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Needing help building two 850$ systems.... Not Counting the OS

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Last response: in Systems
January 28, 2010 8:14:05 PM

Okay I'm going to be picking the parts out for this build within the next 24 hours so I am aware there isn't much time for decisions but I'm really somewhat deadlocked on what to do. I am going to be putting Windows 7 Professional on both of the systems but the 850 dollar part limit isn't counting the OS so in reality both builds are going to be pushing just over the $1,000 mark.

I'm stuck between choosing to build either a system using the Intel Core i5 750 CPU and then going somewhat lower end on the GPU and HDD or building some type of AMD quad-core CPU system and then investing in a a fairly small SSD to use for running my OS and everyday APPS.

Here's where I'm totally split on what to do. I'm totally aware that on all benchmarks and even most real-world type test that the Intel i5 750 beat's any AMD CPU for the most part. But would the extra money that I could invest in a AMD builds GPU or SSD OS drive make up for the difference in CPU power? I can't really decide and it's been driving me somewhat nuts trying to decide for the last few days.

Both systems will be used mostly for running Adobe CS4's Premiere Pro/After Effects because they are going to be basically functioning as Low Budget editing systems. (Hence why I am choosing to not buy some type of Editing/CAD based GPU.)

Here's the part list I've been toying around with... With a Intel CPU based system...

CPU - Intel Core i5 750 CPU
GPU - ATI 4870 (Which kind I havent picked)
Case - Antec 300 Illusion
MOBO - ASrock Extreme P55 version (not x58 obviously)
PSU - Either some type of OCZ or Antec Probably or possibly cosair
RAM - GSKILL or some type of Cosiar XMS 4 Gig kit
HDD - Some type of Western Digital

Here's a list of AMD parts I've been thinking about using

CPU - AMD Athlon II Propus 630 Quad Core - (ONLY 108 Bucks :)  )
GPU - ATI 4890 or possibly still some type of OC'd 4870
Case - Antec 300
MOBO - Undecided
PSU - Same as the Intel build either some type of OCZ
RAM - Undecided
SSD - Kingston SSD Now 40Gig or the Intel SSD i've wanted forever I'm aware that Kingston's uses the same memory controller as Intel's though. But from a article I was reading the new vertex 2's by OCZ made any OCZ SSD sound like a fairly safe buy.

So as you can tell I'm somewhat torn on what to chose and or which direction to go with these builds.

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January 29, 2010 11:13:05 AM

For your listed usage, either GPU is WAY overkill. You could get by with IGP. It'd be pushing it in Premiere/AE. A low end gpu like 9600GT or HD 4670 will MORE than suffice. Unless there's other usage like gaming you didn't mention.

SSD is a bad idea for your usage cuz you WON'T be storing your clips on SSD, but rather on a fast SATAII HDD. SSD has a small limit in writes. After that, it's dead. No more writing. Just reading. HDD has a MUCH longer limit in writes. So you want to maximize your parts' longevity.

Basically, downgrade GPU and swap SSD out for HDD or 2 with 1 small drive for OS & a big one for data. You don't have enough dough for SSD + HDD. With the savings, you might be able to push for a better cpu/mobo/ram.
January 29, 2010 11:44:17 PM

Best answer selected by ComputerNovice.
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January 29, 2010 11:51:04 PM

Well I ended up chosing a new generation 5000 series ATI GPU. I went with the 5770, I wish I would have read your post before I ordered all the parts, but I was in a hurry to order them. Anyways though you'll be happy to hear I ended up not buying a SSD, I bought the Western Digital VelociRaptor WD1500HLFS 150GB 10000 RPM instead because it had 150Gb of space to work with VS. the 40Gig SSD, that way I'll have plenty of room for the current clips I'm working on along with my everyday general APP's and my Windows 7 Professional 64-Bit OS.

I'm planning on storing any stuff I don't need to edit (right away anyways)... On my 2TB Western Digital External Drive with the two seperate 1TB RAID setup. Its using two GREEN drives. But thanks for the response because I'll be ordering two more Budget Edit stations for the company I work at within the next month or so, so I plan to take your advice on the next build I end up doing. So honestly I can't thank you enough, because I was suspecting that the 4890 or 4870 would most likely be overkill but I wasn't very sure seeing as some people buy those GPU's for edit stations from NVIDIA that are like 500 bucks that don't even have GPU rendering on them, so I wasn't really sure what made those cards worth the extra money...

For example I understand the point of possibly buying the really expensive QUADRO card that cost like 4Grand because it has GPU rendering and that would be useful for CS4 if you where Rendering stuff ALOT... But whats the advantage of the PNY Quadro FX 1700 512MB 128-bit GDDR2Workstation Video Card???? VS. a 5850 for almost half the price or for that matter a 4870 for a quarter of the price. Especially since according to most people 4870's are too much for CS4 related stuff. So I haven't ever been able to understand the benefit of it.
January 30, 2010 1:37:34 PM

Some people buy high-end gaming gpus for video editing cuz they have the money. You need to factor in your budget, not just the fastest parts in the world. One of my friends bought a GTX 260 for Java games. lol. Well, he HAS the money to blow. That's the difference between 'em & us.

No, I believe Premiere & AE are both more cpu/ram intensive than gpu. Unless you're doing 3D animation a lot. If it were me, I'd get the lowest gpu or IGP and blow the rest of money on a fastest cpu possible, ok ram and ok mobo and a RAID 5 with 3+ 1TB drives. RAID 5 is more reliable cuz if one of the disk dies, you replace it and it will rebuild the RAID. RAID 1 does the same, but 5 is faster. Much faster if you have more disks, say 5. 3 is the minimum.

The expensive workstation cards are good IF your apps make use of 'em. IMO, it'd be 3D rendering like 3d max, etc. Those 3D workstations always have the FireGL/Quadro FX.
January 30, 2010 7:27:24 PM

Ahh ok thanks for the quick response I appreciate it.