Logic Pro X Advise on a new M1 mac

rainguitar

Logician
I have a MacBook pro (2015) and was thinking of upgrading this year. Historically I rarely produce projects using more than 24 tracks. Bit of a minimalist in that regard. If I use CPU-hungry plugin instruments with my current MacBook pro I can wind up using the freeze function quite a bit. I was looking at the about-to-be released M1 24" iMac and wondering if a maxed out version of that (16 gigs of ram, 2TB SSD) might do the trick. Also how much do you loose by running Logic Pro in rosetta mode rather than natively? (I will continue to use the MacBook Pro, just not for music production.) Thanks!
 

Markdvc

Administrator
Staff member
It seems to me that the only concerns using one of the new M1 Macs might be not being able to go over 16 GB RAM, as well as 3rd party AU compatibility. Still waiting for folk using setups that traditionally demanded a lot of RAM (orchestral and other heavy sample library use) to post about their experiences, otherwise the reactions to the new Mac with logic have been very positive, even running logic in rosetta. The fact that Logic, as an Apple product, is being developed with these new processors in mind can't be bad either. I'm due to move on from my now ancient studio Mac Pro 5.1, would like to hold out a little longer to see what an ARM based Mac Pro will look like, so as yet I can't give any 1st hand experience of the M1.

kind regards

Mark
 
Upvote 0

rainguitar

Logician
It seems to me that the only concerns using one of the new M1 Macs might be not being able to go over 16 GB RAM, as well as 3rd party AU compatibility. Still waiting for folk using setups that traditionally demanded a lot of RAM (orchestral and other heavy sample library use) to post about their experiences, otherwise the reactions to the new Mac with logic have been very positive, even running logic in rosetta. The fact that Logic, as an Apple product, is being developed with these new processors in mind can't be bad either. I'm due to move on from my now ancient studio Mac Pro 5.1, would like to hold out a little longer to see what an ARM based Mac Pro will look like, so as yet I can't give any 1st hand experience of the M1.

kind regards

Mark
Thanks, Mark.
 
Upvote 0

rainguitar

Logician
@rainguitar
If you already have a big screen and a separate keyboard, a Mac mini M1 with 16 GB RAM and a 500 GB SSD would be a good choice.
I've thought of this. I'd also have to buy the screen, keyboard, mouse/trackpad and a 2tb external ssd. That will only make it about $200 cheaper than a similarly specced the iMac 24". The latter has the advantage of a camera and what looks to be a better speaker and microphone system and the disadvantage of a smaller screen. But I'm working on a 15" screen at the moment so a 24" will seem spacious. Of course I wouldn't be using the speakers and microphones internal to the iMac for music production, but I can see other uses for them. What I'm mainly concerned about is whether, over the course of time, buying a machine with the base M1 chip will cost me software upgrade problems in the future. I suspect this will likely be my last computer as I'm nearly 70 and will be winding down over the next few years. Still, I don't want to buy anything that will be underpowered in a short time. The other concern I have is timing. So far the various 3rd party plugin makers are having a slow time of it adapting to both Big Sur and the new chips. That's why I'm still on Catalina and Intel. But Apple is about to announce a new OS in June to be available in the fall. Depending on what changes are made in this new OS, it might force the 3rd party makers back to the drawing board. We all know that as soon as the new OS is available all new Mac's will ship with it. So timing wise, I would rather buy a Big Sur equipped Mac than one with a new OS unless the compatibly problems are minimal.
 
Upvote 0

facej

Logician
I am nearly 70. I retired my MacBook Pro (quad-i7, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD) 2014 for a M1 MacBook Air 16GB/1TB/8x8.
The MBA achieves 90%+ of the performance of my 2019 8-core i9 27" iMac. I don't try to use multiple sampled instruments simultaneously, so my RAM use stays well within a 16GB cap. Rosetta mode performance is entirely acceptable, along with the real advantage - no fans.

The only reason I am not full-time on my MBA is that my really nice Kali IN-5 monitors are connected up in the studio. I can turn off the iMac, plug the MBA into my dock, and run like that - small screen.

If I needed to replace my iMac today? MBA + external monitor + Thunderbolt dock. done and done.

The third-party plug-ins will show up for Apple Silicon eventually (my guess is next year) but for me Rosetta is no problem. When I can "go native" I will get a speed boost that will please me...
 
Upvote 0

facej

Logician
I look at it this way. The MBA running Logic in Rosetta mode is so much faster than the 2014 laptop it replaced that I have only gained.
Someday, when all is native, I will gain even more.

No loss, only gain. Well, I did lose the fans ;-)
 
Upvote 0
Top