How does Live 9 fare on the MBA 11-inch Core i5, 4GB RAM?

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
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Cheeku
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How does Live 9 fare on the MBA 11-inch Core i5, 4GB RAM?

Post by Cheeku » Sun Aug 10, 2014 11:28 am

I'm considering buying a MacBook Air 11-inch with a Core i5 processor and 4GB of RAM for running Ableton Live 9.

The Sylenth1 and the Synapse Audio Dune are the only synths I use. And a few other small plugins like TAL-Tube and Sausage Fattener.
I don't use many tracks, only about 10-12. And I only use EQs, some delays and some reverb on them. Will the MacBook Air be able to cope up with this?

jlgrimes
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Re: How does Live 9 fare on the MBA 11-inch Core i5, 4GB RAM?

Post by jlgrimes » Mon Aug 11, 2014 1:53 pm

Cheeku wrote:I'm considering buying a MacBook Air 11-inch with a Core i5 processor and 4GB of RAM for running Ableton Live 9.

The Sylenth1 and the Synapse Audio Dune are the only synths I use. And a few other small plugins like TAL-Tube and Sausage Fattener.
I don't use many tracks, only about 10-12. And I only use EQs, some delays and some reverb on them. Will the MacBook Air be able to cope up with this?

I have a similar machine and Sylenth uses about 7-9 % of CPU. That said it is not as bad as it sounds because when I add another instance, it usually only adds about another 3-4% to the load vs another 7-9 %. Not sure how CPU intensive Dune is but I am using Omnisphere and NI Komplete, pretty effectively (Some of the Komplete stuff can put the CPU up there). I would definitely consider upgrading your RAM if you can though. The MBA is a stable box and probably the best thing about it is the Battery efficiency. It is a good machine to have for on the go production and it is very light which you probably already know.

All in all I would think the MBA would work fine for what you are doing.

Cheeku
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Joined: Tue Aug 05, 2014 10:55 am

Re: How does Live 9 fare on the MBA 11-inch Core i5, 4GB RAM?

Post by Cheeku » Mon Aug 11, 2014 2:56 pm

Ah thank you very much jlgrimes! What role exactly does the RAM play, can you explain it to me? When I use my current windows laptop (an antique) with 3GB of RAM and a Pentium Dual Core, I run out of CPU quite often but have never faced any issues with RAM till now. So are you sure I would need to upgrade the RAM? Because getting the MBA itself is pushing my budget a bit. :( Thanks a lot though!

jlgrimes
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Re: How does Live 9 fare on the MBA 11-inch Core i5, 4GB RAM?

Post by jlgrimes » Mon Aug 11, 2014 3:59 pm

Ram will help you run large sample libraries and run a lot of tracks more smoother. Within Ram, your PC will need to write to the Hard drive more which will slow your system down vs having no Ram.

If you don't plan on using a lot of audio tracks and large sample libraries, you should be fine with 4 gigs.

Also I don't think MBAs can have their RAM upgraded afterwards, so it might make more sense getting more Ram than you need.

beats me
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Re: How does Live 9 fare on the MBA 11-inch Core i5, 4GB RAM?

Post by beats me » Mon Aug 11, 2014 4:03 pm

Looks like Apple is going to make 8G of RAM the starting point on their new computers. That means they feel even people just tooling around on Facebook and the likes are going to need that. So it’s safe to say doing music or video work is going to need at least that. Don’t cheap out on the RAM.

Cheeku
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Re: How does Live 9 fare on the MBA 11-inch Core i5, 4GB RAM?

Post by Cheeku » Mon Aug 11, 2014 4:18 pm

I remember reading somewhere that 32-bit programs can't utilize more than 4GB RAM. I'll be running a 32-bit (most probably) version of Live Lite 9, does it make a difference?

watermelon
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Re: How does Live 9 fare on the MBA 11-inch Core i5, 4GB RAM?

Post by watermelon » Mon Aug 11, 2014 4:23 pm

Does Apple's "Turbo Boost" in anyway affect music production software while running?

H20nly
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Re: How does Live 9 fare on the MBA 11-inch Core i5, 4GB RAM?

Post by H20nly » Mon Aug 11, 2014 6:32 pm

Cheeku wrote:I remember reading somewhere that 32-bit programs can't utilize more than 4GB RAM. I'll be running a 32-bit (most probably) version of Live Lite 9, does it make a difference?
yes. you would need to download the 64 bit version of Live to utilize more memory than 4GB.

note: if you do that, any of your 32 bit VSTs/plugins will also need to be updated to 64 bit as they will not open in the 64 bit version of Live.

pencilrocket
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Re: How does Live 9 fare on the MBA 11-inch Core i5, 4GB RAM?

Post by pencilrocket » Mon Aug 11, 2014 9:39 pm

CPU isn't fast and Live only uses one core for a synth. CPU is almost same as Celeron G1850. I think you should test before getting it.
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