Help with New Computer Purchase
Needing a new desktop. What would yall suggest to run photopia and also have enough for just kicking around small business stuff. Overwhelmed with choices. Still using dvd drive but def can buy an external instead. Thanks for any suggestions. Budget around 1k or hopefully less. Thanks.
1. Are you using Photopia for the entire project or are you also compiling the slide shows into an NLE?
2. If so, which NLE? Premiere, Resolve etc.
3. What codec and settings are you using to export the final? Are you going straight to .mp4? If so, you are going to want a system with some sort of acceleration for encoding. This would be either NVENC using an NVIDIA GPU to encode. You can also export with just the raw cores. It all comes down to how fast you want to have things completed. Intel QS is another option, but I'm not seeing that it is supported in Creator. That I will have to check.
4. Are you using Photoshop or Affinity to process images brought into the system? If you are using either one of these you will need to have some processing power and storage capabilities.
5. What is your storage situation? Do you store your finished projects on this same computer? I would look into having 1-1TB NVME boot drive, at least 1-2TB or 4TB NVME for the editing drive, and at least 1 large HDD for pure storage. If you are trying to save money, you can buy a system with older tech. NVME's are currently at Gen4x4. You can save money by getting Gen3x4 drives.
About six months ago I retired a 6 year old Dell XPS and bought a new one - XPS-8950 and a larger display. It really cranks and slow software such as Topaz and Photoshop had been on the old one are done in a flash now. This one came with a 1 TB NVME boot and a 1 TB spinner. I added a 2 TB 7200 RPM HDD as well. Jerry's notes above are very useful, but thought I'd be a little more specific.
Duane, I really thought I was being specific concerning Maggi's workflow questions. There was no response, so I didn't follow up. As far as recommending a computer to a user, I need quite a bit more information. Personally, there are only two prebuilt brands that I would recommend for a user: Digital Storm and Puget Systems. Both of these are extremely well built and expensive. Many other prebuilt brands are shipping 12th and 13th gen systems with improper bios settings and undervolting settings, which is required.
I have built my own systems since 1993 (as well as users). I'm currently running a firstname.lastname@example.orgGhz, with 64GB 5200 DDR5 ram, 360mm AIO (6 fan push pull configuration), a total of 13 Lian Li 120mm Lian Li Infinity fans, Lian Li 011 Dynamic XL ROG case, 1-1TB Samsung boot NVME, 1-2TB Sabrent NVME, and 1-2TB Western Digital Black 850x NVME(7300 R/W). The WD 850x is my editing drive. Two LG 27GL650F 144Hz 27" monitors and an 8.8" sensor panel display. I'm still running an Nvidia GTX 1080ti until the prices drop on the RTX 4080. I have a Blackmagic Design Mini Monitor 4K I/O card providing a lined scale output to UHD monitor. I know it's a long shot, but it would be nice to have the option to have output to monitor by way of I/O cards.
I also have a 4 Drive-12TB Raid 0 for storage. All of my projects us ProRes 422 UHD 60p as output from Photopia. This system will edit UHD 60p H.265 and Prores 60p in real time with filters. My last project master was 1TB. The final delivery was 18GB on thumb drive.
I have the Adobe Suite, Edius X and Resolve 18.5. I use Boris Continuum, Vistitle, New Blue FX, and Topaz Video AI. I output to Prores 422 HQ UHD 60 from Topaz. My go to audio plugins are from Waves.
This system is massive overkill for Photopia. This is why I asked Maggie about her workflow. If all you are doing is Photopia, you can get an off the shelf system for around $800-$1200 US that will do just fine. If you are doing more with professional video and graphic editing, then the price will double or triple for both hardware and software.
Above all else, not having a budget from which to work is constraining. Also, not knowing whether Maggie does this professionally or as a hobby, definitely holds back any recommendations.
I hope Maggie replies so that we may get some more information to help her.
Thanks guys! I just realized there was an answer to my question so I will be looking at this and following up with questions. Thanks so much!
I use photopia everyday. I work with a small business and render on average about 5-7 shows a week. They want on a dvd so I have to use my internal drive but then I do render a MP4 for the youtube link. Other than that, it's just some light word processing, quickbooks, internet browsing, etc. I do use picmonkey for light editing. No gaming or major editing software at this point. I have to turn around the videos pretty quickly (funerals) so I don't usually have to do magic on the pictures if that makes sense. Thanks for reply - a lot to process but I am still very much needing to upgrade. Sometimes it takes so long for my mp4s to render.
Hi Maggie, I have a couple of follow up questions.
1). What is your budget, and is the company paying for the computer?
2). How large (MB, GB, TB) are the 5-7 shows you do in a week, and where do you store them? What codecs are you using? Are they mostly AVC encoded H.264 and H.265 .mp4?
3). Do you need one large master storage drive for all of your projects? Do you archive all of your projects or delete them after a period of time?
4). It sounds as if turn around time is very important. Since Photopia has switched to NVENC export, this means using an NVIDIA GPU. You will need to decide how expensive of a GPU to purchase. Newer cards are a bit faster, but use higher amounts of power. A faster GPU will also shorten your render time within Pic Monkey. This is where budget comes into play. You appear to need speed in rendering and export. Just remember, speed comes at a price. The CPU/GPU combination will also determine the size of the power supply needed.
5). Could you post the specs of your current system. This will give me an idea of speeds you are currently getting.
6). Would you be opposed to a CPU/GPU combination that is one generation behind?
7). Does the company have a computer tech/IT guy on site?
8). Are you in the US? If so, are you near a Micro Center?
That's it for now. Let me know.
Maggi - looks like Jerry and I may have defined more than you need. While my workload is apparently significantly lighter than Jerry’s I can run Lightroom, Topaz And Photoshop (any 2 simultaneously) with only 16GB of memory. And they are snappy. Photopia is also quick, even the rendering runs much faster than my 6 year old machine. One recommendation is if you decide to purchase a prebuilt machine, and you are a Costco member, do it thru them. Excellent return policy plus they double the usual 1 yr warranty. Picking a new PC is a difficult job!
I have to turn around the videos pretty quickly (funerals) so I don't usually have to do magic on the pictures if that makes sense. Thanks for reply - a lot to process but I am still very much needing to upgrade. Sometimes it takes so long for my mp4s to render.
I understand completely about the 'magic on pictures.' I recently had 2 funeral projects that ran around 40 minutes each. Multiple segments, After Effects openings and bumpers, and graphics. I also had to restore around 1300 photos. Of these 1300 around 1000 of them had to be scanned and given complete restorations. This was before the Photoshop Neural filters were released and AI could have performed all of the restorations. Lots of work, all in UHD 60p.