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FrozenTundra
08-06-2005, 11:02 AM
Hello

I have a blank slate. I will be building/ordering new Dual G5's that will be used as PS workstations. What is the best hardrive configuration for PS.

This has been a long time coming so I want to make sure I get it right. The last time I built workstations we were using ultra fast SCSI and RAID's for scratch disk. Speed is critical so suggestions on how to build the fastest machine are greatly appreciated.

The base machines will be as follows:

Dual G5 2.7 Ghz
8 GB Ram
2 250GB internal HD

Thanks for the help.

TZ
08-06-2005, 11:19 AM
Have you read through the FAQ Guide?
http://www.macgurus.com/forums/showthread.php?t=19792

The Photoshop Test will help after, but also, give you some ideas.
http://www.macgurus.com/forums/showthread.php?t=20218

The thread in this very forum, PS Test Results
http://www.macgurus.com/forums/showthread.php?t=19741

And comparison of two G5s vs Intel dual-core/MP systems
www.barefeats.com
and our own tests indicated 8-16GB of memory is the best way to go. Reliance on massively fast scratch disks is secondary with Tiger/CS2. But I would probably want SeriTek/1VE4 for backup and maybe scratch.

The only questions would be whether to use 10K Raptor and 300-500GB drives internally, and what, if any, to use for backup/archive and scratch.

I think your setup looks fine, though. ;)

FrozenTundra
08-06-2005, 02:40 PM
Hello

I have read the links the Guru guides are very helpful.

I am just nervous this is my only shot to build the new workstations and I feel less knowlegable then ever. Years ago I had moretime to spend keeping pace with the technology and was a contributer to this forum. That was in the day of the Dual 800mhz G4 machines.

It seems like a RAID for scratch is still the ticket. But what kind of RAID is best for a PS scratch. I would prefer to build everything internal if possible. Suggestions?

Is there any reason not to set a RAM drive as the prime scratch drive?

If I load the G5 with 8GB of RAM from Apple it seems like I can put 4 GB toward a RAM scratch and then set PS to use 70% of the remaining RAM. Then all I should need is a nice fast RAID as secondary scratch drives.

Is this possible as an internal setup I would like to keep the main hardive seperate for the OS and apps.

Thanks

TZ
08-07-2005, 09:06 AM
Hello. I have read the links the Guru guides are very helpful.

I am just nervous this is my only shot to build the new workstations and I feel less knowlegable then ever. Years ago I had more time to spend keeping pace with the technology and was a contributer to this forum. That was in the day of the Dual 800mhz G4 machines.

Things have changed, especially as regards CS2 and G5. So in some sense, our own Guides are out of date since CS2 came out.

It seems like a RAID for scratch is still the ticket. But what kind of RAID is best for a PS scratch. I would prefer to build everything internal if possible. Suggestions?

RAID is not the ticket. Building a super fast scratch is less important than ever. Load up on RAM instead.

Is there any reason not to set a RAM drive as the prime scratch drive?

If I load the G5 with 8GB of RAM from Apple it seems like I can put 4 GB toward a RAM scratch and then set PS to use 70% of the remaining RAM. Then all I should need is a nice fast RAID as secondary scratch drives.

Yes, you are doubling the work. Tiger and CS2 do all of that for you. Otherwise, you are trying to cache the cache and the OS does that automatically. Also, I would not pay/buy for Apple RAM. Our own PC3200 is premium RAM ~$120 per GB.

Is this possible as an internal setup I would like to keep the main hardive seperate for the OS and apps.

That is the whole idea of using Raptor for OS/Apps or even 75GB of DiamondMax 10 (300GB) as the boot drive.

Go back and look at Kaye's setup - yes, it used 4 and 8-drive scratch RAID using the best SCSI drives available, for minimum return in performance.

Don't endorse putting extra drives internally.

FrozenTundra
08-07-2005, 09:34 AM
Regarding loading up the RAM.

I had read that PS can only use 4GB of RAM with usage set to 70%. I believe I saw this in an Adobe post. Can CS2 use more RAM than CS?

Here is the quote from Adobe: http://www.adobe.com/support/techdocs/322829.html

"Photoshop can only use the first 2 GB of RAM on the computer. This limit is based on hardware and operating system limitations. The operating system uses some of this RAM, so the Photoshop Memory Usage preference displays only a maximum of 1.6 or 1.7 GB of total available RAM.

If you have 4 GB or more of RAM, set the Maximum Used By Photoshop in the Memory Usage section of the Memory & Image Cache preferences to 70%. This amount ensures that Photoshop uses as much of the first 2 GB of RAM as possible, while reserving enough RAM for other applications."

FrozenTundra
08-07-2005, 11:28 AM
[i]
Don't endorse putting extra drives internally.

Is this just because of heat?

kaye
08-07-2005, 11:48 AM
Pshop CS2 is definitely a different animal than CS. If you look at my last test results comparing TEST7 with 6.5GB RAM and TEST8 with 8.0GB RAM, there is a measurable difference, even tho in Preferences I have set Available RAM 3072MB and 70% = 2150MB for both tests. This is with the biggest test file size that Boots currently has available to create. With the standard test file sizes, there is essentially no difference.

A couple of other points. While a SCSI 4-drive RAID in a G5 PCI-X with a UL4D and either Cheetah X15.3 drives or Atlas 15K II drives is very fast as a work disk/scratch disk, more than 4 drives (and 2 UL4Ds) tho a bit faster with the biggest test file size, is not economical for the slight improvement gained IMO. Plus you must be careful what other PCI cards you have on the PCI-X 100MHz slots. A 33MHz or 66MHz card in combination with a 133/100MHz card in the 100MHz slots whether SCSI or SATA will be slowed by either of those slower cards. The bus goes to the lowest speed, a big OUCH!

So far, I have only used a second UL4D in the 100MHz slots. I will be adding a SeriTek/1VE4 which is 133/100MHz and therefore no bus slowdown. Whether the SeriTek/1VE4 with 4 Raptors will be slower in the 100MHz slot than the 133MHz slot I will have to test but I don't think so with just 4 drives. k

kaye
08-07-2005, 11:52 AM
Yes more heat and more stress on the power supply. Personally I would never do it internally in my G5. Much prefer external Burlys with their own power supply and fans to cool the drives. k