Whatever your type of music, it's essential you maintain your production devices for a better outcome and to increase the life of your expensive equipment. Here are a few handy tips.
Keep Your macOS or Windows Clean
Windows and macOS are operating systems. They are complex software. But essentially, they allow you to interact with hardware without knowing how to code. Every interaction between software and hardware produces files, whether it's install files, logs or backups. And all of these take up valuable hard disk space. When your hard disk becomes fuller, your device can slow down. Therefore, you must read on ways to maintain your macOS and Windows PC or laptop. A clean computer will run faster without annoying hiccups during a production session.
Maintain Your Production Devices with Battery Management
Not all production is done in a studio. In a studio, you have the luxury of a controlled environment. But going mobile means you need everything in top condition for a productive session. While you may be able to use power generators, it's unlikely you will always have access to these. So it's essential you manage the batteries of your mobile devices. Your laptops and mobile phones should be charged between 40% and 80% for maximum battery efficiency. Of course, you can charge to 100%, but it actually decreases the overall battery life of a device.
Install Patches and Updates for Music Software
Software isn't always perfect. Sometimes there are bugs. And other security vulnerabilities. Your OS can be set to automatically update itself to install new features and patch cyber threats. But you should manually update any music or security software you use. Programs like Cubase and Sibelius are often updated with new features, plugins and bug fixes. So try to keep them in top shape for production without interruption. Suppose you aren't sure how to update programs. In that case, you can use auto-update apps such as IObit Software Updater for a small fee.
Consider Less Intensive Packages
Programs require hardware resources to run correctly. Some use relatively little, while others can hog your CPU and RAM. You could upgrade your machine. But that can cost a lot. Alternatively, you can use low-intensity production apps on your mobile devices, such as:
- Studio One
- FI Studio
- Apple Garageband
All of these are well-known apps. And they are robust and powerful. Also, making VR videos is cool, but requires a meaty machine. Some of these apps are better for an older or slower device. They offer features such as turning off the Spread function and freezing MIDI tracks.
Keep the Cooling Fans Clean
Fans are essential for computers because they draw in cold air for the parts inside. This is vital because computer parts don't operate as well when hot. And they can get very hot. The average Intel CPU temperature should be no more than 65°C. Exceeding this means your computer can slow down, get errors or even cut out entirely if it gets too hot. Fortunately, simply cleaning the fans can be a major help. Try running microfiber cloth through and around fan vents. And remove internal dust if you can open your machine. But ground by touching the metal inside.
Cable Management Helps Maintain Production Devices
Suppose you've spent the last 12 hours mixing a new track, only for someone to pull out a power cable as you are rendering the sequence. Not only is this annoying and requires you to begin the sequence again, but it could corrupt your data. And corrupted data is useless. However, cable management can help avoid many issues around your studio. Always run cables through the proper channels either over or under the room. And regularly check your cables for breakages and wear and tear that could result in signal problems when working.
Upgrade to Better Hardware
Of course, computer hardware becomes outdated. And the same goes for music devices. You can't continue to produce great tracks on older devices with frequent errors. It's annoying, takes more of your time, and could result in lost data. So, it might be time to think about upgrading. An upgrade can be as simple as a new Focusrite Scarlett sound card. Or a completely new system with a faster NVME SSD and powerful Hexa-core CPU such as an AMD Ryzen 7. More modern hardware like this means you can take advantage of more intensive production features.
It's essential to maintain production devices for a better experience all around. Some of the easiest ways include OS cleaning, software updates and upgrading your hardware.