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What Hardware do I need to get started with Spitfire Audio Products?

Angus
Angus mod
edited March 23 in Tech Talk

Before purchasing Spitfire Audio products, it's important to think about what hardware you might need. A general rule of thumb is, the bigger the library, the higher spec your system should be. The most important thing to consider is "where should I store my samples?" and the answer to this is, an External SSD drive. We would also recommend that you are either running Mac OS 10.13-10.15 or Windows 10, though our products will also currently work with Mac OS 10.10 and Windows 7+.

But what other hardware will you need?

Well, here's a quick checklist... and I've split this into Beginner, Intimidate, and Pro as each type of composer will have different needs.

Beginner

This is someone who just uses LABS or BBC SO Discover in their spare time, and do not yet have ambitions to pursue music professionally, or do larger scale projects.

  • 8GB of RAM
  • Dual Core Processor
  • MIDI Keyboard with Suspension Pedal and Mod Wheel.

Apprentice

This is someone who is just starting off in the industry. They have limited experience of using sample libraries, and their projects are generally limited to below 30 tracks. Products they may have include: Originals, SA Recordings, Drama Toolkits, or an Albion.

  • 500GB External SSD Drive
  • 16GB of RAM
  • Dual Core Processor
  • 49 Key MIDI Keyboard, with Suspension Pedal and Mod Wheel.

Intermediate

This is someone who has just started to do professional work, or an advanced level university student who is working on student films. Your projects are a bit more complex and can have up to 100 tracks, and you may have begun to invest in our more pro range orchestral products such as the Studio Range, BBC SO Core, and Artist Libraries from the LCO, Olafur Arnalds, and Eric Whitacre.

  • 1TB External SSD Drive
  • 32GB+ of RAM
  • 8 Core Processor
  • 61 Key MIDI Keyboard, with Suspension Pedal and Mod Wheel.
  • MIDI CC Controller

Professional

This is someone who has a career in music, and uses large and advanced templates of 200+ tracks. Products you own may include BBC Symphony Orchestra Professional, Spitfire Symphonic Orchestra, Symphonic Motions, and Abbey Road One.

  • 4TB External SSD Drive
  • 128GB of RAM
  • 16 Core Processor
  • 88 Key MIDI Keyboard, with Suspension Pedal and Mod Wheel.
  • MIDI CC Controller


Comments

  • Kerry
    edited March 23

    Hey Angus – what data are you seeing about ram usage on the Apple M1 chips? As you know, the largest RAM configurations yet available are 16gb, but this is accompanied by a lot of verbiage saying “the 16GB limit is less meaningful with the all-in-ones”, which is difficult to know whether to take at face value. Has Spitfire had time to develop data/a position on this yet?

  • Angus
    Angus mod
    edited March 24

    @Kerry we've taken delivery of a Mac M1 Mini this week, so when I find the time, I will do some stress testing and post the results on a thread here. It is worth noting that LABS is the only Spitfire product that is fully compatible with the native hardware.

  • Excellent news, thanks! I'm going to be particularly interested in how well BBCSO Core likes it - I think that machine might be a very popular choice amongst the "middle bracket".

  • @Angus Bonjour, I'm hardly trying to install BBCSO and Albion One on a new M1 16Go. I've managed with EDNA and Aperture. But Impossible with Originals and BBBCSO Core. Tried to Repair Patches and Presets as it advised "to Fix it". For Albion One, A Native Acces beta answer me ok when i put my serial, i identify the library directory but no way to install. I've also tried with a M1 version BBCSO plug-in :/. I knew that could be difficult, so. I'm patient too. Sorry for my english

  • Hi @Dominique if you haven't done so already, I'd recommend contacting our support team at www.spitfireaudio.com/support

    Alternatively, using Rosetta Mode should resolve the issue here:


  • This is great info thanks - I've just started pro work, and my setup is hovering between apprentice and intermediate on your list.

    My current pc is decent but can only take up to 32GB. I don't need to upgrade urgently, but it will need to happen probably this year.


    How do you approach getting pcs at 64GB and above? Seems like you don't just nip down to your local computer place and pick one up!

  • @Dave Graham The simplest solution would be to configure something like a Precision or XPS desktop from Dell's website, or similar "workstation" computer from a similarly reputable brand.

    Some better computer stores may also be able to help you find a PC that can be upgraded to 64GB of RAM or more, I'd recommend Microcenter if you are based in the US. UK/Europe based folks on here may be able to recommend similar stores in other countries.

    Of course for the most control over the hardware - and probably the best bang for buck - there is also the option of building a PC from parts, it's not as difficult as you might imagine.

  • Thanks @Sandy I'll probably go down the building route. Watched a couple of build walk-through vids and it doesn't look too bad, Appreciate your help!

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