New Year’s Workstation Build

With all the existing posts on the site, you might think we only handle gaming computer builds. Not so! We’ll make an effort to show some diverse builds in the near future–for now, let’s get started on this New Year’s build that is long overdue for posting.

Back around Christmas time, we had a customer contact us who was needing a workstation built for photo and video editing. After some conversations back and forth, we settled on the following specs that fell within his needs and price range.

Our goal was a near silent computer that gave the performance he needed now while allowing a clear upgrade path–in other words, a computer that would last a long time. For this reason, we went with some very high end components. 

The Xeon processor is a “workstation” class processor tailor made for the customer’s needs; the fact that 2011 is Intel’s newest socket means he’ll be able to drop a new processor when he’s ready to upgrade in a few years and be able to keep his current motherboard. We gave it a 20% overclock and kept it cool with the beautiful and nearly silent Noctua cooler. 

While we threw in 32GB of quad-channel RAM to meet and exceed his current needs, the motherboard has an additional 4 DIMM slots and can hold another 32GB of RAM (64GB total). 
Powering it all is a hyper-efficient GOLD certified Seasonic power supply–the modular power supply allowed easy cable management without a clutter of wires. With components becoming more power efficient while at the same time gaining performance increases, this power supply should last for the foreseeable future. The W5000 is part of AMD’s latest line of workstation graphic cards and will provide all the editing power our customer needed. Better yet, it didn’t require any dedicated power cabling.
We went with a Blu-ray drive which will allow backup of archive media files to dual layer 50GB Blu-ray disks.  
The SSD and hard drive are configured in a caching setup using ASUS’s built in utility. It was a one-step process that will allow the benefits of a SSD (read/write speeds) without the drawbacks of a two-drive setup (having to micro-manage storage).
The Fractal Design Define R4 case itself is marvelous–probably my favorite case I’ve ever worked with. First off, it’s heavy and feels like a serious case; there is no cheap plastic or flimsy aluminum here. Covering the interior of all the panels is a noise dampening material. Coupled with the high-quality internal fans (white) and the amazing Noctua cooler, the computer was completely silent when powered on. In addition, there is a fan controller to the right of the Blu-ray drive, allowing tweaking depending on your needs.
On the side and top panels, there are removable foam areas where you can add more fans if needed. A very nice touch.

Located on the top were the usual USB connectors, power button, and headset ports, along with a single classy blue light. The blue USB connectors indicated USB 3.0.

Along the front sides of the case were vents for air circulation. You can also see the notch where you open the front cover from. The mechanism for shutting the door is very solid, and with the door shut you have a really amazing looking case.

The entire build went really well, and we were able to get some great deals on components, bringing the final total well under what we expected to pay. The end result was all business.
Like what you see? Ready to update that aging computer to something that can handle your video and photo editing demands? Contact Rocket Custom Computers today: [email protected]
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