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Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby Richard Graham » Tue Aug 21, 2018 11:33 am

I use both Mac and PC for work and have used both for music production. If I want to just get on and record, compose or mix some music, Mac is way better.

Every time I use a Windows PC there seems to be some kind of impediment which I end up having to fix instead of getting on with the job at hand: this could also be because I do it so rarely these days.

As for cost, my first (and so far only) Mac, a (secondhand) 2012 MacBook Pro Retina cost me just over a grand, five years ago and it still works as perfectly as it has throughout. For a piece of kit that I use all day every day, I’d say this was good value for money. Yes I could have bought a Windows laptop with a similar spec for a couple of hundred less. Perhaps I’d still even be using it, who knows?

In fairness to Windows, It seems to remain backwards-compatible with software and hardware for longer, and it’s the only choice if you’re a gamer (I’m not). Other than that, Mac all the way. One more word of caution: there was an unexpected learning curve and it took a few months to really feel comfortable with OSX.
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby desmond » Tue Aug 21, 2018 11:42 am

Richard Graham wrote:there was an unexpected learning curve and it took a few months to really feel comfortable with OSX.

Yes, as people generally have to unlearn many of the MS/Windows conventions they've been using, probably since they started using computers.

I actually started (properly) on the Atari ST, which was very Mac-like, and that's where my roots were planted. I then diverted through the PC for many years, and never liked it much, because Windows PC's were mostly unreliable and over-complicated garbage in those days. I tolerated it because I had no other choice, really.

When I finally went Mac, liked I'd wanted to for years, it was a joy, as it was closer to coming "home", but even then, it still took me quite some time to unlearn the Windows conventions and find new ways of solving problems that I'd previously solved on the PC (ie, understanding where thing are, what apps/utilities will do the things I need etc).

Often it was the case that I wanted to do something that was usually hard on the PC, so went looking for the corresponding "hard" way on the Mac, completely overlooking simple and obvious ways (for instance, hunting about the file menu for import or conversion commands or utilities to get data into an app, and finding all you had to do was drop it on the window...).
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby OneWorld » Tue Aug 21, 2018 12:38 pm

Richard Graham wrote:Every time I use a Windows PC there seems to be some kind of impediment which I end up having to fix instead of getting on with the job at hand: this could also be because I do it so rarely these days.

As for cost, my first (and so far only) Mac, a (secondhand) 2012 MacBook Pro Retina cost me just over a grand, five years ago and it still works as perfectly as it has throughout. For a piece of kit that I use all day every day, I’d say this was good value for money. Yes I could have bought a Windows laptop with a similar spec for a couple of hundred less. Perhaps I’d still even be using it, who knows?

In fairness to Windows, It seems to remain backwards-compatible with software and hardware for longer, and it’s the only choice if you’re a gamer (I’m not). Other than that, Mac all the way. One more word of caution: there was an unexpected learning curve and it took a few months to really feel comfortable with OSX.

This is exactly the same problem I have, which seems more frequent with Win10 - many of the fripperies that Win10 dumps on the computer I simply neither need nor want, and the look of it is just plain fow, the Tonka Toy Gui. As you say, there always seems to be some sort of impediment.

I went through a period of enchantment with Windows, especially the Win7/64 phase and early Win10 - the PC worked reliably, quickly, flawlessly, and about 6 months ago, it all started to go horribly wrong, and I lay that clearly at the door of Microsoft with their Anniversary/Creative and whatever other load of junk they have dumped on us. Why cannot Microsoft produced a mean and clean OS, no bloat, no bric-a-brac and penny muck

For example I have an issue which I simply cannot resolve.....

it only happens with Cubase.

Imagine being sat at the computer and moving the mouse rapidly from left to right, every 2 or 3 seconds the mouse 'freezes' momentarily. Imagine the mouse cursor being in the centre of the screen and you want to move to the menu along the top of the screen, the mouse 'stalls' for a moment on the journey from the centre of the screen to the menu bar. OK it's not big deal, but when in Cubase and doing some intense editing, a lot of mousing about, it really is an inconvenience.

Now in sync with the mouse error, the progress line in Cubase stops too. Imagine playing a tune and the scroll bar is moving from left to right as the tune plays. The scroll bar stops every few seconds, only for a moment, then it starts moving again and catches up with itself, but again after a few seconds, stalls for a moment.

What makes this even stranger is that I can start Cubase and the fault does not show up until about after an hour or so of use. I am completely baffled by this behaviour. I have downloaded new/older drivers, I have even tried swapping out my Fireface 800 for my Liquid 56 interface, as I knew I definitely never had the problem before I got the FF800, but, no difference. And because it is relatively random, it's hard to track down when the problem first surfaced. I have tried every setting I can think of but no solution.

I have another problem, since I got a brand new 40" 4K monitor, some screens show the fonts all fuzzy, especially when looking at a browser, this page for example. I have been on the internet and it is something to do with "DPI Scaling" whatever it is, I have tried all the 'fixes' shown on YouTube but nah, it remains the same. So I am in the position of having a brand new 40" 4K monitor and the display is less clear than my old 27" 1280x720 display! And yes I have tried ClearType and Font Scaling, nothing makes any difference.

If I get a Mac I think I shall look for a decent 12 core, 32 gig, SSD drived Mac 5,1
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby blinddrew » Tue Aug 21, 2018 12:55 pm

OneWorld wrote:Why cannot Microsoft produced a mean and clean OS, no bloat, no bric-a-brac and penny muck.
I, for one, would happily pay a bit extra for this! Free install with all* the crud, £20 for a clean install with the option to download any of the freeware later.

* I'm assuming that the bloat ware is actually part of their profit mechanism? I.e. companies pay to have their software installed as part of the windows package?
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby CS70 » Tue Aug 21, 2018 1:07 pm

OneWorld wrote:For example I have an issue which I simply cannot resolve.....

It does look like something's off in your setup. That interruption can be a conflict with your graphic card, a CPU spike due to excessive DPC/interrupts by a driver, and so forth. That it happens only with Cubase could point out that's something related to your interface ASIO drivers, as it's the one piece of software which very few others application will see or use.

You could check the Event Viewer and see if you find any error there.

As of the Apple/PC issue there's no escaping the fact that Windows has to adapt to literally hundreds of thousands different hardware combinations, whose drivers are produced and updated independently by each manufacturer, and of course it's still expected work flawlessly. Nowadays, it mostly does. But of course, with respect to the vastly simpler operating space for Apple computers, the chances that a particular combination doesn't work (or stops to work after some driver for the hardware is updated) are higher.

Mostly tough, things can be fixed easily enough if one cares to look..
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby CS70 » Tue Aug 21, 2018 1:16 pm

blinddrew wrote:
OneWorld wrote:Why cannot Microsoft produced a mean and clean OS, no bloat, no bric-a-brac and penny muck.
I, for one, would happily pay a bit extra for this! Free install with all* the crud, £20 for a clean install with the option to download any of the freeware later.

* I'm assuming that the bloat ware is actually part of their profit mechanism? I.e. companies pay to have their software installed as part of the windows package?

My $.10 is that what is blotware for some, it's features for others. These people/companies aren't stupid, and assuming so would be a grave mistake, imho. And that's because the likes of Microsofts or Apples or Oracles (or the IBMs, in times past) have created and carried on an immense industry on their shoulders, they've done so over a quite large time range, and still do.

Sure, companies bureaucratize and deteriorate, but sooner or later (and usually sooner than later) stupidity shows in the bottom line (the name "Gibson" comes to mind..).

So the most likely explanation is that there's no sufficient demand for these kind of things, and/or the cost/benefit ratio is in disfavor. The way that modern software is made, removing bits and pieces is not straightforward and often creates a can of worms (cue image :D). The vast majority of users are not power users nor interested in audio or video or other niche activities. The biggest niche group is likely gamers - little wonder MS has actually taken them in consideration (and the XBox runs windows, what else).

The moment that product turns out to be appealing to enough people, something like that will probably appear.
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby ef37a » Tue Aug 21, 2018 1:41 pm

I have read somewhere that Steinberg and Microsoft never REALLY got on?

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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby paul tha other » Tue Aug 21, 2018 2:17 pm

im beginning to hate both of them....if im pushed for an answer i would say i hate mac a little bit less than pc..

i never let my music pc go online for the very reason the op stated

ive had a mac do something similar when i updated the driver for a midi interface..my motu audio card wouldnt work if i had the midi interface connected to the mac during boot up.it was like this for about 6 months then as if by magic it was fine again

my point is both systems have got pros and cons but for the most part are basicly the same.neither of them are immune to problems
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Tue Aug 21, 2018 2:31 pm

paul tha other wrote:...my point is both systems have got pros and cons but for the most part are basically the same: neither of them are immune to problems

^ THIS! :thumbup: :ugeek:
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby James Perrett » Tue Aug 21, 2018 2:36 pm

OneWorld wrote:Why cannot Microsoft produced a mean and clean OS, no bloat, no bric-a-brac and penny muck

They do - it is called Windows Embedded and is totally configurable to the way you want it. The only problem is that it isn't available through the usual channels so you have to go to an embedded computer specialist to obtain it.

Maybe there's an opening for an embedded computer specialist to start selling reliable music computers using an embedded operating system rather than the general purpose version.
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby ef37a » Tue Aug 21, 2018 3:05 pm

Oo! I've seen that James.
I fixed the monitors in betting shop machines for a few weeks (when people fekkin' smoked!) and the "brain" was XP embedded.

Bit of a shlep out to Rugby every day and the gear was filthy but good money. This was at the start of the decline of cost effective repairs to domestic TV plus nobody had trained any service techs for 20 years! The agency was just happy to have this old fool doing it. 40 notes a week just petrol money!

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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby forumuser918214 » Tue Aug 21, 2018 4:56 pm

I have not used Macs much, but my experience with Windows (XP on up to 10) has been fine and keeps getting better. No viruses (I use the Windows Defender), usable backup facilities, automatic updates and huge variety of software available.
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby Pete Kaine » Tue Aug 21, 2018 5:25 pm

Dave Rowles wrote:Conversely, my wife hates MacOS and uses windows 10. Nothing but problems, and we're currently battling a weird disk usage issue that is beyond my ability to fix, so going to have to get someone to do it for us.

Is that a mechanical or a SSD?
If it's the former I might have a few suggestions.

OneWorld wrote:Why would my graphics card install an audio driver?

Audio over HDMI to your TV. And the copy protection stuff already mentioned.

ef37a wrote: The drivers in my KA6 are good enough that they just overrule it, not all might?

They only work for your KA6. They wouldn't make the audio over hdmi work for instance. However, if you don't need audio over hdmi you can just remove the audio over hdmi drivers.

James Perrett wrote:They do - it is called Windows Embedded and is totally configurable to the way you want it. The only problem is that it isn't available through the usual channels so you have to go to an embedded computer specialist to obtain it.

It's expensive and they don't want to sell it to anyone not building cash machines and hospital heart monitors. We've got access to it, but we're talking £600+ per machine to install it under current licencing. I understand this may well change in the near future and am currently keeping an eye on it in case there is an outbreak of sanity along the way.
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby OneWorld » Tue Aug 21, 2018 5:57 pm

Pete Kaine wrote: I understand this may well change in the near future and am currently keeping an eye on it in case there is an outbreak of sanity along the way.

That's interesting to know - you might become known as the man that wrestled Win10 to the ground and tamed it!

I feel instinctively that at the core of Win10 there is an extremely capable and reliable OS, but it is lumbered with junk, like hitching a caravan to a Bugatti Veron, what would be the point

But I fear by the time MicroSoft start to listen, Win11 will be upon us
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby OneWorld » Tue Aug 21, 2018 6:08 pm

blinddrew wrote:
OneWorld wrote:Why cannot Microsoft produced a mean and clean OS, no bloat, no bric-a-brac and penny muck.
I, for one, would happily pay a bit extra for this! Free install with all* the crud, £20 for a clean install with the option to download any of the freeware later.

* I'm assuming that the bloat ware is actually part of their profit mechanism? I.e. companies pay to have their software installed as part of the windows package?

I would more than happily cough up extra wonga to get an OS that allows the PC to be a fast, reliable working machine instead of a rag bag bells and whistles slapped together to make it look easy on the eye, like cosmetics I suppose, to some they enhance ones looks, but they don't actually 'do' anything.

And yes I take the point made by another poster, that a WinPC has to be all things to all people, with hardware and the associated drivers being written by all and sundry. But I thought signed drivers had gone a long way to address that issue.

And anyway, my PC is to a great extent stripped down......

i7 not overclocked, runs at 3.9GHz,
32gig RAM,
1 OS/Apps SSD, 1 Data SSD
MOX keyboard,
Virus Ti Desktop,
Roland XV5050,
XL1,
RME FF800,
MCU Pro,
UAD PCIe DUO,
TI Firewire Card,
Beatstep,
Cubase 8.5,
Halion 5,
Groove Agent 4,
Komplete 10,
Modular V3,
Synthmaster

and that's everything, hardly anything there that's 'exotic'
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby Sam Spoons » Tue Aug 21, 2018 6:56 pm

OneWorld wrote:I would more than happily cough up extra wonga to get an OS that allows the PC to be a fast, reliable working machine instead of a rag bag bells and whistles slapped together to make it look easy on the eye, like cosmetics I suppose, to some they enhance ones looks, but they don't actually 'do' anything.

These guys did it back in the '95-2k/XP era https://www.litepc.com/products.html But I guess Windoze has just got to 'integrated' these days......
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby Jadoube » Tue Aug 21, 2018 8:00 pm

I always found this whole thing gets down to drivers and plugins.

The Apple platform usually has an advantage because the drivers are a much smaller target for the limited resources of pro audio solution developers. That said if Apple pulls the rug from under you (high sierra lol); lookout! So try not to upgrade your OS if you are happy. RESIST!!

Apple computer + Apple Logic + "big-name" audio interface = very stable.
I use this formula with live musicians because it stays out of the way. Never crashed.
I use other tools for writing and mixing.

If you want to work away from this formula then you have to be prepared to get deeply involved. There are so many critical moving parts. Apple or Windows. I think Windows 10 is the better OS, but one has to be diligent about actively taking care to maintain that OS. The more powerful DAW is a custom Windows machine... but not many folks need that.

Myself I got tired of worrying about Windows compatibility issues and went over to Apple because of Thunderbolt. I am careful to avoid rocking the hardware boat and my only issues these days are the occasional poorly behaved VST.

OP I think that is your best bet.
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby ConcertinaChap » Tue Aug 21, 2018 9:43 pm

Pete Kaine wrote:It's expensive and they don't want to sell it to anyone not building cash machines and hospital heart monitors.

Did anyone else feel a shiver of fear at the idea of Windows in a heart monitor. Cash machines I can cope with (I've seen a Windows error message on a couple of occasions on a cash machine and once a BSOD).

CC

PS on the High Sierra front, when you get a new machine it comes with the latest version of the OS whatever it is. In the event when I got my new machine last month it was a bit of an anticlimax - everything worked fine. Mind you, it's nearly a year since High Sierra came out so it nearly accords with my long-standing policy of keeping one OS version behind the current one, which works pretty well I find.
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby Jadoube » Tue Aug 21, 2018 9:53 pm

ConcertinaChap wrote:PS on the High Sierra front, when you get a new machine it comes with the latest version of the OS whatever it is. In the event when I got my new machine last month it was a bit of an anticlimax - everything worked fine. Mind you, it's nearly a year since High Sierra came out so it nearly accords with my long-standing policy of keeping one OS version behind the current one, which works pretty well I find.

Yeah +1. I am now safely running High Sierra on my newest machine. A few flavours of weirdness with some of the more eccentric bits I use in my non-musical life... but all is well with the music software\hardware.
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Re: Mac vs PC - sorry but I have to ask

Postby CS70 » Tue Aug 21, 2018 10:34 pm

ConcertinaChap wrote:Did anyone else feel a shiver of fear at the idea of Windows in a heart monitor.

Coupled with known hardware, Windows (or any codebase) really is as rock solid as one wants.

In my previous job one of my depts was operating a large amount of cash machines, and the thing that created problems was invariably the hardware - which every now and then failed in ways that the driver had not anticipated.

That said, I'm scared of the 99% of the general purpose software which runs on generic systems - because that's practically impossible to get right.
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