‘ Computer ’ Posts

Fix: Windows 7 Latency Problem with Line-In

Background: Since building the new computer, I have noticed with both the built in soundcard on my ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 and with the Creative X-Fi Fatal1ty Pro there is a noticeable latency problem with the line-in in Windows 7. When I say noticeable it was VERY noticeable by me and drove me crazy. My non-muscial husband on the other hand didn’t notice it until I pointed it out and even then it didn’t bother him… In basic terms it is a time delay experienced in the system such that the audio through the line-in port has a slight delay from the live audio source. Not something I ever experienced with Windows XP.

This weekend it was particularly annoying in that I was trying to play the stereo through speakers outside where my husband and son were working on ripping out some brambles as well as through my computer where I was working on SFLMA.org’s site. Since I could hear both the sound through the outside speakers and my computer the latency issue was driving me insane and I eventually went to wearing headphones.

So this morning I decided I really needed to figure this issue out! From various searches this seems to be a common issue with Vista SP2+ and Windows 7 regardless of the soundcard being used. I found if you change where you activate the Line-In then the latency issue goes away. There are two ways to listen to the line in.

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New Computer

I’ve spent the past month building a new desktop computer.

It is something I’ve meant to do for the past year and half and just hadn’t had the time or patience to dedicate to it. I had built my previous machine, a Pentium 4 2.6GHz on a ASUS P4C800E Deluxe board in December 2003. It was my first real build and was a good machine however with advances and demands on resources with Photoshop etc it was becoming a bit frustrating to work with on a daily basis. Right after Thanksgiving NewEgg had a great deal the on the case I had been eyeing so I bought that (Antec Nine Hundred) and an Antec PSU and the end of December I started putting together the rest of the parts list…

I ended up with:

ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 Board
i7 Core 920
EVGA 980GTX Video Card
Corsair Dominator 8GB DDR3
WD 150 VelociRaptor for the OS
WD 750 Caviar Black for data
Rosewill 3.5 Floppy and Card Reader
Sony Optiarc Black DVD/RW
An additional 120mm fan to put on the side door..
Windows 7 64bit for the Operating System

I messed up on the memory as it is a Quad kit and the board is triple channel… didn’t realized that until after the fact and everything still works so I’m not going about changing it.

Parts arrived on January 12th. The build went smoothly and spent a day crunching on the MS extended memory tests with no errors. The only surprises were the new ‘triple channel’ thing on the memory and the fact that my 2001 HP scanner (5300C) is not supported in anyway by Windows 7 or HP. HP’s site pretty much says the scanner is too old buy a new one… so I did… I bought a Canan LiDE 700F which I’m quite happy with.
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Malware Alert

I’m severely delinquent in keeping up with the blog. While I’ve taken photos too many other things have been taking up my time for me to post them or even download them from my camera. Between visiting family, 2 cords of wood being delivered (luckily my father-in-law stacked most of it), working on a new design for the Submarine Museum, and keeping up with a myriad of other things.

I’ve been inundated by malware/email scam emails the past two days and that has sparked me to actual write about it hoping that it might prevent people from falling for the scam whatever it may contain…

Yesterday it was mostly a New Settings File email scam saying it is from your email servers technical support. There was an attached zip which they wanted you to run.

The text of several of them was: “We are informing you that because of the security upgrade of the mailing service your mailbox ’email address here’ settings were changed. In order to apply the new set of settings open zip attached file. OR alternately, follow a link to apply settings – See the sample below:

This morning I’ve had a lot of “Microsoft Outlook Notification” emails telling me to re-configure outlook by running an attached file. Sample Below:

Please note the attached zip file/links in these emails will contain malware. Perhaps a trojan or a worm, or it may simply ask you to fill details into a form to get identity information – whatever it does, don’t open that zip! Just delete the whole email and move on with your life!

General Computer Safety:

  1. Never follow a link in an email to log-in to anything! This applies to facebook too! Many malware creators as well as identity thefts use what is called a phishing scheme sending a link to a site that looks like but isn’t the real thing. Once you put in your username and password they use it to find out more about you. If you use the same password for facebook as you do for financial organizations (many people do!) guess what, they now have it!
  2. Never open a zip or exe file sent to you in an email unless you know the person sending it to you and you are expecting that zip or exe.

off my soap box


Moving the LR previews cache folder…

I finally manage to get my new camera body… a Canon 5Dii. I noticed that B&H actually had an “Order Now” link even though it still stated ‘back-ordered’ and decided to take a chance. 2 Days later I got a shipping confirmation stating it would be delivered on Friday (Jan 16) sometime between 8am and 7pm and that it required an adult signature… So I waited around the house for the big brown truck to show up. It finally did around 5pm and then I had to wait a couple hours for the battery to charge.

All in all I’m very pleased with it. The live view is going to take some getting used to it being an option… somehow it just seems wrong in ways for a camera with a true shutter to have ‘live view’ however I have seen a couple areas where it is useful and I think it is the only way you can actually take video with it… how odd to think a SLR with video capabilities.

Mine has the newer 1.0.7 firmware on it. So apparently I don’t need to worry about any of the issues that the previous firmware had with black spots by lights and vertical banding at higher ISO. However, I quickly found out that LR2.2 and ACR 5.2 do not currently display sRAW1 or sRAW2 files created with the newer firmware correctly. Their is a very noticeable magenta shift in the shadows and the tone curves just don’t seem right either. This has lead me to shooting the full RAW files which are HUGE (24-26MB each).

This leads me to my current quest in trying to figure out if there is a way to move the LR preview cache files folder somewhere else besides with the LR catalogue itself. Currently, I have my LR catalogue on my DATA drive – however with such large files the cache is growing huge and I’d love to put in on one of the other ‘temp’ drives that I don’t regularly backup – no need in backing up a cache folder! Apparently, I’m not the only one who has come up with wanting to do this. I managed to find a post by Sean McCormack stating how to do it on a Mac OSX… now to figure out doing it on XP… apparently it can be – it is just actually doing it at this point…

UPDATE: Ok… first I checked out Junction v1.05 by Mark Russinovich which is the simple command line way of going about symbolic links on XP. However, sitting and trying to think cmd line made my head hurt. I just want to get back to playing with the shots I took this morning and yesterday of the snow.

Like mounted hard drives, for junctions, the host folder has to be empty. So I moved all the existing preview files within D:\My Documents\My Pictures\Lightroom\My Database\Lightroom 2 Catalog Previews.lrdata to the new home R:\LR Preview Cach leaving the Lightroom 2 Catalog Previews.lrdata folder empty. (This might also take a while if you have of previews already created – you can alternately just empty the folder by deleting the files inside and then have LR re-create the preview files. I decided I didn’t want to recreate the previews so I just moved them while making lunch.)

Since I didn’t want to deal with command line, I next checked out Rekenwonder Software’s Junction Link Magic which has a GUI interface. Quick download. When you open it, it scans your system for existing junctions (this might take awhile if you have several hard drives with a lot of folders. XP has a couple for the core of windows and then it found the two hard drives I found mounted in folders. Then press “create” and it pops up with the create junction point host and target windows. Once you have the empty host folder, select the two folders as shown below and click “Create.”

After a warning that some unexpected things can happen using junctions (similar to mounted drives) it creates the Junction.

Open up LR and everything works fine… LR thinks the data is still in the Lightroom 2 Catalog Previews folder since the OS sees the two locations as identical… however the data only officially resides on my R: drive now not on my D: If you are unfamiliar with mounted hard drives or junctions be sure to read about some of the quarks that come with them – especially when it comes to deleting files/folders within them.