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Custom build advice

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Hi, I`m planning to do a custom build to replace my current desktop. Although I`ve changed HHDs before this will be my first time to build a computer so your help on a few things will be greatly appreciated.

I`m planning to use the computer primarily for design work (quark, photoshop, etc), office functions, listening to and managing mp3s, and to a limited extent games. I would like to make it as fast as possible though as I don't plan on changing it for a long time after this.

I also want a system that is as quiet as possible. I currently live in Tokyo and it gets very hot and humid here in the summer so my present computer gets very noisy due to the fans (the computer is not in a room with aircon). Sometimes its like having a small car engine in the room!

My current desktop set up is as follows:

Mainboard : Shuttle XPC
Chipset : nVidia nForce2 IGP
Processor : AMD Athlon XP 2600+ (thoroughbred)
Physical Memory : 1024 MB DDR SDRAM
Video Card : ATI Technologies Inc Radeon 9600 XT (V350)
Hard Disk : Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 (320 GB - IDE)

These are the parts that I am looking at for the custom build - this list is incomplete as I am still researching - any recommendations are appreciated

cpu: Intel Core 2 Duo E6600
motherboard: Asus P5B Deluxe
case: Antec P150 case with NeoHE 430 power supply
HDD: seagate barracuda 7200.10 400GB sata
RAM: DDR2-800 DDR2 SDRAM (2 x 1GB)
video: ??????
soundcard: ??????


1. Apart from the monitor (Dell 2005FPW) and the keyboard etc, is it worth transferring any of the parts from my existing setup to the new computer (either permanently or for a short time to be upgraded at a later date)?

2. I've heard about problems with the NeoHE PSU in the P150 case and Asus motherboards - does any one have any experience/advice?

3. Is it worth buying in a separate soundcard? My use is mainly listening to mp3s.

4. I have an external Lacie D2 triple interface with Firewire 800. I use it for back-up. At the moment I use the USB connection - is it worth getting a Firewire 800 card?

5. Can anyone recommend other possible part alternatives that may avoid compatibility issues (e.g. PSU and motherboard) or that might work out better value? For example I was originally considering the Asus P5B and not the P5B Deluxe but I would like something with firewire as well as USB.

6. As regards the Asus P5B deluxe - I've read that its not fan cooled - it is passive cooled (although its possible I misinterpreted this). Is this effective? In mid summer its over 30 degrees C here, so the system can get pretty hot. Also in the p150 case there is a section for two 92mm fans to cool the HDDs. These are not supplied - is it worth putting fans into the section and if so any recommendations for quiet fans?

Any thing else you think I should bear in mind would also be helpful. Like I said its my my first time doing this!

Many thanks in advance. Your help and time is greatly appreciated.
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Many of the options you want are availible on motherboards today. As long as you don't video edit or do lots of gaming and want all the effects on your 5.1 system, stick with onboard, its not worth it. Firwire comes with most motherboards today.

Use your old hard drive.

Dump the PSU, get a better one. 95% of all cases that come with PSU, suck. They usually arn't as efficiant, thus generating more heat and are more prone to error, meaning they could short out, taking your computer with it. Buying a good PSU is an investment.

What kind of ram are you getting, OCZ doesn't work with a lot of Asus motherboards.

If sound is an issue, I suggest you get a passive cooled video card. Your motherboard is cooled with heat pipe (or passivly cooled), they're a little less effective then fans but this shouldn't be an issue.

Get a case that can support 2 120mm fans. Hard drive normally don't overheat, so cooling them shouldn't be an issue, again as long as you can keep the case cool with the 2 case fans you'll be fine.

In your next post can you link me to the exact parts you are planning on getting.


Edited by james_8970, 10 May 2007 - 12:03 PM.

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