picking the apple

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by majorledhead, Sep 2, 2006.

  1. majorledhead

    majorledhead Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,221
    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2006
    Location:
    Slippery Rock
    I want to take the mac plunge for a music production setup. Planning on starting on garageband and moving up to logic. Should I go desktop or laptop ? What specs should I try to get setup with ? Is there an interface that is more compatible with mac than the others ? I play guitars for the most part but do have a yamaha motif8 that I would love to be able to use someday.
     
  2. beePee

    beePee Member

    Messages:
    95
    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2006
    Location:
    Long Beach, Ca.
    As always it depends on your needs. From the bottom up

    Mini Mac single core
    Mini Mac single dual core

    It looks like they are on the verge (in a few weeks ) of an upgrade on the processor …that should be worth the wait.
    The downside is they are limited to 2 gigs of ram (which isn't really bad) but the next Logic upgrade that looks like is coming 2nd quarter 007 may need to be run on at least 4 gig. Past that they seem plenty capable .Has some port limitations but not critical for your smaller needs now.

    Mac Book
    Mac Book Pro

    Don’t know much about them but again seem very capable probably upgrade soon also. Bit on the pricey side but if you need/want to go mobile …

    Intel iMac 17" or 20" are a little more processing power than the mini but you get the Monitor and a few extras (iSight cam, blah blah…) and looks ready for an upgrade also.

    These look good for the $1200 -$2000

    The new Mac Pro desktops are in the same price range as the G5 tower PPC.The advantage at this moment is plugins and apps. The Intel Macs need Universal Binary and everything isn’t UB yet. That probably won't affect you though until you move up to Logic Pro .

    The G5’s and Mac Pros have much more expandability with card slots and ram (up to 16 gigs).The biggest downside for G5’s (if you haven’t heard) is Apple is no longer using Power PC processors. The G5 quad (2 dual core proc) are being left high and dry at the moment…(but not the G5 single dual cores). Apple just upgraded Logic Pro to run on all 4 cores for the Mac Pros but not the G5 quad…and they aren’t even a year old !!

    Not that The G% quads are bad outdated machines .They just can’t operate at the same level as the new Mac Pro’s.Not to worry within a year (or sooner ) there well surely be an 8 core….that’s progress.

    The G5 quad hasn’t seen a price drop yet( none of them have) and and are the same price as the Mac Pro 3.0 ghz quad There is a huge difference between these two machines as far as I can see and it’s a no brainer which “not” to get(unless the price dropped hugely).

    I ‘d go for the Mac Pro 2.5 quad. It list at $2500 and I can’t imagine the 3.0 is going to blow it away for $800 bucks more because you’ll need it if you load up with Mac ram. They are in the gouge faze with 1 gig being about $250 I believe. I’d go for the minimum ram (I gig )and hard drive (1)…then go 3rd party on whatever you want to climb to and save a bundle. The new Pro Mac have 4 ports for HD with a max of 2TB.

    Interfaces .If you want at least approaching pro I’d say the cheapest best would be a Presonus Firepod.Stay away from the M audio unless absolutely want to go Pro Tools LE(don’t go for the Digi 002) MOTU Ultralite as the lowest.

    If you are after a good sound don’t go cheap on your converter though. The next real step up which I think is perfect for project studio is RME Fireface 400. Tight, clean, very livable pres, great clock, software mixer.. can’t go wrong. It will be a few years before this becomes dated (if not more).Still in Beta but RME is pretty solid support.

    Of course remember if you get into this it will make your G.A.S explode. The majority of worth their salt project studios start around $10,000.Everytime you look around you’ll be realizing how it’d be great to have/need something.Whats going to hold it’s value (use) is the hardware gear though. Computers and interfaces are planned obsolescence (but necessary so don’t skimp) Mic’s ,mic pre amps,compressors,EQ,s mixer boards will be around a long time until a huge leap in technology happens (but it probably )e.g.) won’t be happening soon.

    If you haven’t checked into that stuff yet ..just wait…you'll be feeling it in your check book and credit cards!!..

    BP
     
  3. dankayaker

    dankayaker Supporting Member

    Messages:
    4,629
    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2003
    Location:
    Blacksburg VA
    I have a G5 Dual 2.5 tower for sale on the emporium. I've used it for ProTools and Logic with great results. My primary application is a 3-D animation package that is about to release in UB so I need to go to the Intel machine. My G5 has 3.5 gigs of RAM.
     
  4. retro

    retro Member

    Messages:
    2,134
    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2005
    Location:
    Earth
    beePee made a great outline for you.... I would simply add a couple of other interfaces to the fold that I believe are worthy of consideration with midi built in. And say to look at firewire interfaces rather then USB.


    http://www.mackie.com/products/400f/index.html

    Although I believe these are much less known Echo makes good stuff.
    And I believe they partnered and co-designed with Mackie on at least the 400f.

    http://www.echoaudio.com/Products/FireWire/


    If you don't need midi built in and want something mobile...

    Then Mackie's Satellite and these guys are another suggestion I would have.

    http://www.mhlabs.com/

    http://www.mhlabs.com/metric_halo/products/mio/

    Those along with beePee's recommendations offer a good price range to select from with good quality.
     
  5. majorledhead

    majorledhead Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,221
    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2006
    Location:
    Slippery Rock
    Thanks for the suggestions. Whats the advantage of firewire over USB ? Any input on the laptop-desktop choice ? I'm thinking you would want the 7200 rpm sata drive and at least 2 gigs of ram.
     
  6. retro

    retro Member

    Messages:
    2,134
    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2005
    Location:
    Earth
    Speed.


    Just depends what you want to do and run.

    I still use a upgraded G4, 1.25 GB ram with assorted DAW's. DP, Reason, GB, plugs. It's a bit of a strain but it still works pretty good. And I can always freeze tracks, etc. So a new notebook would be an upgrade here. And if you need or want mobility.

    I agree...
     

Share This Page