Upgrade time

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by TonyTurley, Aug 31, 2014.

  1. TonyTurley

    TonyTurley TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Apr 24, 2013
    West Virginia, USA
    . . . not the camera, but my PC. I'm running an 8 year old Dell XPS 410, and even after doing a clean reinstall of Linux Ubuntu 14.04, I'm getting a lot of lag when I do photo processing. I replaced the video card a few years ago with a GeForce GT 430; the PC has 3G of memory, and a 250G HD. I could increase the RAM to 4G, but I doubt that would make much difference. No point in trying to add a better graphics card, because the RAM and Core-2 Duo processor would still be a bottleneck.

    I've worked on plenty of PCs, but never built one from scratch - until now. I've ordered parts to do just that. It won't be state of the art, but much better than what I have now. Here's the list so far:

    * Sentey Desktop Computer Case Cs1-1399 PRO
    * Gigabyte GA-970A-D3P ATX Socket AM3+ Motherboard
    * AMD FD6300WMHKBOX FX-6300 6-Core 3.5 GHz Processor Black Edition
    * Crucial Ballistix Sport 8GB DDR3/1600
    * Seagate Barracuda 1 TB HDD
    * Inno3D nvidia Geforce GT630 4GB DDR3 HDMI/DVI/VGA video graphics card
    * Corsair CX 600M 80 Plus Bronze Modular PSU

    Audio & LAN are built into the MB. My DVD read/write drive still works fine, so I'll just transfer it over. Some of my current USB ports failed several years ago, and it has been slowing down a lot in recent months. I've been dragging my feet on upgrading for a long time, but I suspect my current PC is not long for this world. I'm not a gamer, so this should be plenty of horsepower for the photo editing I do . . . and yes, I'll be installing Ubuntu, RawTherapee, and GIMP again. :)

    Tony
     
  2. davect01

    davect01 Super Moderator

    Aug 20, 2011
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    Dave
    Have fun.

    My last desktop was a built from scratch, I learned a lot putting it together.
     
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  3. José De Bardi

    José De Bardi Assistant in Virtue

    Aug 31, 2013
    Dorset, UK
    José
    Should be a decent machine.

    I used to build a new PC every 3 years with a 1.5 year upgrade in the middle religiously. Then I bought a Mac. My PC hasn't been touched since (5 years and only just got my second Mac) - it gets booted once a year to make use of its super fast DVD burner when I film the school play and have to do a run for all the parents!

    Nice to see a Linux user, we use it at work for our software we write. It's better than Windows but still a faff to use compared to Mac IMO. But this argument could go on all day!
    Will be interesting to hear how much quicker it is once you get it going.
     
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  4. mrlrz

    mrlrz TalkEmount Regular

    65
    Nov 13, 2013
    My advice: Install the os on a ssd and use an hdd as storage drive. Ssd prices are dropping and they are uh_so_fast...
     
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  5. José De Bardi

    José De Bardi Assistant in Virtue

    Aug 31, 2013
    Dorset, UK
    José
    Good call. SSD makes the world of difference to bootup and app loading times etc.
     
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  6. shaolin95

    shaolin95 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    942
    Jul 3, 2013
    I am partial to Intel these days myself. I used to hate Intel and love AMD since I got my first Tbird 1.4Ghz. From that point on I was all AMD as during those days they were kicking ass but then one day the giant woke up and AMD has not been able to compete performance wise any more really. :/ I kept upgrading CPUs over and over and Ocing to try and stay with AMD but after my last one, Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition, I decided to try Intel and boy it was a scary but sweet move at the end. Funny thing, I am STILL running that same Intel CPU these days. It is an i7 920 OCed to 4.2Ghz. Last year I read some big comparison test between CPUs that included mine but at the stuck 2.66 and even at that speed it was matching many higher Mhz CPUs and of course with my OCing, I am not too far from modern ones.
    Now, while this makes me happy in a way, as it has been the longest I have been able to keep a CPU (I have upgraded to SSD and as someone mentioned, it is a GREAT upgrade, RAM and Video Cards).
    But on the other hand, this also shows to me a slow progress in CPU performance, aside from thermal and energy efficiency. The moment Core Duo came up and Intel jump ahead of AMD to never look back, the lack of a performance challenge ended up hurting us all I feel since it slowed down the progress.
    Anyways, sorry for the ranting. I have been building my own computers forever and it is a lot of fun.
     
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  7. Mattithjah

    Mattithjah TalkEmount Veteran

    244
    Jan 17, 2013
    Czech Republic
    Matěj
    Exacty. I bought new SSD drive for my old PC and it is speed demon now!

    Sent from my ZTE V967S using TalkEmount mobile app
     
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  8. WestOkid

    WestOkid TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jan 25, 2014
    New Jersey, USA
    Gary
    I have built many many PCs going back to Windows 3.1. It's easy these days so it should be a piece of cake. What you ordered will do just fine, but like others have said installing the OS and apps on SSD is key. It will be the only sure way of avoiding bottleneck. Just use the hdd for data storage. Good luck.
     
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  9. José De Bardi

    José De Bardi Assistant in Virtue

    Aug 31, 2013
    Dorset, UK
    José
    I have a laptop with an 11 inch monochrome display running Windows 3.11 with Networking! I think it has 12kb of RAM and a 16MB HDD :)
    I get it out every now and again to check it still works. It was my Dad's work laptop and I wrote my first ever program on it in QBasic;
     
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  10. TonyTurley

    TonyTurley TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Apr 24, 2013
    West Virginia, USA
    Thanks for all the replies and the tips on the SSD.

    Tony
     
  11. -et-

    -et- TalkEmount Veteran

    205
    Jan 26, 2013
    Southern California
    Tom
    FWIW, I have a six year old home-built PC with 4BG of RAM and a (very) plain-jane graphics card.

    The data goes on a 3-drive Raid V system for redundancy, and the operating system and program files are on a 160GB SSD drive that was installed about two years ago when I had a memory chip failure and did some updating while fixing the computer. (I also went from Windows XP to Windows 7 at the time, because it made it easier to put in the SSD.)

    In my opinion, this machine has quite acceptable speed when processing NEX-6 images in Lightroom, even when I have to do some fairly extensive local adjustments, and I almost always use Lightroom's lens correction feature. The overall speed with NEX-6 files is at least as fast as the system was with smaller A-700 files when my program files were on a conventional hard drive.

    - Tom -
     
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  12. chrid

    chrid Super Noob

    807
    May 5, 2014
    australia
    Chris
    like the others have said a ssd is a good investment, one you boot with a ssd there is no going back, my pc boots into windows in 13 seconds. it can be fun building a pc, been building my own for years, much cheaper than a prebuilt and you get what you want
     
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  13. xXx1

    xXx1 TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jan 15, 2013
    I also recommend a SSD and conventional hard disk for data. I have 120 GB SSD and only 30 GB for Lubuntu.as I have reserved 90 GB for Windows 8 if I need it at home. Second recommendation is Lubuntu or Ubuntu with LXDE desktop.

    I have AMD 8 core processor as I have fancy for parallel computing (but no time for it) and I am heavy user of virtual computers. Intel processors are probably a bit faster but image processing software is easy to parallise so it might give some advantage (at least in future).
     
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  14. TonyTurley

    TonyTurley TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Apr 24, 2013
    West Virginia, USA
    Thanks again for the replies. I think one of the big problems on my current rig is that I updated from Ubuntu 12.04 to 14.04. It ran OK on 12.04, but really bogs down on the newer OS. Still, I've squeezed 8+ years out of it . . . time for an upgrade.

    By the way, I purchased a 240G SanDisk Ultra II SSD. I could have lived with booting from the 1TB HDD, but figured if I was starting anew, I might as well go for it. Hopefully this one will last quite a while, too.

    Tony
     
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  15. WestOkid

    WestOkid TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jan 25, 2014
    New Jersey, USA
    Gary

    Tony - Not sure if I should take that statement literally, but do not just set up the SSD as a boot drive. Many people make that mistake and still complain. Booting fast is nice, but it has very little to do with work. What you want to do is have the SSD hold the OS, applications, temp storage, and cache. I tried the OS only thing with a small SSD and ended up buying a larger SSD, big difference when only data files are on the HDD.
     
  16. TonyTurley

    TonyTurley TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Apr 24, 2013
    West Virginia, USA
    Thanks for that info, Gary. That's what I meant . . . . just didn't articulate it well.

    Tony
     
  17. TonyTurley

    TonyTurley TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Apr 24, 2013
    West Virginia, USA
    I took posession of a large box with many PC items from a delivery man a short while ago. My DDR3 and SSD are coming in a separate package. If they get here soon enough, I may have a new PC running by this evening. :D

    Tony
     
  18. TonyTurley

    TonyTurley TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Apr 24, 2013
    West Virginia, USA
    I am now the proud owner of a fully functioning home-built PC. With various chores and appointments, it took all day, but it is running. Right now I'm just running a Ubuntu Live CD that lets one work without actually installing anything. Best part is that it is whisper quiet, as opposed to all the noises made by my old PC. Screen refreshing is like greased lightning. :) Mission accomplished!

    Tony
     
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