Shopping for a new Computer, what should I look for?

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Shopping for a new Computer, what should I look for?

Postby rubyeye » Sat Nov 16, 2002 8:38 pm

Well, I'm finally in the market for a new computer. One optimized for video work (that means AMV editing of course). Now I think I've heard that Hewlett Packard, and possibly some other computer manufacturer, was releasing this holiday a commercial desktop system designed for people who primarily use it for video editing and the like. I don't know, but..

Simply put, what should I look out for when shopping for a new computer? What kind of specs (harddrive, RAM, processor, etc.) should I keep in mind?

Everything that's out there in the market is already better than what I currently got, but what I want is the best I can get, for what I plan to use it for, at the most reasonable price.

Can any of you Technophiles out there help me out?
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Postby klinky » Sat Nov 16, 2002 9:05 pm

Okay, my suggestions are build it yourself, you'll probably save 40%.

If you don't want to, here are some suggestions:

P4 CPU, needs to be greater then 2Ghz
Athlon XP, needs to be greater then 1.6Ghz.

Ram:

DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES GET ANYTHING WITH PLAIN SDRAM!!! ESPECIALLY A P4. You will want DDR for a Athlon and RDRAM(Rambus) for a P4, DDR will also work with a P4, but it's slightly slower.

Hard Drive:

80GB atleast. You may not need that much(you always need more actually), but it's so fucking cheap that alot of vendors are screwing people over with old stock 40GB that they purchased months ago at higher prices. You'll also be better off with a 7200RPM drive, though 5400RPM will not kill you I guess :roll:

Sound:

Really doesn't matter much, most stuff is pretty good, even onboard things.

Video:
Don't get anything that has "LE" or "MX" or "PRO" in the name. Also avoid anything with the word "integrated" or "onboard". You'll want either a Radeon 8500, or a Geforce4 ti4200. Both are cheap enough that they shouldn't be out of your range.

DVD-ROM:
Faster the better... Should be able to get a 16X for cheap.

CDRW:
whatever it comes with :p


Monitor:
17" BARE MINIMUM, 19" or large is very nice. I can have 8 full expanded video tracks open with the Premiere video preview full expanded @ 720x480, it's very nice.


~klinky
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Postby klinky » Sat Nov 16, 2002 9:07 pm

BTW I have a 21" monitor.


~klinky
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Postby The Wired Knight » Sat Nov 16, 2002 9:24 pm

I agree with Klinky, building one yourself is much better. You CAN save money on it (depends on what you are doing) but more importantly you can get a computer taht meets your requirements much easier than you could shopping around and having to compromise one way or the other.
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Postby CaTaClYsM » Sun Nov 17, 2002 5:37 pm

7200 rpm HD, CPU above 1 GHZ is a must, if you are getting 256 megs or less of RAM then DDR is a must but once you have 512 SDRAM works fine. (My dads comp is a p3 1.1 GHZ with 512 megs of ram and it does better than my athalon xp 1600+, which has 256 SDRAM.) And considering one stick of 512 will run about 30 bucks, I say pay 60 and get the 1024. other than that, I can't think of anyhting else. Onboard video realy doesnt make a difference in the editing department, I know since my video is onboard, when I play games I can see exactly how much it sucks, but in the video editing department it all comes down to the memory and HD speed.
So in other words, one part of the community is waging war on another part of the community because they take their community seriously enough to want to do so. Then they tell the powerless side to get over the loss cause it's just an online community. I'm glad people make so much sense." -- Tab
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Postby klinky » Sun Nov 17, 2002 5:41 pm

What I meant by getting a good video card is that there is no reason not to. Price is really not a limiting factor. With good video card for around $130 and for the price you pay on a pre-build you should get good gaming performance. You're right that it doesn't matter when editing, but there is no reason not to have it with such cheap prices.

It's also nice to have nice 3D capabilities just in case a game does come out that you would like to play.


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Postby NicholasDWolfwood » Sun Nov 17, 2002 5:43 pm

klinky wrote:Okay, my suggestions are build it yourself, you'll probably save 40%.

If you don't want to, here are some suggestions:

P4 CPU, needs to be greater then 2Ghz
Athlon XP, needs to be greater then 1.6Ghz.



Haha, that's it? I'm running a 450MHz and I can edit! Hehe. Even when my chup is 4 years old and my mobo is 3, haha.
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Postby CaTaClYsM » Sun Nov 17, 2002 6:07 pm

yes, with windows movie maker you could edit with a chip that slow, but for us that use adobe premiere the chip needs to be a bit faster.
So in other words, one part of the community is waging war on another part of the community because they take their community seriously enough to want to do so. Then they tell the powerless side to get over the loss cause it's just an online community. I'm glad people make so much sense." -- Tab
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Postby NicholasDWolfwood » Sun Nov 17, 2002 6:09 pm

I'm using Adobe Premiere. Look in my member profile.
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Postby CaTaClYsM » Sun Nov 17, 2002 6:24 pm

and nowhere in there does it say how much memory you have.
So in other words, one part of the community is waging war on another part of the community because they take their community seriously enough to want to do so. Then they tell the powerless side to get over the loss cause it's just an online community. I'm glad people make so much sense." -- Tab
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Postby Sub0 » Sun Nov 17, 2002 6:36 pm

And there's this thing called XP Multimedia Center or something... and only OEMs (like HP, Dell, etc.) can get it.

I suggest Voodoo btw... (their black n red compus look like Unit 03 anyway ;-p)
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Postby Sub0 » Sun Nov 17, 2002 6:58 pm

klinky wrote:Video:
Don't get anything that has "LE" or "MX" or "PRO" in the name. Also avoid anything with the word "integrated" or "onboard". You'll want either a Radeon 8500, or a Geforce4 ti4200. Both are cheap enough that they shouldn't be out of your range.


??? Radeon 9700 pro may be out of reach but 9000 pro is about equal too 8500, how can you not suggest an 8500le (maybe no duel head or TV out but...)???
9700 is teh bomb, 9500 SUCKS (9500 pro too), 9000 sucks, 7500 and below don't expect to play games.

and for monitors, lcds are not suggested yet... because they don't track the stuff on the screen as good as crts (traditional gorditos) do.

integrated sound SOUNDS good now but they borrow power from the processor. Not much for video work but you can easily notice it in current games. One rule of Soundcards, SOUNDBLASTER SOUNDBLASTER SOUNDBLADDER oh wait... ;-p soundblaster's most current card is the Audigy 2 (just came out in Oct.) about the only thing it does dif from the Audigy 1 (or just Audigy) is 24bit/ 96khz, DVD Audio decoding. nothing for encoding YET but it does have the ability. I don't like Soundblaster cuz it sometimes messes up when used wrong (which is ~20% of the time...) but due to licenses it IS the only card that can play DVDA... you need a dvd drive to play dvda btw...
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Does 'brand name' matter?

Postby rubyeye » Sun Nov 17, 2002 7:36 pm

Sounds good guys. I know that building it yourself is the best way to go, but then the entire hassle of installing the OS and hoping it all works, shopping for the right parts, compatabilitiy issues, security, etc. - I'm not really one to get "down & dirty" with the hardware.

"I'm a user not an abuser" - as the saying goes.

I appreciate the advice. And as I was shopping around today, there were a couple that looked promising. But I had another question.

What's the concensus on the particular brand name of computers? Which ones are better to shop for?

1. Dell
2. Compaq
3. Viao
4. Gateway
5. Hewlett Packard
6. Other
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Postby NicholasDWolfwood » Sun Nov 17, 2002 8:52 pm

CaTaClYsM wrote:and nowhere in there does it say how much memory you have.


Yes, it does. But just incase you can't read, I have 256MB of PC133 RAM.
In my member profile, it tells all of my PC specs.
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Postby CaTaClYsM » Sun Nov 17, 2002 10:05 pm

PC:

Processor: AMD K6-2 450MHz
Motherboard: Tyan S1598C2 Motherboard
Capture Card: I/O Magic PC-PVR TV Tuner Card
Monitor: CTX Color CRT Monitor "17
Cable Modem: Toshiba PCX1100U Cable Modem (@Home Highspeed Internet Service, 1,5mbit Downstream, 160kbit Upstream)
Hard Drive 1 (Main): Western Digital 40GB 7,200 RPM Hard Drive
Hard Drive 2 (Video Editing / File Storage): Western Digital 120GB 7,200 RPM (8MB Cache - Special Edition) Hard Drive
CD Burner: HP CD-Writer Plus 9500i 12x8x32 CD-RW Burner
DVD: Artec 16x DVD -ROM Drive (16x DVD, 40x CD)
Microphone: Standard RadioShack Microphone
Speakers: Altec Lansing AVS300 3 Piece Speaker Set (2 Speaker, 1 Subwoofer)
Case: Standard ATX Case
Mouse: Microsoft Intellimouse Explorer Optical
Keyboard: Microsoft Internet Keyboard Pro
Printer: HP Deskjet 710c Color Printer
Digital Camera: Fujifilm A101 Digital Camera with 40MB of Memory (1-32MB SmartMedia Card and 1-8MB SmartMedia Card)


Software:

Video Editing - Adobe Premiere 6.0
Image Editing - Adobe Photoshop 6.0
Website Work - Macromedia Dreamweaver MX/Fireworks MX/Flash MX

it does not say the memory. How typical of you.
So in other words, one part of the community is waging war on another part of the community because they take their community seriously enough to want to do so. Then they tell the powerless side to get over the loss cause it's just an online community. I'm glad people make so much sense." -- Tab
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