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Thread: Need a computer, but getting confused.

  1. #1
    Member mynxt's Avatar
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    Need a computer, but getting confused.

    Guys, I need some help. Our computer that had my CS5 has died and I can't do any photo editting at the moment (arrrggh!!... it's killing me!). So I have browsed the forums here for information about what to get and would like to get a laptop (for when travelling...mainly just to look at the photos, not edit), and also a desktop. Now reading through the forums it seems I can have both at a reasonable price and did go to my local computer store to price getting a system build. *sigh* my confusion just gets worse! Two quotes, one $2798, and the other $2209. That is without a screen, that would be an extra $750.

    Can I not get a cheap lappy and desktop for $2,000????

    I will list the specs he gave meand I would love opinions. Cause I really want to get something soon, it's been weeks since I've been able to even look at my pics!

    Intel DX58SO i7
    ASI PC61761 ATX Midtower 700w
    Intel Core i7 processor i7-960
    DDR-III 2Gb 1333MHz - 3 of these
    Seagate SATAII 1TB 32mb 7200
    DVD/RW SATA 20x Nero8Suite
    Wired keyboard
    OEM usb mouse
    Gigabyte PCI-E N21iTC 1GI
    3 year warranty
    Win 7 Home premium

    The cheaper one was less 200w in the Midtower, and i7-930.

    I would be interested to know if there was anyone else in the Devonport (Tas) area that was good at building comps, or should I just screw it and get a Mac??
    Canon EOS 350D; 18-55mm kit lens; 75-300mm kit lens; Tamron 17-50mm; SLIK Sprint Pro II tripod, B+W CPL filter.

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    I went through some of this not long ago myself.
    If you are mainly concerned about graphic stuff such as photoshop etc, then the speed and quality of the graphics card is important and the access time to the hard disk is important.
    It is also worth getting good dose of ram ... I assume you mean 3X2Gb = 6Gb. In which case it seems like a fair dose.

    in reality for graphics stuff you probably won't notice a big difference between a 960 and a 930 processor. Heavier duty functions such as noise removal etc will obviously be a bit quicker.

    Best to set your price and buy what you can with that price.


    If you want to get into specs, you can look for reviews on the different components. It may be worth it at least for the graphics card and hard disk.
    I don't think a 500W supply would make a big impact either, but you may want to get some advice on this as it may influence what you can run on your computer.

    Laptops are always more expensive for the same grunt.
    Good hunting.

  3. #3
    Member Watchamacallit's Avatar
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    Once you ask yourself a few questions and answer them it's easier to go from there, though the two main questions are:

    1) Budget ($1k? $1.5k?)
    2) Intended usage (aka, infrequent heavy graphic editting? Occassional photoeditting and websurfing)

    Whilst I'm not in Tasmania, I've been building all the PCs in my household and for friends (and obviously myself) for a while and can provide some input/advice on some solutions (cost effective, bang for your buck, etc) if you want.

    If graphic editting, you'd be looking at the following main areas:
    1) Good Monitor (colour reproduction, resolution)
    2) Mid-level CPU (preferably for multi-threading rather than pure GHz)
    3) Decent sized HDD with a large cache (16/32MB Cache versions)
    4) Mid-range GPU (Not terribly important, but helps)
    5) Good available amount of RAM (minimises HDD read/writes which can be a bottleneck)

    Hope it helps.
    Adam

  4. #4
    It's all about the Light!
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    This is the best place to start... http://whirlpool.net.au/wiki/rmp_sg_whirlpoolpcs

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    Thank you for your replies. For the parts I listed, is that expensive, or overkill for a beginner? If it is the desktop I really do just want it for photoediting. I'm not going to hook it up to the internet. This one I am on will keep working for that.

    The place that quoted me is the computer place I always use, so I really am unsure about other places around me. If I did go ahead with the above system, it would be build in Sydney and sent down anyway.

    Thanks for the link Kym, I did go and check it out and it does show I can get something pretty good for my money. Just need to find someone I trust to build it!

    I have to admit, for me, it is seeming easier for me to get myself a Apple laptop and a good screen to hook into it to overcome the poor screen issue.

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    I too am looking for a new system and today I looked on the Dell site they have some nice systems on there and way cheaper that I can find here in Tas to build one for me. My existing 6 year old system is a Dell and it's never missed a beat, you just have to check every detail because you get exactly what the specs are so check ports etc and take nothing for granted.
    My Goal in life is to be as good a person as my dog thinks I am

  7. #7
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    Thanks jbee, I did have a look and you are right, they do have some nice systems there.
    Definitely a hard decision to make!

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    I'd say get a Mac every time BUT your software is not going to run on it if you've had PC systems, so the Dell may be the way to go.
    Odille

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    Member exwintech's Avatar
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    Mynxt - If you want a Brand-Name PC, this won't be much use, but it's another idea to consider.

    Go to your local town/city and find a sububan dealer who builds PCs. Tell her/him exactly what you intend to do with your PC - and they'll design a PC - from industry-standard parts - that will do those things, with a bit of leeway made-in.

    You'll get good components and build-quality. The dealer must, under Australian Law, give a 12-months Shop Warranty on parts and build, in writing, on a Business headed sheet, signed, and overstamped with the Business's legal stamp.

    The individual components' maker Warranties are also valid, and must be included with the PC sale.

    What you then have is a strong and reliable PC - businesses don't profit on Warranty Claims - so do tend to get it right the first time!

    It will have industry standard parts - off the shelf or fast shop order-in. Most Brand-Name PCs have at least some "proprietary parts" - Power-Supplies being the most common. Often these are so shaped that only the proprietary one will fit. Once out of Warranty - these can be pretty expensive, sometimes hard or long-delay to source.

    I recently got a quote for a P/S for a friend's about 2 year old Brand-Namer (won't name it - most are similar) PC. The "Brand" P/S was $165.00 and had to be ordered from "overseas".

    After a bit of measuring - I found that by cutting one case-bracer - required fully stripping the components from the case, to hacksaw it - to completely avoid metal filings getting into things, that a std 550W P/S would fit. (The original was 500W.)

    The good brand std P/S - with fan, of course - cost $72.00. The job, including strip, cut, clean case, and reassemble with new P/S, took just under an hour. The new P/S has a 12-month Warranty - and should it fail after that, replacing it will take about 5-minutes.

    I spent around 11 years designing and building home-user PCs and office 'stations, almost all for Windows users. (That's where the "exwintech" comes from.)

    I still design my own PCs - but get them "shop-built" (by an ex-employer, actually) - to get the 12-months Shop Warranty.

    However, as I left the trade a bit before Longhorn/Vista was released, I have no experience in Vista or Win-7 builds, so it would be unethical for me to recommend anything regarding those Systems.

    My own PCs have for several years been designed/built for Linux, which has rather lower overheads and demands than recent versions of Windows... The closest I get to running Windows at present, is to run Win2k SP4, and XP-Pro SP2 upgraded to SP3 - inside Virtual-Box in Linux - to test apps and things for friends.

    Who are sometimes amused to see a fully-functional XP-Pro install start and be fully usable in 8-9-seconds...

    Dave.

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    Thanks Analog6 - actually, I have yet to purchase the full version of CS5 so I would be able to still get the Mac if I wanted.

    Thanks exwintech - I did go to my local computer store and they quoted me the above specs and prices. I'm not doubting the system they priced me is good, but it would come from Sydney and need to be sent to base for any repairs and just for the machine, without screen, it is a little out of my price range. I don't really mind if it isn't a brand name, a few years ago I did have a pc build, but it was just for basic use, not specifically for photo editing.

    I have to say I think I have found what I might go with. You will all hate it because it is at Harvey Normans. They only thing I wish to check into is if the screen will be ok. It is a Acer and you can look here if you wish : http://www.harveynorman.com.au/produ...e-m-at-desktop .

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    Check if the graphics casrd is up to all you need to do in CS5 - the Nvidia site shows it as an OEM only card and does not have a lot of specs for it. Other than that looks OK - you might like a bigger monitor these days though.

    Good luck

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    you can save quite a few $$$ with a few changes and still have a fast pc for photoshop/lightroom ect,

    ASI PC61761 ATX Midtower 700w - is fine, but 500 w is enough
    Intel Core i7 processor i7-960 - is way overkill,Go with an i5 2.4Ghz cpu will be plenty good enough,this will save over $300 alone
    DDR-III 2Gb 1333MHz - 3 of these - dont really need 6gig unless you are using 64 bit and intend on working with very large files,otherwise 4 gig is fine
    Seagate SATAII 1TB 32mb 7200
    DVD/RW SATA 20x Nero8Suite
    Wired keyboard
    OEM usb mouse
    Gigabyte PCI-E N21iTC 1GI
    3 year warranty
    Win 7 Home premium

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    Hi mynxt
    Pity you are in TAS and I am in QLD
    I build-sell-repair PC's as well as support PC/MAC systems
    The specs you posted are pretty reasonable (most parts come with 3-5 years manufacturers warranty anyway)
    Altho .. I could build a similar system for just under $2200 including a 24" LCD screen
    how ever I think maybe ya dont need such a killer system . (LOL).. pretty sure a decent i3/i5 system can be built for about $1400 or so leaving you with $600 which wold get you a reasonable 15" notebook (i cant say laptop.. coz if ya use them on your lap they over heat because you block the vents.. LOL - can you tell i've done phone support?? hehe) that would be great for viewing and storeing your photos when on the go
    Last edited by Stingray; 21-10-2010 at 10:16pm.
    - Daz
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    just whipped up a quick price for dropping your specs to something more "reasonable"
    that would do what you want and be still upgradeable later to an Core™ i7-880 3.06GHz you get
    any computer shop should quote around $1550
    Intel i3-530 Core i3 CPU, Dual Core 2.93 Ghz
    Gigabyte GA-H55M-UD2H MB, (mainboard)
    2x Corsair 2GB Value Select (1333MHz) DDR3 RAM
    Hitachi 1TB Deskstar, 3 Years Warranty
    Sony AD7240SGB SATA Black, Double Layer, Multiformat 24x DVD±RW Drive, OEM with software (Nero 8 suite 1)
    Astrotek V-113 Internal Multi Card 3.5" Card Reader
    Gigabyte GT240 PCI-E 1GB 128-bit DDR3, 600/1600MHz, DVI, VGA, HDMI, Fan (graphics)
    Aywun SOHO Series S01 Black/Silver mid tower ATX case
    550W "Aywun" MEGA POWER ECO Series A1-550E Power Supply
    ASUS VE246H 24" Widescreen LCD Monitor - Black, Full HD 1920x1080, HDMI, 2ms, 50,000:1 Contrast (ASCR), Speakers
    Gigabyte GK-K7100 USB Ultra Slim Keyboard
    Gigabyte GM-M5050 Black USB Curvy Optical Mouse
    Microsoft Windows 7- Home Premium 32-bit
    3 year warranty

  15. #15
    Member Adrian Fischer's Avatar
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    Why wouldnt you go for a 64bit system to take advantage of the ability to use more ram and therefore have a faster machine for graphics work? Im in the market as well(and live in Brisbane ;-) .
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    How does this sound

    Just looked at an online dealer who I always use to buy components from

    System assembly $55

    INTEL i7-930 - INTEL CORE i7 PROCESSOR, 2.8GHz/4.8GT QPT/8MB CACHE/LGA1366 $406.56

    ASRock X58 EXTREME, iX58,6*DDR3,3*PICE16,6*SATA,RAID,1394 $214.83

    Corsair HX3X12G1600C9 12GB (6x XMS3 2GB) PC-12800 (1600MHz) XMS DDR3 For X58 MB/i7 Core $355.4

    2 x Samsung Spinpoint, 1000GB SATA II 3.5" 32MB Cache, 7200rpm, HD103SJ $140.8

    Gigabyte ATI HD 5850 PCI-E 2.0 1GB 256-bit GDDR5, 725/4000MHz, Dual DVI/ HDMI/ Display Port, DX $308.02

    LG BluRay Burner, BH10LS30, 10xBD-R Read/Write, 16xDVD+-R Read/Write, SATA, LightScribe, Retail $145.2

    GMC ATX Middle-Tower Case, R4 Bulldozer, Black, without PSU $68.2

    700 watt ATX power supply Enermax, MODU87+ 700W CrossFireX™, 87 PLUS, EMG700AWT $198

    Creative Sound Blaster Audigy Value - Retail, 7.1 channel, 100dB SNR, 24-bit Advanced HD2 Effects $38.72

    LG W2353V-PF BLK Glossy 23" Widescreen LCD -16:9 (1920x1080), 2ms, HDMI, DVI, 50000:1 Contrast, Ful $208.67

    LOGITECH CORDLESS DESKTOP EX90, USB/BLACK/WINDOWS XP - RETAIL $30.8

    MICROSOFT MS W/L MOBILE MSE 6000 BLUETRACK MHC-00005 $49.38

    Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate 64-BIT, GLC-00736, OEM 1PK - Must be purchased with hardware $218.21

    Microsoft Office Home and Business 2010, ENG MICROCASE Product Key Card, No Media $228.94

    Subtotal: $2,666.73


    Cheers - JB

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    Quote Originally Posted by jbee View Post
    How does this sound

    Just looked at an online dealer who I always use to buy components from

    System assembly $55

    INTEL i7-930 - INTEL CORE i7 PROCESSOR, 2.8GHz/4.8GT QPT/8MB CACHE/LGA1366 $406.56

    ASRock X58 EXTREME, iX58,6*DDR3,3*PICE16,6*SATA,RAID,1394 $214.83

    Corsair HX3X12G1600C9 12GB (6x XMS3 2GB) PC-12800 (1600MHz) XMS DDR3 For X58 MB/i7 Core $355.4

    2 x Samsung Spinpoint, 1000GB SATA II 3.5" 32MB Cache, 7200rpm, HD103SJ $140.8

    Gigabyte ATI HD 5850 PCI-E 2.0 1GB 256-bit GDDR5, 725/4000MHz, Dual DVI/ HDMI/ Display Port, DX $308.02

    LG BluRay Burner, BH10LS30, 10xBD-R Read/Write, 16xDVD+-R Read/Write, SATA, LightScribe, Retail $145.2

    GMC ATX Middle-Tower Case, R4 Bulldozer, Black, without PSU $68.2

    700 watt ATX power supply Enermax, MODU87+ 700W CrossFireX™, 87 PLUS, EMG700AWT $198

    Creative Sound Blaster Audigy Value - Retail, 7.1 channel, 100dB SNR, 24-bit Advanced HD2 Effects $38.72

    LG W2353V-PF BLK Glossy 23" Widescreen LCD -16:9 (1920x1080), 2ms, HDMI, DVI, 50000:1 Contrast, Ful $208.67

    LOGITECH CORDLESS DESKTOP EX90, USB/BLACK/WINDOWS XP - RETAIL $30.8

    MICROSOFT MS W/L MOBILE MSE 6000 BLUETRACK MHC-00005 $49.38

    Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate 64-BIT, GLC-00736, OEM 1PK - Must be purchased with hardware $218.21

    Microsoft Office Home and Business 2010, ENG MICROCASE Product Key Card, No Media $228.94

    Subtotal: $2,666.73


    Cheers - JB

    If you are using this for photo-editing even on a casual basis, I would suggest getting a better monitor for that purpose. The one you listed is good for gaming IMO

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    Thanks JM would something like thie H-E2340V-PN.AAU here be a better monitor
    http://www.eyo.com.au/items_CatID_12..._Monitors.html

    Or were you thinking size ?

  19. #19
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    Just a quick reply...will be back later to look through properly...You guys are amazing!! Thanks heaps for all the info.
    I'll re-read and go from there

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    Been refining my own new PC build before I buy too at the thread below.
    Have had some fantastic advice from people there as well, simply awesome the way people on this forum take the time to help you out , i will be cutting back the cost and refining a bit more tonight before I submitt my order .
    http://www.ausphotography.net.au/for...64-bit-windows

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