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Thread started 31 Jul 2009 (Friday) 09:22
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Quad vs i7 In PS CS4 and LR2

 
Twitch1977
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Jul 31, 2009 09:22 |  #1

I'm badly in need of a new PC, my one upstairs is dieing a slow and painful death.

I'm in Canada and my target budget is ~$1000 including the OS software.

I don't really play any games or use and CPU intensive applications other than PS and LR. I'm just wondering if I'll really see the benefits of going with an i7 over a Q9950. \

Clearly the i7 will be a faster, but my general work in photoshop doesn't really involve running a lot of filters, it's retouching stuff like healing brushes etc with a few filters in here and there.

I'm also looking for a bit of a future proof here, I don't upgrade often... my old PC is from 2003 and was happy with how it lasted. Right now I can probably part a PC together and get a Quad core for under $1000, or Dell has a deal on their XPS system and I could get a i7 with 8GB RAM for $999. (Dell.ca)

Just wondering if anyone can offer some insight on how 'visible' the benefits of an i7 over an Quad core will be and if it's worth going with a Dell over building it myself.

Thanks,
Kurt


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basroil
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Jul 31, 2009 09:45 |  #2

Speed is actually more significant in batch processing than post production of a single image, and an i7 of the same core speed as a core 2 quad core will be nearly twice as fast during batch.

for the i7 build, DO NOT USE 8GB OF RAM. USE ONLY 3, 6, 9, OR 12GB OF RAM. Using 6gb of ram should actually speed up programs, and will also take off a few bucks off the price.


I don't hate macs or OSX, I hate people and statements that portray them as better than anything else. Macs are A solution, not THE solution. Get a good desktop i7 with Windows 7 and come tell me that sucks for photo or video editing.
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EagleRock
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Jul 31, 2009 19:45 |  #3

i7 is a beast cpu but i would wait for i5 ;)




  
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Jul 31, 2009 19:57 |  #4

basroil wrote in post #8375159 (external link)
Using 6gb of ram should actually speed up programs, and will also take off a few bucks off the price.

well actually, no it doesn't

but more RAM means you can have larger files open in Photoshop..


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basroil
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Jul 31, 2009 22:19 |  #5

Bobster wrote in post #8378241 (external link)
well actually, no it doesn't

but more RAM means you can have larger files open in Photoshop..

tri-channel vs dual channel, knight takes your bishop :D 6gb is faster (though not by much in most cases), and already large enough that you can edit gigapixel images or several dozen 5dmkii files concurrently (not that you would do that anyway). In fact, you're bound to be limited mainly by gpu ram size more than physical memory if you use CS4 and gpu acceleration, and anything larger than that can handle will be slowed anyway in comparison. I can tell you that I've never had memory issues while editing photos in photoshop, while having 40+ tabs open in firefox, while having a few open in IE8, while encoding 1080p video to 720p high profile unrestricted level, while checking the originals in LR2 (from a 22000 image catalog), while having IRC open, while outlook is on, while chatting on AIM, while watching a 1080p video on my second monitor. If you need more memory than that, yes, 8gb may help, but few people have even half that number of programs open ;)

Bottom line, on i7 systems, go with 3 (gaming), 6 (photo/general purpose), 9 (intense video editing), 12 (guy with too much money), or 24 (specialized workstations for people who know what they are doing) GB (can also do 15, and 18gb, but not 21 currently, that would require 3gb dimms). In OP's case, 6gb FTW


And i7 is faster than i5, and has 8 threads vs an expected 4. And it's available now instead of at the end of the year.


I don't hate macs or OSX, I hate people and statements that portray them as better than anything else. Macs are A solution, not THE solution. Get a good desktop i7 with Windows 7 and come tell me that sucks for photo or video editing.
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MaxxuM
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Jul 31, 2009 23:04 |  #6

Twitch1977 wrote in post #8375036 (external link)
I'm badly in need of a new PC, my one upstairs is dieing a slow and painful death.

I'm in Canada and my target budget is ~$1000 including the OS software.

I don't really play any games or use and CPU intensive applications other than PS and LR. I'm just wondering if I'll really see the benefits of going with an i7 over a Q9950. \

Clearly the i7 will be a faster, but my general work in photoshop doesn't really involve running a lot of filters, it's retouching stuff like healing brushes etc with a few filters in here and there.

I'm also looking for a bit of a future proof here, I don't upgrade often... my old PC is from 2003 and was happy with how it lasted. Right now I can probably part a PC together and get a Quad core for under $1000, or Dell has a deal on their XPS system and I could get a i7 with 8GB RAM for $999. (Dell.ca)

Just wondering if anyone can offer some insight on how 'visible' the benefits of an i7 over an Quad core will be and if it's worth going with a Dell over building it myself.

Thanks,
Kurt

i7 will be faster - sometimes MUCH faster than the fastest Quad's. I currently have a Q9650@3.0GHz w/ 8GB of DDR2 PC8500 RAM and dual 4850 ATI cards and I'm not planning on upgrading for at least another year - if even then. I could build a system with Windows OS for less than $500 that would be more than enough power for most PotN members. That said, if I had to build a new system I would get an i7 even at the premium cost.

The only reasons I can see NOT to go with an i7 would be...
1. Don't want to spend more than $700 for a complete system (complete).
2. Don't do large (100+) batch jobs daily.
3. Don't do very large (500+) batch jobs weekly.
4. Don't do serious video work (444/production quality).
5. Don't use LR2 with more than 50,000 photos in the same library.
6. Don't do serious 3D work (animation/stills for production).
7. Don't plan on being a serious 3D gamer for more than a year.

Hope that helps.. :)




  
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basroil
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Aug 01, 2009 00:26 |  #7

MaxxuM wrote in post #8378973 (external link)
7. Don't plan on being a serious 3D gamer for more than a year.
\

Dunno about that... core 2 duo processor overclocked to 4gh is cheaper and faster than an i7 system for games... as long as it has a dual SLI 285gtx as well :D

Only real reasons not to go with i7 are:
price (though you are saying the i7 is cheaper than build-your-own core 2)
heat (130TDW means a lot of heat...); two monitors + i7 tower doing cpu intensive things is about 350-400W. same setup with cpu AND gpu intensive things, 500W. That's a lot of heat, and electricity consumed.


I don't hate macs or OSX, I hate people and statements that portray them as better than anything else. Macs are A solution, not THE solution. Get a good desktop i7 with Windows 7 and come tell me that sucks for photo or video editing.
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Twitch1977
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Aug 01, 2009 09:31 |  #8

Thanks for all the advice, so in summary it seems like the i7 is far more than enough for what I do. My photoshop work doesn't really consist of any batch work or anything like that.

Does anyone have any experience with the latest Dell XPS systems, are they decent? I don't really see myself upgrading much usually I just run my computer to death then buy a new one, so upgradability isn't a huge factor to me, I'd probably add another hard drive down the road and maybe swap the video card at some point.

Is getting a Dell i7 better than parting together a Q9550 system? From what I can tell they'll both cost about the same. I have used tons of dells at work and we're generally happy with them there, but I've never used any of their home line up before.


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basroil
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Aug 01, 2009 10:03 |  #9

Yes, much better thanks to not only the i7 chip, but it's use of tri-channel ram. You'll lose SLI unless you go with the studio xps 435, but doesn't sound like you're in need of it. I personally have a xps 420 and a studio xps 435MT (smaller than 435, 12gb soft limit on ram, but has dual raid 1/0 on four sata ports and an esata port, along with the standard 7.1 audio and toslink). It's not like the home built computer will have much better parts, and in fact, dell started using mobos from other companies, xps 420 is actually an asus mobo. My studio xps (note that there is a difference between studio, xps, and studio xps lines) 435MT is great, and now after the bios upgrade the tower has gotten a bit more on the quiet side. Blazing fast, not a bad case design, though wish the cd tray buttons where on the side rather than under, where the try blocks the button.


I don't hate macs or OSX, I hate people and statements that portray them as better than anything else. Macs are A solution, not THE solution. Get a good desktop i7 with Windows 7 and come tell me that sucks for photo or video editing.
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Twitch1977
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Aug 01, 2009 10:17 |  #10

What is the 435MT case like on the inside? How many hdd's can it hold and what's the airflow like especially around the drives?

Adding a hdd is really all I see upgrading in it. I need to look closer and see exactly what case this one has but I think it actually might be that studio 435 mid tower. Unfortunately it won't let me select 6GB RAM or 12GB RAM over the 8GB so no tri-channel for me. :(

Thanks again,
Kurt


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basroil
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Aug 01, 2009 10:43 |  #11

Twitch1977 wrote in post #8380528 (external link)
What is the 435MT case like on the inside? How many hdd's can it hold and what's the airflow like especially around the drives?

Adding a hdd is really all I see upgrading in it. I need to look closer and see exactly what case this one has but I think it actually might be that studio 435 mid tower. Unfortunately it won't let me select 6GB RAM or 12GB RAM over the 8GB so no tri-channel for me. :(

Thanks again,
Kurt

You can put four drives internally (plus a dvd drive), but if you have a dvd burner you'll have only three open sata ports. The spaces for the extra drives don't have direct fans, but the bottom drives are in direct contact with the frame, so heat will be dissipated though conduction rather than convection. But they are also directly behind the front fan, so no issues there. http://support.dell.co​m …n/SM/drives.htm​#wp1188656 (external link)


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Aug 01, 2009 10:57 |  #12

i7 is faster bar none. I build computer systems for sale and is that much better. Worth the price. Also keep in mind that 1366 socket is a enthusiasts socket and thus all the xtreme edition CPU are destined for it.

The new Hectacore is coming and the numbers seem super impressive. As mentioned before the i5 would be a great cpu based on performance/price ratios.


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Twitch1977
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Aug 01, 2009 11:18 |  #13

equetefue wrote in post #8380704 (external link)
i7 is faster bar none. I build computer systems for sale and is that much better. Worth the price. Also keep in mind that 1366 socket is a enthusiasts socket and thus all the xtreme edition CPU are destined for it.

The new Hectacore is coming and the numbers seem super impressive. As mentioned before the i5 would be a great cpu based on performance/price ratios.


The i5's from the bit of reading I did on them do seem like they're exactly what I need. The problem is my old PC just isn't going to last that long, it's crashing frequently now, and it fails to POST properly probably more than 50% of the time, sometimes when it does post it'll give an 'overclocking failed' error even though the processor is running at stock. Probably the mobo on the way out.

Regarding the Dell PC's can the processor on those be changed out with future i7's down the road or other processors that fit that socket or does dell lock it in for that one processor it ships with?

Also anyone know if the power supplies in those dell's are standard issue? If a power supply blows and it's out of warranty can I just grab one from a local place and throw it in?


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Aug 01, 2009 12:44 |  #14

http://www.tomshardwar​e.com …-module-upgrade,2264.html (external link)


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basroil
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Aug 01, 2009 16:17 |  #15

Twitch1977 wrote in post #8380793 (external link)
Regarding the Dell PC's can the processor on those be changed out with future i7's down the road or other processors that fit that socket or does dell lock it in for that one processor it ships with?

Also anyone know if the power supplies in those dell's are standard issue? If a power supply blows and it's out of warranty can I just grab one from a local place and throw it in?

The CPUs in all dell machines, including laptops, are user replaceable as long as you know how to install a CPU. Unlike Apple, there is no epoxy to worry about, if that was what you were thinking about. That is not to say all i7 chips will work with the mobo, but as long as the mount is the same there is a good chance you can upgrade. In fact, very few companies epoxy their chips, of the major brands the only one I know does that is Apple.

As for power supplies, they are generally small, but you can replace them with just about anything that fits in the case. But I'm not sure why you would need to replace it, I have four dell towers including a 9 year old that was almost always on, and a 5 year old (nearly 6) that was also almost always on, and absolutely no issues. In fact, the only things I've had to replace are fans (room took in a lot of dust during remodeling, killed my video card and the central fan) and one broken hdd (no point replacing a 16gb ata66 drive though.


I don't hate macs or OSX, I hate people and statements that portray them as better than anything else. Macs are A solution, not THE solution. Get a good desktop i7 with Windows 7 and come tell me that sucks for photo or video editing.
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