Pro tools mac minimum requirements

Your library will grow more and more over time. It is always possible, though, to use an external hard drive to expand your disk space. If you can, always go for solid state drive SSD. They are essentially flash drives with no moving parts. SSD works faster, is mechanically more reliable, and is quieter too. The optimum setup is to have 2 hard drives. One for your system files and applications, the other for your sound libraries and samples. This is the most streamlined and fastest way to work.

Audio IO Setup on Mac In Pro Tools

And is an easy upgrade if you choose the desktop PC route. This is called random-access memory or RAM. The larger the RAM, the better, especially when dealing with large libraries and sound files. This is one where Windows machines are much more generous with the availability of USB ports.

With a new mac you will need some kind of dock, unless you have a thunderbolt audio interface. Pro Tools requires a USB port for the iLok dongle — other software may require a similar device for copyright reasons.

So pick a machine with the most USB ports you can. Or if you want to buy a Mac, budget for a dock too.


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Read and re-read the reviews of any machine you are going to buy. Make sure it is ultra-quiet. Beware of noisy fans and drives. Go for a machine with SSD if your budget allows. It is the quietest option.

System Requirements

Yet for music recording, video production, and really serious gaming, a desktop is what many the pros continue to use. Does that mean you have to buy a desktop machine? Unless you have the luxury of being able to purchase a computer solely for home music production, it is likely your computer will have to be able to multi-task. However, at the end of the day a desktop computer is NOT portable. Furthermore, you can get a lot more for a smaller budget with a laptop computer.

And if you need a laptop anyway, for school, college or work, then purchasing two different systems may not be an option.

What are the system requirements for the Pro Tools First software included with my product?

You might have to go the laptop route. Do not worry, it is perfectly possible to get exceptionally high quality recordings using a laptop. So choose the system that suits your lifestyle and budget. If you are using your laptop in a live situation, as a DJ for instance, the noise may not be an issue. But in a bedroom home recording studio, noise matters. Much quieter and faster.

Otherwise, you may have to think how you separate the noise from your laptop from your mics. Especially if you work in a low-light environment. Backlit keys are a godsend when you are searching for your keyboard shortcuts in the semi-dark.


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OK, so you foresake portability but go for the biggest screen you can. DAWs take up a lot of screen real estate. Or, budget for an external monitor. Make sure you have enough inputs and outputs for your audio interface and other outboard gear. Apple changed the rules with their last release of Macbooks, and now you have to buy dongles and docks to expand the connectivity. Tower cases are built with a vertical chassis. They generally take up a small floor space, so they can fit in a tighter spot on your studio floor or desk. Also they a more spacious inside, making them easier to get into if you want to upgrade their internal components.

The ability to upgrade components as you expand your recording studio is a huge plus. And you can really get a huge amount of power for your money. This kind of computer is very customisable to your own requirements, and is therefore the most flexible. So you have the added expense of a monitor, keyboard, and other peripherals. You also need to find room for them, usually below your desk. Having said that, many are designed to stand on your desk… but then you need a big desk!

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One benefit of the horizontal desktop pc is it could be fitted on your studio equipment rack. The main disadvantage is the space it takes up on your desk. An all-in-one PC computer has everything built into one unit, which is designed around a monitor. For our pricing options we are going to use the brand new iMac For the basic option we are going to use the Retina 4K 21" iMac with its 3. For the Superior option we have selected the 3.

However there are a number of caveats and limitations for each of these configurations so please check our article or the Pro Tools System Requirements pages. Yesterday Apple announced new iPads and today they release the latest iteration of the iMac. There are updates for both the There have been a growing number of Pro Tools users that have either needed a more modern machine or a machine that has Thunderbolt, and until recently the Trash Can, even with its drawbacks, has arguably been the only game in town.

Check the image above, which is part of a rack from Deluxe in Hollywood with no less than 50 Mac Pro trash can Pro Tools computers. Even so, the Mac Pro 6,1 trash can has come in for a lot of stick throughout its life. Apple in a rare admission admitted that they had missed the mark, Apple's Craig Federighi said this…. I think we designed ourselves into a bit of a thermal corner if you will.

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We designed a system with the kind of GPUs that at the time we thought we needed, and that we thought we could well serve with a two GPU architecture. That that was the thermal limit we needed or the thermal capacity we needed. Every day I walk into my studio turn on my Mac Pro and work for sometimes 12 hours if it's a quiet day.

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There's never a day when I think to myself; I wish I owned a different computer or used a different OS. In the years that I have owned it, my 'overpriced' Mac Pro Late has paid for itself over times; it is the rock that powers my business. In fact, it is such a rock that I rarely realise it is there; it just keeps doing the job, quietly humming on the shelf.

With the announcement of the Mac Pro we are already seeing evidence of the prices for secondhand trash cans going up, which shows that they are not only going to hold their value, but increase in value. As at the time of writing the Mac Pro 6,1 trash can is still a current Apple model until they release the Mac Pro 7,1 and so we are going to use the Apple Store web site to price up our 2 options - Basic and Superior.

Currently Avid supports 4 Mac Pro trash can models….

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For the Basic option we are going to start with the 3. For the Superior option we will use the 2. Most of the team use a MacBook Pro of one description or another as their second machine on which we have Pro Tools.