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Old February 14th, 2011, 06:38 PM   #1
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New setups for CS5

Ive finally finished setup and configuration of our 2 main systems for editing our web show The show is shot with a Canon XH A1 in the built studio with a Blackmagic Intensity USB 3.0 Shuttle which is connected to system R2, in 10 bit 4:2:2. The external/out and about shots are recorded with a pair of Canon T2i's and we record the audio with the XH A1's XLR's. This is the best matching quality for both audio and video. We capture on R2, downsize to SD and edit on both machines, then export in SD on R1 (the old machine) and export in HD on the new machine (R2)

We are 1 month away from shooting in the studio; the set is being built now. Please advise if i have the hard disks utilized correctly, especially on R1 (the SD machine)

We use Adobe Premiere Pro and After Effects CS5, both are CUDA enabled machines. i tried to follow Harm Millaards' 'Generic Guideline' for the most part, but the SSD's throw that out of whack a bit.

R1 - SD editing machine, generic Gateway tower
Intel G33 Schroedertown motherboard
Intel Q6600 @ 2.4 Ghz
8 GB Crucial PC2-6400 (800Mhz) RAM
Intel X25M 80GB SSD. OS/program/source disk/pagefile
RAID 0 'work' drive (4x80 GB 7200RPM 2.5" HDD's. Projects, media cache)
1 TB backup drive (previews, exports)
GeForce 9800GTX+ OC 1GB DDR3
HP DVD writer


R2 - HD editing machine, HAF 932
Asus Rampage III Gene motherboard
Intel i7 950 @ 4.2Ghz
12 GB Corsair XMS3 12800 (1600Mhz) RAM
OCZ Vertex 2 120GB SSD (285MB/sec read, 275MB/sec write) OS/program/source disk/pagefile
ARECA 1120 RAID 5 (8x500GB 7200RPM 2.5" HDD's. Projects, media cache, previews, exports)
1 TB backup drive (media backups only)
GeForce GTX 460 1GB DDR5 Galaxy (single slot)
Intensity Shuttle USB 3.0
Pioneer BDR-206BK blu ray burner
HP DVD writer

Anything im missing or have set up incorrectly?

Last edited by Panagiotis Raris; February 15th, 2011 at 10:12 AM.
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Old February 20th, 2011, 07:57 AM   #2
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For the R2 build I would up the ram to 24, same make/model. You will notice this upgrade and is well worth the price.

On the main ssd drives, I would make sure that I wasn't too far over half full when I had all software installed. For my computer, 120 wouldn't be enough.

I'm not familiar with the 2.5 inch 7200rpm hard drives, any I have worked with were 3.5 but I would up the R1 to 1tb and lower R2 to 2tb and as soon as projects were completed, remove them from the raid array. Raids are fast but are not any kind of long term storage.

Good luck!
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Old February 24th, 2011, 06:30 PM   #3
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Re: New setups for CS5

I assume you are using 2.5" drives because there is no room for 3.5" drives, correct?

I would be wary of using notebook drives in raid and especially raid 0.

With AE CS5, I would max out the ram so you can have 3GB of ram per core (AE sees the i7 as 8 'cores').

Just noticed that you have 2.5" drives with the Areca. Why are you using notebook drives? Per gigabyte, they are more expensive and slower than 3.5" drives and far less reliable. Not to mention, their firmware is designed to use very little power so spinning down constantly can be an issue. Also, their firmware is not designed for Raid and using them with Raid 5 can result in 'drop outs' because the drive is taking too long to respond so the raid controller thinks the drive is bad even though it isn't, which then results in the need to rebuild the raid array at the very least (if only one drive was dropped). If another drive is dropped during the rebuild, then all data on that array is lost.

That Areca 1120 is an old card and requires PCI-X which the motherboard does not have. At the very best, it could possibly run on a 32bit PCI slot if that mobo even has one. And at 32bit PCI speeds, a single hard drive can saturate the entire bandwidth. However, its not even a guarantee it will work in a 32bit/66MHz PCI slot because the card is 64bit/133MHz.

Have you begun shooting anything yet and have you used the Shuttle to record live?

Your SSDs are fine as long as you don't use them for storage and definitely do NOT use them for Page File as that will eat away their write cycles very fast, not to mention the Page File equals your ram so it takes up a good amount of space on the SSDs.

I don't see a UPS for either machine. A good UPS is a must.
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Old February 25th, 2011, 12:06 AM   #4
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Re: New setups for CS5

Any recommendations for a top of the line, but stable and reliable, X58 MB? Would like to pair it with a 970 CPU.
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Old March 9th, 2011, 12:56 PM   #5
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Re: New setups for CS5

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Kalle View Post
I assume you are using 2.5" drives because there is no room for 3.5" drives, correct?

I would be wary of using notebook drives in raid and especially raid 0.

With AE CS5, I would max out the ram so you can have 3GB of ram per core (AE sees the i7 as 8 'cores').

Just noticed that you have 2.5" drives with the Areca. Why are you using notebook drives? Per gigabyte, they are more expensive and slower than 3.5" drives and far less reliable. Not to mention, their firmware is designed to use very little power so spinning down constantly can be an issue. Also, their firmware is not designed for Raid and using them with Raid 5 can result in 'drop outs' because the drive is taking too long to respond so the raid controller thinks the drive is bad even though it isn't, which then results in the need to rebuild the raid array at the very least (if only one drive was dropped). If another drive is dropped during the rebuild, then all data on that array is lost.

That Areca 1120 is an old card and requires PCI-X which the motherboard does not have. At the very best, it could possibly run on a 32bit PCI slot if that mobo even has one. And at 32bit PCI speeds, a single hard drive can saturate the entire bandwidth. However, its not even a guarantee it will work in a 32bit/66MHz PCI slot because the card is 64bit/133MHz.

Have you begun shooting anything yet and have you used the Shuttle to record live?

Your SSDs are fine as long as you don't use them for storage and definitely do NOT use them for Page File as that will eat away their write cycles very fast, not to mention the Page File equals your ram so it takes up a good amount of space on the SSDs.

I don't see a UPS for either machine. A good UPS is a must.
Steve, yes i am using 2.5"s for space savings. I accidentally purchased the 1120 instead of the 1222 which i now have.

I have not used the shuttle yet as the green screen area is not set up (only using it for green screen work with component out of an XH A1 for the 4:2:2). Changed my mind and went with the PCIe BM intensity pro instead of the shuttle (can use in both systems).

Current system specs. R2 has a decent UPS; will get one for R1 in about 2 months.

R1 - Gateway mid tower
Intel X25M 80 GB
4x 80GB RAID 0 on ICH9R CS5 drive
500GB storage drive
9800 GTX+ OC MPE/CUDA
Pioneer BDR 205
Intel G33TL
Intel Q6600 at 2.4 Ghz/Cooler Master
8GB DDR2 RAM
BM intensity PCIe

R2 - HAF 932
OCZ Vertex 2 120GB on Marvell SATA III
ARECA 1222 8x 500GB RAID 6 (7 active plus 1 hot spare) CS5 drive
6x 500GB RAID 5 on ICH10R storage in an iStar 6 disk 5.25" bay
Pioneer BDR 206 on Marvell SATA III
Asus Rampage III Gene
i7 950 @ 4.2 Ghz/Corsair H50 push/pull
12GB DDR3 RAM
Galaxy Razor GTX 460 1 GB (single slot)
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Old March 10th, 2011, 08:36 PM   #6
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Panagiotis:

Curious on how you settled on the Corsair H50. I ask because I'm looking at replacing stock cooling and was thinking about a Noctua U12.
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Old March 11th, 2011, 02:42 PM   #7
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Re: New setups for CS5

Thats an easy one to answer. When i first built R2, i stuck with the OEM Intel cpu cooler as i was not planning on overclocking for a few days, i just wanted it up and running. Parts were still coming in, and i was considering a Cooler Master V8 as well as a Noctua NH-U12.

I installed everything in the below configuration...
Rampage III Gene
i7 950/Intel CPU cooler
Intel X25M SSD 80GB boot/install
4x Fujitsu 80GB 2.5" in RAID 0 for CS5 on Intel Southbridge ICH10R (all project/source etc files here)
1TB Seagate (file storage)
Apevia Aqua 700w PSU
GeForce 9800GTX+ OC 1GB (MPE/CUDA)
Pioneer BDR-206MBK Blu Ray burner
12GB XMS3 1600Mhz

This was in a Gateway mid tower case (the case i built R1 into later); CPU idled in the 40c range at 3.06Ghz, NB around 55c, SB around 50c. Had 4 fans at full power; too hot. Was waiting for my HAF 932 to arrive.

And started editing some M2T (XH A1 with a DN-60 CF recorder) and T2i footage. CPU temps shot to 60c. Overclocked it to 3.7 Ghz, went back and temps were hitting 80c.

...Got in my car, drove to best buy, bought the H50 based on a lot of reviews and research, but mostly because they had one in stock and i had about $30 in rewards certificates, and a second fan to do it push/pull. Figured i would see how it handled the temps, buy whatever CPU cooler i wanted later and throw the H50 on R1 when it was built. When i got home, there was a bunch of boxes from UPS; the HAF 932 and some other bits. If they had one in stock, i likely would have bought a Noctua, but i wanted it that day so i could compare stock vs overclock speeds (i am impatient). I dont see any reason to buy the H50 over the Noctua or vice versa; actually the Noctua is cheaper and less of a pain as you dont have a radiator with 2 stiff water cables to work around.

After installing everything in the 932, setting my fan controllers and temp monitors, temps were about 15c down, so i decided to OC to 4.0. ended up with it stable at 4.2. Went back into CS5, opened up AME, and re-encoded the same projects i was hitting 80c+ with. Temps never spiked over 70c. NB stable at 42c, SB around 38c. This is on a mobo that gets notoriously hot on the NB but i did have a single 80mm fan aimed at the NB and SB.

At 4.2Ghz, CPU idle is 29c, RAM idle is 35c, NB is 40c, SB is 35c, case interior is 24c. Mind you i have 7 case fans, from 230mm to 80mm, plus the 2 H50 fans. Temps idle low and STAY low. For an entry model 'water' cooler, i am thoroughly impressed. I bought a second H50 for R1 which i will install later this week, and 2 H70's and two more fans to replace the coolers on the work machines (both i7 980X with crappy air coolers; at 100% load they hit high 70c's and idle in the 38c range. I have never had a Noctua product, but i have had a LOT of Corsair products, from RAM to PSU's to cases and SSD's. I have never had a single problem with Corsair products, so i usually stick with their kit if its priced close to competitors.

Either one is a great cooler; i just bought what was in stock. EITHER one is worlds better than the stock Intel unit.
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Old March 11th, 2011, 11:24 PM   #8
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Thanks for the detailed response. That was exactly what I needed to know.

The mention of Best Buy is particularly timely. Tomorrow morning, I'm making my monthly road trip to the nearest what-passes-for-a-city in these rural parts. The local Best Buy not only has has the H50 in stock, it has it on sale for $10 less than at Newegg. .

I have a somewhat similar PPro editing set-up and have been running into similar CPU temp issues. The systems differences are that I'm using an ASUS "P6t Deluxe v.2" mobo with a 1 TB Hitachi as the boot/system drive (rather than an SSD), a PC Power & Cooling 750 PSU , a GTX 260 video card, I'm running an MXO2 Mini PCIe 1x card, and I'm running both an internal Intel Raid 0 along with an external Raid 10 run off a PCIe 4x card, and I have a couple of extra disks in the system for scratch and page files. (I'm running a case with four 120mm case fans plus te PSU and an addtional 80mm fan on some of the hard drives). I have had this for a couple years with an I7/920 CPU, and it mostly worked well for me. A couple of weeks ago, my I7/920 started showing signs of being toasted. (I had done some mild overclocking using the ASUS AI, an automated o/c program that is one of the mobo utilities). If I would let it, the CPU temp would head above 90 C on long transcodes from HD to Mpeg-DVD. Revertying to default mdoes did not help.

This did not seem to be specifically a case cooling issue because the mobo temps generally stayed below 42 C even at the hottest temp on the CPU. I just replaced the I7/920 with a new I7/950. That has reduced idle and operating temps by about 10 to 20 C. However, I'm still getting hot CPU temps with long HD-to-DVD transcodes, The temporary good news is that encoding CPU temps generally stay at or below 74 C. (This is with all 8 cores showing >90% usgae.) When the I7/950 hits a prolonged 74 the mobo tempts will rise to the upper 40s. My thinking is to try a new CPU cooling approach. Your report on the H50 with your system encouraged me to try that one. Much less cumbersome than the Noctua I was looking at..

I'll report back on how (or if) the H50 helps.
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Old March 15th, 2011, 04:00 AM   #9
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So, I tried out an H50 and discovered that my combination of case (5-year-old Antec P180) and mobo (ASUS P6T Deluxe v. 2) is not suitable for use with the Corsair H50 cooling unit In my set-up, the Corsair H50's radiator-fan unit hangs out over the mobo, blocking some air flow needed to cool the chipset. Worse, the CPU base and chipset heatsinks on the P6T seem to rely on the airflow of a downdraft cooler. I'm guessing that some of the more recent case designs (including Corsair's own "Obsidian" line) probably have better ventilation and air flow. However, my p180 couldn’t get the air to the right place even though it is running four 120mm case fans. Even with all four fans on full and with the Corsair radiator and fan hanging outside the case, I still got mobo temps of 54 C and CPU temps of 85 C with the H50 when transcoding HD to Mpeg2-DVD. . With the stock cooler, Im getting mobo temps of 41C and CPU temps that range up and down between 74 to 78 C. Seems like it might be time to check on a new computer case.
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Old March 29th, 2011, 12:52 AM   #10
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Re: New setups for CS5

agreed; i can strongly recommend the cooler master HAF series; i have a 932 for my home editing rig.

Everything stays quite cool, and its pretty quiet. It is pretty big however. I believe Newegg has them for $115 right now. Heres a shot of my home editing station.
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Old March 29th, 2011, 05:47 AM   #11
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Re: New setups for CS5

Why not go with GTX 460 or 430/450 for R1 as well? This way you'll get CUDA support there.
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Old March 30th, 2011, 03:24 PM   #12
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Re: New setups for CS5

the 9800GTX+ OC has 1GB of RAM and actually works quite well as the GTX 460; had to do the CUDA/MPE support hack for both.
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Old March 31st, 2011, 10:37 AM   #13
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Re: New setups for CS5

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Originally Posted by Panagiotis Raris View Post
the 9800GTX+ OC has 1GB of RAM and actually works quite well as the GTX 460; had to do the CUDA/MPE support hack for both.
The 9800 GTX+ OC is still slower than a GTX 460 - and about as slow as a GT 240 for MPE purposes - because the 9800 series uses only DDR3 RAM (which, in turn, delivers less throughput than DDR5 RAM at the same effective clock speed), and that even the 9800 GTX+ has only 128 CUDA cores. Even the GTS 450 and the new GTX 550 Ti have 192 CUDA cores (not to mention that the GTX 460 SE has 224 CUDA cores and the regular GTX 460 has 336 CUDA cores).
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Old March 31st, 2011, 09:26 PM   #14
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Re: New setups for CS5

The PC that the 9800GTX+ is in is an old quad core that cannot be overclocked and money is tight. Eventually i will replace the whole machine and use it as a home desktop again. In that machine, the GTX 460 and 9800GTX+ performance is identical. I left the old DDR3 card in the old machine for that reason.

at the same time i have the galaxy razor GTX 460 (single slot) which im curious to find out whether a dual slot card would perform better. i have a 'regular' asus GTX 460 1GB dual slot in one of the work machines i might test. i have the single slot card in only so that i can use the BM intensity pro PCIe card, because i bought my rampage motherboard for under $100 used as opposed to $200+ new. money IS a factor here.
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Old May 11th, 2011, 03:00 PM   #15
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Re: New setups for CS5

New primary rig build scheduled for a client. Premiere Pro CS5, After Effects CS5, Photoshop CS5 rig, AVCHD and very very little HDV footage. Basically a refresh and upgrade of the machine i built a few months back. Looking for a stable 4.5 OC, 8-8-8-20 latency at 1600Mhz with RAM, and TONS of space (5.44 TB calculated).

HAF 932 case
Core i7 990X CPU
24GB Corsair XMS3 (6x4GB) PC12800 RAM
Corsair H50 Hydro CPU cooler
Gigabyte GA-X58-UD3R
Galaxy GTX 570 1280MB graphics card
Antec 1000w PSU
OCZ Vertex 2 OS/install HD 100GB
Areca 1222 RAID controller 256MB RAM 800Mhz Intel processor
8x Samsung F3R 7200RPM 1TB HDD's in RAID6

Misc adapters/connectors etc. Also extra 120mm fans and a manual fan controller to keep the RAM, northbridge, southbridge, and HDD arrays cooled, in addition to the included case fans.
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