Best CPU for NI Komplete - Reactor Maschine MK3

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MegaBeatz
MegaBeatz Member Posts: 1 Newcomer
edited April 13 in Tech Talks

I am in the market for a new PC. It has been a while however I was running Abelton and NI Komplete on a 2015 MacBook pro Intel QuadCore 2.8 GZ. It ran well for a while then after some OS updates started struggling with Reactor and Maschine. Even on the simplest of projects with all tracks frozen.

Now on to the present day, I was about to pull the trigger on an Intel Core i9-14900KS - Core i9 14th Gen Raptor Lake 24-Core (8P+16E) LGA 1700. Windows 11 NVMe drive and go with 64 GB DDR 5. I am reading posts about the new Hybrid Architectures struggling with the NI and Audio applications.


Does anyone have a recent build with an Intel 14th gen processor, do you have feedback?

Should I look to AMD or Mac (really want to avoid Mac if possible)?

Would I be better off sourcing a non-hybrid CPU? like the Adlerlake 12th gen.

What is the best CPU in your opinion currently for NI?

Any feedback or insight is greatly appreciated. It is terrible when technology impedes creativity.


Additonal notes - I could live without the complex reactor sets, I really would like to lean on the Maschine though, and Massive. I am currently at Ableton 11, and Komplete 12 I will likely upgrade to the latest versions when the build is complete.

Comments

  • PoorFellow
    PoorFellow Moderator Posts: 3,553 mod
    edited April 13
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    Should I look to AMD or Mac (really want to avoid Mac if possible)?

    The answer to that one entirely depends on who you ask. And also it is often most likely to spur an undesirable string of discussion posts between Mac and Windows users ! Most Windows user will tell you to avoid Mac and most Mac users will be rather satisfied using Mac and tell you to use Mac ! (I am a Windows user myself and have no plans ever buying any Mac computer)

    Does anyone have a recent build with an Intel 14th gen processor, do you have feedback?

    Would I be better off sourcing a non-hybrid CPU? like the Adlerlake 12th gen.

    First of all then there is misunderstanding because also gen. 12 Intel is Hybrid Architecture !

    So , if buying a Windows PC, it's more or less that you take the jump and buy the newest generation 14 Intel and trust that all the problems will be ironed out or compensated for (and in case of problems turns off the E cores in BIOS ?) or buy something gen. 11 or older ! I would take the jump to gen. 14 intel immediately if I had the money to buy a new rig ! (but I don't).

  • Kubrak
    Kubrak Member Posts: 2,815 Expert
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    I am one of those who dislike intel's big-little. It is not only big-little, it is also that few last generations of Intel take a lot of power and so need good and so expensive cooling.... Intel does not have good times, past few years.... And most probably will have at least one, two years more....

    Yes, you may switch off e-cores, or use Lasso SW or like. But, what the hell, why to pay for them, if not used?

    AMD seems to be better choise, IMHO. So far no big-little, and when they will start to use it, little will be the same core just with less cache and lower clock. AMD's are way less energy hungry, easier to cool than Intel's.

    Do not get fooled by Intel's TDP... Intel takes twice, three times more....

    Also AMD with extra large cache (3D in CPU name) might be good for Kontakt. If you can wait few months Zen 5 will come. It will have relatively strong AI coprocessor, which may be handy for certain plugins.

    I use "old" Zen 3, 8C/16T and it is a bit above M1 Pro.

    As PoorFellow has mentioned, three people, five different contradicting recomendations....

  • BIF
    BIF Member Posts: 675 Pro
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    I can provide some perspective from the Intel side. Oh and I have stories too.

    The hybrid nature, meaning the combined "efficiency cores" and "performance cores" on the chip die are nothing to be upset about or mad at.

    I have a 9th gen Intel i9 laptop (it has 8 and 8 processors, I believe), and a 12th gen i9 desktop machine which has both efficiency and performance cores.

    I also have an M1 Mac. M1, M2, and M3 Macs also have efficiency and performance cores, and let me tell you, Apple really shook up the world when they came out with the M1. I firmly believe that Apple's innovation in ARM architecture is what really got Intel and AMD to wake up and get off their butts to make better processors.

    Having hybrid cores is NOT a new idea, not at all. UAD has been making DSP cards and audio interfaces using SHARC chips from A company called Analog Devices, and they've been doing this for just about 20 years now or more. The DSP chips just stay idle until you load a reverb or other effect or instrument that can be dispatched to run on the SHARC chip's architecture. That takes burden off of your INTEL, AMD, or Mac CPU. Having performance cores and efficiency cores on one CPU die just happens to be a natural evolution. Mainframe computers actually did this first, and then some servers had the capability, and now pretty much any iPad, Mac, or PC has some form of this.

    And before that, train engines had hybrid power. For decades now, we've used diesel engines to drive massive generators, which in turn drive big electric motors to make trains go. Modern ships work the same way, because you won't break a diesel engine if the propeller stops. You might bend the shaft or damage the prop itself, but you won't have to replace the big diesel engine(s). Hybrid cars get powered by electricity AND/OR gasoline, depending on needs at any given moment.

    And over 110 years ago, Titanic , Olympic, and Britannic were also hybrid-powered, although in a different way. Titanic and her sisters had "performance cores", which was two four-cylindered, four-story-tall steam engines that could directly drive two of her propeller shafts and move the ship forward.

    But Titanic also had numerous smaller steam engines, some of which were actually responsible for powering shipboard electricity when docked so that crews could run the galley and serve food while in port; and not be blasting the docks with mass-quantities of smoke, ash, and soot from all 30+ of the coal boilers down below; you only needed to run one or two boilers to get electricity to the kitchens, so no need to burn more coal than necessary.

    There were also a couple of these "efficiency engines" used to start the big steam engines safely. These were just smaller steam engines that were geared (literally "geared") to set the bigger engine shafts to a slow rotation rate before the big engines' steam lines were fully pressurized. Starting those massive cylinders on full steam pressure from the boilers would have just blown them apart!

    So just like the trains and ships of a hundred to 200 years ago, we have hybrid engines. Some of them are chips. Your efficiency cores run your web browser and office apps, and all the YouTube cat videos you might want to watch! Your performance cores might get engaged if you fire up any native effects, and if you have UAD, those chips will take on some work if you run UAD plugins.

    And if you run Folding@Home, that will use your graphic card cores. What an amazing time to be alive. Seriously!

    -------------

    So now back to computers:

    Buy what you want and make music with it.

    Any Apple Silicon will be fine. Any Intel silicon will be fine if it's an i5 processor or higher. Any AMD processor will be fine if it is roughly comparable to the i5 or higher.

    --------------

    Something ELSE to think about. I'm on Intel. I'll stay on Intel. Not because I'm in love with it, no.

    I use Intel only because I never build a computer from scratch anymore. Never. I start with restored backups, then I change the Windows serial number to match the new license I bought. Then I customize accordingly until I have fashioned a new computer.

    So for me, I'm on Intel because restoring from backups is easier to do if you keep to the same CPU architecture as the old computer where the backups were taken from.

    So as I mentioned above, buy what you want and use it. Use what works and nobody needs to fight over computer architectures. We already have enough disagreements in politics, religion, and sports. You know I'm right! 😉

  • JesterMgee
    JesterMgee Member Posts: 2,656 Expert
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    So if I understand your answer, the best CPU option in your opinion is a hybrid diesel-electric model, or did I read that wrong :)

    So for me, I'm on Intel because restoring from backups is easier to do if you keep to the same CPU architecture as the old computer where the backups were taken from.

    Shouldn't make a difference really, It is either x86/x64 in that regard and the cpu is just another piece of the overall puzzle. 30 years ago when there were certain instruction sets in CPUs like MMX it was more crucial especially if applications were written around it, these days it's just a matter of preference although there may be some strange exceptions to the rule but nothing I have ever done or backed up has been an issue going from Intel to AMD.

    Mac is a perfectly valid preference and known for reliable, consistent and efficient operation but the tradeoff is you are held to ransom by their updates and decisions where you don't have many freedoms of choice like upgrading parts or choosing not to upgrade the OS unless you want to lose compatibility with software. It is also much less forgiving in terms of compatibility with anything that is not fully up to date or approved, even down to what USB hub or external drive you can use. However, I would personally choose a macbook for portable use like gigging and touring, tho my DJ setup uses a windows laptop with a macbook as a backup but the demands placed on it are pretty simple so it doesnt need to be anything fancy.

    If you don't need the portability, a desktop PC is more flexible for longevity since you can upgrade storage, RAM and CPU to extend it's working life and of course if you also like to game, you have all that you can do. Additionally, if you don't like having to constantly update software all the time (with the costs that go with that) then PC is far more forgiving in that regard and will let you run an old copy of something just fine.

    I've usually always been Intel for 20 years (with a couple of early exceptions) but my current PC I opted to test the performance of a modern AMD 5900 CPU simply due to price-per-core performance and it has been just fine, fast, 12 cores and handles all the projects/applications/games without any issues and with better performance than my previous i7 49XX CPU

    A suggestion would be for anyone looking to upgrade because their current system seems to no longer be capable, try to understand what the actual issue is. Are you hitting a limit on a single core, on the CPU overall, on memory, storage or read speeds etc. Once you know what the limitation is you can select something more accurately and unless you plan to really change up what you do, almost anything new from the 10 year old tech you have been using will work just fine, be it AMD, Intel or Apple M chip. Most suggestions will simply be people's personal preferences.

  • BIF
    BIF Member Posts: 675 Pro
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    A suggestion would be for anyone looking to upgrade because their
    current system seems to no longer be capable, try to understand what the
    actual issue is. Are you hitting a limit on a single core, on the CPU
    overall, on memory, storage or read speeds etc. Once you know what the
    limitation is you can select something more accurately and unless you
    plan to really change up what you do, almost anything new from the 10
    year old tech you have been using will work just fine, be it AMD, Intel
    or Apple M chip. Most suggestions will simply be people's personal
    preferences.

    This is good advice.

    I just advise people to not go below an i5 "level", but maybe that's not necessary anymore.

  • Maciej Repetowski
    Maciej Repetowski Member Posts: 503 Guru
    edited May 14
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    My advice as a Mac person: if you are familiar with PC and Windows, stick with PC.

    Not being sarcastic or anything, those are vastly different platforms and computing experiences/philosophies, despite superficial similarities.

  • Mark Oxley
    Mark Oxley Member Posts: 191 Advisor
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    If it helps I've been using an Intel i5 12600k CPU for a year now and very rarely max it out using 30+ tracks using a mixture of hardware synths, vst synths, samples and many effect plugins. Most of my projects use between 20 - 50 % of the CPU.

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