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Here is my current setup. Though not built intentionally for day trading, it's getting the job done.

 

PC - Wonderful little computer for productivity, media consumption, and even light gaming. The machine is barely audible from 2 feet away with the silent Noctua fan. It literally fits in the palm of my hand.

Tiny PC

ASRock DeskMini (Barebones)

Intel i7-7700

Integrated Intel HD630 Graphics (no video card!)

32GB DDR4 RAM

Samsung 960 EVO M.2 250GB NVME Drive

Crucial MX300 525GB SATA SSD

1TB Samsung Hard Drive

Noctua NH9-Li CPU Cooler

 

All that performance is crammed into a package that is smaller than Andrew's book!

Compared to book

 

Monitors - Two ultrawides really limits the cable clutter/additional hardware required for a multiple monitor setup. However, there is some ergonomic drawback as the overall height requires quite a bit of vertical neck movement.

Dual 34

LG 34UM88-P 34" Flat Ultrawide (top)

LG 34UC88 34" Curved Ultrawide (bottom)

Mounted to a Vivo STAND-V002T Dual Monitor Vertical Desk Mount

 

Desktop/DAS Layout - I am able to fit 10 montages in DAS which includes:

DAS Layout

8 x Stations with 5 min chart, L2, Time/Sales

2 x Stations with 1 min chart, 5 min chart, L2 Time/Sales

Central "hub" showing Market Time, Top List, Open Positions, Open Orders, Watch List, Windows Calculator

Bear Bull Traders Chat and Andrew's Trade Idea Scanner

Most of the time I am watching 5-6 stocks and just keep some low floats up top to avoid any FOMO!

 

Keyboard - MechanicalEagle Z88 RGB Backlit. Fully customizable down to each individual key colour. I use green for long hotkeys, and red for short.

Hotkey Colours

 

Desk - Ikea Malm White

 

Chair - Vertagear S-Line SL2000. Very comfortable for extended sitting. Includes a lumbar cushion and neck/head pillow. I may consider getting a standing desk in the future.

Gaming Chair

 

Miscellaneous

Glorious Extended Gaming Mouse Mat - keeps the white desk nice and clean

ALED LIGHT 5050 LED Strip for ambient backlighting behind desk/screens

 

Let me know what you guys think!

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I built my computer specifically for day trading (and gaming!).

 

I share a home office with my photographer girlfriend so I wanted to make sure I kept everything quiet and contained. My corner of the office is a standing workbench I custom designed and built myself to contain the tools, electronics, and gadgets I use to build "stuff". My 3d printer is also pictured. I built a Core i7 based PC on an Asus ROG Maximus IX motherboard, 32gb of RAM, and a Vega 64 graphics card. I have a Noctua CPU cooler that operates almost silently, and the machine itself is down in the corner so it's near silent. The iMac on our desk behind is actually louder. I installed an Ergotron arm to mount the monitors (a 34 inch wide screen and a very old 24inch monitor) to my standing work bench. I have gaming mouse and keyboard because I like the feel and I'm left handed so having an ambidextrous mouse is great when I switch to right-handed to game. The last part of my setup is a Stream Deck, a customizable keypad with LCD screens on each key which I've set up to trigger hotkeys for long and short positions. Each icon is custom color-coded so I can't mistakenly short a long position when I'm trying to sell, or something similarly boneheaded.

 

Standing bench

Closeup

Streamdeck starting point

Streamdeck Long

Streamdeck short

Bull

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Very nice setup Robert, money, power & space wise.... I may build my desktop based on your setup...

 

Some questions:

 

Reason to have curved & flat monitors? why not two flat / 2 curved

Vertical neck movement would less with standig desk?

Monitor holder / stand brand?

The cpu fan is this one: "Noctua CPU Cooler NH-L9I Low Profile" LGA1150/1155/1156 NF-A9x14 PWM https://goo.gl/j8Vwgr

Difference betwenn NVMe drive and SATA SSD?

The Intel i7-7700 it is a complete motherboard? this one? https://goo.gl/AtfGU7

 

Thx!

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Abiel,

 

My system is overkill for day trading. I recently built the same mini PC for a friend with less powerful components. It came up to $585 CAD after taxes. Here are his build specs. Note that the system is limited to two displays and there is no room for adding a video card. So upgrade path is limited and monitors are restricted to a dual setup.

 

Reason to have curved & flat monitors? why not two flat / 2 curved

I bought the curved one first and the flat one later. Since the flat was a secondary monitor and further up, I thought the curve wasn't necessary. However, I am finding that the far side edges look a bit weird; they are so far from my peripheral vision. If I can't adjust to it, I will probably swap it for a second curved screen. Curve is an extra $300 CAD!

 

Vertical neck movement would less with standig desk?

I figure that standing would allow me to use my body more for movement as opposed to just my neck. But you're right: it probably wouldn't help with vertical. Brendon D uses a standing desk for his 8 monitor setup and highly recommends it.

 

Monitor holder / stand brand?

The stand is Vivo STAND-V002T Dual Monitor Vertical Desk Mount. For 2 x 34" monitors I cannot recommend it. My monitors come in 5 lbs under the weight limit, but they have a hard time staying in position (sagging). Also, the vertical stand is much less robust than two independent stands. Here is a YouTube video of an ideal setup:

 

 

 

The cpu fan is this one: “Noctua CPU Cooler NH-L9I Low Profile” LGA1150/1155/1156 NF-A9x14 PWM

That is correct. The stock Intel fan is notoriously loud, even on "silent" profiles

 

 

Difference betwenn NVMe drive and SATA SSD?

NVME drives are multiple times faster than regular SATA SSDs. Make sure to get a PCIe and not SATA interface.

 

 

The Intel i7-7700 it is a complete motherboard? this one?

The i7-7700 is just the processor. The ASRock Deskmini case/chassis comes with a motherboard (and power supply). Just pick your processor, RAM, storage and be on your way.

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Very nice setups guys, thanks for sharing. I don’t have the skills nor knowledge to build a computer, and even though I am just starting in my mission to make a living from trading, I would like to know if anyone has any experience with trading computer builders as Falcon Trading Systems or such, to recommend. Thanks.

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I’ve always built my own PCs, but I’d guess looking at their and other custom computer shops that you’ll likely get a better deal buying an off the shelf machine. My machine is also overkill for day trading but I use it for other things. If you’re building exclusively for trading you don’t need much power. I’d go with a midrange dell with maybe an upgraded graphics card for multiple monitors.

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Hi Mario, Falcon builds really quality systems, but they do come with a pretty high price tag. I am an IT consultant so naturally, I have the skills for this lol. I built my own machine with parts from my local computer store (Microcenter) for around $2,500. Mind you, I went completely overkill because my trading platform (Tradestation) is a real resource monster and you need to have some heavy processing power in order for it to run properly. DAS isn't as nearly intensive as TradeStation, but you do want to ensure you build something that won't become obsolete in the next 2 years. Especially with how frequently Microsoft is updating Windows 10, each update comes with a bit of a hit on certain areas of performance. Also just be mindful that the more monitors you wish to add, the more power you will need.

 

Here's my system:

Trading Workstation

 

Trading Workspace

 

1x Intel i7 6800K CPU (processor) that is water-cooled and overclocked to 4.2 GHz.

32 GB's of high performance RAM

1x Samsung EVO 950 Pro (NVMe), 256B SSD (Solid State) - For Windows and applications

1x Crucial 525MX, 525GB SSD - For profile data and basic user data

1x Western Digital 3 TB 7200RPM Mechanical drive - for bulk data like image files

2x nVidia GTX 970 video cards

1x Corsair H110ti water cooler (for CPU)

1x Asus STRIX X99 Gaming motherboard

1x Corsair 750 Watt power supply

6x Acer 24" LED LCD monitors mounted on a HEX stand that is mounted to my desk

1x NEC monitor that is rotated for portrait mode and has the chatroom, Outlook and other apps on it

2x Dell keyboards. 1 keyboard is used for normal input, the second keyboard I used a free program called HIDMacros that allowed me to program any key to executed a macro or command. So the number pad on my second keyboard handles all of the order entry commands for my platform.

Windows 7 Pro

 

Remember, I went overboard because of my platform and since I am an IT guy, I figured "why the hell not?". Plus, it was a business write-off :)

 

You will often find that "gaming" computers are best suited for day trading, but they sometimes have video cards that are complete overkill. As I mentioned above the specs of my machine, the more monitors you wish to have, the more video processing and hardware power you will need. MOST video cards can support up to 4 monitors on 1 card. If you want more than 1 monitor, than you will likely need 2 video cards. On-board video may be an option, but some manufactures will disable the on-board video if an add-on video card is detected.

 

However, here's a breakdown of the BARE MINIMUM you need for a decent trading workstation:

 

Processor (CPU): Minimum of an Intel Core i7 series processor. Most of these processors are fine and the latest generation (7th generation) is sufficient to handle the load. Ideally you want a processor with a higher clock speed (measured in GHz) as this will crunch numbers and data faster.

 

Memory (RAM): NO less than 16GB's (Gigabytes) of memory. 32 is perfect, but 16 will do the job as well. The more memory you have, the more responsive programs are and the more space a program is given to store instructions that it needs quickly.

 

Storage (Hard Drive Space): Hard Drive capacity is measured in Gigabytes and sometimes Terabytes depending on the type of drive. This isn't super important to your trading computer unless you plan on using your trading computer for other tasks, at which point, you will likely need more space. However, the most important take-away here is you want your primary hard drive (the "C-Drive" where Windows and your programs live) to be a Solid State Drive (SSD). These come in many forms, but the BEST option here is what is called an NVME drive. This type of drive plugs DIRECTLY into the motherboard. These are the fastest drives available now.

The other type of solid state drive which is still a good option and good enough for trading is a regular 2.5" solid state drive that connects via a SATA data cable to a SATA port on your motherboard. This isn't as fast as the NVME drive you plug directly into your motherboard, but if you are on a budget it will suffice.

The third and final type of drive to avoid unless you need a buttload of space is a standard 7200 RPM mechanical drive. These are the drives that have been around forever and the drives that moving parts (they have discs in them that spin around). These drives are slower and have a higher failure rate.

 

Motherboard: The motherboard is the most important piece to the puzzle here since it connects all of the components and makes them "Talk" to each other. Naturally, you want a board that is compatible with your processor but also powerful enough and offers enough expansive capacity to ensure you will be able to add more memory (RAM), additional hard drives, and most importantly, additional video cards if needed. Once again, most of the gaming motherboards will fit the bill here. If you plan to have more than 3-4 monitors then you will need to ensure the motherboard you get has the ability to add another video card. You will want a board with at least 2x PCIe (PCI Express) x8 slots. Newer boards have x16 slots which is even better (the x8 or x16 signifies the speed at which the port can operate. Newer cards need the higher speed to operate more effectively, but this is more for gaming than trading). Also ensure the board offers gigabit LAN. This is a default on almost all boards nowadays, but I have seen a few lower-end boards that only offer 10/100 speed for the LAN (rather than 10/100/1000 or 'Gigabit').

 

Video Cards (GPU): I discussed this above with how many monitors you plan to add to your system. I prefer the NVidia cards as they are reasonably priced and they offer lots of power. You do not need the absolute latest $700 video card that has 5 GB's of RAM. This is total overkill (unless you plan to game). Any of the lower-end 10x series or even the higher numbered 9x series cards will do the job. Each of the video cards will be independent. Gamers tend to use what is called 'SLI' to make 2 cards act like one, but that is not the case here since we just need extra monitor space. Just be sure if you want more than one video card you see my notes on the motherboard above.

 

Case: The case is something that you can have a little fun with. This is where all of the pieces of the computer live. People tend to get creative with these and get cases with windows and lights and all sorts of fancy stuff. This is entirely up to you. The most important take-away on the case is that it MUST support proper cooling. Most cases have 2x 80mm or 120mm fans in them. The more fans the more air is moving through the case to keep the internal components cool. If your goods overheat, then your machine will shut down and could potentially fry. So make sure you find a case with decent cooling capacity.

 

Power Supply (PSU): The power supply or PSU is what provides power to all of the components. There are calculators out there that can help you determine based on what you plan to buy how large of a PSU you will need. My rule of thumb is do not go for anything less than 500 Watts. If you plan to have additional hard drives and video cards, then you will likely need a 750-1000 Watt PSU. Also, do not buy a cheap unit here. You want something that is robust and ideally, a modular power supply. These units provide the power to all of the components. If the PSU is providing crappy quality power, then you can expect crappy performance or fried components. Do not skimp on the power supply!

 

Cooling: One final piece I am going to add here and it relates to everything else is that you need to ensure your system is properly cooled. A computer that is improperly cooled will perform poorly and you will end up replacing parts far sooner than you should. Proper cooling primarily comes from the case (discussed above), but other environmental factors such as location of the computer (is it near a heat vent, placed in a hot room, etc) will also affect the cooling. The processor is the most important component that needs to be cooled. Depending on which CPU you get, it will either come with a factory CPU cooler, or it won't come with anything. You DO NOT need to get a water-cooled system. This is ONLY for people like me who are a bit crazy and like to push their hardware to the absolute extreme. For day trading, a simple air cooler is more than enough for the processor. "Tower Coolers" as they are known do an incredible job of keeping the CPU nice and cool even under a heavy load. If you plan to go all out with high-end cards, a high-end CPU and you plan to game, day trade, edit videos and all sorts of stuff, then you will need liquid cooling. But the point of this thread is for a DAY TRADING system. so no overkill needed!

 

I believe I about covered everything here. I probably made your head explode with even more questions, but that's what we are here for! I also apologize for the mess in my office in the pictures above. I need to re-organize my office at some point, but I had back surgery a few months ago, so moving anything is off the table for now. Although they do so that a disorganized desk is the sign of an intelligent mind....

 

Please feel free to ask any follow up questions. I didn't post links to specific hardware or websites since you can get this stuff from pretty much anywhere for very close to price. I have found that Microcenter is a lot cheaper than NewEgg and Amazon are. But if you don't have a Microcenter near you, you will have to order from elsewhere.

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Cool set up everyone! Is nice to see all the different set up and what everyone is working with.

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Great setup, everyone! I custom-built my PC for gaming, picture/video editing, and engineering. Turns out it also kicks ass as a day trading station!

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ASUS Maximus VIII hero Alpha motherboard

Intel i7 6700k 4.0 GHz processor Overclocked to 4.6 GHz

EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 FTW Graphics Card

16GB Corsair Dominator Platinum DDR4 DRAM 3200MHz

2 x 256 gb SSD, 1TB HDD, 3TB HDD

Blu-Ray drive

Corsair H115i liquid CPU cooler

EVGA 850W G2L PSU

3 x Corsair ML140 140mm LED fans

1 x Corsair ML120 120mm LED fan

Corsair 760T full tower with 2 x front 140mm LED fans

Corsair Strafe RGB keyboard

Corsair M65 Pro RGB mouse

LG 34" curved 21:9 ultrawide 3440x1440 monitor

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