32 Replies Latest reply on May 10, 2012 4:19 AM by Harm Millaard

    New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks

    lordloco79 Level 1

      Afternoon one and all!

       

      Firstly, thanks to Harm for your very wise advice on going for those old Xeon X5690 chips and half usable 590-GTX which would have all been such useless additions to my new system!

       

       

      Anyway, with that in mind - I have just specced out a new PC (with my limited knowledge) and wanted to run it past some of you helpful people here just in case I have chosen any pitfalls that could be avoided before ordering the new kit.

       

      This machine will be used for editing AVCHD and native Canon DSLR footage, a lot of green/blue screen compositing, colour grading, multi-cam editing (3-4 cameras normally), and then animations and effects with After Effects.

       

      It is basically a Fujitsu Celsius R920 (i work for Fujitsu so am somewhat limited to choices here and there...) and this is the list of internal bits and bobs that matter for video work...

       

       

      • MSI nVidia 580-GTX Twin Frozr II GPU
      • Dual Xeon E5-2640 2.5GHz 15MB Turbo Boost (6 physical cores each)
      • 48GB RAM (6X 8GB DDR3-1600 rg ECC)
      • SSD SATA III 512GB high speed drive (for OS & CS5.5)
      • 7X HDD SAS 600GB 10k 6G 2.5" (Not sure on config yet)
      • SAS Controller D2607
      • Blu-ray Disc Triple Writer SATA
      • Windows 7 Professional
      • Adobe CS5.5

       

      Any advice would be great, and I will hope that no response means its OK to go ahead with!

      CHEERS for all your help in advance

       

      Bradley

        • 1. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
          Harm Millaard Level 7
          • Change the E5-2640 to E5-2690.
          • Increase RAM to 8 x 8 GB to profit from the quad memory architecture.
          • You can save money (needed for the 2690's) by lowering SSD capacity to 128 GB or there abouts. 512 GB is a waste of space and money.
          • Check those disks. If they are Velociraptors, are are better off with large capacity 7200 disks. If they are SCSI disks, you are better off with 15K models.
          • Don't know about the SAS controller, but it looks like just a simple backplane, not a raid controller and the one one the mobo is pretty slow.
          • Get a big tower. That Celsius R920 is only a mid-tower and will cause heat problems with all those disks, being filled to the rim.

           

          I suggest a case like this, with some expansion room for the future:

           

          Magnum TH10.png

           

          These remarks are solely based on your specs. I really think you can get much better BFTB by looking at a DIY build with an i7-3930K and overclock it.

          Mind you, the E5-2690 is over $ 2 K apiece, an i7-3930K is around $ 500, the dual CPU mobo is way more expensive than a simple X79 mobo, the ECC memory is way harder to get and more expensive.

           

          FYI, I'm looking at the case above for my new system, possibly with two PSU's.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
            Bill Gehrke Most Valuable Participant

            The SAS controller is a simple SAS controller based on the LSI 2008 chip

             

            "D2607 SAS/SATA RAID controller The Fujitsu D2607 SAS/SATA RAID controller, based on the LSI SAS2008, offers small businesses exactly the low-cost data safety unit which they have been looking for. The D2607 enables increased read/write performance thanks to its RAID 0, 1 and 10 implementation".

            • 3. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
              lordloco79 Level 1

              Hi Harm

               

               

              Thanks (again) for such a quick and detailed response.

               

               

              With regards to upping the RAM to 64GB to take advantage of the quad memory architecture, is this ONLY an advantage if I can upgrade to the Xeon E5-2690 CPU's? I am thinking that my company may bulk a little at the price of those as they are pretty much top of the new Xeon list!s

               

               

              At the moment as the current E5-2640's are 6 core I have the 48GB RAM as 6X 8GB modules which I presumed (very silly to presume somthing when I have a lack of technical knowledge) that worked with the CPU in groups of 3 which I was told works better, but I could have been given some duff information there?

               

              Unfortunately I dont have a choice over the tower, this is currently the largest Fujitsu do for workstations short of getting a server case possibly?

               

              Thanks for your advice Harm

              • 4. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                Harm Millaard Level 7

                The optimal amount of memory in a system is not dependent on the number of cores, but only on the architecture of the memory controller, whether it is dual (1155), triple (1366) or quad (2011) channel architecture. You always want a number of DRAM's equal or a multiple of the architecture, so with dual channel 2 or 4 sticks, with triple channel 3 or 6 sticks and with quad channel 4 or 8 sticks. So in your case, independent of the E5-26xx CPU you opt for, go for multiples of 4 for the memory sticks, 4 or 8.

                 

                Did you notice the difference in storage capacity in your Fujitsu case and the one I'm comtemplating? The one I think about has the capability to use around 32 HDD's plus 4 SSD's plus 2 BR burners internally without modding, but with some modding can easily hold 40 or even 48 HDD's internally.

                • 5. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                  MM2004 Level 1

                  Im also reading and finding out what would be my next rig.

                   

                  Regarding Harm's posts from today,,, I know you cannot overclock the new Xeon E5 as today,, so in your opinion, what would be faster on Premiere Pro and After Effects,, a couple of Xeon E5-2690s or the fastest i7 out there (i think is the 3960X extreme) overclocked?

                   

                  I know is comparing bananas to apples, but, other than $$ is there any reason to pick one overclocked I7 instead of two regular Xeon E5's?

                  • 6. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                    John T Smith Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    Go to the results page at CS5 Benchmark http://ppbm5.com/ to see what is fast

                    • 7. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                      MM2004 Level 1

                      There are no XEON E5-2600 Series on the PPBM5 yet.

                      • 8. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                        Bill Gehrke Most Valuable Participant

                        That is because they were just introduced this week

                        • 9. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                          MM2004 Level 1

                          Yes, thats exactly why Im asking.

                          Ive seen the PPBM5 results before,, and I have submitte dmy own.

                          I was wondering if anybody (such as Mr Millard) would have an educated oppinion on how the new Xeon E5-2600 would perform compared to an i7 (even comparing a single i7 OC against a dual Xeon E5-2600 system withouth OC).

                          • 10. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                            Bill Gehrke Most Valuable Participant

                            If you do not mind spending twice as much you might get medocre results without the overclocking available.  If you look at PPBM5 results and first filter on CS5.5 under the version Tab and then Filter on Xeon's under the Model CPU Tab you can see that without overclocking dual Xeons are not a good bang-for-the-buck item.  I seriously doubt that will change when someone submits results from this new generation.

                             

                            Message was edited by: Bill Gehrke

                             

                            Now if you are a real heavy multitasker and use other demanding software there could be advantages to having two Xeons, my comments above are for a Premiere Pro user.

                            • 11. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                              RjL190365 Level 5

                              For the money that you spent, dual E5s do not perform anywhere near that much faster than systems equipped with single i7-39xx CPUs. In fact, dual E5s might actually perform slower than single i7s in H.264 encodes due to the excessive latencies in the switching in dual-CPU systems (and the more CPUs within the single system, the greater the latency).

                              • 12. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                                MM2004 Level 1

                                I see,, just to make sure, we are talking about the new Xeon E5-2600 series right? the ones that just came out.

                                I though they were based on the same architecture as the i7 ,, the logic told me that two is better than one,, but with the being being OC Im getting all confused.

                                If the multi CPU increase latency, then why the Xeon exist to begin with? sounds like they are all slower than i7 then.

                                 

                                I wish that would be a little more clear.

                                • 13. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                                  lasvideo Level 4

                                  Hey MM2004, I feel your pain. Im in the same exact situation as I consider investing in the most powerful system as possible. Able to handle Epic 5K jobs as well as AVCHD long forms.And both with lots of effects and AE motion graphics. I am also on the fence until I get a better understanding of the new chips performance. Apparently there are latency issues with the dual Sandy Bridge EP setups that could be an issue.

                                   

                                  Tom Daigon

                                  Avid DS / PrP / After Effects Editor

                                  www.hdshotsandcuts.com

                                  Mac Pro 3,1

                                  2 x 3.2 ghz Quad Core Intel Xeon

                                  10.6.8

                                  Nvidia Quadro 4000

                                  24 gigs ram

                                  Kona 3

                                  Maxx Digital / Areca 8tb. raid

                                  • 14. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                                    lordloco79 Level 1

                                    (sorry for the delay in my reply, I have Thanks again Harm - I now understand the quad channel thing now, much appreciated. I have upped the RAM now to 8x16GB sticks then giving me loads of RAM to play with!!.

                                     

                                    The SAS drives are 'Serial Attached SCSI' but I dont think that Fujitsu do 15k models, just the 10k ones and 600GB seems to be the largest I can specify, but I have emailed our IT guys to check so just awaiting a response from that question at the moment.

                                     

                                    I would really LOVE that 'Magnum TH10' case, that is one hell of a beast! I unfortunately dont have the option to go for that though as much as I would like to, although I think for my Workstation at home i might stick some cash aside to go for one of those next! It offers SO much expandability it really is an amazing case! The case I have is this Fujitsu Celsius R920.

                                     

                                    The BFB is not really too much of an issue as this is all financed through the company so not out of my own pocket, but for my own home system I am still all ears and listening to everything as I will upgrade my home system later this year so all the advice is still very relevant to me and is being noted!

                                     

                                    Regarding the Dual Xeon's,
                                    My only other choice I would have would be to go with a single Xeon, there are no i7 chips are avaiable at through work place so surely 2 is better than 1?

                                     

                                    I am a heavy multitasker user, and often have projects using the dynamic link between After Effects and Premiere and have them both running together, and often am also using Photoshop and Illustrator at the same time, so more RAM and CPU cores allows me to do this without compromising anything or constantly having to close programmes and re-open then etc. Its not about more money than sense in this instance.

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                    Thanks for your time one and all!


                                    Bradley

                                    • 15. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                                      RjL190365 Level 5

                                      Bradley,

                                       

                                      Here is one major problem with all dual-CPU setups (not just dual e5s):

                                       

                                      No dual-CPU system performs anywhere near twice as fast as an otherwise comparable single-CPU system. In fact, without all of the latencies and bottlenecks that switchers, disk systems and graphics systems impose on the system, a dual-CPU system performs at best 41 percent faster than a single-CPU system. (In fact, one would need a quad-CPU system just to theoretically double the overall performance of a given single-CPU system.) Add in the chipset, disks and GPU, and the performance advantage could plummet to less than 20 percent. That's way too small of a performance improvement for such an astronomical increase in total system cost (which could amount to double or even triple the cost of an otherwise comparable single-CPU system). And that's not to mention that the second CPU increases the total system cost by at least $2,000 up to a whopping $6,000. No wonder why dual-CPU systems are relatively poor values (bang-for-the-buck).

                                      • 16. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                                        Harm Millaard Level 7

                                        Those Fujitsu (well, currently Toshiba, after last years take over) drives are great and perform better than any SATA disk.

                                         

                                        Are you sure about 8 x 16 GB sticks? That would be the first I hear about 16 GB DDR3 sticks for the 2011 platform, but then I may be a bit deaf.

                                         

                                        If I were in your shoes, I would suggest my boss to save money and not go for a dual Xeon system (bosses love that you think in terms of saving money!) but instead invest some of that savings in an even better disk setup in combination with an overclocked i7-39xx.

                                         

                                        If your 16 GB sticks are accurate, maybe your company also has access to the i7-3980X with all 8 cores and full 20 MB L3 cache enabled. That would be the sweet deal currently I think.

                                        • 17. Re: New Video Workstation PC Spec - Any advice on my new build?? Thanks
                                          lordloco79 Level 1

                                          Sorry Harm - my mistake, I meant to type 8x8GB sticks to total 64GB RAM, we dont have the choice for 16GB sticks as far as I know - my bad there, thanks for pointing that one out!