Looking to buy workstation for 4K color correction

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Jason Kettle

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Looking to buy workstation for 4K color correction

PostWed Apr 12, 2017 4:16 pm

Hi,

I am buying a new computer and I need some help.

I am looking for a computer that can do fast 4K color correction and editing in both Davinci Resolve, Assimilate Scratch and Adobe Premiere Pro. I sometimes work with DPX files as well.

I am looking at two machines and not sure which one to get:

CPU: Intel Xeon E5 V4 ES Broadwell 20 cores / 40 threads cpu 2.5GHz turbo, 2,3GHz all cores, 50mb cache
RAM: 4 x 4Gb Crusial DDR4 2133MHz (16GB total)
DRIVE: Kingston V300s 120Gb SSD
Motherboard: Asrock X99m Extreme 4
CPUZ bench: Single Thread 1200, Multi Thread 23800

OR

CPU: Intel Xeon E5-2420 1.9Ghz 12 cores / 24 threads
RAM: 4 x Kingston 16GB 1600Mhz DDR3 ECC CL11 (64GB total)
DRIVE: 4 x 250GB 5400RPM 2, 25" SATA
Motherboard: Asus Z9NA-D6

For the GPU, I am planning to install 1 x Nvidia Geforce Quadro 6000 6GB RAM on either one of them.

Which one would serve me best?

Thank you so much.
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Marc Wielage

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Re: Looking to buy workstation for 4K color correction

PostThu Apr 13, 2017 3:28 am

It's fair to say there's a lot of different ways to get there. I will tell you that real-time 4K DPX is challenging and will require more horsepower than what you have listed. And the moment you throw in any OFX plug-ins, you won't get real time even with 6 or 8 GPUs. You'll also need a fast RAID with tons of storage, and I would try to hit at least 900MBps on the BMD Speed Test.

MixingLight did a pretty good piece on what's needed to run Resolve workflows in Windows (and this piece is free, even though it's normally a pay site):

https://mixinglight.com/color-tutorial/ ... i-resolve/
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Andrew Kolakowski

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Re: Looking to buy workstation for 4K color correction

PostThu Apr 13, 2017 9:14 am

Very bad choice of components.
DXP is actually not demanding on CPU at all, just GPU.

Read forum- there are maaany threads about it.

Quickly:
- bad CPU- get one with high clock and e.g. 10+ cores, e.g. E5-2687W v4 (or dual if you have money). This will serve you better than your choice.
- get 2x GTX 1080Ti for this money. You need a lot of GPU RAM for 4K, so 8GB+. Quadro 6000 has only 448 CUDA cores and 6GB of RAM- not good at all- avoid!
- you need proper RAID to work with DPX 4K (2GB/sec). This requires e.g. 6x SSD in RAID 0. You can use e.g. IcyDoc to nicely pack them into your case (http://www.icydock.com/goods.php?id=151). You can either use on board ports (if motherboard is good) or add LSI controller to avoid bottlenecks.

If you don't know what to get I advice you to ask someone to help you as you may waste a lot of money for machine which won't work properly.
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Jason Kettle

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Re: Looking to buy workstation for 4K color correction

PostThu Apr 13, 2017 5:25 pm

Andrew,

Thank you for the advice.

The configurations are reasonably priced and they are not built from scratch.

Here is another option:

Dell Precision T7500
CPU: 2 x Xeon X5670 2.93 Ghz (12 cores, 24 threads total)
RAM: 48GB DDR3
GPU: Palit GTX 1070 8GB
SSD: 250GB SSD

What that at least be fine for 4K DPX at 1/2 or 1/4 resolution or 4K ProRes?
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Andrew Kolakowski

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Re: Looking to buy workstation for 4K color correction

PostThu Apr 13, 2017 6:10 pm

These Xeons are old.
Ho much is it?

You can go i7 6950x (or 6900K) route if you want to save money.
For 3K£ you can have overclocked 6950x+ 2x GTX1080+32GB RAM with very good motherboard.
2.5K£ for the same with overclocked 6900K.
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Jason Kettle

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Re: Looking to buy workstation for 4K color correction

PostFri Apr 14, 2017 7:22 pm

How about this setup?

HP Z420
1 x Intel Xeon E5 2670
1 x 64GB DDR3 RAM
GPU: AMD Radeon RX480
2 x 128GB SSD in RAID 0
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Andrew Kolakowski

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Re: Looking to buy workstation for 4K color correction

PostMon Apr 17, 2017 6:40 pm

Sounds like a PC which is not as good as it could be for the purpose (for given money).

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