These threads can add clutter to the list so i appologise in advance..
I have come to the end of another laptop lifespan, and have started searching for a replacement. Unfortunately the marketplace has substantially changed since my last search and in this period it seems that both firewire (400+800) and pc expansion ports have been for the most part eradicated. As an owner and constant user of a half decent firewire interface (fa-101), and with a rather constrained budget, i would hate to have to ditch it.
So what are the options these days? I use a laptop for live performance, so a desktop is out of the question. And as much as the hardware is solid and generally well spec'd, i'd prefer to avoid the expensive premium for glowing fruit.
For all the bells and whistles of modern hardware it seems that few machines are designed with pro audio in mind, and even those left with 1394 support often use dud chipsets like ricoh. Combined with infuriating graphics card support (yes i need DRI - blender/pd-gem) I am finding this round of laptop compatability just a little more frustrating than usual.
So what can folks recommend for linux multimedia, which companies are comitted to packaging decent quality chips with solid assembly? Or contrary, what are the recent horror stories - what looked good on paper, only to fail miserably under a stress test?
I know that these things keep changing and keeping abreast is some folks full-time job, but really should it be so difficult!?
My last machine was an old hp/compaq nc6400 with a belkin fw (TI based) pcmcia (TI cardbus). Sadly missed.
Thanks for your thoughts, any advice is much appreciated.
FWIW.. The best i've found online is this blog entry with a basic comparrison - not linux based but i'm sure the observations mostly stick:
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