Sweetwater Custom Computing CS250 2u Professional Audio and Video Production Workstation

Intel 6th Gen Core i5-6400 2.7GHz (3.3GHz Max Turbo Boost) Rackmountable CPU with 8GB RAM, 240GB SSD, 1TB HDD, Windows 10 Home 64-bit, and Software Suite
Sweetwater Custom Computing CS250 2u Professional Audio and Video Production Workstation image 1
Sweetwater Custom Computing CS250 2u Professional Audio and Video Production Workstation image 1
$1,399.00
Sweetwater Savings: $600.00 MSRP: $1,999.00
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0% interest for 24 months*. 24 equal monthly payments required. Valid through 12/31/2018. Learn more

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Sweetwater Custom Computing CS250 2u Professional Audio and Video Production Workstation
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At Sweetwater, we understand that you need the absolute pinnacle of audio-processing power, and we designed the Creation Station 250v5 to be your ideal production solution. Built for peak pro-audio performance, the CS250v5 gives you the power, confidence, and reliability to say "yes" to any type of production project your studio is called on to perform. This recording and creation workhorse is made with the expandability you'll need to take on bigger projects as your studio grows. If you rely on a computer for your studio's success, putting Sweetwater's Creation Station 250v5 at the heart of your system is the right move to make.

Sweetwater Creation Station 250v5 Rackmountable CPU at a Glance:

  • Ready to rock with preinstalled applications and Windows compatibility
  • Solid-state boot drive for ultra-fast startups
  • Primed for production with quality components for processing speed and reliability
  • Convenient rackmountable chassis fits in your studio or stage rack
  • The versatile connections you need for your professional production gear
  • Total Confidence Coverage — the power you need with the support you deserve

Ready to rock with preinstalled applications and Windows compatibility

From music theory lessons to recording your music, your new Creation Station audio computer comes ready to rock. We have fully loaded it with an incredible suite of amazing programs and utilities to keep you and your studio creating and recording efficiently. The Windows 10 operating system with 64-bit architecture gives you the latest in Windows features. We've included tools for making music that include Audacity audio editor recording software, Audio Test Files with white and pink-noise signals, and a free license of Studio One Artist. Stay organized with the LibreOffice software suite and a printable PDF track sheet for logging your session information. Your Creation Station is compatible with virtually all major audio production packages, including PreSonus Studio One, Steinberg Nuendo and Cubase, Cakewalk SONAR, Sony Vegas, and Avid Pro Tools — we even install iLok Manager for you!

Primed for production with quality components for processing speed and reliability

You need an audio PC that gives you the best performance possible for your money. That's why we at Sweetwater chose components for our Creation Station computers that are not only desirable in terms of build quality and performance, but also ideal in how well they interact with all of the other elements in the system. Your recording projects require hard drives that give you quiet, reliable performance. The Creation Station 250v5 features an ultra-fast 240GB solid-state system drive and a 1TB audio hard drive to effortlessly handle the demands of audio recording. When you're working with audio, you need rock-solid, dependable performance, and because the motherboard is an essential component of that, we chose an ASUS motherboard for the Creation Station 250v5. It's built to stand up to the rigors of the studio — and the stage. We painstakingly evaluated CPUs to determine which processors would perform reliably on Windows applications for audio production. For the Creation Station 250v5, we chose a blazing-fast Intel 6th Gen Core i5-6400 to provide uncompromised speed and reliability. And you can rest assured you've got dependable RAM onboard for reliable, error-free operation. We install our RAM in matched sets, so your system can run in dual-channel mode for best performance. And there are two open slots for future expansion. You get the power you need and the reliability you want at a great value. And since your Creation Station is built by Sweetwater, you'll have the peace of mind that comes from knowing that your computer was designed and built by people who rely on technology to make their music, just like you!

Convenient rackmountable chassis fits in your studio or stage rack

Our new Creation Stations put incredible computing power and rock-solid reliability into a rackmountable format you can easily incorporate into your studio rig or take onstage. These no-compromise audio computers let you work the way you want to work. For ultra-quiet, cool operation, we chose the highest-quality power supplies and cooling fans for our new Creation Stations. With optimized airflow, maximum efficiency, and the best components available, our audio computers give you the ultra-low-noise performance you need, without the risk of overheating. To minimize case rattle from the 2U chassis, we install Auralex SheetBlok-Plus on the lid. And should you use your Creation Station as a desktop computer, we include a set of four AcoustiFeet for decoupling and vibration isolation, ensuring you get absolute operating silence. Whether you rely on virtual instruments for performance or you're tracking audio in the same room where your computer is located, you can depend on your Creation Station's strong, silent nature to get you through it all.

The versatile connections you need for your professional production gear

Sweetwater focused the design of the Creation Station around your projects, so we provided you with the fast, flexible connectivity you need to accomplish your production goals. With fast USB 2.0 and 3.0 ports, your Creation Station 250v5 is flexible enough to make the connections you need for professional audio and video interfaces, MIDI controllers, and more. A USB-C connector yields speeds up to 5Gb/s, and its increased charging power is great for tablets and bus-powered devices. A Multi-card reader makes it easy to transfer files to and from the memory cards used in your handheld recorders, samplers, digital cameras, and more. The optical drive lets you load a track for remixing or sampling and lets you burn your latest project to CD or DVD. For easy expansion of your processing power, we gave you multiple PCI and PCIe slots. And the Creation Station supports up to three displays with video outputs that include VGA, HDMI, and DVI-D — essential for customizing your workflow whether you're recording audio or doing video post production.

Total Confidence Coverage — the power you need with the support you deserve

Your Sweetwater Creation Station 250v5 is fully covered by our Total Confidence Coverage 2-year warranty plus a 3-year limited warranty on the hard drives, and your memory is covered for a lifetime! We even preinstall the TeamViewer application, so if you ever need help, our gurus can access your machine from the Tech Support offices right here at Sweetwater — you won't have to ship your computer back to us for the simple fixes. You get a machine that is designed, built, and fully supported by the same people who use computers in their music-making lives every day. We don't just sell you a computer — we take care of you!

Sweetwater Creation Station 250v5 Rackmountable CPU Features:

  • 2U rackmountable chassis for stage or studio use
  • 2 quiet fans prevent dangerous heat buildup
  • Acoustically treated to reduce operational noise
  • VGA, DVI, and HDMI ports support up to 3 displays simultaneously
  • Suite of amazing programs and utilities keeps you creating and recording
  • CD and DVD read and write capability
  • USB 2.0, 3.0, and USB-C ports enable connectivity with outboard gear and peripherals
  • Includes USB keyboard and mouse and rackmounting hardware

Creation Station Models

 
CS450v5
$2599
Learn More
CS400v5
$1799
Learn More
CS250v5
$1399
Learn More
CS100v5
$999
Learn More
Motherboard: Asus w/Z170 Chipset Asus w/H170 Chipset Asus w/H170 Chipset Intel Integrated
CPU: Intel 6th Gen i7
3.4 GHz
4 Cores / 8 Threads
Intel 6th Gen i5
3.3 GHz
4 Cores / 4 Threads
Intel 6th Gen i5
2.7 GHz
4 Cores / 4 Threads
Intel 6th Gen i5
1.9 GHz
2 Cores / 4 Threads
CPU Cooler: Noctua NHU98 Noctua NHU98 Noctua NHL12 Intel Active Cooling
Case Fan Front: ULN 120mm Noctua ULN 120mm Noctua ULN 80 mm Noctua (x2)  
Case Fan Rear: ULN 80 mm Noctua ULN 80 mm Noctua    
RAM: 32GB DDR4/2133 Mhz 16GB DDR4/2133 Mhz 8GB DDR4/2133 Mhz 8GB DDR4/2133 Mhz
System Drive: 500GB Samsung M.2 SSD
(SATA 6.0 Gb/s)
240GB Intel M.2 SSD
(SATA 6.0 Gb/s)
240GB Intel M.2 SSD
(SATA 6.0 Gb/s)
500GB Seagate
(SATA 6.0 Gb/s)
7200 RPM
Audio Drive: 2TB Seagate Barracuda
(SATA 6.0 Gb/s)
2TB Seagate Barracuda
(SATA 6.0 Gb/s)
1TB Seagate Barracuda
(SATA 6.0 Gb/s)
 
Sample Drive: 2Tb GB Seagate Barracuda
(SATA 6.0 Gb/s)
     
Optical Drive: DVDRW DVDRW DVDRW  
Removable Storage: 1 Removable Hard Drive Bay
(Hard Drive not included)
1 Removable Hard Drive Bay
(Hard Drive not included)
   
Card Reader: MultiCard Read/Write MMC,
Microdrive, CF, SD
SmartMedia, MemoryStick
MS/Pro
MultiCard Read/Write MMC,
Microdrive, CF, SD
SmartMedia, MemoryStick
MS/Pro
  SD Card Slot
Video: HDMI, DVI-I, DisplayPort, VGA
Supports up to 3 displays
HDMI, DVI-I, VGA
Supports up to 3 displays
HDMI, DVI/DVI-D, VGA
Supports up to 3 displays
HDMI, Mini DisplayPort
Supports up to 2 displays
WiFi: PCIe 802.11 b/g/n PCIe 802.11 b/g/n PCIe 802.11 b/g/n Internal 802.11ac, Bluetooth
Ports: 1 Gigabit Ethernet
(10/100/1000 Mb/s)
6 SATA 6.0 Gb/s ports (0 Available)
1 x SATA Express port (PCIe mode)
USB 3.0 – 2 back
4 USB 2.0 (2 back 2 Frt panel)
1 10Gb/s USB 3.1 Type C (back)
1 10Gb/s USB 3.1 Type A (back)
1 Gigabit Ethernet
(10/100/1000 Mb/s)
6 SATA 6.0 Gb/s ports (1 Available)
1 x SATA Express port (PCIe mode)
USB 3.0 – 2 back
4 USB 2.0 (2 back 2 Frt panel)
1 5Gb/s USB Type C
1 Gigabit Ethernet
(10/100/1000 Mb/s)
6 SATA 6.0 Gb/s ports (4 Available)
1 x SATA Express port (PCIe mode)
USB 3.0 – 2 back
4 USB 2.0 (2 back 2 Frt panel)
1 5Gb/s USB Type C
1 Gigabit Ethernet
(10/100/1000 Mb/s)
1 SATA 6.0 Gb/s port
USB 3.0 – 2 back
USB 3.0 – 2 Front
PCI Slots: 3 PCIe 3.0/2.0 x 16
3 PCIe 3.0/2.0 x 1(two available)
1 PCI Conventional
2 PCIe 3.0/2.0 x 16
1 PCIe 2.0 x 16
2 PCIe 3.0/2.0 x 1(one available)
2 PCI Conventional
2 PCIe 3.0/2.0 x 16
2 PCIe 3.0/2.0 x 1(one available)
 
Case: 4U Rackmount 4U Rackmount 2U Rackmount Mini
Case Lining: Auralex SheetBlok-Plus™ lid treatment (prevents case rattle) Auralex SheetBlok-Plus™ lid treatment (prevents case rattle) Auralex SheetBlok-Plus™ lid treatment (prevents case rattle)  
Feet: AcoustiFeet (Isolating case feet) AcoustiFeet (Isolating case feet) AcoustiFeet (Isolating case feet)  
Power Supply: 750W Enermax 450W Enermax 380W Antec AC adapter included
OS: Windows 10 64-bit Windows 10 64-bit Windows 10 64-bit Windows 10 64-bit
System Restore: Acronis System Restore OEM Acronis System Restore OEM Acronis System Restore OEM Acronis System Restore OEM
Peripherals: USB keyboard & mouse included USB keyboard & mouse included USB keyboard & mouse included VESA adapter included
Keyboard & mouse not included
Warranty: Two years for the entire machine. Three years limited for hard drives. Lifetime for memory. Two years for the entire machine. Three years limited for hard drives. Lifetime for memory. Two years for the entire machine. Three years limited for hard drives. Lifetime for memory. Two years for the entire machine. Three years limited for hard drives. Lifetime for memory.

Tech Specs

Operating System Windows 10 Home 64-bit
CPU Skylake Core i5 (i5-6400, 4 cores/4 threads), 2.7GHz (3.3GHz Max Turbo)
Motherboard Intel H170 Chipset
Graphics/Video Intel HD Graphics 530 (Integrated in CPU)
Maximum Resolution HDMI 1.4 4096 x 2160 @ 24 Hz max, DVI-D 1920 x 1200 @ 60 Hz max
Memory - Included 8GB DDR4/2133 MHz
Memory - Max 64GB (4 x 16GB)
Storage - Included System - 240GB M.2 Solid State Drive (SATA 6.0 Gb/s)
Storage - Expanded Audio - 1 TB Seagate Barracuda (SATA 6.0 Gb/s)
Optical Drive DVD-RW
USB Ports 1 x USB 3.0 Type C, 2 x USB 3.0 Type A, 4 x USB 2.0 Type A
PCI Slots 2 PCIe 3.0/2.0 x1, 1 PCIe 3.0/2.0 x16, 1 PCIe 3.0/2.0 x16
Card Slots MultiCard Read/Write MMC, MicroDrive, CF, SD, SmartMedia, MemoryStick, MSPro
Video Ports HDMI, DVI-D, VGA, supports up to 3 displays
Other Ports/Slots Storage - 1 x M.2 Socket 3 (used for SSD), 1 x SATA Express port, 6 x eSATA 6Gb/s port (2 in use)
Ethernet 1 x Gigabit Ethernet (10/100/1000 Mb/s)
WiFi 1 x PCIe 801.11 b/g/n WiFi Card
Audio Inputs 1 x 1/8" (mic in), 1 x 1/8" (line in)
Audio Outputs 1 x 1/8" (audio out)
Included Keyboard USB (PS/2 port available)
Included Mouse USB (PS/2 port available)
Height 2U Rackmount
Depth 15.5" (16.75" with front handles)
Manufacturer Part Number 250.5

Customer Reviews

4.5/5
Based on 7 reviews
Write your review
5/5

A must have

After trying to use my new Apollo Twin for about 6 weeks i finally admit i have a problem and call my sales rep. Dan. He puts me on with service to talk to Andy, who in a matter of about 3 minutes lets me know my computer is not ever going to run this hardware, it will work with others but it is not up to spec. for this application. So i start to save my money for a new computer, looking everywhere for, "the best deal" reading spec's, comparing prices, reading reviews in forums. My brain was about to melt! But one thing became obvious. Call Dan and get the Creation Station! I got the CS250, and when it came plugged everything in, and it worked perfectly, no tweaking no minor adjustments, nothing! Installed my Apollo software, pro-tools and everything worked as expected, the first time! not almost the first but the first time. I will never try to get buy or make do again. Thanks to Dan for all his help and knowledge. I will recommend him and your products and services to everyone. Thanks
5/5

Creative Station CS 250 is best computer ever had

To Sweetwater Friends, The computer I had suddenly died on Christmas Day while I was listening to Christmas music.This was a major crisis-first as a musician there went the music I had written and forgotten to put in Dropbox. I am also Board Secretary and data base manager for House the Homeless, an education and advocacy group on homeless issues. Two days earlier I had spent about 6 hours working to update our 2000 name mailing list. When the computer crashed completely and so suddenly I had a hard time remembering whether or not I had put the mailing list in DropBox after I had finished my work two days before. Needless to say the next few days were rather stressful. When Jeffrey Green got back from his Christmas vacation. I asked him about the CS250 Creation Station. Jeffrey and I have been working together for three years now so it was easy to say yes. The problem was that I did not have the money for any computer. But since my work with House the Homeless is essential to their operation, I was able to convince Richard Troxell, the President of House the Homeless, for the organization to purchase this creation station. One of the big selling points for this Creation Stations was the tech support. The computer had spent a lot of time in the repair shop. And because much of my work involves internet research we had ended up having to have a couple viruses removed. House the Homeless had also had to pay for tech support after the first six months ran out. So this was the biggest selling point for a nonprofit. Richard also knows I am a musician so we were assured that this computer would be a win win. And it most definitely is. The computer arrived the last week of January. And the tech support that goes along with everything Sweetwater sells proved to be one of the best parts of this computer. The computer works great and I would recommend it to anyone--not just musicians. The issues that I had to call tech support were related more to my lack of knowledge about computers than anything. But for the first time since I have been doing a lot of computer work I did not dread having to call tech. Instead, what I have found with Sweetwater is that calling tech support is more like calling a good friend to ask a question than it is calling tech support. And this is one thing I really appreciate about Sweetwater. Of course, the technology is great too. I did have to get speakers- and the sound is what can best be called awesome. Using this computer for my work with House the Homeless also meant I had to get other programs put on it. One was Microsoft Office Professional--the package with Access data base. That was a breeze and it works great on this computer. I also had to install my copy of the Adobe Master Suite Collection 5.1 that works fine on this computer too. This may be one of the few computers that are made that can handle high audio demand music programs and other programs that one may need outside of music. As I said above, one thing I really appreciate about Sweetwater is tech support and Jeffrey. Computers really are new to me. But not once did tech support or has Jeffrey ever viewed my questions as "dumb". I look forward to this Creation Station working just fine for several years to come and being able to add software such as one of the Orchestral Virtual Instruments and Cubase so I can get into recording the music I am composing. And I know that if I have any glitches that I cannot figure out myself all I have to do is pick up the phone and either call Tech support or Jeffrey and I will have it fixed. And to me the combination a great computer and great help keeping it working is about as good as it can get for a musician who also needs the computer for other work. Sincerely, Jo Ann Koepke
Music background: pianist-classical
5/5

Great Product

I recently purchased the CS 250 Creation Station. This is my first desktop computer, having been using a high-end laptop for home recording. This unit is definitely a step up. I was hoping my older FireStudio Mobile interface would work with the CS 250, but to no avail. Too many issues kept cropping up. The Sweetwater techs did the best they could to assist. So, I moved up to the PreSonus 192 Mobile, along with Studio One 3. Now, that’s a magical combination. The sound is superb. The unit is fast, quiet, solid, and appears reliable. If you’ve been riding the fence, treat yourself and make the plunge for a Creation Station. I think you’ll be more than pleased.
Music background: Entertainer/Home Recording
5/5

Great Work Station!

We just upgraded from our older Creation Station to this new one and we couldn't be any happier. Once it was all set up and loaded, it was session time! Works great so far. It's a 2 rack model so not enough USB ports and I had to order the CPIE fire wire card and install it. Other than buying the additional card and using a splitter to gain more ports for the USB, its great! Well built and the tech and sales support are incredible as always. Thanks guys for a top notch product and a terrific working relationship with us!
Music background: Entertainer/Studio Owner
4.5/5

What I needed

The computer works great. I will probably put more ram in it but considering it shipped with 8 gigs I'm not going to complain. My old computer needed replaced and I am very happy with this one.
Music background: Radio Theater
See also: Sweetwater Custom Computing, Sweetwater Custom Computing PC Desktops