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thinking of taking the laptop leap

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  • thinking of taking the laptop leap

    I don't have any idea of what to look for. I don't want to record, just trigger ezdrummer in toontrack solo from my td10 with the lowest latency possible. I'm kinda a dummy when it comes to PC's, so I'm leaning on y'all for input/advice. I'm looking to keep as cheap as possible. TIA

  • #2
    Any laptop that meets the minimum spec for the software you want should be fine. According to the Toontrack website, you need a 1.8ghz processor, 512 of RAM and 1.5gb of hard drive. However, I'd advise you make sure you have a few hundred mhz over the top in the cpu and at least 2gb ram. Just make sure it has a large hard drive and you should be fairly set. Saying that, my 1.5ghz laptop copes perfectly well.

    Other than that. you'll need a good low latency audio interface, either USB, Firewire or PCMCIA/Expresscard. Of that list, the best to use is the PCMCIA/Expresscard option as that'll give you the best bus transfer speeds. Not a clue about prices in your neck of the woods, but in the UK, a laptop more than capable can be had for £400-500 pounds. Obviously, the audio interface will cost extra. You can also look used, or buy one under-spec and upgrade.

    Oh, and a way to get the midi in to the laptop. Usually a cheap-ish (£10) USB-midi cable, unless your audio interface includes midi in itself.

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    • #3
      xp or vista......I've heard bad things of vista and audio, but what do I know?

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      • #4
        Alot of people, and music magazines recommend staying with XP... better performance, XP hogs less resources. etc etc.

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        • #5
          Yeah, XP all the way as it currently stands. You can always dual-boot and see shich works best for you though....

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          • #6
            Specs

            Max out the memory (check what you Motherboard can handle and what XP can see) roughly 2.5 to 3GB and get a good sound card.

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            • #7
              You don't actually need that much RAM to have it work. EZDrummer takes roughly 300MB RAM, depending on the kit. So if you are running XP 1GB RAM should be fine, though it never hurts to have more.

              J
              Edrums- KD-120, PD-125 (3), PD-105 (3), Yamaha PCY155, PCY-135 (4)
              Module - Roland TD20X
              Software - Pro Tools and Toontrack Superior

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              • #8
                Thats true, but the more RAM you have, the faster it will load as less % of the RAM is used by the system and background tasks.

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                • #9
                  You are a patient drummer

                  If you wanna run EZDrummer with a 1GB of Memory try to load EZDrummer with an expansion pack. Believe me i tried...bring a sandwich.
                  Last edited by Fig Newton; 05-02-08, 12:41 PM.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Fig Newton View Post
                    If you wanna run EZDrummer with a 1GB of Memory try to load EZDrummer with an expansion pack. Believe me i tried...bring a sandwich.
                    My old desktop had 1GB RAM and I could run multiple instances with a mix of the standard kit and the DFH expansion no problem. Probably around 400MB, of course I had it optimized with very little running in the background and the RAM was PC3200.

                    What will really slow down the loading of the samples is if you use EZdrummer (which is 16 bit 44.1 kHz) in your host running a 24 bit session with say a 48 kHz or higher sample rate.
                    Edrums- KD-120, PD-125 (3), PD-105 (3), Yamaha PCY155, PCY-135 (4)
                    Module - Roland TD20X
                    Software - Pro Tools and Toontrack Superior

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by ige87 View Post
                      Yeah, XP all the way as it currently stands. You can always dual-boot and see shich works best for you though....
                      Wasn't there a thread not too long ago about a guy having a problem with his laptop and XP?

                      If your laptop comes with Vista, it doesn't necessarily mean that you can install XP on it. Sometimes drivers are not available for certain operating systems.

                      If going the laptop route, you might consider purchasing from a company that allows returns if it doesn't work out for you...

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                      • #12
                        I'm also open to a new macbook. 2.1 gig core 2 duo w/4gig ram. It only has firewire 400 though. Paired with a m-audio FW 410, it should rock right? With this setup I may just delve into PC recording, but triggering EZD is still priority....whatdaya think fellers? *scratches chin while sipping a whiskey and water*

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by SPISHAK View Post
                          I'm also open to a new macbook. 2.1 gig core 2 duo w/4gig ram. It only has firewire 400 though. Paired with a m-audio FW 410, it should rock right? With this setup I may just delve into PC recording, but triggering EZD is still priority....whatdaya think fellers? *scratches chin while sipping a whiskey and water*
                          I've got a macbook pro, the fw410, and EZdrummer...and it works great. I am not using any fw800 devices at the moment, I have an external fw400 drive chained through the 410 for recording and samples. FW400 is more than enough for EZD as it loads all the samples into RAM anyway, no disc streaming.

                          Pics:
                          http://www.vdrums.com/forum/showthread.php?t=40143

                          J
                          Edrums- KD-120, PD-125 (3), PD-105 (3), Yamaha PCY155, PCY-135 (4)
                          Module - Roland TD20X
                          Software - Pro Tools and Toontrack Superior

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Latency???? remember my goal is for live gigs

                            nice lookin' setup, bro

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by SPISHAK View Post
                              Latency???? remember my goal is for live gigs

                              nice lookin' setup, bro
                              I don't know of any way to test latency on a mac, but I practice with it all the time using Toontrack Solo as a host, sample buffer set as low as it will go....64 samples. I can't detect any lag at this setting. Pro Tools has a minimum of 128 and I can feel the difference between 64 and 128. You would be absolutely fine with this setup.

                              And thanks on the setup Lots of fun

                              J
                              Edrums- KD-120, PD-125 (3), PD-105 (3), Yamaha PCY155, PCY-135 (4)
                              Module - Roland TD20X
                              Software - Pro Tools and Toontrack Superior

                              Comment

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