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How do I soup up my macbook for recording?


Hello Gang...
I have a 2.4 GHz Dual core MacBook (not MacBook Pro) running the latest version of leopard (10.5.8) with 2 gig ram. My DAW is Logic 8. I am recording from a Firestudio 2626 and Digimax FS, and storing into a Glyph 250 gig drive. My goal is to record full bands; drums, guitars, bass, keys, vocals, the works.
I want to optimize my rig for recording and minimize the chance of a crash in the middle of a session. I will be expanding the ram to 4 gig and adding a second external hard drive. In addition to that...
What else do I need to do?
There are applications that I never use. Should I delete them?? If so, which ones??
Once I add the 2nd drive, do I run Logic from one drive and store on the other one?
How do I configure this thing so I can have the most efficient, effective and stable system possible?
I have 15 years of live sound experience, but am fairly new to recording. Thank you all for your suggestions.
August 22, 2009 @01:44am

So you are adding a 3rd hard drive right? That wont really do anything for performance, and no you want to run your DAW from your OS drive, not an external.
What kind of apps do you want to delete? I see no reason to do that, because if they are not loaded in the ram or running background services, there will be no performance gain.
Iv never used Logic, im all Pro Tools, but Im sure they have an "optimazation" guide, so check through that.
To be truthful about your PC a dual core is pretty old these days, with the advent of the Intel i7 Quads, which are seen by a PC as 8 cores since each core can do 2 threads. You said you want to record bands, so I assume you want to build a studio, and most People will be using a Desktop not a laptop for this. So consider getting a new Mac or PC, the Quad cores will give you much better performance.
August 22, 2009 @08:21am
Joe Muscara

I know for sure you can record quite a few tracks at once with your existing computer. You may be able to record as many tracks as your interfaces allow.
You might need to do things like turn off some things that are running like AirPort or Bluetooth but really, you don't need to delete applications (and you should not delete applications that come with the OS anyway, that sometimes messes up the OS updaters).
If you have the capability to experiment, you should give it a shot and see what you can do. Except for potentially trying people's patience when you're setting stuff up or running into glitches, you have nothing to lose by setting up an experimental session and seeing if you can record X many tracks simultaneously. I bet you'll be surprised.
August 22, 2009 @03:02pm

For best performance make sure the external firewire drive has
the oxford chipset controllers. They are recommended by digidesign for
More RAM is always a good thing for performance.
7200 rpm drives with big caches help when mulitracking or overdubbing.
I am running a Emac G4, 2 ghz, 2 gig ram, OWC mercury elite firewire (400)
for the recording disc through a digi003 rack.
I regularly record 8 tracks and overdub up to 24
with this rig.
Be careful about leaving you ipod plugged in while recording
some apps will grab it for scratch space and blow away your library.
I was running Peak LE v 6 on a macbook and it used my ipod for
scratch space. grrrrr
I plan to use the macbook with peak le , a sony DAT stereo condenser mic and a griffin Imic for live audience recordings.
good luck!
August 29, 2009 @06:53am

I have used a Macbook Pro with a 2.0ghz dual, 2 gb ram, and an external firewire drive to record 16 tracks at once with Pro Tools. It worked flawlessly for a whole week/40gb worth of recording :) If you're doing live stuff, you're probably set right now. Be sure to set a large buffer.
September 14, 2009 @02:28am