MacBook Air as mobile recording solution?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by davester, May 17, 2012.

  1. davester macrumors regular

    davester

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2001
    Location:
    Perth, Australia
    #1
    The size, weight and portability of the MacBook Air appeals to me greatly, so I was wondering how many people out there are using their MBA with, for example, a small keyboard for recording when out and about (on a trip, when not at home, etc).

    Is it viable? My main concern is whether the MBA has the suitable processing power to run applications such as ProTools, Ableton Live, etc, VSTs, etc.

    Thanks!
     
  2. davester thread starter macrumors regular

    davester

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2001
    Location:
    Perth, Australia
  3. shinobi-81 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2012
    #3
    I never use any extra keyboard outside home. It comes with a good enough keyboard already.

    What do you intend to "record", btw?
     
  4. TheGdog macrumors 6502

    TheGdog

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2010
    Location:
    North Carolina, USA
    #4
    I don't have a macbook air, but I can say with some confidence that the MBA (especially the i7 version) would have plenty of power to run protools, logic or any other DAW. What Apple does not tell you is that the i5 and i7 processors have a turboboost mode that gives them a boost of power when needed. I think the i7 goes up to 2.7ghz. You should be fine, even with quite a few plugins running. Just make sure to get 4gb of ram.

    The only problem is that there is no firewire and the internal SSD is not very big. You will have to use a external usb drive is you plan on storing lots of recordings. Eventually portable thunderbolt HDs and audio interfaces will hit the market, but until then USB is your only option. USB should be just fine, but If you plan on recording more than 8 tracks at a time, it may not do the trick. If you get an external HD, I would recommend the OWC "On The Go Pro" HD.

    I have used one of the new MBAs, and I think you will be shocked at just how crazy fast it is. Quickest computer I have used.

    He means a MIDI keyboard.
     
  5. shinobi-81 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2012
    #5
    lol, I see :D
     
  6. Boyd01 macrumors 68040

    Boyd01

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Location:
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    #6
    I am doing this with my two month old MBA 13" i5/4GB/256GB. Just installed Logic Pro last week and it runs great. With the kind of stuff I'm doing, the SSD will last me awhile - I still have 157GB free. I might eventually upgrade to the OWC 480GB SSD. Will also get a Thunderbolt drive sooner or later (have lots of USB drives already).

    I have two AT2020 USB microphones, so that gives me a really portable machine that can record stereo anywhere. At home I also use an Alesis iO2, and old StudioLogic full sized 88 key keyboard, a Korg nanoKONTROL2 control surface and a pair of Mackie MR5 mk2 speakers. I use an old 23" HD Cinema display and Apple extended keyboard at home as well.

    Very happy with this setup so far, and it also works well for video with Final Cut Pro.
     
  7. Redbull916 macrumors member

    Redbull916

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2012
    Location:
    Brighton, UK
    #7
    I'm using my i7 256gb 13" Air with Propellorhead Reason 6 and linking it up to a small Akai keyboard when on the move.
    Works superb.
    You need as much screen size as you can get when using Reasons SSL9000 mixing desk which is why I went for the 13"
     
  8. yusukeaoki macrumors 68030

    yusukeaoki

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2011
    Location:
    Tokyo, Japan
    #8
    It may sound a bit weird but I like to record or go live online of my driving during the break.

    So what I do is connect a 720p web cam via USB and tape it onto the windshield.
    This is how I record my stuff.

    Im not sure if you want to go webcam style or an actual camera.
     
  9. davester thread starter macrumors regular

    davester

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2001
    Location:
    Perth, Australia
    #9
    Thanks for the input guys, I now feel confident, despite it's wafer-thin appearance, that it has the power to fit my needs. Now, to start saving! :D
     

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