2 Replies Latest reply on Nov 4, 2011 7:21 AM by ConnFB

    Getting the best out of an older machine for CS4 and AVCHD -HDD RAM configuration-


      Hi everyone,


      i have to get out the best of an older system, to use it for cs4 Premiere and AE.


      Current System:

      AMD Phenom x4 II 940 3Ghz

      8GB DDR2

      ATI HD4850 512MB or HD4870 1GB

      Gigabyte MA790FX-DS5 with SATA: 3Gb/s


      Video footage will be AVCHD camera is the Sony HXR-NX5


      Of course best solution would be an i7, but that doesn´t match the budget.

      I have to make this AMD system run as smooth as possible, for maybe a year or so, with the lowest amount of money.


      I already read along in this forum, but need some specific adwise (it´s the first machine I set up for video editting).




      does it make sense to sell the 8GB and get 12GB instead, or will the 8GB do the job.




      What I´ve read tells me I should get at least 3 drives. The question is how to set them up.


      The Disk Usage Guidline in this forum says:

      1. OS + Programms

      2. Previews, Media Cache, Exports

      3. Media, Projects


      Don´t know if I got it right:

      1. OS+Programms - clear no questions

      2. What means Export? Shouldn´t this be the drive for temporary data only (render, scratch)? Some sites say to put the Projects onto this drive?

      3. On This drive we have the footage and the Final/Output?



      1. OS+ Progs. I thougt of a spinpoint f4 320GB

      2. I´ve read several times it should be a 1TB Caviar Black. Is there a cheaper alternative? Do I really need the 64MB Cache? Aren´t 500GB enough? Mobo only has Sata II

           Does a Raid0 with some smaller and cheaper drives with the internal controler make sense?

      3. Some say this has to be a streaming drive like a WD AV-GP or Seagate Pipeline because of it´s multiple streaming capability? True, or could i get any 1 or 2 TB drive?

      Would it speed the system up if I add:

      4. for Final/Output (maybe a caviar green got one: 500GB 16MB Cache) and use 3. only for footage




      I´m a littlebit confused because Adobe says:

      Specify your fastest hard disks for capturing footage and storing scratch files. You can use a slower disk for audio

      preview files and the project file...Ok so project files on 3. and scratch/temp/cache on 2. But I thought footage should also be on 3. but this isn´t the fastest drive


      The final question is, which HDD´s should I buy? an how should I set them up. Please enlight me!


      Thank you so much!



      PS: GPU: 512MB vs 1GB big diffrence?

        • 1. Re: Getting the best out of an older machine for CS4 and AVCHD -HDD RAM configuration-
          Harm Millaard Level 7

          With CS4:


          RAM, don't spend any money on that. 4 GB is all CS4 can use because it is 32 bit.


          GPU, don't spend any money on that either, since even a $ 50 card will perform equally well as a $ 2000 card. There is no MPE with CS4.


          Disks, Export means the final delivery file, either for the web or for BD or DVD. For the rest of your disk setup:


          1. Great.

          2. Instead of a single 1 TB drive, 2 x 500 GB in (r)aid0 is definitely faster, but also more expensive.

          3. Any 7200 RPM will do. Popular choices are WD Caviar Black, Samsung F3, Hitachi 7K3000 and Seagate Barracuda XT.

          4. That makes a lot of sense.


          Look at the FAQ hardware articles under the Overview tab at the top of the page for more information.

          • 2. Re: Getting the best out of an older machine for CS4 and AVCHD -HDD RAM configuration-
            ConnFB Level 1

            thank you for replying.


            Ok things are a bit clearer now. I will setup the disks refering to your Guidelines for Disk Usage.


            1. OS + Programms

            2. Preview, Media Cache, Exports

            3. Media (footage), Project Files




            would a raid0 with the internal controller be a good idea? The CPU is already the bottleneck. would a raid system bring an advantage in this case?




            which of the disks should be the raid0 No. 2. or 3.?


            I read 2. should be the fastest, but I also read that 3. could have problems with streaming when working with multiple tracks,

            this is why I mentioned those streaming-disks before.


            Disk 4. for final. It makes sense of course but will it help speeding the system up?


            The question of the disks gets even more difficult since the prices for hdd´s are rising dramatically because of the flood in Thailand.


            Another question I have:


            I will get the PC ready the next days, but the camera will be on a diffrent location, is there any source in the internet where I can get larger AVCHD raw footage files to test the system?