I run a laptop with an Intel Dual Core 1.73Ghz processor and 1GB of RAM as my recording machine. I know this isn't the best spec, but I find it to be adequate and can handle a fair few plugins and guitar and vocal track etc.

However, when I use a plugin which is fairly CPU hungry (such as the bluenoise drum kit plug in), the CPU is almost entirely taken up by one instance of the plugin when a few notes are played simultaneously. I know this could just be simply the limitations of my machine, but I read an article a while back about how some DAW's don't take full advantage of multi core CPU's by default. I'm currently running Cubase SX3 as my DAW.

Does anyone know if I can make better use of my dual core, or is this simply a problem I am just going to have to either live with or upgrade >?
There is poetry in despair.
Are you sure? Go to the task manager, go to "processes", not "applications/programs" and see what all there is going.
Yeah, I already do that. I get rid of everything. Basically, the CPU monitor in Cubase shows a relatively modest load with a few guitar and vocal tracks, it's mainly just with the drum plug-in. I think its really to do with that vst, but just wanted to know if there's anything I can do to make better use of the CPU. Surely it shouldn't eat my CPU like it does ?

If there is, say a hi hat, kick and snare all playing, there'll be like a stutter. Increasing the number of buffers goes somewhere towards reducing the problem, but doesn't eliminate. Also, this has the obvious drawback of creating too much latency to effectively play the notes with my keyboard.
There is poetry in despair.
See if the playback causes the same CPU load when you just load in a standard MIDI file, not playing it in realtime on a keyboard. Chances are your MIDI drivers/inteface are what's causing the issue.
Yeah, the playback is just as bad. I can export to audio then reimport to reduce the problem, but then I can't edit.
There is poetry in despair.
No, or I would have done. At the minute, I don't really have the money to purchase one, and I find that the one I have sounds pretty nice when panned and EQ'd properly. Unless you know of anything of a similar calibre for free ? I doubt that one exists though. I wouldn't be averse to paying for a vst, I have spent a decent amount on my setup already, but I just really have no cash for a while.

Btw, thanks for your help on this so far.
There is poetry in despair.
Hmm, the first question you have asked that I am not 100% on. I don't have my laptop with me, so I can't check, but I believe the number of buffers is 14, to reduce the problem to a minimum, and the buffer size something around the 850 mark, if that's what you mean.
There is poetry in despair.