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Thread: New (second hand) desktop slower than old laptop

  1. #1
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    New (second hand) desktop slower than old laptop

    I was getting frustrated with my old laptop taking so long processing JPG filters... then trying to edit RAW files...
    Had to upgrade.

    Went to my local computer bloke. smh.

    So I tell him my laptop is too slow... can he build me a faster desktop from old bits.
    He specialises in building gaming PCs.
    I knew that was no guarantee that he would know anything about graphic/video editing... but gave him a shot at it.

    After building me a box with an SSD for the boot system and a 1TB HDD for internal storage.
    A wireless card (at my request) to communicate with all my wireless cams.
    And a graphics card with an HDMI plug.

    I get home and find (after installing everything and transferring all my data from the old computer) that the system takes 9 secs to calculate the white balance of a RAW image... where as my laptop was taking little more than a second at most.

    I called the computer bloke... he asks that I put the file on the SSD and see if there is an improvement.
    Why yes... it now only takes 6 seconds.
    He says "well, we're getting there"
    I start to loose it. Just a bit... but noticeable.
    I let him know that the laptop was too slow and this new system he built can't even match that.
    He says bring it in and he'll upgrade the CPU for no charge... but if i want more RAM... it'll cost me. It did.

    Specs.
    Desktop.

    Win10 (free upgrade from Win7)
    An i7 3.4Ghz Intel
    16gb of 1600Mhz RAM
    120GB SSD as C drive (OS installed)
    1TB HDD as internal file storage.
    300mbs wireless card
    NVIDIA GeForce GT 220
    -GPU 625 MHz
    -1GB DDR2

    Since the upgrade to i7 and more/faster RAM... now processing RAW in 3 secs. Now only 3x slower than my Laptop.
    Computer bloke says... well... you haven't wasted your money... you only need a new graphics card, new motherboard and new CPU and you'll have a good system.
    I realised how many ways of expressing my point of view with my foot I was considering and left the shop.

    My laptop is some years old, but wasn't the slowest horse in the race back in it's day.

    hp pavilion g6 - AMD a8 4500m
    4 GB 1600 MHz DDR3
    AMD Radeon HD 7640G/7670M Dual GPU (2 GB DDR3 dedicated)
    500 GB 5400 rpm SATA
    Windows 8 64 bits


    So now I'm trimming down Win10 and trying to get the most out of the purchase... as I have my eye on a new graphics card.

    I have a GOPRO and want to be able to edit RAW video as well as RAW photo's... I can also record 4k from my smart phone... so want to be able to edit that at some stage.

    So the card I'm now looking at is the nvidia quadro.
    They range in price from $260 - $8000... and up.

    So if I can make the desktop useful until I can save up for a $500 card... but might have to settle for the entry level card... that might be enough for most things except 4k... not sure. Still a lot of reading to do. Only started checking it out yesterday.

    Well.. that's where I'm at... and hoping that I can tweak it enough for the time being.

    It's been suggested that I donate my new (second hand) desktop to family for web surfing... probably all it's good for LOL... but we'll see if it's a dead horse first... and even then I'll probably flog it some.

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  2. #2
    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    It's odd, as the specs of this desktop don't sound slouchy.
    Some preliminary considerations:
    Have you ever run the "Windows Experience Indicator" in Win 7 on any of your older machines?
    It is installed as part of Win 7, but NOT in Win 8 or Win 10.

    To install it in Win 10 (and it looks the same as in Win 7 then), you need a 3rd party APP called
    "ChrisPC Win Experience Indicator"

    It's free, and it gives you an indication of the performance of all your computer sub-systems, graphics, ram, etc...

    IF YOU INSTALL IT, the first T&C is OK, but you can decline the 2nd one. I did, and it still works.
    AND ANOTHER THING, install it on an external drive (like I did to save space, but in case you end up returning that machine).

    Run it, and do the same on your Win 7 laptop. (On Win 7 installs it is in the Properties part of My Computer.)
    Compare the results. It might indicate what's letting your performance lag.
    No good running out and getting a new graphics card if the RAM/HDD/something else is below par.

    That's that bit for a start, and now...

    1) Did you let the computer store people know of the type of performance you were after, like show them your laptop, or some other indicator?
    2) Did they say anything about being able to satisfy your requirements?

    Since they did not, you could return it on the grounds it doesn't perform as advertised/was supposed to. If they don't accept, then there is the state consumer affairs
    if you consider it's worth that.

    If this is favourably resolved financially, get some good advice on a system from somewhere other than that place before you purchase again.

    Enough for now. (ANd AK might weigh in, and then what?)

    - - - Updated - - -

    PS: I meant to say that the reply you got from them was specious and unwarranted. You should have a witness next time you go there.
    How good are you at putting your foot down?
    CC, Image editing OK.

  3. #3
    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    1st Question.

    Do you have your PP program installed on Disc 'C', the SSD ?

    And check to see you have the latest W10 drivers for your GT 220. http://www.nvidia.com/download/drive...px/87988/en-us This is for 64bit systems, which I hope you have.
    Last edited by Cage; 30-10-2015 at 5:28pm.
    Cheers
    Kev

    D600 : D7200 and too much stuff to list

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cage View Post
    1st Question.

    Do you have your PP program installed on Disc 'C', the SSD ?
    Yep.
    All software installed on the SSD 'C' drive.


    ---EDIT---
    just checked the driver and it is a later version than the one available via the link you provided???
    Not sure where he got it from... I'll try the autoupdate from the GeForce website.




    Quote Originally Posted by ameerat42 View Post
    It's odd, as the specs of this desktop don't sound slouchy.
    Some preliminary considerations:
    Have you ever run the "Windows Experience Indicator"...
    ...It might indicate what's letting your performance lag.
    No good running out and getting a new graphics card if the RAM/HDD/something else is below par.

    Goods idea... I have left upgrading the graphics card for last... as I wanted to make sure I had as good as I could get (on a budget) before moving ahead. this is also why i have opened it up for the forum to offer advice... I want to make sure I have utilised the maximum potential of the system before writing it off.


    Quote Originally Posted by ameerat42 View Post
    ...
    1) Did you let the computer store people know of the type of performance you were after, like show them your laptop, or some other indicator?
    2) Did they say anything about being able to satisfy your requirements?

    Since they did not, you could return it on the grounds it doesn't perform as advertised/was supposed to. If they don't accept, then there is the state consumer affairs
    if you consider it's worth that.

    If this is favourably resolved financially, get some good advice on a system from somewhere other than that place before you purchase again...

    ...PS: I meant to say that the reply you got from them was specious and unwarranted. You should have a witness next time you go there.
    How good are you at putting your foot down?

    I had given him a brief on why I was purchasing the system (laptop too slow) and what I'd be using it for (editing RAW photo files and GOPRO video).
    He worded his response as I would have in the same circumstance... "SHOULD be able to put something together".

    Although it hasn't been spoken... and I am just assuming... if I did crack the -it's, he probably would accept the return and refund... but that was before the RAM upgrade... not so sure now... but still, perhaps.

    As for me putting my foot down... Yes.
    I can and have a history of it.
    Nowadays, I step back and consider things a bit first. (Still a hot head... but it shows less)

    The system (before the RAM upgrade) was $400 all up.
    So for the price... not so bad. the RAM cost a bit though... so has blown out a bit now.

    After exhausting all attempts to speed the unit with what I have... I'll consider returning it with a stern demure.

    Until then... I'll do what I can.



    ----------------------


    NOTE: the current speed test I have been judging the system on is this...

    Capture NX-D (run from an SSD)
    a 22.2MB .NEF file
    From the White Balance menu... "Calculate Automatically".

    I have noticed that the time to calculate is reduced if the application window is not at full screen.


    ------------------

    Have to go out soon... so might not be able to reply to any posts until later.
    Thanks all for your input.






    - - - Updated - - -



    Checked the GeForce web site http://www.geforce.com/drivers

    and I do have the latest Win10 driver installed. V341.81
    it also has the previous version available... V341.74

    I'll roll it back as a trial if anyone thinks that might help?
    Last edited by JDuding; 30-10-2015 at 6:23pm.

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    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    As Am said, the system specs aren't real shabby.

    It would be a good starting point to know the make and model # of the motherboard, and also the PSU.

    I'd hold off throwing a new GPU at it at this stage.

  6. #6
    I like my computer more than my camera farmmax's Avatar
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    I run a win 7 desktop with specs under what your "new" computer has, and it eats up raw files and handles most things instantly. I don't think there is any excuse for your PC not to do the job you want it to do.

    If the scratch disc for photoshop is C drive, try changing it to your larger more empty drive. In Photoshop go to Edit/preferences/performance to decide how to allocate your scratch disks. In the same place, is your " Enable OpenGL drawing" ticked on?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cage View Post
    As Am said, the system specs aren't real shabby.

    It would be a good starting point to know the make and model # of the motherboard, and also the PSU.

    I'd hold off throwing a new GPU at it at this stage.

    I'll open it up this evening and get the motherboard details.



    Quote Originally Posted by farmmax View Post
    I run a win 7 desktop with specs under what your "new" computer has, and it eats up raw files and handles most things instantly. I don't think there is any excuse for your PC not to do the job you want it to do.

    If the scratch disc for photoshop is C drive, try changing it to your larger more empty drive. In Photoshop go to Edit/preferences/performance to decide how to allocate your scratch disks. In the same place, is your " Enable OpenGL drawing" ticked on?

    One of the reasons that I am not throwing the computer at the tech and jumping up and down... is that I also believe that it should be able to do what is being asked of it easily.

    I am not currently using Photoshop... but will check the software prefs to make sure it is set to use the hardware available.

    A mate also suggested that I check the power saver settings of win10. I never thought to look as it's not a laptop.

    ---------


    Also to note: I did notice that during the tests that the laptop (when looking at Task Manager/performance/memory) would keep topping out at about 70% of RAM utilised, when performing the calculations on the laptop.
    When the desktop was processing the same file... would show as utilising over 75% of the available RAM... When I had 8GB installed.
    This is why I thought I should try and have more RAM installed.
    Putting in 16GB helped improve the speed by 10-15%... but the cost turned a reasonably priced system into a "what have I done" type of deal.

    So now the system barely registers 20% RAM being utilised during tests.
    The maths seems a bit off, but better than being maxed out.

    Will look into it more after work tonight.
    Last edited by JDuding; 31-10-2015 at 5:02am.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    I did a summary down below if you can be stuffed reading the whole thing!

    There are so many aspects to this issue .. where to begin!

    Firstly, are you confident of getting into the BIOS to check a few things?

    1. check to see if all CPU cores are enabled. Some BIOSes default to some AUTO setting, and shut down uneccessary cores to save on power, and enable them if needed.
    Problem can be, when they are enabled, the process that needed them probably doesn't need them any more!(or something to that effect).

    2. Check to see if the builder of the system enabled AHCI in the BIOS.
    Warning, if the system's storage config is set to IDE mode, and you set to to AHCI .. your system will be trashed!
    I found that a massive difference is HDD speeds came from switching from the default IDE mode to AHCI .. but there is a specific order of steps necessary to do this right.
    All you want to do for now is check to see what the builder did for now.

    There are also some aspects that you can't do nuthin' about like .. what motherboard did he use to build the system?

    There are some things you can change to help too tho, like what model HDD did he use

    Other things to be mindful of:
    Note that you sometimes get an anomalous situation where not all your RAM is used.
    Some motherboards just do this, and they have a RAM compatibility list(located somewhere on the manufacturer's website)
    You would expect that a person specialising in building systems wouldl do the right job .. but don't assume .. check to be sure.
    Is all the RAM seated properly?

    eg. I have 16Gb of RAM installed, but the motherboard I have can only use 12G of that RAM .. and 500Mb of that is reserved for the onboard graphics card!
    (yep! I only use the onbard graphics chip on my desktop .. long story about how my graphics card got donated to another PC .. and never replaced!)

    My desktop is now a fairly old setup, I run an AMD II X4 955 Phenom CPU(which is a fair bit slower than your i7!!) onboard graphics(Radeon 4290 chip) .. so technically a fair chunk slower than your system and CNX-D calculates an Automatically calculated WB the moment I press that option!
    That is, no wait for it to start calculating .. and maybe 0.5sec for it to render the D800E's 80Mb file from a nice looking WB rendering to an ugly more magenta 'auto' version!
    It's take all of 0.01sec to return it to the nicer looking 'recorded value' version again.
    The only aspect of my PC that is on the fast side are all the (main) HDDs I use.
    Minimum speeds are in the 85-90MB/s range.
    I do have a few older and slower drives of various forms(and functions) and if I place a raw file on them .. then I see slower rendering speeds.

    Look for updated IDE/SATA/ATAPI drivers from the manufacturer. You need to know what motherboard model was used. storage controllers vary from motherboard to motherboard .. even from revisions of the same M/board model! so be 100% sure if you try to update them, you get the right ones. You may have to manually download the latest drivers. if you try to update via Windows's Device Manager update method, it will say the best drivers are installed!
    Well at least they work .. maybe just not as efficiently!

    I updated from Window's own(2006) year drivers for my SATA system to AMD's SATA drivers(2013)

    As one example of how much different just this one driver made:

    CrystalDiskMark 4.1.0 x64 (C) 2007-2015 hiyohiyo
    Crystal Dew World : http://crystalmark.info/
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------
    * MB/s = 1,000,000 bytes/s [SATA/600 = 600,000,000 bytes/s]
    * KB = 1000 bytes, KiB = 1024 bytes

    Sequential Read (Q= 32,T= 1) : 124.597 MB/s
    Sequential Write (Q= 32,T= 1) : 103.914 MB/s
    Random Read 4KiB (Q= 32,T= 1) : 1.074 MB/s [ 262.2 IOPS]
    Random Write 4KiB (Q= 32,T= 1) : 0.986 MB/s [ 240.7 IOPS]
    Sequential Read (T= 1) : 123.938 MB/s
    Sequential Write (T= 1) : 114.728 MB/s
    Random Read 4KiB (Q= 1,T= 1) : 0.556 MB/s [ 135.7 IOPS]
    Random Write 4KiB (Q= 1,T= 1) : 0.969 MB/s [ 236.6 IOPS]

    Test : 1024 MiB [T: 8.6% (80.4/931.5 GiB)] (x3) [Interval=5 sec]
    Date : 2015/07/09 13:10:38
    OS : Windows 7 Professional SP1 [6.1 Build 7601] (x64)
    That's with Windows 2006 driver(the std install used)

    Updated with the AMD SATA driver and:

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------
    CrystalDiskMark 4.1.0 x64 (C) 2007-2015 hiyohiyo
    Crystal Dew World : http://crystalmark.info/
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------
    * MB/s = 1,000,000 bytes/s [SATA/600 = 600,000,000 bytes/s]
    * KB = 1000 bytes, KiB = 1024 bytes

    Sequential Read (Q= 32,T= 1) : 142.509 MB/s
    Sequential Write (Q= 32,T= 1) : 142.678 MB/s
    Random Read 4KiB (Q= 32,T= 1) : 1.278 MB/s [ 312.0 IOPS]
    Random Write 4KiB (Q= 32,T= 1) : 1.163 MB/s [ 283.9 IOPS]
    Sequential Read (T= 1) : 142.614 MB/s
    Sequential Write (T= 1) : 147.443 MB/s
    Random Read 4KiB (Q= 1,T= 1) : 0.599 MB/s [ 146.2 IOPS]
    Random Write 4KiB (Q= 1,T= 1) : 1.207 MB/s [ 294.7 IOPS]

    Test : 1024 MiB [T: 8.6% (80.4/931.5 GiB)] (x3) [Interval=5 sec]
    Date : 2015/07/11 11:30:04
    OS : Windows 7 Professional SP1 [6.1 Build 7601] (x64)
    It's not just the actual speed difference, it's the more responsiveness difference that you notice in the drive.
    Not all drives respond with such a difference, my C drive only got boosted from 80-ish Mb/s to just under 100Mb/s.

    Crystal Diskmark is free to use to check the hard drive's performances .. it'd be good to know how much faster the SSD is over the HDD, and how fast your HDD is as a storage device too.

    I found that speeding up the responsiveness of the storage system was the most crucial aspect to faster raw file editing on all my systems from way back when.

    Note about the graphics chip:
    CNX-D doesn't use accelerated GPU rendering processes(like Adobe software can). I remember reading that Lr supposedly uses the GPU's extra capacity to help speed it up a little(same with photoshop too).
    Years back, when I had to donate my geforce 260(something) graphics card, I didn't notice any speed difference in Nikon's software then(ViewNX2 and CNX2) in going from a much faster card, to the onboard chip either. Using this onboard graphics chip probably explains why I experienced slow operation in Lr4 (point something). I haven't reinstalled it again.

    The other thing to be mindful of too with Windows and some motherboards(that caught me out).
    The drivers used to operate the hard dries(both SSD and HDD) can make a difference in speeds.

    SUMMARY:

    Check BIOS for:
    1/. AHCI. All BIOSes are different, but look for the storage section. What storage mode is used. Options could be IDE/AHCI/RAID .. or others **BUT CHANGE NOTHING**
    2/. RAM count and HDD model name while your there. Did all the RAM get used?
    3/. CPU cores enabled? there may be options to set a specific number of cores, all or some auto setting.
    (my M/b has all of these options .. but not all BIOSes are the same, and some are even dumbed down, and can be suped up a bit with some special key input)

    On the PC, go to Device Manager and Task Manager:

    Look for RAM usage in Task Manager. Now look for how much RAM is in use and allocated: if it doesn't add up to the 16Gb you have installed, this can be normal. Annoying, but normal!

    In Device Manager: Drill down to your IDE/ATA/ATAPI controllers.
    Are the storage controllers used(look in Properties) Windows old 2006 drivers?
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
    {Nikon} -> 50/1.2 : 500/8(CPU'd) : 105/2.8VR Micro : 180/2.8ais : 105mm f/1.8ais : 24mm/2ais
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    can't remember Tannin's Avatar
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    Something is wrong. Very wrong. It's not performing anything like its specs. You need to run formal tests and benchmarks on the system to locate the problem. Start with the IDE devices.
    Tony

    People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.

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    I'd suggest that the graphics card might be your problem. I've found that a fast GPU with 2gb or more of fast DDR5 RAM speeds up my processing a lot. Altering WB on a RAW file is instantaneous. Filters that take the longest on my PC are the Blur filters, in particular the Surface Blur. Gaussian Blur is instantaneous. Make sure your RAW settings in Adobe are correct and set the cache size to suit the number of image previews you want to store. Adobe says each 1GB of cache size caters for 200 RAW images. My cache is set to 100GB and actually rendering previews the first time I open a folder with a few thousand RAW images in it, it does take a little while to render all those thumbnails and then preview the edits. IN ACR though, WB changes are still instantaneous. I'm running a GTX660 video card with 2TB a DDR5 RAM. My system is a Core i7 with 32 GB RAM. I'm not running any SSD drives, just WD Green discs which are obviously not as fast as the best available.

    ****EDIT*****

    Sorry I'm using a GTX750 with 2GB DDR5 RAM at the moment. And, when I say check your settings, go into photoshop and edit settings where you'll find a box that deals with your graphics processor. Make sure you have it set to hardware acceleration.
    Last edited by Warbler; 31-10-2015 at 8:50am.

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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Hey JD. Have you run any tests yet???

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    You, and others, may find this helpful too.

    http://blogs.adobe.com/crawlspace/20...rformance.html

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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Warbs. That - and likesomes - is why I asked JD if he has run any tests. Gotter get down to the problem(s).
    I'm still rather about it all.

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    Sorry AM. You posted before I hit the post key. My last post was directed at the OP, not you. I'd be checking the software settings before I start fiddling around with the hardware, but if they are okay, then go ahead and follow the excellent advice already given.

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    Re the GPU, my understanding is that the app software needs to explicitly throw work at it - is that correct ? Photoshop does this, especially for for complex calcs like blurring as Warbler pointed out, but I'm not sure Capture NX-D would be doing this. In other words, a GPU upgrade might not have any effect in this case.

    (FWIW, I don't have a graphics card or SSD, and PS and LR work fine for me...)

    As Tannin stated you need to do some basic benchmarking to try to isolate the issue. My feeling is maybe some sort of motherboard incompatibility / settings...


    Good luck...
    Phil.

    Some Nikon stuff. I shoot Mirrorless and Mirrorlessless.


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    Quote Originally Posted by JDuding View Post
    Capture NX-D (run from an SSD)
    a 22.2MB .NEF file
    From the White Balance menu... "Calculate Automatically".
    Sorry, I missed that bit about Capture NX. I thought he must have been using Adobe products to run his filters. As you were then.

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    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    If you are not comfortable in opening your case, download this free utility which will give you most of your hardware specs.

    http://www.cpuid.com/downloads/cpu-z/cpu-z_1.74-en.exe

    CPU-Z.JPG

    It will also give you basic performance info on your MoBo, Memory and GPU. And if your PSU is much less than 500W you may be down on required power.
    Last edited by Cage; 31-10-2015 at 12:06pm.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ameerat42 View Post
    Hey JD. Have you run any tests yet???

    So that you and others that are taking so much time and making so much effort to assist me know...

    I work weekends.
    2x 12hr shifts and sometimes a 15hr istead of 12 on a Sunday.

    So please don't think I am not taking all the advice on board or have given up... but right now I'm knackered and after a day like today... last thing I feel like doing is running any tests.
    That's not actually true.
    I am tremendously curious to try all the suggested tests and to track down the issue/bottleneck... but not tonight.

    Sorry to all that are as curious as I am to see the results.
    But will have to wait till tomorrow evening or Monday.

    Cheers @all and a really big "Thank You" for all the interest and advice.

  19. #19
    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    That's OK. Take it easy. You ask when you're ready.

    For me, sorry for any overload.

  20. #20
    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    JD, I'm retired, and obviously have too much time on my hands. I often lose sight of the fact that other people actually have a life.

    My computer knowledge is gleaned from building my own, firstly because I hate paying good bucks for not so good gear, and secondly because of my limited budget I'm a tight @rse and want the most bang for my buck.

    I also have this inherent desire to help people, so if I come across as pushy, I also apologise.

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