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Old 09-30-2008, 12:45 AM   #1
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Default Need help finishing a build

I'm building my first complete computer (have added a new mobo, processor, hard drive, etc... over the years to the one I currently have) and need some advice. These are the components I'm looking at:

CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16819115036
- My reasoning behind this choice (may be completely wrong): I only really play old games (Warcraft 3, Diablo 2, etc... I do play America's Army but that is really the only new one) so none of my games will really benefit from having a quad core versus a duo core (I think?). Probably the highest intensity application I use my computer for is Adobe CS2 (Photoshop, Illustrator, etc...) but that's the old version so will a quad core matter much to it? Because of these things, it seems to me that I might as well spend the same amount and get a 3.16 GHz duo core over a 2.4 GHz (Q6600) quad core. However, I don''t want to immediately preclude myself from any new games. Also, never even considered AMD although I am definitely open to it. Since I won't be overclocking would they be a better choice?

Video Card: ASUS EAH4850 512MB http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814121253
- I want the Radeon 4850 but if you would recommend a different brand, let me know

HDD: Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 500 GB, 7200 RPM http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822148288
- Went through Tom's Hardware reviews and this one was rated high

RAM: G.SKILL 4GB DDR2 800 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820231122
- If I decide on AMD via your recommendations, this will probably change as well.

Case: NZXT Tempest http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...nzxt%20tempest
- probably overkill but Tom's Hardware rated it high and it looks cool

CPU Fan: Xigmatek HDT-S1283 (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...ek%20HDT-S1283) or ZALMAN CNPS9700(http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16835118019)
- Any other recommendations?

So, I need help choosing a motherboard and PSU. I would also appreciate any recommendations you might have for me. Feel free to recommend something completely different but if you recommend a new part, please confirm that it will work with all of the other parts.

Budget for the basic computer is between 1000 (preferred) and 1200. I'll get a monitor and keyboard/mouse on top of that.
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Old 09-30-2008, 12:49 AM   #2
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Default Re: Need help finishing a build

heres a great power supply, wait for the intel people to come in on this threead

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817341001

heres a great 19' monitor

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16824254005

i also highly recommend the Logitech G5 gaming mouse. i love this thing
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Old 09-30-2008, 12:57 AM   #3
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Default Re: Need help finishing a build

In case you missed it, I am open to switching to AMD just need a reason and recommendations.
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Old 09-30-2008, 01:03 AM   #4
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Default Re: Need help finishing a build

well in that case i highly reccomend my mobo and CPU (not sold anymore but came out with a newer 65nm model) specs in sig
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Old 09-30-2008, 01:15 AM   #5
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Default Re: Need help finishing a build

if you arent overclocking, then its best to go with AMD.
But if you are overclocking, then go with Intel.

The 6000+ (clocked at 3.0ghz) for AMD is pretty cheap now, its less than $100, and it wont bottleneck ram speed because of the integrated memory controller.

But the E7200 (clocked at 2.53ghz) for Intel is for sale for $100 at micro center, and according to benchmarks, it beats the 6000+. But since its intel, it can only run RAM speed at 667mhz due to the bottleneck of the FSB, unless you overclock.

I will be getting a Intel board and CPU tomorrow if i can, so it will be my first build with Intel CPU's, but i did use brand names with Intel CPU, but those CPU was worse than what AMD had. IIRC, Intel didnt beat AMD till Intel released the Core 2 series, Now a lower clocked C2 outperforms an AMD at a higher clock, back then, it was the other way around.

With AMD, i used the MSI K9A2 CF-F, it had the 790x chipset, supports CF, it has AM2+ socket, and i think it was under $100. It was the best board i have ever seen (in life, not reviews) or used so far.

EDIT - if you want to find boards by yourself, some brands that are good are Asus, Gigabyte, MSI, DFI, Biostar.
and some good chipsets for Intel for great OC is the P35/P45 boards, or if you want CF, the X38/X48.
If you want SLI, you probably wont get as great as an OC since nvidia chipsets dont do as well, but the chipsets are the 6xx series, and the 7xx series, the 7xx series is really expensive.
As for AMD, the chipsets i have known that are good is the AMD 790 series, which is the latest i have known, but i heard that the 690 series was good too, i stopped researching AMD and switched to research Intel.

I would post some links, but im kind of tired, and i think im going to go to sleep so i wont fall asleep in class tomorrow.
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Old 09-30-2008, 11:26 AM   #6
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Default Re: Need help finishing a build

Does my reasoning for getting a duo core rather than a quad core make sense? Will this substantially limit me in the future?

Thanks for all your help so far and the PSU recommendation. It looked like what I need.
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Old 09-30-2008, 11:35 AM   #7
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Default Re: Need help finishing a build

Dual Core against Quad Cores.
In gaming, you wont see any differences since theres no game out there that uses all 4 cores of the Quad core, its more with how fast the CPU goes, and since you are playing old games, then you could save some money and get a Dual Core instead.
But if you like to do like, video converting, music converting, rendering, etc. Then the Quad Core will beat the Dual Core.

So it depends what you do.
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Old 09-30-2008, 11:40 AM   #8
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Default Re: Need help finishing a build

Quote:
Originally Posted by Teny View Post
if you arent overclocking, then its best to go with AMD.
But if you are overclocking, then go with Intel.
Thats not exactly true. AMD can be overclocked. It doesnt matter what one you get. they both can be overclocked. Their are benchmarks showing that AMD can keep up with intel. Sure, Maybe intel will preform better. But AMD can be just as good. AMD is good for the budget build.
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Old 09-30-2008, 11:54 AM   #9
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Default Re: Need help finishing a build

Your reasoning is sound for the dual core v quad core argument in most respects. If its future proofing you want thought, then it's a bit harder to say. Mutli-threaded applications have slowly been trickling out into the market over the years but as you've already hinted, two cores at a faster clock speed than 4 won't make a massive difference unless your use some pretty profession software or doing heavy amounts of video encoding. And in most cases and apps, the faster clocked dual core is faster than the slower quads.

Corei7 may prove to be a bigger catalyst for mutithreaded apps in the future anyway, and i'm guessing then we'll see a huge leap in performance as markets adopt the tech properly to compete, by that time, you'll probably be ready to upgrade anyway.

As for the AMD v Intel argument, it's all well having the integrated memory controller to prevent memory bottlenecks, but whats the use if the Core 2 at a similar price is still performance king in real world benchmarks (the memory controllers still have to play their part during these benchmarks - if intels memory setup made the core 2 slower than the phenom and current prices, you wouldn't accept "ah but, it's got a better core CPU architecture" as a reason for going intel would you? nor would the majority of people accept "but it's got a good memory bandwidth due to it's integrated memory controller" as a reason to buy a slower per $/, hot running AMD CPU). Not to mention the difference in power consuption. I say stick to the core 2 duo, at least the ability for a bit of overclocking is there if it ever takes your fancy. The phenoms a decent all rounder, but core 2 is cooler running, more overclockable, and in 90% of cases faster in the same price group.

Another note, one which you probably already know, and thats use a 64bit copy of vista. otherwise, you're not going to be able to use much of that 4 GB memory. Infact, due to the 512MB graphics card, you'd only get to see about 2.5GB system memory. Not good. Plus, as your using Adobe CS2, if you ever upgrade to CS4, you'd notice a huge performance increase (it utilises 64bit CPU support and GPU acceleration, I just read a review on it, pretty impressive speed increases apparantly). I've used 64bit Vista for over a year now, and still yet to find incompatable software (with the exception of Anti-virus, but now theres support across the board for it).

Hope this helps.
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Old 09-30-2008, 04:08 PM   #10
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Default Re: Need help finishing a build

Phenom is so underrated, people don't over consider it. But it is actually on par clock for clock with Core 2. And overclocking performance is just good with the new SB750 southbridge. The 9950 BE, which costs roughly the same as the Q6600 is hitting 3.4GHz-3.6GHz with the 790GX/new 790FX boards. And the 9600 BE is going for an amazing $120!

790GX and 790FX boards also support Crossfire so that's an added bonus.

Just food for thought...


And go with Palit's HD 4850. It has a better cooler and VRM.

+1 for the Xigmatek HDT-S1283, make sure you get the backplate if you're going with LGA 775. The 9700 is the most overpriced, underperforming, overrated POS ever.

Also, Tom's Hardware sucks, they don't have a clue how to do reviews or tests. XbitLabs and Anandtech are good sites.

PSU - OCZ's new modular range.
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