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PC Build for SPECIFIC FUNCTIONALITY

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March 8, 2012 4:15:43 PM

i am interested in building a desktop pc for the primary objective of RAW image editing and HD video editing and blue-ray disc buring. I am NOT A GAMER. So, I want to build a PC with a resonable budge of $1000.00 -1,200.00 or less (without monitor): with the best durable motherboard,CPU,RAM combination. I am also interested in ideal upgrades such as : CPU fan/cooler, a well rated powersupply and CASE. Also what brand of RAM/ and how much? Any help from experienced builders would be greatly appreciated. Thank You very much in advance.
Sonny
March 8, 2012 4:42:21 PM

Try this for a workstation:

Case: Cooler Master HAF 912 - $59.99 ($10.00 MIR)
PSU: Corsair Enthusiast Series TX650 V2 - $89.99 ($10.00 MIR)
Motherboard: Asus P8B-X - $189.99
CPU: 3.1GHz Intel Xeon E3-1225 - $219.99
Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo - $34.99
RAM: Crucial 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 - $69.99
SSD: 64GB Crucial M4 - $94.99
HD: Samsung Ecogreen F4 2TB - $149.99
Optical: Lite On Bulk DVD Burner - $17.99
Video Card: ATI Fire Pro V5900 - $369.99

Total: $1295.90 - $20.00 MIR = $1275.90

With this build - it's a little over $1200 sans monitor/keyboard/mouse/OS but you get a good Asus server/workstation board, a Xeon Sandy Bridge CPU and a professional video card - one of the best available right now.

The case and PSU are extremely well rated, the SSD is one of the best on the market, you get a rather large 2TB HD, and the RAM should be more than efficient - if you need more you can always add a second set.
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March 8, 2012 8:23:45 PM

I thank you for your prompt reply.
As this will be my first build (i am motivated to build my own after having 'off the shelf' systems having motherboard failures and disappointing performances).

I am not sure what differences are there between Xeon Processor vs Intel's i7 processors? Can you or any well informed members educate me?

Thanks Again
Sonny
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March 8, 2012 8:26:46 PM

I don't do much image and video editing myself, but I don't believe the graphics card is going to make a big difference. Thus, I wouldn't spend $370 on it. Plus, these are heavily threaded applications, so I would want hyper-threading enabled. The Xeon 1225 does not have hyper-threading.

My inclination would be to pick up an i7-2700K, (about $340) with a decent z68 motherboard (about $125), and stick with integrated graphics. That will save you about $315 over the build g-unit1111 suggests.

Also, you said you want a Blu-ray burner. You can pick up an LG brand on newegg for about $80, so that adds another $63 to the build cost. Or if you want a higher end Blu-ray burner you might go for the Plextor brand for $140, and add an addition $60 more.

Disclosure: I work for Intel, but these are my own opinions. I do not speak for Intel.
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March 8, 2012 8:55:36 PM

sonnymichigan said:
I thank you for your prompt reply.
As this will be my first build (i am motivated to build my own after having 'off the shelf' systems having motherboard failures and disappointing performances).

I am not sure what differences are there between Xeon Processor vs Intel's i7 processors? Can you or any well informed members educate me?

Thanks Again
Sonny


Here's my understanding.

The Xeon 1225 is quite similar to the i5-2400. Here's Intel's official feature comparison: http://ark.intel.com/compare/52207,52270.

The main reported advantages to the Xeon are support for ECC and Demand-Based Switching. ECC corrects and/or reports memory corruption. It's especially important for business servers as people need to know when their memory is corrupted (imagine, for example computing the wrong bank account value due to memory corruption). Demand-Based Switching is an energy-saving feature, which under-clocks cores that are not in use---you lose a bit of performance but save some money on your electric bill.
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March 8, 2012 8:59:42 PM

sonnymichigan said:
I thank you for your prompt reply.
As this will be my first build (i am motivated to build my own after having 'off the shelf' systems having motherboard failures and disappointing performances).

I am not sure what differences are there between Xeon Processor vs Intel's i7 processors? Can you or any well informed members educate me?

Thanks Again
Sonny


The Xeon's a workstation-specific CPU where the i7 is a general consumer / gaming CPU. This article probably explains it better than I can: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/xeon-e3-c206-workst...

Quote:
The Xeon 1225 is quite similar to the i5-2400. Here's Intel's official feature comparison: http://ark.intel.com/compare/52207,52270.


That's what I figured - so the Xeon E3-1245 would be equivalent to the 2500K then?
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March 8, 2012 9:25:05 PM

Quote:
That's what I figured - so the Xeon E3-1245 would be equivalent to the 2500K then?


I'd say the Xeon E3-1245 is closer to the Core i5-2500 than the 2500K. The 2500K enables overclocking, but disables the more business-oriented features (vPro and VT-d). Of course, I don't think we're interested in vPRO or VT-d here.

The one place where the "K" family is closer to the Xeons actually is integrated graphics. The Xeon 1225 and 1245 both have the higher-end HD3000 graphics, like the 2500K, 2600K, and 2700K, whereas the Core i5-2400, 2500, and 2600 have the lower-end HD2000 graphics. This pretty much only matters if you are NOT going to put in a discrete card. I say "pretty much," because quicksync will work a little better on the HD3000 chips vs. the HD2000 chips.

And quicksync may actually matter to you if you're doing video editing---it enables faster transcoding from one video format to another.
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March 8, 2012 9:55:38 PM

Quote:

I'd say the Xeon E3-1245 is closer to the Core i5-2500 than the 2500K. The 2500K enables overclocking, but disables the more business-oriented features (vPro and VT-d). Of course, I don't think we're interested in vPRO or VT-d here.


I don't know enough about those features - I'll have to read up a bit more.
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March 8, 2012 9:57:03 PM

sonnymichigan said:
RAW image editing and HD video editing and blue-ray disc buring


These specific activities do not require a workstation GPU. The specific programs in use MIGHT benefit from CUDA so you might want an Nvidia card... but that does not need to happen right off, if ever.

Perhaps a compromise would be best here. A less powerful NVidia GPU that will let you play around with CUDA if needed.

  • Rosewill FUTURE Gaming ATX Mid Tower Computer Case, come with Four Fans - 2 x Front Blue LED 120mm Fan, 1 x Top 120mm Fan,1 ...
    Front USB 3.0 port
  • Western Digital AV-GP WD10EURS 1TB SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
    Optimized for your type of work.
  • EVGA 01G-P3-1526-KR GeForce GT 520 (Fermi) 1GB 64-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card
    CUDA enabled
  • Rosewill CAPSTONE Series CAPSTONE-550 550W Continuous @ 50°C, 80 PLUS GOLD Certified, Single +12V Rail, ATX12V v2.31 / EPS12V ...
    Very efficient, quality power.
  • CORSAIR 16GB (2 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 Desktop Memory Model CMV16GX3M2A1333C9
  • ASUS P8Z68-V LE LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
    Has the onboard USB 3.0 connector for the case.
  • Intel Core i7-2700K Sandy Bridge 3.5GHz (3.9GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623i72700K
    since the prices are currently near, might as well get this one.
  • SAMSUNG 22X DVD Burner SATA Model SH-222BB/BEBE - OEM
    Happens to be free with the CPU
  • Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM
  • Pioneer Black Internal BD/DVD/CD Writer SATA BDR-207DBKS
    Blu-ray burner
  • SAMSUNG 830 Series MZ-7PC064B/WW 2.5" 64GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
    Fast SSD for programs and OS.
    TOTAL: $1,189.90
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    March 9, 2012 12:26:29 AM

    I really appreciate all of your insights...and various approaches...it is of great knowledge and education. If I were to stretch the budget by a 100 to 200 dollars...what component would you alter, add, or modify? If any...
    Thank you
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    March 9, 2012 12:35:26 AM

    Feldii said:
    I don't do much image and video editing myself, but I don't believe the graphics card is going to make a big difference. Thus, I wouldn't spend $370 on it. Plus, these are heavily threaded applications, so I would want hyper-threading enabled. The Xeon 1225 does not have hyper-threading.

    My inclination would be to pick up an i7-2700K, (about $340) with a decent z68 motherboard (about $125), and stick with integrated graphics. That will save you about $315 over the build g-unit1111 suggests.

    Also, you said you want a Blu-ray burner. You can pick up an LG brand on newegg for about $80, so that adds another $63 to the build cost. Or if you want a higher end Blu-ray burner you might go for the Plextor brand for $140, and add an addition $60 more.

    Disclosure: I work for Intel, but these are my own opinions. I do not speak for Intel.

    Thank you for your reply. What is your opinion of the below stated configuration?...pros and cons...
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    March 9, 2012 3:45:13 AM

    sonnymichigan said:
    I really appreciate all of your insights...and various approaches...it is of great knowledge and education. If I were to stretch the budget by a 100 to 200 dollars...what component would you alter, add, or modify? If any...
    Thank you


    With my build, I would look at a case that suited my individual taste more aesthetically, then look at a larger SSD, perhaps a 120GB.
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    March 9, 2012 4:02:14 AM

    I like the i7 2700k, 16gig memory(i like g.skill), and 2TB of Disk Space. Those are the things that Video Editing will benefit from.

    The PSU/Case/MoBo/Video are all PERSONAL preference. If you ask 10 people your likely to get 10 different answers.

    I have, and always will be a QUALITY/VALUE purchaser. I want the best quality I can afford, and the best value. As such Corsair OFTEN fills this role.

    Case: Corsair 650D is BIG, Good for cable management. It also looks very nice.
    PSU : Corsair 500w-600w GOLD Modular. GOLD because pushing those cores really uses some energy, and its hard to fathom how much energy a PC burns untill you use a device to see how much your using. Spend 30 bucks more now to save 100 a year. Modular because it makes the build so much cleaner looking, and less dust collects inside.
    Mobo: I am really liking the Asrock products right now.. I'm a stats guy.. I like to see that they're buying Gold, Japan made Caps.. They spend more making their boards then Asus/MSI/Gigabyte, because they (like myself) see value in higher quality products.
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    March 9, 2012 7:05:04 AM

    Quote:
    Thank you for your reply. What is your opinion of the below stated configuration?...pros and cons...


    I like Proximon's build. I'd probably up the hard drive to 2TB, since videos use a lot of space. Dadof1hunter's build looks good too.

    Here's my 2 cents:

    Grpahics: As I said before, I think you'd be fine with integrated graphics, but it all depends on what exactly you're doing. Some video editing software can use a GPU to speed up some features. And depending on the software, it may only work with a very specific set of graphics cards. I'd use integrated graphics and then if you find out that some feature on your software would be much faster with a GPU, then go out and get one later (making sure to find a card supported by your software).

    PSU: I'd just be sure to pick something that isn't too cheap, as you don't want it dying on you. I think all the PSU's mentioned above are fine. It's tempting to go with a modular PSU to reduce the number of cables in your case, but you do have to pay a little more for it. You probably don't really need a big power supply (even 200W would do), unless you want to overclock your CPU, but the 500-650W power supplies are not that much more money, and they give you headroom in case you want to overclock the CPU or get a graphics card later.

    Motherboard: I like Z68 motherboards. It's hard to go wrong with either Asus or Asrock.

    Case: This is so subjective, I'm not even going to try to recommend anything. The one thing to note is that bigger fans are generally quieter.

    Memory: You'll want 2 sticks, since the CPU uses dual channel memory. Either 2x4GB or 2x8GB make sense. My guess is that you won't notice much by going from 8GB to 16GB RAM, but it isn't all that expensive either.

    SSD: I like the Crucial a little better than the Samsung, but they are very similar in price and performance. I'm a bit biased as an Intel employee, but I like that Crucial flash is manufactured here in the USA in a joint venture with Intel :) .
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    March 9, 2012 7:40:20 AM

    +1 for the i7, but I would suggest an i7-2600k rather than an i7-2700k (it's the same chip, if you're getting a z68 based motherboard, you can easily overclock it to be equivalent/faster!)
    CoolerMaster 212 EVO + Arctic Silver 5 thermal paste

    Case: whatever has high reviews on newegg and is aesthetically pleasing for you, to be honest. USB3 on the front panel is cool...

    PSU: Rosewill, XFX, Corsair, ThermalTake or other big names are all excellent. Go with the specials, require 80+ efficiency and try to get a modular model if possible. Especially here, buy cheap and probably need to buy twice. DO NOT cheap out.

    Memory: I would go with 8GB 1600MHz DDR3, and if you need more, you can always add more sticks later.

    SSD: Everyone benefits from SSDs. Crucial M4, OCZ Vertex 3, Intel 520, Mushkin Enhanced Chronos Deluxe; basically whichever is on special/fits the budget. Sandforce controller vs Marvell controller is pretty much over these days; we find little difference today.

    Motherboard: I would suggest an ASUS P8Z68-V (if you're getting a case with USB3 on the front panel), otherwise, the ASUS P8Z68-V LX is a great board too.

    For the graphics, I have to agree with Feldii: go with the sandy bridge integrated graphics for now, and if you find the need to upgrade, you can always get a graphics card supported by your applications, such as a HD6850 for ~150$. A workstation graphics card is NOT needed for your usage, I believe.

    HDD: TBH, I would go with a 500GB-1TB drive now, wait for the prices to drop, then get another drive later. 500GB takes time to fill, even while HD video editing.
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    March 9, 2012 1:36:45 PM

    As we often do....I was surfing pc build sites and came across this suggestion for a Lightroom/photoshop pc build. I know that there are many approaches and opinions to such a build...however, are there any merits in this approach which can be added to Proximon's build and other suggestions given above? The build suggested I have quoted below:

    Re: PC Build help for lightroom, photoshop
    Looking at your needs I would actually recommend a last-season build (quite similar to my own). what you need is processor power and memory throughput. I would recommend the Asus Sabertooth X58 ($200 model), an Intel 900 series (I use the 960), and 12 Gb Corsair Vengeance DDR3.

    The reason is that the newer model 2500k-2600k's are dual channel and not triple channel like the X58's. There is a newer quad channel memory system (X79) but they are still quite expensive($1000 processor). Triple channel memory is 50% faster than its dual channel counterpart due to the way the X58 uses the third memory channel.

    With a 3+ ghz processor (try the 960) pulling 8 threads and that much memory running that fast, you will make mincemeat out of those .raw files. I suggest the Veangance RAM due to the fact that it is quite inexpensive and in that type of environment, more RAM is preferrable to faster RAM. You could easily run the 24 Gb kit and get that much more memory working for you.

    I would second the 700 watt PSU if you are running a wimpy video card and more like 950-1000 watt for a good video card or if you decide to go with a full 24 Gb of RAM. The added overhead will keep your PSU running cooler and increase its lifespan

    Coolermaster cases are the bomb. I am running a Coolermaster 932haf I absolutely LOVE IT.
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    March 9, 2012 3:27:20 PM

    Proximon said:
    These specific activities do not require a workstation GPU. The specific programs in use MIGHT benefit from CUDA so you might want an Nvidia card... but that does not need to happen right off, if ever.

    Perhaps a compromise would be best here. A less powerful NVidia GPU that will let you play around with CUDA if needed.

  • Rosewill FUTURE Gaming ATX Mid Tower Computer Case, come with Four Fans - 2 x Front Blue LED 120mm Fan, 1 x Top 120mm Fan,1 ...
    Front USB 3.0 port
  • Western Digital AV-GP WD10EURS 1TB SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
    Optimized for your type of work.
  • EVGA 01G-P3-1526-KR GeForce GT 520 (Fermi) 1GB 64-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card
    CUDA enabled
  • Rosewill CAPSTONE Series CAPSTONE-550 550W Continuous @ 50°C, 80 PLUS GOLD Certified, Single +12V Rail, ATX12V v2.31 / EPS12V ...
    Very efficient, quality power.
  • CORSAIR 16GB (2 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 Desktop Memory Model CMV16GX3M2A1333C9
  • ASUS P8Z68-V LE LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
    Has the onboard USB 3.0 connector for the case.
  • Intel Core i7-2700K Sandy Bridge 3.5GHz (3.9GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623i72700K
    since the prices are currently near, might as well get this one.
  • SAMSUNG 22X DVD Burner SATA Model SH-222BB/BEBE - OEM
    Happens to be free with the CPU
  • Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM
  • Pioneer Black Internal BD/DVD/CD Writer SATA BDR-207DBKS
    Blu-ray burner
  • SAMSUNG 830 Series MZ-7PC064B/WW 2.5" 64GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
    Fast SSD for programs and OS.
    TOTAL: $1,189.90


  • Why a 2700K when the 2600K can be clocked to match or beat those speeds that are advertised? I think the 2700K is pretty much a moot point especially when you consider the price.
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    March 9, 2012 4:56:17 PM

    Quote:
    Why a 2700K when the 2600K can be clocked to match or beat those speeds that are advertised? I think the 2700K is pretty much a moot point especially when you consider the price.


    The 2600K would be fine too, but the 2700K is only $15 more. If you're not overclocking, that's a 3% performance boost for about 1.5% of the total system cost.

    Overclocking always involves some luck, so there is no guarantee which one will overclock better. However, the fact that the 2700K is able to obtain a slightly higher frequency in the same power envelope, I think gives you a slightly better shot of getting a good overclock.
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    March 9, 2012 5:11:43 PM

    Feldii said:
    Quote:
    Why a 2700K when the 2600K can be clocked to match or beat those speeds that are advertised? I think the 2700K is pretty much a moot point especially when you consider the price.


    The 2600K would be fine too, but the 2700K is only $15 more. If you're not overclocking, that's a 3% performance boost for about 1.5% of the total system cost.

    Overclocking always involves some luck, so there is no guarantee which one will overclock better. However, the fact that the 2700K is able to obtain a slightly higher frequency in the same power envelope, I think gives you a slightly better shot of getting a good overclock.


    That's true - OC'ing is a lot of trial and error before you get a clock that will work correctly. The 2700K may give you a better clock or it may not - the thing to keep in mind is every system is different and will give you different results every single time.
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    Best solution

    March 9, 2012 8:26:35 PM

    Sonny, the quote you referenced is pretty much clueless.

    Triple channel memory is not faster. I'll prove it. In these benchmarks the i7-2600K is using 8GB dual channel. The i7-950 is using 12GB of triple channel memory.





    Both images from the review here
    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/sandy-bridge-core-i...

    Any small improvement the triple channel memory might impart is quickly cancelled out by the superior speed of the i7-2600K.

    And then there are all the other benefits from the modern platform, such as onboard USB 3.0, absolutely vital for you to transfer those movies to an external drive.

    The suggestion that someone would need that much PSU is ridiculous. The system I listed needs no more than 300W. The 550W I provided will cover any future upgrade and has all the connectors you will want. a GTX 520 pulls something under 50W at full load. The rest of the system will pull around 200W full load. IF you were running a pair of GTX 580s a good 1000W PSU might be legitimate. If you were running a single GTX 590 a 700W PSU might be about right.

    If you were running a top-of-the-line professional workstation card you might need a 600W PSU, but those cost far more than your entire system:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
    Share
    March 10, 2012 12:47:58 AM

    Thank you all and moderator for your suggestions. I have a great place to start. Once I build, I will certainly post my fin al build specs here. If I have issues in setting bios or other technical inquiries, I will welcome your insight and knowledge.
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    March 10, 2012 2:54:00 PM

    Best answer selected by Sonnymichigan.
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    March 10, 2012 3:10:55 PM

    Proximon
    I was trading the ssd reviews on this site and wanted to know if switching to intel's ssd...the 520 that was rated well...would be advantageous over the Samsung....of course it's a bit more. Any compatibility issues with the recommended system that I will be using?...( I am starting with your recommendation above.)
    I will be ordering most items from new egg....that's the only well known site I know if....I am not sure of any other wel known vendors.
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    March 10, 2012 3:28:22 PM

    Yes, Intel is tops in the quality area of SSDs. I use a 180GB Intel 320.

    Samsung have a good rep for quality SSDs as does Crucial. I would probably choose Intel first though.

    Other good vendors are Amazon and NCIX, and occasionally Tigerdirect.
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    March 11, 2012 8:49:17 PM

    Proximon said:
    Yes, Intel is tops in the quality area of SSDs. I use a 180GB Intel 320.

    Samsung have a good rep for quality SSDs as does Crucial. I would probably choose Intel first though.

    Other good vendors are Amazon and NCIX, and occasionally Tigerdirect.


    An inquisitive question inregards to the graphics card you suggested above..I can certainly see that at its price point, it's very suitable for my needs...without having to reevaluate the power supply...what would be the next card...up from this one you would suggest that would give a noticeable performance boost in terms of hd video editing and cs5 raw file editing?...thank you I advance for our thoughts.
    sonny
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    March 11, 2012 10:18:19 PM

    The Cuda ability is actually tops in the GT 520. It doesn't get any stronger. Open GL acceleration is another thing used in CS5... but I'm honesl=tly not sure what you would get out of a stronger card. In general terms the next stronger card I might suggest a GTX 550ti
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



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