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If you intend to use CS5, you'd be wise to get an nVidia graphics card that has CUDA capabilities. CS5 can take advantage of that.
You list 3 identical hard drives. The System drive does not need to be so large. Ideally you will use it ONLY for the OS and program installation. 2TB would be a HUGE waste of space.
Thanks, Jim. Good point on the OS drive, I will pass that info on to our IT Manager. Will also look into the nVidia CUDA option - any recommendations on an actual card/model number for use with Mac?
Mac Definitely not the best platform for Adobe. Unless you need FCP as well I would look at PC. The video card you need is this:
It's not in stock in the channel yet that I can tell.
I agree with Eric that a PC would be faster, better and less expensive than a MAC. With dual Xeons, definitely get 24 GB of RAM. A nVidia GTX 470 would be a more economical choice then the Quadro 4000 unless you require 10 bpc color output to your monitor. Keep in mind that those monitors are pretty rare and steep in price. A single Samasung F4 320 GB is enough for OS & Programs. Use three large disks (7200 RPM) for storage, projects and exports.
Thanks for all your help.
I would also recommend looking at the EVGA SR2 motherboard if you are going with the dual Xeon's It apparently is the only one that allows overclocking to get lots of free processing power out of those chips. To see what that can do for you look at the results of the PC only Premiere Pro BenchMark (PPBM5) Also if you do not want to build your own have ADK build and test a custom configuration for you..
I bought my system prior to CS5. At the time, I felt a Mac Pro was the best choice, given my personal situation which included already having the CS3 suite. However, if I were to do it all again TODAY, I would build a PC with an nVidia GPU.
Assuming you're already set on a Mac, I'll share my experiences based on my 2009 Mac Pro.
I definitely agree with not wasting a 2TB drive on the OS and CS5 programs. An SSD or 'Raptor drive will be better and more efficient, or simply a smaller 7200rpm drive. Do get the other three internal 2TB drives, though, and RAID them for the video files. My 3-drive RAID works excellent.
I currently have an ATI Radeon HD 5870, which drives a 30" Apple Cinema Display and a 22" Dell display. This works great, even in CS5, but I'm missing out on the hardware acceleration offered by using nVidia cards with CUDA technology. In the case of an Apple, this means finding an older GTX285, an overpriced Quadro 4800, or a less-overpriced but supposedly excellent Quadro 4000. I'd find a 4000 and use that.
RAM should be as much as you can stuff in there, but I'd NOT buy from Apple. I received excellent service and no trouble with RAM from OWC (Other World Computing) for a fraction of the price that Apple charges. I have 16BG in 4x4GB sticks, but you should try for at least 48GB in 8GB sticks, or go all-out with 8x8GB for a nice 64GB. You'll use it all. If you opt for only 24GB, you can buy 6x4GB sticks from OWC for only $462, but then you'll have wasted that money if you decide to bump up to 8GB sticks later. Food for thought. Either way, you really should consider the money saved by getting the minimum RAM Apple offers, and buying that via third party. It couldn't be simpler to install. Same goes for hard drives. I know some outfits require all to come from one vendor, and if that's the case, I feel bad that you're hamstrung in that manner. I was in that situation at a job, but still managed to work around the problem by buying a system from one vendor, then using a purchase card later in a new transaction for the upgraded parts.
Thanks for the info.