Some questions about the new M1 MacBooks

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KVRer
23 posts since 3 Sep, 2020

Post Sun Apr 04, 2021 11:35 pm

So I’m thinking about getting one of these and they don’t have the USB 2 port but two Thunderbolt/ USB (3?) ports.

How important is the cable for the Linnstrument? I may buy a shorter cable with the correct inputs and outputs. 90% of the time I will be plugging it in directly but from time to time I might need a hub. The ones I’ve seen have a lot of inputs but I only need two or three USB ports.

Any recommendations here? And do I need it to be powered or can the Linnstrument get power from the Mac through the hub?

One last question: is the Air (7 core) enough or do I have to aim higher? My main synth would be Aalto hosted in Logic. I think the heaviest synth I have is Kaivo. I try no to exceed 4 tracks in my music.

Thanks in advance.

KVRian
922 posts since 2 Apr, 2015

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 12:03 am

The base Air is 8 core for CPU and 7 core for graphics, the more expensive one is 8 cores for both.

One recommendation would be to get 16GB ram.

I think you should just be able to use a USB C hub, Anker are a good make and they offer fantastic support.

4 tracks of Kaivo would be absolutely fine.

I have a M1 mini here, I can do some tests for you with Kaivo and Aalto if you would like, what daw do you use?

I did test out its speed compared to a Mac Pro 12 core with the Logic benchmark, the Mac Pro could do 256 tracks, the M1 managed 196 so they have plenty of power.
Screenshot-2020-11-24-at-21-44-18.png
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KVRAF
5442 posts since 6 Jan, 2017 from Outer Space

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 12:08 am

Get a hub and you’re done. For your envisioned setup even an old Air would do it. A M1 MacBook might be faster than my 10-core Mac Pro...

KVRer

Topic Starter

23 posts since 3 Sep, 2020

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 12:12 am

Thank you Bobdog. Definitely I’ll be upgrading to 16GB RAM. My current Mac mini has 36GB but I miss the portability and minimalism.

It seems an Air will do.
I will check Anker for hubs.

KVRer

Topic Starter

23 posts since 3 Sep, 2020

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 12:15 am

Tj Shredder wrote:
Mon Apr 05, 2021 12:08 am
Get a hub and you’re done. For your envisioned setup even an old Air would do it. A M1 MacBook might be faster than my 10-core Mac Pro...
Thanks Tj.

Air will be - M1 😊

KVRian
922 posts since 2 Apr, 2015

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 1:20 am

Ok, Just did a quick test with Logic, 8 tracks of Kaivo, each set to 8 voices and each playing a 8 note chord with the default patch:
Screenshot 2021-04-05 at 10.16.15.png
Kaivo is running in Rosetta which is why you see the cpu load in "AUHostingCompatibilityService".

I did hear rumours that new M1 native versions of the Madonna Labs plugins might be coming soon which will lower the cpu hit.
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KVRer

Topic Starter

23 posts since 3 Sep, 2020

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 4:08 am

That is a lot of Kaivos! :) Off to sell my Mac mini 2018!

KVRist
148 posts since 10 May, 2018

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 6:45 pm

These are indeed phenomenal numbers. I am waiting for the next round of M1 MacBooks, which certainly won't be WORSE than these machines and are rumored to have some worthwhile added features that would help me a lot.
Mike Metlay, PhD (nuclear physics -- no, seriously!) :D
listen to me: Mr. Spiral | join the fam: RadioSpiral | my gig: Atomic Words LLC (coming soon)

KVRer

Topic Starter

23 posts since 3 Sep, 2020

Post Mon Apr 05, 2021 9:14 pm

mrspiral wrote:
Mon Apr 05, 2021 6:45 pm
These are indeed phenomenal numbers. I am waiting for the next round of M1 MacBooks, which certainly won't be WORSE than these machines and are rumored to have some worthwhile added features that would help me a lot.
What have you heard and when is the next round expected?

I need one pretty soon.

KVRist
148 posts since 10 May, 2018

Post Tue Apr 06, 2021 7:56 am

The primary problem with waiting is that with Apple, you never know the wait time until the products are officially announced. Sometimes they're shipping on the day of the announcement, sometimes they're weeks or months away. In your case, unfortunately the latter seems to be true; right now the best guess at shipping dates is Q3 2021.

That said, a couple of industry insiders (whose track records for predicting new products and features are very good) have predicted a few improvements to the new machines. As someone who used to travel all the time before the pandemic and who anticipates getting back to it, one of my main objections to Mac laptops built over the past several years is that the wholesale adoption of USB-C has taken away the surprisingly life-saving MagSafe connector. The most reliable prognosticators, including Ming Kuo, have said that Apple looks like it will be returning to MagSafe, with a dedicated port that will allow much faster recharging than USB-C while also providing the beloved and much-missed safety feature.

There are also rumors that expanded connectivity will return to some of these models, including an SD card slot and possibly even a legacy USB-A port (although the latter isn't likely). At least one of the models is removing the Touch Bar, and it is possible that this technology will be entirely eliminated as a failed experiment. The scissor-switch Magic Keyboard action has already completely replaced the horrific Butterfly-switch key design of the recent MacBooks, and a return to butterfly designs is about as likely as Apple throwing away the M1 and moving back to Intel. :)

They're also talking about 14" and 16" models, a slight case redesign, improved displays, and faster M1 chips (the "M1X"). Best guess is that these new lappys will be introduced sometime this month, certainly well before WWDC in June.

I hope that helps.
Mike Metlay, PhD (nuclear physics -- no, seriously!) :D
listen to me: Mr. Spiral | join the fam: RadioSpiral | my gig: Atomic Words LLC (coming soon)

KVRer

Topic Starter

23 posts since 3 Sep, 2020

Post Tue Apr 06, 2021 11:03 am

Thanks. Well, there is always going to be a better Macbook next year. For my part, I've already sold the screen and the trackpad. It is a question of time before I sell the mini. Let's see how it goes.

KVRist
148 posts since 10 May, 2018

Post Wed Apr 07, 2021 8:01 am

Indeed. My mini has no dedicated peripherals at all aside from an OWC Thunderbolt2 dock for connecting things I rarely use, like a CD drive; I use it entirely from a virtual window in my Mac Pro. It's still quite handy at times, especially if I need AirDrop (one of the few things my ancient machine can't do on Mojave).
Mike Metlay, PhD (nuclear physics -- no, seriously!) :D
listen to me: Mr. Spiral | join the fam: RadioSpiral | my gig: Atomic Words LLC (coming soon)

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