Hardware requirements and recommendations for MG3?

I am wondering what the true minimum system requirements might be for running MG3, both on Mac and anything that might be anticipated for the eventual iOS release, and what a good recommendation would be to step above the minimum, without going truly crazy investing in hardware.

I am finding that my current 2018 MacBook Air, with 8GB of RAM and a dual-core processor, seems to be prone to limiting out on CPU load. It surprises me sometimes, since what seems to limit out sometimes doesn’t seem to do so others (with the same patch), but I imagine that a machine with more CPU and more memory might give me a good deal more headroom, especially if I wanted to build out three full chains with a VST instrument and various supporting plugins.

So, the question really is, if you wanted to take full advantage of MG3’s ability as a host, what does that imply for looking for minimum CPU speed, number of cores, memory, etc? Really I’m just looking for guidance and ballpark ideas here, not getting into the weeds of hardcore optimization, etc.,

Any clarity and guidance for those using music software seriously would be helpful. Thanks!

On the Mac, any Apple silicon machine is recommended and will run great.

The “expressive” tracking is where it crunches audio data the most and if you have a complex patch and an older intel machine, you may want to use one of the other tracking options which will run on just about anything.

With 3.0.48 there is also a new option for multithreading, which balance loads and improves energy efficiency.

For Windows, newer AMD APUs will run great (Im seeing typically under 15 watts of power draw) but we’ll get a better grasp on Windows requirements when the first beta is ready.

RAM and harddrive is almost irrelevant as for MG is concerned, but of course can be important if you use sample based synths or a DAW.

Hey, thank you most kindly for that. Useful info for me, for sure.

And your comment about “sample based synths” I think is kinda what I expected, since that is mostly what I originally invested in (IK’s SampleTank and Mirsolav Philharmonik), but curiously the place I’ve had things bog down the most isn’t with those MG3 patches, but rather with the ones that use IK’s AmpliTube and MODO Bass. They don’t always seem to bog down, but it looks like I may be kind of right at the tipping point with my Intel-chip Mac, so I’ll play with optimization a little more.

And for anyone reading this (not just @JamO), my interest in this question is not just for MG3, which I kinda figured may not use up all that much horsepower on its own, but more generally for suggestions/guidelines on what baseline performance to look for in upgrading to a Mac with which I’ll expect to be using these sorts of combinations. So, I could well have phrased my original question more simply, along the lines of:

“What would be the minimum Mac I should consider getting, if my intentions are the following?”

  • MG3 with several hungry plugins (e.g., AmpliTube or MODO Bass for guitar channel and SampleTank for instrument channel) and a few more less-hungry plugins
  • MG3 in MIDI-out mode with multiple standalone apps (e.g., one, two, or three of the aforementioned apps)
  • DAW for basic recording and mixing (with aforementioned plus other plugins)
  • Any of the above running concurrently with device editor software (e.g., for configuring MIDI devices like the MS-3 or a control surface)

I’m still new enough to the serious use of music software, that I just don’t feel like I’ve got a good natural handle on how to assess all that. I could also phrase it as, “What sort of thing would I need to be doing, in order to really require the extra investment of a Mac Pro rather than an Air?”, etc.

Anyway, guidance from others who know the space better than I is very much welcome. :slight_smile:

I dont want to get into hardware recommendations, but just a few comments:

Some plugins need CPU power (analog synths, guitar processors) and very little RAM and harddrive. MG3 falls into this category. Conversely, others plugins (sample based synths) and also DAW recording need RAM and a fast SSD and very little CPU.

MacBooks M1 was a game changer for laptops. And newer M-chips are even more awesome. But since you cant upgrade CPU, RAM and SSD you need to figure out where to spend. Most people will say 8GB RAM is the weakest part and go with 16GB. The question of Air vs Pro is mainly a question about Mx vs Mx-Pro/Max.

Further, MG3 for Windows is coming, so that gives you a lot of other choices :slight_smile:

1 Like

I can totally understand not wanting to wade in to specific recommendations, especially in your chair, but I seriously appreciate these comments. Thank you. This is exactly what a n00b needs to make a better-informed decision when the time comes, and I appreciate it!