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Topic: Do I need a super computer to Run Giga/VOTA?

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  1. #1

    Question Do I need a super computer to Run Giga/VOTA?

    OK - I'm a Mac guy without a clue. Currently I'm running a Mac G5/Logic (w/VSL) as my main sequencer. I already have a custom built VisionDAW (most of the configuration was already done for me) running EWQLSO.

    I want to get Voices of the Apocalypse very soon and want to use a relatively inexpensive dedicated computer to run that and Giga. Can anybody give me some guidance as to what to look for in "low to mid" range PCs to do this inexpensively but effectively?

    Memory needed
    Motherboard
    Soundcard

    Sorry for the dumb questions. Thanks for any help you can offer Mr. Perplexed (me)

  2. #2

    Re: Do I need a super computer to Run Giga/VOTA?

    The main things you need are lots of RAM, a decent GSIF soundcard and a second 7,200 RPM hard drive dedicated to your samples. Given that, you would be hard pressed to find a PC that's too slow to run VOTA/Giga today. Going with an AMD processor is one way to save cash. Getting a well-respected motherboard (like Asus) is a good way to avoid headaches.

    There's also noise to consider. If your PC will be in your soundroom, get quiet components, like a Zalman heatsink/fan. Seagate drives are among the quietest. The Asus motherboards have no fans. That leaves a quiet powersupply and a fanless video card. If the PC will be in another room, get the loud stuff.

    -Jon Fairhurst

  3. #3

    Re: Do I need a super computer to Run Giga/VOTA?

    Thank you!

    Jon, do you recommend I have this built from scratch? If so do you know a good place that can either provide parts or build it for me with the least amount of damage to my wallet?

  4. #4

    Re: Do I need a super computer to Run Giga/VOTA?

    I build mine from scratch. It's not too hard. But if you haven't done it before, and are not a PC person, then attempt it only with the help of a PC nerd. If you have a friend at work/school or a family member of neighbor who has built a PC, go for it.

    If you buy off the shelf, make sure that it supports lots of RAM. I'd recommend 1 to 1.5 Gig. 2.0 max. Have them open the PC and prove to you that it has enough slots to handle that. Also, make sure that it has enough connections for a hard drive.

    There are people on this forum who offer pre-built Giga rigs. They can be a bit pricey, but are most likely to be headache free. I haven't bought any of these, so I can't make a specific recommendation.

    If you decide to build your own, I can give a full parts list with everything that you'll need.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Guyana/Barbados
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    224

    Re: Do I need a super computer to Run Giga/VOTA?

    AMD vs Intel ....
    Any thoughts, jon?

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Castle Rock, Colorado
    Posts
    699

    Re: Do I need a super computer to Run Giga/VOTA?

    For Giga 3 I've heard they are recommending Intel over AMD

    Some helpful pdfs regarding what Giga 3 requires, go to:

    http://www.tascamgiga.com/general.php

  7. #7

    Re: Do I need a super computer to Run Giga/VOTA?

    Quote Originally Posted by JonFairhurst
    I build mine from scratch. It's not too hard. But if you haven't done it before, and are not a PC person, then attempt it only with the help of a PC nerd. If you have a friend at work/school or a family member of neighbor who has built a PC, go for it.

    If you buy off the shelf, make sure that it supports lots of RAM. I'd recommend 1 to 1.5 Gig. 2.0 max. Have them open the PC and prove to you that it has enough slots to handle that. Also, make sure that it has enough connections for a hard drive.

    There are people on this forum who offer pre-built Giga rigs. They can be a bit pricey, but are most likely to be headache free. I haven't bought any of these, so I can't make a specific recommendation.

    If you decide to build your own, I can give a full parts list with everything that you'll need.
    Jon,

    I would really appreciate that a lot! Thanks for offering - because although I can see the value of the prebuilt ones my wallet isn't cooperating. I'm a quick learner but as I said before, I'm mostly Mac and use a prebuilt PC as a hardware sampler (QLEW)

  8. #8

    Re: Do I need a super computer to Run Giga/VOTA?

    Okay, here goes my recommendations...

    Case: Get one locally to save shipping. Make sure it's easy open. Don't worry about the power supply. Get one without or with a cheap one.

    Power Supply: I use the 300W Fortron. It's very quiet and tested to work up to 390W. When it goes over 390W it shuts down gracefully. And it's cheap!
    http://store.yahoo.com/directron/fsp30060atv.html

    Case Fans: remove them! Stay quiet.

    Floppy: None

    Mouse: Anything optical and USB.

    Keyboard: I like the Microsoft Natural ones. Get whatever

    Monitor: CRTs are cheap. Get something that can run 1600 x 1200. Probably 17".

    Motherboard: ASUS. Either the A7N8X-Deluxe (AMD Athlon) or the P4C800-Deluxe (Pentium 4). Not cheap, but high quality, lots of features and no stinking fan.

    Processor: Chose AMD Athlon or Intel P4 and find your "sweet spot". AMDs are cheaper. Both work. Prices get steep at the high end of the scale. Skip the factory fan option.

    CPU fan: Zalman. CNPS6000-Cu for the AMD. CNPS7000-Cu for the Intel. http://store.yahoo.com/directron/cnps60001.html
    http://store.yahoo.com/directron/cnps7000cu.html

    RAM: At least one meg. 1.5 is sweet. 2.0 is max, and you don't get much Giga performance over 1.5. Go with a name brand and a "heat spreader".

    Audio Card: Audiophile 2496 is the cheapest. I like the Echo MIA for its balanced I/O and multiple virtual outs.

    Video Card: Just about anything without a fan. Here's one
    option

    Hard Drives: Two, at least. I like the Seagate ATA-V series, since it's quiet. If you want more performance, the Western Digital Raptors are nice, but will make more noise.

    CD/DVD: Probably a CD-RW & DVD-ROM. Lots to chose from.

    OS: Windows XP Home should do it.

    Audio monitors: The best you can afford.

    That should do it. If there's a Frys in your area, you're set. Directron.com is great for the quiet parts. Atacom.com has always given me good service and reasonable prices. Newegg.com is sometimes cheaper.

    Best of luck!

    -Jon Fairhurst

  9. #9

    Thumbs up Re: Do I need a super computer to Run Giga/VOTA?

    Jon! That's an incredibly detailed response! Thank you so much. It was exactly what I was looking for. Now comes the task of finding a PC guy who could help me put it together..

  10. #10

    Re: Do I need a super computer to Run Giga/VOTA?

    Quote Originally Posted by Chananda
    Jon! That's an incredibly detailed response! Thank you so much. It was exactly what I was looking for. Now comes the task of finding a PC guy who could help me put it together..
    I've got two similar PCs at work and three at home (mine, my wife's and my oldest son's). Only my home PC has the MIA and the extra hard drives, but all five machines use roughly the same parts, they're all AMDs and they're all reasonably quiet (though none are silent). Ironically, my audio PC - with three HDs - is the loudest of them all!

    Anyway, I've done this enough times to just about recite this stuff from memory. And I'm confident enough that it works well too.

    -Jon Fairhurst

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