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Need Recommendation For Budget Laptop For Music Live Performance

Last response: in Laptop Tech Support
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June 17, 2011 3:39:44 AM

I dunno if this is the right place, but I'm a professional musician---starving as is typical.

And I need a new Win7 laptop for musical use in live performance... as a replacement for a workstation. (What we'd call a 'Rompler'.)

I currently use an old Korg. It's getting to the end and I was about to look at a newer version, but then I realised that this is 2011, plus I already have all the extra licenses/software I need from my studio to do this if I simply connect a MIDI controller and an external USB/Firewire audio interface.

I have no need for anything beyond stereo recording or output. Just need it to be reliable. The other 6 days a week it will be used to browse the web and do e-mail and that's about it. Maybe -any- of the current ones will do what I need (my current laptop is 7 years old and runs a P4 so I'm totally out of touch with what's au courante.)

In desktops, the main thing that really matters for (most) music apps is a 7200rpm drive. Graphics is irrelevant and in fact, most guys I know steer clear of anything with a fan.

I had to be in Office Depot today and found this:

http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2369674,00.asp?tab...

For prox. $500 out the door (well... $550... and then a $50 mail rebate). And I keep lookin' for a timebomb, but so far I don't see one.

7200rpm drive? Check
Core i5 processor? Check.
Super lightweight? Check.
5hr battery life? Check.
4GB DDR3 RAM (upgradable to 8) Check.

No firewire or USB3, but I really only need USB for MIDI in and audio, right?

For use strictly to web surf... and as a glorified Rompler, what can go wrong?

I ask because I haven't actually -opened- it yet. Just waiting to see if there's anything obvious I've missed that's a dealbreaker.

Thoughts? THANKS IN ADVANCE!

---JC
a b D Laptop
June 17, 2011 7:30:53 AM

not bad

it comes with an eSATA port but it would have been nice to have a PC Card Slot which would allow you to add a firewire card
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June 17, 2011 6:49:22 PM



Nope. 5400rpm drive. Gotta have 7200rpm drive to run DAW software.

Anyone else?

I'd open it right now, but it seems almost too good to be true... and it's an HP which means to me:
a. My last laptop (8 years ago!) was an HP and it came LOADED to the gills with crapware.

b. My last 2 HP printers have been total crap from a construction standpoint... the company build quality has totally gone south it seems.

---JC
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a b D Laptop
June 17, 2011 8:34:52 PM

the HP Pavilion dm4-1160us you listed in your OP is over $800

There are also USB 3.0 Express cards available, too
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June 17, 2011 8:39:08 PM

I know. But I got it for $500. That's why I'm inclined to stick with it. I don't expect to need Firewire... at least I am -told- that there a lots of decent stereo A/D cards for USB 2.0. Of course, that's my next challenge. :D 



Emerald said:
the HP Pavilion dm4-1160us you listed in your OP is over $800

There are also USB 3.0 Express cards available, too

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a b D Laptop
June 18, 2011 12:02:29 AM

sweet deal
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!