Need to upgrade or replace trading computer!

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by andytk5, Jul 29, 2010.

  1. andytk5


    Currently using a Dell 8400 w/3.0Ghz pentium 4, 4gig ram 2 hard drives w/500g backup, 350w supply

    Have the PCI express card running 2 20" dells, and a PCI card running 2 17" dells.

    Systems works ok but with all 4 monitors full of charts off thinkorswim and daily webinar adn a few webpages open things get glitchy, also have this rundll32 crap popping up and everytime I open a program a box opens asking what program I want to use to open it. I know these are connected and I need to get the rundll32 file copied into my system folder (which Im working on).

    Question is should I continue to use this sytem and add more PCI cards and a larger power supply to go to 8 monitors or is using a basic computer like the HP Elite HPE-210F

    and adding PCI express cards to it to get to the 8 monitors since it already has the newer ram, quad core processor, huge ram etc...???
    Thanks guys!!
  2. Question:

    How do you plan to drive the future 8 monitors?

    4 x PCIe display cards, dual monitor each?


    2 x PCIe display cards, quad monitor each?

    When I shopped for a new PC about 6 months ago, one thing I found is that many of the new "generic" PCs (the one that you can find in an electronic store) only offer 1 available PCIe X16 slots. Some offers 2 slots: PCIe X16 and PCIe X1

    The on-line spec did not tell about the available slot on the HPE-210F. But I suspect only 1 PCIe X16 is available.

    While you may drive some monitors via the USB-VGA gadgets and I don't know if there is a limit on that configuration (e.g. not sure if you can drive 6 monitors via USB), it works better if the display cards are inserted in the motherboard bus. Faster.

    Just something to think about.
  3. andytk5


    Yeah I was wondering about using 2 quad monitor cards, I checked that HP I mentioned and I kinda figured (just like you said) once I had the guy open the case there is only one slot, so that one is out even though the other parts are pretty decent, no expandability. Also guy told me using PCI slots is counter productive on my old machine since the motherboard makes the PCI slots act as one sharing the memroy or something? Any how I would like to maybe build a computer (1st time for ground up for me) and see how much the parts add up to before looking at a Falcon or the like.

    Seems like the biggest thing is finding the right motherboard for this. WOuld like to use a quad core 2.8+ processor, and motherboard with expandability but this would prob be the meat of things next to the vid cards.
    Not really sure what I should be looking at in terms of FSB specs and matching that with RAM etc.. Once I nail down the proper board and processor and vid cards the rest seems easy.

    Thanks for the comment and help!
  4. Trying to run 8 monitors with your 8400 is marginal, but it wouldn't cost you much to try... the price of a couple of used dualhead PCI cards. You won't need a bigger PSU if you don't get high power video cards. Trying to run 8 monitors with the one in your link is also marginal, at best.

    If you want to run 8 monitors, you should get a computer with a proper workstation motherboard or a gamer board with 4, PCIEx16 slots.
  5. andytk5


    So I am roughly at $1,000 building my own machine case, powersupply (500watt), etc.. I need to get more info on the compatability of things I am selecting, like I said more for trading, multiple apps running, lots of windows and web sites, won't really be streaming any bloomberg or such on the comp since tv is in the office. Just a basic list for now.

    OS -

    CPU -

    MB -

    RAM - (2)

    Vid card - (4)

    Case -
  6. andytk5


    weird, I put a reply with all the parts up here but it isn't listed.. Came to about $1000+ then another $400+ for the extra 4 monitors from dell 20"s,
  7. It's not that PCI has anything to do with sharing memory... the real skinny is that is that all devices in the PCI bus share the bandwidth.... which in a newer machine is 133 MB/s (100 MB/s in older machine). Even with 8 monitors, that's actually plenty of bandwidth for trading.

    But PCI is being phased out. Some boards have already eliminated it. There was a time when many peripherals were designed to be connected to a PCI card. A good mobo in those days would have 1, AGP slot and 5-6 PCI slots. Now, most peripherals are being made to fit a PCIE slot.. especially x1. It has a bandwidth of 500 MB/s. PCI slots are included in boards made today to accommodate legacy devices, mostly.

    And of course, many peripherals now connect via USB.

    If you're going to get an Athlon CPU, you're looking at the right kind of mobo... 3-4 PCIEx16 slots and NO onboard video chip. However... that board doesn't include the new USB 3.0 nor SATA III controller. Here's one which does..

    And that video card choice... it has fans. Unnecessary heat and noise. Suggest getting a proper workstation video card without fans.. like the Nvidia Quadro NVS 295. Save some $$ and get them on eBayl

    ~$1,000 is also in the ballpark for everything except monitors.
  8. Check the reviews for your parts, they aren't that good. Personally I would go with Intel processor and Gigabyte MB (which somebody suggested).

  9. andytk5


    Ah, ok good info, like I said I'm pretty much a noob at the big stuff so your input is much needed. I'll have to look more closely, seems like a Mobo with 4 PCIx16 slots would be the jam, I'll check the links you posted...
  10. andytk5


    Been looking at and pricing one of the $600-700 systems but keeps telling me the motherboard I have selected doesn't support more than 2 vid cards, I selected the
    GigaByte GA-890FXA-UD5 and it says it has 4 PCIexpress gen 2 slots, and 2 PCIexpress X1, not sure of the layout of that card having an effect on the cooling of the cards when stacked in there. Seems like it may be better to go this route than me piecing it together?
    #10     Aug 1, 2010