Advice on CPU/Chipset

I'm about to undertake my first home built computer and after reading this forum and others I've come up with these two choices for the major components:
AMD Athlon 850Mhz
128mb Corsair Ram
Matrox G450 Video Card
Addtronics ET3890A w/300W PS
Pentium III 866EB
ASUS CUSL2-C i815EP chipset
128mb Corsair Ram
Matrox G450 Video Card
Addtronics ET3890A w/300W PS

I will probably not do any overclocking. I rarely play 3D games. My main use will be graphics design with Photoshop and a little CAD work. Can anyone comment good/bad on either of these two setups? Thanks for the help
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  1. If yo gonna use W2k, go with P3, otherwise Athlon is ok for rendering graphigz. But if i had the same clock speed choice, I would have P3 with closed eyez. Have both at home...

    "akuna mutata" braza... :wink:
  2. YOu might find your CAD program better optomised for SSE than 3D-NOW, or you may find other things optomized in it for the Intel chipset or CPU. If you know otherwise, the AMD is cheaper. I have the CUSL2 myself.

    Suicide is painless...........
  3. Hi,

    You don't mention what o/s you'll be running but I think you'll find that Win2K will need 256Mb minimum to be able to stretch it's legs. Sure you can run 128, but youll probably be short before you start running any CAD or graphic software, so expect a lot of paging.

    With CAD and graphics in mind I'd look to 256Mb minimum, prefereably single stick for maximum future upgrade - especially since prices are so down at the moment...

    Also don't discount the other components as minor - choice of HDD can make a lot of difference to performance. I persoanlly have found the IBM 7200rpm UATA disks exceptionally fast/reliable units.

    My 0.02c

    Good luck!


    -Your Comany Names Could Be Here-
    e-mail for application details.
  4. Thanks for replies. I should have mentioned I'll probably run WinMe and the hard drive is IBM Deskstar 7200RPM
  5. Hi Emily:

    While I fully agree with all of peteb's advice, you may find you need even more memory with Photoshop (depending on what you do with it). I do large photos and I found the performance with 512MB much better (but that's with Win2K).

    I have an ASUS CUSL2 (with an 866MHz P3) and I can tell you it's one fine board. However some guys around here have had very negative comments about the CUSL2-C, such as the following remarks from "Stable", a knowledgeable contributor to these forums.

    "It (the CUSL2-C) actually runs slower than the CUSL2 with the same chipset! The CUSL2 is much more stable in every variation. Additionally, our specs are saying the CUSL2 runs faster (than the CUSL2-C) in every variation."
  6. HI
    If you want the best system, especially for 3d ,AMD and some other listed components would only be considered in the middle to low end category.
    For a reasonable amount , you would be able to get the following P4 system which is very fast..


    2x 128 Meg 800 mhz RAMBUS (this is dual channel for 3.2 GBPS bandwidth 2 times DDR !)

    2x 15,000 rpm Cheatah 18 GIG Ultra 160 scsi Drives (3.8 MS
    one for OS and one for software, can operate concurrently for close to 180 MBPS sustained ! )

    Geforce 2 or 3 64 meg video

    Kenwoood 72X Multilaser CD or Toshiba 16\48 DVD

    WINDOWS 2000 sp1 with DD3d 8a both P4 compiled !!

    this will outperform any AMD system with similiar components
    RAMBUS has superior maximum bandwidth expecially dual channel where both ram modules are effectively operating at 1600 mhz concurrently

    also with P4 compiled software like dd3d 8a, there is a trememdous speed gain.
    P4 has dual FP units operating a 3 GHZ or 2x, and can handle more operations in CAD and rendering
    also P4 has a cache prediction rate of 95% thanks to a table that is 8x times larger than P3 or AMD
    it has a 20 stage pipeline and 8 way cache as
    well as a 400 mhz memory bus compared with 200-266 for AMD

    any 3D app using P4 optimization will outshine anything
    the spec mark for the P4 is 550 and its FP is 540 !
    currently the fastest CPU around
    do yourself a favor get the P4, it will be upgradable past 2 GHZ this year !
    we build thousands of high end Cad and Rendering systems for clients and test alot of hardware like TOM does, so I am speaking from hands on knowledge :)

    I also do 3d work on the side and use 3d MAX, Acad, Lightwave,and Photoshop and they are very fast on a P4 :)

    The P4 is the fastest we have tested by far

    hope that helps


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    Ultra High Performance Computers-
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