(I am posting this here in hopes of a better or any response...it didn't get any attention in the General thread)
This is just about the best list that I have had the joy of participating in! Dependable advice from people who seem to genuinely want to help. Thanks so much.
As I carefully contemplate moving from my beloved Mac laptop in order to make the best use of GPO/Finale (my two favorite programs, bar none), I would like input and advice as to the best configuration of laptop computer.
Although I know Macs pretty well and have used a PC desktop unit before, don't assume I know anything about PC laptops.
As I mentioned, I am looking for the optimum configuration for running the GPO/Finale combination. I will also need to be able to create mp3 soundfiles from the resulting compositions, so some comments as to the best software for that would be appreciated.
1. I have no brand bias, and I am not intending to start brand wars, but I guess that cannot be avoided as people champion their favorite.
2. I am committed to the notebook/laptop platform as that serves my needs best.
3. Price point would be from $1500 to $2000. (I admit that I am counting on the better price to performance ratio available in the PC world to help make that amount of money go farther.)
4. My screen need is 15"...smaller is too small for working with scores, and I am not crazy about the inherent bulk and dimensions of a 17".
Thanks in advance for all your help.
(Let me also say that I am not intending to start Mac/PC wars, but simply following the thread related to number of voices/instruments available relative to the Mac or PC was enough to finally get me seriously looking in this direction.)
I'll tell you all about my system which works great for me and that allows me to create music resulting in any digital audio format:
I have an IBM thinkpad with 1GB ram and a processor speed of 1.8 GHZ (the ram and processor could be better, but that's what I got for Christmas) and Windows 2000 pro. That's all I really know about the actual computer. I have never used Finale, but I'll tell you what I do and use to make MP3s of my work:
I use Cakewalk Music Creator (similar to Sonar, but more understandable to the begginer, as I am) with the GPO DXI plugin. When I'm done, I just tell Cakewalk to export audio in MP3 format, and I have the file right there. Cakewalk limits you to eight audio fx, and an instance of GPO counts as one, so if you want GPO with reverb in all instances, you only have four instances to work with. But if you export audio without reverb, you can then import that audio back into Cakewalk and add reverb and other fx.
It's a great program and I highly recomend it. You can do almost anything using the import export process.
I hope that helped, and good luck finding a notebook computer suitable to your needs.