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I became addicted to the speed


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This past week I got brave and built my own computer from the ground up.  My son had moved to Calgary and left his gaming computer behind.  I have been using it and last week he informed me he would like me to ship his computer out to him.  Noooooooo!  I have become totally addicted to a computer that does everything in a nano second.

 

So instead of reverting back to my slow Lenovo desktop (which my husband has declared his and did not appreciate me trying to take it back) I decided to build my own system.

 

After a lot of frustration and watching a bunch of YouTube videos, I now have my fantastic super fast computer with it's i7 processor, SSD drive , dedicated gpu and 16gb of RAM.  After finishing the build I plugged in my flash drive with Windows 10 Pro on it, held my breath and turned it on.  Installed Windows in no time and now I am zooming along.

 

Anyone else here build their own?  A real sense of accomplishment once I got it finished.  I'm doing so much work now in Photoshop and Illustrator, so speed has become essential.

 

Jill

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Always.

(currently: i7-8700K - 32GB - Quadro P4000/8GB - SSD 1 TB - HDD 2x10GB 1x4GB - 2 Eizo 24"displays)

 

40 Layers A7R2 files: no problem.

However once in a while my screen freezes in Photoshop. I can still save my file or save as, but not much else. Closing the file and opening it again, everything is normal. So somewhere there's a memory thing that misfires. Still not idea where. My guess is the outlandish graphics card. Because I can still go on after a few seconds, and because it only happens after a lot of editing, it's not on the top of my to-do list.

 

wim

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I have not built my own, but my last desktop computer I bought was built to my specs by my son's best friend.  He's a big gamer and computer wiz, so I asked him to put together a fast lean machine and boy did he ever and for a fraction of something off the shelf.

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My only hassle has been that I didn't notice my Radeon gpu only had one hdmi and the rest were display ports.  Now have to spend money on another cable or two as I always have 2 or 3 monitors going at the same time.  On Lenovo I would use the VGA and DVi ports but my son has told me not to use any of the video on the motherboard, do everything off of the gpu.  Looks like more money for Jeff Bezos.

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Heaven forbid I should even attempt building my own. It would probably turn into HAL from “A Space Odyssey” and run me, instead of the other way around.  

Before I started using iMacs, my last PC was a gaming computer I bought off the shelf on sale and it was blazingly fast. It started occasionally having the gray screen of death and since I worked with images, that terrified me even though I managed to get it going again each time.  My daughter took it when I went Mac.

When I get a new Mac, I order my own specifications which cost a pretty penny. But they have always done what I need done, so I’m happy.
 

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3 hours ago, Jill Morgan said:

Anyone else here build their own?  A real sense of accomplishment once I got it finished.  I'm doing so much work now in Photoshop and Illustrator, so speed has become essential.

 

Jill

Not completely, but I did surgery on my Dell 5000 series laptop to install more memory and an ssd card.   I have priced getting an upgraded display for it.   Most computer components are plug and play, so yes, for Windows machines, building your own makes a lot of sense.  It's a bit more complicated with the newer Macs.    I may switch to Windows in the future because everything Mac seems to be proprietary and in some cases welded in.  I've had better luck working on the older Macs that had regular enclosures. 

 

Other World Computing has the best information for keeping older Mac going.

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8 hours ago, Jill Morgan said:

This past week I got brave and built my own computer from the ground up.  My son had moved to Calgary and left his gaming computer behind.  I have been using it and last week he informed me he would like me to ship his computer out to him.  Noooooooo!  I have become totally addicted to a computer that does everything in a nano second.

 

So instead of reverting back to my slow Lenovo desktop (which my husband has declared his and did not appreciate me trying to take it back) I decided to build my own system.

 

After a lot of frustration and watching a bunch of YouTube videos, I now have my fantastic super fast computer with it's i7 processor, SSD drive , dedicated gpu and 16gb of RAM.  After finishing the build I plugged in my flash drive with Windows 10 Pro on it, held my breath and turned it on.  Installed Windows in no time and now I am zooming along.

 

Anyone else here build their own?  A real sense of accomplishment once I got it finished.  I'm doing so much work now in Photoshop and Illustrator, so speed has become essential.

 

Jill

Did not build it myself but I am currently working with a 7 year old Dell, that I had rebuilt for me and have had it upgraded several times over the years.  Just spent over 30 hours reconfiguring the OS (64bit Windows 10 Pro)  Currently it's running i5 @ 3.2 GHz with two 1TB internal drives, need to get a SSD, and 16 Gigs of RAM.  I found the original builder on eBay and he did a really good job on the original rebuild of the machine.  Two years ago I also had a new NVIDIA graphic card installed.  The new card made a huge difference.  Probably the last up grade for this machine, from what I understand.

 

Question:  Is running 32 gigs of RAM worth the cost on an old i5 Windows machine?

 

Chuck

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On 04/12/2020 at 22:11, Chuck Nacke said:

Question:  Is running 32 gigs of RAM worth the cost on an old i5 Windows machine?

Get a program that monitors memory and CPU useage and see if memory is a bottleneck (I have one program on my iMac  i5 and another one on the Dell 5000 something laptop that do these things, but I think you can also use some built in utilities).  If memory maxes out at times, then probably getting more memory would be useful   If memory doesn't, probably not.   My iMac is has an i5 processor and 24 gigs of RAM, came with some less and I added more.   Could go to 32 gigs of RAM.  Haven't seen a need.    I have done some things that pegged the CPU but don't remember pegging memory.   For a Mac, vm_stat in a terminal window shows if you're using swap (not enough memory) a lot.  Not sure what the command is for Windows, but Help Desk Google should find what you need.

 

I love SSDs.  Boot time was a quarter or an eighth of what it had been after I migrated the OS to the SSD.  Programs also load faster. 

 

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1 hour ago, MizBrown said:

Get a program that monitors memory and CPU useage and see if memory is a bottleneck (I have one program on my iMac  i5 and another one on the Dell 5000 something laptop that do these things, but I think you can also use some built in utilities).  If memory maxes out at times, then probably getting more memory would be useful   If memory doesn't, probably not.   My iMac is has an i5 processor and 24 gigs of RAM, came with some less and I added more.   Could go to 32 gigs of RAM.  Haven't seen a need.    I have done some things that pegged the CPU but don't remember pegging memory.   For a Mac, vm_stat in a terminal window shows if you're using swap (not enough memory) a lot.  Not sure what the command is for Windows, but Help Desk Google should find what you need.

 

I love SSDs.  Boot time was a quarter or an eighth of what it had been after I migrated the OS to the SSD.  Programs also load faster. 

 

Miz B,

 

I had been told years ago that running more than 16 gigs of RAM in a windows machine was a waste.  I think that has changed as a lot of machines are now running 32 and 64 gigs.

 

Chuck

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On 05/12/2020 at 05:11, Chuck Nacke said:

Did not build it myself but I am currently working with a 7 year old Dell, that I had rebuilt for me and have had it upgraded several times over the years.  Just spent over 30 hours reconfiguring the OS (64bit Windows 10 Pro)  Currently it's running i5 @ 3.2 GHz with two 1TB internal drives, need to get a SSD, and 16 Gigs of RAM.  I found the original builder on eBay and he did a really good job on the original rebuild of the machine.  Two years ago I also had a new NVIDIA graphic card installed.  The new card made a huge difference.  Probably the last up grade for this machine, from what I understand.

 

Question:  Is running 32 gigs of RAM worth the cost on an old i5 Windows machine?

 

Chuck

 

Try the SSD first.

That may be enough for a while. If you do want to upgrade to a new machine, it's certainly something that can migrate to it. Memory from a 7 year old machine not so much.

Make the SSD the drive where your OS and your programs sit. And use it for your swap disk in Photoshop. Not recommended with a hdd to have them both on the same disk, but acceptable with a SSD. Make sure you have made your graphics card memory accessible in Photoshop (=probably the reason you bought it in the first place).

 

wim

 

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1 hour ago, MizBrown said:

 

I love SSDs.  Boot time was a quarter or an eighth of what it had been after I migrated the OS to the SSD.  Programs also load faster. 

 

 

+1  Not only fast but durable,

 

I have 3 in a Dell desktop, 2 internal and 1 external,

 

In another photo forum I just commented on SSD vs hard disk lifespans info I had found.   Pretty eye-opening.

 

Typical SSD = 342 yrs

Hard disk replacement suggested in 3-5 yrs.

 

 

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2 minutes ago, wiskerke said:

 

Try the SSD first.

That may be enough for a while. If you do want to upgrade to a new machine, it's certainly something that can migrate to it. Memory from a 7 year old machine not so much.

Make the SSD the drive where your OS and your programs sit. And use it for your swap disk in Photoshop. Not recommended with a hdd to have them both on the same disk, but acceptable with a SSD. Make sure you have made your graphics card memory accessible in Photoshop (=probably the reason you bought it in the first place).

 

wim

 

Thanks wim,

 

My original machine is the DELL 8300 and while I have upped the RAM and replaced the Graphics Card,  I still have the old mother board and it's wired for USB 2.0

After the 30 hours of maintenance upgrading software, deleting old files and programs it is running fine.  Just looking into adding more RAM and then I might install

an internal SSD drive (.5 or 1 TB). I have four slots and am only using two and yes I know about running the OS and programs on the SSD, which would mean I'd have to 

go with a 1TB SSD.

 

Chuck

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1 hour ago, MizBrown said:

Get a program that monitors memory and CPU useage and see if memory is a bottleneck (I have one program on my iMac  i5 and another one on the Dell 5000 something laptop that do these things, but I think you can also use some built in utilities). 

Under windows 10 nowadays it's called Task Manager.

Ctrl-Alt-Del and click Task Manager. Graphs are under the Performance tab.

Weed out unnecessary stuff under the Startup tab.

See what processes are slowing a machine down under the Processes tab. Check both CPU high to low and Memory high to low.

 

wim

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1 hour ago, Chuck Nacke said:

Miz B,

 

I had been told years ago that running more than 16 gigs of RAM in a windows machine was a waste.  I think that has changed as a lot of machines are now running 32 and 64 gigs.

 

Chuck

 

Faster processors, more cores, bigger programs, bigger graphics files. 

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2 hours ago, Chuck Nacke said:

Miz B,

 

I had been told years ago that running more than 16 gigs of RAM in a windows machine was a waste.  I think that has changed as a lot of machines are now running 32 and 64 gigs.

 

Chuck

 

That used to be the case bit not nowadays. There used to be an OS-imposed limit of 2GB of RAM usable by Photoshop until 64bit processing arrived around 10 years ago (Mac and Windows) so the only advantage of having more RAM then was being able to run more programs without using virtual memory (scratch disk) which really slows things down. Larger image files from high MP cameras, 16-bit images, files with multiple layers and panoramas all have large RAM requirements. Now the minimum RAM required to even run Photoshop and Lightroom is 8GB and no doubt this will increase in due course. 16GB is the minimum I would have in any computer and preferably 32GB at least. SSDs only increase write speed for LR and PS (saving images) but have little effect on times taken to do raw conversions. You don't want to be using scratch disk anyway as that will slow things down. For PS and LR, RAM and GPU are far more important. 

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On 04/12/2020 at 09:39, Jill Morgan said:

Anyone else here build their own?  A real sense of accomplishment once I got it finished.  I'm doing so much work now in Photoshop and Illustrator, so speed has become essential.

 

Jill

 

I have built my last three computers for Windows XP, 7 and now 10 (64 bit). I find the hardest part of assembling a new computer is sorting through the thousands of hardware choices. What chipset? what CPU at what speed? what motherboard? what hard-drives/SSD? what power supply? what case to fit it all into? Funny thing with technology I've had to relearn the hardware standards (State of the Art) for each new build.

 

Once all the components are chosen the actual assembly/build of the computer is pretty straight forward and simple. But be warned once you start down this path you may soon be turning your old computer in to a PLEX server that is installed in a server rack.... 🤣

 

David L. Moore

 

Boxes of new computer components and an empty Lian Li A79 aluminum computer case before DIY computer build Stock Photo

 

 

 

ASUS X99 Deluxe motherboard with liquid CPU cooler installed inside a Lian Li A79 aluminum computer case Stock Photo

 

 

 

 

This is my old computer that is currently running Unraid and being used as a PLEX server.

Edited by dlmphotog
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For anybody thinking of building their own system I would say go for it. Having built lots of systems providing you just take your time once all the components have been assembled its a great way to debunk allot of "fright" about how they work. For a start this guy very good for people willing to give it a go.

A PC Build That Just Works Even If It's Your First Time. Intel i7, Scythe Mugen 5, Gigabyte H370 HD3 - YouTube

(Copy and paste the above link will lead you to his U tube channel)

 

 

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On 04/12/2020 at 19:39, Jill Morgan said:

This past week I got brave and built my own computer from the ground up.  My son had moved to Calgary and left his gaming computer behind.  I have been using it and last week he informed me he would like me to ship his computer out to him.  Noooooooo!  I have become totally addicted to a computer that does everything in a nano second.

 

So instead of reverting back to my slow Lenovo desktop (which my husband has declared his and did not appreciate me trying to take it back) I decided to build my own system.

 

After a lot of frustration and watching a bunch of YouTube videos, I now have my fantastic super fast computer with it's i7 processor, SSD drive , dedicated gpu and 16gb of RAM.  After finishing the build I plugged in my flash drive with Windows 10 Pro on it, held my breath and turned it on.  Installed Windows in no time and now I am zooming along.

 

Anyone else here build their own?  A real sense of accomplishment once I got it finished.  I'm doing so much work now in Photoshop and Illustrator, so speed has become essential.

 

Jill

So long as you don't try shovelling it up your nose your should be ok! 😉

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