It's time I buy a new computer since work is picking up. I primarily do graphic design (Photoshop, Illustrator) and a little web design here and there (Dreamweaver). I plan on purchasing CS4 this week as well. No real video work (maybe as a hobby) and zero gaming. Which machine of these two should I go with considering the price?
Machine A: $840
AMD Phenom II X4 910 (2.6 GHz)
8 MB PC3-8500 DDR3
1 TB Serial ATA 5400 rpm
ATI Radeon HD 4350 512 MB
Wireless LAN (802.11a/b/g/n)
Blu-ray Disc player and DL DVD±RW/CD-RW drive
Vista Home Premium
Machine B: $950
Intel Core i7 920 (2.66 GHz)
750GB 7200 rpm SATA 3Gb/s
ATI Radeon HD 4650 1 GB
Wireless-N LAN card and Bluetooth
LightScribe 16X max. DVD+/-R/RW SuperMulti drive
Vista Home Premium
All of the benchmark findings online say the Intel will outperform the AMD, but considering the other specs, what route should I go? Any suggestions/advice is welcome and if you have a question, please ask.
I'm not sure what you intend to use the computer for, but I doubt you'll ever need 4Gb ram much less the 6 or 8 in those machines so I wouldn't even consider that a factor in the decision. The blueray player is rather useless in my opinion too, but I have absolutely no use for one myself. Machine A also has a larger hard drive, but from what you've listed it is also slower.
Go with Machine B, you'll get a faster cpu, gpu, and hard drive. Your load times will be better, your gaming performance will be better, your multitasking will be highly improved upon, etc.
COnsidering you said you would be using this for graphic design and such, i would go with option B, the i7 would be the way to go there. with the hard drive, i assume that 750g is the WD HDD, which is very quick and reliable. You may consider 2 of them in a mirror, just to be safe. I wouldn't know for a fact, but i would guess utilizing the tripple channel function of the memory would make having that 6gig of ram ideal.
on a side note, i don't know if a better graphics card would help render or not... you may want to look into that
I would probably look at trying to get something like this:
AMD Phenom II X4 955 (3.2 GHz) or 945 (3.0GHz)
8 GB PC3-8500 DDR3
1 TB Serial ATA 7200 rpm
ATI Radeon HD 4350 512 MB (or anything really since you don't need 3D)
Wireless LAN (802.11a/b/g/n)
DL DVD±RW/CD-RW drive
Vista Home Premium (64 bit)
Since I've removed the pointless blu-ray it should still be around the $900 mark.
But with one change: The HD4650 is a low end gaming card, I'd replace it with a passively cooled HD4550 provided the case has good airflow.
And, obviously, you'll get 64-bit Vista, just that you did not say;)
This totals $780 - will whoop your OEM builds (assuming you will also be paying sales tax). You need an optical drive ($35?) and cable - no reason for a Blu-Ray drive.
You may even pay a local yokel to build it and still come out to the good. You could save a good bit of money on a different mobo but hopefully in the future the second PCIe x16 slot may be used for true GPU processing.
^+1 AMD Fool.... as am I....... BUT, I must say get System B .... Get the i7 940 instead though.... Also this is basically a workstation NOT a gamer.... The 4650 is a decent card but for workstation use I would have to recomend at least an HD 4890/4870x2.
No blu-ray.. Waste right now! This is not a media center, correct?
As of right now, due to my own gut feeling and many of the responses, I'm leaning toward B. Like I mentioned before, it's going to be used primarily for Adobe CS4 Design Premium. Other than that, basic internet use along with MS Office or OpenOffice. I hear a lot of back and forth about the video card. Some people I've talked to say the video card isn't going to make a significant difference since I'm not a gamer and don't have a video rendering workload.
Initially, I was hoping to build/buy a pretty sweet machine for between $600-800. After looking into statistics, I won't be able to do so with an i7.
As for the Blu-ray, I don't have any use for it but it was included. It didn't cost any more to have it.
It is my understanding that cs4 is multicore optimized, and can use lots of ram to improve performance. The i7 920 and 6gb will serve you well on both counts.
I also note that the i7 build has a stronger vga card, more ram, and a faster hard drive. If you were to compare apples to apples, the i7 vs. phenom difference would be less.
The i7-920 can easily and safely be run at 3.3, the speed of the $999 i7-975.
If your budget permits, I would suggest a velociraptor for the OS and work drive, and a WD caviar black 1tb drive for storage. Otherwise, just the caviar black alone is good. It is almost as fast.
Jump on the 1/2 price deal for windows-7 upgrade deal before july11.