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New gaming system, a few questions...

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Last response: in Systems
March 26, 2006 8:24:17 AM

Ok so me and my friend are building a new gaming computer in the near future with the specs:

AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200
XFX GeForce 7800 GT
WD Caviar SE16 250 gig hard drive
Asus A8N32-SLI Deluxe Motherboard
2 gigs of DDR400 PC3200 Value Select Corsair RAM
Antec Sonata II black mid tower
Some nice monitor that I don't know 'cause I don't care, lol

I was wondering if it would be worth it getting a mobo that can handle DDR2 but from a quick check, I can't find any AMD mobos that support DDR2. Is there that much of a speed advantage with DDR2 that I should wait until there comes out with compatible boards or should I just get it now?

Also I'd like to know if anyone knows why the XFX 7800GT is out of stock at all the larger places like zipzoomfly, mwave or newegg. We really dont want to buy from a small vendor and we've found it on their sites but it's been out of stock for 3 weeks now! Any ideas?

thanks you guys in advance!

PS: Is there anything there that you can see that could be better? We really are stretching our pocket limits on this computer so we can't go much higher in price, lower would be better, lol. Any oppinions would be great!

More about : gaming system questions

March 26, 2006 4:19:12 PM

You might as well go w/ the 7900gt, newegg has the BFG 7900gt and is only a few bux more, actually a great deal for $335 shipped. I got the 7800gt I got last month for $330 complete w/ SLI mobo & MIR, unless you can still get that deal I can't recommend the 7800gt since it is still ~$300 and the 7900gt is much better for such a small increase...
March 26, 2006 4:31:18 PM

Quote:
Ok so me and my friend are building a new gaming computer in the near future with the specs:

AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200
XFX GeForce 7800 GT
WD Caviar SE16 250 gig hard drive
Asus A8N32-SLI Deluxe Motherboard
2 gigs of DDR400 PC3200 Value Select Corsair RAM
Antec Sonata II black mid tower
Some nice monitor that I don't know 'cause I don't care, lol

I was wondering if it would be worth it getting a mobo that can handle DDR2 but from a quick check, I can't find any AMD mobos that support DDR2. Is there that much of a speed advantage with DDR2 that I should wait until there comes out with compatible boards or should I just get it now?

Also I'd like to know if anyone knows why the XFX 7800GT is out of stock at all the larger places like zipzoomfly, mwave or newegg. We really dont want to buy from a small vendor and we've found it on their sites but it's been out of stock for 3 weeks now! Any ideas?

thanks you guys in advance!

PS: Is there anything there that you can see that could be better? We really are stretching our pocket limits on this computer so we can't go much higher in price, lower would be better, lol. Any oppinions would be great!



As doolittle says go with the 7900GT. It can outperform the 7800GTX and the price is not much more. They are probably out of stock because the 7800 was EOL'ed.

For the processor go ahead and jump to an Opteron 165 and overclock it. The advantages are: getting a server grade chip, and 1MB L2 cache per core vs 512KB with the 4200+. Since you are overclocking instead of getting ValueRAM get 2GB of Corsair XMS RAM. Its around $200 at Newegg but has a $40 MIR, so net its only $20 more than the ValueRAM.

As for the motherboard, unless you are going to go ahead and buy 2 video cards within the next 2-3 months and you want to play FEAR and CoD2 on max resoultions, you dont need an SLI motherboard. Save some money and get the Asus A8N-E instead which is only $95.

As for the case, good choice as long as it comes with a PSU of at least 500W. If it does not (or comes sans PSU) pick up the Antec Truepower II 550W for $95.
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March 26, 2006 5:30:54 PM

Well thanks guys, I'm gonna go over this with my friend and we'll see what we can put in. To me it looks like everything you chose was great here so I think he'll say yes to it. Although i have no idea what EOL'ed means I'll just take it as "they're out of stock for some reason" lol.

One thing I'm wondering is that the opty is at 1.8 gigahertz, which is much slower than the 4200. We will be overclocking but not a big one. How well do the opties clock to 2.2 ghz and is it around the same speed as the 4200+ when it's at native speed.

Our case comes with a 450 watt PSU, which I think is enough. We're not gonna do any huge overclocking so we won't need as much power and the 7900 gt says it needs at least a 450 watt psu so I don't think we'll need more than that. Here's the link to the case if you want it.

thanks guys
March 26, 2006 5:33:15 PM

EOL'ed is a retail term for End of Life aka the product is not being made by the manufactor any longer.

You should be able to easily get the Opteron to 2.2, but even at 2.0 the 1MB extra of L2 cache will speed up you performance.
March 26, 2006 8:00:01 PM

Quote:
I was wondering if it would be worth it getting a mobo that can handle DDR2 but from a quick check, I can't find any AMD mobos that support DDR2. Is there that much of a speed advantage with DDR2 that I should wait until there comes out with compatible boards or should I just get it now?


AMD will not support DDR2 until their socket AM2 is released, which I believe is in... June? So... with that in mind, if you wanted to wait for DDR2 then you will have to go with the socket AM2 line of cpu's as well instead of Socket939.
March 26, 2006 8:13:10 PM

Quote:
You might as well go w/ the 7900gt, newegg has the BFG 7900gt and is only a few bux more, actually a great deal for $335 shipped. I got the 7800gt I got last month for $330 complete w/ SLI mobo & MIR, unless you can still get that deal I can't recommend the 7800gt since it is still ~$300 and the 7900gt is much better for such a small increase...


Agreed.

As for the power supply, a 550W would be fine, but for a $5 increase you could get the 600W one with SLI support at the following link:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

According the reviewers this seems to be a pretty good PSU. Check it out.
March 26, 2006 10:51:49 PM

Hi guys, I'm the friend and I decided to pop over and answer some questions and see what you guys thought of them.

Ok, as far as I can see, the comp will have:

AMD Opteron 165 Dual Core
XFX GeForce 7900 GT
WD Caviar SE16 250 GB HDD
Asus A8N32-SLI Deluxe Motherboard
Corsair XMS 2GB PC3200 DDR
Antec Sonata II black mid tower w/ a 450 W PSU
Dell 2005 FPW


The reason I'm deciding to stick with that mobo, is because in the future, I really do think I will go SLi. And I really want this computer to be upgradeable. As for the processor, now that I have read the reviews of it, I am most definetly getting it. And it's cheaper. Graphics card, I actually found for only 8 dollars more than the 7800, which is just kind of weird in my mind. It's even XFX. Case, should be fine, I mean, even with SLi it should run fine, and if it doesn't, yeah, I can get a new PSU for cheap. RAM i'm still undecided on, but yeah, I think I'll get the nicer XMS instead of the TrueValue.

Oh, also, doolittle, where did you get that deal from. Its absolutely INSANE.

As for the EOL'd vid card, any ideas why they would do this to such a popular GPU. I mean it has rave reviews and the benchmarks are really good, and yet they EOL it?

DDay

EDIT: Does that mobo work with a Opteron Processor. And if it doesn't what does?
March 26, 2006 11:00:45 PM

Yes, that motherboard works with the Opty 165 because both are socket 939.
March 26, 2006 11:08:19 PM

So it really just matters what the pin set up is? Thats all?

OK.

DDay
March 26, 2006 11:12:20 PM

Basically, yes, but if older board, it might/will need current BIOS update to recognize it.
March 27, 2006 12:48:47 AM

Unless you are going SLI within the next 2-3 months getting an SLI motherboard makes no sense. If you wait a year the 7900 will already be replaced and the 8000 or whatever high end card will cost less and outperform 2 7900s in SLI. Unless you enjoy playing FEAR or CoD2 totally maxed out, SLI does not really make much sense.
March 27, 2006 1:01:31 AM

Wait, this doesn't really make sense. When the new cards come out, I can still keep my old one, just add a new one. Right? So, whats the point of not getting SLi?

And yes, I want to be able to play games like CoD2 at full res and with full settings.

Additional Hardware:
G5 Logitech Laser Mouse
G15 Logitech Gaming Keyboard

DDay
March 27, 2006 1:10:52 AM

As far as I know SLI requires two cards of the same GPU. 100% chance you can't mix a 7900GT and an 8xxx card, unless they somehow tweak SLI drivers so that you can.

Also, the 7800 was EOL'd because the 7900 series came out. The new ones are just better all around and apparently no one wanted to lower prices on the 7800's
March 27, 2006 1:18:12 AM

Damn, thats news to me. Hmm... What exactly is the point of SLi then. Isn't it so that anyone can upgrade there computer in the future. I mean, wouldn't it be awesome if we could have true upgradeability. Who knows, by the time I buy this this summer, I might just go with AM2 or w/e its called. I also just might buy two of the 7900. I know nothing now.

DDay
March 27, 2006 1:24:13 AM

SLI is, in reality, only for those who can spend $600 on video cards. It's marketed as a cool upgrade feature, but by the time you save up enough to upgrade, the newest card will beat two of the old cards in SLI. It's just better at this time, until they improve SLI's performance increases, to just stick with single-card solutions.

I have a feeling I'm in a similar situation as you. I'm an aspiring college student and I've been stuck with a 4-year-old Dell that I've slightly upgraded but is now everything but completely dead. I can only surf the net and play music, as even UT2004 won't run stable anymore. With so much time freed from non-gaming, I've spent hours upon hours (I estimate around 35 so far) looking up parts for a kick-ass machine. Your tone and language tells me that you're in the first stages of looking at stuff, but don't worry because the people here are very helpful.
March 27, 2006 1:29:41 AM

Hmmm... I don't know, I might just stick with this mobo though. To me the heatpipe design, and all its features are better than any board I have seen out there. But if I were to buy an non SLi board, what would you recommend. Oh, link please.

DDay

EDIT:
Actually, Ive been seriously looking at parts for a few months now. But its really my friend, bigsby, who has the most experience with this kind of stuff. I'm a mac user, I didn't know what the hell IDE was before christmas. I am now looking into doing this for gaming, especially after playing BF2. So no, I'm not quite a n00b, but I am relatively new to all the defenitions on SLi and stuff.

EDIT again:
Also, I had all the parts I was going to buy layed out, until a little thing like my parents said no, you can't buy until this summer. So, now I'm going back over everything, just cause I can.
March 27, 2006 1:36:03 AM

Sorry for the misinterpretation. If you've been looking for months I thought you would know what SLI was. I've never had a Mac myself so I can't judge you on your computer knowledge.
March 27, 2006 1:40:54 AM

I guess my last post might have sounded fairly defensive. I wasn't insulted, I was just letting you know. I mean, hell, I'd think I was a newb. No wait, don't I.




And yeah, with a Mac, you just know that it will work, and don't normally care how.

DDay
March 27, 2006 4:23:48 AM

Quote:
I guess my last post might have sounded fairly defensive. I wasn't insulted, I was just letting you know. I mean, hell, I'd think I was a newb. No wait, don't I.




And yeah, with a Mac, you just know that it will work, and don't normally care how.

DDay


Hey i was a Mac user for years, welcome to the dark side Brother!

As for a non-SLI motherboard. Asus A8N-E.. its $92.99 @ newegg
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813131530
March 27, 2006 4:56:11 AM

I herebye swear that I will not let go of my mac heritage. I just shall use my PC to its full to potential to GAME. And do lots of other cool stuff that I can't do with a mac. God damn I wish everything was on the Mac operating system, I would pay HUGE bucks for that. God damn Windows. :D  w/e its the reality, and I'll LOVE it no matter.

DDay
March 27, 2006 5:06:10 AM

Get a DFI board since you are ocing. You will be able to go higher and be more stable but they arent for the noob.
March 27, 2006 5:22:02 AM

Hmmm.... Even if I don't do SLi, I really like the current mobo that I have down. It just seems easy to use, and hugely powerful. But if anyone could give me specific examples of mobos that are comparable or better, that would be great.

DDay
March 27, 2006 6:42:44 PM

Quote:
Hmmm.... Even if I don't do SLi, I really like the current mobo that I have down. It just seems easy to use, and hugely powerful. But if anyone could give me specific examples of mobos that are comparable or better, that would be great.

DDay


I did twice. Asus A8N-E OR the DFI LanParty Ultra D.
March 27, 2006 7:35:32 PM

:)  Yeah, i know, but I'm asking for more, from other people also. Trying to stir up responses in this thread.

DDay
March 27, 2006 7:53:00 PM

If you can do Math, you can use the DFI mobos to OC.
March 27, 2006 7:53:29 PM

if ur going 7900gt, and OC'ing EVGA is the way to go. Their warranty beats all others and pretty comparable in price to the XFX
EVGA 7900GT
As for the SLI, this is just my opinion whether you want to listen to it or not but I've done a lot of research and truly I believe SLI is not worth it. The money you spend on a performance increase of only 50-70% however long down the road, will not even be worth it. By that time there will be a new card which will be faster than SLI of the 7900gt so I suggest don't bother with the SLI mobo. Get the one 7900GT, opty and a DFI Ultra-D (wicked for OC'ing)
and thats.... the way to go.
March 27, 2006 11:54:12 PM

Thanks for all the help guys, if you have any more ideas on what would be best, please post, I still have a while to choose yet.

DDay
March 28, 2006 12:18:51 AM

Hey if you have the money.. go SLI. About the motherboard.. DFI is the way to go for OC'ing
March 28, 2006 12:40:33 AM

Ok, I'll look more into DFI as it seems that everyone is highly recommending it for OCing. I really like the features on the Asus I have down for now, but if DFI is even easier and better at OCing than the Asus, then sure. And it looks like I'm now not going SLi, as long as I get a good board. But man, I love that heat pipe design on the Asus board.

DDay