Laptop sound cards

Hi. Read the sticky, but it didn’t entirely answer my question.

I’m currently running Cubase 7 on PC (win7). I’d like to buy a laptop, where I can work on some ideas when not at home. Intended work on the laptop is just small stuff like vst programming synth/drums etc. Without a midi keyboard, just using the components that come with the laptop. And I’d prefer to do this without always having to bring my external music production sound card.

I’m not planning on producing music without a proper sound card, this is just for those times when I want to be creative, and do not have all my equipment with me.

Is this possible with the integrated sound cards that come with laptops nowadays? I guess some laptops are better equipped than others regarding sound cards, so what should I look for? I’d prefer PC over MAC if possible.

Information on this is highly appreciated. Thanks.

Are there any laptops that come with an internal sound card with ASIO? That would be the primary thing to look for I think beyond having the I/O you need. I’m not so sure about ASIO4All being reliable. I don’t know what the big protest of using some small USB sound card/interface that can fit inside your laptop bag, probably way better performance too. If you’re just dragging & dropping or creating midi tracks inside Cubase with it, maybe it’s not as critical.

The free ASIO4All would be the driver to use, though being generic, it cannot match the low latency of a driver that is purpose-designed for particular hardware.

Here is an eBay (though if you Google you can find it new in online stores) solution. It needs an PCMCIA card slot I believe. But I, like others would probably opt for a small USB external interface. One reason is you would have lots to choose from, not so with a card bus solution.

See here:


I honestly think you’ll be fine with the onboard audio in this case. If you projects are not heavy it will easily cope, and the higher latency isn’t an issue if you’re not using any physical instruments.

On board audio is fine and with ASio4all, you can get pretty good latency. I can play my keyboard set up from my laptop using on board sound at 64 samples no problem. I’ve used this method for live gigs on quite a few occasions and never had any issues from a sound quality point of view. I made up some decent cables that connect to a mini jack on my laptop , straight into a pair of the P.A. system D.I. boxes and you’re good to go live.

If you’re just recording/studio/on a bus/plane then headphones are fine.