Advice for a DJ: Which Mac for these specifics???

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Coakley, Mar 22, 2008.

  1. Coakley macrumors newbie

    Mar 22, 2008
    Hi guys.

    I was recently inspired by DJ Q Bert's Apple advertisement to look at buying a Mac but I have no idea which would be suitable.

    I am a scratch/performance DJ and what i'd like to be able to do is....

    1. Be able to hook my turntables up to a Mac and record mixes into the Mac to press up onto CD's.

    2. Be able to hook up a camcorder to the Mac to be able to record my mixes and scratch/turntablism performances....edit the footage....sync my live mixes in with the footage so it runs in time....eventually ending up with a promotional product I could burn off as a special DVD (I figure that sending people DVD's with music AND pictures would be a lot cooler than just sending out boring mix cd's).

    3. Be able to possibly move into digital DJ'ing such as using Serato Scratch and/or Ableton.

    4. Be able to eventually create my own music to a proffessional level, probably running Logic (which I used in college and really enjoyed).

    Please could you advise me as to what Mac would be powerful enough and suitable to be able to do all this and which you would reccomend.

    I am leaning towards a laptop as it would be portable for DJ'ing with using ableton/serato, but I also like the look of the imac.

    Would a Macbook be powerful enough to do all of the above?

    ....or do I really need a power Mac of some kind (which sadly I cannot afford)?

    Thanks in advance for any help!
  2. JG271 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 17, 2007
    Yeah a macbook would be capable of all that. Of course a macbook pro would be better - but money is an issue!
    So the base model macbook i reckon - and logic is a great piece of software although i don't know how well it works as a DJ tool.
    Hope this helps.
  3. Coakley thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 22, 2008
    Thanks for replying mate.

    The Logic side of it would be to produce my own beats rather than DJ'ing (i'm pretty sold on Serato for the DJ'ing side of it).

    Do you think a Macbook or an imac would be capable of handling Logic and not have loads of latency?

    Do you still need to buy external gear or a proffesional soundcard or can you make music to an acceptable level on just the stuff tat comes inside the mac?
  4. xparaparafreakx macrumors 65816

    Jul 29, 2005
    Most would say a Macbook would be fine but I am going out with a limb and saying Macbook Pro.

    1. In Native Instruments' traktor scratch there is the Audio 8 DJ box. hook up your record out from your mixer to the 3rd or 4th input on the Audio 8 DJ box. Record it using audacity.

    2. Your camcorder to the Macbook Pro using firewire. Edit video in iMovie 08. Create DVDs using iDVD 08.

    3. Traktor Scratch. I love that program and swear by it. Ableton Live is also a great program but I gotta figure out how to use time coded vinyl, Traktor Scratch, and bring it back into Ableton Live 7.

    4. You can run logic studio on the Macbook Pro and since you can use the Audio 8 DJ box, you can record, hook up midi, etc.

    A macbook should be fine but I don't have a macbook so I can't comment it on. I also haven't tried Traktor Scratch on my Macbook Air but my Air is a general laptop for listening to music from a DJ Pool.

    Feel free to ask more questions.
  5. Coakley thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 22, 2008
    I really appreciate this advice. I wish I had the extra cash to buy the pro. Sadly I can only just afford a macbook or imac at the most.

    If I bought a Macbook would it be powerful enough to run Logic without any latency ad would I have to buy any more outboard gear???

    Will the soundcard that comes with the Macbook be powerful enough or would i have to buy a specialist soundcard?

    Thanks for this guys!
  6. xparaparafreakx macrumors 65816

    Jul 29, 2005
    What macbook were you thinking about getting?

    Also in logic, what were you thinking of doing? Recording live audio or making it inside logic?
  7. kubricks macrumors member

    Mar 15, 2008
    The regular Macbook can run Logic just fine, especially for someone starting out, I doubt you will ever get close to choking your Macbook in any Logic session you would create. Serato/Ableton runs blazingly fast on even the first Macbooks.

    The onboard core audio of OS X has incredible latency right out the box. If you are serious about recording audio or need multiple I/O you will want to purchase an external soundcard, I'd suggest firewire over USB. I have a Presonus firebox.

    For audio applications, there is no real difference between the Macbook vs Pro. Only plus is the extra firewire bus and external slot for expanding. I mean you share ram with the video on the Macbook but it's minor. For the cost difference, I'd rather go for a Macbook and a midi controller + external soundcard than a Macbook Pro.

    If you are playing live, you might enjoy the cheaper Macbook when/if something drops, breaks, gets stolen etc.

    But whatever you choose, you will have more than enough power to do whatever you could possibly want in the audio world.

    Upgrade to a 7200RPM HDD and it doesn't get much better.
  8. xparaparafreakx macrumors 65816

    Jul 29, 2005
    I guess a Macbook would be fine then. I just never used one to know. Make sure to get that 4GB of ram for your Macbook.
  9. Coakley thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 22, 2008
    This has been really helpful guys i really appreciate it. I have decided to save up a bit more money, despite money being tight at the moment and to get a Pro if I can.

    You have been very helpful people. Thanks!

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