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Best possible PC configuration

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July 9, 2012 10:15:43 AM

Hello,

As the title says, I wish to go for an assembled PC, which will be able to run all the following software:
1. Solidworks 2013
2. Adobe Master Collection cs6
3. Autodesk Product Design Suite
4. AutoCAD 2013
5. 3Ds Max 2013
6. Alias, Creo and Rhino (optional)
7. Sound Forge Pro 10
8. Corel Draw x6
9. Windows 7 Professional or Ultimate (obvious choice)

I wish to use this PC for at least the next 5-6 years without any significant upgrade.

I did some homework already and figured out the best possible configuration would be a 64 bit compatible PC with:
a) Intel i7 processor
b) Intel motherboard
c) 8-16 GB RAM
d) Graphics Card (preferably Nvidia Quadro 4000 or 5000 or 6000)
e) Sound card compatible with ASIO protocol or Microsoft WDM/MME
f) Cabinet (preferably Cooler Master)
g) Dual Layer DVD writer (are dual layer blue-ray writers available in the market already?)
h) Speakers
i) UPS
j) Hard Disc (1 TB or 2X500 Gb preferably Seagate)
k) Monitor
l) Printer

Now, lemme he honest, I'm a novice at hardware stuff and I'm not sure if I've missed out anything. So, please advise me on the best possible brands and models that will suite my requirement (along with being as pocket friendly as possible :p ). Please feel free to suggest any change in the configuration (brand, model, specs or anything else) as necessary.

Also I heard a few absurd rumors, please do let me know, if they are true or not...
i) i7 processors heat up super-fast and may burn down the entire setup :( 
ii) Intel processors go better with Intel Motherboard
iii) Gigabyte motherboards have nothing to do with Intel processors :o 
iv) Intel i7 processor+ Gigabyte motherboard= BOOM :o 
v) Asus pirates Intel motherboards :o 
vi) Original Intel motherboards needs to be shipped to China to be repaired...
vii) Blue -ray writers cannot read CDs :o 

Any advice would be highly appreciated.

More about : configuration

July 9, 2012 10:22:23 AM

5-6 years isn't a reasonable goal. It's better to spend less now and upgrade in 2-3 years than try to futureproof for 5 years.
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July 9, 2012 10:37:41 AM

Components.

A. Intel i7 is what you need for an editing rig, depending on the budget you could go a step up and get an X79 platform i7. For a LGA1155 setup, the i7-3770k is the one to get. An i7-3820 for X79 unless your rolling in cash and can get a 3930k.

B. There are Intel motherboards, but they are not all that good. All you need is a motherboard with the same socket as the CPU to make it work.

C. For an editing rig, you want 16GB of RAM. Make sure its 1600Mhz, CL9 latency and 1.5V. Corsair Vengeance and G.Skill Ripjaws are brands to get.

D. An editing card that is, dont expect to game on that thing.

E. Unless your music editing or have an extensive surround speaker system, a sound card is pointless.

I. Not necessary, but if you are in an area prone to lightning/sudden blackouts/surges or just want to be safe, you might want one.

J. For a dedicated editing rig of what seems a high caliber like this one, you will want more than a TB of storage, and on multiple drives for reasons I will explain. One drive for holding raw footage (2TB), another (1TB) for video and stuff to be rendered to with another drive, yet another ( An SSD, 128GB) for holding the Program's and OS. This is so that data isn't being written to and read from the same drive, which will slow things down.

I recommend Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM 64MB cache drives and either a Crucial M4 (if you want to play it safe) or an OCZ Vertex 4 (gamble a bit for more speed) for the SSD.

All of those rumours are false, don't worry about them.
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July 9, 2012 10:41:49 AM

FinneousPJ said:
5-6 years isn't a reasonable goal. It's better to spend less now and upgrade in 2-3 years than try to futureproof for 5 years.


I don't mind that either, as long as its doesn't burn a hole in my pocket... :) 
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July 9, 2012 11:17:18 AM

manofchalk said:
Components.

A. Intel i7 is what you need for an editing rig, depending on the budget you could go a step up and get an X79 platform i7. For a LGA1155 setup, the i7-3770k is the one to get. An i7-3820 for X79 unless your rolling in cash and can get a 3930k.

i7-3770k sounds better (according to Google links) :) 
Or do you think i7-3820 would be better?

manofchalk said:
B. There are Intel motherboards, but they are not all that good. All you need is a motherboard with the same socket as the CPU to make it work.

What about this one?
Or any other suggestion? :) 

manofchalk said:
C. For an editing rig, you want 16GB of RAM. Make sure its 1600Mhz, CL9 latency and 1.5V. Corsair Vengeance and G.Skill Ripjaws are brands to get.

Great! Any specific model number? :) 

manofchalk said:
D. An editing card that is, dont expect to game on that thing.

Nope, not a gamer here... ;) 

manofchalk said:
E. Unless your music editing or have an extensive surround speaker system, a sound card is pointless.

If the budget permits, I may add a sound card along with extensive surround speaker system. :) 
Any suggestions there?

manofchalk said:
I. Not necessary, but if you are in an area prone to lightning/sudden blackouts/surges or just want to be safe, you might want one.

Just want to be safe... Many of my friends have had some damage from lightning...
Any suggestion on brands to go for and models?

manofchalk said:
J. For a dedicated editing rig of what seems a high caliber like this one, you will want more than a TB of storage, and on multiple drives for reasons I will explain. One drive for holding raw footage (2TB), another (1TB) for video and stuff to be rendered to with another drive, yet another ( An SSD, 128GB) for holding the Program's and OS. This is so that data isn't being written to and read from the same drive, which will slow things down.

Excellent analysis! :) 
So 3 drives - an SSD (128 GB) for OS and programs (but will 128 GB be sufficient?), and 1 TB and another 2 TB...

manofchalk said:
I recommend Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM 64MB cache drives and either a Crucial M4 (if you want to play it safe) or an OCZ Vertex 4 (gamble a bit for more speed) for the SSD.

I too was thinking of Barracuda. I saw both Crucial M4 and OCZ Vertex 4 has a 256 GB versions as well. OCZ Vertex 4 even has a 512 GB SSD. But will it make the system any better if 256 GB or 512 GB ones are used? Or is it just a waste of money?

manofchalk said:
All of those rumours are false, don't worry about them.

:bounce:  :D 
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July 9, 2012 11:39:11 AM

FinneousPJ said:
Why don't you fill this in www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/353572-13-build-upgrade-ad...

Here you are: :) 

Approximate Purchase Date: approx. a month or two

Budget Range: As much value for money as possible (preferably within $1000.)

System Usage from Most to Least Important: 3D works, Video Editing, Graphics Design, Audio Editing and Web Design

Are you buying a monitor: Yes

Parts to Upgrade: Planning to build a new PC.

Do you need to buy OS: Yes. Preferably Windows 7 Professional.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Ummm... I would prefer to check with a local sales person...

Parts Preferences: Processor: Intel i7

Overclocking: Not sure

SLI or Crossfire: Not sure

Your Monitor Resolution: 1680x1050 or better


And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: I would be completing my course soon and need to have a good PC before I start with my project and my career. For some extra income I'd like to do part time work (or work as a freelancer) as Video and Audio Editor, Graphics Designer and Web Designer.
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Best solution

July 9, 2012 2:07:20 PM

I think an i7-3770k is the better option considering your budget. An X79 system is quite expensive.

That board is quite old and if I'm not mistaken, wont let you overclock. You want a modern Z77 board to go with the Ivy Bridge processor. For some reason public opinion has swayed against the AsRock Z77 Extreme4 (its 3cm smaller than ATX standard, some mounting holes don't fit), which is what I would recommend on a budget. I have the board and no problems at all with it.

This RAM kit will do fine, low profile so you can fit big CPU coolers. You can get the blue version for a bit less, but that'l look weird on the black/gold mobo.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Dont know much about Sound cards or UPS' I'm afraid, will have to find that info somewhere else.

128GB is enough to put the OS and Programs on, I have a 128GB SSD with the OS, most of my programs and a game or two with 86.7GB free. Technically the higher the capacity drive, the better performance you will get due to more NAND cells being available at any time, but the difference isn't noticeable and not worth getting a bigger drive for.
If you do somehow run out of room, just move unimportant programs to the raw data HDD.

Completely forgot about this, but you will need a Power Supply (sounds so obvious now).
An overclocked rig with a single card will only need 600W. Here's a good modular supply with 80+ Bronze efficiency. I have the 750W version and have no problems except a slightly short ATX motherboard cable (running through a large full tower case mind you).
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

And a CPU heatsink if your going to overclock that 3770k. Coolermaster Hyper 212 EVO is the standard cooler to get, and will work well on this machine.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

We haven't gotten down to the case yet, you prefer Coolermaster, so I would recommend something from the HAF series. The HAF-XM is based off the HAF-X (which I own and is very good), and is an amazing case for the price. Despite being a mid-tower it will fit almost anything you could throw at it (its one of those "Mid-Towers" that are only just smaller than full).
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

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July 9, 2012 3:31:43 PM

Wow Manofchalk!!! Thanks a ton!!! You rock!!! :) 
I'll contact the local sales people and inform you if these are available in our area or not. In case any of these items are not available, I hope you won't mind suggesting alternatives. :) 

manofchalk said:
For some reason public opinion has swayed against the AsRock Z77 Extreme4 (its 3cm smaller than ATX standard, some mounting holes don't fit), which is what I would recommend on a budget. I have the board and no problems at all with it.

Keeping in mind public opinion has swayed against the AsRock Z77 Extreme4, is there any alternative? Moreover, why is the general public opinion against it?

manofchalk said:
We haven't gotten down to the case yet, you prefer Coolermaster, so I would recommend something from the HAF series. The HAF-XM is based off the HAF-X (which I own and is very good), and is an amazing case for the price. Despite being a mid-tower it will fit almost anything you could throw at it (its one of those "Mid-Towers" that are only just smaller than full).
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I suggested Cooler Master because many I know use that... If you feel any other brand or model would be better, please do let me know. :) 

Any suggestion on monitor and printer? :) 


Just asking:
a) Is it possible to have more than one Graphics Card in a machine? Will it be any good?
b) I know I'm going to sound silly, but, what is the advantage of overclocking? I read somewhere that overclocked machines heat up faster. Won't that be damaging?
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July 10, 2012 7:04:39 AM

*cough* the graphics card *cough* Good Lord! That's pricey!!! :ouch:  :sweat:  :( 

I went for the certified hardware for every product:
http://www.adobe.com/products/creativesuite/mastercolle...
http://www.adobe.com/products/premiere/extend.html
http://www.solidworks.com/sw/support/videocardtesting.h...
(I had to stick with 64 bit version as that is required to run Adobe After Effects and Premiere Pro)
http://usa.autodesk.com/product-design-suite/
http://usa.autodesk.com/adsk/servlet/pc/index?siteID=12...
http://usa.autodesk.com/autocad/system-requirements/

Is there any other cheaper Graphics Card that supports the software listed above? I believe, if a card supports the latest version of a software, then it should support older versions as well... Or am I wrong?
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July 10, 2012 8:43:49 AM

The reason why the Extreme4 draws criticism is because of the sizing I mentioned earlier. It just means that the far right of the board is a bit loose, so be careful when plugging in the motherboard ATX power cable. Its still a good board.

Cases are largely a personal choice, all depends what you like the look of as chances are you will have it for a while. The two brands to get cases from are Corsair and Coolermaster, they are all consistently good. The HAF-XM is as good a case as you can get, especially at that price point. Though feel free to get a Corsair if you don't like the HAF industrial look and want something more subdued.

Any Nvidia or Quadro card should benefit editing/rendering if you enable GPU Hardware Acceleration within the program, then they can utilize the CUDA cores on the graphics. Considering that this is a pure editing build, your better off with a Quadro than a mainstream card.

It is possible to have more than one graphics card in a rig. Though doing so with a Quadro wont have any effect I think.

You get better performance from your hardware when you overclock. It is essentially making the processor run at a higher speed than stock so it will do things faster. It does generate more heat and can damage/reduce the lifespan of the component. However with decent cooling the heat isn't a problem and a conservative overclock (not messing with voltage) wont damage the parts to any extent.
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July 30, 2012 10:48:11 AM

Best answer selected by Abby1234.
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July 30, 2012 11:07:17 AM

Thanks a million times. I checked as many local shops as I could and all the parts for CPU are available. :) 

Didn't do much searching on the graphics card yet. But many are telling that a good Nvidia gaming card would go equally well. Personally, though I'm not sure about that suggestion, I'm not planning to buy the Quadro now. Its way too expensive! Perhaps FinneousPJ is right. I gotta upgrade after 2-3 years than making it future-proof immediately. Just got to select the best value-for money and pocket-friendly model now. Any suggestions there?

Though HAF-XM looks super-cool, I was just wondering, is it possible to have a white or silvery case?
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