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Old 11-15-2010, 12:12 AM   #1
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Default My first PC build...

Building your own computer seems to be a right of passage, but it's something I've yet to do. My PC is long in the tooth and I want to build its replacement. I'm looking for something solid, fast, and quiet. I want power but don't play PC games, so I don't need to get carried away with graphics support. I have an initial budget of around $700, but will go over within reason if worthwhile.

Here is my preliminary list. Please comment:

Mobo: GIGABYTE GA-880GA-UD3H
$109 less $10 MIR

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 970 Black Edition
$185.99, includes $15 newegg gift card

Ram: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB
$64.99

Boot drive: Kingston SSDNow V Series SNV425-S2BD/64GB
$124.99 less $25 MIR

Storage drive: Western Digital Caviar Black WD6402AAEX
$69.99

Case: Antec Six Hundred
$65

Power Supply: OCZ Fatal1ty OCZ550FTY 550W
$59 less $20 MIR

Optical: LITE ON DVDRW
$25.99

Total of above is $712 shipped from newegg. I then get back $55 in rebates plus a $15 newegg giftcard.

I'm skipping a GPU for now to keep the budget in check, but plan on adding a video card later. I'll pump the rebate money back into it to partially cover the GPU in "6 to 8 weeks" when they come back. I'll also start with 4 gb of ram, but will be upgrading down the road when DDR3 comes down in price.

May remove the LiteOn drive in favor of a bluray combo drive, or may keep it and add bluray later.

So, what am I missing? I'll get some good thermal paste and already have the OS (win 7 pro 64 bit). Feel free to point out what I'm doing wrong and link me to the manual. I surely deserve it.

This will be replacing an 8 year old retail bought computer (2.4 p4, 512mb ram, 256mb PCI (not PCI-E) gpu). So this new rig will be a substantial upgrade.
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Old 11-15-2010, 12:21 AM   #2
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you think 640 gigs is gonna be enought why not go bigger or do you plan on running more than one drive? and also from what i have seen ddr3 is not that awesome performance for the cash outlay siomething like 10% more effeciency. ooh i see the SSD cool beans i would still want more space though lol esp if you store movies etc it gets eaten up quick.
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Old 11-15-2010, 12:40 AM   #3
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Here is what I would start with.
AMD phenom x6 desktop(no os)
http://www.ascendtech.us/customkitit...TPCPH2X6109002

Would probably upgrade the motherboard(base one seems to suck) and memory, but you could probably stay in your budget
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Old 11-15-2010, 12:42 AM   #4
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Building it yourself, like with almost everything, gets you the best bang for your buck. I've built my last 5 or 6 machines, and all have been pretty much top of the line machines for their time, maybe some of it was just previously out-dated by new released parts (like buying the AMD Phenom II X4 940BE right when the 945 and 950 series stuff came out, and use of high end DDR2 instead of cheap DDR3, which isn't much better) just for extra saving. That gives me 95% of the performance, and all for half of what companies wanted for pre-built machines. Plus I find the stockpiling of parts and the build a lot of fun. Lots of research, reading reviews and learning stuff as you go. Overall an enjoyable thing, typically. Never had an issue with any build, thanks to good research, and a bit of luck I guess.
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Old 11-15-2010, 12:43 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by magnamx-5 View Post
you think 640 gigs is gonna be enought why not go bigger or do you plan on running more than one drive? and also from what i have seen ddr3 is not that awesome performance for the cash outlay siomething like 10% more effeciency. ooh i see the SSD cool beans i would still want more space though lol esp if you store movies etc it gets eaten up quick.
Thanks. My proposed build has nearly 9x the storage of my current PC, which I've only managed to fill 60 out of 80 gb over 8 years. So I don't think it's an issue, but if I do manage to start filling it up, I'll get more storage as it's warranted.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NA6C-Guy View Post
Building it yourself, like with almost everything, gets you the best bang for your buck. I've built my last 5 or 6 machines, and all have been pretty much top of the line machines for their time, maybe some of it was just previously out-dated by new released parts (like buying the AMD Phenom II X4 940BE right when the 945 and 950 series stuff came out, and use of high end DDR2 instead of cheap DDR3, which isn't much better) just for extra saving. That gives me 95% of the performance, and all for half of what companies wanted for pre-built machines. Plus I find the stockpiling of parts and the build a lot of fun. Lots of research, reading reviews and learning stuff as you go. Overall an enjoyable thing, typically. Never had an issue with any build, thanks to good research, and a bit of luck I guess.
Yeah I started looking for a preassembled machine but couldn't find one that I wanted at a reasonable price. When I started looking at components, I considered going with something a little older to save a bit of money, and it looks like the difference would be in the $150 range to get into a high clock speed 2 or 3 core. Tempting. But I think the better value is in the 970. I'm not popping for the i7.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zarniwoop42 View Post
Here is what I would start with.
AMD phenom x6 desktop(no os)
http://www.ascendtech.us/customkitit...TPCPH2X6109002

Would probably upgrade the motherboard(base one seems to suck) and memory, but you could probably stay in your budget
Thanks for the link.
I do want to build this on my own though for the learning experience and the braggin rights.

Last edited by Ben; 11-15-2010 at 01:07 AM.
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Old 11-15-2010, 11:35 AM   #6
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Surprised about the solid state drive. You think there is much benefit of running it over just a standard sata?
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Old 11-15-2010, 01:31 PM   #7
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Surprised about the solid state drive. You think there is much benefit of running it over just a standard sata?
Never had one myself, but from what I read and hear from those who do have them, yes. Dunno, guess I'll find out.

As far as I can tell, the spindle drive I picked out is also reasonably fast for mechanical.
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Old 11-15-2010, 02:02 PM   #8
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LOL, get SSD, but skimp on GPU.


Makes sense.


(I'm trolling, I see you're not playing games)
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Old 11-15-2010, 02:07 PM   #9
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I approve of the use of SSD. You're going to like how snappily windows will boot and run.
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Old 11-15-2010, 02:27 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbrown7815 View Post
LOL, get SSD, but skimp on GPU.


Makes sense.


(I'm trolling, I see you're not playing games)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryce View Post
I approve of the use of SSD. You're going to like how snappily windows will boot and run.
^^That's what I'm looking for.

I do plan on doing the GPU in the near future. Just figured I'd wait for the rebate money to come back to help pay for it while I watch prices.
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Old 11-15-2010, 02:38 PM   #11
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Be careful with the SDDs. You have to set them up correctly because they do not last as long as a HDD. At least you did a year or two ago when I did my SSD setup.

EDIT: This looks to not be the case anymore! Good deal.
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Old 11-15-2010, 02:50 PM   #12
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www.hardware-revolution.com <--------- good stuff
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Old 11-15-2010, 09:24 PM   #13
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Good link. Thanks
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Old 11-16-2010, 12:41 AM   #14
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Why not spend $6 less and get 6 cores. Easily OCed to 3.5 GHz on stock cooling. Multi-tasks like a ****. For more explicit directions just read all Newegg comments.

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Old 11-16-2010, 09:18 AM   #15
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I wouldn't bother with SSD as Win7 boots pretty fast (assuming that's the OS you're running). But I leave my **** on all the time too.
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Old 11-16-2010, 09:22 AM   #16
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My next build, which might be soon, WILL have 1090T action, unless they outdate it before then. Honestly, 6 core **** snuck up on me. I went for a few months without looking at computer stuff, then I look at newegg and see 6 core technology on both sides... damn!?
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Old 11-16-2010, 09:24 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by r808 View Post
Why not spend $6 less and get 6 cores. Easily OCed to 3.5 GHz on stock cooling. Multi-tasks like a ****. For more explicit directions just read all Newegg comments.

Because 4 cores is plenty to multitask. Remember the more cores you have the less efficient they are. 4 cores @3.5ghz > 6 cores at 2.8ghz. I bet that x4 smokes that x6.

Does AMD have the turboboost like the i7s? Where you can have 4 cores @xghz when multitasking, or 2/1 cores @xghz when you don't need multiple cores.
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Old 11-16-2010, 09:28 AM   #18
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Because 4 cores is plenty to multitask. Remember the more cores you have the less efficient they are. 4 cores @3.5ghz > 6 cores at 2.8ghz. I bet that x4 smokes that x6.

Does AMD have the turboboost like the i7s? Where you can have 4 cores @xghz when multitasking, or 2/1 cores @xghz when you don't need multiple cores.
But what about 3.5 vs. 3.5? I'll take the 6 core. Preferably the 1090T for only $40 more. I find it insane that AMD can offer their top of the line processors for less than $250. Which is why I have always been an AMD guy. Intel might have better stuff, but for multiple times more cost, and only slightly better in performance. The 1090T apparently can run pretty hot and remain stable. So even with stock cooler, you can coax just under 4ghz out of it.
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Old 11-16-2010, 09:53 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by r808 View Post
Why not spend $6 less and get 6 cores. Easily OCed to 3.5 GHz on stock cooling. Multi-tasks like a ****. For more explicit directions just read all Newegg comments.

Good feedback, and the answer is
The data's conflicting on which is better.

Also, as much as I want the SSD for geek factor, reading around I'm thinking I might be happier with a RAID0 setup for now, and later if I get bored, I can explore SSD after it's better sorted and the $/GB is lower. Reading about RAID0 failures also is tempting me to add a "green" back up drive or other external back up solution.
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Old 11-16-2010, 11:49 AM   #20
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If you haven't purchased the parts yet... wait till black friday. There's usually a ton of deals on hardware. Should even be able to find a decent GPU for cheap.

Though... i will admit last years black friday deals sorta sucked.

Heck .. if you really want to move towards geek factor.. look into water cooling! can either aim for a ridiculously quiet computer, or one that you can overclock and keep low temperatures.

now that makes it fun!
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