running a live set off usb flash drive

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
forge
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Post by forge » Thu May 01, 2008 10:01 pm

@Lo-Key - how much was yours and where did you get it? the chinese computer shop up the road keeps advertising 1GB sticks for about 10 bucks and I've been meaning to get one

cheers

Dominik
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Post by Dominik » Thu May 01, 2008 11:54 pm

readyboost seems interesting. i read it will supported in vista fast performance,xp don't know.
here is a list for supported usb sticks.
http://www.grantgibson.co.uk/misc/readyboost/

Dominik
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Post by Dominik » Fri May 02, 2008 12:00 am

http://www.eboostr.com/

here we are. readyboost for xp. whatever it is.

fishmonkey
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Post by fishmonkey » Fri May 02, 2008 2:19 am

Lo-Key Fu wrote:Just to dredge up an old thread with a little bit of new information:

Since starting this journey with a Corsair Voyager GT 4GB drive, I have since done a little more research and found that the Lexar JumpDrive Lightning 4GB is of comparable price, and seems to perform significantly faster on my own system(s).

Roughly speaking, I am getting about 23 Megabytes/second from the Corsair and a solid 30 Megabytes/second from the Lexar.

Just food for thought for anyone considering this option.
i bought a Corsair Voyager 8GB a wee while back (couldn't justify the premium $$ for the faster GT), and i get the spec'd read speeds of around 22MB/s, on my MacBook Pro...

i guess your Voyager GT doesn't like your USB ports...

fishmonkey
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Post by fishmonkey » Fri May 02, 2008 3:10 am

just thought i'd add that it's access/seek times and sustained throughput that really matter when working with multiple tracks of audio....

one track of 16 bit/44.1kHz audio:
= 16 x 44.1 x 1000 = 705600 bits per second
= .0882 megabytes per second

so this means 100 tracks of 16/44.1 audio requires shifting 8.82MB/s of data...

USB flash drives have a real advantage over hard drives in this scenario because their access/seek times are so much faster... exactly why the Vista ready boost thingo is possible...

remember that a hard drive is basically a really fast magnetic turntable! no hard drive can compete on seek times with a solid state memory device...

flash drive write speeds are generally much much slower than their read speeds though...

the bottom line is, for reading multiple tracks of audio (e.g. playing a live set), a flash drive is a perfectly good solution, and you don't even need a really fast (i.e. expensive) one unless you are working with a ridiculous number of tracks...

forge
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Post by forge » Fri May 02, 2008 3:29 am

Dominik wrote:readyboost seems interesting. i read it will supported in vista fast performance,xp don't know.
here is a list for supported usb sticks.
http://www.grantgibson.co.uk/misc/readyboost/
I tried readyboost, not sure it made any difference - I think the general shitty performance of Vista out wieghs it

what's everybody using to test these seek time benchmarks? I'd like to test mine

cheers

Lo-Key Fu
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Post by Lo-Key Fu » Fri May 02, 2008 7:34 am

@Forge:
Bear in mind I am from Perth (Australia) - and my online suppliers were picked more on proximity and stock level than price at the time - so this info may not help you a great deal; but for the record: I bought the Corsair from Foxcomp Technologies for AUD$111.88 (including postage). The Lexar came from Core Computers for AUD$114.90 (including postage).

Also, I have been using HD Tune for benching purposes, but others have recommended HD Tach too. Hope this helps!


@Dominic:
Readyboost sounds interesting mate, thanks for the links! I'm sticking to XP for the time being, but whenever I decide to make the move to Vista I'll be sure to check it out.


@fishmonkey:
I think I might have been unlucky enough to receive a less-than-perfect drive with the Corsair GT as I have benched it on a large number of machines with no better performance than 23 Megabytes/second (spec is supposedly 34 Megabytes/second which many others have reported getting). Corsair support have been helpful though and happy for me to return it for replacement; but as I played a brief tour last month it has been in constant use with no chance to swap it out of my rig until now. I'll likely send the Corsair in and see if I can get it changed over for one that performs to spec.

Dominik
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Post by Dominik » Fri May 02, 2008 2:54 pm

the idea of eboost is simply make the flash drive to a ram stick.
i read some threads,people are very happy with it on xp but not on vista (right now).
i read the voyager gt 8 and gt 16 gb don't use the fancy nand technology
but they put the older "technology" inside.don't know to tell in english.
the "read and write discussions" are more relevant if you stream from disk.
once everything is in the ram,any drive is mostly quiet.
i like the size of usb flash sticks.
when i'm going more into flash i will watch out for sdhc cards.
for example.

4096MB takeMS SDHC Hyper Speed 133x (sd-card)

read and write around 20 mb/s.

i wanted to buy one today for 22 € but it was sold. :D
the cards are not nice but cheaper.
take care of the x60,x100,x266 in the specs.this is how fast they are.

then i want to install live on it!!!

siddhu
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Post by siddhu » Fri May 02, 2008 3:21 pm

I just found this.....never seen one before:

A Firewire flash drive stick!

Could be the ultimate solution.

http://www.kanguru.com/fireflash.html

forge
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Post by forge » Tue May 06, 2008 6:13 am

Dominik wrote:http://www.eboostr.com/

here we are. readyboost for xp. whatever it is.
Hi

I just downloaded the demo for this and ran the speed test and it said something like:

direct access speed: 4.3MB/s
cache something or other speed(cant remember): 11.3 MB/s
ratio: 2.66

what does this mean? does it mean my USB stick is not quick enough?

Dominik
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Post by Dominik » Tue May 06, 2008 6:43 am

the hole flash thing is a nutshell,
after reading an afternoon about it.
most usb sticks are formatted in fat 32,right?
i bought mine 3 days ago after reading a test.
in fat 32 it have much lower write speed.
after formatting to ntsc, mine is three times faster.
don't know if it works for yours,though.
i think in some month the era of high speed flash take off..

forge
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Post by forge » Tue May 06, 2008 8:10 am

Dominik wrote:the hole flash thing is a nutshell,
after reading an afternoon about it.
most usb sticks are formatted in fat 32,right?
i bought mine 3 days ago after reading a test.
in fat 32 it have much lower write speed.
after formatting to ntsc, mine is three times faster.
don't know if it works for yours,though.
i think in some month the era of high speed flash take off..
thanks

even with this I think it seems faster - I've loaded a set I've been using that uses a lot of the sample content of the Live suite - a lot of sampled drums and EIC sounds and my laptop has been really struggling with it - like, trying to load another program like Firefox or something will make things very slow

right now I am playing that set while writing this email and burning a dvd and it's performing quite well - although there are still some glitches when a new sound comes in

so it would seem to make a difference

but now you've said about using it NTSC I'm going to try that

cheers

forge
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Post by forge » Tue May 06, 2008 9:44 am

Dominik wrote:the hole flash thing is a nutshell,
after reading an afternoon about it.
most usb sticks are formatted in fat 32,right?
i bought mine 3 days ago after reading a test.
in fat 32 it have much lower write speed.
after formatting to ntsc, mine is three times faster.
don't know if it works for yours,though.
i think in some month the era of high speed flash take off..
this is from the eBoostr site:
Q: Is it better to use NTFS or to use FAT32 for the usb drives?
A: There is no difference in speed between FAT32 and NTFS formatted drives. If your thumb drive is less or equal to 4GB we recommend using FAT32. Use NTFS if you want the cache file sized more than 4GB (make sure that the drive has a good write speed, otherwise disable the “write-cache” option for this drive to prevent “Windows Delayed Write Failed” errors).

Bunky Freaks
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Post by Bunky Freaks » Thu May 15, 2008 12:25 pm

Just a small addendum: i successfully used two different usb sticks with the live set data on them on my last few gigs. Performance- and stabilitywise it was the best addition to my live setup for a long time.

The afformentioned cheapo one from cn memory and the newer one is a 4 gb corsair voyager (not the GT version). The corsair stick is very well built, even specified as being "water-proof". If someone spills beer or other nasty liquids over your setup at least your liveset data will survive..

So, after intensive real world usage i highly recommend trying this out! Nothing is more "professional" than a flawlessly working system :)

cheers

Froschfinger
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Post by Froschfinger » Sat May 17, 2008 11:09 am

Reading this thread, I get really curious about the flash drive thingy, as you report so much speed enhancement. I have read that the Buffalo Firestix might be even faster - did anyone test one of those expensive bars?`Those sticks don't occupy yet two USB ports at the same time if they are placed beside each other (which is the case on most laptops).
But what's the use in that
When you lie?

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