12 Best Desktop Computers for Music Production (2023 Guide)

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This is a guide covering the best desktop computers for music production.

Are you on the hunt for the best computer for music production? Well, look no more.

There is no doubt that laptops are a more convenient option when it comes to producing music but they certainly cannot achieve the quality and unlock the musical dimensions that a desktop computer can.

There is a lot that goes into consideration before investing in a machine for the purpose of music production.

Audio processing is one of the most CPU-intensive tasks people do on computers today.

The fact that it relies on real-time processing brings more prospects of a computer into the picture.

When it comes to music production, also pay attention to how much RAM a computer has, you’ll want at least 8GB and 16GB or 32GB is obviously better but not needed.

In a hurry? Here’s the overview table:

How to Choose the Best Desktop for Music Production?

Processing Power: The central processing unit (CPU) is the most important component in a computer for music production as it determines the speed and power of the system. You should look for a CPU that is at least a quad-core processor, such as Intel Core i5 or i7, or an equivalent from AMD.

Memory: A good amount of RAM (Random Access Memory) is crucial for music production as it enables the computer to handle multiple tasks and applications at the same time without slowing down. Look for a computer with at least 8GB of RAM and the ability to upgrade it later on.

Storage: The hard drive is where all your music files, samples, and software will be stored. A solid-state drive (SSD) is a faster and more reliable option for music production compared to traditional hard disk drives (HDD). Look for a computer with at least a 256GB SSD, or consider a larger size if you plan on storing a lot of files.

Connectivity: You need to ensure that the computer has all the ports and connectivity options you need, such as USB, Ethernet, and audio in/out. Additionally, if you plan on using external hardware, make sure the computer has the necessary ports, such as Firewire or Thunderbolt.

Performance: You need a computer that is fast, reliable, and runs smoothly. Look for a desktop computer with a dedicated graphics card (GPU) to enhance performance and enable you to use more demanding software and plugins.

12 Best Desktop Computers for Music Production

1. Apple iMac M1 2021

Computer Features:

  • Immersive 24-inch 4.5K Retina display
  • Strikingly thin
  • Studio-quality three-mic array

When it comes to processing power, almost no device can supersede Apple.

This 24-inch screen has surprisingly a lot packed inside it.

With Apple, you have the entire CPU unit inside your display screen which saves quite the space.

The M1 chip offers an 8 core CPU delivering extremely fast rendering speed.

Along with that, it offers 8GB of RAM and 512 GB of SSD storage.

Music production involves a lot of equipment being connected to your computer simultaneously and so with this iMac you get a couple of thunderbolt ports along with multiple USB 4 and USB 3 ports.

A sound system featuring six speakers is another bonus for music producers.

The display is as good as it gets with Apple and there are 4 device colors to choose from.

All that makes this the best computer for music production.

My Pros With this Computer:

  • 24-inch vibrant display
  • Minimally clean look
  • 8GB RAM, 256GB ROM
  • 512GB SSD
  • Six Speaker Sound system
  • Excellent rendering speed
  • Available in 4 colors
  • Wide variety of ports

My Cons With this Computer:

  • iMac cannot be upgraded in terms of specifications

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2. DELL XPS 8940

Computer Features:

  • Powerful 10th Gen Intel Hexa-Core i5-10400 Processor
  • 16GB DDR4
  • 1TB HDD

Next up we have quite the computer from DELL.

This tower computer is a 10th generation core i5.

With the latest DDR4 RAM that goes as high as 32GB (after upgrading), audio rendering is not something that you have to worry about.

DELL introduces UHD graphics which makes up for all the video work. In addition, the clock can be boosted up to 4.3GHz which is very impressive.

The SSD storage can go as high as 512GB while the HDD drive can be maxed out at 1TB.

My Pros With this Computer:

  • Upgradable device
  • DDR4 latest RAM (16,20,32)GB
  • Extremely fast processing
  • Very high clock speed (each task is done at a very fast rate)
  • 1TB HDD, 512GB SSD
  • UHD 630 Vibrant graphics

My Cons With this Computer:

  • Graphic visuals are not as impressive
  • Takes up more space

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3. ACER Aspire TC-885

Computer Features:

  • 9th Generation Intel Core i3 9100 Processor

Next up we have the tower of speed from Acer.

This 9th generation core i7 alongside the gigantic clock speed of 4.2GHz.

To get the heavy job done steadily it has 16GB of RAM and a 2TB HDD.

This device is concentrated more around storage and making use of the built-in integrated chips to boost the speed which is why it does not feature a separate graphics card and rather relies on intel Graphics Chip.

My Pros With this Computer:

  • Excellent clock speed
  • 16GB RAM, 2TB HDD
  • 512 GB SSD
  • Wide variety of ports
  • Bluetooth 5.0
  • Includes a keyboard and mouse

My Cons With this Computer:

  • Not very versatile as it doesn’t feature a graphics card

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4. Apple iMac M1 2020


Computer Features:

  • 27-inch (diagonal) 5120-by-2880 Retina 5K display
  • 3.1GHz 6-core 10th-generation Intel Core i5
  • AMD Radeon Pro 5300 graphics
  • Two Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) ports

Back at this beauty from 2020 with a brighter and wider screen.

The retina display goes beyond the market standards and jumps at a 5K display which well speaks for itself.

This iMac comes in multiple SSD options of 256GB and 512GB and possesses a clock speed that goes as high as 3.8GHz.

The number of ports is not as high as you’d expect but regardless, coming from Apple, its worth is self-explanatory as any Apple device, due to its power, can qualify as the best computer for music production.

My Pros With this Computer:

  • 27-inch vibrant display
  • 5K display
  • 512GB SSD
  • Excellent clock speed
  • High processing power

My Cons With this Computer:

  • Lesser variety of ports
  • Not upgradable


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5. HP Envy All in one Computer

Computer Features:

  • 34″ Screen
  • i7 7700 Processor
  • 16GB RAM

If you like the idea of everything packed within a screen then here is a device you should consider.

The premium 34 inches massive screen is a container of speed that will not let any process hinder the rendering and processing of music.

Similar to the iMac, this All in one design has all the hardware equipment you need.

Inside it is a core i7 processor accompanied with 32GB RAM and a 1TB SSD. Furthermore, the clock speed goes as high as 2.40GHz.

My Pros With this Computer:

  • Bigger and better screen size
  • Core i7
  • All in one design
  • 32GB RAM, 1TB SSD
  • AMD Radeon Graphics Card
  • Upgradable

My Cons With this Computer:

  • Average clock speed

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6. SkyTech Legacy 2070

Computer Features:

  • AMD Ryzen 5 3600 6-Core 12-Thread 3.6GHz Processor
  • GeForce GTX 1660 Super 6GB GDDR6 Graphics Card
  • Skytech Archangel Gaming Case with Tempered Glass

Although this computer may be designed specifically for gaming we can find our way to get the job done. 

Gaming computers hold tons of computing power and get tasks like audio rendering in a matter of minutes.

This computer has a RAM of 16GB and 500GB SSD storage. It features an NVIDIA 8GB Graphics card.

My Pros With this Computer:

  • Very powerful
  • Fast rendering
  • 16GB RAM, 500GB SSD
  • NVIDIA Graphics Card
  • Water cooling mechanism

My Cons With this Computer:

  • Not a dedicated computer for musicians
  • A lot of graphics capability will go to waste if used for audio-only

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7. HP Pavilion 690

Computer Features:

  • HP Pavilion 690-0084 Gaming PC
  • Intel Core I5-8400/2.80Ghz Six Core CPU

If you are looking forward to setting up a home studio and you have just started out then you probably don’t want to break the bank.

The Pavilion series will certainly do justice in such a case.

This tower machine features an Intel Core i5 processor accompanied by NVIDIA GTX 6GB Graphics card to keep things running smoothly.

Furthermore, it has 8GB of RAM which can be upgraded alongside 1 Terabyte of HDD.

My Pros With this Computer:

  • Upgradable
  • Ideal for Beginners
  • Core i5
  • NVIDIA Graphics
  • 8GB RAM, 1TB HDD

My Cons With this Computer:

  • The device does not feature an integrated card reader

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8. Apple iMac Pro

Computer Features:

  • ‎64 GB DDR4
  • ‎3 GHz intel_xeon Processor
  • 27″ Screen

You may think it is a little too late on the list to see an Apple device coming up again but Apple fits everywhere.

The iMac Pro has enhanced performance and speed.

The sky is the limit for the iMac Pro as it features 1TB of SSD – think about the possibilities.

The finishing of this all-in-screen computer is worth all the appreciation.

My Pros With this Computer:

  • 27 inches 5K vibrant display
  • Includes magic keyboard and magic mouse
  • 18 cores
  • 4.5GHz clock speed
  • 64GB RAM
  • Space Grey Sleek Design

My Cons With this Computer:

  • Practically none other than the fact that iMac Pro is not upgradable

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9. Apple Mac Mini M1


Computer Features:

  • Apple-designed M1 chip
  • 8-core CPU
  • 8-core GPU

If you prefer the Apple environment but want something more dedicated and separate for musical work only then the Mac mini will do.

It is available in 8 to 16 GB RAM and features an astonishing 2TB of SSD.

This computer is Apple’s smallest desktop but it is equally powerful with high specifications but a compact design which is satisfactory for music producers.

This device is a CPU and does not feature a display.

My Pros With this Computer:

  • Compact design
  • 16GB RAM
  • 2TB SSD
  • 8GB unified memory
  • 3x Faster at computing tasks

My Cons With this Computer:

  • Similar design to the last 4 versions


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10. Microsoft Surface Studio 2

Computer Features:

  • 28″ PixelSense Display
  • Intel Core i7 processors,

There is no reason for Microsoft to stand behind when all the other tech giants are competing to produce the fastest processing computers.

The surface studio 2 is an all-in-one device with all its hardware contained in a 28-inch beautiful display.

This upgradable computer can go as high as 32 GB on the RAM and 2TB on the SSD storage.

It also features an NVIDIA 1070 8GB graphics card to chew on tasks like audio processing in a blink.

My Pros With this Computer:

  • Very powerful
  • All in one computer
  • Upgradable
  • 32GB RAM, 2TB SSD
  • 8GB NVIDIA graphics
  • 28-inch vibrant display
  • Features a touch screen

My Cons With this Computer:

  • Dedicated for designing purpose

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11. Alienware Aurora A9

Computer Features:

  • 9th Gen Intel Core i7 9700 Processor
  • 16GB single channel HyperX DDR4 XMP at 2933MHz
  • Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070 OC with 8GB GDDR6

If you are listening to this name for the first time then it won’t make much sense unless you take a look at the device.

How could this be the best computer for music production?

This computer features heavy specifications which include 16GB RAM accompanied by a 512 GB SSD.

In addition, to avoid any hindrance the NVIDIA graphics card is optimized to make the most out of this device.

My Pros With this Computer:

  • Uniquely aesthetic design
  • Highly powerful
  • 16GB RAM, 512 GB SSD
  • Includes NVIDIA Graphics card

My Cons With this Computer:

  • The design may not be catchy for every music producer out there

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12. Apple Mac Pro


Computer Features:

  • 3.5 GHz 6-Core Intel Xeon E5 Processor
  • 16 GB of 1866 MHz DDR3 ECC SDRAM, a 256 GB SSD
  • Dual AMD FirePro D500 with 3GB GDDR5 VRAM each

Coming up at number two we have XPS 15 from Dell – a performance-intensive laptop that has a super vibrant display and lots of ports.

The 10th generation i7 processor is on board with this laptop.

With 16 GB of RAM and 512 Gb SSD, this masterpiece delivers a high-end processing speed.

The FHD infinity edge screen showcases on-screen content with precise detail.

A 16:10 screen ratio allows for using multiple audio applications at once easily.

My Pros With this Computer:

  • Compact design
  • Good clock speed
  • 16GB RAM, 256GB SSD
  • Features AMD D700 graphics

My Cons With this Computer:

  • Not sold or certified by Apple anymore


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Frequently Asked Questions

Is a desktop good for music production?

Desktop computers are generally good for music production because they offer more power and versatility compared to laptops or tablets.

How much RAM do I need for music production?

For music production, having at least 8GB of RAM is recommended, although 16GB or more is ideal. This is because music production software such as Digital Audio Workstations (DAWs) can be resource-intensive and having more RAM can help improve performance, speed up project load times, and handle larger projects with many tracks and plugins.

Your computer is going to be the center of your music creation so it is important to make sure that you get the best computer for music production.

This guide takes you through the computer requirements for music production including the minimum specifications that you should be looking for that is of course in case you if you just started out.

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