I keep hearing that low-latency software is very important to music production, but it's very unclear to me why this is so. I'm about to try my luck with some music production after some time, but my current PC setup is not low-latency, so I'm trying to decide if I should upgrade the software (at considerable effort), or just stick to the high-latency setup I'm working with now, which I also use for daily work.

So I would like to know, what am I missing out on in terms of music production in general, by not using low-latency software? What side-effects, problems can I expect that low-latency software is supposed to solve? Will I not be able to use patchbay software effectively? Will I be unable to record / have lag in my recordings? Noise / skips / screetches? Will midi input accuracy via piano keyboard suffer?

PS: My particular setup is a linux setup; my question is a general one, but any advice specific to linux music production workflows would be highly appreciated

closed as off-topic by Todd Wilcox, ttw, Dom May 2 '17 at 5:15

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "Questions seeking recommendations for specific equipment are off-topic, because they are primarily opinion based. Instead, describe the required function and setting in which the equipment will be used, and ask what you should look for to achieve that." – ttw, Dom
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • 1
    I wonder if this question would be better handled on the Linux stack. It sort of seems to be more about Linux than about music production. To be specific, if I'm reading this correctly you want to know what the important differences are between the generic kernel and the low latency kernel, which is a Linux question, although you specifically want to know what differences will affect music production, which fits in both categories. All that is to say there might not be as many people who know about the Linux side of your question on Music.SE. – Todd Wilcox May 1 '17 at 22:29
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    well, i mean, how do you do ANYthing on linux... try it. see if it blows up. if it does, try something else. You've got your 1. 2. 3. right there. Go down your list and pray for the best. Your order seems pretty good to me. – Stephen Hazel May 2 '17 at 0:02
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    @ToddWilcox I fully agree with the general sentiment. But I don't consider it an appropriate answer to this particular question, any more than I would consider "buy them both and find out yourself" an appropriate answer to a question asking about a comparison between two cars for a particular set of circumstances that users of this forum might have expertise on. "Experimenting" in this case may involve reformatting my entire PC to install an audio-oriented distro. I think it's more than fair to ask experienced musicians if according to their experiences this is encouraged or overkill! – Tasos Papastylianou May 2 '17 at 1:34
  • 1
    Meta question: music.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/2767/… – topo morto May 4 '17 at 7:46
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    and chat discussion on this: chat.stackexchange.com/rooms/58179/… – Doktor Mayhem May 4 '17 at 10:04

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