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Advice on CPU/GPU upgrade

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Paul Herron
Advice on CPU/GPU upgrade
on Aug 28, 2019 at 11:44:23 am

Hiya folks, first post here, go easy on me.

Looking to upgrade CPU and/or get a GPU.

The aim is to create a better desktop than I currently have, specifically for editing and exporting video with Adobe Premiere Pro CC 2019.

I am edging into the world of paid work, using my new Panasonic GH5S camera, and as such, 4K capabilities are a must. The work will be varied, from music vids to wedding stuff, and I want to be able to use plenty of effects, do color correction etc , whilst editing.
At the minute I'm using HD proxies, and don't mind doing so, especially as my monitor is just full HD, not 4K. (Use my 4k TV in the living room to check eventual 4K renders.......I know....I know.....)

As you'll see below my specs aren't great, and I'm actually surprised with the work I've been able to do so far, but of course, even using proxies, once the effects/adjustment layers, start adding up, I get major slow down, and exporting times are not great.

Unfortunately, neither is my bank balance, and any upgrade will be below the £500 mark initially.

I've done a bit of research, but, as you guys know about looking for this sort of stuff online, you open one door to be greeted with ten more, each of which take you to another ten, and 4 hours later you've forgotten who you are and the kitchen has burnt down.

So, in summary, to greatly speed up/ enhance my system (editing/previewing and rendering), shall I get a GPU to work alongside existing components, or upgrade just the CPU, or do I have to bite the bullet and realise that just one or the other is not an option?

I'm thinking maybe a cracking 8th gen Intel CPU now prices are coming down? I7/9 maybe?
No thoughts on GPUs as I don't know anything really...



Intel i5 8600k (Graphics are Intel UHD 630)
Don't have one.
Z370A-PRO (MS 7B48)
DDR4 32GB, 3200 MHZ
Corsair CX 550M (550 watt)
Windows 10 home

Look forward to your answers folks,
Thankyou in advance!!!


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Sa Dilshan
Re: Advice on CPU/GPU upgrade
on Aug 28, 2019 at 2:04:26 pm

I'd suggest getting a Ryzen 2700X (since those are extremely cheap after 3rd gen launch) and save money for a better GPU. Also go for a RM series or Seasonic G series PSU.

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Paul Herron
Re: Advice on CPU/GPU upgrade
on Aug 28, 2019 at 2:18:01 pm

Cheers Sa!!!

So the Ryzen must be a real step up processor wise yes?

Also just wondering why thenee for new PSU?

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Sa Dilshan
Re: Advice on CPU/GPU upgrade
on Aug 29, 2019 at 9:07:50 am

Yeah. Also, don't need to upgrade motherboards if you are planning to upgrade to 3 or hopefully 4th gen Ryzen CPU in the future.

Because capacitors in CX series isn't that good.

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Jeff Pulera
Re: Advice on CPU/GPU upgrade
on Aug 29, 2019 at 6:37:36 pm

As far as I know, a motherboard is either made for an Intel processor, or an AMD (Ryzen) processor and they are not interchangeable. So the Ryzen recommendation is suspect.

This is what it says for the Z370A motherboard:

Supports 9th / 8th Gen Intel® Core™ / Pentium® Gold / Celeron® processors for LGA 1151 socket



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Merlin Vandenbossche
Re: Advice on CPU/GPU upgrade
on Aug 29, 2019 at 8:35:20 pm

I don't mean to pry but I strongly disagree on the suggestion for a Ryzen in your case. Since you already own a Z370 board, it would be more cost-efficient to upgrade along the Intel i7 or i9 path. Getting Ryzen also means getting a new board for your system. And more importantly: the intel CPU's are a better match for premiere pro if you are using GOP-compressed footage. You shoot GH5, which delivers a difficult H264 or HEVC compression. Because Intel CPU's have access to an 'onboard' GPU, it allows Premiere Pro to use what is called 'QuickSync', a technology that helps decode the GOP-compressed stream. Ryzen, Threadripper, Xeon, Core-X are all CPU-brands that have no access to QuickSync and are therefore 'slower' at editing H264 footage (be it DSLR, GoPro or drones).

In fact, even now, your 8600K can use this tech. Just make sure to enable the onboard graphics (enable 'IGPU' in the bios) and enable the hardware accelerated decoding in the prefs of PPRO (under the media tab).

This is a good vid explaining some more:

On to actual recommendations:

For CPU:
Since you are limited in budget I would suggest trying to find something like a 9700k for around 350 dollars. If you can't: a 6-core 8700k will also be a good upgrade compared to the 8600k. The best upgrade path is the 9900k, which is phenomenal for Premiere Pro right now, but it will cost you higher. Whatever you choose: never pick any of the 'KF' series (9700KF, 9900KF), since those don't have an IGPU. And you really do want QuickSync.

For GPU:
I would actually advise you to get this first. Compared to no GPU, pretty much any GPU will mean a really good improvement. General advice for Adobe apps is to get NVIDIA cards. They beat AMD's offerings in almost every scenario. PPRO is much more optimized with CUDA than OpenCL as the Mercury Playback Engine setting. For CUDA you need NVIDIA cards. Reasonable budget options today are the GTX1660Ti or regular GTX1060. If you can afford it: get an RTX card, RTX 2060 or 2060 Super.

These articles on Puget Systems btw give you great insight about the performance of various CPU and GPU options. That way you can easily compare to more expensive upgrades.

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Paul Herron
Re: Advice on CPU/GPU upgrade
on Aug 30, 2019 at 10:30:00 am


This is a fantastic answer and has given me plenty to think about.

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