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Thread: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

  1. #1
    Senior Member jOhO's Avatar
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    Default Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    Just trying my luck to see if any IT gurus can give comments:

    A friend of mine has recommended me a couple of systems to buy for PURE work purposes, which means, almost literally, the computer will be used to hold the O/S (which i guess is winXP, i dunno if i wanna try 64bit system, and does PS even support 64bit?), photoshop, a couple of RAW convertors (NC4, Bibble, C1 etc) and WIP (work-in-progress) image files. archiving of images will be done on another PC and/or external HDD, so essentially this new PC might have a super fast HD system, but not necessarily very big. perhaps somewhere along the lines of 60gb is enuff just for working. or i could save money and just use normal 7200rpm hdd.. that one still KIV.

    so the decision basically is on processors. he has proposed dual Xeon 2.4Ghz, or one Xeon 3.2GHz couple with an intel m/b (dunno wat model), and able to get the stock by mid jan. apparently this m/b also supports SCSI, so i guess if i really wanna blow the bank, i'll be able to use a SCSI drive.

    i'm not an IT person, so i'm kinda lost, except for wat i read online and hear from pple who are supposed to be in the know. my understanding is that dual processors rock for multitasking, but if i'm just gonna be using only one programme at a time, say photoshop, and nothing else is running in the background (except the O/S of course!), then would the dual processor be a little redundant? can PS use BOTH processors for the same function (say the age old test, using zoom blur which usuall takes ages for a large image)?

    and besides the processor, he recommended that 1gb ddr ecc RAM should be enuff. I'm still tempted to get 2gb in total...

    and the last question is, why is XEON better for such work? would a XEON 3.2 run much faster than a p4 3.2? is it a significant difference?

    basically i wanna build a pure workhorse. this system will not even be online, the most it gets to "go out" is to access files from another PC thru LAN. it's a no nonsense computer where i won't have msn windows popping up to distract me!

    any idea how much something like this would cost? he's given me a rough estimate, but since i'm not confirmed i told him no need to calculate until so accurate.

    and also a last point if any of u wanna add, BESIDES A MAC, wat's the ultimate PC for image editing. i do NO VIDEO at all. oh.. well maybe the odd photo video montage for customers... but that's not a priority at all.

    Thanx all for reading.. machiam very long-winded post..

  2. #2
    Senior Member jnet6's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    xeon is meant for servers...
    overall specs is too overkill.

    processors- AMD/Intel up to you.
    SCSI HDD- unless u got $$ to burn else PATA/SATA is gd enough.
    RAM- 2GB to be shiok(seen diff between 1GB/2GB using PS) of cos if u don't mind up to 4GB also can.

    *last pt.. diff ppl have diff think of a ultimate PC for image editing.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    Quote Originally Posted by jOhO
    any idea how much something like this would cost? he's given me a rough estimate, but since i'm not confirmed i told him no need to calculate until so accurate.

    and also a last point if any of u wanna add, BESIDES A MAC, wat's the ultimate PC for image editing. i do NO VIDEO at all. oh.. well maybe the odd photo video montage for customers... but that's not a priority at all.

    Thanx all for reading.. machiam very long-winded post..
    An idea as to the kind of image processing work (apps/workflow) you'd do and the file sizes you'd routinely handle would also be purposeful. When there's no budget limit mentioned up front, suggestions can become pretty nebulous, and without limits too. So I feel you would want to set a ballpark limit as to how much money you'd be willing to put down. Describe any other hardware components you need - any screen for instance? Also, do you need an organised tech support to hold your hand if you run into trouble?
    Last edited by kahheng; 29th December 2005 at 08:48 AM.

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    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?



    You chia me tea-o, I walk you through...

  5. #5

    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    well I think a good readup will do you some good here.

    1. http://www.tomshardware.com/2005/12/...on/page21.html

    2. http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu...resler_13.html

    Anyway, those are the top model from each company and may defer a bit from what you are actually getting. But still a good place to start.

    you dun have to really get a server class system as most system are capable of what you have just state.

    My Basic recommandation
    1. AMD 4200,4400 class CPU + Mobo
    2. 2GB Ram(no need ECC)
    3. ATI X1300,X1600 or 6800GT,6600GT level Gfx card
    4. 2x80GB SATAII HDD (RAID0)
    5. 1x160/80GB SATAII HDD (Storage)

    In case you asking why I dun go for Intel cos it consume too much power. and look ard. there are comparsions of cpu from both camp.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    Based on my experiences with desktops, most pple will under utilise the system.

    Depending on the kind of tasks u will do with PS, u might not need a Xeon system.
    For purely photo editing:
    I'm think sure that a P4-3.2Ghz, 2GB Ram and a SATA HDD should be swee swee. Some systems even though is a P4 is still slow becoz of the motherboard. Therefore motherboard is a crucial component. Get the latest LGA processors and motherboard. Can consider AMD processors too. I have friends who used it and feedback that its fast.

    For design work which might have a situation whereby ur work file is like 50GB or more:
    Maybe a Xeon with be a much better choice. SCSI HDD will definitely be good to have in this case.

    End of day depends on ur budget. Based on ur budget and work backwards.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    Xeon processors and ECC RAM are more important to servers.

    For PC workstations running photoshop - Dual core processors (AMD / Intel) would be more cost effective and would be more than fast enough.

    Yes, dedicating a machine for photo editing is a good idea. Be sure to get at least 2 harddisk in your set up so that the disk caching is faster.

    2GB RAM would be a good idea too.


    Bluestrike's recommendation is pretty good. If you want, a dual core AMD would allow you the benefit of multiprocessor on a single chip. ANother reason for AMD is that the latest chips actually run cooler then the Intel's counterparts. Processors slow down as they heat up. If you do not have aircon... you might wanna take that into consideration.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zplus
    Xeon processors and ECC RAM are more important to servers.

    For PC workstations running photoshop - Dual core processors (AMD / Intel) would be more cost effective and would be more than fast enough.

    Yes, dedicating a machine for photo editing is a good idea. Be sure to get at least 2 harddisk in your set up so that the disk caching is faster.

    2GB RAM would be a good idea too.


    Bluestrike's recommendation is pretty good. If you want, a dual core AMD would allow you the benefit of multiprocessor on a single chip. ANother reason for AMD is that the latest chips actually run cooler then the Intel's counterparts. Processors slow down as they heat up. If you do not have aircon... you might wanna take that into consideration.

    I used dual xeon a couple of years ago,then i tried amd. w/ graphics and 3d most of my work....the amd is abt 30 to 40% faster.
    here's my set up:
    dual amd 2800mp ,wc is equal to to the lastest dualcore.
    mboard tyan
    2 gb registered ecc sdram
    50 gb pri harddrive sata
    200 gb slave hd
    256mb wildcat graphic card
    dvd multi writer
    and most important get the best cooling system..

    with these i increased my productivity.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    do get additional disks for easy backup. they're the most vulnerable components these days.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    cpu = get an intel, never an amd for raw processing power. dual core lagi best but abit over kill.
    hdd = raid0 is very sweet and fast. best if you can get 2x raptors for this, the response in PC is almost instantaneous. use another normal sata for data storage.
    ram = 2gb ram is just nice
    VGA = normal to high end is good enough.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    Quote Originally Posted by jOhO
    and also a last point if any of u wanna add, BESIDES A MAC, wat's the ultimate PC for image editing. i do NO VIDEO at all. oh.. well maybe the odd photo video montage for customers... but that's not a priority at all.
    the ultimate, hmmm...

    let me cook something up even better than quad Mac:

    - 2x AMD dualcore Opteron 280
    - Tyan (or IWill) nforce4 Pro motherboard
    - 4GB of ECC PC3200 RAM
    - 1x WD Raptor 10k 74GB drive for OS
    - 1x WD Raptor 10k 36GB drive for secondary scratch disk, in case primary scratch (see below) ever fills up...
    - 3x WD 400GB Sata2 drives in RAID5 for storage
    - Gigabyte 4GB i-RAM drive for primary scratch disk
    - any graphics card with dedicated 256MB DDR3 vid RAM would do for smooth rendition of even the biggest image...
    - some really powerful power supply, >550W, to power this beast...
    - 2x 21" NEC LumiLED monitors

    oh, and any casing that can pack it all in while keeping everything cool, design your choice

    price?: somthing really obscene...

    as many above have mentioned, computer needs depends on image size you would expect and what you expect to do on the images... but seriously, unless you are getting a P40 medium format back and intend to do alot of DI really fast, don't think anyone really needs that much firepower... of course, if you are

  12. #12
    Moderator ortega's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    apart on the cpu you also need to focus on the bottlenecks
    so i guess a balanced approach would be ideal to an optimized workstation.

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    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    will Linux run faster?

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    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul_Yeo
    will Linux run faster?
    Pro question.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul_Yeo
    will Linux run faster?
    Not really. Linux is stable but without custom hardware drivers built for Linux, it will be slow.... And then you can run GIMP. Free free free.....

  16. #16

    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    http://www.hardwarezone.com/microsit...6/design.shtml

    most important is the ram ... and HDD capacity and bus speed

  17. #17

    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    Quote Originally Posted by theRBK
    - 2x AMD dualcore Opteron 280
    - Tyan (or IWill) nforce4 Pro motherboard
    - 4GB of ECC PC3200 RAM
    - 1x WD Raptor 10k 74GB drive for OS
    - 1x WD Raptor 10k 36GB drive for secondary scratch disk, in case primary scratch (see below) ever fills up...
    - 3x WD 400GB Sata2 drives in RAID5 for storage
    - Gigabyte 4GB i-RAM drive for primary scratch disk
    - any graphics card with dedicated 256MB DDR3 vid RAM would do for smooth rendition of even the biggest image...
    - some really powerful power supply, >550W, to power this beast...
    - 2x 21" NEC LumiLED monitors
    I like this combi amybe watercooling will improve the performance even more

  18. #18

    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    Quote Originally Posted by dennislim
    http://www.hardwarezone.com/microsit...6/design.shtml

    most important is the ram ... and HDD capacity and bus speed
    yeah, as much RAM as Photoshop can use... CS2 in Win XP64 can use up to 3.5GB I think...so 4GB for PS and OS should be enough...

    don't think anyone in any field would complain about having too much HDD space...provided money and powersupply don't fail...

    current bus speed diff between top of the line for AMD, Intel and Mac don't really give much diff in performance at this point in time...

    Quote Originally Posted by Klose
    I like this combi amybe watercooling will improve the performance even more
    How about cryogenic cooling...liquid nitrogen, anyone?

  19. #19

    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    Quote Originally Posted by theRBK
    the ultimate, hmmm...

    let me cook something up even better than quad Mac:

    - 2x AMD dualcore Opteron 280
    - Tyan (or IWill) nforce4 Pro motherboard
    - 4GB of ECC PC3200 RAM
    - 1x WD Raptor 10k 74GB drive for OS
    - 1x WD Raptor 10k 36GB drive for secondary scratch disk, in case primary scratch (see below) ever fills up...
    - 3x WD 400GB Sata2 drives in RAID5 for storage
    - Gigabyte 4GB i-RAM drive for primary scratch disk
    - any graphics card with dedicated 256MB DDR3 vid RAM would do for smooth rendition of even the biggest image...
    - some really powerful power supply, >550W, to power this beast...
    - 2x 21" NEC LumiLED monitors

    oh, and any casing that can pack it all in while keeping everything cool, design your choice

    price?: somthing really obscene...

    as many above have mentioned, computer needs depends on image size you would expect and what you expect to do on the images... but seriously, unless you are getting a P40 medium format back and intend to do alot of DI really fast, don't think anyone really needs that much firepower... of course, if you are
    at least 8k
    dont think dualcore opteron can use ecc but ddr..

  20. #20

    Default Re: Dual processor better for Photoshop work?

    Quote Originally Posted by theRBK
    yeah, as much RAM as Photoshop can use... CS2 in Win XP64 can use up to 3.5GB I think...so 4GB for PS and OS should be enough...

    don't think anyone in any field would complain about having too much HDD space...provided money and powersupply don't fail...

    current bus speed diff between top of the line for AMD, Intel and Mac don't really give much diff in performance at this point in time...

    How about cryogenic cooling...liquid nitrogen, anyone?
    w/c is practical. liquid nitro is one off for getting a high 3dmark score i m fan boy.... my casing is like a wind tunnel

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