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Control Room / Information Center PC (under $3000)

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December 26, 2009 6:24:29 PM

Purchase Date: ASAP
Preferred website: Newegg
Location: Downstate NY USA
No OC, No SLI
Monitor resolution: Five monitors 52” @ 1920x1080 (already purchased)

System Usage:
2D applications of all types - commodity tickers, charting applications, data aggregators, multiple web browsers, standard office applications
Display HDTV feed from set top box (cablevision, westchester county) This is becoming too complicated (after further research) so ignore this requirement.


Comments:
Issue 1:
We would like to have the HD feed from our STB be viewable on any monitor so we would like to pass it through the PC. This causes some serious problems since I cannot find a videocard that accepts component cable input. The best I could find is this http://www.hauppauge.com/site/products/data_hdpvr.html.


Issue 2:
Since I’ll be using 3 video cards, I need a motherboard that is laid out such that we will have a slot for the video capture card.

Issue 3:
This is also a bit of a marketing toy (show the clients…) so very slick looking case is a must. Interesting keyboard/mouse/io options also welcome.

Issue 4:
Id like to keep the video cards of all the same type, and the 9500GT looks good, so I’ll need 3x PCI-E 16 slots

What I have so far – I have not decided on specifics:

CPU: Intel core i7 2.66
RAM: G.Skill F3-10666CL9T-6GBNQ 6GB DDR3 1600
Mobo: ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 X58 3x PCI-E 16 1x PC-E 1 2x PCI
Video: 3x Nvidia 9500GT
SSD: Intel X25-M 80gb
HDD: 1TB 7200PRM SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB
TV Tuner / Video capture: ???
Case: ??? Silverstone FT02
PSU: 650W Antec Quattro 850w
OS: Windows 7 Professional
Mouse / Keyboard: Generic until i find something better
DVD: Generic
December 26, 2009 7:11:20 PM

here's a salvo from a fellow downstater (Long Island)

Look at some of these MoBos

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case - Antec 1200 (turn LED's off if you don't want it "blingy").

PSU - Antec CP-850

Get the 500 GB per platter HD...Spinpoint F3 or Seagate 7200.12 .... give your usage I'd say get the quieter / cooler 7200.12.

The 9500 getting little long in the tooth....

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/geforce-310-5970,24...

Here's the "winners" from THG's latest (December) GFX Roundup
Best Graphics Cards For The Money: December '09


$50 - HD 4650
$65 - HD 4670 / 9600 GSO
$85 - 9600 GT
$95 - 9600 GT / HD 4830
$110 - GTS 250 512 MB
$120 - GTS 250 1 GB
$155 - HD 5770 / GTX 260
$200 - HD 4890
$240 - 2 x GTS 250
$310 - No winner (HD 5850 Honorable Mention)
$330 - 2 x GTX 260 / 2 x HD 5770
$400 - 2 x HD 4890
$410 - No winner (HD 5870 Honorable Mention)
$465 - No winner (GTX 295 Honorable Mention)
$625 - No winner (HD 5970 Honorable Mention)
December 26, 2009 7:17:15 PM

Well, have you considered the ATI 5XXX series? These support multiple monitors through the EyeFinity technology. For such a multi-monitor set-up, it's worth giving it a look. The 5870 (or with that budget a 5970 even) might be more intresting than multiple individual cards.

A very slick looking case is a matter of preference... Some think fans with blue LED's that can act as a makeshift Disco a wondrous threat to the eye, while others prefer simple and plain, but stylish lines. Tell us what you think slick if you want advice. Flashy, simple and elegant, colorful, futuristic,...
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December 26, 2009 7:31:08 PM

RE: Video cards
Im open to anything - I just like Nvidia because i have set up multiple monitor configurations easily using such a setup.
I am not too concerned with budget - I want stability, ease of install and reliability.

After further research I am going to ditch the tuner all together and simply use an AV switch on the feed from the STB to select which monitor to display.

RE: Case
I would say sleek is professional, simple lines and smooth. I think all the antec gamer cases look way too busy, except for the three hundred. The old antech p180 http://www.x-computers.sk/img/skrinky/antec/p180_black.... looks great once you take its "hat" off. I would like to use green LEDs (company colors) and if i had a window, perhaps a green neon base lamp.
December 26, 2009 7:45:32 PM

The P180 still lives (in a newer form): http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... very little changed with this newer 183.

Less elegant, but of amazing build quality and simplicity (and with a side window) is the Xigmatek Midgard. Not the most roomy of cases, but large enough for a normal build: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

For the graphics card, Nvidia is an option, but for multiple monitor setups you can't beat the multi-monitor support of the 5XXX series. Read some reviews and judge if it's what you're looking for.
December 26, 2009 7:55:12 PM

RE Eyefinity:

It seems that all current offerings support only 3 maximum outputs per card by choosing 3 of the following: 2 DVI, 1 HDMI, 1 DisplayPort

Since i need to drive 5 monitors each with independent display (no spanning), these would be out.

Edit: with seperate 3 cards, i would be using 5 of the 6 total DVI outputs. I would gladly take one card that would output 5 DVI (via converters or not), i just cant find one.
December 27, 2009 2:51:47 AM

http://cgi.ebay.ca/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&Item=28043...

Doubt this would work but it can drive up to 12 monitors supposidly

Now back to reality

For the video cards i would consider 3x 5770s they will offer great performance, probibaly alot more than you require but since you are going for a very sleek look a fully enclosed card will add to the effect if you choose a case with a side window.

Once again for that sleek look I would go with the DIAMOND 5770 because it doesnt have any silly stickers on it
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

But for the warranty I would deffinitely go with the xfx
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

On the nvidia side my choice would be 3x GTS 250
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

And as for the case the I would go for the P183 even though it doesnt have a side window it could be combined with a CP-850 power supply which is an amazing combination and if you want a side window just pull out the jig saw and have at it.
December 27, 2009 3:22:12 AM

^+1 I forgot about the Fortress it is also a very sleek looking case and has a side window if you desire that. One thing is that if the computer will be a bit of a show toy, if it has a side pannel you will need to do some major cable management but that should be a problem in a case like the silverstone.
December 28, 2009 12:37:43 PM

Good call on that fortress. Im placing my order now - Thanks guys.
!