Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Configure and optimize you computer for Audio.
theEmbark
KVRian
512 posts since 4 Dec, 2015

Post Sun Feb 19, 2017 3:44 pm

I am getting ready to go back to school and need a new laptop. I'm in school for music and audio engineering but we aren't required to stick to MBPs. With the underwhelming reviews on the latest MBP and the ridiculous prices I'm looking for a professional grade laptop for audio engineering. Mostly for mixing and recording I use quite a few VSTS.

With this being said I've got a custom self built desktop in my studio that does the trick most of the time but I travel a lot from venue to venue or even just studio to studio.

Anyone use one of Clevos bones systems?

I'm looking for suggestions. Should I just pick up a 2013 MBP or go the Clevo route. I've got about $2500 to spend.

Any places you recommend for clevo builds?

Thanks,
Kevin
Win 7 | Dual Xeon x5680 | 48 GB RAM | Saffire Pro 40 | Yamaha HS50 monitors |Cubase 8.5 Pro|
Image
Kevin DiGennaro

Chandran
KVRist
143 posts since 24 Jul, 2012

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Sun Feb 19, 2017 4:05 pm

Hi,is one year Now I use a Clevo laptop( before that I ever had macbook pros...). I have to say is the best laptop I ever had!
I bought the Rain model from https://www.notebookguru.de/index.html
Last edited by Chandran on Sun Feb 19, 2017 5:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

theEmbark
KVRian
512 posts since 4 Dec, 2015

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Sun Feb 19, 2017 4:18 pm

Thanks for the reply,

Doesn't look like that site is running anymore but here's the one I'm looking at now.

http://rjtech.com/shop/index.php?dispat ... t_id=30361

The extra gpu power is for my Adobe software.

I'm not sure if the upgrades came over with the link but looking at the following:

Nvidia gtx1060
I7 7700k 4.2ghz
32gb ram (2 dimms)
500gb Samsung 960 Evo m.2 pci-E storage
1 TB 7200 RPM
Extra 8 cell battery
Windows 10 x64

$2568

Any suggestions? Should I buy the ram and hard drives separately and install them?
Win 7 | Dual Xeon x5680 | 48 GB RAM | Saffire Pro 40 | Yamaha HS50 monitors |Cubase 8.5 Pro|
Image
Kevin DiGennaro

Chandran
KVRist
143 posts since 24 Jul, 2012

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Sun Feb 19, 2017 5:15 pm

Hi your configuration looks great! I suggest to install only ssd dives (less noise and heat), windows 10 professionnal because you have better management on how automatic updates works and it's easer to stop them if you want. I you can find the same hd for cheapper it's quiet easy to install. for the best audio experience you have few easy tweaks to do, look at the tutorials:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=PhQVkv3NM3k
http://community.cantabilesoftware.com/ ... udio/588/4

Sorry for the broken link, this one works:
https://www.notebookguru.de/index.html

Hope it helps!

theEmbark
KVRian
512 posts since 4 Dec, 2015

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Sun Feb 19, 2017 5:44 pm

Chandran wrote:Hi your configuration looks great! I suggest to install only ssd dives (less noise and heat), windows 10 professionnal because you have better management on how automatic updates works and it's easer to stop them if you want. I you can find the same hd for cheapper it's quiet easy to install. for the best audio experience you have few easy tweaks to do, look at the tutorials:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=PhQVkv3NM3k
http://community.cantabilesoftware.com/ ... udio/588/4

Sorry for the broken link, this one works:
https://www.notebookguru.de/index.html

Hope it helps!
Thanks again for the reply,

No worries on the broken link!

I'm debating on just buying the shell battery and motherboard and buying my own hard drives and RAM. I have lots of experience building pcs and quite a bit fixing laptops so I'm not to worried about it.

Keeping to all SSds is a good call. I should save enough sourcing my own parts to make that happen.

Any suggestions on good audio ram for laptops? Crucial still?

Thanks again,
Kevin
Win 7 | Dual Xeon x5680 | 48 GB RAM | Saffire Pro 40 | Yamaha HS50 monitors |Cubase 8.5 Pro|
Image
Kevin DiGennaro

Chandran
KVRist
143 posts since 24 Jul, 2012

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Mon Feb 20, 2017 3:53 am

I installed kingston hyperX on mine.
Best,
David

Sam Marks
KVRist
39 posts since 29 Dec, 2018

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Wed Jan 15, 2020 2:32 am

I have recently bought a Clevo laptop after having a bad experience with an iMac 2019 i9 Vega 48 that died shortly after buying it (I got my money back when I returned the iMac).

I needed a computer with at least 64GB RAM, powerful multicore processor, silent and with multidisplay support for my music production projects.

The best thing is that you can install Windows, OSX and Linux on this Clevo laptop.

The cost of an equivalent Macbook Pro 16 is €5,600 in my country and I spent €1,400 in my Clevo (N970TC). My system has the following specs:

- 8 core i7 9700 desktop CPU (1300/7600 geekbench 5 scores, single/multicore). Close to the base Mac Pro 2019.
- 64GB 2666 Premium Samsung RAM
- 17.3" IPS screen mate
- 3TB fast nvme SSD storage (originally it came with 1.5TB, I paid €150 to upgrade it)
- Nvidia GTX 1660ti (63000 open CL Geekbench 5 score). It supports 4 additional monitors. Good for video editing.
- silent and efficient cooling system
- 4 usb ports: 2 3.1 gen 2 (one usb c), and 2 gen 3. Card reader.
- expandability and repairability, except the GPU all the other parts can be upgraded, including the CPU (I could install an i9 9900 cpu if I need in the future). The battery is easily swappable (for €60 you can buy an additional battery, to have a total of 12 hours of autonomy). And it can accept more than 12TB of internal SSD storage.

I use Ableton Live 10 and Cubase with lots of cpu intensive plugins and the computer is very powerful and fast. It is a very stable system also. For the moment I am using Windows 10 and I am very happy. In the future I may install also OSX Catalina.

I also have a 2010 MBP i7 that is an excelent machine. But the new MBP 16 with 64GB RAM seemed to expensive for my needs. Things that my Clevo laptop lacks compared to the four times more expensive 16" MBP are Retina display, T2 chip and TB3 ports (I do not need them anyway). For music production my clevo laptop is a beast with a very good value.

Passing Bye
KVRian
975 posts since 5 Nov, 2014

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Wed Jan 15, 2020 3:10 am

Ok, if still relevant, than avoid old Macbook Pro's because majority of them have faulty GPU's, even current ones have some issues, like CPU throttling, keyboard defects and etc, so wisest thing is to skip Macbook Pro's altogether.

SCAN Audio is worth considering, there are board member's that are happy with their work and their representative is here too, as shown in link bellow, you can buy pre-built ones or built your own with their help.

https://www.scan.co.uk/shop/music-and-p ... rkstations
Last edited by Passing Bye on Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
Googly Smythe wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 1:39 am
Somedays it seems like we're not allowed to dislike anything.

User avatar
CrystalWizard
KVRian
952 posts since 10 Jul, 2008 from Orbit Sol III

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Wed Jan 15, 2020 4:16 am

Still relevant.
gadgets an gizmos...make noise
https://soundcloud.com/crystalawareness

Heartfeltdawn
KVRist
239 posts since 4 Oct, 2014

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Wed Jan 15, 2020 3:59 pm

Very happy with my i5-8300h Clevo bought via PC Specialist and I'm considering another to replace the desktop in the next financial year.

Sam Marks
KVRist
39 posts since 29 Dec, 2018

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Thu Jan 16, 2020 7:09 am

With my new Clevo laptop i7 9700 and 64GB RAM I am obtaining a similar performance to the iMac i9 2019 40GB RAM and Vega 48 in soft synths and DAWs. In graphics the performance of the Clevo with the GTX 1660 ti is clearly superior. This Clevo is excellent for music production an much more silent and cool than the MBP or the iMac. It is an excelent replacement for a desktop. I strongly recommend it to any music producer.

TheZB
KVRer
6 posts since 16 Jan, 2020

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Thu Jan 16, 2020 12:47 pm

I'm replying to this thread because I'm a similar situation. I need to replace a very old Dell running Win7 that I used for audio, and I'd rather use Win10 than Mac just to make sure everything is compatible and because of the T2 madness. However, I also want to be able to perform live sets in Ableton with looping and backing tracks, and I was never able to get DPC low enough on my Windows machine. FL, MaxMSP, etc. still work mostly fine, but Ableton still cackles and I think it's a DPC problem because Ableton doesn't show any CPU or disk overload, but latencymon shows plenty of DPC overruns. Nonetheless, no point in debugging a 10-year-old computer running on a depreciated OS, nor in updating it with my fingers crossed. Has anyone tried to do something similar on these Clevos, or benchmarked the DPC with latencymon? I'd appreciate if some of the above posters would post those benchmarks, as it's hard to find them. Right now it seems like my only options are to either build a computer or get a custom one from PCAudioLabs, Scan, etc. Thanks.

Edit: I'm in the US. I realize Scan doesn't ship here.

Sam Marks
KVRist
39 posts since 29 Dec, 2018

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Thu Jan 16, 2020 1:52 pm

One of the first things I did after receiving my Clevo laptop was to test it's audio stability, reliability, performance and latency with different tools including latencymon. All the tests were very satisfactory and the computer performs as expected. The latencymon tool stated that the system is suitable for handling real-time audio and other tasks without dropouts (better than other PC laptops of well known brand with several problems for real-time audio). Even the in-depth test were all perfect.

I also played in real time several cpu consuming synths layered without any problem, crackle, dropout, or artifact and with a very low latency (also recording them in real-time. My Clevo computer (N970TC) for audio is as stable as my MBP or even more I would say. Totally stable and without any click or pop in the audio.

I use ASIO drivers and they are as solid as the OSX audio drivers. In fact sometimes I forget that I am working under Windows 10. On the other hand, the i7 9700 CPU is great for real-time audio in my experience.

Sam Marks
KVRist
39 posts since 29 Dec, 2018

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Thu Jan 16, 2020 2:40 pm

This is the report that I obtained some minutes ago from the LatencyMon program in my Clevo laptop.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

TheZB
KVRer
6 posts since 16 Jan, 2020

Re: Custom Clevo Vs. Macbook Pro - looking for thoughts and suggestions

Post Thu Jan 16, 2020 3:04 pm

Sweet. I'm still looking into a pre-T2 MBP but will likely go with this Clevo if that turns out to be too unusuable. Did you swap anything out in this laptop? Thanks!

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