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Best PC laptop for audio production with a Tascam US-428

by moblash / November 15, 2004 5:10 AM PST

So, I'm looking to buy a PC laptop in the next month or so to do audio production (I know, I know - PC laptops suck, but I live in New York and I can't afford the space for a desktop rig). I'll be using Cubase SX, SF Acid, Vegas, and Sound Forge, and running all audio through a Tascam US-428 USB interface.

Given that, I'm wondering if anyone has any recommendations as to what I should be looking for in a laptop? I've been looking at the Toshiba Satellite P25 or P35, but want to know if there's something else I'm napping on.

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Re: US428
by MikeInNM / December 23, 2004 10:15 PM PST

I can't tell you which laptop but I can point out some areas of consideration. Audio/Video production can bring a decent desktop to it's knees. Much less a laptop.

I have the HP 772n Desktop which came stock as follows.

2.2 ghz / 512 ram / 80 gig samsung w/2mb cache @ 5400 rpm / xp home

Multi track audio (via cakewalk) stammered and stuttered and popped.

I bumped the ram to 1 gig pulled out the 80 gig drive and put it in an external case for storage and installed two WD 120 gig drives with 8mb cache @ 7500 rpm.

Put the music application on one drive and the data (projects/songs) on the other and split the swap file 1/2 on one drive and 1/2 on the other. Now this system is very smooth and stable.

A desktop will give you more performance for the same $$$ but you can pull it off on a laptop.

Balance your budget between fast processor, lots of memory and a large, fast HD. Preferably 2.

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Defending PC Laptops
by Ryan T / December 24, 2004 1:03 AM PST
In reply to: Re: US428

Well for one, PC Laptops dont suck. But you would have to get a very powerful Pentium M or Athlon 64 to handle Audio editing.

If I were you I'd wait until next month when the Athlon 64's with power management technology come out. That would be the best Audio-editing laptop you could get.

And look for something with firewire (most PC laptops have at least 1 jack) if your mixing console supports it. Firewire has a transfer rate of 400 MBPS. Most (infidel) mac-using DJ's who have their songs on a laptop use Firewire to interface to their mixing console.

Go for a 7200 RPM hard drive if you can find one. You won't need a ton of video ram, but make sure you don't get shared video ram.

Definately 1GB of Ram, but upgrade yourself it's cheaper. Order the computer with 512 MB in one stick and then get another stick (either another 512 or pop for a whole gig for 1536MB of ram) to upgrade with.

If you opt against an Athlon 64, you might consider waiting for the next generation Pentium M's, which should debut next spring. These will have a 533MHz front side bus with clock speeds at about 2.5 GHz, and remember, with a Pentium M, 2.5 GHz approximately equals about 4.3 GHz of power.

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