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  #1  
Old 09-05-2022, 04:58 PM
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NoiseRoom NoiseRoom is offline
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Default Mac Studio - Separate Drive?

I'm exploring options for moving from my 2010 Cheese Grater.

With the new Mac Studio, are separate drives (OS and Media) still required?

Also, since I'm not doing as much recording but do a lot of design work with Adobe Creative Cloud, does setting up two profiles make sense?

Thanks
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Old 09-05-2022, 05:11 PM
AlexLakis AlexLakis is offline
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Default Re: Mac Studio - Separate Drive?

Not sure about the latter part of your statement, but separate drives are no longer "required". In fact, the internal drive on the Mac Studio is probably faster than your current external SSDs. The OS and media drives need no longer be separate.
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Old 09-05-2022, 05:18 PM
Obsidian Dragon Obsidian Dragon is offline
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Default Re: Mac Studio - Separate Drive?

The need for a separate drive for recording sessions was originally due to the limited speed (read/write times and transfer times) of spinner hard drives. Today with SSD's (even the slower ones) that is not an issue and you can have your OS, applications, sample libraries, and sessions all on the SSD. The internal SSD's in the new Macs are actually among the fastest. Some do use separate drives as a way to organize data types if folders are not preferred. If SSD space is available, it is best to use that for the sessions. You can always backup to other drives if needed.

I don't know if a separate profile is needed for Adobe Creative Cloud. Perhaps someone with more experience on this can chime in.
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Old 09-05-2022, 05:34 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is online now
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Default Re: Mac Studio - Separate Drive?

Yep best money you can spend is likely maxing out that internal SSD as much as you can afford, especially if you want max performance getting it in a configuration that uses two internal FLASH cards (i.e. 4GB and larger IIRC, but check). The drives are on compact daughter cards that plug into the motherboard... but these are special, it's mostly NAND FLASH memory only on those cards, the SSD controllers that you normally find on say a modern M.2 SSD are actually in the Apple CPU silicon likely for cost and performance reasons.... so even though they might look a lot like common M.2 SSD drives you can buy, they are not, and today you *cannot* upgrade those SSDs. They are very Apple proprietary, and use hardware encryption which stops anybody else from just copying the drive hardware today. It would be great in future if Apple or others were able to offer internal upgrades drives... but don't hold your breath.

And yes you no longer need an external dedicated audio drive, but you also don't need a dedicated sample drive. You can mix and match your operating system, samples, and sessions all on the internal drive. And thats' been true on Macs with (especially PCIe/NVMe based) SSDs now for about a decade.

And remember that memory on these systems is not upgradeable, don't believe some folklore you might read about Apple Silicon systems needing less memory.

I run Creative Cloud on my Pro Tools Macs and use it a lot (used to work for Adobe). It also have a lot of development tools loaded, so far from the idea of a dedicated system for Pro Tools, but then I'm anal retentive about frequent clean installs and testing stuff. I would start by trying it and seeing, it's a PITA to switch login accounts if not needed. I would disable automatic update on CC, and even better when working in Pro Tools fully exit the Creative Cloud app.

I *have* had some problems on Monterey on my Mac (Intel MBP) recently, that seems to be a low level network issue (including mDNSResponder thrashing - a potentially not unheard of general problem on Monterey?). That was affecting both Pro Tools and Creative Cloud apps... so while both would show pauses/beachballs when things were misbehaving it was not having both installed that was the problem.

Last edited by Darryl Ramm; 09-05-2022 at 05:49 PM.
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Old 09-05-2022, 05:41 PM
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Default Re: Mac Studio - Separate Drive?

What the others says but don’t forget it’s always good to have a fast drive connected to the Mac and use like CCC to do recording back-ups and just set and forget with Carbon Copy Cloner program and it is a great investment as it back up anything and whatever drive or recording partition etc so IF something happens you have the songs backed up
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Old 09-05-2022, 06:09 PM
mattrixx mattrixx is offline
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Default Re: Mac Studio - Separate Drive?

These Mac Studio drives are ridiculously fast... Especially on the Ultra.
Here's a quick grab of Speedtest running on a small partition I use to temporarily do some video stuff.




.... and here's an SSD I'm using for Pro Tools.. (never too slow).



....and this is an external USB3 NVMe (Samsung) that I use for my Sample library.



As you can see.... nothing comes close to the internal.

So I recommend getting the biggest internal you can afford and create a couple of working partitions and use the externals for backing up etc..
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Old 09-05-2022, 06:18 PM
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Default Re: Mac Studio - Separate Drive?

Thanks everyone! These posts are so helpful.
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Old 09-05-2022, 09:42 PM
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Eric Lambert Eric Lambert is offline
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Default Re: Mac Studio - Separate Drive?

Chining in to say that I'm experiencing what everyone else is saying. The internal drive is screaming fast. I still use an external drive for sessions and samples but not because I need to.
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Old 09-06-2022, 01:35 AM
Obsidian Dragon Obsidian Dragon is offline
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Default Re: Mac Studio - Separate Drive?

Great info in the screen shots. This is exactly what I wanted to see.
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Old 09-07-2022, 03:16 AM
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Default Re: Mac Studio - Separate Drive?

It is not quite as simple as saying internal is better for all. Unless you are creating absolutely huge sessions, you won't see any problems with an external drive, particularly on USBc or Thunderbolt connection.

You just have to weigh things up. I bought a Samsung 1TB external Thunderbolt drive for £100 and the equivalent upgrade for a 1TB internal would have been £400.

Running sessions for mixing and recording of around 100 tracks, I never have any issues. Of course some people will require more, but just look at what makes sense for you.
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