What laptop are you running on?


Hopefully my laptop will do some more time, but what laptop are you running or would you advice?

I have an alienware m14x 8gb ram, 3.2ghz 8 core on windows 10. Runs stable. Boots in 4 sec or so.
Happy with it, although not with windows and music software. I hope cantabile will give me a good user experience in the long run.


Any advice here?
Or does any modern laptop do the job since they are getting more performant these days.


That sounds pretty true to present day. Of course, one thing to be aware of is that a laptop optimized for gaming is NOT necessarily a laptop optimized for audio. That is one little fact that took me by surprise, and I’m glad I did not go for some ultimate laptop. I still lug a tower along myself - I’m a hold-out. :rolling_eyes:


[EDIT:] Well, and I am also a nerd… :nerd:


Ive been using a Dell I5 with just 4Gb ram and a 240Gb SSD on windows 10. Lacking a little in Ram, but ive stripped windows down and gone through the help on here and it runs great. Cantabile stopped a couple of times the other day, but that was after a new VST id installed. I also have Cakewalk Sonar X3 running and all is good :grin:


I think that it depends on the vsti’s you are using since they require the most horsepower in live situations. If you only run algo type you can use a dual core at a lower clock and still get what you need from it for live performance. If you use sample streaming type of plugins then you will need more processing speed, more memory, faster storage drives (SSD). I am running an HP Elitebook with 32 GB ram and 2.66 GHz Quad core CPU and dual SSD. My backup Laptop is another HP but a Probook variety with 2.1 GHz Dual Core CPU, Dual SSD and 8GB memory. I use some UVI instruments (Ravenscroft, B5, Super Combo) which I love the sound of but have discovered in my case at least that they are very resource hungry, so I use them to test my rigs. The Elitebook is a beast (workstation style desktop replacement) so it is mechanically stout and has great resources and expansion capability so it is my main one. The Probook I have had for years and I like but it could not run my hungrier plugins without clicks or unless I used larger buffers with the added latency delay, but it still very usable. Also both have 17 inch screens, I like a big display for my preference.




Do you have any examples of it?
I could only find small screen versions like 12"?


I acquired mine used on Ebay. like this:



Is the i5 powerful enough?


What is the clock speed and what is you hungriest Vsti? My HP i5 Probook can do almost all of it but I have to set the buffer to 256 to avoid clicks on Ivory,Kontakt and UVI plugins.(Ravenscroft, B5, Super Combo). With my Elitebook I can do it all including vsti audio processing (reverb,comp), vocal processing and media playback and recording at 128 sample buffers.


Would this be a powerful version?
I would add extra ram and bigger SSD.


Well, I can’t guarantee it would work for your setup but can say it is faster than my probook so I think it would be fine depending on the processing load you use live ( what vst, vsti etc … )



Hm. I need a good video card for beaming


I would run the video on a separate box, personally. Video streams eat up the bus like crazy.



Works on my alienware perfectly.


Some systems have better data flow of video to the card than others. The ones that buffer the video on board can clog up the PCI bus, but ones that allow the video to be written directly to the graphics card work OK. At least that is my understanding.

I help out as forum answer guy at the CamStudio video recording screen capture software site, and that is how I became aware that modern games and some software write directly to the card bypassing the buffers for full-screen display. CamStudio relies on the buffers, and if those are empty, it captures nothing. So, people have to capture their games running in a window in those cases.



Good to know. Guess i was lucky with my alienware.


I use a pretty old Dell Latitude E6420 ATG. Very rugged machine, heavy but built like a tank. I hear it’s almost a cult item. Has i5 @ 2.8Ghz, 16 GB, 1 128 and 1 480GB SSDs and nVidia graphics. I picked it up refurb for $199 on Ebay with a 6 month warranty. I put in the 480 SSD and added 8GB of RAM. It has an Express Card Bus, so I use it with an Echo Indigo IO native ASIO driven audio interface. Win 7 Pro SP1 64 bit. Very stable. Did all Brad’s tweaks and also use Process Lasso to fine tune CPU affinity, I/O priorities, memory usage, and a lot of other tweaks for audio that you can’t otherwise control. I can run U-he DIVA (a known CPU hog) with no problems even at decent polyphony and quality settings. Process Lasso is a must have for audio. As a final touch I replaced the keyboard with a Dell OEM lighted one for those low light venues. Very happy. It was perfectly clean with everything intact and solid, looked new. It was a former graphic workstation for making laser-cut vinyl. With all the additional hardware, it cost me less than $400 including a spare high performance battery. As far as I can tell it runs audio and vsts as well as my i7 3.5Ghz 32GB $1500 custom built Win 8.1 audio laptop (which I’m afraid to take out of the studio!)


Running an Acer Aspire Nitro V.

  • i7 Quad-Core @ 2.6 GHz
  • 8 GB RAM
  • Win 10
  • Hybrid SSHD
    Boots super-quickly, runs mostly quietly, runs everything I throw at it so far…

Some criteria to select a Cantabile machine:

  • get as much RAM as you can afford / physically put in there; especially when running sample-based instruments
  • for disk-streaming Samplers or when you frequently need to load new sounds into your sampler: get a large SSD drive and put your samples on it.M.2 drives seem to be the best choice if you can afford them.
  • the advantage of the higher-level i7 processors is that they are TRUE quad-core, i.e. they can truly run four processes fully in parallel. If your Cantabile songs can take advantage of this, this will allow you to run more plugins smoothly. But it really depends on your song structure; take a look here to understand better.




Thx, very interesting, and so good cantabile and users give tech insight. I learned allot already and have more respect for the programmer.


I’m not running on a laptop, I use one of those mini PCs in my 19" rack. It’s a Gigabyte Brix, with this approximate spec:

  • Intel® Core™ i7-4770R 3.90 GHz
  • 16Gb RAM
  • 1Tb SSD
  • Windows 10
  • HDMI Resolution (Max.) 4096x2304 @ 24 Hz
  • 1 x HDMI, 1 x Mini DisplayPort sockets
  • 4 x USB 3.0 sockets

It runs beautifully. Most of my songs have 8-12 plugins active, and Cantabile’s load rarely gets much above 30%, unless I’m running one of the really crazy plugins like Serum. It can manage comfortably with a 128 sample buffer into my MOTU Ultralite Mk3, although I run it at 192 samples just for some extra security live (and the slight increase in latency there doesn’t bother me).