E31 Graphics Card Advice

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doherrick
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E31 Graphics Card Advice

#1 Post by doherrick » Mon Dec 10, 2012 5:07 pm

Hello:

I have been shopping around for a few months for a desktop computer.
I have found 2 pre-configured E31s at a reseller that are the same except for the graphics card.
Model 2555-47U has a Quadro 600 card and Model 2555-48U has a Quadro 2000 card. Both have the Xeon E3-1230V2 CPU.
The price difference is $300.

My usage will be for ripping CDs, A to D conversion (LPs to digital), raw photo processing (Canon’s free software; no Adobe), and maybe some video editing—files from a Canon DSLR.
Will the Q2000 benefit me in any way over the Q600 for these tasks?
Don’t mind spending the extra $300 if it gains me something.

I also looked at an M92p tower (Model 2992-A5U) with the i7-3770 CPU and Radeon 7450 graphics card.
It is about the same price as the E31 w/Q600, but has the HD4000 integrated graphics along with the Radeon 7450.
Would this be a better choice?

I have the perception that the E31 is "better" than the M92p because it is a certified workstation.
One bonus of the M92p is the 3-year on-site warranty, but that’s not as important as the CPU/graphics to me.

If it matters, I connect to an NEC LCD2190UXi (1600 x 1200) monitor and plan to purchase an NEC P241W (1900 x 1200). I use SpectraView calibration software.
Any thoughts?

Thanks
doherrick
X200T; X201T; T60p
Previous: 760ED, 390E, 390X, A31p, X220T (returned)

craigmontHunter
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Re: E31 Graphics Card Advice

#2 Post by craigmontHunter » Mon Dec 10, 2012 5:25 pm

From what you have posted, the extra $300 won't get you anything noticeable. The main draw of quadro cards is the reliability, stability and rendering performance, none of which I belive you will take full advantage of with your posted workload - the certification is more for high end software (autocad, adobe, solidworks...). Personally I would get the M92p, since the intel quicksync in the HD4000 will help with your video editing/any converting you do, and the onsite warranty will give piece of mind. One thing to note is that the quadros are not designed for gaming, and as a result will not perform as well as the radeon in most gaming situations.

I don't know exactly how the calibration works, but I don't imagine the video card would have that much of an effect on it (I'm thinking it just creates a colour profile for windows to load), and any of the videocards will drive either or both of your monitors (you may need adapters, but nothing too major).

thats my $0.02 for the workload you've been describing and the systems you have selected, which is fairly similar to what I do with my desktop (a M57p, core 2 quad Q6700, 8gb ram, geforce 460)
Elitebook 8440p, i5 520, 8gb, Samsung 840 SSD
Old/Not Working/Dead Laptops:
T61 7661CC2, 4gb, Windows 7 x64, 240gb intel SSD, 500gb Ultrabay drive
Toshiba Portege 7020ct
Thinkpad T41 23737FU
Dell Latitude LS

doherrick
Posts: 41
Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2007 12:42 pm
Location: Cary, NC

Re: E31 Graphics Card Advice

#3 Post by doherrick » Mon Dec 10, 2012 6:48 pm

Thanks craigmontHunter.

I am leaning that way (M92p).
Use some of the $300 for a small SSD boot drive. M92p also comes with 1TB HDD, E31 500MB
M92p has mSATA option, E31 does not.

There is also a stock configuration of the M92p (2992-E5U) that has W7 Pro pre-loaded through downgrade rights and includes W8 Pro recovery disks. Might go that route and dual boot.
I can always add a decent graphics card as long as it doesn't use more than about 75 watts.
The E31 and M92 have the same PS--280 watts--and my understanding is that it is near impossible to upgrade because of non-standard connectors. I'm not into hacking around the hardware; just want something I can plug in and turn on.

The M92p/M82p/E31 are nice boxes at good prices. IMHO, a lot better than the HP/Dell/etc boxes at Best Buy.
X200T; X201T; T60p
Previous: 760ED, 390E, 390X, A31p, X220T (returned)

craigmontHunter
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Re: E31 Graphics Card Advice

#4 Post by craigmontHunter » Mon Dec 10, 2012 7:13 pm

I don't know about the M92p (you will want to check), however my M57 has a standard psu, and I upgraded it last year to allow the bigger video card (but it did kind of wreck the acoustics - they're not terrible, but nowhere near as good as stock, which was dead quiet)

I'm very impressed by the lenovo boxes (the M55 sff my grandfather has, and my desktop) - both are quiet, well designed, sturdy systems - although to give Dell and HP their due, their buisness desktops are substantially better than their consumer desktops in my experience.
Elitebook 8440p, i5 520, 8gb, Samsung 840 SSD
Old/Not Working/Dead Laptops:
T61 7661CC2, 4gb, Windows 7 x64, 240gb intel SSD, 500gb Ultrabay drive
Toshiba Portege 7020ct
Thinkpad T41 23737FU
Dell Latitude LS

doherrick
Posts: 41
Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2007 12:42 pm
Location: Cary, NC

Re: E31 Graphics Card Advice

#5 Post by doherrick » Mon Dec 10, 2012 8:11 pm

There is a bit of discussion on the Lenovo Support Forum about the 280W PS.
Consensus seems to be if you need or think you will need a larger PS, go with the S30 ThinkCentre.
X200T; X201T; T60p
Previous: 760ED, 390E, 390X, A31p, X220T (returned)

craigmontHunter
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Re: E31 Graphics Card Advice

#6 Post by craigmontHunter » Mon Dec 10, 2012 9:30 pm

Ultimately it's up to you, however looking at lenovo docs, the M92 tower seems to have a normal ATX power supply, but the desktop/sff/tiny all use special power supplies. if you think you can live with the available power, I would still reccomend the M92 from what you've posted so far, however if you think you may need more, then I guess you will need to re-evaluate your options.
Elitebook 8440p, i5 520, 8gb, Samsung 840 SSD
Old/Not Working/Dead Laptops:
T61 7661CC2, 4gb, Windows 7 x64, 240gb intel SSD, 500gb Ultrabay drive
Toshiba Portege 7020ct
Thinkpad T41 23737FU
Dell Latitude LS

doherrick
Posts: 41
Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2007 12:42 pm
Location: Cary, NC

Re: E31 Graphics Card Advice

#7 Post by doherrick » Tue Dec 11, 2012 1:05 am

I'm fine with the 280W PS and Radeon 7450. Just looking at options for the future.
Lenovo changed the PS design when going from the E30/M91p to E31/M82/M92p
Uses a 14 pin connector. They list a 450W PS in the parts list for both systems, but apparently it is not available--PN 54Y8860. It is also not an option in CTO--special bid only whatever that means.

My gaming is XP Solitare--should do well with an i7-3770 :P
BTW: There are some You Tube videos showing that the Q2000 is not a bad gaming card.
X200T; X201T; T60p
Previous: 760ED, 390E, 390X, A31p, X220T (returned)

craigmontHunter
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Re: E31 Graphics Card Advice

#8 Post by craigmontHunter » Tue Dec 11, 2012 8:48 am

I'm not saying its bad, it is a very powerful card, however it has been optimized for OpenGl and rendering applications. This article by AnandTech shows how the quadros are optimized - the GTX 460 beats them at games, and they blow the GTX580 out of the water with the rendering.

In regards to the power supply, its good to know they use a special unit, however I had kind of hoped that the world had moved on past proprietary parts, especially with "professional" desktops.

EDIT: the radeon graphics card would perform more like the Geforce cards rather than the quadros, but both will handle solitare no problem :lol:
Elitebook 8440p, i5 520, 8gb, Samsung 840 SSD
Old/Not Working/Dead Laptops:
T61 7661CC2, 4gb, Windows 7 x64, 240gb intel SSD, 500gb Ultrabay drive
Toshiba Portege 7020ct
Thinkpad T41 23737FU
Dell Latitude LS

doherrick
Posts: 41
Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2007 12:42 pm
Location: Cary, NC

Re: E31 Graphics Card Advice

#9 Post by doherrick » Sat Dec 15, 2012 11:24 am

Thanks for your input.

I am going to let this purchase (and replacing my wife's X200t) go till after the holidays. Too much to do and I will be out of town for a week.

BTW, I took a look at the Lenovo K430 (31093ZU)
For about $250 -$275 more than the M92p (2992-A5U) you get:
-same i7-3770
-2TB HDD versus 1TB HDD
-16GB RAM versus 4GB RAM
-Radeon 7750 versus 7450 and support for dual video cards
-WiFi vs none (I would add this to the M92p)
-HDMI out versus none (don't care)
-Card Reader versus none (I will use this)
-USM hot swap bay (I would add this to the M92p)
-7.1 sound (don't care)
-Upgradeable PS (BIG plus)
-NO NORTEN pre-load
-I like the looks

Only downsides:
-W7 HP versus W7 Pro (can upgrade)
-1 YR versus 3 YR warranty (can upgrade)

All reviews I read are very positive. (One reviewer added a 700W PS). Anyone looking for a decent DT under $1000 should check it out.

BTW: it seems that Lenovo is updating everything in the IdeaCentre desktop line. There are no As, Bs, or Ks on the web site and very few in the outlet store. Lots around at on-line resellers and big box stores

Also considering building my own. Have built 30-40 PCs in the past for industrial applications.
Definitely will cost more but I will get what I want and have some fun. I am semi-retired and have the time and inclination.
X200T; X201T; T60p
Previous: 760ED, 390E, 390X, A31p, X220T (returned)

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