Now *this* is kinda interesting…

Zoom has a new multieffects pedal just for us bass players:

Zoom B6 Multi Effects Processor (Image via No Treble)

The interesting parts are the nice sounds, the versatility (almost like a Line6), but especially the two inputs on which you can switch the impedance from 1MOhm to 10MOhm which is good for piezo pickups like the ones on double basses. And additional to all the amp and cabinet simulations it also has four simulated DI outputs, two of them tube, the other two solid state.

Found it via No Treble where they also embed a video…

A good balance between size and performance

In regards of space I’m a bit restricted, and so my thoughts about computers and cases to put them into lead me to Mini ITX, and to a case which was introduced last year and which immediately became one of the favourites in that size and price class, the CoolerMaster NR200P. Here’s Leo from Kitguru reviewing it:

Leo analyses Cooler Master MasterBox NR200P

You can also read their/his written review here in case you want to know more.

As you could see in the review video, my current drives – one 2,5″ SSD and one 3,5″ hard disk with 4TB – the same Leo was showing – both fit nicely. Plus modern mainboards all have space for one or two M.2 SSD drives which are even faster anyway, and the case could even take two more 2,5″ SATA SSDs behind the front plate – that’s 6 drives overall, surely more than enough storage options.

Of course one should also try to save some space with choosing components wisely, so as a power supply I’d take Corsair’s smaller SFX ones, the ‘Platinum’ specced ones have a set of nicer braided cables compared to the ‘Gold’ rated ones. Without ever planning to add a graphics card, a 450W model would be more than enough, if you want to keep the possibility to add a medium- or high powered graphics card later on, there are also models with 600 or with 750W available. Remember, the high powered system Leo was building there drew some 500 Watts from the wall socket when stressing it out, both CPU and GPU alike. For me, that would rarely to almost never happen… so what about cooling?

I’d go with air cooling with a Noctua L12S low profile top blower cooler. I’d never overclock a system, so that should be just fine for a CPU with a TDP of around 65W like the AMD Ryzen 5 5600G (6 Core / 12 Thread), the Ryzen 7 5700G (8 Core / 16 Thread) or a comparable Intel Core i5-10400 (not the “K” versions which take lots more power). Learn more about such coolers from Machines & More:

Cooler Master NR200: Low Profile Air Cooler Configuration (feat. the Noctua L12S)

In case you also take low profile (or JEDEC-compatible) RAM which isn’t higher than 31,25mm, you could even let the cooler’s fan *under* the heat sink if you so desire, although these tests showed that it’s performing a bit better if you have the fan on top of the heatsink.

So for RAM a kit of 2x8GB or 2x16GB DDR4-3200 from Corsair (“Vengeance”) would be cool and wouldn’t restrict your mounting options.

For the main board, I’d go with Asus, but Gigabyte is also a good option and maybe a bit cheaper. Even MSI has a nice board, for AMD CPUs I’d take one with a B550 chipset, for 11th gen Intel chips a Z590 one.

All of the mentioned CPUs have graphics built right in, so you won’t have to overpay for graphics cards (only gamers would want these anyway, you can cut movies or “develop” photos without a dedicated graphics card just fine).

That would be cool machines, and maybe I’ll build one of these for a relative soon.

Oh, and a propos benchmarking: my own current system which is quite old already, and still has a 4th gen Intel Core i5 was behaving quite nicely when I stressed out its CPU with the Blender render “classroom” test:

Benchmarking Blender on my machine

As you can see, CPU average temperature was 41°C, max was 52°C, and the system was drawing about 72 Watts from the wall socket while doing this. Of course this took quite a while:

Blender classroom test finished

Over 31 minutes is slow, a more modern machine and chips like the ones mentioned above should do the same in about 8-10 minutes. And while they might draw a bit more power, they’d still do it in about a third to a quarter of the time, which makes them much more efficient in case you need that power…

As always, thanks for reading.

Robin Vincent about how to build an audio PC

Just found this awesome series from Robin Vincent about how to build an audio PC. It’s a bit over 2.5 years old, so when he’s talking about chipsets etc. it’s not that current anymore, but the principle is just right – and because I think that some of my friends over at Wikiloops would possibly be thankful for such explanations, here it is:

How to build an Audio PC
Molten Music Technology
1/7

Of course I would install Linux instead – or Windows *and* Linux – or Windows and *two* instances of Linux, which is what I did with my own machine. But that’s not part of what he’s talking about here, and I found his series really interesting. So thanks to Robin, and I hope that some of you who read this might find it useful as well.

As always, thanks for reading, viewing, and/or listening.

Sound setups

The more I’m using my new Debian 11 “Bullseye”, the more I like it. The first – and big – change to something better is that thanks to Geoffrey Bennett, a friendly musician and developer there’s now a Linux driver for the Focusrite Scarlett 2nd and 3rd generation interfaces in the kernel versions 5.x – see his latest thread on Linuxmusicians about it. He’s even developing graphical tools to manage these audio interfaces, but hasn’t released anything public yet. Still they work great, and I can now switch inputs from line to instrument, or assign a -10dB pad with a simple mouse click for instance in qasmixer, which shows my interface like this:

qasmixer showing my Focusrite Scarlett 6i6 2nd generation interface

This is cool because now you won’t need any Windows- or Mac-only software just to change settings on your interface (only the smallest Focusrite interfaces have physical switches, and none comes with software for Linux).

I have also set up a new LADISH studio for the Sonarworks headphone correction in Cadence and Claudia, and Cadence bridges all of Alsa, Pulseaudio, and Jack nicely so that it all works together. The cabling for my self-built “systemwide” setup for Linux in Carla looks like this:

Carla showing my Sonarworks headphone correction sitting “systemwide” between the PulseAudio Jack Sink and the system

Of course, I also had to select the right inputs and outputs for Pulseaudio in their pavucontrol, which looks like this:

Pavucontrol in- and outputs set to Jack to make it all audible

And these settings also allow third party applications like SongRec to check if a song might be a cover of others – and if yes, it shows something like this:

testing some Wikiloops template on known “covers” or songs which sound alike (based on Shazam recognition)

All of this is very complex because the Linux sound systems are so many, from Alsa over Jack to Pulse, and so on. But it all works nicely now, better than ever I’d say.

On Arch Linux I have Pipewire which tries to replace all of the sound servers mentioned above, and that also works – tho I haven’t looked that deep into it, and it’s also not quite ready yet. But from what I have seen and heard so far, that one is also perfectly usable already, so no matter which system is up and running (except Windows), I could make some music.

Good times. I’m happy that my transition to newer operating systems worked so well. And so today I also wiped all partitions from my old 250GB system drive which will go and find a new home in my brother’s PC as soon as he has time to deal with that. I already made a Ventoy-based USB boot stick with these same systems on it (plus some others which he hasn’t seen yet) for him.

Ok, enough for today. And thanks for reading, as always.

You Play On

Just published a new album on Wikiloops, and here’s its front cover from Flickr:

you_play_on_front_cover
You Play On by wjl & friends, hear it on Wikiloops

Photo: “Photo of Woman Sitting on Chair”, Jorge Fakhouri Filho
https://www.pexels.com/photo/photo-of-woman-sitting-on-chair-2530717/

As always, thanks to my friends on Wikiloops, and to Richard & family. Thanks to you for listening, downloading, and so on… hope you’ll like it 🙂

Wikilonians Online Jam

Sharing a Youtube video from 2012 here:

wikilonians online jam

Like Dick & Mr. Baer said, you’re invited – and it’s free. Join us, it’s fun! 🙂

Wikiloops artwork…

After trying out the new and upcoming artwork for Debian 11 “Bullseye” on my desktop (see my last post), I downloaded the poster art for the last Wikiloops member’s meeting in 2018, and tried that – and so this is how my desktop looks right now:

some Wikiloops artwork

Fits, because first I’ve been there (which was great), and second I’m a bass player… 🙂 So thanks to Dick for providing this – and thanks to you for viewing/reading, as always.

Trance 28, from Andreas Weber

A former colleague who left the company already is on SoundCloud, so I hope I’ll hear from him from time to time. Two days ago for instance he published this one:

Trance 28, by Andreas Weber (on SoundCloud)

Nice to hear from him 🙂