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Building a PC for Discretionary/Automated Trading and Strategy Development
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Building a PC for Discretionary/Automated Trading and Strategy Development

  #1 (permalink)
Just starting out...
Red Hook, NY
 
Futures Experience: Beginner
Platform: Not sure yet
 
Posts: 20 since Sep 2010
Thanks: 27 given, 3 received

Building a PC for Discretionary/Automated Trading and Strategy Development

Approximate Purchase Date: Next week or so
Budget Range: $1200-$1800
System Usage from Most to Least Important: Stock Trading, Streaming videos, Surfing web
Parts Not Required: (e.g.: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS): OS
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: no loyalty, using Newegg to find components
Country of Origin: USA
Parts Preferences: AMD chip for value
Overclocking: Maybe some very modest OCing if the configuration lends itself to it.
SLI or Crossfire: No, but maybe 2 graphics cards
Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080
Additional Comments: Needs to be stable and fast. I'm not sure if I should go with 4 cores or 6.

Case and PSU: Antec EarthWatts EA750 750W, Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX - $125
Motherboard: ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3 AM3 AMD 880G - $120
CPU: AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition - $266
Video Card: PowerColor AX5770 1GBD5-5D Radeon HD 5770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 CrossFireX Support Eyefinity 5 - $220
Memory (4): Kingston 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) $316
Hard Drive (2): Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s $180
Monitor (3) Acer G235HAbd 23'' WideScreen LCD monitor $480

Some alternatives being considered:

Using M4A88TD-M as a motherboard to save $15.
Starting with 8GB of RAM to save about $150
Foregoing the 5 monitor video card and putting a $45 Radeon 5450 in there, which should allow me to use 4 monitors (2 through on-board graphics and 2 through the video card).
Downgrading to a X4 processor to save $80 or so.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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  #2 (permalink)
Trading Apprentice
San Francisco, California
 
Futures Experience: Advanced
Platform: NT, TS
Broker/Data: MBT
Favorite Futures: ES, EC, GC, CL
 
Posts: 28 since Mar 2010
Thanks: 1 given, 10 received


nlhaines View Post
Approximate Purchase Date: Next week or so
Budget Range: $1200-$1800
System Usage from Most to Least Important: Stock Trading, Streaming videos, Surfing web
Parts Not Required: (e.g.: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS): OS
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: no loyalty, using Newegg to find components
Country of Origin: USA
Parts Preferences: AMD chip for value
Overclocking: Maybe some very modest OCing if the configuration lends itself to it.
SLI or Crossfire: No, but maybe 2 graphics cards
Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080
Additional Comments: Needs to be stable and fast. I'm not sure if I should go with 4 cores or 6.

Case and PSU: Antec EarthWatts EA750 750W, Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX - $125
Motherboard: ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3 AM3 AMD 880G - $120
CPU: AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition - $266
Video Card: PowerColor AX5770 1GBD5-5D Radeon HD 5770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 CrossFireX Support Eyefinity 5 - $220
Memory (4): Kingston 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) $316
Hard Drive (2): Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s $180
Monitor (3) Acer G235HAbd 23'' WideScreen LCD monitor $480

Some alternatives being considered:

Using M4A88TD-M as a motherboard to save $15.
Starting with 8GB of RAM to save about $150
Foregoing the 5 monitor video card and putting a $45 Radeon 5450 in there, which should allow me to use 4 monitors (2 through on-board graphics and 2 through the video card).
Downgrading to a X4 processor to save $80 or so.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Suggestions:
1. skip AMD, get Intel i5/i7 instead
2. get a UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply)

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  #3 (permalink)
Site Administrator
Manta, Ecuador
 
Futures Experience: Advanced
Platform: My own custom solution
Favorite Futures: E-mini ES S&P 500
 
Big Mike's Avatar
 
Posts: 46,238 since Jun 2009
Thanks: 29,350 given, 83,218 received


Personally I would always use discrete video and not onboard, but that is just me. Maybe onboard has come a long way now with AMD.

I would put two cheap PCIe video cards in there and save over $100 on the video card.

I see your doing two drives, so assuming raid 1. If not, you should.

Personally, I would opt for 8GB instead of 12GB, plus a cheaper mainboard w/o on-board video, and the two cheap radeon's instead of a fancy card, all which should be enough savings to buy a 4th monitor.

I have four Acer 24" monitors now and I will not buy Acer again. But I think you did good making sure it is 1920x1080 or 1200, best for charts this way.

I also agree that a UPS is a must, depending on where in the country you live and how your electricity is, storms, etc. Personally I have four or five CyberPower 1500's in my house.

Mike

Due to time constraints, please do not PM me if your question can be resolved or answered on the forum.

Need help?
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4) Accept responsibility for your actions. Stop looking elsewhere to explain away poor performance.
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6)
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  #4 (permalink)
Elite Member
new york
 
Futures Experience: Beginner
Platform: SC, NT
Favorite Futures: CL, GC
 
Posts: 213 since Sep 2009
Thanks: 99 given, 113 received

I am still using the q6600 I got 3 years ago. I have dual 24" monitor, but only use 1 monitor. I can only concentrate on 1 screen. If I have to buy monitor again I would just get a 30".



Sent from my PC36100 using Tapatalk

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  #5 (permalink)
Elite Member
Toronto, Ontario
 
Futures Experience: Advanced
Platform: NinjaTrader, Multicharts
Broker/Data: IB, IQfeed
Favorite Futures: ES, CL
 
Snoop's Avatar
 
Posts: 203 since Oct 2009
Thanks: 135 given, 161 received

I'm still using the Phenom II X4 965 BE and I haven't even overclocked. It still more than meets my needs and it is my main workhorse.
You may want to save the $80 as the benchmarks don't suggest much improvement with X6 Bench - CPU - AnandTech :: Your Source for Hardware Analysis and News
Don't skimp on the video cards - onboard is insufficient especially if you are powering multiple monitors
The HD5770 you listed is crossfire - not needed. A much better choice is nvidia quadro nvs 295.
Great performance for charting apps. 2 cards will display 4 monitors and cost $240

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  #6 (permalink)
Trading Apprentice
Port St Lucie, FL
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: Tradestation, MultiCharts
Broker/Data: TradeStation/Open e-cry
Favorite Futures: ES
 
Ranger's Avatar
 
Posts: 46 since Jan 2010
Thanks: 9 given, 43 received

THIS IS NOT AN ENDORSEMENT but an ALTERNATIVE!!!!

::: CyberPower :::

I like this site because they walk you through configuration of your complete system. Since it's a gaming site, they have some high powered equipment with good descriptions; they build it for you. You can select multiple monitors; cards; and just about anything from MB to drives. If you feel like browsing, check them.

For sure go with the I7.

RANGER



nlhaines View Post
Approximate Purchase Date: Next week or so
Budget Range: $1200-$1800
System Usage from Most to Least Important: Stock Trading, Streaming videos, Surfing web
Parts Not Required: (e.g.: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS): OS
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: no loyalty, using Newegg to find components
Country of Origin: USA
Parts Preferences: AMD chip for value
Overclocking: Maybe some very modest OCing if the configuration lends itself to it.
SLI or Crossfire: No, but maybe 2 graphics cards
Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080
Additional Comments: Needs to be stable and fast. I'm not sure if I should go with 4 cores or 6.

Case and PSU: Antec EarthWatts EA750 750W, Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX - $125
Motherboard: ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3 AM3 AMD 880G - $120
CPU: AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition - $266
Video Card: PowerColor AX5770 1GBD5-5D Radeon HD 5770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 CrossFireX Support Eyefinity 5 - $220
Memory (4): Kingston 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) $316
Hard Drive (2): Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s $180
Monitor (3) Acer G235HAbd 23'' WideScreen LCD monitor $480

Some alternatives being considered:

Using M4A88TD-M as a motherboard to save $15.
Starting with 8GB of RAM to save about $150
Foregoing the 5 monitor video card and putting a $45 Radeon 5450 in there, which should allow me to use 4 monitors (2 through on-board graphics and 2 through the video card).
Downgrading to a X4 processor to save $80 or so.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.


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  #7 (permalink)
Just starting out...
Red Hook, NY
 
Futures Experience: Beginner
Platform: Not sure yet
 
Posts: 20 since Sep 2010
Thanks: 27 given, 3 received

I'm definitely going to spring for a UPS, I just didn't list it here because I think of it as something separate.

Chip:
Why go with the i7? That's going to end up costing me a lot more. AMD has always served me well and there fastest chips seem to be plenty fast for what I want to do. I was actually thinking an AMD 970 BE would serve me fine.

HDs:
Some people have been telling me to get a SSD for the OS and main apps. Does anyone here recommend this?
If I do Raid 1 I'd probably get a couple 2TB drives. If I use this almost exclusively for stock work is 1TB sufficient?

Video Cards:
The card I listed can drive 5 monitors. Its about $100 more than buying a couple of cheap cards, and it would still drive more monitors. Over at TomsHardware they told me to get one cheap card and use the onboard video in conjunction with it. This would save me a lot, and I think it would work, but if people here say onboard is not sufficient for simple charting then I would rather just get the $220 five monitor card and be set for a while.

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  #8 (permalink)
Elite Member
arizona
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: rolling my own
Favorite Futures: ES,CL,GC,6E
 
GoldStandard's Avatar
 
Posts: 211 since Oct 2009
Thanks: 326 given, 188 received

I just bought a cyberpower pc

I just bought a cyberpower pc with an AMD 6 core processor for around $1200 and I'm pretty happy with it. A couple things I learned:

Even if your AMD video card has 3 output ports, Eyefinity only works to support 3 monitors with one card if one (maybe 2?) of your monitors is a display port compatible monitor. These monitors are much more expensive than other monitors, so you will have to spend quite a bit more on monitors to get that extra display going this way. It might be cheaper to just buy a 3rd video card if you want 5 monitors.

If you get Cyberpower's liquid cooling option, the cooler takes up quite a bit of room and you may not be able to fit additional case fans on the side of the case. Also with a Coolermaster 690 case only one fan can be placed in the top of part the case, not two. They don't mention this in the configurator, so instead of installing my extra fans, they just threw them loose in the box for me to try to install, lol. Still the case is quite nice and stays cool so I've decided to forgive them. Not sure about Antec cases but you might want to double check that if you're planning to add more fans.

I opted for a 64 GB SSD for my main drive and I think it was worth it. The pc boots up very quickly and applications open super fast. For storage I got the cheapest 1tb HDD they had.

Cyberpower tech support was quite good when I called them for help with the onboard realtek audio manager. The guy I talked to knew his stuff and didn't waste my time running me through an irrelevant script or checklist.

I only got 4 gb of ram to start with and haven't needed more yet. I plan to add another 4gb when I need it and by then the price of ram should be even lower.

Its hard to say if I really needed to get 6 cores, but it wasn't much more cost than the 4 core versions and I do sometimes see all 6 cores getting utilized, even on apps that are single threaded. Not sure how that can be but its nice to know there are nearly always extra cores standing by. Also the extra cores will get used if I do backtesting or optimization.

I would buy from Cyberpower again despite the fan thing.

I wouldn't overclock a trading pc - the extra speed would hardly be noticeable and if you ever have instability you'll always wonder if it was because you overclocked it.

For your UPS, make sure and get a model that has AVR (automatic voltage regulation) . This protects against voltage fluctuations which you may be getting even if your local elecricity is reliable and can make a big difference in stability.

p.s. - I'm pretty sure that adding a video card disables your onboard graphics, so you'll need to get 2 graphics cards to run 4 monitors, or that high-end card you mentioned. This might have changed but this is how it has been on other PCs I've built or upgraded in the past.


Last edited by GoldStandard; October 16th, 2010 at 06:14 PM.
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  #9 (permalink)
Just starting out...
Red Hook, NY
 
Futures Experience: Beginner
Platform: Not sure yet
 
Posts: 20 since Sep 2010
Thanks: 27 given, 3 received

I think I would just need this adapter to run more than 2 monitors (non-displayport) off that Eyefinity card.

Because the motherboard I'm looking at has something called "surround view" it will allow its on-board graphics to work in conjunction with an ATI card, so with this setup I could run 4 monitors right off the bat, and I could add up to three more using the adapter I linked above. I doubt I'd need more than 7 monitors, so I like the expandability I'd get with that setup, but I just want 3 monitors to start and I doubt I will ever need more than 6 so I think I will get a Radeon 5450 instead. That will save me $180 and will allow me to run 4 monitors, with an option to add a card and run 6 later.

It looks like I will spend $100-240 on a SSD for the OS and whichever trading platform I decide to go with. How big do the databases get for these programs? Multicharts says 3GB, so I'm thinking I should allot 10 or so GB on the SSD for trading apps.

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  #10 (permalink)
Site Administrator
Manta, Ecuador
 
Futures Experience: Advanced
Platform: My own custom solution
Favorite Futures: E-mini ES S&P 500
 
Big Mike's Avatar
 
Posts: 46,238 since Jun 2009
Thanks: 29,350 given, 83,218 received



nlhaines View Post
I'm definitely going to spring for a UPS, I just didn't list it here because I think of it as something separate.

Chip:
Why go with the i7? That's going to end up costing me a lot more. AMD has always served me well and there fastest chips seem to be plenty fast for what I want to do. I was actually thinking an AMD 970 BE would serve me fine.

HDs:
Some people have been telling me to get a SSD for the OS and main apps. Does anyone here recommend this?
If I do Raid 1 I'd probably get a couple 2TB drives. If I use this almost exclusively for stock work is 1TB sufficient?

Personal choice on AMD vs Intel. Do your homework on benchmarks and buy the fastest chip you can afford, imo.

I've used SSD's. I am not a typical user, mine lost performance very quickly. Newer drives (mine were 2-3 years ago) are much better, but you need to opt for the latest technology. Unless you are just a geek and want the best, there is no need for SSD in a trading machine. I use 4x750GB in a RAID 10 behind a 3Ware 9690 card. It's overkill, but it's fun. I would say opt for two 1TB drives in a RAID 1 and call it a day. You don't need more than 30-50GB most likely for trading. Save the $50 bucks over the 2TB drives, spend it on CPU.

Mike

Due to time constraints, please do not PM me if your question can be resolved or answered on the forum.

Need help?
1) Stop changing things. No new indicators, charts, or methods. Be consistent with what is in front of you first.
2) Start a journal and post to it daily with the trades you made to show your strengths and weaknesses.
3) Set goals for yourself to reach daily. Make them about how you trade, not how much money you make.
4) Accept responsibility for your actions. Stop looking elsewhere to explain away poor performance.
5) Where to start as a trader? Watch this webinar and read this thread for hundreds of questions and answers.
6)
Help using the forum? Watch this video to learn general tips on using the site.

If you want
to support our community, become an Elite Member.

Reply With Quote

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