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Thread: winamp cpu usage

  1. #1
    Newbie awh4992's Avatar
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    winamp cpu usage

    hi, my system that i'm running is a national geode based computer (cyrix mediagx 233mhz), running windows 98 w/ win95osr2 shell instead (same trick 98lite does) and my winamp seems to be running slow. running the system monitor in 98 shows that when its decoding a mp3, processor usage is @ about 70%. sometimes the system monitor shows that the decoding only takes 6% (this is constant for 10-15 mins) which i find rather weird. possible the system monitor is screwy. anyways, all the stupid startup thingys have been killed through win.ini and msconfig. basically i'm wondering if there's a way to reduce cpu usage so i can use some lightweight vis plugins. oh ya, i'm using the direct sound decoder (for the fading/gapless output), winamp 2.9, virtual memory set to 1 meg (winamp won't play w/o VM enabled), there's 64 megs of onboard ram (windows hogs about 40, so there's plenty left over for winamp). the only way i can get the cpu usage 2 go down is to downsample the mp3....22khz is fine for me, but then the vis plugins don't work right for some reason. i even tried replacing the decoder w/ the MAD plugin which is supposed to use IEEE floating point numbers. In theory it seems this should be faster, but its not if anyone knows of any other performance tweaks, it'd be appreciated thanks, andy

  2. #2
    I'm sorry, and you are....? frodobaggins's Avatar
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    You just aren't going to be able to run any vis with decent speed with that slow of a system. I would upgrade if I were you.
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  3. #3
    Constant Bitrate OdysseyPC's Avatar
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    I concur, all vis' regardless, are processor hungry. If you don't want to upgrade but are still after some eye candy for your system, try album art ... just a thought.
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  4. #4
    Maximum Bitrate deadweasel's Avatar
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    There's also another issue: CYRIX?! Haven't they died out YET? I didn't know that their hardware was still available. If it's an original 233mhz however, it's no wonder that you are having issues. Also, you have VM set to 1mb?? Wouldn't it be better to give it more swapfile space to play with if you can't add more physical RAM? Can't help too much with those piggie vis thingies unfortunately.

    Somebody please correct me if I've misconstrued something here. I'm not 100% up to par on the latest micro mini technology, so I could be wrong about the processor issue.
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  5. #5
    Newbie awh4992's Avatar
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    lol, i can run the full screen tiny vis that comes w/ winamp just fine (the oscilloscope and the spectrum analyser), i was just lookin for a way to reduce the cpu usage of the mp3 decoder. lol no cyrix ain't around anymore, they were taken over by national semiconductor, and then AMD took the rights to that national semiconductor geode chip, and is now supported by AMD. but ya, u can't get a cheap embedded system unless it's a bit on the slow side, as this one is. i mean for under a hundred bucks, ur not gonna get an embedded pentium 3. and no, i put the virtual memory as low as i could and still have winamp play so everything happens ram which is quicker than the hard drive. also, when data is written to the hard drive it makes the full screen vis slightly choppy. but anyways, i'm a college student on a $0 budget, so...gimme a break

  6. #6
    Maximum Bitrate deadweasel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by awh4992
    lol, i can run the full screen tiny vis that comes w/ winamp just fine (the oscilloscope and the spectrum analyser), i was just lookin for a way to reduce the cpu usage of the mp3 decoder. lol no cyrix ain't around anymore, they were taken over by national semiconductor, and then AMD took the rights to that national semiconductor geode chip, and is now supported by AMD. but ya, u can't get a cheap embedded system unless it's a bit on the slow side, as this one is. i mean for under a hundred bucks, ur not gonna get an embedded pentium 3. and no, i put the virtual memory as low as i could and still have winamp play so everything happens ram which is quicker than the hard drive. also, when data is written to the hard drive it makes the full screen vis slightly choppy. but anyways, i'm a college student on a $0 budget, so...gimme a break
    Hahaha! Been there, done that, so I can relate a bit!
    Well, I understand your reasoning behind wanting to NOT use the VM so much, but bear in mind, that if the machine uses main memory up, and has nowhere to turn for more memory, then the whole thing will slow down while it attempts to process what I can cram in there. I would suggest more memory. If you're using the onboard video, you have a device that is busy communicating with memory while the rest of the system is attempting to as well, and the memory bus can only handle so much data at once. Although increasing the amount of RAM won't help the bus issue much, it will certainly help the system to maintain a faster speed, since it won't be trying to use more memory than what it has avail. With that small of a swapfile, there isn't much else that could be causing your problems (other than the obvious, of course!)
    The ALEXIS Project
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    Color Coding :
    DONE / MOSTLY DONE / BASE FEATURES / WORKING CONCEPT / NO CODE COMPLETED

  7. #7
    Newbie awh4992's Avatar
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    ya i was thinkin of boostin things up to 128 megs when i get the chance. that's the max the board supports, so...we'll c what happens. hopefully this chipset doesn't have that stupid thing the intel vx chipsets...or was it the tx...where above 64 megs of ram it was all cached cause the chipset couldn't address the ram or...something like that. i dunno lol. it's been a while since i've had a workin socket 7 board w/ an intel chipset. freakin cheapo heatsinks on the regulators lol. anyways thanks for all the help and...i'll c what happens w/ more ram and that kinda good stuff. oh also, after i do this mp3 player and get it workin the way i want, i'll do an upgrade and all that kinda stuff. by that time prices should be down...and maybe i could get 1 of those via itx boards w/ a lvds lcd connector on it. that'd be hot. alright, later

  8. #8
    cvi
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    How bout using dos?
    something like http://www.damp-mp3.co.uk/
    It even has a few vis and should be able to run on a 486 DX4
    You'll need an ESS or a SoundBlaster16 compatible sound card
    I never tried it, but with the specs of your machine it might be good. I dont suppose you're running much windows software besides winamp.

  9. #9
    Newbie awh4992's Avatar
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    hmm...that's not a bad idea, however i like some of the winamp plugins for IR, crossfading, the resumer plugin, an automatically enqueing plugin. also, i'm using windows networking, and i really don't wanna fool w/ dos network drivers. the dos mp3 program looks like it would run in dos mode while win98 is running...so...i dunno. i'll look into it and try it out and c what happens. the dos vis would definately be faster. also, would you need a dos video driver to be able to display more than 16 colors? i'm probably wrong about this cause i have virtually no experience w/ dos video modes thanks though. andy

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