P5E motherboard seems to fix everything

2008 Jan 4

Salute to my system integrator (cooltechpc.com) who managed to get the P5K mobo swapped out for the P5E and burned in, and the system returned to me in a week!

I haven’t really been leaning that hard on this system, but it seems solid as a rock compared to all the flaky performance I reported in my recent blog entries.

On the Ableton Live forum there’s a performance thread where you can download a Set and run it to compare your system’s performance to other configurations. The result of about 26% CPU usage that I get seems to fall in line with other people with 2.4 GHz Core 2 Quad / ASUS P5E / 2GB DDR-500 RAM setups.

One tiny annoyance I’ve been noticing: occasionally the mouse will “stick” just for a second when attempting to adjust a control. I get the feeling it’s some kind of process swapping problem that I might be able to fix with minor tweakage (e.g. Background vs. Programs option in Performance). In any case I can now run projects that would cause my 2 GHz Pentium 4 system to fall over badly.

update on 2011 Feb 12

I am still running this mobo without a care in the world. Also still running Windows XP. As far as I;m concerned, I’d be happy if I didn’t ever have to use any later version of Windows ever. I have updated the P5E’s BIOS a few times (currently at version 1201), and gone to 4 x 1GB DRAM, which was well worth it.

Things were going so well I decided to investigate the overclockability of this system. I’m currently running it at 2.94 GHz (the Q6600 chip runs at 2.40 GHz by default) without any problems whatsoever. Other people have pushed it to the low 3.x GHz range but I don’t have any interest in doing that at present. The 4GB DRAM seems to be useful, especially since I am now using a software drum package called BFD Drums that uses a huge amount of memory.


2 Responses

  1. I found your blog as a result of doing research to build my own rackmounted DAW. Of particular interest is the fact that you settled on the same mobo/proc combo that I was planning on using, with the Q6600 and the P5K.

    Looks like you’ve had some troubles with the P5K. Do you know if those troubles are restricted to the particular HD vendor? I was thinking of getting Seagate SATA drives as opposed to the Western Digital ones.

    Also, it looks like the P5E supports 1600MHz frontside bus. Since the P5K doesn’t, I assume that means your replacement solution was more expensive than the one you originally tried?

    One last thing… I haven’t looked a whole lot at Csound but it sounds interesting. Looks like your new DAW is an XP machine, were you also going to use Csound in linux? Since I’m building a machine from scratch and have plenty of linux experience, I was thinking it might be time to build a full-fledged linux DAW, or at least a dual-boot XP/linux DAW. Have you done this?

    Sorry for the longwinded reply. If these questions would be better served in a forum somewhere, just tell me where to go. 🙂


  2. Originally, the vendor who built my pc recommended adding a jumper “opt1” to the installed WD SATA drive. After more reports from their users, apparently, they determined that there were too many other problems being seen with the P5K mobo, so they offered to exchange it for no cost. Even though it cost me another couple weeks in shipping time, I’m happy now with the performance and (so far) the stability of the resulting system.

    You might also want to look on various message boards, like ASUS own one, silentpcreview.com, or any where they’re building PCs for audio use and see what people are saying there.

    On Csound in Linux: I think it’s a great idea for an experimenter or visionary. At my age and situation in life, I get a little frustrated and want some semi-instant gratification which is probably why I use Ableton Live most of the time…and of course, the Csound forums themselves are good places to ask questions and learn. (see link to right)

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