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Video card recommendation for a non-gaming audio workstation

Discussion in 'Video Cards & Monitors' started by Katunka89, Aug 24, 2019.

  1. Katunka89

    Katunka89 Member

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    Hi, I've built PCs before but I'm a bit out of the loop. I'm thinking about building a workstation for audio production (using Ableton).

    Most likely it will be an Intel system as I need Thunderbolt for my Audio interface; or else I might look into the new X570 AMD motherboards with Thunderbolt once they're available.

    At the moment I have a 1920x1080 monitor which serves me fine, but I might eventually get a display with a higer resolution.

    Would one of the Intel CPUs with an onboard GPU be enough for my needs? The only thing I will use this system for is Audio production, I won't ever game on it.

    If the onboard GPU isn't likely to be enough, am I best off going for something like a GTX1060? or is there a better/more cost effective choice?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. demiurge3141

    demiurge3141 Member

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    Any integrated GPU would be fine.
     
  3. Boneman

    Boneman Member

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    Get a dedicated mid-range GPU. The integrated GPU may take away working ram and/or CPU processing, also depending on how many plugins you are opening/closing at once, some fancy GUIs might slow down your workflow.
     
  4. macktheknife

    macktheknife Member

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    I'd just a 4GB 1050TI for $200, use it over HDMI and call it a day.
     
  5. nope

    nope Member

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    rx560 are like 100 used get that
     
  6. dr_deathy

    dr_deathy Member

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  7. Ratzz

    Ratzz Member

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    I know little about audio production but I would have thought it would be far be more likely to need CPU grunt than anything GPU related. Any IGP could handle whatever resolution monitor you want to connect to it, provided you aren't looking for game style FPS, which I would assume you aren't.

    Hence a multi core CPU with onboard graphics would do the job nicely, provided my assumptions are correct. Apart from the desire for Thunderbolt, that would lead you to Intel anyway, as only low end AMD CPU's provide IGP.

    If that's the case, then a basic GPU just for display would do, like the GT-710.

    Does audio, even high end audio, production even require much CPU grunt? Googling the minimum system requirements for Ableton, all it asks for is a multi core processor? It seems to me that a low end Intel CPU, with IGP graphics, on a board with Thunderbolt, is all you need?

    Perhaps, assuming you can find a Thunderbolt AMD board, you could even consider a basic low end AM4. Thunderbolt is the main thing you are looking for in your desired rig in the end, that should be the defining feature I guess.

    Another possibility is adding a PCIE Thunderbolt card to whatever machine you feel suitable, a quick google shows multiple possibilities under $100.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2019
  8. 2_stroke

    2_stroke Member

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    Last edited: Aug 25, 2019
  9. OP
    OP
    Katunka89

    Katunka89 Member

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    Thanks everyone for the detailed replies, it's really helpful.
    Regarding CPU grunt - the more the better. I have a quad core i7 from a few generations ago which I easily max out once you have a few tracks of audio with multiple effects processes in place, MIDI being sent to external instruments and recording multiple channels at once, etc.
     
  10. Azzan

    Azzan Member

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    Not 100% sure about audio production but you'll want dedicated GPU for video editing.
    https://forums.overclockers.com.au/...for-better-video-editing-performance.1266705/

    My Results
    20min 1080p .mkv to .mp4 (Shotcut)
    6:51 = i7 8809G with RX Vega M GH
    4:36 = i9 9900K with Intel UHD 630
    4:26 = i9 9900K with 6GB GTX1060

    20min 1080p .mp4 render (DaVinci)
    13:17 = i7 8809G with RX Vega M GH
    17:05 = i9 9900K with Intel UHD 630
    05:13 = i9 9900K with 6GB GTX1060

    Since then I've upgraded to GTX1070Ti(supposed to be ~62% faster than GTX1060) but I haven't noticed any performance increase over GTX1060.
    So I think used 6GB GTX1060(should be able to get one for ~$200) should be fine for you.
     
  11. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    If part of your audio work is any sort of matching to video (audio editing for TV/film, audio syncing to video footage, etc) a GPU with hardware H.264/H.265 can help.

    If you never ever touch video and are 100% audio, then don't worry about it. Spend your dollars on some nice IO and monitors instead.

    (Citation: I spent the last 7 years speccing creative workstations, including commercial DAWs for music/radio/TV/film/broadcast).
     

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