Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Please advise me on these component choices for new system.

Last response: in Systems
Share
March 13, 2006 4:45:50 PM

First off, thanks for reading this.

I have a 4+ year old Gateway that I abhor greatly. Now to the point of action since I have been playing BF2 and it is just barely able to run it.

I have decided to build my own system after being raped by Gateway and Compaq in the past (never again!). This will be my first time custom building a system, but I am confident I can undertake this task.

I am a starving student so this is my attempt at a cost-effective gaming system. Please let me know if these components will work well together or if there are any better choices available. I do plan on OC'ing the system once it is complete (1st time OC'er also).

Opteron 165 - 325.00

DFI Ultra-D - 122.99

OCZ 2x1gb platinum - 199.99

7900gt - 315.00

Antec Truepower II - 89.99

Cooler Master Centurion 5 - 49.99

WD 250GB Caviar - 97.00

Total - $1200.00

The 7900gt is out of stock at the moment, but I have auto-notify on for it. Hopefully it won’t be for long.

Another thing is I only have $773.00 cash on hand (life savings). The rest will come in over the next 2-4 weeks. Which components should I order now, while buying the rest over the next 2-4 weeks? I need to go ahead and spend the $773.00 now or it will grow smaller the longer I wait. Also selling my paintball gear if anyone is interested.

EDIT: changed some components choices to reflect advice.
March 13, 2006 4:54:33 PM

Save your money by getting an Opteron 165 if you are going to OC. Cheaper, and means you'll be able to spend more elsewhere on the pc in order to get decent enough products that won't bottleneck with the CPU and GFX card performance. Apart from that, excellent choice in components.
March 13, 2006 5:14:37 PM

I agree with Bluefinger, get an Opty 165. Cheaper, great overclocker, more than sufficient. I love mine! I also have that RAM and am happy with it. Save $50+ by getting an Antec 550W TPII psu instead of that Enermax--your choice is good, but you probably won't need the extra wattage, and the Antec is a great psu and a great value.

Wait until you have the money to buy ALL components at once. Otherwise, the ones you order now will sit there for a while, and you won't get a chance to find out if they're defective or anything in a reasonable amount of time. Plus, you might get to save on shipping by having all items sent together. PLUS, you'll get very frustrated staring at the parts you have and waiting for the others to arrive! :) 

Other than that, have fun with your first build!
Related resources
March 13, 2006 5:18:09 PM

Oh also, the Cooler Master Centurion 5 case is pretty well-regarded for the price. I spent a little more on a flashier case, and while it's not bad I'm now wishing I'd got the CM one instead.
March 13, 2006 11:47:06 PM

Quote:
Save your money by getting an Opteron 165 if you are going to OC.

Nice... $179.00 cheaper and can OC to 2.5-2.6ish stable on stock cooling. Thanks for that piece of advice.

Quote:
Save $50+ by getting an Antec 550W TPII psu instead of that Enermax--your choice is good, but you probably won't need the extra wattage, and the Antec is a great psu and a great value.

Cool, Antec it is. Another $59.00 saved, thank you.

Quote:
Oh also, the Cooler Master Centurion 5 case is pretty well-regarded for the price. I spent a little more on a flashier case, and while it's not bad I'm now wishing I'd got the CM one instead.

Functional and cheap... perfect.

Thanks for all the great advice so far. I am glad I came here first.
March 14, 2006 4:34:24 PM

Just a bump to see if I can get anymore opinions.
March 14, 2006 5:15:41 PM

Nothing wrong with those components, looks fine so far. But you will still need a hard drive, an opticle drive, and WinXP. That will probably run you another $150 or more. Looks like the Motherboard comes with cables, so you won't have to worry about that. Double check the the CPU comes w/ thermal grease, otherwise you will need that before you install your CPU.
March 14, 2006 6:19:34 PM

Quote:
Nothing wrong with those components, looks fine so far. But you will still need a hard drive, an opticle drive, and WinXP.

Yeah, with the money I saved from Bluefinger and HumbleGod's advice I can get a HD. I was going to use my old 160GB for now but that would be the weak link in data transfer. How about a WD 250GB - $97.00 Just enough storage and SATA for a decent price.

Can I use my old optical drives from my Gateway. The drive speed is not a factor as I only use them when installing games and not for play.

Quote:
Double check the the CPU comes w/ thermal grease, otherwise you will need that before you install your CPU.

Will pick up some AS5. From what I have read it's worth the $17.00 and ithe amount will probably last me forever.
March 14, 2006 6:35:45 PM

$17.00, my god, I think I paid $5 or so for AS5. Where ever you buying it from atm, I think you could switch websites and save some $$
March 14, 2006 6:47:22 PM

Good choice on the HDD. I have that same model and it works great. It's quiet and the 16mb cache has made a noticable difference. Everyone has make great suggestions so far and I agree with HumbleGod big time. Buy all your stuff at once for all the reasons he posted. Other than that, good luck and enjoy!
March 14, 2006 6:47:31 PM

Quote:
$17.00, my god, I think I paid $5 or so for AS5. Where ever you buying it from atm, I think you could switch websites and save some $$

It's for a 12g tube. I can go elsewhere and get a 3.5g tube for $6-$8 but with the additional shipping costs it makes buying a 12g at newegg bundled with the shipping from the rest of the order a better deal. Just works out that way. Perhaps if I keep looking I could find someone with a good shipping price and it would be worth while to get a 3.5g tube. I should do that.
March 14, 2006 7:05:06 PM

3.5g tube is plenty, 12g seems like it would go bad before you ever got to use it. Heck even 3.5g is overkill, Do you plan on building 5 more computer within the next month? :D 
March 14, 2006 7:28:43 PM

Quote:
Good choice on the HDD. I have that same model and it works great. It's quiet and the 16mb cache has made a noticable difference. Everyone has make great suggestions so far and I agree with HumbleGod big time. Buy all your stuff at once for all the reasons he posted. Other than that, good luck and enjoy!

Glad to hear it is a good HDD. Thanks.

Quote:
3.5g tube is plenty, 12g seems like it would go bad before you ever got to use it. Heck even 3.5g is overkill, Do you plan on building 5 more computer within the next month? :D 

No. This is the only one for a while, I hope. Unless some of my friends get envious and want one too, but that would be two more at the most who are financially able to do it.
March 15, 2006 12:59:20 AM

I have managed to acquire the cash ahead of schedule, but the 7900gt is still out of stock. You all advise me to not buy until I can get the whole system, but what if something else goes out of stock before the 7900gt becomes available. Should I go ahead and order everything minus the 7900gt and just wait for it OR wait and risk something else going out of stock? I'm leaning towards option #1 but I would like your valued advice again.

Also the OCZ has a rebate that ends tomorrow, $40.
March 15, 2006 1:19:48 AM

Well, that 1.8GHz Opteron 165 runs at 1.8GHz and costs $325.00. An Athlon X2 4200+ runs at 2.2GHz and costs about $360. I know Opterons overclock better, but for $35 extra, you get 400 more MHz. Most 4200s I have heard of can get to 2.4 easily and maybe 2.5-2.6 on air top-end. (Mine runs stock- I need to have this computer working!) Getting the 1.8 Opteron up to the same speeds as the 4200 will be hard as 600-800MHz is a LOT to OC these chips by- it is about 40%! So if I were you, I'd get a 4200+ instead of the Opty 165.

Or you could get a 3.0GHz Pentium D 930 for about $330. I have seen those 65nm Presler cores get WAAAYYY up there- 4GHz out of the 930 on air is not that hard from what I hear. Of course they will produce an ungodly amount of heat and racket at that speed, but the AMDs will not be that much cooler when OCed. Very few chips are unless it's a very mild overclock of about one base clock or so on an AMD chip or 1.5-2 on a P4 or PD.
March 15, 2006 1:35:59 AM

That WD 250GB is a good hard drive as I have one too. But games are generally only use the hard drive when loading levels. And a 160GB drive is far from being *that* old that it really bogs down the system. If it was a 5400rpm 20GB model, yeah, it'll be slow.

Games generally play slowly for the following reasons (and in decreasing order of importance): OS problems (viruses, spyware, etc.), slow video card, too little RAM, bad GPU/system drivers, slow CPU, slow motherboard, slow memory, case/CPU is too hot and is throttling, slow HDD.

So the biggest thing is to make sure the OS is all kosher. Nothing slows down a game like a spam server set up on your computer eating up all the bandwidth and CPU time propagating itself. Next would be to get a graphics card that is capable of playing the games you want to play at the resolution and detail level you want. Your 7900GT is more than enough. Next is RAM, and 2GB is plenty. Drivers are next, make sure they are current and stable and generally work well. Almost any decent modern CPU can play games well enough when hooked up to a big GPU, so don't worry about this as much unless you're going to be doing non-gaming work on the machine. Most boards today have good chipsets and PCI-e slots, so you're good there too. Your memory is MORE than fast enough- latency affects A64s more than bandwidth does, so low-latency DDR400 generally beats higher-latency DDR433/450/500. Cooler Master makes good, cool cases and Antec makes a cool-running PSU. You're good there, and the AMD stock coolers are quite effective (My rig idles at about 26-27C.) And your current 160GB HDD should be fast enough.
March 15, 2006 3:03:22 AM

Quote:
That WD 250GB is a good hard drive as I have one too. But games are generally only use the hard drive when loading levels. And a 160GB drive is far from being *that* old that it really bogs down the system. If it was a 5400rpm 20GB model, yeah, it'll be slow.

My bad it's a 120GB, but is also WD Caviar 7200 IDE 8MB. I belive you about only really using the HDD during loading, which is not that big of a deal so I will save $97.00 more dollars and reuse my old HDD.

This system turned out to be alot cheaper than I had hoped. Thanks alot to all those who helped me. Also I hope this thread will help someone else make a more educated choice.

Final results:

Opteron 165 - 325.00

DFI Ultra-D - 122.99

OCZ 2x1gb platinum - 197.99 -$40 MIR = 157.99

XFX 7900gt - 315.00

Antec Truepower II - 89.99

Cooler Master Centurion 5 - 44.99

Total - 1055.96

I just placed my order at newegg minus the GPU. As soon as it is in stock anywhere I am going to buy it. Hopefully it wont be too long. Thanks again for all your help.
!