Looking to put together the ultimate Ivy Bridge system? Bennett Ring reveals the kit you need to build a grunty, top-of-the-line video-editing PC.
Intel’s new Ivy Bridge chips and 7-series motherboards may not be quite earth shattering -- especially if you already own a second-gen Core i system -- but that doesn’t mean they don’t make for great parts. If you’ve been holding out on building a new system, there’s never been a better time. Here, we’ve put together our list of recommended components for assembling a top-of-the-line video-editing PC.
CPU: Core i7-3770, $355
When it comes to video editing, it’s all about the threads baby. You’ll be needing as many cores and virtual cores as possible, which is where this CPU’s four physical cores with HyperThreading comes in. We’re sure Intel will have a six-core Ivy Bridge part in the future, but until then this is as good as you’ll get from the Ivy Bridge family.
Motherboard: ASRock Z77-Professional, $309
It might only support 32GB of memory, but the supported speed of 2,800MHz will make all the difference to video editors. There are several extra SATA 6Gbps and USB 3.0 ports, helping to deliver the best possible internal and external file transfer speeds.
Graphics card: Leadtek PCIe Quadro 2000, $525
Your choice of graphics card is highly dependent upon the video editing software you use, but Nvidia’s Quadro range are some of the most widely supported. The 2000 here is one of the most affordable, with Quadros increasing in price up to the $4,000 mark. Go for the most expensive one you can con the boss into paying for.
Memory: 32GB G. Skill Trident X PC3-22400, $800
Working with HD files requires as much system memory as you can afford, and the faster it is, the better. This swathe of DDR3 2,800MHz memory should do the job nicely.
Sound card: ASUS Xonar Essence STX, $185
With a signal-to-noise ratio of 124dB, the XONAR Essence STX offers crystal-clear audio reproduction, allowing editors to spot noise problems that would otherwise be lost.
Hard Drive: OCZ RevoDrive 3 X2 PCI-E SSD 480GB + 2 x WD Caviar Green 2TB in RAID 0, $2,000
You can’t have fast enough storage when it comes to moving around your edits, but this PCI-E drive from OCZ comes close. If 480GB storage on your main scratch disk isn’t enough, there’s always the 960GB version for a cool $3,600. A couple of mechanical drives act as long-term storage.
PSU: Corsair TX850 V2 850W, $169
We’re borrowing the same PSU from the overclocking system, but not because you’ll be tweaking your shiny new CPU. With so many drives and a need for perfect system reliability, it’s better to be safe than sorry, and this premium PSU will last for the long haul.
Case: Antec Dark Fleet DF-30, $162
This quality case might look a little out-there for office environments, but the Fleet-Release front drive system allows for rapid data transfers. More importantly, it’s great at hiding the interior fan noise, removing your edit bay from the incessant whining of fans. A front-facing USB 3.0 port will play nicely with your USB 3.0 external drives.
Total price: $4,505