Good trading setup?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by jmcgraw, Apr 6, 2001.

  1. jmcgraw


    I'm planning to buy a new computer... Just had a couple of questions.

    What would you guys consider a good setup? I was thinking of getting a p4 1.3 gigahertz dell workstation with a 400mhz bus, 512mb ram, a scsi HD, matrox video, and 2 19 inch monitors, with windows 2000. On, this all came out to about 3500 bucks.

    I think I'll be fine with only 2 monitors, as I completely ignore all news, and only follow 5 stocks at a time. But other than that, is this system an overkill, or is it worth it? I could bring the price down a bit by getting a slower bus, and going with an ide hardrive... But dont want to regret it later.

    Or I could build one myself.... But alot of the time it comes out more expensive that way.

    Any opinions, and ideas would be appreciated.
  2. Neoh


    jimcgraw ; I think you have some good ideas
    there but I think for the kind of money you
    are willing to spend you may want to reconsider.
    The pentium 4 is not highly thought of, here is a site
    to read about it

    You may want to find out if a Xeon might be the better
    processor for your application . It can be bought
    with 512kb , 1 MB , or 2MB L2 cache . this may be of
    more importance . I don't know what the bus speeds
    of the P III Xeon's are .

    SCSI is fast and there are IDE drives that run fast
    also if you read about how drives work you may find a
    fast ,min 10 gig , IDE is enough .

    Windows 2000 is definatenly the way to go , XP has
    a bios locking feature that makes it not worth getting .

    I use a G400 but, with win 2000 you can use multiple
    PCI cards and an AGP or just multiple PCI's . I have
    heard that the G450 has driver issues with win 2000.
    Multi driver cards like the Appian are of superior
    design but may not be of importance for our application.
    Many people report good results with Matrox and multiple
    PCI cards.

    You may want to check out what servers are going for on
    Ebay these days . here's one I would have bid on but
    didn't need a new machine

    Basically , probably most people here are happy with
    a P-III 450 or better . Though after you read the first
    link with the thoughts about a P-4 you'll see there isn't
    much difference between the P II and the P III and both are
    thought to be better than the P-4 for what we use them for .

    As for building yourself , I've been there . Design one
    yourself if you wish and pay someone to do the work.
    Spend your time focusing on trading or taking care of the
    other areas of your life.

    If you need support go with DELL or Gateway if not consider
    your options ......just a few toughts...Neoh
  3. Neoh


    jmcgraw ; Just reread your post again , yes that is a way
    over kill system . The kind of system you mention and I was
    refering to are suitable for at least 2 streaming feeds of
    data to compare quotes aganist each other . If you have
    only 5 stocks running through your system 128k ram with
    a 400 mhz running on a 100 mhz bus will suffice ....Neoh
  4. Hoyler


    I am currently using a Dell Dimension 4100, 933 w/512, 2 19" M991 monitors from Dell. The monitors are great, also using a matrox G450 graphics card.... here's the rub, the g450 was purchased as an OEM from Dell, but, there's always a butt isn't there... the G450 comes only preinstalled on their workstations and is NOT support on any other configuration, suprise, suprise it took 2 calls to Canada to finally get some help from Matrox. Matrox feels since it is an OEM it should be supported by Dell whether or not it is used in a workstation. Window's ME was the original OS, I cant say any thing good about it.... opening up Tradestation Pro & Cyber X2 with a few charts always led to low system resources, always... I streamlined as much as possible in ME but to no avail... 2000 has had no such problems.
  5. jmcgraw



    Wow, that article on the p4 really was eye opening. Looks like AMD may be the way to go. Thanks for the advice.

    When I said I track 5 stocks, and use one feed... I ment for now. I may expand later. I defenitly dont need more than 2 monitors now, and could easily add those later. But I do want the system to last me for a while.

  6. Neoh


    jmcgraw ; I think the Pentium Xeon with
    a large L2 cache looks very interesting.
    A 2MB cache would maybe save ticks from being
    dropped on open and closes . Lots of happy
    P III owners around . Have no experience with AMD.
  7. Neoh


    jmcgraw ; You may want to post what programs
    you'll be running during the day. Like Tradestation ,
    Cybercorp, chat window , spread sheet , etc ..
    This would give people better idea of your resource
  8. mindgame


    Dangs... and i'm running a Celeron 500MHz, 128 Ram, G450 matrox card dualhead, ATI PCI graphics card (total of 3 monitors), esignal, omnitrader2000 RT, cybercorp X2, all on this cheap but realiable computer.. P4 looks like a overkill, but hey...

    BUY IT!!! help INTC clearout their inventory and help boost the 3rd quarter earnings soo we may see another bubble burst in 2003. :)

  9. jmcgraw



    For starters, I'll be running E-Signal, have 2 spread sheets open (one small, one kinda big), IB's traderworkstation (installed, not java), Metastock, and explorer. And possibly a wildcard or 2.

    I'd like a system that could run all that smooth, with ease. And still have room for more. And I want to be able to open apps fast, so I want a fast HD.

    So, I know I want the scsi drive, win2000, 512megs ram, and the 2 monitors. But I'm not 100% sure what to choose for the CPU and bus. Although, after reading that article I've pretty much ruled out the p4.

  10. jmcgraw


    Thanks again for the help so far...

    Now that I think about it, I may choose 256megs ram instead of 512. But I have a question... What kind of ram should I choose?

    I used to know alot more about hardware 5 years ago, but everything has changed and I didnt keep up. Is the faster memory worth it for the kind of apps a trader runs? For example on the dell config screen, they have "256mb pc600 rdram 1 rimm", and "256mb pc700 rdram, 1 rimm" for the same price... Then they have "256mb pc800 ecc rdram 1 rimm" for 100 bucks more. Is it worth the hundred bucks, or would I not even notice the difference?

    This is what I'm considering now...

    pIII 866mhz
    256mb ram
    matrox g450 video
    18gb ultra 160/m (10,000rpm) Hard Drive
    2- 19" Ultrascan p991 monitors

    All for almost exactly 3,000. Is it still an overkill?
    #10     Apr 6, 2001