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Photographer - Gamer - Videographer New Build Advice Needed

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August 3, 2012 11:50:28 AM

Approximate Purchase Date: End of August - Beginning of September

Budget Range: $1300-$1500
Also might be willing to go up 2-300 more if it means a vast performance

improvement.



System Usage from Most to Least Important: Photo and Video Editing with a Canon

5d Mark III, Gaming (Would like to run Skyrim Fully modded, Fallout3 and New

Vegas too and the upcoming Dishonored) I tend to have several ram hoggin apps open when I am working on projects.

Are you buying a monitor: unsure if I get good recommendation for something

under $350 maybe, my current one is kind of old



Parts to Upgrade: Whole New Build



Do you need to buy OS: Yes


Preferred Website(s) for Parts: New Egg, I am close by



Location: City of Industry, CA



Parts Preferences: INtel, Looking for Compatibility and Quality in that order.



Overclocking: Maybe, always wanted to but I don't want to wreck my system



SLI or Crossfire: um, I don't know, not sure what they are. Graphics cards? i know very little about graphic cards




Your Monitor Resolution: 1920 x 1200


Additional Comments: Besides the above already mentioned games, I would

mainly use Adobe Photoshop and Premiere



I have built 2 computers. I chose the parts by looking up the top rated new egg parts but the ratings were

old and it didn't turn out that fast but it was alright. The first turned on and worked pretty well besides

crashing everytime on the first start of the day and then working fine after a

restart for the rest of the day... not sure what I did, I think it had to do with

something I was trying out on the motherboard when the pc first starts up

but I am really not good at dos/ terminal stuff. I always copy and paste

code. The second comp I built didn't turn on and I never figured that out, it

was mostly a cheap build with extra parts.

That was like 10 years ago, I have no clue what to get for parts. I was

even thinking of getting a alienware or if possible having a gaming rig built

since I am not sure if i am comfortable building again(I just remember trying to

get lots of tiny parts to connect in a cramped case with my big hands and getting lucky eventually.) But

aliendware costs as much as a Mac.


And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: . My computer just isn't fast enough

for gaming and I am starting to get into video editing. I already do lots of
I would likesomething that would be good for upcoming games.
photo editing sometimes with poster to small billboard sized files.


Thanks for reading all that and I appreciate any help and advice.

Best solution

August 3, 2012 12:45:51 PM

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/dJPT

if you dont think that you need that much graphics firepower, you can get a asus 7850 instead and still get great performance
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August 3, 2012 1:01:14 PM

Quote:
The Big Troll has a good list there for ya. I would change two things though. I would use a Seasonic or Corsair power supply and a version of AMDs HD7970. I have a HD7850 and love it, so if you want to save money, like he said, its a great buy.


you do know that xfx units are made by seasonic right? 7970s are great but they draw more power than a 670 so i usually dont go with one other than if they are running a higher resolution
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August 3, 2012 2:17:04 PM

Quote:
The Big Troll has a good list there for ya. I would change two things though. I would use a Seasonic or Corsair power supply and a version of AMDs HD7970. I have a HD7850 and love it, so if you want to save money, like he said, its a great buy.

I agree about the list and the power supply. I would also change the memory to this - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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August 3, 2012 5:05:15 PM

If main uses are for Photoshop and Premiere would a current Nvidia card be a better choice to take advantage of some acceleration from the Mercury stuff? Though I assume they will be extending this through to openCl at some point.
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August 3, 2012 7:53:56 PM

TheBigTroll said:
:non:  :pfff:  are you serious? there is virtually no difference between 1600mhz and 2133mhz after factoring in latency

Of course I'm serious! The faster the memory, the faster things get done with audio/video programs. With regard to the Mercury Playback Engine, yes a good video card is better for it to run in GPU mode, instead of having it run in software mode and put the strain on the CPU.

BTW, I use Nikon Capture NX when I need to tweak NEF's and PP CS5 for video
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August 3, 2012 10:16:31 PM

Thanks for the great list TheBigTroll, and for everyone's recommendations :D  I have used Nvidia many times on different pc's but never an asus video card. If I was interested in a Nvida card what would be one that works well with this setup?
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August 4, 2012 12:12:47 AM

a asus gtx 670 or the gigabyte gtx670 whatever is cheaper

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August 4, 2012 12:14:10 AM

dingo07 said:
Of course I'm serious! The faster the memory, the faster things get done with audio/video programs. With regard to the Mercury Playback Engine, yes a good video card is better for it to run in GPU mode, instead of having it run in software mode and put the strain on the CPU.

BTW, I use Nikon Capture NX when I need to tweak NEF's and PP CS5 for video


yeah sure when you mean like 1-3% faster memory. its probably less than 1 second in differences. plus higher speed memory has higher latency. no real advantage there
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August 5, 2012 3:00:03 AM

Alright cheaper sounds good and the more I look at the parts on the list the more I cant wait to get this started :bounce: 
I only ask because I might have an extra $500 to spend on the computer but wont know for sure until the end of the month and I was curious about Nvidia. If I do get the $500 is there anything I can change to make this computer last longer as future gaming requirements change? Is this setup upgrade-able? Forgive my ignorance, I thought what I built before was upgrade-able but turned out it wasn't due to new hardware incompatibility. If not I will probably spend the extra cash on a monitor should i get the cash.
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August 5, 2012 4:25:14 AM

If you have the money, you should get the fastest, best hardware you can. Technology stays at a constant - price wise, but speed of components increases. Meaning, what you get for $2000 today, will be the same with respect to proportions of speed relating to software, in three to four years. That's just how it is.

Yes all hardware is upgradable. An example would be upgrading to the memory I suggested because it's faster. Other than that, consider it being at the same point you are now with the computer you have.

It's not rocket science or brain surgery...
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August 5, 2012 4:28:07 AM

I would recommend an H-IPS Panel monitor for your kind of work, but too bad it is above budget.
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August 5, 2012 4:52:14 AM

azeem40 said:
I would recommend an H-IPS Panel monitor for your kind of work, but too bad it is above budget.


+1 also you need to have a color calibration tool. Most monitors tend to be far too blue.
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August 5, 2012 4:53:19 AM

Nah, just use a custom setting.
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August 5, 2012 5:00:16 AM

azeem40 said:
Nah, just use a custom setting.


I originally assumed that he was a pro photographer but I don't know that for a fact. I do know that if you're spending $3,500 on a camera body you should have the equipment from the right lenses and lighting equipment to the right computer to the right printer to back up. That means carefully color correcting your monitor. Custom settings are fine for Skyrim but its not the right way to do things when you're photographing at that level.

Also a single 1TB isn't going to do it for your main drive. you should seriously consider mirrored storage and an external drive for backups if you don't have one. I'm a photographer by the way and the MK3 spits out massive RAW's which you should be using because it has somewhat weak native Jpegs. Losing all your photos because of the failure of a single drive would be devastating. Raid 1 get a pair of 2TB drives. I love the SSD but in your case it might be worth sacrificing that if its too far over budget.
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August 5, 2012 1:52:26 PM

you could get a asus pa238q monitor. its pre-calibrated from the factory.
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August 5, 2012 2:01:30 PM

TheBigTroll said:
you could get a asus pa238q monitor. its pre-calibrated from the factory.

But that still is only about 80% true to hardware. A professional calibration is needed to get the device to be 100% true to whatever color space

I was ISF Certified waaay back about 10 years ago, and used Sencore products only
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August 5, 2012 9:08:51 PM

Thanks again for the advice!

I think I will wait on the monitor and look into a H-IPS first. I always color calibrate, I have an old Eyeone Calibrator but am thinking of getting a new one. I am good with color and I use a Calibration DVD also. I do all my photography work at the moment on my Macbook Pro and color is very important, but I wasn't too worried about a monitor right now because I was going to setup my new computer to my Panasonic Viera for color correction.

I was also thinking about space I fill up hard drives so fast, 1 project file can be 1gb or more sometimes. I always have 2 backups for each file and i will probably get another 1tb external to backup this new internal.

Is there room to setup raid in this case? I like the listed dedicated drive for my system and apps, and the 1TB is way bigger than my current internal. If I could add Raid I would feel more secure.

I will put the extra cash into it if I must. I can afford it now that I found out I am getting payed back some money. I was gonna use some of it on on photo equipment but I would rather put it all in the comp right now.
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August 5, 2012 9:10:36 PM

I agree with space. For his level of professional work, a true color calibrator is needed.
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August 5, 2012 9:15:34 PM

Lol, there is more to monitors than most realize. :p 
Most only think response time is everything when it isn't.
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August 5, 2012 11:29:35 PM

I been checking out the build parts late at night and I didnt see the 8 drive bays, I saw the 2 external drive bays... that will definitely work.
I have only had one monitor I really like and that is my Macbook Pro's screen. Best black levels I have had on a monitor and color. I am not gonna get an Apple Cinema Display bit will look for the best color and black levels with a nice response time.
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August 5, 2012 11:30:26 PM

Best answer selected by laughingloud.
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August 5, 2012 11:33:08 PM

If you want good black levels, I recommend looking at VA panels. They have the best black levels out of IPS and TN.
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August 6, 2012 12:10:00 AM

Nice to know, i will look some up and go check them out at local stores. Thanks azeem40.
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August 6, 2012 12:16:07 AM

Np. If you really need help on monitors, the hardforum community is very knowledgeable on them. :) 
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August 6, 2012 12:57:32 AM

Would I need an extra SSD's for Raid or do I only setup RAID with the Second Larger Hard drive?
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August 6, 2012 12:39:20 PM

you can raid the hard drives and leave the SSD alone. SSDs dont (or shouldnt) fail as much as hard drives (although i have yet to see a hard drive fail on me)
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August 7, 2012 12:46:19 AM

Alright that sounds good. Sorry for all the questions but I have a couple more and I didnt want to start a new thread if not needed.

Do I need more power if I plan on having 5 total drives? 1SSD and 4 1TB Drives Setup in Raid1 for 2 mirroring setups. I only plan on getting 2 drives now then adding 2 when space is needed.

Also and this is what usually confuses me when it comes to building and upgrading.

I been looking into the graphics cards and I like the EVGA GTX 670 FTW and its not much more , I like the 4gb version also but saw a test where the FTW out-performed it a bit and its cheaper plus I hear they have a good warranty and service.

Anyway while I was looking I saw the 680 4gb verison which I dont want but noticed that it had different pins.
In case the future upgrade card i might want has different pins will 6pin/8pin and the other 2 x 6 pin both work with this mother board?

Also noticed the 680 needs more power and that also made me wonder if i should up the power to 600. Saw the same power supply in 600 version but it comes with one less PCI plug according to the new egg video.
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August 7, 2012 12:51:39 AM

the gigabyte gtx670 or the asus one is vastly superior than the ftw in cooling. 4gb versions are useless unless you are running many monitors

no point of a 680 when a 670 performs so close. nor the 4gb version

the extra power plugs are for very intense overclocking. not needed at all for day to day use or medium overclocks
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August 7, 2012 1:07:43 AM

Alright that answers that then but do I need a power supply with extra cables or more wattage to eventually run 5 drives?
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August 7, 2012 1:44:59 AM

Ooh thanks, that looks plenty powerful.
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August 7, 2012 12:18:23 PM

dont get that. you dont need that much power. plus, its a pretty old unit
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!