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Re: Mac vs PC?
OzarkCDN #3020929 09/03/20 01:54 PM
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PC or Mac ? That's like asking meat or fish...

Both can be very tasty, but ultimately, fish is better for you.


A long time ago, in a musical galaxy far, far away...
Eminent-Solina B412, Yamaha DX21, Yamaha V50, Yamaha U1

21st century...
Kawai MP11SE, Kawai CA58
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Re: Mac vs PC?
joemama42O #3022647 09/07/20 11:34 PM
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Originally Posted by joemama42O
Originally Posted by anotherscott
Originally Posted by joemama42O
You'll see people that don't know a lot about computers still trying to argue that macs are better than windows.
The windows laptop is $600 USD cheaper than the mac, while being much, much faster.
OTOH, a Windows user typically has to add an audio interface (for basic use, Mac users often don't need that); and, as mentioned, will typically need to spend more than Mainstage's $30 to get a comparable set of sounds and hosting capabilities. So that reduces the price difference somewhat.

Also, price and speed are not the only variables. A Windows user is likely to have to locate, download, figure out, and configure ASIO4ALL, along with whatever hosting environment and VSTs he wants, and then may have to tinker to get it all working right. It can take hours for a new user to do in Windows what might be done in minutes on the Mac. That's worth something too (the difference in time and also often the difference in frustration).
*Deleted by moderator*

You're entitled to your opinion, you're not entitled to insult people who don't share it.
As far as I remember this post said (summarized), "Anybody with half a brain could install programs on Windows". I have no idea how the moderator thought that this was an insult directed to the person I was talking to. I'm sorry if anotherscott felt like that was directed towards him (it was not). The frustration when I see a question I can answer, but yet i'm banned... oh well. I don't know if the moderator who banned me has had troubles with downloading programs on windows and took offense to what I said? I have no problems with people using Mac but there's better options and that was the point I was trying to prove.

Last edited by joemama42O; 09/07/20 11:36 PM.

Finally bought the P515
Re: Mac vs PC?
OzarkCDN #3022717 09/08/20 07:20 AM
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Joe, I did not see the post that was deleted. But I want to pass along my own experience with Windows that I posted on another forum some time back:

=====

I was able to pick up a Surface Pro 4 with 8 GB RAM at a really tempting price, and have been playing with it this weekend. I have to say, I love the form factor and the keyboard feel (for what it is), and wish Apple had done something like this.

That said, as much as I admire the hardware, I had forgotten what a nightmare setting things up in Windows is, compared to iOS or Mac. Okay, I got a little ambitious in trying out so many different VSTs, but there is just so little consistency in installation procedures and interfaces, there are so many file formats, you get asked different questions, you have to manually move files into specified folders (or tell your environment--in my case, Gig Performer--to look in different places), there's a lot of clumsy folder navigation... (Boy, the Mac spoils you in file management, between things like spotlight search and the ability to drag a file from the desktop into an app's dialog box, and the ability to sort however you want without some insistence on grouping folders above files in your alphabetical list even when you say you want no grouping, and I can't believe all these years later, you still sometimes have to actually type a path... but onward, I'm just scratching the Surface.) Continuing in the list of Windows-specific setup complications... jbridge to adapt 32-bit plug-ins... a not-straight-forward ASIO4ALL configuration... even a mix of files that were compressed rar vs. zip, necessitating downloading an unrar program... and whoops if you double-click something to open it when you were supposed to be sure to extract it first... it's a lot of effort and there are so many places you can screw up, I was reminded of why so many hardware folk are resistant. Oh and this was a fun one... pick the option to make apps bigger, and some of the apps end up positioning important controls off-screen. Anyway, in the end, I did get at least most of it working the way I want, but even with ASIO4ALL, I'm getting too much latency out of the headphone output. Yeah, I knew that was probably going to be the case, but I'd hoped it would be "close enough." (Using my Macbook headphone jack is fine... but I wanted the tablet form factor for live use, and I wanted to run a couple of less common VSTs that are Windows only.)

I assume I'll have to pick up an interface, but I'm also open to tips on lowering latency besides just playing with buffer size (which, confusingly, can be set in both ASIO4ALL *and* GigPerformer, and neither picks up the setting you make in the other). (And p.s. -- experimenting much with ASIO4ALL settings seems to quickly make things unstable, requiring reboot to get things working right again. I guess that's the downside of depending on some years-old freeware to get the OS to do what it should have been able to do in the first place.)

Yet another complication... even just switching it to play from speakers to using the headphone jack wasn't straightforward! And all the sound options have cryptic names. They can't call the choices "Built in speakers" and "Headphone output", they have to call them things like SST1 and SST2. What the heck does SST stand for, anyway?

And yes, I'm sure some of the frustrations come from a general lack of familiarity with the Windows environment, despite using it on and off since 3.1.

======

There was more. At one point, the Surface insisted on doing a software update, The max it would let me delay it for was 30 minutes, after that I was dead in the water while it updated... and one of the things I had installed in demo mode stopped working after the update (I think the update may have messed up it's 30-day expiration or something like that). I also discovered that one need to modify power options to make sure it wouldn't throttle the cpu and degrade performance if I kept running it for a while.

And it's still true that PCs are more malware/virus prone, and while the best solution is to keep the computer off the internet, even if you're dedicating a computer to your music work and never intend to surf the web with it, you obviously do need to put it online to locate/download/configure/activate all this stuff. So there's one more thing to think about that you pretty much don't on a Mac (e.g. your initial setup is probably going to involve activating some protections, and then you'll want to run a check when you're done).

Anyway, I did add an interface and got everything working, but as you can see, it wasn't pretty. Of course, eventually, you can get a perfectly good system out of it, but especially if you're not already Windows savvy, setup is more time consuming and there are lots more potential derailments.

Re: Mac vs PC?
OzarkCDN #3022821 09/08/20 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by anotherscott
Originally Posted by joemama42O
You'll see people that don't know a lot about computers still trying to argue that macs are better than windows.
The windows laptop is $600 USD cheaper than the mac, while being much, much faster.
OTOH, a Windows user typically has to add an audio interface (for basic use, Mac users often don't need that); and, as mentioned, will typically need to spend more than Mainstage's $30 to get a comparable set of sounds and hosting capabilities. So that reduces the price difference somewhat.

Also, price and speed are not the only variables. A Windows user is likely to have to locate, download, figure out, and configure ASIO4ALL, along with whatever hosting environment and VSTs he wants, and then may have to tinker to get it all working right. It can take hours for a new user to do in Windows what might be done in minutes on the Mac. That's worth something too (the difference in time and also often the difference in frustration).

I agree with @Joemama420 - the heavy prices for similar or inferior components is egregious, in my opinion. There are many, like @anotherscott, who ascribe to the "it just works" stuff that I just don't buy into, at least not anymore. Remember that MacOS is built on a "monolithic OS", namely Unix, which dates back to the '60s and operation of telephone switches and networking gear - updated to be sure, but so has Windows.

I think most people who are of the "Mac just works" camp haven't used a Windows PC since, say, Vista. XP was a solid OS, and Windows 10 has been fantastic, although like MacOS it has its pitfalls. You are in one camp, or another.

The Windows camp tends to get all the software available for Mac but for Apple proprietary software - Adobe can't ignore an install base as big as Windows, when the Mac only has 8% market share - and has had for a decade. Niche applications have always been the Mac's bread and butter - everyone likes to point out the "creative" types, but I don't think those count anymore either with PCs like the Surface Studio. It used to be desktop publishing - remember when that was a thing?

As to the Windows user having to "add an audio interface", that isn't true in many cases, but the best practices for either side are to add one. The Steinberg units add incredible functionality to both Windows and MacOS applications. Most have an audio interface into their computer, again except for the cheaper laptops. I admit to still having a desktop, which is a preferred format for my studio as far as I'm concerned; that's just me though. My laptop is a secondary PC.

Oh and - Apple just killed Bootcamp with their next iteration of hardware, if I recall correctly. They won't be able to run Windows on their Ax silicon.

Choose whichever floats your boat. Frankly if it were not for edge cases, most people could get along with a Chromebook - surfing and e-mail is basically what most people do.


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Re: Mac vs PC?
ommoran #3022839 09/08/20 12:42 PM
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Originally Posted by ommoran
I think most people who are of the "Mac just works" camp haven't used a Windows PC since, say, Vista.
I can't speak for most people, but I did post my Win10 experience.

Originally Posted by ommoran
The Windows camp tends to get all the software available for Mac but for Apple proprietary software - Adobe can't ignore an install base as big as Windows, when the Mac only has 8% market share - and has had for a decade. Niche applications have always been the Mac's bread and butter - everyone likes to point out the "creative" types, but I don't think those count anymore either with PCs like the Surface Studio. It used to be desktop publishing - remember when that was a thing?
This thread has strictly been about using the computer in music applications (MIDI/VST/DAW), and that's an area where it continues to have the advantages some of us have been talking about

Originally Posted by ommoran
As to the Windows user having to "add an audio interface", that isn't true in many cases, but the best practices for either side are to add one.
As I described, I was not able to acheive suitable low latency VST playback on my Surface Pro 4 without an interface; I had no such issue on my 2011-2013 era Macbooks. Though yes, if you're recording analog audio, you'll want an interface for either.

Originally Posted by ommoran
Oh and - Apple just killed Bootcamp with their next iteration of hardware, if I recall correctly. They won't be able to run Windows on their Ax silicon.
Yes, I expect Bootcamp to go away. But as of today, any Mac you buy can also function quite well as a Windows PC if and when needed, the reverse is not true. (And it will probably be years yet before you won't be able to buy some new Mac model that can run bootcamp.)

Originally Posted by ommoran
Frankly if it were not for edge cases, most people could get along with a Chromebook - surfing and e-mail is basically what most people do.
Yes, but again, we've been talking in the context of MIDI/VST/DAW apps. For what you're talking about, lots of people don't even need chromebook. Indeed, there is a new generation of folks whose entire silicon life is based on their smartphone, they don't even bother with a traditional computer.

But I agree, people should buy whatever floats their boat!

Re: Mac vs PC?
joemama42O #3022845 09/08/20 01:00 PM
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Originally Posted by joemama42O
The frustration when I see a question I can answer, but yet i'm banned... oh well. I don't know if the moderator who banned me has had troubles with downloading programs on windows and took offense to what I said? I have no problems with people using Mac but there's better options and that was the point I was trying to prove.

Quote
You'll see people that don't know a lot about computers still trying to argue that macs are better than windows.
The windows laptop is $600 USD cheaper than the mac, while being much, much faster.

Are we talking about computer games here or DAWs? Are we talking about latency? joemama42O your posts are not clear and misleading. They are inaccurate.

I agree with anotherscott and I think he's giving an experienced person's advice. OS X and mac have many benefits. Windows platform is not bad but it takes some extra effort to come up with a 100% working music workstation.

I'll vote for mac. I have worked with both Windows and OS X and I think OS X provides a much better/professional environment for music production. If it was games or 3D animation works my opinion was different.


Kawai MP7SE, Yamaha MOTF XF6, Yamaha WX5, Yamaha Pacifica 112v
Re: Mac vs PC?
OzarkCDN #3023000 09/08/20 11:54 PM
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Until 2013, professional audio mastering applications were more prevalent on Windows:

https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/sony-sound-forge-pro-mac

Professional recording and mixing was always more prevalent on a Mac.

Until I recently decided to use a Tascam DR-100iii for recording, I used an M-Audio Firewire 1814 connected to a Windows box with a Firewire card and Sony Soundforge Pro to capture stereo recordings from keyboards and midi modules mixed in the analog domain when recording. The Firewire interface on the Windows box saved me from having to buy a 2nd computer. Maybe I just got lucky with the chosen hardware, but I just installed the m-audio driver on the Windows machine, and everything just worked flawlessly for years. I still use the 1814 as an external soundcard/DAC on the machine, and it is a backup interface for recording if needed.

Instead of framing a discussion as Mac vs. PC, spend time understanding your requirements, decide what software and audio hardware will best meet your requirements, and select an OS/hardware platform that best meets your requirements or is the most cost-effective solution or the one you are most comfortable using.

Re: Mac vs PC?
Sweelinck #3023013 09/09/20 02:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Sweelinck
Until I recently decided to use a Tascam DR-100iii for recording, I used an M-Audio Firewire 1814 connected to a Windows box with a Firewire card and Sony Soundforge Pro to capture stereo recordings from keyboards and midi modules mixed in the analog domain when recording. The Firewire interface on the Windows box saved me from having to buy a 2nd computer. Maybe I just got lucky with the chosen hardware, but I just installed the m-audio driver on the Windows machine, and everything just worked flawlessly for years.

I've generally had no trouble with Windows. I sent a Dell laptop back before I bought my current computer (Mac), but the problem was of Dell's making, and had nothing to do with Windows. The computer had some DSP hardware that couldn't be bypassed, and it was causing latency. It was fine with an external interface.

Re: Mac vs PC?
OzarkCDN #3023099 09/09/20 08:46 AM
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The Mac is generally the best bet for those who want to quickly set up and start playing piano VIs IME. But it seems some people still add an external interface. Caution with the defective (and expensive to repair) butterfly keyboards pre-2020 laptops. Also, the operating system is somewhat irritating IME and apparently being phased out.

Windows PCs can provide a lot more processing and storage at attractive prices but IME can be difficult and time consuming to optimize for piano VIs. I have spent too many hours "optimizing" some Dell XPS laptops and finally they are OK...usually but not always.

A decade ago, the decision was easier as OSx was superior to rotten Windows Vista or 8, and Mac prices were similar to premium PC prices.

Re: Mac vs PC?
Sweelinck #3023130 09/09/20 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Sweelinck
Until 2013, professional audio mastering applications were more prevalent on Windows:

https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/sony-sound-forge-pro-mac

Professional recording and mixing was always more prevalent on a Mac.

Until I recently decided to use a Tascam DR-100iii for recording, I used an M-Audio Firewire 1814 connected to a Windows box with a Firewire card and Sony Soundforge Pro to capture stereo recordings from keyboards and midi modules mixed in the analog domain when recording. The Firewire interface on the Windows box saved me from having to buy a 2nd computer. Maybe I just got lucky with the chosen hardware, but I just installed the m-audio driver on the Windows machine, and everything just worked flawlessly for years. I still use the 1814 as an external soundcard/DAC on the machine, and it is a backup interface for recording if needed.

Instead of framing a discussion as Mac vs. PC, spend time understanding your requirements, decide what software and audio hardware will best meet your requirements, and select an OS/hardware platform that best meets your requirements or is the most cost-effective solution or the one you are most comfortable using.

There is no question in superiority of OS X and its CoreAudio APIs in pro audio applications! It is a known fact.

We need to refien our statistics here. The bulk number of users don't count. There is a very narrow portion of users who are considered as professionals. Using mac requires more money not just for the Mac PC but also for external hardware and software.

Compatible hardware need to meet certain specs and other extra costs that adds up to the finished products so not every ordinary musician can afford more expensive audio gears.

You can achieve the same with windows for sure but as I said, the workflow for audio production and ease of use in Windows is no where near Mac OS X. One really simple example that we often see here is the aggregate audio devices! You can't have them on Windows unfortunately. ASIO4ALL is a tricky unofficial software which is of course not reliable.

The idea of using ASIO4ALL for a multi million dollar movie is plain stupid.


Kawai MP7SE, Yamaha MOTF XF6, Yamaha WX5, Yamaha Pacifica 112v
Re: Mac vs PC?
OzarkCDN #3023166 09/09/20 11:24 AM
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I have been on the Windows side and it suits my needs. That is all I will say as I don't like these arguments about MAC vs. Windows. Use which one you're comfortable with.


All these years playing and I still consider myself a novice.
Re: Mac vs PC?
EPW #3023221 09/09/20 01:26 PM
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Originally Posted by johnstaf
I've generally had no trouble with Windows. I sent a Dell laptop back before I bought my current computer (Mac), but the problem was of Dell's making, and had nothing to do with Windows. The computer had some DSP hardware that couldn't be bypassed, and it was causing latency. It was fine with an external interface.
"I had latency I couldn't get rid of, but it was fine with an external interface" is not Dell-specific... it seems to be the case with most (maybe all) PCs... and not Macs. That's one of the things we've been talking about.

Originally Posted by newer player
The Mac is generally the best bet for those who want to quickly set up and start playing piano VIs IME. But it seems some people still add an external interface.
If you want to record analog audio in, you'll want an interface for either platform. Or if you need more than a single pair of stereo analog outputs (say, for 5.1 surround mixing). But for VST playback, I doubt any Mac user needs one, while most if not all PC users need one. That's my understanding, anyway.

Originally Posted by EPW
Use which one you're comfortable with.
I completely agree! But for folks like the OP who have not already committed to one platform or the other for their music work, a thread like this can help show them the pros and cons of each route.

Re: Mac vs PC?
Abdol #3023240 09/09/20 01:56 PM
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Quote
The idea of using ASIO4ALL for a multi million dollar movie is plain stupid.

As noted upthread, I don't use ASIO4ALL. Firewire and Thunderbolt do I/O by DMA which eliminates the latency issues that lead some to believe a MAC is a necessity. I would be perfectly happy with a MAC. My point is just that most or all of the insufficiencies of Windows for audio arise from using USB.

Sony used their Soundforge Pro mastering package for production mastering of their CD music product base for many years before it was even available for a Mac. I believe they also produce soundtracks for movies.

Re: Mac vs PC?
OzarkCDN #3023260 09/09/20 02:23 PM
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I wonder how this discussion will be when MAC is all on ARM in several years.


All these years playing and I still consider myself a novice.
Re: Mac vs PC?
Sweelinck #3023268 09/09/20 02:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Sweelinck
My point is just that most or all of the insufficiencies of Windows for audio arise from using USB.
Getting back to the initial post about using a computer to play VSTs, I don't think the MIDI IN via USB is really an issue, it's getting the audio out that's the bottleneck, right? So if the on-board audio out is insufficient for low latency, what is the real advantage of thunderbolt compared to USB, if you have to buy an interface either way? I think you're saying that if you use a thunderbolt or firewire interface for your audio out, you don't need ASIO4ALL, so yes, you can eliminate some complication there. But there goes your price advantage compared to a Mac, since a thunderbolt interface is probably going to be $500. And your computer price could go up as well (e.g. the least expensive Dell laptop with Thunderbolt is $300 more than the least expensive Dell laptop without, though it's better for other reasons as well). So to the extent that someone prefers PC over Mac for its price advantage, that benefit erodes. Unless you intend to use a thunderbolt interface regardless, for its other capabilities. If you're going to put a $500 interface on whicver unit you buy whether PC or Mac, then yes, you're back to Windows having a likely cost advantage.

Re: Mac vs PC?
OzarkCDN #3023434 09/09/20 10:29 PM
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I'm just pointing out that there are more options than the MAC owners on the thread were articulating. I could use either OS.

Re: Mac vs PC?
OzarkCDN #3023489 09/10/20 04:13 AM
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Originally Posted by anotherscott
"I had latency I couldn't get rid of, but it was fine with an external interface" is not Dell-specific... it seems to be the case with most (maybe all) PCs... and not Macs. That's one of the things we've been talking about.

This was a hardware issue specific to the computer that had nothing to do with Windows. This is not typical of good PCs.

Re: Mac vs PC?
OzarkCDN #3023525 09/10/20 07:27 AM
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1. What is "IME"?

2. What is "ARM"?

3. Don't new MACs eliminate audio ports? I just bought my first iPhone, it needs a dongle, and Drum Genius does not work on it as it clicks every loop. So, how would using a dongle work with good headhones for mixing, recording, etc. with a click?

4. I'm considering a MAC (I have a nice Windows machine, Lenovo 720), but I'd have to be super convinced it's way more better for music. So, why is it? I play sax and thus need an audio interface, but for piano gigs it would be nice not to have to bring one just to get VST keyboard sounds. But plugging speakers into a dongle? Or a single 1/8" audio out?

Thanks....

Last edited by Skyscrapersax; 09/10/20 07:27 AM.

Selmer Mark VI Tenor (‘73) & Alto Sax (‘57), Yamaha YSS-62 Soprano Sax (‘87), Conn Naked Lady Baritone Sax (‘52), Conn New Wonder Tenor & Alto Sax (‘24), Yamaha WX5 Wind Synth (‘13), Kawai MP11 & ES-110, Numa Compact 2x, Casio PX5S, Roland VR-09, Hammond E-112 (‘69).
Re: Mac vs PC?
Skyscrapersax #3023535 09/10/20 08:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Skyscrapersax
1. What is "IME"?

2. What is "ARM"?

3. Don't new MACs eliminate audio ports? I just bought my first iPhone, it needs a dongle, and Drum Genius does not work on it as it clicks every loop. So, how would using a dongle work with good headhones for mixing, recording, etc. with a click?

4. I'm considering a MAC (I have a nice Windows machine, Lenovo 720), but I'd have to be super convinced it's way more better for music. So, why is it? I play sax and thus need an audio interface, but for piano gigs it would be nice not to have to bring one just to get VST keyboard sounds. But plugging speakers into a dongle? Or a single 1/8" audio out?

1. I beliebe IME is probably In My Estimation, which would be a variation of IMO.

2. ARM is a kind or processor. Relevant here in that it is not Intel. It is what iOS devices use (as well as many other devices). Once Macs switch, they will need to be running updated software, or the older stuff will be run through an emulation layer, so there are questions about how that might impact performance, and also whether bootcamp will still allow Macs to run Windows. Which is actually not an impossibility since Microsoft themselves are committed to Windows on ARM, something I should have mentioned in my post about that but thought of too late to edit.

3. Macs still have audio ports, the only removals have been some iOS devices AFAIK.

4a. "why is it" is exactly what the OP asked at the top of the thread. It has been thoroughly answered in this thread.

4b. Single 1/8" audio out usually works fine if all you need is a straight stereo output. (Same with most iPads/iPhones which people use as well.) Not the most ideal/rugged connector, and you'll almost certainly need some kind of adapter on the other end, but workable. Get an 1/8" cable that has a right-angle connector, they are much less susceptible to getting knocked around while plugged in, which is the biggest vulnerability. (There are also things like 1/8" to XLR direct boxes and such, if needed.)

Re: Mac vs PC?
anotherscott #3023618 09/10/20 11:55 AM
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Thanks for the complete answer, Another Scott! I have to avoid plugging my headphone directly into my Windows laptop, as I tripped on the cord once, my laptop fell to the ground (destroying the plug) and taking down my satellite hard drive, destroying it (only $600 to repair to retrieve the data!).

Maybe somebody makes a 1/8" to 1/8" right angle adapter?


Selmer Mark VI Tenor (‘73) & Alto Sax (‘57), Yamaha YSS-62 Soprano Sax (‘87), Conn Naked Lady Baritone Sax (‘52), Conn New Wonder Tenor & Alto Sax (‘24), Yamaha WX5 Wind Synth (‘13), Kawai MP11 & ES-110, Numa Compact 2x, Casio PX5S, Roland VR-09, Hammond E-112 (‘69).
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Any thoughts on Bechstein B?
by Seacityguy - 12/02/20 07:54 PM
Yamaha C2x and C3x Cost???
by navi9187 - 12/02/20 04:10 PM
plz help ID this piece :)
by Chummy - 12/02/20 03:25 PM
CLP 735 vs CA49 vs HP704
by Einaudio - 12/02/20 02:49 PM
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