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New Build Needed - $1,500-$1,800 Budget [REVISED]

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July 16, 2010 2:57:21 PM

Hi Everyone!

I would like to solicit your advice for this i7 build, primary focus for the system is as a Video Editing but I do launch a game every now and then. Based on advice I've found in these forums (thanks!), I’ve put this system together. This community has been an incredible resource. Any feedback, experience, do’s & don’ts would be greatly appreciated. So here goes:

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: By 7/23/2010

BUDGET RANGE: $1500 - $1800 Including Shipping

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: The primary use for my system is as a 1080 HD Video Editing. Secondly it has to be functional as a general use computer – typical office apps & internet. I would also like the system to be fairly quiet. I would also like to be able to play the latest games, but I don't need to "max out" every res/shadow/setting....just close to it! Over-clocking is also of interest to me..why not?

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: keyboard, mouse, speakers, OS (will be using Windows 7 Ultimate), thermal paste

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Probably Newegg but I’m open to any reputable site/retailer if the deal is good.

PARTS PREFERENCES: Prefer to build this system around Intel I7 quad core.

OVERCLOCKING: Perhaps

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Upgradeable

MONITOR RESOLUTION: Full 1080p

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS:
Any bundling options you might recommend to save $$$? Feel free to swap out any part for more bang for the buck as I have a couple hundred breathing room. I have wireless-g in my house but only old Linksys PCI cards - any rec's on a new wireless if needed? I might need more USB ports - any rec's? Any misc. cables/connect I'm missing?

Here’s what I have so far coming in right at $1600 from Newegg as of 7/16/2010:

Mobo: Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R [Intel X58/LGA1366/DDR3/ATX $209

Processor: Intel Core i7-930 Bloomfield 2.8GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80601930 $289

RAM: CORSAIR XMS3 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model TR3X6G1600C9 $139

Graphics : SAPPHIRE TOXIC 100282TXSR Radeon HD 5850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card $329

Boot Drive: WD SiliconEdge Blue SSC-D0064SC-2100 2.5" 64GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) - OEM $149

Storage Drive : SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive $75

PSU: CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply $90

Case: COOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-UW Black Aluminum Bezel , SECC Chassis ATX Mid Tower Computer Case $74

Optical Drive: ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS Black SATA 24X DVD Burner - Bulk - OEM $26

Cooling Tuniq Tower 120 Universal CPU Cooler 120mm LED Cooling Fan and Fan Controller/Heatsink $35

Monitor: ASUS VH242H Black 23.6" 5ms HDMI Full 1080P Widescreen LCD Monitor 300 cd/m2 1000:1 (ASCR 20000:1) $189


Looking forward to your feedback and advice!

Thanks!
July 16, 2010 3:23:25 PM

A very low performing builld for how much you're spending. I'll be completely honest. You're going to get horrible performance for the price if you insist on using the i7 and getting a SSD. The i5-750 is just as good at gaming as the i7, yet costs $200-300 less. As for the SSD, it's expensive and doesn't help gaming performance in the slightest.

Here's what I'd build if I were spending $1,800 (adjusting the links):

CPU/Mobo: i5-750 and Asus P7P55D-E Pro $360
RAM/PSU: G.Skill Ripjaws 2x2 GB 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7 and Corsair 850W $200 after rebate
GPU: HD 5970 $700
HDD: Samung Spinpoint F3 1 TB $75
Case: HAF 922 $90
Optical: Cheap SATA DVD burner $20
HSF: Sychte SCMG-2100 $35
Monitor: Asus 23.6" 1080p $180 after rebate

Total: $1,660 (not counting shipping)

If you absolutely want the i7, spend $200 more than this.
July 16, 2010 3:46:24 PM
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July 16, 2010 3:46:59 PM

oh, and get the heatsink madadmiral recommended for my build.
July 16, 2010 3:54:38 PM

Thanks - I'll start looking at these components. But, I thought I read that the I7 was a much better chip than the I5 for my primary purpose of HD Video Editing?
July 16, 2010 3:56:25 PM

for video editing, my build is better, for gaming, his build is better.
July 16, 2010 4:09:04 PM

The hyper threading of an i7 will have big benefits in video encoding so yeah, if that's primary go with an i7.

I don't really like 5970s, as you can get better performance out of 2 5850s for less. Or go SLI 460s for even less and great performance, or SLI 470s... or a single card I'd say either a 5870 or GTX480. A 5970 is definitely the best single card I just don't think it's priced very well for what you get.

For monitors, I bought a (24") Samsung 2494SW for $200 locally and it is a really great monitor. Awesome colour, brightness, contrast etc.
July 16, 2010 4:10:18 PM

I have a couple of big problems with ares' build. First, you're wasting a lot of money on the Asus board and 950W PSU. The Gigabyte board I picked below is the best value for X58 boards. 950W for an HD 5870 is extreme overkill. A 750W unit would be just as good.

Second, OCZ RAM has major compatibility issues. This is especially prevalent with Intel builds. I'd avoid them at all costs.

@Wolfram23: The 5970 performs better than dual 5850s, especially once you overclock. You also keep an upgrade path open. As for the GTX 460, they don't outperform the 5850. They outperform the 5830, which is a big difference. The other new nVidia cards are really not worth it. They're expensive, under performing, use lots of power and generate lots of heat.

I really thought this was a gaming build, so I'm going to have to suggest some chages to the above....

CPU/Mobo: i7-930 and Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R $484
RAM: Corsair XMS3 3x2 GB 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7 $155 after rebate
GPU/PSU: HD 5870 2 GB and XFX 750W $560 after rebate HD 5870 1 GB and XFX 750W $450 after rebate. Thought that price looked high...
SSD: Intel X25-M 80 GB $200 (if you really, really want one)
HDD: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1 TB $75
Case/Optical: Coolermaster 690 and cheap SATA DVD burner $73
HSF: Sychte SCMG-2100 $35
Monitor: Asus 23.6" 1080p $180 after rebate

Total: $1,762 $1,652.
July 16, 2010 4:16:11 PM

^ +1 that looks like a solid build by Mad Admiral
July 16, 2010 4:23:43 PM
July 16, 2010 4:34:06 PM

that build adresses the ram issue, which i was cautious about too, the over sized psu (it was a good combo), and i got just as good a value board, while making the build the same price. and btw, i think this is the best value 1366 board:

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

but that combo with the ram is hard to pass up.
July 16, 2010 4:39:20 PM

I wouldn't call that much better. You stuck in a low quality board (MSI can't compare to a Gigabyte, even Tom's would agree, seeing as the UD3R got the recommended buy), a lower quality case, and a smaller, lower quality SSD.

Oh I also forgot to mention that the 5870 I put in there was a 2 GB model, which I didn't mean to include. Here's the HD 5870 1 GB in the same combo for $450 after rebate. I've corrected the above build. That brings the price down to $1,652, which makes it much, much better.
July 16, 2010 4:45:34 PM

i wouldnt put my money on that, MSI can compare to gigabyte anyday, they have just as good features, and usually higher build quality. gigabyte isnt one for quality in my experiences. the V9 is just as good or better than the CM 690. and lower quality ssd? really? curious, im over here thinking that faster speeds were better:









so much for the agility 2 being lower quality than the intel x25m, the intel sure seems to be pretty low on the lists.


July 16, 2010 4:52:00 PM

and for the msi being such a low quality board, it sure doesnt show it:









oh yes, very low quality... the gigabyte is good, both are good, but by no way is it so much better as you make it out to be.
July 16, 2010 5:07:42 PM

To start, the SSD you listed isn't included in any of those benchmarks. I don't see the OCZ Agility 2 60 GB on those, I see the 100 GB. They might be similiar, but they're not the same. Also, you're not showing the most important benchmark: random read/write. I don't know who wins that, but you can dig up a benchmark to support anything you want to say.

Second, all benchmarks show are "performance". I say that cautiously, since there isn't a significant difference in performance among any of the boards and SSDs. My point is this, quality cannot be measured in a benchmark run once on a board that isn't going to be used over a stretch of time. Do the OCZ SSDs perform as well as the Intels? Yes, but they're not as high quality. They won't last as long, or they'll degrade faster. In general, you can't beat Intel for quality in SSDs. As for the boards, Asus and Gigabyte are the top two manufacturers in terms of longevitiy (i.e. quality). Can you get the same features for slightly less in an MSI or ASRock or Foxconn or Biostar or Jetway or EVGA board? Yes, but you should not be surprised when it fails on you.
July 16, 2010 5:21:56 PM

You guys keep at it :)  I'll just wait around 'till this evening and buy what you all settle on as the best price/performance with combo pricing (gotta love that combo pricing)! I see my system definitely improving without my cost going up....thanks! Any thoughts on the wireless card or any addl. small things I'm leaving out that I'll kick myself for not thinking of?
July 16, 2010 5:22:03 PM

The OP will also be doing video editing, wouldnt a 200$ six core phenom be more productive vs the i5 750? It would come to 200$ cheaper than an i7 930 build and be around same cost of the i5 750? Just wondering.
July 16, 2010 5:24:31 PM

the ocz ssds support trim and all the other fun stuff. feel free to look at the review, the agility wins in just about all of them, i think it loses in maybe 1? heres another review:

http://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/3388/ocz_technology_ag...

i think the intel wins in reads only, and that win is only partial, and is by a tiny margin. and your right about the benchmarks, thats why i didnt show any for the mobos, the difference is pathetic. but the msi oc's higher, is more efficient, uses less power, so on and so forth. so how exactly is that lower quality? i have a MSI mobo right now, and trust me, its better than any gigabyte board ive ever used. asus is good. but imo, asus is #1 overall, then the followers are gigabyte and MSI overall. so at best, they are the same quality. the intel ssd and the ocz agility will likely last just as long, and thats likely 10 years +, so it wouldnt matter even if the intel did last longer. your sense of quality is a very interesting one... :lol:  i dont mean to sound rude, but really, when the ssds get some of the best reviews, and the mobo gets good reviews, and they both show their speed, how are they bad?
July 16, 2010 5:26:04 PM

wrazor said:
The OP will also be doing video editing, wouldnt a 200$ six core phenom be more productive vs the i5 750? It would come to 200$ cheaper than an i7 930 build and be around same cost of the i5 750? Just wondering.


thanks for reminding me, i forgot my video editing policy. if you can buy from micro center, get the i7 930, if you cant get the 1090T.
July 16, 2010 5:35:53 PM

Although I think 60 GB is a little small for an SSD, based on recent reading, it appears that the SandForce controller that the Agility 2/Vertex 2 use doesn't drop off in speed with lower-capacity drives, so the benchmark for the 100 GB should be pretty much the same as for the 60 GB.

(I'd still have trouble buying one that small though, my data discipline isn't very good.)
July 16, 2010 5:38:42 PM

60 is fine, in my opinion. if it really bugs him, he cant get the 120 gig version, it fits well within my build for his budget.
July 16, 2010 5:40:13 PM

I still want to point out that excluding the minor differences (MSI/Gigabyte, Intel/OCZ), with my revised build (with the 1 GB HD 5870), you'd pay $12 more and get an extra 20 GB on a SSD. That's an excellent deal.
July 16, 2010 5:42:26 PM

you would also get lesser RAM, a slower ssd, a lesser case, a lower quality monitor and in my opinion a worse mobo. see, i can call parts out too.
July 16, 2010 6:02:09 PM

The RAM is the same speed, and lower profile, allowing you to use some of the larger HSF. That means higher overclocks.

The SSD might be slower, but it's not noticeable. And it's higher quality and larger.

Are you kidding me on the case? The Coolermaster 690 is one of the top cases in the price range. If anything, the Thermaltake is a waste of excess money.

As for the boad, it's higher quality, but we've been through that already.

The montior isn't lower quality. Asus makes excellent monitors. It's just cheaper.

EDIT: That's a decent combo. The only problem I have with the 690 II is that the HAF 922 (possibly the best case out there) is the same price. The combo makes up for that though.
July 16, 2010 6:10:01 PM

MadAdmiral said:
The RAM is the same speed, and lower profile, allowing you to use some of the larger HSF. That means higher overclocks.

The SSD might be slower, but it's not noticeable. And it's higher quality and larger.

Are you kidding me on the case? The Coolermaster 690 is one of the top cases in the price range. If anything, the Thermaltake is a waste of excess money.

As for the boad, it's higher quality, but we've been through that already.

The montior isn't lower quality. Asus makes excellent monitors. It's just cheaper.

EDIT: That's a decent combo. The only problem I have with the 690 II is that the HAF 922 (possibly the best case out there) is the same price. The combo makes up for that though.


my ram has better head spreaders, and lower voltage allowing for higher oc's. my ssd IS faster, its undisputable. both cases are great, leave it at that. the board u linked, im tired of arguing over it, its good, so is mine, i like MSI, you like gigabyte. the monitor is good, mine is better, mine has a LED backlight allowing for a much high contrast ratio, and less power consumption. and it is a good combo, although i can fit the HAF 922 in with a different combo, and still get good discounts.

Best solution

July 16, 2010 6:25:00 PM
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July 16, 2010 6:25:02 PM

The bigger heat speaders don't really do much other than block larger heatsinks. I'll take the $15 over the slightly lower latencies (are we really arguing over a few points on the least important latency?). As for the voltage, the Pi's are lower, but that would only make a difference if you were able to overclock the CPU high enough on the required smaller heatsink to make a difference.

The HAF hasn't had good combos in a while. Of course, when you're talking about one of the best cases on the market for only $90, it doesn't really need to have combos...

Either way the OP goes from here, it's a good build. There are just minor differences that won't really affect anything.

EDIT: Now that's a horrible build. You went from having the i7-930 and a 5870 for $1,640 to the i7-860 (never a good choice) and a 5870 for the same price. Either one of the two builds above that would be massive better.
July 16, 2010 6:26:14 PM

i fit the HAF into a good combo. look above.
July 16, 2010 6:29:17 PM

Not really. As much as I like the Gigabyte AM3 and LGA1366 boards, they've got problems with the LGA1156 ones. Their USB 3/SATA III support doesn't work with Crossfire. I tend to go with the Asus P7P55D-E Pro for LGA1156 builds.

Regardless, I wouldn't drop to the i7-860. It's not a good choice. It'd be better to spend a little extra and get the 930 or spend less and get the i5-750.
July 16, 2010 6:40:24 PM

ughhh...... the 860 is just as good as the i7 930, aside from memory and mobos, they are practically identical. and when you say everything isnt "quality enough" you bump the prices back into the high $1700's.
July 17, 2010 2:01:09 AM

Thank you...both. I'm lovin' learning the additional ins-n-outs you both are teaching me. Anyone else want to chime in? Any thoughts on what's missing from this build or other oversights?
July 17, 2010 2:06:42 AM

nah, id say you have learned just about anything you need to know. btw, do you plan on sli or xfire?
July 17, 2010 3:51:20 AM

As for SLI or xFire, I don't have the need today unless HD Video Editing makes use of the performance gain. I would like to leave myself open to the upgrade path if I win the lottery and free up more gaming hours to actually find time to play, however. In the above configs, the high-end single video card spec'ed should provide all the performance I need for the immediate future, don't you think? Won't this system play most any game maxed out?
July 17, 2010 5:24:34 AM

depends on the resolutions and settings but pretty much. sure, games like crysis wont be fully maxed out, but it is a very powerful gpu. however, it might be wise to wait for the "475".
July 17, 2010 10:50:31 PM

Thank you again for your valuable input. So, with what was said, here is my build so far. Please look through this list and comment. A couple of questions:
1) I upgraded my SSD from the 64GB to the 120GB and added ~$150. Will I really need this extra SSD space for the extra money I'm spending?
2) I went ahead and upgraded the case to the HAF 922 - why not, right?
3) Take a look at the 25" LCD I've listed...what do you think? Free shipping too!
4) Still need a wireless-g card - any thoughts?
5) For a ~5% performance drop across the board, can I drop my cost by $200 and still be happy? If so, how?
6) Do a need a dedicated memory cooler?
7) Sorry if this is a dumb question, but should I install 64-bit Windows 7 on this system?
8) What cables/connectors/rails/fans & other bits am I missing for a full build?

REVISED SYSTEM:
CPU/Mobo: i7-930 and Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3 $484
RAM: Corsair XMS3 3x2 GB 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7 $159 after rebate
GPU/PSU: HD 5870 1 GB and XFX 750W $430 after rebate
SSD: OCZ Agility 2 OCZSSD2-2AGTE 120G $319 after rebate
HDD: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1 TB $75
CASE: HAF 922 $90
OPTICAL: Samsung SH-S243N DVD $25
HSF: Scythe SCMG-2100 $35 (incls. free thermal compound)
MONITOR: I-inc iH-252HPB 25" Widescreen LCD Monitor $169
SHIPPING (Newegg - $15.06, TigerDirect - Free)

Total: $1,801 (a buck over budget!)
July 18, 2010 1:30:41 AM

1.) Calculate SSD space as follows: Multiply the total space by 20% (SSDs like to have a lot of free space to work as fast as possible) then subtract 16 GB (for Windows 7). If you won't have more than what's left in programs at any one time, then you've got a big enough SSD.

3.) The link to the monitor doesn't work.

4.) I tend to recommend USB wireless adapters, mainly because they can be moved easily from one build to another. There isn't a huge signal difference between cards and USB adapters. I've also been told that there generally isn't a huge difference among the different brands, so get whatever's cheap.

5.) The only two possible changes I'd make without losing too much performance would be switching to an i5/P55 build or dropping to the 5850. Both would save about $100, but both would be way more than a 5% performance loss. The 5850 could be an option, if you don't mind playing games at slightly lowered settings.

6.) Nope.

7.) Absolutely. Nothing else would be good. A non-Windows OS wouldn't likely run a lot of the programs you'd like to run. Another version of Windows (XP or Vista) isn't as well performing. Finally, a 32-bit version wouldn't let you use half of the RAM.

8.) Possibly a 2.5" to 3.5" bay converter. SSDs are 2.5" form factor and most cases don't accommodate that out of the box. Make sure the SSD doesn't come with one though. Other than that, if you have some screwdrivers, you've got everything you need. Make sure to read up on some building guides to learn/refresh what you should expect. The one in the sticky at the top of the forum is a good one.
July 18, 2010 1:47:38 AM

I fixed the monitor link - sorry about that!
July 18, 2010 2:04:23 AM
July 18, 2010 2:19:09 AM

Oh, and one more thing....someone recommended that I get 2 larger capacity drives (fast ones) and put them in an array instead of going the SSD route. They said I would get the same performance, more space, and far less money. What do you think?
July 18, 2010 2:39:39 AM

Hey there,

I haven't read all replies fully, but I noticed that you are getting an ATI card, and you are planning HD video editing?

If you're going to use anything like CS5 ( Premiere Pro specifically ) you are wasting money by going with the ATI route.

for video editing, and using CS5 you NEED Nvidia period. For Cuda support, Open GL 3.2, etc, etc. etc.

Your options are:

Single GTX 460 1GB card, which are EXCELLENT - they run cool, and use LESS power.

2 GTX 460's in SLI, which outperform a single GTX 480, and run cooler and quieter.

Or a single GTX 470 if you plan on going dual 470's in the future.

Bottom line - you are WASTING your money by going ATI for video editing purposes, especially if you plan to work with CS5 in the future.
July 18, 2010 2:54:24 AM

Thank you ares1214 - I switched my case and SSD to your combo (COOLER MASTER RC-692-KKN2 CM690 II) and (OCZ Vertex 2 OCZSSD2-2VTXE120G 2.5" 120GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)) - this looks great with a $50 savings...thanks!

QUESTION: You've recommended the Mushkin ram with DDR3 1333 with 7-7-7-20 timings vs. my selected Corsair DDR3 1600 with 7-8-7-20. The Corsair appear to be faster and a better name. Is there a reason for the Muskin rec?
July 18, 2010 3:04:23 AM

ohwhatfun said:
Thank you ares1214 - I switched my case and SSD to your combo (COOLER MASTER RC-692-KKN2 CM690 II) and (OCZ Vertex 2 OCZSSD2-2VTXE120G 2.5" 120GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)) - this looks great with a $50 savings...thanks!

QUESTION: You've recommended the Mushkin ram with DDR3 1333 with 7-7-7-20 timings vs. my selected Corsair DDR3 1600 with 7-8-7-20. The Corsair appear to be faster and a better name. Is there a reason for the Muskin rec?


hahaha, in RAM, Muskin and Corsair about as good as they get, so the name doesnt matter much. if you plan on taking advantage of the MIR, and dont wanna oc too much, get the corsair, if you want fast RAM thats cheaper and runs at what it says it will, get the mushkin, if you want speed and better oc ability, get this:

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

i highly recommend the ram above, just 10 bucks more. of course, you can always get the combo with the good MSI mobo, but thats up to you, id say its a pretty good idea depending on if you can save more that a little money, other wise, gigabytes great.
July 18, 2010 3:58:00 AM

ohwhatfun said:
Oh, and one more thing....someone recommended that I get 2 larger capacity drives (fast ones) and put them in an array instead of going the SSD route. They said I would get the same performance, more space, and far less money. What do you think?


Standard HDDs can never match SSDs in terms of performance. The speeds of SSDs are an order of magnitude faster than standard drives. You certainly would get more space for far less, but you'd be losing a TON of speed.

The Mushkin sticks are good. My only problem with the Pi Series sticks is that they're really tall, which can mean that if you get a larger heatsink, you won't be able to use all your RAM slots.

EDIT: Again, those Mushkin's would be fine. There's also these G.Skill Trident 2000 mhz CL 9 sticks for $185. Once you account for the speed difference, they're actually as fast or faster than the CL 6 Mushkins.
July 18, 2010 4:06:17 AM

Well...this is interesting kg2010. What's everyone else think....should I go the 470 route for video instead of the 5870 since video editing is my #1 reason for this build and gaming is #2?
July 18, 2010 4:13:59 AM

if gaming is your number 2 concern, id go with the gtx 460 or 5850, not the 470. or id wait for the 475, see if its cheaper than the 5870.
July 18, 2010 4:14:45 AM

ohwhatfun said:
Well...this is interesting kg2010. What's everyone else think....should I go the 470 route for video instead of the 5870 since video editing is my #1 reason for this build and gaming is #2?


If you are building this for video editing - ATI is not an option - trust me. Alvin Smith drove this point home to me.

Nvidia is the only choice for video editing if you want to take full advantage of Cuda, OpenGL 3.2, etc, etc - Not to mention how Nvidia works closely with software companies like Adobe.

The 470 runs HOT though, and has high temps -

The GTX 460 1GB will game just fine and has DX11 support - plus it has close to 5850 performance, and it's definitely better than a 5830.

Plus, GTX 460 in SLI outperforms a single GTX 480 by as much as 23%, and in some games, it even outperforms 5870's in Crossfire.

Check it out this GTX 460 SLI Review ( keep in mind this the 768 MB version in SLI ) the 1GB in sli will be even FASTER.
http://www.guru3d.com/article/geforce-gtx-460-sli-revie...

I'm getting a GTX 460 for my build. Check it out here:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/forum2.php?config=tom...

One last thing - if the primary purpose for your build is Video Editing - ATI is NOT an option. ;) 
July 18, 2010 4:25:52 AM

if u casually game, get the 460, if u want to max most things out, wait for the 475. and ironically, video editing usually has mostly to do with the cpu.
July 18, 2010 4:36:49 AM

kg2010 said:
Nvidia is the only choice for video editing if you want to take full advantage of Cuda, OpenGL 3.2, etc, etc - Not to mention how Nvidia works closely with software companies like Adobe.


Obviously, I'm not arguing the point on CUDA. If your applications make use of CUDA, go nVidia.

I will point out though, that Open GL 3.3 and 4.0 are supported on 5nnn series ATI cards. (3.3 only on lower-series cards.) A recent development to be sure, but something worth noting, I think.
!