Keyboardist wanting to run DAW live

First Comment
edited June 2021 in General Discussion

I have played keyboards for decades in gobs of bands. I have always been overwhelmed with heavy, space-consuming keyboards. I looked at trying to run Native Instruments Komplete a few years ago on a desktop. Sounds were great but 2 totally unacceptable issues:

play a key and wait 0.7 seconds for the CPU to process and generate the sound, and

switch to a new patch/sound and CPU/Komplete chugged a good many seconds to reconfigure to the new patch

I dread spending multiple thousands on a new computer (esp big $$$ if I have to go Intel i9 or AMD Ryzen 9) only to find CPU still isn't fast enough for live usage. Anyone have any experience/comments on live usage?


  • TSTDavey

    Hello @Gordon_J and thanks for posting on the Microcenter Community Forum. I personally do not work with Digital Audio Workstation software, but I have seen a friend of mine use Presonus Studio; not as a livestream, but just on his computer. His system had at least 24 gigs of RAM and good processor.

    It seems to use any type of DAW software especially when doing live performances, your computer will need to be heavily focused on your RAM and processor. Also your internet speeds would need to be strong as well with your Internet Service Provider (ISP) for live performances.

    If you're going to do a live performance in HD, you want to at least have internet speeds of 5 mbps to 10 mbps. If its in 4K you'll need 25mbps plus. You can check your UPLOAD speeds at

    Below are some links that give you an idea of the computer hardware or PC types needed to support DAW software and live streaming.



    BTW, other DAW users may chime in as well on your post.

  • Gordon_J

    Cool response. I appreciate your assumption that I'm live streaming. My "content" is two-fold: in-person bricks-and-mortar venue performance, where patch agility is a high priority; and mp3 files for downloading and purchase which I'd like to create by actually playing rather than sequencing manually, note by note. In both cases latency is an issue.

    Looked at the links you found. They both indicate the obvious more-is-better without any actual/anecdotal breakdown or bench tests of just how over the top I'd have to go for live performance. There is a big jump from the 7 to 9, both Intel and AMD. For stage performance, SSD will speed up pulling patches so I'm accepting that (plus less susceptible to knocks on the road). Also the higher speed RAM, plus more of it.

    I'm just frustrated that keyboards are essentially dedicated computers with dedicated inputs and controls instead of computer keyboard and mouse, and primarily audio out vs to a monitor. Surely it's possible to run synth and recording software on a regular computer and then just update software for a couple hundred instead of having to buy the next mega-synth for a couple thousand.

  • TSTDavey

    @Gordon_J so the latency is the problem. When you are downloading mp3 files, are you using the shops internet where you are performing?

    The keyboards should function in regular speed in synchronization with your DAW software with good RAM and CPU processor. If the system is connected to the internet while using the DAW software and the internet is slow, then I can see there could be latency issues from that stand point as how the DAW program is functioning over the internet with slow speeds.

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