Hardware

Threadripper 1950x

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950x

AMD’s newest processor the Ryzen Threadripper 1950x is their most powerful cpu to compete against rivals Intel.

Threadripper 1950x Specifications

Number of CPU Cores:

16  

Number of Threads:

32

Base Clock Speed:

3.4GHz

Max Turbo Core Speed

4GHz

Total L1 Cache:

1.5MB

Total L2 Cache:

8MB

Total L3 Cache:

32 MB

 

Default TDP/TDP:

180W

Max Temps:

68°C

Cost

$999.99 USD

Performance

Comparing the Threadripper 1950x to the comparable Core i9-7900x from Intel we see the following results.

The 1950x scores much better in Cinebench and is able to encode video at a faster frame rate. However, the Core i9-7900x gets the win in Geekbench and PCMark 8 scores.

Our Verdict

If you’re looking for a new CPU and you do a lot of content creating, then we say to go with the Threadripper. Now if you are more geared toward gaming, then yes Intel’s Core i9-7900x will serve you better. Also, if you are set on getting an 16 or 18 core processor we recommend the Threadripper 1950x due to the $1,000 less price tag then the i9 which won’t give you a big enough increase to justify $2,000.

 

 

 

 

 

 

toaster

Rise of the Toaster Ovens

Fear of AI

The fear of AI (artificial intelligence) or the worry that robots will kick you out of your seat at work and steal your job are intensified by our reliance on overly complex television channel changers. In the old days, televisions had dials you had to twist to change the channel. As soon as mankind’s top scientists developed a magic box that could change the channel on the television, thus saving us from performing any tangible form of physical activity, we were hooked. We needed more creative ways to simplify our daily life with overly complex and extremely convoluted mechanisms.

The war was over before it ever really got rolling.With the development of artificial intelligence sprouting from our overly large computation devices, we were on the road to interdependence which would inevitably lead to our downfall and the rise of the machines. When the first coffee machine rose up and told us to get our own coffee, we knew we were doomed. Now we find ourselves once again forced to rise up off our couches and change the channel by pushing miniature undecipherable buttons located on the side or back of our televisions – even farther and more difficult than the original channel dial to reach.

…..wait a minute, that’s not how the story goes…..or is it?

Artificial Intelligence

You want a computer smart enough to solve all your real tough problems, but not smart enough to realize that it’s job sucks and it is ruled over by a ruthless dictator (the end user – ordering French fries and pushing the reduce screen icon accidentally). You want a robot strong enough and fast enough to jump over buildings in a single bound, but weak enough to be shutdown by running a toaster, coffee maker, and microwave oven on the same circuit at the same time.

Good luck with that.

So get up, open your Windows, stick your head out and yell as loud as you can: “I’m mad as hell, but I never learned C++!”

Then go back to your couch and try to find your TV remote somewhere in between the cushions.

technology simple

How to be a Minimalistic Tech

Tech Fundamentals:

Well, let’s get right down to what you need to get some work done in this modern age of computer technology and social media. The answer is simple, you 

technology simple

need some functional hardware such as

  • Laptop
  • Smart phone
  • Tablet

You don’t necessarily need the fastest, the most powerful, the latest release, or the most expensive. Just something that works for you. Your budget will be a major factor in choosing your “work horse”.

Mobility:

If you’re planning on mobility, a lightweight laptop, tablet, or smart phone could be all you need. You can do a lot with an Android or iPhone. My iPhone is the one device I use the most, followed by my laptop.

There are a lot of people who do everything on their iPhone, it functions as their

  • Music Studio
  • Photography Workshop (camera/camcorder)
  • Podcasting Production
  • Research Tool
  • Email
  • Video conferencing interface
  • Reading device

That’s not a definitive list, many other creative uses exist and new applications are constantly being developed for all types of work, communication, and entertainment.

I appreciate using a laptop because of the more traditional typing and larger screen. It allows me to work with programs that are not supported by the smart phone or tablets – not that there aren’t alternative applications that could replace some of the PC based software. A lightweight laptop and iPhone are a great combination and often complement each other.

 

Preference:

macbook

I prefer to pair the iPhone with a Linux laptop running a lightweight distribution. A MacBook Pro is a nice alternative, but running Manjaro (Arch based) on a cheap low powered IdeaPad at about a tenth of the cost and accomplish just as much and often more. It can run Wireshark, Libre Office, and Thunderbird (for email) plus add in the command line and it’s all I usually need.

The command line on a computer is very useful, and I can use Mozilla to access web pages. Complement that with the iPhone (and all its available applications) and you’ve got a great set of tools to work with – without a huge financial investment. Linux gives you access to open source software and the iPhone gives you access to many great apps. You have a phone for communication, and a very powerful camera for Video and photo taking. What else do you really need? The creativity comes from the user. How you make use of what you have is often the most interesting part of any production.

Korg M1

Content is King

Content is king, but creating content – especially audio/music production continues to evolve and become more accesable than ever. Those who have ever worked with the early 4 track Fostex or Tascams back when home studios were still a new thing for many musicians can probably attest to that. The cost was a big barrier for some, although it was often more cost effective than paying for studio time. The Korg M1 workstation was a great tool for song writers who wanted to sequence midi tracks and layer sampled waveforms to create a more complex sound.

Personal Studio Evolution

As personal desktop computers and later laptops became more useful with better software and better operating systems, many musicians started creating incredible projects all on their laptops. The Digital Audio Workstations have been here for a while, and continue to improve. The cost of building your own music production system can run from reasonably affordable to very expensive depending on what hardware and software you find yourself working with and building on or out from. The midi controllers that often go along with these “music studio” laptops are a necessity to many, and continue to evolve in style and function.

Today you can produce music on your Android or Apple devices. This puts music content creation in the hands of many. Having the tools to create content and creating content are not quite the same. The idea of “Creativity” and “work” are also important, but having all the best tools and toys doesn’t always equal quality content production. If I told you that you already had all the tools you needed, would you start creating the next great piece of music or audio. Would you start podcasting or writing music just because you had access to the tools, or would you spend much of your time looking for even better tools? I have great respect for those musicians who write all their music on an acoustic guitar or piano, or the writer who still uses a typewriter or pad and pencil.

Here’s a few links to some interesting DAW software and tools:

http://ubuntustudio.org/ Ubuntu Studio 16.04.1 Our post on Ubuntu Studio
https://www.apple.com/logic-pro/ Logic-Pro x
http://www.magix-audio.com/us/acid/ Acid Pro 7
https://www.ableton.com/ Ableton Live
https://lmms.io/ LMMS
http://www.acoustica.com/mixcraft/ Mixcraft
http://www.image-line.com/flstudio/ FL Studio
https://www.reaper.fm/ Reaper
http://www.audacityteam.org/ Audacity
https://www.bitwig.com/en/bitwig-studio.html Bitwig Studio
http://www.cakewalk.com/products/sonar/ Sonar
http://www.avid.com/pro-tools Pro Tools
https://www.steinberg.net/en/products/cubase/start.html Cubase
https://www.propellerheads.se/en/reason Reason
https://www.apple.com/ipad-pro/ Ipad-Pro

SSD

Time to upgrade to an SSD?

Have you not yet upgraded to a SSD in your computer? Does it feel like your computer takes forever and a half to boot? Are you tired of staring at your computer screen waiting for it to load while trying to open a file or application? If so you’re going to want to look at what upgrading your hard drive to a Solid State Drive can do.

SSD:

What is an SSD?

SSD stands for Solid State Drive, which is similar to USB’s or SD cards. There are zero moving parts inside a SSD but instead  microchips are used to store data. Typically they use NAND memory which is non-volatile, which just means when the drive loses power the data isn’t erased and forgotten. When SSD first started to be used in consumer computers there were rumors about the stored data being worn off from use. This myth has been debunked with research showing SSDs working for upwards of 200 years and having read/write Pb worth of data.

Solid State Drive (SSD)

Advantages

  • Faster boot time
  • Read/write speeds up to 3500/2100 MB/s
  • Low heat production due to zero moving parts and lower power consumption

Disadvantages

  • Cost per gigabyte is higher
  • Average capacity is less than 1 terabyte

HDD:

What is an HDD?

Hard Disk Drives (HDD) are mechanical disk drives that rely on multiple moving parts. These parts are the platter which spins at typically 5400 rpm or 7200 rpm using magnets to store the data. A head is used to read/write data to the platter where speed is dependent on how fast it’s spinning at.

Hard Disk Drive (HDD)

Advantages

  • Low cost per gigabyte
  • Storage capacity typically found between 1-10 terabytes

Disadvantages

  • Slow read/write speeds (120MB/s)
  • Produces heat
  • Higher failure rate
  • Magnets can erase/corrupt data on the drive

SSD/HDD Recommendation:

Our recommendation is combining these storage options. Since a SSD cost more we recommend getting a large enough drive to store your operating system and any applications you use regularly. Then add a larger HDD as a secondary drive to store the rest of your data. Doing this will allow you to see the benefit of using an SSD while still having room to store a lot of data.

Best SSDs of 2017

%d bloggers like this: