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Need Some Advice Regarding MacBook Pro


allan_evett

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From reading through the other 'Lion' threads, and checking the GSi and NI sites, it appears that Logic 9 and my software instruments will run in OSX 10.7, provided that I start Logic in 32 bit mode. 

 

I was running Logic 9 and Studio One Pro on my '08 MacBook, but as my wife needed a notebook I set up the MB for her and decided to pick up a MacBook Pro - ideally a used one.  I managed to locate - through a reputable Mac dealer I've used previously - an '08, 15" MBP, w/6 GB RAM, and a 500 GB 7200 RPM HD (if I'm going to use software instruments live, I hate to have to use an extra drive; more s*#t  to carry, connect, place,  etc.).  As I'd been running the MB with Snow Leopard, I set up the 'new' MBP with the same OS, then migrated my MB over to it.  So far so good, right ?

 

Well, not exactly.  While the MBP has power to spare ( no CPU overloaded when playing, like I had with the MacBook), it appears to show a lot of wear and hard use from the previous owner.  Though it's the same age as our MB, this machine functions like it has a lot more miles on it.  It acts a little like the early 2000's aluminum MacBook I had - right before the main board gave out in 2008. Being that the dealer will give me full credit on it in the first 30 days, I'm considering returning the used MBP for a new 13" MBP.  I can get a new i5 for essentially the same money, an i7 for $200 more.   

Question is, will the dual core i5 or i7 processors ( with the minimum 4GB RAM) provide enough processing power to run - free of CPU overload - Logic instruments, VB3, NI Komplete, etc. live w/o having the 7200 RPM drive ?   Typically, I've run one software instrument at a time, live; the most I could envision would be two.   As the 7200 drive option is only available on the 15" model, it would be quite a stretch to make that work, $$$$-wise; likely not doable. Or would the quad core processor in the 15" MBP - with the standard 5400 drive, do the job ?

 

I haven't purchased a new Mac notebook since 2008, and know that a lot has changed since then.  I could use some insights from fellow Mac users - especially those who may have upgraded to the newer, unibody MBP's.  Thanks much....

'Someday, we'll look back on these days and laugh; likely a maniacal laugh from our padded cells, but a laugh nonetheless' - Mr. Boffo.

 

We need a barfing cat emoticon!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I have a new 13" MBP i5, with a little extra memory, that I run NI Komplete7 - mainly Kontakt6 with zero problems. No high powered 7200 rpm drive, just the macbook pro. Works great live. I got the 13" because I wanted as small a mac as possible. Heck I wish I could run an iPad; it's so small. Maybe I can, but I have not looked into it and the MBP works very well. Very satisfied. I recommend it. My mates who had gone with software have all gone with the mac as is without any extra hard-drive etc. Maybe it is required for studio etc I don't know. I just know my experience with the plain MBP is very positive.
"Forget it, Jake. It's Chinatown."
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I would never buy a used computer, MacBook Pro or otherwise, unless money is a major consideration. If you are considering a new MBP, I would try to wait until this spring when the new "Ivy Bridge" MBPs come out; it is a fairly substantial step up from the current MBPs, or at the very least you will be able to get an amazing deal on the outgoing models.

 

If you are going to get one now, then by all means get one with an i7; but it would be much cheaper to upgrade the HD and RAM with 3rd party suppliers than to have Apple do it.

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Hi, I have an early 2011 2.2Ghz, 4-core, i7, MBP with 8GB RAM that I bought in June. I run Logic 9 in 64-bit mode under Lion without a hitch. it will even run my 32-bit plugs without complaining. I would go with any recent i7 and up to RAM to 8GB. I don't think the 5400rpm drive will be that big a bottleneck in your situation.
Instrumentation is meaningless - a song either stands on its own merit, or it requires bells and whistles to cover its lack of adequacy, much less quality. - kanker
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I have a new 13" MBP i5, with a little extra memory, that I run NI Komplete7. .. No high powered 7200 rpm drive, just the macbook pro. Works great live. I got the 13" because I wanted as small a mac as possible. Heck I wish I could run an iPad; it's so small. Maybe I can, but I have not looked into it and the MBP works very well. Very satisfied.

 

Same here. My 13" MBPro is my "soft synth" machine (as I chickened out on the Receptor... for now).

 

Of course, how much you can run at once depends on the patches you are running, FX use, etc, but if you're running only ONE or TWO software instruments simultaneously, that should not be a problem at all. (Also, consider Mainstage 2 as your host. For $30, worth a look!)

 

I'm running with a 128 sample buffer using a Focusrite FW interface.

 

HTH,

John

 

I make software noises.
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If you are playing classical music using a maga sampled 12 layer plus sustain plus release samples piano library you might have an issue with the slower HD. If you are playing parts normal for a cover band you should be fine.
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Keep in mind that while you cannot upgrade the CPU, memory and HDD are comparatively easy to upgrade. The 7200rpm (or, if you can afford an SSD) upgrade is a nice quality of life bonus. I've had good experiences with macsales.com for upgrades, have a look at their video library where they show how to swap memory, hdd etc - you can decide for yourself if that's an option for you.

 

Another option: I'm carrying around a little external enclosure for a laptop-size hdd with an SSD installed that holds my sample libraries for Stylus, Trilian and Ivory. Hooked up via FW800 I have not had any latency issues.

"You'll never be as good as you could have been, but you can always be better than you are." - MoKen
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This is an interesting article from Seagate about 7200 RPM drives vs. Green Drives running ~5400 RPM: KLONK

 

Seagate... is killing off its entire line of Barracuda Green (low power) drives. Whereas most green drives use 5400 RPM spindle speeds, Seagate pushed to 5900 RPM, but even this was ultimately deemed unnecessary.

 

If youve ever sat around waiting for Windows, game levels, or any large application to load from a 5400 RPM drive, youll understand instantly how slower drives translate to lost minutes. It seems unfair to think that 30% slower drive performance translates linearly to 30% lost productivity, so lets say theres an entire order of magnitude of difference.

 

If you look at the PCs that major OEMs sell to their corporate customers, says Seagates Burks, they dont ever ship 5400 RPM drives. Because for their customers, theyre measuring the overall performance of their systems, and they know that the 7200 is a better situation. Were just trying to get that same common sense into the rest of the market.

 

 

"Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent." - Victor Hugo
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Thanks for all of the input, everyone. The new/used Apple retailer in Fort Collins and Boulder, Mac Shack, is a class act. Turns out that the owner had an early 2011, unopened MBP 13" i7 - at a very fair price; so I snagged that early this afternoon. The 2.7 GHz processor, vs. the newer 2.8 is a non issue; same with the 500 GB HD vs. the current 750.

I was offered full credit on the '08 MBP, which I took with one small exception: I kept the new, recently installed 7200 RPM HD, which the store put into a compact, FW 800/USB 2.0 enclosure. I'd been in the market for a very small, portable drive, so that turned out to be a very good deal.

 

 

 

'Someday, we'll look back on these days and laugh; likely a maniacal laugh from our padded cells, but a laugh nonetheless' - Mr. Boffo.

 

We need a barfing cat emoticon!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Your sig says it all. ;)

 

Let us know how the system works out for you, and if you decide to get MainStage and how that is if you do.

"I'm so crazy, I don't know this is impossible! Hoo hoo!" - Daffy Duck

 

"The good news is that once you start piano you never have to worry about getting laid again. More time to practice!" - MOI

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