New Laptop Os Choice

Finally getting myself a laptop I have been eyeing up for the longest time now :D

It comes with Vista64 installed but I have no qualms with removing this and installing an OS of my choice. Now Renoise is my main host of choice and I use pretty much entirely freeware effects so I am a little worried about 64bit support. What OS would be most recommended? I know XP well and have never really got on with Vista that much so that makes me lean towards sticking with XP but I know there are some benefits to Vista (or at least 64bit OSes allowing me to use all the RAM in the machine.)

Also a recommendation on a audio interface would be appreciated. I’m thinking of eventually getting a RME Multiface II but want something better than onboard sound during the interim. Requirements are:

4 analogue out and 2 analogue inputs (mono.)
1 MIDI out and 1 MIDI in.
Stable drivers and low latency.
Connection doesn’t matter. USB, ExpressCard and Firewire will all be considered. USB probably preferable as I can then donate it to my housemate once I upgrade.
Cheaper end of the market as I am planning on upgrading so want to save money to start.

Thanks everybody.

I would stick with XP and go with the intention of getting windows 7 which appears to be pretty good, although it’s still only in RC stage at the moment. Your other option is to go for Linux which would be far more efficient, but you don’t get as much variety of software and drivers could be a nuisance. If you plan to do nothing but track & a bit of browsing & general office tasks then linux could be for you.

With regards to sound cards, anything M-Audio or Emu will give you good quality…

Actually, looking at the emu site, there doesn’t seem to be a usb one that has 4 outs on it, so I would strongly recommend the M-Audio. Firewire devices are good too, but almost always need an external power supply, unless you have a 6-pin firewire port which only tend to appear on macs nowadays.

Yeah the E-Mu 0404 uses digital for one pair of i/o otherwise that would of been a consideration.

M-Audio Fast Track Pro 4x4 looks to fit the bill and falls under the £200 line I was hoping to stay under.

Edirol UA101 looks nice and maybe does enough for me not to bother upgrading from it (don’t think I will be doing that much multitrack recording of live band to be fair) and is still reasonable priced for what it does, although above what I was looking at.

{EDIT:} Another consideration would be the Native Instruments Audio Kontrol as it covers all my requirements as well so experiences with this also appreciated.

But yeah am intending to install a Linux partition although currently I’m a total n00b as far as the little Penguin goes. Driver support seems to be a bit of a problem. From what I hear Edirol are one of the better companies for driver support and thus it’s another inclination to go that route.

But I think you may be right, one XP32 and one Linux partition for now. Maybe moving to Windows7 when it’s proven stable. Still have the worry about older freeware VSTs, especially the likes of the old Darkware Synth-Edit made stuff, not working with 64 bit OSes.

I think it’s just unacceptable to be limited to one Windows install, but I never got around to read up on how to go about, you know, hiding all partitions except one, installing windows, decloaking another one, installing another Windows, and so on, and finally install a few Linuxes (Linii :lol:) and write a GRUB boot menu for all of them. If anyone has a single link detailing exactly this scenario I’d be eternally grateful…

Linux, no problem. Windows? MUST EAT COMPUTARRRRRR.

I installed two instances of XP on my ageing desktop no problem. Where I got into serious headache was trying to get a third partition with a Linux distro (Agnula, based on Debian IIRC) on it installed at the same time. I could get one XP and Linux or two XP working fine but all three would stump me every time! In the end I gave up and stuck with 2x XP, then I found I actually very rarely bothered going into my audio specific installation and just stayed in my general one even when making some music. That installition lasted about 5 years until I finally decided I should reinstall due to a few niggling issues (and they are actually worse now and think may be mainly hardware) so think I can look after an XP install.

I couldn’t get any of my audio hardware to play nice with my wife’s Vista64 laptop. :(