As for a desktop, it depends on how many gigs you're likely to get. If its a couple of times a year, its fine. I did a gig with a full PC once, and it was in my hometown so I could drive there and had people to help me carry it all. And it was fine because I only got the gig because I knew the promoter and knew the venue, not because I had any sort of reputation in the music industry. So I could get there really early and faff about setting it up.
But if you start getting asked to play quite regularly, you need a laptop. A macbook pro with time machine, so that if someone spills beer all over it, you can be up and running ready for the next show via a quick trip to the Apple store (on the venue's expense if possible).
Its just I been thinking, Laptops are 3 times as much for the same power and also they dont take PCI cards and such.
Anyone done this? How did it work out.
I must add, Im taking a dedicated music PC, not the family computer. Im thinking a small shuttle type PC, a very small LCD. Cant be too hard. Simply plug the monitor in, the keyboard n trackball. Not like its any harder than setting up hardware synths and MIDI cables.