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  • The MIDI Messages Forum  Ask and you shall receive

    The MIDI Messages Forum
    Ask and you shall receive

  1. John
  2. MIDI Software
  3. Sunday, 11 February 2018
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MIDI Frustrated 25 years.
I have some equipment and software but burned out many times trying to get the software to control the MIDI device consistently. Been on my own for years til I found this site ! Started with Cakewalk 3.0 thru Sonar, Cubase, Ableton (seemed to work the easiest but kept crashing). Was told to buy better computers (only used PC's) so even had one PC special made with tons of memory and RAM. Still didn't seem to help. I'd like to continue to use my Korg Triton Extreme, Yamaha Motif and Roland 50/50 Kontakt Native Instruments. Have been told to switch to MAC and use Protools but seems all I've done is spend money with no lasting result. I just want equipment that can converse together civilly. I plan to start playing live again so would like to do from a laptop. Any suggestions ? Don't want to start a war but does MAC w ProTools work more intuitively ?
  Smithflat, CA 95667, USA
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John Garside Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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Dear Frustrated, (sounds like an agony aunt!) ;-)

I've been using non Mac equipment successfully since about 1988.
Additionally, I've been using used laptops, I'm fairly selective with what though, for more than ten years.
The critical things in the set up, in my view, are getting a good interface with the equipment where there is no USB port on the keyboard (etc.) and the right piece of software, called a DAW these days, but which I still refer to as sequencing software.

Expect to pay a sensible amount of money for the interface, the cheap stuff has faults in my experience.
Next look for a piece of software that handles sysex messages well. Not all sequencers do, by any means.

Meanwhile I soldier on successfully with a used Lenovo running Win XP, an E-MU cardbus 02 with its 1616m breakout box, and sequencing software from the early 2000s. A later version of Yamaha's XGworks called SOL2. Not sold in the west so imported from Japan. So far, so good. I use it all virtually every day.

My own preference has been for the better Lenovo Thinkpad laptops.
The X61 was good, with a cardbus port, but the T420 in either i5 or i7 form are good machines.
I go for a Win 7 machine with a fast hard drive and 8GB of RAM.
Get one that's been refurbished and has some sort of warranty from the seller (not a third party warranty).
I've bought a few off ebay, from suppliers with good feedback.

Any help?
John G.
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  1. one week ago
  2. MIDI Software
  3. # 1
John Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
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John G. !!!

Thanks so much for the reply.

I have a Lenovo 300-171SK Idea Pad - (bought new about a year ago) Looked up the difference between the Think Pad and Idea Pad and the one I have seems more suited for multi media just not as durable.
Not a very pricey laptop but I bought for Office use

It has:

Intel Core i5 6200U CPU @ 2.30 GHz, 2.40 GHz
8 RAM
64 bit operating system

Running Windows 10

I can't find any info on the sound card installed originally by Lenovo

Do you think this is sufficient ?

RE: Interface
I have used many but the one I still have is a Pre Sonus

RE: Software: I still have a copy of Ableton but probably needs to be upgraded.... think it's Ableton 6 ?

In my MIDI recording I was having latency problems when I used Virtual Instruments but am happy to just use the KORG Triton Extreme I have.

Do you think I'm OK to go? Have not tried MIDI on this Lenovo I have ? Just figured I'd have to buy more expensive stuff.
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  1. one week ago
  2. MIDI Software
  3. # 2
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