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There are some threads in the forum here about computers, but nothing recent or specific. I need a new computer. I've been working on an iMac, but I'm finding it insufficient for really hi-res painting (for example 10,000 x 7,500px). I need something more powerful to do that kind of work.
At this point, I would prefer to live in the Windows world. I have the option to build a pc or purchase something (Dell Studio XPS?). I regularly use SAI, Photoshop, Artrage and Painter.
What specs are you guys running? How's it working? Any recommendations for me?
I appreciate the help and am happy to provide more information if necessary.
I plan on getting a new laptop in October when I get my financial aid, so I can get Photoshop CS5. Here are the specs of the laptop I plan on getting:
Dell Inspiron laptop 64-bit
Intel Core i5 processor (i5 2410M)
8GB memory 750 GB Hard Drive
Intel HD Graphics 3000
Just look at the minimum requirements for Photoshop CS5, and try to exceed that by a healthy margin. I don't know a lot about this, but people here have told me that this computer is adequate for CS5. I don't know if it meets your other needs. Of course, the computer I'm recommending is a laptop, if you're against that and want a desktop, just seek out a desktop with similar specs.
Last edited by Ace Corona; September 16th, 2011 at 11:16 PM.
I've gotten photoshop to run on netbook-grade specs....but I don't work at HD levels like you do.
A program like Photoshop is depenedent on two things. The CPU and Ram.
4 GB should be sufficent for most tasks, but if this a Desktop and you have alot of layers on top of the 10,000 x 7,500px, I'd say rig it out with 8 or 12GB of ram.
And for CPU performance, a Quad Core Sandy Bridge Core i7 would be your best bet. Just make sure its above 3 ghz.
Awesome. Thank you for the feedback @ace and @darkmagistric.
I'm working on selecting all the components. I've decided to build my own, which will allow me to get some more high end components.
The last thing I'm trying to decide is a second monitor. I already have a Cintiq and I want to have the 2nd monitor for keeping the "whole" painting visible. I'd like to keep it around the same size as the Cintiq, so probably in that 21-22 inch range. Probably IPS because of the better colors as well. Any recs on that?
I work at around 3500x5000 with an i3 2100 and 4GB RAM and it's fine, I don't use many complex brushes, I've learned by trial and error that they're just counterproductive and there's easier ways to achieve the same thing.
For you I would go with this setup:
i5 2500k or 2700k
550w PSU, I don't know what brands you have in your country but Antec, XFX and Corsair are all good bets.
A GTS 450 graphics card should be enough, if you want to go overboard a 5xx GTX, you would want something quiet but capable.
For the monitor go with the HP S-IPS monitors, you should find them easily, they're very affordable for what they are.
Yeah, you can actually do very well in PS with a lower end cpu - quad icore7 is not necessary. If anything you can skimp on that and go with a higher end monitor.
2d illustration programs are not that dependent on really high end CPUs, it doesn't hurt to have one but not completely necessary. 3D on the other hand where time is really really money and every second counts, go with a higher cpu.
I thought I would check back in with my build information now that I've been using the computer for a couple of weeks.
Intel i7 2600k 3.4ghz
Asus z68 mb
nvidia geforce gtx 560 video card
2 - 128 gb Crucial SSDs
Asus PA238 monitor
All is working well and the machine is a complete beast for 2d illustration. You could certainly get away with much less, but I'm planning on using this for a few years and I had the cash now. Cheers!
I didn't know Asus is making monitors for graphic work. The PA238Q and PA246Q monitors sound good.
You can't go wrong with that setup, hopefully you got a good PSU as well because a dodgy one can send all that hardware to the bin.