What laptop is good for vcv rack and synth work ( needs good battery life)

I am looking for a laptop that is under 2000 AUD (australian dollars which is 1350 usd) and I want it to have a good battery but can run generative patches? What is the best option

I was thinking of getting this

Would this laptop be ideal?

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My suggestion laptop Windows, to start : min. intel i3 min. ram 4gb and with graphic card like nvidia min. 2gb ~ more better = expensive

I was faced with that decision a couple years ago. I had always strictly used Windows machines, and had/have a Dell XPS 8930 desktop with i7-9700 CPU @ 3.00GHz, 16 GB RAM and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER.

I wanted to take VCV on the road, and was stressed over what laptop to get. After lots of research, I finally settled on the original MacBook Air M1 base model, with only 8GB memory and 256 GB storage. I am absolutely thrilled with the result.

  • Light weight, with a gorgeous display.
  • Absolutely silent - no fan! Yet I’ve never had heat issues. It is hard to convey how wonderful this is.
  • Long battery life. I haven’t timed how long it actually lasts without charging, but have never run out of juice. Way more than is needed for a gig without power source
  • An absolute breeze to setup - it simply works
  • I’ve only had one patch that fails to run - my abusive VCP AirWindows challenge entry with 85 instances of AirWindows! But other than that, every patch has run as well or better than on my PC. Sometimes I can run the MacBook at a higher sample rate than the PC. I run all my patches at 48kHz or higher.
  • Based on what I have read, the MacBooks have one of the highest reliability scores. I’ve certainly had no problems.

I think now there are multiple MacBook M1 or M2 options within your budget. I can’t imagine a better platform for a portable VCV setup.

Apple has a reputation for being expensive, but I am convinced I am getting better performance, both battery life and computing power, and better reliability with the MacBook than I could ever get with a PC laptop at the same price point.


I agree. I’m pretty much windows towers all the time. But for tablets and laptops Apple is best. And, as you say, the price penalty is a lot less than it used to be.

I use an M1 for work. My previous Intel Macbook always sounded like it was about to fly away. I would stop working like 5 minutes before a meeting so that the fans would shut up. M1 so much better.

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Same here, windows all my life, and now super happy with a M2 Pro. Expensive, maybe, yes, but same(ish) performance on a windows machine would be even more expensive I fear, and even though I am absolutely used to go under the hood fine tuning my system for audio, it is nice that it just works without doing anything, out of the box. For a cheap option I’d go used M1 and that’s it.

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yeah i may sell my gaming lapotp for more money to get the macbook m1, i would rather study music than play games


That said, VCV is pretty CPU and GPU intensive. have not heard much about how much battery time you have when using VCV.

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My M1 MB Air does just fine. It is rated at nearly 12 hours. I know I have run for 5+ hours running VCV continuously, with plenty of juice left to spare. As long as you don’t have any peripherals sapping power from the usb C ports (I just used headphone out), then it should run for a looonnnnggg time. Even with an interface plugged in sapping power, I ran for 3 hours on battery, though it was getting pretty low at that point.

At open mics I have a 1/8" stereo jack plugged into the headphone jack, which then splits into 2 1/4" L/R output jacks to plug into the hosts mixer. So all the battery is available to run the MB Air.

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Same here, only time I noticed battery going down fast(ish) is when I use VCV on Zoom, the battery takes a big hit in only two hours.

More power needed,more battery drain

No magic recipe

Who,from AMD,Intel,Apple is the winner…Apple on native ARM apps…for sure