Which imac for music production?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Thomasr, Jun 18, 2010.

  1. Thomasr macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2010
    #1
    Hey all, first post =)

    So I've been wondering a lot lately about what I want. I currently have a 6 years old Dell XPS PC and want a mac. I've used imacs a lot during college years and now want one for myself, no more PC for me.
    Now, the question is: what do I need? I would use this mac for pretty much anything, but mostly mostly mostly for music production. I will use it to record songs,
    I have decided I probably do not need to wait for the refresh, as all I would need is to be able to run plugins and multiple tracks at the same time.. I'm pretty much sold on the imac 27 quad core with 8gb ram right now, but would I be able to make a wiser choice? thanks for the help!! =)
     
  2. Thomasr thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2010
    #2
    one more question that might actually be a bit more pertinent...
    does anyone know what I need exactly? I mean, I know that the video card will not matter, and I will be using an external soundcard.. What I really would like to know is if I should boost the RAM and the CPU.
    My current dell is a 3.5 ghz (not dual core though i think) and has 3gb of RAM. When I record songs, it starts to lag when a lot of tracks are recorded, and it lags even more when I have plugins turned on. This becomes a problem because the metronome is not on time anymore..
    What would I need for it to be as fluid as possible? I was staring in awe at the 27 inch screen because I really love how big it is, but if the quad core is superficial for my needs, I can always get a 21,5..

    also, would 2X2X2X2 RAM be significantly better than 2X4 ? as far as I know, having 2x4 is mostly better when you can add another 2x4 to make it 4x4, but I've been told you cannot add more RAM sticks on an imac ...
     
  3. TMRaven macrumors 68020

    TMRaven

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2009
    #3
    Get the i5 or i7 iMac. Judging by how you've kept your dell for 6 years, you'd want to futureproof your iMac purhase as well. The iMacs come with 2x2 ram sticks, so you could always add more later on. They accept up to 4 ram sticks.
     
  4. Thomasr thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2010
    #4
    that's the thing, my Dell doesn't work properly anymore, and I'm getting sick of it. I've always had some problems with it, but it's getting ridiculous. Most of the time, I can't use it for more than 10 minutes before it freezes and stops working. I am going to need a working computer to record in july, and I can't use the dell anymore. most of the time, I'm actually on my ipod touch because it's faster to boot and doesn't die on me all the time..
    I'm in France right now. If they made a refresh when I'm back home, then great. If not, I can't really afford waiting, especially if i end up waiting until october..
     
  5. Music_Producer macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2004
    #5
    Perfect choice - I have the same unit and it works great with just 4 gb of ram (esp with the 64 bit Logic)
     
  6. Thomasr thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2010
    #6
    ^yay, thanks =)
    now, should i go with 4gb ram? i can afford to get 8gb (2x2x2x2) but would it really be worth it?

    Also, would going with the i7 make a huge difference, or am I better off going with an i5 ?
     
  7. washburn macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2010
    #7
    some music software supports i7's 8 cores I know the latest Ableton Live is geared for this and I'm sure other DAWs will take advantage of this and Reason 5 is out soon so that will probably also have it, so I reckon better to get i7
     
  8. gdeusthewhizkid macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2008
    Location:
    NY|NJ
    #8
    can you tell me if the imac works with a pro tools HD system? We are looking to get one for another studio in our facility. Is anyone have experience with this ?
     
  9. skiltrip macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 6, 2010
    Location:
    New York
    #9
    Any music production software worth it's weight in snot (Pro Tools, Logic, Live, Studio One, etc) will definitely take advantage of all 4 cores on the quad. I'd definitely shoot for that. I am currently working in Pro Tools on my 13" MBP (dual core). It's rock solid but lacks a little horsepower when my sessions get a little busy.
     
  10. iMikeT macrumors 68020

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    Jul 8, 2006
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    California
  11. Icaras macrumors 603

    Icaras

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    Mar 18, 2008
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    California, United States
  12. gdeputy macrumors 6502a

    gdeputy

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2008
    Location:
    New York
    #12
    Do not buy ram from apple themselves, buy it after you purchase your mac. it's super easy to install, doesn't void your warranty, and will save you a ton of money.
     
  13. scannerdarkly macrumors newbie

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    Mar 12, 2011
    Location:
    Chicago
    #13
    im just getting into the whole daw setup, i was limited in cash so i went with the 21in imac i3 3.06ghz 4gb ram, im debateing on abelton or logic, but the real question is what performace problems if any will i see. and is it worth upgrading the ram to 8gb for better performance in logic or ableton???? Any advice is welcomed plz!!!!!! thank you!!:eek:
     
  14. Rapmastac1 macrumors 65816

    Rapmastac1

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    Aug 5, 2006
    Location:
    In the Depths of the SLC!
    #14
    I use an iMac for my music work. The screen can be a bit small sometimes but I have a large screen attached. The only problem is the lack of a real sound card with multiple ins and outs. I use an external mixer for my recording, which has a lot of ins and outs as well as a very powerful sound card. I would prefer to have a tower (Mac Pro) to be able to add a better sound card but I'm getting along just fine with what I've got here.
     
  15. MrPresident macrumors newbie

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    Nov 25, 2009
    Location:
    Manchester
    #15
    It can sort of work with a Pro Tools HD system but I'd recommend getting a Mac Pro if you're going to be spending the ridiculous amount of money on the outboard sound cards/interfaces that a true Pro Tools HD system would use. HD needs PCI/e cards which is why you need the Mac Pro.
     
  16. daceymathers macrumors member

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    Apr 17, 2011
    Location:
    newyork
    #16

    Yes you made a wiser choice by taking imac 27 quad core.To see how well the new quad-core iMacs perform, we ran our overall system performance test suite, Speedmark 6, and the results were quite impressive.
     
  17. daceymathers macrumors member

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    Apr 17, 2011
    Location:
    newyork
    #17
    I'm running an older iMac – the white case variety, 2.1 GHz Core 2 Duo, with only 3 GB RAM and it's quite happy running Logic Pro 9 with a lot of plugins.Macs are definitely more intuitive and better suited to music, in my opinion; and I say that as someone who moved from PC to Mac several years ago, largely for that reason.
     

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