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GeorgeN

Custom build editing computer advice

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I'v had a search for anything similar but couldn't find much so thought id see if I could get some advice.

I'v been saving up wanting to buy an 8core mac pro maxed out but after talking to a friend recently, I was advised not to purchase one now as its old tech and due for an update (possibly)

I then looked at a maxed out i7 imac 5k but wasn't sure if its ideal for what I'm currently working with.

So in the end started looking into getting a custom built pc, which seems so much cheaper and better value for money.

I own and shoot on an FS7, always shoot internally and use adobe premiere cc as well Resolve for colour grading.

This is the spec of the machine I'm interested in:

  • Asus X99-A with USB3.1, Intel X99, S 2011-3, DDR4, SATA III 6Gb/s, SATA RAID, PCIe 3.0 
  • Intel Core i7 5960X Extreme Unlocked, Haswell-E, 8 Core, 3.0GHz, 3.5GHz Turbo, 40PCI-E Lanes, 20MB Cache - Overclocked up to 4.0GHz
  • 64GB (8x8GB) Corsair DDR4 Vengeance LPX, 2400MHz
  • 12GB PNY GTX Titan X, 1000MHz GPU, 3072 Cores, 7010MHz GDDR5
  • operating drive: 120GB Intel SSD 535 Series, SATA 6Gb/s,
  • Media Cache and Previews Drive: 256GB Samsung SM951, M.2 (22x80) PCIe 3.0
  • Project drive: 1.2TB Intel 750 PCI-E SSD.
  • Storage Drive:2TB Western Digital Black, SATA 6Gb/s, 7200rpm, 64MB Cache
  • Thunderbolt storage: ASUS ThunderboltEX II/DUAL PCI-e 2 Port Thunderbolt2 - 2 Ports DisplayPort IN

Total Cost including VAT = £3763.14

With this setup is there anything anyone could advise me on swapping or adding and also if it should be able to cope with 4k footage smoothly within the programs I mentioned.

I'v used Mac for the last 7 years so am pretty clueless with how thing have progressed with Windows. A lot of people I work with all use Mac and this is my biggest concern about being able to work between both platforms if needed. I'v read into the pro res issues but also saw there are ways around it but if there were any other factors you guys have come across first hand it would be a great help with my final decision. Iv read a few things about making a hackintosh but i think for the time being i would just want to use Windows for stability/upgrade issues mainly.

 

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

 

 

 

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6 hours ago, GeorgeN said:

I'v used Mac for the last 7 years so am pretty clueless with how thing have progressed with Windows. A lot of people I work with all use Mac and this is my biggest concern about being able to work between both platforms if needed. I'v read into the pro res issues but also saw there are ways around it but if there were any other factors you guys have come across first hand it would be a great help with my final decision. Iv read a few things about making a hackintosh but i think for the time being i would just want to use Windows for stability/upgrade issues mainly.

Why would ProRes issues worry you on a Windows system? Whereas it's true that ProRes is much slower on Windows QT (only 32-bit computing there), you as the editor would cut the FS7's XAVC natively anyway. And if someone gave you ProRes to use in your project: of all NLEs on Windows, Premiere handles ProRes best.

However, data rates for XAVC UHD don't force you to use Thunderbolt. 

You wrote you were on a Mac for 7 years. So perhaps you have a 2009 MacPro, like me. I edit FS7 footage with ease, but I'm using FCP X. This plays back the original files pretty smoothly, and even large projects don't scare me. Because in this case, I allow ProRes proxy (completely automated workflow, a no-brainer). I can switch to original media at any time, i.e. for critical work like color correction or before the Resolve roundtrip, which works best with FCP X. Exchange with Premiere on Windows is safe with XtoCC (although you have to take some care to organize your media in such a way that Premiere always has access to original media, actually simple through "camera archives").

To get the same performance on Premiere on Windows, specs alone don't tell much. You have to find the right components and best someone with experience who helps you configurate your system. I couldn't tell, because I never built my own machine. 12 GB graphics sound impressing, but will as well Premiere as Resolve use it well? 

As for the 2013 MacPro, I was occasionally tempted to buy one, but as your friends said, it may become obsolete any time now. Furthermore, you'd need to buy a completely new ecosystem. Without the whole periphery being Thunderbolt, you never exhaust the possibilities. And these gadgets still cost a fortune.

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Don't forget a custom Heatsink and Fan, if you're going to get the most out of that motherboard, something like a Phanteks PH-TC14PE or Noctua NH-D15 would be suitable.

Also you don't mention a power supply, this can cause difficulties that are hard to track down on windows, so go overkill, something like a EVGA Supernova 1000W P2 or Seasonic P1050 1050W 80+ or Corsair AX1200i

Did you budget for a box to put this all in? Something like a Silverstone Fortress FT02 is a really good case for a decent price, or the Coolermaster Cosmos 2 if you want it to look like a cylon basestar.

What you've chosen looks solid to me, can't advise on whether it will be smooth with 4k, but my lower spec system is usable in 4k.

 

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Brilliant thanks for the reply, i appreciate it.

The pro res issue was more to do with not being able to export from premiere as a lot of stuff I work on clients ask for a master file as prores.

The power supply I was planning on getting was Seasonic Platinum 760W but if you think ill need the extra ill maybe look into P-1050XP3 1050W.

As for the box i was planning on having the Fractal Design Define R4 which seems to have ok reviews.

 

Ill also now look into a custom heatsink and fan as well.

 

Thanks again for your help.

 

 

 

 

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FYI: If you are planning to run Adobe CC don't bother with Windows 10: I have seen multiple post about Adobe performance issues when comparing the Windows 10 version to the Mac. Additionally, when running the same project on both a 2015 MacBook Pro and a 2016 Dell Precision 5510 Mobile workstation configured with the latest mobile Xeon chip, Quadro Graphics and double the ram as the MacBook, the older MacBook is able to perform the same task 20x faster. Yes, 20x faster. The Windows 10 Mobile workstation cannot even playback the footage smoothly in Quicktime. Adobe is not compatible with Windows 10 in its current state. I believe Quicktime is perhaps the culprit here. It does not work well in Win 10, and Adobe seems to require Quicktime to work. So Adobe + Win 10 = PAIN!!!

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1 hour ago, DBounce said:

FYI: If you are planning to run Adobe CC don't bother with Windows 10: I have seen multiple post about Adobe performance issues when comparing the Windows 10 version to the Mac. Additionally, when running the same project on both a 2015 MacBook Pro and a 2016 Dell Precision 5510 Mobile workstation configured with the latest mobile Xeon chip, Quadro Graphics and double the ram as the MacBook, the older MacBook is able to perform the same task 20x faster. Yes, 20x faster. The Windows 10 Mobile workstation cannot even playback the footage smoothly in Quicktime. Adobe is not compatible with Windows 10 in its current state. I believe Quicktime is perhaps the culprit here. It does not work well in Win 10, and Adobe seems to require Quicktime to work. So Adobe + Win 10 = PAIN!!!

I run windows 10 and have had nothing but improvements in Adobe over my Windows 8.1 install.  I use 4K ProRes files and have had no problems playing them back and editing them. 

13 hours ago, GeorgeN said:

I'v had a search for anything similar but couldn't find much so thought id see if I could get some advice.

I'v been saving up wanting to buy an 8core mac pro maxed out but after talking to a friend recently, I was advised not to purchase one now as its old tech and due for an update (possibly)

I then looked at a maxed out i7 imac 5k but wasn't sure if its ideal for what I'm currently working with.

So in the end started looking into getting a custom built pc, which seems so much cheaper and better value for money.

I own and shoot on an FS7, always shoot internally and use adobe premiere cc as well Resolve for colour grading.

This is the spec of the machine I'm interested in:

  • Asus X99-A with USB3.1, Intel X99, S 2011-3, DDR4, SATA III 6Gb/s, SATA RAID, PCIe 3.0 
  • Intel Core i7 5960X Extreme Unlocked, Haswell-E, 8 Core, 3.0GHz, 3.5GHz Turbo, 40PCI-E Lanes, 20MB Cache - Overclocked up to 4.0GHz
  • 64GB (8x8GB) Corsair DDR4 Vengeance LPX, 2400MHz
  • 12GB PNY GTX Titan X, 1000MHz GPU, 3072 Cores, 7010MHz GDDR5
  • operating drive: 120GB Intel SSD 535 Series, SATA 6Gb/s,
  • Media Cache and Previews Drive: 256GB Samsung SM951, M.2 (22x80) PCIe 3.0
  • Project drive: 1.2TB Intel 750 PCI-E SSD.
  • Storage Drive:2TB Western Digital Black, SATA 6Gb/s, 7200rpm, 64MB Cache
  • Thunderbolt storage: ASUS ThunderboltEX II/DUAL PCI-e 2 Port Thunderbolt2 - 2 Ports DisplayPort IN

Total Cost including VAT = £3763.14

With this setup is there anything anyone could advise me on swapping or adding and also if it should be able to cope with 4k footage smoothly within the programs I mentioned.

I'v used Mac for the last 7 years so am pretty clueless with how thing have progressed with Windows. A lot of people I work with all use Mac and this is my biggest concern about being able to work between both platforms if needed. I'v read into the pro res issues but also saw there are ways around it but if there were any other factors you guys have come across first hand it would be a great help with my final decision. Iv read a few things about making a hackintosh but i think for the time being i would just want to use Windows for stability/upgrade issues mainly.

 

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

 

 

 

I have almost the exact same setup, including that CPU OC'd to 4.5, except I'm using 32gb of RAM and 2 GTX 960's in SLI. You should have no trouble running overlay-ed 4K footage with this setup. My only recommendation is with the GPU either:

1) Save $300 and buy the GTX 980 Ti for similar performance, the 12gb RAM in the Titan X is best utilized in Adobe After Effects, up to you if this is worth it. 

2) Wait and see what Nvidia announces today, their new GPU is rumored to have much better compute performance. http://wccftech.com/wtach-nvidias-gtc-2016-live-webcast-pascal-dx12-vr-gameworks/

3) Get a Titan X and be happy. 

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This thread might have some useful information to you:

Keen in mind that:

1) XAVC-I is much less CPU intensive than XAVC-S so it should be easier to edit right away (no transcoding required)

2) A powerful GPU will work wonders for previewing effects in Premiere and color grading in Resolve. A GTX980Ti should be enough. For Resolve later on you can add a second one if necessary (but I don't think you will need it). 

3) Water-cooling is your friend :) 

With i7 CPUs and Macs you get quick sync that apparently helps in encoding/decoding of H264. That can decrease the time of rendering when comparing to a similarly spec'ed PC. But the powerful GPU and multicore CPU will separate an off the shelf iMac with a custom build powerful Windows computer. GPU for previewing effects, extra CPU cores for rendering (which for h264 encoding will just make it equal to the iMac but for anything else it will be much faster). 

It is actually not that difficult to either build a custom computer or set it up for optimal performance. 

 

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