New build for 4K cameras. i9-9900K?

Discussion in 'Blue Iris' started by Jan Werbinski, May 15, 2019.

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  1. Jan Werbinski

    Jan Werbinski n3wb

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    I'm thinking about new build PC for BI and some light office work but maybe later it'll be dedicated for BI only. Currently I use only few cameras and testing with QVR Pro on Qnap. But I don't like this software.

    Planning 8-12 4Mpx and 4K cameras with total 40-80Mpx and 15fps rate is 600-1200MP/s. I expect some time after I play with this setup I'll set fps for most of cameras much lower and save a lot of bandwidth. All cameras I have already are H.265+ capable and I plan to buy only H.265+.

    CPU
    i9-9900 is fastest CPU with reasonable price and quite futureproof. Best whole PC price to passmark ratio if I want fast machine. Im not sure is it wise to go with top CPU but cost of buying lower CPU and losing money in resale then buying better CPU seems to me as waste of time and not saving any significant money. In the past I never upgraded CPU in my PC's.

    RAM
    2x8GB DDR4-2666 should be enough. Motherboard will have 4 slots just in case.

    System disc
    SSD 500GB Samsung 860 Evo which I already have or 500GB Samsung 870 NVMe for a little more price. Should I use NVMe? Any visible increase of speed during playing recordings? What about size? 500GB too much or OK?

    Storage discs
    3-5 3TB HGST enterprise HDDs in RAID5. It's cheapest price for TB. Not sure how many disc to add at the begining and is it possible to add another disc to RAID5 in Windows 10? I have disc already.

    Motherboard
    I don't know what to choose? Maybe MSI MAG Z390 for about 150euro or something more expensive like ASUS Aorus? But these are probably gaming motherboards and no need for all the fancy features. Motherboard must be RAID5 capable and have gigabit LAN and Z390 chipset.

    What do you think?

    PS I have i5-4570 HP Elitedesk which I can use for BI for a while if it's possible to just move BI and recordings from one computer to the other saving hassle with configuration and without losing data. It would be wise to use it as long as possible.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2019
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  2. bp2008

    bp2008 Staff Member

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    The main reason to buy Intel is to use Quick Sync for hardware acceleration to make the system run on less power. You can only use Quick Sync for H.264 video at this time. Not for H.265. It was supposed to be working for H.265 for a year or two now, but it simply doesn't. Also, codec extensions like "smart codec", "SVC", "H.264+", "H.265+" may have compatibility issues with Blue Iris and cause video corruption or outright streaming failure.

    Although I have absolutely no data from Blue Iris to back this up, I'd suggest DDR4-3000 or -3200 as a better price/performance balance. Blue Iris does do a lot of memory access while decoding, encoding, and rendering such huge amounts of video.

    i9-9900(K) is a good choice for a 1200+ MP/s load. If you limit yourself to 1000 MP/s or less, then i7-9700(K) or i7-6700(K) should be fine. (K editions not strictly necessary, but they DO offer better performance)

    NVMe is faster than SATA, no doubt there, but the real-world effect is not even close to what you see in benchmarks, and there'd likely be no measurable effect on BI performance. Plenty of BI systems run well without an SSD at all. It is kind of like having a car that can drive 125 Kph (HDD), or a car that can drive 500 Kph (SSD) or a car that can drive 2500 Kph (NVMe SSD). There's more speed, but no place to use it!

    Consider not using RAID 5. Some raid controllers may dump the entire array when they encounter the first bad sector on any of the disks while you are recovering from a disk failure. RAID 6 is better for reliability with modern multi-terabyte disks. Many of us do not use RAID at all, and either span the disks with software or just configure BI to record specific cameras to specific disks so that in the event of a drive failure you only lose a few of the cameras' recordings and keep all the others.

    There's no reason to buy a Z390 motherboard for Blue Iris. All motherboards have gigabit LAN these days so I suggest saving a little cash and getting a B365 or something since that should meet all your requirements.

    You can move BI and the recordings from one computer to the other. Export the registry settings from within BI Options, install BI fresh on the new machine, and and import the registry settings after reproducing the disk layout that you had on the old machine. You can then rebuild the clip database, or transfer over the database from the old system while BI is not running on either machine. You will need to activate BI on the new machine and if you've done this more than once with your current serial number then you will probably have to contact BI support to get the serial number reset.
     
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  3. SouthernYankee

    SouthernYankee IPCT Contributor

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    Interesting system.

    I do not use raid. I use clone cameras to write to an external network storage. Clone cameras do not use any additional processing at the camera, the data from the camera is collect only once and BI writes it multiple time as required. Clone network storage is added insurance from a major system failure or system theft.

    If there are multiple drives in BI assign different cameras to each drive. So if a drive fails you only loose some cameras in the primary system. In my experience a raid 5 recovery is a PIA.
     
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  4. bp2008

    bp2008 Staff Member

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    My dad lost his office backup server RAID 5 array once, when a disk failure went unnoticed for a while, then a second disk dismounted itself for unknown reasons (the disk was fine after reboot, but the raid controller decided it was too late and it was NOT going to recover). Unfortunately, the secretary had been working straight off of the network drive and didn't have local copies of her work. Fortunately, I had backups of the "backups" and was able to get them running again.
     
  5. Jan Werbinski

    Jan Werbinski n3wb

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    Until BI will add support for H.265 I can use H.265+ in cameras and direct to disc write. But I suppose this comes with a cost of not using full features of moves detection in BI? I hope version 5 will have support. Now I use QVR Pro on my QNAP and it supports H.265+. File sizes are really small.

    I plan to use RAID5 for availability, not for backup. So no problem with URE. I think RAID5 is in this case better than single discs because gives me chance to switch disc and expand size of storage. I have a few brand new HGST 3TB enterprise class discs which I bought for about 37EUR. I use RAID4 and RAID5 on my NASes and so far so good.
    Losing of data because no one did notice first disc failure in RAID5 is argument against single discs, not against RAID5. RAID5 gives time to do additional backup in case of disc failure and after this backup it is possible to safely replace discs. If URE occurs then restore from backup.
    RAID is not a backup!

    Exporting and importing registry? Can I select just a part of registry and import it? Will I keep all my database, history, clips etc?
    If so that is great news! I can use my cheap HP EliteDesk (which I just bought for 130EUR) and get experience with BI and have precise evaluation of my future needs.
     
  6. bp2008

    bp2008 Staff Member

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    You could try. As I said, there may be compatibility problems with H.265+ such as corrupt video, dropped frames, or worse. Or it might work. You can certainly try! Normal H.265 should work, you just won't get to use Quick Sync for hardware acceleration so it will be more CPU-intensive. H.264 is still a good option. It does not offer as good of a compression ratio but it is less energy-intensive to decode which makes it a better choice for most BI users.

    Direct to disc does not hurt BI's motion detection.

    You can export and import manually with regedit. You can also use the export and import functionality which is built directly in to Blue Iris. It is basically the same thing either way.

    The database and clips are not kept in the registry and not not exported when doing a settings export. These are just files and you can simply copy to a new system if needed.
     
  7. mech

    mech n3wb

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    I recently built a computer for BI and had some of the same decisions to make. Before BI, I had klunky Grandstream software recording nine cams (mostly 3MP each), and had ten others (Bosch) recording to iSCSI on low-end Synology NASes, including some 5MP and one 12MP cam. Total is about 1200MP/second, recording continuously at frame rates of mostly 15FPS. I do a lot of viewing, so I knew I would have the console open and shift among different groups of cameras.

    At first, I planned to pick up a used Dell Precision dual-Xeon with 8-core or 10-core CPUs for 32 or 40 threads. Then I did some reading here, and realized dual-socket Xeons would lack QuickSync, which is a game-changer, so I decided to go with the i9-9900k, 32GB of DDR-3200 RAM, and a inexpensive Gigabyte Z390 board (Gaming X). For storage, I used some of my HGST drives from my Synology NASes, plus a new NVME SSD for the system drive because I wanted more space for archives of still photos. I added an old nVidia 760GTX to run three 1920 x 1200 monitors, and experimented with nVidia acceleration on the higher-resolution cameras.

    At the moment, I am using 14GB of RAM and about 50% CPU with the console open (using "Fast" display scaling), Microsoft IIS running a FTP server for the cameras to save still photos independently, and DropBox. So I'm not using 32GB of RAM, but I'm getting up near 16GB.

    If you are happy with your SATA SSD then keep it for your system drive, unless you need more capacity. I was hoping NVME would result in a radical change in how fast the system can load thumbnails of thousands of photos in a folder, but it is not a radical change compared to my SATA Samsung 860 EVO. Bitlocker also slowed it down. My new 970 Evo Plus doesn't have native encryption, unlike a 970 Pro.


    For mass storage, I agree with the others: have each drive run independently.

    With direct-to-disk encoding (all h264 cams here), QuickSync acceleration, and using the "fast" scaling instead of bilinear or bicubic for the console, I can view all the cameras at once in the console at about 50% CPU load and about 30% GPU load on the GTX760. But that is just viewing, not playback. If I hear something suspicious, and I want to review what just happened, I'd like playback to work smoothly. The i9 actually cannot keep up if I want to play back all the cameras, since it's also still tasked with recording them in real time. CPU usage hits 100%, even with Fast display scaling.

    For a test, I tried playing back the 12MP camera, which runs quite a high bitrate to get good detail in a long-range situation. Using Intel acceleration, 1x playback is feasible. 2x playback starts to get notchy. 4x playback is too much... I see the BI time readout progressing at 4x actual speed, but the video window just occasionally shows a random frame. Then I switched that camera from Intel to nVidia acceleration and tried the same thing with the 760GTX. On the nVidia card, 4x playback will take the 760GTX up near 90% utilization, but the video is keeping up.

    Since I'm going to have a card in there for multi-monitor anyway, I took a gamble and ordered a GTX1650 with 6GB of memory, also gaining a h265 encoding option in the bargain. I'll try to find a balance of Intel and nVidia acceleration that gets me smoother playback when it counts. If it's still too much, it may be time to sacrifice framerates on cameras where 5FPS technically could get the job done.
     
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  8. Jan Werbinski

    Jan Werbinski n3wb

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    Interesting to see i9-9900K isn't future proof after all. Comparing with cheaper options there seems to be constant price in CPU power per passmark - twice passmark power = twice price of the system.
     
  9. mech

    mech n3wb

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    I read the feature list for BI version 5 (PDF: https://blueirissoftware.com/BlueIris5.pdf ) and the ability to access other BI installations will present an interesting parallel-processing option: several inexpensive used Dell or HP i7 systems with 64-bit Win10, each with its own BI license, would be an alternative to a single system, at least if you can go down to h264 to take advantage of QuickSync acceleration. If I understand the notes correctly, you will only be able to view one BI system at a time in the interface, so that would be the trade-off versus a single do-it-all system. It's an idea, anyway.

    I might try that if I'm not satisfied with the outcome after my nVidia card gets here (and BI v5 releases), since my old i7 is still operational.
     
  10. bp2008

    bp2008 Staff Member

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    Based on a test I did a day or two ago, yes, it is one BI system at a time. I also noticed:

    * The remote system must be running as a service.
    * When you connect to a remote BI service via this feature, it automatically closes and disables the local console on the remote system for as long as you remain connected. I guess BI can only allow one console per service because there would be too many problems synchronizing the configuration if more than one console was open.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2019 at 3:45 PM
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