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Build a new PC or go Mac?? (Video editing workstation)

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September 30, 2011 11:35:57 PM

Hey!

So I am an amateur videographer/audio engineer/web designer/gamer and I am going to get a new computer. My budget is about $2k or less. I made a pretty decent PC build (will list the specs down further) but then a couple days after I was talking to my film prof and it got me thinking of possibly getting a mac instead. Because Macs generally run better and I could get Final Cut Pro X. Ok so here are my options...

PC Build:
- Asus P8Z68-V Pro: $205
- Intel i7 2600k Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz: $320
- CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB (PC3 12800): $110
- Seagate Cheetah 15K.7 300GB SAS 6Gb/s: $272 (Don't actually know what HDD to get so this is a place-filler; already have storage drives)
- EVGA GeForce GTX 570 Classified 1280MB: $372 (NOTE: I use PrPro and it would be accelerated by this card)
- Antec Nine Hundred Two V3 Black Steel ATX: $120
- CORSAIR Enthusiast Series CMPSU-850TX 850W: $160
- Microsoft Windows 7 Professional x64 OEM: $147
- HP 24X Multiformat DVD Writer: $39
- Rosewill 2+1 Port Firewire PCI Card: $25
Total: $1770 (P.S. the prices are with shipping)

ORRRRRRR....

iMac:
*May 2011 model*
- 3.4GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7
- 4GB (2x2) 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM (would upgrade this to 16GB so add ~$100)
- 1TB SATA1 7200 rpm
- Slot-loading 8x SuperDrive with 4x double-layer burning
- 27-inch LED-backlit glossy 2560x1440 (mmmm... :) )
- AMD Radeon HD 6970M 1GB
- Two Thunderbolt ports and One FireWire 800 port
Total: $1969 (P.S. it's refurbished)


QUESTION: Which one should I get considering video editing performance?

More about : build mac video editing workstation

September 30, 2011 11:45:48 PM

Get whatever you Professor is going to teach with. Although if he the program he is going to teach with works with windows, then build your machine yourself. As for your PC build I would consider stepping the GPU down to a GTX 560 as your not gaming and cuda performance should be close. Also you don't need more then a good 650 watt power supply. spend the money on SSD's to store your project files.
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October 1, 2011 12:23:49 AM

You could always install mac on a pc(not really pc but your custom build). Could you fill out the form so we could help you more with picking parts. Here are just a few quick suggestions/comments. You could get a lower card, even just one step down to a 560ti and save quite a bit of money. Vengeance ram has high heatsinks which will get in the way of most hsf. Get a ssd not a cheetah. I'm guessing you want to sli later so mobo and psu are fine (for the 570) though there are cheaper alternatives. Students can get w7 pro for $30.
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October 1, 2011 12:44:47 AM

mac hardware is the same as pc hardware [ but with a much more limited range ]

There is no reason for anyone to use one for photo editing except maybe Steve Jobs shining personality and the size of apples marketing budget .
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October 1, 2011 2:07:36 AM

PsyKhiqZero said:
Get whatever you Professor is going to teach with. Although if he the program he is going to teach with works with windows, then build your machine yourself. As for your PC build I would consider stepping the GPU down to a GTX 560 as your not gaming and cuda performance should be close. Also you don't need more then a good 650 watt power supply. spend the money on SSD's to store your project files.


I will be gaming. Skyrim :) .

And I don't think I'll be getting a SSD
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October 1, 2011 2:53:49 AM

Get the PC.
The iMac will NOT, DOES NOT, and NEVER WILL be as fast as the desktop. It's all laptop parts (so It fits in the case which (hint) is just thicker than a laptop. Intel's most recent advances put the Mobile chips at competitive with desktops released two to three generations prior. GPU Acceleration is amazing, and well worth the troubles.

If you really want the Mac OS, go hackintosh http://lifehacker.com/348653/install-os-x-on-your-hacki... and take the best of both worlds.
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October 1, 2011 4:34:07 AM

Kinda depends on what software you plan on using, OS X has great software for audio/visual work.

Maybe a Hackintosh and bootcamp Windows 7 for games? Best of both worlds IMO.
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October 1, 2011 8:22:28 AM

If you take the Hackintosh suggestion, make sure you research whether your programs will work beforehand. I built a Hackintosh, and it's great for what I want to do, but it is imperfect.

If you like the look of the iMac, and it sounds like you would enjoy the high resolution, you should get it. It's quite speedy, reaching almost Mac Pro levels, and stable, like you said. You'll have fewer compatibility issues and other headaches loading Windows on a Mac than loading OS X on a PC.
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October 1, 2011 8:40:36 AM

What I would suggest is instead of buying such an expensive HDD, buy a SSD drive.
Is there a specific reason you don't want to buy one?
I could be wrong about this... since I never even knew a 15000 rpm HDD even existed

Also if you aren't planning on SLI you can save money and buy a cheaper mobo, and a much cheaper power supply, since 850 watt is overkill for the system you've built.
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October 1, 2011 10:15:06 AM

k1114 said:
You could always install mac on a pc(not really pc but your custom build). Could you fill out the form so we could help you more with picking parts. Here are just a few quick suggestions/comments. You could get a lower card, even just one step down to a 560ti and save quite a bit of money. Vengeance ram has high heatsinks which will get in the way of most hsf. Get a ssd not a cheetah. I'm guessing you want to sli later so mobo and psu are fine (for the 570) though there are cheaper alternatives. Students can get w7 pro for $30.


How can I get Win7 Pro for $30?

And from what I've seen the P8Z68-V is highly recommended for the i7 2600k. Is that right or should I go with a different one?
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October 1, 2011 5:11:57 PM

Which form are you talking about exactly?

And I can't find anywhere on the Microsoft website how to buy the full student edition and not just the upgrade.
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October 2, 2011 7:01:59 AM

Oooo thanks.

Approximate Purchase Date:
this month


Budget Range:
<$2000 (before rebates)


System Usage from Most to Least Important: working in NLE software, visual effects software (AE), gaming, DAW software, web design


Parts Not Required:
keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers


Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.ca


Country of Origin: Canada


Parts Preferences: i7 2600k sandy bridge, 16 GB (PC 12800), 750W PSU,


Overclocking: Yes


SLI or Crossfire: No


Monitor Resolution:
1920x1080


Additional Comments:
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October 2, 2011 6:40:27 PM

Here's my suggestion if you decide on a PC.

Corsair Carbide Series 400R: $99.99
A new case with front panel USB 3.0 and great cooling performance.

3 x Thermalright TY-140 (2 top, 1 bottom): $17.99 each ($53.97)
PWM gives the motherboard more control over fan speed, so you can get great cooling while staying quiet. These particular fans are excellent. Put 2 in the top of your case and 1 in the bottom.

Rosewill 12" PWM Splitter: $5.99
You'd connect the 3 fans above to a single 4-pin motherboard case fan header with this cable.

PC Power and Cooling Silencer Mk II 750W: $109.99
80Plus Silver PSU from a long-trusted brand.

ASRock P67 Extreme4 Gen3: $199.99
This motherboard will allow high overclocks, and is PCIe 3.0-ready for Ivy Bridge and the next generation of graphics cards. It also has front panel USB to match your case and FireWire.

Intel Core i7-2600K: $314.99
The processor you wanted.

Thermalright Silver Arrow: $79.99
The best air cooler out there, with two of the same fans I listed above.

GELID PWM-Y Cable Adapter: $4.99
Connect this to the fans on the Silver Arrow to control both from a single 4-pin motherboard CPU fan header.

G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 16GB: $94.99
PC 12800.

MSI GeForce GTX 570: $319.99
The GPU you wanted for PrPro, and generally an excellent card. You can add a second one later in SLI if you want; because it has a rear exhaust cooler, a second card won't hurt your thermal performance much.

Patriot Wildfire 120GB: $299.99 ($259.99 after rebate)
The fastest SSD of its size.

Hitachi Deskstar 7K1000.C 1TB: $59.99

Total: $1,624.86 ($1,584.86 after rebate)

If you want to run OS X, check out this thread. Some follow-up information is in this thread. The people over on the TonyMacx86 forums are really helpful: that's how I got my Hackintosh working. I recommend the Crucial M4 128GB ($209.99) for OS X, because it has the best garbage collection and doesn't really need TRIM. It's a great drive for Windows too.
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October 3, 2011 3:14:45 AM

Thanks. Is it neccessary to get all that cooling stuff? And how do I use the Windows 7 $30 student upgrade special to do a clean install on my new PC?
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October 3, 2011 3:27:16 AM

reims said:
Thanks. Is it neccessary to get all that cooling stuff? And how do I use the Windows 7 $30 student upgrade special to do a clean install on my new PC?

Not necessary, no, but it'll keep your computer cool and quiet automatically. It's one way to make a PC more Apple-like.
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October 5, 2011 3:03:05 AM

reims said:
Thanks. Is it neccessary to get all that cooling stuff? And how do I use the Windows 7 $30 student upgrade special to do a clean install on my new PC?


Looks like the student deal price changed. Was $30 USD not sure about CAD. But now its $65 USD, $95 CAD. http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/31402-clean-instal...

Nim Chimpsky said:
Not necessary, no, but it'll keep your computer cool and quiet automatically. It's one way to make a PC more Apple-like.


More fans make it less apple like.
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October 5, 2011 3:05:45 AM

k1114 said:
More fans make it less apple like.

That's certainly true. I was referring to the quiet and automatic aspects of the cooling system.
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October 5, 2011 5:59:34 AM

I'm just not sure what you're trying to say; pcs and macs are the same cool, quiet and auto.
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October 5, 2011 6:03:41 AM

k1114 said:
I'm just not sure what you're trying to say; pcs and macs are the same cool, quiet and auto.

PCs are variable. You haven't heard a PC with noisy fans? Or a hot GPU? What I mean by automatic is having the computer adjust fan speed according to temperature, and not everyone has PWM.
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October 5, 2011 6:13:29 AM

But you mustn't compare stock hsf that oems go cheap on vs a mac that uses a non-stock hsf. :non:  Every good build will have pwm and sufficient cooling. If he wants to go with 1 rear fan to be quiet, sure.
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October 5, 2011 8:27:37 AM

k1114 said:
But you mustn't compare stock hsf that oems go cheap on vs a mac that uses a non-stock hsf. :non:  Every good build will have pwm and sufficient cooling. If he wants to go with 1 rear fan to be quiet, sure.

I'm not comparing those, I'm talking about actual builds that actual acquaintances and Tom's Hardware forum members have accomplished. You and I might agree that every good build has those things, but ask around or look in forums and you'll find plenty of people who care more about pure performance than acoustics.
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