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New Laptop advise, sound card issues


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#1
Fishmonger

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Hi all. I am looking to buy a top spec laptop for my uni course which is music technology. It needs to be able to run cubase SX3, and I also want it to a good gaming laptop, and I have assassins creed ready to play on it, which has a very high reccomended spec. I am currently interested in the Gateway® P-173X FX Edition (http://www.gateway.c...rdr=v1494&nmg=1), which will run assassins creed, but i'm not sure about its sound card abilities, or if it even has one. My current computer cannot keep up with cubase, and theres a huge delay when I try to use my midi keyboard, I press the key and the sound comes out about two seconds later, which I was told was due to my old sound card.

Two main questions:

1) Do laptops generally have sound cards? I can never seem to see any sound cards mentioned in any of their specs online. (Maybe they are built into the Graphics cards nowadays?)

2) What laptops would you recommend for my needs?

I have quite a lot to spend, about £1000 (or rather ~$2000)

Thanx in advance.

PS. I DONT want a MAC book pro, or any apple stuff. My last one was bunk.
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#2
Troy

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Hi there,

Yes all laptops will come with sound, specifically it's built into the motherboard.

I would be looking at a Dell XPS M1710, you can find a this for around the £1000 mark.

Cheers

Troy
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#3
The Admiral

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The M1710 could definitely keep up with Cubase - as most (read: all) music programs are more dependent on the processor, not the sound card. My Inspiron 1520, which you could pick up for like £700, can handle everything I throw at it, although I haven't tried Cubase.

The sound card is just an interface for the sound - that's where the digital signals from the computer are changed into analog sound for your speakers/headphone, and where analog audio is changed into digital signals, in the case of a microphone or other input.

That said, your USB keyboard problem will most likely be solved by using ASIO4ALL, in which you can decrease the latency of the keyboard so you don't get that lag.
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#4
Fishmonger

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Thanks for all the advise peeps. I decided to go for the new Novatech X50MV Pro (NNB-655) (see here: http://www.novatech....h...ming&r=X50), as I know that novatech are really reliable, and the best choice out of any in the UK. Bit of a risk getting this one though, its so new theres no decent reviews of it yet, but it meets all my needs and for just £50 extra I was able to fit in a Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Xtreme Audio Notebook Sound Card, which is ideal for me. Should be able to handle all the modern games too. Even my favorite, assassins creed, which generally needs 4 gig memory. It came to ~£1000.

Screen: 15.4" WSXGA+ X-Brite 1680x1050 TFT ScreenLCD
Processor: Intel P9500 Core 2 Duo Mobile 6MB Cache Dual Core Processor
Processor Speed: 2 x 2.53GHz
Memory: 4GB DDR2 800MHz Memory
Memory Capacity: 8GB
Hard Drive: 200GB 7200RPM SATA Hard Drive (Pro version)
Drive: DVD/RW Multi Burner
OS: Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium pre-installed.
Graphics: Nvidia 9600M GT 512MB GDDR3 Graphics


Should be here in a week. I cant wait. :)

Edited by Fishmonger, 23 August 2008 - 09:43 AM.

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