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#1
SomeCrazyStuff

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Hi all!

I am having some hardware difficulties and am looking at replacing a couple of core components. I wanted to throw out a possibility and see what Comments or suggestions I could get.

I currently own a custom built PC with a ASUS P5N E-SLI MoBo, 4GB Patriot Extreme Viper Series RAM, 500GB Seagate 7200RPM HDD, 500W PSU?, and the Q6600 2.6GHZ quad core CPU. Also I have a nvidia 8500 Vid card (I believe that is the model.. lol)

I am looking at replacing the MoBo and CPU (Memory was just replaced via warranty). I am looking at the Core i7-860 and the Asus P7P55D Premium MoBo. Of course i have also looked into a new PSU as I have been told my current may be the reason behind my current problems. The PSU i am looking at is Corsair CMPSU-1000Hx; it is a 1000W PSU.. Is this a bit overkill on the PSU? I have never had to purchase a seperate psu and have no idea of how to determine what i have in my current system or what wattage supply i will need.

Also I would love some ideas on cooling. Think just air cooling via fans is sufficient? or should i start looking into liquid cooling?

Any ideas?

Edit: there was no pun intended in the line about my "current" PSU problems... :)

Edited by SomeCrazyStuff, 08 November 2009 - 12:16 PM.

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#2
Digerati

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Is this a bit overkill on the PSU?

Yes. Although it does not hurt anything to have way more power than you need (except your wallet), there is no advantage to have so much extra either. Some overhead is good, but not tons more. See my canned text below for sizing and choosing the correct PSU.

Think just air cooling via fans is sufficient?

Of course! If it were not, millions and millions of PCs would be overheating and failing under warranty - not something PC makers would like to deal with. Also note that using alternative cooling on retail versions of CPUs VOIDS THE WARRANTY!!!!

Use the eXtreme PSU Calculator Lite to determine your power supply unit (PSU) requirements. Plug in all the hardware you think you might have in 2 or 3 years (extra drives, bigger or 2nd video card, more RAM, etc.). Be sure to read and heed the notes at the bottom of the page. I recommend setting Capacitor Aging to 30%, and if you participate in distributive computing projects (e.g. BOINC or Folding@Home), I recommend setting TDP to 100%. These steps ensure the supply has adequate head room for stress free operation and future demands. Research your video card and pay particular attention to the power supply requirements for your card listed on your video card maker's website. If not listed, check a comparable card (same graphics engine and RAM) from a different maker. The key specifications, in order of importance are:
  • Current (amperage or amps) on the +12V rail,
  • Efficiency,
  • Total wattage.
Then look for power supply brands listed under the "Good" column of PC Mechanic's PSU Reference List. Ensure the supplied amperage on the +12V rails of your chosen PSU meets the requirements of your video card. Don't try to save a few dollars by getting a cheap supply. And don't count on supplies that come included with a case. They are often underrated, budget or poor quality models "tossed in" to make the case sale. Digital electronics, including CPUs, RAM, and today's advanced graphics cards, need clean, stable power. A good, well chosen supply will provide years of service and upgrade wiggle room. I strongly recommend you pick a supply with an efficiency rating equal to, or greater than 80%. Look for the 80 Plus - EnergyStar Compliant label. And don't forget to budget for a good UPS with AVR (automatic voltage regulation), as surge and spike protectors are inadequate.
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#3
SomeCrazyStuff

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haha hi again and thx for the info!

I took a look at the psu calculator and I think i have set everything right.. It came out to about 350W PSU but I think I am going to be extra cautious and get a 750W from Corsair.

do you see any issues with that particular MoBo/CPU combination.. That is the part that has me the most worried. Also, now that I am thinking about it I will probably get a new heatsink/fan and some artic silver heat transfer gel. Any recommendations there?

I have a good UPS at the house already that I keep my computer(s) plugged into. And my personal computer that I took too work(the one you and I did the RAM troubleshooting on) is plugged into their commercial ups conditioned power supply so im good there as well xD

Edited by SomeCrazyStuff, 08 November 2009 - 02:04 PM.

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#4
Digerati

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I have a Corsair on this system and so far, no problems. I did have a bit of a scare when I first installed it - it was so quiet, I did not think it came on!
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#5
SomeCrazyStuff

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hahahaha! that is exactly something i would do...


now i know to look out for it.. xD

do you see any issues with that particular MoBo/CPU combination.. That is the part that has me the most worried. Also, now that I am thinking about it I will probably get a new heatsink/fan and some artic silver heat transfer gel. Any recommendations there?


Any thoughts on this?

Edited by SomeCrazyStuff, 08 November 2009 - 03:12 PM.

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#6
Digerati

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do you see any issues with that particular MoBo/CPU combination.. That is the part that has me the most worried. Also, now that I am thinking about it I will probably get a new heatsink/fan and some artic silver heat transfer gel. Any recommendations there?

The CPU is on the motherboard's CPU Support List so it should be fine. But remember, using a 3rd party cooler with a retail version of the CPU voids the warranty of the CPU.
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#7
SomeCrazyStuff

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right.. where might i find a list of cpu coolers that are "in warranty" with the cpu..? Also, would mixing this cpu and MoBo present a problem where using a hetsink specified for the cpu would void something in warranty with the MoBo?

lol if you can't tell i am collecting as much info as possible.. dont want to make a decision without know what the consequeces will be..
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#8
Digerati

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where might i find a list of cpu coolers that are "in warranty" with the cpu..?

There are none - only the coolers supplied with the retail versions of the CPUs are allowed. See my canned text on CPU warranties below.

The motherboard does not care what cooler you use - as long as it physically fits without touching any of the surrounding components. That is not the problem it used to be since most motherboard makers user solid capacitors which tend to be shorter.

***

It should be noted that using a 3rd party cooler on retail (not OEM) versions of Intel and AMD CPUs that come with heat sink fan assemblies voids the warranty!!! And damage attributed to overclocking is not covered under any CPU warranty either, regardless any overclocking features or software provided by motherboard makers. Certainly, this is not a concern for some enthusiasts. But it is a concern for many others, and everyone should be aware of it.

Intel CPU Warranty Information (my bold added)

Intel warrants the Product (defined as the boxed Intel® processor and the accompanying thermal solution)... ... if the Product is properly used and installed, for a period of three (3) years. This Limited Warranty does NOT cover:

• damage to the Product due to external causes, including accident, problems with electrical power, abnormal electrical, mechanical or environmental conditions, usage not in accordance with product instructions, misuse, neglect, alteration, repair, improper installation, or improper testing; OR
• any Product which has been modified or operated outside of Intel's publicly available specifications

AMD CPU Warranty Information (their bold)

AMD is more straightforward on their page where it says the following concerning their retail, Processor In A Box (PIB), versions of their CPUs:

This Limited Warranty shall be null and void if the AMD microprocessor which is the subject of this Limited Warranty is used with any heatsink/fan other than the one provided herewith.

This limited warranty does not cover damages due to external causes, including improper use, problems with electrical power, accident, neglect, alteration, repair, improper installation, or improper testing.

The good news is since both AMD and Intel warranty their boxed CPUs for three years, and since replacing them at their cost is not something they want to do, both make excellent cooling solutions both in terms of cooling abilities, but also in noise levels.
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#9
SomeCrazyStuff

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hmm.. sounds good to me.. how about cooling for other parts of the MoBo? say the north/southbridges and such? can I rely on CPU fan cooling them effectively as well?
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#10
Digerati

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Motherboard designers design the placement of those devices with stock cooling solutions in mind. My advice is to stop trying to second guess the engineers. Unless you have advanced degrees in electronics engineering, it is not likely you are going to improve on what they have done.
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#11
SomeCrazyStuff

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Oh I wasnt at all trying to do better than the engineers. I have just heard too many horor stories and other people ranting on things like that so i was wanting to make sure I covered all bases. Besides.. I don't want to have to do this again in a year's time because i was negligant on a issue that is easy to prevent.

Thank you again for your help and for the info!

Motherboard designers design the placement of those devices with stock cooling solutions in mind. My advice is to stop trying to second guess the engineers. Unless you have advanced degrees in electronics engineering, it is not likely you are going to improve on what they have done.


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#12
Digerati

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Oh I wasnt at all trying to do better than the engineers. I have just heard too many horor stories and other people ranting on things like that so i was wanting to make sure I covered all bases. Besides.. I don't want to have to do this again in a year's time because i was negligant on a issue that is easy to prevent.

I hear you. No harm in asking, that's for sure. Homework first is typically much better, then fixing after.
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