Ok so the last time I built a computer was 7 years ago. So, I'm not really sure if I'm getting everything I need as far as this build goes. Which is why I thought I would post it up and see what you all thought so far and ask for pointers. Here is my build as it stands now.
As the thread title said primarily I'm going to be using this system for art (specifically digital painting in Photoshop with the cintiq) and some gaming (the main thing I want to play atm is Warhammer online).
I have a few specific questions and then any other suggestions or opinions would be appreciated.
1) I want to have the option to add another video card in the future to utilize crossfire. However I'm unsure if the case I have chosen will be large enough to accommodate another video card. Also I'm unsure if the heat sink I have chosen will fit either. I choose the P182 case because I liked the way it looks (it’s classy not overly flashy) and because of the reviews it got on keeping the computer quite and cool. So I guess my question is: Is the P182 going to be large enough or should I get a full tower case, and if I need a different case which ones would work?
2) The 2nd question has to do with the Cintiq. Cintiq's act as both a tablet and a 2nd monitor when connected. I'm planning on using my 32" HD-TV as my main screen. Do I need to go ahead and get 2 video cards to run the Cintiq or can I use one of the other ports on the card I've already chosen?
3) I read somewhere that if you are using crossfire you have to give up on having 2 monitors without getting some other hardware. Is that true and if so what else would be needed?
Ok I think that’s all the questions I have for now thanks for any help you can give.
1) I don't like the P182 at all so I may not be the best person to ask about this. It is a fairly cramped case and costs way too much for what you get. If you are considering crossfire I really wouldn't get it. I like full towers personally since they are usually better in every way other than price and portability. For mid-towers I would recommend the CM RC690 and maybe the Antec 900, although I think that one is a bit pricey. For full towers the Antec Tweleve hundred is highly regarded. I would also suggest CM Cosmos and Stackers. Also Lian-Li makes some excellent cases, but they are fairly pricey.
2) You can use one video card.
3) It is true. If you want a second monitor with crossfire you will have to buy a third graphics card. Almost any card will work so long as what is attached to this card isn't strenuous on the graphics card.
I really hop you don't plan on doing photoshop work on the TV. As a web and graphic designer I can tell you that TVs have no where near enough quality to make images properly.
Thanks for the reply. this is why I knew I should ask questions. The reason I was planning on using the TV is b/c of its size and b/c I wouldn't have to buy a monitor, I didn't really think of researching the difference in quality between a monitor and the TV for working in PS. Thanks for pointing that out. After all, if I am going to be buying a new system and spending the money on a cintiq I might as well not shoot myself in the foot by having a sub par screen to work with.
Got any suggestions on what monitors I should be looking at?
Well Eizo makes amazing monitors for designing but they are awful for gaming. I personally use an Acer AL2216W since it is cheap and offer good screen real estate and works for gaming. It isn't technically the best for designing but it works for me. My school uses Apple monitors mostly (they look great) and my design firm uses a mixture of Eizo and Dell monitors.
Basically, just get a good gaming monitor. I can tell the difference between the screen qualities but I don't think my cheap Acer has ever hampered my ability to design.