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Which of the two systems is better?


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#1
SOORENA

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Hi I just recently collected enough money to build a new rig under a grand. I have two options and I don't know which is better.

1st: INTEL

Motherboard: ASUS P5NSLI
CPU: Intel Pentium D 945 2x2MB (3.4GHz)
HD: Western Digital 250 GB 16 MB Cache
Memory: 1GB DDR2 PC2-5300 DDR667
Graphics: 2 x XFX GeForce 7300 GT 512MB
Case: NZXT Apollo (Silver)
PSU: ATX 450 W

2nd: AMD

Motherboard: ASUS M2N4-SLI
CPU: AMD Athlon 64 X2 5200 1MBx2 (2.6GHz)
HD: Western Digital 250 GB 16 MB Cache
Memory: 1GB DDR2 PC2-5300 DDR667
Graphics: 2 x XFX GeForce 7300 GT 512MB
Case: NZXT Apollo (Silver)
PSU: ATX 450 W

Basicly the only difference is the Motherboards and the CPUs. By the way this is for a gaming rig.
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#2
makai

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Now I'm not an AMD fan, and according to many reviews, the Intel Core 2 Duos are blowing away the AMDs at the moment. I just built a new computer for video processing (no games) consisting of the following for about $890. All components were purchased on newegg.com and note... I already had the case and PSU.

Asus P5W DH Deluxe $219
Intel E6400 2.13GH processor $221
1GB Corsair PC6400 800mhz Ram $104
Seagate 320GB Sata hard drive $79
BFG 7600GT 256MB $142 (-$50 MIR = $92)
ZALMAN CNPS9500 CPU fan $43 (newegg will have this price every once in a while)
Misc junk $???
Existing case, existing PSU

I am currently overclocking the processor to just over 3GHz (with air cooling) and there are no heat issues. Temps run at no load 33C, full load 45C. Been running perfectly for about 2 weeks now and I could go higher, but I think I'll let it run at this speed for a while. There is definitely a noticeable speed increase on this system compared to my P4, 3.2GHZ system when I do practically anything... especially video editing.

My friend just recently purchased the P5NSLI and he has had nothing but troubles trying to overclock it. The highest he could get was about 2.38GHZ using an Intel E6300 (1.8GHz) but never got it stable. In fact, he actually had problems with stock frequencies with hanging and blue screens. The reviews on this board are not stellar, and its definitely not designed to overclock as it's basically a mainstream design. Anyways, my friend returned the P5NSLI and went with the P5N32-SLI and is now running the same E6300 at 2.8Ghz air cooled with no problems.

From my friends experience and all the reviews I read while trying to help him troubleshoot the board, I wouldn't recommend the P5NSLI. If you really want to get a good board, look at the P5W series, or the P5B series. The P5B series are actually more overclock friendly and there are many reviews on the web about the board.

Of course... YMMV depending on what you get.
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#3
SOORENA

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That was very helpful makai. Although I am planning to overclock the system I wouldn't go much higher because it is already 3.4 GHz and I think the mobo can handle 3.8 or even 4 GHz. Any comments on the M2N4-SLI?
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#4
makai

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Any comments on the M2N4-SLI?

Sorry, as I stated, I'm not an AMD fan so I never researched anything to do with AMD. Must stem from the fact that long ago AMD used to "overrate" their processors (by internally overclocking them) just to gain market share. I guess I never forgave them for that when my processor smoked!

I'm pro intel, and with the strides I see intel moving with, AMD is playing catch up. The Core 2 Duos are quick, and the Quads are even quicker! I think you are better off with intel for the moment. If you get a motherboard that can handle Quads now (major consideration), you'll be able to upgrade later down the line just by changing the processor.

Edited by makai, 04 March 2007 - 10:54 PM.

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#5
SOORENA

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Also another question that came up for me was wether to go with SLI or CrossFire. I noticed that I coudn't find the crossfire edition cards anywhere!! Thats why I chose SLI for now until I find a place where I can buy CrossFire Edition cards.
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#6
SuperSam

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If you ask WarriorScot (who has more knowledge of SLi technology than me) he will tell you that two nvidias in SLi will only increase performance by up to around 20% MAXIMUM. Having two cards is not double the power, its bullcrap. You would be better getting ONE better card / getting 1 x 7300GT + upgrade something else...
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#7
makai

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Hmmm... I'm not the heavy gamer type and I'm not going to pretend I know anything about SLI and Crossfire other than what I read. Hopefully someone with more knowledge on the subject can reply to your question.

I do have a question about your ram choice though. Why DDR667 and not DDR800? Price? My XMS Corsairs, while not the top of the line, cost only $104. I would think since you mentioned a "gaming rig", you'd want faster ram... or at least ram that would have more headroom for overclocking.
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#8
warriorscot

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SLI only becomes an advantage at high resolution and only with half decent cards 7300s one is slow two is still slow you need something a little bit faster a 7600GT at least but for a gaming machine something in the x1950 range is the best recommendation something cheaper motherboard wise would be a good way to save cash as the ones you picked are OTT for your budget, i would go for the AMD though it is much better of the two and AM2 will let you upgrade to the newer AMD chips as they come out like the new quad core which from the specs looks to be better than the core2s by a fair margin.

Also im not a fan of NZXT cases and i would get a PSU from a larger company like Antec or Enermax.
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#9
SOORENA

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Any ideas on where I can get CrossFire Cards? Also if I wait a little more I might be able to purchase 2 x 7600 GTs instead of 2 x 7300 GTs. By the way those two systems cost exactly the same price. I am building these computers online at www.etccomputer.ca and I will pick them up localy.

Edited by SOORENA, 05 March 2007 - 03:14 PM.

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#10
SOORENA

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I have decided to go with one 7900 GT for now and later on I will buy another one and run SLI. Although I am still unsure of wether or not I should go with the Pentium D or Athlon X2.
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#11
james_8970

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Don't "SLI", this is a marketing gimic, you'll see 10-20% at most for paying 100% more. Your better off just to buy a higher end card when the old card cannot meet your needs. SLIing is burning cash, you'd spend your money better giving it to someone else.
James
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#12
SOORENA

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Thanks for the tip James. Is this also the same for CrossFire?
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#13
james_8970

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Exactly the same thing. Your better off investing double the money into a good card, 2 cards doesn't equal 100% performance gain no matter how much NVidea or ATI want you to think it does. At best you'll see 20% performance gains, which isn't economical since your spending 100% more.
James

Edited by james_8970, 06 March 2007 - 04:55 PM.

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#14
SOORENA

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I am looking for a good card 200 CA or under. Right now my best pick was a Sapphire ATI Radeon X1650PRO 512MB, I know I said 7900 GT before but after I looked at some reviews and some comparison charts I found out that the X1650 is way better. Please tell of any cards that are better and are under 200 CA. Thanks!!
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#15
james_8970

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hip hip hurray another Canadian :blink:
You said 7300GT before, which one is it? :whistling: 7900 GT will be over your budget from what I can see. You can get the 7600 GT in your price range which from what I can see, it'll beat the x1650 pro.
These charts are great guidelines.

James

Edited by james_8970, 06 March 2007 - 09:25 PM.

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