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Replacement video DVD builder board

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December 10, 2006 4:06:54 PM

Folks-
I currently have an Epox 8rda+ motherboard with AMD 1.6G processor and 1.5GB Ram. The board has failed in the characteristic way - leaking capacitors. I know that now the processor and memory will need to be replaced. I am looking for a replacement board that will work well with my current usages for the board - I build DVDs and do a lot of video editing with this machine. I have a separate ATI video card for a dual monitor setup and use soundblaster audigy 5.1 channel stereo. I also attach a DVD player and a VCR to this machine for transfering home movies to DVD for people. I also need IEEE1394 firewire for connection of my Hi8 video camera. If yo uneed more detailed info, please ask as this computer has been down for a little while and I am trying to get my sidework going again.

Thanks in advance for your suggestions and advice an a solid, stable replacement platform. The EPOX was an outstanding platofrm before until the capacitors began going due to a major power surge in my neighborhood.

Respectfully~ Desktopjockey.
December 10, 2006 4:32:10 PM

I would go with a workstation type computer with two Xeons, but I don't know your budget. Is 2000-3000 USD too much for you?
December 10, 2006 9:56:01 PM

Actually I built this system from scratch. I am interested in repeating that. I would like opinions on the boards people would recommend for my application. I can build it from there. I imagine all i need to replace is the board, processor and memory. Unless someone can come up with a comparable board available for an AMD Athlon processor running DDR PC2700 memory.

My budget is about $200 - $300 and can be done since I did it last time for about the same amount. If anyone has a logical reason to spend more, I am all ears. Thanks for the input.

Desktopjockey
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December 10, 2006 10:33:47 PM

Quote:
Actually I built this system from scratch. I am interested in repeating that. I imagine all i need to replace is the board, processor and memory. Unless someone can come up with a comparable board available for an AMD Athlon processor running DDR PC2700 memory. My budget is about $200 - $300 and can be done since I did it last time for about the same amount.


Thats going to be difficult. Just the lowest and slowest Core2 (which is much better for video editing than anything AMD has right now) will set you back about $200. Add to that a motherboard (example: Asus P5B Deluxe) is $190, and $250 for 2 GB RAM (a minimum for video editing).

And these are good office PC components, not workstation class components.
Your old PC is sufficiently old that you shouldn't try to reuse CPU or RAM.

I have sold(build) a few workstations for Premier Pro - videoediting.
Earlier on they have been dual Opterons (280 or 285's) on a motherboard with nvidia professional series chipset.
Today I would definitely get a dual Xeon 5160, maybe even quadcore Xeon 5345 or 5355's. Xeon 5345 has better price/performance/watt usage. Add to that 4GB RAM, a nvidia 8800GTX (or Quadro FX), and some Seagate 7200.10 disks in RAID 5, or SAS disks if there are money.
Thats what Pros use in videoediting. If you never worked on a thing like that, you have no idea how nice such a rig is to work with, when rendering, encoding and transcoding video.

Anyway, a cheaper build can be done, by going with standard desktop PC components, but for now you should go Core2 - not AMD.
Quad core (with standard desktop you only got a single CPU) would be nice, but for the sake of economy, get the dual core Core E6600. About $250-300.
Get the Asus board (P5B-Deluxe), or a good Gigabyte or Intels BadAxe2. Thats another $200. Get 2GB DDR2-800 RAM, value RAM is ok - if you do not plan on overclocking. If you overclock you can easily do so with the E6600, but then you should get faster RAM - not value RAM.
You can save on the video card, but you will need one for PCI-E.
Thats a total $1000, assuming you are reuseing everything else. Thats is as low you should go, but you will get a much faster system by getting dual CPU for up to 8 cores, and a good disk system. But then you are over $3000.
December 11, 2006 1:29:00 PM

Many thanks for your informative reply. I have worked on professional level systems (NewTek VT3,m Lightwave, the complete system) and only wanted something I could do on the side. Performance was not as demanding at home, but function and price were paramount. I understand and agree with your recommendations, however I am still not using this profefssionally. My old system, although slow, worked and I got the job done effectively. The software I use at home is pinnacle. I also use TMPGenc and DVDLab to build the DVDs. Not bad for home use. Is there anything hardware wise (software too while you are at it :lol ) you would recommend for this level? I agree with ASUS - beautiful boards. I am looking for a good rock solid platofrm, a little more budget concious. I do believe the best money spent is in the board, processor and memory. I already have a pair of Maxtor 20GB drives (I know I know) but that will have to do for now, I need to get the system back up. The cards I have are PCI, again, I would like to reuse them since I am so budget limited right now.

Thanks again for your info. Any other ideas probably a year or so older in technology would probably be better in my budget line.

GodSpeed~ Desktopjockey.
December 11, 2006 3:35:49 PM

Quote:
I have worked on professional level systems (NewTek VT3,m Lightwave, the complete system) and only wanted something I could do on the side.

I could get a feel from your original post that you were an experienced video user, and since you are on a budget and know the difference between professional level systems and a more limited home system, let me try to recommend a more limited system, which should serve you well (at least much better than the old that died).

Quote:
The software I use at home is pinnacle. I also use TMPGenc and DVDLab to build the DVDs. Not bad for home use.

That is a very good semi-pro software selection. Again I select, install and service systems - i'm not that experienced in video editing my self. But many of my clients use/recommend Pinnacle, when not using the Adobe Video suite.

Now, the hardware:
Quote:
I agree with ASUS - beautiful boards. I am looking for a good rock solid platofrm, a little more budget concious.


I would not get anything smaller from Asus than the P5B-Deluxe (Intel 965 chipset, and the board has Firewire). I never save on the motherboard - better get a solid board, and then save on other things if nessesary.
I know the Intel BadAxe2 is not recommended by a lot of persons here on the board, because of limited overclocking. But I like both the Intel BadAxe2 and the Intel Lamont (Also called Intel Desktop Board DP965LT). They are rock solid, and I find the Intel Lamont to be a VERY good deal (at least here in Denmark). It is a P965 chipset board that includes Firewire, but has no RAID and not the most advanced sound chip. But as you already have a good sound card, and RAID should be hardware RAID5 anyway, it will save you some money. It is 100 USD in the US.
The three boards all have 3 PCI slots, so you can reuse existing sound and video capture boards.

The CPU:
Video editing is CPU heavy. Getting anything else than a Core chip is not a good idea - Core is much better at SSE instructions than AMD.
I recommend the E6600 (300USD), but as you a very low budget you can go as low as 180USD with the E6300.

RAM:
As I wrote earlier: 2GB as 2 sticks of 1GB RAM. DDR2-800 value is ok.
Get the cheapest as long it is DDR2-800 (also called PC2 6400).
With todays RAM prices it will cost you about 250USD.

Videocard:
I guess that you present card is AGP. Sorry, but that can't be recycled on a modern platform. Get a nVidia 7600GS or 7900GS, with passive cooling. Check that it has 2 DVI-I display ports.

Recycle the case, powersupply (if not burned as well), soundcard, videocapture card(s) and every thing else (well, maybe you should invest in a Seagate 7200.10 320GB harddisk which is good, fast, cheap and much bigger than than your current 20GB disks (20GB for video editing 8O 8O 8O ).
Getting anything older/lesser than the above (MB,CPU,RAM,videocard) is not going to make you content, and is a waste of money in my opinion.
And as you already have experience, you should be able to assemble the system from both the new and your current parts.
December 11, 2006 6:42:07 PM

Simply put, you rock! Thank you so much. that is a sweet combo, and is flexible with what I have already. My secondary video card is an ATI Radeon 9700 so it should be ok with the new setup. I will add another ATI video card that I have here already which is comparable with each other.

I checked my supplier and it will be about $600 for all the goodies which is acceptable for a good solid system.

Again, thanks 10^10 for your wisdom.
December 11, 2006 6:50:21 PM

Thank you for your kind words. Just a single question:

Quote:
My secondary video card is an ATI Radeon 9700 so it should be ok with the new setup. I will add another ATI video card that I have here already which is comparable with each other.


What interface is your graphics cards (the Radeon9700 and the ??) ?

If it is PCI you should be ok, but there are no AGP on modern motherboards.
December 11, 2006 7:40:01 PM

The radeon is a PCI card, the other was the onboard Nvidia controller. I tried using an Nvidia PCI card Nforce3 if I remember correctly, but kept running into issues where both video systems were trying to access the same.dll files, therefore they didn't work. I didn't have that issue when running a pair of ATI cards before. So I chose ATI after that and had no problems. I know the ASUS board has no video and personally the paranoia in me prefers to keep everything component level, but that is not the case anymore in the Pc industry. I see a lot of Intel video around onboard, but I have been faithful to ATI and Nvidia for a very long time. Is there a comparable Intel video card that I should take into consideration since I will be running intel chipsets. (BTW - I feel like a heretic since I've been an AMD supporter for a very long time too. HA!~)

Thanks again.
December 11, 2006 8:02:07 PM

The statement that no one makes a new mobo with AGP on it is not excatly correct. ASROCK makes a new mobo with an AGP slot that will also handle the new Intel Conroe chip, and you won't need DDR2 RAM but I think it's an option. I have nothing against ASUS, I just thought I'd point out a cheaper option for the OP.

I'm currently running an (new) ECS mobo that has an AGP slot and a pentium D805, it renders video at least twice as fast as my older Athlon XP2400. Unfortunately it doesn't feature an onboard firewire so I had to install a firewire card that I already had laying around.

If you do build a new system, be sure that you have a new PSU to build it with, your old PSU may not have the power needed for the new mobo's.
December 11, 2006 8:05:20 PM

Quote:
The radeon is a PCI card, the other was the onboard Nvidia controller.


Ok, then you should be able to use it as a secondary card - but don't depend on it as your ONLY graphics card.
But what is the reason to use the Radeon? New graphics cards have connectors for two displays. Do you need more than two displays?

If you need 3 or 4 displays, then install the Radeon as a secondary display adapter, but then your primary PCI-E graphics card should also be an ATI based card. For example a MSI RX1650XT-T2D256EZ, which has two DVI outputs and is passively cooled (no fan=no noise).

Quote:
I know the ASUS board has no video and personally the paranoia in me prefers to keep everything component level, but that is not the case anymore in the Pc industry. I see a lot of Intel video around onboard, but I have been faithful to ATI and Nvidia for a very long time.

In your case, you should avoid integrated video. A graphics card based on a mid-level ATI or NVidia chip is much better. With the right board, it will give you some level of video acceleration and two DVI outputs for two displays, which you wont get with integrated video. Intel only makes integrated (no graphics cards) graphics, which I really can't recommend to you.

Quote:
(BTW - I feel like a heretic since I've been an AMD supporter for a very long time too. HA!~)


Don't fell bad, just choose the most apropriate, and forget about who makes it - this is science not religion. As I wrote earlier I have sold AMD for video editing earlier on, but with the introduction of Core2, Intel is again having the best products.
December 11, 2006 8:10:41 PM

Quote:
The statement that no one makes a new mobo with AGP on it is not excatly correct. ASROCK makes a new mobo with an AGP slot that will also handle the new Intel Conroe chip, and you won't need DDR2 RAM but I think it's an option.


I know about the Asrock mobo. But I don't consider it a modern mobo. It's a cludge. Yes, money can be saved, but it is not worth it, as it is a completely non-standard solution, bound to cause trouble.

Quote:
If you do build a new system, be sure that you have a new PSU to build it with, your old PSU may not have the power needed for the new mobo's.


The Core2 is very low powered - lower than his earlier Athlon. He should be fine as the power requirements are at the same level or lower than his old system.
!