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What computer should I get?

Old 05-01-06, 11:09 AM
  #76  
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Originally Posted by TexasGuy
Building stuff is very time consuming. I am in the process of building a new machine and I want a water cooling system. Well according to everybody I talk to all of the water cooling kits are "bad" and that you have to go shop around 3-5 differnet places picking up 6-10 different items and hope that the items are compatible, what you need and etc. Then you have to figure out how everything goes together. A complete PITA
but it will let you check your email so much faster!
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Old 05-01-06, 11:11 AM
  #77  
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Originally Posted by ZachS
but it will let you check your email so much faster!
Heh. If that were all I ever did on that machine. My current machine usually runs as a web server hosting websites and web services, VPN, virtual pc's emulating other windows operating systems inside of another (most of which are hosting services and sql servers), sql server, developemnt and debugging (appliation and web) amongst many other things.
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Old 05-01-06, 11:13 AM
  #78  
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Originally Posted by TexasGuy
Heh. If that were all I ever did on that machine. My current machine usually runs as a web server hosting websites and web services, VPN, virtual pc's emulating other windows operating systems inside of another (most of which are hosting services and sql servers), sql server, developemnt and debugging (appliation and web) amongst many other things.
yeah, i figured as much... but i think most of the people posting to this thread are losing sight of the fact that the OP is doing nothing of the sort.
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Old 05-01-06, 11:16 AM
  #79  
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Originally Posted by ZachS
yeah, i figured as much... but i think most of the people posting to this thread are losing sight of the fact that the OP is doing nothing of the sort.
*slaps ZachS* What must you *slap* keep reminding us *slap* of the oringal *slap* topic/op. sheesh! This is about us NOT HIM!
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Old 05-01-06, 11:44 AM
  #80  
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Originally Posted by phantomcow2
At the end of the day, building a computer is still quite a bit easier than a car. You can have it built and going in a few hours no problem. It does not need a lot of parts to go, on a whole different level than a car. Probably not a good thing to compare it to
Nooooooo way. Computers are just as bad. I've done both. Computers have way more tear-out-your-hair "WTF doesn't this work?!?!" problems than cars do. Way more frusterating for someone to get started with.

I'd say get a mac. I'd recommend an iMac, $1300 I think for the cheaper one. My current computer-buying approach is always buy the low-end model... because you can afford another low-end model a LOT sooner than you can a high-end model, and the second low-end model will still be much faster than any high-end model you could have bought the first time.

Also an iMac goes with the statement about wanting something simple that you don't have to futz with.
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Old 05-01-06, 02:31 PM
  #81  
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Get that mac yet?
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Old 05-01-06, 07:57 PM
  #82  
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Originally Posted by TheDTrain
Get that mac yet?
I haven't gotten anything yet, still waiting for my friends to pay back the $1500 they borrowed which is the money I plan on using to buy the computer. I'm kinda leaning towards the Intel iMac and been doing LOTS of studying (much of which I don't understand). One downside so far is it would cost a lot more than a PC since I'd have to buy all new antivirus/software and stuff, plus they're more expensive in general. No I don't want to install WindowsXP, if I did I'd just get a PC instead! Oy so many decisions!! So if I did get a Mac, which would you suggest?
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Old 05-01-06, 09:06 PM
  #83  
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Originally Posted by PVyrus
I haven't gotten anything yet, still waiting for my friends to pay back the $1500 they borrowed which is the money I plan on using to buy the computer. I'm kinda leaning towards the Intel iMac and been doing LOTS of studying (much of which I don't understand). One downside so far is it would cost a lot more than a PC since I'd have to buy all new antivirus/software and stuff, plus they're more expensive in general. No I don't want to install WindowsXP, if I did I'd just get a PC instead! Oy so many decisions!! So if I did get a Mac, which would you suggest?
you don't need antivirus software for a mac!

in all honesty, it depends on what you want to do with it. the iMac has a much better (but still not great) graphics card than the Mac Mini does - but the fastest iMac costs $1700, and the fastest Mini is only $800. That would leave you tons of money to get a nice big monitor that you can take with you to your next computer in a few years, which you couldn't do with the iMac. At the same time, I can vouch for the coolness of the iMacs... we have a few at work, and they're lots of fun.
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Old 05-02-06, 12:22 AM
  #84  
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Originally Posted by ZachS
you don't need antivirus software for a mac!

in all honesty, it depends on what you want to do with it. the iMac has a much better (but still not great) graphics card than the Mac Mini does - but the fastest iMac costs $1700, and the fastest Mini is only $800. That would leave you tons of money to get a nice big monitor that you can take with you to your next computer in a few years, which you couldn't do with the iMac. At the same time, I can vouch for the coolness of the iMacs... we have a few at work, and they're lots of fun.
The mini looks like a great buy especially since I could go cheap and snatch spare hardware parts off craigslist or something, but it doesn't look like it would be able to handle Illistrator/Photoshop. That's the only reason I'm leaning more towards the iMac instead (but I'd wait to buy the software until it's more compatible, plus give me time to save up money). Seriously I don't care if don't have the coolest LOOKING computer in the world, as long as it works great I couldn't be happier.
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Old 05-02-06, 01:35 AM
  #85  
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The 1.66ghz duo-core Mini's fine for Photoshop/Illustrator! Slightly than the fastest 2.5ghz single-G5 Mac or a 2.0ghz P4 even! It'll be about 10x faster than your current Win98 machine and 5x faster any of the G4 PowerMacs. The 20% faster iMac won't be as significant of a boost. You'll want to get universal-binary or Intel-code versions of the software to make the most of it.

I just compiled a multithreaded version of ffmpeg for converting downloaded movies (AVIs/MPEG/DivX/WMV/etc.) into MPEG2 to make DVDs. On a 1.66ghz CoreDuo, I'm getting over 100fps!!!. That's encoding a movie at 3x realtime! The fastest I got on a 2.5ghz G5 machine was only 70-75fps, although I couldn't get the multithreading libraries to work on the 64-bit VMX instructions. I actually got faster speeds (90fps) out of a 2.0ghz dual-G4 by optimizing the multithreading with Altivec. One thread handles the MPEG2 video, the other does the AC3 audio and muxing. Slightly faster at 120fps was an Athlon-64 2.6ghz on Linux, about the same as a P4-3.6ghz. So don't worry, the 1.66ghz CoreDuo's a monster of a chip when software's optimized for it.

The mach UNIX kernel really does a great job at scaling multithreaded applications. Dual-cores are seeing factors of +80% over a single-core, almost double! Photoshop should actually see throughputs close to 100% (double speed) as previous double-processor plug-ins lets many functions run twice as fast.

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Old 05-02-06, 05:14 AM
  #86  
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Originally Posted by PVyrus
I haven't gotten anything yet, still waiting for my friends to pay back the $1500 they borrowed which is the money I plan on using to buy the computer. I'm kinda leaning towards the Intel iMac and been doing LOTS of studying (much of which I don't understand). One downside so far is it would cost a lot more than a PC since I'd have to buy all new antivirus/software and stuff, plus they're more expensive in general. No I don't want to install WindowsXP, if I did I'd just get a PC instead! Oy so many decisions!! So if I did get a Mac, which would you suggest?
If your the legitimate licence holder of your current software then you can usualy cross grade (upgrade across systems) without a problem.

I have an eMac which is a great budget system. Totaly reliable. One downside is its 15" inbuilt CRT monitor and one of its features is its 15" inbuilt CRT monitor. As a photographer I like the CRT monitor as it shows results FAR closer to what a print will turn out like than a flat screen. Its also heavy but that means its less likely to be stolen.

Regards, Anthony
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Old 05-02-06, 05:19 AM
  #87  
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Hit up Voodoo PC for a custom rig.

Get one of those newfangled Athlon 64 bit processors, and a dope video card, like an ATI Radeon All-In-Wonder.

I recommend setting your new piece up with dual drives; two 60 GB, in RAID 0 formation.
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Old 05-02-06, 07:10 AM
  #88  
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I think that's a league or 2 out of OP's and I am 10 to 100 leagues out of their ****ty excuse for fanboy systems.
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Old 05-02-06, 07:13 AM
  #89  
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Originally Posted by TexasGuy
I think that's a league or 2 out of OP's and I am 10 to 100 leagues out of their ****ty excuse for fanboy systems.
That's why the Creator made installment plans.

n00b.
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Old 05-02-06, 08:23 AM
  #90  
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Originally Posted by PVyrus
The mini looks like a great buy especially since I could go cheap and snatch spare hardware parts off craigslist or something, but it doesn't look like it would be able to handle Illistrator/Photoshop. That's the only reason I'm leaning more towards the iMac instead (but I'd wait to buy the software until it's more compatible, plus give me time to save up money). Seriously I don't care if don't have the coolest LOOKING computer in the world, as long as it works great I couldn't be happier.
It will handle photoshop fine, especially after Adobe comes out with the universal version. I run CS2 on my 1.3Ghz G4 without any problems, and the mini's like 5 times faster.
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Old 05-02-06, 10:02 AM
  #91  
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Slightly faster at 120fps was an Athlon-64 2.6ghz on Linux, about the same as a P4-3.6ghz.
You should try a dual-core A64 X2 now I was delighted to have my Adobe Premiere Elements encode times chopped in half when I upgraded from a single-core 3000+ to a dual-core 3800+. It's too bad Apple isn't using these yet, I would've thought they'd be just the ticket. The CPU's about $140 less and the supporting platforms offer much better onboard video than Intel's onboard video. Maybe next year...

make your own iMac-alike for less? DISCLAIMER: that's the functional equivalent of an iMac (Core Duo, etc), including the OS X operating system, but I'm 99% sure the OS X would not install because it's not an "official" Mac. Just a sort of "bill of materials."
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Old 05-02-06, 10:06 AM
  #92  
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When companies who live and die by the sword, where if they can save 200 - 300 bucks per system that ships out, if they're not using something that saves them 200-300 bucks a chip, one has to wonder why they wouldn't take something that was both acclaimably "cheaper" and "super faster" then what they are using.
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Old 05-02-06, 10:14 AM
  #93  
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apple switched to intel because their chips have low power consumption and their brand has high name recognition. speed is secondary for them.
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Old 05-02-06, 10:17 AM
  #94  
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Originally Posted by TexasGuy
When companies who live and die by the sword, where if they can save 200 - 300 bucks per system that ships out, if they're not using something that saves them 200-300 bucks a chip, one has to wonder why they wouldn't take something that was both acclaimably "cheaper" and "super faster" then what they are using.
If you're trying to imply that AMD's product ain't up to snuff, go talk to Cray (the supercomputer company), Sun Microsystems, HP, and that other "small" company named "Google" that use AMD's CPUs in their datacenter servers.

One theory is that Apple didn't use AMD because AMD doesn't have enough production capability, but I don't think Apple sells enough computers to where it would be a problem. I tend to think Intel probably gave them a price break to win back some mindshare, since AMD now has 80% of the retail desktop market (think BestBuy & Dabs here).

(Intel fans need not despair, Intel's got a competitive CPU coming out later this year code-named "Conroe" The price should be good, too.)
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Old 05-02-06, 10:40 AM
  #95  
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Originally Posted by TexasGuy
Heh. If that were all I ever did on that machine. My current machine usually runs as a web server hosting websites and web services, VPN, virtual pc's emulating other windows operating systems inside of another (most of which are hosting services and sql servers), sql server, developemnt and debugging (appliation and web) amongst many other things.
I just noticed this. To veer OT some more, you deserve some 15000rpm SCSI, my good sir Atlas 15k II's are fast and also quiet at idle, if you want a recommendation... I can barely hear mine, it's quieter than most of our Dell desktops(!). LSI Logic 21320-R would be a nice basic SCSI HBA that can do one striped volume (RAID0) and works on 32-bit PCI or 64-bit PCI/PCI-X slots. Its RAID0 peak throughput would be bottlenecked to about 120MB/sec by a 32-bit PCI bus, but the very low seek times and the command queueing are the primary attraction for what you're doing, not sustained transfer rates. Slap your IS people around and make them do it!
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Old 05-02-06, 11:03 AM
  #96  
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Originally Posted by mechBgon
I just noticed this. To veer OT some more, you deserve some 15000rpm SCSI, my good sir Atlas 15k II's are fast and also quiet at idle, if you want a recommendation... I can barely hear mine, it's quieter than most of our Dell desktops(!). LSI Logic 21320-R would be a nice basic SCSI HBA that can do one striped volume (RAID0) and works on 32-bit PCI or 64-bit PCI/PCI-X slots. Its RAID0 peak throughput would be bottlenecked to about 120MB/sec by a 32-bit PCI bus, but the very low seek times and the command queueing are the primary attraction for what you're doing, not sustained transfer rates. Slap your IS people around and make them do it!
I'll keep that in mind. I want to go RAID but I'm not sure if I want to go SCSI. It seems to be extremely expensive, and since I haven't used it before I'm not sure where I need to draw the line. One would really need to find a motherboard that had a PCI-X slot and not go with a 16x Card ? ?
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Old 05-02-06, 12:03 PM
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Originally Posted by TexasGuy
I'll keep that in mind. I want to go RAID but I'm not sure if I want to go SCSI. It seems to be extremely expensive, and since I haven't used it before I'm not sure where I need to draw the line. One would really need to find a motherboard that had a PCI-X slot and not go with a 16x Card ? ?
If you can get away with a 36GB drive, then the Atlas 15k II at $190-ish is really not radically expensive. I use a basic LSI Logic U160 card that I paid $35 for, which is "only" Ultra160 SCSI, but in a seek-intensive task, this drive/card combo still trounces my fairly-good Serial ATA drive by a factor of 2:1. That's with a "regular" 32-bit PCI bus. I pay for my own toys and can't afford something with 64-bit PCI-X busses I do have PCI-Express on this thing, but the cheapest PCI-E SCSI HBAs at the moment are still waaay up there above the $500 mark.

The test task in question, if you're curious, is to test a patched-up Office2000 Pro Administrative Installation Point (disc 1) by installing it to the same hard drive that the AIP itself is stored on. The clock time required by my SCSI drive was about 45 seconds with my older A64. On the same system, the SATA drive, with NQC and 8MB cache and etc etc, took a little more than double that time. I still find the SATA drive useful for capturing video to, since that takes more capacity than I personally can afford in a SCSI drive.

Anyway, I'd think the expense would eventually pay dividends so think it over
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Old 05-02-06, 12:04 PM
  #98  
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Originally Posted by mechBgon
One theory is that Apple didn't use AMD because AMD doesn't have enough production capability, but I don't think Apple sells enough computers to where it would be a problem. I tend to think Intel probably gave them a price break to win back some mindshare, since AMD now has 80% of the retail desktop market (think BestBuy & Dabs here).
Sounds like some back-room deals going on, eh? I was trying to install OSX on an AMD machine about 2-years ago and Apple had specifically compiled with SSE3 in mind. Not sure if this was intentional to cut out AMD or not... one can only wonder, eh? There were some hacked versions that required only SSE2, but these were running emulation with VMware with generic PowerPC software.

The Athlon64 series are kicking some serious @ss! Although it doesn't show across-the-board gains until Windows is optimized for its 64-bit instructions. You'd need to use Linux or have specially-coded routines within your existing programs like Adobe's done... Competition's good, brings us more innovation. Too bad the old man on the block (IBM) was too complacent and got cut out...heh, heh...
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Old 05-02-06, 12:05 PM
  #99  
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Yeah I was looking at PCI-X SATA cards on NewEgg and they were in the 300-700 dollar range.
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Old 05-02-06, 12:09 PM
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Command-queuing has been one of the reasons SCSI's won out in the past in speedier throughput. Now that SATA's got it too (with some drives), the differences should be minor on a theoretical basis. But in real-world situations, SCSI still wins out due to lower CPU overhead. Especially when you get over 100-MB/s transfer rates, real DMA saves your CPU a lot of cycles...

Some of the fastest drives tend to be SCSI too:

15000rpm Fujitsu | SCSI | 73GB:
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822116152
Average Latency: 2ms
Average Seek Time: 3.3ms
Average Write Time: 3.8ms

10000rpm WD-raptor | SATA | 74GB:
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822144160
Average Latency: 2.99ms
Average Seek Time: 4.5ms
Average Write Time: 5.9ms

7200rpm Seagate barracuda | SATA | 200GB:
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822148033
Average Latency: 4.16ms
Average Seek Time: 8.5ms

I think bang-for-the-buck SATA wins, but in ultimate top-performance, you're looking at SCSI.

Last edited by DannoXYZ; 05-02-06 at 12:16 PM.
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