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Old 04-06-2008, 12:06 AM   #1
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Default AMD Phenom Compatibility

Hey I want to upgrade my compaq computer and in order to do so i need to buy a new motherboard graphics card and processor. I know two of those three things. I am getting a nvidia geforce 8600 gt and a AMD phenom quad core. But im not sure about the mother board. I am on a budget but i dont want to buy crap. I just want everything to work like it should. If you could please give me suggestions that would be great. Thanks so much.
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Old 04-06-2008, 05:34 AM   #2
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Default Re: AMD Phenom Compatibility

OK, so if you're going with a Phenom, you'll want an AM2+ socket, so you can take full advantage of the Phenom's hypertransport. This narrows us down to the AMD 770/790X and 790FX chipsets. I don't know how much you want to spend but for a budget mobo or if you're not overclocking or don't need Crossfire capabilities, this is perfect: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813135069
It even has PCI-E 2.0

If you can spend a bit more, then the 790X chipset can bring you Crossfire support and better overclocking potential: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813130138

I would actually recommend AMD's new HD 3650 over the aging 8600GT: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814121232

For the Phenom, make sure you get one of the new B3 stepping models (the 9500 and 9600 are B2 stepping and have higher power consumption and the notorious TLB bug) The new Phenom 9850 X4 is comparable to Intel's Q6600 in terms of performance. The 9850 is the one I recommend.
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Old 04-06-2008, 09:51 AM   #3
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Default Re: AMD Phenom Compatibility

Thank you so much.
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Old 04-06-2008, 09:53 AM   #4
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Default Re: AMD Phenom Compatibility

However im not sure what crossfire is and what is does to improve the computers processing. Thanks
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Old 04-06-2008, 10:36 AM   #5
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Default Re: AMD Phenom Compatibility

BTW AMD bought ATI a while ago, so that's why I refer to ATI as AMD.

Crossfire is AMD's multi-GPU (GPU=Graphics Processing Unit or graphics card) It allows you to combine the power of two AMD's graphics chips to improve performance. The great thing about the new CrossfireX technology is not just it's improved performance and scaling, but the ability to pair non-identical cards. For exemple with Nvidia's equivalent technology (SLI), two identical cards are required for it to work.
But with CrossfireX, you can pair, for exemple, a HD 3850 and a HD 3870.
Please not however that two cards do not give 2x the performance except for in very rare cases. If you have a single 3650, adding another will bring anything from a 10% to a 50% performance increase depending on the application.

Hope this helps, don't hestitate to ask anything else.
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Old 04-06-2008, 11:38 AM   #6
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Default Re: AMD Phenom Compatibility

What kind of monitor will i need to get the best of what the Radeon HD 3650 can provide and how much ram would you recommend.
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Old 04-06-2008, 12:22 PM   #7
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Default Re: AMD Phenom Compatibility

Sorry, but I haven't actually asked what this computer will be used for?
If you're talking about LCDs, then a 8ms or lower response time is always nice, and the size is dependant on how much you've got to spend. I personnally prefer CRTs, although they may be bulky, they don't have a lot of the drawbacks of LCDs.

2GB of RAM is the recommended amount ATM, that motherboard takes DDR2 si I would recommend this RAM: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820208283
But if you are running Vista (as I have found out), upgrading from 2GB to 4GB speeds general multi tasking up a bit.
4GB can be had for as little as $66: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820211271
I have picked this RAM on the basis that you won't be overclocking.
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Old 04-06-2008, 12:37 PM   #8
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Default Re: AMD Phenom Compatibility

The computer will generaly be used for gaming and if possible streaming HD programs into my desktop. I would like to be able to run very high quality graphics on games such as crysis.
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Old 04-06-2008, 12:41 PM   #9
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Default Re: AMD Phenom Compatibility

I also would like to know how much power i will need to power everything. Im guessing in the ball park of 500-600W.
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Old 04-06-2008, 01:14 PM   #10
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Default Re: AMD Phenom Compatibility

Quote:
The computer will generaly be used for gaming
Ah, yes. At what resolution? As you're going to need something a bit beefier than the 3650. Nothing can max out Crysis at the moment though. I can run it at high settings with a few at medium with my 8800GT, but far from maxed out. It still looks great even without all the AA etc.
To play games like Crysis at a decent resolution, you'll want something like the HD 3870 or 8800GT:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814143118 $170 with rebate.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814103050
This is also a brilliant buy at $200 with the rebate, but if you haven't got that amount to spend then the 8800GT or 3870 is fine. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814127325
Quote:
I also would like to know how much power i will need to power everything. Im guessing in the ball park of 500-600W.
Yep, even a brand name 450W would be fine. The 12V rail is the value you should be looking at most though. Something with 30A+. Like this:http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817139003
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