Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

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Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Redheadhenry on 08/22/2016, 7:32 pm

Hello! I'm going to be upgrading my personal computer from AE CS5 to AE CC. I currently use CS5 at home and CC at work.

That said, I am looking at upgrading and or getting a new personal computer in addition to the upgrade to AE CC. Here is my current PC specs:

OS: Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit 6.1.7601
CPU: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-3770K CPU @ 3.50GHz
RAM: 32725MB
GPU Vendor: NVIDIA Corporation
GPU: GeForce GTX 760/PCIe/SSE2
GPU Driver: 3.40.0.0
GPU RAM: 2048MB

At the time I built my current PC, it was decent. However, now it's a little outdated and I'm looking at beefing up a lot of components. Or getting a new computer altogether. I've budgeted around $3.5K.

For my new rig, I want it to be built specifically for AE. Go big or go home. Below is what I've come up with and wanted to get some other opinions. I'm a little confused on the CPU. I ran comparisons on my old CPU versus this new one, and the old one is getting better results. Does that seem odd to anyone else? From my experience and reviews online it seems pretty obvious that the CPU is first priorty, followed by RAM, and lastly, the graphics card. I want to see a significant improvement in performance, render times, RAM previews, workflow etc... I'm sure a small portion of that will come with upgrading from CS5 to CC.

OS: Microsoft Windows 10 Pro
CPU: Intel Core i7-5820K hexa-core 3.3GHz, 15MB Shared Cache
RAM: 64 GB (may change to 128GB)
GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 980Ti

I would welcome other alternatives to ensure I'm making something that I'll see considerable improvement with. Thanks in advance.
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Posts: 13
Joined: 02/20/2010, 12:24 am
System Specs: OS: Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
CPU: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-6900K CPU @ 3.20GHz
RAM: 65436MB
GPU Vendor: NVIDIA Corporation
GPU: GeForce GTX 1060 6GB/PCIe/SSE2
GPU Driver: 21.21.13.7595
GPU RAM: 6144MB

Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Guitarboy2828 on 08/22/2016, 11:55 pm

So, your proposed build is exactly what I built. Except I stopped at 32gig ram for now.

The 5820k is significantly better than your 3770k. 6 cores 12 threads vs 4 cores 8 threads. When Farmfield checks in he can give you the more in depth geeky version of why it is better, if it is :P

So, from my experience AE loves RAM and read/write speed of drives. SO, spend money on a MB that can support a M.2 hdd. Install AE on there. Then, have another SSD with your project files. A third ssd for your cache. That is how I have it setup and I find it increases speeds big time. Then I have a sata drive that holds random downloads and movies and whatever.

GPU won't get used at all in AE, so, the 980ti is completely overkill. I got mine for E3d and Octane (c4d). So, unless you're planning on using something with GPU, don't buy that. Also, 1080 is a lot cheaper and a lot better, get that. I bought mine a month too early and missed the 1080/70/60 boat, huge bummer.
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Farmfield on 08/23/2016, 5:20 am

Check the pricing on the 6800K - I believe the difference is negligible and if so, go with the later 6800K.

And buying a GTX980Ti is complete madness - a GTX1070 is faster and have more VRAM.

http://www.anandtech.com/bench/product/1731?vs=1715

And Guitarboy already wrote about the disk i/o thingie. Nothing will make a bigger difference in performance than disk i/o. :)
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Redheadhenry on 08/23/2016, 7:13 am

SO, spend money on a MB that can support a M.2 hdd. Install AE on there. Then, have another SSD with your project files. A third ssd for your cache. That is how I have it setup and I find it increases speeds big time. Then I have a sata drive that holds random downloads and movies and whatever.


Just want to make sure I understand you correctly.

You're saying get a motherboard that can support 2 HDD then 1 SSD? Three hard drives total? Inside After Effects how am I setting that up? How big of an SSD do you have?


Check the pricing on the 6800K - I believe the difference is negligible and if so, go with the later 6800K.


Looking at this processor now, Intel Core i7-6700K (4 GHz, up to 4.2 GHz with Intel Turbo Boost, 8 MB cache, 4 cores) + Intel HD Graphics 530, does that look to be solid overall versus the 6800K and the Core i7-5820K
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Posts: 13
Joined: 02/20/2010, 12:24 am
System Specs: OS: Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
CPU: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-6900K CPU @ 3.20GHz
RAM: 65436MB
GPU Vendor: NVIDIA Corporation
GPU: GeForce GTX 1060 6GB/PCIe/SSE2
GPU Driver: 21.21.13.7595
GPU RAM: 6144MB

Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Farmfield on 08/23/2016, 7:47 am

HDD's for backup only, you run all production stuff on SSD's. I currently run three 250 Gb Samsung 850 Pro's, one for system, one for pagefile & caching and one for current project footage and assets. As I upgrade this box over the fall, I'll exchange the caching and project SSD's with two Samsung 950 m.2 SSD's.

Then I have a couple of local and a couple of external HDD's in my network, so I backup current projects on a local disk + a networked disk. I also got a lot of assets, textures, models, etc, on local HDD's.

And I have no problem managing with that, though if you do 4k editing or alike, you'll likely need bigger SSD's.

Edit: And no matter what motherboard you get it'll support 6-10 SATA disks. M.2 is another matter. You should at least have one slot on the mainboard, preferably two. Though you can run M.2 disks via adapter on PCIe, they are a tad (10-20%) slower and you can't boot from a M.2 on a PCIe adapter.
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Redheadhenry on 08/23/2016, 8:03 am

Farmfield wrote:HDD's for backup only, you run all production stuff on SSD's. I currently run three 250 Gb Samsung 850 Pro's, one for system, one for pagefile & caching and one for current project footage and assets. As I upgrade this box over the fall, I'll exchange the caching and project SSD's with two Samsung 950 m.2 SSD's.


So with that said, maybe I should change this up to:

Intel Core i7 6700K
Windows 10 Pro
GTX 970 Graphics
1TB SSD
6TB (3TB x 2) HDD
64GB RAM

This particular build, I'm assuming I can swap out one of those HDD for another 1TB SSD. Binging this to two separate 1TB SSD and one 3TB HDD Would I have any restrictions changing that?
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Posts: 13
Joined: 02/20/2010, 12:24 am
System Specs: OS: Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
CPU: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-6900K CPU @ 3.20GHz
RAM: 65436MB
GPU Vendor: NVIDIA Corporation
GPU: GeForce GTX 1060 6GB/PCIe/SSE2
GPU Driver: 21.21.13.7595
GPU RAM: 6144MB

Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Farmfield on 08/23/2016, 8:25 am

Well, I would split that 1Tb up in smaller disks. You either have 1x 540mb/sec transfer speed on one SSD or you have 2x or 3x that transfer speed splitting it up between SSDs. So m.2 as boot disk and 1-2 SSD's on SATA for fast i/o in the apps, the rest you can run from HDD's.

And buying a 9xx series card today is insane. Go for a 10xx series card with 6-8Gb VRAM.
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Guitarboy2828 on 08/23/2016, 8:52 am

Yeah, massive ssd isn't really worth it as it's a better bet to run AE and cache on separate drives and your projects on a separate drive. So, as Farmfield (who is an absolute guru on this stuff, so, listen to him) said, you will get 540mb/s from AE and 540mb/s for cache and 540mb/s for projects. Rather than trying to get them to all simultaneously run off 1x540mb/s.

So, if I was you, I'd get:
i7 5820k or 6800k
32/64gig ram
GTX10xx (1070 or 1060)
1. 125gig SSD: cache
2. 250gig SSD: Project Files
3. 125gig m.2 SSD: OS and programs (if you can afford a bigger one, obviously do that, but they are expensive as hell)
4. 3tb Sata: Textures, pictures, movies, whatever you like that isn't a project being read or written in AE.
Obviously, if you can double each of those ssd's into bigger ones, do it. But I wouldn't go smaller than what I've suggested above.
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Redheadhenry on 08/23/2016, 8:55 am

Thank you both! You have both been very helpful and I appreciate it. :)

I'll post back here with what I end up getting.
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Posts: 13
Joined: 02/20/2010, 12:24 am
System Specs: OS: Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
CPU: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-6900K CPU @ 3.20GHz
RAM: 65436MB
GPU Vendor: NVIDIA Corporation
GPU: GeForce GTX 1060 6GB/PCIe/SSE2
GPU Driver: 21.21.13.7595
GPU RAM: 6144MB

Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Farmfield on 08/23/2016, 8:58 am

Guitarboy2828 wrote:Yeah, massive ssd ... a lot of good stuff ... I've suggested above.

^ this. :)

Especially the part about me being a guru - though I'm more like this... :D

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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Redheadhenry on 08/23/2016, 6:08 pm

Bahaha! Some people call me the space cowboy!

Alrighty. Second opinions on this final rig I put together. I think we found a winner.

Motherboard Asus X99 Deluxe II
CPU Intel Core i7 6800K 3.4GHz Six Core 15MB 140W
Ram Crucial 64GB DDR4-2133 (4x16GB)
Video Card EVGA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB

HD
Samsung 950 Pro 512GB M.2 x4 SSD (OS and programs)
Samsung 850 Pro 256GB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5inch SSD (project files)
Samsung 850 Pro 256GB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5inch SSD (cache)
Western Digital Red 3TB HDD SATA 6Gb/s (music, photos, movies, etc...)

Was just above 3k, but I may lower the two 256GB.
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Posts: 13
Joined: 02/20/2010, 12:24 am
System Specs: OS: Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
CPU: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-6900K CPU @ 3.20GHz
RAM: 65436MB
GPU Vendor: NVIDIA Corporation
GPU: GeForce GTX 1060 6GB/PCIe/SSE2
GPU Driver: 21.21.13.7595
GPU RAM: 6144MB

Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Farmfield on 08/23/2016, 10:16 pm

That's basically the perfect build for doing comping, editing, 3D. :D
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby [signuversum] on 08/25/2016, 1:25 am

Aren't we still in "Founders edition" high-price w/ little choice mode with 10xx NVidia cards? (as in - does it make sense to wait 3-6 months with upgrade)?
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Farmfield on 08/25/2016, 1:37 am

Not if you need to buy a card today. ;)

But yeah, from this point, going ahead, they'll drop in price - but when is a good point to buy a GPU, when it's new or when the price dropped and there's a new series on the horizon? The only one who knows the answer to the question is the buyer, really.
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Tiner on 09/2/2016, 3:17 pm

Maybe you have already bought everything, in that case disregards everything i say and be happy, its a good system.

But for a $3500 budget (without a monitor?) shouldnt you be adding in a true octa core (i7-5960X) and maybe 1070 if possible (not sure where you live in this crazy world) and isnt a m.2 drive abit over the top for a $3500 budget?

Not that $3500 is bad, not at all but maybe tone down the amount of ssd's? so skipping the m.2 and just make sure you buy a motherboard that support m.2 for future profing that you can if you wish, later on adding a m.2.

I havent been able to play with my m.2 yet but i dont think its gonna give me a huge boost compare to my regular samsung ssd's. The access time on regular ssd's and m.2 is pretty much the same === pretty much instant, and that is the big advantage compare to mechanical hard drives.

The m.2 will shine in copying larger files with its around 2GB sec read/write comparing the samsung ssd's around 500mb read/write. So using a m.2 for let say fluids would be kick ass since each frame can be really large... that would be expensive tho :P But just have it for installs and maybe let AE use it for scratch disk should'nt give much of a performance gain vs regular SSD.

But maybe im way off? please correct me if you want :)
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Samsung 950 Pro 512GB M.2
Samsung SSD 850 EVO 1TB
Samsung SSD 850 EVO 500GB
Samsung SSD 840 PRO 256GB

Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Farmfield on 09/2/2016, 3:34 pm

LOL, it was I who persuaded him to setup the SSD's like that, it's just such an immense boost in system performance compared to anything else you can do. I spent 2 years doing practical tests, running SSD's in RAID, testing caching solutions, etc, and this is what I determined is the best setup for comping, editing, one SSD for the OS disk, one for caching and one for current project files, footage and assets. And I would propose not running an M.2 for the OS disk but for the caching, for optimal performance. Who gives a shit how fast a computer boots or the applications start, it's IN the application you want the performance, while you work.

About the GPU, that's something where you can perhaps get 25% performance gain, upgrading to a 1070, but that's 25% you only get when you use the GPU - and the GPU is WAY less used than people think. Well, unless you are doing GPU rendering.

But you are always using the disks. :D'

Edit: I use these for years for keeping track of performance - it's really helpful because the second you notice lag or whatever, you usually get an instant answer on what the hell is happening. And you need 8gadgetpack app to run these in Windows 8 and 10 as they removed the gadget support after Windows 7...

http://addgadgets.com/

So yeah, highly recommended. I run the Process list with the top 5 highest CPU using apps, the CPU usage for per core load and temperatures, the GPU meter, Drives meter and network meter.
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Tiner on 09/2/2016, 3:47 pm

haha sorry, like i said, havent tested the m.2 yet but if its giving a big boost comparing to the normal ssd (in normal usage, copying of small files) thats super, i just thought that the M.2 was shining when used for bigger files but in normal workload not so much.

I still think that a true 8 core should be in with that budget ;)

Edit
Harddrives/ssd's/m.2's can always be added later without sadness, cpu not so much :)
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Samsung 950 Pro 512GB M.2
Samsung SSD 850 EVO 1TB
Samsung SSD 850 EVO 500GB
Samsung SSD 840 PRO 256GB

Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Farmfield on 09/3/2016, 12:23 am

You got nothing to apologize for, as long as you're factual, I have no issue with opinion.

And you are right about m.2 but you are missing that we are actually not talking "normal usage" but caching timelines and such, so we really are in territory where M.2 shines. Using M.2 for a OS drive, that will not yield more speedup than at boot time and launching apps, useless performance, so to speak, but it's a really good option for a caching drive - take the Fusion-iO PCIe cards, they are basically MLC memory using NGFF interface (which is m.2) on a PCIe bus, so more or less it's an M.2 SSD's on a PCIe adapter, though built as one piece... ;)

You are also right about always being able to add disks later, but in this case we are talking about building a system specifically for a task, and most people doesn't add disks for speed later, they might add for storage, and this was all about getting as much performance as possible from day 1 - and this is in my experience and testing over the last couple of years, the best way to get a high performance system, maximizing i/o performance. It will give you tangible, overall performance gains.
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Redheadhenry on 10/28/2016, 8:29 am

Little late. But I just wanted to let you guys know, this is what I ended up building. I won't lie, pretty slick.

Motherboard MSI X99 SLI Plus Black
CPU Intel Core i7 6900K 8 Core
Ram 64GB DDR4
Video Card GeForce GTX 1060 6GB

HD
Samsung 950 Pro 256GB M.2
Samsung 850 Pro 1TB SSD
Samsung 850 Pro 550GB SSD
Western Digital Red 4TB HDD

I'll be adding a 125GB SSD later as well. :)
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System Specs: OS: Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
CPU: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-6900K CPU @ 3.20GHz
RAM: 65436MB
GPU Vendor: NVIDIA Corporation
GPU: GeForce GTX 1060 6GB/PCIe/SSE2
GPU Driver: 21.21.13.7595
GPU RAM: 6144MB

Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Farmfield on 10/28/2016, 8:44 am

Looks great. :)

And unless you're gonna do GPU rendering, like Octane, Cycles, Redshift, there's no reason to go beyond the 1060 either. Looks like a great combo.
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby brian barber on 11/1/2016, 12:13 pm

I'm a lifelong Mac user, looking to replace my 2008 Mac Tower, probably with a Windows machine, so this is really helpful. This is probably a dumb question, but where are you buying the pieces from? I'm guessing you're building a custom machine. If I went to HP or Dell or whoever and asked them to configure a machine with the same or similar parts, would that work?
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GPU: NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GT OpenGL Engine
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Guitarboy2828 on 11/1/2016, 12:29 pm

It would, will just cost a lot more.
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby Iamtheface on 02/16/2017, 10:39 am

Thank you all for the great information. I wanted to ask a quick question. As a screenwriter and film producer, when I'm in the process of seeking film funding or doing early PR stuff for my projects, I will use premiere Pro and After Effects to create trailers, promo materials, etc. I am by no means an expert (completely self taught, thank you Andrew Kramer and others who do such great video tutorials!), and would never edit or do motion graphics design for an actual release - I would pass that off to the professionals.

But my current IMAC set up is like pouring molasses through a cocktail straw when it comes to some of the AE and PP projects that I'm doing for my promo materials. I often design my trailers and promo materials based on tutorials I can find, so I would say they're at an intermediate or advanced intermediate level (for instance: i'm currently designing an opening logo that has a spinning earth with a logo title going around it and then morphing the earth into an earth with a face that is looking towards a starburst glow.) trying to get the graphics to work, often takes a great amount of time in rendering, and because I am not an expert, I often have to try things then play at to see if it does what I wanted to do, or if I even like it. And I'm finding that I'm wasting a mass amount of time just waiting for things to render to see if little adjustments I've made it work or not.

I have a little bit of money to play with ($3000-$3500 give or take as needed), and I realize that a better system is going to significantly cut down on how long it takes for my trial and error method of creating motion graphics and editing film. Because we are fully maxed household, I assumed I was going to spend that money on a Mac pro and came here to see what people were saying about what set up a Mac Pro I need. But I'm now getting the indication that going Mac is maybe a very bad choice. And probably more money for less results. My last PC experience, was spending more time with fail errors and blue screens then working, so I've enjoyed the MacWorld where I haven't had to deal with that nonsense. I'm definitely an artist and a creative mind, so the tech stuff on the computer definitely sends me into orbit. I tend to be the guy who likes things to work so that I can do my part as opposed to reading about tech specs.

After reading this thread I'm half tempted to just duplicate one of the systems you all have detailed here.

Would love any feedback for a user such as myself as to whether this makes sense, and would greatly appreciate even being told that "XYZ" is going to work great for you. Like I said when it comes to the final releases of things I'll turn it over to a true pro, but I really need to cut down on the time it takes for my computer to catch up as I test different things and try to create graphics and promos that are enough to get my investors excited and get my project moving.

Thanks!
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Re: Major Computer Upgrade [Need Feedback]

Postby asuswarvet1976 on 09/18/2017, 4:08 pm

I have ( i5 -7500 cpu @3.40GHz
16 GB Ram soon to be 32 GB
MSI Nvidia Geforce GTX 1050Ti 4 GB
1TB HDD 7200 rpms
on a Asus Z270E Gaming MB
450watt psu

Still can't use E3D... but I can eat 4k footage on Adobe Premier pro like its nothing. Now I hav a $200 piece of software from VCP that I cannot use.
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