MacBook Pro ReviewBy BeatMatters On June 24, 2010 Under Best Gear
Buying a music-ready computer can be a tough assignment. You have a lot to consider:
- Mac or PC?
- Desktop or Laptop?
- How many GB of RAM?
- How big a Hard Drive?
- How fast should the processor be?
In my opinion (and it is simply that, an opinion), Macs are the way to go. Although the tech specs might not be as impressive for your money as a comparable PC, I find that Macs function much, much better than PCs. They use their RAM and processor more efficiently, they almost never get viruses or spyware, and are simply better to work with. Also, and maybe most importantly, they run Logic Studio, which is quickly overtaking Pro Tools as the industry standard DAW.
If you are looking to buy your first computer and you want it to be able to handle processor-intensive music making and also be able to go online, your best option is the MacBook Pro 13″.
Why Not a PC?
The number one reason why you shouldn’t purchase a PC if you’re planning on using the internet with your music computer is viruses. PCs are unfortunately incredibly susceptible to viruses, spyware, malware, and other malicious scripts that quickly turn a decent computer into one that is not useable for music. I’ve also noticed (and this may be just my personal experience) that PCs tend to fragment hard drives more than Macs. Whereas friends of mine have experienced slowdown that was somewhat remedied by defragging their hard drives, I have yet to have to need to defrag the hard drives on either of my Mac laptops.
Why Not a Regular MacBook?
If you’re really strapped for cash, you might consider buying a MacBook. These aren’t bad laptops by any means and can definitely work as home studio computers. However, for an additional $200 you can get 4 GB of RAM expandable to 8 instead of 2 GB expandable to 4. For this reason alone, a MacBook Pro is a much better investment.
So now that you’re hopefully convinced that PCs and regular MacBooks are not the way to go, lets talk about why the MacBook Pro 13″ is:
- It comes with 4GB of RAM. RAM and processor speed are the two most important factors in determining how many tracks you can run simultaneously.
- You can go online without being afraid to get viruses
- 250 GB hard drive is more than enough to hold a decent multisample library, your iTunes library, and a bunch of drums
- Because it is fairly small, you can take your studio with you when you travel
- Whopping 10 hour battery life
Like any product in a highly competitive market, there are a few drawbacks to the MacBook Pro 13″ when compared to its competitors:
- Many free plugins are PC only
- The 2.4 GHz Intel Duo Processor could be faster
My main issue with the MacBook Pro 13″ for music is the processor speed. Although 2.4 GHz is more than enough for most songs that you will create, once you get up into the 50-100 track range, this computer will likely start to struggle. However, there really is no laptop out right now for that price that won’t so this is just something that you have to expect when you’re on a budget.
As of this writing, the MacBook Pro 13″ comes standard with:
- 4 GB of RAM
- 2.4 GHz Intel Duo Processor
- 250 GB hard drive
- NVIDIA GeForce 320M graphics card
- 10 battery life
These specs are more than enough to make bangin’ beats, record quality vocals, surf the internet, and maybe even play a little Call of Duty during your breaks. The quality boost you get from buying a MacBook Pro 13″ make spending the extra money to buy one and worthwhile investment. Not only will your music benefit, but you will likely be able to use this laptop for a much longer time than a standard PC laptop: I still use my Powerbook G4 that I bought 6-7 years ago every now and then.
Feel free to post your comments and questions below!