Alternative to iMac for Studio Computer?

  • Say,


    My iMac (2011, 12,2) is starting to get pixel problems. Pretty much it's unfixable and I'll have to deal with it until I replace it.


    What are the alternatives? I know some have a type of Mac for their studio, but I only know about iMacs and Macbooks.


    What are the alternatives, used market, that I can just port my backup of the iMac to? (ie Mac Pro, etc) that also costs reasonable, say, under $1500


    Thanks!


    P.S. not into going back to PC for studio, nor linux/unix solution, thanks.

  • There is hardly anything really modern below 1500$ these days.
    Maybe MacMini + 24'' Monitor, but that is "old" hardware.


    The transfer works on all Macs as far as I know.


    I have transfered a few installations over time and I never had a problem.
    You may need Adapters to connect FW or USB to Thunderbolt or USB 3.1, if you gonna buy a modern Mac.


    I have no experience with used or refurbished Macs. I never buy a used computer.

  • The 2012 Mac Mini i7 quad is a workhorse for DAW use. Much more powerful than the more recent model, which is only dual core. I have a couple in my studio and they run Pro Tools and Logic without a hiccup.


    I have an extra one loaded with a 256 SSD + 1 TB HDD and 16 GB of RAM if anyone is interested. Let me know.

  • The 2012 Mac Mini i7 quad is a workhorse for DAW use. Much more powerful than the more recent model, which is only dual core. I have a couple in my studio and they run Pro Tools and Logic without a hiccup.


    I have an extra one loaded with a 256 SSD + 1 TB HDD and 16 GB of RAM if anyone is interested. Let me know.

    I just bought a used one last month...this exact model. I upgraded to 1TB HDD and 16 GB/RAM as well.
    It's running fine on High Sierra. I only use Mac for music, not internet, so when it gets to the point where the OS can't be upgraded, it will stay offline. It runs my Fishman Tripleplay software and Logic Pro X.
    I don't need more than that.


    It has worked great so far. I got it for around $800 from Simply Mac.

    The key to everything is patience.
    You get the chicken by hatching the egg, not by smashing it.
    -- Arnold H. Glasow


    If it doesn't produce results, don't do it.

    -- Me

  • I just changed from PC to Mac and brought myself a Harpertown Mac Pro as I’m on ProTools 10HD It’s absolutely rock sold and very cheap for £250 It’s 2 x 2.8 quad core processors with 32gig RAM. If you need to be current with certain software then maybe this is not the root but if that’s not something that bothers you then I recommend a Mac Pro. The build quality and reliability has made me never use a PC again

  • I just changed from PC to Mac and brought myself a Harpertown Mac Pro as I’m on ProTools 10HD It’s absolutely rock sold and very cheap for £250 It’s 2 x 2.8 quad core processors with 32gig RAM. If you need to be current with certain software then maybe this is not the root but if that’s not something that bothers you then I recommend a Mac Pro. The build quality and reliability has made me never use a PC again

    I tried that 3 years ago. I bought a brand new Macbook Pro 2 years ago and it had a motherboard fault after 4 days and had to be sent back. The Lenovo X1 Carbon that I got with the refund money has been flawless and fast. So it just depends.

  • Currently driving an old 30 inch Dell at 2560x1600 and a newer Samsung 24 inch at 1920x1200 using the original 5770 Video card.
    Loads of real estate.
    Logic main screen on the 30 inches and my plugins go on the Samsung.

  • For those getting these Macs w/o screens, what are you using FOR screens? The 2011 mac I got has amazing detail.

    I got a philips 27" screen - I wanted something that was not only big, but with the same resolution as the (at the time) "regularly" sized 24" monitors. A lot of big monitors are just bigger, without giving you more screen real estate.

  • For those getting these Macs w/o screens, what are you using FOR screens? The 2011 mac I got has amazing detail.

    I'm using my Sony 35" HD TV (around that size). I don't need super high definition since I'm only using it for musical purposes.

    The key to everything is patience.
    You get the chicken by hatching the egg, not by smashing it.
    -- Arnold H. Glasow


    If it doesn't produce results, don't do it.

    -- Me

  • I got an old Mac Pro 1.1 (2007) second handed, like 5 years ago. Just 9MB RAM, but ram for this thing is bloody expensive! It has been working ok for me until it died three months ago... I'm almost sure it's the power supply; since then I've been delaying the decision wether to buy a power supply on ebay for like 70€ and replace it myself or just recover the stuff in the HDDs and go PC...

  • I got an old Mac Pro 1.1 (2007) second handed, like 5 years ago. Just 9MB RAM, but ram for this thing is bloody expensive! It has been working ok for me until it died three months ago... I'm almost sure it's the power supply; since then I've been delaying the decision wether to buy a power supply on ebay for like 70€ and replace it myself or just recover the stuff in the HDDs and go PC...

    Get in touch with OWC. Even if they don't sell anything from that year, they might be able to just guide you through how to do it. They are super nice people!

  • I'm using a Slate Raven MTI2 27" Monitor with my 15" MacBook Pro.
    The monitor is great in its own right (without using the Raven software).

    I am DYING for them to implement Reaper compatibility. But that is good to know!


    BTW, I chanced to ask my brother 'Say, Bro, any chance you're selling an iMac or something" and he was! Said I can have his 2012 for $500. So I'll do that, swap my SSD in for now. I don't need a lot of power.


    But it's good to know I can just use my 2015 in a pinch. I use it to mix, but funny enough don't think about it as my MAIN studio computer. Maybe because I like all the I/O to be setup and not plugin/unplug all the time since I take this laptop with me EVERYWHERE ('cept bike riding, lol, but i've toyed with the idea)

  • But it's good to know I can just use my 2015 in a pinch. I use it to mix, but funny enough don't think about it as my MAIN studio computer. Maybe because I like all the I/O to be setup and not plugin/unplug all the time since I take this laptop with me EVERYWHERE ('cept bike riding, lol, but i've toyed with the idea)

    This has changed for me.
    Since I got my first iPad 2 years ago (running on iPad Pro now) I keep my MBP in my music room, everything plugged in and ready to run.