Logic, Reason, Cubase...oh my, do I need a mac?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by horiveira, Mar 4, 2010.

  1. horiveira macrumors newbie

    Mar 4, 2010
    I plan to run music programs such as Cubase, Logic Pro, Reason, and a bunch of vst's and AU's, all of which I'm sure are real heavy programs for a processor. I've been looking at mac laptops for a while now to do the job.

    Is there a particular reason why I should go with a mac (possibly the speculated, new MBP) for music production? What are the particular reasons I should go with mac over a pc (not the whole debate, just the one pertaining to music production software)?

  2. jungeliest macrumors member

    Feb 18, 2010
    For some reason (the OS?) the Macs with similar specs outperform their PC vendors. Are they problem free? Hell no. Do they crash or freeze? Hell yes. Does the Cubase work faster on a PC? Yep.

    But then again, you have more choices with the Mac. Like Digital Performer and Logic Pro, there are some DAWs that only work on Mac OS. Ableton Live is more stable on Mac. Not sure about PT. And you can still open Cubase projects if you can afford the licence. Hell, if you want to Cubase all they long, you can install W7 via Boot Camp, it's much more stable on Windows than it is on Mac OS. No, it's less unstable on Windows. :)

    + You get efficiency with Logic Pro. I've seen some friends working on projects w/ 20+ tracks, on their old MacBooks! I did not have the luxury of having more than 15 tracks on Cubase w/ my 2.2 Ghz Core2Duo HP.

    Yes, the PC laptops are blazing fast when you first buy them. But in less than 6 months, they begin to slow down. They just age faster. Most of them are consumer toys, in my humble opinion.

    Right now, I'm using a 2002 PowerBook. It can't play Youtube, but it runs both Logic 7 & Ableton Live. The performance is acceptable.

    In my opinion, Macs are good investment, and they give you a head start on your career. Like "I could have bought a second hand car with the money I've spent for this computer. Jesus. I better earn some more!"

  3. slu macrumors 68000


    Sep 15, 2004
    For strictly music production, the only reason to specifically use a Mac over a PC would be to use Logic, which is not available on Windows. Everything else pretty much works on both platforms.

    Now that being said, I would argue that the stability of OS X makes it a better choice overall, but I have very little experience on Windows 7. I am sure one can buy a very stable Windows 7 machine for music production.

    As for processing power, any box you buy will have plenty of power unless you are putting together the highest end professional level system. The recording studio where my band recorded our CD last summer was running a PowerMac G5.
  4. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    (1) Logic only runs on Mac OS X.

    (2) Setting up a PC for music is a lot of work. You need to get device drivers and make sure nothing stupid is going on like FireWire and a disk controller sharing an interrupt. If you know a lot about the guts of PC then this is all easy stuff.

    (3) Windows has a horrible real time scheduler you find on a windows PC that yu have to manually remove just about everything to get good performance, the Mac can actaully multitask very well

    (4) Macs have pretty good audio hardware inside the line in/out is good quality

    (5) you can run Winows on a Mac but you can't run Mac OS on a Windows PC.
  5. localoid macrumors 68020


    Feb 20, 2007
    America's Third World
    Based on my experience, I've found that running Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) software under OS X makes my life much, much easier _if_ I have access to audio and MIDI hardware that have a proven track record under OS X. And by "easier" I mean much less hassles with drivers, latency, and other potential problem areas, along with having a user-interface (UI) that's cleaner in appearance and easier to work with. Typically, I can get more done, in less time, with less hassles, using OS X vs. Windows DAW software.

    However, Windows DAW software and Windows itself has improved in recent years, and most all commercial DAW software is available cross-platform these days (although Apple's Logic is a notable exception). And, at this present moment, you can buy PC (quad-core) laptops that are more powerful than Apple's current (C2D) offerings. If you are planning on using lots of effects, wanting to work with a great number of tracks, etc. you will usually find yourself wanting/needing all the CPU that offers a good amount raw processing power you can get your hands on.

    I'm considering purchase of a new laptop to replace a 2.75 year old MacBook sometime within the next year or so. Personally, I'm willing to wait and review the specs of Apple's new 2010 MB and MBP releases, before I even consider buying anything. But then I'm in no great rush, as I don't need something right away. What I have still works fine for my needs, but then I only use the MacBook for mobile recording, typically of four tracks of less, and not for final production -- the heavy lifting is done on desktops.

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