[ardour-users] newbie and 1st Q

Mark Knecht markknecht at gmail.com
Fri Sep 16 07:26:02 PDT 2005

On 9/16/05, TommyDrum <mycooc at yahoo.it> wrote:
> Hash: SHA1
> O/H Geoff Beasley ??????:
> > Quality costs, but not much more ! Look around for boards that sport
> > NVidia or Via chipsets. They are better. Via had a truck load of woes
> > with Windoze, but not Linux to my knowledge. Modern Via chips are as
> > fast and reliable as any other. If someone can prove otherwise I would
> > be interested to know.
> Ehmmm... I have to disagree with you:
> Via chipsets have been proven disastrous for audio work in linux, as is
> stated also on the ardour website: http://ardour.org/requirements.php
> Some extra googling can prove me right. Of course this could have
> changed in the meanwhile, but I wouldn't count on it.

I have used many Via chipsets in my desktop machines and have had
nothing but great results.

I know many people who recommend Via chipsets in the Pro Tools world.
As with everything Linux support is sometimes a bit slow but it
eventually gets there.

> In regards of nforce chipsets, free drivers and software written for
> them are still in early fase, due to nvidia marketing-policy (closed
> source, not providing specs etc etc) and are still beeing reverse
> engineered, but they're not yet finished. Someone COULD grab the binary
> drivers, but in case of latencies or other problems he wouldn't have the
> minimum probability to get things fixed by nvidia; I really don't think
> nvidia is targeting pro-audio or video work, but rather gaming, beeing
> as the only counterpart to ATI, therefore....

My laptop is an ATI chipset. It has worked pretty well for light audio
work. I don't have much hardware that I could attach to my laptop so
I've never used it under heavy load. The biggest problem I had with
this machine was no DMA for the first 45 days I owned it.  That has
long since been solved.

I have just set up an NForce4 chipset for the AMD64 machine. It's
running the HDSP9652 and an onboard NVidia sound chip. Both seem to be
working pretty well although I do have some unresolved xrun problem
that is very inconsistent. I'll run for days with not a single xrun,
and then suddently I'll get 15 in a row. Weird, but probably will be
solved in the next few months.

> So, what other chipsets remain? Well, Sis for example, which I've used
> for a very long time not having any problems, or Uli (ex Ali), which
> actually is making chipsets for the AMD64 platform that seem really
> promising (M1695 just published).

My son's $99 Fry's computer uses SiS. He does not run Jack. It's jsut
a desktop machine. I've not had trouble with the basic machine
although I gave up trying to get 3D acceleration to work with the
onboard graphics chip. Not worth the effort.

I would not recommend SiS, nor can I attest to problems like Geoff
had. That said the machine is only 9 months old. I guess it will die
in another 9...

> Ciao,
> tommy
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