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I want to build a computer for my cousin but need some advice

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#1 lionheart5656


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Posted 13 January 2013 - 02:59 AM

I can build it easily but I'm not technically savvy enough to know for sure what kind of specs would be best for what he needs and would like your help. Here's what he told me:

He will be using the computer for digital art that involves high res photoshop files and 3d modeling programs like Maya. Basically he'll be going heavy on graphic art programs of all kinds.

He will be also playing a lot of games as well.

He wants a lot of hard drive memory and at least 16 gigs of ram.

He didn't give a budget and based on what he's said I don't think price is an issue.

I'm not sure whether to get him multiple GPUs, overclock his CPU, both, more, etc.

I'm probably going to get him Windows 7.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

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#2 killerx525


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Posted 13 January 2013 - 04:09 AM

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770 Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz - $300 - This should work nicely Maya, also there is no need to overclock.

Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-Z77X-UP4 TH - $185 - Lots bells and whistles.

Ram:G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) - $88 - Plenty of ram.

SSD: SAMSUNG 840 Pro Series MZ-7PD256BW 2.5" 256GB - $250 - This basically where you only place the OS and the programs.

Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 7200.14 ST3000DM001 3TB - $160 - For storing all of the data like the projects.

GPU: MSI R7970 Lightning Radeon HD 7970 3GB - $490 - Fastest single chip card you can get.

PSU: SeaSonic SS-660XP 660W - $150 - A high and efficient unit which has plenty of power for upgrades.

Case: Corsair Obsidian Series 650D - $160 - A roomy mid-atx case with a beautifully aluminum finish to it.

ODD: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS OEM - $20 - A simple drive.

OS: Microsoft Windows 8 64-bit (Full Version) OEM - $100

Total: $1,903 excluding postage, tax and rebates.

Edited by killerx525, 13 January 2013 - 09:30 PM.

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

#3 lionheart5656

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 06:56 PM

Three questions.

1. Isn't AMD on the verge of going out of business? Is it wise for me to set him up with a board from them?

2. I thought he might need 2 GPUs for the kind of work he's doing. Just curious as to why I was wrong there.

3. I know he asked for 16 GB at least but is there a reason 32 GB would not be better for his sort of work?

Again, thanks so much for the help.

#4 DJBPace07


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Posted 13 January 2013 - 08:44 PM

1. AMD is not going out of business, despite the hyperbolic and sensationalistic articles on the net predicting doom. They do have issues with their CPU's not being as fast as Intel's top-of-the-line, but their upper-mid range CPU's do quite well. Their graphics division, previously ATI, is also holding its own against Nvidia. Keep in mind that AMD doesn't actually make the graphics card, MSI does, as does Asus, XFX, and other manufacturers.

2. You don't need two GPU's for this kind of work, unless the rendering program can utilize it. If it can, you would need two high-end GPU's. To use more than one card, the program will also need to use be optimized for AMD's Crossfire or Nvidia's SLI. I don't think Maya is optimized for this. But the cost and hassle of using multiple GPU's may make it troublesome. Also, keep in mind that processing an image for CAD versus a game is different. In CAD, the aim is for precision over speed, in games it is for speed at the cost of precision. This is why AMD and Nvidia put out professional cards for those who cannot make do with consumer cards. These workstation cards are hugely expensive versions of consumer parts with altered firmware.

3. This is a tricky one. You mention 3D content creation and RAM. This type of content is really the only reason, aside from scientific processing and rendering, that can really eat up all the RAM you can throw at it. Games almost never need more than 8GB, but CAD and 3D rendering do. To get the most benefit, you must use a 64-bit OS. Also, Windows 8 does have better memory management over Windows 7. This is one of the things Microsoft changed, this article explains some of it.



#5 lionheart5656

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 04:00 AM

Thanks a lot guys.

I really appreciate the help.

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