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Microphone Month 5

Sweetwater Forums [Archived]

After 15 years of great discussions, the Sweetwater Forums are now closed and preserved as a "read-only" resource. For discussions about current gear, check us out on Facebook, YouTube, inSync, and our Knowledge Base.

mini or pro?

lmyers

I run Digital Performer with only a couple of tracks and midi for keyboard and flute, using a Saffire LE. We have on old mac dual processor and want to replace it before it dies. I want a Mac Pro, my husband thinks a Mini would be fine. My concern about the Mini is the HD speed of 5400 vs the 7200 on the Pro. I've never used a slower HD than 7200. Is anyone using a mini for audio? How does it perform?
November 26, 2009 @02:25pm
DAS

For two tracks of audio the Mini would be fine, however, in either case I would recommend a separate hard drive for audio tracks if you do very much of it. You could get a USB drive that runs at 7200 r.p.m.
November 27, 2009 @01:43pm
lmyers

Thank you for the advice. Would I load the op sys and dp7 on that USB HD?
November 27, 2009 @08:23pm
DAS

No. Load all your applications and normal stuff on the main/internal HD. Use the external drive only for things like DP audio files. The more recording you do the more of an issue this can be. You don't want to be thrashing your main (critical) hard drive all the time with your audio file recording and editing.
November 27, 2009 @08:30pm
jibran9

I would not recommend using an USB external hard drive as a viable solution here. USB is not only slow but have delay issues for use in audio. NOT RECOMMENDED.
November 27, 2009 @08:58pm
jibran9

For two tracks of audio the Mini would be fine, however, in either case I would recommend a separate hard drive for audio tracks if you do very much of it. You could get a USB drive that runs at 7200 r.p.m.

The mini uses a laptop hard drive. Laptop hard drives run at around 25 MB/sec transfer rates. You could still use the mini and run around 20-30 stero 24 bit audio tracks before you start to notice serious write delays.
If you are going to be running any disk streaming sampler software, the laptop hard drive in the mini will definately slow things down and will reduce your track count.
If you are serious about the mini, I would recommend you replace the internal hard drive with an OCZ SSD. Solid state disks are quickly becoming very popular right now do to their amazing transfer rates and speed. Where a typical desktop hard drive gets around 45-65 MB/sec write rates, SSD's can get 180 MB/sec write rates. I've personaly used SSD's in my rigs and have had no issues with track count what so ever and I guarantee the mini would be an amazing audio recording computer with no issues with an internal SSD.
E.J.
November 27, 2009 @09:11pm
TheKeytarist

My advice would be to go with the 2.66Ghz Mac mini, 8Gb ram, and as jibran9 sugjested, a SSD drive. If you still aren't comfortable with the Mac mini, Perhaps a second hand or refurbished Mac pro of any configuration would be adequate.
January 13, 2011 @06:16pm