AMB Phenom or Intel i3?

  amateur geek 21:36 14 Sep 2010

Trying to choose a new pc. Dell insprion 570 with an AMD Phenom II x4 820 with 6 mb RAM and a 1 TB hard drive comes out £50 more expensive than an Inspiron 580 with Intel i3 540, 4 mb RAM and 1 TB hard drive; if the 580 is upped to 6 mb RAM they come out the same price. Is there any logical way to choose between them? I do lots of multi tasking, no gaming but photo editing.

  VOT Productions 21:42 14 Sep 2010

6 MB RAM???

Well, the AMD Phenom wins because of 4 cores and the Intel i3 is equal to Intel Core 2.

  amateur geek 22:11 14 Sep 2010

oh dear, never could sort out a gb from a mb. I'm a VERY amateur geek! Thanks.

  rsignals 22:28 14 Sep 2010

There's little point in installing > 4Gb of RAM unless you are using a 64-bit OS.

  john bunyan 22:47 14 Sep 2010

I have Photoshop CS5. I Use W7, with 64 bit but PS installs in both 32 and 64 bit (Good as TWAIN drivers for scanners don't work in 64 bit)I find 4 Gig RAM and on my older PC have a nVidia 7800GTX with only .5 gig memory plus 2Core (2x 2200) Intel. No problems so your spec even may be OTT for stills editing. Video may be another matter.The higher levels of RAM and and photo editing are fine as long as you actually scan in 32 bit mode.

  amateur geek 17:55 15 Sep 2010

Thanks. I don't see much point in sticking with 32 bit so am planning on a 64 bit machine. Almost anything will be a big improvement on my current machine (which is so old that it has only 512 mb RAM) - but there are so many choices to be made! I'd like it to be nice and logical that a 580 was better than a 570 and a 570 better than a 560, and so on. But no, it doesn't work that way, in fact if you go for 6 GB RAM and a 1TB hard disk a 560 with an intel 2 quad core Q8300s comes out even more expensive than either a 570 or 580.

Do I gather that 4 GB RAM will be ok for most purposes? That will save a penny or two, and maybe make the choice easier.

  john bunyan 18:27 15 Sep 2010

Quite right, I fully agree re 64 bit. All I am saying is that you will find that not all programmes actually run in 64 bit mode, some 32 bit programmes run well on a 64 bit machine. What I was pointing out is that if you are a keen photo editor and use scanners (I use a Canon MP640 amd a Canonscan 8800f) the TWAON function only works in the 32 bit version if Photoshop CS5 (no problem as the disc installs both 32 and 64 bit) For still photo editing I think 4Gig RAM is fine - your big HD will provide plenty of scratch disc reserve. You could always add RAM later. I am not a gamer, and they may well suggest more RAM.

  amateur geek 19:34 15 Sep 2010

Thanks - I'd taken it for granted that TWAIN would work! And yes, still photos only, not into gaming at all.

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