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I7 980 CS5 workstation build

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April 18, 2010 6:47:02 PM

HI All,

Building my first workstation and I wanted to get some suggestions. This system will be used mainly for CS5 After Effects- probably will see a bit of gaming. Will definitely overclock and still deciding whether it is worth water cooling or not. Here's my preliminary list.

CPU I7 980x

Mobo Asus P6X58D Premium - Since I'm only using a single GPU is there a different Mobo I should look at?

GPU Nvidia GTX 480- not on the official list yet from Adobe but coming soon.

PSU Corsair HX750- Bigger? Smaller?

Ram 12gb for sure, but 24 would be nice. Guess I'm stuck with the 4 gb sticks if I want to upgrade. Any recomendations
on which ram would be best? Cs5 will use as much Ram as is in the system.

SSD boot drive. What's a good size?

HD Might do the WD 600 gb VR. Would 2 7200 rpm drives in a Raid be as fast?

Cooling Would like to push the CPU to 4-4.4 GHZ. Watercooling necessary? If I do water, I'll cool the GPU also.
The Evga card has optional water cooling

Case still undecided

Budget 3500US
April 18, 2010 7:25:52 PM

Probably won't see a lot more things added, maybe a few drives. What should I look at for water cooling the CPU and GPU? I've read some threads but all the #s get a bit confusing. Are there some kits that have all the parts I would need?
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April 18, 2010 11:26:56 PM

I can't really justify the cost of SSD's either, but if you're set on a boot drive (with no applications) this 80GB Intel X-25M is highly regarded:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

They also make it in 40GB form, but I've heard it's not good to fill SSD's close to capacity.

I'd hesitate on recommending the GTX 480 because of its heat and power consumption. The ATI Radeon 5970 performs better and has lower heat and power consumption, but it is a dual GPU card, so if you're NOT AT ALL concerned about heat, then a GTX 480 could be a viable option. I myself have the 5970 and it does everything I want and more, but to each his own :) 
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Related resources
April 18, 2010 11:29:32 PM

Another thing; both the 480 and 5970 are currently out of stock on Newegg, but I think you're going to find the 5970 (generally) slightly more available in the near future. Just something to think about if you plan to build this rig soon.
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April 18, 2010 11:39:26 PM

Eh I just thought of one more thing; I'm not really familiar with what After Effects CS5 is but it seems like it has something to do with editing images or video, so you might benefit from having multiple screens. The 5970 can use Eyefinity technology to drive three monitors from a single card, which is what I'm doing now. It's pretty easy to set up once you do the research, and if you do decide to go this route you can message me and I can send you links to all the adapters and such that actually work.
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April 19, 2010 1:12:55 AM

Unfortunately Adobe doesn't support ATI products, so it is the 480 or Quadro. If I water cool I should be able to keep that card nice and cool.

I can go either way on the SSD
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April 19, 2010 1:59:01 AM

As you can see here, they hit 4.4 Ghz easily with the Intel Stock cooler....no need for water.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/core-i7-980x-effici...

And yes, With AutoCAD, Adobe Suites, 2D graphics, you definitely want an nVidia card.....

To allow for OC'ing (4.4 Ghz +) and twin GFX cards, going full tower....drop to mid tower if dropping one of those.

Full Tower Antec 1200 w/ CP-850 PSU $230 And yes, the blingy LED things do thankfully have OFF switches :) 
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Alternate Full Tower HAF 932 w/ Corsair HX850 $330
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Mid Tower HAF 922 w/ TX650 $160 (180 - $20 MIR)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Alternate Mid Tower Antec 900 w/ EA-650 $180
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS P6X58D-E LGA 1366 Intel X58 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 w/ Intel i7-980 $1300
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

RAM - (avoid tall heat spreaders which may interfere w/ heat sink).
Fastest available is Mushkin redline CAS 6 ($250 x 2 = $500)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Alternate RAM CORSAIR XMS3 6GB (3 x 2GB) DDR3 1600 CAS 7 Model CMX6GX3M3C1600C7 $200 x 2 = $400[/b]
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Hard Drives - Check out the performance charts and pick whatever 500 GB per platter drive performs best under your usage patterns. The 2 TB WD Black and XT from Seagate are good choice but at smaller capacities, you are limited to the Seagate 7200.12 or the Spinpoint F3. The 7200.12 excels in gaming, multimedia and pictures whereas the F3 wins at music and movie maker. See the comparisons here (copy past link in manually, link won't work in forum):

(http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/2009-3.5-desktop-har...[2371]=on&prod[2770]=on)

Look at the tests that reflect your usage and choose accordingly.
2 x Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST31000528AS $180
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Heat Sink - For top notch performance and ease of installation
http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...
Prolimatech Megahalems ($100) ($65 for the HS, $7 for TIM, $11 each for two PWM fans and $7 for a Y cable splitter).

http://www.frozencpu.com/products/8807/cpu-pro-01/Proli...
http://www.frozencpu.com/products/7038/thr-41/Innovatio...
http://www.frozencpu.com/products/10026/fan-639/Scythe_...
http://www.frozencpu.com/products/8418/cab-150/FrozenCP...

If that's a budget breaker, look at the Xigmnatec S1283 or one of the others here:
http://www.silentpcreview.com/Recommended_Heatsinks
http://www.frostytech.com/top5heatsinks.cfm#INTELHEATSI...
http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...
http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...

pick a TIM from the top few here:
http://www.hwreviewlabs.com/index.php?option=com_conten...
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/coolers/display/therma...
http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...

GFX Card - ASUS ENGTX470/2DI/1280MD5 GeForce GTX 470 (Fermi) $350 x 2 = $700
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Optical - Wanna watch movies ?
Plextor Blue Ray Combo Model PX-B320SA LightScribe Support and 50 LS disks $125
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

If not, Alternate Optical
Any $25 burner

Option - SSD - Intel G2 160 Gb for OS and scratch disk $444
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

2 optionl case fans $30 for GFX cards $30
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

AFT card reader $34
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Totals $3199 w/ bolded items (no SSD)
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April 19, 2010 2:51:01 AM

Not sure I can go with the Dual GFX. I don't think Adobe supports SLI. Would I actually be able to see the performance difference in the ram?
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April 19, 2010 3:08:07 AM



are there some other dealers that are not located in Ca? To buy from Newegg will cost me a couple of hundred for tax!
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April 19, 2010 4:03:19 PM

I need this system to be kind of portable. What is the best of the smaller mid towers?
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April 19, 2010 5:20:22 PM

I looked at that laptop. figured I could build a much more powerful machine for less. As far as portability I just need to be able to box it up and ship it to locations for work. So many of the towers are so big that they won't fit into any of the shipping cases I own.
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April 21, 2010 3:33:22 PM

the sonata III is a very good case, though you probably want a little more expensive case and the PSU it comes with won't power your system. Just make sure if you go this route and want the quiet factor pick a PSU that is quiet at the wattage you need
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April 21, 2010 5:07:09 PM

OP,

I have been researching my 3rd NLE build here for the last couple of months.

Just a few notes.

12GB RAM is more than plenty ... even after you go 6-core, you are still looking at 2 Gig per core and 1 GB per thread.

And, while nVidia is "definately the way to go", I am almost shocked you do not have a QuadroFX in that build !

Unless you are Gaming ... get the PNY QuadroFX 1800 (or above) as a "primary" GPU ... if you add a secondary GPU (for 3 or more monitors or 2xDual Link HQ) ... then you can go GeForce (or another Quadro).

If you are really serious about CS5 ... Get a true Pro WS card ... QuadroFX.

( Not sure if/when the latest/newest successors are due for release )

AND ... Air cooling is ALL YOU NEED ... H20 would be a mistake !

=Al =




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April 21, 2010 5:43:29 PM

Decided to go with the Mountain Mods H2go Case. A little more money but it will transport nicely.

I guess I'm making the big mistake of water cooling. At least I'll be able to push the speed a bit more for AE rendering!

I thought about the Quadro, but for the money the 480 is going to be much faster, look at the specs for the two cards. Unfortunately Adobe doesn't take advantage of SLI

I could see not OCing the system if it was just an NLE.
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April 21, 2010 8:45:11 PM

So how big of a power supply do i need?

i980
gtx 480 maybe a second sometime in the future
3 drives
watercooling single loop
12 gb ram
will be over clocked.
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April 21, 2010 11:04:21 PM

astropaulo said:
Decided to go with the Mountain Mods H2go Case. A little more money but it will transport nicely.

I guess I'm making the big mistake of water cooling. At least I'll be able to push the speed a bit more for AE rendering!

I thought about the Quadro, but for the money the 480 is going to be much faster, look at the specs for the two cards. Unfortunately Adobe doesn't take advantage of SLI

I could see not OCing the system if it was just an NLE.




Why not just go with a Dual Xeon build ?

I'd rather have a 2nd proc or more RAM than some algae-infested jacuzzi-pump that I have to inspect and maintain several, times/year. My final plea, on your behalf.

The "specs" on the GPUs do not tell the whole story ... not hardly. There's a helluva-lot more to Pro renders than just pushing out frames.

Any-hooo there IS a list of certified GPUs ... Whether the 480 is on that list is prolly moot as it soon will be (if not already). I have not seen the benchmarks but I would be very interested, if you have run across any ... especially, of course, for CS5 Apps.

Would like to see a 480 go up against a QuadroFX1800 both for speed and for output quality ... with CS5 Apps. THAT would be a great article!


= Al =
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April 21, 2010 11:09:31 PM


480s suck the juice ... I'm thinking 900W +/- ~50W

With all that Ram and adding power for breakout boxes and RAIDs, etc.

I have seen a few folks opt for 1KW modular, but that seems really obscene, to me.

nVidia should have put out a prefered power spec for 2xSLI ... I'll see if I can dig it out.



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April 21, 2010 11:13:46 PM

Yup ... Looks like anything from a Corsair 900W on up (all the way) to 1100 Watts

http://www.slizone.com/object/slizone_build_psu.html

CORSAIR CMPSU-1000HX 1000W ATX12V 2.2 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply
Voted Best Power Supply Manufacturer by Custom PC 2009

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

OR . . . much cheaper . . .


CORSAIR TX Series CMPSU-950TX 950W ATX12V v2.3/EPS12V v2.91 SLI Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply
Voted Best Power Supply Manufacturer by Custom PC 2009

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

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April 29, 2010 3:28:38 AM

Looks Like I'm going to go with the 850hx. Probably stick with the single 480.

Just trying to find a Rampage III mobo. Hopefully next week.
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April 29, 2010 5:42:06 AM


Sounds like a plan.

That'll do.
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April 29, 2010 6:15:45 AM

Alvin Smith said:
Why not just go with a Dual Xeon build ?

I'd rather have a 2nd proc or more RAM than some algae-infested jacuzzi-pump that I have to inspect and maintain several, times/year. My final plea, on your behalf.

The "specs" on the GPUs do not tell the whole story ... not hardly. There's a helluva-lot more to Pro renders than just pushing out frames.

Any-hooo there IS a list of certified GPUs ... Whether the 480 is on that list is prolly moot as it soon will be (if not already). I have not seen the benchmarks but I would be very interested, if you have run across any ... especially, of course, for CS5 Apps.

Would like to see a 480 go up against a QuadroFX1800 both for speed and for output quality ... with CS5 Apps. THAT would be a great article!


= Al =

lol algae investeted jaccuzzi pump. I'm happy I bought a d14 ;) 
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July 17, 2010 2:16:38 PM

Very interesting-indeed. I was in the beta of PSCS5 and use CS5 Design. Have a new rig designed for it. Killer fast.
This thread is an interesting read. The cost of this rig skyrocketed once Xeon and Quadros came along. I have to agree with Alvin tho. Sound advice. I would have gone with 2x CPUs.

GTX 480 Versus QuadroFX 1800 on CS5. A very interenting article. Hope the rig is working out well, Somebody. Since this thread finished up in late April, the GTX 480 has been added to Adobe's list of CS5 approved graphFX cards. I would love to give your rig a run on Adobe's Pixel Bender filter set. Its listed in Adobe Labs. While a few of the arent useful, the oil painter filter is amazing!

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August 3, 2010 6:39:49 PM

I Am in the same situation but would like to keep my machine under 2k.... does anyone have any idea of what I can start with. I want to be able to continue adding to it over time ie more HD space and ram but i would like to start off with a 6core cpu and 8gb of ram. I would be using CS5 and Avid xpress!!!!
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August 15, 2010 2:02:31 PM

GPU Nvidia GTX 480- How to Unlock Adobe Premiere CS5 to use almost any NVIDIA graphics card with CUDA acceleration.


Here are the steps:

1. Go to All Programs, then Accessories.

2. RIGHT click on Command Prompt and select Run as Administrator

3. Type cd \ it will give you a C:\> Prompt.

4. Type in cd \Program Files\Adobe\Adobe Premiere Pro CS5
It will give you a C:\Program Files\Adobe\Adobe Premiere Pro> Prompt

5. Type in GPUSniffer.exe Press enter and wait a few seconds

You should see something like this: (Note the lines I have highlighted in red)

Device: 00000000001D4208 has video RAM(MB): 896
Device: 00000000001D4208 has video RAM(MB): 896
Vendor string: NVIDIA Corporation
Renderer string: GeForce GTX 295/PCI/SSE2 < --------- Look for the card type
Version string: 3.0.0

OpenGL version as determined by Extensionator...
OpenGL Version 2.0
Supports shaders!
Supports BGRA -> BGRA Shader
Supports VUYA Shader -> BGRA
Supports UYVY/YUYV ->BGRA Shader
Supports YUV 4:2:0 -> BGRA Shader
Testing for CUDA support...
Found 2 devices supporting CUDA.
CUDA Device # 0 properties -
CUDA device details:
Name: GeForce GTX 295 Compute capability: 1.3
Total Video Memory: 877MB
CUDA Device # 1 properties -
CUDA device details:
Name: GeForce GTX 295 Compute capability: 1.3
Total Video Memory: 877MB < ---- Look for the total video memory
CUDA Device # 0 not chosen because it did not match the named list of cards <---See Below
Completed shader test!
Internal return value: 7

If you look at the 3 rd from the bottom it says the CUDA device is not chosen because it's not in the named list of card. That's fine. Let's add it.

6. Next, click on the Start icon in the bottom left corner of Windows 7.

7. Then click on All Programs and then click on the Accessories folder.

8. Look in the Accessories folder for Notepad and RIGHT click Notepad

9. The left click on Run as Administrator

10. Once Notepad opens up, click on File and then Open

11. Navigate to the Program Files\Adobe\Adobe Premiere Pro CS5 folder

12. Find the file: cuda_supported_cards.txt then click on it to select the file, then click Open

13. You will see a list of cards

14. Go to the end of the list and add your video card. For Example, above it listed the video card as:

Renderer string: GeForce GTX 295/PCI/SSE2

15. Now just add the name of the card between the “Renderer string:” and the forward slash “/” to the cuda_supported_cards.txt file.

Using the example above, you would add GeForce GTX 295 to the file. Make sure you enter your video card correctly. It IS case
sensitive.

16. Click on File and click Save. Then exit Notepad.

17. In the window that has the GPUSniffer program, type in GPUSniffer.exe again and press enter and wait a few seconds.

18. Look to see your video card is listed and how much memory it is showing.

19. If everything is correct, type in Exit at the command prompt. Otherwise, go back to step 6 and make sure you have the name of the card entered correctly.

20. Now RIGHT click your mouse on the Desktop.

21. Select the Nvidia Control Panel

22. On the top left side, click on Manage 3D Settings

23. Then click on Program Settings

24. There is a drop down box next to the “Add” button. Click on the drop down box and look for Adobe Premiere CS5 (adobe premiere pro.exe) and select that.

NOTE: On some systems it might say Adobe Premiere CS4 (adobe premiere pro.exe) that is fine you can select that to.

NOTE: You can also click the “Add” button and go to the Program Files\Adobe\Adobe Premiere Pro CS5 folder and select the
executable file: "Adobe Premiere Pro.exe"

25. Next, you will see a list of Feature and Settings.

26. Go to the "Multi-display/mixed-GPU acceleration" option and under settings switch it from "Multiple display performance mode" to "Compatibility performance mode"

27. Then Click Apply and Exit.

28. Startup Premiere CS5 and open or create a Project.

29. Then a the top of the screen select Project, then select Project Setting and select General

30. Look under Rendering and Playback at the bottom of the window, it will say:

Renderer: Mercury Playback Engine Software Only.

Simply change it for Mercury Playback Engine GPU Hardware and you are done.
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August 15, 2010 2:04:21 PM

copy paste from - Studio 1 Productions
good day
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!