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#1 kurtenstein

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Posted 16 September 2020 - 06:49 PM

Hi! I just got in AP and would like to get a more effective computer than my actual cheapo laptop. I found a place where refurbished desktops are sold. I understand I should go for 16GO RAM and SSD, but do I need a specialized graphics card, considering I'll be using DSS and On1 Photo Raw and don't intend to edit video?

Thanks for your help!

#2 mmalik

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Posted 16 September 2020 - 07:24 PM

You would need two types of systems:

 

 

1. A laptop for use by the mount-side (Note: I primarily discourage mount-side computing but there are certain scenarios where mount-side computing becomes necessary, e.g., polar aligning...)

 

2. A workstation class computer for Astro processing; few examples here...

 

Regards



#3 kurtenstein

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Posted 16 September 2020 - 07:42 PM

You would need two types of systems:

 

 

1. A laptop for use by the mount-side (Note: I primarily discourage mount-side computing but there are certain scenarios where mount-side computing becomes necessary, e.g., polar aligning...)

 

2. A workstation class computer for Astro processing; few examples here...

 

Regards

I use a DSLR atop a motor driven EQ3-2, so I don't need a mount-side computer. Thanks for the examples!

 

But the question remains: is it all about processing speed and readily available memory, or does one need a specific, specialized ("gaming", for example) graphic card?



#4 mmalik

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Posted 16 September 2020 - 07:54 PM

Not a specialized one per se but powerful enough to handle image processing apps like PixInsight, Photoshop, etc. which are both processor and memory intensive. And yes, a very decent graphics card since you'll be dealing with very high resolution data. Regards

 

 

Note: I have covered most of this in the linked... thread with high resolution monitors/graphics cards, NVMe drives, PC build samples, etc.


Edited by mmalik, 16 September 2020 - 08:05 PM.

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#5 bignerdguy

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Posted 17 September 2020 - 08:36 AM

One other thing to keep in mind is that not all astro-processing programs use the graphics card to run their functions.  So really what you want is a good/powerful/fast CPU and as a side consideration a good graphics card.  As far as the rest, at least 16GB of RAM and though an SSD is not required but it does help speed up access to files.  You do want at least 1TB of storage or more depending on how many files you plan to keep. Remember that RAW and FITS files tend to eat up space quickly on a Hard drive and you are going to want to keep them all for future use as you go along.  As an example, i have almost 400GB of files of all my astrophotos and their processed version on my server. This is for the last. say 5-6 years of astrophotography or so.   Also a large frame, high resolution monitor will be a good idea too.


Edited by bignerdguy, 17 September 2020 - 08:37 AM.


#6 kurtenstein

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Posted 17 September 2020 - 06:49 PM

I see! So I'll try to hunt down a fast PC with an ok graphics card. I still have to decide between used and refurbished...

Thanks for the input, fellows!
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#7 piaras

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Posted 19 September 2020 - 11:36 AM

I use a GTX1060 which are very cheap today vs the higher end gaming cards which are not required. As Mike mentioned get a workstation. Used market has lots of them available at 10% their original cost, and load it up with memory and SSD.

Pierre



#8 bignerdguy

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Posted 19 September 2020 - 11:46 AM

I wanted to mention a minor correction based on my usage last night of PixInsight:  16GB should be considered the minimum amount of RAM you need.  More like 32GB would be better and more than that best.  I ran a processing job last night that included quite a few photos that i wanted to stack.  I have 48GB of ram on my machine and when PixInsight started to combine them it reported it was using 25GB of my RAM for the job.  So in your case if you did the same thing and only had 16GB it might run out of memory quickly.  So yeah, more is better and a good workstation not a laptop is recommended.



#9 kurtenstein

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Posted 19 September 2020 - 06:58 PM

There's this guy who builds gaming pcs as a hobby, prices seem fair: https://www.kijiji.c...adId=1524585968

#10 kurtenstein

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Posted 19 September 2020 - 06:58 PM

... prices in canadian dollars!

#11 N3p

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Posted 19 September 2020 - 07:30 PM

I just wonder, anybody regularly fill 16gb or ram while using a computer? 

 

SSD I did some tests, and I want to share my story. I replaced an older Kingston Sata SSD 128gb with a speed of around 500mb per seconds for a Western Digital M.2 Nmve gen3 which is supposed to transfer at around 2400mb per seconds. It's true, it can do it according to the bench mark of my operating system.

 

But the thing is, my operating system will boot at the exact same time with either an older SATA or a newer M.2. same thing with applications.. I don't play games so I don't know about games.

 

For about the same price, I get 250gb M.2 or a 500gb SATA... To copy larger files between M.2 SSD to the same M.2 SSD or M.2 to HDD, the M.2 is much faster then the SATA, that is a fact.

 

My thought is... even today I think I would be tempted to pick a older SSD Sata with twice the capacity over M.2 for the same price.. It's a question of size vs transfer speed.. I might be wrong but the SATA seems like the best deal in my opinion.

 

I don'T hate my M.2 either, it's fast!



#12 piaras

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Posted 20 September 2020 - 09:12 AM

People who process large files and stacks have slowly migrated to dual Xeon processors or the newer Ripper chips and lots of ram. I have 96 Gb of Ram and PixInsight can fill that fairly easily when doing 100s of subs. I have 1 Ramdisk of 4 Gb per processor, total of 12 using 48 Gb and don’t write to the HD’s until the end. Much faster!
Also using Linux has a large effect on the running time, Windows is slower most if not all the time, as PI is native to Linux. 
I don’t know about Win10, but in doing a test of the same subs with ramdisks, Win7 only used ONE of the available ramdisks while Ubuntu used all.
Pierre



#13 bignerdguy

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Posted 20 September 2020 - 04:17 PM

People who process large files and stacks have slowly migrated to dual Xeon processors or the newer Ripper chips and lots of ram. I have 96 Gb of Ram and PixInsight can fill that fairly easily when doing 100s of subs. I have 1 Ramdisk of 4 Gb per processor, total of 12 using 48 Gb and don’t write to the HD’s until the end. Much faster!
Also using Linux has a large effect on the running time, Windows is slower most if not all the time, as PI is native to Linux. 
I don’t know about Win10, but in doing a test of the same subs with ramdisks, Win7 only used ONE of the available ramdisks while Ubuntu used all.
Pierre

Well I cant speak for RAM disks, but i know that my Win 10 system processes the images pretty quick. I have an M.2 SSD and 48GB of OC'ed RAM and yeah PixInsight can fill it pretty quickly if I am processing a lot of subs, however I haven't yet filled it completely during processing.  I also use an AMD Ryzen 3800x 8-core CPU (OC @ 4.2Ghz) and it processes quite fast, no need for a Intel chip.  I should also mention that since I have a full 48GB of RAM I turned off the page file system completely so everything runs from RAM and not the HDD.  If you have enough memory then who needs a paging file?  Win 10 rarely uses more than 4-5GB of memory for itself and PixInsight uses a bare 600MB, if that, by itself.

 

There are lots of ways to tune a already fast system to make it even faster.



#14 piaras

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Posted 20 September 2020 - 05:30 PM

Well I cant speak for RAM disks, but i know that my Win 10 system processes the images pretty quick. I have an M.2 SSD and 48GB of OC'ed RAM and yeah PixInsight can fill it pretty quickly if I am processing a lot of subs, however I haven't yet filled it completely during processing.  I also use an AMD Ryzen 3800x 8-core CPU (OC @ 4.2Ghz) and it processes quite fast, no need for a Intel chip.  I should also mention that since I have a full 48GB of RAM I turned off the page file system completely so everything runs from RAM and not the HDD.  If you have enough memory then who needs a paging file?  Win 10 rarely uses more than 4-5GB of memory for itself and PixInsight uses a bare 600MB, if that, by itself.

 

There are lots of ways to tune a already fast system to make it even faster.

Proved my point.




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