DAW and SSD optimization

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Dyonight
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2013/12/04 23:21:38 (permalink)

DAW and SSD optimization

Hi,
 
I had stability issue with my daw and I decided to do a clean install of windows 7 and Sonar.
 
Since I had a hard time finding a nice tweeking guide, I took some advices from Presonus, Focusrite, Sweetwater and from the site http://www.thessdreview.com which is really nice and I have merged all this togheter to make a somewhat complete guide to optimize a PC with SSD's for audio recording.
 
Note that I took the installation steps from cakewalk to install the VS system if some ask themselves how to do this.
 
Of course, if you feel something is missing or unappropriate, thanks to let me know.
 
Hope it will help someone :)
 
Install Windows

 
Install ALL Windows updates
Start > Windows update > Check for updates

Repete until it shows "Windows is now up-to-date"
 
Install SONAR
Dimension Pro
Loops and One Shots
Rapture
Additional Content from the 4th installation disc
 
Optional Installations:
VS-700R IO Editor
Free Dimension Pro Expansion Packs 1-3
Rapture Expansion Packs 1 & 2
Fantom VS Instrument Definitions
Fantom VS x64 Hotfix
 
VS-700
Install latest Drivers
 
Configuring SONAR for use with the VS-700 SET
 
1. In SONAR go to Edit | Preferences
2. Set your Driver Mode to "ASIO"
3. Set Playback Timing Master > "MAIN (VS-700)"
4. Control Surfaces "Add New Controller/Surface" 
5. Under MIDI > Devices select the following MIDI ports under both Inputs and Outputs: CONSOLE (VS-700), FANTOM VS (VS-700), and IO MIDI (VS-700).
NOTE: Do NOT select "IO (VS-700)". 
6. Under MIDI > Control Surfaces click on the "Add New Controller/Surface" button on the top right. For Controller/Surface select "VS-700" and for the Input Port and Output Port select "CONSOLE (VS-700)". Click [OK].
7. Finally in Edit | Preferences click [Apply] and then [Close]
 
Windows optimization for DAW
 
Disable User Account Control (UAC)
1. This helps alleviate and prevent installation and registration issues.  To disable UAC, click the start button.  In the Search Box type UAC and press ENTER.
 
2. In the UAC window, slide the slider down to ‘never notify’ and press OK
3. Reboot your PC.
 
Disable USB Power Management
1. Open Control Panel, then click on Device Manager.

2. Open the Universal Serial Bus Controllers menu.
3. Right click on the USB Root Hub in the menu and choose Properties
4. Go to the Power Management tab and un-check the the box to ‘allow the computer to turn off…’
5. Repeat this for each of the USB Root Hub’s that show up in device manager
 
Disable Startup Items
1. Click the Windows Start button and in the search box, type msconfig, then press ENTER

2. Go to the Startup Tab and choose ‘disable all’ in the bottom right corner.
** NOTE: after doing this Pro Tools users must check the box for “Digidesign MME Binder”**
 
3. Next, navigate to the Services tab.  Check the box at the bottom to “hide all Microsoft Services”
4. Choose “Disable All” on the bottom right corner. 
**NOTE: Pro Tools users must check the boxes for “Digidesign MME Refresh Service”, “digiSPTIService” and “PACE License Services”
 
5. Click OK and reboot the computer.
 
Change Processor Scheduling
1. Click on the Windows Start button, then right click ‘Computer’ and choose Properties

2.  Click on ‘Advanced System Settings’
3.  Click the Settings button under the Performance section
4.  Set Processor Scheduling to ‘Background Services’
5.  Click the OK button.  You will have to reboot for changes to take effect.
 
Data execution prevention
Advanced > Data Execution Prevention > Turn on DEP for essential Windows programs and services only.
 
Adjust Power Options
1. Click on the Windows Start button and choose Control Panel

2. In Control Panel choose Power Options
3. In Power Options, choose High Performance
4. To the right, click Change Plan Settings
5. Choose “Change Advanced Power Settings”
6. At the top of the Advanced Settings window, change to “High Performance” in the menu.
- Open USB settings> USB Selective Suspend, and change this to “Disabled”.

- Open Processor Power Management > Minimum Processor State> 100%
 
7. Click OK, then Save Changes.
 
 Disable Sound Exclusive Mode
This one is untested and it appear that ASIO need this and some recommend both checkboxes to be checked. I'll update this one when I'll have it tested.
 
1. Click on the Windows Start button and choose Control Panel.

2. Choose Sound.
3. Within the Sound settings, select your device and click Properties.
4. Advanced tab > uncheck the two boxes under Exclusive Mode.
5. Do this for all devices under the Playback and Recording tabs in Sound Settings.
 
Speedstep or Processor Throttling
In BIOS, look for “Intel Speedstep”, EIST,  or “AMD Cool n’ Quiet”, and disable it.  
 
 
Disable HPET
Some says that it reduce latency a bit when disabled and other says that it enhance the audio quality when enable. Seems to be on Intel system only so I won't be able to test it is it's true.
 
Search in BIOS for "High Precision Event Timer" or HPET and disable it for latency gain
 
Not all BIOS offer this option, you can go to Device manager > expand "System Devices"
 
 
Look for High Precision Event Timer. Right click on it and click disable. Will only disable the driver not the device.
 
Enable DMA (Direct memory access) on each IDE channel
- Open device manager 
- Expand the IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers category then double click on each one of the IDE channels
- Under the 'Advanced settings' tab, make sure the 'Enable DMA' box is ticked in device properties
Note : this only applies to some hardware and if this option is not available, you should not worry about completing this step.
 
There are also two other drive properties to consider. These can be accessed by going to Computer and right-clicking on the drive in question, and:
 
* Under the General tab, make sure "Compress this drive..." is unchecked.
* Under the Quota tab, you have "Do not limit disk usage" selected, but nothing else.
 
Onboard Devices
Wireless Internet cards and audio cards are notorious to cause click/pops
Device Manager > right-click on any device and choose "Disable." 
 
Personalization
Right-click on the desktop > Personalize

1. Screen Saver > set your screen saver to "none."
2. Sounds >  sound scheme to "No sounds."
 
Check Your RAM
Start > Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Memory Diagnostics Tool 

 
Virus Protection and Internet Security (Online user)
A light antivirus and a good browser like Firefox with the Adblock Plus extension can do miracles.

Recommended = AVG or Microsoft Security Center. 
 
Windows Security Center (Offline user)
Your computer will be ultra-vulnerable so use another machine to access the internet or simply apply the previous "Virus Protection and Internet Security (Online user)" settings
 
 
Start > Control Panel > Security Center
Windows Update > Change Settings > Never Check for Updates... > OK 
Windows Firewall > Change settings > Off > OK 
Windows Defender > Tools > Options > uncheck "Automatically scan my computer" > Save
 
Don't install any Antivirus
 
Remove Windows security alerts:

Right-click the alert icon in system tray > "Change the way Security Center alerts me" > "Don't notify me and don't display the icon."

 
Bitlocker
If you wish, enable Bitlocker for passive backup drive only
 

Start > Control Panel > Control Panel Home > Security > BitLocker Drive Encryption
 
Enable it for your backup drives only
 
SSD Optimization
 
ENABLE TRIM
Windows key + R > Run as Administrator > type = fsutil behavior set disabledeletenotify 0 > Enter
 
TURN SYSTEM PROTECTION OFF – CAPACITY/ENDURANCE
Control Panel > System > System Protection > Disable system protection

 
TURN OFF PAGEFILE – CAPACITY/ENDURANCE
To get to Pagefile, go to Control Panel/System/System Protection/Advanced/ Performance and then click on ‘Settings’.

 
TURN HIBERNATION OFF - CAPACITY
Run > CMD >  Right click and select ‘Run as Administrator’ > type ‘powercfg -h off‘ > enter 
 
 
ENABLE FASTER BOOT THROUGH MSCONFIG – PERFORMANCE
Run > MSConfig > Boot > Check ‘No GUI Boot’ > save
 
 
TURN OFF MULTI-BOOT SELECTION - PERFORMANCE
Right-click Computer > Properties > Advanced System Settings > StartUp and Recovery > uncheck "Time to Display List of Operating Systems" > OK
 
 
ENABLE OPTIMIZE DRIVES – PERFORMANCE (Windows 8)
Windows System Assessment Tool (WINSAT) > Optimize drives
 
 
DISABLE DRIVE INDEXING – ENDURANCE
Start > type in "indexing options" > press Enter > Modify. In the "Change selected locations" window, uncheck everything except for the Start menu, located in C: > ProgramData > Microsoft > Windows.
 
 
DISABLE WINDOWS SEARCH – ENDURANCE
Windows key + S > scroll down to Windows Search > Stop > Disable
 
 
DISABLE SUPERFETCH – ENDURANCE
Windows key + S > scroll down to Superfetch > Stop > Disable
 
 
DISABLING PREFETCH – ENDURANCE
Windows key + S > scroll down to Superfetch > Stop > Disable

 
Confirm the operation 
Windows key + S >  type ‘Regedit’ > Enter

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\SessionManager\Memory Management\PrefetchParameters

Delete Superfetch/Prefetch key if there
 
UNDERSTANDING SSD DISKSPACE
To ensure top performance and endurance, it is best to leave AT LEAST 15% free at all times to accomplish this, depending on the capacity of the SSD.  
 
 
MOVE DOC FOLDER TO HDD – CAPACITY
Keeping in tune with the observing of SSD space above, Windows 7 and Windows 8 provide the ability to change folder locations, enabling your relocation of key folders to a hard drive.  This is key for mass storage of such things as music, pictures and video.
 
 
ADJUSTING CPU STATES – PERFORMANCE
THIS TWEAK IS NOT ADVISED FOR THOSE THAT AREN’T CONFIDENT IN THEIR PC ABILITIES AND WE DO NOT RECOMMEND IT.  IF NOT MONITORED PROPERLY, IT MAY RESULT IN HARDWARE DAMAGE .
 
This last optimization will provide a significant performance boost, however, it is not readily available in any Optimization Guides that we are aware of and, in fact, discussion really isn’t that prevalent considering the boost that can be obtained.  
 
It consists of shutting off C1E, C3 and C6 states through the CPU management console of your bios which shuts down regulation of the CPU.
 
Basically, it will disable all cpu power saving features resulting in more heat. Proper ventilation and careful temperature monitoring is required after this adjustment. Be careful if your cpu is already overclocked.
 
THE SSD TOOLBOX
There can be many advantages to choosing the right SSD which provides the buyer with many choices.  Of particular interest are Toolboxes from companies such as Samsung, Intel and OCZ that allow such things as automated firmware updates, secure erase, resetting, formatting, adjusting over provisioning, automated optimizations as well as banchmark testing of the drives.  All companies update their toolboxes on a frequent basis and they can be obtained, free of charge, by clicking on the company name above.  In addition, Samsung and Intel provide free data migration software.
 
post edited by Dyonight - 2013/12/05 17:13:30

Sonar Platinum (Latest monthly update) / Roland A300-pro / AMD FX-8350 / Firepro V4900 / 16gb ram / RME HDSPe MadiFx
#1

4 Replies Related Threads

    Rob[at]Sound-Rehab
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    Re: DAW and SSD optimization 2013/12/05 10:38:34 (permalink)
    Hey Dyonight!
     
    This makes a great compilation and a resource to retrieve from this forum!
     
    Despite educating myself on that subject over the past, I still learned a few things here ... and I still believe that tweaks are mandatory for optimum DAW performance these days (I know many on this forum now claim the opposite).
     
    Cheers
     
    Rob

    GOOD TUNES LAST FOREVER
      +++   Visit the Rehab   +++
     
    DAW: Platinum/X3e, win10 64 bit, i7-3930K (6x3.2GHz), Asus Sabertooth X79, 32 GB DDR3 1600MHz, ATI HD 5450, 120 GB SSD OCZ Agility3, 2x 1TB WD HDD SATA 600
    Audio-Interface: 2x MOTU 1248 AVB, Focusrite OctoPre, (Roland Octa-Capture)   Control-Surface: VS-700C 
    VSTi: WAVES, NI K10u, FabFilter, IK, ... (too many really) 
    #2
    Rob[at]Sound-Rehab
    Max Output Level: -47 dBFS
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    Re: DAW and SSD optimization 2013/12/05 13:58:02 (permalink)
    Dyonight


     Disable Sound Exclusive Mode
    1. Click on the Windows Start button and choose Control Panel.

    2. Choose Sound.
    3. Within the Sound settings, select your device and click Properties.
    4. Advanced tab > uncheck the two boxes under Exclusive Mode.
    5. Do this for all devices under the Playback and Recording tabs in Sound Settings.


    Not sure if that is to be generally recommended; additionally available information tells me the opposite; VS devices have this enabled by default and if you're aiming at lowest latency, I believe this ought to remain enabled ...
     
    But pls educate me, if you have a more detailed understanding

    GOOD TUNES LAST FOREVER
      +++   Visit the Rehab   +++
     
    DAW: Platinum/X3e, win10 64 bit, i7-3930K (6x3.2GHz), Asus Sabertooth X79, 32 GB DDR3 1600MHz, ATI HD 5450, 120 GB SSD OCZ Agility3, 2x 1TB WD HDD SATA 600
    Audio-Interface: 2x MOTU 1248 AVB, Focusrite OctoPre, (Roland Octa-Capture)   Control-Surface: VS-700C 
    VSTi: WAVES, NI K10u, FabFilter, IK, ... (too many really) 
    #3
    Dyonight
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    Re: DAW and SSD optimization 2013/12/05 17:15:27 (permalink)
    Thank you for the comment Freefly, I added a note until I test it myself. Sweetwater recommend to do this in windows 7 and some say that ASIO need this checked to work.  Maybe it's not worth the hassle ;)

    Sonar Platinum (Latest monthly update) / Roland A300-pro / AMD FX-8350 / Firepro V4900 / 16gb ram / RME HDSPe MadiFx
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    garybrun
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    Re: DAW and SSD optimization 2013/12/11 06:22:54 (permalink)
    A couple I didnt know there... thank you.

    Sonar Platinum 64bit, Win 10 64 bit, English,
    Intel Core i7 4960X @ 3.67GHz, ASRock Motherboard, 48GB DDR3 1600MHz, Nvidea NVS 510, Intel 750 1.2 SSD, 488GB SSD, 300GB SSD, 22TB in SATA
    Hardware: VS-700 set ASIO, Presonus RM32ai, Studio Live III 32, Studiolive 32R,  RME Fireface 800, Matrox MX02 Rack, Roland Integra 7, Roland A-88, Edirol R-4 Pro, Focusrite Liquid Channel x 2, Jomeek Studio Channel VC1Qcs, Ultra Dyne 9024, TD30KV, Komplete 9 Ultimate, Monitors: Focal TRIO6 BE, JBL Studio Monitor 4412, SE Monroe Egg 150, Avantone x 2.
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