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Suggestions Which Windows Desktop Computer To Run Flexi?

Discussion in 'Flexi' started by StickerGuy83, Feb 14, 2020.

  1. StickerGuy83

    StickerGuy83 Member

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    I've been a Mac user for a decade. It is now time to go back to Windows so I can run the HP Flexi Print & Cut RIP and have everything wired via LAN. Does anyone have a recommendation on which desktop to run Windows 10 on? I found some minimum requirements as for specs. I've been out of the PC world for way too long to make this decision, although probably any system will probably do the job.

    Min. requirements:

    Windows 10, 8 or 7.
    1GB Ram (minimum), 4GB or more recommended
    1GB FREE Space (for install) + extra for ICC Profiles
    4GB Working disc space
     
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  2. bannertime

    bannertime "You guys do banners, right?"

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    We like the stock Dell XPS systems if you're not comfortable building something yourself. Whats your budget?
     
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  3. chrisphilipps

    chrisphilipps Merchant Member

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  4. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Is that 1GB min on a 64 bit system or on a 32 bit system? Reason why I ask is that in my experience 32 bit programs that are on a 32 bit OS tend to be a min of 1GB, but when that same 32 bit program is put on a 64 bit OS, that min requirement jumps to 2GB. Out of the box, Win 64 bit requires a min of 2GB (which is absurd) and then you got 2GB of the program, there goes 4GBs of ram right there, and that's not doing much work, that's really just turning on the computer and opening up the program and doing some minor work.

    If this rig is going to be used for multi-tasking, I would probably suggest 16GB, if it's RIP only, maybe get away with 8GB of RAM, but as a general rule with how software is now, I wouldn't do less then 8GB especially on a Windows system. It used to be, one could turn off some processes to help free up memory usage (a big help during the Vista days) from what the OS was using, but a lot of options have been done away with in the later years (and appear to be continually done away with as well).

    I'm one of those that subscribes to the "better to have it and not need it, then to need it and not have it", so I would suggest getting as much as you can handle budget wise, especially if it's going to be a multi-tasker.
     
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  5. Solventinkjet

    Solventinkjet DIY Printer Fixing Guide

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    I agree with WildWestDesignsWildWestDesigns One thing to add, an Intel i7 is great if you are going to be multitasking but if it's just going to be a RIP computer, I would find the i5 with the fastest clock speed available instead. It will save you some dough you can spend on an SSD which will help RIP times.
     
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  6. player

    player Major Contributor

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    I put 32 gigs of ram in my computer. It's fairly cheap.
     
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  7. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Naaahhh, it's for a RIP, need to go with the threadRIPper processor. I'm just kidding.

    We actually went with a threadripper for my dad's new rig and a TRX40 board, 32GB Dominator Platinum RGB sticks. I cried when I had to install Win 10 on it.

    I have 32GB on my rig as well, but it's workstation/server grade. Great stuff, but not as a cheap as consumer RAM.
     
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  8. StickerGuy83

    StickerGuy83 Member

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    Trying to keep the budget under $800.
     
  9. StickerGuy83

    StickerGuy83 Member

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    I agree with you. I don't mind going for the 16GB RAM. I am "techie", so I could even replace/upgrade if needed. Trying to make this as turn key as possible.
     
  10. StickerGuy83

    StickerGuy83 Member

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    Great info, and this desktop will only be used for the print and cut operations. Nothing else. Design work will be done on a MacBook Pro, which has all my expensive editing software already installed. Having to pay for all of that again makes me cringe lol.
     
  11. Jburns

    Jburns Active Member

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    Wow - that is a good price for those specs. I am about to pull the trigger on the same setup on a Dell, smaller SSD at costco for 1,099.00
     
  12. StickerGuy83

    StickerGuy83 Member

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  13. Bobby H

    Bobby H Very Active Member

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    $800 isn't going to buy very much for a computer involved in sign graphics production. I wouldn't buy a new Windows-based desktop tower with anything less than 16GB of RAM, a Core i7 CPU and a decent dedicated graphics board (not some integrated chip thing on the motherboard). Those specs are going to be really hard to hit and keep the price under $1000.

    Very often Windows PCs that offer what looks like impressive specs for a low price usually come with some kind of catch. The main one is lots of pre-installed cr@p-ware, trial software and other miscellaneous bloat trying to sell something. That garbage helps subsidize the lower price. But it can really hamstring the performance of a computer system. Pre-installed cr@pware can be very difficult to eliminate. And it will often come right back if the system ever has to be factory restored. Generally low cost computers sold in retail stores like Walmart, Sam's Club, Best Buy, etc will come loaded with lots of cr@pware. Higher end gaming PCs tend to have far less of that stuff. PCs from true workstation product lines will often have no cr@pware at all. They'll be very clean.

    Our shop has generally done well using Dell's computer systems. The XPS desktop line has a pretty wide array of configuration options, up to 64GB of RAM and a Corel i9 CPU. The only sort-of downside with the XPS line is the graphics boards are more oriented for gaming. The Precision Workstation line offers more professional level video cards (nVidia Quadro cards) along with choices of Intel Core or Xeon CPUs and ECC RAM. Obviously that's getting into more expensive territory. But it's really more on line with what someone would expect to get in a Mac Pro Tower -not the new, over-priced one, but more in line with the towers they made years ago.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2020
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  14. StickerGuy83

    StickerGuy83 Member

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    I'm just looking for a desktop to run the Print & Cut Flexi software. RAM, SSD and a solid processor should be all I need. The cr@pware is most likely related to the operating system. Windows 10 is what i'll be using. Sometimes you gotta take the good with the bad i guess lol
     
  15. greysquirrel

    greysquirrel Member

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    if this is a dedicated rip (and it should be in my opinion)
    i7
    4gb ram for windows, 2gb per active printer...ram is cheap go with 16gb
    500gb ssd for os and onyx program
    7200rpm 1-2tb hdd for job folder

    gigabit network card
     
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  16. Bobby H

    Bobby H Very Active Member

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    The Windows 10 OS itself doesn't come bundled with cr@pware. The stuff I'm talking about is third party software that tags along for the ride. Vendors like HP and others will stuff their low cost, retail PC models with that stuff. This has been a problem with many PCs sold on the Windows platform since around the mid 1990's when various OEMs started customizing their Windows install discs. The OS would be on the disc but so would all this other sponsored software.

    I don't mind buying a new Windows PC that has a trial version of MS Office pre-loaded on it. At least I can get rid of that. I just don't like any of the other junk-ware that infests so many low cost, retail PCs. For me that was actually one of the good selling points with buying a Mac-based system. Apple never had a habit of pre-loading their systems with a bunch of spam software. But customers had to pay a pretty serious premium for that hardware in return.

    By the way, do not buy a system with Win 10 Home loaded. Get a PC with Win 10 Pro.

    Solid State Hard Discs are pretty good for the most part. They're usually pretty fast and can dramatically speed up boot times, program launches and other tasks. The only thing I don't like about SSDs is they'll usually give you little if any warning at all if the drive goes bad. The SSD goes from working great to just not working at all. Regular hard drives give some warning they're about to go South.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2020
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  17. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Another hamstring is the tech itself may be outdated. A new processor from the previous generation etc.

    You can actually get them with no OS (some NUCs as well, my son as one, not bad for what it is) and considering I don't run Windows on bare metal, that saves from the "Window's Tax". Some game rigs do have subsidizing software on them (had a Toshiba Quisimio(sp?) that has some, thankfully not something like Norton, that really gets entangled with the system.

    My main office rig is a Xeon with 32GB of ECC RAM. Love it. Worth every penny.
     
  18. StickerGuy83

    StickerGuy83 Member

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    Thanks for the info. But why would I need the Gigabit network card? I am aware I need an ethernet switch to run everything via LAN, connected to the internet.
     
  19. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Ummm, I would consider Candy Crush crapware, but to each their own.



    Very very true. Backups, backups, backups. True backups mind you. In this day and age it should be a no brainer, but people still don't do that crucial thing that unfortunately should be the cost of doing business.
     
  20. StickerGuy83

    StickerGuy83 Member

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    I guess my $800 budget just went out the window, lol. Where can I find something up to spec with Win 10 Pro on it for a decent price?
     
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