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How CPU intensive is recording/editing music?

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Anonymous
a b à CPUs
October 13, 2010 2:07:25 AM

Hey all, I'm going to be getting a laptop soon and will be on a budget. It's either a large HD and slower CPU or smaller HD and faster CPU. I know a large HD would go to use but I'm not sure whether I need an i5 over an i3. I'll be recording and editing audio and working a lot in a program called Reason, using and recording digital synths and drum machines. Any help is much appreciated!!
a c 78 à CPUs
October 13, 2010 3:09:27 AM

I would go with the faster CPU than larger hard drive. The CPU will play a bigger factor and you can always add an external for additional storage / backup.
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a b à CPUs
October 13, 2010 8:00:11 AM

Hello and welcome to the forums
I agree with tecmo,go with a faster CPU.Because you can always change your HDD/add a SSD later on,but changing the CPU especially on a laptop isn't very easy and also voids the warranty.
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October 13, 2010 11:37:49 AM

I'd say the software is more important than the processor, early didital recording and editing have been done one 166mhz, and standalone units rarely use anything above this. That said I use a 2ghz intel pentium laptop that's perfect and is very quick at adding effects to a track, so I doubt you'll need a i5 or i3. Sure it'll help though with the added speed of the ram but I wouldn't worry about dual core since most audio programs can't utilise them or hyperthreading. In my opinion a laptop for 500 quid or so should do you, just make sure its in or around the 2ghz mark, 3 or 4 gigs of ram and 250gb hard drive (trust me you'll need it 10 megs a minute for a raw track, say 8 tracks in a song about 4 mins long, 12-16 songs on an album and creating a backup of all of those before post production, you're talking about up to maybe 10 gigs an album and at least 25 gigs free for swap space) and invest in a decent reliable external hard drive to archive everything on. Oh and most importantly - an external sound card!!! Regardless of how good the internal one on the laptop is, it'll never be as good as an external usb/firewire soundcard and the quality can be seriously effected. I swear by MOTU
http://www.thomann.de/ie/motu_828_mk_iii.htm
But there are loads of alternative usb ones, but that's up to yourself, you can pick up a usb desk for cheap enough instead which can be quite handy
http://www.thomann.de/ie/alesis_multimix_8_usb_fx.htm
http://www.thomann.de/ie/yamaha_mg_166c_usb.htm
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