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virtual build


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#1 wkid

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Posted 19 August 2011 - 11:45 PM

During a recent dialog with Cryptodan (BC Advisor), he recommended that I open a new thread here. The sole reason for this thread is to increase my understanding. I have very little (if any) understanding of specs and compatibility of the hardware required to build a custom machine. I am prepared to research topics and parts to perform a virtual build of a machine which will satisfy the requirements which I will outline below.

I ask that anyone who assists me in this virtual build exercises patience with me. My personal life is very full, and I am enrolled in Study Hall here at Bleeping Computer. My responsibilities outside of this thread are of higher priority than immediate response. Additionally, I will have to have time to research and ask questions along the way. I am not asking for someone to spec out a system; rather I am asking for guidance in learning to spec out a system (including sourcing parts) to perform as I outline. Also, I am not a gamer; so parts dedicated to gaming are not required unless they make the build a good one.

I am anticipating questions for why I include some of the system requirements; so I am including some reasons in this initial thread.
  • This will be a PC using Windows.
  • I want enough processor speed and RAM to allow tasks similar to the following to be performed simultaneously without overwhelming system resources:
    • download a large program or video -- or possibly perform video editing
    • listen to live streaming radio or watch instructional videos
    • research topics required for online training
    • compose a document with research results
  • I want to use up to four monitors
    • 2 or 3 to keep windows open in full screen size to view research materials
    • one for composing a document
    • possibly one to monitor downloads if only two are used for research material
  • up to four additional USB ports beyond those required to run a printer and/or other devices which will be attached on a full time basis
  • two DVD player/recorders
  • maybe a blue ray player

Do I have any takers to give me the first step in specking this machine and the reasons for why to start there?

Thanks for your replies.

regards,
wkid

Edited by wkid, 19 August 2011 - 11:48 PM.

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#2 cryptodan

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Posted 19 August 2011 - 11:48 PM

Id like for you put a PC together via newegg.com and post the final rig here and we will critique it for you.

#3 killerx525

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Posted 19 August 2011 - 11:56 PM

Hi dude :busy: A little tip off, look for the processor first then the motherboard and finally look for the other components like the ram, hard drive etc.

>Michael 
System1: CPU- Intel Core i7-5820K @ 4.4GHz, CPU Cooler- Noctua NH-D14, RAM- G.Skill Ripjaws 16GB Kit(4Gx4) DDR3 2133MHz, SSD/HDD- Samsung 850 EVO 250GB/Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB/Seagate Barracuada 3TB, GPU- 2x EVGA GTX980 Superclocked @1360/MHz1900MHz, Motherboard- Asus X99 Deluxe, Case- Custom Mac G5, PSU- EVGA P2-1000W, Soundcard- Realtek High Definition Audio, OS- Windows 10 Pro 64-Bit
Games: APB: Reloaded, Hours played: 3100+  System2: Late 2011 Macbook Pro 15inch   OFw63FY.png


#4 wkid

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Posted 19 August 2011 - 11:57 PM

OK ... Give a little time to figure out where to start and research some parts.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. - Benjamin Franklin

#5 wkid

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Posted 20 August 2011 - 12:03 AM

killerx525,

I was posting my reply to Cryptodan while you were posting.

Starting with the processor poses a question which I have not found a suitable answer for. To frame this question I am going to use fictional processor speeds because the math is easy.

If there are three processors: single core rated at 4Ghz, duo core rated at 2Ghz, and quad core rated at 1Ghz, are they equivalent in speed? What is the advantage of one over another?

regards,
wkid
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. - Benjamin Franklin

#6 killerx525

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Posted 20 August 2011 - 12:08 AM

I believe it's not always the clock speed that matters, i reckon it depends on the architecture of the processor and the tasks it's gonna be used for. Out of your fictional processors, i would say the 1GHz quad core which usually the clock speed is higher.

>Michael 
System1: CPU- Intel Core i7-5820K @ 4.4GHz, CPU Cooler- Noctua NH-D14, RAM- G.Skill Ripjaws 16GB Kit(4Gx4) DDR3 2133MHz, SSD/HDD- Samsung 850 EVO 250GB/Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB/Seagate Barracuada 3TB, GPU- 2x EVGA GTX980 Superclocked @1360/MHz1900MHz, Motherboard- Asus X99 Deluxe, Case- Custom Mac G5, PSU- EVGA P2-1000W, Soundcard- Realtek High Definition Audio, OS- Windows 10 Pro 64-Bit
Games: APB: Reloaded, Hours played: 3100+  System2: Late 2011 Macbook Pro 15inch   OFw63FY.png


#7 wkid

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Posted 20 August 2011 - 12:46 AM

Researching architecture returns a few items:

http://www.techterms.com/definition/processor includes this information

...the speed of a computer is also influenced by other factors, such as the efficiency of the processor, the bus architecture, the amount of memory available, and the software that is running on the computer...


Going to bus, I come up with http://www.techterms.com/definition/bus which states

...Each bus has a certain size, measured in bits (such as 32-bit or 64-bit), that determines how much data can travel across the bus at one time... The computer's primary bus is called the frontside bus and connects the CPU to the rest of the components on the motherboard... the speed of the frontside bus is the most important, as it determines how fast data can move in and out of the processor.


I have no idea of how to determine the system resources required to satisfy the requirements of this virtual build; so I am going to make the assumption that I would be better off with a 64 bit processor. I believe that the resources required for the scenario I described would be pretty intense.

This leads me to question my understanding of the operation of multi-core processors. If I am not mistaken, multi-core processors can divide up the tasks to prevent some of the bottle neck caused by resource intensive tasks. If this is a correct understanding, then a duo- or quad-core processor would perform better than a single core processor. Is that correct?

If I am on track so far, the next consideration would be clock speed.

Please correct where I may be wrong in this step before I continue.

regards,
wkid
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. - Benjamin Franklin

#8 cryptodan

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Posted 20 August 2011 - 12:53 AM

You want want ample RAM up to 8Gigs, maybe a Mid Range Core i5 or AMD, Dual Graphic Cards in non-sli, and ample power.

#9 diggi

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Posted 20 August 2011 - 12:58 AM

What is your budget ?? or there is none. For starters I would recommend an AMD 5 or 6 series Graphics card with eyefinity for multiple monitor capacity eg PowerColor AX6870 2GBD5-6DG Radeon HD 6870 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 Eyefinity 6 Edition

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814131447



Processor

AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition Thuban 3.2GHz 6 x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Socket AM3 125W Six-Core Desktop Processor HDT90ZFBGRBOX

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103849

More cores for handling several processes at once



Memory

All you need for now is 8 gigs
G.SKILL Value Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL9D-8GBNT

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231424



Motherboard

ASRock 970 EXTREME4 AM3+ AMD 970 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157262

#10 killerx525

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Posted 20 August 2011 - 01:03 AM

I would say that the X6 is good for editing videos, I own one myself and Premiere Pro works well and multitasking is awesome. 8GB is ram good enough for video editing and heavy multitasking.

>Michael 
System1: CPU- Intel Core i7-5820K @ 4.4GHz, CPU Cooler- Noctua NH-D14, RAM- G.Skill Ripjaws 16GB Kit(4Gx4) DDR3 2133MHz, SSD/HDD- Samsung 850 EVO 250GB/Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB/Seagate Barracuada 3TB, GPU- 2x EVGA GTX980 Superclocked @1360/MHz1900MHz, Motherboard- Asus X99 Deluxe, Case- Custom Mac G5, PSU- EVGA P2-1000W, Soundcard- Realtek High Definition Audio, OS- Windows 10 Pro 64-Bit
Games: APB: Reloaded, Hours played: 3100+  System2: Late 2011 Macbook Pro 15inch   OFw63FY.png


#11 wkid

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Posted 20 August 2011 - 02:47 AM

I forgot to indicate that this will be a desktop computer. I'll call midrange $219-$279 which includes:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116400
Intel Core i5-2405S Sandy Bridge 2.5GHz (3.3GHz Turbo Boost) 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache LGA 1155 65W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52405S
price $219.99

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115217
Intel Core i5-661 Clarkdale 3.33GHz 4MB L3 Cache LGA 1156 87W Dual-Core Desktop Processor BX80616I5661
price $219.99/ 64 bit support/ L3 Cache: 4MB/ 3.33GHz Dual-Core

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116369
Intel Core i5-655K Clarkdale 3.2GHz 4MB L3 Cache LGA 1156 73W Dual-Core Unlocked Desktop Processor BX80616I5655K
price $234.99/ 64 bit support/ L3 Cache: 4MB/ 3.2GHz Dual-Core

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819111021
Intel Core i5-560M Arrandale 2.66GHz 2 x 256KB L2 Cache 3MB L3 Cache Socket G1 35W Dual-Core Mobile Processor Model BX80617I5560M
This one does not look like it is designed for a desktop.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819111025
Intel Core i5-2520M Sandy Bridge 2.5GHz (3.2GHz Turbo Boost) 2 x 256KB L2 Cache 3MB L3 Cache Socket G2 35W Dual-Core Mobile Processor Model BX80627i52520M
This one does not look like it designed for a desktop.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115062
Intel Core i5-750S Lynnfield 2.4GHz 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1156 82W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80605I5750S
price $279.99/ 64 bit support/ L3 Cache: 8MB/ Quad-Core 2.4GHz

NOTE: The information above which follows the processor model number is found on this page: http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&DEPA=0&Order=BESTMATCH&Description=core+i5&x=11&y=34

My intent (if possible) is to use Windows 7 Ultimate to allow use of XP mode for backwards compatibility for programs on the machine I am using now which has XP Home 32 bit and uses AMD Sempron LE-1300 which supports 64 bit. So I see no problem with choosing a 64 bit processor. The use of a processor which supports 64 bit may extend the machine's usefulness as software migrates away from 32 bit.

Now I have narrowed my choices down to Intel Core i5-661, Intel Core i5-655K, and Intel Core i5-750S.

The Wikipedia article on cache explains that larger cache improves speed. I believe the could possibly benefit from larger cache.

I see virtually no difference between Intel Core i5-661 and Intel Core i5-655K as far as speed is concerned. If Intel Core i5-750S is significantly faster by virtue of being quad-core, the hot rodder in me leans toward this one. Research shows me that the Intel Core i5-655K "Unlocked Desktop Processor" makes overclocking easier. The hot rodder in me leans this way, but I have read about too many instability issues resulting from overclocking to be comfortable with doing so.

All three of these processors employ LGA 1156, which I believe will be considered for choosing video cards later in this virtual build.

The last consideration I see is power requirements. If I am reading the specs right, it looks like the Intel Core i5-750S is the most efficient of the three on a speed vs. power usage basis @82w.

Overall I am choosing the Intel Core i5-750S. Primary criteria is future use as software evolves, perceived speed, and efficient use of power. Since this is a virtual build, I am not worrying about price here because I believe this is the true guts of the system. If price becomes a consideration later, I'll reserve those considerations for less important pieces of hardware.

My eyes are getting very fatigued; so I would like to stop here and view critiques and/or corrections in my logic before moving to the next piece of hardware. That way I can know for sure what I am building the next pieces around.

I will look into posts #9 and #10 the next time I visit this thread.

Good night for now.

regards,
wkid
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. - Benjamin Franklin

#12 killerx525

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Posted 20 August 2011 - 04:10 AM

You chose some mobile processors which won't work on a desktop motherboard. 1156 has been phased out so it would better to spend on the Sandy Bridge processors which is faster and newer.

>Michael 
System1: CPU- Intel Core i7-5820K @ 4.4GHz, CPU Cooler- Noctua NH-D14, RAM- G.Skill Ripjaws 16GB Kit(4Gx4) DDR3 2133MHz, SSD/HDD- Samsung 850 EVO 250GB/Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB/Seagate Barracuada 3TB, GPU- 2x EVGA GTX980 Superclocked @1360/MHz1900MHz, Motherboard- Asus X99 Deluxe, Case- Custom Mac G5, PSU- EVGA P2-1000W, Soundcard- Realtek High Definition Audio, OS- Windows 10 Pro 64-Bit
Games: APB: Reloaded, Hours played: 3100+  System2: Late 2011 Macbook Pro 15inch   OFw63FY.png


#13 wkid

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Posted 20 August 2011 - 09:14 AM

Killer,

You chose some mobile processors which won't work on a desktop motherboard

Because this is a virtual build for educational purposes only, I will be including some items which I am unsure of to ensure that I am reading the specs properly. That is why I included the mobile ones. The last line of those sections includes info indicating that I think that they are for mobile application.

1156 has been phased out so it would better to spend on the Sandy Bridge processors which is faster and newer.


noted ... So this brings me to the least expensive of the choices I listed. Please tell me if I am reading the following right. I have highlighted areas of primary concern in yellow:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116400
Intel Core i5-2405S Sandy Bridge 2.5GHz (3.3GHz Turbo Boost) 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache LGA 1155 65W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52405S
price $219.99
questions/observations:
  • http://geekmontage.com/texts/intel-socket-1155-vs-1156-vs-1366-x58-vs-2011/
    indicates that motherboard availability is limited. That may be a deal breaker.
  • The detailed information does not indicate support for 64 bit. Will this pose a problem with newer software written for 64 bit? Do I need to expand my search parameters to find a Sandybridge 64 bit processor? I was attempting to satisfy Cryptodan's "mid-range" suggestion.
  • If I remember the information I viewed in a documentary, the 32nm technology listed indicates the length of the internal electrical connections. Shorter lengths result in more speed because of the finite speed limitations of electrical current. Is that a correct understanding?
  • Shared cache looks like a good speed oriented featured.
  • The integrated DD3 memory controller sounds like a speed enhancer also.
  • The built in graphics card is questionable to me. I remember reading somewhere in the past that an internal graphics card is a deal breaker for multiple monitor applications. External graphics cards were recommended in the article. Do I have that right? Does that eliminate this processor from consideration?
  • Does virtualization technology enhance the use of a virtual machine, or is this a different issue entirely.
  • Power consumption of 65w is lower than the ones I chose previously.
Do these concerns make this processor a less than ideal choice for the virtual build?

 

Diggi,

What is your budget ?? or there is none.

This is a virtual build for educational purposes only. Price is of low consideration.

The AMD processor looks inviting, especially with 6 cores at a price of only $169. Support for 64 bit looks promising. I wonder if the 125w power rating will come into play later in the build as power supply choices have to be dealt with. Also, information found here says, "...Multimedia Instruction...Enhanced Virus Protection..." Will this present any conflicts with various security programs which may be chosen for the system once it is up and running?

Thanks for the other info. I'd like to complete the processor choice before moving on to other components.

 

How is my read so far? Are the highlighted areas of any real concern which should prompt me to search for other alternatives?

regards,
wkid
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. - Benjamin Franklin

#14 killerx525

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Posted 20 August 2011 - 09:28 AM

I can answer only a few questions. There are plenty of LGA1155 motherboards out there, that topic is outdated. Most modern processors nowadays can support 64bit. I am not sure about running multiple monitors on those graphics integrated CPU. I believe the virtualization technology does enhance the use of virtual machine, it is actually requirement to have it to run the virtual machine.

>Michael 
System1: CPU- Intel Core i7-5820K @ 4.4GHz, CPU Cooler- Noctua NH-D14, RAM- G.Skill Ripjaws 16GB Kit(4Gx4) DDR3 2133MHz, SSD/HDD- Samsung 850 EVO 250GB/Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB/Seagate Barracuada 3TB, GPU- 2x EVGA GTX980 Superclocked @1360/MHz1900MHz, Motherboard- Asus X99 Deluxe, Case- Custom Mac G5, PSU- EVGA P2-1000W, Soundcard- Realtek High Definition Audio, OS- Windows 10 Pro 64-Bit
Games: APB: Reloaded, Hours played: 3100+  System2: Late 2011 Macbook Pro 15inch   OFw63FY.png


#15 wkid

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Posted 20 August 2011 - 11:15 AM

Thanks for your answers, Killer. I'll wait on some more answers before continuing. I may profit from researching AMD processors. With the pricing, I may be able to step up the speed from Intel and still keep the price window from the previous research. If I decide to add running a virtual machine to the initial uses, that may prove to be useful.

regards,
wkid

Edited by wkid, 20 August 2011 - 11:16 AM.

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