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Author Topic: Windows workstation, what are you building or buying today?  (Read 12869 times)
andyptak
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« Reply #40 on: August 08, 2009, 08:13:47 PM »
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Fascinating discussion from people far more knowledgable than me. I'm in the market for a new rig too, but the main stumbling block for me is that DxO and Nik only support 32 bit! The main reason I want to upgrade from my old dual core P4 is that my 24mpx files process very slowly, particularly the RAW conversion in DxO and multi-layered files (usually about 500/600 megs) in CS3 take forever to even save!

What's the point in going to a fast quad core, lots of RAM and a 64 bit OS ? Looks like I can't use the extra horsepower.
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Christopher
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« Reply #41 on: August 08, 2009, 09:53:07 PM »
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Quote from: andyptak
Fascinating discussion from people far more knowledgable than me. I'm in the market for a new rig too, but the main stumbling block for me is that DxO and Nik only support 32 bit! The main reason I want to upgrade from my old dual core P4 is that my 24mpx files process very slowly, particularly the RAW conversion in DxO and multi-layered files (usually about 500/600 megs) in CS3 take forever to even save!

What's the point in going to a fast quad core, lots of RAM and a 64 bit OS ? Looks like I can't use the extra horsepower.


Well first of all I don't know if DxO supports multi CPUs but I expect it.

The very first question which always comes to my mind is how much do you want to spend. I find a disscussion before that a little sense less. Why ? Pretty easy for some just want to spend under 1500 US and others really want something big and are willing to spend 3000 upwards. It changes a lot of things.

For general advice here are some thoughts:

- CPU I wouldn't spend the money on workstation Xeon CPUs or a extrem edition of a Core i7. You can save already nearly 500 bucks by choosing a cpu which is not the top end at the moment. (The performance lost would most of the time be less than 5%)

-RAM I would go between 8 and 12 gigs, that however depends on what you need. If you really are thinking about working on larger files an panoramic stuff you should consider going towardes 12+

- OS 64 bit is the only way to go. I still would say Vista if it is a workstation for serious work, if not you can try Windows 7 which has it's benefits.

- Most important point in a workstation hard drives. Here it also depends on how much money you are willing to spend. When it comes to working with larger files, saving loading them, NOTHING is faster than a few SSD drives in raid 0. You easly can get write and read speeds over 500 mb/s. However this is also the expensive rout, especially if you need a lot of harddrive space.

I can give you more ideas and thoughts, when I know how much you really would like to spend.
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Phil Indeblanc
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« Reply #42 on: August 08, 2009, 11:31:45 PM »
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Quote from: andyptak
Fascinating discussion from people far more knowledgable than me. I'm in the market for a new rig too, but the main stumbling block for me is that DxO and Nik only support 32 bit! The main reason I want to upgrade from my old dual core P4 is that my 24mpx files process very slowly, particularly the RAW conversion in DxO and multi-layered files (usually about 500/600 megs) in CS3 take forever to even save!

What's the point in going to a fast quad core, lots of RAM and a 64 bit OS ? Looks like I can't use the extra horsepower.


I know that some programs need to emulate a 32bit OS and will run fine under 64bit native OS, but will not gain the added muscle.

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mmurph
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« Reply #43 on: August 10, 2009, 12:44:05 PM »
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Quote from: Christopher
Well first of all I don't know if DxO supports multi CPUs but I expect it.

The very first question which always comes to my mind is how much do you want to spend. I find a disscussion before that a little sense less. ....

- CPU I wouldn't spend the money on workstation Xeon CPUs or a extrem edition of a Core i7. You can save already nearly 500 bucks by choosing a cpu which is not the top end at the moment. (The performance lost would most of the time be less than 5%)

That is all a great lead in to these type of discusions.

Personally, I like to hold back a couple of steps from the "bleeding edge", premium pricing/premium performance level.

That last 5% to 10% of performance just is not worth th extra 100% to 200% in cost - in most cases - to me.  (It usually is in the design mode, like when you buy a car.  You start out with a basic box at $200 and "inch up" to a $5,000 box.  Then reality sets in when you have to balance the budget and still eat, buy a camera, pay studio rent ...)  

Specifically, if you look at the retail price points on the i7 processors, the "base level"  920 is $250, the "mid level" 950 is $500, and the "higher end" 975 is $1,000 (roughly, as proxy numbers, ignoring deals, etc.)

So is the extra performance of he 970 "worth" 4x as much as the 920?  For some people, yes.  But if you look at the overall spectrum of "usable" processors - from dual core to the Xeon, etc. - the incremental increase is small compared to going from the dual core 4200, for example, to the i7.

Here are som,e benchmark numbers:

[blockquote]T4200 - 1,239

i7 920 - 5,442

i7 950 - 6,231

i7 975 - 7,202
[/blockquote]

http://www.cpubenchmark.net/high_end_cpus.html


There is another thread where folks are discussing $4K laptops for medium format tethered, but the same basic argument/discussion that is raised more explicitly here.

Cheeers!  Just back from one trip, 2 days home and I have to go again ... no time to actually buy or use things .... or do anything useful.    

Best,
Michael
« Last Edit: August 10, 2009, 04:54:49 PM by mmurph » Logged
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