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Heavy Music Production Build From Scratch (Logic/Ableton DAWS and Serum)

Joined
Aug 19, 2018
Messages
1
Hello all,

First time poster. I have searched the forum and seen this somewhat touched on but not really to my situation:

Trying to build a Hackintosh laptop. I currently have a late 2017 iMac 27 inch so I have the ability to build at a good pace while being able to use my DAWS and not worry about rushing it. I want to run Ableton Live 10 and Logic. I want to use Serum that takes a boatload of CPU. My iMac seems to work pretty good at 8GB RAM (luckily, I got the iMac that can upgrade RAM), i5 3.4ghz quad core and 1tb SSD.

So my question is tied into my situation. I haven’t purchased anything yet so I am a blank slate. What would you all recommend I get as far as the the laptop and components? I want to keep the build under $1300ish and try to make sure that thunderbolts/WiFi and other features still work for the most part. What laptop would be the best to use for this application? What other components does this require I get? All other posts related to this seem to have people asking if their current laptop is compatible. I would like to know what you all think is a good choice if my possibility was anything.

So all in all:
What is the best laptop to start out this Hackintosh build while staying in my $1300ish total build price?
What else do I need to switch out or will that laptops RAM/SSD/etc work with the build?
Is the software downloadable for free or do you have to pay?
Will my MIDI keyboard work?

Specs I’m thinking I need:
16gb RAM
1tb SSD
Quad core or better

What makes the CPU more powerful? Am I over killing/forgetting/not doing this build correctly with those specs?
Do I need to solder anything?

Obviously I’d like to get as current technology as I can for the price. Any advice, recommendations or experience would be greatly appreciated. Especially Serum <— Serum is the only reason I am stumped on this build. I want to make sure if I spend the $$$ on a build I make sure it can handle Serum and not overheat or crash.

I apologize if this makes you think I haven’t been going through post about this. Most of the threads are outdated, start with a laptop already bought by the OP or doesn’t touch on serums CPU issues and just touches on Ableton or logic.

BTW, I have a few good tech friends/you all to help if I’m stuck on anything. Like I said, I have time to wrench this build.
 
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Joined
Feb 28, 2018
Messages
1
If you're using $1300 as your budget why not just get a MacBook? I bought my MacBook Pro 13" back in 2015 for like $1400ish brand new in store.

I've ran Ableton on my MacBook since I've bought it, slide an External Hard drive into that USB slot and you're set. External Hard drive is a must anyways. It's the simplest and most affordable way to hold your samples and sounds.

I admit the Serum issues with MacBooks are present. Not with every sounds, but some just are so overdone that it kills the DAW. I typically will freeze my tracks in that case so I can hear a clean sound and if I like it I'll keep it.

If you don't want to buy the MacBook then for parts I'd say:

Ram: 8gb ram would work but if you have the budget bump to 16gb.
Hard Drive: You do not need a 1TB SSD that is OVERKILLLLL. 256gbs works great.
(I have a 120 gb ssd running High Sierra with Ableton on my Gaming PC because sometimes I wanna use my setup for making beats. It has no issues but again I have a 2TB External Drive with my samples.)
CPU: My current CPU for my gaming setup is an i5 7600k which I share with my Hackintosh as I just said. It has 0 issues in Ableton and Serum runs smooth except for a handful of superkill presets but those still run alright.

USB Issues: I have almost no issues when it comes to my midi keyboard and drumpad. I also have hooked up a powered USB hub which has those are connected along with my Steinberg UR22 audio interface. My midi keyboard occasionally has to be unplugged and plugged back in if my PC sleeps and my External Drive usually loads no questions and its like 4 years old...

Software: You can easily download the macOS off of your iMac here is a link to tonymacx86 guide
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/unibeast-install-macos-high-sierra-on-any-supported-intel-based-pc.235474/#download
You can download everything else once the Hackintosh has booted up.
 
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trs96

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Joined
Jul 31, 2012
Messages
14,450
Motherboard
GA-Z97X-UD3H-BK
CPU
i5-4690K
Graphics
HD4600 / RX 570
Mac
iMac, Mac mini
Mobile Phone
Android
What would you all recommend I get as far as the the laptop and components?
Have you searched the Laptops forum to see what others are having success with ? Read the FAQ first.

Do I need to solder anything?
Of course not. No one builds their own laptop. You buy one from Asus, HP, Dell etc. and install a compatible wifi card if you need that. That's about the only hardware you'll have to fiddle with. Possibly an SSD and ram upgrade if you need those.
 
Joined
Dec 27, 2018
Messages
6
Motherboard
Alienware 17 R5
CPU
i9-8950HK
Graphics
GTX 1080, HD630
Mac
iMac, MacBook Pro, Mac Pro
Classic Mac
Apple, iBook, iMac, Xserve
Mobile Phone
iOS, Other
If you're using $1300 as your budget why not just get a MacBook? I bought my MacBook Pro 13" back in 2015 for like $1400ish brand new in store.

I've ran Ableton on my MacBook since I've bought it, slide an External Hard drive into that USB slot and you're set. External Hard drive is a must anyways. It's the simplest and most affordable way to hold your samples and sounds.

I admit the Serum issues with MacBooks are present. Not with every sounds, but some just are so overdone that it kills the DAW. I typically will freeze my tracks in that case so I can hear a clean sound and if I like it I'll keep it.

If you don't want to buy the MacBook then for parts I'd say:

Ram: 8gb ram would work but if you have the budget bump to 16gb.
Hard Drive: You do not need a 1TB SSD that is OVERKILLLLL. 256gbs works great.
(I have a 120 gb ssd running High Sierra with Ableton on my Gaming PC because sometimes I wanna use my setup for making beats. It has no issues but again I have a 2TB External Drive with my samples.)
CPU: My current CPU for my gaming setup is an i5 7600k which I share with my Hackintosh as I just said. It has 0 issues in Ableton and Serum runs smooth except for a handful of superkill presets but those still run alright.

USB Issues: I have almost no issues when it comes to my midi keyboard and drumpad. I also have hooked up a powered USB hub which has those are connected along with my Steinberg UR22 audio interface. My midi keyboard occasionally has to be unplugged and plugged back in if my PC sleeps and my External Drive usually loads no questions and its like 4 years old...

Software: You can easily download the macOS off of your iMac here is a link to tonymacx86 guide
https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/unibeast-install-macos-high-sierra-on-any-supported-intel-based-pc.235474/#download
You can download everything else once the Hackintosh has booted up.
I’ve gone through a bunch of MacBooks... If I try to run Ableton on anything short of my MacPro or my Alienware (gtx1080)... bye bye MacBook-they’ve all been fried

Attached pic: AW17R5, i9, GTX1080
 

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Joined
Jun 11, 2019
Messages
1
Motherboard
I don't know
CPU
intel
Graphics
Not sure
I’ve gone through a bunch of MacBooks... If I try to run Ableton on anything short of my MacPro or my Alienware (gtx1080)... bye bye MacBook-they’ve all been fried
Your Macbook fried just from running Ableton? I've not seen this; I have a 2015 Macbook Air and a 2016 or 7 Mac Mini. (I can't say I've done anything really intense with Ableton but it certainly runs fine and I've used it multiple times in performance mode without trouble; certainly no risk of "frying" it).
 
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