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Need advice on building Dual Xeon

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So, unless the update involves a major recode (which 64bit doesn't necessarily imply), I don't think you'll see much improvement in PT itself by having more than 6 REAL cores.

We've been told over and over again by Avid that the reason we need new hardware, and that the reason it is taking so long is that 64bit PT11 is a major recode. That's their story anyway, and they have been sticking to it.

I can't say anything about the plug ins, it depends on what they actually do

The plug-ins are what process the audio in real time. Some of them are not computationally intensive, and some of them are. for my test I made stereo tracks with 5 very intensive plugs. I kept duplicating the tracks until the machine started to give me playback errors, which are errors in which the machine stops playing back.

In it's current iteration, I'd suspect running PT with cores set to 4 (and a utilization of 100%) would perform as fast as any other arrangement. Assuming the plugins are not computationally intensive, there should be a significant speed up going from 4 to 6 real cores, as ancillary processes (plug ins, OS, IO, etc) wouldn't have to share resources with the PT threads (since you'll have 2 real cores available to handle them, not impinging on the PT thread pipeline flow).

I've included a pic of what it looks like when Pro Tools is running that same 40 voice session with no plug ins active, then halfway through that pic I turn all the plugs back on (all 100 of them, which I will admit is actually a lot) I had Pro Tools set to use 7 of the 8 cores at %100.

Thanks again, your input is really helpful
 

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Yeah, it's only using 4 threads, and the plugins do not play nice with HT (not much does, in best case scenarios a HT core is about equivalent to 15-20% of a real core, worst case it can hurt, especially pre-Sandy Bridge).

Just for kicks, try setting it to 4 cores, 100%, I doubt it will be much different (other than 4 cores will have higher utilization)...but shrug.

Beyond that, it depends on how much faith you want to put in their statements. If true, and if time is money, it may well be that you'd benefit from a 2P xeon set up. If you believe them, that it's a significant recode, I'd be very cautious of a sr-2. It's a lot easier to take advantage of SB/IB enhancements than code for better multithreaded performance. If they've done the latter, it's pretty safe to assume they have done the former.

EDIT: Forgot to mention that the 2P lga2011 route doesn't have to be done all at once. You can start with one processor, and add another at a later time.
 
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