Return to Level1Techs.com

Need a Prebuilt System for Work

#1

Hello All,

I was hired as a digital marketing associate at a small to mid sized tech company but I took on the role of webmaster and junior web developer. For this role I have been using a 2015 Mac-book Pro with an i7 quad core processor (I can’t find which model but it clocks at 2.2-2.6 GHz on normal use) 16 GB of RAM, and a 256 GB SSD.

Our Website is powered by a heavily customized WordPress and I am constantly editing multiple pages of the website at once while Running a vagrant homestead VM to work as a development server. On top of this I often find myself Using Photoshop, Illustrator, to design, mock-up, and edit graphics. So it’s become clear that I do not have enough Ram and processing power to run these things concurrently and I am constantly experiencing slowdowns and random computer restarts.

Because this is a work environment I really can’t just build a computer, does anyone have a good recommendation for a reasonably priced workstation?

My Requirements
Budget: 1000-1200 USD
Processor: 6-8 cores SMT enabled
GPU: Needs to support 2 displays (2560 x 1080 and 1920 x 1080)
RAM: 24-32 GB (High Speed RAM isn’t a necessity this machine will not be gaming or doing heavy computational tasks)
Storage: 512 GB - 1024 GB or higher

I may be video editing in the future but that depends.

Thanks,

UPDATE
I just realized I have to travel back and forth for this job on a regular basis, the company is bi-coastal. So laptops are also on the table.

0 Likes

#2

you’re asking for a lot for that budget, and theres some conflicting things in your description.

You want 6-8 cores with SMT, so you probably want ryzen given your budget but there arent any 6-8 core ryzen laptops in your price range.

Are you really going to haul a desktop back and forth?

High speed ram is necessary for something like ryzen to function at full potential.

I’m not sure why you cant just build a computer, but if you want a prebuilt, you might as well look at what someone like @SoulFallen could to for you with AVADirect.

2 Likes

#3

I might be able to swing 1500 USD. I’m using a High-End MacBook from 2014 so I don’t know what their old budget restrictions are. My main problem is the computer is just not as good at multi-tasking as I need it to be. we have a spare XPS 13 from 2017 lying around as well so I figure if get a desktop I can just remote in when I’m visiting The other office.

0 Likes

#4

When it comes to pre-fab desktops your mileage is going to be “meh” as many companies prefer upselling, HP has a Pavilion Ryzen 7 model but they stupidly crippled it with 2400 memory as a way to upsell to their Omen series–if I recall somewhere there was a post claiming the motherboard could handle two 16GB sticks to replace the stock 2x8GB sticks but HP won’t support that end-user setup. Dell has a Ryzen 7 desktop which has been on sale at Amazon but you’ll have to add a 16GB stick yourself & upgrade the OS license to Win10 Pro (Home edition doesn’t provide Windows Update end-user control but I heard 1809 did add it)

There are 6-core i7 notebooks with GeForce 1060 or 16-series dGPU that can be found for under $1200 but the downside is they’re going to be “gaming” series so you might need to look for a model which doesn’t stick out with excessive gaming appearance(ex: Dell G-series is less gaming looking from the design side and if you use the RGB keyboard backlighting to something less distracting it’ll stay fairly low-profile).

1 Like

#5

I don’t see why you couldn’t just build a computer. Especially if it’s in a clean looking low-key case. You’re only going to get those specs for that price if you custom build.

0 Likes

#6

Warranty management and insurance are the big obstacles to building a custom rig. I’d love to build a work PC but I know for a fact that wouldn’t get approved

0 Likes

#7

Oh, they’re funding it?

0 Likes

#8

Honestly at this price it will be rough getiting those core in a laptop. A lot of people here are fans of the XPS15. $1500 will only get you 16gb of ram

The cheaper ones will be gaming laptops (not sure how you feel about that and if you want SMT if you want intel mitigation on aka no SMT)

If you go used you can score some good deals, but idk how you feel about that.

0 Likes

#9

Don’t forget a nice big monitor, colour accuracy may be important. Oops there goes your budget.

2 Likes

#10

Sounds like laptops are your only option? Unless they’re going to give you a rig per coast

Why not have them get you a newer mac pro?

0 Likes

#11

I was considering a new Mac Book Pro but the keyboard issue has given me reservations. My sister bought a mac book pro for college and she’s had to get the keyboard replaced twice on the 2018 membrane protected butterfly switch keyboard.

Another problem is that I would be the only person running Mac OS and the companies servers run Windows Server. when I get sent links from co workers for file location on company drives I have to go and manually find them and I can’t send links to my coworkers in return.

My Desired Setup would be to run a VM of Linux For web development and Windows for media editing, website content entry, and office productivity.

Right now I am forced to do so much locally because we have our dev server running VM’s for our software development projects but web development isn’t high up enough on the food chain to get dedicated resources.

0 Likes

#12

Yes, thankfully I am not purchasing this machine out of pocket, if I was I would have built a Ryzen 5 or 7 machine already with cheap ram and mid tier GPU in the most basic case I can pick up at microcenter.

0 Likes

#13

I have two monitors and one is decently color accurate. I’ve inherited a lot of older peripherals from our previous graphic designer.

0 Likes

#14

If I were you I would be lookingbat the Asus GL702ZC. Its has a 1700x, and I believe you can drop 2000 chips in it too, a 580 4gb, and can take like 128gigs of ram or sobething stupid.

That sounds like exactly what you need.

1 Like

#15

Does not compute (I guess there are 32gb dims now but would be wary of putting them in that box)

0 Likes

#16

Could hab been 64, but I leave op to find that out.

1 Like

#17

I have been looking into this, My issue is that accounting won’t green light a gaming machine. Period. The board runs b350 chipset so if you wanted to run more than 32 GB of ram it would probably work.

0 Likes

#18

Dell workstations like the Precision 5820’s aren’t a bad shout or an XPS 15.

1 Like

#19

Its largely not been considered a gaming machine. Most reviews call it a workstation, and thats what it is giwen that the cpu is better than the gpu, arguably.

If they want you doing art you can argue the specs of that machine are equal to one of the rually expensive macs. And its a laptop, not an imac.

Otherwise I’m gunna say system76 is a good lead on clevo workstations. Idk the model names by heart like some of the wackos in lounge tho.

2 Likes

#20

A nicely specced Dell Precision 5520 or 5530 can have a six core i7 and 32GB or 64GB. Plus a Quadro. Only problem is at that point it’s at or over 2k. Would be a very nice system, though.

0 Likes