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building a personalized system... help please

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building a personalized system... help please

Postby mworts on Sat Oct 15, 2005 6:36 pm

I just bought the rights to reproduce and sell about 200 independant films on dvd in my district. I'm hoping to find the best way to store and reproduce them as needed.
Here's what I'm thinking but I need suggestions:
-I want to have 3 300gb hard drives (to store all the dvd images for quick access) with 4-5gb partitions like the way a duplicator hd works.
-I also want to have 1 dvd-rom for ripping the single layer discs onto the hard drives.
-Then I want 3 dvd writers (NEC or Pio) and I want to have the ability to both; burn 3 copies of the same title and burn 1 copy of 3 different titles depending on the situation

I hope that gives ppl a sense of what I want to do so I need suggestions on:

-Whether or not this is possible
-What case to use
-what CPU I would need
-Controller cards
-power supply
-mobo

I would just make a duplicator with a hard drive but then I don't think I would have the option of burn several different titles at once. AM I WRONG?

Much appreciated and cheers to all

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Postby dodecahedron on Sat Oct 15, 2005 7:10 pm

i think you can do that with Nero but you might need a special license, not a regular Retail Nero, for the ability to use multiple recoreders.
i think other software has this ability too.

you'd want each drive on a separate IDE channel if you're going to burn different titles at the same time. so that means at least one PCI ATA controller card for the 3rd burner.
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Postby burninfool on Sat Oct 15, 2005 11:59 pm

You can also use firewire external drives and the old RecordNow Max to burn.You can "daisy-chain" up to 64 firewire drives and RecordNow Max supports simultaneous burning up to 64 drives.
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Postby hoxlund on Mon Oct 17, 2005 3:07 am

nero should support multiple burners at same time, i thought

as far as cpu goes, go dual core athlon
motherboard, nforce 4 ultra - the best mobo for amd out right now: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6813131540

cpu - at least the manchester 3800 x2 processor: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6819103562

power supply, don't skimp here go with a 480 - 500 watter

case, any case with adequete cooling

i would spend more money on the mobo/cpu, power supply then case

also for drives i would go for plextor 716, or if you want to try it, the 716sa, sata no need for controller cards
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Postby hoxlund on Mon Oct 17, 2005 3:12 am

hard drives - maxtor 300GB SATA: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6822144359

super fast, huge buffer and Native Command Queuing, and also not a bad price either
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Mon Oct 17, 2005 3:42 am

I second the suggestion for using the PX-716SA.... as long as you use compatible media, it's SOOOOO much better using an SATA drive!! :D
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Postby dodecahedron on Mon Oct 17, 2005 10:40 am

dolphinius_rex wrote:I second the suggestion for using the PX-716SA.... as long as you use compatible media, it's SOOOOO much better using an SATA drive!! :D

sorry, i don't understand that sentence.
did you mean better than using a PATA drive?
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Postby mworts on Mon Oct 17, 2005 10:58 pm

Thanks hoxlun for the great suggestions. I'm definately gonna go with the amd x2 (probably the 4200). I'm really glad you told me about the SATA plextor (very exciting). I'm not very familiar with SATA though... how many connections can that Asus board handle? Will it handle 6? (3 hdd and 3 odd) ... Also will special cooling be needed if I will once in a while be accessing all the hard drives and opticals at once? Or is there a good case with sufficient ventilation?

thanks again

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Postby dolphinius_rex on Tue Oct 18, 2005 12:03 am

dodecahedron wrote:
dolphinius_rex wrote:I second the suggestion for using the PX-716SA.... as long as you use compatible media, it's SOOOOO much better using an SATA drive!! :D

sorry, i don't understand that sentence.
did you mean better than using a PATA drive?


I said:
it's SOOOOO much better using an SATA drive!!

So yes, it's better using an SATA drive then using a PATA drive. Why? because it's on a dedicated cable, which means that your HDD isn't sucking half the bandwidth. I try to use only SATA drives when possible. It's too bad BenQ doesn't have an SATA drive yet... then I could use them! :)
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Postby dodecahedron on Tue Oct 18, 2005 12:56 am

@dolphin:
my bad, i thought you'd said 'so much better than using SATA' which doesn't make sense.

@mworts:
the best case in terms of ventilation is IMO the Antec P180.

http://forums.silentpcreview.com/viewtopic.php?t=23179
http://forums.silentpcreview.com/viewtopic.php?t=23386

if you do go with that case, just be sure to buy a power supply with a long-enough 4-pin ATX cable to reach the location on your motherboard - it's a bit tricky with this case.
search Silent PC Review forums for info on this.
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Tue Oct 18, 2005 1:30 am

dodecahedron wrote:@dolphin:
my bad, i thought you'd said 'so much better than using SATA' which doesn't make sense.


When I re-read it, that's what I thought it said too.... then I re-read it a few more times and realized my brain had been adding the "than", and it wasn't really written there at all!

Funny how a mind can play tricks on us eh? :o
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Postby hoxlund on Tue Oct 18, 2005 1:36 pm

that board can support 4 sata optical drives and 4 sata hard drives

or any combination of the 2, but can't go over 4 sata optical drives

but you'll still have the 2 pata ports, which i wouldn't put more then 1 pata on each ide port

so you could have 6 optical drives total, without the need of a controller card
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Postby hoxlund on Tue Oct 18, 2005 2:15 pm

dodecahedron wrote:the best case in terms of ventilation is IMO the Antec P180.


http://www.neoseeker.com/Articles/Hardw ... iews/p180/
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Postby mworts on Tue Oct 18, 2005 6:42 pm

Thanks again for all your dedication to this topic. That case looks great! There's another thing I want to know and that's if there's a good inexpensive way to convert a PATA drive to be used on the SATA bus? I've seen some converters that come individually for about $30 but that's a little pricey for a make-shift kind of idea. The reason I ask this is that I really like the looks of the benq 1640 and I can get 3 of them for the same price of 1 px-716sa. I attached a screenshot of some of the items i've chosen so far for my system. I can pick these up just down the street from where I live. The prices are in $CDN dollars so divide by about 1.2 to get $US. The prices seem reasonable considering It's very convenient and I won't have any shipping charges. What do you guys think?

Cheers

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Postby hoxlund on Tue Oct 18, 2005 8:29 pm

don't use a converter

use 716sa drives, better burn quality with quality media also, since thats what your doing is professional dvd burning for other people

i would try to get the best burn quality possible
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Postby Ian on Tue Oct 18, 2005 8:32 pm

mworts wrote:There's another thing I want to know and that's if there's a good inexpensive way to convert a PATA drive to be used on the SATA bus? I've seen some converters that come individually for about $30 but that's a little pricey for a make-shift kind of idea.


Check Pricewatch.com. I found a few for $14-$20.

System looks good. You wanna buy me one too? :wink:
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Postby mworts on Wed Oct 19, 2005 10:52 am

I don't suppose anyone would know how much empty space I'd have to leave on the Maxtors in order to maintain system stability and defragment with diskeeper?

I'm waiting another couple weeks with my eyes wide open just to make a few more observations. And the prices can only go down with passing time. I'll be sure to keep you guys updated on the process of purchasing and building this beast. Maybe even post some pics of the final unit and run some tests?
Once again, you guys have been the best help of any forum I've posted on. It's people like Hoxlund, Dolphinius and Dodecahedron who give cdrlabs a great image and keep ppl coming back for great information.

I take my hat off to you

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Postby hoxlund on Wed Oct 19, 2005 12:23 pm

hey you should see me at work, its my duty and honor to keep people away from the memorex and sony drives

im just glad we have plextor and pioneer drives to recommend as a replacement
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Postby dodecahedron on Wed Oct 19, 2005 12:52 pm

mworts,

no offence to hoxlund, but for the computer you're describing you want to build, you don't need the most cutting edge CPU and motherboard.
SLI? what do you need SLI for?
dual core ? what do you need dual core for ?
you can get cheaper CPU and mobo which will be good enough for your needs.
the plus of the Asus mobo is the large offering of SATA ports. anyway i'm sure there are other motherboards that offer plenty of SATA connectors. and in any case i'm not sure it's better than getting a cheaper board and buying a SATA PCI (express?) card. but you'll have to research this stuff yourself and check the costs. maybe the expensive Asus board is a cheaper solution after all.
in any this is only relevant if you're gonna go with SATA burners of which there isn't a large selection, or use converters.

i haven't read up on hard drives lately, but i'd go with Seagate not Maxtor. they give more warranty. and i don't think 16MB buffer is important for the kind of use you're gonna be making of these HDs. you're gonna be streaming data in and out, not making frequent accesses. so any fast 8MB SATA drive will be good enough. IMO.

as for software, you want to be able to burn 3 different compilations (DVDs) simultaneously. that means runnig 3 instances of the burning program. not all programs can do this. you should check up on the websites of the programs and pehaps contact sales reps to inquire about this and make sure the software can do exactly what you want.
for example, i don't think you can run multiple instances of Nero simultaneously burning different stuff without a special license.
see here: http://www.nero.com/us/Nero_max._7_Reko ... oPage.html

take all my advice with a grain of salt - i'm not a hardware guru (or a computer guru for that matter).
just my 2 cents.
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Postby dodecahedron on Wed Oct 19, 2005 1:00 pm

mworts wrote:I don't suppose anyone would know how much empty space I'd have to leave on the Maxtors in order to maintain system stability and defragment with diskeeper?

i think diskeeper says 20% free space for good performance.
but i don't know how that'd work for you. you want a very strange setup - divide the HDs to lots of small (5G) partitions. i don't know how that effect performance.
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Postby mworts on Wed Oct 19, 2005 1:52 pm

@ Dodecahedron,
Thanks for your great advice. I know that I could go with a lesser cpu and mobo but I really like the idea of having the capabilities of dual core because I also often do audio and video editing (sorry for not mentioning that before). And I always love to have the newest consumer technology when I can.

As for software which can run several instances at once: Right now, I run 2 instances of DVD Decrypter at a time to write to my two pioneer 109's and it works perfectly well. So I believe it would work fine with as many instances as you wanted as long as your cpu and ram could handle it. Just my $.02.

And I suggested the 4-5gb partitions because I know that's how the dvd duplicators all work. I was merely putting it out there to see what people thought the benefits or downfalls would be.

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Postby dolphinius_rex on Wed Oct 19, 2005 2:17 pm

For what it's worth, I think Hoxlund's suggestions were quite good. If you want to be burning 3 seperate projects on 3 seperate burners, you NEED to be able to have a system capable of it. I can burn 2 seperate projects on a mid range system, but only at 8x and it's pushing it VERY hard. For 3 projects, especially if it's more then just data disc creations through Nero CD/DVD Speed, I think you'll need some real "ompf" in your computer, especially if you want to burn at 12x or 16x.

And SATA is very important for this too! :D
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Postby hoxlund on Wed Oct 19, 2005 2:59 pm

sorry I was playing AOE 3

anyways, your gonna want a huge system to do this

you don't want to run into tons of buffer underrun errors

and remember why your doing this, professional duplication of dvds

this is a end product that your selling (?) to people you don't want people complaining to you because you have unreadable discs, and you'll lose customers as well

i could do it with my system but it would take me 2 days to turn out 300 dvds
oops i actually am doing this much burning right now, mine is for other reasons though [-X
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Postby dodecahedron on Wed Oct 19, 2005 3:10 pm

dolphinius_rex wrote:If you want to be burning 3 seperate projects on 3 seperate burners, you NEED to be able to have a system capable of it. I can burn 2 seperate projects on a mid range system, but only at 8x and it's pushing it VERY hard. For 3 projects, especially if it's more then just data disc creations through Nero CD/DVD Speed, I think you'll need some real "ompf" in your computer, especially if you want to burn at 12x or 16x.

i stand corrected.
i guess you do need a powerful CPU.
however, unless you're gaming i don't think you need SLI.
even if you want the Asus board, the're a version of it without SLI for $55 less (newegg). check the specs.

also, re-stress what hox already said - get a good PSU.
if your'e gonna run 3 HDs and 3 burners you want a powerful, stable PS.
and if you do go for the Antec P180 dase don't forget to check the location of the 4-pin ATX connector on the mobo and make sure to get a CPU with a long-enough 4-pin ATX cable.
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Postby hoxlund on Wed Oct 19, 2005 5:30 pm

are you referring to the a8n-e? if so, only 4 onboard sata

i recommend the sli premium version because of the rock solid performance

and the reviews this one gets, besides with all that power i would have a hard time resisting the occasional game, thus the SLI
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