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New Computer System for Maximum Storage and Power

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Last response: in Systems
November 5, 2012 10:27:52 AM

Hi, I'm a photographer and I have the need to store large RAW files and volumes of RAW files. Some of which I would need to keep handy and of which I just need backup and store.

I'm currently running a 2 x 3TB Dual Core + 16GB RAM. I'm currently using bluray discs to store most of my raw files, except it sometimes becomes tedius trying to re-locate discs etc, my cataloging system is piss-poor at the moment.

I want to look at building a new computer and I've been having a look at parts sporadically, and I wanted to get some advice from here. I've been looking at Motherboards with the most SATA ports, so that I can add as many HD's as possible. However, in some forums they have suggested to go for SATA Controller (not sure why I would need this unless I want to expand the number of SATA ports).

So here's what I'm looking at:
Intel Based Motherboard with the most SATA ports (8+ ports)
Quad-Core or Six-Core i7
32 GB of RAM and if possible to upgrade to 64GB RAM at a later stage
Fit about 8-10 x 3TB Harddrives + 2 SSD
The best RAID formation with 8-10HD
Space to fit in a bluray burner
USB 3 ports
USB 2 ports
Wireless Built in (if possible) or continue to use my Wireless Card
Bluetooth built in (if possible) or I can continue to use my USB dongle
A Case to Support all the HDs, I was considering a Lian-Li PC-V2120
Graphics card - Support Maya, Photoshop etc... I'm using two 2 x 27" Monitors so would love to connect them using DVI instead of DVI + VGA. HDMI would be great as well.
I have a 7.1 Logitech Sorround Sound system which I would love to continue to use, and happy to go with 5.1 if required.
Should I add Energy Concious, or is this asking too much ?

Also, regarding RAID setup. I have 2 x 3TB HD with information already. Can I get these included in a RAID setup or would I need to remove the information and the reformat the information and then get included in the RAID setup ?

And, can I start small with the RAID setup and add additional HD as required or do I need to purchase all the HDs that I want in a raid at once ?

More about : computer system maximum storage power

November 5, 2012 5:18:33 PM

I can recommend on the hardware side, but the RAID set up is not my specialty.

I could not find a mobo that had more than 6 6GB/s SATA ports, so I believe that a SATA card may be in order, but I would hold off until you actually needed to expand.
Anyways, I'm not sure if you could even use the 32GB of RAM, but I included it. However, I recommend going with only 16GB, and if you believe you could benefit from more, then add more.
I went with this particular case because its $40 off right now, and it fits your needs.
If you have any questions, just ask.

PCPartPicker part list:
Price breakdown by merchant:

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($319.99 @ Amazon)

CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($26.22 @ NCIX US)

Motherboard: Asus Maximus V Formula EATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($279.99 @ Newegg)

Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 32GB (4 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($144.99 @ Newegg)

Storage: Seagate Barracuda 3TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($128.99 @ NCIX US)

Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition 1GB Video Card ($112.99 @ Microcenter)

Case: Lian-Li PC-A70F USB3.0 ATX Mid Tower Case ($149.99 @ Newegg)

Power Supply: Antec EarthWatts Green 650W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($69.99 @ Amazon)

Optical Drive: Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($55.99 @ NCIX US)

Total: $1289.14

(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
Note: The GPU is a little more online as compared to microcenter. It isn't much though.

EDIT: I forgot to mention that the PSU has 7 SATA connectors. If you need more, I can easily recommend one with more connectors.
November 5, 2012 6:02:10 PM

the reason you got told that you need a sata controller is because intel board only comes with limited number of supported sata devices, if you wish to include more you need a separate controller. Some boards already come with built in AS media controllers, unfortunately those do NOT support RAID, afaik.

as far as including HDDs later. I believe if you go from RAID 0 to RAID 10 (1+0) you can include the blank drives for back up without a problem. However, you will not be able to set your existing drives with data into a RAID 0 without formatting them.