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I'M DONE!! Tell me what you think before I spend $1100 hehe

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January 15, 2006 6:53:18 AM

Whew, its been a lot of fun getting hyped about finally building a new computer to replace my trusty 5-year old 1.5GHz P4, and I think I'm ready to display what I've put together for you all to pick apart. I'm pushing my budget, and I still have to find a disk drive! If you see any place to save, be sure to mention it!

This PC will be used for gaming, what else? I do not plan on doing much, if any, overclocking. I have never done it before and any I do will be very cautious, so premium o/c parts are not necessary.

Case: AeroCool SPIRAL GALAXIES Aluminum ATX Case $85
Power Supply: Fortron AX450-PN ATX12V 450W Power Supply $50

Processor: AMD Opteron 148 Venus 1GHz FSB 1MB L2 Cache Socket 939 Processor - Retail $233
HS&F: Retail
Thermal Paste: Retail, pick up some AS5 if I need it

Motherboard: EPoX EP-9NPA+Ultra nForce4 Ultra AMD Motherboard - Retail $105

Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar SE16 250GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s $110

Memory: Corsair XMS 2GB (2x1GB) 184-Pin DDR 400 (PC3200) $195 ($235-$40)

Video Card: eVGA 256mb N517-AX 7800GT $314

Disk Drive: NEC Black IDE/ATAPI DVD Burner Model ND-3550A - OEM $39

Speakers: getting from a friend

Sound Card: onboard

TOTAL: even $1200, w/ rush next day delivery



Thanks so much to everyone for your help! I am compltely satisfied with the purchase!

More about : spend 1100 hehe

January 15, 2006 9:08:44 AM

The motherboard will fit in that case. I'd buy the Seagate 250gb hard drive instead of either of those. The BenQ drive has become nearly impossible to find, so go for the Sony DRU-810A, it's based on the DW1640 and is a good drive. It comes with a beige and black bezel, so no worries.
January 15, 2006 10:04:58 AM

Quote:
The motherboard will fit in that case. I'd buy the Seagate 250gb hard drive instead of either of those. The BenQ drive has become nearly impossible to find, so go for the Sony DRU-810A, it's based on the DW1640 and is a good drive. It comes with a beige and black bezel, so no worries.
Why the Seagate? It has a 8mb cache compared to both of the others which have 16mb.

That Sony looks good I guess, I'm going completely on other people's input to decide which one to get. It's a little pricey though.
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January 16, 2006 1:59:44 AM

Hm, I was under the impression that doubled cache size would help quite a bit.

What about the WD version? It's "in between" Maxtor and Seagate as far as quality, but still has the bigger cache.

Also I updated the questions at the bottom of my first post, please read! :) 
January 16, 2006 8:02:16 AM

Ooook! I have everything sorted out how I want it.

The last decision is about that RAM. I'm thinking the XMS is probably better since its normally $40 more, although the G.SKILL has slightly better timings (2-3-2-5 vs 2-3-3-6).

Also its been mentioned that I might do well to get a pair of 80gb or 120gb HDs and put them in raid 0, but I think I will pass on that for now and just set up some partitions.
January 16, 2006 9:33:36 AM

Good config :-)

I would use Corsair XMS over any other brand except maybe OCZ.
January 16, 2006 10:46:24 AM

Hrm, so which is it? The Seagate with 8mb cache, or the Western Digital with 16mb cache?

I added a new option, same as the original WD hard drive, except this one is a 320GB version, which uses larger plates (3x107gb instead of 3x83gb) which, empirically, makes it run faster. This is my current favorite.
January 16, 2006 12:15:33 PM

Quote:

Also its been mentioned that I might do well to get a pair of 80gb or 120gb HDs and put them in raid 0, but I think I will pass on that for now and just set up some partitions.


Don't waste your time with RAID 0. It makes your data inherently less safe (which is ironic given the acryonm RAID) and is more trouble then it's worth -- it knocks em dead in benchies but read any real world apps timings and there is no significant difference.

I'd go with the 250 GB WD. I've always had great luck with WD drives; I've had 2 Maxtor drives fail on me in 2 years :cry: 
January 17, 2006 2:17:11 AM

I decided against raid and on the WD 250GB. I changed the PSU from XClio to Fortran.

Annnd I think I'm done! Some final review over these pieces to ease my mind and I'll hit order!!
January 17, 2006 4:03:00 PM

Argh, it never ends!

For $45 more I could get a 3700+ instead of the 3200+. I have a little thinking and research to do about this one, but I will welcome any suggestions on this matter, although I think I'm gonna go ahead and step up to the 3700.
January 17, 2006 4:39:04 PM

For $45 buck you cant go wrong. Darn newegg the price has been going up on the 3200+ since december. Everything else looks good.
January 17, 2006 4:47:24 PM

Everyone will tell you different stories on HDDs. It all depends on which brand has given them trouble - but nowadays they all have their ups and downs. I own 2 x Maxtor DiamondMax 10 (300GB, 7200RPM, 16mb Cache) and I've owned other brands in the past. My last drive to break down was a an old Seagate 8.4gb, but it's been running for years on an old machine.

I'd get the one with the bigger cache - just make sure that for any HDD you get, keep the warranty details.

If you can afford it, get the better processor - thats unless you plan to upgrade to bigger any time soon (like soon after M2 mobos are released). But for $45 you cant go wrong.
January 17, 2006 4:57:07 PM

well if your trying to save money get 1gb of value memory instead of 2gb... memory is the easiest/quickest thing to upgrade so if you find money later on you can install anoter gig in under a minute, also it may turn out that you wont need 2gb of memory the diff from 1gig and 2 isnt very big, its much bigger from 512 to 1gb..
January 17, 2006 5:54:10 PM

save 14 bucks and buyt the XFX 7800gt. You get FarCry with it and a lifetime warrenty
January 18, 2006 4:40:47 AM

Finished and ordered! Original post is updated with what I bought.

I went with an Opteron 148 because it has the same stock speeds as the 3700+. That way if I don't, or before I do, any OCing, I'll have the same processor.
!