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computer for a professional studio

slyintherye

New Member
Hi guys,

In the future I would like to open my studio to the public. I will need to upgrade my computer before then. (I run cubase sx and the switch to 96khz is killing my pc) What would be the best computer for a professional studio?

Realibility is my biggest concern. I want to be able to count on my hardware not failing me, and to be able to run an intense project with out things starting to skip and get jumpy.

This is not a pc only question. If a mac might be a better choice I would pay for it.

Thanks,

Brian
 

Ashermusic

Active Member
slyintherye said:
Hi guys,

In the future I would like to open my studio to the public. I will need to upgrade my computer before then. (I run cubase sx and the switch to 96khz is killing my pc) What would be the best computer for a professional studio?

Realibility is my biggest concern. I want to be able to count on my hardware not failing me, and to be able to run an intense project with out things starting to skip and get jumpy.

This is not a pc only question. If a mac might be a better choice I would pay for it.

Thanks,

Brian
I am a long time Mac user but I have friends who do music, particularly with Cubase SX3/Nuendo, on the PC. They have told me that the biggest difference, besides price, is that a Mac pretty much comes ready to add audio and midi with no problems where certain PC makers, like Dell, use audio unfriendly MoBos and/or add things to Windows that need to be removed. They have all told me that if I ever go PC I should have one built for me that is specifically configured to run audio rather than buying a Dell, Gateway, HP, etc.

The other advantage of going Mac is that if you ever decide to switch to Logic Pro 7 or Digital Performer 4.5 and future versions, they only run on a Mac whereas the only other option on PC AFAIK is Sonar.
 

mbarrs

Member
I recommend using a computer specifically built for audio, by a company that knows what they're doing. I've been using a Carillon rackmount computer for the last 2 years with zero problems, 100% uptime:

http://www.carillonusa.com/clnweb/index.jsp?country=US

Carillon sometimes gets a bad rap because they use P4's, but I don't care. It just runs and I don't have to think about it. NOTE: one problem with their systems is that they don't have large number of PCI slots, but you might end up needing a Magma anyway, for serious UAD-1/Powercore card expansion.

Here's another company I hear good things about, but haven't used myself:

http://www.liquiddaw.com/

These are also very quiet systems. A quiet studio is a happy studio.

This ended up being a PC-only reply, but that's due to the customization you can get here. A Mac might be a good choice, but that partly depends on your software choices. I'm a fan of Samplitude and Sonar, so that means I use a PC. With other software choices, I might be on a Mac.

Mike Barrs
 

F5D

Active Member
If you need a stable and fast system with as little problems as possible, buy a powermac g5. But if you make the switch, I suggest you switch the cubase to logic at the same time. The SX3 runs very slowly (even slower than SX2) on mac due to bad optimizations. Logic7 is the best choice if you go the mac way.

However, the 96kHz sampling rate is a cpu hog anyway, at least if you use many plugins. Maybe you should think about getting a Pro Tools HD accelerations cards too. I'm not sure but I guess they can run @ 96kHz too.

If you go with pc, try to find a dual processor AMD Opteron computer which is built for audio use.
 

mbarrs

Member
Ashermusic said:
The other advantage of going Mac is that if you ever decide to switch to Logic Pro 7 or Digital Performer 4.5 and future versions, they only run on a Mac whereas the only other option on PC AFAIK is Sonar.
Actually, a PC can run Cubase, Nuendo, Sonar, Samplitude, Sequoia, and probably others I'm forgetting.

It is a good idea to choose your software first, then figure out the platform that runs it best (including hardware interfaces to the outside world).

Mike Barrs
 

Royal T

Member
I actually have two Dell computers, and they haven't given me much trouble at all, Powercore runs fine, UAD, FX teleport etc. Pretty much smooth sailing, I even use the Emu 1820M soundcard with no problems. Avoid/disable hyper-threading and most apps runs fine.
 

giles117

Active Member
Another one for Mac here. I run a professional (commercial) Studio and my Macs have given me over 7 yeras of no headaches.

Of course I do simple stuff like replace my Hard drive (at least the oldest one) once a yera and I upgrade systems about every 2 years as software gets more power hungry.

Cubase SX3 runs fine for me on my Older slower mac so you should be cool.

On the PC most guys (pro's) I know use either CuBase/Nuendo or Samplitude.

Being a Mac Guy I vote exclusively for the mac platform.

Tooo many people I know have too many issues with their PC's even under XP Pro (Or should I say especially under XP Pro)

Of course YMMV.

Mac comes out the box ready to go.

Even a complete system re-install from erase and instal takes me about 45 minutes (for the main OS to all my Audio programs and plugins.) Samples is another story.I have over 300GB of them so far.

I am a very happy user and when I need the occasional PC thing I run Virtual PC.

i COuld go on and on and on, the best bet is to go play with the software.

Read my signature for some details fo what I run.
 

Ashermusic

Active Member
mbarrs said:
It is a good idea to choose your software first, then figure out the platform that runs it best (including hardware interfaces to the outside world).

Mike Barrs
Absolutely correct IMHO.
 

cporro

New Member
hey, thanks for th useful info. i recently switched from mac and let the guy at the store sell me a dell 380 (based on value). well 8 tracks of 96/24 is killing it. ad 3 uad-1 plugs and its all over. sadness i say! my gut says its the dell. just like my gut said the digi 001 converters were bad. i'm not saying they were... all i know is my new RME fireface 800 sounds way way better even on my cheap alesis m1 mk2 monitors. ha!

i have 2 questions for you if you have time.

1) i'm a former protools user and i just switched to sonar. as far as audio editing goes i don't think sonar is in the same ballpark. i do a lot of tracking and then fixing. so, i'm thinking about scrapping sonar. now people have recommended samplitude. whats your take on audio editing in the 2 programs (sonar and samplitude) ? slicing dicing snapping etc. what does sonar have going for it that samplitude doesn't in terms of audio?

2) do you know of any resorces that have actual numbers on what PC systems pros use in there studios?

much thanks.

mbarrs said:
I recommend using a computer specifically built for audio, by a company that knows what they're doing. I've been using a Carillon rackmount computer for the last 2 years with zero problems, 100% uptime:

http://www.carillonusa.com/clnweb/index.jsp?country=US

Carillon sometimes gets a bad rap because they use P4's, but I don't care. It just runs and I don't have to think about it. NOTE: one problem with their systems is that they don't have large number of PCI slots, but you might end up needing a Magma anyway, for serious UAD-1/Powercore card expansion.

Here's another company I hear good things about, but haven't used myself:

http://www.liquiddaw.com/

These are also very quiet systems. A quiet studio is a happy studio.

This ended up being a PC-only reply, but that's due to the customization you can get here. A Mac might be a good choice, but that partly depends on your software choices. I'm a fan of Samplitude and Sonar, so that means I use a PC. With other software choices, I might be on a Mac.

Mike Barrs
 

Suntower

Established Member
Yep.

Especially, since they are the guys UA went to for testing 4.0.

I didn't go to them, simply because they have a 1 month wait time, but I did the next best thing; I simply bought their parts list from NewEgg and assembled myself. Took about 6 hrs. The performance and reliability of this spec has been exemplary.

If you're not a DIY kind of guy? Let them do it. One reason it takes a while is that they have SX and Samplitude and so on. You FedEx them all your VSts and your UAD cards and so on and then -they- install it all and test for you. That alone could be worth the price/wait time.

---JC


Ceretone said:
 
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