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bdickens

Laptop Recommendations?

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The Athanor Sound Labs mobile/ studio B is slowly dying.

What out there would be suitable for running CbB without much of a struggle?  Hopefully for around $500- 700.

I can't make sense of all the different variations of processors, etc.

This wouldn't be for anything heavy duty. Mostly audio with a few VSTis and not much in the way of sample libraries.

Thanks in advance.

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4 years ago I purchased an i5 Asus ROG gaming laptop for 1100€ with  8Gb of ram (which i upped to 32Gb), a 1Tb HDD with USB3 ports and a sole USB2 port.

For live work its the bees knees. With CbB it can handle recording 16 audio tracks via full USB from a Soundcraft MTK22 during a 1hr set. Solid as a rock. But then Soundcraft drivers are well built.

J

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I have a 7th gen CPU Dell gaming laptop.   I only use it for mobile recording but would probably work good for general recording DAW,    It works fine for what I use it for but not officially Windows 11 compatible due to 7th gen CPU.   Win 10 is fine for CbB so no need to replace it.

I selected the gaming laptop as it has more cooling.  Most "general" laptops have poor cooling and that can be an issue for a DAW machine that is on for long periods.

Drawback to your price range, gaming models are pricey, but like most items you get what you pay for.

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I bought a purpose-built music laptop from Scan (UK) around four years ago (i7 with 32Gb RAM). It's a Clevo under the hood and has been pretty solid, apart from a spate of BSODs that were eventually resolved by a local computer shop rebuild.

I've upgraded the disks to SSDs, but everything else is as built. It cost nearly double your budget though. You do have to watch cooling - mine used to blow like a jet engine till I realised that putting it on an upturned wire mesh office tray massively improved the efficiency of the vents in the base - that was a revelation. 🙈

Annoyingly the i7 has no Win 11 support, so I will have to replace it at some point eventually. I'm pretty torn between desktop and laptop. I really like the versatility of a laptop, but they're a pain to upgrade, you get less compute overall for your $ and the fan/ noise issue is always a problem.

I'll probably go to the guy who fixed this laptop for me as he does custom builds and is not too expensive, otherwise I'm end up paying for stuff (like fancy graphics) that I don't need.

Andy

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I've gotta go with @Jeremy Oakes recommendation.

I've got two ASUS ROG gaming laptops that I use for both development and DAW use.  Both of them are excellent and have given me zero problems.  I use WASAPI when using the on-board sound device, and ASIO when using them with my Focusrite Scarlett 2i2.

The only downside to them is the battery life - I'll get around 45 - 60 mins max, which is kind of understandable given that they're powerful machines eating up CPU usage.

The lower priced ones have less powerful graphics cards, which is fine - you should be focusing on CPU speed / cores rather than how good the GPU is.

I recommend getting at least 16GB RAM. 

Most come with an SSD for the OS drive, and a Hybrid ( HHSD ) drive for storing games.  If you can, get one with a 512GB SSD for the OS drive - 256GB will work, but it'll get full quickly. 

Use the second drive for samples (including plugin sample libraries) and projects. You can partition the 2nd drive to separate your projects from the samples.

If possible, consider replacing the 2nd drive with a large SSD.  This was possible with my older laptop, but not with my newer one as it's a sealed unit  ( and the newer one belongs to BandLab, so I'm not gonna open it anyhow! ).
 

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10 hours ago, Jack Stoner said:

I have a 7th gen CPU Dell gaming laptop.   I only use it for mobile recording but would probably work good for general recording DAW,    It works fine for what I use it for but not officially Windows 11 compatible due to 7th gen CPU.   Win 10 is fine for CbB so no need to replace it.

I selected the gaming laptop as it has more cooling.  Most "general" laptops have poor cooling and that can be an issue for a DAW machine that is on for long periods.

Drawback to your price range, gaming models are pricey, but like most items you get what you pay for.

Agreed concerning gaming laptops fot audio work.

unfortunately mine is not W11 compatible (bloody cpu !)

J

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I use Alienware gaming lp but not without some issues. Anyone using PCAudioLabs Rox Box lp's? Out of OP's price range but I think it might be better for audio production which these are made for.

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