Dogway

New rig and some questions

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Hello, I'm going to build a new rig and there are a few components (PSU, RAM) I don't know which to buy.

Budget is about 500€ and I will be using it for work (no games), video/audio processing/encoding, Photoshop, and in the near future CG as well, a field I had apart for a while but want to resume or be able to at any moment.

I don't need Graphic Card, it will be i5-3570K, Asus Z8P77-V Pro, SSD, a case I haven't chosen yet, and 2 more components I don't know what to choose, RAM, and PSU.

1. I'm thinking on a fast RAM of 1866Mhz, but I don't know what brand is good (I was recommended G.Skill), here on my local place they sell Kingston and Corsair, are they good? and should I buy 1x4Gb or 2x2Gb, what is better?

2. I'm also open to recommendations for PSU, in the 600W range. A good PSU overall, silent... I don't know exactly what else to ask for a PSU, that's also something I would like to know, I have read good things about aerocool strike X and Seasonic M12II. The main issue is that where I live there are micro power surges, so I want something to protect from that, not sure if at PSU or Mobo level.

3. About SSD, I read that Samsung and Intel are good reliable brands, but I'm not sure to find those at my place, I think here they work more with Sandisk, are they good/reliable?

4. To finish one small question, I'm thinking on buying an esata equipped mobo, in that terms I thought it would be a good idea to invest and buy one with wifi built in. The thing is I saw that with these boards an USB antenna is sold. The idea was to make things easier so I wonder do I need to plug this antenna for the board wifi?

Thanks for the help!

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I managed to find some answers.

1. I read that by setting even number of modules you get a speed boost, dual channel in my case for 2x4Gb so I might buy that. Should I buy something over 1866Mhz? Would it run in native speed or only after OC? What are good models of Kingston?

2. I havel also been reading and almost all PSU nowadays have protection for micro power surges. That's a good thing. The thing is that the named PSU's are always spinning despite the CPU load. there are some that adjust themwelves.

4. Also today I saw a wifi internal card, and it comes with external antennas WTF! I mean, on my laptop I didn't need any antenna whatsoever, the wifi is internal. There doesn't exist any REAL internal wifi?

Thank you!

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1 - Probably True. Crucial also makes good sticks. The RAM Bus speed on newer PC's doesn't necessarily have to match the CPU. It should be "native". Get the fastest now in case of CPU Upgrade.

2 - It's in the BIOS to allow reduced Fan spin. Choose wisely.

3 - Not there :blink:

4 - WiFi on laptops have a built-in internal antenna. Add-ins almost always have an antenna UNLESS you get a PCMCIA/Cardbus Add-In PCI Card and stick a WiFi card in it (old-school).

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1. For best performance, the supported clock speed of the RAM you buy should at least match the CPU's RAM bus clock rate (also known as Front Side Bus or FSB). RAM with a higher speed rating can be used, but the higher rating is useless unless you overclock the system. :)

Here is a decent primer on RAM: http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/Understanding-RAM-Timings/26/1

As submix8c suggests, be mindful of any CPU upgrades you might later want and check the FSB speeds for those CPUs. To avoid problems later, buy RAM rated to the FSB speed of the fastest CPU you intend to use, or faster if you will overclock.

Edited by 5eraph
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1. Thanks 5eraph. Yes newer CPU's have the FSB on chip, so there's not FSB actually. Thanks for the link, that deserves a good read.

The question is more towards about over 1866Mhz ram speed, for example 2133Mhz, is this natively supported in RAM, Mobo, etc? or only achievable by overclock? another way to ask it, is it a hack or a number supported by a known standard?

2. @submix8c, yes, I was talking about adaptive speed. I know you can increase/decrease speed in bios, but I would think that is an fixed speed. Now some PSU's are able to adapt themselves, so when idle it won't spin as much and be more silent. I'll need to do some more research, expecting to not exceed budget.

4. it's funny all the desktop wifi cards have awkward antennas attached to it, it looks so 90's XDD, it's the first time I need to buy one so it shocked me. I wonder why can't they be internal like with laptops, or maybe that is not an optimal design?

With this said I don't care buying a wifi card apart from mobo, it's gonna bother the same either way.

3. Hopefully someone can recommend me a good SSD out of Intel, Samsung and Crucial. Good as in reliable, speed not much of a concern for SSD's.

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4.[...] I wonder why can't they be internal like with laptops, or maybe that is not an optimal design?

I could be wrong about this, but I think with laptops with built-in WiFi that the antenna is hidden behind the display, The old school WiFi add-in cards, for laptops without built-in WiFi, also had antennas sticking out of the card.

Cheers and Regards

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1. Thanks 5eraph. Yes newer CPU's have the FSB on chip, so there's not FSB actually. Thanks for the link, that deserves a good read.

The question is more towards about over 1866Mhz ram speed, for example 2133Mhz, is this natively supported in RAM, Mobo, etc? or only achievable by overclock? another way to ask it, is it a hack or a number supported by a known standard?

Don't worry about RAM troughput rates like 1866 or 2133MHz. You are using a CPU that does works best with 1600MT/s memory, but you can use higher rated memory if you want. What is more important is the voltage, yes voltage, that should not exceed 1.5v (or risk a damaged memory controller). Second, timings; get timings as tight as possible within a XMP-profile, make sure your RAM has an XMP-profile so the UEFI it will pick the lowest timing settings when you set XMP. So, an example: PC3-12800U, timings 8-8-8-24 (1600MT/s) will perform better than PC3-14900U, timings 10-10-10-27 (1866MT/s) (unless you read/write large blocks from memory, but normal users won't do that much). But, I would not ask too much or go to deep on how memory controllers work else you will get lost ;).

2. @submix8c, yes, I was talking about adaptive speed. I know you can increase/decrease speed in bios, but I would think that is an fixed speed. Now some PSU's are able to adapt themselves, so when idle it won't spin as much and be more silent. I'll need to do some more research, expecting to not exceed budget.

New PSUs with 14cm fans make almost no noise, some have temperature regulated fans in them but it's not really needed as you won't hear a 14cm at a meter/3 feet or so, let alone when it's in a computercase.

3. Hopefully someone can recommend me a good SSD out of Intel, Samsung and Crucial. Good as in reliable, speed not much of a concern for SSD's.

All are okay these days, but I would go for performance so look at the IOPS a SSD can do when reading AND writing, higher is better. latest gen SSDs are most likely faster.
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4.[...] I wonder why can't they be internal like with laptops, or maybe that is not an optimal design?

I could be wrong about this, but I think with laptops with built-in WiFi that the antenna is hidden behind the display, The old school WiFi add-in cards, for laptops without built-in WiFi, also had antennas sticking out of the card.

Cheers and Regards

You need a certain size of an antenna to get the power output, named in dBi. Laptops have indeed long, about 30cm / 1 feet wires, for TX and RX.
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Thanks for answers!, about this:

PC3-12800U, timings 8-8-8-24 (1600MT/s) will perform better than PC3-14900U, timings 10-10-10-27 (1866MT/s) (unless you read/write large blocks from memory...

What there is to look at in case memory block were large (the last number? 24 vs 27?) I work a lot with Photoshop, Maya, Avisynth, and that kind of heavy stuff, would these use large blocks?

About SSD, I'm really not concerned about speed, be it x8, or x16 speed boost. Even a x4 speed increase is enough for me, I want a snappy windows response, and programs that don't take ages to launch, boot times shortened as well. I'm gonna get that with any SSD, so what I'm looking for is resilience to wear, failed blocks, durability, etc

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Thanks for answers!, about this:

PC3-12800U, timings 8-8-8-24 (1600MT/s) will perform better than PC3-14900U, timings 10-10-10-27 (1866MT/s) (unless you read/write large blocks from memory...

What there is to look at in case memory block were large (the last number? 24 vs 27?) I work a lot with Photoshop, Maya, Avisynth, and that kind of heavy stuff, would these use large blocks?

About SSD, I'm really not concerned about speed, be it x8, or x16 speed boost. Even a x4 speed increase is enough for me, I want a snappy windows response, and programs that don't take ages to launch, boot times shortened as well. I'm gonna get that with any SSD, so what I'm looking for is resilience to wear, failed blocks, durability, etc

No, no need to have a higher bandwidth, just go for better timings. It´s about timings vs. throughput, and you better go with lower timings and not with higher throughput. I'm not going to explain how and what a memorycontroller does (however, some one might have the time to write a few pages on this to explain it to you (no offense, it's just specialized stuff) ;). Get 1.5volt, 1600MT/s, 8-8-8-24 or better timed memory and you will be fine with the best performance for your new PC.

SSD life depends on how you use it, write a lot on it and it will live shorter, so get 16GB RAM for the kind of programs you use and disable the "swap-file" and hibernate for example to get the best out of an SSD. There is no simple answer to "what is best", sorry.

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I'm not offended, it's ok without deep explanation.

What I'm used to see is 1866 CL9 and 1.65(?), not sure about voltage tho. Also same specs in CL7 flavour, but that pumps the prices much higher.

Wouldn't it be buying 1600 right now falling a bit short? These days I have read that everything above 1600 is an overclock (OC from factory, but still OC) so it makes me think that sticks being sold as 1600 are for a reason, meaning not so overclockeable. I also read that for example that timings don't mean the same on different speeds, for example CL9 is not the same in 1600 than 1866 (means better with the latter)

About SSD, I know exactly what I need to do in order to avoid write cycles, but I read a lot of reports of sudden SSD deaths, failed blocks, reliability, etc I mean, it depends on the use? Yes, and also manufacture process. So for me best is no what's faster, but rather what's more robust. I surfed a bit and read articles, user opinions, etc. I was expecting a closer feedback for comparison between Kingston and SanDisk SSD's vs Intel, Samsung and Crucial SSD's.

What I couldn't understand at all was your explanation on the swap file. Photoshop needs a hard drive, if you set none, default C: will be used. Did you mean RAM would be automatically used? or that I'd be better off making some RAMDisk? Running only 3 available gigabytes for RAM on my x86 XP I doubt there would be enough room for your original "swap to RAM" suggestion.

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Google this for further info

xp ram pagefile site:msfn.org

Possible to use RAM for pagefile if you wanted to. Within some of those the answer to "will RAM used instead if NoPage" = yes.

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Google this for further info

xp ram pagefile site:msfn.org

Possible to use RAM for pagefile if you wanted to. Within some of those the answer to "will RAM used instead if NoPage" = yes.

Sorry, I was talking about the "Scratch file" (who puts these names...?) of Photoshop.

I have had looooooooooooong discussion before about the pagefile, whether it was necessary or not, and the conclusion is YES, you need a pagefile. If you set none, still some files will be swapped to disk, and with a SSD you won't want that, don't you?

Google this for the long discussion:"ramdisk pagefile site:foro.noticias3d.com". you will want a translator since it's in spanish.

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Pagefile with SSD is kind of a problem. You don't want the pagefile on the SSD because you don't want the read/write wear on the SSD that would cause, but you also almost always need some kind of pagefile, as you have stated. So I would think that the best solution would be to use as much memory in your system that your motherboard, OS, and wallet can fit to minimize the need for any pagefile, and put a small pagefile on the fastest spinning HDD in your system. Also put the Photoshop "Scratch file" on that same HDD. Yes, if your wallet can live with the possible hit, you would get better performance if you put those files on the SSD, but you would shorten the SSD's life. So it's a trade-off. Yes, you can also use a RAM drive for both of those if you have enough RAM, which would give you killer performance yet not shorten the SSD's life. Choices, choices.

Cheers and Regards

Edited by bphlpt
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You won't shorten easily the life of a recent ssd setting a pagefile on it (see there for full explanation).

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