Are 50 charts too many?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by BrooksRimes, Jul 23, 2010.

  1. Trying to help a friend who used to trade with a broker by phone, has not traded in many years, and is trying to get set up to trade electronically.

    He has a computer with an AMD 2.4 GHZ processor, 4 GB ram, several video cards, 3 monitors running XP. The broker is IB and he wants dozens (50?) of charts open at the same time on various futures and different timeframes.

    He's having intermittent problems with the system hanging.

    He'd like to know if others are running 50+ charts successfully.

    And if he upgraded to an Intel 3.4 GHZ processor and ran Windows XP Professional, if that would make the system more stable?

  2. Some comments:

    1. Just the clock speed cannot tell the computing performance of the AMD or Intel processors. e.g. an Intel i7 processor, even at a lower clock speed, is much faster than a i3 processor. An AMD Phenom processor is much faster than an AMD Athlon processor.

    2. Are 50 charts too many? Hard to tell without knowing if the charts are just generic charts or there are indicators involved. The indicators are what consume computer powers (CPU cycles). So if I have only ONE chart but I calculate 50 different indicators on this chart, it may eat up more CPU cycles than have 50 different simple charts plotting the price series alone.
  3. Also:

    Not all indicators are created equal. Some are relatively simple to calculate. Some require a lot more computions. For example: MACD is relatively simple. But Bollinger Bands... calculating the summation series of something-squared and taking the square-root... Calculating the BB may take up more CPU times than a few other indicators.

    EMA requires more CPU time than Simple Moving Averages.


    So it's really hard to generalized. The best is to gradually turn it. Start with 10 charts or something. Monitor the CPU usage and memory usage. Gradually increase the number of charts until the saturation point. Then you have some ideas how many charts your particular computer/network can handle.
  4. Surdo


    Why the fuck do you need 50 charts running, 12 maybe...but 50 gimme a break! You can run strategies on TradeStation or various other platforms without keeping a million charts running.
  5. Tic charts tend to use a lot of CPU time... same for "custom" indicators. Suggest keeping tic charts to a minimum... run 1-minute charts instead and see how it works.
  6. Ive run 40 on quottracker and ib without a hiccup....

    On top of very demanding programs...

    3.0 Intel quad core 4gb ram... xp pro
  7. Does he have any junk cpu hogging programs running? any chat messenger(like yahoo, MSN), ITunes, webcam drivers, quicktime, etc. Those need to be turned off all times, especially at start up.

    Running that many charts(especially if you running indicators) also means better to have more CPU power, upgrade to higher power AMD Phenom 2 965 Black Edition 3.4 Ghz quadcore, or Intel i7 quadcore (at least 2.9 Ghz) and Asus motherboard with overclocking capabilities.....and a top notch CPU fan(like from Arctic Cooling, Zalman, or Thermaltake). That should take care of the system hang ups..
  8. 'cause some days it takes a portfolio of 50 stocks to find 5 that have a high prob setup.
  9. Surdo


    I scan the S&P 500 with various parameters daily, do you think I run 1500 charts?
  10. If you are looking at the S&P I'd think it would be closer to 500 not 1500. :p

    OP, 50 charts or not... up to you/your buddy. Personally I think its overkill and especially on only 3 moniors it will make the charts so small it'll be a waste of monitor space. You would need to upgrade to 30" monitors or get more - which is expensive.

    That CPU is pretty old and generally considered slow to today's standards. Try getting a second computer (something newer) for order entry and charting and then use the older, slower computer for internet browsing, chat sessions, email, etc. I just phased out all of my E8400 CPUs and the "slowest" I run now is a Q9650 (Quad core 3.0ghz) or dual quad core Xeon 3.0ghz boxes. I personally don't have a need for hyperthreadding but some others might - you should check into that because an i5 CPU combined with DDR3 RAM will be cheaper than a Q9650 with DDR2 RAM.

    Have you considered XPx64 or W7x64?
    #10     Jul 26, 2010