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New build, gaming focus but CS5 as well, torn between AMD/Intel

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August 22, 2010 10:16:20 PM

Hello all. First off this new build is mine for gaming mostly, but will sometimes be shared with the wifey for her CS5 work. Read reviews, seen the benchmarks, still debating after 6 months deployed, and excited for the build when i get back in NOV. My price is somewhere in the low 3,000, and yes i understand thats a lot of headroom, but theres still compromises. Initial thoughts:

Intel
i7 930 2.8 GHz stock
2x 470 GTX
Asus Rampage II Extreme
6 GB tri-channel memory

AMD
Phenom II x6 1055
would prefer the nVidia cards, but if i cant find a decent OC'ing mobo for phenoms and nVidia cards, then 2x 5870's
Crosshair IV
8 GB dual channel memory

common between the two:
850W PSU
Thermaltake Element G case
80G SSD
1 TB SATA 3 HDD
LG Blu-ray player internal
Corsair's H50 or camparable CPU WC kit


and if i feel like it, a loop for the 2 video cards


A little more in-depth. I want it to be future proof for a good while. Yes the 6-core is VERY future proof but not in this budget, apparently theyre not even practical atm, not many things even use 6 cores fully. Since we'll be using Photoshop now and then for work, this build should be made to handle it fairly well. Also with the tip i read on a memory swap file for PS, should be good to go. Im basically asking the opinion of the forum, as myself and my two other tech-savvy buddies are in deadlock debate :D 
August 22, 2010 10:29:25 PM

The decision for me was made easy after realizing the futureproofness of AMD systems. I bought an AM3 compatible motherboard a month ago and when 8 core processors come out this year I will be able to drop one in...if I want.

Buy that Intel and its awesomeness will be ....awesome for about a year. Then you will still be rippin through modern games, but not at the awesome factor as previously had. ahh nay sir, you will have to trash your and motherboard and get a whole new setup basically. Intel phases out motherboard sockets like they are cursed after 6 months use. They also routinely make fun of AMD for supporting upgradability.

also using photoshop and intense modern gaming will not utilize the 6 core thingy. In fact, by the time your 6 core is practical you will want to buy a new computer because all your other parts are outdated lol. Sounds like the military is paying you good dollar thou, and im glad your spending that on computers rather than a shitty truck lol. Since your dollars are so plentiful ya might as well go all out and get the 6 core...I guess.
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August 23, 2010 12:38:16 AM

First, I am taking it you are a soldier, and I thank you for your service. If you come home with some dollars from your service, that's great. Just hold onto some; the economy is brutal and not showing signs of getting better.

Anyway, CS5 was recently released. As of now, the only approved video cards are nVidia based. CS4 had some ATI Radeon cards on its approved list, but that was a mature product. Perhaps, CS5 will have some in the future, but that's an unknown now.

From my research, I would say nVidia and Adobe are joined at the hip for now. Some features, like the Mercury Playback Engine, require nVidia in CS5.

I like AMD products, but am going with Intel for my build, which will be used for CS5. I have read many threads in the hardware section of the Adobe Forum on CS5 builds. The major gurus recommend builds with Intel and nVidia; almost all the builds I have seen on that forum use that combination.

As for the six-core, I do not think the bang for the buck is there yet. Maybe in six months it will be there. For gaming, you might be wiser putting that money towards GPUs in an SLI setup.

The current limited use of the six-core means there are not a lot folks on the web to help with issues. I sort of wonder how CS5 would work with it. The i7s run a little hot, so cooling might be a concern with two more cores. Of course, the "cool factor" of having a six-core might make it worth the trouble.

I hope that helps a little. Have a safe time till you get back to do that build!
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August 24, 2010 1:37:43 PM

At that price, there is no "torn" between AMD and Intel, Intel is your only option at that price.

At 3,000, the i7 980X, an SSD, Dual 5970's or tri/quad GTX480's can be considered.

Quote:

A little more in-depth. I want it to be future proof for a good while. Yes the 6-core is VERY future proof but not in this budget, apparently theyre not even practical atm, not many things even use 6 cores fully. Since we'll be using Photoshop now and then for work, this build should be made to handle it fairly well. Also with the tip i read on a memory swap file for PS, should be good to go. Im basically asking the opinion of the forum, as myself and my two other tech-savvy buddies are in deadlock debate :D 


A six-cored CPU should seriously be considered. Even if an application cannot use 6 cores but only 4, a six core still will drastically increase performance. The reason being, if a quad core-based application is run on a quad core CPU, the CPU must handle the application and on top of that, any background processes, services, the OS, and other applications. If you have a six cored CPU, you can deticate 4 cores for just the application while the other two cores for the Operating System and background tasks that it must run. It really makes a difference. Not only that, but the i7 980x is highly overclockable and is 32nm, unlike the 45nm i7 930. It's cooler and just another step in advancement. The 980x will give you unprecedented benefits over the quad cores in multi-tasking, and with your budget of 3,000, the 980x should be first in line. Plus the "wifey" will enjoy better performance for her CS5 if she uses it extensively. If you don't want the i7 980x, fine, but consider it and consider what I said :) .

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Next, please tell me what parts you need and don't need. Do you need a monitor? Keyboard? OS?...etc.
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