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Gaming Computer: Would Like Opinions And Advice *Update

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January 5, 2006 7:44:00 PM

Gaming Computer: Budget Under $2000 *UPDATE

LCD
Dell UltraSharp 2005FPW 20.1-inch $375

Speakers
Logitech Z-2300 2.1 Speaker$94.98

Keyboard
Saitek Black Wired Eclipse Keyboard $46.95

Mouse
Razer Plasma Diamondback Black Mouse$43.98

Case
Lian Li PC-61 USB Black Aluminum ATX Mid Tower Computer Case $110

Power Supply
Antec TruePower 2.0 EPS12V ATX12V 550W Power Supply $99.99

Motherboard
ASUS A8R-MVP ATX AMD CrossFire Motherboard$139

CPU
AMD Athlon 64 3800+ 1GHz FSB Socket 939 Processor $282

RAM
OCZ 2GB (2 x 1GB) 184-Pin DDR SDRAM Dual Channel Platinum System Memory$235

Video Card
eVGA Geforce 7800GT$299

Hard Drive
Seagate Barracuda 250GB 3.5" Serial ATA150 $104

Total Price with shipping: $1,882

My primary interest is gaming. I am interested in overclocking, although I have never tried it before. Im ordering all of this from Newegg unless you think that I am overpaying and can show me a cheaper way without losing money on shipping. I would love all the opinions I can get, and any advice. If you see anything vital I have left out, please let me know. I already have all the software so I dont plan to purchase anything like that. I plan to order this around the middle to end of February. Also is that power supply compatible with the MB?

Thanks in advance,

Jordan
January 5, 2006 8:13:45 PM

Good choices on almost all fronts...I PERSONALLY do not trust that specific Maxtor hdd--you might be in the 6% that has to replace it in 6 months (I'm guesstimating based on how many of those maxtors I've had to replace here locally, so it may just be a bad batch in this area...). Other than that looks good.
January 5, 2006 9:27:39 PM

Im having trouble finding a motherboard im comfortable with. From the reviews I have read on Newegg DFI doesnt have much of a reputation for having stable boards. Any recommendations?
Related resources
January 5, 2006 9:50:29 PM

I've heard alot of raving about that A8N-SLi Premium ASUS board: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813131540

I personally own an ASRock 939 Dual-SATA II mobo, it works fine for me. I've heard mine isn't as stable as others when overclocking though, and it is not SLI capable (THWG says it has good quality components if not OC'ed). Don't own the above ASUS board but I've heard nothing but good things about it. Wait for another reply if you're still unsure.
January 5, 2006 9:55:45 PM

I don't plan to use SLI as of right now. Considering I dont have $559x2 to spend. So should I still plan on getting a SLI board, in case i want to upgrade?
January 5, 2006 10:19:00 PM

Ohh...I missed that :oops:  . No you likely don't need that feature--especially since you're getting an ATI video card that doesn't use SLi. I'm not really the motherboard expert as I have never really had any go bad on me...I've used very few modern ones. I know a thing or two, but as far as quality and speed of specific mobo brands or models, I'm not comfortable giving you uninformed advice. Hopefully someone else will join this thread :) 
January 5, 2006 11:04:38 PM

I agree on the Maxtor drive. They did get bought by Seagate, but the drives out right now are still Maxtor drives. I'd go with Seagate or Western Digital.

Viewsonic is a good brand for CRT monitors, but their LCD's for me haven't left a good impression. Remember that most LCD's are manufactured by the same plants, so they are all generally the same in quality. Samsung is the best performance-to-price ratio for my tastes.

Logitech speakers suck compared to Creative Labs. I have both brands, and Logitech falls short of quality compared to Creative and cost more.

Lian-Li, Saitek and Antec are all good. The latter I've heard problems with their power supplies though. Enermax has never done me wrong, ever.

DFI is great for LANboys, but I find they are strictly great for gaming only. I want quality for not just gaming. No knocking DFI, but I'll stick to Asus for mainboard needs.

nVidia makes faster GPU's right now for the price. 7800GT's are around $300 and they fly. I have an XFX which is factory overclocked, and it hauls pixels for the price. Also, 512MB is not needed right now, maybe in a couple of years, but performance vs. price, you'll lose.

Onboard sound is as good as any add-on card you'll buy. Plus, why add $75 to your total if you want to get 2.1 speakers anyway? To me an add-on sound card is for audiophiles or those that use there PC as an HTPC. Don't waste your money, DFI's onboard sound is plenty good and barely eats CPU cycles (10% or less when in use in games).
January 6, 2006 12:22:49 AM

I also added a floppy drive(Bios Updates) and artic silver thermal paste.
January 6, 2006 1:00:37 AM

You may want to consider building your own PC. I think the knowledge you gain by the research and effort is worth it. The advantages of building your own machine are:

1. You can choose your upgrade options. Many PC vendors will limit your upgrades.

2. From your experience, you will be able to assist others in making a choice between buying a system and building your own.

3. You will have improved or learned new skills, and these may carry over into a passion to be a part of the IT industry.

4. For your budget, you'll save some money. The trade-off is the time investment, but if time is not an issue then I'd really consider building your own machine. You might be able to save up to $1000 on your budget and still have something as good as or better than a system from a manufacturer.
January 6, 2006 1:41:31 AM

Lmfao, did you even read my post or click any of the links. Clearly im building my own computer. Not meaning to flame, but how to you get the idea im buying from a company like Dell or somen?
January 6, 2006 3:34:07 AM

I apologize for my remarks then. You are correct in that I did not read the post or look at the forum description. My intent was to try to provide some helpful advice, but sometimes that impulse overrides my common sense or being thorough. :oops: 
January 6, 2006 4:30:40 PM

/Bump
January 6, 2006 4:57:20 PM

Quote:
/Bump


Your updated config looks fine to me. Was there something else you want to know?
January 6, 2006 5:15:20 PM

As your getting a crossfire motherboard would it not be better to get the x1800xt instead of the 7800. that way you can bang another one in if needs be later.

I would take the x1800 over the 7800
January 6, 2006 6:18:54 PM

Alright, a few questions. Are Opteron Processors comparable in speed vs. price to the one I have chosen and are they compatible with the current asus MB i have chosen? Thirdly, will I see that much of a performance increase when going from the 7800gt to the Radeon X1800XL to justify spending $119.00 more?(Not counting the rebate, they take so long so I still have to spend the money now.) Or is this just so I will have the possibility of going SLI?

Thanks,

jordan
January 6, 2006 6:23:48 PM

Also what type of cooling do you recommend for opteron processors?
January 6, 2006 6:47:32 PM

I would be strict on following the rules with rebate, and they are pretty good about it, and it is 80bucks...bringind dif down to 60 dineros...
I have an A8R-MVP with a HiS X1800XT along with an Opteron 175 and 2x250gig WD SATA2 drives... Very good performance, what it is worth, after installing XP SP2 and all MS updates, NAV and NIS running in background, I got 9550 3Dmarks on 3DMark05...
January 6, 2006 10:09:11 PM

Any chance you could address the questions I asked in a lil more detail. ?I want to know more about opteron processors primarily, and about difference in vid card, price vs. performance.
January 7, 2006 1:47:39 AM

I don't know anything about opertrons but you should not get that crossfire motherboard with the 7800gt, get an asus with sli unless you don't want sli. Or if you want a radeon 1800xt it's better but the 7800gtx with 512mb is even better. As for your speakers I wouldn't get those I have these http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1683... if you have room they are great.
January 7, 2006 5:30:07 AM

Ok opteron socket 939 cpus are exactly the same cpu as the athlon 64 san diego. They are the same chip same instructions same every thing, the only difference is that the opterons are the cream of the crop.
They are built woth the better quality parts because they are designed for the stress of servers so need to be able to handle more stressing.

Now this factor of being able to handle more stress has meant that overclockers can push these babies big time with little effort on air cooling.

I have a 146 opteron 2ghz stock, currently overclocked running at 2.8ghz (thats a fx-57 i have now for a lot less money). I have even had it up to 3ghz but I backed off till its run in a bit more. This is all done on air cooling with a small voltage increase.
This means for £115 $257 (146) I have a cpu that would cost me £709 $1011 (fx-57) a big saving.

Now the cpu you have chosen runs at 2.4ghz with 512kb cache if you went for the opteron 150 thats a 2.4ghz 1mb cache with if you want the scope to go up to a lot more.

I would say are you ever going to overclock:
If yes get the opteron 148
If no get the 3800+
If maybe get the opteron 150 as you will be getting the same speeds as your previous choice just with the possibility of getteing great speeds at a later date.

As opteron 939s are sandiegio cores all 939 motherboars will suppoort them its just the manufactures are not allowed to say they support them.

Cooling Air is great on the opterons obviously the bigger the cooler the harder you may be able to push. Mine is using a zalman cnb7000-cu.
The stock cooler is also good i have seen people hit 2.8 on stock but depends on the chip.

Graphics card: have a look at the benchmarks Here the best option is the x1800xt the xl gets beaten by the 7800. If you get the 7800 change your motherboard for an SLI board instead of crossfire.
!