My Mac DAW considerations thread

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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby selfinflikted » Thu Oct 23, 2014 12:04 pm

soundwave106 wrote:
selfinflikted wrote:Ok, so it seems like the only affordable Mac I could use, won't be useable.


From my viewpoint, a 2.8 Ghz i5-4308 machine with 8GB of memory certainly could be a useable DAW.

The caveat is that very CPU hungry plugins will be a burden, so you'll have to freeze more tracks. But that's a problem even on my machine (i7-2600K quad core, 4.5Ghz overclocked). Most DAWs I think are multi-core friendly and will divide the processing among cores. But very few individual plugins are. So throw on a super complex patch on (easy to do with Alchemy and Iris and others) and it's glitch city for pretty much *everyone* at the moment. (Diva is a *very* welcome exception to the rule for instance).

(That won't change unless coders start getting smarter about multi-core. CPU speeds are not going to go much faster in the near future, the focus is more on cores at the moment. Also, for computers like the Mac Mini, the reason specs are getting lower is quite simple: low power consumption / "environmental friendly" aspects are starting to become a big deal, and that does not jive with "powerful". If all you do is surf the web and do some word processing, having so much computational power on all the time makes little sense.)

I/O is what I think would be the bigger deal. If you go down the Mac Mini route, you really would want the 256GB SSD option vs the 1TB stock drive. It's the same price and should still be enough space to cover a few projects (or lots if all ITB).

I also agree that this PC is not usable for gregwar's needs. :) But probably quite usable for a 20-30 track mostly electronic production where anything *too* CPU heavy is frozen to disk. I know I was able to run Omnisphere live on a cheap Acer i5 laptop (with an SSD), and I remember the days when everyone moaned how much of a CPU hog Omnisphere was; I can't imagine general DAW duties being *that* much more intense...


Yea, it actually probably would work for my needs, honestly. I just feel like for the asking price, it should be more of an upgrade for my current setup. Thanks for this post!

My hodgepodge DAW computer gets me by just fine for now, for how *I* use it. It's a dual-core, 2.4gHz machine with 4GB RAM and a crap standard HDD still running Windows XP (does anyone know how to get the blasted "WE NO LONGER SUPPORT THIS OS TROLOLOL SO YOUR COMPUTER PROBABLY HAS VIRUSESES NAO" message to stop popping up every 15 minutes?!). Anyway, when I actually have a song completed, which is rare, it's usually less than 50 tracks. I run plugins on nearly all tracks - just the standard verbs, delays, etc etc, and have yet to run into a single stutter or freeze on any of my audio. Damn, this Dell has been magical. But I just feel like it's time to upgrade. I'll never be recording live acts, well, probably never, so I'm a one-track-at-a-time kinda guy which makes it much easier on the 'puter.
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby soundwave106 » Thu Oct 23, 2014 12:33 pm

selfinflikted wrote:Yea, it actually probably would work for my needs, honestly. I just feel like for the asking price, it should be more of an upgrade for my current setup. Thanks for this post!


Well, in that, I kind of agree... Apple is pricey for what you get.

From what I'm Googling, the most annoying Windows XP EOL nag apparently comes from Microsoft Security Essentials, I guess you could always uninstall that and use another antivirus solution? (All my machines are currently on Windows 7, though I currently have a Windows XP VM on one of them...)
BC | SC
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby selfinflikted » Thu Oct 23, 2014 12:36 pm

Ah! I bet that's it, since I DO use MS Security Essentials.. funny thing about THAT is, that damn thing still updates nearly weekly. :idk:
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby gregwar » Thu Oct 23, 2014 7:52 pm

I kno u aren't interested in laptops si but dell did have a line of MacBook Pro killers released this summer. it was actually pretty difficult to justify getting a MacBook Pro when they came out.

I don't remember skus but the bottom line was the display was slightly less crisp (not a big deal for audio) and I was still running logic and all mac software stuffs so switching to pc at that time would have been a huge headache.

the dell would have been a few hundred dollars cheaper than the apple refurb shop. there are still ok deals there on apple stuff tho
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby selfinflikted » Thu Oct 23, 2014 8:23 pm

I think I'm just past wanting an Apple for my DAW. I honestly think I'm going to let Dell build my next PC again. The one I'm using now is literally 10 years old, and I have never replaced a single component in it, and it's still working fine. I can probably get what I need for around the 5-6 hundred dollar mark, and it'll be better - at least on paper - than the Mac Mini.

You guys are awesome for all your infos. Thank yous again.
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby Plink Floyd » Fri Oct 24, 2014 3:03 pm

At the time, I hated giving up XP, but I don't miss it now.

Except that the GUI for my M-Audio Midisport 8X8 USB interface isn't supported past XP. It still works as a basic aggregator, but the full flexible control thingy would be nice.

-

And this thread illustrates the fact that our little group contains some pretty savvy savants.

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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby selfinflikted » Fri Oct 24, 2014 4:13 pm

Plinky, that's why I've been hesitant to ditch XP. I have a lot of outboard gear that allegedly isn't supported by anything beyond XP. I have both a Unitor 8 (8x8) AND a MOTU 8x8 midi patch bay, and I'm afraid that when I do upgrade, neither will work. Plus you have all those really nice editors for all my outboard keyboards that probably won't work beyond XP as well - not that I use those THAT much, but I sometimes do when I need control of the minutiae. Anyway, I probably won't upgrade for another 6 months or so, so I don't have to sweat too hard just yet.
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby Plink Floyd » Sat Oct 25, 2014 1:14 am

Which MOTU? Are u sure it's obso?
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby gregwar » Sat Oct 25, 2014 5:20 pm

si (and anyone else with older machines)
there's nothing wrong with keeping the dinosaurs around so to speak. i got a old mac g4 just to run a korg oasys card and os9 'vintage' software. all i have to do is hit the on button and its all rigged up to my tv on a different channel.

i was going to do something similar with all my 32 bit software from 2006-2012 (my entire old macbook pro is literally just a folder on my mac mini's desktop). i'm still half transitioned to 64 bit daws and plug-ins but once thats complete i'll likely get a refurb machine just to run my old software like
- audiomulch
- logic 8
- ni kore & komplete
- cyan
- dx7 librarian
- meta synth
- midi quest xl
- recycle
- vfx (.dll host on mac) & vst to au adapter

and lots of other stuff that may or may not be broken that i don't even know about, that may or may not be caught up, etc.
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby gregwar » Sat Oct 25, 2014 5:27 pm

i just checked out the refurb shop for mac pro computers (canada)

the prices are much more competitive and there's a big enough variety to choose from !

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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby selfinflikted » Mon Oct 27, 2014 11:52 am

Plink Floyd wrote:Which MOTU? Are u sure it's obso?


Not sure at all. I'm just fearful like that. This is the one that I have. It actually works better than the Unitor 8 that I have, and the only thing I really dislike about it is that it is USB powered ONRY, which means if I want to noodle around on a keyboard, I have to turn on the computer. The Unitor has a wall-wart, and can be used sans USB.
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby selfinflikted » Mon Oct 27, 2014 11:56 am

gregwar wrote:there's nothing wrong with keeping the dinosaurs around so to speak.


Good thing, because I don't have a choice right now. lol. This old Dell I'm using has certainly served me well. When I am able to upgrade, I'll probably use it for a media server or some such until it just dies a natural death. I'll probably bury it in the back yard.
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby gregwar » Mon Nov 17, 2014 12:18 am

today i decided to upgrade to iOS 8.1 and OS X 10.10 Yosemite

this all started about 2 months ago. there's a way to get siri to read your books to you in a 'blind' mode. i had a book on my laptop that i'd started but wanted to have read to me while i drive from my phone. getting anything from your laptop to your phone requires you to sync those iTunes libraries. in the process it asks you to restore your phone so i decided to wait.

fast forward to my sunday off. first i would try to update my iPhone 5s to iOS 8.1, since its been updated and should have the initial point O bugs worked out. i connected it to my macbook pro since it requires about 5gb of space and my phone only has 16gb total so i could download it on the laptop.

first i followed these instructions: http://bit.ly/1jCPrOY

Image

mainly i just transferred my iTunes purchases and backed up my iPhone but all these steps are useful

then i tried to update my phone from iTunes (once it was backed up, etc) then it totally crashed near the end of the backup :faceplate: apparently there has been a lot of issues going from iOS 7 to 8

i used this trouble shooting guide: http://bit.ly/1rucH51

basically i just restarted my device and told iTunes to restore it from the backup i just made. then when it was restored it was also updated to iOS 8.1 at the same time. there are lots of other trouble shooting ideas for other issues in that article. i backed up my phone again once the update was completed.

lastly i updated to OS X 10.10 Yosemite. i downloaded the free update in the app store, hit the install button and followed all of the prompts. then i signed into iCloud and tried out the txt and phone continuity features.

the txt functions seemed to be working (even sms) but not phone calls.

i found this guide: http://bit.ly/1xbzDZ7

i logged out of iCloud on my laptop and phone and logged back in, turned them off and back on, etc. then i went to terminal and entered the commands in the guide and it worked.

Image

so there is the long and short of updating your apple laptop and phone. hopefully it doesn't require so much effort but now everything is working fine here and there's a good chance the links will include trouble shooting information you might need. the only casualty seems to be my voice memos, which are mostly backed up in iTunes.

btw i did finally get my ibooks transferred. i connected my phone to my laptop and clicked sync. iTunes asked if i would like to restore my phone to sync the libraries, i said yes, and all it did was transfer the ten books over that i have :faceplate:
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby gregwar » Sat Nov 22, 2014 2:47 am

new p series vizio tvs announced

http://www.vizio.com/en-ca/p-series

50" 4k TV with hdmi 2 for $1000 (6 cores, 60hz 4k, dynamic LEDs for deep blacks, etc)

I'm looking for a way to connect it to a MacBook Pro. apparently if I use a regular mini display to hdmi converter it will only play 4k at 30hz. there must be a special adapter or something but i don't find it :idk:
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby selfinflikted » Mon Nov 24, 2014 1:56 pm

I'm actually surprised the Macbooks don't have HDMI outs. :idk:
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby Veracohr » Mon Nov 24, 2014 11:00 pm

But it's Apple, where the philosophy is "Why go along with a standard when you can make something proprietary!"
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby midinut » Tue Nov 25, 2014 7:47 am

Hey Greg, my wife figured out an easy way to get Siri to read to her during her commute. I'll ask again how she did it, but I don't think it involved near as many steps as you cited above.
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby selfinflikted » Tue Nov 25, 2014 2:03 pm

Veracohr wrote:But it's Apple, where the philosophy is "Why go along with a standard when you can make something proprietary!"


Probably the case.
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby gregwar » Fri Nov 28, 2014 8:02 am

my laptop has hdmi out ? :confuse: I'd like to point out this is the bleeding edge of technology :grin:

macbook pros have hdmi 1.4, which can do 4k @ 30hz. to do 4k @ 60hz takes much more bandwidth and hdmi 2.0.

the vizio p series is the first semi-affordable 4k TV with HDMI 2.0 and that can do the faster refresh rates.

4k @ 60hz 'can' be done with mini display ports but most tvs don't have them. specialty 4k displays for computers are really expensive at the moment, but they would connect to my laptops Thunderbolt 2 ports.

so I need some kind of adapter to go from tb2 to HDMI 2 (because my laptop's HDMI is limited to 30hz)

@midi it wasn't the reading it was transferring books onto my phone that was the problem. I decided to update to new operating systems and the trouble shooting is about that.
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Re: My Mac DAW considerations thread

Postby midinut » Mon Dec 01, 2014 2:34 am

I had asked wife for those instructions for having Siri read ebooks to you. I know you got this figured out, but just in case anyone else was interested, I'd thought I'd post it here anyway (since I said I would):

Reading ebooks – Siri’s Voice Over setting can turn virtually any ebook into an audiobook. To make it easier to switch Voice Over on and off, you can configure the Accessibility Shortcut feature located at the bottom of the settings for Accessibility. With it you can quickly use a triple-click of the Home button to turn Voice Over on and off. Once set, open one of the books in your Library, even using the Kindle app, and triple-click to enable Voice Over. Once activated use a two-finger swipe up to signify that you want Siri to begin reading the book to you. Now Siri is not nearly as nice as some of the winners of this year’s Audie awards for audible books, but it will do in a pinch.
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