Need advice from audio heads, which macbook?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by turlehe, Jun 17, 2007.

  1. turlehe macrumors member

    Jun 17, 2007
    I've been reading this forum for a couple of months now i decided to sign up.

    I currently have a four year old Dell Desktop PC (P4 2.8 with 1 gig of ram) and i'm looking to purchase my first mac very soon.

    I'm studying music at college and will be using a lot of Apps like Logic, Pro Tools and FL Studio (through Bootcamp). I was wondering if anyone else using a Macbook to produce their own music and how solid it is running a lot of VST's at once.

    I have two options:

    White Macbook

    * 2.16GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    * 1GB memory (i'll upgrade to 2GB myself)
    * 120GB hard drive1
    * Double-layer SuperDrive


    Low End Macbook Pro

    * 2.2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    * 1440 x 900 resolution
    * 2GB memory
    * 120GB hard drive1
    * 8x double-layer SuperDrive
    * NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT graphics with 128MB SDRAM


    Keep in mind i'll have my current LCD monitor as well, so screen size is'nt really an issue. I was also thinking the extra money saved buying the macbook i could put into a set of studio monitors.

    Any help would be great. Thanks
  2. Scarlet Fever macrumors 68040

    Scarlet Fever

    Jul 22, 2005
    looks like the MacBook is the way to go unless you want more than 2GB RAM, or if you want to run an external drive (in FW800). On either of the two options, if you're running off the internal drive, make sure you get the 7200 RPM drive :)
  3. rainydays macrumors 6502a

    Nov 6, 2006
    I'd recommend the MBP actually. I'm using a MB for making music right now, and even though it works great and can take a lot of load, it easily gets noisy, especially with a secondary display and firewire audio interface connected to it.

    The MBP will also get noisy at high CPU loads, but it has much better cooling than the MB, so I'd recommend that.

    But other than that the performance of the MB is really good, over my expectations.

    I'm buying an iMac for studio work as soon as it's updated.
  4. turlehe thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 17, 2007
    Thanks for the replies.

    Yea, i'll prolly be usuing an MBox Mini as a soundcard (USB).

    Keep the comments coming.

    Does bootcamp perform well?
  5. Igantius macrumors 65816

    Apr 29, 2007
    The C2D MBs are able to access a maximum of 3.3GB of RAM.
  6. turlehe thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 17, 2007
    even better then!
  7. localoid macrumors 68020


    Feb 20, 2007
    America's Third World
    I've been making music via home-brewed micro-computers since the 70's when I was a music comp major. Trust me -- the MacBooks make for one heck of a portable DAT, midi-workstation, etc. I would have killed for this ability a few decades ago, or even a few short years ago for that matter. ;)

    The only real-world difference between the MB and MBP is in the area of 3D graphic capabilities. But no music creation app requires 3D graphics does it? What they do require is pure CPU horsepower, which the Core 2 Duo MB and MBP both can provide. In other words, the Macbooks will do great for music creation, post production and editing, etc.

    I have a 2GHz C2D Macbook. It can run many VST effects and/or many Apple Audio Units (AU) effects, and lots of tracks, etc. The CPU fans will kick up under heavy loads, but unless you're recording from a mic physically located near the notebook that's not a real problem.

    Anything running via Bootcamp is running native (under the Windows 0S). If the program works in Windows, it'll work fine on a Intel Mac. If you have Windows and OS X drivers for your outboard audio devices they'll work fine under either OS.
  8. NewSc2 macrumors 65816

    Jun 4, 2005
    New York, NY
    Go for the MBP. The added screen real estate is worth the extra dough. I've been using Logic Pro and Ableton for at least 4 years now, way back when with a 17" PB, a 13" Macbook, and now a 15" MBP. The PB was too slow, the Macbook was too small, and the MBP is just right.
  9. localoid macrumors 68020


    Feb 20, 2007
    America's Third World
    Personally, the Macbook's smaller size was the factor that caused me to buy it s. a MBP. You can use an external monitor if your eyesight is bad. But for ~$1,000 less (than the MBP) you end up with cash to spend on more important things (if music is the objective) such as sound cards, mics, music software, etc.

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