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Old 05-12-2012, 05:38 PM   #1
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Default Noob Help Please!

Howdy everyone. I have very limited experiece in modding my computers, as complex as simply replacing RAM and GPUs. Now I'm trying to build a ground-up PC to play games on (Not building it to the nines, just a cheap little gaming rig for RTS games). I already have a Biostar N68S3+ (You can read its specs here: N68S3+ :: Motherboard :: BIOSTAR) along with 8Gb of Ram and a Radeon HD6770 GPU thrown in already. I'm using my existing hard drives and case, and I have enough fans to start a tornado in my room (Including a nice 120mm one). Which leaves power source and CPU.

Now, for the power source, I was planning on getting the OCZ ModXStream 700W (This one: OCZ ModXStream Pro 700W ATX 20/24PIN SLI Ready Modular Cables 135mm Fan 80PLUS Power Supply - OCZ Technology - OCZ700MXSP). People online say that OCZ is a fairly poor brand, as they tend to lose efficiency sporadically, however, the GPU and CPU only say a 480W is necessary, meaning an efficiency loss probably wont drop low enough to do damage, right? Any advice would be appreciated on this front. (For those wondering why I'm selecting a power source that's almost one and a half times my requirement, it's actually the cheapest option above 480W)

Now, next up, and the one I'm having more trouble figuring out is the CPU. I was planning on getting the AMD Phenom x4 965 Black (For those that haven't seen it: AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Quad Core Processor AM3 3.4GHZ 8MB Cache 125W 45NM Retail Box - AMD - HDZ965FBGMBOX) as it's the most powerful AM3 processor I can afford. Now, the BioStar is an AM3 board, so the CPU will "fit" in it. My biggest concern is that the Phenom is listed as a 125W CPU, and the BioStar says it will give 95W maximum to the CPU. Is this going to prevent me from using that CPU option? Curiously, the BioStar page I linked previously actually lists the Phenom x4 as an option to use... Anyways, this is the one I desperately need help with. I don't want to spend a hundred bucks on a processor only to cook it the first time I power the computer.

Thanks in advance for any help/suggestions!
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Old 05-13-2012, 12:30 PM   #2
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Default Re: Noob Help Please!

If you use a CPU that goes beyond the MAX TDP of the motherboard you risk causing damage.

Unfortunately that is a pretty basic board with minimal overclocking features. I would see if you can sell the board and get something with a few more features. Don't get me wrong, I used that board in several budget builds and it works great.

These would be your options for CPU. There is a six core in there but I'm not 100% if that board supports it. Don't worry about getting a black edition as I don't think you can adjust the multiplier in the BIOS.

Newegg.com - Computer Hardware, CPUs / Processors, Processors - Desktops, 65W, 35W, 45W, 95W, 84W, 80W, 73W, Socket AM3, 77W
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Old 05-13-2012, 03:01 PM   #3
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Default Re: Noob Help Please!

Alrighty, thanks. I should clarify, I had no intentions of overclocking anyways, but yes, I don't want to damage the CPU.

It's curious that the 3.2GHz quad-core runs at 95W yet the 3.4GHz quad-core runs at 125W... Does it really take that much more juice to push it those extra 0.2GHz?
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Old 05-13-2012, 03:07 PM   #4
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Default Re: Noob Help Please!

Sorry to double post, but while browsing your suggestions, I came across this: Newegg.com - AMD FX-4100 Zambezi 3.6GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) Socket AM3+ 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor FD4100WMGUSBX

Now, despite being ridiculously powerful (3.6GHz Quad-core with a 3.8GHz "Turbo option", whatever that means), it's only 95W, however it's also an AM3+. I have no experience with those, but am I to assume that they wont fit my current board then?
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Old 05-13-2012, 03:47 PM   #5
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Default Re: Noob Help Please!

Physically, AM3+ CPUs fit in an AM3 board and could work, there are no guarantees though.
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Old 05-13-2012, 04:16 PM   #6
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Alrighty, thanks again for all your help!
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