Laptop/Setup Suggestions


I’m a musician and interested in incorporating some visuals into my performance. I use a 2012 MacBook Pro for all my sound needs (I run three pieces of software for the audio side of things, SuperCollider, Mainstage and looping software I made) I’d love to run VDMX as well but am concerned about the load on my computer. It makes sense to run VDMX from another laptop right? Or should I give it a go and see what happens? My graphics card is nothing special (intel HD graphics 384MB)

My question is what specs should I be looking for in another computer? I know bigger is better but my wallet doesn’t agree! I’m also a little fuzzy on how to get the two computers to talk with each other sending audio and midi data. Is there hardware I need to look at? Or software solutions?

Thanks for any advice/suggestions!


Hi Greg, I’ll try to help, maybe someone else can as well. As for two computers (Mac-Only) there are a number of ways to send osc data from computer to computer. Apps like Osculator will convert midi to just about anything you can image. You can also setup a custom port for VDMX to send or receive OSC data. I’d recommend a 2015 MacBook Pro or higher if you can get your hands on one. The newer MBP’s support external GPU’s in case you need more power. I used to run VDMX off of a 2012 MacBook Pro for years, but it had a GeForce 650M? chip inside of it. Additionally, if you’re internal Mac HD is an SSD and you replace the internal CD drive with a caddy and SSD, it should have better performance for video playback.

May be worth a try to download an older version of VDMX and give it a go. (Just don’t use .mp4 videos)

David would know best, but I figured I’d chime in. I know plenty of people still using their 2012 MBP’s for visuals, programming, music production, and even live coding (although, not all at the same time).


Thanks for the info ProjectileObjects. I’ve already upgraded the HD to an SSD but didnt think about replacing the CD drive with another, I’ll look into it. I’ll also look into Osculator and maybe upgrading the video chip

One more quick question. If I replace my cd drive with another SSD can I theoretically run vdmx from one drive and then my audio stuff from the other? I’d need to make some kind of RAID situation right? Then would I be limited by the RAM? I have 8GB and I think thats as high as the motherboard will allow me to go.

I appreciate any info!

Hi Greg, sorry for the late reply. I would keep all of my apps on the main SSD (not optical drive SATA connection). I believe they are different SATA connectors and the bandwidth of the primary drive will be better. That being said, keep all your apps on the internal SSD and put a Hard drive or SSD where the optical drive is, and keep your video files there. The app will run smoother if you are sourcing your video content off a drive other than the primary one running your apps.