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upgrading my computer. any advise?

Discussion in 'Computer Hardware' started by ironchef, Jun 19, 2012.

  1. ironchef

    ironchef Very Active Member

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    I just bought 4 ,4gb kingston memory. It was $27 each at tiger direct. Installed easy. The computer recognizes it. So its at 16gb of ram. Anything else i can do to make my computer better. I have to rip a mimaki printer. And a graphtec plotter. Plus i have to use it to design. Until i save money for another computer. Also. For that. I'm looking into the tiger direct barebones kit. Anyone ever build those or have a better recommendation? Thanks
     
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  2. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Hard drives and video cards are pretty well known areas for bottlenecking. Your processor is another one as well. Without really knowing what system you have now, it's hard to suggest much of anything except to just evaluate known bottlenecking areas.
     
  3. SignBurst PCs

    SignBurst PCs Very Active Member

    I would need to know more about your computer to give any helpful advise.
     
  4. choucove

    choucove Active Member

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    As Casey stated, there's a little more information about your current computer that we would have to know about before offering good advice for computer upgrades. Besides upgrading RAM, the best performance upgrade you can do for your computer system is the storage subsystem (hard drives.) The problem is this is a lot more complex than just adding in RAM for an upgrade, so it may take a professional to complete without issue.
     
  5. 121a

    121a Member

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    Hands down, get a Solid State Drive. They are expensive for the amount of storage but you can always keep the spinning disc drives in there for larger file storage, like RIPs.
     
  6. 96XP

    96XP Member

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    If getting SSD, go with Intel as they have the best warranty (5yr).
    I haven't had any luck OR recourse with the OCZ2 brand. I was well within my last warranty and they are in dishonor. So avoid them big time, for if you do a search, you will see that many have had issues with them and many left in the cold.

    As for the original question, go 64 bit o/s with lots of ram. If doing intense design work, get a Quadro 4000 gfx card, you won't be sorry ;)
    (I always build from scratch)
     
  7. choucove

    choucove Active Member

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    I have been using OCZ Vertex drives for years without any real issues. I had one set (my original Vertex 120 GB drives) which finally killed over on me after a little over five years of constant wear and tear, but that is far beyond the standard "usage" of any person in their normal computer environment. I've heard of several having issues with the Vertex 2 drives, but into the Vertex 3 series those issues have been addressed and little complaint remains. Even now the Vertex 4 series is selling well and to great applause from what I have heard. There are a few good brands out there, Intel is definitely one of them (and I've used several of their drives too) but I would have to say OCZ is still one of my favorites for price and performance balance.

    If all you are looking to do is 2D graphics work, such as vector graphics, Illustrator and Photoshop or Flexi, etc. then having a high-performance graphics card will do you absolutely no good. All of this type of graphics production work is CPU intensive, not GPU intensive as nothing model or shader based has to be rendered. This means that even your integrated graphics card is adequate for doing design work. Not ideal, but adequate. Spending $800 on a Quadro 4000 graphics card will gain you no benefit in color quality, performance, or reliability in doing 2-D design work over a $100 or $150 Quadro 400 or Quadro 600 graphics card, anything more is never utilized unless you're working with complex 3D modeling and rendering. Put that money towards your storage system.
     
  8. SignBurst PCs

    SignBurst PCs Very Active Member

    Not all SSDs are created equal. If you are doing it yourself, do the research, and then do more research. This can be an expensive endeavor if you mess it up.

    There are a slew of different SSDs, even within the Intel line (mentioned in a prior post). They have different pros and cons. Know what you are buying and why you are buying it.
     
  9. ironchef

    ironchef Very Active Member

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    Thanks. Lots of info. I have an hp pavilion the gray one. With 1tb , phenom 2, i upgraded the graphics long ago. About a year... to get a dual screen setup. And recently put 16 gb of ram. Also i put a 650 watt power supply. I will get a different computer in a couple months. Should i leave this for design and custom build one for ripping. Or vise versa?
     
  10. SignBurst PCs

    SignBurst PCs Very Active Member

    It would depend one your needs and budget at the time. What do you design? In what software?
     
  11. Pat Whatley

    Pat Whatley Major Contributor

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    If you know how to operate a screwdriver you can put a barebones kit together. The hardest part of the actual assembly for me has been plugging in all those damn USB port connectors. Pay special attention to the video card, most of their barebones systems use on-board video. I never had much luck with on-board video. Then comes the joy of loading Windows, finding and loading drivers for everything, chasing down software, and all the jazz that goes with building a system.

    I'm happy with the systems I've built but I doubt I'll do it again. Technology is so far past what I actually need for the design work I do that I can pick up a three or four year old system, max out the ram in it, and come out cheaper and better in the end.
     
  12. signswi

    signswi Very Active Member

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    Spend your money on a quality 8bit IPS monitor with 100% aRGB coverage. If you've already got that, and a hardware calibrator, then go buy an SSD or better GPU.

    At the end of the day if you're looking at a crappy monitor all the horsepower in the world doesn't really matter as you're designing blind.
     
  13. ironchef

    ironchef Very Active Member

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    Oh yea. I forgot about the monitors. What brand do you recommend and from where? Tiger direct? There's one 5 mins away so that's why i ask.. i use gerber omega 4.0 and corel x5. I do 60% vector art (vinyl) and other 40% is printed stuff. I currently have a graphtec 30in. And will be hooking up a mimaki. I'm planning on getting another computer and using either one as rip and print, and other for design and cutting on the graphtec. Any suggestions? Oh and I'm going to get a switch and a nas with raid 1.
     
  14. choucove

    choucove Active Member

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    The UltraSharp series of monitors from Dell are very nice quality IPS displays and some of the best priced ones for their features and quality. We've used several of them at a few different offices and they have really liked them. IPS monitors are going to cost quite a bit more than your standard TN panel monitors, but the difference is noticeable when you're doing design work with the right programs and the right graphics card.
     
  15. ddarlak

    ddarlak Trump Hater

    as far as monitor, i bought a 46" Vizio TV and hooked into it, i love it...

    i still have my samsung HDMI 23" monitor as my secondary monitor, love that too
     
  16. Ditchmiester

    Ditchmiester Active Member

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    I tried a 32" vizio as my monitor for a while but didn't really like the quality maybe I didn't have the settings right. What connection are you using to your computer.

    I ended up opting for 2 28" I-Inc Monitors for my computer. I don't know how I got anything done before dual monitors.
     
  17. ironchef

    ironchef Very Active Member

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    Im guessing iips monitors arent the same as lcd tv/monitors?....
     
  18. premiercolour

    premiercolour Sales and services from S. California

    I have two lenovol t400s. Looking to upgrade but seeing all the i processors. I thought buying rams and all that on top of the old computer, I would just buy a newer ones and donate them to the kids to use. Now, newer ones does not mean they will be more expensive than the old computer + new upgrades with slick deals.net and tech bargain.com help. Any good deals that you know of for lenovo or dell laptops? Looking to get least 35% off the market price less tax + less shipping.
     
  19. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    TVs do not render the same way that a true monitor does. I use a Samsung TV for my second monitor and it's strictly just for entertainment (netflix, WMP etc) and you can tell there is a difference between that and my viewsonic versus my Cintiq.



    Imagine what it's like with 3 monitors. I have a hard time going with the laptop couple with my smaller cintiq when I'm on the road or having to use the production computer hooked up to the embroidery heads.
     
  20. SightLine

    SightLine Very Active Member

    Careful if you get an older one. Some of the older Dell UltraSharp monitors did not use IPS panels. I'm pretty sure all current ones do though.

    They are.... it's just a different type of LCD technology and it can be a bit confusing. Same as you see a lot of monitors advertised as LED monitors now. Thats somewhat of an incorrect way of describing them, LED monitors still use LCD screens. LED is just referring to the backlight which is what makes the screen light up. Pretty much any non LED LCD screen uses flourescent lights just like the ones on the ceiling in your shop but much thinner and smaller.

    If you really want to make you brain hurt read up on the technical details. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TFT_LCD

    What it boils down to in english, generally any "flat screen lcd" monitor with IPS technology has a much better color range, and wider viewing angle than one without. A monitor with LED backlighting may or may not be any better than one without due to how the LED lighting is implemented. Poor designs might be unevenly lit. Best to find reviews of any potential monitor, particularly is you are looking at one which might be in the $400+ range which most decent IPS ones will be.

    Of course it should go without saying..... a new monitor will not make your computer one bit faster. A solid state drive can make a massive difference though. I'd also point out that the majority of Nvidia Quadro based video cards, have an Nvidia Geforce equivalent for about a quarter or less the price. Unless you are doing a lot of 3D modeling and engineering work you do not need a Quadro video card.
     
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