Set-up for rendering PC

First of all since this is my first post I want to say Hi to everyone and what a great forum you've got here, keep up the good job.

I've been out of the PC-upgrade game for a long time (5-6 years) which in PC terms is a lot of time.My current set-up is an AMD 3200+, Asus A8N-SLI Delux mobo, 2x512MB ddr1 RAM, 9600GSO GPU and 250gb WD HDD.

Even this PC is WAY old, I've have not feel the need to change but now I want to change and I need some wise opinions.

My little brother is in Animation college and is a verry tallented student and animation is his life direction and you can see that the word animation don't go together with my current PC so I want to buy a powerfull machine.

The main uses will be 3d rendering, video editing, Photoshop and everything graphical and animation associated, also for me a FTP file server, maybe Web server, visual studio compiling, VM machine (maybe) and for fun some HD movie playback.Games are not important, ok maybe verry little (10% max).And this configuration need to last at least 3-4 years.Actually I need a powerhouse (whell the thing closest to)

Because I live in a small country in Europe online shopping here is a NO and I'm limited to what I will find in the stores.

My first set-up is this:

1.Intel i7 920 slightly OC-ed
2.Asus P6T ....I dont know if I need the v2 edition
3.Corsair 6gb (2x3) DDR3 1600Mhz.....for know, I'll add some more later when money comes.
4.PSU unit 650w or 750w but dont know still which one.

The HDD and the GPU for now stay the same.

Second set-up:

1.AMD Phenom X6 1055T Box
2.MB Sapphire AMD 890GX AM3 DDR3 1600 CF+Hybrid............I forgot, and this Mobo is in the question also M4A89GTD PRO
3.Corsair 4GB (2x 2GB) DDR3 1600MHz....for know the same
4.Because the price for this configuration is for know much cheaper then the i7, I would like to ask you if a spend the rest of the money on some SSD drive for the OS and the applications (I dont know if the SSD will bring rendering times down), or more RAM for the system.(or maybe both)
5.PSU the same

I'd like to ask also about the Core2Quad q9550 (i know it's older socket and everything but those 12mb memory are confusing me, and the price is equal to the i7 920 but the RAM and Mobo are cheaper, and also about the i7 870 since its price is 50$ more then the i7 920)

My last set-up but this one is only if you say will be better then the other for my uses (and the most expensive):

1.Intel Xeon e5520......maybe in the future another one when I feel the need
2.ASUS Z8NA-D6C Dual LGA 1366
3.4GB DDR3 1333MHz Kingston ECC...for know
4.sound card

Sorry for the long post but better the question, better the answer.

Thanks for the help
11 answers Last reply
More about rendering
  1. avoid socket 775 its outdated and slower.
    I'd guess for rendering you want 6 or 12gb of ram with the i7

    or 8gb ram with the amd.

    without a crazy video card crossfire or sli setup a 500watt good brand psu should be fine..
    I'd recommend in no particular order, Seasonic, PC power and cooling, Corsair, enermax
    get something that is 80+ bronze (or better)

    I'd probably go with the i7 as its 4 cores are more powerful than the 6 core amd.
    and most programs dont scale perfectly with cores so the i7 is significantly faster usually.

    no need for a xeon setup.. best use of those is if you have a board that takes 2 cpu's

    no need for a sound card either.. with your useage the built in sound should be fine its really quite decent.

    I would recommend a SSD for OS drive, 2x 500gb hdd for a raid 0 data drive
    and a 1 TB backup drive.
  2. So the i7 920 is the best choice from the list.I forgot to mention that I can get the 950 for 50$ more but I dont know if it's worth since the 920's are good overclockers.

    If I go with the 920 the ram will stay 6gb for a while since the cpu is 320$ and the ram is 150$.

    Other thing that I want to know is what is the difference between the P6T and the P6T v2 mobo because the P6T is 260$ and the v2 is 320$?

    If this is the set-up for me then I'll have to wait a little for SSD and other HDD's because the SSD is 160$ 64gb Kingston, so will the SSD have great impact on the rendering times and overal CPU work or only the benefit will be faster app switching/loading/OS boot etc.?

    With all of the above mentioned things is still the i7 combo better then the rest or not?


    I should've told you my budget I totally forget, it's around 750-800$ at the max for everything, thats MB,CPU,RAM and maybe SSD if I really need it.
  3. You probably should shell out for an Nvidia Quadtro card or at least something with CUDA. Given how much professional apps like Premiere use them, I'd strongly recommend one for you based on avalible funds.
  4. With the Intel conf there is no way to afford CUDA card, but if I go with the AMD then I might get the cash for a decent card.

    How will the performance be with the AMD/CUDA combo vs the 920/9600gso combo, I mean give or take I know that everything changes with the platforms (MB, RAM) but still some rough estimate which will be better?
  5. You don't have any critical need for a SSD.. If that 750$~800$ budget for only motherboard + CPU + ram, i'll recommend a setup comprising of the following components -

    1. Intel i7 860 (its practically an i7 930 on a LGA 1156 platform).

    2. A decent motherboard like the Gigabyte P55A-UD4P.

    3. 8GB of DDR3 1600 MHz ram from a good brand such as Corsair or Kingston or G-Skill.

    4. You might be able to squeeze in a Nvidia GeForce GTX 460 768MB card also here which, along with its CUDA cores, should be fit for your purpose. It would handle your 10% gaming requirements also adequately.
  6. OK so the SSD is out of the game.Yes that budget is for the motherboard, cpu and ram.

    1.The i7 860 is the same price as the 920...310-320$

    *The 870 is 340$

    2.I cant find this motherboard at any of the familliar local shops but I found this one for the 1156 platform.Intel P7P55D PRO ......200$

    *There is also this version of the same board Intel P7P55D for 150$.

    3.Corsair 4x2gb DDR3 1600Mhz ram.......260$

    The totall is arround 770-780$ with the 200$ motherboar, so even if I go with the cheaper it's a big strech for a GTX 460 which is 250-260$.

    I think with anyone Intel i7 set up there is no chance for new GPU, so maybe I should concentrate on another solution if the CUDA GPU have big performance impact or to search for another better/bigger CPU/RAM solution for now?

    I know that rand_79 said that the s775 is outdated and slow but while searching for the prices I saw a Core2Quad q9650 for 450$ and is way more expensive than the i7's so whats the deal about, is this still a powerfull CPU or the shop is trying to sell it for some old retail price?

  7. Honestly, it comes down to what version of Adobe software (CS4 and CS5 take advantage of OpenGL and CUDA) you intend to use and whether you are using professional applications such as 3dsMax, AutoCAD which only tend to support Quadtro cards.

    The Q9650 is a legacy part, hence the high price tag.
  8. Well, Adobe CS5 will be used, 3dsMax, Maya, Premiere and Vegas I think for editing HD videos, and I don't know if there is something else, these are the things that I know for sure that he uses.

    My uses are ftp, web server, VS and VM but those are not a problem.

    I'm thinkig about something else, what if I go with the following:

    2.ASUS P5Q3 LGA775 Intel P45
    3.Stuff it with 12 or 16gb of DDR2 ram since the price is lower then DDR3

    I'm thinking this because I'm stepping up from an AMD3200+ with 1gb ddr1 ram and I dont think that I'll notice the difference from the i7, but I'll have a lot more ram and also I can change it to ddr3 if its really faster but thats an option plus with this conf (I've always heard people saying that animation/rendering/editing video needs lot of CPU and ram) and I'm not that kind that always need the latest and greates (speaking of PC now, hence my current rig :) ).

  9. How about considering an AMD setup -

    All this for under 550$.. That leaves a good 200$ for your video card purchase.. So now, you can go for this -

    The X6 covers your processing requirements for 3DS Max and VM's adequately.. The Nvidia card along with its CUDA cores takes care of whatever advantage it has to offer in Adobe apps and is excellent for your gaming needs too (in case)..
  10. You don't combine programming with multimedia it should be separate PC.

    I got an AMD for photo and video editing - and rendering yes it is cool.

    My intel core i7 gaming and programming. I have an intel C++ compiler, microsoft C#, visual studio, 3DMax, autoCAD, maya, etc.

    Minimum of 8Gb, SSD or 640Gb for OS and 1Tb Storage plus lots of external drives for storage (videos, music, programs, etc.)
  11. ok then those combinations with Q and s775 are out.

    with that Amd config I could get a gtx 260 but not that one because i cant find it.

    second the 1090T also will be replaced with 1055T slightly OC-ed since i cant find the 1090T but i think the performance should be around the same.

    I cant find that ram, only corsair and kingston here.

    I need to check for the motherboard if there is someone like that but if i dont find that one is the asus formula 4/3 good enough?

    will this configuration work better then the i7 860/870 with 8gb ram (maybe manage to put 12gb since cant afford the gtx) and later for say year or two add good cuda card if I feel the need, for now eveything will fly I know that I wont feel the need for anything.

    2 pc are out of the question even if its better.

    forget about my needs (vm, visual, ftp, web ) and even games I have xbox 360 for that and its good enough for me.I need the most powerfull combination for rendering ,editing video and 2d/3d work that this money can buy, again do not need the latest tech if there is something goog from previus generation.

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