I'm looking to replace my workhorse i7 2600K workstation, which is almost a decade old, with another workstation. The USB ports are becoming unreliable, and there's no enough space for expansion inside mostly because of the massive Noctua cooler blocking slots, otherwise it's ok. I'm looking for something very solid and reliable that is likely to last 6-10 years reliably, like my current machine has - though I had to swap out the odd faulty component.
I'm undecided on buy vs build. I've built all my past PCs with components I choose, but I'm not sure I can be bothered. If it's a lot cheaper, build, otherwise if I can find something suitable, buy. Plus I never do that well at cable routing, things like fan control, etc. I'll probably completely replace rather than reuse these components, but I'll keep current monitors, keyboard, mouse. Max $2500, but I would spend less rather than get slightly faster components.
I'm not in a hurry, I can wait until lockdown finishes. The current PC works ok.
Here's what I use it for, in about this order:
- General internet and email
- Work - nothing too intensive, Word, light software development, running four web browsers with many tabs open at a time in the AWS console
- Video and photo editing about once a month - my 2600K is plenty fast enough for this with no video card, I use Premier Elements which I'm not sure supports using video cards anyway
- Video transcoding - every couple of months I might do a batch, again 2600K is fast enough
- Absolutely NO gaming
- Physically holds and allows connection of at least two SATA SSDs and three spinning disks, plus room for an expansion card or two. That probably means mini tower or tower case.
- Single thread performance at least as good as the i7-2700K
- 16GB RAM is probably enough, but 32GB if it's not that much more expensive. considering ECC RAM for reliability,
- I'm leaning towards AMD Ryzen as they seem to be good performance and good value, but I have to buy a video card with them whereas Intel has something ok built in, so I'm not too bothered
- Plenty of USB ports built into the motherboard - absolute minimum six, ideally more
- I will reuse keyboard, mouse, monitors, and most of the spinning disks, but I would want an m.2 primary disk maybe 256GB (I have others SSDs and disks for data)
- Prefer fairly quiet. I have a "quiet" case right now with padding inside, not sureif it helps much, but it makes it more difficult to get components in
- I'm in no hurry, can do after lockdown finishes
- Any suggestions where I can buy something suitable, that's good solid quality? Nothing proprietary so I can replace parts that fail.
- AMD vs Intel for this use?
- If build is recommended, any suggestions for motherboard, video card, etc? Think midrange CPU, lower midrange video card if one is required