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#433959 - 11/19/03 11:33 PM G3 600 MHZ with an Mbox...Good Idea or Bad Idea?
barguitar Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 07/23/03
Posts: 45
Loc: Indiana
Like many others, I am slowly trying to piece together a project studio in my home. I am currently using a P3 1 GHZ with 512 RAM. It...is okay. If I get too many tracks or effects going it gets unhappy \:\(

I am considering getting a G3 600 mhz iBook from a friend. It has 640 RAM and comes with OS 10.2.8. I'm planning on getting a MAC in the next year, wondering if y'all think I should jump at this one. At the most I'd be paying a few hundred.

I would probably add a firewire HD for tracks...is this machine a good direction to go for PT LE? Even if its an amazing deal, I don't want to take a step back.

Other note: I have PT LE v.6 on the way from Digidesign so I can try it out on the machine. I realize that will tell me alot, I would just like some people to weight in on if this machine is adequate.
Other Other note: I realize there is benefits to PC and Mac. I am going the Mac direction, so I guess I'm more wanting input from those who are familiar Mac performance

As always, your input is appreciated \:D
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#433960 - 11/20/03 12:46 AM Re: G3 600 MHZ with an Mbox...Good Idea or Bad Idea?
Henchman Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 12/31/00
Posts: 3433
Loc: Vancouver,,CANADA
well, all I can say, is I just spent $500,- on an Athlon 2500 system, and can play and record 48 tracks at once. with 4 band eq and comprssors on every channels and 4 reverbs. And it still barely hit's 50% on CPU usage.

The G3 Ibook is really old technology, in computer years, and just not woth it IMO. if you want to go Mac anyway, buy a good fast PC for now, and then upgarde to a Mac later.
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#433961 - 11/20/03 05:14 AM Re: G3 600 MHZ with an Mbox...Good Idea or Bad Idea?
Alndln Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 08/15/00
Posts: 6451
Loc: ,NY,UNITED STATES
A G3 won't get you any more power than the P3 you already have.Either wait or buy an Athlon in the interm like Hench suggested.
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#433962 - 11/20/03 01:28 PM Re: G3 600 MHZ with an Mbox...Good Idea or Bad Idea?
Bill@Welcome Home Studios Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 08/23/03
Posts: 9613
It's not the hardware or the OS, it is the software. Find the software that you like and build or buy the machine to support it.

Forget name recognition, as 99% of that is bullshit. If you can take the time, find the demos, try them out. Even shareware programs offer a lot these days.

Another small sugestion is that you wipe and reformat your computer, add a stick or two of RAM, and a fast hard drive. Optimise the OS setup for audio. Then be prepared to be amazed at how well your machine functions. (OSes seem to bog down as time goes by. Wipe and re-install every 12 to 18 months.) We've been getting 40 tracks or better since the over-clocked Celeron 400 days, and that was a very poor processor by today's standards.

A P-III with a gig or better of RAM and a fast hard drive is still a valid machine, though it might not be such a great player come the next round of software updates. But fewer audio people have leaped on the new chipsets, finding the P-III to be find for most work. In the past, we upgraded in a heartbeat just to get one more plug in track. Now, maybe we submix a little, render an effect back to the file, lessen the load on the processor rather than dump the rig and buy a new one.

Bill
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#433963 - 11/20/03 04:03 PM Re: G3 600 MHZ with an Mbox...Good Idea or Bad Idea?
where02190 Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 11/06/01
Posts: 5402
Loc: Weymouth, Ma. USA
Quote:
Originally posted by Henchman:
well, all I can say, is I just spent $500,- on an Athlon 2500 system, and can play and record 48 tracks at once. with 4 band eq and comprssors on every channels and 4 reverbs. And it still barely hit's 50% on CPU usage.

The G3 Ibook is really old technology, in computer years, and just not woth it IMO. if you want to go Mac anyway, buy a good fast PC for now, and then upgarde to a Mac later.
Since the poster is asking about an M-box, this is pretty good, considering the M-box run PTle and has a max of 32 audio tracks...

A G-3 is pretty old technology, and while it will run your M-box fine, and with OSX 10.2 will allow you to run PT6, it's far from the fastest dog on the track. However, for a few hundred bucks, it's a great way to get a Mac without spending a fortune, and it will certainly perform well. ther eare a few tricks to coaxing out peak performace ffrom a Mac. check out the
Digidesign DUC forum for Mac.

While PC's get a bit better performance in terms of track count, there are many gret plugins for Protools that only run on Mac.
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#433964 - 11/20/03 06:34 PM Re: G3 600 MHZ with an Mbox...Good Idea or Bad Idea?
barguitar Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 07/23/03
Posts: 45
Loc: Indiana
A couple responses...

I have already added a second hard drive and have optimized the OS. As far as wiping clean and reinstalling, this computer unfortunately is not devoted to recording...my wife and I both use it alot, so that's not a great option.

I hear you on the $500 Athlon, one of the reasons I want a laptop though is I'm an apartment dweller. Right now I live in an apt with Brick walls and small rooms and the 100-200 khz boom is AWFUL. I figured with my mBox I could record in a more "friendly" environment.

What I hear about the G3 not being a step up might be a concern. Even if it matched what I currently have, I might still get it because of its portability
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#433965 - 11/27/03 02:31 PM Re: G3 600 MHZ with an Mbox...Good Idea or Bad Idea?
alcohol_ Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 06/18/00
Posts: 3457
Loc: Boston, MA USA
I have this very setup for portability.

I've just done a brief test with Panther and PT 6.2 and it seemed to work fine.

I'm going to do some on site recording, using only two mics this Saturday recording several hours of live performances.

I'll report on how the iBook mBox combo worked.

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#433966 - 11/30/03 07:53 PM Re: G3 600 MHZ with an Mbox...Good Idea or Bad Idea?
edmann Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/26/03
Posts: 314
Loc: MA
Quote:
Originally posted by Henchman:
- on an Athlon 2500 system, and can play and record 48 tracks at once. with 4 band eq and comprssors on every channels and 4 reverbs. And it still barely hit's 50% on CPU usage.
cool HM - 48 tracks at what SR?
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#433967 - 12/01/03 12:23 PM Re: G3 600 MHZ with an Mbox...Good Idea or Bad Idea?
Dave Bechtel Offline
Member

Registered: 05/10/03
Posts: 26
Loc: Columbus, Ohio
Hey Brian,
What kind of deal are you talkin about here? Yes, you can record tracks on a G3 iBook but I probably wouldn't get put my money in something that is several generations old. Your going to fight with Latency quite a bit with a G3 running PT 6.X I'm sure there are guys doing it, but you don't want that kind of headache:) I'd wait an extra couple of months and see if you can't work your way into one of the new G4 iBooks. Drop me an e-mail if you have any ?'s.

Dave Bechtel
dave@ascendproductions.com
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