Over To You: Which Windows Laptop Is Best For DJing?

headphones and laptopOK, here’s the deal. We’ve got some exciting new DJ courses coming up soon to add to How To Digital DJ Fast, and we’re going to start filming shortly. As well as new video lights and mics, we’ve also decided we need a Windows laptop, and we want to know the best Windows laptop for DJing. See, we’ve always used Macs for DJing here at Digital DJ Tips, since we traded up from an old Sony Vaio years ago – and despite the relentless march of the iPad for DJing, we think the laptop will be pretty important for digital DJs for a while yet. But even though we use Macs, we realise that two-thirds of our users are using PCs, not least because not everyone has a vast amount of money to spend on a laptop for DJing. So if only for being able to talk first-hand about the fun of ASIO drivers, we’re going to buy a Windows laptop to run alongside our MacBook.

Question is, which is the best Windows laptop for DJing? I know the spec I’d go for, but I also know there’s nobody best placed to advise you than someone who’s already where you want to be – which in this case means all you PC-owning DJ readers. So I’d like to know what’s working for you!

Tell us about your Windows laptop…

So, Windows users only: Please reply to this thread with your make and model of laptop, the year you bought it, why you like it, what you’d change about it, and what you paid for it. Finally, and most importantly: Would you recommend it?

We’ll then look carefully at your advice before buying our own Windows laptop for DJing. I’ll come back and post here when we’ve chosen and ordered to let you know which one we went for… and many thanks for your help!

So, over to you. Please tell us all about your Windows DJ laptop. We value your advice over anything else out there…

Comments

  1. Manny Lovecraft says:

    You gotta buy a DELL XPS or a LENOVO!!!

    • I did have a Samsung Series 5 Ultrabook (stolen last night after a set =(). It’s properly tiny, really powerful and works well with Traktor. I don’t think I would really change anything about it, it’s a great Laptop =)

      • Sorry to hear that but yes, it is a great laptop, except for the fixed RAM (not upgradeable), the lack of ExoressCard if you ever want to connect it to a low latency firewire soundcard, replace your broken USBs or other externals.
        And about their supposed all-day battery… certainly it will last near 8 hours, but -being ion lithium kind- you are not advised to go lower than 30-40% of discharge level, if you want long life from it.
        Actually I’ll tell you to consider waiting for the April-May next year ultrabook generation, it will be a significant jump at many levels, it will possibly include Thunderbolt (akin to ExpressCard), much longer battery runs, run cooler, maybe 2nd generation gorilla glass (more durable and light), touch capacities.
        That is outstanding already, so -if you may- get a temporary replacement and prepare for the upcoming Haswell generation.

  2. I use a HP Probook. Had a little trouble with crashes and glitches but then I started running a DJ specific profile which I never connect to the internet and only have my music and DJ programs running on it. I have never had a problem since.
    4gb ram
    Win 7 64 bit
    i5 2.5 Ghz

  3. I`ve got a HP Pavillion G6 4 gb ram, intel core 2 duo i3 @2.3ghz. in theory this should be fine, however in practice its not. It tends to bog down when I`m mixing and becomes slow to respond. After a bit of digging, I`ve found that the lack of a solid state hard drive is a big hindrance to reliability (upgrade to a 256gb ssd is about £150 including fitting) and 4gb ram is possibly a little small for traktor too.
    in the new year Im upgrading to 16gb ram and the ssd. the other advantage of this is that all the bloatware installed at the manufacturers end will be removed too (the bloatware is all the worthless programs that you will probably never use, these slow down start up times and performance etc)
    Ideally, I would recommend a laptop from somewhere like cyberpower computers (google) as custom manufacturers do not install bloatware. Do get the SSD and a decent intel processor (i5/i7) and maybe try for 8/16gb ram.

    • uhmm its either core 2 duo or i3. And if it is the first generation of i3 you are not allowed to install 16 GB, having a 8GB max. Only latest Ivy Bridge generation officially accepts 16GB, however some selected Sandy Bridge (2011, early 2012) models happily run them.

  4. I just use a Dell Studio (C2duo, 4G DDR2, 7200rpm drive) …. never, ever had issues with serato, traktor is meh but that’s just the nature of the software

    • The same, Dell studio is very good, I have very good experience with this.

      • DJ Doughboy says:

        I use a dell studio also (15z) paid about $900 for it. (i5, 4G ram). I’m in the market for a new one and I’m looking at the dell inspiron 17R special edition and the ASUS G75. (Between $1,100-1,250) Both have17.3″ screen, i7, 8G ram. Both the one I’m using now, and the 2 I’m looking at all have backlit keyboards which is a deal breaker for me, just one of those perks I’ve gotten used to and have to have. I’ll probly be spending a few hundred more than I need to (spec wise) just to have a backlit keyboard because the selection of laptops with them isn’t very big!!!! Screen size is also a big factor for me. Cheers!

      • @DJ Doughboy, have a look at Lenovo Thinkpad T models, they have all the features you mention and more! on the same price range, plus one of the best reliability records on the professional/business market.

  5. My laptop is a HP Pavilion DV6-6176sa. I bought it in March 2011 fr around £400 refurbished. I got it from PC world and it came in pretty much perfect condition. It packs a 2nd gen i3 intel core processor (2.4ghz) and 4gb of RAM which is upgradeable to 8gb I think. A pretty fast Hitachi 500gb hard drive is in it as well. I love it as it can handle pretty much anything, from gaming with its dedicated graphics card, to producing with beats audio to configure how it plays sound. If you run it with something like Game Booster 3 or a script to shut off unnecessary programs I can get about 2ms of latency in Serato which is perfect for a scratch DJ like myself. I use it with ASIO drivers and my Terminal Mix 2. My only issue is frankly the OS, it sometimes crashes, not often, but more than a mac would. And due to it being refurbished I have had a couple of issues, including a loud whirring noise sometimes which I believe is the ball bearings in my fan. And also the body sometimes pops off a bit ad I just push it back on, it works pretty much fine. Most errors I get is because I messed around with the Bios to allow me to switch graphics cards manually (it has two). In fact that is another thing, battery life is very good if you run it with the intergrated graphics instead of dedicated and I managed to watch about 4 hours of video on a plane with wifi turned off and it still didnt run out. The screen is bright and the touch pad is backlit so you can see where it is in a dark area to select your tracks. All in all I give it 10/10 for DJing and 9/10 for overall use.

    • Forgot to mention it has 2xUSB 2.0 and 2xUSB 3.0. SO four in all but 3.0 USB Slots don’t always work with my controller for some reason so I basically have two for DJing, one for usb mouse, and one for hard drive

      • Upgrade the USB3 controller to its latest driver. Chances are, the manufacturer’s site published them this year, since they have been improved to fix the very same errors you are experiencing.
        Once installed, go to the device manager and manually check if it was effectively upgraded to the new one, otherwise uninstall it and keep trying, till the laptop accepts it.

    • I’m starting djing but not sure if I should get the Lenovo IBM thinkpad T41? Has it got a good reputation, I would buy a better laptop but I have a small price range

  6. I’m using an Asus X54C. As standard, it comes with 8gb RAM, and 500gb HDD; most stable lappy I’ve ever owned. I can run Ableton with all my plugins for hours, my only gripe is that it doesn’t have many connection ports; 2 USB & an Ethernet. Does the job though.
    My advice to new DJs would be whatever laptop you choose, make sure it has at least 4gb RAM and a decent sized hard drive and you can’t go wrong. sound cards etc can be changed if you want, but by the time that becomes important, you’ll prolly be ready for an upgrade anyhow :)

    • I’m also Simon and I also use a laptop from the x54 series. It’s not very heavy and has a very, very good screen. Can’t see the keyboard in the dark though. Get a USB-hub for sure, maybe an external soundcard (if you’re without a controller) and you’re good to go. It’s handled my events well so far!

      • Oh, I remember I borrowed a Hercules mk2 once and it was not a good experience. It worked once every 3 restarts and got very laggy at times (using VirtualDJ)

  7. Sony Vaio SVE14115FLP

    RAM: 4.00 GB
    HDD: 500 GB
    Intel Core i5-2450 CPU @ 2.50 Ghz
    Windows 7 Home Premium (x64)
    Integrated soundcard (iugh)

    Windows Experience Evaluation: 5.9

    CD/DVD-ROM
    HDMI Port
    VGA Port
    3 usb ports
    1 power usb port
    Backlight Keyboard (perfect for the club!)

  8. http://www.cyberpowersystem.co.uk/system/Xplorer_X6-9350_Notebook/ with 8gb ram, i7, and 240gb ssd £866.40 inc vat

  9. I use Acer TravelMate 5730.
    2GB RAM, Core2Duo CPU, nothing special.

    Pro`s: 4x USB (one is combined with e-SATA, i had some external HDD`s with it), Integrated Intel graphics (dont heat up) and it was cheap (without win7 x64 = something about 330€ over 1 year ago).
    Contra:
    Low resolution (1280×720, so Traktor does fit in with 4 Decks & FX panel, but not with advanced decks view: if you adjust the beatgrid, you dont see FX panel), pretty much useless for anything what needs a highend CPU, a lot of RAM and/or dedicated graphic card with enough power.
    Producing music ist pretty much impossible, even with 4gb RAM upgrade – CPU is limiting.

    Current setup: 4gb RAM inside, Win7 x64, working with VirtualDJ (LE, Pro as demo), Serato DJ Intro & Traktor Pro 2.5 without sound problems.
    But its outdated, now you should go for i5, 8gb RAM and a higher resolution (just simply to get more stuff on the screen), powerful graphic card if you like to do some other stuff with that laptop & dont forget the USB & firewire ports (mine does not have an firewire port).
    Win7 x64 is the best windows out there right now and you need it to use more than 4gb RAM. But beware if you have old hardware without win7 driver`s.

  10. Mines an Alienware MX17. Love it!! Running it since 2009 never had a problem. Running win7 with traktor and vdj with videos, HDMI out. Never failed me once. Others have been so impressed by it they’ve also bought one. Problem is….. not cheap!!!

  11. Asus UX31VD (with Intel i7) upgraded to 10Gb ram .

    1920 x 1080 on a 13″ ultrabook weighing 1.5kg

    ideal

  12. I’ve been in doing I.T. as a profession for 10 years. I’ve only actually been doing D.J for a very short amount time, and I quickly learned that EVERYBODY in the D.J. world loves MacBooks. I think MacBooks are really great quality, but also cost way too much money. Most I.T. guys don’t like Apple for that reason. The fact that they soldered the RAM into the computer so it can’t be upgraded tells you that Apple is in it for the money. Most Windows PCs/Laptops can be customized and upgraded at low cost. Buying a Windows laptop with similar specs as a Macbook is much more cost effective.

    In this case, the VIZIO 15 Inch CN15-A2 is the best Windows laptop you can buy that is comparable to a Macbook. Along with the comparable tech specs, another thing I would like to point out is that it is a “Microsoft Signature” laptop meaning that it doesn’t come with any of the bloatware (unnecessary software) installed that most new laptops come loaded with.

    Price: $1,199

    Tech Specs from the Microsoft Store website:

    DISPLAY | 15.6 in Full HD LED (1920 x 1080)
    PROCESSOR | Intel Core i7-3610QM 2.30 GHz with Turbo Boost Technology up to 3.30 GHz
    MEMORY | 8 GB DDR3 1333 MHzHARD
    DRIVE SIZE | 1 TB SATA 5400 RPM + 32 GB SSD for caching
    OPERATING SYSTEM | Windows 7 Home PremiumPC
    TYPE | Notebook
    OPTICAL DRIVE | None
    MEDIA DRIVE | SD card reader (SD, MMC, MSPro)
    AUDIO | SRS Premium Sound
    HDVIDEO | Intel HD Graphics 4000 and NVIDIA GeForce GT 640M LE with 1 GB graphics memory
    PORTS | 2 USB 3.0 • HDMI • Headphone output • Microphone input • RJ-45 (10/100/1000)
    BATTERY | 74Wh (up to 6 hours)*
    CAMERA | 1.3 MP HD webcam
    WIRELESS | 802.11a/b/g/n
    BLUETOOTH | Yes
    DIMENSIONS | 14.90 x 9.90 x 0.86 in (378.46 x 251.46 x 21.84 mm)
    WEIGHT | 5.30 lbs (2.40 kg)
    COLOR | Silver

    http://www.microsoftstore.com/store/msstore/pd/VIZIO-15-Inch-Notebook-CN15-A2/productID.252853000/vip.true

    • hey i just ordered a custom build my laptop on the toshiba website, and this is the specs that i got im trying to run traktor with timecode and ableton effects with maschine as VST, is it a good investment, what are your thoughts? i can always return it and get what you that laptop you recomended earlier, but i think this proccessor is BOSS LOL

      Toshiba Satellite P850-BT3G22 Laptop
      Intel® Core™ i7-3630QM Processor (6M Cache, up to 3.40 GHz) with Intel® Turbo Boost Technology,
      Windows 8,
      8GB DDR3 1600MHz (4GB + 4GB),
      750GB HDD (5400rpm, Serial ATA),
      2GB GDDR3 NVIDIA® GeForce® GT 630M with NVIDIA® Optimus™ Technology,
      DVD SuperMulti drive
      Glossy Black LED Backlit Tile keyboard,
      Integrated 2MP Webcam and Microphone,
      WiFi® Wireless networking (802.11b/g/n), Intel 1Gbps LAN, Microsoft® Office (trial),
      Norton™ Internet Security 2013 (30-day trial subscription),
      1 Year Standard Limited Warranty (1 Year on Battery),
      PSPKFU-04X011
      1 Estimated Ship Date: 02/20/2013
      $879.99

      Thanks in Advance

  13. In my opinion and experience high specs version of any laptop will fulfill your djing needs. But the main specs to look out for are :

    Processor: i5 Quad-core or above
    RAM : at least 8gb
    Storage : 1TB or above… (SSD=500GB is the way to go as a lot of mobility is involved in laptops)
    Graphics : 1GB dedicated or above (for smooth running of software)
    Display : 17″ or above… need a good view on everything

    Optional features:
    audio card in case the in-built is not Low-latency
    cooling pad
    many usb ports
    bendable light for laptop keyboard

    • I would suggest a Desktop setup for producing music and laptop for djing. But if you want to use the laptop for both purposes… The best way to go about this is to create 2 user profiles (DJ/Production) in your OS.. One for djing having all the unnecessary services(bluetooth, wifi, etc…)disabled and hardware’s power priority set to your software of liking. And the other user to be customized as needed or just normal. Guides are available over the net, with a little of Googling one can make a lot of difference.
      Hope this helps…..

    • I dont agree with 1GB dedicated GPU. Unless you are planning to do VJ it is not necessary and it is only money thrown out of window.

  14. DJ Majestic says:

    If you are going with a new laptop I would choose the Toshiba Qosmio X870-BT3G23 Laptop. That is the latest with th 3rd gen. i7 chip & you can customized direct from Toshiba after that. Here’s the link: http://www.toshibadirect.com/td/b2c/cdetland.to?poid=2000044488

    I’ve been using Toshiba laptops since I started using Serato. I never had a crash or any other isuues.

  15. I use an Asus N53SV
    i7, 8gb ram etc
    Also using game booster to ensure trouble free playing.

    Although i bought online, i went into physical stores to help decide. Chose this as its solid as all hell and has brushed metal casing.

  16. any i5-i7 with 4gb ram should be fine

  17. I recomend to look in business range of notebooks.

    When I was choosing my laptop 2 years ago, I wanted it for DJing so my primary requirements were portability, reliability and performance. Theese were the main reasons why I have choosen
    Thinkpad X201:

    Intel Core i5-560M
    4GB RAM
    320GB HDD
    Intel GMA HD Graphics

    12.1″ LED Backlit Widescreen Display
    Windows 7 x64

    I am using it with SSL and ITCH with no performace issues at all. The screen is only 12.1″ but for me is sufficient and does not tempt to waveriding that much.

    What is superb about this laptotp is the build quality and reliability – it is made to last. Also one funny plus is that people think that it is very old (because of the design) so they are not likely to steal it :)

    In the future I will upgrade it with SSD disk and it will become total beast.

  18. tomffoulkes says:

    I’ve just bought a series 3 Samsung notebook.
    £369, 6 gig ram, 750 gig hard drive, windows 7 (64-bit). I’ve not had much time to find any faults but everything seems good right now, plus it looks good, brushed steel lid (looks smart from a booth). Opened, it’s has a black bezel, keyboard and mouse pad, Ties in nicely with my s2 kontrol. I’m very happy so far, worth considering for the money!

  19. I’m using a dell XPS m1530 with
    2,5 core2duo
    3,5 GB ram
    320GB HDD
    Windows7 32bit
    Bought in 2008 for 1300€
    Traktor Pro 2,5 :)
    As an soundcard im using the one inside my kontrol s2.

    I’m generally satisified with it, but one thing bothers me: the lack of (easy to use) audiorouting for windows. I would love to route live input (maschine,guitarrig) internally to one of the traktors decks on one laptop – Macs with soundflower (an app) can do this :) (Thought about getting(buying!)a copy of Mountain Lion and making a hackintosh ;) )

    But besides this, djing on it works like a charm. 3 decks and one remixsets full of stuff – no problem! I would recommend it – Although it isn’t for sale anymore.

  20. Dell inspiron
    Core i7 at 3.1 GHZ
    8 gigs of ram
    1 terrabyte Hard drive
    Never crashed. Huge 17.3 inch display. 2 usb 3.0 plugs. 1 usb 2.0 plug. 1 line in and 1 out. all plugs you’ll ever need. Fantastic laptop.

  21. I have used a windows7 ultimate that is cracked on acer aspire 5735z with a cracked virtual dj 7.0 4 years i have it never crashed down :D i switched from a cracked win xp to a cracked win 7 :) never crashed once and really poor maintanxe of the sofwear :) never did that :)

  22. I’ve got an Alienware M17xR3, but the laptop for the future will be a windows 8 touch enabled computer running touch optimised DJ software. Your controller will never outdate, as the software and interface changes so will the ‘controller’. The ‘controller’ will be mutipurpose, one session you can DJ, the next you could be VJ’ing, or music making etc. Your ‘controller’ won’t be locked into one company’s software either. The Sony Tap 20 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cPRcxtxJIaE) does a pretty good job of this already, but the graphics card is a bit anaemic for VJ’ing
    I suppose some would say touching a screen will never replace the tactile feel of knobs and sliders, but I say it can; I’ve used music making apps on my tablet quite happily and afterall, touchscreen phones have replaced phones with physical buttons

    • I am lookin to start DJing I have a small budget and I am looking to buy a laptop can anyone make a suggestion looking to spend 2-300 bucks

  23. John Bingham says:

    I would tend to stay away from the more commercial products like HP or Dell, I say this because your not really getting any bang for your buck and in two years time your going to need a new laptop because the one you have is just not good enough

    I have a numark NS6 and dj with a custom built laptop from PC Specialist

    Intel Quadcore i7 2840QM
    32GB Samsung RAM
    Intel 520 series 480GB
    Seagate Momentus Hybrid SSD 750GB (have my music on this)
    Windows 7 Ultimate 64

    Ive never had any issue and this spec came in at £1700 when I brought it in May

    John

  24. HP DV6-3119sa, bought November 2011, £500, i5, 8gb ram (upgraded from 4gb), and GAMEBOOSTER – gamebooster is free software and really superb for djing since you specify which processes to shut down and it integrates all of these things which you want normally into a single button. I had latency issues with traktor scratch before using gamebooster but not after!!! (not affiliated, just enthusiuatic) Battery good, fan noise can get annoying when not playing music but never a problem djing. Would recommend.

    • Also good alternative to Gamebooster could be TuneUP utilities. They are wery usefull with keeping the system clean and defragmented.

    • Been using Game Booster for years & it’s a Really Really Good Program.Also running Traktor Pro 2.5.0 & just absolutely loving it. My anti-virus program Bitdefender Internet Security 2013 i have included Traktor so that when i run traktor, it will automatically enable gaming mode which is pretty cool.

  25. Kris Santana says:

    Having run a Dell for about 5 months with no problems, I can say without hesitation that they are solid, reliable and powerful. Mine is a 15R with an i7 core (insanely quick, should be able to cope with pretty much everything you throw at it) and it also has a 1TB hard-drive and 8GB of RAM. It’s never let me down. Hurrah for Windows! I bought this laptop for around £650 from the Dell website but I would recommend to anyone to try and get the best specced laptop (even if it looks like a brick and feels super plasticky) you can find in your budget. The Intel processors are in my opinion, a country mile better than the AMD ones.
    Hope this is helpful!

  26. Stazbumpa says:

    I’m using an Acer laptop bought in 2009. It has 4 gigs of ram and a 160gb hard drive. It came with Vista but I flattened the hdd and stuck Win7 on it. Up until earlier this year it ran traktor no probs, then had an overheating problem which was fixed with a usb fan tray. Not tried traktor 2.5 on it yet and I won’t because I’m due an upgrade.
    My criteria will be:
    4gb ram
    1080 display
    Dual core 2.2+ GHz, or an i-something.
    Hard disk not important as I’ll be slapping a spare 128gb ssd in it anyway.
    Refurbished Dell Precision or Latitude looking good at the moment, both come with 4 usb ports and we all know how handy they are :-)

  27. ASUS Zeenbook Prime UX32VD is your best option…

    Intel® Core™ i7 3517U Processor
    13.3″ IPS FHD Display (1920×1080)
    NVIDIA® GeForce® GT 620M
    Up to 256 GB SSD
    HDMI, 3x USB3.0, BT4.0…
    and ultra portable with only 1.45 kg.

    http://www.asus.com/Notebooks/Superior_Mobility/ASUS_ZENBOOK_UX32VD/#specifications

  28. HP Pavillion DV6 – 2125ev

    I think I got it 2-3 years ago. i3 CPU and 4GB ram – Windows 7 64bit

    Using it with a NI 2 soundcard and Ableton Live! Never had a problem with it – only downside is the battery life which I dont really care because I always DJ with the power cord plugged.

    Since it’s my DJing machine I just take extra care by not installing everyrandom software I want to try it out, I keep it nice and clean with the minimum of software installed. Everything else, gets installed on my desktop first.

  29. Superfly Agaric says:

    I currently use an Acer Aspire 6935 – 4GB RAM/core 2 duo running Traktor 1.2.7 with a Denon DN MC-6000.
    I have a couple of other machines (Lenovo Thinkpad T61 & Samsung P510) with Traktor installed – they are all similar spec – nothing too fancy compared to what is available now – and are rock-solid without any crashes/problems.
    The Acer is networked but only to my file servers and has no gateway out to the internet. It does not do auto-updates from microsoft or anywhere else and this is the reason it continues to work.
    If you have to use the machine for internet then think about dual booting to Ubuntu or another windows installation for internet access and leave the Audio-Windows partition isolated from the Internet.
    It really is the only way to prevent introducing ‘variables’ which can affect the OS/software from functioning.
    My audio-pc alo runs Cubase and FL Studio flawlessly with no crashes, drop-outs or faults. I know that as soon as it connects to the internet that I will end up re-installing the OS and Traktor et al within months.
    I think most mid-powered dual-core machines are more than capable of running a majority of programs if kept isolated.

  30. Are you guys not using external sound cards? That’s where the power needs to be, not in the actual laptop. As long as the system half decent you’ll be fine. I run Traktor 2.5 with all of the current updates on a 3 year old Compaq CQ61, Celeron processor, 3GB RAM, 320GB hard drive and I’ve never had a single crash, latency issue or glitch. I put his down to having my sound card set up properly and my drivers updated.

    I’ve got a USB hub that connects to up to four different controllers, as well as the sound card, at once and I’ve never had any issues there either. My NI Audio 4 does all of the hard work so my laptop doesn’t have to. Do you guys not find the same thing?

  31. Purchased a brand new ASUS K53SV for around $900 on sale 4 months ago with Windows 7 Home Premium.
    RAM: 4GB (could use with another 2gb at times) but 4gb does just fine majority of the time)

    Processor: i7-2630QM CPU @2.00GHz (Quad Core)

    System Type: 64-bit (to me 64-bit is essential, 32 doesn’t do the job)

    Storage: 640GB

    Graphics: 1GB Dedicated (NVIDIA GEFORCE GT 520M)

    15.7 Inch Screen size 1388×768 resolution

    Ive been using this laptop solely for DJing and Music Production. It works great, never crashed no problems. I use Traktor Pro 2 and it works well. I would recommend this laptop.

  32. I think it’s best to point out brands than models. That said, any top of the line laptop from Asus, HP, Samsung or Lenovo.
    Alienware and related are also good, but at that price point you’re better off buying a Mac and save time tweaking out Windows.

  33. No AMD love I see.

    • I built An Entry Level Gaming Machine

      Asus M4N78 SE Mainboard
      AMD Phenom II x3 Triple Core Black Edition 2.8GHz CPU
      x2 2GB Apacer Gaming Ram
      Nvidia 9800GT 1GB 256bit Graphics Card
      320GB HDD Seagate (Windows 7 Ultimate x32-bit)
      1TB WD HDD – Music

      No Problems There! Spent quite a penny but it’s all worth it.

  34. I use a HP Pavillion DV6 with Beats Audio. 6 GB of RAM, i5 processor, 4 USB ports, windows 7, had for about 6 months, only spent about $600 on it. Same as some of the other guys, I use it only for DJing, I have no other software on it so that it does not get messed up.

  35. In my experience the best windows laptops for Djimg are Dell,Toshiba,Alienware and Asus. I own a Macbook Pro 2010 8Gb, 2.66Ghz processor and for Djing is good but have issues with videos and karaoke.Also a Gateway Md 7820u 4Gb,2.0Ghz processor and no problem at all, not even playing videos and karaoke. So I use Mac for mixing only and windows for everything else. Another thing is that the Macbook pro only have 2 usb ports and 1 firewire 400 and the gateway have 4 usb ports. For me my next laptop is gonna be an Asus, I made my research about them and confirm that they are reliable for Dj and for visuals and graphics.

  36. I use a low-ball laptop that I bought used off a buddy for $150. It’s an old hp g60 from with a single core semperon proccessor running at 2.0ghz and 3 gigs of dd2 ram that was built in 2009. Running Windows 7 and a custom dj profile (lots of services turned off and no non-essential programs starting up) it does the job and I have played out on it, but it is getting replaced this tax season. Just posting to show you can get Traktor to run on just about anything.

  37. HP Envy 14 1260SE I bought it back in 2010. The reason I like it is because HP didn’t install any significant factory bloatware, includes a red backlight keyboard, and when I’m working on applications that require high processing power I experience minimal performance issues. What I would change about it (which might be a deal breaker for some people) is the mousepad, as it doesn’t function quite that well and I find myself using my external mouse most of the time. I paid roughly $900 for my laptop which within that price range I didn’t see many laptops that had the specs and reliabilty I wanted at the time. Voted number 1 from PCMag which was an important factor in my purchase. I would definately recommend this laptop to any DJ and producer out there looking for an alternative that would fit right in with their setup.

  38. FreshNstuff says:

    Im using Samsung series 3, bout 700 euros and its working all good it has AMD Vision A8 and Radeon dual graphics quad core :D

  39. TommyHearMe says:

    RivaTurner can be used to slow down the fan result less noise fan.

  40. Some people have way over stated system specs, if you are talking traktor not ableton, you do not need any kind of monster laptop at all. Currently I use a laptop that is actually a bit below the NI recommended specs

    http://www.native-instruments.com/#/en/products/dj/traktor-pro-2/?page=2050

    They say;
    Windows 7 (latest Service Pack, 32/64 Bit), 2.0 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo or AMD Athlon 64 X2, 2 GB RAM (4 GB recommended)

    I run a CULV (between a netbook and a laptop) with a 1.3Ghz intel dual core and 3GB of RAM and traktor runs fine, no audio drop outs and occasional on screen slow down when loading a track onto a deck.

    What is most important is that when you play disable anything that runs in the background, uninstall any bloatware shite (the branded software that comes preloaded onto most big name PCs).

    Then run DPC latency checker (free software) as you play a track, and see if you have any drops. These are often not caused by your machine being too slow but from add in cards, particularly wifi/blutooth interfering with things. I have to disable my wifi card (not just turn it off) through device manager when I play and that stops big spikes/drop outs.

    Follow the instructions here:
    http://www.native-instruments.com/knowledge/questions/847/Windows+7+Tuning+Tips+for+Audio+Processing

    You will not need more than 4GB of RAM or faster than a modern 2Ghz intel dual core for smooth use of traktor, if you reach or exceed these specs and you still have trouble it is most likely not your hardware that is too slow but a driver/add in card/ bloatware issue. A clean install of windows is a good idea if you’re the kind of person that installs toolbars and has 20 items in the system tray.

    On a side note, an SSD is not essential either, however it is a highly desirable upgrade as it makes a PC faster in most tasks, won’t improve playback performance but it makes system much better for day to day use.

    As for actual hardware, I don’t own yet but plan to buy a Lenovo T series as they are designed to be “business proof” without looking like a JCB. You can drop them and they’re fine, and pour water through the keyboard and it drains through the chassis avoiding all the electricals. My biggest fear when I play out (and I’m sure most others’ as well) is that someone knocks a drink on the laptop ending your set permanently. These seem to answer that hazard. They are also cheap compared to Macbooks (start at £850 and can be upgraded to SSD and and a i5 for around £1100)

    The other to consider is screen resolution and size. My current laptop is a 13inch 1336×768 and it is just enough for compact 4 deck mixing in traktor, however if the laptop is on one side of the mixer and I and my controller on the other side it can be difficult to read the tracks I am selecting (protip, increase the the font size in traktor, helps a lot). a 15in screen would be best for djing IMO, 13 is a little small as I have said, but then 17in laptops are stupidly big and heavy to carry about for my tastes, and tricky to find space for in the booth.

    Lenovos (and others) have options when you buy them for different resolutions in one size, varying the dot pitch. Consider this also because too high (think retina) all the non scale-able content will be very very small, too low and there will not be enough “space” to display FX and four decks comfortably.

    Sorry for the essay but I don’t comment usually, but I love this blog, and as I have a knowledge/experience on the topic I thought I would contribute.

    TL;DR Your laptop is probably fine, you just need to make sure it isn’t full of digital silt and has extraneous stuff disabled. If you’re looking to buy, Lenovos are worth a look as they are highly spill resistant.

  41. Ive 2 suggestions. The first is http://www.pcspecialist.co.uk, although this would be best suited for UK/Ireland customers. They have a great selection of custom built laptops at awesome prices. I’ve had a Vortex II (Based on a Clevo P150HMx) from them for the last 2 years and it’s phenomenal. I recently put a hybrid drive into it, and it’s ace for dj stuff.

    The other option is to look at the Lenovo Ultrabooks. They’re a bit more portable than the pcs stuff, but are more expensive, however, they’re tasty little machines too.

  42. Sony Vaio would be your best choice, a lot of people tend to say it’s like a Mac, with windows OS. Sony Vaio is the best windows pc for anything that has to do with music. Your second best choice would be a Lenovo pc. I currently own a Lenovo.

  43. Medion Erazer X7815
    i7-2670QM
    8GB RAM
    SSD+HDD
    17″ FullHD

    My first and my last one, very dissapointing machine. Reinstalled Windows and still have issues. Simply not stable, USB-Port shuts down from time to time, slower than it should be concerning the specs.

    Just make sure you don’t buy one.

  44. HP Pavilion dv6-7014nr ,
    Windows® 7 Home Premium 64,
    15.6″ diagonal full HD anti-glare LED-backlit (1920 x 1080),
    8 GB DDR3
    500 gb sata,
    bly ray drive
    bought it i year ago at 1200 euro.it is a rock solid laptop and i never had any crash or other problem.i run traktor pro 2 with an NI audio 2 .there are some tricks to make your laptop run smoothly depending the software you use: 1)pull out the battery 2)optimize the energy settings for maximum performance and remeber always to cool it properly.

  45. I use a XPS L502X and it is amazing mainly because it has two audio outputs, so if you’re starting you don’t have to worry about a soundcard. If you can, buy the version with Full HD graphics card, so you can run 4 full decks on Traktor.

  46. I run a 14″ lenovo ideapad y480. It’s quad core, has a dedicated GPU, 750GB HDD and runs itch/scratch live great.

    I got it on sale for around $700 and really couldnt have gotten anything better. The size is perfect and the power is there when you need it. Can’t really complain about what I got. The build quality is awesome and the portability is excellent.

  47. Extralucky13 says:

    well this question is a can of worms isn’t it?

    I think pretty much any modern BUSINESS class laptop will do. The reason why I believe business class laptops are better is because:

    A) I own and use one for DJing and dabbling in production (yay Ableton! still lost there though lol)

    B) The biggest up they have over a standard consumer laptop is construction. Usually business class laptops have MUCH more study bodies than a consumer laptops.

    Real Life Example:
    I used to own a Dell XPS m1530
    2007ish
    a whopping 1600
    at the time LOADED with every option
    loved the form factor as is was quite slim
    hated the form factor as it got very hot! (read: overheating issues)
    That lasted me until last year when it took a dive off the arm of my man chain to splash down on the tile floor (Doh!) Cracked the lid hinge so the lid could not sit properly when opened.

    Now I have an HP (Compaq) 8510w that is pretty much the same spec wise but the build quality is far superior even if it isn’t as svelte.

    As far as a list of “must haves” a lot of it is going to be dependent on how you DJ! I think the two biggest questions are:

    How much screen real estate do you need?
    How much of your resources are you pulling?

    For instance my resolution on my laptop is set at 1680×1050, which on my 15in screen doesn’t feel is enough space in Traktor for four deck mixing. However, I like distorting my sound with the full plethora of Traktor’s effects so I do need some beefier specs as opposed to a beefier 17in lappy.

    So without further ado my wish list for (yay its 2013 and the world isnt over so im gonna buy) a new laptop

    build quality and portablity (unless you’re in your bedroom 24/7…….)
    an i5 would get you through the next few iterations of DJing software however if you’re gonna do it go big and future proof with an i7
    min 4g RAM prefer 8
    standard hard drive speeds are 5400rpm, get a hd spinnin’ at 7200rpm better, SSD BEST!
    probably a Backlit keyboard

    The rest is really gonna depend on how you dj…
    need more space get a bigger screen and probably a badass graphics card to support your four decks or vjing

    Hope it helps, sorry its so long…

  48. sammsousa says:

    i have an hp g62! wich i bought two years ago, wich at the time was the winner in the category ‘best pc under 600′! it costed 599 and all i can recomend is a mac! nothing agains pcs, I intend on keep using windows at home! but for djing, a windows laptop, the amount of money that you have to spend to get killer windows pc, you could basicly buy a mac for that price! and if you dont have allmost 2000 bucks to spend on a laptop, i’d say its all the same crap, coz none of them is gonna last more then 2 years, as oposed to a mac, of course!

    • I have been using the same pc laptop to dj for about 5 years now (triple boot w hackintosh)

      here are the main things you should consider when djing

      processor, go for highest clock speed, this is more important than number of cores at the moment (as programs get more advanced this will likely change)

      any pc with over 2.4-2.6 dual core will have sufficient ram

      internal sound card should not be a factor

      make sure your internal hdd has enough room to store your collection (have seen usb devices die or sleep mid mix, not pretty)

      your budget should be spent on screen real estate the bigger the resolution the better this will help a lot when playing

      the rest is down to taste and budget but with regards to djing is more or less superfluous

  49. Hey there fellow DJ’s. I’m also a Windows Loving Person & since buying my laptop upon receiving my Pioneer DDJ-T1 DJ Controller, I have had some problems, of which i could fix. Bought my Lenovo G560 March 2011, same month when i got my DJ Controller. I noticed that a few forums guys talk about latency / audio crackles / freezing / & it’s mostly windows based DJ’s.

    These are my Specs:
    Levono G560
    Intel Core i3 M280 2.53GHz CPU
    Installed 8GB Ram (x2 4GB Ram Sticks)
    Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit SP1
    WD 500GB Internal HDD

    I love this machine & after fixing some problems, i am enjoying the performance from this machine. I’d recommend this model (for those wanting to start out) the i5 models are ideal for DJing Purpose.

    A Couple Tips:
    Set Your Buffer to 128 Samples, Keep your bit Depth always at 16 bit, Get a program called Game Booster (http://www.iobit.com/gamebooster.html) , before performing, set your battery option to High Performance & make sure WiFi is turned off. i have no problems running 4 tracks with effects, keylock on & recording my sets live.

  50. Well there are three main reasons to use Mac’s when DJing (I don’t use a Mac by the way is too expensive) and its that the software in the Macs rarely crash,Mac are not automatically updating every single time(shutting down the Pc and when you are using a full screen program like DJ software you cant see the Pop up telling you to postpone restart) and since Mac are built for the arts they offer a good sound quality. So my personal advice is that if you want to DJ with a PC first only use it for Djing to avoid crash, deactivate automatic updates and buy a good PC with a good sound card and good built-in speakers when u want to practice with out external speakers.With that characteristics and also the portability not to big because its difficult to carry around and not to small because its hard to see what is going on in the software,you would do great with whatever computer you decide to buy.

  51. Bikram aditya says:

    Any laptop irrespective of brand ,is good for dj use (audio only).you just need to optimize the windows you use,eg.,I use 1.Hcl netbook Winxpsp3 home, 1.60 ghz 1gb ram ,after optimizing windows ,even my ns7 runs smoothly without any problems,no glitches ,or drops or any kind of delay.Any laptop with pentium intel is good for dj,Brand names keep on increasing the price of even a low config.netbook.

    • As long as you clear all the junk out of it…turn off windows updates. use it only for Audio purposes (DJing, editing) nothing else…you should not even use Office on the PC…

  52. Sony SVE1511MFXS
    Ram – 8gb
    Hard Drive – 750gb 5400 rpm
    Screen – 15.5 inches (1366*768)
    Backlit Keyboard (an absolute lifesaver in clubs)
    Processor – intel i7-3612qm
    Windows 7 home 64 bit
    July 2012 – $799.99 (Amazon)

    What I like: This thing is fast – really fast. I still can’t believe I managed to buy a computer with 8gigs of ram and a quad core i7 for $800. When I spin clubs, I run traktor rewired into live, and it barely takes a toll on the cpu. I produce a lot of music in live as well, and even my most recent project – soundcloud.com/hardlyariot/bundem – *shamelessSelfPromotion.jpg* with all of its <80 tracks, 48 vsti's, and an innumerable amount of fx and plug-ins, didn't stutter once.
    The screen is really bright, and I like having the bigger display. The integrated graphics (intel HD 4000) are surprisingly capable, letting me run up to two external monitors for extra screen space. (It might be able to do more; I just haven't quite had to try that yet.)

    What I'd change: This thing, being a Windows, not to mention a Vaio, came pre-loaded with ridiculous amounts of bloatware. It took me at least 3 or 4 hours to uninstall everything "helpful" that came with it, so I could have it set up for djing.
    Also, a bigger screen resolution would have been nice, but for the price I'm not complaining.

    Why you should buy it:
    1) This hasn't crashed on me once. I know Windows has a bit of a spotty reputation, but my old Mac Mini crashed more than this computer. I've played so many gigs, and the only issue I've ever had is sometimes Itch will take an extra second or two to load a track (and that rarely happens.)

    2) A mac with these specs would be $2,000.

    • Also, forgot to mention – 4 USB ports, so I can run my Launchpad, S4, and Axiom at the same time, and then charge my mobile if it starts to die during a gig.

      • Trade that 5400RPM for something better.
        That hardrive is actually the greatest bottleneck you undoubtedly have in your laptop.
        The next step above will be 7200RPM hardrive.
        From then on, things start to behave ‘a new level better’ with hybrid (Hardisk + SSD), and lastly with a SSD drive.
        RESPONSIVENESS is something we DJs need.

      • word djcl.ear!

    • regarding bloatware, the best option will always be to buy a non-brand laptop, again, a non-brand laptop.
      If you’ve never heard the name on the box, that’s the one for you.

      why is that? well, bloatware. most branded laptops comes rigged to the teeth with these resource consuming BSware, and most branded laptops lose crucial functionality when removing these softwares and services(for instance, Hot Key control on ASUS laptops must have 2 services running in order to function properly), in comparance, most non-brand laptops can be optimized to the max, showing as little as 200 MB of memory usage when idle, and still retaining most, if not all functions on the laptop.

  53. I use a HP Envy Beats edition quad core i7, 8 gigs of ram… not let me down once.

    • Its strong!! I dropped it 3 times and they were hard freaking drops, I spilled a beer on the key board, A FULL BEER!!!!Still running like new.

    • also using an HP Envy, great specs, only had a slight problem with the beats audio button sticking in the beginning, once I figured out what it was I haven’t had any problems. Well built like a Mac but for half the price. Only downfall is only one USB 2.0 and two USB 3.0 ports. My NS7 and fx bar both work better if plugged into the 2.0 port, but obviously not enough ports.

      • Another user here on an Envy. core i7, 720gb drive, 8gb RAM, 3 usb ports, and just threw a clean windows install on there. Havent had any problems ever.

        Bought it in December 2010, has been running like a dream, though I’ll probably ghost the drive and toss an ssd in there soon.

      • Heh, I am reading this thread so that I can find a replacement for an HP envy beats model. It has crashed on me in the middle of sets multiple times and I am about to send it in for the third time for service. So far it’s on its second sound card (and I use an external sound card for DJing, so it’s not a DJing problem- but it is a pain when one is doing research and the headphones are full of static). The reason for previous crashes, I think, was an unstable power supply at one particular club, as it never crashed anywhere else.

        It’s too bad. These are generally tough laptops, backlit keyboard is really great because it’s red and doesn’t mess with your vision, nice fast processor, etc. etc. But I think I got a lemon. They’re out there.

        At this point I’m going with an Asus Zenbook UX32A.

  54. Lenovo Thinkpad T60 Core 2 Duo (T5600 CPU 1,8 GHz) 32bit, 4GB RAM.
    Rock solid build, metal case (2.34 kg). 1440×900 resolution (some real estate for traktor). Dedicated ATI-graphics card. Running Windows 7 Home Premium.

    Experience: Mixed, now mostly all issues resolved and working at an overall audio latency of 7,3ms (with an audio buffer size of 128 samples at 44,1 kHZ). Multicore processing works fine with recent Traktor Pro 2 versions (running 2.1.2 currently).

    Problem which took a long time to track down: Crackling static noise, especially during times of graphics activity (e.g. switch fullscreen). Probably due to delays in the processing of shared interrupts. Looks like the dedicated ATI graphics card (and the wired network card, Intel Pro 100 PL) caused delays/dropouts in audio processing — massively annoying stuff. Had to deactivate the ATI graphics card (=not install the drivers) and use the builtin (Intel) graphics card. Deactivated the wired network card as well (in Windows device manager).

    Also, there are a couple of Windows 7 realted issues to be aware of:

    * Due to a bug in Windows 7 USB drivers, there are spikes in CPU load (Microsoft Knowledgebase article kb981214). Due to Microsoft being Microsoft, this hotfix was lost in Service Pack 1 (kb2529073), I didn’t have a chance to install it yet, works none the less.

    * When wireless is enabled, DPC Latency Monitor shows spikes about every 15 seconds or so. More a cosmetic issue, but I disable wireless (running a script) before performing.

    * In my case the “Media Player Network Sharing Service” (wmpnetwk) claimed about 40% of one of the CPUs. Better disable it, in case you don’t need it.

    Important Tool: “DPC Latency Checker”, it’s actually included in the Traktor Audio 6 driver. Latencymon might also help to track down pathologic cases.

    I hate to say it, but from my experience, this kind of business class notebook, though praised by lots of Linux hackers as a reliable work horse, is not optimal pnp for audio, at least not in my sepecific setup. Maybe it’s the ATI graphics card that caused most of the trouble. Since Notebooks only offer very limited/no options to work around conflicts like these (e.g. in the bios setup), I guess it’s a bit of a game of chance, if a specific model or combination of hardware plays nice.
    Try before or immediately after buy, and return if unsatisfied.

    All this said, I’m a reasonably happy camper now with my setup, but it took way too much time and energy to resolve all theses issues. I nearly forgot the initial purpose of this whole exercise.. Btw. bought my first TT yesterday and might give DVS a try. Gotta get some distance between my musical performance and this abstract technological stuff.. That’s my day job and should not burn down my creativity as well :-)

    Cheers!

    • Honestly I have done DJing on this laptop, worst part just with the ThinkPad.. and trust me it was an awesome experience.
      Yes it may not be the finest , but definitely did the work for me…..

  55. HP Envy 15′ i7, 8gb ram, dual hds Solid State & 7200rpm hdd for data, usb 3.0 all around. ALUMINUM BODY!!! Enough said.

    • I’m having a second mid-range HP right now and cant complain. Great thing about HP lappys is that Firewire chipset is mostly TI brand (which is a must for FW audio on PC).

  56. DJ DroogSixtyTwo says:

    If money is not an issue, then there is only one clear choice, Panasonic Toughbook. It’ll take drops, shocks, spills and just keep on running, it’s the perfect laptop for a club environment. It’s literally milspec certified, if it’s good enough for the battlefield, it’ll handle a club just fine.

    • downside: heavy and bulky as hell

    • Except it has middle speed CPUs in order to lower temperatures (that the hard shell enclosing it finds hard to dissipate) and it is only 12″, which many DJs consider lower than 14″ as unusable.
      Leaving aside any comment about its US$3500 price tag.

      So hardly, this laptop qualifies as being “the only clear choice”.

      A good idea yes, yet not ready for performance oriented DJs, producers or musicians.

      • TT team and guys/rls here: The fact is that Laptop manufacturers -so far- have neglected the already LARGE and increasing DJ laptop market.
        Focusing instead in Visual techs or gamers, IT people, business, academic and a few more… but the Djing needs and even the PRO AUDIO market has been very laterally served. Most models lacking on connectors, specs or overbuilt with unnecesary and cloating hardware (like heat producing and power hungry, highly speced GPUs).
        I would contribute to the proper Laptop DJ needs list, starting with choosing criteria like reliability, serviceability, upgradeability, Powerfull multicore CPU, good isolated power traces on the motherboard, TI firewire chipsets, Silent, low voltage fast large RAM memory, hopefully in three of four channels, Light, white colored or plated(direct sunlight-proofed working condition), Responsiveness (SSD), long battery life, Either ExpressCard or Thunderbolt to access at least PCIe 2 speeds, and of course price choices relating the above for the niches of market segments that comprise the Audio Communities.
        Yes, surely many of us here would contribute and back that DJ Specs need list, but it is a different topic altogether.
        //These years feeble demand situation in the laptop amrket favors that the solid Laptop manufacturers like Lenovo, DELL, Asus, Toshiba, Sony, HP, MSI, etc should be VERY interested in finally finding out the relevance of this community.
        Particularly because our opinions and needs are very very very seldom seem at the main technical sites of ANY OTHER related ones except our dedicated websites…

  57. Di Bartdi says:

    I always used an HP Probook 4530s
    Its relativly cheap and comes with 4 USB ports (which is great as most laptops come with only two, allowing for example for a controller, an audio card (if ur controller doesnt come with one) another midi controller if you need as the midi fighter and I also like having a mouse when I use it at home)
    Also, I ve never had to deal with crashes while gigging or anything of the sort.

    • Hah, I actually have 10 USBs when I add a mobile docking station. Overkill, I know.

    • Most laptops only have two USB decoding chips inside, which are then connected to either two USB connectors or more (3,4,+) using the same harware. So for multiple demanding devices the bandwith and processing is divided…

    • Hi Di Bartdi,
      didn’t you had problems with dissapearing sound on Probook 4530S

      • Di Bartdi says:

        the only issue I have is that, when disconnecting the audio interface like a gorilla, just pulling off the usb cable while music is playing, the driver kind of brakes and i have to uninstall and install again or I get a blue screen next time i have to use it, but if u arent a disconecting beast u will hav no problems. and even if u like being an alpha dominant gorilla male while disconecting ur stuff, uninstalling and reinstalling is just a matter of 2 mins

      • hahaa alpha gorilla?
        All the girls I’ve ever seen disconnecting a cable, grave it by the cord… ehemm.

      • …while yes, gorillas may not switch the device off, before disconnecting the stuff

  58. I bought a Sony Vaio last December for 580 eu on a small budget (I’m Greek lol). i3 @ 2.2 GHz, 4Gb memory, 500 Gb hard drive) and use it with Serato. I optimized it with Serato’s simple enough instructions and everything works fine. Yes one more usb than usual three available helps a lot.

    I did a reserch on which laptop brand is more reliable, No1 was Apple and then was SOny along with Toshiba and Asus.

    I’m pretty satisfied, everything seems to be at the right place, and it’s also beautiful.

    Out of topic a little bit now, the main reason for me to buy a Windows laptop is the ability to also use Media Monkey.

    • Toshiba and IBM(lenovo) are not what they used to be. They still charge like in the good ol times.

      • Well it depends more on the actual lines in question rather than the brands.
        Lenovo Thinkpads are probably close to the top for the correct mix of features, reliability and price, then Dell’s Precision and some business models, HP professional line, and high speced Sony’s Vaios and Toshiba Portege ones. Leaving aside Macbooks PRO that are a kind of their own.

  59. James Norris says:

    Dell xps studio 15
    December 2010
    £690
    Id recommend because:

    With a little tinkering can get it down to 3ms latancy with a decent soundcard and TP2. Has an in built JBL subwoofer so you can play music off it in small rooms to quite good effect. Start up is very quick.

    Things id change:

    To much pointless software comes pre installed, I still find a mac much better for production, ableton live doesnt seem to run particuarly smoothly.

    • Dell Studio line is a major letdown for a number of buyers, hardware defects, major IPC problems, not durable…

      • There are a couple of deceptively built XPS models, but most of them are quite excellent…
        And they are DJ/Producer friendly, except for those demanding Audio set ups, because -so far- all XPS models lack the versatile and future-proof ExpressCard option for Firewire or ultra fast/low latency external Soundcard solutions.
        Hopefully I envision the Thunderbolt option at next 2013 , Haswell generation.

    • I’ve used seven different Dells over the years (mine as well as those of other DJ’s and musicians), and they gave us LOADS of trouble.

      - Two of them whined constantly, even through external sound cards
      - Two of them had skipping audio problems that weren’t solved by turning off the wireless
      - One of them had audio dropouts (silences)
      - One of them had terribly slow network speeds on both ethernet and wi-fi (I don’t think this was ever solved)
      - One of them seemed to reset the USB’s periodically, causing sound cards, external hard drives e.t.c to be lost and redetected

      I’m not saying these problems couldn’t be fixed, but me personally? I tell everyone I know to steer clear.

  60. I think the MacBook Pro is the best Windows Laptop hands down. I have been using MacBook every since they switched to to the intel chipset for almost 6 years now. I use boot camp with a dual partition and have had windows XP and Windows 7. I have been a DJ for 26 years and digital djing for the past 10 years.

    My first laptop was a Toshiba PC and at the time it was one of the best PC’s. ($2600). It worked well when it was working! The first thing that went out was the power supply
    exactly after one year. Then a couple months later the DvD drive. Then the hard drive crashed and at the 2 year mark the LCD monitor went out. I took it to the repair shop and they told me it would be about $700 to fix it. He also told me that I got my moneys worth being that the average life of a laptop is 2 years. Needless to say I was very
    pissed off and needed another laptop to work with. I didn’t have another $2600 at the time.

    So at the time Apple had just released the Black intel Macbook’s but now you could
    install windows on it. I was always told that mac’s were too expensive but for me it was the other way around. So I took a chance and paid $1200 for the MacBook installed windows xp on it. I am happy to say that I probably won’t be buying another PC. After 2years everything was still working on it to my surprise until I dropped it. The corner cracked and the DVD drive broke. So after being paranoid I went and bought another MacBook expecting for it to break at the 2year mark. After having it almost 4 years my wife accidentally drove over my Back pack and cracked my LCD screen on my first MacBook. But guess what? The thing still works gave it to my son and he has an external monitor hooked up to it and he uses it almost everyday. Is 6 years old and I haven’t spent a dime on it other than buying it. The original power supply still works and the only thing that went bad on it is the rechargeable battery. Which is not a big deal since my son uses it as desktop.

    I now own two 13″ MacBook’s & a 15″ MacBook Pro. I just recently started using my latest 15″ MBP without windows on it for the first time. My 13″ MacBook has windows 7 on it and I still use that to DJ with ( for the past 2years).

    This is why I believe the MacBook Pro is the best laptop for windows. You can get a regular PC for less but the question is how long is it gonna last?

  61. Like Tom and Sam, I also own a 15″ Envy, and I love it. I originally chose the Envy because the video card and processor would give me plenty of power for video editing and 3D work – excellent if you’re running multiple DAWs or throwing visuals down with your set. I was okay with the cost, $1,200 (USD), because of the metal body and excellent screen.

    I sigh a little when people talk about Windows being unstable, when it usually has more to do with conflicting software or bad hardware. The Blue Screen of Death is usually a hardware issue, such as bad RAM or a hard drive error – why do you think your PC was so cheap? As for software, removing bloatware should be the first thing you do, and do you really need to download every browser add-on, media player, gadget, etc? Buy or build a PC with good parts and keep it maintained, and it will treat you just as well.

    FYI: I have a second user set up for music in which the resolution is dialed down a few notches. 1080 on a 15-inch screen is excellent for gaming, but I was having a difficult time reading the text of icons.

  62. I don’t plan on buying a computer any time soon, I have to use what I have. I have an HP Pavilion dv6 Notebook PC and haven’t been able to get traktor running on it – it doesn’t seem to like the “audio device,” I get an error message every time I try to run Traktor. I don’t know too much about computers, do you have any advice on what I can do?

  63. George Palilis says:

    Lenovo T410 or T420 or T430
    is the best windows Laptop for Djs

    1.you can change the cd/Dvd drive with ultra bay slot. no need for external HD

    2.keyboard is ”waterproof” liquids come through.

    3.Tough construction

    4.MAgnesium Body – Business hardcore Laptops -build for transport around the world!

    5. lots of Usb slots.

    6. RAM and main hard Disc can be very easy upgraded

    i have a T410 since 2010 and a am more than happy!

    but i use WIndows only for Serato. The rest of The day Ubuntu. I can change the hard discs like Usb’s and boot from wherever i want :)

    i tested Sony Vaio Z (2009) and HP Pavilion(2007-8)… forget it!
    i just wish serato one day works with Linux too:/

    chears guys…

    • I mostly agree with these, except for some particular models of Dell’s latitude that very seldom DELL puts on discount so are similarly priced…
      The 2012 Thinkpad T line is almost a dream come true for DJs, but imho it is beaten by the elusive Latitude E6430s that shares the magnesium casing, the ExpressCard versatile and future-proof connector, the 1400×900 graphics option, backlit and spill resistant, keyboard, high cell count battery option, fully serviceability, post-buy upgradeable to the highest mobile CPUs available…
      Yes both laptops share that, but DELL managed to fit the 14″ screen into a 13″ laptop case, which makes it lighter andeasier to carry. This sells it to me, except for…
      …for…
      for the next CPU+chipset generation fastly approaching the laptops to desire, precisely at MAY 2013, where radical improvements are coming to bring laptops to a level of a completely new league!!
      No much publicity is going to come until a few months before release date, because they are having problems to sell the actual Ivy Bridge laptops/Ultrabooks generation.

    • The T4x0 might actually avoid the problems I had with my T61, where the Intel 3945 wireless drivers are causing latency spikes about every ten seconds.. The 4965 AGN reportedly might even be worse while the 6300 model built into the T410 Lenovos triggered considerably fewer complaints. See e.g. http://communities.intel.com/thread/6021?start=75&tstart=0

      • Thumbs up! I replaced the builtin wifi card of my Thinkpad T60 by the Intel 6300-N model built into the T420 Lenovos, and according to the DCP latency checker the latency spikes I used to have every 10 seconds are gone (actually NI built the DCPlat checker into their Traktor Audio card driver.. great!). If anyone wants to try this at home, I followed these instructions and the whole procedure went really smooth: http://www.cwnp.com/cwnp_wifi_blog/upgrading-to-intel-ultimate-n-6300/ .

        Anyway, now I use a script to stop my wifi card and antivirus software before running Traktor, just to be really really sure (btw. check out the tool “Hstart” in case you have trouble with the windows permissions denying you to stop services etc..). Now I’m a happy camper with me olde T60 audio circuit board :-) hopefully for maybe another three years?!. I’d really like to spend the money on other things.. buying a notebook always feels a bit like burining money.

  64. Make: Toshiba

    Model: L745

    CPU: Intel i3 @ 2.10 GHz

    RAM: 8GB DDR3 (upgraded)

    HDD: 600GB

    Cost: $400 at Best Buy sale

    Age: Almost two years

    Likes: I really enjoy the smaller size (15″) and the feel of he touch pad; having three USB ports really helps out as well.

    Dislikes: I’ve had Blue Screen issues, and almost lost my music library. Having since optimized it a bit more for audio, I’ve not had issues. I also run dual boot so Windows can’t screw with my audio partition, but this leaves a bit of search lag in Traktor.

    Overall: For the price this was an excellent buy on my (then) jobless budget.

  65. Whatever you get make sure the graphics card can do video, so when you start video DJing you’ll have enough and the right amount of memory and such available to complete this task. Or like Jon above with the Toshiba L745 i3 won’t be able to do any VDJing as the graphics is built into the processor

  66. Asus g73sw ROG

    full hd 3D monitor 17″ (Im half blind)

    backlite keyboard

    Intel I7 second gen

    windows 7 ultimated

    8 gig ddr3 ram expandable to 16(8 is the best for video dj)

    dual hdd slot 1 ssd 512 for the programs (traktor, serato and vdj yes vdj)1 750 hdd 7200 rpm (for music folders)

    Nvidia GE Force graphics (no intel as it doesn’t work with serato video)

    blue ray dvd

    1 usb 3.0
    3 usb 2,0
    1 hdmi

    Bought it in feb 2011for 1499.00, doesn’t get any better that a gamer laptop for Dj.came with the 750 hdd just added the ssd.
    Upgrade win 7 home premium for ultimated (not necessary for our application)

    no other programs (strictly for Dj)

  67. John Jone says:

    Hands down, ASus and MSI build the best gaming laptops for DJ use. I concur with other DJs that the Asus G73 and Republic of Gaming rigs blow away the Macs. Apple charges too much for machines that have half the power of the Asus setup. Just make sure you buy a gaming rig without bloatware and use Eset or Vipre for antivirus.

  68. Te problem isn’t the computer the problem are the DJ software. All DJ software are 32bit so don’t use more than 3Go of Ram and for exemple traktor don’t use all the core of the computer , And I’m not sur he use 32 core , it take the same time on my I5 2500K and my core 2 duo T7500. and if I check the option multi core it don’t work better and add some bug in the sound
    So any computer is good as long they didn’t do a real multi core support.
    after the SSD or HDD don’t change a lot because it load it in the RAM and the ram is 7Go/s
    And intel HD 3000 or 4000 are enought for video because it’s just video not 3D game or application.
    So it’s just DJing software, ask to NI and others to improve their software and a real multi core (because now any basic sofware and free do it) and don’t spend money in unuseful laptop

    • 1. serato video does’t support intel graphics.
      2. ssd are more reliable, perform better than hdd
      3. for video dj 8 gig ram is the best option

  69. Any laptop with at least an i3 intel cpu
    4gb ram or higher
    SSD boot drive or dual bay(ssd+hdd)
    15″ 1600×900 or higher(anti-glare)
    Backlit keyboard
    At least 3 usb ports + hdmi
    Discrete gpu for video mixing
    Expect to spend $800+

    • I spend $1400.00 on my Asus but compare the specs and price to a Mac easy decision. The only problem is as you said my monitor isn’t anti glare but easy fix with those anti glare screen protector.

  70. 2011 Samsung Q530 I would DEFINATELY recommend this laptop. Because it owns traktor pro 2. As in… 13% CPU Usage on 4gb o RAM. I’d like more RAM. Just incase. Soon tho… I’ll have a “boot mode”, just to run Traktor an my S4. Win win… ;)

  71. I have a Lenovo ThinkPad T61 with the ram maxed out and Windows 7 (64-bit) running in it. I bought it used in 2007…although I wouldn’t mind upgrading to a W530 now. Still, it runs beautifully.

    I think the trick to Windows laptops is you can’t go cheap. You can’t expect quality performance from a $400-$500 laptop from Walmart. You need to invest in a laptop that’s noted for solid quality hardware.

    This is why Macbooks work well. It’s not just that Apple has built the whole system to run solidly with the OS, but they put in high-end hardware. This is why they’re expensive. Plus the OS isn’t a “version” of the original tweaked by the company selling the laptop. It’s the genuine OS without alterations.

    Lenovo, Toshiba, Dell, Samsung, etc…just pick a laptop with noted solid hardware. Max out the ram, and try to get a pure copy of Windows…rather than some altered version from the laptop manufacturer. I even avoid the ThinkPad tools and added software…just so my laptop runs lean and solid.

    Only time I ever had crashes was when the laptop overheated in a club. A cheap cooling platform fixed that.

  72. Using PCs for Djing Software can be a bit of a hassle, as not all PC laptops are created equal.

    For example My first Djing laptop was an Old Toshiba with an Bare bones AMD Processor 2ghz, 2 gigs of ram, and integrated Graphics card.

    This worked GREAT for Djing and was perfect for it until one day my screen got smashed for a gig…this was because it was an all plastic case and the lid wasnt very durable.

    With that in mind i made my hunt for my next Djing Laptop…and i wanted something that could handle everything i had on my desktop, PLUS take a big beating in case stuff got dropped onto my laptop. Now the Programs that i use not all at once but sometimes 3 at a time are:

    Ableton, Resolume, Traktor, Serato

    Now Traktor is the biggest resource pig of all the DJing software…and Ableton isnt that much of a pig either…neither is Resolume…but when you do Ableton, Resolume and Traktor at the same time….well things can get a bit Stressed.

    With that in mind…and keeping with the Windows Perspective.

    I picked up an Alienware m15x, Core i7 920 Extreme, with 8 gigs ddr 3 ram, Upgraded to 500gig SSD, and a GTX260m(not really important for basic DJing but VDJing its a must!!!)

    Now on paper this machine looks mighty impressive…but when i loaded up all my software and started playing around…i noticed a lot of crackles and pops…onto the diagnostics!!!

    Where my Toshiba laptop took about 10 mins of setting up, getting the right drivers and fixing the USB to have a total of 8ms response…my Alienware took me about 2 days…having to upgrade a multitude of drivers, finding usb bug code errors etc! Finally I had a DJing laptop that could run internal midi to both ableton and Resolume while using Traktor with an overall response of 7ms!!

    Now my alienware has a full metal body and chassis so i havent had any problems with it getting beat up or anything…and on the plus side it has LOTS and i mean LOTS of colorful lights that i can make blink and switch colors! and Ravers love flashy lights :D

    • oh forgot to add the toshiba laptop was about 300 bucks

      while my Alienware street price was around 3000, but i got it for about 800 :D

  73. graeme burch says:

    This has been a great review for me as I’m thinking of moving on to a Dj controller(flightcased) & laptop.
    I currently use a Mep 7000 which I total trust & relay on.
    But in its flightcase with Mixer & backup player in it, My back does not like it …Too Heavy.
    The one thing that terrifys me is the norm laptop glitchs, freezing, not responding , etc.
    Having to shut down/restarting program or restart windows during a set …NIGHTMARE DJ MOMENT.
    I have a lot of Dj colleges that use traktor, serato, etc that use both platforms osx & windows, Mainly windows.
    Obvious choice if I could afford it would be OSX but I aint got that kinda Cash so windows is a natural choice plus I kinda know my way round the system.

    Is there a guide on what to turn off or disable for windows Dj’s ?.
    I’ve heard of people having their laptops tweeked for Dj’ing only.

  74. I think all the new “Ultrabooks” are great pieces of equipment.Small form factor, Metal casing, backlit keyboard and i5 processor. Some of these Ultrabooks start at around $600 which is also very affordable. I personaly have the M17X R3 Alienware, a monster of a notebook! But now I’m looking for something in the 13″ range…

    • You want better perfomance than they offer, the possibility to upgrade RAM (that most ultrabooks don’t allow), better connectors typically they have few USBs, replaceable battery, hopefully spill resistant keyboards, some of us need (or will soon) ExpressCard or thunderbolt and the possibility in a years time to place a cheap 500GB SSD, etc.
      All these are elusive features in ultrabooks nowadays.
      Let alone the fact that they are very crammed inside so they are not built to be serviceable, one factor many business (that avoid those risks) equally as us DJs.
      I do hope the Ultrabooks evolve to meet our needs, but I don´t see that happening, instead the Professional Laptop lines are becoming thinner, lighter and speced with many of the useful features Ultrabooks are designed with.

    • Plus, if you are coming from 17″, I guess you will not be comfortable with anything smaller than 14″.
      If possible try it out before buying.

  75. Edvard Hübinette says:

    Saying that it’s a “windows laptop” is plain silly, since that’s just software. The most important factors when choosing a laptop is getting one with a backlit keyboard that keeps cool.

    • Not really, as you can’t run OSX on non-Apple machines, and 99% of our readers use one or the other.

      • Phil it’s right, you can tell the difference between 2 computers with the same tech specs but with different OS, some times, because of the system configuration, it can huge.

  76. If money isn’t an issue then I wouldn’t even consider a pc. I’d buy a MBP and just put a nice cover on it. My MBP is very durable and more dependable then any PC I’ve ever had. Handles running multiple programs without any issues, has yet to ever freeze or fail, and allows so much room for growth in regards to adding video or moving into music production. Hands down Mac has the advantage and you can even pick up a used one at a good price.

  77. I work in the IT field so shopped around and found a sale with another valid discount coupon and saved $400 on a $1200 customized HP laptop. It is dedicated to Traktor with the minimum of additional apps needed for MP3 tagging, convertin and editingfiles, and BPM rating and organizing files.

    One thing you absolutely need to do is disconnect your wireless while performing, to prevent update downloads through open access points. Also disable automatic installations of upgrades which can affect performance and force unexpected reboots. Run all you updates before going to a gig and take it offline before leaving for a gig.

    I have an HP Pavillion DV6T with a Quad-core I7, 8 gigs of Ram, A terabyte drive, Beats Audio, the base model video card, Windows 7 pro to to take full advantage of multi-core processing speed, and so I have full admin privileges to manage the laptop. Windows 7 Home edition does not have true and full administrative privileges to manage a laptop.

    A big mistake often made by general users is not to backup the restore partition which is the very first thin you need to do before doing anything with a new laptop. it is often hidden and can be unidden. It contains all the software to rebuild your laptop to it’s base image.

  78. The thing to remember is that specs and durability are the only important things for the most part. Brand doesn’t really have too much to do with it. My friend has a 2008 MacBook Pro that he uses to DJ and it has the exact same specs as my 2008 Thinkpad. Neither is particularly modern and anything you get new today will have better hardware. Still, both laptops perform perfectly well.

    Both of our laptops have Intel Core2Duo CPUs running at 2.4Ghz and 2GB of RAM. This is pretty low by today’s standards now that costs have come down and CPUs have improved but it shows just how little it takes to run a basic VDJ/Serato/Traktor session.

    That said, if you are looking for a laptop today, I’d recommend the same specs for DJing as I would for just about any general use laptop to be worth buying: Any of the current Intel multi-core CPUs (i3/i5/i7) will be fine. With RAM as cheap as it is now, get at least 4GB of RAM. Windows 7 64-bit for the OS, probably at least 500GB hard drive for storing a ton of music.

    You can find these specs in anything from a $400 craptop to a high end model so the difference will come with durability, build quality, and support. Shop around, read reviews of the models you like, and go to sites like newegg.com and do an advanced search that only shows notebooks with the spec you want. If I can do it on a 4-year-old Thinkpad, you can do it on a nice modern Asus or Vaio or Thinkpad or Elitebook.

    One of the biggest things to remember is that even a modest-spec laptop can handle digital DJing but whether you are on a Macbook or a Windows notebook you want to minimize the amount of background processes that use system resources. It’s easy to have things running in the background on Mac OSX but unfortunately, the issue is worse with a lot of Windows laptop OEMs. Some brands are notorious for bundling trialware or their own “value added” software that aims to make things easier for the novice computer user but just sucks up juice for the power user. If you buy a new laptop, look for one that doesn’t bundle lots of extra software. Nothing worse than booting up to about 15 random assistants, wizards, and configurators running in the taskbar. Either install the OS from scratch if you can or hit up the control panel uninstaller or a program like CCleaner and uninstall all the unneeded trial versions and extras.

    You really want just this: The OS, the latest drivers, ASIO4All, and a free, lightweight antivirus like MS Security Essentials, and your DJ software. You can add other stuff but you really don’t need all the HP/Dell/etc. “assistant” tools or big bloated a/v suites like Norton or Symantec.

    Sounds like a pain in the ass but the positive side is that you can save a fortune. I just went on newegg and searched for a laptop that approximates a Macbook Pro. This Asus (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834230411) has a higher resolution screen (1920×1080 vs 1440×900 on the MBP), a bluray drive, and a dedicated nVidia graphics card instead of the Intel onboard option.

    A 15″ MBP with that same CPU, 8GB RAM, 750GB hard drive, and no bluray, lower video card, and lower res screen costs $2000 whereas the Asus costs $1150. That’s no small change. Personally, I would rather spend 30 minutes uninstalling any “bloatware” than spend an extra $850. That’s a new DJ controller, a crapload of music, a tablet, new cell phone…shit, that’s a second laptop!

    Taking the time to compare specs and hunt around can really save a fortune over just going with an expensive brand because its “the thing to do”. Apple makes good kit but they have issues just like any other and it’s important to look at the specs and cost and not only the marketing. Obviously if you are running OSX-only software you are better off buying a used Macbook if you are on a budget. Otherwise, I’ve had zero issues DJing on Windows laptops of sufficient spec.

    • Well, what you state is probably true for the most basic DJ set-ups, a large number nevertheless, but still far from covering important segments of Audio users, including those more Producer. Musician or PRO Audio oriented. Users with more than 1 controller, planning a recording DAW or wanting to run low latency soundcards, as well as to mix with live instruments, mics, etc.
      In those cases, all gets complicated in terms of performance, particularly if you add Plug-ins that can very fast get the laptops to a slow unresponsive state in the best scenario, an obligated restart as one of the worst.

      For those uses, you need low latency connectors, firewire being much better than USB and still to have a very streamlined Laptop configuration. Increased battery life is achievable using Intel’s inboard Video instead of a dedicated graphics card (also this could save you US$100-200).
      A backlit keyboard is essential and not many models offer this option. As said above in some other comment, you prefer to use Windows PRO and definitely 64 bit, in order to access over 4 GB RAM and make better use of the 2 or more CPU cores and their doubled threads common in Intel CPUs. Consider that 16 GB of low voltage (1.3v) runing at 1600 mhz and Cas11 lat, may be had for US$80 now,
      The good news are that you may find laptops speced like this for around US$600 in certain timed offers, but you’ll have to dig, which is a very different story that what you tell here.
      I agree that since the second “i” CPU generation (i3, i5 and i7), most laptops will serve quite well to most basic Digital DJs, but at the same time, users with more complex set-ups or with a set-up upgrade on their horizon, are really sprouting all over, and therefore for them(us), when searching for able Laptops, the plot thickens considerably.

  79. I’ve used a Sony Vaio PIII Windows XP 800mhz with 512MB of ram
    Traktor ran flawlessly as well as Serato SL1.

    Traktor gave me issues when accessing external USB drives. Serato only gave me issues when I would pull the external drive out while in use. Otherwise…people who say they need to use Macs to be better DJ’s is false. If you know how to configure your Windows box to run lean and mean you’re good to go. I think the community just wants to bond with their shiny apples to feel good about themselves.

    i currently use MSI Wind u100 and triple boot it with three different OS’s so i get the choose what i want for any given gig.

  80. I keep it real simple…

    Dell Inspirion E1505
    250 gb harddrive
    2gb ram

    15″ screen
    Intel duo core 1.6ghz

    Windows XP SP3

    I run Virtual DJ 7 with my Numark Mixtrack pro. I bought my laptop for $200. Dell has a strong reputation for business use. It may not. E a a Sony or HP, but it runs smooth.

    Do not however run Vista for any DJ software. In the PC world Vista is crap. Windows 7 is proffered, but I’m a old school geek and stick to relevance of the machine rather than get all 8gb ram and super big hard drives (not needed). Keep in mind DJing is mobile, keep it simple use all the super specs at home.

    • I agree with you – unless you are doing regular gigs and earning good money from djing why not use a basic laptop as long as its kept just for music.I want to replace my Acer Aspire mainly because it has no bluetooth or built in camera which I really need and I am having problems with the USB ports/drivers.This laptop is about 2 years old and cost £330.I will uninstall everything apart from all my music/djing software such as Traktor 2,Virtual dj ( both free and 6 ),Mixmeister Fusion etc and buy a better laptop for everyday use.

  81. dj naizeni says:

    Inspiring 15r 15.5 inch screen
    Comes stock with 6 gig ram and a terrabyte harddrive I5 processor cost me $700
    It’s fast reliable and its added audio control program you can fine tune it’s output.

  82. I would say that if you want to use a windows pc for djing you should get your hands on any of the high end models from sony or hp with at least intel i5 processor, 4 gigs of ram and hdd of any size but with a minimum of 7200 rpm disk speed. What makes a big difference here is that you use a ssd drive instead of a hdd drive (that increases the performance of any windows machine) and also you should tweak a little bit of the windows system configuration (there a lot of tutorials for how to do it) so the laptop becomes a lot more stable and fast.

  83. I got the hp envy 17 this summer and love it. I had the computer store research what would be best for mixing 4 hd videos at once (denon mc6000 hooked up to 2 stanton str8 15s running virtual dj), and that’s what they came back with, and I’ve had no issues. The 6 built in speakers and subwoofer with 2 audio outs, 4 usbs, beats audio inside, and backlit keyboard make it the ideal djing machine.

  84. Dj Honest says:

    Toshiba Satellite A505, purchased in 2009
    250gb hd, 2gb ram, it was a big deal when it was new

    This thing has been such a headache. It has three usb ports, one on the left and two joined on the right. Within the first three months the two attached ports on the right fell into the casing, rendering them useless. I spoke to the folks at Best Buy and called Toshiba directly only to find that fixing this problem would mean I’d lose my laptop for six to eight weeks. Not cool. I also took it to a few small computer repair places in the area and found that most were afraid to touch it and the ones that weren’t wanted to charge me way too much. Long story short, I bought a usb hub.

    About a year into ownership, the hard drive failed. Luckily I caught it in time to have everything pulled off of it. With a new hard drive, the total cost of that adventure came to around $330, or about half the original price of the laptop. Awesome.

    Internally, I’ve run Virtual Dj, Serato Scratch Live, Traktor Scratch Pro, and Ableton Live individually with few hiccups. I can also run programs while downloading music and not run into issues with memory and music playback. Windows 7 hates my M-Audio Xponent but does just fine with my CDJ-900s.

    Bottom line, it does enough to get by. It doesn’t excel at anything and it’s definitely built like crap. I’m currently in the market for a mac.

    Honest

  85. dj trouble says:

    got a vostro 3360 ultrasize 13″. very light(portability)
    i7, 8gb ram, 512ssd hdd + 256 gb ssd msata (speed and power)
    totally futurproof for now and totally ready for vdj 8 when it comes out

    • A good model indeed. However if you want to improve your sound quality or to use a more complex set up involving Ableton Live, Plug-ins, lower latencies via a better soundcard, you will need a ExpressCard connector. And this particular 13″ model lacks it , whether the bigger 3460 or 3560 offer it.
      Dell’s best Audio future-proof laptop is the great (but small) Latitude E6430s that has all the PRO features, a 14″ screen size but still inside a 13″ case, just like yours.
      Ok, Ok, it may cost you around the double price, and that is when found on a rare special offer. Still, is good to know the alternative or what to aim for if given the chance…

  86. Sony Vaio or HP with a good processor .

  87. Dell Precision M4600 Mobile Workstation:
    - 8gb DDR3 ram
    - 120gb SSD
    - external audio interface M-Audio Profire via Firewire
    - 15.6” display
    - back-lid keyboard
    - Intel® Core™ i7-2860Q vPro
    - NVIDIA® Quadro® 2000M with 2GB GDDR3

    Cons: heavy, battery last for around 4 hours in a maximum performance mode.
    Pros: ultra fast, great quality, lots of connectivity and upgrade options, no bloatware.
    Bottom line: perfect for studios and clubs, not for mixing on a train:)

    • What a laptop!
      Actually if it is the Ivy bridge generation, you could install 32GB of RAM!!
      I would -instead- advise you to buy the 16GB (2×8)running at 1600 Mbps and still at low latency C11, but here is the trick; get the lovo (low voltage) version at 1.35v that sells at US$80 total on their own site. That may give you more than 30 extra min of battery run and an increase in its life since they also runs at lower temperatures…
      Couple the memory upgrade with SSD upgrade, watching carefully for the watts consumption. You may choose the excellent (and now cheap) Samsung model 830 that for 256GB costs you US$170 at Amazon this week, or even better the new model that replaces it, just launched. Both reduce the laptop consumption quite a lot as compared with a 7200 RPM Hard Disk.

      At any case if you or anyone reading this, has not yet acquired this wonder… you better wait for next year, haswell Precision generation. It may take longer than the other models to be released, probably around August 2013, but they will double-fold increase their battery life at the already superb specs it today has.
      And yes, it will be as expensive as this year version, except that probably you could get the 500GB instead of the 256GB for the same price you would now. That is just how good next years looks.

  88. shadowcat says:

    when i started djing i ran:

    gateway mx 7118
    amd athlon 64 3400+(2.2ghz single core)
    1.5mb ram
    160gb hd (7200 rpm)

    it was good enough to run traktor. had much of my system and latency optimized so there would be no artifacting. it had four usb ports, so i had no trouble plugging in an external sound card (numark dj io), numark mixtrack, and an akai lpd 8 for extra control.

    since then i’ve bought and upgraded both my laptops.

    old gateway notebook
    amd athlon 64 4000+ (2.6ghz single core)
    2gb ram
    128gb ssd (hard drive caddy in the optical drive bay)

    gateway nv73a04u
    amd phenom n970 (2.2ghz quad core)
    8gb ram
    120gb ssd
    320gb hd (backup hard drive caddy in the optical bay drive)

    i use the old gateway laptop for outdoor gigs. it’s heavy and plastic, but very durable. i still baby it because it’s a pretty good laptop that runs traktor with no issues. the internal graphics adaptor is a litte dated for today’s standards, but traktor still runs impressively.

    the newer laptop i’ve used for indoor gigs and for production. it runs traktor and ableton live with system resources to spare.

    needless to say, it isn’t about manufacturer you’re buying from, it’s more to do about what you want to accomplish. if you have a computer that has the minimum system specs for the dj program you wish to use, you should be fine. you may need to upgrade a little bit if you want your computer to do more (more ram/hard drive space, faster processor).

    if you do wish to buy a new laptop, pc is the way to go if you’re budget minded. you can get what you need for under $400 these days. spend a little more for a more durable, light weight laptop.

  89. trashbaby says:

    Seriously!!

    Sager/Clevo custom ordered through xoticPC.com. Pick out your dream laptop for DJing, and best of all no bloatware just windows(or no windows). You could buy windows OEM from newegg and install yourself. Rock solid construction, and a tailored computer wins everytime. USB 3.0 port drivers blow no matter who you buy from, reccommend USB 2.0 ports for any audio interface.

    -trashbaby

  90. I was testing the water when I bought a used Lenovo Thinkpad T60. It runs XP Professional 32-bit (SP2) and has 3Gb of RAM installed. I bought it in mid 2011 and I did a very minimal build on it. Running VDJ and using a Creative X-Fi Go Pro USB soundcard I’ve been impressed by the stability of this setup. I used to use utilities like TPFanControl and SpeedswitchXP but now I just get the BIOS settings right and it runs fast and pretty cool.

    Laptop cost me £149 on a well-know auction site.

  91. Damn, I’m Envy-ous (pun intended) of the laptops that a lot of you are using. I could use a major upgrade but my landlord and my stomach are a demanding lot and after they’ve been fed, my budget for a new laptop seems to receding from me faster than that Yugo I passed on the Autobahn at 250 kmh in my new Ferrari 458 Italia, in my dreams.

    But I can also testify that for those on a budget, it’s possible to DJ successfully using Ableton Live, with a low end used laptop. I should add this is also my primary everyday PC, that I use for music production, email, Internet (including Formula One online on BBC iPlayer via a VPN (I’m in the U.S.).

    I’m using a 5 yr old Acer Aspire 5100-5023:

    AMD Turion TL-56 1.8ghz
    120 GB 5400 RPM drive (yes, it works)
    1280×600 15″ display
    2 GB (used this for 1 year, just upgraded to 4gb)
    Windows 7 32 bit
    M-Audio Trigger Finger & Evolution X-Pression controllers. Both are plastic lower end units but they are not toys and they’re light and very cheap used.

    I’d estimate that the laptop can be had used now for $100-$200. If you’re patient, you might be able to get the laptop for close to a giveaway. Those controllers used: $100 for both. There also used Korg Nanos for $25.

    Yes, you’ll have to keep within strict limits, can’t go crazy with effects, need to sometimes shuffle tracks back and forth from an external drive. I’ve also benefitted tremendously from my 25 years of professional PC and Windows support and development experience but there is plenty of good advice for Windows music laptop tuning out there on the net.

    Bottom line, buy the best you can afford but if you that’s very modest machine, don’t let it hold you back.

  92. My Dell Studio 1558 cost me around $500 in South Africa. It has a 750gb 7200rpm drive and 4gb of ram and i5 processor and I am running windows 7 x64 Enterprise edition.

    It runs Traktor perfectly, I only had to change the latency from the standard 1ms on my S4 to 3ms.

    It has never crashed or given me any issues. It loads up faster than my friends i7 mac pro and cost me about a quarter of what he paid for his mac.

  93. everyone else put good info, but I must add that having at least a 17″ screen is a must for me…..

  94. Hi there,

    I am currently using a Fujitsu Lifebook T902. The cool thing about it is that you can turn the display in any direction you need or even fold it like a tablet. And it has touchscreen so I do not need to use the mouse all the time.
    The system specs are: Intel Core i7 with 8GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD plus an additional HDD connected via USB3.0 with all my music on it.
    I am running Windows 7 x64 Pro and have never had any issues up to now. For sound I use an external NI Traktor Audio 10.
    The Lifebook has absolutely no problems running Traktor and Ableton Live at the same time.
    I found the datasheets on their website if any of you is interested:
    http://www.fujitsu.com/fts/products/computing/pc/notebooks-tablets/superior/lifebook-t902/index.html

    Nevertheless I put all my money together now because I want one of their new Ultrabooks (Lifebook U772). I have already seen one at my retailer and the red alloy chassis looks really cool. It also has a bigger display than the T902 and is much lighter to carry around. I hope to be able to afford it by Christmas :)

    Cheers,
    Simon

  95. Using Acer Aspire 1810TZ (along with Mixage IE and AKAI LPD8). 1810TZ is ultra portable, unexpectedly powerful (for given money), reliable, long-lasting while on battery. Three USBs were always enough. Running Win7 for years without any problems. The only :contra: is small (11.5) display. As low-budget device for casual on-the-road use – ideal. Not for pro for sure.

  96. Thinkpad R61i : C2D @ 1.8Ghz / 2Gb ram / Win XP SP3
    4 or 5 years still running fine, but I will probably move to a higher specs one (I7 920 or something like that) on next year.

    The key is deleting bloatware, deactivated services and and get ride of not needed things .

  97. DJ Miguel says:

    I own a DELL Studio 1555 (2009)/17″/Core Duo/2.66GHz/4GB RAM/HD 500GB @7200RPM/ Windows 7. Its cost me ~1000.00 CAD at that time. It works smoothly and haven’t give any problems while DJing. The screen and resolution are very good, but it is a little heavy so I would recommend the 15″ instead.
    Finally, I also agree that brand-name is not the most important. The crucial thing is to keep the PC tuned as much as possible and avoid unnecessary software.

  98. I run a lenovo g550, 4gb ram, pentium processor. 17″ screen. works great no problems. has a light issue with usb sticks crashing Traktor.asides from that it has never let me down.I would not buy an Apple product just because I dont like the whole mindset of using Apple.

  99. As far as I am concerned any mid-range and above system will have the power to do it, if you’re in a sweat box it needs to be durable (or have two) I like a second machine switched on and ready to plug into the mixer and go (if I had enough channels it’d be even more ready… looks like you know what you’re doing too)

    You’ve got to know where the music will be – internal or external. if it’s external have a backup (all well and good having two laptops but if the drivepack fails…)

    Oh and make sure it’s physically big enough – I have to run my start menu on my backup system up the side as it’s widescreen and not big enough!

    Get an external mouse.

    Make sure it’s at a good height (stand, flight cases, yellow pages etc) – laptops are very low when on a table and you’re stood up.

    Type the name and number into Google and let auto-complete warn you of any glaring faults. Read a 5* and also a 1* review to get both sides of the story.

    Might need a better (external) soundcard and possibly a ground loop isolator (mine hums when it’s plugged into the mains)

  100. Filippo (ITA) says:

    in windows pc the most important thing is the system not the harware contrary to everything that people think…

    it needs to be customize… i personally used Vlight that let me the possibility to create another win 7 customize version without the part of the system that i don’t need for djiing… so.. my windows pc start less than 30 seconds because is running only parts of the system and Traktor + Asio driver and Music.. STOP!!! with this setup Windows Pc goes better than Mac…because at the hardware level PCs are much more powerful than the mac … from processor to video cards etc etc … Now i’ve a Macbook pro for djiing that let me synchronize traktor and maschine and i use Logic pro for production… but is more a whim than a real need…

    with PC is possible to djiing… you just have to learn to be familiar with the operating system and its potential are definitely more hidden than the Mac instead where everything is already ready..

  101. Hi.
    I’m about to buy a Samsung Intel® Core i5 2450M it has 6GB, HD 1TB, 15” LED… the specs and build quality seem pretty good, price is ok too…

  102. Jordan Patrick says:

    Hey guys! Finally some windows love! I just purchased an asus n56vm – tb71. The thing is awesome! It has an i7 processor , 8g ddr3, 750 g hard drive and a 15.6 inch screen that’s shows in almost any lighting. I’m not going to run on about everything it had but I picked it up at a comp USA / tiger direct outlet store for 980 bucks out the door. I’ve never had a problem with it and it had a cool instant on feature for quick start ups. Definitly something worthy of checking out.

  103. Jordan Patrick says:

    Forgot some important things about my laptop. (Work got busy) now i just started playing 2 months ago and that’s when I bought the laptop as well. Iv played a few parties and a massive outdoor camping trip/party my friends threw. The things that really helped out where the backlit keyboard which has adjustable brightness levels. The fact that it has never crashed on me yet is something i suprised with being a windows only user. And trackpad utilizes some similar features as the Macs do. And I know people crave that glowing apple but you not at a loss with this laptop either the metallic black backing with the asus logo lights up white and in my own opinion looks a little cooler. Best wishes to your shopping and hope you find something that works well for you guys!

  104. Hey Guys, I’ve had always used macs for the last 15 years but bought a windows pc as back up and it is awesome !. it is a HP Envy 14 Beats Edition, 2.5 ghz I7 Quad core – 8 GB Ram – 1TB HD + 12O GB SSD. the sound of this Pc is unbelievable…Dr DRE has done his tricks on this Machine.

  105. I am currently running a Samsung RV511
    spec:
    Intel core i7
    8gb ram
    15.6inch glossy screen that has good lighting any time of day
    640gb hd
    windows ultimate (although that doesnt really make a difference)

    But yeah for me this laptop does everything my macbook did and at half the price of the basic mac model around €600 I dont have to soil my boxers everytime someone walks to close to it.

    Samsung have never really let me down (touch wood)… I bought one of those toy laptops, I think people call them “netbooks” and stuck in 2gb’s of ram and used this solid for a year playing 2 decks in traktor with 2 fx decks and running 3 controllers…. never lagged on me.

  106. Hey Guys,

    I don’t think it matters what brand or model laptop you have. The important thing is what’s inside. PROCESSOR, Graphics Card, Memory, HD I/O SPEED. You see a lot of MACS out there because the OS is UNIX based and more stable. Windows machines are nice and half the price however you really need to be mindful of other back ground applications process using up your vital resources.
    SPIN SPIN

  107. I use a Dell Inspiron 6000 about 6-7 years old and still working!

  108. I can’t say for sure any specific models, but I need to suggest ditching windows.
    Not for Mac. Linux.
    It’s cheaper, less buggy, can run windows programs (wine), so it will work for any dj.
    Plus it can run a lot of Mac software (natively or with an emulator) so you can have Mac-only stuff too.

  109. Make & Model: HP Envy 14 Beats Edition (2011)
    The powerful specs i7 8gb ram means that it is basically always lagless and latency to output is always at a minimum. The built in sound card and audio ports are very good.
    I also like the black/red colour and keyboard with red backlight.
    It also comes with matching Beats Studio Headphones.
    Bought for around $3000 NZD when it first came out. Price is probably lower now as i7 is more common.

    Will definitely reccomend

  110. I have a HP Laptop, It is certainly horsepowered enough. Performs well. Here is the blurb from HP on it.
    hp
    HP Pavilion dv6-6190us Notebook PC, steel gray aluminum
    The ultimate in technology; Full HD 1080p Genuine Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit §§ § with SP1 15.6″ diagonal full high-definition §§ + HP anti-glare LED 1080p display (1920 x 1080) 2nd generation Intel Core i7-2630QM processor (2GHz) with Turbo Boost ‡ 8GB DDR3 memory Radeon HD 6770M graphics with 1024MB GDDR5 memory 750GB hard drive § with built-in protection Blu-ray player and SuperMulti DVD burner 802.11b/g/n wireless LAN and Bluetooth Beats audio 6-cell Lithium-Ion battery with up to 5.75 hours of battery life

    • Hey I have pretty much the same laptop..I have searched everywhere for the sound card specifications..On the HP site it only says beats audio, as if that makes any sense..Got any idea what the actual sound card is?

  111. Notebook: Acer Aspire 6935G
    Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo T9400, 4GB RAM
    Graphics Adapter: NVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT
    Display: 16.0 inch, 16:9, 1920×1080 pixels, glossy: yes
    Weight: 3.5kg

    I’ve had this baby from day 1 of it’s release as i could not (and still can’t) afford a Macbook. Its strong and sturdy and packs a good weight which can be a disadvantage as the heavier they are the harder they fall and even though it has fell from a 2.ft table, slammed against the wall because a mate tripped over the cable and yanked it and other atrocious mishaps it is able to ‘fix’ itself up and runs good as new although one of the usb slots have stopped functioning thats just because the cover for the prongs are dropped out. It did have diffculties with Traktor 2 at first but worked perfectly after the update. Watching dvds/movies is superb with the graphics display and it has a great 5.1 surround sound capability as well. It has never died on me at any events (and some have gone up to 8hours). I fully stand by the 6935G, it may not be a Mac but it sure runs like one.

  112. Amp Parks says:

    Everyone seems to know to stay away from AMD processors, and thats the key to getting a good WIndows Based laptop. I personally am a fan of ASUS laptops, but as long as you have an Intel CPU, you pretty much cant go wrong. There are some very good deals on the 2nd gen i3 laptops for about $300 which will still give you the performance you are looking for without a large layout of cash, so when something new comes out in 2 yrs, you wont be out as much money.
    I used to buy the biggest and the baddest laptop out there, but I replace them every 18-24 months and saw how much money I was wasting, so now I have a $350 cap on what I will spend on a laptop. Anyway, hope this helps someone.

  113. My HP 4530 seems to handle ok in Traktor and Ableton. But once it didn’t want to boot up at a club, win 7 started loading but then just kept going black before the logon window appears. I was getting ready to run my set on USB memory sticks, but luckily the 5th time round it booted up.

    The HP might cost less than a Mac, but I’m rather gong to get a Mac for reliability.

  114. All3y C4t says:

    Litte late, but add in my beast to this…

    Asus G74SX:

    Display: 17.3 Inch, with 1920 x 1080 Resolution
    CPU: Intel Core i7-2630QM
    RAM: 16GB
    Hard Drive: 1TB
    Video Card: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560M (3GB GDDR5)
    Size 16.6 x 12.8 x 2.3
    Weight 10 pounds

    Now the personalized stuff, I bought this thing for gaming, but it is now moonlighting as my DJ Laptop. First and foremost, I like the feel of the rig. It feels solid. Everything is laid out nicely, boasting an angled design, with the outside and palm rest being made out of a rubber-like material. The keyboard is back lit nicely, and has a separated number pad, and further separate arrows. Hardware-wise, this thing is a beast. Has plenty of Memory, and is running an Intel i7. Top that with gaming level display, meaning you have a good sized screen with wicked clarity.

    One thing I want to point out about the design that I enjoy quite thoroughly, is it’s cooling. It sports 2 heatsink pipes for each the CPU and GPU, and 2 fans in the back to blow all the heat away. Also, the rubber pads on the bottom provide wicked grip, so generally it will stay put.

  115. Hello, I’m happy for your wonderful comments ,I bought a hp laptop pavillion g6 almost a month with window8,because I do love windows due to less restriction for mixing .omg as I was mixing in a big night club in London ,my laptop keep freezing , I was so lucky one of the other dj ,continue deejaying ,I felt so bad,and the crowd was. Just watching me, I called hp ,so I was with one off the guy on the phone , he try to fix the problem but still the same,I’m afraid to use hp in live mixing anymore,for my opinion,toshiba,Lenovo,and asus,they are the best , never crash and stable

  116. Eder Houses says:

    I Have an Inspiron 1525 since 2009. Specs:

    Windows XP SP3,Intel Core 2 Duo at 2Ghz 4MB Cahe, 3Gb of Ram, Numark IO usb Audio Interface, Numark Mixtrack usb Midi Controller,Emu Xboard49 Midi Controller. Asio4all Drivers . I have been using it on Ableton Live, Tracktor, and Virtual DJ. Runs Very smooth and stable, very lox latency. But you have to make some tweaking to the OS to work like this. Its a cheap DJ Hardware Set up.

  117. Ive got a Toshiba L655 with windows 7 bought it 2 yrs aqo (only used it for only 6 months) wanna know if its cool to gig with…(Im tryin to install a stereo mix out)

  118. DJ BADBOY says:

    I’m gonna make this plain and simple, I been djing for 35yrs from belt driven turn tables to digital, and I understand and found out many years ago you have to pay to play with the big boys ” Even if you wan’t to be a good dj or music producer it’s hands down save your money and invest in a mac which I run right now and i’ve had NO PROBLEMS what so ever ! Dont get me wrong when I first started the digital thing it was because I had got tired of carrying wax and cd’s, and I just wan’t to be stright up with all the guy’s and gal’s OK, if you wan’t to be very good at this you GOT to LOVE it first and do what you have to do and save to get what it takes to keep the party jumping ! Much Love Peace and God Bless ! DJ BADBOY “

  119. Any Windows laptop with 8 gig of ram will do you great. I have a new Asus rig, but I still primarily use a 3 year old HP i3 laptop. Works perfectly and sounds great.

  120. Bought in May 2014. HP ENVY 15-j154ca laptop. i7 quad core. Did some recommended clean ups to the computer via the control panel. Traktor Pro 2.6.8 (R382) works great. Also have an F1. Running all four decks (2 Track and 2 Remix) with effects. The cpu usage bar doesn’t click past one thin sliver. If I were to guess a percentage. I’d say.. 5-9%. Highly recommend.

  121. Laércio Lourenço Vieira says:

    Hello friends! Laércio call me, I’m from Brazil, I have a laptop acer aspire core i5 processor with turbo bost 2.5, 6Gb DDR3 Ram, 500 Gb HDD, 1.7GB shared video memory. My operating system is windows 7 ultimate moment. Although my laptop be beyond the minimum legal requirements, the software that I have do not work right on my dj controller, numark N4 to be exact. Here in Brazil it comes with a version of Virtual DJ LE 7.0 4 decks and Serato DJ Intro.
    The three months I upgrade to Serato DJ, I enjoyed the effects, the audio quality is great, but none of the software function properly cited. Everyone has a deficiency in the sensitivity of jogs, difficult when we try to hold music or scratch. Moreover Serato DJ gets the audio often cuts.
    question:
    If my laptop have the requirements above that required by the manufacturer and develop software for both Mac and Windows, because it does not work properly?
    Some friends of mine say it works better with Mac OS. But laptops apple (macbook, as we call it here in Brazil) has a very high cost. To get an idea, the value of a mac with core i7, 8 Gb RAM, Os X 10.8.2, the popular car to buy a new semi in Brazil, almost the value of a used honda civic in the U.S.
    Amazing is not it??
    Forgive my outburst, I opted for a DJ controller for the convenience of not having to haul that pile of vinyl and CDs, have everything we need right there inside the HDD, with the possibility of adding the turntable controller and use timecodes for better perfomace.
    What is missing for my DJ controller works as it should?

    I apologize if I have some difficulty in understanding, I’m using google translator to communicate.

    Thank you very much for your attention, be in God!

    FYI: Laércio L. Vieira

  122. I got a refurbished Dell Inspiron 15 7537
    8Gb RAM upgradable to 16GB
    1TB HDD
    all 4 USB Ports are 3.0
    Multi Card Reader
    for $699

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