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Who here records on an Imac?

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  • Who here records on an Imac?

    If you do - how long have you been using it - what are your specs and what is your max # of tracks.

    I'm thinking of getting a duet w/ an Imac and will only be recording 2 tracks at a time max (with a max of 16 tracks likely). I also plan on using Ezdrummer or Superior Drummer 2.0.

    Do you think I'll be okay?

    Thanks in advance!
    Solo Album

  • #2
    I use an iMac. Been using it for a little over a year. It's 2.8 Ghz w/ 4 gigs of RAM. I use Logic Pro and occasionally Reason. I have an M-Audio Firewire Solo that I use as my interface. I can get a ridiculous amount of tracks going (like 24+), with multiple plugins (Superior Drummer among them) on several of them and not even come close to stalling. You will want an external hard drive; if you record to your system drive, that will be your bottleneck. If you record at 96khz as the Duet allows, you will get lesser performance; but 16 or so tracks of playback shouldn't be a problem.
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    • #3
      I use an iMac. Been using it for a little over a year. It's 2.8 Ghz w/ 4 gigs of RAM. I use Logic Pro and occasionally Reason. I have an M-Audio Firewire Solo that I use as my interface. I can get a ridiculous amount of tracks going (like 24+), with multiple plugins (Superior Drummer among them) on several of them and not even come close to stalling. You will want an external hard drive; if you record to your system drive, that will be your bottleneck. If you record at 96khz as the Duet allows, you will get lesser performance; but 16 or so tracks of playback shouldn't be a problem.


      Thanks for the reply, Mega. It's a tough call b/c MacMall has the old version of the MacBook Pro listed at under $1,700. I keep thinking I may be able to save some cash on an iMac but once I upgrade it to 4GB of Ram it will probably be about the same as the $1,700 MacBook Pro.

      I have to wait until March or April so maybe another iMac will come out and I can get the last version for a better price.
      Solo Album

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      • #4
        Rumor has it that the Mini is due for a serious upgrade, and I'm going to take a look at that if it happens.

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        • #5
          It's a tough call b/c MacMall has the old version of the MacBook Pro listed at under $1,700.


          Just before Christmas I bought the Apple MacBook Pro MB133LL/A 15.4-inch Laptop (2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo Processor, 2 GB RAM, 200 GB Hard Drive, DVD/CD SuperDrive) for $1594 at Amazon.com with a $150 rebate that just arrived last week.

          edit: damn, I see the price of that unit has shot back up to $1,774.88!
          http://www.crazydeliciousband.com/

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          • #6
            Just before Christmas I bought the Apple MacBook Pro MB133LL/A 15.4-inch Laptop (2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo Processor, 2 GB RAM, 200 GB Hard Drive, DVD/CD SuperDrive) for $1594 at Amazon.com with a $150 rebate that just arrived last week.

            edit: damn, I see the price of that unit has shot back up to $1,774.88!



            How does that 2GB work? Do you think that would be enough for recording 2 tracks and playing back 16? How about with EZdrummer?
            Solo Album

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            • #7
              You can get by with 2 gigs; but since you're planning on using Superior or EZDrummer, you will see a big improvement with 4 gigs of RAM. Plus, with memory prices being as low as they are these days, there's no reason not to make such a simple and cheap upgrade.
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              • #8
                Yes, 4 GB of RAM in that iMac should cover all of your needs. I have the same machine & use MOTU Ultralite for audio and MIDI. I never record more than one track at a time though, although in mixdown I've had 20-25 tracks of audio with loads of plugins at the same time and had it freeze up.

                Kind of off topic, but I am seriously thinking Mac Mini for a road gig for audio playback & rack mounting it with a wireless keyboard & getting a small 7" touchscreen monitor to use in live gigs. I'm currently using a macbook, and while it works great, it isn't very hardy on road situations and I want to prevent any more wear and tear on it.

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                • #9
                  Hey Tom - what kind of external HD are you using? FW or USB? I ask because the main reason I haven't seriously considered an iMac is because my FW interface (FW1884) doesn't like to live on the same bus as a drive. I had to buy a PCI card to give it a separate bus on my G5.

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                  • #10
                    I'm not sure what you mean by FW1884. There's ieee 1394, which is Firewire 400; and ieee 1394b is Firewire 800. I'm using a FW800 drive. My interface is FW400. The current iMacs have two built in FW400 busses and one FW800 bus. I could see where you might have a problem daisy chaining the devices if your interface is bus powered... but you could probably use a powered hub to get around that. Other than that, I don't know why there should be a problem with the two sharing a bus... unless you're recording and playing back a ton of tracks, you should have plenty of bandwidth there to handle the two.
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                    • #11
                      FW1884 is my audio interface. Connected to a FW400 port. I tried a FW400 drive on a separate port (though it was on the same bus) and it didn't work, so I had to get a separate card.

                      My understanding was that the FW bus on the iMac was a single bus, hosting two ports (400 and 800). Will have to research that, but it is good to hear that it is working for you. I might have to give it a shot!

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                      • #12
                        Perhaps the two FW400 ports do share the same bus. I really have no idea. I don't see how the 800 could possibly share the same bus as those though. Wouldn't that mean that, other than the type of connection, the FW400 ports are exactly the same as the 800... especially since FW800 is fully backwards compatible?
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