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A8N32-SLi Deluxe / 64 4000+ / GeForce 7900 GT : need input

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April 12, 2006 10:07:08 PM

A8N32-SLi Deluxe / 64 4000+ / GeForce 7900 GT : need input

[/b]
Here is my intended setup :
***************************
(links go to Newegg)

MOBO : A8N32-SLi Deluxe (link)
CPU : AMD 64 4000+ (link)
or 64 X2 4200+ (link)

RAM : 2x Samsung PC3200 1Gb TwinX
(no reference found in Newegg)

VIDEO CARD : GeForce 7900 GT (Sparkle, Galasy Tech or Club3D) (link)
link goes to all 7900GT, as Sparkle or Club3D wasn't found

CASE : Gygabyte 3D Aurora GZ-FSCA1-ANB (link)
PSU : Tagan TG580-U22 2Force ATX 2.0
(no reference found in Newegg)

CPU Cooler : Zalman CNPS9500 LED (link)
GPU COOLER : Zalman VF900-Cu (link)

BURNER : PLextor PX-760A/T3K
HDD : 2x Samsung SP2504C SATAII
KVM : Belkin Omniview 4P PS/2
KB+MOUSE
: whatever

***************************


NB :
* It's a gaming rig
* I want to make sure there is no blatant bottleneck or conflicts
* I don't wish to do some crazy OC, but a few tips/optimizations would be nice
* I read some *very informative* posts here, but am still unsure about bottlenecks & inconsistencies pertaining to the hardware (I'll deal with the noise on a case-by-case basis).


QUESTIONS :
*************************** VIDEO CARD ***************************

1) Video Card : GeForce 7900 GT (Sparkle, Galasy Tech or Club3D)
Is SLi/Crossfire truly justified today, or will it shine only in future games ? (if future games actually benefit from such technology)
Does it need to be the same card manufacturer for SLi to be operational ?

*************************** MOTHERBOARD ***************************

2) Motherboard : A8N32-SLi Deluxe
2x PCIe x16 is what I went for, when I get my 2nd GeForce 7900 GT
North- & South- Bridges : should I leave the Caloducts, or put on Zalman/other Heatsinks ?

*************************** RAM ***************************

3) RAM : 2x Samsung PC3200 1Gb TwinX
Should I stick to PC3200, or can I go up to PC3500 ? PC4200 ?

*************************** CPU ***************************

4) CPU : It's a gaming rig - should I stick to Athlon 64 4000+, or for 20 more euros, go with a 64 X2 4200+ ? Will I benefit from the DualCore ? (for gaming purposes)

*************************** COOL & QUIET ***************************

5) "Cool 'n Quiet" A8N32-SLi Deluxe technology
Does it adjust the CPU fan RPM according to CPU load ? If so, will I suffer from *any* latency when the CPU is solicited ?
(I have this type of technology on my Intel work PC, and it's a real pain)
If so, can I disable/bypass it ?

*************************** CPU COOLER ***************************

6) CPU Cooler : Zalman CNPS9500 LED
* I'm looking for SILENT & efficient cooling methods for my whole rig : CPU, GPU, North/South Bridges
I already have a Zalman Reserator 1+ on my other rig, and wonder if I could cool 2 PCs with the Reserator 1+ ?

*************************** GPU COOLER ***************************

7) GPU Cooler : Zalman VF900-Cu
Seems like a good choice. I should have bought some Zalman Co stocks. :D 

*************************** PSU ***************************

8.) PSU : Tagan TG580-U22 2Force ATX 2.0
Needed an SLi-compliant PSU, able to support 2 VidCards (later, when the price goes down).

*************************** CASE ***************************

9) CASE : Gygabyte 3D Aurora GZ-FSCA1-ANB
Now, I said i wanted something *silent*, and it occurs to me that this case goes against my wishes, but I'm sick & tired of having rigs that look like they were scavenged from some post-apocalypse era. I want something new & shiny, dammit ! And anyways, I can turn off the fans one by one, while checking the temp, right ?

***************************


Any mistakes, besides the fact that I'll have to sell a kidney to pay for this ? :D 
April 13, 2006 12:29:24 AM

Quote:
A8N32-SLi Deluxe / 64 4000+ / GeForce 7900 GT : need input


Here is my intended setup :
***************************
(links go to Newegg)

MOBO : A8N32-SLi Deluxe (link)
CPU : AMD 64 4000+ (link)
or 64 X2 4200+ (link)

RAM : 2x Samsung PC3200 1Gb TwinX
(no reference found in Newegg)

VIDEO CARD : GeForce 7900 GT (Sparkle, Galasy Tech or Club3D) (link)
link goes to all 7900GT, as Sparkle or Club3D wasn't found

CASE : Gygabyte 3D Aurora GZ-FSCA1-ANB (link)
PSU : Tagan TG580-U22 2Force ATX 2.0
(no reference found in Newegg)

CPU Cooler : Zalman CNPS9500 LED (link)
GPU COOLER : Zalman VF900-Cu (link)

BURNER : PLextor PX-760A/T3K
HDD : 2x Samsung SP2504C SATAII
KVM : Belkin Omniview 4P PS/2
KB+MOUSE
: whatever

***************************


NB :
* It's a gaming rig
* I want to make sure there is no blatant bottleneck or conflicts
* I don't wish to do some crazy OC, but a few tips/optimizations would be nice
* I read some *very informative* posts here, but am still unsure about bottlenecks & inconsistencies pertaining to the hardware (I'll deal with the noise on a case-by-case basis).


QUESTIONS :
*************************** VIDEO CARD ***************************

1) Video Card : GeForce 7900 GT (Sparkle, Galasy Tech or Club3D)
Is SLi/Crossfire truly justified today, or will it shine only in future games ? (if future games actually benefit from such technology)
Does it need to be the same card manufacturer for SLi to be operational ?

*************************** MOTHERBOARD ***************************

2) Motherboard : A8N32-SLi Deluxe
2x PCIe x16 is what I went for, when I get my 2nd GeForce 7900 GT
North- & South- Bridges : should I leave the Caloducts, or put on Zalman/other Heatsinks ?

*************************** RAM ***************************

3) RAM : 2x Samsung PC3200 1Gb TwinX
Should I stick to PC3200, or can I go up to PC3500 ? PC4200 ?

*************************** CPU ***************************

4) CPU : It's a gaming rig - should I stick to Athlon 64 4000+, or for 20 more euros, go with a 64 X2 4200+ ? Will I benefit from the DualCore ? (for gaming purposes)

*************************** COOL & QUIET ***************************

5) "Cool 'n Quiet" A8N32-SLi Deluxe technology
Does it adjust the CPU fan RPM according to CPU load ? If so, will I suffer from *any* latency when the CPU is solicited ?
(I have this type of technology on my Intel work PC, and it's a real pain)
If so, can I disable/bypass it ?

*************************** CPU COOLER ***************************

6) CPU Cooler : Zalman CNPS9500 LED
* I'm looking for SILENT & efficient cooling methods for my whole rig : CPU, GPU, North/South Bridges
I already have a Zalman Reserator 1+ on my other rig, and wonder if I could cool 2 PCs with the Reserator 1+ ?

*************************** GPU COOLER ***************************

7) GPU Cooler : Zalman VF900-Cu
Seems like a good choice. I should have bought some Zalman Co stocks. :D 

*************************** PSU ***************************

8.) PSU : Tagan TG580-U22 2Force ATX 2.0
Needed an SLi-compliant PSU, able to support 2 VidCards (later, when the price goes down).

*************************** CASE ***************************

9) CASE : Gygabyte 3D Aurora GZ-FSCA1-ANB
Now, I said i wanted something *silent*, and it occurs to me that this case goes against my wishes, but I'm sick & tired of having rigs that look like they were scavenged from some post-apocalypse era. I want something new & shiny, dammit ! And anyways, I can turn off the fans one by one, while checking the temp, right ?

***************************


Any mistakes, besides the fact that I'll have to sell a kidney to pay for this ? :D 
[/b]

Lets answer your questions one by one here:

1) SLI needs to have 2 of the exact same card. If you can find 2 manufactors that make indentical cards (with same speeds) it would work, but is better to stick with same manufactor. Now as for the SLI question. Unless you plan on buying your 2nd card within 90 days, SLI is not worth your money. Say you wait 6 months, the new high end card will beat your dual 7900s in SLI and you just spent more money. Don't fall for the SLI hype.

2) Stock cooling is just fine, you dont need aftermarket stuff. However if you cannot get that second card within 90 days, change to the $122 (USD) DFI Lanparty Ultra D board. It is a better overclocker, and a nice board.

3) PC3200- Corsair XMS or OCZ Gold for max overclock poential

4) Go with the Opteron 165 (its cheaper than the X2 4200+ at Newegg, and will overclock far beyond the speed with the stock cooler).

5) Cool and Quiet cuts the CPU speed based on what you are doing. If you want to use it, you have to install a driver in Windows. Not worth the hassle for the small energy saving IMHO.

6) Well, if you want silent stuff.. Zalman is the way to go. However, the stock Opteron cooler is NICE.

7) Ok.

8) Nefver heard of it. Get the Antec Truepower II 550W. Money well spent on a GOOD PSU.

9) Antec P180- its sweeeeettttttt.

Edit: DFI board I mentioned:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813136152

RAM:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16820145574

Case:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16811129154
April 13, 2006 12:59:49 AM

Quote:
Lets answer your questions one by one here:

1) SLI needs to have 2 of the exact same card. If you can find 2 manufactors that make indentical cards (with same speeds) it would work, but is better to stick with same manufactor. Now as for the SLI question. Unless you plan on buying your 2nd card within 90 days, SLI is not worth your money. Say you wait 6 months, the new high end card will beat your dual 7900s in SLI and you just spent more money. Don't fall for the SLI hype.

2) Stock cooling is just fine, you dont need aftermarket stuff. However if you cannot get that second card within 90 days, change to the $122 (USD) DFI Lanparty Ultra D board. It is a better overclocker, and a nice board.

3) PC3200- Corsair XMS or OCZ Gold for max overclock poential

4) Go with the Opteron 165 (its cheaper than the X2 4200+ at Newegg, and will overclock far beyond the speed with the stock cooler).

5) Cool and Quiet cuts the CPU speed based on what you are doing. If you want to use it, you have to install a driver in Windows. Not worth the hassle for the small energy saving IMHO.

6) Well, if you want silent stuff.. Zalman is the way to go. However, the stock Opteron cooler is NICE.

7) Ok.

8) Nefver heard of it. Get the Antec Truepower II 550W. Money well spent on a GOOD PSU.

9) Antec P180- its sweeeeettttttt.

Edit: DFI board I mentioned:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813136152

RAM:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16820145574

Case:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16811129154


1 ) I think Nvidia added support for different manufacturers support for SLI as long as it's the same GPU(i.e. as long as both are 7900GT's). At the moment SLI is a little overrated, however drivers are in the works to make it more effecient by putting one gpu to physics processes I believe.

2 ) Don't get the A8N32 - SLI Deluxe, it's main claim to fame is the 2 x PCIe x 16 while it hasn't even been backed up by evidence that two x16 PCIe slots have much better performance than two x8 PCIe slots. I suggest going with the DFI Ultra D board. Make sure you read up on reviews and visit dfi-street.com.

3 ) Good RAM companies: Corsair, Crucial, Mushkin, OCZ, Patriot, in no particular order.

4 ) Get an Opteron instead and OC it beyond x2 4200+ speeds.

5 ) I don't like cool n' quiet.

6 ) Zalman and Thermalright are two good heatsink manufacturers. Don't worry about one unless you plan to OC really.

7 ) Check out Arctic Silver's products.

8 ) Antec True Power II.

9 ) Antec cases are fine. I love my Lian-Li case though.
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April 13, 2006 12:09:42 PM

OK, I made a few modifications from my initial plan - I'll just stick to the basics :



*************************** MOTHERBOARD ***************************

DFI Lanparty UT nF4 Ultra-D
All right, I saw the light & changed my mind - but I sure hope that 2x SLix16 is justa marketing gimmick now. ;D

*************************** CPU ***************************

AMD Opteron : 165 or 170 ?
60 Euros difference between the two, +200 MHZ.
Is the 165 more OC'able than the 170 ?

*************************** RAM ***************************

OCZ DDR PC3200 2x 1024 Platinum Enhanced Latency - 275 Euros
OCZ DDR PC3200 2x 1024 Gold Gamer eXtreme - 267 Euros


Given the small price difference, shouldn't I go for Platinum ? (bling bling)
Or is Gold better for performance ?

*************************** VIDEO CARD ***************************

Sparkle 7900 GT 256Mb

You know, I've actually had a Radeon 9500 Pro for quite some time now, so I don't need to have the best omfg VidCard every month, just an evolutive solution once games get more power-hungry. SLi/Crossfire seem like a nice solution, given the price tags are bound to come down in a few months.

And given the few posts I've read that contained both the words "upgrade" and "Oblivion", I'd say BethSoft can claim a few millions from PC components manufacturers by now.
April 13, 2006 12:46:55 PM

Quote:
If you're buying a single core 4000+, there's a problem with your brain. Dual core is much better, and games will start requiring a dual core, so buying it now makes perfect sense.


So when exactly do you think games will start REQUIRING dual-core CPUs?

I believe they'll be REQUIRED any time soon... the CPUs this guy is considering will be long gone before they're required. I think the word you were looking for was "utilizing" not "requiring" in your above post. Don't try to scare the guy into buying dual-core. I bought mine hoping that future games would benefit from it... not that any would actually require it in my processor's lifetime.
!