8 Best PC for Music Production: Macs & Desktop Power (2024)

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Navigating the digital landscape of music production requires a command center that harmonizes power, speed, and reliability. As we move into 2024, finding the best PC for music production means looking for machines that can effortlessly handle high-resolution audio files, complex plugins, and extensive digital audio workstations without breaking a sweat. Whether it’s the sleek design and intuitive ecosystem of Apple Macs or the customizable, powerhouse performance of high-end desktops, the right computer becomes an extension of your creative spirit.

In this article, “Best PC for Music Production: Apple Macs & High-Performance Desktops (2024),” we dive deep into the heart of music production technology to bring you a curated list of machines that stand out in the studio. From the seamless workflow of macOS to the brute force and adaptability of Windows-based powerhouses, we explore a range of systems that cater to various production styles, workloads, and preferences.

Join us as we dissect the features, performance, and capabilities of these top contenders to help you make an informed decision on your next investment. Whether you’re a seasoned producer looking to upgrade your studio setup or a budding musician setting up your first home studio, discover the PCs that promise to elevate your music production journey to new heights.

Our Top Picks
  • Dell XPS Tower 8960
  • Apple iMac M1
  • Apple Mac Mini M1
  • Apple Mac Studio M2
  • Apple Mac Pro M2 Ultra
  • Microsoft Surface Studio 2+
  • Geekom Mini IT8

Dell XPS Tower 8960

A Powerhouse Desktop for Uncompromised Audio Workflows

Specifications:

  • CPU: Up to 12th Gen Intel® Core™ i9 processor
  • Graphics: Up to NVIDIA® GeForce RTX™ 3090 or AMD Radeon™ RX 6900 XT
  • RAM: Up to 128GB DDR5
  • Storage: Dual options with up to 2TB NVMe SSD + 2TB SATA HDD

Benefits:

  • Cutting-Edge Processing Power: Equipped with the latest Intel processors to effortlessly handle demanding DAWs and plugins.
  • Top-Tier Graphics Options: Supports multiple high-resolution displays and demanding visual tasks with ease.
  • Expansive Memory and Storage: Offers ample room for large sample libraries, projects, and seamless multitasking.
  • Versatile Connectivity: A wide array of ports for connecting audio interfaces, MIDI controllers, and external storage.

Overview:

The Dell XPS Tower 8960 emerges as an unparalleled choice for music producers seeking a desktop that combines robust performance with the flexibility to grow with their evolving needs. Beyond its powerful CPU and GPU options, this tower brings the advantage of extensive RAM and storage capabilities, ensuring that producers can access their entire library of sounds and projects without a hitch.

Designed with creatives in mind, the XPS Tower 8960 offers a comprehensive suite of connectivity options, making it a central hub for all production gear. Its upgradability stands out, providing users the assurance that their studio can expand in capabilities alongside their career. Moreover, Dell’s attention to detail in creating a system that operates quietly means that it can sit in the studio without intruding on the critical listening environment.

Final Thoughts:

For music production professionals who demand a desktop that matches their ambition, the Dell XPS Tower 8960 is a formidable ally. Its blend of high-end components, expandability, and thoughtful design positions it as a top choice for studios looking to push the boundaries of what’s possible in music production. Whether you’re mixing in-the-box, mastering, or running complex virtual instruments, the XPS Tower 8960 is built to elevate your creative workflow without compromise.

Apple iMac M1

Sleek Design Meets Sonic Precision

Specifications:

  • CPU: Apple M1 chip with 8-core CPU
  • Graphics: 7-core or 8-core GPU
  • RAM: Up to 16GB unified memory
  • Storage: Up to 2TB SSD

Benefits:

  • Revolutionary M1 Chip: Delivers outstanding performance for DAWs, plugins, and virtual instruments.
  • Stunning Visuals: The 4.5K Retina display offers unparalleled clarity and color accuracy for editing and mixing.
  • Seamless Integration: Works flawlessly with macOS-based music production software.
  • Compact and Quiet: Ultra-thin design and silent operation make it perfect for studio environments.

Overview:

The Apple iMac M1 redefines the desktop experience for music producers with its breathtaking design, groundbreaking performance, and compact footprint. At the heart of this sleek machine is Apple’s M1 chip, which provides a massive leap in CPU, GPU, and machine learning performance. This makes the iMac M1 an ideal choice for demanding music production tasks, offering smooth playback, quick rendering, and the ability to handle multiple tracks and plugins effortlessly.

The iMac’s 24-inch 4.5K Retina display not only makes it a joy to work on visual aspects of production, such as video scoring and editing but also provides detailed and accurate visualization of every plugin and DAW interface. Moreover, its quiet operation ensures that your recording environment remains undisturbed.

Final Thoughts:

For musicians and producers fully invested in the Apple ecosystem, the iMac M1 stands as an exemplary choice. It combines Apple’s renowned design and technology innovation with the specific needs of music production, offering a machine that’s not only powerful and capable but also inspires creativity. Whether you’re recording, mixing, or mastering, the iMac M1 is built to bring out the best in your music, making it a top contender for any studio looking to harness the power of Apple’s M1 chip.

Apple Mac Mini M1

Compact Powerhouse for Studio and Stage

Specifications:

  • CPU: Apple M1 chip with 8-core CPU
  • Graphics: 8-core GPU
  • RAM: Up to 16GB unified memory
  • Storage: Up to 2TB SSD

Benefits:

  • Innovative M1 Chip: Offers remarkable speed and efficiency, dramatically enhancing DAW and plugin performance.
  • Ultra-Compact Design: Fits effortlessly into any studio setup, perfect for space-constrained environments.
  • Versatile Connectivity: Provides a wide range of ports for connecting audio interfaces, external displays, and storage solutions.
  • Silent Operation: Runs quietly, minimizing background noise for recording and mixing.

Overview:

The Apple Mac Mini M1 stands as a testament to how a small form factor doesn’t mean a compromise on performance. Equipped with Apple’s groundbreaking M1 chip, this diminutive desktop offers a leap in processing power, making it an ideal choice for music producers, sound designers, and performing artists alike. Its ability to handle complex arrangements, numerous tracks, and a plethora of plugins with ease makes it a formidable tool in any music production arsenal.

Despite its compact size, the Mac Mini M1 doesn’t skimp on connectivity, offering a variety of ports that ensure seamless integration with studio hardware. The inclusion of the M1 chip not only enhances its performance but also its efficiency, allowing for silent operation that’s crucial in a studio environment.

Final Thoughts:

For those in the music production field looking for a powerful, yet budget-friendly option within the Apple ecosystem, the Mac Mini M1 emerges as a compelling choice. Whether used as a primary production machine, a portable rig for live performances, or a secondary studio workstation, the Mac Mini M1 delivers robust performance that belies its size. Its blend of power, portability, and price makes the Mac Mini M1 a standout option for producers and musicians ready to embrace the future of music creation.

Apple Mac Studio M2

Unleashing Unprecedented Power in a Compact Form

Specifications:

  • CPU: M2 Max with 12-core CPU or M2 Ultra with 24-core CPU
  • Graphics: Up to 38-core GPU with M2 Max, up to 76-core GPU with M2 Ultra
  • RAM: Up to 96GB with M2 Max, up to 192GB with M2 Ultra
  • Storage: Up to 8TB SSD

Benefits:

  • M2 Max and M2 Ultra Chips: Deliver unprecedented performance for professional music production.
  • Massive Memory: Supports extensive sample libraries and multiple instances of complex plugins.
  • Extensive Connectivity: Offers a wide array of ports for studio peripherals, displays, and storage solutions.
  • Compact and Silent: Fits any studio setup without compromising on power or creating noise distractions.
  • High-Efficiency Cooling: Ensures peak performance without overheating, even in intense sessions.

Overview:

The Apple Mac Studio with M2 Max and M2 Ultra chips marks a revolutionary leap in desktop computing for music production. Tailored for creatives who demand the pinnacle of performance, the Mac Studio combines the raw power of Apple’s most advanced chips with a design that’s both compact and connective. Whether orchestrating complex compositions, editing multilayer tracks, or processing audio in real-time, the Mac Studio stands ready to elevate your production workflow to levels previously unimaginable.

Encased in a 19.7 cm square frame, this powerhouse transforms any space into a professional studio, offering the kind of speed and capability that creative professionals dream of. With the ability to support massive amounts of central memory and offering incredible bandwidth speeds, the Mac Studio ensures that even the most demanding music production tasks are handled with ease and efficiency.

Final Thoughts:

The Apple Mac Studio M2 emerges not just as a tool, but as a central hub for creative endeavors in music production. With configurations available up to the M2 Ultra chip, it’s designed for those who refuse to compromise, blending incredible performance with an expansive set of connectivity options in a chassis that’s as aesthetically pleasing as it is powerful. For producers, sound engineers, and audio professionals looking to push the boundaries of what’s possible in digital music production, the Mac Studio M2 stands unrivaled as the ultimate desktop computing choice.

Apple Mac Pro M2 Ultra

The Ultimate Fusion of Power and Expansion

Specifications:

  • CPU: M2 Ultra with 24-core CPU
  • Graphics: Up to 76-core GPU
  • RAM: Up to 192GB unified memory
  • Storage: Up to 8TB SSD

Benefits:

  • M2 Ultra Chip: Delivers unparalleled performance for the most demanding music production tasks.
  • Expansive Unified Memory: Supports the largest projects and the most complex plugins without compromise.
  • Versatile Expansion: PCIe slots offer the flexibility to add specialized audio and storage hardware.
  • Advanced Connectivity: Multiple Thunderbolt and Ethernet ports ensure fast data transfer and networking.

Overview:

The new Apple Mac Pro with M2 Ultra is designed for professionals who refuse to compromise. By blending Apple’s most powerful chip with the ability to expand and customize through PCIe slots, this machine is a powerhouse capable of handling any music production challenge. Whether orchestrating large scores, mixing countless tracks, or pushing the limits with synthesizers and samplers, the Mac Pro delivers performance that’s simply unmatched.

The inclusion of the M2 Ultra chip means producers can expect mind-blowing speed and efficiency, transforming workflows and significantly reducing rendering and processing times. Additionally, the Mac Pro’s expansive memory and storage options ensure that even the largest projects can be managed with ease, while its plethora of ports and expansion slots make it the most versatile and connective Mac ever built for professional use.

Final Thoughts:

For music producers, sound engineers, and audio professionals seeking the pinnacle of desktop performance, the Apple Mac Pro with M2 Ultra represents the zenith of what’s possible. Its power and flexibility, combined with Apple’s ecosystem and optimized software, create an unmatched environment for creative work. From studio recordings to film scoring, the Mac Pro stands ready to elevate your music production to new heights, making it the ultimate choice for those who demand the best.

Microsoft Surface Studio 2+

Elevate Your Creativity with a Fluid Productivity Powerhouse

Specifications:

  • CPU: 11th Generation Intel® Core™ i7-11370H Processor
  • Graphics: NVIDIA® GeForce RTX® 3060 Laptop GPU with 6GB GDDR6 GPU Memory
  • RAM: 32GB DDR4
  • Storage: 1TB SSD

Benefits:

  • Immersive PixelSense™ Display: A large 28" touchscreen provides a vast canvas for expressing yourself from every angle.
  • Zero Gravity Hinge: Adjust to the perfect angle effortlessly for any task, whether drawing with the Surface Pen or navigating through tracks.
  • High-Performance Computing: Equipped with an 11th generation Intel® Core™ processor and NVIDIA® graphics for seamless multitasking and exceptional creative experiences.

Overview:

The Surface Studio 2+ stands as the epitome of versatile all-in-one design, redefining creative workflows and productivity. With its striking 28″ PixelSense™ display and Zero Gravity Hinge, it offers the flexibility to work in the perfect position for every task – from intricate music production edits to expansive compositions.

Powered by an 11th generation Intel® Core™ processor and the NVIDIA® GeForce RTX® 3060, the Surface Studio 2+ delivers rapid multitasking capabilities and lifelike graphics. Whether you’re laying down tracks, mixing, or mastering, this workstation provides the computational horsepower needed for the most demanding music production software.

Final Thoughts:

For music producers and audio engineers seeking a blend of form and function, the Surface Studio 2+ presents an unmatched proposition. It combines powerful performance with an unparalleled display and innovative design, making it a compelling choice for those who refuse to compromise on power, precision, or aesthetics in their music production journey.

FAQ Buying Guide: Best PCs for Music Production

Selecting the best PC for music production is pivotal in creating a seamless and efficient creative process. Whether you’re drawn to the sleek design and robust ecosystem of Apple Macs or the customizable power of Windows desktops, this guide aims to answer frequently asked questions to help you find the perfect computer for your home studio in 2024.

Choosing the best PC for music production involves balancing performance, compatibility, and budget. Whether opting for an Apple Mac for its renowned stability and user experience or a Windows desktop for its flexibility and power, ensuring your system meets the demands of your music production workflow is key to a successful and enjoyable creative process.


  • What Makes a PC Suitable for Music Production?

    A suitable PC for music production should have a fast processor, ample RAM, significant storage capacity (preferably SSD), and robust audio interfaces. It should also support your DAW and plugins of choice efficiently.

  • Apple Mac or Windows Desktop: Which is Better for Music Production?

    The choice between Apple Mac and Windows Desktop often comes down to personal preference, software compatibility, and budget. Macs are known for their reliability and seamless integration with music production software, while Windows PCs offer greater customization and a wider range of hardware options.

  • How Important Is CPU Speed for Music Production?

    CPU speed is crucial as it affects how well your PC can handle multiple tracks, effects, and virtual instruments simultaneously. A faster CPU ensures smoother performance during intensive sessions.

  • How Much RAM Do I Need for Music Production?

    Ideally, 16GB of RAM is a good starting point for music production, providing enough headroom for most projects. For more complex arrangements with numerous plugins and virtual instruments, 32GB or more is recommended.

  • Is an SSD Necessary for a Music Production PC?

    Yes, an SSD (Solid State Drive) is highly recommended for music production. It offers quicker boot times, faster loading of software and projects, and more reliable performance compared to HDDs (Hard Disk Drives).

  • What Type of Audio Interface Should I Look for?

    Look for an audio interface with low latency, high-quality preamps, sufficient inputs/outputs for your gear, and compatibility with your chosen PC. The interface plays a crucial role in recording quality and overall system performance.

  • How Crucial Is the Graphics Card in a Music Production PC?

    While a high-end graphics card is not essential for audio tasks, a decent GPU might be beneficial if you plan to use video-related applications or have a multi-display setup for your DAW.

  • Can I Use a Gaming PC for Music Production?

    Yes, gaming PCs, with their high-performance CPUs, ample RAM, and fast SSDs, are well-suited for music production. Ensure the system meets the specific requirements of your audio software and interfaces.

  • How Do I Choose Between a Desktop and a Laptop for Music Production?

    Consider your need for mobility versus power. Desktops typically offer more power for the price and easier upgrades. Laptops provide the flexibility to produce music anywhere but may have limitations in performance and upgradability compared to desktops.

  • What Should My Budget Be for a Music Production PC?

    Budgets can vary widely based on needs and preferences. Entry-level music production PCs can start around $700-$1,000, while professional-grade systems may cost several thousand dollars. Investing more upfront can often save money in the long term by reducing the need for immediate upgrades.

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