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  • #16
    iMac + mini

    I'm getting closer to the time when I will upgrade my system.

    I have detailed how I'd like to go with a mac mini modular setup.

    Now I think I may do a combi rig for a couple of reasons.

    First the Rig

    imac 27" basic model. mid 2012 when it cones

    Present mac mini top range, not the server edition.

    imac 20" mid 2007 2.4 already owned


    Used 15" macbook pro 2011 buy in 2013.

    With this setup I have a both powerful and relatively logical set up.

    The imac 27" Why? Well after checking out the monitors and how much it would cost for a decent one I'm starting to see that the base 27" model has quite a good value. 4 cores, 27" great monitor. Fast enough.. At the same time I will resist going for any expensive upgrades.

    The money I save from not upgrading I will put toward a 2.5 Ghz mac mini, this combined with the imac costs about the same as if I upgraded the top of the line imac. The advantage here is I have the first element of my travelling portable setup.

    Later I'll get the 2011 macbookpro. That combined with single mac mini gives me a pretty powerful and portable setup for travel concerts. In Copenhagen I can easily take my imac to concerts.

    Using my present iMac for internet and effects processing means I have a four cpu setup.


    1 new iMac 27" base model 2012 (Speculation-Ivybridge i5 3.1 Ghz perhaps.) buy between May and August.
    1 used mac mini 2011 i5 2.5 Ghz 2 cores. buy between May and August. Costs: 30% off new price.
    1 presently owned imac 2007 costs:Free!
    1 used 15"macbook 2011 model pro. Buy september-january 2013. Costs: 30% off new price

    I think if you need a monitor and a computer then it's hard to beat the 27" imac.

    One mac mini the top model used can be a upgrade path for a relatively small outlay. This gets that powerful setup for travel portablilty going that I think is a must. At some far distant point the 2007 imac may get replaced by a 2014 mac mini!

    Use the old gear as long as possible. Even the new systems have bottlenecks so spreading the load out over several systems is going to give more power than just buying one upgraded super system. Therefore I'm not going to part with the old imac. I'm sentimental too I admit it! Also if there are any programs that run on Rosetta only, like Cakewalks Rapture I can use these on the old old but good imac 2007

    Portabilty with a macbook pro. It's powerful enough for many tasks so it's a nice grab and go, again it can be the base model 15" The base models are always plentiful and often cheap on the used market. When you go with a multi computer setup. You don't have to be so concerned with getting these expensive yet just incremental apple upgrades.. A student bought a basic mode 15" macbook pro today, in 16 months he/she will be selling it and I will be buying it!

    Regards

    Wade
    TwoToneshuzz
    Senior Member
    Last edited by TwoToneshuzz; 02-09-2012, 04:27 AM.

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    • #17
      Interesting related thread.

      I'm still checking around the net on my coming upgrade and found this setup.

      Apparently you could use Wormhole to do the same thing as I was thinking using Vienna Ensemble Pro for .. And it's free.

      Here they suggest hosting you instruments in Main stage. But for me I would think it would make sense to host it in Numerology on the slave computer..

      This would allow for Numerologies native CV modulation at the synths instead of having to use a midi pipe to affect modulation from the master maschine..

      http://www.logicprohelp.com/forum/vi...695cb5&start=0

      Regards

      Wade

      Comment


      • #18
        It's getting closer!!

        I'm actually a little surprised but it seems like I might get my setup a little sooner..

        It's like this.

        Getting new gear in the Summer in Denmark, is like so wrong timing. Denmark has this fantastically beautiful summer from mid May there is often a good period with fine weather , and then rain then good weather in Parts of June, when summer holidays starts for the kids, well likely going to get rain then too, but not for the whole month of July. Anyways it's almost an captial offense to spend your Dansih Summertime inside staring at a computer monitor. It's just not a done thing..

        So all my planning goes against the seasonal flow..

        It would be much smarter to get the setup NOW, or soon soon, not later later.....

        So if I would get a system now, I really feel the mac mini modular is the way to go.

        I have looked at the screens on the iMac 21.5 and 27" models and they are actually hardly any bigger height wise than my present imac 20" , the 20" has a different aspect ratio. I want height because in Numerology the only way to get an overview is by scrolling up and down the stack...

        It's a real problem this, it is also a real drag for viewing music notation, and portrait orientation images. pitwauw grrrrr, bing band boink and rattle. I'm perturbed! Movie aspect ratio is not fun for a working Numerologist photographer.

        My data streams like in the matrix want to run up to down like a waterfall of info...

        So haamm. So heemm if I pulled the trigger on a setup this month, I'm leaning towards:

        2 mac mini servers now.

        1 presently owned imac 20"

        I 20" screen that can be oriented in portrait modus.


        No Vienna Pro, use wormhole and the IAC bus and a cheap Giga bit hub.

        Later 1 mac mni regular the sept? 2012 model. Bought in a year used.

        1 used 2012 Macbook pro bought used in 1.5 years.

        What do you think is this the way to go. Read the link in the previous post. 2 mac mini servers apparently smoke a 3.4 imac quack kore i7


        Getting close it's the seasonal thing.. Rumour has it the the IvyBridge is going to be delayed til summer only limited quantities available in June then..

        And I've been very patient with this upgrade. If some of you have read my many comments about the CPU blues...

        Regards

        Wade

        Comment


        • #19
          Still doing my research on the Multithreading topic here and found this rather old SOS article on the subject.

          It just points up the issues, a multi computer setup when using non multithreading programs, is the quickest way to get expanded instrument counts in a transparent maner.

          http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/jan0...ician_0108.htm

          Regards

          Wade

          Comment


          • #20
            This is sort of relevant for using the Mac Mini for among other things Graphic multiple screens arrays or other graphic and other PCI stuff:


            http://www.sonnettech.com/news/pr201...underbolt.html


            Seems like three mac minis networked with one of these PCI adapters on the master machine is a mac pro killer..

            Way more portable for air travel..

            Regards

            Wade

            Comment


            • #21
              Just a link for disabling the Server part on the Mac mini server:

              http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4827

              Regards

              Wade

              Comment


              • #22
                Mac mini server 2011 with Vienna Pro :

                http://community.vsl.co.at/forums/t/31121.aspx

                Comment


                • #23
                  More connectivity goodness, a Thunderbolt to expresscard adapter by Sonnet technologies.


                  could be nice with two firewire busses on a mac mini server or expresscard audio interface:

                  http://www.sonnettech.com/product/ec...underbolt.html

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Originally posted by TwoToneshuzz View Post
                    I'm still checking around the net on my coming upgrade and found this setup.

                    Apparently you could use Wormhole to do the same thing as I was thinking using Vienna Ensemble Pro for .. And it's free.
                    Just thought of what could be a very interesting trick: using Wormhole transmit CV busses from Numerology on one computer to Numerology on another -- Just use the CV to Audio module on one end and the EnvelopeFollower on the other.. It would be a pretty extravagant use of resources (MIDI CCs work just fine in many cases), but for some signal type, it could be very handy....

                    Cheers,
                    Jim

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Originally posted by TwoToneshuzz View Post
                      This is sort of relevant for using the Mac Mini for among other things Graphic multiple screens arrays or other graphic and other PCI stuff:


                      http://www.sonnettech.com/news/pr201...underbolt.html
                      Indeed -- thunderbolt is pretty awesome stuff...

                      Originally posted by TwoToneshuzz View Post
                      Seems like three mac minis networked with one of these PCI adapters on the master machine is a mac pro killer..
                      Oh, please don't say that -- I'm afraid Apple will listen!

                      Cheers,
                      Jim

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Okay apple don't listen, this mac mini idea is absolutely no Mac pro killer, the big studios need more power. And boasters need it too! Forget all about this mac mini modular thing apple, the whole idea got out hand not realizable, hot air, talking silly talk, like the monty pythons silly walk, look the other way now apple, your not listening ? GOOD!

                        Wade
                        TwoToneshuzz
                        Senior Member
                        Last edited by TwoToneshuzz; 02-29-2012, 12:44 PM.

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          AHWOOGA AHWOOOGA!!!! Alarming NewwWsssSSSss

                          On the Uhe forum a Yewser has complained about the poor performance he's getting out of his Mac mini server 2.0 Ghz with Diva..

                          This is not good neauwes not good neauwes at allll!

                          My plan was to get a pair of Mac mini servers to start my Mac mini modular setup. But if a single core can't handle a polyphonic patch with oscillator stacking, then the whole idea is flawed...

                          My mid 2007 iMac 2.4 Ghz is giving okay performance, so this issue with the server being less capable has me really worried!

                          I would have to spend serious cash to realize this mac mini modular, so it has to give me absolutely ironclad multivoice multi oscillator performance with these synths:

                          Diva

                          RAZOR

                          Tassman

                          Chromaphone

                          ACE

                          Big Sample instruments, like the True Strike Tension Kore instrument that trounces my computer..


                          So the mac mini modular really needs a Mac mini running at the maximum speed available which at present is 2.7 Ghz in the Duo Core upgrade.

                          This is valuewise a rather poor deal as you only get two cores per machine, in Denmark at the apple store it costs 1400 usd, and then you still miss the keyboard mouse and screen...

                          I think I need to wait for the 4 Core mac mini server to get a speed boost to at least 2.4 preferrably 2.7 Ghz before it's viable to use with my instruments of choice..

                          Urs Heckman has mentioned that they are working on making Diva more efficient, and further that their looking into spreading the CPU load for one instrument out over 2 or more cores.. Imagine a synth running on several cores crazy.. It has to happen though as it seems that the only increase in performance we are getting these days is an increase in the number of Cores not the actual CPU speed.

                          The issue with the CPU speed on the Mac Mini server is related to the PSU being an internal, this limits the cores speed apparently because of heat concerns..

                          So I'm now thinking that the 21.5" imac in it's next upgrade is the most ecominically and performance tuned system for my pocket book.

                          The next 21.5 iiMac will no doubt have the Ivy Bridge chip and in the mid model have the same clock speed as the present 27" base model a 3.1 Ghz, upgradable to 3.4 Ghz If I could get this processor(speculation) at the same price as the 21.5" upgraded model in a month or two, it could be a mac mini modular killer for a time..

                          The Imac will perhaps become thinner and lighter this makes the 21.5" sort of more portable. I could saw off the stand and make a tight little flight case for it so I could still get into the carryon for Air Travel.

                          Later I could supplement with a 2012 macbook pro 15" non glare screen.. The mac mini modular time will come, maybe in 2015 or it¨ll all just be done on the cloud in 2017

                          Oh the pain of living in interesting times.....


                          Regards

                          Wade
                          TwoToneshuzz
                          Senior Member
                          Last edited by TwoToneshuzz; 03-04-2012, 11:10 AM.

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            " If ain't broken don't fix it. " It's an old saying but sometimes I think it should be applied to the process of specing out a new system.

                            The question here is if it's necessary to get the apple processor upgrades, in the iMac and the Mac minis..

                            I have in the previous post gone on about the problem with the Mac mini server not being powerful enough to run Diva in certain configurations.

                            After continuing my research I'm discovering that often users with the Maxed out iMac 3.4 Ghz i7 are also complaining about having too few voices available. I feel at the minimum 16 voices per machine is what should fairly be expected. I spec my system for live use. This gives a more intuitive and productive workflow in a studio or live situation.

                            Now this leads me to conclude that for plug ins that are open ended like Diva, Razor, Tassman upgrading to the i7 processors is a waste of money. The i7 processors are optimized for systems that are true multithreaded, That is a single process is spread out over several cores.. This is easily doable for things that don't need to be in realtime. For audio plugins this Realtime factor is what breaks the multithreading functionality..

                            So upgrades to i7 for dedicated audio plugin player workstations are not necessary. It's only if you are really using multithreading for other appplications on a regular basis that you should spend the money on the upgrades..


                            I'm now considering a single iMac 21.5" 2.5 Ghz i5 Quad Core networked with a single Mac Mini duo core 2.5 Ghz i5

                            I save about 400 usd by not going with the upgrades here in Denmark.

                            I'll end up with this system:

                            iMac 21.5 2.7 Ghz ? Quad core i5 Ivy bridge buy when released

                            Mac mini 2.7 Ghz ? Duo Core i5 Ivy bridge buy when released

                            iMac 20" 2.4 Duo core mid 2007

                            Mac Book pro 15" 2012 Ivy bridge 2.5 Ghz? Quad Core buy used Sept 2013

                            Networked over Lan using Wormhole or Vienna Pro.

                            Regards

                            Wade
                            TwoToneshuzz
                            Senior Member
                            Last edited by TwoToneshuzz; 03-05-2012, 03:05 AM.

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              Originally posted by TwoToneshuzz View Post
                              Now this leads me to conclude that for plug ins that are open ended like Diva, Razor, Tassman upgrading to the i7 processors is a waste of money. The i7 processors are optimized for systems that are true multithreaded, That is a single process is spread out over several cores.. This is easily doable for things that don't need to be in realtime. For audio plugins this Realtime factor is what breaks the multithreading functionality..

                              So upgrades to i7 for dedicated audio plugin player workstations are not necessary. It's only if you are really using multithreading for other appplications on a regular basis that you should spend the money on the upgrades..
                              An interesting and I think probably accurate observation -- for heavy audio calculation, a single thread per core that can really crank up is what you'll want.

                              Cheers,
                              Jim

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                I'm waiting for the mounney and waiting for the upgrades but my thought's about the whole setup shift around once again.

                                I'd talked about starting with getting the 2 mac minis then a 2012 macbook pro in a year and a half or so when it comes out the other end, er on the used market where I could save say 30% of the new price. Now my thoughts are that the new version macbook pro thats coming with have enough raw power to cover my needs mostly , and perhaps get a single mac mini and say stop this mad rush towards a perhaps too complex setup.

                                The best workflow would alway be with one single computer that can do the whole production.

                                This is not quite doable for a reasonable price in the mac world, sure you could get a 8 core mac pro when it comes out for say 8000 usd, but it's not portable and that 's alot of money to tie up if your are me...

                                So it's seems like the Ivy Bridge chips are going to tip the performance scale enough, it'll run cooler and therefore they will be able to pump up the Cpu to 2.5 or 2.6 quad core in a single Macbook pro 15" This combined with a SSD drive would pack alot of power.

                                Then to flesh out the system I could get one single mac mini server new version when it comes out, perhaps it also will have a 2.5 quad core processor.

                                This scenario if it works out would be a most attractive solution. you wouldn't even need an ethernet hub, just plug the cable directly between the two computers. 8 cores for a total of 20 Ghz of computing brash and brawn...

                                No need for Vienna Pro in this Scenario either just use Wormhole..

                                So my plan now is to get the Macbook Pro with the antiglare screen top model with no upgrade to processor or hardisk, and install the max ram.

                                Use it at home with the iMac, later when the Mac mini server comes out in say Oct-Dec I'll get my friends at Five12 to send me a Mac mini serv whoops----> in a parallel universe this might happen, but it seems like CPU power is the spice of planet earth. Like in the Dune series on the planet Arrakis, everything revolved around the spice, and the lack of water. Here on earth it's all about the CPU and the heat they generate...

                                Wade

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