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Buying My New Computer


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#1
PB Andy

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Hello everyone, thanks for checking this out. It is time for me to buy a new computer, and after some research on Newegg this is what I have come up with:

Case: Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower - $70
Mobo: ASUS M4A79 Deluxe AM3/AM2+/AM2 AMD 790FX ATX - $179
CPU: AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+ Windsor 3.0GHz Socket AM2 125W Dual-Core - $80
Power Supply: CORSAIR 550W ATX12V V2.2 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready - $90
Video: EVGA GeForce 9800 GTX+ 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 - $130
Memory: G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 - $60
HD: Western Digital 320GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" - $50
OS: Windows Vista Home Premium 64bit - $100

Total: $759

My budget is somewhere around $750-850. I would just like some input on what I have selected. I already have a Pioneer DVD-RW drive, and a 1TB external HD, so the internal 320GB should be fine.

Some specific questions I have:
Is everything compatible (so far, to me, it looks like it is)?
Am I fine with the specific Mobo, CPU, and video card I have selected? Do any of you have any gripes with them?
Is the Corsair PSU a good choice, and is 550W enough?
Am I missing anything that I would need when building this?

Thanks!

Edited by PB Andy, 15 August 2009 - 10:15 PM.

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#2
Troy

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Hey mate, and welcome.

Corsair is an excellent choice, 550W should be enough for this build as this PSU also has a hefty output on the +12V rail.

Whenever you're building a new system, you'll want to look up the motherboard on the manufacturer's website and make sure you can see the CPU you have selected in the CPU Support List.

Also, for the graphics card, have a look at the Tom's Hardware VGA Chart and compare cards up and down the tiers, and their prices. You might find a better performing card for a few dollars more (or less!)

The one thing that really stands out to me is the pricing of that motherboard. Considering everything else is cheaper, I'm sure you could find a board with all the features you want for less than that.

Cheers
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#3
PB Andy

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Troy,

Thanks for your advice! After researching some more, I was able to find some pretty sweet combo deals. Because of this my entire computer has changed. Parts in italics are the new additions.

Case: Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower - $70
Combo Deal 1:
Mobo: ASUS P5Q Pro Turbo LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard
CPU: Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 Yorkfield 2.83GHz LGA 775 95W Quad-Core - $305 combined
Combo Deal 2:
Video: SAPPHIRE Vapor-X Radeon HD 4870 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported
Memory: CORSAIR XMS3 DHX 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) - $290 combined

Power Supply: CORSAIR 550W ATX12V V2.2 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready - $90
HD: Western Digital 320GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" - $50

Total: $785, INCLUDING rebates.

After talking with a friend, I decided to go with a Quad-core, since I do multi-task a LOT. And you were right about the video cards. The ATI HD 4870 is slightly better than the 9800 GTX+, plus it is 2gb and only a bit more! I also decided to stick with XP for now, and forget the added price for Vista. This way I can get a better computer that is more in my price range. I looked on Asus site, the mobo and CPU are compatible. So:

How does everything look now, any recommendations or advice on anything?
The more specific question I have is, is the 550W PSU man enough to handle this, or would I need to upgrade that to support this beast?

Thanks a lot, again.
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#4
fenzodahl512

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is the 550W PSU man enough to handle this, or would I need to upgrade that to support this beast?

Power Supply: CORSAIR 550W ATX12V V2.2 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready - $90

If the Corsair PSU is below, it should be no problem at all..

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16817139004

Also, you might want to buy a third party CPU cooler..
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#5
Troy

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Problem - new motherboard is DDR2, new RAM is DDR3.

See if you can find a combo that includes DDR2 RAM instead.
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#6
PB Andy

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Hey guys thanks for your responses.

After looking for different combo deals, for some reason I can't find memory + CPU combo deals anymore on Newegg. So I went with this route: a CPU + GPU combo deal, and then a Mobo + RAM combo deal.
1. Decided to go with a AM3 mobo, and AMD Phenom II X3. I figured I multi-task enough for a triple core, but not enough to warrant a quad-core. :) The clock speed is fast for that one too (2.8Ghz).
2. I also upgraded to a ATI Radeon HD4890 (1Gb), because this was a combo deal with the CPU so I'm saving some money here.
3. Going with just 4gb of DDR3, I don't think I need more than that, for now at least.

Here it is:

Case: Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower - $70
Combo Deal 1:
Mobo: ASUS M4A785TD-V EVO AM3 AMD 785G HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard, and:
RAM: Patriot Gamer Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600)
- $175 combined
Combo Deal 2:
CPU: AMD Phenom II X3 720 2.8GHz Socket AM3 95W Triple-Core Black Processor, and:
Video: HIS H489FT1GP Radeon HD 4890 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported
- Turbo OC Edition - $322
Power Supply: CORSAIR 550W ATX12V V2.2 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready - $90
HD: Western Digital 320GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" - $50

Total: $706, or $672 with rebates.

What do you guys think? I believe everything is compatible now.

Also, what kind of cooler should I get? A CPU cooler or just an extra case fan?

Edited by PB Andy, 16 August 2009 - 02:23 PM.

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#7
Troy

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He was talking about a CPU cooler, in which case an aftermarket cooler might be handy if you are going to overclock. Otherwise just make sure the CPU comes with a cooler in the box, and you'll be fine.
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#8
PB Andy

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He was talking about a CPU cooler, in which case an aftermarket cooler might be handy if you are going to overclock. Otherwise just make sure the CPU comes with a cooler in the box, and you'll be fine.

Thanks. I am planning to unlock my 4th core of the CPU since my mobo should work for that (hopefully, with some luck), so I'll invest in a compatible CPU cooler.

Any words on the final computer? Thanks for all of your help guys!
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#9
Troy

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Unlocking the 4th core is different from overclocking...

Also I've never had any experience unlocking cores (never needed to) so I'd be interested to hear how you go with it.

Troy
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#10
PB Andy

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Unlocking the 4th core is different from overclocking...

Also I've never had any experience unlocking cores (never needed to) so I'd be interested to hear how you go with it.

Troy

Sorry about that, only somewhat knowledgeable on these things... OK so I'll order these and after attempting to unlock the 4th core I'll come back here and report. Also, went with the Scythe KATANA3 CPU cooler, it was one of the few coolers that was AM3 compatible.

Thanks for all of your help, this really is a great site. Keep it up.
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#11
Troy

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That Scythe looks an interesting design...

You'll have to upload some pics when it's finished :)
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#12
stettybet0

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From what I've read, unlocking the fourth core on a Phenom II X3 is only possible on a 790GX board from Biostar or ASRock.

Also note that the fourth core is usually disabled because it's defective/unstable, so even if you have an appropriate motherboard, you aren't guaranteed anything.
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#13
PB Andy

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From what I've read, unlocking the fourth core on a Phenom II X3 is only possible on a 790GX board from Biostar or ASRock.

Also note that the fourth core is usually disabled because it's defective/unstable, so even if you have an appropriate motherboard, you aren't guaranteed anything.

So I've read. I think the chances of unlocking it greatly diminish using an ASUS board, but from what I've read from a couple guides, it's possible on some. I'll let you guys know how it goes.
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#14
PB Andy

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Pictures as requested:

Antec 300 case
Case.JPG

Close-up of the Scythe Katana3 CPU Cooler
CPU_Cooler.JPG

Inside1
Inside1.JPG

Inside2
Inside2.JPG

Cable management is not the greatest. 1, Corsair PSU have a CRAP LOAD of cables! 2, Antec 300 is not as big as I thought. 3, I should have plugged everything in at the end. I may do this sometime in the future with this computer, but definitely not soon. I spent about 8-9 hours putting it together because it was my first time building a computer. Did a lot of trial and error, and there were a few episodes of me not doing [bleep] for an hour because I was clueless and started watching TV. After reading the manuals for the Case and Mobo, it became clearer and I finally got this thing running. The CPU cooler looks [bleep]ing AWESOME. Running on Vista Prem. 64-bit, waiting on that Windows 7... Also, I may add a sound card in the future (the Omega 7.1 most likely).

I've decided not to unlock the 4th core because it will probably won't work with my board, but more importantly it is disabled for a reason, and may be unstable or something. I think I'm better off just overclocking it.

Thanks for all the help guys.

Edited by PB Andy, 21 August 2009 - 01:58 PM.

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#15
Ferrari

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Cable management is not the greatest.

:) Yeah, it could definitely be better. :) Cut some holes, hide the cables behind the motherboard tray. Look at these videos...

Antec 300, Not the greatest, but it will give you the right idea.

If the case allows it, I think this is how it should always be done. Best video I know of for cable management...
TJ Harlow

Edited by Ferrari, 22 August 2009 - 12:48 AM.

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