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David Merrill July 10th, 2009 09:47 PM

diy computer build??
 
Hello. I'm new to this forum. Was a DVXer, and keeping it, but now getting the Canon HF-S100. I've never done any HD but done a lot of reading. I watched a couple DIY computer build tutorials and it doesn't look too difficult as long as you get everything plugged in correctly. I'd like to build an i7 computer that just does Video editing and music composing. No internet except to authorize apps, and nothing else.
Do you save a lot of money doing it yourself?

Kevin Duffey July 10th, 2009 10:32 PM

Really depends. If you got the budget, I'd look at either one of the pre-built dual-cpu quad core's with MAtrox graphics for really good HD editing performance, or even there single-cpu quad core setups.

For me, here is what makes most sense. Windows 64-bit, core 7 quad core, 12GB ram, if not more, depending on your money situation a 10K main drive, and either external Raid 0 for editing or internal.. these are your editing drives for maximum performance. 10K is fine, but 7200rpm in raid0 even with most mother/board implementations of Raid0 is really good (and free if it comes on the m/b). Building a single cpu quad core setup is not bad. I paid $1300 for my 2.4ghz quad core, 12GB ram, 1TB HD, dvd burner, ATI 4870 video, case, power supply and mother/board. The m/b was almost 300 at the time, case was 100, power supply 150, cpu was 300, 1TB drive 100, 12GB ram was about 165, video card was 200, burner 30. I had a 750GB drive already and another 1TB drive, and I am not using a RAID setup and have no problems with editing..although to be fair I've not done any 1080P stuff yet. It's pretty fast system, the video card while no Matrox, does ok with opengl hardware performance, and I also do music creation and such with it. I am able to edit a small video of about 40 minutes or so, burn a DVD, run VMWare with a solaris OS guest virtual machine, play music via winamp, and have World of warcraft running, all at once. At times things will bog down.. primarily rendering from After Effects slows things down. But that's a whopping lot of apps at once and things run smooth. You want 64-bit because CS4 can handle multi-threading and you can specify memory per cpu up to 4GB each and specify 3 cpus for rendering leaving the 4th for apps.

My next system will most definitely be a matrox based dual cpu system with 32GB ram and a few TBs of HD and external RAID 5 backup. But that's a ways off. I don't expect to pay more than about 7K including 4TBs of backup and 2TBs of raid0 striping for that setup with the matrox card.

HTH

David Merrill July 11th, 2009 12:29 AM

Thanks for the reply. Something like your current set-up is about what I'm planning. Boy, your planned system would be killer! I've read a couple articles about Raid 0 and it sounds like a nightmare if any one drive crashes. What I was thinking is 3 drives; 1 for the OS and apps, 1 for music samples, and 1 for video files. I have a 150 gig Raptor for the samples. I'd be using Adobe Production Premium and a bunch of music apps.

Harm Millaard July 11th, 2009 01:21 AM

2 Attachment(s)
I have made available three guides, that cover this.

Have a look here: Adobe Forums: How to get the best from a PC? Some...

A limited view of some of the disks in front (I could not get all 14 in view) and the rather large Noctua CPU cooler with 3 more disks above it in the back. The fan in the bottom of the picture is taped to the PSU for cooling the video card, since the Areca controller is too close to allow a good airflow.

Zsolt Gordos July 11th, 2009 10:42 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by David Merrill (Post 1170231)
I'd like to build an i7 computer that just does Video editing and music composing. No internet except to authorize apps, and nothing else.
Do you save a lot of money doing it yourself?

Hi, why dont you build a Hackintosh? I just have built mine last week, works like a charm and delivers much better performance than my old G5 desktop. Most importantly, it was a fraction of the price of a MacPro.
I can boot any of the OS installed. Final Cut Studio 2 is great for video editing and for video work it is only Adobe Ultra that requires a PC.
It looks as follows:

Gigabyte GA-EP45-DQ6 MOB with 3Ghz Quad cpu (lightly overclocked to 3.5Ghz), this MOB is considered as one of the best overclockers... http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/mai...-ep45-dq6.html
8Gb RAM
Nvidia 9800 XT
3 x 250 Gb Western Digital hard drives
1 x 1Tb Western Digital hard drive

Leopard and Vista are installed on 2 of the 250Gb drives, one 250Gb drive is for the "workflow" and the 1Tb drive is for my media.
It means the OS drives contain only the OS and apps, my projects are sitting in the 3rd 250Gb drive and my large media files are sitting on the 1Tb drive.
I still have available slots and connectors for further drives so later I may setup a RAID config.

Google Efi-x then you will get the idea of what I am trying to say... :)

Kevin Duffey July 11th, 2009 10:56 AM

Can you get OSX to run on any PC now? I heard it could be done.. just haven't tried. I got a coworker that got OSX to work inside a virtual machine as a guest OS.. but it's not 100% solid last I checked.

I think it really depends on your budget and what you want to do.

Keep in mind Raid-0 is NEVER a solution for any sort of long term storage. You use it for performance, not for storage. Ideally you have all your original source/projects on a RAID1 or RAID5 setup. RAID1 is probably simplest it uses 2 drives and basically duplicates what is on one to the other..so if one does die, you can recover from the other. Raid 5 I think requires 3 or 4 drives.. 3 for Raid 1 like performance, 4 for Raid 0+1 or something like that lol..been a while since I set that up. But.. point is, don't shy away from Raid 0 using SATA 2 drives. Buy a m/b that has it built in, and use it for your editing drive. You'd set this up in the CS4 suite (really only AE and Premiere.. oh and photoshop if you use it), to use this drive as your cache/scratch drive. You could move a "copy" of a project over to it while you edit on it.. then when you save.. have some script that you can run to copy it back for backup purposes on your raid1/5 setup. You'd be looking at 6 HDs, 1 main one, one for your music stuff, 2 for raid0 cache/scratch, 2 for Raid1 backup/storage. The main drive and the raid1 drives can be 500GB or 320GB drives.. save on cost. The main OS doesn't need that much room, and to keep it performant you use something like OO Defrag on it. The Raid0 drives will double capacity so 2 500GBs will give you 1TB of faster read/write. Very few projects will use 500GBs of space. The backup drives I'd consder 1.5TB drives, as you'll only get 1.5TB with two of them in Raid1 setup.. since they duplicate one another.

David Merrill July 11th, 2009 11:15 AM

Thanks Harm. I'm going through your tutorial now. I'm confused about one thing. You say "You will gain more from slower memory in large quantities, than from faster but less memory, even with 32 bit apps like CS4". I looked up the specs on Premiere CS4 and it says it's "architected and optimized for 64bit". I guess that's different than natively 64bit. I had earlier gone to TomsHardware.com and I like the i7 920 processor. At this point I'm operating on 3 datums. i7 920, X58 Express mobo (The idea being stick with Intel), and get a big case with lots of expansion slots.

David Merrill July 11th, 2009 11:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Zsolt Gordos (Post 1170435)
Hi, why dont you build a Hackintosh?

Thanks for the idea but all my apps are Windows. My son is a graphics guy and hates PC's. Maybe "hate" is the wrong word. He has a very condescending attitude towards them.

Harm Millaard July 11th, 2009 11:29 AM

I can imagine how you can get confused by that statement. Let me give you an example based on current prices:

Corsair TR3X6G1600C7 6 GB DDR3 kit PC-16000 @ around $ 300 with CL7, versus
GeIL Ultra GU36GB1333C6TC 6 GB DDR3 kit PC-10600 @ around $ 120 with CL7

From the specs the Corsair memory is much faster and more expensive.
The problem is that the i7 on a X58 mobo will not use that theoretical speed.

My message was that it is better to get two kits of GeIL memory instead of one Corsair kit, because:

1. You will save money,
2. You will double your memory and reduce pagefile use, thus increasing performance,
3. Even with the same memory, differences in performance would be negligable,
4. You can't use the higher FSB speed of the Corsair.

Hope this helps.

David Merrill July 11th, 2009 11:38 AM

Yes. That does help. Regarding the X58 Express, I'm just assuming it will allow me to have up to 4 Sata drives. I'm not geeky enough to understand all the spec terms in reading specs.

Harm Millaard July 11th, 2009 12:27 PM

Usually X58 mobo's have 6 SATA connectors. What is important to consider is on-board sound and on-board firewire as mentioned in the guide. Take your time to read it carefully and also the Q&A's in the rest of the thread. There may well be valuable info to help you. That at least was my intention when writing these guides, since these are issues that come around with a certain regularity. If you go to the Premiere CS4 forums, there is a link at the top of the page to all kinds of hardware related issues, amongst them these guides.

http://forums.adobe.com/community/pr...erepro_current

David Merrill July 11th, 2009 12:39 PM

Thank you Harm. With your help and the Adobe forum I'm sure all my questions will get answered. My sound, BTW, is through a M-Audio Firewire 410 so that's covered.

Kevin Duffey July 11th, 2009 12:48 PM

To make your life easier, I'd opt for the main drive and 2nd drive inside the computer, and use raid outside. Less heat to extract, and if there is any sort of failure.. less hassle having to open the case again. I think you can get 2 low-cost 2-drive enclosures + 2 drives and Raid 0 or Raid 1 them quite easily. I'd consider using the backup Raid 1 setup on the USB port, with using the e-sata port for the raid1. If you have 2 e-sata, then naturally put both on there. Most motherboards come with 0 or 1 of them.. although the more expensive m/bs come with 2 or a back port with one on it. I forget the speed..but I think e-sata is quite a bit faster than USB2. It will be nice when USB3 comes out later this year.. sometime next year before we start seeing anything with it tho.

I agree with the memory.. get more slower memory. 12GB is nice.. like I said I run that now on my quad core and I almost never have issues except when rendering.. but that is because I've specified to use most of my memory and 3 cores to render with.

Take a look at the BM Intensity card while you're at it. For $200, it's very nice for analog and HDMI/HD-SDI inputs. Not sure if you would need it, but pointing it out in case you didn't know about it.

Harm Millaard July 11th, 2009 01:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by David Merrill (Post 1170495)
Thank you Harm. With your help and the Adobe forum I'm sure all my questions will get answered. My sound, BTW, is through a M-Audio Firewire 410 so that's covered.

Just to let you know, I recently helped a guy who had a firewire audio card and had trouble capturing over firewire with CS4. This firewire card was causing his problems. After he removed the card and switched to on-board sound, his problems disappeared. He used a RME card, so maybe you will not encounter his difficulties. Let's hope so, but at least you will know where to look first.

Harm Millaard July 11th, 2009 01:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kevin Duffey (Post 1170497)
To make your life easier, I'd opt for the main drive and 2nd drive inside the computer, and use raid outside. Less heat to extract, and if there is any sort of failure.. less hassle having to open the case again.

I would suggest against that, for a couple of reasons.

1. The cable mesh you get with externals.
2. The lack of external connectors.
3. The lack of using a decent raid controller.
4. The often bad cooling of external disks.
5. The extra sound that externals come with.

If you have a decent case you can easily fit in 15+ hard disks in hot swappable bays without temperature problems (I have 17 internals plus 2 BR burners and the highest temperature I have measured was 30 degrees C with a room temperature of 28), that clearly indicate if one has failed by LED lights and it is cheaper and easier to replace a failed internal than an external disk.

David Merrill July 11th, 2009 01:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Harm Millaard (Post 1170505)
Just to let you know, I recently helped a guy who had a firewire audio card and had trouble capturing over firewire with CS4. This firewire card was causing his problems. After he removed the card and switched to on-board sound, his problems disappeared. He used a RME card, so maybe you will not encounter his difficulties. Let's hope so, but at least you will know where to look first.

Thanks for the data. I'm sure I'll have lots of questions regarding my music apps because I don't know how well or if they will operate in a Vista 64 bit environment. I've heard good things about the RME cards.

David Merrill July 11th, 2009 01:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Harm Millaard (Post 1170509)
I would suggest against that, for a couple of reasons.

1. The cable mesh you get with externals.
2. The lack of external connectors.
3. The lack of using a decent raid controller.
4. The often bad cooling of external disks.
5. The extra sound that externals come with.

If you have a decent case you can easily fit in 15+ hard disks in hot swappable bays without temperature problems (I have 17 internals plus 2 BR burners and the highest temperature I have measured was 30 degrees C with a room temperature of 28), that clearly indicate if one has failed by LED lights and it is cheaper and easier to replace a failed internal than an external disk.

That's good to know. Thanks. I was figuring on internal drives and using one of those 5 bay cases that will let me provide some air space between the drives.

Kevin Duffey July 11th, 2009 01:50 PM

Harm, your a brave sole. I am all about convenience, and anytime I have to open up my case to get at anything, well..I'd prefer not. You get conveniences with externals as well. Still hot-swappable.. I've not heard any sound except when I put it on my desk with no rubber feet and the speeds sometimes vibrate the case and my desk..but that's my own fault. External cables are really not that hard to take care of.. it's not like the montior, power supply, keyboard, mouse, network, USB hub and external sound card don't have them.. but that's really a matter of preference.

If you have 17 drives in one enclosure, I am guessing you have a 1500+watt power supply? How do you turn the drives off when not in use? To me the added ability to avoid extra electrical costs running that many drives when most of the time most of them wouldn't be in use is worth the external benefits. Plus the externals you can plug into other computers, bring them with you if need be, etc. Again it is all a matter of how you plan to work and how much money you got to play with. For me, the externals work out better because with most having network connection built in, I can put the enclosures anywhere, connect to the network with 1GB connection and use it when needed. For backup/home media users, it's fantastic. I'd go either way on the "work" raid1 drives.. inside is fine, depends on your case you get, how much room to work with, power supply, etc. I'd highly recommend the expensive good power supplies tho. I paid $150 for my 600 watt which isn't too bad.

You sound like with 17 drives that you do all your backups of all your video work right there in the case. Personally for me, if I am running a business where I am expected to keep backups for a period of time, I am either paying for storage like at S3 to keep backups or I am putting removable drives in a fire safe. Not that it will happen, but if a fire broke out and your computer went with it.. you'd lose a huge investment not just in drive cost, but potentially far more in all that data you're backing up in one spot. I can't claim to know that you don't backup elsewhere either.. just from what you've said..with 17 drives in one uber large tower case, I am taking a guess.

David Merrill July 11th, 2009 01:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Harm Millaard (Post 1170509)
If you have a decent case you can easily fit in 15+ hard disks

I didn't know they made 'em that big. We're getting into the small garden shed size. (Just kidding).

Kevin Duffey July 11th, 2009 01:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Harm Millaard (Post 1170509)
I would suggest against that, for a couple of reasons.

1. The cable mesh you get with externals.
2. The lack of external connectors.
3. The lack of using a decent raid controller.
4. The often bad cooling of external disks.
5. The extra sound that externals come with.

If you have a decent case you can easily fit in 15+ hard disks in hot swappable bays without temperature problems (I have 17 internals plus 2 BR burners and the highest temperature I have measured was 30 degrees C with a room temperature of 28), that clearly indicate if one has failed by LED lights and it is cheaper and easier to replace a failed internal than an external disk.

1. Cables are easily contained and kept out of sight.. lease of the worries when your in a studio.

2. This can be an issue..depending on the motherboard, but it really depends on how many external enclosures your planning on. 1 4-drive nice one with drives for about $1K should do most people good for quite some time. Maybe not for backups down the road, but plenty good for working with video and music production.

3. The few external setups I've seen use good controllers in their external bay setup. No worse than using SATA raid that comes with the motherboard. Probably better. Neither would be as good as a $300+ raid card with memory slots for caching.

4. I think you've either not looked recently or had some bad experiences. You get what you pay for here. If you buy a $100 2-bay enclosure, with a cheap loud fan, sure..I would agree with you. But most of the $600+ 4 bay enclosures (that's without drives) that have Raid 0, 1, 5 and sometimes 6, usually have pretty good cooling and aren't loud.

5. My external 1 bay and 2 bay make no noise at all with fans. To be fair, a cheap enclosure probably does use cheaper fans that are noisy. You can sound dampen quite easily tho, and most come with rubber grommets/washers to offset any vibration noise you may pick up.

David Merrill July 11th, 2009 02:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kevin Duffey (Post 1170518)
To me the added ability to avoid extra electrical costs running that many drives when most of the time most of them wouldn't be in use is worth the external benefits. Plus the externals you can plug into other computers, bring them with you if need be, etc.

I like that. I'm not using this for business so I'm trying to keep it simple yet effective. I'm figuring 3 internal and a 1 TB external for storage.

Harm Millaard July 11th, 2009 02:12 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Kevin Duffey (Post 1170518)
Harm, your a brave sole. I am all about convenience, and anytime I have to open up my case to get at anything, well..I'd prefer not. You get conveniences with externals as well. Still hot-swappable.. I've not heard any sound except when I put it on my desk with no rubber feet and the speeds sometimes vibrate the case and my desk..but that's my own fault. External cables are really not that hard to take care of.. it's not like the montior, power supply, keyboard, mouse, network, USB hub and external sound card don't have them.. but that's really a matter of preference.

If you have 17 drives in one enclosure, I am guessing you have a 1500+watt power supply? How do you turn the drives off when not in use? To me the added ability to avoid extra electrical costs running that many drives when most of the time most of them wouldn't be in use is worth the external benefits. Plus the externals you can plug into other computers, bring them with you if need be, etc. Again it is all a matter of how you plan to work and how much money you got to play with. For me, the externals work out better because with most having network connection built in, I can put the enclosures anywhere, connect to the network with 1GB connection and use it when needed. For backup/home media users, it's fantastic. I'd go either way on the "work" raid1 drives.. inside is fine, depends on your case you get, how much room to work with, power supply, etc. I'd highly recommend the expensive good power supplies tho. I paid $150 for my 600 watt which isn't too bad.

You sound like with 17 drives that you do all your backups of all your video work right there in the case. Personally for me, if I am running a business where I am expected to keep backups for a period of time, I am either paying for storage like at S3 to keep backups or I am putting removable drives in a fire safe. Not that it will happen, but if a fire broke out and your computer went with it.. you'd lose a huge investment not just in drive cost, but potentially far more in all that data you're backing up in one spot. I can't claim to know that you don't backup elsewhere either.. just from what you've said..with 17 drives in one uber large tower case, I am taking a guess.

1 disk is for OS & programs, 2 in a raid0 for pagefile and scratch, 1 for audio & stock footage, 1 for final projects and 12 in a raid30 for media and projects.

Backups are done to server 1, which backups to server 2 over VPN, with a final backup to a NAS. The practical problem is however that the NAS only has 10+ TB and there is more than just my machine to backup.

In the case you are portretting, hot swappable bays may be just your solution. You have a finished project for client A. You take out the disk with all the source material, the project, and final delivery and store it. When the client somewhere in the future returns and wants any modifications, just plop in the drive for client A and there you go.

Look at this setup:

David Merrill July 11th, 2009 02:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kevin Duffey (Post 1170440)

Keep in mind Raid-0 is NEVER a solution for any sort of long term storage. You use it for performance, not for storage. Ideally you have all your original source/projects on a RAID1 or RAID5 setup. RAID1 is probably simplest it uses 2 drives and basically duplicates what is on one to the other..so if one does die, you can recover from the other. Raid 5 I think requires 3 or 4 drives.. 3 for Raid 1 like performance, 4 for Raid 0+1 or something like that lol..been a while since I set that up. But.. point is, don't shy away from Raid 0 using SATA 2 drives. Buy a m/b that has it built in, and use it for your editing drive. You'd set this up in the CS4 suite (really only AE and Premiere.. oh and photoshop if you use it), to use this drive as your cache/scratch drive. You could move a "copy" of a project over to it while you edit on it.. then when you save.. have some script that you can run to copy it back for backup purposes on your raid1/5 setup. You'd be looking at 6 HDs, 1 main one, one for your music stuff, 2 for raid0 cache/scratch, 2 for Raid1 backup/storage. The main drive and the raid1 drives can be 500GB or 320GB drives.. save on cost. The main OS doesn't need that much room, and to keep it performant you use something like OO Defrag on it. The Raid0 drives will double capacity so 2 500GBs will give you 1TB of faster read/write. Very few projects will use 500GBs of space. The backup drives I'd consder 1.5TB drives, as you'll only get 1.5TB with two of them in Raid1 setup.. since they duplicate one another.

Tell me if I'm wrong but here's the way I'm looking at it.
1. I'm not a computer geek so I don't want a complex system.
2. With a i7 Vista 64 bit system I don't think I'll require a Raid 0 set up, especially if I use a CineForm codec.
3. Trying to keep costs down.

David Merrill July 11th, 2009 02:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Harm Millaard (Post 1170529)
1 disk is for OS & programs, 2 in a raid0 for pagefile and scratch, 1 for audio & stock footage, 1 for final projects and 12 in a raid30 for media and projects.

Backups are done to server 1, which backups to server 2 over VPN, with a final backup to a NAS. The practical problem is however that the NAS only has 10+ TB and there is more than just my machine to backup.

In the case you are portretting, hot swappable bays may be just your solution. You have a finished project for client A. You take out the disk with all the source material, the project, and final delivery and store it. When the client somewhere in the future returns and wants any modifications, just plop in the drive for client A and there you go.

Look at this setup:

Now that's impressive! I mean that. It really is impressive. But I wouldn't even understand what I had under the hood. I just want to get from A to B smoothly and effectively. Lamborghini's are really cool but I can't afford one.

Kevin Duffey July 11th, 2009 03:00 PM

Dang Harm, that is some serious gear you got going! Nice stuff!

David, I think what Harm and I have done is giving you are geeky knowledge of building a kick ass solution and you're looking for less geek and something simple.

1. I'm not a computer geek so I don't want a complex system.

For easy of use, I'd suggest a 2-bay or 4-bay exsternal device then. You basically install the HDs, plug it in and it shows up as drive letters on your computer. You may have to install drivers..but I am hoping you know how to do that since you got CineForm and such. Shouldn't be hard. I'd tell you like Harm was saying.. get hot-swappable enclosure.

Something like:

External 2-Bay Hot-Swap SATA RAID Case Kit

might be up your alley. That's a 2-bay hotswap, USB2 connector. I'd really recommend e-sata tho because it's a much faster interconnect between external and the computer. Harm, correct me if I am wrong on that.. I've only used the USB setup so far.. I tought e-sata was 3Gbps to the computer from external drives.. even tho most HDs can only churn out 100mb or so anyway.


2. With a i7 Vista 64 bit system I don't think I'll require a Raid 0 set up, especially if I use a CineForm codec.

Remember, RAID 0 is purely for speed at the expense of losing ALL data on both drives involved if one dies. Hence why I say, if you're going to be working with HD content or higher (2K/3K/4K.. not sure what camera you are using), you'll want RAID 0 for storing the footage on while you edit it. A single 7200rpm drive may not be fast enough for larger projects with lots of HD or greater footage in it. I don't know for sure. I am actually just getting in to HD footage and haven't yet started.. and I don't have RAID0 right now, but plan to use it in my next computer build. If you plan to do mostly SD and perhaps some HD content, then I don't think you need RAID at all. Only reason I bring it up is because most good motherboards have it built in now.. so it's easy to add 2 SATAII drives and set up the RAID to get more performance.

3. Trying to keep costs down.
In that case, if your m/b supports it, you can use it later, but start out without it. To me the importance in the system is memory #1.. more memory is better but only if you're using 64-bit. I should say 64-bit is #1.. since you really can't utilize the memory without it. I've heard that with quad core cpus and 32-bit, each cpu can use 4GB of ram, but I don't know how that works to be honest. I've been using 64-bit windows Vista and 64-bit Ubuntu for both my quad cores. #2 (or 3) would be a good mother/board with room to grow, be it memory slots, Raid onboard, heat pipes throughout and so forth, you want a good mother/board. I've not gone wrong with Asus boards, and Gigabyte have been good to me too. I'd look at the $200+ m/bs for core 7. If you can afford it, you may even consider a dual-cpu board and just use one cpu for now until you can afford 2 of the same cpus. I think they are about $600 or more for the dual-cpu board.. until I have the money I wont be looking because prices always come down. I plan on building a dual-cpu system next tho, and the sooner I can, I'll start with a single cpu and add the 2nd later. Next up would be the video card. I'd opt for bare minimum an ATI/NVidia with 1GB ram and DirectX10 with probably their higher end cards. I'd say tho..if you are going to do a lot of editing, the matrox is the way to go for this system. It may not play video games well tho.. but I have 360/PS3 for that. :D So if you've got more money, grab a good Matrox video editing card. They range in all kinds of prices. NVidia Quatros and such are good too, just a matter of choice. The rest is really speculation.. faster HDs, dvd/blu ray, etc.. all your choice.

Love this discussion tho.

Harm Millaard July 11th, 2009 03:29 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Kevin,

USB2 will achieve somewhere around 20-25 MB/s sustained tranfer rate, depending on the number of devices sharing the USB port.

FW400 will achieve around 30-35 MB/s, FW800 around 50-55 MB/s. SATA and eSATA are equally fast and will achieve in the best case around 80-110 MB/s depending on fill rate, buffer size and RPM's. A 2 disk SATA raid0 will show around 170 MB/s and my weird 12 disk raid30 over 800 MB/s.

Look at these results:

Harm Millaard July 11th, 2009 03:47 PM

David,

To parrot Kevin, keep it simple. A simple case with 1 or 2 BR/DVD burners, 4 disks internally, one Velociraptor 150 GB for OS & programs C, one 500 GB SATA for pagefile and scratch disks D, one 1 TB SATA for media and projects E and one SATA for final projects F.

All X58 mobo's support that number of disks, there is no need yet to go to raid configurations but if your case is large enough, you can add that at a later date. In my Guide I have given suggestions for video cards as well. My personal favorite at this moment would be the ATI 4890 (or 4870 with a smaller budget) with at least 512 MB.

For a simple setup like this I don't see the advantage of the more expensive externals.

Kevin made a point of the electricity bill, which is an understandable and valid concern, but if you take into consideration that the average disk nowadays will consume around 8-10 Watts under load, I think that is a rather meek point. Specially if your CPU will consume up to 150 W and your video card will not be far behind in power consumption or even surpass it.

Oh, Kevin, I only have a 1000 W PSU.

Kevin Duffey July 11th, 2009 04:22 PM

Nice Harm. 1000watt for 17 drives + cpus and video? How do you have enough connectors for all them.. OR did I see that image earlier and you have an external drive bay with most of your HDs thru eSata into your computer?

So I want to make sure I got this right.. eSata is around 100 to 150mbs or so.. yet your getting 800mbs? How are you getting that speed? Sorry.. your first image you posted it looked like you had a rack of HDs and not one computer with HDs in it. It may be the angle or something, but it looked like a full rack of hardware, and not a rack computer.

I am guessing you do something in the hardware/software field since you have this kind of gear. You do realize that most editors have a dual cpu quad core with a couple HDs or even less to work with lol. You have a serious setup that no doubt kicks arse.

David Merrill July 11th, 2009 05:10 PM

Harm,

Could you explain "pagefile". I looked it up but still don't quite understand. And "scratch disk" is where CS4 would be creating temp files? The original clips from memory cards should go on which drive? Sorry, I'm getting better though at understanding these terms.
I won't have a need to swap drives in and out so I'll probably keep it all internal.

So you like the ATI 4890 over the Nvidia cards like GeForce GTX 285? I was going to ask you what you thought about the "Elemental Accellerator" plug for CS4 but just noticed it's $1,800.

I was reading some of the comments and your answers in the Adobe Forums and now I'm wondering if I should wait until later in the year when Windows 7 comes out.

Kevin Duffey July 11th, 2009 07:00 PM

Page file is what the OS uses when it's out of memory. You specify a location for this in Windows. When you put in a 2nd (or more) drive, it's best to put this on a driver OTHER than the main OS drive as it adds a minor bump in performance.. or sometimes a nice bump depending on cpu speed and memory speed. Using your scratch disk for the page file should be fine. Scratch disk is a similar concept for Adobe product.. they store temporary files among other things on this disk. Each SATA hd is on a separate controller, so by using different HDs for different things you speed up your system a little bit. I got an ATI 4870, wish I had got the 4890. It's a great card and for the price is faster than the nvidia stuff right now. They go back and forth every generation. I'd opt for the ATI right now.

The case is nice. I really like my CollerMaster COSMOS case. It's a really solid built case, has room for 8 or 10 drives, all with slide rails, + 5 or so dvd drives. and has a ton of room inside, easy to move around, plenty of cooling, and the side doors are screwless as well as the drive bays.. so very easy access. It's a tall case, but well worth $175 or so I paid for it. I would have bought a 2nd one, but found a decent "gamer" case for $100 that also had good room and a huge fan on top and fans in front of the HDs. For $100 it's a better deal, but the COSMOS is just the best case I've ever owned.

Harm Millaard July 11th, 2009 08:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kevin Duffey (Post 1170569)
Nice Harm. 1000watt for 17 drives + cpus and video? How do you have enough connectors for all them.. OR did I see that image earlier and you have an external drive bay with most of your HDs thru eSata into your computer?

So I want to make sure I got this right.. eSata is around 100 to 150mbs or so.. yet your getting 800mbs? How are you getting that speed? Sorry.. your first image you posted it looked like you had a rack of HDs and not one computer with HDs in it. It may be the angle or something, but it looked like a full rack of hardware, and not a rack computer.

I am guessing you do something in the hardware/software field since you have this kind of gear. You do realize that most editors have a dual cpu quad core with a couple HDs or even less to work with lol. You have a serious setup that no doubt kicks arse.

A couple of power splitters works wonders. It is all internal in a Lian Li PC-A77 B case. The first image was taken with the left side panel off towards the front, showing around 12 of the 14 disks in the front side of the case. The other 3 disks are above the mobo at the back side of the case, hardly discernible in the second image. All you really see in that second image are some red SATA cables in the top of the picture.

I still have 5 eSATA connectors free, 1 from the mobo and 4 from the Areca controller.

I do have a couple of externals, 1 FW400 disk, and a couple of USB externals. Those externals are mostly used to transfer footage from SxS (or MxR) cards through my notebook to the external drives and later transferred to my media drive.

That media drive is so fast because it consists of 12 disks, configured as two raid3 arrays of 6 disks each that are striped to a raid30, giving 10 TB net space. It is aided by 2 GB cache memory on the controller.

Near the end of the PC Buying Guide there is a link to a screenshot of my complete configuration listing all components, drive setup, benchmark results and temperatures.

In post #4 here http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/attend-wo...tem-build.html you can also see it.

Harm Millaard July 12th, 2009 08:34 AM

Kevin,

I have to disappoint you, I don't work in the IT sector, far from it, I'm a Human Resource Consultant. However, I do have a basic understanding of some hardware/software related things relevant for NLE in general and CS4 in particular. It is purely a hobby for me, but I also have to admit that my son sometimes helps me when things get too complicated for me. He is an IT professional (MCSE, MSSA, CCSE, and a whole lot of other certifications) who specializes in network and infrastructure design and roll out of extensive networks in large companies, like major telecom organizations.

Sometimes I feel we are guinea pigs, when he wants to experiment with different VMWare servers on our home network (LAN and WAN). But he keeps it working great, with daily backups over VPN, distributed Exchange servers, fall back configurations fully implemented, self managed DNS records and DHCP configuration and the like. It is only when he starts talking about some of the client configurations he encounters, that I realize with our setup, we are nothing more than mere hobbyists.

Zsolt Gordos July 12th, 2009 08:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kevin Duffey (Post 1170440)
Can you get OSX to run on any PC now? I heard it could be done.. just haven't tried. I got a coworker that got OSX to work inside a virtual machine as a guest OS.. but it's not 100% solid last I checked.

Hi Kevin, what I am saying is not a virtual machine, it is OSX running on a real PC hardware. It is ROCK solid. Plus with the MOBO I have overclocking Quad processor up to 4Ghz also not a big deal. To be on the very safe side I just OC-d it up to 3.5Ghz.

Anyways, the usual problem with the Hackintosh configs is the steep learning curve if you want to do it all from BIOS tweaking. This is where Efi-x comes into play. It is a cute little piece of hardware and it acts as a booting agent. You have to connect it to the MOBO via internal USB port.
If you follow the instructions, installing and running OSX is a child play. I am not at all an IT guy or any sort of hacker enthusiast. If I could do it, anyone can.

The only thing you have to look at is the hardware compatibility - fortunately you can choose from a lot of supported parts (MOBO-s, graphoc cards, CPU-s). And the list of supported hardware is growing by the day.

Now I have a pretty powerful system for both OSX and Vista, and it is a matter of a new hard disk to have Linux, too.
And the price I paid is less than 1/3 of a similar MacPro...

Zsolt Gordos July 12th, 2009 08:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by David Merrill (Post 1170454)
Thanks for the idea but all my apps are Windows. My son is a graphics guy and hates PC's. Maybe "hate" is the wrong word. He has a very condescending attitude towards them.

David, I may not fully understand what you mean by this. If your son, a graphic guy hates PC-s (which is perfectly normal..:P) why do you have all your apps under Windows?

Anyways, if you follow my suggestion, you would have a PC AND a Mac same time in the same machine, how cool is that? You never know...maybe one day you will develop some crave for Final Cut Studio... :)

Having both FCS and CS4 I wont be surprised.

David Merrill July 12th, 2009 10:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Zsolt Gordos (Post 1170793)
David, I may not fully understand what you mean by this. If your son, a graphic guy hates PC-s (which is perfectly normal..:P) why do you have all your apps under Windows?

Anyways, if you follow my suggestion, you would have a PC AND a Mac same time in the same machine, how cool is that? You never know...maybe one day you will develop some crave for Final Cut Studio... :)

Having both FCS and CS4 I wont be surprised.

Mostly it's my music apps. I have more money wrapped up in music software than any place else and it's all windows stuff and even the Intel Mac won't handle half of it. On the music forum I belong to the Mac guys were always pissed off that the developers weren't handling the bugs in the "Wrapper" (whatever that is). Anyway, I don't mind PC's. I just need a faster one. I have a dual core E6550, 3 gigs ram, and it handles all my apps and SD video fine. But it won't handle HD to my satisfaction.

P.S. After years of messing around with Premiere and AE I'm familiar with them. I don't want to have to learn FCP too.

P.S. #2 If I was a professional video guy I would probably go Mac. I think of them like a BMW. High quality parts, reliable, but pricey.
I'm retired and do this for pleasure.


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