Warning - this is a very rough guide without prices and where to buy them I'm only talking about what I've experienced and used as a composer that's used LS in the last 2 years.
Hope it is of help.
So you're still not sure about it, I know, I was there once. You would like to switch to Mac and you might be wondering if Logic Studio is good for you... well as I've written before... if Apples and Logic Studio are good enough for:
I don't mean to say "stars use LS so should you" I asure you personally, LS is such a complete package that I often find myself on the road, composing with just my laptop and my headphones... no audio interface no nothing... later on I can ad vocals, record guitar... whatever I want.
iMacs, MacBooks and MacBook Pros
I know most of you will get iMacs and MacBooks, and the answer is YES Logic Studio works great on both, except of course if you want to record projects that need gazillions of tracks and plugins running at the same time. Go take a peek at the MacBook stress test post (remember it's my old white MacBook so imagine what you could do with the newer, faster ones).
Buy them or sell them used
If they are too pricey for you let me tell you that used Macs are also totally worth it.
If you want to buy or sell a used Mac and you want a rough idea on what the right price should be you can checkout this guide or for a quick appraisal checkout this site.
I'll keep it simple: if a simple MacBook can handle LS imagine a MacPro... it is usually the studio types who need MPs but hey, if you have the money...
- iMacs, MacBook 13' old and MacBook Pros: You can go for FireWire interfaces as all these computers have FireWire ports. I've writen a small guide on budget FireWire audio interfaces and as of December 2008 prices on those audio interfaces have dropped a little bit.
- MacBook 13' new: No FireWire for you! so you are 'stuck' with USB my personal picks on USB audio interfaces are: - wait, you have to consider that I only recommend these because I have used them:
1. Behringer U-Control UCA202, does what it says, using it for small venue performances with MainStage.
2. Presonus AudioBox USB, this is a 2 in 1er (Audio + MIDI) sounds clean and you get 48 v. phantom power.
3. Alesis Multimix 8 USB 2.0, man... how can I say it, this is a mixer AND an audio interface at the same time, I plug different instruments to it and I can record straight trhough it. No hiccups no noise no nasty surprises.
Sure, read this post, although... prices may have changed (dropped).
While some people claim that the minis will disappear I still see them alive and kicking on the Apple Store.
Yes, Logic Express is a very viable starting solution for your home studio needs, it has almost all the features of Logic Studio.
How powerful Logic Express is, some quick numbers:
- Up to 255 independent mono or stereo audio channels
- Up to 255 independent software instrument channels
- Up to 255 auxiliary channel strips
- 64 busses
- 15 inserts, 8 sends per channel
- 32 multi-assignable channel groups for mix and edit
Included Instruments from Logic Studio & GarageBand
- EFM1 (FM Synth)
- ES E (Ensemble Synth)
- ES M (Monophonic Synth)
- ES P (Polyphonic Synth)
- ES1 Synth (Analog Synth)
- ES2 Synth (Subtractive Synth)
- EVOC20 PS (Vocoder Synth)
- EXS24 Sampler
- Ultrabeat (Drum Synthesizer/Sampler/Sequencer) MO
- External Instrument plug-in
- Klopfgeist (Metronome Sound Generator)
- Test Oscillator
- All 24 GarageBand instruments
Included effects from Logic Studio
- Amp Modeling
- Bass Amp, Guitar Amp
- Echo, Sample Delay, Stereo Delay, Tape Delay
- Bitcrusher, Clip Distortion, Distortion, Distortion II, Overdrive, Phase Distortion
- Compressor, DeEsser, Ducker, Enveloper, Expander, Limiter, Noise Gate, Preset Multipressor, Silver Compressor, Silver Gate
- Channel EQ, DJ EQ, Fat EQ, High Cut, High Pass Filter, High Shelving EQ, Low Cut, Low Pass Filter, Low Shelving EQ, Parametric EQ, Silver EQ
- AutoFilter, EVOC 20 Filterbank, EVOC 20 TrackOscillator, Fuzz-Wah, Spectral Gate
- Direction Mixer, Stereo Spread
- BPM Counter, Correlation Meter, Level Meter, Tuner
- Chorus, Ensemble, Flanger, Microphaser, Modulation Delay, Phaser, Ringshifter, Rotor Cabinet, Scanner Vibrato, Spreader, Tremolo
- Pitch Correction, Pitch Shifter II, Vocal Transformer
- AVerb, EnVerb, GoldVerb, PlatinumVerb, SilverVerb
- Denoiser, Enhance Timing, Exciter, Grooveshifter, Speech Enhancer, SubBass
- Gain, I/O, Test Oscillator
Again... I can only talk about my personal favorites, I'm not into pitching gear I've never used, I'm sorry if your personal favorite or the one you're planning to buy is not here:
M-Audio Axiom 49: Once I got used to its keys it became an instant favorite. There is nothing particularly wrong with the keys, it's just that you need time to adapt to the feel of any keyboard. It has you'd want from a MIDI controller like: pitch wheel, faders, knobs, toggle buttons and... PADS.
Edirol PCR 500: Absolutely a no-thrills controller and a similar featured alternative to the Axiom 49 but I'm more used to its keys (keyboard player here).
Korg nanoKontrol: Tiny footprint, 4 scenes 8 faders, 8 knobs, toggle buttons... it's pefect for any DJ or electronic musician, couple this with your softsynths or effects and you're all set!
Well... I think that's about it... simple and basic... now go read some reviews!