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  #1  
Old 07-26-2006, 11:20 PM
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Super deals on AMD processors..

Thought I would pass this along in case anyone is looking for an AMD processor. TigerDirect has some killer Overstock sales going on AMD 64 processors. The prices are so low that I had to break down and order an upgrade for my computer today. The rebate is only good til the end of the month.

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...ory=Processors


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Old 07-26-2006, 11:40 PM
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I'll stand up for Tiger Direct! They're a good business to deal with!!

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Old 07-27-2006, 05:58 AM
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Boy, their pricing on stuff is incredibly cheap. Now you have me thinking....

My system is an ATHLON 1.5GHZ w/750mb ram. It's four years old, and maybe more. I don't know the specifics of the motherboard as I write. It works famously, but it does take time processing images. (I store in an external HD, so I still have a lot of space in my 80gig internal.)

I have heard that I can get a video card that would allow two monitors. With all the Photoshop editing I do having this ability would really help (I think. Can I run the same app on both monitors? My editing photo on one in LARGE and the buttons and controls on the other?)

Should I consider a new system in entirety, or a processor upgrade, ram and video card with another monitor (or two). What are the bottlenecks?

Sorry for the tech questions, but someone smarter than I may know this.

Coop


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Old 07-27-2006, 08:43 AM
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Coop,

It really depends on the socket design that the processor plugs into. Sometimes they change from generation to generation of processors, so there may be a limit to how fast a processor your mobo will accept. With things like Photoshop, where memory (RAM) is really put to the test, going to 2GB of ram would probably do more wonders for you than a new processor. Does your hard drive seem to do a lot of work when you render an image? If so, it could be that Windows is using hard drive space as extended memory.

Of course, a processor upgrade wouldn't hurt.

And I use dual monitors. I run a laptop, and I have an external monitor that I use as a desktop extension. I can stretch an application across both screens if I want. When a window is maximized, it fills one of the screens, but I can "restore" it and stretch it across both screens.


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Old 07-27-2006, 08:45 AM
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Jim,

I built the system I'm using last fall. It consists of a Gigabyte K8U motherboard, two 160 gb Hitachi hard drives, 1 GB of Corsair DDR400 memory, a 256mb video card (Nivida), and an AMD Sempron 3300+ processor. I picked up the motherboard and CPU from TigerDirect as a "combo deal", and got the rest through Newegg.com.

I'm no computer expert, but if I understand correctly, the L1 & L2 cache on the processor, and the memory have the most to do with the speed of a computer. The Sempron 3300+ that I'm running now has only 128mb of L2 cache, where as the Athlon 64 3400+ that I just ordered has 512mb of L2 cache. Most of the motherboard companies have pages on their websites that will show you the "Processor Compatability" for your motherboard. Mine will take up to an AMD 3700+, but those are pricey and hard to find. The processor that I ordered is next in line, and will likely be as high as I'll ever go in this machine.

A really good tool for finding out all the componets in your machine is a program called Everest Home. The company no longer offers it, but you can download a free copy from here..... http://www.softpedia.com/get/System/...-Edition.shtml

It will tell you just about everything.

With what your doing with your machine, I would want a fairly fast processor and and LOT of memory (ram). Historically a computer that is more than a couple of years old is really outdated. Things move so fast in the computer world now a days that toady's biggest and best, is tomorrow's bottom of the barrel.


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Last edited by Ed Caffrey; 07-27-2006 at 11:28 AM.
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Old 07-27-2006, 11:58 AM
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Thanks to both of you guys. Later or tomorrow I will find out more on what I have. The paperwork is around, and this program will be helpful.

I'll keep you posted.

I think the dual monitor setup is going to make me slap my forehead and say "WHY did I wait so long to do this!!!"

Coop


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Old 07-27-2006, 02:58 PM
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Coop, I responded earlier, but doesn't seem to have made it up here.

My guess is you will want to upgrade the motherboard, ram and CPU. I would recommend a dual core AMD64 or the new Core 2 Duo that Intel is about to release. Because of this new core from Intel, AMD is slashing their prices right now, it is a good time to be buying.
http://www.tomshardware.com/2006/07/...out_athlon_64/

I am running a dual setup, and everything you want should work fine, usually, anything that is it's own window (say a layer dialog) can be put wherever you want.

The setup I am running here at work, I have a 24" lcd (1920x1200) and a 21" LCD (1600x1200) and this looks to the OS as if it is one monitor of 3520x1200). The 24" LCDs have dropped a huge amount the last year or so, and can be had for around $850 (http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/us/en...7-1844961.html is the one I have). I have noticed that these are in the small business section of most web sites, not the consumer section.

--Carl


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Old 07-29-2006, 03:12 PM
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NOW you did it......!




Sure, I wuz fine plodding along with my old reliable. Then I get an itch when I see 'upgrade' mentioned.....

Upon discussion with a tech guy (read: Salesman), coming this next week a NEW computer in entirety: 'Systemax' ATHLON 64/2ghz, 2GB ram, 160gb HD, fresh motherboard, video card supporting two monitors, another 19" LCD monitor to supplement my 21" NEC CRT, DVD/CDR burner (I didn't have but a CDR before) and a CA migrating software package that allows transfer of programs and settings from one computer to the other (free after rebate). Optical mouse, etc....

I am sure some programs will have to be installed, but, as the tech told me, this will do 90% of the programs, if I choose it to. We'll see.

Having two monitors will really allow me to work less restricted. The speed increase will allow me to work quicker with the large files my 12mp camera can generate!

News as I do.

Thanks. I think.....

Coop


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Old 07-29-2006, 03:17 PM
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Carl,

I didn't go all-out on a monitor. If I can move all the tools over to another screen it will allow me to increase the size of my image to nearly screen size. I generally work at 1/2 of the full screen size if that. I blow it up often, but the scroll bars and toolbars are omnipresent.

A full image on either a 19" or a 21" (actually it is only 19.5" in true diagonal measure. They cheated measurements in the CRT days!) will far surpass what I work with now.

Thanks for the tip.

Coop


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Old 07-29-2006, 07:16 PM
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Yeah, I know about it. I have finally gotten all CRT monitors out of my life (both work and home). I had 2 21" CRTs blow up within a month of each other. Very happy with the LCDs.

I think the 2GB of RAM will give you noticable speed increase.

--Carl


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Old 07-30-2006, 09:26 AM
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Now I gotta start asking some questions!

I purchased an LCD last fall, installed it and played with it for about three days. I wound up giving it to my Mrs. for her machine simply because I could never get the colors or appearance of photos that I was working on to turn out as well as the did on my CRT monitor. It was a Syncmaster.

My question is this.... what is a decent LCD for photography work? I've acutally gone to the local staples store with a CD of knife pics and looked at them on a number of LCD screens.... by comparison the images all seem really "corase" (with a wide difference in color) to how they look on my NEC AccuSync CRT montior.
I'm getting a little more interested in the LCD after reading a few stories on the internet that LCDs should be really dropping in prices because of an over supply by the makers.


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  #12  
Old 07-30-2006, 11:55 AM
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Ed,

I have a syncmaster that has wonderful colors. It is a 21". I think one of the big differences was the target market. Is it marketed at professionals (this category includes graphic designers). The paticular model I have is aimed at graphic designers specifically.

Next, try this on you laptop. while sitting and looking at the screen with a knife image up bring it forward and back on the hinges. See the color, brightness, etc change. That is the pixels making up the display getting off centered.

Now how do you get one that is good. Each of the monitors should have specs for viewing angle, color temp, contrast, brightness, pixel pitch, and resolution. These are what you want to compare, they will give you much more information than is typically displayed (resolution and contrast are typical on the box).

The new one I have at work has the following specs
Pixel pitch: 0.27 mm (distance between physical pixels on the screen. This is a little coarse, but wrt the size of monitor OK).
Brightness: Up to 500 nits (Excellent)
Contrast ratio: Up to 1000:1 (Excellent)
Response rate (typical): 6 ms (Excellent)
Viewing Angle - Horizontal: 178 ° (Excellent)
Viewing Angle - Vertical: 178 ° (Excellent)
Native resolution: 1920 x 1200@60 Hz (Native is the key here, always compare the native resolution on displays)
Interface (analog/digital): Analog/Digital (Display will look better if run from a DVI (digital) video card generally)

I didn't see a speced color temp, but it is adjustable on this monitor.

Look at http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/us/en...70-444767.html for a good comparison across one companies line. If you look at the 17" displays you can see a lot of difference in the different panels.

Once you find one that you like, you then need to get it set up for your workspace, and adjust things like color temp, contrast, brightness, etc using a known good image that you have.

--Carl


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  #13  
Old 10-05-2006, 09:45 PM
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Update from me...

Well, it's been in operation for about 6 weeks now and I sure don't want to go through the program changeover thing again. I did not use the 'migrating' software package, because it does not move programs, just settings and documents. Doing such took me about two weeks and I had two computers running for a while as I slowly got it to where I wanted.

Anyway, there is a VERY noticable increase in speed and production now, attributed to all of the upgrade stats, I am sure.

Dual monitor setup allows me to place some toolbars on the second screen and so more room for the images on my main screen. I did get an inexpensive LCD monitor, and I found that it is acceptable to me when I took the brightness WAY down on it. They can overpower the images otherwise. I am going to the big Photo Expo in NYC in early November. I will certainly have a better idea of what screen I would like then.

Thanks again for the prodding...

Coop


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