• Top 10 Best Computers for Music Production and Recording 2018

    12 comments / Posted by William Tyler

    Top 10 Best Computers for Music Production 2018

    It is that time again Producers to highlight the newest and truest Computers to fit your Music Production workflow in 2018! As always, the common debate comes up? Mac or PC? Desktop or Laptop or even Tablet? Well with the technological advances made in the last year, we will highlight the top computers and what they bring to the table. Welcome 2018, I present the World’s Best Computers for Music Production 2018.

    Top Must Haves:

    1. 1 Terabyte SSD – With all the newest advancements in technology as of late, this is really where you should be as far as hard drive space in today’s market. There are high end plugins out there that take up 100 GB of space alone and that’s just one plugin. Having a terabyte in today’s day and age will ensure you stay competitive with the latest and greatest plugins but also have at least 50 GB of space for your computer or device to operate efficiently.
    2. 8 GB of RAM Minimum – A lot of the mixing and effects plugins used today can take quite a toll on your computer’s memory. Having at least 8 GB of RAM (16 GB is ideal) will help to ensure your computer won’t freeze up or slow you down.
    3. CPU Processors – Remember this is essentially the brain of computer and it needs to be up to a certain standard to be able to get your ideas out quick, fast, and in a hurry. At a minimum, I’d say an i5 processor would do. Ideally though, I would go after an i7 Quad Core processor for optimal activity.

    Here are my Picks for Best Laptops:

    Apple MacBook Pro

    Anyone who has been a Mac user period knows the value of this hardware unit. The new MacBook Pro hosts a slew of new features including the now infamous Touch Bar, replacing the old function keys that used to occupy this space. It also boasts a 3.1 GHz Quad Core Intel 17 processor for the fastest of speeds around. The LED display is stunning giving you even more clarity on screen than ever before. The only down side I would say is that for whatever reason Apple has decided to eliminate USB ports altogether and instead go with Thunderbolt and USB C ports. Since most of the market hasn’t adapted to the use of the connections as of yet, adapters will be highly necessary for the computer to function properly. If that isn’t too much to handle though, this Laptop kicks ass on every level especially for all the Mac users.

    Apple MacBook Pro
    • Processor- Intel Quad Core i7
    • Storage- 1 TB
    • Memory- 16 GB
    • Battery- 10 Hrs

    Dell XPS 15

    When it comes to laptops, Dell has always been cutting edge. Their latest XPS 15 rollout has been no exception. Comparable to the Apple MacBook Pro in almost every way, the display is stunning at 4K resolution, a 7th generation Intel Core processor and comes with Windows 10 Home Edition. It also has the ever-popular Thunderbolt 3 port (USB-C), perfect for interfacing with the UAD line of products. As far as speed and performance, this laptop gives the MacBook a run for its money, especially given the price point. If you’re a PC guy this just might be your bread and butter.

    Dell XPS 15
    • Processor- Intel Core i7
    • Storage- 512 GB
    • Memory- 32 GB
    • Battery- 5 Hrs

    MSI GE62VR Apache Pro

    A major unspoken secret in the industry has been that great music production laptops, have always been those designed specifically for gaming. The MSI Apache Pro takes this ideal to new heights with their new gaming PC. It is designed specifically to take the strain of extended hours of use, while also offering its own internal cooling system. It also contains a comparable internal speaker system with a subwoofer. The display is of course stunning with a NVIDIA GeForce GTX video card and it can be upgraded to 64 GB of DDR4 RAM memory which is unparalleled to anything I’ve seen or heard about these days. That is essentially almost unlimited and unbothered plugin use.

    MSI GE62VR Apache Pro
    • Processor- Intel Core i7-7700HQ
    • Storage- 1 TB
    • Memory- 64 GB DDR4
    • Battery- 51 WHr

    Asus ROG STRIX GL553

    Making the list for the third time and for good reason, this is yet another very powerful gaming PC that is perfect for music production. It includes Windows 10 pre-installed, a 7th generation Intel Quad Core i7 processor, and NVIDIA GeForce GTX graphics card for stunning visuals. It also contains an overclocked memory setup and some streaming friendly features as well for all you social media streamers.

    Asus ROG STRIX GL553
    • Processor- Intel Core i7
    • Storage- 1 TB
    • Memory- 32 GB DDR4
    • Graphics- NVIDIA GeForce GTX

    HP ENVY Notebook

    This laptop is definitely a great “bang for your buck” cheaper option for those just starting out. The Envy has an Intel i7 processor with 8 GB of RAM. Back in the day this laptop wasn’t the greatest cheaper option to make music with, but with a 1 TB hard drive and the 8GB of RAM, this computer is quite the viable option.

    HP ENVY Notebook
    • Processor- Intel Core i7
    • Storage- 1TB
    • Memory- 8 GB (Up to 16)
    • Battery- 52 WHr

    Here are my Picks for Best Desktops:

    Apple iMac Pro

    This particular computer is definitely one of my favorites, and I actually own this model. The new model has gotten a few upgrades, including a 4k 21.5” display, 2 Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) ports, and a new Radeon Pro 500 graphics card. The biggest upgrade I’d say is the new fusion hard drive system which makes tasks like booting and launching apps and programs lightning fast.

    Apple iMac Pro
    • Processor- Intel Quad Core i7
    • Storage- 1 TB Fusion Drive
    • Memory- 16 GB (Up to 32 GB)
    • Graphics- Radeon Pro 500

    Apple Mac Pro

    Apple shows up again as they have recently expanded their desktop product line in the last year or so. This particular style of Mac may suit some producer’s needs better as it is small and sleek, taking the place of most Mac towers from back in the day. It also contains Thunder 2 connections capable of connecting PCI Express Cards. With this implementation, it may be possible to interface this unit with a Pro Tools HD rig as well. This computer, in my opinion is the ideal choice for a stationary setup when it comes to a Mac, especially if you’re looking to record in programs like Pro Tools as well.

    Apple Mac Pro
    • Processor- Intel Xeon E5
    • Storage- 1 TB PCIe- Based SSD HD
    • Memory- 16 GB (Up to 64 GB)
    • Expansion- Capable of Housing a PCI Expansion Chassis

    Dell XPS 8920

    Another repeat offender this year, The Dell XPS is a powerhouse in the computing community. This year is no different with the unit boasting an Intel Quad Core i7 processor, 32 GB of DDR4 RAM, and can hold up to 4 storage devices. It also has a USB-C port which is crucial as many of the new lines of audio interfaces like the UAD lines are now in this format. Overall this computer has optimal performance capabilities for your production needs and has the ability to grow with you as you need to expand.

    Dell XPS 8920
    • Processor- Intel Quad Core i7
    • Storage- 1 TB (Expandable)
    • Memory- 32 GB DDR4
    • Graphics- NVIDIA GeForce GTX

    Acer Predator G6

    This monster of a machine is a powerhouse gaming computer with an incredible array of features. It includes Windows Home Edition with a 7th generation Intel Core i7 processor and 64 GB of DDR4 RAM for lighting fast speed. With this much power and speed, you should have no issues when it comes to loading up and using your DAW of choice, no matter what you use. Definitely my go to for PC users looking for a desktop solution.

    Acer Predator G6
    • Processor- Intel Quad Core i7
    • Storage- 1 TB
    • Memory- 64 GB DDR4
    • Graphics- NVIDIA GeForce GTX1080Ti

    Lenovo ThinkCentre

    If you are just getting into the music production game and are a PC user, this is a great entry level computer. It may not have all the bells and whistles, but it has the specs to get the job done and efficiently. Anyone who knows anything about music production will tell you. It’s not about what you use, but how you use it. Check it out!

    Lenovo ThinkCentre
    • Processor- Intel Core i7
    • Storage- Up to 1 TB
    • Memory- 16 GB DDR4
    • Ports- 6 USB 3.0, 2 USB 2.0

    Tablet Honorable Mention:

    Apple iPad Pro

    Believe it or not, I’m seeing more and more professional level productions being done on tablet devices. Utilizing programs like Garage Band, iMPC, and Beatmaker 2, tablets are now just as strong as regular computers when it comes to producing records. The new iPad Pro fits the bill when it comes to these tasks. With a new 10.5-inch screen and a A10X Fusion chip, this device is more powerful than most laptops. If you are one of those beat makers who swears by the tablet game, this is your best bet.

    Apple iPad Pro
    • Processor-  A10X Fusion Chip
    • Storage-  512 GB
    • Battery- 10 Hrs

    Written for SoundOracle.netby Mitchell "The Innovator" Tillotson, Producer ....Guest blogger...

    Mitchell “The Innovator” Tillotson is a Music Producer, Musician, Songwriter, and Sound Designer hailing from the greater Baltimore area. Growing up as a Military Brat in the early 90’s and 2000’s and listening to producers like Teddy Riley, Rodney Jerkins, The Neptunes, and Timbaland, he fell in love with music at an early age. The recent Fullsail Music Production Grad and Navy Veteran grew up deejaying the local scenes in the Baltimore/DC areas and is now starting to take the music world by storm. Follow @iamtheinnovatoron Twitter.

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  • World's Best Computers For Music Production 2017

    5 comments / Posted by William Tyler

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    World's Best Computers For Music Production 2017

    When considering a computer to purchase for Music production in 2017, I’m sure there are a few questions that come into mind.  Do I go with Mac or PC? Should I get a Laptop or Desktop?  What’s the best Computer for my budget? What’s the best Computer for my DAW? We’ll have no fear; we’ll go into all of this and more as we explore the World’s Best Computers for Music Production in 2017.

    Top Must Haves:

    1. 500 GB SSD at least - In an era of digital plugins and less outboard gear, having plenty of hard drive space is crucial. Some plugins bundles alone can take upwards of 100GB for just those plugins themselves. In my opinion though from experience, 1 Terabyte is ideal.
    2. 8 GB of RAM minimum - A lot of the software plugins themselves can be quite memory intensive. Having at least 8 GB will help lighten the load. Some say max out at 16GB, which I recommend, but depending on your budget this is still a workable option.
    3. CPU Processors - When understanding processors, there are a few things to consider. This is essentially the brain of your computer and these needs to be efficient, fast and smooth to get your musical ideas out quick and easy. At a bare minimum an i5 processor is ideal; however the most important part of this chip is the number of cores. 4 cores or “Quad core” affects the performance the most. The ideal spec for a processor is an i7 quad core.
    4. Big screen to work on - Obviously, seeing is believing; having a screen that is at least 12” is great, but 15” and above is ideal.

    Here is my list. At the end of the day it doesn’t matter what computer you use. What matters most are how you use it? Most DAW’s work with PC and Mac, as well as software plugins; you should make the decision based what works best for you and within your budget.


    Here are my Picks for Best Laptops:

    Asus ROG

    This year yet again this machine makes the cut. The gaming PC is loaded with a new G-SYNC lag control feature to minimize frame rate stutter. It also has one of the most powerful processors on the planet with an overclocked memory setup. Not to mention, as far as laptops this is simply one of the best out there period with high resolution, lighting fast speed, and supreme graphics. This is a staple for many producers that use PC’s including guys like Super Producer Mike Will Made It.

    • *Processor - Intel Quad Core i7
    • *Graphics - NVIDIA Geforce GTX
    • *Memory - 24GB DDR4
    • *Storage - 2TB SSD HD
    • *Battery – 10 Whr
    mikewillmade-it_World's Best Computers For Music Production 2017_SoundOracle

    Apple MacBook Pro

    The newest addition of the MacBook Pro features some very powerful upgrades. With the addition of the Multi Touch glass strip, a new element of control has been added to this already powerful unit with an increased workflow capability. The Mac comes with a powerful Intel i5 or i7 quad core processor and an Intel Iris Graphics card.  Talk to any Mac based producer and they’ll tell you just how powerful of a tool this computer is to have in your corner. The new MacBook Pro is essential for getting ideas down and out in a crunch and compatible with just about every DAW.

    • *Processor - Intel Quad Core i7
    • *Graphics - Intel Iris Graphics
    • *Memory - Up to 16GB of RAM
    • *Storage - 512GB SSD HD
    • *Device Ports - Four Thunderbolt 3 Ports
    • *Special Features - Touch Bar and Touch ID 
    Macbook Pro_World's Best Computers For Music Production 2017_SoundOracle

    HP ENVY Notebook

    Another returnee, the HP ENVY is just as powerful this year as it was last year staying right up there with the current competition. Boasting a powerful Intel Core i7 processor, 12GB of memory, and up to 2TB of HD space, this unit is a favorite of mine to get the job done right without any setbacks.  If you’re looking for a computer that isn’t a Mac, this may just be your best bang for your buck.

    • *Processor - Intel Core i7
    • *Graphics - Intel HD Graphics 620
    • *Memory - 12 GB 
    • *Storage - 2 TB HD
    HP ENVY 15_World's Best Computers For Music Production 2017_SoundOracle

    Lenovo ThinkPad P50

    New to the list the Lenovo ThinkPad is quite an impressive addition to the mix.  Displaying a dazzling 4k UHD screen with 180-degree viewing angles, this machine was built to perfection. This machine also lends its audio from Dolby Home Theater, giving it an epic sound for live performances and cinema. This magnificent piece of gear even has a Thunderbolt 3 port for connecting gear like UAD’s flagship Thunderbolt line of devices. If you’re a PC user, you need this machine in your corner.

    • *Processor - Intel Xeon Processor
    • *Graphics - NVIDIA Quadro
    • *Memory - 32 GB 
    • *Storage - 2 TB HDD
    • *Display - 4k UHD
    Lenovo thinkpad_World's Best Computers For Music Production 2017_Sound Oracle

    Dell XPS 15 Laptop

    A straight powerhouse when it comes to system needs, the Dell XPS line speaks for itself as far as system performance. With a 6th generation Intel Quad Core processor, 32GB of memory, and full HD 4k display, it is the most powerful laptop we have covered thus far. The addition of a Thunderbolt 3 port as well makes this a must have for PC users trying to incorporate external devices like the UAD line of products.

    • *Processor - Intel Quad Core i7
    • *Graphics - NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M
    • *Memory - 32 GB
    • *Storage - 1 TB
    • *Battery - 84 Whr
    • *Device Port - Thunderbolt 3 Port
    Dell XPSWorld's Best Computers For Music Production 2017_SoundOracle

    Here are my Picks for Best Desktops:

    Apple iMac

    The new iMacs are sleek and intuitive with a cutting edge design perfect for the stable home or studio producer who isn’t really on the move.  It also features a 21.5” Retina 4k display with IPS technology and Two Thunderbolt 2 connections along with Four USB 3 ports. For stable Mac users this is a favorite at home or in the studio.

    • *Processor - Intel Quad Core i7
    • *Graphics - Intel Iris Pro Graphics 6200
    • *Memory - Up to 16GB
    • *Storage - 2 TB
    imac_World's Best Computers For Music Production 2017_SoundOracle

    Acer Predator

    This Monster makes this list again this year and for good reason. Boasting 64GB of RAM, a 6th Generation Intel i7 Processor, and a Turbo button for Overclocking processing, this computer is in a league of its own.  It also features several USB 3 ports as well as a swap expansion drive bay. This allows you to hot swap out drives without having to shutdown the computer, which increases efficiently tenfold. This machine would be a great addition to any stable based PC producer.

    • *Processor - Intel Quad Core i7
    • *Graphics - NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070
    • *Memory - 32 GB DDR4 RAM
    • *Storage - 1 TB HDD
    • *Device Ports - 6 USB 3 and 2 USB 2 Ports
    Acer_Predator_G6_World's Best Computers For Music Production 2017_SoundOracle

    Apple Mac Mini

    I’m starting to see more and more of these devices show up at some of the major studios that I frequent. This device has great versatility, as it is just small enough to be mobile and on the move from place to place, but powerful enough to just be a stable unit in one area.  All this in a small 7.7 x 7.7 “ frame weighing only 2.7 lbs. Performance wise it has just about the same specs as the iMac or MacBook Pro.

    • *Processor - Intel Dual Core i7
    • *Graphics - Intel Iris
    • *Memory - 16 GB RAM
    • *Storage - Up to 2TB Fusion
    • *Device Ports - Two Thunderbolt 2 and Four USB 3 Ports
    Apple-Mac-Mini_World's Best Computers For Music Production 2017_SoundOracle

    Lenovo ThinkCentre

    For this pick, I wanted to choose something that was somewhat affordable, but still packed a punch for those Producers who are just starting out. The Lenovo ThinkCentre does just that and more. With its small size it has just as much mobility and power as the Mac mini at almost half the price.

    • *Processor - Intel Core i7
    • *Memory - 16GB DDR4 RAM
    • *Storage - up to 1TB HDD 
    • *Device Ports - Four USB 3 and Four USB 2 Ports
    thinkcentre_World's Best Computers For Music Production 2017_SoundOracle

    Dell XPS Tower

    Last, but certainly not least we have the Dell XPS back again this year. The Dell XPS Tower has the power you need with the ease that most are accustomed to with Dell products. It includes an Intel Core i7 Processor up to 4.0 GHz in speed. With an AMD Radeon RX 480 graphics card as well you can’t go wrong. All around this machine will get the job done if you’re a PC user.

    • *Processor - Intel Core i7 
    • *Memory - Up to 64 GB
    • *Storage - 2 TB HDD
    • *Graphics - AMD Radeon RX 480
    Dell xps Tower_World's Best Computers For Music Production 2017_SoundOracle

    Written for SoundOracle.net by Mitchell "The Innovator" Tillotson, Producer
    ....Guest blogger...


    Mitchell “The Innovator” Tillotson is a Music Producer, Musician, Songwriter, and Sound Designer hailing from the greater Baltimore area. Growing up as a Military Brat in the early 90’s and 2000’s and listening to producers like Teddy Riley, Rodney Jerkins, The Neptunes, and Timbaland, he fell in love with music at an early age. The recent Fullsail Music Production Grad and Navy Veteran grew up deejaying the local scenes in the Baltimore/DC areas and is now starting to take the music world by storm. Follow @iamtheinnovator on Twitter.

    "The UnQuantized podcast is a live and interactive podcast streaming on IG. Join hosts @SoundOracle and @Triza as they discuss producer gear, answer production and music career related questions, and share industry stories. Tune in to build with your production community every Friday at 4 PM (EST)"

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