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natfunk
Building NLE on an $1150 CAD Budget, can it be done?
on Nov 4, 2010 at 3:18:20 am

Hi!

I'm doing some research to see what the most cost effective system would be for me to build or have someone build for me if I give them a list of parts to get or provide parts to them.

I'm fairly new to video editing (been doing it for about 7 months) and have been learning on Adobe Premier Pro CS4.

My main uses for my NLE video system will be to do the following:

*Produce and edit weekly HD video blogs for YouTube (3-10 mins in length)
*Produce and edit a 1.25 hour (maybe a bit longer) live show DVD with backstage footage. This will be manufactured as a DVD for sale
*Use Adobe After Effects to do simple animated intros and some other effects, but not tons of this type of work


So far I've been doing OK with my system, but it's now dying and quite rapidly it seems. I'm getting terrible blue screen crashes, audio synch off in some renders, frame dropouts, I get tons of crashes of APP and then it corrupts the file, I can't use a lot of layers and rendering anything over 10 minutes is a nightmare. Most recently, my video card seems to have burned out and I replaced it. It was fine for 2 days but then I crashed and the card was not recognized and it's like it completely disappeared from the Device manager. Now when it crashes I have to unseat and re-seat the card, and then reinstall the ATI software and drivers. It's a serious pain in the butt!

I've decided I need to get a new system built.

What I am working with is about an $1150 Canadian dollar budget. I need to buy the parts or do the build in Canada. Buying a US made system or buying parts from NewEgg.com and getting them across the border is costly when you factor in duties.

I have done research for computer shops or parts here in the Toronto area and these places come recommended:
http://www.sonnam.com/
http://www.canadacomputers.com
http://www.tigerdirect.ca/

What I currently have for my computer setup is as follows:

Motherboard: ASUS Socket AM2 MB
Processor: AMD Athlon64 X2 4200+ 2.2GHZ
RAM: 2GB Super Talent DDR2-667 PC2-5400
Operating System: Microsoft Windows XP SP3
Burner/DVD/CD Drive: Samsung 18x DVD/- R/RW Drive
Video Card: ATI Radeon HD 5550 Series 512MB
Case: Coolermaster Centurion 534, Power Supply: 430 Watts
C Drive (for OS only): Western Digital 40GB SATA300 7200 RPM
Main Drive: Western Digital 250GB SATA300 7200 RPM
LCD Display: Viewsonic VP920b

I will keep the display monitor, but will want to build a new system.

What would be the best system that I can build within my budget?

I was looking at the Intel i7 for the processor and I had seen the ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 mentioned in the DIY7 build for an NLE system. I can't afford $2,000 for my system, so what should I do to get something that can handle what I need to do? Also I will be upgrading to Adobe Premier Pro CS5 and Adobe After Effects CS5, so that's something to keep in mind as far as processor goes I would think.

Thanks for all your help in advance.

Nat


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Jcschild
Re: Building NLE on an $1150 CAD Budget, can it be done?
on Nov 4, 2010 at 1:16:42 pm

if AMD it needs to be the 1050t/1090T and over clock it
If Intel it needs to be the 870 and overclock it.

minimum nVidia 460
minimum 3 HDDs
minimum 8 gig ram (CS5 eats ram like crazy)


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RJL0365
Re: Building NLE on an $1150 CAD Budget, can it be done?
on Nov 4, 2010 at 3:12:24 pm

Actually, 5.0.2 doesn't eat up RAM as ridiculously as 5.0.1 or 5.0.0 although you still want more than 4GB of RAM for acceptable performance.

And based on my testing, I found that you can go as low as a GTS 450 or a GT 240 (the latter in its 1GB DDR5/GDDR5 version - the DDR3 version is not recommended as it is significantly slower in MPE than the DDR5 version) and still achieve good MPE performance. This is because CS5's MPE GPU mode does not take anywhere near full advantage of the higher-end GPUs. However, if you can Google "CS5 MPE GPU hack", you will find the method of enabling GPU acceleration in CS5 of most NVIDIA cards that are not "officially" supported by Adobe (the current list of official Adobe-certified cards as of 5.0.2 are the GeForce GTX 285 and GTX 470, the Quadro CX, FX 3800, FX 4800 and FX 5800, and the new Quadro 4000 and 5000).

And I do agree that a minimum of three drives is strongly recommended (I consider a RAID 0 array as a single drive regardless of the actual number of drives used).


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natfunk
Thanks!
on Nov 5, 2010 at 1:45:01 am

Jcschild: can I overclock something myself? I've never done that before. Are there any guides on how to do it?

I found this online:
http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=4_65&item_id=0239...
Intel Core i7 950 Quad-Core Socket LGA1366, 3.06Ghz, 4.8GT/s FSB, 8MB L3 Cache, 45nm (Retail Boxed) (BX80601950)

and Motherboard:

Motherboard
Asus P6TD Deluxe Socket 1366 + Intel X58/ICH10R Chipset Triple-Channel DDR3 2000(O.C.) / 1866(O.C.) / 1800(O.C.) / 1600(O.C.) / 1333 / 1066 support 16+2 Phase VRM PCLe 2.0 6 xSATA 3 Gb/s ports
http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=26_342&item_id=02...

Would those be a good buy together? I'm a total newb when it comes to building, so really looking for recommendations of specific items that I could fit into my budget.

I notice with the nVidia 460 that a bunch of people make it. How do I know which one to get? Why are there differences?
See this list I found:
http://www.canadacomputers.com/advanced_search_result.php?cPath=&sort=5...

RJL0365: If I get 6GB - 8GBof RAM to start, what brand should I get. I hear Corsair is the best, but what is comparable or doable that's a bit cheaper?

So are you saying for the nVidia card, make sure it is DDR5? What is the difference between DDR5 and GDDR5? I am thinking it's probably best to get the card that is compatible with Adobe CS5 to avoid issues, correct?

Also, do I need a Heatsink? How do I get extra cooling to make sure stuff doesn't burn out? The case I am looking at has the following cooling specs:
# Advanced cooling system:
# - 1 rear 120 x 25mm TriCool� blue LED exhaust fan
# - 1 top 200 x 30mm �Big Boy� TriCool� blue LED exhaust fan
# - 2 front 120 x 25mm special black blue LED intake fans with front speed control
# - 1 side (Optional) 120 x 25mm fan mount
# - 1 middle (Optional) 120mm fan mount

Do I need to mount anything extra to make sure the box stays cool?

So far I've come up with a list of pieces I'd wish to get. This totals way above my budget, but just wondering what I can skimp on to save or cut out altogether. I made this before Jcschild mentioned to get 3 Hard Drives. Can I get 350GB for C drive and 1TB for the others? Or should they all be 1TB?

Wishlist so far for DIY build:

Processor
Intel Core i7
http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=4_65&item_id=0239...
Intel Core i7 950 Quad-Core Socket LGA1366, 3.06Ghz, 4.8GT/s FSB, 8MB L3 Cache, 45nm (Retail Boxed) (BX80601950)
$330

Motherboard
Asus P6TD Deluxe Socket 1366 + Intel X58/ICH10R Chipset Triple-Channel DDR3 2000(O.C.) / 1866(O.C.) / 1800(O.C.) / 1600(O.C.) / 1333 / 1066 support 16+2 Phase VRM PCLe 2.0 6 xSATA 3 Gb/s ports
http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=26_342&item_id=02...
$250.00

RAM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820145235&cm_re=c...
CORSAIR XMS3 12GB (6 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800
$239.99 (USD from NewEgg.com in the US)

Operating System
Windows 7
http://www.sonnam.com/detail.asp?S=944302153&prod_gp=29&prod_code=2...
WINDOWS 7 HOME PREMIUM 64BIT
$100

Graphics Card
http://www.canadacomputers.com/advanced_search_result.php?cPath=&sort=5...
nVidia 460
$250

System Drive
Hitachi Deskstar 1TB 3.5" SATAII 7200rpm 32MB Cache OEM (0F10383)
http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=15_210_212&item_i...
$60

Dedicated Video Storage
Hitachi Deskstar 1TB 3.5" SATAII 7200rpm 32MB Cache OEM (0F10383)
http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=15_210_212&item_i...
$60

DVD/CD R/WR
http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=3_56&item_id=0268...
Samsung SH-S243D/BEBE SATA 24X Black DVD Writer OEM
$30

Power Supply
http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=33_441&item_id=02...
Cooler Master GX Series 750W Power Supply (RS-750-ACAA-E3)
$90

Case
http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=6_112&item_id=021...
Antec Nine Hundred Two Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Ultimate Gamer Case
$230


Any ideas on how to bring my costs down to $1100-$1200? What pieces can I cut or maybe get a different version of?

Thanks so much for the feedback!

Smile


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natfunk
RAID - Array
on Nov 5, 2010 at 1:50:09 am

BTW RJL0365: what is RAID 0 array?

Thanks!


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RJL0365
Re: Building NLE on an $1150 CAD Budget, can it be done?
on Nov 5, 2010 at 3:57:10 am

Nat,

RAID 0 is striped. Using a stripe, two or more disks can be linked together so that they are detected as one large single drive volume. And striping writes bits of data to different drives simultaneously; thus, sequential transfer speeds increase by a factor of almost this many drives (for example, four identical hard drives in RAID 0 will be nearly four times faster than a single drive of the same make and model).

As for the memory, Corsair does not currently offer a 1600-speed memory module that runs at any lower voltage than 1.65V, which is the maximum recommended memory voltage for the Intel processors. The higher stock voltage may result in the CPU running a bit hotter than normal.

For lower-end NVIDIA cards, make sure that they have at least 1GB of graphics RAM (a 512MB or 768MB card will not enable MPE's GPU mode at all) - and also make sure that this memory is DDR5 or GDDR5 and not DDR3.

As for the case, I don't recommend any of the Antec gaming cases, including the Nine Hundred Two: They are embarrassingly cramped from front to rear. Some GTX 470s and GTX 480s will not even fit inside that case because they are too long compared to the space between the rear panel and the fixed, nonremovable drive cage support bracket (or, if they physically fit that space, they might end up getting squashed by the internal hard drives installed in the drive bays), while the cramped case layout needlessly complicates the use of front-edge-mounted internal SATA ports on the motherboard.

And although the stock boxed Intel CPU heatsink would suffice at the i7-950's stock speed, I'd recommend getting a high-performance aftermarket CPU heatsink such as the CoolerMaster Hyper 212 Plus (which costs just $30).


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natfunk
More questions...
on Nov 5, 2010 at 5:34:01 am

RJL0365:

Thanks for explaining that to me! Is it mandatory to link all the drives together? I have several drives in my box now, but they are not linked up.

Based on your info here, my questions are:

RAM
What is the best, most cost effective RAM to get for the i7? Would Crucial Ballistix be OK? I was looking at Crucial Ballistix Tracer 2GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory w/ Red LEDs Model BL25664TR1608

I was looking at this RAM tonight:
CORSAIR XMS3 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model TW3X4G1333C9A G
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820145251&Tpk=N82E...

Would you say a no go on the Corsair due to heat issues?

VIDEO CARD
It seems that most of the nVidia 460 cards that I saw are all 768MB, can you recommend one that would work for Adobe CS5 suite? I will not be gaming on this system. Just doing mostly short videos, smalltime animation, editing images, doing graphic design work in Illustrator and Photoshop and that sort of thing.


CASE
As for cases, what cases do you recommend?
Is Coolermaster OK? I checked this alternate one out:
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119137&Tpk=N82E...
COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
It doesn't come with a Power Supply though. Are there any brands you recommend for a 750 Watt one that are decently priced?

HEATSINK
I was doing some reading about the on board heatsink for the i7 and read that a good extra one to get is the CORSAIR CAFA50 120mm CPU Cooler, so will need to revise my list.
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835181012&Tpk=CORS...


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natfunk
RAM Voltage, Motherboard and CPU
on Nov 7, 2010 at 8:34:26 am

I found some Corsair that runs at 1.5v
CORSAIR XMS3 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model TW3X4G1333C9A G
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820145251&Tpk=N82E...

This would seemingly meet the Intel i7 Guideline as specified here:
http://www.intel.com/support/processors/sb/CS-029913.htm
What are the Intel® Core™ i7 processor and the Intel® Core™ i5 processor DDR3 memory voltage limitations?
Intel® recommends using memory that adheres to the Jedec memory specification for DDR3 memory which is 1.5 volts, plus or minus 5%. Anything over this voltage can either damage the processor or significantly reduce the processor life span.

It seems that the frequency of the RAM is down-clocked to 1066 MHz... what does this mean for me performance wise if I put 4GB in the box to start. I may Upgrade to 6GB but I just can't at the outset.

The motherboard and CPU combo I am looking at is
GIGABYTE GA-P55A-UD4P LGA 1156 Intel P55 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard w/ USB 3.0 & SATA 6 Gb/s
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128409&Tpk=N82E...

Intel Core i7-950 Bloomfield 3.06GHz 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor BX80601950
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115211&Tpk=N82E...

What do you think of the above?

Thanks!


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RJL0365
Re: RAM Voltage, Motherboard and CPU
on Nov 7, 2010 at 5:01:10 pm

natfunk: The motherboard and CPU combo I am looking at is
GIGABYTE GA-P55A-UD4P LGA 1156 Intel P55 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard w/ USB 3.0 & SATA 6 Gb/s
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128409&Tpk=N82E...

Intel Core i7-950 Bloomfield 3.06GHz 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor BX80601950
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115211&Tpk=N82E...

What do you think of the above?


The processor and the motherboard are not compatible at all with each other. You see, Socket LGA 1156 and 1366 are not pin-compatible with one another! Plus, the notches of the two sockets are in different locations and of different sizes, preventing the insertion of 1366 processors into 1156 sockets. You will need an X58 chipset-based motherboard in order to use the i7-950. Or, if you have to get a P55 (1156) motherboard like the one in the quote, you will have to drop down to an i7-8xx (i7-860, i7-870, i7-875K) in order to use that motherboard.


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natfunk
What board to get?
on Nov 8, 2010 at 5:25:01 am

What is the best Motherboard to go with the i7 950? Is the ASUS P6T the one to go with?

I'd like to keep it under $200 if I can... any suggestions would be so apprecaited.

Thanks!


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Jcschild
Re: Building NLE on an $1150 CAD Budget, can it be done?
on Nov 8, 2010 at 1:55:44 pm

RJL0365: Actually, 5.0.2 doesn't eat up RAM as ridiculously as 5.0.1 or 5.0.0 although you still want more than 4GB of RAM for acceptable performance.



let me re-phrase. CS5 works best with a minimum of 12gig. 24 is better
48 overkill for most.

yes 5.02 is better but still requires a good amount of ram.

for his budget i dont see him hitting it with a X58 platform.

case $100+
very good power supply (700w minimum name brand) $120
Mobo (over $200)
CPU $300
ram 12gig $240
3 HDD (minimum) $200
460 video $250
optical $25
win7 64 Pro not home $135


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RJL0365
Re: Building NLE on an $1150 CAD Budget, can it be done?
on Nov 8, 2010 at 3:21:22 pm

Jcschild:
RJL0365: Actually, 5.0.2 doesn't eat up RAM as ridiculously as 5.0.1 or 5.0.0 although you still want more than 4GB of RAM for acceptable performance.



let me re-phrase. CS5 works best with a minimum of 12gig. 24 is better
48 overkill for most.

yes 5.02 is better but still requires a good amount of ram.

for his budget i dont see him hitting it with a X58 platform.

case $100+
very good power supply (700w minimum name brand) $120
Mobo (over $200)
CPU $300
ram 12gig $240
3 HDD (minimum) $200
460 video $250
optical $25
win7 64 Pro not home $135


Oh, I assume that you mean Canadian Dollars in your price quotes. If this were in U.S. Dollars, then those price quotes are a bit higher than actual U.S. prices from most online resellers.

And that setup will exceed the OP's $1150 CAD budget. In fact, it exceeds $1500 CAD.

In that case, even a P55/1156 platform will come close to exceeding that $1150 CAD budget because of the requirement of four 4GB modules that will completely fill up all of the memory slots on most P55 motherboards (and will also be at the 1156 CPU's memory amount limit). In other words, 16GB will completely max out the memory support of the 1156 platform. 12GB is unattainable on an 1156 system unless a mixture of 4GB and 2GB modules are used (this will increase the risk of stability issues or a failure to even POST) or the memory controller is forced into Flex (mix of dual-channel and single-channel) operation. And that's not to mention that the 1156 platform lacks a sufficient number of PCIe 2.0 full-bandwidth lanes to add a hardware RAID card later on.

And most AMD setups are slower than the slowest Intel 1156 or 1366 platform in Premiere (any recent CS-something version) because the AMD processors lack full support of SSE 4.x.

One more thing: Even with a recognizable (big) name brand, not all 700W PSUs are equally good - in fact, some of them can't even provide anywhere near the full 700W without producing out-of-spec ripple or blowing itself up. Many so-called "700W" PSUs from big name brands are effectively only 500W PSUs under realistic operating conditions. Hence, for a 750W PSU, look for units from Corsair, Antec, XFX, SeaSonic, Thermaltake (ToughPower series only) and certain Enermax and Silverstone units.


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