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Components & Compatibility


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#1
Smilodon_UP

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Evening,

After finally getting my current PC back on it's feet for the most part following malware/virus, I'm looking at maybe upgrading by mid-Summer/Fall. This current system still works pretty well for casual older gaming, but the increased requirements of the current generation of games and internet combined with the trends in MMOGs and the like make some kind of upgrade a wise choice.

This system is at least four years old, if not five or six in actuality. I would like to keep running 32-bit Windows XP SP3 - I have not been real impressed by anything I've seen or read with 7 or Vista, so sticking with XP is a must.
(In fact, I was looking at picking up Microsoft Windows XP Home SP2 OEM rather than relying on an old Gateway disk a relative had for backup/repair.)

Component-wise, it has been a while since I've built a PC but given that I have access to the internet this time that should I hope not be an issue.

This is what I was looking at for a baseline moderate gaming/home system, with room to expand or upgrade as necessary. I will not be doing any overclocking although that option is available later, and am not absolutely tied to these items. These are just the ones that seemed to have better reviews and would be most likely to work together that I can budget enough to buy. Paying somewhat extra on a few items is OK for long-term reliability.

Core Components
AMD Phenom II X2 555 Black Edition Callisto 3.2GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Socket AM3 80W Dual-Core Desktop Processor - C3 Revision HDZ555WFGMBOX
GIGABYTE GA-870A-UD3 AM3 AMD 870 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL
HIS H467QR1GH Radeon HD 4670 1GB 128-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card

Other Components
Western Digital Caviar Blue WD3200AAKX 320GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
TEAC Black 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM IDE/ATAPI DVD-ROM Drive Model DV516E/B/S
Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
SeaSonic X750 Gold 750W ATX12V V2.3/EPS 12V V2.91 SLI Ready 80 PLUS GOLD Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply

Nice to have, but not essential at this time.
COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus RR-B10-212P-G1 "Heatpipe Direct Contact" Long Life Sleeve 120mm CPU Cooler Compatible Intel Core i5 & Intel Core i7
HP Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM SATA 24X Multiformat DVD Writer
AFT PRO-55U All-in-one USB 2.0 Card Reader

Hooking it all together -- Not very sure on this one, as I have never had a PC case with a bottom PSU or SATA.
Rosewill 18" Serial ATA Black Flat Cable w/ Locking Latch Support 6 Gbps, 3 Gbps, and 1.5 Gbps transfer rate Model RC-18"-SA2-BK
Some kind of IDE cable for Teac optical drive.
Some kind of longer/additional molex connectors for PSU to other components?

Edited by Smilodon_UP, 04 June 2011 - 11:21 PM.

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#2
iammykyl

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Hi.

AS you will not be building for a while you should do some more research for the AMD Socket AM3+ Motherboards.

The Socket is backward compatible with all AM3 CPUs, so you could still use a Phenom.

> http://www.vadvert.c...therboards.html

Edited by iammykyl, 05 June 2011 - 03:28 AM.

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#3
Digerati

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I would like to keep running 32-bit Windows XP SP3 - I have not been real impressed by anything I've seen or read with 7 or Vista, so sticking with XP is a must.

Then why get modern hardware? XP was designed over 10 years ago to support DOS era hardware from 10+ years before that. XP was designed during a time when security was an afterthought. And 32-bit is history.

I won't argue about Vista, but 64-bit Windows 7 is, far and away, the best, most secure Windows ever. It was NOT designed to support antiquated legacy hardware or software. It was designed to support today's and tomorrow's HW and SW and it was designed with security being a forefront concern.

(In fact, I was looking at picking up Microsoft Windows XP Home SP2 OEM rather than relying on an old Gateway disk a relative had for backup/repair.)

That's good, because using the old Gateway disk would be illegal.

with room to expand or upgrade as necessary

Room? With 32-bit, you have already capped your RAM capacity so there's ZERO expansion or upgrade possibility there. With XP already 2 generations behind the times, there's no reason to expect new hardware will even have XP drivers. Same with software. IE9, by far the best and most secure IE to date, will not even run on XP because XP is too archaic!

If you are not overclocking now, then there's no need for a 3rd party cooler now. But even so, the supplied cooler that comes with Intel and AMDs are very capable and will support minor overclocking. HOWEVER, it must be noted that overclocking and/or using a 3rd party cooler violates the terms of the warranty! If the 3 year warranty is not a concern, then there are many 3rd party coolers to choose from - but of course, none of them will replace your CPU should their fans die and damage to the CPU occurs.
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#4
Smilodon_UP

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Thanks for the input so far.


I learned several things today-

First, I had no clue on the difference between OEM and Full Retail versions - this PC did not come with a system disk which is why I have to rely on others hanging onto old XP OS disks. Given that the last PC I did build went through two DOA Dragon MBs before I got an Epox that worked (using a full copy of Win98 luckily), I have no desire at all to mess with OEM software anything tied to a specific item of equipment that can break. My luck is not that good, so I think I'll shop for a full version of whatever OS I can get.


I do not want to start flames and I'm not disputing XP is an old OS, this is just an honest question - was there not a 64-bit XP program? I am hesitant about switching to 64-bit for the most part due to all the stories and reviews I keep coming across about issues with compatibility between components and 64 versus 32-bit operations. This issue seems to occur a lot with graphic cards for some reason.


I had no clue about RAM being capped by 32-bit. But after reading a few articles I kind of get the gist of the mathematical limitations of address allocation between 32 and 64. My question now is, how do I tell if a CPU chip is 32 or 64 bit when it doesn't say in the details?


I never use IE unless the site just won;t run using Firefox.

Edited by Smilodon_UP, 05 June 2011 - 03:53 PM.

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#5
Digerati

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Almost all, if not all CPUs, motherboards, and RAM support 64-bit. As I noted 32-bit is history.

Yes there was a 64-bit XP.

due to all the stories and reviews I keep coming across

Oh? Got current examples?
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#6
Smilodon_UP

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Just those from hours reading through reviews on Newegg or the like this past week - And they probably weren't true anyways.
I apologize for riling you, that was not my intention. I'm just ignorant.


You're right, I don't know enough to be contemplating a build. No worries.

And you win, I'll just lurk until I have problems, like the one with Vassal that seem unsolvable.


Let me repeat - You're right. You win. Problem solved.
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#7
Digerati

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I'm just ignorant.

The ignorant just trudge along and don't ask questions. You ask questions.

There's nothing for me to win. Sorry if I come across that way. You win if you are happy and that has nothing to do with me. And that does not mean you have to have the latest and greatest. But sadly, if it were only latest computing technologies, it would be one thing. But badguys have forced the rest of us to become security experts too. :yes: And part of that is staying current - and XP is not current.

The problem with user reviews is they are written by users, not expert reviewers using tried and true testing methods, in testing facilities. And happy people don't complain. So don't put much stock in user reviews, unless you see a whole bunch of people complaining about the same thing, indicating a serious trend.

My issues with 64 vs 32 stems from my frustration as a hardware technician, seeing computer hardware, fully capable of supporting 64-bit for years, being stifled by the lack of 64-bit software including - infuriatingly - hardware drivers. But since that has all turned around in the last 18 months or so and 64-bit support is widespread, I cringe when I see someone about to plunk down good money for modern 64-bit capable hardware, then wanting to throttle it back with a 32-bit OS. Me imposing my opinion? I suppose - I am pushing 60 and I do get opinionated. But I think it's a darn good opinion! :unsure: :)
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