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putting together a computer for image processing

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#1 CounterWeight

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 08:31 AM

Hi,

OK I'm not going for anything top of line and thinking an i5 3570, Win7.

Using CS5, MaxImDLpro, Corel PSP, soon to add StarTools, and a number of less used programs like DSS and FITS liberator and those from SBIG.

Is there anything you found increased performance more than anything else?

I'm building up from a Gigabyte GA-Z77X-D3H 1155 socket motherboard, thinking 16GB 1600 DDR3.

thoughts?

#2 rmollise

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 08:58 AM

The main requisite, assuming you're using even a marginally modern CPU is ram and disk space. Imaging programs like Adobe Photoshop just don't need a lot of horsepower compared to games. Especially not for our application.

#3 CounterWeight

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 11:11 AM

Thanks Rod. Storage / archival, I'll be adding a few data storage drives. No plans to game on it or do any fancy audio or visual work - just playing with images, testing my astro hardware on occasion.

#4 rmollise

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 12:41 PM

Thanks Rod. Storage / archival, I'll be adding a few data storage drives. No plans to game on it or do any fancy audio or visual work - just playing with images, testing my astro hardware on occasion.


Let me add that a lot of storage is not a huge factor unless:

1. You are using a camera with a large, full-frame plus, chip.

2. You are shooting .avis with a planetary cam.

;)

#5 derangedhermit

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 05:57 PM

Fancy graphics cards aren't helpful for 2D stuff. Fast processor, fast RAM, fast disk never hurt. Usually the weak point, if any, is hard drive access times, so an SSD might be in order (to store the apps and working images on) if you want to treat yourself.

That, and a nice large accurate monitor that you can calibrate; IPS, I guess. There are debates about what gamut to use; minimum in my mind is a close approximation to SRGB; wider gamuts, closer to Adobe RGB gamut monitors are also on the market. To me, you only want Adobe RGB if you are going to make prints on a printer that supports the wider gamut (most don't). For displays and the web, sRGB. You can always work in a bigger color space if you choose a broad-gamut monitor (and can see the color differences) and then manually control the collapse of the color space - rather specialist work. I don't know how applicable the gamut choice is to astro work.

#6 CounterWeight

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 07:27 PM

Good points. I'm going through a lot of that with several boutique/artist printing shops in town. I've seen near great results using the sRGB IEC61966-2.1 all through. Blowing an image up incrementally to 24"x36" 16 bit TIFF at highest level the files get massive.

#7 Atl

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 09:01 PM

Most astro programs don't support dual and quad core...Photoshop does though. If your not using PS then you will get minimal benefit from a new rig. Go for lots of RAM though.

#8 CounterWeight

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 09:19 PM

thanks Atl,

Yes PS CS5 is in that mix I use. I'm hoping 16GB will do the job?

#9 Atl

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 11:55 PM

Your good with 16...beyond good.

#10 Tom and Beth

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Posted 16 June 2013 - 04:42 PM

Fancy graphics cards aren't helpful for 2D stuff. Fast processor, fast RAM, fast disk never hurt. Usually the weak point, if any, is hard drive access times, so an SSD might be in order (to store the apps and working images on) if you want to treat yourself.

That, and a nice large accurate monitor that you can calibrate; IPS, I guess. There are debates about what gamut to use; minimum in my mind is a close approximation to SRGB; wider gamuts, closer to Adobe RGB gamut monitors are also on the market. To me, you only want Adobe RGB if you are going to make prints on a printer that supports the wider gamut (most don't). For displays and the web, sRGB. You can always work in a bigger color space if you choose a broad-gamut monitor (and can see the color differences) and then manually control the collapse of the color space - rather specialist work. I don't know how applicable the gamut choice is to astro work.


Hmmmm. If I can trust Speedfan to indicate usage of a graphics card (5770) could I assume that at least with DSS the card is "helpful"?

The rest of the rig is a bit dated, I5-650, 128G SSD, 16G RAM.

#11 g__day

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Posted 16 June 2013 - 09:42 PM


An SSD or a PCI-X based SSD (think Revo add in card) might really speed things up. If you had the budget a six core Intel chip would be nice!

#12 rmollise

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Posted 17 June 2013 - 08:51 AM

An SSD or a PCI-X based SSD (think Revo add in card) might really speed things up. If you had the budget a six core Intel chip would be nice!


None of which you need to run Registax, Maxmi DL, or even do big astro pictures in Photoshop. NICE, sure, no doubt about it. :cool:

#13 Raginar

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Posted 17 June 2013 - 10:06 AM

I run all of that (minus PS) on a Core2duo celestron. I think the i5 will do just fine.

#14 JoseBorrero

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Posted 19 June 2013 - 02:26 AM

I think is all about what sensor size you're imaging. Thats the one will put all it force (stacking) etc. For processing, I use a AMD (athlon) 6 RAM for now and 1tb HD after a year runs like charm and still more than half to fill the drive :)
It seems to be good for my little Atik 314L+ Mono :)

#15 CounterWeight

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 03:25 AM

Well it is done :)

Completed the laplink xfer of files, took 16 hours or so. Was surprised that it properly included all my bookmarks and documents I wasn't even thinking about.

I've done some very fast and simple testing and used a variety of programs, some not optimized for multicore and others that are. Results are as expected there. Everything is faster, and the CPU cores seem at best only modestly tasked under the most difficult I've handed it, resulting in an overall tasking/resource use near single digit in terms of averages.

I did a clean install of everything as far as programs and app's, and so no 'bloatware' or 'carpware' clogging the system arteries. I'm certain over the years that I wasn't perfect in my repairing the registry and all the rest as I'd done re-installs and ...

Result, modestly priced upgrade and I'm very happy, interesting in tinkering with the old box where I'm realizing a I waiting where the is none on the new one.

Here is a clip of the win performance indicator.

Attached Files



#16 rboe

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 09:23 AM

What did you use in the end for hardware? Those are some nice scores. :)

#17 derangedhermit

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 01:02 PM

Hmmmm. If I can trust Speedfan to indicate usage of a graphics card (5770) could I assume that at least with DSS the card is "helpful"?

The rest of the rig is a bit dated, I5-650, 128G SSD, 16G RAM.

If a card is installed, it will be used in the video pipeline for the display buffer(s) and the chip and board will generate heat; GPU makers started doing power-saving things like slowing the clock speed or shutting off parts of the chip later than Intel did on the CPU. I don't know the specifics of the card you mention.

DSS says it will use multiple CPU cores if present, but no mention of GPUs that I saw.

The only thing I can think of that a graphics card may make a large difference on for astro imaging software is video processing, since there is often hardware support for encoding, decoding, and a number of intermediate operations. Intel also now puts similar video functions on their on-chip GPU, so I don't know if a separate board would be better than that, or how much difference it would make.

#18 JoseBorrero

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 01:53 PM

wow, excellent choice

#19 Turkinolith

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 03:09 PM

Don't forget that for improving disk speed you can always RAID 0 a few drives together.

Or better yet, RAID 0 a few SSD's!

It was a promotional video a few years back but its still fun to watch (skip to halfway through or more):
Youtube






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