8 Replies Latest reply on May 27, 2015 11:13 PM by MarkWeiss

    Building a Better Editing PC--Recommend Reliable Components?

    MarkWeiss Level 1

      A friend of mine is asking me to build him a new editing workstation. His notebook is inadequate.

      Something a few steps above a Q6600, but not bleeding edge. What he's looking for is solid, reliable components that have a good track record working with Adobe Premiere. He's running CC.

      He'll need an SSD boot drive, and at least two SSD media drives. I have these picked out. What we need help with is finding a reliable, compatible motherboard, CPU and RAM. Below are the rest of his requirements:


      Please go ahead put some feelers out to the online forums as needed.

      Re the motherboard:

      • I'm thinking of populating it with 16GB memory initially ... but please select a motherboard that has sufficient slots that I could add more memory later for total of 32GB.
      • I'd like to have lots of connection ports available ... including multiple USB 3.0, eSATA.
      • I'd like to have daughter board (PCI??) slots available for future expansion.

      Re graphics card, I think it would make sense to use THE SAME card you use (GTX680).

      Re cost:

      • I'd like to aim at the right level, i.e. NOT a bleeding edge high-end  computer ... rather use components from two years ago.
      • But I don't want to skimp. Let's use good fans, extra capacity power supply.
      • If you think we can really save money with eBay used components, I'm willing to try ... especially on things that you can easily test and know whether work ok or not. I'm a little more leery about say the motherboard, because an intermittent connection could be really hard to find/prove.


      We're going to use Muskin Reaktor 1TB SSDs and Intel 240GB boot drive.

      Also EVGA GTX680 GPU.


      Up for speculation are motherboard, CPU and RAM. A good compatible, well ventilated case, good after market CPU cooler because of the long renders. I think I'll recommend a Seasonic power supply, because they've been very good. But the rest I hope to hear your experiences with, what works, what doesn't. Etc.

        • 1. Re: Building a Better Editing PC--Recommend Reliable Components?
          RoninEdits Most Valuable Participant

          the samsung ssd's are usually the goto unless you are doing raid, then the intel 730 controller works better, and the intel 240gb is on the slower side compared to samsung. are any of these components bought or firm decisions? why the gtx680 vs 960/970?


          as long as you stick with solid brands, such as asus and gigabyte, the main consideration for recommended is to stick with intel+nvidia. depending on budget, you can look to build a system around an i7-4790k or i7-5820k. usb 3.1 motherboards are available now too.

          Re: Please help with first time PC build


          if you need to for budget, might look for a used or refurbished computer or used mbd/cpu/ram combo with an i7-47xx or i7-37xx.

          • 2. Re: Building a Better Editing PC--Recommend Reliable Components?
            MarkWeiss Level 1

            Samsungs are good, but I've got personal experience with the Mushkin Reaktors, which are best bang for the buck and very fast reads for uncompressed HD playback. I realize the Intels are not the fastest, but I trust their reliability for the OS disc.


            GTX680 is more than he needs. He's only editing AVCHD. He's a teacher and needs to record demonstration and educational videos for his YT channel. And we're trying to do all this on a $1500 budget.


            I agree with Intel + nVidia. Works well for me. But what I'm trying to weed out is the bad BIOS or chipset combination. We'll go a tad over budget with an i7, but I think he'll consider it. I was thinking i5, which should be more powerful than a Q6600, and my Q6600 handles multiple camera edits smoothly. i7, if he can afford it, will certainly ensure that he has some 4K edit capability later on, should he get a 4K camera.


            Mainly, I'm trying to find out what combinations of motherboard, BIOS and RAM work well together, and avoid recommending a bad combination that's going to crash or have other problems.

            • 3. Re: Building a Better Editing PC--Recommend Reliable Components?
              JFPhoton Level 3

              ....a smart buyer can do what I did  last summer if he keeps his eyes peeled..


              I bought a " refurbished " Asus G750 JW gaming laptop for $858, instead of the normal $1400...it arrived in like new condition with all the plastic still on it and operated like brand new. Next I upgraded the memory from 8 to 24 GB myself. The included  Nvidia 750m mobile GPU was fine along with the intel i7 4700HQ CPU.


                   Finally, I removed the supplied, useless 5400 rpm HDD and installed two separate Crucial M550 SSDs......one in each drive bay. This powerful, self contained machine runs great...it even has athunderbolt port which I can attach my 2560 x 1440p external monitor to at full res at 60 fps.

              and HDMI 1.4, too.


                     This years laptops have even faster CPUs and much better Nvidia GPUs......get a refurbished unit that has at least 4GB video memory on a 8xx or 9xx Nvidia mobile GPU, AND that has two HDD bays with system memory that can be increased to at least 24 GB....best 32. As CC  PPro now uses much more memory , even 16 GB is too low....I have seen memory usage exceed 20 GB on my laptop while editing a timeline with four tracks of 1080p.

              • 4. Re: Building a Better Editing PC--Recommend Reliable Components?
                MarkWeiss Level 1

                He's moving off the laptop to a desktop. More expansion room, more SSD drive space, better cooling, stronger bus architecture. His laptop has an i7 processor, but it stutters and crashes constantly with 1080P AVCHD material. My "outdated" Q6600 desktop PC handles it easily without breaking a sweat in CS6.

                • 5. Re: Building a Better Editing PC--Recommend Reliable Components?
                  MarkWeiss Level 1

                  This is what we've come up with:


                  http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231628&cm_re=G.SKILL_Trident_X_Se ries_16GB_%282_x_8GB%29_240-Pin-_-20-231-628-_-Product$134.99
                  G.SKILL Trident X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-1600C7D-16GTX
                  Intel Core i7-4790S Haswell Quad-Core 3.2GHz LGA 1150 65W BX80646I74790S Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4600
                  GIGABYTE GA-Z97-D3H LGA 1150 Intel Z97 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
                  EVGA 04G-P4-3687-KR GeForce GTX 680 FTW+ w/Backplate 4GB 256-bit GDDR5$250.00
                  Lian Li PC-10NA Silver Aluminum ATX Mid Tower Chassis
                  New LG 16x Internal Blu Ray/DVD/CD Burner Writer Drive Mdisc 3D play back + Software$106.88
                  Dynatron K17 92mm 2 Ball CPU Cooler LGA 1155/1156/1150$34.99
                  Crucial M500 CT960M500SSD1 7mm (with 9.5mm adapter) 2.5" 960GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
                  (TWO RECOMMENDED)$304.99
                  Crucial BX100 CT250BX100SSD1 2.5" 250GB SATA 6Gbps (SATA III) Micron 16nm MLC NAND Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)





                  SeaSonic X Series X650 Gold ((SS-650KM Active PFC F3)) 650W ATX12V V2.3/EPS 12V V2.91 SLI Ready




















                  • 6. Re: Building a Better Editing PC--Recommend Reliable Components?
                    RoninEdits Most Valuable Participant

                    so you said you guys were on a budget, so im wondering does he need the ssd speed? 2x1tb ssd vs a hdd raid 0 using the mbd? ($600 vs $200). or if one is for media and the other for cache, the cache doesn't need to be 1tb size.


                    at a quick glance, i dont see anything wrong with the gigabyte mbd, however they are selling mbd's with usb 3.1 now if you want to futureproof.

                    ASUS Z97-E/USB3.1 LGA 1150 Intel Z97 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard - Newegg.com


                    the intel i7-4790s shows same price as the faster i7-4790. Intel Core i7-4790

                    the i7-4790k is unlocked for overclocking, but even without overclocking its still alot faster. its worth the extra few dollars. Intel Core i7-4790K


                    the gtx 680 isn't bad, but the faster gtx 960 is around $200. its also new tech, which requires less power and runs cooler. also get the benefit of a brand new warranty.

                    ASUS STRIX-GTX960-DC2OC-2GD5 GeForce GTX 960 2GB 128-Bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 HDCP Ready

                    or there are some gtx 960 4gb versions if you wanted to keep the 4gb of memory.

                    ASUS STRIX-GTX960-DC2OC-4GD5 GeForce GTX 960 4GB 128-Bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card …


                    you should look at a bigger cpu cooler with a bigger fan, to keep the cpu cooler and to keep noise down with the fan. depending on the case you can get a 120mm or even 140mm fan cpu cooler. for the case, have you looked at the corsairs or the refine r5?

                    • 7. Re: Building a Better Editing PC--Recommend Reliable Components?
                      JFPhoton Level 3

                      .....uh..........no.        This > $1,600 pile of old technology will not perform as well as the laptop I described that cost almost 50% LESS !!  If going desktop, use BETTER components which will also handle 4K and other more difficult codecs coming.  This CPU barely outperforms my laptop and underperforms some laptops from this current year. The GPU is OLD tech...go with a modern 9xx NVidia GPU with at least 4GB video memory....these new cards have HDMI 2.0 to support 4K monitors AND are much faster than the old 680.


                      16 GB is NOT enough memory in a desktop, and not really enough for a laptop , either.


                      If going desktop, spend a little extra and go for a Haswell E series CPU.....six and eight core versions are available along with the new quad channel memory.....64 GB is recommended.  The X99 board gives the option of TEN SATA III ports to create RAID arrays on with SSDs AND the board has the M.2 connection for the new Samsung SM951 PCI SSD which provides jaw dropping speed for video. Visit Bill Gehrke's video bench marking website, PPBM8.com  to see his fast machine and others on this test.


                      It will not be worth it to tie your wagon to an old, dying horse.......better to invest in a young steed who will live a few years, instead.

                      • 8. Re: Building a Better Editing PC--Recommend Reliable Components?
                        MarkWeiss Level 1

                        RoninEdits, thanks for those suggestions. The CPU might be a good option. Though the GPU is only 1024 cores, instead of 1536.. I wonder how it can be any faster?


                        JFPhoton, he's not going to be editing much other than AVCHD footage. I figure if my Q6600 can slug it out with 4K footage and 8GB RAM, this setup should be much better still. On my system, I usually have 5GB free when Premiere is loaded with a big project and multiple timelines. If I'm working on 4K, then as much as 4.5GB is in use (including the OS), leaving 3.5GB free. With 16GB, he can have the entire Adobe suite running at the same time.


                        One day, I may build, for myself,  "one last PC".. and it will likely have two Xeon 18-core CPUs, 512GB RAM, a petabyte of SSD and two Titan cards in it. I'm sure that will edit 4K video like a dream. :-) But my friend here isn't into bleeding edge. We were actually going to spec out used parts and build a less expensive system from 3 year old parts that have proven themselves compatible with Premiere.


                        What I'm mainly soliciting here is what motherboards and BIOSes are compatible with Premiere and AE and least likely to cause problems with crashes and failed renders. Some hardware combinations have been known to be troublesome. My goal is not to break speed records, but to build the most reliable editing system at a modest cost, from proven components with a track record.