iMac vs MBP for Audio Recording

Discussion in 'iMac' started by kmano8, May 12, 2008.

  1. kmano8 macrumors newbie

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    Apr 28, 2008
    #1
    I am in the market for my first mac. As well as serving as my primary general purpose machine I'd like for it to be the center of my recording work. I plan to run bootcamp with windows and linux too. I would also be doing some casual gaming.

    > Will there be any difference in performance between the iMac and the MBP for recording?

    > Is there any difference in noise level between the two?

    Any other considerations I should be concerned with my mac decision?
     
  2. Fonzijr1964 macrumors 68000

    Fonzijr1964

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  3. D4F Guest

    D4F

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    Planet Earth
    #3
    If you are really thinking into doing quality work then noise isn't your issue as you should run a external audio card.

    One thing I can tell you already (I use Cubase SX a lot)... if you go with a MBP you will cry for a bigger screen very soon. Once you add few audio tracks + midi tracks + mixdowns + some FX open + mixer you will find that even a 24" screen isn't sufficient sometimes.
    Also iMac has a bigger HD and apart from those two things they are pretty much same in regars of audio production.
     
  4. DarthTreydor macrumors 6502

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    May 25, 2007
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    Richmond, VA
    #4
    I'd recommend the imac. you can get a faster processor, faster ram and a faster fsb for less money than the mbp. plus if you're using it in a home studio, portability isn't really a factor. I believe the iMac is quieter as well.
     
  5. Sir Cecil macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 31, 2008
    #5
    If you are working at home and don't need portability for location recording etc, the iMac is the clear choice. Quieter, with a substantial built-in monitor, and more power for the money.

    Anyone remotely interested in sound quality recordings or editing would not be using the sound card in either the iMac or the MBP. An outboard audio interface is essential. I've just started using the $500 Apogee Duet (worth the money for the headphone monitoring quality alone) but there are plenty more at all kinds of prices, connecting via the USB or firewire ports.

    I'd say save money by buying the iMac instead of the MBP and use what you've saved on a decent external sound card.
     
  6. kmano8 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Apr 28, 2008
    #6
    Would you say it's portable enough to transport if I have a gig though? The majority of my recording will be in my apartment, but there will be occasions I would need to bring it off-site. Although the off-site situations would be two-channels simultaneous max, so I could always get a macbook if needed to run the interface.

    EDIT: and yes, I would never consider using the built-in sound on the mac.. this is a given.
     
  7. ChrisA macrumors G4

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    Redondo Beach, California
    #7
    Don't musician's think stuff like guitar amps and drum kits are "portable". If you have a custom shipping case with wheels anything is portable. Seriously, I would not think of transporting an iMac without a shipping case. I gues you could re-use the box it came it as a shiping case but not for to long.

    Look at the software you intend to use. Some of them just fill the screen with a zillion controls and all those track displays. I'd hate to have to work that on a 13" screen. The 24 inch imac would be ideal.
     
  8. Vurnakes macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 10, 2008
    #8
    Could someone please suggest some easy to use sound cards for recording. I have the line 6 toneport ux2 and cannot get it set up to work with my mbp and garageband. I am interested in the Apogee Duet that was mentioned. Is this similar to the toneport?
     
  9. DarthTreydor macrumors 6502

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    May 25, 2007
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    Richmond, VA
    #9
    I have the presonus firestudio project and would recommend it highly. Its FireWire (far supperior to USB), easy to set up, and has great built in preamps all at a reasonable price ($500).
     
  10. ARCTOMYS macrumors newbie

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    May 8, 2008
    #10
    How does Garage Band compare to programs like Digidesign Pro Tools software for digital composing? Is Garage Band any good?
     
  11. D4F Guest

    D4F

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    #11
    Pretty much like a Geo Metro to Lamborghini Murcielago... not joking.
     
  12. MacHappytjg macrumors 65816

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    Mar 24, 2008
    Location:
    Winnipeg
    #12
    yyea i belive they have imac bags well atleast they did i didnt read other postsd to see if it was ther e
     
  13. MacHappytjg macrumors 65816

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    Mar 24, 2008
    Location:
    Winnipeg
    #13
    well its called garage band for a reason and theres better free windows recording things than garageband but i only use garage band for loops making songs for projects so im not a big contributer to that
     
  14. ARCTOMYS macrumors newbie

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    May 8, 2008
    #14
    Yeah, that's what I thought. Thanks.
     
  15. eXan macrumors 601

    eXan

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    Location:
    Russia
    #15
    iMac is definitely faster, but not by much. The one with GeForce 8800 is about 2 times faster than MBP in games though.

    iMac is silent even under max load, unlike MB/MBP which is very loud. When idle both are rather quite.
     
  16. paulemann macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2008
    #16
    take into consideration that the new
    fw chipsets in the alu-imacs are incompatible to a range of pro-level
    audiointerfaces i.e. rme fireface 400, several m-audios,
    several motus. the macbooks had a revision a while back,
    before that they also incorporated the faulty agere chipset.
    apple, at least here in germany, plays deaf when this
    issue is adressed. there are, nervedrenching, workarounds tho.
     
  17. Detektiv-Pinky macrumors 6502a

    Detektiv-Pinky

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2006
    Location:
    Berlin, Germany
    #17
    Under load, the MBP gets quite loud, however, I only experienced this running games.

    When idle, my MBP is much quieter than the iMac. Compared to other computers the iMac is relatively quiet, but I can clearly hear the fans spinning. They are louder than the HD and seem to spin at a constant rate, not going up or down.
     

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