Why I Designed It How I Did: DaVinci Resolve Studio Workstation

Why I Designed It How I Did: DaVinci Resolve Studio Workstation

Designing the right system for the current scenario is a core element of our mantra at Top Flight Computers. If you don't get the right parts, it doesn't matter how much you spend on your computer...you'll be stuck with expensive hardware that doesn't work well with your situation.


DaVinci Resolve Studio Workstation Overview

Regardless of the content you work with, this system gives you fantastic overall performance in DaVinci Resolve Studio.

In fact, while this system only supports a single CPU, due to the incredibly high core counts currently available it will typically be faster than a more expensive dual Xeon workstation.

Additionally, if you encounter a significant amount of RED RAW footage in your workflow, it might be better to get a system custom-built for that type of content. Please contact us if this sounds like you.

DaVinci Resolve Studio Workstation Overview

System Design

This system can be configured with up to 18 CPU cores, is designed with 64GB of DDR4 RAM, giving the editor plenty of room to open large files and timelines.

If your work benefits from having four GPUs, please contact us and we can quote you a configuration capable of handling four video cards.

This DaVinci Resolve Studio Workstation performs well in applications optimized for highly multithreaded CPUs, with very high GPU rendering capabilities.

Let’s Do It!


CPU

Intel i9-7920X 12-Core Processor (afl)

We chose the i9-7920X for its high single-core performance, high multithreaded performance, and support for 128GB of memory.

Intel CPUs continue to see slightly better performance in DaVinci Resolve standard workloads, with the edge going to AMD Threadripper when working with RED RAW footage.

Intel i9-7920X 12-Core Processor

System Change: If you come across a need for more cores, you can easily upgrade to a more powerful i9 with no need to change the system otherwise. Changing to a Threadripper-based system would require a new motherboard and new CPU cooler.

Please contact us if you have any questions about a system design.


CPU Cooler

Phanteks PH-TC14PE Black Dual-140mm CPU Cooler

Phanteks PH-TC14PE Black Dual-140mm CPU Cooler (afl)

To ensure that the CPU remains cool under load, we've selected a very good aftermarket air cooler. While water cooling does cool better than air does, a big air cooler will do quite well when leaving the CPU at stock settings.

Air coolers are also more reliable, as they don't have a pump that can fail. If the fan on this air cooler fails, the system has enough internal cooling to allow you to quickly order a new fan, and finish your work.

That being said, higher-end closed-loop liquid coolers do come with very long manufacturer warranties (upwards of 7 years), so the failure rate is extremely low.

System Change: If you are unsure if your cooling idea will work with this case, please contact us for further review and assistance.


Motherboard

EVGA X299 FTW K Motherboard (afl)

Because this system requires a high degree of reliability, we chose a high quality motherboard from EVGA.

This motherboard has excellent power delivery, a simple visual design, plenty of PCI 3.0 slots, support for multiple M2 NVME drives, and up to 128GB of memory.

Let’s Do It!

EVGA X299 FTW K Motherboard

System Change: Please contact us if you have a question about a potential system upgrade being compatible with your motherboard.


Memory

Corsair Vengeance LPX 4x16GB DDR4-2666 Memory

Corsair Vengeance LPX 4x16GB DDR4-2666 Memory (afl)

We went with 64GB of Vengeance LPX memory due to the extremely high quality of the internal chips.

This setup will give the user plenty of room for open applications.

As Skylake X is a quad-channel platform, the system is most stable by using 4 DIMMs of DDR4-2666.

System Change: If you come across a need for more memory, you can easily add in more sticks, with no need to change the system otherwise. The motherboard selected supports a maximum of 128GB of memory, in an 8x16GB array.

Contact us if you have any other design questions or changes.


Samsung 860 EVO 500GB SSD
Samsung 970 EVO 1TB SSD
Western Digital Red 4TB HDD

The main storage SATA SSD, project/caching NVME SSD, and archival HDD were chosen for their high capacity, relatively low cost, and high reliability.

System Change: If you come across a need for more storage, you can easily upgrade to a bigger SSD or HDD, with no need to change the system otherwise.

Contact us if you have any other design questions or changes.


Video Card

Zotac RTX 2080 8GB (blower)

2x Zotac RTX 2080 8GB (blower) (afl)

The video cards were chosen for their memory capacity, CUDA cores, RT cores, and Tensor cores.

These video cards use a unique cooling solution that exhausts heat directly out the back of the PC, preventing heat from building up inside the PC.

To ensure the blower-style cooler has enough air, we've incorporated 2 additional fans to blow directly onto the GPUs.

Operations in DaVinci Resolve do work quite well with dedicated video cards, though we’ve seen diminishing returns past 3 GPUs.

Let’s Do It!

System Change: If you come across a need for more graphical horsepower, you can easily upgrade your video card with no need to change the system otherwise.

Contact us if you have any other design questions or changes.


Case

Phanteks Enthoo Pro Full-Tower Case (afl)

The case was chosen for its high build quality, room for several high-end video cards, and incredible amount of cooling potential.

Phanteks Enthoo Pro Full-Tower Case

System Change: Reasons for changing the case can be very hard to pin point. If you have a question about the compatibility of the case selected with an upgrade, please contact us.


Fans

Phanteks PH-F120MP Fan

2x Phanteks PH-F120MP Fans/4x Phanteks PH-F140MP Fans (afl)

We have selected a set of high-quality pressure-optimized fans to ensure sufficient airflow in the case to keep the system stable under heavy load.

System Change: Reasons for changing the fans can be very hard to pin point.

If you have a question about the compatibility of the fans selected with an upgrade, please contact us.


Power Supply

EVGA SuperNOVA P2 1200 Fully-Modular Power Supply (afl)

The power supply was chosen for its high build quality, ample power capacity, and high thermal efficiency.

Upgrading the wattage will potentially make the fan run slower, creating less noise overall. A higher wattage PSU than necessary will also prolong the life of the unit, as it isn't being operated near peak load.

Let’s Do It!

EVGA SuperNOVA P2 1200 Fully-Modular Power Supply

System Change: If you decide to upgrade any single major draw of power, you do not need to change the power supply. If you change multiple draws of power, you may need to upgrade the wattage on the power supply.

Contact us if you have any other design questions or changes.


About Top Flight Computers

 
About Top Flight Computers
 

Top Flight Computers designs high-performance custom-built computers. We specialize in workstations, gaming computers, water cooling, and network storage solutions. We are based in Cary, North Carolina, and we ship across the USA. Check out our previous builds and our page on Facebook.

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