[wdmaudiodev] The latest in acheiveable latencies using Windows?

  • From: "Voelkel, Andy" <andy.voelkel@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <wdmaudiodev@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 7 Feb 2007 13:12:04 -0800


I am looking into the feasibility of using Windows as a realtime
development platform for audio algorithms. The stumbling block for this
approach for some time now has been latency. I am wondering what the
current state of affairs is in the Windows world regarding this issue. A
few year ago, I acheived latencies of a few milliseconds using a MOTO
2408 and (tuned) 500 MHZ P3. So I figured this problem would be largely
solved by now, but it appears that this not the case, based on some
quick internet research.

I am interested in the answers to questions like:

1.      Which audio interface HW types (USB, Firewire, PCI) have the
lowest latencies, and what latencies are achievable in each category?
2.      Is DirectKS streaming still the best way to achieve low
latencies, or has it been replaced by something better?
3.      What are achievable latencies in Windows Vista vs. Windows XP?
Would I get an enormous payoff going to Vista, or could I get close by
tuning XP and using the fastest driver interfaces?
4.      How much Windows system tuning is required to achieve low
5.      What are the best information resources to consult for (up to
date) system tuning tips?
6.      If I write my own audio host program (desirable for many
reasons), are there good information sources on how to achieve the
lowest possible latencies?

Thanks in advance for any help on this issue. I really appreciate it!

- Andy Voelkel

Principal DSP Engineer

Plantronics, Inc.

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