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Old May 4th, 2004, 01:10 AM   #1
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 1,484
Xeon System Good deal???

This system is being offered for $2,600.00 from a reputable web dealer (I think, I have no experience with them myself). Where is the weak links, it sounds too good to be true. When I try to match it on other sites (this one is a preconfigured deal) it comes out to a $4K to 6K machine. I know some people that say dual Xeon processors are best used for servers and others that rave about it for video editing. I am not well versed in chip sets, motherboards, and other specifics (some of which are not well specified on the site). My NLE is busy and needs to be replaced. For software I will be running a Premier Pro Video Bundle. I will post the URLs, but after all this time here I’m still not sure if that is cool?

• Microsoftฎ Windowsฎ XP Pro
• (2) Xeon 2.8GHz Processors
• 512K Cache / Hyperthread / 533MHz FSB
• 1GB (1024MB) PC2100 Memory
• Dual Channel DDR266
• (2) 200GB SATA150 7200RPM RAID HDDs (8MB Cache)
• Onboard Serial ATA150 RAID Controller Card
• Designed for EZ Mirror Setups (Raid 0,1)
• 8X DVD+-RW Drive w/Software (Black)
• 16X DVD Drive w/Software (Black)
• 3.5" 1.44MB Floppy Drive (Black)
• nVidia FX5600 AGP 8x 256MB DDR Video
• Gigabit 10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet NIC
• US Robotics 56K PCI Fax/Modem
• 3D Sound (6 Channel Audio)
• VisionMan Tower chassis w/ 500-Watt PS (Silver)
• Black Windows PS/2 Internet Keyboard
• Black 3 Button PS/2 Internet Mouse
• Black Stereo Speakers
• 3-Port PCI IEEE 1394 FireWire Card
• High Speed USB 2.0 Interfaces

Steven Digges
Still learning twenty years later.
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Old May 4th, 2004, 06:34 AM   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: sounthern maine
Posts: 344
well i have pretty much the same system.

i would add more ram and probably a raid controller that can handle a lot of drives.

also make sure to get a video card that can handle dual displays.

i know your question is a lot about is this price legit, i built my machine myself so that is a little hard to answer, i am always surprised at how much the system integrators want for a similar system but i think a lot of that is due to their advertising expense and how few video nle systems they probably sell.

the only system integrator i know of firsthand is 1beyond and their prices are a little high but they offer superior support long after the sale.

can you give us the link to the above system so we can read more details?

Matthew de Jongh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 4th, 2004, 08:21 AM   #3
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 1,484

Thanks for the input. I buy complete systems and am willing to upgrade components as needed. Building one from scratch is tempting but over my head. Reliability is major priority for me and if left up to my own design, I would have to shoot myself for every 3:00AM crash. No thanks. I am really considering this machine; I would appreciate it if you would take a look.


It is made by vision computers at www.visionman.com

Thank You,

Steven Digges
Still learning twenty years later.
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Old May 4th, 2004, 12:20 PM   #4
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Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Toronto, Canada
Posts: 4,750
You can check out visionman's resellerratings.com rating over at http://www.resellerratings.com/seller1018.html. They only have 3 reviews so it isn't that helpful.

It looks like they put lots of cheap parts and assemble them into a computer. Local computer stores can do that for you too. Some like ncix.com charge you $50 to assemble the computer (ncix says they will stress test your computer, which is a good idea). Cheap parts can be ok if you know where to cut corners on. Problems with cheap parts:
Case: cheap cases have sharp edges that cut you and are hard to work with. If you don't dick around much in there then this won't be a problem.

Power supply: Cutting corners here is a bad idea. There are lots of cheap power supplies where their power rating is fudged. Brand name (certain brands like Antec, Enermax, etc. are good and others bad) and PSU weight (heavier is better) are ways to pick out good power supplies. tigerdirect.com will show you the shipping weight of various power supplies. see http://www.directron.com/psu.html

Motherboard: manufacturers can cut corners by using a motherboard with a cheaper chipset. Some of these cheaper chipsets are crappy (VIA usually is, but not always). Also cheaper motherboards may have less features and will limit you. In this case it looks like they're using a Tyan motherboard (Tyan = good brand). It seems to be the Tyan S2668ANR using the Intel E7505 chipset (http://www.tyan.com/products/html/tigeri7505.html).

If you are going to use a hardware acceleration card, make sure it is compatible with your motherboard.

RAM: cheap RAM will be marginal and probably more likely to be dead on arrival and may fail more. It would be nice if the computer was stress tested with a program like memtest86 (free) to determine if the memory is flaky.

Noise: Most manufacturers don't pay too much attention to noise and use loud fans (lowers price and loud/high airflow fans increase reliability slightly). If noise bothers you, get long cables or buy a quiet computer in the first place (you can spec out quiet parts and get a local computer store to assemble it for you).

Support: ?

Refund: there may be restocking fees.

I'm assuming they use cheap parts since they don't publish the brand or model names. Some things they didn't cut corners on (8MB buffer hard drive instead of 2MB buffer, the higher model of the motherboard).
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