How to Build the Best PC for Music Production and Audio Editing

Ableton Live 10 Release Press Image - building a PC for music production and audio work The builds in this guide are designed to work very well with Ableton Live and other music production and audio editing (DAW) programs.

Last updated: November 2018

Audio production can be one of the more challenging purposes for building a PC. Special care must be taken not only to know how your main hardware affects performance, but also to ensure maximum compatibility with important peripherals, interfaces, and Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) software options. That’s why it’s important to build a computer that will efficiently handle these audio-specific tasks, which are some of the most varied processes the average PC user will perform.

That's where this guide comes in, to help you with everything you'll need to know! We’ll explain which components are the most important for audio work, and how to get the most out of your new workstation.

We have separated this guide into four main sections:

In Section 1, we provide a selection of example balanced builds for different budgets, and how to look out for parts yourself if you’re upgrading.

In Section 2, we have an explanation of the importance of the main PC components in relation to audio editing. This is geared more towards users looking to customise their build on a budget outside of our example builds.

In Section 3, we look at the big wide world of professional audio-specific components and peripherals. This is where you will find information on sound cards, DAC/AMPs, USB interfaces, microphones, and a note about headphone and speaker/monitor options.

Finally, in Section 4, we cover some of the most prominent music production and audio editing software that is available today, ranging from the free open-source programs to the top-end license packages.

Section 1: Example PC Builds for Music Production and Audio Editing

Before we get into this section, a note: you can never really discuss audio production without starting a fight about PC vs Mac. Now, there are two reasons that our article will be entirely focused on PC. First, of course, Logical Increments is a research and information site about building PCs, and that is what all of our resources are about. But second, and more importantly for our present context, a PC has so many more customization options when it comes to additional audio-centric components through PCIe cards and USB right now that a PC would be more suited for the majority of audio-focused users. The only factor that significantly shifts the debate in the other direction is portability, as then the 15” Macbook Pro models that come with i7 CPUs are viable options.

Now, on to the topic at hand:

When looking at building a PC for audio production, a lot of your build will be determined by what exactly you are looking to produce. For smaller scale productions (solo podcasts, student projects, etc.) you really don’t need some supercomputer with the power of a thousand suns to get the job done—yet you still might want some of the peripherals detailed further below, so your total budget could include them in order to give you a good all-around starting setup. For professional independent and studio setups, however, the sky really is the limit.

These builds have been designed around very different price points and (unlike what you'll find in our general build recommendation chart) feature very different components to provide a snapshot of what sort of builds you can put together for audio production. As you go through this section, also remember that these are the core components alone. If you want even more hardware, take a look at our third section below.

Note: When building a new PC, you’ll need to install an operating system. For maximum compatibility with available music production and audio editing (DAW) software, we recommend using Windows. You can purchase Windows here. Some people are eligible to get Windows free through school or work, so you may also look into that.

Starter Audio Workstation Build ($600)

This PC build is perfect for students and folks who are new to audio production work. Being a very capable, all-around production PC is what we are aiming for here. The focus is on decent storage, audio editing capabilities, and plenty of upgrade options down the line. A great bang for your buck build!

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 2400G
Graphics Card: Stock (Vega 11 iGPU)
Motherboard: ASRock AB350 Pro4*
RAM: 16GB DDR4-2400 (2 X 8GB)
Storage 1: 256GB SSD
Storage 2: 2TB HDD
Power Supply: SeaSonic 620W
CPU Cooler: Stock
Case: DeepCool Tesseract
Operating System: Windows 10

*Note: With this motherboard, you need to check with the supplier that you are getting a newer board, not the older model—otherwise this will need a BIOS update to work with the Ryzen+ CPU.

With this build, we are taking advantage of the superb Ryzen APU; but we're also maintaining a huge potential upgrade path in the current Ryzen platform from AMD. The 2400G is the best of the bunch for the budget, and gives an excellent 4-core/8-thread CPU and a solid integrated GPU also.

Although for a lot of other build guides on the site we start with 8GB of RAM (or less), as we’re focusing on editing here we have jumped straight in with a 16GB kit. This will help the system when doing more CPU-intensive tasks and, coupled with the SSD, will give the system plenty of speed for the price.

To support this build, we have gone with a full-size standard ATX motherboard, as (together with the chosen case) that mobo leaves you with mountains of upgrade possibilities for the future.

Home Professional Audio Workstation Build ($1500)

Designed to be a solid professional workstation, this PC comes bursting at the seams with performance. This build is very much designed around being the at-home professional studio PC. Not only does it come with incredible performance for most users, but it has plenty of customization options to suit your needs.

CPU: Intel i7-9700K
Graphics Card: GTX 1060 6GB
Motherboard: Asrock Z390 Extreme4
RAM: 32GB DDR4 (4 X 8GB)
Storage 1: 512GB M.2 SSD
Storage 2: 2TB HDD
Power Supply: EVGA 850W
CPU Cooler: Corsair H105
Case: Corsair 750D
Operating System: Windows 10

With the i7-8700K at its heart, this is a solid high-performance PC which comes with just about everything a new professional looking for their first serious purchase could ever need.

When compared to the first build, we’re getting a nice jump in core/thread count, not to mention getting a meaty 32GB of DDR4 RAM. Package this all together with a super-fast M.2 SSD and you have a PC that will fly through most editing tasks.

Productivity Monster Audio Workstation Build ($2500)

When you absolutely, positively need to know that your PC will be able to handle everything you throw at it in terms of audio production—this is the sort of high-performance, professional-grade build you need to be looking at. Despite the monstrous music production and audio editing prowess of this build, it amazingly still manages to leave the door open for future upgrades as well (pending new releases).

CPU: AMD TR 2950X
Graphics Card: GTX 1070 Ti
Motherboard: Asus Prime X399-A
RAM: 64GB DDR4 (8 X 8GB)
Storage 1: 500GB Samsung 970 EVO SSD
Storage 2: 4TB HDD
Power Supply: SeaSonic 1000W
CPU Cooler: Enermax Liqtech TR4
Case: Corsair 760T
Operating System: Windows 10

When you are able to pay the big bucks for top-shelf performance, this is the result. Starting with the mighty 16-core/32-thread Threadripper 2950X from AMD and matching the parts to that, every component here screams top-end performance. This is very much the maximum performance you’ll need to run everything under the sun when it comes to audio editing. The CPU is supported by filling the 8 RAM slots on the motherboard for a frightening 64GB of DDR4 memory, as well as one of Samsung’s new flagship 970 EVO M.2 drives.

Remember, these are simply three examples of builds at very different price points, but they are not the be-all and end-all when it comes to building. For a huge number of balanced builds to suit any budget, take a look at our main parts page; and feel free to comment on this article for further advice!

Ableton Live 10 Release Press Image - building a PC for music production and audio work

Section 2: Choosing PC Hardware for Music Production and Audio Editing

CPU

The CPU is the foundation of an audio production PC. The processor’s core count and speed will determine how quickly you can accomplish various editing tasks. If your PC doesn’t have a powerful processor, it’s going to be slow, regardless of anything else. Modern editing software will take advantage of many CPU cores and hyperthreading, so investing in a good CPU is crucial when building a PC for audio production.

Generally speaking, the CPU is where you should invest the largest part of your budget. Serious builders should be considering a 6-core CPU at a minimum or a 4-core/8-thread CPU as a viable alternative.

In most situations, having more CPU cores should give you better performance. With that said, relatively modest projects will likely be just fine with an 8- or even-lower-core-count CPU, but depending on the complexity of your project and the latency you require, you may want to upgrade to one of the monstrous 10-, 14-, or even 18-core CPU options on the market.

Low-tier CPU

For budget builds, we recommend the R5 2400G. This 4-core/8-thread CPU brings excellent editing performance down to the lowest price ever, thanks to its high core and thread count. The R5 2400G will comfortably edit simpler audio files (i.e. so long as you’re not creating a super-complex edit with hours of lossless format audio).

The i5-9600K is also a good midrange option, although somewhat less budget-friendly. The i5-9600K is a great CPU with 6 cores and 6 threads. So, although it has less threads than the AMD offering above, the high single-core performance makes up for this.

Mid-tier CPU

The next logical step up to where you’ll notice the difference for your money is the i7-9700K. The i7-9700K offers even higher clock speeds, and a total of 8 cores.

AMD's newest Ryzen 7 CPUs are also good options in this price range, as—although they do not quite have the single-core performance of the 8th-generation Intel CPUs—they make up for that with their excellent core and thread counts.

High-tier CPU

After this point, you are going to start spending money on higher core counts with diminishing returns for your added investment.

Intel’s most popular chips for the professionals are the 14-core i9-7940X and the 16-core i9-7960X, but they would offer only a couple percent more performance in some areas (and a couple percent less in other areas) than the i7 CPUs described above.

For the money, if it is simply power for productivity that you are after, the TR 2950X is a great option, with its ridiculous 16 cores and 32 threads. When compared to the Intel offerings at this point, it does just edge them out on productive performance for your hard-earned dollars.

Graphics Card

One of the things in the current market you can relax about is the GPU for your build. If you are using your workstation for more than audio production, then you are going to need to make sure that you do have a balanced system. But just by itself, the GPU is not really utilized when it comes to audio work.

This is why, in the first of our example builds in section one above, we were more than happy to recommend an APU (a CPU with integrated GPU).

For most music production and general DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) builds, the GTX 1060 6GB will give you plenty of power for any and all needs. However, if you are also planning to use the workstation for 3D Rendering, high-resolution video editing, and/or gaming, then you may want to consider upgrading to the GTX 1080 or the RTX 2070.

RAM

Having enough RAM is critical when looking for good all-around performance for your build. For music production and audio editing, having 16GB is a reasonable minimum to ensure headroom for all relevant applications. Then, as you go up in the performance of your CPU, you can jump up to 32GB or 64GB of RAM for a top-end system.

A useful alternative to just throwing more RAM at the problem is spending a bit more on faster RAM. Especially if you are happy with overclocking your CPU, you can get very noticeable performance improvements from 3000MHz (or higher) RAM over the standard 2133MHz. If you know you are not going to be running a lot of programs at once, then this is a major alternative to simply doubling your RAM.

Storage (HDD, SSD)

When looking at your storage in a workstation, workflow is king. You can have the fastest system in the world, but if the CPU cannot simply read the data from the HDD fast enough, then that performance is wasted.

The general rule of thumb is that you want a dedicated drive to store the files you are editing, and then a main storage drive once you are done with them. This is why all of our examples come with 2 drives as standard, a smaller-capacity (faster, more expensive) SSD and a larger-capacity (slower, cheaper) HDD.

As you go up in budget, you can get even more elaborate by having one drive for your operating system and key programs, one for project files in use, and a third as a short-term cache drive. You can also get quite smart with this, as you’ll find a lot of the newer M.2 SSDs have super-high sustained read/write speeds to and from the drive. So, although they are more expensive, you are paying for pure performance.

An alternative to this or a further possibility (especially if avoiding data loss is a high priority) is setting up multiple drives in a RAID configuration; this can be achieved by mounting additional drives inside the case if there is space, or by purchasing an external enclosure.

Motherboard

For an audio workstation, the motherboard choice usually comes down to a very simple question of, “how many things can I plug into this?” For that reason, we would usually recommend full-size ATX boards, so that you are not losing a PCIe slot on the board. Losing a PCIe slot may seriously limit you, especially if you’re browsing the sound card list in the third section below.

A few other considerations when selecting a motherboard are likely to include exactly what the onboard sound is capable of handling in terms of bitrates and the like, the number of available USB ports, and the number of available SATA ports.

When it comes to audio processing, modern motherboards often have very good integrated sound. If you’re especially concerned about the quality of sound as you’re editing, however, check reviews of the motherboards you’re considering in order to make sure the audio quality will meet your needs. As mentioned above, a good additional purchase for such concerned users is a PCIe sound card.

Finally, as mentioned above, think about how many hard drives you’re planning to have. While most PC users get away with having one or two, editors are very often strapped for storage as you focus on maintaining good workflow. Standard SSDs and HDDs run off of SATA ports, whereas the super-fast M.2 SSDs run off a special M.2 port on the board (or can be mounted onto a PCIe slot adapter and plugged into the board that way).

Power Supply (PSU)

The last thing you want is for your PC to instantly power down through lack of power, or even to short out the entire board from an overload. So, it is important to not only get a power supply that will handle what you throw at it, but also one which has good power safety features in the unfortunate case of a power surge. For this reason, we would strongly recommend getting a power supply only from a well-known and reputable manufacturer (such as SeaSonic, Corsair, Silverstone, Cooler Master, Rosewill, be quiet!, or EVGA), and to opt for an 80+ rating of Bronze or better—which will also ensure your PC uses electricity efficiently, and runs cooler and quieter.

Professional Studio Audio Work - building a PC for music production and audio work

Section 3: Peripherals and Specialized Components for Music Production and Audio Editing

PCIe Sound Cards

Although built-in motherboard sound components have come a long way, which has made investment in a sound card have more diminishing returns than ever, no other internal component solution quite beats having a dedicated card to handle your audio—especially when driving high-end/high-impedence headphones or speakers, and especially when precise quality is everything.

Entry Level: Asus Xonar DGX GX2.5 ($40)

With a dedicated audio processor rated at 96KHz/24bit, this is a good solid first step for the price. You also get the capability for true Dolby Headphone 5.1 HD sound, which is a huge bonus if you’re going to be outputting any audio to 5.1 and listening to it back with capable headphones.

Upgrade: Creative Sound Blaster Audigy RX ($60)

For the extra $20, you’re paying for a little more in the form of connectivity (multiple mic inputs) as well as 7.1 output. It is also rated at 192KHz stereo, so again, you’re getting a little more flexibility when it comes to listening back to that audio accurately.

Professional: Asus Essence STX II ($220)

If you’re looking into building a serious system without an external DAC/AMP, then a high-performance/high-cost sound card like this may be a required expense. Asus have produced a top-end, professional-grade card which includes a 600ohm headphone amp, a shockingly low (for an internal PC component!) 123dB signal-to-noise ratio, as well as swappable amp sockets so you can customize the card yourself to better suit your setup once you have it installed. On top of all that, you also get support for everything from Dolby Home Theater to high-sensitivity IEM headphones.

External DACs and AMPs

While an internal sound card is a great choice in terms of convenience, reduction of cable clutter, and proximity to other input ports—the quality of any internal audio processor will be mitigated by the electrical interference inside of your PC case. For this reason, many serious audio production users have turned to external digital-to-audio converters (DACs) and amplifiers (AMPs) to fulfill their needs. The low end of these is as low (price-wise) as the low end of sound cards, but the high end here is as extremely high as the high end for other audio equipment like speakers, microphones, and headphones.

Entry Level: Creative Sound Blaster E1 ($45)

A great value DAC/AMP for beginners. Not too much precision in the volume control on this unit and minimal other features, but otherwise this is a convenient, solid budget solution.

Upgrade: Schiit Fulla 2 ($100)

For those that are starting to get serious about audio work, the Fulla 2 from Schiit audio is a huge amount of quality in a tiny package. This thing has the power to drive even very-high-impedence monitors, and also comes equipped with a pro-grade 1/4" headphone output (and an included converter for standard 3.5mm jacks) as well as a full-size, smooth volume knob for extremely precise volume control.

Professional: Audio-GD NFB 11.28 ($330)

If you can get past the very outdated design of their website, you'll notice that the huge increase in price at this stage is accompanied by a huge increase in features. This DAC/AMP is totally qualified for use in a professional audio workstation, with every input and output option you are likely to desire. (Plus, the thing looks amazing, but that's not as important . . . or is it?)

Studio: Questyle CMA400i ($800)

For full-time audio technicians, professional musicians, and luxury home users—there is this DAC/AMP that costs more on its own than the entire low-tier PC build in section one of this article. The few users who have been able to afford this DAC/AMP monster as an add-on have given it a perfect review score, and it boasts all of the capabilities of the above devices plus additional features, additional quality, and direct XLR support.

USB Audio Interfaces

If you’re going to be recording with your workstation before editing (and especially if you aren't going for a USB microphone), then you will be needing a USB interface. In a nutshell, it takes your various audio inputs and then transmits them into your PC.

As with each of these peripheral and audio-specific component sections, there are a couple of different quality grades here, depending on if you are just starting out, looking to spend a little more on some added features or quality, or wanting a more top-end interface.

Entry Level: Behringer U-Phoria UMC22 ($40)

Starting off our list is the decent UMC22. The interface is designed as a no-frills style interface, so you get a simple 2-input/2-output low-latency interface with gain control for the channels. It also has built-in phantom power, if your device requires it.

Upgrade: Focusrite Scarlett Solo ($100)

Coming in at $100, what you are paying the extra for on the Solo, relative to teh entry level option, is build quality. It has superb sample rates as well as frequency response, all while having a low latency. One of the more recognisable pieces of hardware thanks to its colour, but it is also by reputation that they are one of the best interfaces around for the price.

Professional: Focusrite Scarlett 18i8 ($320)

This interface is a beefed up version of the one above, now sporting support for four inputs instead of one—definitely a pro-grade piece of hardware, with a price tag to match.

Studio: Universal Audio Apollo Twin ($900)

The big boy of the interface world for PCs, and with one hell of a price tag for that quality. When you absolutely must have the best quality, regardless of price, the Apollo Twin is what you purchase. Everything from the real-time UAD processing to the range of plugins that Universal Audio provide with their products . . . an audio engineer's fantasy.

Microphones

A lot of true beginners in the world of music production or audio editing are likely to go for a popular USB microphone—like the Blue Yeti Snowball. There is certainly nothing wrong with that choice, per se, as a USB microphone can not be beaten in terms of convenience and ease-of-use (they are typically plug-and-play devices).

But this section (and this article in general) is geared toward serious users who prioritize the overall quality, features, and future upgrade capabilities of their workstation over convenience. For that reason, the microphones we recommend here are XLR mics, which will require an audio interface (like one of those in the section above) in order to connect to your PC. The good news is that an entry level user who would have otherwise bought a Blue Yeti Snowball for $80 can instead buy the $40 entry level mic from this section and the $40 entry level USB audio interface from the above section to get a better starting kit for the same price!

Entry Level: Shure SM-48 ($40)

An inexpensive and incredibly durable dynamic microphone from one of the industry-leading manufacturers of professional mics. With nearly the audio quality of Shure's more popular SM-58 at less than half the price, this is a strongly underrated product for beginners in the world of audio production.

Upgrade: Audio Technica AT2020 ($100)

This is the only condenser mic in this list, which means that it uses a newer and often more sensitive recording technology (which also requires external "phantom" power, and tends to have a worse price-to-performance ratio). Nevertheless, this is a popular and well-reviewed piece of recording equipment—and for those of you who are strongly tempted by the convenience of USB mics, it also has a USB variant for $30 more.

Professional: Heil Sound PR 30 ($260)

A fairly significant step in cost, but what you're getting for the price is a durable, high-quality, professional-grade dynamic microphone which—much like the top-tier DAC/AMP above—has flawless reviews.

Studio: Shure SM-7B ($400)

A strong choice for any audio producer, the Shure SM-7B has featured in professional music production work for decades. This is a piece of truly top-shelf, pro-grade audio equipment for less than $500.

Regarding Headphones and Speakers

When it comes to true audio quality (so we’re talking about a flat response to accurately work with when editing), you can go on and on all day long when looking at what headphones and/or speakers to buy. Any respectful designer of professional-grade products will post the response curves out there, as they show editors, engineers, and any other audio professional exactly how the device should handle. Yet even with that, there are exceptions.

A great place to start for selecting headphones is this headphone guide put together by users of the subreddit /r/Headphones. For speakers, there are similar resources in the forms of this chart of bookshelf speakers and this chart of tower speakers put together by the Reddit user /u/AverageJoeAudiophile, but those charts are somewhat dated.

In essence here, you need the right headphones and speakers for the job. For audio playback, there are plenty of great studio monitors out there and plenty of headphones designed for specific purposes. The best advice I can give here is to use your ears. If possible, test the headphones; go and listen to the speakers in a music store; and do your research, so you can be sure your choice is right for you!

Still have questions about equipment?

That's not too surprising! There is a massive variety of options out there for peripherals and components related to music production and audio work at all budget levels. With broad questions, such as looking for reviews or overviews, you should search for YouTube videos on the relevant subject. With more specific questions and concerns, I would recommend seeking the help of folks that already have a strong knowledge base. Reddit, for instance, is home to numerous helpful audio-centric communities; some that are highly worth checking out are /r/Audiophile, /r/Headphones, /r/AudioEngineering, and /r/BudgetAudiophile. iZotope screenshot - building a PC for music production and audio work

Section 4: Digital Audio Workstation Software

Alright, so you’ve got a PC now, or at least you have one in mind. Next, you’ll need one or more programs to do your design work. Below is an overview of the most prominent pieces of software for music production and audio editing.

What you’ll find with a lot of the software listed here is that they don’t need something super-fast to run them. Where the power of your PC comes into play is how fast they can perform various edits and effects, as well as when you are creating the final master and encoding your files.

Adobe Audition CC ($240 annual subscription for updates)

As part of Adobe’s creative suite of software, Audition is excellently suited for those who are providing audio content to use in their other software like Premiere Pro. As such, you will often find small multi-user studios doing quicker touch ups for video editing in this software. It is available as a monthly or yearly subscription; however, it is probably only worth it if you’re using other Adobe products.

Avid Pro Tools ($299 annual subscription for updates)

Like Adobe, Avid have their own audio program which compliments their video software. However, one of the main positives for Avid is their user-friendly interface and arguably better sound processing plug-ins and tools. Where Pro Tools really shines is (like Adobe Audition) how it performs with other Avid products. So if you prefer their general design and function, this is a no brainer!

Ableton Live ($499 single license)

One of the big hitters of the recording world is Ableton Live. The main advantage you will find in this software is super-fast multitrack recording and MIDI sequencing, making it a must for a professional recording studio when it comes to recording multiple sources for a track. Where there's a mixing desk, Ableton is usually not far behind.

iZotope RX ($1199 single license)

Rather than an editor, iZotope is an audio repair tool with so, so many features to fix and improve your audio. Because of the price of this, you’ll normally only see this in a professional studio setup. Yet, for a piece of software which has a simple interface, the tools are very in-depth. As someone who was stupid enough to use a shotgun mic to record someone’s speech in a high-reverb room, I can personally attest to how powerful this software will be for your audio.

FL Studio ($199 single license)

Personally, I think it's a shame they shortened the FruityLoops name to FL! Where Ableton leaned more towards studio work, FL Studio leans more towards DJ mixing and editing. But that doesn't mean it is lacking for features! As a music production suite, FL Studio is a favourite for the popular plugins it comes with, not to mention the fact that, if you purchase the producer edition, you get lifetime updates for the software (take that, monthly subscriptions!).

Cubase Pro ($740 single license)

The top dog of the composer world, Cubase Pro brings a superbly designed interface as well as a great feature set for composers and aspiring artists. Crucially, this is one piece of software that can utilize every piece of your hardware to the maximum to give you optimum performance, no matter what you are running on. Because of this, Cubase has become a natural choice for a lot of new users on simpler PCs, as they can get the benefit of optimization for their current system and know that when they do upgrade to something more substantial, the software can take advantage of that performance boost. The one downside for smaller systems is that this does take up a lot of drive space, meaning most users need to set aside at least 500GB for core software and plugins.

Reason ($400 single license)

Reason is a little bit different from the other options, mainly because it is designed to work as if you had a physical hardware rack connecting things—like a mixer, samplers, processors, and so on—together. What results is a piece of software which is oddly intuitive for someone who is used to using a hardware setup like that, and the flexibility/modularity that comes with, but less intuitive for typical digital producers. That being said, out of all the software listed, Reason often wins out in personal recommendations thanks to its stability and phenomenal customer support team, making it a life saver when you need to know a piece of software can get the job done!

Reaper ($60 personal use / $225 commercial use)

What's that? A company that still supports Windows XP?! Think of it this way: a closed off studio (for security reasons), which doesn't have internet access and doesn't need the next big update from Windows . . . a lot of these studios still run Windows XP, because it works and the systems don't need anything else. In steps Reaper with that support, but also importantly it does work in the same format all the way up to Windows 10. So, when the studio is done with it, that track can be taken and used by the super-fast, online-capable systems with confidence that it'll work just the same. What's more, any paid license includes the current version with all of its future updates—and a free upgrade to the next major version and all of its subsequent updates, when they are released—making it a fan for long-term adopters.

Audacity (free)

The audio junky's free tool for all! Audacity is a free, open-source program that can be used by anyone and everyone. Because of this, there are hundreds (and hundreds!) of free user-created plugins, which make it a great first start for your audio needs. One of my favourites is "chris's dynamic compressor" (no relation, haha!), as frankly I am yet to hear a better compressor for voice than what this provides—so much so that I still pass my audio for voice over through it when I'm creating a quick voice track for demonstration purposes. It is stuff like that which makes Audacity such a popular and flexible tool for people making their first big steps into the audio world.

Cakewalk (free)

A previously-premium professional DAW whose basic version recently became freely available, in a maneuver that may be familiar to video editos aware of Davinci Resolve. If you're going the Audacity route, it is likely worthwhile for you to at least check out this option as well—to see which of them better suits your needs, workflow, and style.

Avid Pro screenshot - building a PC for Music Production and Audio Work

Conclusion

A great music production or audio editing PC is one that allows you to do all of the work you want to do, while never getting in your way by slowing you down or limiting you. In order to achieve this, put the weight of your resources toward your build’s CPU, followed (in order) by storage space and RAM. And don't forget, when you're budgeting for your build, to factor in the cost of audio-specific peripherals like those in section three above.

Consider following one of the example builds above in section one, so that you can be sure that your build will be suited for its role and also reasonably balanced. And always check for compatibility between the programs you want to use and the hardware you want to buy. (We do our research here, but it would be almost impossible for our team to check every possible combination of software and hardware on our own.)

Follow this guide, and in no time you’ll have a workstation PC up and running for audio editing and music production!

About Us

Chris is a contributing writer for Logical Increments, and has worked in the gaming and technology industries as a community manager for many years, as well as a live streamer. He has been building PC's for over 11 years.

When Chris is not here creating builds and guides, he can be found at University, studying for a BSc in Video Production as he makes the transition over to the film industry from gaming. You can read more about his journey on his website.

Logical Increments helps more than a million PC builders each year with hardware recommendations for any budget.

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