Hard drive configuration for music production
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Old 22-06-2016, 02:36 PM   #1
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Icon5 Hard drive configuration for music production

Pretty much everything on my PC needs upgrading so I'm just going to buy a new one. Currently I'm only using one hard drive for everything, but I read that some people use one hard drive for samples and another for software. Is this worth doing? And if so, what is the optimal configuration? Eg., do you put the OS, DAW and VSTs etc on maybe a 250GB SSD and then put the samples on something like a 1TB (or larger) standard drive?

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Old 22-06-2016, 02:40 PM   #2
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

pretty much what you just said, although it's advised to at least have the samples drive a 7,200rpm one with a good read/write speed t keep up with shit, maybe even a hybrid for that
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Old 22-06-2016, 02:52 PM   #3
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

I've got 3 solid state drives, one for the OS and programs, one called Audio with my audio files on it (recorded stuff, samples etc) and one called Storage for backups.

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Old 22-06-2016, 03:02 PM   #4
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

hard drive configuration has second priority, first things fist things first get oxygen free cables covered with [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
at jacks to further enhance quality
oh yes and almost forgot, put bunch of [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
on your gear

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Old 22-06-2016, 03:41 PM   #5
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

I have three identical HDs. One is for OS and all software. The other two are setup as a RAID backup system for samples, recordings, project files etc. So everything is mirrored. It takes a few seconds for the RAID drives to spin up but once a file is loaded on the RAM through the DAW it doesn't slow anything down.

Next time around I'm just getting all SSDs.

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Old 22-06-2016, 03:41 PM   #6
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

You can get reasonably priced Thunderbolt 1TB external SSDs these days. Darn fast things.

Also: using TimeCapsule as local and CrashPlan as offsite backup.

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Old 22-06-2016, 03:43 PM   #7
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

Quote:
Originally Posted by D42K732202 View Post
hard drive configuration has second priority, first things fist things first get oxygen free cables covered with [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
at jacks to further enhance quality
oh yes and almost forgot, put bunch of [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
on your gear
Can confirm, frequently drinking NanoLiquid™ and feeling much better and faster, should work with electronics too.

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Old 22-06-2016, 04:50 PM   #8
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

Quote:
Originally Posted by D42K732202 View Post
hard drive configuration has second priority, first things fist things first get oxygen free cables covered with [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
at jacks to further enhance quality
oh yes and almost forgot, put bunch of [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
on your gear
I am already using dark matter cables which access harmonics from other dimensions and channel them into the mix, making it approximately 20% better. Occasionally a wormhole will form nearby but so far the loss of life has remained at acceptably low levels.
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Old 22-06-2016, 05:00 PM   #9
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

I'm still waiting for myself to come back from the future and drop that road-map to fame, fortune and success right into my lap..along with the future-wave multi-million selling album I'm going to writer.

WTF is keeping me?

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Old 22-06-2016, 05:15 PM   #10
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

Lack of faith.

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Old 22-06-2016, 05:23 PM   #11
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

3 internal drives here: one for OS/apps, one for cubase projects, one for samples/libraries. i also back up my projects to an external drive once a week that i generally keep unplugged. and one of these days i need to back up everything to another external drive and give that to my parents, in case of fire/floods/aliens invading my neighborhood. should probably selectively back some stuff up to the cloud, but too much data to back up everything.
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Old 22-06-2016, 05:36 PM   #12
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

In the past I had 2 or three drives, but really 2 can be just fine. One for OS and software and core samples and core VST(i)'s. And then a 2nd for BackUps.

The ideas is that all the DAW music-making stuff needs to be on the same drive as the OS. When you install a DAW program some of it goes into the Program Files folder, and some of it goes into the Windows or System folders and Fonts folders. So when you backup to the 2nd drive, you can reinstate your entire DAW system in one procedure using just one disk data partition image. I doesn't really make sense to separate all your necessary configurations and the Registry edits from your samples and stuff. Anything you use needs to be on the main System OS partition.

To help facilitate this, set your virtual RAM to be on it's own partition on the OS drive, but separate from everything else. So when you do your OS partition backup, it isn't screwed over by the humongous vitual RAM file.

Keep all other sporadic backups on flash drives or on a laptop computer separate from your DAW computer.

Old project data could be on the third drive, or you could just keep project data on either of the other drives and then move them to flash drives after each project is done. Keeping old projects off the system helps free up a lot of space so the drive can be faster.

Another handy thing... keep a program archive folder on your OS partition. Use this folder to store 7-zips and RAR's and Zips of your installers or portable freewares with their embedded configurations. It also might be a good idea to archive your user Application Data folder. So if you just accidentally lose one or two programs due to corruption, you can overwrite the bad data with a good fresh copy.

This is also faster than having to rely upon partition backups for everything.

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Old 22-06-2016, 05:46 PM   #13
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

Pretty much the same here.

Laptop is all apps, 1 HD for Kontakt/Komplete and Sample library.

I keep current client sessions and personal projects that I'm working on while on the road on my laptop but end up depositing them on one of 2 other external HDs when I get home. I have a 3rd for client sessions, Ableton, Protools, whatever, I keep this backed up to a 2nd drive and keep the sessions that are current (bands I tour with or who are out on the road and may need edits) in a dropbox folder (ive got the "pro" 100GB plan) so I can access them anywhere. I update the cloud files about weekly.

Oh and a Time Machine Backup drive that gets updated weekly as well.

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Old 22-06-2016, 06:45 PM   #14
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

let me clarify why i mocked this thread to those who didnt understand: every sample you use in DAW is cached in ram so good hdd doesn't matter much unless its TOO slow (even then you will experience loading time only when you drag sample into project then its up to RAM), yes and by the way hdds as well as ssds have cache of its own for frequently accessed sectors, so better care about RAM, but even then difference is so negligible that you will mention any delay if you are quicksilver, and even then difference will be subtle

now take this gold covered and oxygen-free ethernet cable

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Old 22-06-2016, 07:13 PM   #15
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

if you have a high audio track count though, you'll need to ensure that you have fast drives 7200rpm or SSDs.

Sure samples load into RAM but larger sessions will ultimately need to be either recorded down to audio or frozen.

I def suggest gold plated cables for everything though, more bling more fidelity.

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Old 22-06-2016, 07:14 PM   #16
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

Quote:
Originally Posted by D42K732202 View Post
let me clarify why i mocked this thread to those who didnt understand: every sample you use in DAW is cached in ram so good hdd doesn't matter much unless its TOO slow (even then you will experience loading time only when you drag sample into project then its up to RAM), yes and by the way hdds as well as ssds have cache of its own for frequently accessed sectors, so better care about RAM, but even then difference is so negligible that you will mention any delay if you are quicksilver, and even then difference will be subtle

now take this gold covered and oxygen-free ethernet cable
Most current desktop configs will have 8-16-32-64 GBs of RAM. While I've got a session that is currently running and using 31 tracks of mostly audio in 24bit 44.1khz (granted, some of it is here and there but the rhythm/clean/lead guitars and bass are pretty constant and there are about 8 tracks of those), it's barely cracking 3.6 GB of used RAM, with EZDrummer, Addictive Drums 2 and about 6 synths going at the same time.

For laptops I could see RAM being an issue for some, but with most current dekstops you can easily get away with 8GB of RAM no worries.

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Old 22-06-2016, 08:45 PM   #17
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

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Most current desktop configs will have 8-16-32-64 GBs of RAM. While I've got a session that is currently running and using 31 tracks of mostly audio in 24bit 44.1khz (granted, some of it is here and there but the rhythm/clean/lead guitars and bass are pretty constant and there are about 8 tracks of those), it's barely cracking 3.6 GB of used RAM, with EZDrummer, Addictive Drums 2 and about 6 synths going at the same time.

For laptops I could see RAM being an issue for some, but with most current dekstops you can easily get away with 8GB of RAM no worries.
One thing to add to that is a lot depends too on how you're streaming the samples / presets..are they being fully loaded into memory or not? Take the likes of Omnisphere..you get the choice to reduce the sample size, which can make a huge difference to the hit your memory is going take.

Also there's little details like how fast your CPU and how many cores it runs..which again , makes a difference to how much you can run at once without shit starting to go funny on you.

But, generally speaking, Mike's right..most computers out there these days should be able to run most things without too much bother..just keep an eye on what's running in the background and your should be OK.

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Old 22-06-2016, 08:50 PM   #18
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

As for myself, I have 4 drives on my system..3 internal (SSD for system OS, VSTs / NI stuff..2 1TB "Old school" HDs for Audio files, samples and VST presets..and 1 external 1TB HD for backups of the important stuff..as well as online backups as well.

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Old 22-06-2016, 09:18 PM   #19
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

I have a laptop where I have an SSD from a few years ago, so everything is plenty fast but very small (120 gigs total, and I have to use this for school too). I have to really watch what I have. On the bright side, it keeps me honest about what I really need and what I can live without. I have an external that backs up everything, as well as online and a couple of flash drives (project files and finished audio only on those).
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Old 22-06-2016, 10:26 PM   #20
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Re: Hard drive configuration for music production

2 solid state hybrid hard drives in raid 2tb each
3 4tb hard drives in raid and one back up drive
2 500 gig solid sta hard drives
1 250 gig solid state boot drive
intel 750 series 400 gig pcie solid stae drive for copying over samples at lightning speed.
2 fire wire external hard drives at 5 tb each useing usb 3.1
also built a separate nas server (15 tb)as well for extra back up and copying files from my laptop.

Last edited by joem; 22-06-2016 at 10:31 PM..

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