Seeking advice for fast Photoshop/Lightroom PC

Looking to build a fast system for Lightroom and Photoshop. My P4 just doesn't cut it anymore. I need lots of reliable storage and lots of memory. A good monitor that will calibrate well is a must. I want to take advantage of the new OpenGL acceleration in Photoshop but otherwise nothing fancy in terms of graphics... except dual DVI so I can hook up my existing 19" monitor plus a new 24". No gaming.

Debating between using RAID 5 on the motherboard, or just backing up to another drive locally. I have Mozy for offsite backup but it takes a while to backup 30GB of photos when coming back from a trip, and a full restore would take a very long time. I have (2) 7200RPM drives I am planning to use for OS and scratch disks so thinking about getting (3) 1.5TB 5400 RPM drives for long-term storage. I have lots of photos.

Any comments/suggestions greatly appreciated! It's been a while since I've built a PC.


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APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: tomorrow

BUDGET RANGE: ~ $1500-$1800 with 24" monitor

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Photoshop, Lightroom, Illustrator, some web development/general office work

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: reusing keyboard, mouse, graphics tablet, DVD-RW, 2x 7200 RPM 1TB Samsung Spinpoint currently used to store photos, 19" Dell 1905 flat panel (for dual-monitor setup)

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: NewEgg (but open to other reputable dealers)

PARTS PREFERENCES: Based on benchmarks I've seen, I really want a Core i7 system. Otherwise open.

OVERCLOCKING: Unlikely

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: No

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1200

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I want something as quiet as possible ... near-silent would be ideal


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Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80601920
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16819115202

MSI X58 Pro-E LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16813130226

OCZ StealthXStream OCZ700SXS 700W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16817341019

QTY 2 -- Crucial 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1066 (PC3 8500) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model CT3KIT25664BA1067
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16820148246

SAPPHIRE 100225L Radeon HD 3870 512MB 256-bit GDDR4 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16814102719

QTY 3 -- SAMSUNG Spinpoint F2EG HD154UI 1.5TB 5400 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16822152175

COOLER MASTER Centurion 534 RC-534-KKN2-GP Black Aluminum & Mesh bezel / SECC Chassis ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16811119106

HP LP2475w Black-Silver 24" 6 ms (GTG); 12ms HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16824176104

Right now this comes out to $1735 at NewEgg.
5 answers Last reply
More about seeking advice fast photoshop lightroom
  1. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136351

    Western Digital 1.5tb Green
    Once this drive comes back in stock, I'd recommend it over the Samsung. It's 10$ more, but runs faster, and cooler. Just don't use it in raid.

    Also, MSI motherboards aren't the greatest- I recommend the Asus P6T SE
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131386
    About the same price, for a better brand- supports Cross Fire.
  2. Much appreciated ... I will take a look at both of these. I probably won't end up using RAID anyway so it would be nice to have lower power/cooler drives.
  3. If you want superior customer support I would go with EVGA. You can get them on the phone to help you with technical issues if you have assembly problems or issues down the road you can't figure out.

    I would go with this board:

    http://www.evga.com/products/moreInfo.asp?pn=141-BL-E757-TR&family=Motherboard%20Family

    I also like the 5 year warranty on Seagate hard drives. You don't have to register it, all you do is go to their site and input the part # and serial # and it tells you if its under warranty and how much longer it is warrantied.

    As you can tell I like warranties and customer support and both of these are the best in the market. I have 3 western digital drives that are dead and out of warranty. My 500g seagate was my only failed drive I got to RMA and get back out of all of the drives I've used. Western digitals site after telling me my hard drives were out of warranty it redirected me to the discount area for being an existing customer and they tried to sell me hard drives that were repaired for more than I could go to the local shop and pay for new.

    To me that's not how you show appreciation to existing customers.

    Here's another great case option:

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129042
  4. hoganknowsbest said:
    Much appreciated ... I will take a look at both of these. I probably won't end up using RAID anyway so it would be nice to have lower power/cooler drives.

    Another Option is to go with a SSD & HDD for storage/backup.

    SSD
    OCZ Vertex Series OCZSSD2-1VTX120G 2.5" 120GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid state disk (SSD) - Retail $369.00
    ($339.00 after $30.00 Mail-In Rebate) Free Shipping*
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227395

    Corsair P128 (CMFSSD-128GBG2D) 2.5" 128GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid state disk (SSD) - Retail $345.99
    Free Shipping*
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233087

    HDD
    Western Digital Caviar Green WD7500AADS 750GB 32MB Cache $69.99 Free Shipping*
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136359
  5. Yoosty said:
    Another Option is to go with a SSD & HDD for storage/backup.

    SSD
    OCZ Vertex Series OCZSSD2-1VTX120G 2.5" 120GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid state disk (SSD) - Retail $369.00
    ($339.00 after $30.00 Mail-In Rebate) Free Shipping*
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227395

    Corsair P128 (CMFSSD-128GBG2D) 2.5" 128GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid state disk (SSD) - Retail $345.99
    Free Shipping*
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233087



    Wow ... I love the idea of the SSD, but I think it's just too soon for me. I will definitely be watching these and once the price on a 128GB drops somewhere close to $150 I will grab one and do the upgrade.
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