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Building a workstation PC

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I was looking for input on a computer I am helping my dad build. Before anything, I want to stress that this is a workstation PC. No games. The big and most performance-demanding application he uses is AutoCAD (he's a structural engineer), so that is the primary focus for performance. Being such an expensive computer, it is also important that it'll last for years to come and, because all his work is done on this thing, it is important that it is very sturdy and reliable. MoBo: GA-EP35-DS3R (NewEgg)... (was: GA-EP35-DS3R (NewEgg)) CPU: Core 2 Duo E8400 (NewEgg) GPU: Quadro FX 1700 (NewEgg) RAM: G.SKILL 2x2GB DDR2 800 (NewEgg)... (was: 2x2GB OCZ Reaper DDR2 800 @ 4-4-4-15 (NewEgg)) PSU: CMPSU-520HX (NewEgg)... (was: 620HX) The one part I didn't really put much attention into is the PSU just because I wasn't so sure what to look for. I assume 620 watts will be plenty, and after trying to fit my 750w PSU into my Antec 900, modular cabling sounds quite appealing. As for the case, not really sure what to look for as far as compatibility besides that it is big enough to fit it all in there. Suggestions? Any input, especially incompatibility issues and concepts, would be greatly appreciated. And remember, not for games! :) Edit: Updated the list with a different MoBo and knocked down the PSU to a 520 watt version of the same model. Edit 2: Changed RAM. [Edited by - Spodi on August 1, 2008 8:33:24 PM]

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Hard drives?

I personally would suggest a multi-redundant fail safe, a RAID setup that can have more than one drive failure. If you're putting more than a little money into a work system, no reason to risk a day's or worse of engineering work on a faulty drive.

Also dual optical drives can be useful.

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Well if he want stability and no games I really don't see the reason for getting OCZ memory that is made for gamers?
If money is no biggie and performance,stability is paramount and you want it to last years you want something comparable to this:
Mac octocore!
If AutoCAD can make full use of multiple cores anyways?
Anyways, if I was to build another workstation not geared for games I would get a workstation motherboard that supports ECC memory(The Mac Pro incorporates a 256-bit-wide, fully buffered memory architecture with Error Correction Code (ECC), which corrects single-bit errors and detects multiple-bit errors automatically. These features are especially important in mission-critical or compute-intensive environments) like my old dual AMD opteron system. It's probably the most stable system I ever built(never seen a BSOD on it or random reboot) although definitely not the fastest.
Tyan and Intel have a good reputation for building very stable workstation motherboards. I've used them in the past and have no complaints.
About the only thing I see on your list that is workstation related is the vidcard.
Oh well, if he wants a quiet pc I highly recommend the Antec P180!

p.s. Yeah a decent 620Watt power supply should be more than enough for what you listed.

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For the HDD, I was leaving that up to him to decide for the most part. I am almost positive he won't want to do a RAID and instead just a single high-performance drive and make backups periodically.

AutoCAD can only make use of a single cpu/core, which is why I decided dual-core would be best.

With the RAM, I didn't realize there is actually a difference between "high performance" and "gaming" RAM. Is there really a difference when it comes to RAM, be it for games or applications? I thought it was just marketing to get gamers to throw more money at it.

Mac is probably not an option - he likes XP. ;)

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