Recommendations for new Windows computer build?

I finally need a new box. I’ve been building my own Windows machines for decades, but haven’t kept up with what’s new for several years. If you were building a new machine focused on audio what components would you spec?

I’m using a UR44 right now and have a UAD1 card (don’t laugh!), but probably going to pick up an Apollo Twin 2, so I’ll need Thunderbolt.

It all depends heavily on you budget but as far as bang for the buck goes I’d probably go for an Intel I7-6800 (the 6850 is just a little more powerful but more expensive and only interesting if you want more lanes for gaming purposes…)

Any board with X-99 chipset and at least 16GB of DDR4 ram and in your case one with Thunderbolt. (That limits the choice to just a few boards).

For graphics I’d go for a silent model and it doesn’t have to be that powerful. Both Nvidia or Geforce will do.

Hopeful question: can you do serious work on a laptop these days (obviously I would want to be able to hook up a big monitor or two and I’d need Thunderbolt.)

Yes of course. I do some myself sometimes on an 4 year old HP laptop with i5 processor and 8GB of ram. Not much capacity left but it’s workable. So a recent laptops with 970M to 980M processors and more ram will work like a breeze. There’s a variety of laptop that also have Thunderbold and they are mostly in the higher price segment.

See this: Thunderbolt 4 and Thunderbolt 3 laptops - the complete list

Another option is of course a Mac book? On the other hand I wouldn’t put to much weight on Thunderbold. Because it doesn’t bring very much extra to the table. It’s more a marketing hype. Good firewire or even usb 2 interfaces can perform just a good and if a driver is well written maybe even better. Why do you think there are so few usb 3 interfaces on the market. Because you can already record like 40 ~ 50 tracks of audio simultaneously with a usb 2 device on a well configured computer with a fast hard drive. And reviews proof that it’s not much more with usb 3/ firewire / Thunderbold. And latency all depends on how well the driver is written. A good usb 2 will easily outperform a lousy written Thunderbold driver and thus degrading a very expensive interface to mediocre performance.

Hey Nickel, thanks for taking the time to reply and giving me the free advice! BTW, I’ve used Cubase since the late '80s, myself!

Good to hear! A lot has changed since then…

Yes, everything except (amazingly) MIDI itself.

Also, be mindful of this confusing concern. :wink:

Regards :sunglasses: