Who uses all-in-one machines and touch screens?

Reason for my question is this: I rely heavily on the web frontend and touch - main reason is that 99% of what I do is improvised (like improvised musicals) - so I never know what sounds I am going to need until I need them. I extended the web-front-end a bit so that stuff is easier to find https://community.cantabilesoftware.com/t/example-of-webui-customisation/4452/2 .

Right now I run off a laptop + soundcard, and I use a cheap tablet to connect to the Cantabile webserver on the laptop. The webUI is perfect for navigating (quickly) with a thick finger.

I am now wondering to get rid of the tablet, but then I’d need a beefy laptop with touch screen, or even better, a 2-in-1. I do see things like MS Surfaces, with i7 processors and I am wondering whether those things are fast enough to handle audio. So, anyone have experience with 2-in1 machines? If you do and you are happy, would you mind sharing specs?

Hi Tom,

Can you let us know which processor is in your current laptop, and how is the Time Load in Cantabile, using your standard rig?

That said, I have a 6th generation i7 Surface, used for work (compilers, mainly). It’s very fast, the real trouble is that Windows craps using touch, unless you have the pencil. Even in “tablet mode”, it’s not comfortable in touch use (and my fingers are not thick). I had to buy both pencil and keyboard, so i paid a lot to have… a luxury laptop.

I’m aware this is not the answer you are looking for, it’s only what I experienced using 2-in-1.

EDIT: There are, here in the forum, some who use 2-in-1s. They will be able to tell you about whether such devices fit the needs of realtime audio.

Laptop is 8 generation i7, 1GB SSD, 32Gb ram. I do preload tons of stuff as I never know what I might need at a second’s notice. No audio problems, preloading all my stuff takes between 1 and 2 minutes, after that reaction times are instantly.

  • What’s the processor model? You’ll find in “Start -> Settings -> System -> About”
  • When you say tons of stuff, do you mean samples/sample based instruments?

I haver a Surface Pro 5 with the i7 processor.with 8G ram. I would have gone for more ram and a larger SSD, but it gets rather expensive. I have a large 512G SD expansion card for samples.

My previous version 3 wouldn’t cut it, but this one keeps up without too many glitches. I have to be careful to ensure various processes don’t kick in, including turning off wifi.

All the newer Surface Pro are even better.



This is a little survey we made in 2020. Hope it helps a bit.
Here is the whole thread.

I know you’re looking for more of an all-in-one solution, but I use a rack pc and quantum 2626 in a rack, and 11" Gechic touchscreen. The pc is beefy, 2 ssd’s 8 core @ around 4ghz (IIRC) on an i9, thunderbolt 3. The touch screen is great, especially when you create custom buttons. A couple years ago Brad had posted that with C3 single core speed is the most important thing. I found that to be true, although multiple cores are becoming more important, and it depends on the plugins you’re using.

I don’t know what your budget is, but when I got this rig a year ago, I started out looking for a laptop but would have had to spend double to get the speed and features I wanted, especially native thunderbolt 3. But I do miss the small footprint and portability of my backup laptop.

Torsten and many others have several excellent posts on small form factor PCs, you might want to look into that as well.

Best of luck in your search,

Same here. NUC Skull Candy and GeChic. Why? Because Touch screens had limited IO and their cost/performance ratio was quite poor compared to the combination I settled on.

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Depends what you want to do. I have 3 machines. All in one Sony Vaio Tap20, Surface pro 6 and Asus Vivobook flip 14. I use the Vaio for studio work recordings not for live. The Surface pro is great for live Midi VSTs, media etc. The Asus is the only one that will do the Midi and live audio at the same time. That was from recommendations on this forum.

CPU is i7-7700HQ, 2.8 Ghz. Lots of stuff is lots of everything - modeled pianos but also sample libraries. Lots of them :slight_smile: I run just over 16Gb, Average CPU is around 55%, peak around 80%.

I see comments about windows touch not being very good. I know that - and that is why I use the web frontend - I customized that so I have pretty big buttons or screen areas to touch with my fingers. I would never be able to control the Cantabile UI with touch/fingers (nor would I want to - for my needs the Cantabile UI is too slow to navigate live - remember I have +150 preloaded songs, lots of states per song, and I never know which song in which state I am going to need next).

For a gig tonight I think I might try the web UI on the cantabile laptop and see if it is doable to navigate that fast enough with fingers on the trackpad. Might work?

Tx for all your reactions so far!

I think the webUI should be the best way. The i7-7700HQ is a powerful processor, I’m not sure the “U” (now “G7”) series fits your needs, not to mention that a Surface with 32GB is bloody expensive.

Update, turns out the webUI on a laptopscreen/touchpad is quite workable for me (I wonder why I never actually tried that before). No all-in-one on order then! Tx for the reactions!