Rack Rigs: Rack-Mounting Macs?

The anti-Origami: why go portable when you can get the maximum performance from a machine in a road-ready case? That’s the question I’ll be offering all week, with a first look at some of the options. First up, we’ll start with the platform that makes this a bit tricky: the Mac. Mac lovers adore their svelte cases (Mini, iMac) and buy up laptops more often than desktops (PowerBook, iBook, MacBook Pro). So it may seem odd to want to rack mount a bulky Power Mac G5 desktop and take it on the road. If performance is a must, though, you …

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Rack Rigs: Redco Power Mac Rack and Other Ideas

Fabienne from The Unofficial Apple Weblog has some suggestions on rack-mounting Power Mac G5s and other Macs. She points to the Redco Audio Vertical Rackmount Frame. Yes, this one is a vertical frame, but it’s designed to fit other hardware like the Digi HD hardware shown here. Looks like a better solution for studios than it is for road-racking, unless someone can suggest a way to make it road-ready, but that’s partly a function of the size of the case. At US$149 it’s a fantastic bargain for any Power Mac owners; I’ll probably have to get one! Fabienne offers some …

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Hotel Room Studio: NIN’s Rack-Mounted Dual G5s

No, not G5s with dual processors: think racks filled with two Power Mac G5s. Composer Justin McGrath tips us off that Nine Inch Nails’ current photolog has a rack-mounted Power Mac G5, as we’ve discussed today and earlier today: nine inch nails: current [nin.com] Apparently taken in a hotel room, Trent Reznor, Saul Williams, and Atticus Ross are on the road with their road-racked G5s and other audio gear. (Check out the cheap-and-quick recording tip: use a blanket or curtains to make an impromptu recording booth.) Looks like they’re also running Pro Tools via a Digidesign 002. And I don’t …

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Live Mac Mini Rig, Pt. II: Logic Environment for Live Performance

Christopher Scheidel has been hard at work cleaning up his sophisticated Apple Logic Pro Environment template, which he uses to manage his guitar + keyboard + Mac Mini rig while performing. He’s been nice enough to share it with us: Logic template [Download] See Christopher’s site for further information. He promises more soon, including a full walkthrough with screenshots; I’ll try to offer some additional tips of my own. Sure, you could just run Ableton Live as your only performance rig, but with the Environment it’s easy to switch guitar effects, synth presets, and, of course, to play Logic Pro-only …

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Studio Furniture: M Rack, Perfect for Computers, Music, and Small Spaces

You know the problem: computer furniture seems to be built for imaginary people with undersized tower computers who never actually do anything. Want to integrate a music keyboard, computer, monitors, and a rack of gear in a small space? Good luck! But James (of reflexaudio and the fabulous new blog Retro thing) sends along a great solution: Australian manufacturer M Rack makes fantastically designed studio furniture that’d be great for apartment studios. They racks are expensive (the setup in the attached pic runs about $2200), but they’re beautifully made. As a vital bonus, everything’s within arm’s reach. The site pics …

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Challenge: Rack-Mounted, MIDI-Capable Nintendo NES

While we’re busy rack-mounting Mac Minis, how about a vintage Nintendo Entertainment System (NES)? If you analyze these photos closely enough (via Make), you should be able to do what this fellow did and cram your eBayed NES into a 1U rack mount. (It ought to go really nice next to your rack-mounted synths or effects or whatever.) Then, add MIDINES, a custom cartridge for MIDI output. Viola. Hook up sound, and you’re golden. Then you can keep from killing your bandmates on tour by getting out angst playing Mario on the tour bus, to boot. Anyone who pulls this …

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Rack-Mounted Mac Mini Keyboard/Guitar Rig with LCD (Part I)

Christopher Scheidel has created an impressive Mac Mini-based rig for playing keyboards and guitars. He’s documented the whole process at his site Heavylift. There’s a lot to be learned there about how to do it yourself (including taking advantage of cheap LCDs for display), but here are the basic specs: Hardware: Apple Mac Mini 1.2G G4 / 1 G RAM, Bluetooth, 802.11g, 40G HD Apple Bluetooth Mouse and Keyboard Belkin USB extender eBayed Lilliput 2″ LCD screen ($5 + $25 shipping; replaced a larger touchscreen when it died!) Calzone 4U rack MOTU 828 mk II audio interface M-Audio Radium 61 …

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64-bit Rack-mounted Music PC

Coyote R&D now has a 64-bit version of their 2-space, rack-mountable Two-Can PC. But what makes it really cool: Liquid-cooled (see image) 256 MIDI ports per machine with other PCs and Macs (OS 9/X), delivered over Ethernet 3700+ CPU speeds, up to 800 GB RAID-array storage Preinstalled options: Kontakt, GigaStudio, V-Stack Yep, that's a server-class music computer. So, what will YOU do with 256 MIDI ports? (Via Harmony Central)

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