Potential computer for small home studio.

Hello my audio friends :blush: I am looking to purchase a new computer for my small home studio. I was just wondering if someone may be able to tell me if these specs are good enough to do small projects ( ie: 2-4 virtual instruments, 4-8 audio tracks w/ plugins).

Azza Helios Case (2x 140mm fans / 1x 200mm fan) * Blue LED
Intel i7-3770 @ 3.4Ghz (3.9Ghz Boost) Quad Core Cpu
10GB DDR3-1600Mhz Ram
Gigabyte B75M Motherboard
2TB Storage HDD
GTX 1050Ti 4GB DDR5 Video Card (DVI-D/HDMI/DisplayPort)
650W Power Supply
Windows 10 Home 64bit

My home system has a slower, older CPU and does very well on projects much larger than you describe. I do have 24gb of ram and I use several terabytes of orchestral samples, including almost 1tb of orchestral samples on an SSD which is about the only way I can use Hollywood Orchestra which is typical of plugins that use large sample data sets.

So if you are planning to use heavily sampled plugins, then you should get more ram, more hard disc space, and preferably at least 1 or 2 tb of SSD for data only. Although it is common to use SSDs for boot discs, for sample-centric music applications with limited SSD resources the better use might be for samples.

However, for most typical VST instruments with moderate sample usage the system you describe would be a good starting point. It would be prudent to buy ram sticks that will not initially fill all your sockets to make it economical to expand later on. And 16gb might be a better starting point no matter what your intended application is.

And make sure those fans are low noise! Nothin’ worse than a noisy computer in the music room.

Thanks Bill for the information. I will definitely take all of that into consideration. Very helpful.

I have to ask why you’re looking at that processor specifically. It’s 5 years old, which is pretty darn old in computer-world. Just checking Newegg really briefly shows that it’s a more expensive processor than the 7700k, which has been a favorite for DAW builders for the past couple of years or so.

Of course it will. Just check the System requirements of the software you want to use it with. These kinds of Posts are quite pointless, without knowing what kind of plugins you want to use it with, under what conditions (low latency live Monitoring, or does latency not play any role at all…

Basically I’m just an amateur singer songwriter wanting to record some audio tracks, put on some virtual drums, maybe some pads. Nothing serious. 10 - 12 tracks maybe.

Well, to answer your question. Because my budget is very small and it looked a lot better than my Acer laptop with 4 gigs of ram and much slower CPU. It’s a used setup and was only $500 bucks.

At $500 for the whole thing it’s probably worth it. If you really want to do “2-4 virtual instruments, 4-8 audio tracks w/ plugins” then I have hard time seeing how it’s not enough. I would think you should be fine.

You may want to do a quick search on Gearslutz.com for the CPU model and “Dawbench” for benchmark numbers that are relevant for that CPU.

Edit: Found it for 'ya…

256 232 RXC compressors
128 223
64 210
32 190

The first number is the buffer size, the second how many instances of RXC compressors are used in the project. Mind you - this is an older test template if I remember correctly, so the RXC plugin is probably a bit easier on the CPU. Still though, it should give you some indication of where the CPU sits relative to others.

Thanks for the the input Mattias. I thought it was a good deal too. But I have found something even better, I think. This is only $800.
Corsair HX850 W PSU
Asus P8Z77-V Pro Motherboard
Intel i7 3770k CPU OC to 4.1 GHz
Corsair Vengeance 16 GB (4 X 4 GB) DDR-3 1600 RAM
Arctic Freezer 240 Liquid Cooler
InWin 303 Case
Intel 520 Series 120 GB SSD
Western Digital 1 TB Black HD
4 Case fans
Logitech Wireless Mouse and Keyboard
Gigabyte G1 Gaming GTX 1070 with an HDMI cable

In your opinion, what makes it worth the extra $500?

Also, what is your actual budget? If your budget is “very small”, yet you increase the amount you spend on a computer by 60% ‘like that’, what’s the actual real budget though?

800 was my highest point. I only went up by 300

Right,i wrote the wrong number. I’m still curious about what makes it worth the extra money…

With that processor with clocking up to 4.1 GHz, and 16 GB of RAM, you’re going to have zero issues with the recording and playback scenario you’ve described. Liquid cooling, and your operating system on a solid state drive with files reading and writing off of a 1 TB external drive. I’m sure that’s 5400 RPM or 7200 even… you’re going to be in fine shape!

“I’m sure that’s 5400 RPM” My advise would be don’t get one of those, 7200 would be a wiser choice…also, liquid cooling is not necessary, a Noctua NH-D15 or similar does a good job, quietly. But, of course, it’s up to you, and opinions do tend to vary… :wink: