Mac Pro vs iMac Pro For Pro Audio

This video, via composer Christian Henson, compares the Mac Pro ‘trash can’ computer against a new iMac Pro.

Henson loads up to 112 channels, each with its own Kontakt instance, with three mic positions, logs of notes, dedicated FabFilter Pro R & Space Designer instances.

The new iMac Pro, which is a 3.0GHz 10-Core Xeon W / 128GB RAM / 1TB SSD system, does outperform the older Mac Pro – but his conclusion may surprise you.

12 thoughts on “Mac Pro vs iMac Pro For Pro Audio

    1. It has been calculated that an equivalent Dell professional machine costs more than an iMac Pro. Hackintosh are great options in the mid-low range (I made a really nice hack out of a 500$ assembled pc), but not for professional purposes (that is, non plus ultra configurations which only professionals could need).

  1. I’ve been using Logic for years and its become a real beast with no meaningful restrictions, in my experience. You pay out the @$$ for the hardware to get increasingly-generous and very *stable* software. I’m fine with that, since I’m not Zimmer or Pink Floyd and will surely never need 112 tracks at once! Synth sounds in particular fill the spectrum rapidly, so even with acoustic parts going, I generally find myself happy with 20-to-30-odd tracks. That often includes tracks for things like a tympani you apply only four times. For real world uses, a modest iMac will handle whatever you have in mind. It doesn’t require the top-ender from Asgard. Great comparative demo, Christian!

    1. For my work I have had problems with Logic that can have a workaround, but it is limited to 8 aux sends per track 🙁

    1. Yes a reel to reel would be cool ….. Teac 3340s outta do the trick .. I every now and then shop around for one in primo condition to know avail

  2. for the price ($400)my AMD Hackintosh , work fine for all my needs …
    every year the machines get faster but the software gets more demanding ..
    i think it is time to go back to the 4 track

  3. This is super valuable information for a professional film composer! Thanks Christian! I just did a final upgrade to my Mac Pro tower to a 3.46 12 core with one super loaded up slave with VE Pro 6, (which is so fantastically snappy these days!), and that should get me through the next 5 years.

  4. The problem is no longer how powerful your Mac is, but how long it will be before Apple stops supporting it. I am using a 2.8 GHz 12-core aluminum Mac Pro tower. Sadly I can pretty much guarantee it will not run the next Mac OS, and as such will probably also preclude the next version of Logic.

    I say “sadly” because it is obviously more than powerful enough to do everything I need it to.

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