Best System for Movie Scores and Orchestral Music

Hi to everyone,

Firstly I’m new here, so I’m sorry if this topic is not posted in the right place.

I want to build a new computer for music production. And a very specific one, for movie scoring and orchestral compositions, with a very high number of tracks with a lot of VST instruments like Kontakt libraries from Native Instruments (Komplete 11 Ultimate), 8Dio, East West, IK Multimedia, Cinesamples, Vienna Symphonic Library, Audiobro, ProjectSAM, Spitfire Audio and so on. The list is huge. This will be a future proof computer build for at least 5 years with a minimal upgrade on RAM & hard disk space. And if will be very necessary the GPU.

The base of my build that I’m sure about is the next:

CPU: ???
RAM: 64 GB or more (but with actual price it will press my wallet a lot)
SSD: 1 x 256/512 GB
HDD: 2 x 4 TB
GPU: GTX 1050Ti or maybe a GTX 1060 6GB (I’m not a gamer so it would more than enough to display all the stuff on a 4k Display)

My question is:

Which CPU would be the best for that kind of projects?

So which would be a better CPU for the task? An Intel Xeon with a high number of cores (ex: 12-18c/24-36t) or it would be enough an AMD or Intel consumer grades CPU like Ryzen or Intel Core ix with 6-8c/12-18t?

I searched a lot on this topic all around the internet asked support teams from Native Instruments but I didn’t get the answer for this specific task. I didn’t find any clear answer event on Steinberg’s support page.

So it would be much appreciated if I can get a specific answer and also any other suggestion that I might not think of.

Thank you very much in advance,

Don’t go Intel Xeon, they are not really that fast. Go for Intel ix or AMD Threadripper.
Actually it’s likely that the I7-8700K will do just fine with it’s 6 cores/12 threads.

I agree.

Also remember that chips like the 8700k includes a video processor (unless I’m grossly misinformed). So if you want to run your video on a monitor separately from your GUI/software then you’d probably be better off buying one of the cheaper 4k Blackmagic Design cards for video output, and just use the built in one in the chip.

And if you’re going to use just one monitor consider trying just the 8700k’s video processing, and simply see if that’s enough. You can for sure use the money you have to spend these days on a video card on much better things considering what you want to do (like more or faster storage, maybe a better monitor or a second monitor, more memory etc).

Well, thank you very much for the suggestions. It is really helpful and clarifying.

The I7-8700K starts looking good if I think about the built-in UHD Graphics. In the first place I will use a single monitor setup, so, it would be enough until the GPU Crysis will disappear. And it really has a lot of porcessing power, that’s true.

Can you tell me if 32GB RAM will be enough in the first place, or should I go with 64GB? I ask this because if it will be enough 32GB RAM, I think in investing that money on VST Instruments instead or more hard drive space.

Thank you very much again for the answers and suggestions.

The RAM amount will depend on how many vsti and more so how many sample libraries you need to load at once and if the sample player is streaming from disk or loading everything into the RAM.

My recommendation: Try it with setup in which you have 32G populating (at most) half of the motherboards memory slots. If 32G is proves not to be enough just add another 32G. Memory is always an easy case, because you can add it instead of replacing it (like it is with processor).

Thank you very much for all of you guys, all this information and suggestion helped me a lot to make a decision about the computer build.