New graphic design computer for signs

  1. Think I finally have my boss talked into letting me put together a new computer for doing our sign setup work.
    I don't have a full list of parts yet, but right now I'm wondering if using a Quad core CPU with four channel memory (sometime like Intel Core i7-3820) is worth the cost or if I should just stay with with a Dual core CPU and dual channel ram (looking at the Intel Core i5-3570K right now).
    Either way I'm thinking 16 gigs of ram.

    Computer is going to used 100% at work for doing setup for signs. Mainly using Illustrator CS2, along with Photoshop and Indesign CS2. I'm trying to put something together that will last another 8-10yrs like my current computer has.
    Not this year but in the near future going to try to work into the budget upgrading to a newer version of Adobe Creative Suites.

    Because I'm going sign setup I'm working with rather large files quite often. Things in the area of 4ft x 8ft raster files @ 600dpi take A LOT of ram, and I'm currently wasting way to much time waiting on the computer to think.
  2. slh28

    slh28 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,706   +170

    Can't say I know much about those programs but X79 has 8 DIMM slots for a max of 64GB of RAM (which is twice as much as possible with Z77) which will come in handy if you seriously need that much RAM. In terms of quad channel vs dual channel I don't think there is any real world difference.

    If your work is paying for it then might as well go all out and get the i7 3930K ;) using a quad core CPU in an X79 platform is a bit of a lost opportunity IMO.
  3. TorturedChaos

    TorturedChaos TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 831   +18

    As much as I would love the i7 3930K I don't think I can talk them into that :(. I'm going to be lucky to get the Quad core at all.
  4. slh28

    slh28 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,706   +170

    If budget is going to be an issue and you can't justify a 3930K then just go with the 3570K/3770K on LGA1155. The 3770K is slightly quicker than a 3820 and the motherboard will be much cheaper. Plus it's also unlocked so you can overclock easier.
  5. TorturedChaos

    TorturedChaos TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 831   +18

    I think that will be what I end up going with. Hope I can get it all ordered and built while we are slow over the winter.
  6. TorturedChaos

    TorturedChaos TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 831   +18

    Think I have come up with a decent build for it:

    CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K
    Mobo: ASRock Z77 Extreme3 LGA 1155 Intel
    PSU: CORSAIR Enthusiast Series TX650 V2 650W
    SSD: OCZ Vertex 4 VTX4-25SAT3-128G 2.5" 128GB
    RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600
    Optical Drive: ASUS 24X DVD Burner
    OS: Win 7 Pro

    And I have a good case I can re use. I don't store any of the projects on the computer (they are stored on our file server) so the 128gig SSD should be plenty of space.

    Any feed back would be great :D.
  7. slh28

    slh28 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,706   +170

    Are you going to be overclocking? If so you'll want a CPU cooler. If not then you might as well go for the cheaper Xeon E3-1230 V2 or Xeon E3-1240 V2, they're the same as the 3770K but without the overclocking capability and HD4000 graphics, so you'll also need a discrete GPU to drive your display(s).

    I'm all for buying good power supplies but without a high end gaming GPU there's no way you'll need 650W. A 3770K uses only ~150W under load and when overclocked it will still only need ~250W [link 1] [link 2]. So something like this 450W XFX is more than enough.

    For the SSD I'd get the tried and tested Crucial m4 over the OCZ. When it comes to SSDs reliability is much more important than speed (I doubt you'll notice any real world difference between the m4 and Vertex 4, especially as your files are on a network), and even more so since this is a work computer.

    It looks like a great build, wish I had something like that at work... I'm still rocking a C2D E7300 :(
  8. TorturedChaos

    TorturedChaos TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 831   +18

    I didn't even think about Xeon CPU's :p. I will take a look at them. I guess I always think of them as server CPU's so it didn't even cross my mind for a desktop.
    I forgot to mention I have a graphics card I can keep using. Had to buy a replace about a year back, and it should still get the job done for now. (although the HD4000 intergrated graphics might be better considering I only have a GeForce 210)
    And I don't know why I thought I need so many watts out of my power supply.... guess I'm too used to building for gaming computers. Plugged everything into Neweggs PSU calc and came up with 353 W :p. So I'm thinking something in the 450 watt area, like the 450W XFX you recommended.
    I think I picked the OCZ Vertex 4 because the description said it had a longer MTBF, but if Crucial's is proven to be more reliable I'm good with that. That's what I'm after is speed and reliability.
    And yes I'm very happy to upgrade - been working with a Athlon 64 x2 4200+ for the last 5 yrs, with 3gigs of ram on Win XP. Its been rough......
  9. slh28

    slh28 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,706   +170

    Well a Geforce 210 and HD 4000 are going to be equally bad in gaming or any sort of GPU intensive work, but for general work I.e. displaying pictures on a monitor they're fine.

    I wouldn't trust anything from OCZ, type in "Vertex 2/3 failed" into google and see the results you get.
  10. TorturedChaos

    TorturedChaos TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 831   +18

  11. slh28

    slh28 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,706   +170

    Looks good, you won't need a Z77 motherboard though, you can get away with a H77 one. Make sure you double check the compatibility with the E3-1240 V2, I don't think all mobos support Xeons.
  12. TorturedChaos

    TorturedChaos TechSpot Chancellor Topic Starter Posts: 831   +18

    I suppose you are right. When I first look at that Z77 mobo it was on sale for a nice price.

    So now the trick of finding a mobo that says its Xeon compatible w/o getting a expensive server mobo

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