Looking for PC for Business Use

Hi There,
I need some advice. I am a business owner for a printing and design company.

The computer I wish to build (or maybe buy) will be used primarly for business and secondarlily for personal use. I will be using programs such as Microsoft Office suites, Adobe Suites (Illustrator etc), Photoshop, Accounting Software (quickbooks), internet, chat windows. Also, I would want it to be ready for Windows 7 and other new software about to come.

Although not an experienced graphics designer at the moment, I am continuosly learning so I want to make sure the computer is ready (or upgradeable) for heavy graphics design. For now, light graphics design.
PC, will also be used for my personal use but never or (on the very rare occassion) for gaming.

Advice I am seeking is should I buy a readymade PC (which usually means one or two great components and the rest mediocre) or build. I am leaning towards build, but looking for the advice on the the chips/mobo/graphics card, etc.. I am bias towards Intel, so I will probably stay away from AMD. Why change what has not yet failed me. I have a colleague (computer engineer) that will build it for me, I just need to bring it to him. Please, let me know everything I will need including if additional fans are required or larger watt power supplies, cases, etc.

Thank you in advance. Greatly appreciated.
22 answers Last reply
More about looking business
  1. Newegg.com has an asus Z8NA-D6C dual 1366 xeon server board with 6 gb of ddr3 for $259 after rebate. You can add the 5402 xeon nehalem for $199.99, or spend significantly more for faster xeons. The cooler master storm scout scg 2001 for $99.99 and free shipping is a wonderfully designed case with built in handle and plenty of room. Or, you may want an htpc style case that sits flat for space considerations. For the power supply, the pc power and cooling silencer 500w is the minimum I would go with. Other good brands are seasonic, enermax, antec, ocz, and corsair. For a video card, newegg has an HIS H485QT512P for only $79.99 after rebate. For this card, I would go with a 600-700w power supply in any of the above brands. The corsair and pc power and cooling have the highest 12v rail ratings which is a good measure of how the ps will work under load. If you don't need such a fancy case, frys.com has the antec 300 for $49.99 with free shipping. And frys has the antec basiq 500w ps for $47.99 which will work with onboard video. If you get an htpc style case from newegg, I wouldn't trust the power supply that comes with it unless it's an antec.
  2. Thank you o1die.

    Is ddr3 better than ddr2? Meaning I heard there were issues with certain chipsets/mobo.

    Thanks for the suggestion on xeon. I had not even heard of this line, i was more researching on core2duo, quad cores and/or i7. Any info on xeon over the other intels?
  3. For that price your better off with i7.^ Not to mention he said he didnt want AMD. And velociraptor is junk especially the price. SSD or dual 640s in raid 0.
  4. daship said:
    For that price your better off with i7.^ Not to mention he said he didnt want AMD. And velociraptor is junk especially the price. SSD or dual 640s in raid 0.


    Price it out - let's see what yah got
  5. Price your own its not hard for $1160.
  6. Daship---> Can you please provide more details on an i7 setup?

    Wisecracker ---> Thank you for your input. I do prefer Intel but will look into your recommendations.

    ct1615--> The warranty is a good point. I can still write off I build it. See the issue I have with pre-built PC is that you get two excellent parts and then the rest of the parts are below standard and you end up paying a premium for them.
  7. I don't plan on using this for gaming but I do plan on using it for graphics design.

    You do make some good points.

    What do you think about this Lenovo?

  8. Thanks for your feedback ct1615. Greatly apprecaited.

  9. I think it represents what you were trying to avoid - weak PSU, only 2 DIMM slots, RAMs maxed out at 4Gb, Win 32-bit, etc ...
  10. The only issue I have with this is the 280W power supply. I will need to upgrade that. The question I have is will it be a non-issue to replace the power supply. Are largers watt supplies mean larger in size and wont fit in the allocated slot?
  11. Wisecracker --> I hear what you are saying, I am still looking around, but my current PC is on the fritz. I mean I will be working and all of sudden the monitor goes blank. I need something asap!
  12. phife99 said:
    The only issue I have with this is the 280W power supply. I will need to upgrade that. The question I have is will it be a non-issue to replace the power supply. Are largers watt supplies mean larger in size and wont fit in the allocated slot?

    'ATX' power supplies are interchangeable. Some may be a touch greater in length than others but maintain a typical mounting standard.

    Some operate more efficiently and have different cable combinations - some of which are 'modular'. Many units today have incorporated nearly silent 120mm fans.

    I would suggest a unit with an 'EPS' designation - this allows for not only a 4-pin CPU power connection but includes an 8-pin. This will help compatibility with many motherboard requirements.

    If this system is ""primarily for business"" it is very important that your design requirements focus on data storage and redundancy. Critical business data and current projects must be duplicated and preferably stored off-site (at least over night with something like the portable hard drive I recommended) to maintain continuous operations of the business.

    Your interests in graphic design notwithstanding the move to 64-bit, operating systems and applications, has been made. Though the rig you have identified may run a 64-bit operating system you have a significant hardware limitation of 4Gb and 2 DIMM slots.

    The primary advantage of a 64-bit system is that the 4Gb limit (3.25 Gb practical) of the 32-bit ceiling does not exist. When 'multitasking' your programs may reside in physical memory as opposed to the slower 'virtual memory' of a page file. A typical 64-bit system may employ 6-8Gb of RAMs plus more and more applications (Photoshop being one) are being developed to utilize 64-bit address space.

    Additionally, segregating your OS / Apps on a fast drive and utilizing a second hard drive for data and storage will greatly improve performance (as suggested by Photoshop in the use of what they refer to as a second 'scratch' hard drive). The dual monitors I recommended would allow for your design to take place in the primary monitor while the secondary disply is used for tool bars, chat windows, spreadsheets, etc.

    A custom rig built with the assistance of your engineer-bud is the only way to fly. Your components will be top-notch, you will gain knowledge from the experience that will benefit you in the future and your hardware will be easily upgraded as your needs demand.

    And by the time you purchase a new PSU, video card and monitor your OEM computer will have cost as much as the custom build (with little in the way of similar benefits).

    Good luck with all this ...
  13. Thanks for your prompt resonse. Having read what you have provided, it does make sense. I am though running out of time as my current PC is pretty much done. I hope its my video card as only the monitor goes blank or it comes up with the fuzzy snow lines.

    The only issue with building is I will not get the software for the OS, right?. Being a business, I am leaning towards not using pirated versions.

    As for backups, i have an external drive that I backup every night. However I think you are right, i will need an off-site storage for added security.

    In building out, would you mind helping me in selecting my parts for an Intel-build? I am sure the AMD you are recommending is as good. However, from everything I read, I think I would prefer Intel. I am not sold on the phenoms, just yet. If you can help me fill out this list, it would be great.

    Intel/Asus Motherboard -???
    Intel Quad core or core 2 duo
    6GB - 8GB DDR3
    ITB HD (broken down into 2-3)
    Nvidia/ATI 1Gb video card
    media reader
    usb 2.0 ports 6-8
    600w ps
    cooling fan
    hdmi/dvi/rgb out
    ethernet + wireless

    I dont need monitor, have a samsung t220.

    I really appreciate all your help.


    P.S. Is newegg.ca the best priced site to get this? (I am in Canada)
  14. Thanks ct615. I will check out newegg.ca. Cheers!
  15. This is what I have put together. It is more than I was hoping to spend, but I understand the cpu is more than I was thinking at first. Let me know what you guys think and where I can possible save some money. Note all prices are in Canadian dollars.

    Intel Core i7 920 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor $319.99
    ASUS P6T SE ATX Intel Motherboard $259.99
    ASUS Radeon HD 4870 EAH4870 DK/HTDI/1GD5 Video Card $164.99
    Patriot Viper 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory $114.99
    Antec Three Hundred Black Computer Case $69.99
    CORSAIR CMPSU-850TX 850W Power Supply $169.99
    Scythe SY1225SL12M "Slipstream" Case Fan $10.99
    COOLER MASTER Hyper N 520 RR-920-N520-GP 92mm Sleeve CPU Cooler $52.99
    SAMSUNG 22X DVD±R DVD Burner Black IDE Model SH-S222A $27.99
    Western Digital Caviar Black 750GB 3.5" SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive $99.99
    Western Digital Scorpio Blue 320GB 2.5" SATA 3.0Gb/s Internal Notebook Hard Drive $89.99
    Western Digital VelociRaptor 150GB 3.5" SATA 3.0Gb/s Internal Hard Drive (bare drive) $209.99
    Rosewill RX-358-S SLV (Silver) 3.5" SATA to USB & eSATA Ext. Enclosure w/Int.80mm fan $47.99
    nMEDIAPC ZE-C68 All-in-one USB 2.0 Card Reader w/ USB Port $10.99
    Total $1,650.86
    Handling Fees (including taxes) $215.86
    Shipping $58.80
    Grand Total $1,925.52
  16. Yowsa ... :o

    You might want to check NCIX-Canada to see if you can save a few dollars.

    And you don't have to purchase everything at once. You've already got your external drive for critical backups - and once you learn how to set up a SATA drive in your rig it will be simple for you to add an additional hard drive in the future.

    This Corsair 750w is only $105 after rebate or better yet the Corsair 450w is only $60 AR.

    The main reason I chose the Radeon HD 4670 1GB ($68 CAN after rebate) was that it is a dual-slot card which will run cool, vent hot air out of the back of the case, does not require a secondary power connector, it's inexpensive, has a 2-year warranty and should easily push 2 monitors each with a high resolution.

    For what you plan to do it would work well - I'm not sure about your 4870. Has the gamer in you broken out? - LOL

    Here's another little secret no one will really admit - you can get a lot of mileage out of a fast dual core with what you wish to do (here's an e7500 / Asus P5Q for $245 CAN after rebate). In multitasking fast RAMs and disk I/O is the key to success - and a fast dual-core will perform just dandy. The only thing they lose to a quad is video encoding.

    And I know you bleed Intel Blue but the Phenom 945 / MSI 790GX AM3 for $284CAN will make you happy you ventured away from The Dark Side.


    edit: I fergit.

    The Windows 7 RC download is free (at least I think it is in Canada), stable and not 'pirated'. If you find out otherwise please advise.
  17. Yowza is right, LOL.

    1) I had forgotten about NCIX. At the very least, they price match. Thanks for the reminder!

    2) No PC Gaming in me...I stick to Xbox360 and PS3 for that. Having said that, I want to make sure for graphics design i have a very decent graphics card.

    3) I don't mind the Radeon you suggested, however, I was under the impression that for my motherboard chosen, i would need to be very specific with the video card for the EPU to work. Please correct me if I'm wrong?

    Feel free to suggest another motherboard/video card combo for an i7. I just chose this motherboard for its high reviews.

    4) I am thinking 450w is too low just incase I do go witha powerful video card. 750w is definitley doable. The 850w after rebate will cost me $149.99. In your opinion, is it worth spending the extra $40 for 850 vs 750 PSU?

    5) Thanks on the suggestion of the dual core. With lots of multitasking and heavy programs being used every day, I think it would be proactive to go with the quad. Now I contemplated going with the Q9K series, but everything is pointing towards the i7. 950 is really out of my range but 920 should be more than enough.

    6) Here is my theory for AMD vs Intel. I think AMD is perfectly fine for personal use/gaming. I just feel for multitasking and SB business use, Intel has an edge. This is my personal life experience. I am probably wrong and my sample size is so small...but it is what it is, lol. The best comparison I get is Honda Vs Toyota...Honda is amazing and probably even more popular, but Toyota is still a little ahead in engineering.

    7) Yes, I think I should have no issues downloading the windows 7 RC. Question for you, Is it safe enough for me to use windows 7? I still have windows xp professional, should I go with that, until windows 7 is legit. I dont want to have crashing issues on a beta version.

    Dude, thank you so much for all your help. You and ct1615 have provided me with great help. I hope you dont mind just hanging in there to get me to the finished line. Thank God I have a laptop, my current PC is done! :(
  18. The weekend has knocked some sense into me, lol. I think I will await the i7 for future.

    I would like to get y'all feedback on this: (All Prices are in Canadian Dollars from Newegg.ca)

    Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - $69.99

    Western Digital VelociRaptor WD1500HLFS 150GB 10000 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - $209.99

    Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - $79.99

    SAPPHIRE 100256HDMI Radeon HD 4670 1GB 128-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card - $78.99

    CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC $109.99

    OCZ Gold 8GB (4 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Quad kit Desktop Memory Model $104.49

    GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3R LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail $149.99

    Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 Wolfdale 3.16GHz LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor Model BX80570E8500 - Retail $219.99

    Scythe S-FLEX SFF21E 120mm Case Fan - Retail $15.74

    ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro 92mm CPU Cooler - Retail $30.21

    Pioneer CD/DVD Writer Black SATA Model DVR-S18M LabelFlash Support - $51.99

    nMEDIAPC ZE-C68 All-in-one USB 2.0 Card Reader w/ USB Port - $10.99

    Subtotal $1,132.35
    Total With Shipping and Taxes $1326.31
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