Time for mini laptops yet?

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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by toad » Wed May 20, 2009 1:12 pm

meatballfulton wrote:
toad wrote: I use the Behringer UMA25S as a MIDI controller and audio interface.
How does the UMA sound? I've seen a few reviews claiming the audio interface wasn't very good. How low can you get the latency?
I don't know how low you can go, but mine is set to 6 ms at the moment, which is more than enough for softsynth playing. I could probably even raise it a few milliseconds to save CPU. I haven't tried recording anything through it yet.
The audio quality (output) is OK, but i guess the 16 bit resolution is not enough for studio use by today's standards. I couldn't care less, though :)
And contrary to the review in SOS, the headphone output is plenty loud.

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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by propel » Wed May 20, 2009 9:44 pm

Okay so i went to the store today and downloaded the impOSCAR demo as well as ASIO4ALL onto an acer aspire one

I gotta say it didn't work too well :? , the sound kept clipping a lot and holding notes i didn't press :( ... Is this something an audio interface would fix?

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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by toad » Thu May 21, 2009 4:15 pm

Before i got the UMA25 i also had crackling problems with the latest version of asio4all, until i downloaded v 1.8, which worked perfectly.
But yeah, a proper audio interface with asio drivers would most likely work better, i know mine does.
Also, the old Windows tweaks, like setting processor scheduling to "background services", are relevant again for these less powerful laptops. Disabling wifi also seems to help.

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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by th0mas » Thu May 21, 2009 4:24 pm

Sadly most of these netbooks come loaded down with tons of crapware too, my aspire one (with no optical drive) came with DVD playing software that insisted on loading itself at boot time to put itself in the tray in case I hotplug a usb DVD drive and happen to want to play a movie on it!

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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by JSRockit » Thu May 21, 2009 5:31 pm

My HP came without much of anything pre-loaded, but my g-friends came with a ton of nonsense. Weird. I wouldn't want to use one of these for music, the vertical resolution of the screens requires too much scrolling.
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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by propel » Thu Jun 04, 2009 5:57 am

Alright so my mom is thinking of getting one of these netbooks (not sure which one she'll pick but they seem pretty similar) so ill be able to try a few things in more details than just at best buy's demo

So I take it from what I heard here that an audio interface would help with the clipping i was getting when i installed the imposcar demo? How does that work?

Thanks,

David

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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by Stab Frenzy » Thu Jun 04, 2009 6:07 am

propel wrote:So I take it from what I heard here that an audio interface would help with the clipping i was getting when i installed the imposcar demo? How does that work?
Probably not, unless it was clipping caused by a really bad internal soundcard not having high enough voltage rails to recreate the full amount of its DAC, which is really unlikely. Clipping (on the output) happens when you try to recreate a waveform that's larger than the maximum output level of the DAC. To fix it you just turn the volume down, it's easy.

The hung notes and stuff sounds like you've got a lot more going on than just clipping though.

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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by JSRockit » Thu Jun 04, 2009 12:58 pm

I would never want to use one of these for music. The vertical res is a nightmare for even internet browsing.
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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by jimi_t » Mon Dec 07, 2009 4:43 pm

I've used Live w/ some basic enough VSTi's on the Samsung NC-10 and it ran fine. Similarly, using Virtual DJ or Mixmeister (Traktor is asking a bit much) combined with my tiny Hercules I/O and midi controller it becomes the ultimate backpack afterparty rig out.
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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by nvbrkr » Tue Dec 08, 2009 5:26 pm

Seems to be a bit of a necro thread, but I've been considering these things too. I also have mostly Mellotron and sample playback applications in mind.

I don't think the latency clipping can be avoided if you're not using an audio interface. My own desktop PC is a modest 1.6 Mhz AMD with a cheap motherboard and it cannot really run a single softsynth without problems on its internal soundchip and no ASIO / WDM drivers. So If these things cost around 300-400 I wouldn't except much from their built-in sound chips either, so an external audio interface would be a necessary purchase as well.

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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by th0mas » Tue Dec 08, 2009 6:17 pm

I got rid of my acer aspire one and upgraded to a real laptop. It handled reason ok, and was just barely fast enough to get me through a djing gig with traktor, but as I moved into VSTs it could not handle it whatsoever. Plus the screen was a real pain.

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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by nvbrkr » Tue Dec 08, 2009 9:16 pm

Did you use it with an USB audio interface or did you just use the integrated sound chip?

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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by jimi_t » Tue Dec 08, 2009 9:20 pm

I'm quite anachronistic in that regard in that my main 'big' laptop is an old Amilo with a desktop 2.66ghz PIV in it - I find it completely wipes the floor with any of those dual core centrinos (not the duos mind) in a live performance environment. The NC10 is my sisters and I love borrowing it - its just not got enough processor heft for me to justify buying one of my own yet.

@Nvbrkr - Why in gods name wouldn't you use an audio I/O? A cheap USB one is less than $50! Whenever I use the onboard sound on a laptop with any-way decent cans I can hear the Graphics Card shifting frequencies; drives me mad. You also get an awful hum off the headphone socket if you're using the kind of ghetto 3.55mm to RCA leads I'd use for jacking into whatever PA is lying about.

@Anyone looking for a VSTi Rompler - Here's a guy who shoehorned an eeePC netbook into the case of the MS20 Legacy Controller, letting it autoboot into a small footprint VST wrapper (http://www.tobybear.de/p_minihost.html) so he could have a standalone, digital MS20.

http://nostromo.noisepages.com/2009/04/ ... tal-ms-20/
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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by nvbrkr » Wed Dec 09, 2009 11:34 am

"@Nvbrkr - Why in gods name wouldn't you use an audio I/O? A cheap USB one is less than $50!"

Yeah, that was my point too. :)

I was suspecting that people who have had trouble here really weren't using those. I once had someone telling me that you're going to need at least 1GB of RAM to make 8+ track productions on a PC without glitches. I just had to stare at him with a blank face and ask him whether he has ever heard of audio interfaces.

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Re: Time for mini laptops yet?

Post by redchapterjubilee » Wed Dec 09, 2009 3:42 pm

i was running Reason 2.5 just dandy on an old P3 machine with 512MB of RAM. The netbooks have faster processors and more RAM than that so I would imagine they could run minimal synth scenarios just fine. But yeah, gotta have some sort of USB I/O.
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