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Small Form Factor SFF buying advice

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Gunsmith, 13 May 2019.

  1. Gunsmith

    Gunsmith Maximum Win

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    alright, i'm on the hunt for a quiet small form factor to essentially be my PS machine and run my Cintiq. I'm seeing quite a few out there that look like they'd do the job but im concerned about the gpu's on them not having the grunt to essentially run hardware rendering in PS and at print resolutions. would be nice if it could run a second monitor as well but that's pipe dreaming.

    I'm not really looking for a bank breaker either so gaming stuff like the gigabyte brix is a little out of my budget.

    any suggestions?
     
  2. bawjaws

    bawjaws Multimodder

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    I believe our very own @Gareth Halfacree has just done a SFF megatest for PC Pro (I think), so that might be a good place to start...
     
  3. Gunsmith

    Gunsmith Maximum Win

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    subscription only.
     
  4. bawjaws

    bawjaws Multimodder

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    Perhaps you could ask Mr H for some pointers?
     
  5. Arboreal

    Arboreal Keeper of the Electric Currants

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    I think those little beasties may be too low powered and inflexible for heavy duty image editing and content creation. /2p
    Something compact in ITX may do the trick.
    The Asrock A300 barebones is meant to be pretty good with the Ryzen 2400G APU popped in it
    Puget Systems in the USA have a series of benchmarks and discussions on system requirements for Photoshop. e.g. This one
     
  6. Zoon

    Zoon Hunting Wabbits since the 80s

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  7. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Staff Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    I did!
    I mean, you can always pop along to the newsie or supermarket and 'browse the shelves' if you have to...
    For the job in question, and assuming size matters, I'd probably say the Intel glowy skull thing is the best bet - gets great CPU and GPU performance from the combined Intel/AMD processor, and ne'er mind dual-display 'cos the thing supports six simultaneous displays - but if the Brix is at the top end of the budget then the glowy skull is likely over the top.

    The big question, though, is how much of Photoshop is actually GPU-accelerated? I know there are only a handful of filters in GIMP that use OpenCL, with the rest running entirely on the CPU. It may be that a system with a more powerful CPU but weaker GPU will perform better for daily Photoshop use than vice-versa - and most USFF stuff tends to be CPU-focused (most don't even have the option of a dGPU, for starters.)
     
    Last edited: 14 May 2019
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  8. Arboreal

    Arboreal Keeper of the Electric Currants

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    I did, and was impressed by the amount in there, I thought it was ironic that there was a review a few pages later for a Lenovo SFF workstation PC done by someone else. Lacking in joined up thinking!
    Interesting point about GPU acceleration, it's been touted for ages, but I understood that not a lot of what PS does is assisted that way.
     
  9. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Staff Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    That is a bit daft - though, in the editor's defence, the group test was supposed to be for an issue or two earlier, but when he said "hey, can you source, photograph, and review at least ten-mini PCs in the next two weeks" I rather sensibly said "absolutely bleedin' not."
     
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