Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Discussion of anything not related to audio or music production

Which OS do you use to work with Ableton Live or which is your favourite if you use several?

Macintosh OS X
36
64%
Windows
20
36%
Other, as it is possible
0
No votes
 
Total votes: 56

shiter
Posts: 6
Joined: Sat Mar 11, 2017 11:21 am

Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by shiter » Thu Jun 22, 2017 12:33 pm

Hi Community,

I actually working on a Windows-PC with Ableton Live Suite, but Live just stucks any 2-3 Minutes, when i want to apply any effects or options from Live.
It may high-probably be, that i´ve got no high-performance-hardware on my Windows-PC. I´m using 4 GB RAM and a Intel i3-4005U Processor on my Notebook.

But unrelated and unminded from the fact, that i got not really good high-end-performance ressources, i´m thinking about to may purchase a Apple Macintosh-Computer, for the reputation to be a better audio-processing environment. And for this after all thoughts and plans how i want go further i only have the question, which OS and what kind of Hardware do you use as CPU? and RAM and how many Cores or Capacity does it has, so that you can say there are no problems with the Processing of Ableton Live on your Computer?

Thanks for any reply.

And Thanks everyone for read.
Robert

jlgrimes
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Location: Atlanta, Ga

Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by jlgrimes » Thu Jun 22, 2017 1:42 pm

shiter wrote:Hi Community,

I actually working on a Windows-PC with Ableton Live Suite, but Live just stucks any 2-3 Minutes, when i want to apply any effects or options from Live.
It may high-probably be, that i´ve got no high-performance-hardware on my Windows-PC. I´m using 4 GB RAM and a Intel i3-4005U Processor on my Notebook.

But unrelated and unminded from the fact, that i got not really good high-end-performance ressources, i´m thinking about to may purchase a Apple Macintosh-Computer, for the reputation to be a better audio-processing environment. And for this after all thoughts and plans how i want go further i only have the question, which OS and what kind of Hardware do you use as CPU? and RAM and how many Cores or Capacity does it has, so that you can say there are no problems with the Processing of Ableton Live on your Computer?

Thanks for any reply.

And Thanks everyone for read.
Robert
I use Mac but I've used Ableton on Windows before and it worked fine.


That said I would stay away from the MacBook Airs. I have one and for the money paid, it is not powerful at all. If you just want to record Audio Tracks and use loops, it is good but don't think of trying to run DIVA on it (or even less hungrier synths).

If you go Mac probably the MacBook Pro or IMac would be the best bet. In general go with Quad Core i7, SSD drive (or Fusion to save some money), at least 8 gigs of Ram (I would max it out if planning on using a lot of large library soft samplers and over like 48 tracks of audio. The Higher end IMacs ram are user upgradable so you can save some $$$ upgrading yourself.

I would have recommended the MacMini but their last update to it was only a lateral move or maybe even downwards as they got rid of Quad Core Processors and took away the ability for the user to upgrade RAM.



I don't necessarily think your problem is your OS though. Your PC only has 4gigs of Ram and if you are on a 64 bit OS that is the bare minimum. 8 gigs is an absolute minimum on a 64 bit OS IMO. Hard drive type is important too. If you really want your PC to fly go with a SSD drive at least for your main drive. Processor isn't as important as it used to be but it depends on what you are doing. If you are just doing audio and using older softsynths (E.g. Sylenth) sparingly, processor type is probably not a big deal a dual core i5 would probably be as low as I would go though. If you use a lot of softsynths especially modern ones like Serum/DIVA processor type is very important. i7 quad would be recommended.


Getting a Mac makes things a bit easier in knowing what type of computer to buy as there are so many PCs on the market and it is harder to know if you are getting a quality unit although if you know what you are doing you can save some cash going PC. But even with a Mac you get what you pay for most lower end Macs aren't really geared for music production. Be prepared to spend at least $2000 for something that will give you a truly smooth experience. Can you spend less on a Mac? Well yes but be prepared to make some compromises and in those cases you probably would be better off with a PC.

Stromkraft
Posts: 7033
Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2014 11:34 am

Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by Stromkraft » Thu Jun 22, 2017 9:20 pm

macOS, not Mac OS X (since 10.12)
16gb
1tb SSD (a must IMHO)
4 cores or better. Forget i5s on MBP and go for second hand quad i7s if you don't want to invest into a new machine. Watch out for fixed RAM and SSD sizes in 2013 MBPs and later, and get what you need (While these can be updated in theory anyway it's not for normal consumers or even the faint-hearted).

Desktop machines are great if you can get the some of the later iMacs. Please do your research on these.

I don't think performance is better or worse on Windows — any issues are likely about power saving, too few cores, too slow disk or the wrong set of expectations — but I feel Windows 10 is privacy-intrusive and insecure from a security standpoint, whereas Apple doesn't make money from selling any info to third parties and their guard of their users privacy is very good IMHO in comparison.

macOS is also a more secure platform overall, even if being naive is dangerous also on the Mac. If one can stay away from naiveness there are good ways to lock down the system, yet enjoy the freedom of your own choices. These aspects is why I've chosen macOS, though I've used Windows (7) before.
Make some music!

jestermgee
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Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by jestermgee » Thu Jun 22, 2017 11:10 pm

Yeah your specs there are what is referred to as a potato. It has about that much power for this kind of thing.

i5/i7 is what you need and at least 8GB+ RAM and a dedicated audio interface to get you going.
I don't use MAC simply because I grew up on PC since 3.1 and understand the OS intimately and have never had issues.

Live will work pretty much just as good within a well maintained Windows OS as a MAC OS and these days. It use to be a common knowledge thing a decade or 2 ago that MAC was the serious performer for production work and much more stable than windows. I think that gap closed a lot with Windows 7 and then more with Win10 with both MAC loosing a little ground in reliability between OS releases and Windows improving a huge deal with hardware compatibility etc. It's now just something people argue about for no good reason.

Unless you really understand the MAC platform and all the different models it can be tricky. I do see a lot of people buying a second hand Macbook only to find it underperforms because they got the wrong model. You need to do a lot of research.

Stromkraft
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Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2014 11:34 am

Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by Stromkraft » Fri Jun 23, 2017 9:02 am

jestermgee wrote:Yeah your specs there are what is referred to as a potato. It has about that much power for this kind of thing.

i5/i7 is what you need and at least 8GB+ RAM and a dedicated audio interface to get you going.
I don't use MAC simply because I grew up on PC since 3.1 and understand the OS intimately and have never had issues.

Live will work pretty much just as good within a well maintained Windows OS as a MAC OS and these days. It use to be a common knowledge thing a decade or 2 ago that MAC was the serious performer for production work and much more stable than windows. I think that gap closed a lot with Windows 7 and then more with Win10 with both MAC loosing a little ground in reliability between OS releases and Windows improving a huge deal with hardware compatibility etc. It's now just something people argue about for no good reason.

Unless you really understand the MAC platform and all the different models it can be tricky. I do see a lot of people buying a second hand Macbook only to find it underperforms because they got the wrong model. You need to do a lot of research.
All true jestermgee, but it's Mac and macOS or more generally Mac OS (X). MAC in all capitals is an abbreviation for Media Access Control, typically a unique number on a network device.
Last edited by Stromkraft on Wed Jul 25, 2018 7:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Make some music!

jestermgee
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Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by jestermgee » Fri Jun 23, 2017 3:41 pm

Fair enough... pretty sure readers would have cracked that cryptic code.

miyaru
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Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by miyaru » Mon Jun 26, 2017 10:57 am

I run Live on a fairly old machine - a i7-920 @ 2,66 GHz with 24 Gb of ram, and it runs just fine on Win 7/64bit. I don't expect magic from this setup, but it does the job.

Windows is just fine to work with, as is Apple OS X too. It is what you like best to work with, and what you are used to.

I guess Windows is a bit more tweakable, and that can be good, and that can be bad - depending how much you know from the Win OS.

A Macbook Pro is proven good for music production, and keeps it's value a long time...... a thing to consider.

Just some thoughts from side......
Greetings from Miyaru.

Prodaw i7-7700, 16Gb Ram, Focusrite Saffire Pro40, Live Suit 10, Push2, Presonus Eris E8, Lexicon MPX1,
Korg N1, Korg R3, NI Massive, Air Hybrid 3, Rob Papen's Predator 2, Sonarworks Reference 4 and Scaler.

login
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Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by login » Mon Jun 26, 2017 2:51 pm

You will get the best performance for the money from a custom build desktop PC.

PC laptops can be fine, nevertheless many of them have issues of some kind (drivers for wifi, or touch pad) that can be annoying. If you are going to go this route I would recommend buying from a place where you can return the laptop easily so you can see if the computer works for you. You also get better specs for the same price if you compare to macs.

macbook pros are expensive and the specs doesn't feel worth for the price, nevertheless the hardware is robust and at least they are almost problem free in drivers. The lack of useful ports (usb no longer included) is very very annoying and you will have to spend on some adapters.

The sad part with Mac these days is the yearly updates to the OS, which normally break something: compatibility with hardware or software. It can be a non issue depending on what software and hardware you use. But as time goes by the possibility of something no longer working increases.

Stromkraft
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Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by Stromkraft » Mon Jun 26, 2017 5:21 pm

login wrote: macbook pros …The lack of useful ports (usb no longer included) is very very annoying and you will have to spend on some adapters.
One convenient adapter to sign up for: Other World Computing DEC.

It should also be mentioned, that one of those Thunderbolt 3 ports can do more work than all other USB ports combined on older Macs. Personally I wish Apple would have made some additional USB ports build to order.
Make some music!

dpknight
Posts: 3
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Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by dpknight » Sat Jun 30, 2018 6:07 am

Used a macbook air and now a surface pro tablet. I preferred using the macbook, the surface pro took some fiddling to get going, I had to create a special power profile to use the processor properly, because the default power optimisation setting it came with was not compatible with Ableton, and the simplest tracks would use up all the CPU, even though it was a 2017 i7! But now i've got it working its fine, though there are still more bugs around audio drivers etc, than on the Mac, eg: if I'm using the Scarlett USB interface, its tricky to then go out an look at something on YouTube, the audio has issues. No doubt I could figure it out, but its just a bit less smooth than on Mac OS. Touch screen is fun though, and its really barely any different when you get past the set up. The small form factor is great, like ableton on an iPad, but more powerful than the Air.

slyoo
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Apr 14, 2009 3:42 pm

Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by slyoo » Tue Jul 24, 2018 6:20 pm

Hi there,
I own a maxed out mid 2012 MBP I use to produce electronic music. I start to experience limitations : some of the plugins I use are really heavy on the processor (Izotope Neutron, Reaktor 6 and other greedy stuffs like theses)
To replace this laptop, I should spend at least 5400 € to get a I7 8750H with 32 Gb/2tB/apple care and a bunch of adapters (LOL)
This led me to consider a HP (or DELL) workstation that will cost me half of what apple claims for their laptop (with the same specs but a better support care plan).

Do you think I'll be able to reach the same performances with a PC other a mac ?
I almost never saw PCs when touring and I'm a bit afraid to cross the line...

Any thoughtful insight will be greatly appreciated.

jestermgee
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Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by jestermgee » Tue Jul 24, 2018 11:22 pm

It's not about "Mac is better/more powerful than PC" these days. It's more about what a user is comfortable with and the sense of stability.

Power and performance both options are about the same these days. Mac has always been a staple for pro end use because the hardware and software are designed together so this means from one machine to the next the operation and stability will be the same. That is the main reason for it. DOes not always mean it is the best bang for buck.

I am a Windows user, have been since Windows 3.1 but I have used Mac and personally do not care for the OS or the model. I have no issues getting anything working and I use personally built machines for everything which cost me 1/5 of the same spec Mac tower so I typically build 2 at a time then demote the old machines to my kids.

If you are comfortable with PC, know how to tune things like power and BIOS settings and know how to manage your OS, SSDs and files to make it hum nicely then you will get just as good performance from PC as Mac.

Angstrom
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Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by Angstrom » Wed Jul 25, 2018 12:19 am

I've always run Ableton on a PC. Of course problems have arisen but at weird times, so when a lot of people had issues with Live 8.0x I had no issues ever with any version of Live 8.
When many people had a perfectly fine time with Live 9 ... so did I until version 9.2 when it went crappy for me, and these were slowly resolved so that by 9.6 all those bugs went away.

But is MacOS better for Live? Well you'll see that currently MAc users are struggline with GFX issues. It's the same as my 9.2 issue ... Ableton will introduce something and there are unintended consequences for certain hardware/software combinations and the bumps get ironed out in time. The pain moves around. It's pretty equal.

Currently I'm running Live 10.0.3b5 on my Windows7 desktop and 10.01 on my Windows 10 laptop. The laptop is for gigging and is quite low powered but never hits more than 30% CPU. Neither of them have any real problems.A couple of bugs on the beta, the usual stuff.

So why do you see so many Mac laptops on the gigging circuit? Well Apple courted the creative market from the mid 90s where Microsoft focused on business. Most musicians became familiar with a ProTools rig, or a Logic setup on Mac. Windows 98 was greatly inferior to something relatively robust like System 7. Then MacOS moved to a Unix core and only got more robust. Couple that with the exceptional structural design of the Apple laptops from 2000 to 2012ish and compare those to the flexy plastic abominations on the PC market at that time ... it's easy to see why a Mac Laptop was the choice for those who could afford it.
Unfortunately it seems that we are now in the era of the "Clagnut". Apple have made good use of the creative sector in positioning the products as quality cool items, based on good engineering practices. But as iPhone and iPad sales revenue dwarfed that of the Macbook Apple look to be stepping away from supporting creatives with good products (Hence the "what's a computer?" commercials).
At the moment a Macbook Pro with Clagnuts™, Touchstrip™ and BullshitKeys™ it is still a good piece of tech, but the value proposition for creatives is relying heavily on legacy good feelings and familairity with the OS they grew up on.

But that can change. Many video editors jumped ship a few years back, and that is a weird thing to be saying. AV types were as fervent about MacOS as any Producer.
Telling an editor in 2008 that they'd one day prefer a WindowsOS for a working environment would be laughable. But here we are.

Not to say Windows or Microsoft is "amazing", but Apple seem to be digging themselves a hole and shitting in it for no reason. I feel like any one of us could step into the Apple offices and doodle up a MacbookPro suitable for creatives, but they seem to have lost that ability and desire. Very odd.

slyoo
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Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by slyoo » Wed Jul 25, 2018 12:50 pm

You are both right ! It's just that I've been using OSX for 12 years because I found the OS more "elegant/robust/pro" at this time (drives & files management, ease of use...)
But it's definitely not the case any more. I guess I just needed a sanity check before jumping.

I'll come back to post a review once I received and configured everything.

@jestermgee, @angstrom : thanks for your inputs ;)

doghouse
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Re: Do you use Windows or Mac OS X as OS for Live?

Post by doghouse » Wed Jul 25, 2018 2:44 pm

Angstrom wrote:the exceptional structural design of the Apple laptops from 2000 to 2012ish and compare those to the flexy plastic abominations on the PC market at that time ... it's easy to see why a Mac Laptop was the choice for those who could afford it
As an EE working in the computer industry for many years my feeling has always been that a Windows machine built to the same level of quality as a Mac costs about the same. People see $300 Windows laptops and figure why buy a $1000 MacBook. But a Surface Pro starts at $800!!!

I have used a number of inexpensive Windows laptops from name brands like HP, Compaq, Dell, etc. and in heavy use none has lasted more even 4 years before dying....keyboards, disks, trackpads, power supplies, displays and other major components have crapped out. They are literally throwaway machines. The machines sold to corporate users designed to be maintained for many years fare much better but cost 2-3x as much as the consumer grade machines. So you do get what you pay for. It's not at all OS related.

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