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Thread: Specifications recommendations
07-13-2007, 10:48 AM #1
It's getting near the time to upgrade this old PC (been thinking about this for a year now). I'd like to have a system that can handle digital photography and video editing.
What would you suggest (PC)?
(Nothing exotic like the fluid cooling systems please)
07-13-2007, 11:39 AM #2
Any C2D CPU will do. 2 smaller and 1 big SATA HD (2X80GB and 1X500GB) and 2GB ram. Load win xp, vista will slow your rendering time and sucks too. Also, with this setup, 1 HD can be use to boot winxp and 1 to boot in OS X and use OS X for faster for video editing. Get a OK video card and make sure you have firewire. You know the drill, DVD+-R/DL drive is a must.
07-13-2007, 11:57 AM #3
Is it worth getting a 10,000 rpm hard drive for the OS? They are not so common in HK whereas 7,200rpm drives are plentiful.
Can you run OS X on a PC config?
What video card is 'good'? I haven't got a clue on video cards.
Firewire definitely will be included.
07-13-2007, 12:41 PM #4
Actually, water-cooling isn't that exotic anymore. You just have to open up your wallet a bit wider. Therer are a few online stores that will be happily setup a system for you . There are a few references at www.tomshardware.com
07-13-2007, 12:43 PM #5
For 10K rpm hd, don't bother. helps a little between 2 hr rendering time to 1.75 hr. 2GB ram will make more difference.
Yes, I have friends did it before and works great.
Any PCI-e X16 with 128mb ram will do. Middle price range is more then enough for video editing. Check out these 2.
07-13-2007, 01:19 PM #6
07-13-2007, 02:59 PM #7
You can take a look at
I think Jeff Atwood (blogger) just built a machine with parts list, cost, instructions, from the ground up. It's in three parts, look for his posts on July 9, 10 and 11.
07-17-2007, 04:19 AM #8
get some big disks. 500GB is a minimum for photo and video. i have already filled up 300GB with photos alone and i am scratching my head how to expand...
07-17-2007, 05:50 AM #9
07-17-2007, 06:25 AM #10
Last edited by Neil Nicholls; 07-17-2007 at 06:32 AM.
07-17-2007, 10:24 AM #11
I got a few ideas from dpreview.
Some ideas came up.
What is the difference in the speed of the Duo 2Core? Specifically E6320 and above? I think there is only a small price difference to the E6600 so does the higher gigahertz speed help significantly? I remember from the DVD thread that video conversion requires a faster CPU so that's obviously an advantage...correct? I've got a lot of videos to edit/process.
Some configs have a separate hard drive for cache. What is a cache and how does it help? OK, it might not be absolutely necessary but some like it and smaller hard disks are really not so expensive so it could be worthwhile.
For the videocard, seems like 8600 GT is necessary if I want to be Vista compatible for the future. There is also a 8600 GTS - any good or minimal advantage?
07-17-2007, 10:25 AM #12
07-17-2007, 11:14 AM #13
If you have a >400bg sata hd, it usually has 16 mg cache build in the hd. Win use hd to swap the data that is over the capacity of the ram. That is call Cache. If your source and target drive are different than your c drive, no need to seperate hd for cache. Here is why, if you have 3 hds in your computer(C,D and E), C is the main drive and it is used for swapping and cache already. D drive used as storage of raw footage. E drive is used as output of final footage. Then you are OK. The advantage is the C drive does not need to be super huge. The biggest help will be raid. You can Raid 2 hd to improve data thru put. Even a new SATA drive can transfer 300MB per sec. That is the interface speed and after the buffer has beed used up, the transfer speed decrease to about 35 MB per sec. By raiding 2 HDs together, it will increase the data rate to 60~65MB per sec. Some people raid 4 hd together to get the 133 MB per sec transfer speed. s it really worth it? My feeling is no. 2 HD raid is enough. Also, new MB usually come with the capability to set up raid drive on board.
The 2 video card I suggested before are Vista compatable already. Faster video card has min advantage, they are for video gamer.
Agree with Neil, back up is an issue for me. I have 1.5TB in one of my computer and I can not backup my data because there is no drive to back it up to. I just got nailed by a virus 2 weeks ago and that compter is down and I can not use it. It took me 2 days to back up and verify the data. I am still working on it last night to restore it.
07-17-2007, 11:47 AM #14
For the Megahertz issue, got the point! From the CPU prices I have, it looks like the law of diminishing returns so E6600 looks to the the cutoff point.
I was going to have a separate data drive from C: drive (for which I put all the OS and programs). I got a bit bogged down with the jargon. Basically, a three hard drive setup is highly advantageous. Either the setup is one drive for OS and 2nd for Cache, 3rd for data drive...OR one drive for OS, 2nd for source and 3rd for output ...OR..2nd and 3rd drive in RAID. Have I got this right? (and this is the support for your recommendation of x2 80Gb drives and the 500Gb data drive)
For the videocard issue, somebody told me the 8600 supports DX10 which is what VISTA uses. The lower cards support DX9 which VISTA doesn't use. Did I get it mixed up somewhere?
Very interesting stuff and thanks for helping me become more informed. I might end up asking some questions twice because I might not have understood the first time round.
Last edited by Cheung; 07-17-2007 at 11:52 AM.
07-17-2007, 12:28 PM #15
07-17-2007, 12:30 PM #16
07-17-2007, 12:32 PM #17
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