Build For Heavy Media (Audio Recording/Video Editing/Photoshop)

Hi all,

I'm in the process of researching parts to put together a new system and I'd like to get some advice on my parts list.

This system will be running win7 64-bit and it will be used for heavy media purposes like audio recording/mixing (with multiple tracks and CPU/RAM hungry effects), video editing, and photoshop so power and performance is an important factor.


CASE: Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - $58

PROCESSOR: Intel Core i5-2500K - $220


MEMORY: Kingston HyperX 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 - $85

POWER SUPPLY: SeaSonic X Series X650 Gold (650W) - $140

CPU COOLER: ZALMAN CNPS9700 LED 110mm 2 Ball CPU Cooler - $55

I'm also looking at adding a couple 2TB Seagate drives down the road when the prices drop a little more. So I will have a total of 3 hard drives with a smaller drive partitioned for Windows and program files and the two 2TB drives for storage and backup.

Any comments or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

9 answers Last reply
More about build heavy media audio recording video editing photoshop
  1. The best non expensive cpu for your work is 2600K and not 2500k. This is my recomandation change 2500k with 2600k.
    Change the 4x4gb RAM with 2x8Gb i know its 40$ more expensive ,but allow you later if you need to upgrade with another 2x8Gb RAM for a 32 GB ram.
  2. Cabinet collermaster haf 932Advanced or cosmos 2, power supply collermaster 1050W OR 1200W , motherboard asus croshair 5 (usb 3.0 4usb backpanel 2 front)usb 2.0 8 at back 4 at front sata3.0,amd phenom 2 x6 cost is equal but u get extra 2 cores or fx8150 8core 17mb cache world record processor$270 only ,ram trancend axe overclock able ram 2000+ without vat in dollers(8Gb 119,6Gb 111,4gb 74.10)or1600Mhz(8gb 61 ,4gb 34.30 ,4gb 30.20) graphics amd radeon 6970 monitor aoc e2239Fwt 22inch lcd 2crore:1 asceptratio multitouch hd 1920X1080 $310 only
  3. Unless your buying some high end graphics card, a 650w PSU is some incredible over-kill.

    A much smaller 350w unit would be plenty.

    As for the RAM, personally I would stick with your 4x4GB sticks. It's unlikely you'll ever see anywhere close to 16GB being used, so expansion will never be required any time soon, if ever.

    i7-2600k would be a good purchase though over the i5-2500k if you can squeeze it into budget.

    Case: Antec Illusion $58
    CPU: i7-2600k $320
    Mobo: ASrock Extreme3 Gen3 $110
    RAM: (stick to 1.5v RAM) Corsair Vengeance Low Profile $90
    PSU: 430w Corsair Builder $25 (after rebate)
    Cooler: Zalman $55

    Total: $658 compared to your initial build of $668
  4. Thanks for the responses everyone.

    If you don’t mind I have a few more questions based on your responses.

    sosofm and AdrianPerry,

    The i5 vs i7 is something I’ve been debating. I figured I’d save a little cost and go with the i5 since I heard their performances were comparable, especially considering the price difference. But you think in my situation it would be worth it to just go for the i7?


    I just looked into the AMD FX8150 and it looks like even though it has 8 cores the i5 actually beat it overall in performance and it’s cheaper too. Here’s one link I found, with test results comparing several processors. The i5/i7 seem to be the consensus everywhere I looked.


    I looked up the Jonny Guru review for the Corsair power supply and their concluding paragraph was: “Corsair has managed to pull off rather successfully something not too many companies can brag about. They've come up with a reliable, cheap, and well performing power supply for everyday systems that don't expect a lot from their power supplies.”

    So I just want to make absolute sure that I fall into that group of “not expecting a lot from their power supply”. Do you think I should be concerned about that or is my system not going to be taxing enough on the power supply? I’ve had problems in the past with power supplies so if I have to error, I would rather error slightly on the side of overkill than underkill. But if 650W is WAY overkill, then I’ll definitely go with something less expensive.

    I think I may stick with the Kingston RAM because in the comparisons I found between the Corsair Vengeance vs. the Kingston HyperX the large consensus was that the HyperX ram was better even though it had higher voltage.

    And final question, is the ASrock motherboard board a better board than the Gigabyte? Or is it just a better bargain because of its slightly lower cost?

    Thanks again everyone, your help is greatly appreciated! :)
  5. Here's an update on my progress thus far. I found a cheaper PSU ($60) and I think I'm going with the i7. To save on the cost I think I'm going to drop the CPU cooler....good idea or not? So here's where I'm at now.

    CASE: Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - $58 - Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

    CPU: Intel Core i7-2600K - $320 - Intel Core i7-2600K Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623I72600K

    MOBO: GIGABYTE GA-Z68A-D3H-B3 LGA - $130 - GIGABYTE GA-Z68A-D3H-B3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

    RAM: Kingston HyperX 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 - $85 - Kingston HyperX 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model KHX1600C9D3K4/16GX

    PSU: SeaSonic S12II 520 Bronze 520W - $60 - SeaSonic S12II 520 Bronze 520W ATX12V V2.3 / EPS 12V V2.91 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply

    TOTAL: $653

    Thanks again everyone,
  6. Many users struggle to get the Kingston RAM to run at 1600MHz because SandyBridge doesn't like 1.65v - Its common you'll be stuck using 1333MHz @1.5v

    Corsair Vengeance and G.Skill RIPJAWS both run 1600MHz @ 1.5v and cause no issues. Mushkin RAM is also another choice along with Patriot and a few other brands I can't remember of the top of my head.

    Solid choice with SeaSonic PSU however, 520w is more than enough power to dump a mid-high end graphics card into the build if you ever felt it necessary.
  7. Thanks Adrian. Looking into 1.5V RAM and Sandy Bridge more I see what you mean and it sounds like Intel doesn't really recommend going over 1.5V. So I'm going with Corsair because to stay with Kingston would double the cost to get 16GB 1.5V memory.

    On newegg there are 3 different types of Corsair Vengeance 16GB that all appear to have the same specs, and other than their appearance there doesn't seem to be much difference. They are all even priced the same. So does it make any difference which one I go with?...I must say, the first one does have the coolest looking heat sink. LOL

    Thanks again,
  8. The RAM all has exactly the same performance. So literally just pick which-ever you fancy.

    I would generally recommend you avoid the fancy heat sink RAM however because this can cause issues if the CPU cooler over-hangs the first RAM slot. If you were only getting 2 RAM sticks this would be acceptable because you could use channel 2,4 rather than 1,3. Stick with the low profile stuff to avoid spacing issues :) I believe Corsair sells their low profile vengeance RAM in white, blue and black :) so just pick whichever you think will look best/match your motherboard :)

    Here's a good example of what can happen, as you can see the first RAM slot would be unusable unless the RAM was low enough to fit underneath:
  9. Thank you again Adrian! I greatly appreciate your help.

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