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Best CPU for audio recording and apps - AMD or Intel?

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March 7, 2011 4:40:08 AM

I'm looking to upgrade my computer. I currently have an Intel Q6600 Quad Core with 4GB DDR2 RAM. I'm looking for good performance for audio applications - Pro Tools, Reason, Ableton, etc. I'd like to stick around the $200 mark for the CPU. Any suggestions? First glance at the benchmarks seems to show that Intel is still supreme, and maybe the i5-760 is the best way to go.

I'll also be adding to it 8GB DDR3 (the ram is currently my biggest hindrance).
a c 138 à CPUs
March 7, 2011 5:29:23 AM

all good CPU to support recording, the foremost being the Hardware Audio and tool, record not require a huge CPU,
if you want sandy bridge is the best or i5 750 for application

viewed from the system that you have had enough of this but you know ... like:
- soundcard M-Audio Audiophile 2496
- ASUS Xonar Essence STX Virtual 7.1 Channels PCI Express
- Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Champion Series
- Sound Blaster Audigy
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March 7, 2011 5:34:59 AM

I don't actually use this system to record audio, but it is my main system for editing. That's why it has a high CPU demand, because it runs dozens of plugins on many channels simultaneously through multiple applications.
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a c 138 à CPUs
March 7, 2011 5:41:17 AM

CPU use Sandy Bridge
- audio / video editing need good soundcard-
- high VGA like HD6950 / GTX 580
- Firewire


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March 7, 2011 12:15:08 PM

stick with the intel, with the 8 gig of ram youll be able to really get a dream system going with a sandy and run so many plugins and nice analog synths at the same time youll love it. Plus then if you ever do wanna try messing around with putting a mac os onto it the whole thing is much easier, if you ever wanna try logic down the line.
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March 7, 2011 4:13:21 PM

After some more research, I'll probably go with Sandy Bridge (once the whole mess gets sorted out and I can actually buy a mobo). Yes, I do mean mixing - running a lot of RAM intensive programs through ReWire such as Reason, which can easily use 2+GB. Also very CPU intensive plugins such as pitch correction on multiple tracks are bringing my current system to its knees. I got an error the other day on my Q6600 system saying I had run out of processing power... ;) 

And Mac OS? Why in the world would I ever even consider that? Not even when pigs start to fly.
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a c 188 à CPUs
a b å Intel
March 7, 2011 5:17:07 PM

The 2nd generation Intel® Core I7 2600k would most likely give you the best performance for audio work. Also first of the H67 and P67 chipset based boards are already showing up at the reseller and the Intel® boards should start showing up by mid-March.

Christian Wood
Intel Enthusiast Team
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a b à CPUs
a b å Intel
March 7, 2011 5:24:41 PM

Concur with it-2500k or 2600k.
** Make sure the MB has the fix for the sata-II bug, There are still MBs out there with is bug. The new boards are just now starting to show up.
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March 7, 2011 9:26:13 PM

I don't do DJ stuff. I use Ableton in a live setting, but on a laptop. I already have a quality audio interface, just looking to upgrade my computer. I recently added an SSD to my desktop, so the RAM and CPU are now my bottlenecks.

I'm probably going to go with the i5-2500K and Asus P8P67, based on reviews that I've read and the price points of those products. A couple of you mentioned the B3 boards are starting to show up now. Where? I can't find an Asus board anywhere. Closest I've found is an MSI board.
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March 7, 2011 9:43:49 PM

Because the 2600k is over $100 more, and my hard drive situation is fine. I have plenty of bandwidth. I prefer Raid 1 for data redundancy, and have an SSD for my system and apps disk.
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March 7, 2011 10:08:20 PM

Well, if I haven't been clear already, I need more RAM and a faster processor. My hard drive situation is just fine and they are plenty fast enough for the type of work I'm doing. It doesn't take much - even my 5400rpm laptop hard drive can record and edit tons of tracks at once without a hiccup.
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March 7, 2011 10:55:07 PM

No, my hard drive light does not flicker and slow everything down. It has in the past. But when my system is showing 4070+ out of 4096mb of RAM in use, that's obviously a problem.
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March 16, 2011 7:09:12 AM

Hey prophetsquirrel, did you decide on a motherboard/cpu? (And what did you end up paying) i am pretty much in the exact same boat as you, but a little less knowledagble, so i was hoping i could find out what you decided on. I also am kinda interested in the sandy bridges mobos but sketchy about their recent problems. Any help would be appreciated!

i am basically trying to get the best bang for my buck. Computer will be used for exact same stuff, (audio recording/production) and hopefully some video editing (1080p)

This computer WILL NOT be hooked up to internet, and hopefully stripped down as much as possible. (will have no need for spyware/antivirus programs, email/messaging/internet programs, obviously anything and everything having to do with online activity disabled.) No real gaming desires at all either.

i would like to run as much memory as i can afford. at least 8gb.

ive been told to make sure to get usb 3.0, sata 6gb/s, and ddr3 memory compatability

i would like firewire, but can always buy a firewire card



can anyone reccomend a good mobo/cpu combo that would suite me and be relatively cheap? my budget is around 300-400 (canadian.) if its a matter of HUGE performance difference i would go up to 5 or 6, but i still have to buy monitors and a case and power supply ect ect.

The idea behind this computer is to 'hold me over' till i can save up 1000+ for my dream cpu, so i dont want it to be too much. im currently using computers with less than 1gb ram so.. time for an upgrade


Thanks in advance for any help!

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