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New plan for my system, comments welcome.

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May 8, 2006 1:18:05 AM

OK, I posted a couple of months ago with a planned computer, and now the time to buy is two weeks away, and this is what I've ended up with, which is very diferent to what I originally listed, in part greatly due to the comments of people here, so once again, I'm putting it up for critique. Any opinions and suggestions are most welcome, all prices are in Australian dollars. The components without prices are ones I've already purchased, so it's too late to change. Total cost is just over AU$6000, with the prices listed adding up to around AU$5500.

Here's the old system I planned, just for comparison.

Case
Lian-Li pc-v1000+
$290.00

PSU
Enermax EG701AX-VE 600W Noisetaker
$189.00

Motherboard
Asus A8R32-MVP Deluxe
$275.00

Processor
AMD Dual Core Opteron 175
$799.00

CPU Cooler
Scythe Ninja Plus Cooler SCNJ-1000P

120mm fans
2 x Scythe S-Flex 1200RPM
$59.90

RAM
OCZ OCZ5002048EBPE-K PC4000 1024MBx2 EB DC Platinum CL3
$480.00

Video Card
Sapphire ATI Radeon X1900XTX
$895.00

VGA Cooler
Arctic Cooling Accelero X2
$42.00

Sound Card
Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Fatal1ty
$363.00

Hard drives
2x WD 250GB SATA 3.0GB/s 16mb cache
$300.00

DVD Drive
PIONEER DVR-111D silver
$79.00

Floppy Drive
1.44" silver Panasonic
$17.60

Mouse
Logitech G5 Laser Mouse
$95.00

Mousepad
Icemat 2

Keyboard
Logitech Gaming Keyboard
$109.00

Joystick
Logitech Freedom 2.4GHz
$95.00

Speakers
Logitech Z-5500D
$449.00

Headphones
Sennheiser HD595

Monitor
Viewsonic™ Pro-Series VP2030B
$899.00

UPS/Surge Protector
Belkin F9G723au3M-F-GY
$103.73

Fan Control
Evercool extended cooling system
$17.50
Coolermaster Aerogate II Silver
$65.00

Lighting
Dual Cold Cathodes Red $25.00

More about : plan system comments

May 8, 2006 2:21:59 AM

DAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANG! Uhh, I don't see anything wrong with it if you can afford it!
May 8, 2006 2:36:48 AM

Quote:
OK, I posted a couple of months ago with a planned computer, and now the time to buy is two weeks away, and this is what I've ended up with, which is very diferent to what I originally listed, in part greatly due to the comments of people here, so once again, I'm putting it up for critique. Any opinions and suggestions are most welcome, all prices are in Australian dollars. The components without prices are ones I've already purchased, so it's too late to change. Total cost is just over AU$6000, with the prices listed adding up to around AU$5500.

Here's the old system I planned, just for comparison.

Case
Lian-Li pc-v1000+
$290.00

PSU
Enermax EG701AX-VE 600W Noisetaker
$189.00(While this power supply has dual 12v rails it only has 1 pci-e 6pin plug, meaning if you were thinking about crossfire you would need to run an adapter)

Motherboard
Asus A8R32-MVP Deluxe
$275.00

Processor
AMD Dual Core Opteron 175
$799.00 (spending this much, how much more for an opteron 180?)

CPU Cooler
Scythe Ninja Plus Cooler SCNJ-1000P

120mm fans
2 x Scythe S-Flex 1200RPM
$59.90

RAM
OCZ OCZ5002048EBPE-K PC4000 1024MBx2 EB DC Platinum CL3
$480.00

Video Card
Sapphire ATI Radeon X1900XTX
$895.00 (sweet card, even though I prefer nvidia I wouldnt turn my nose up to these)

VGA Cooler
Arctic Cooling Accelero X2
$42.00 ( I would wait to see how the stock cooler performs before taking apart a $895 card)

Sound Card
Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Fatal1ty
$363.00

Hard drives
2x WD 250GB SATA 3.0GB/s 16mb cache
$300.00 (raid is a little over rated, go with one raptor and one storage)

DVD Drive
PIONEER DVR-111D silver
$79.00

Floppy Drive
1.44" silver Panasonic
$17.60

Mouse
Logitech G5 Laser Mouse
$95.00

Mousepad
Icemat 2

Keyboard
Logitech Gaming Keyboard
$109.00

Joystick
Logitech Freedom 2.4GHz
$95.00

Speakers
Logitech Z-5500D
$449.00

Headphones
Sennheiser HD595

Monitor
Viewsonic™ Pro-Series VP2030B
$899.00

UPS/Surge Protector
Belkin F9G723au3M-F-GY
$103.73

Fan Control
Evercool extended cooling system
$17.50
Coolermaster Aerogate II Silver
$65.00

Lighting
Dual Cold Cathodes Red $25.00
Related resources
May 8, 2006 2:41:51 AM

On second thought, are you really going to spend $690 USD on a graphics card? That's waaaaay too much.

Also, Conroe is coming... R U E?
May 8, 2006 3:24:12 AM

Sweet set up, bud. Only question I have is, if you're spending this kinda cash and planning on gaming at 1600x1200, why not go for the Crossfire? Unless, of course, you aren't using it for gaming...?
May 8, 2006 4:31:42 AM

Well, while I want close to top of the line, there's an extreme I'm not comfortable with. And a extra $900 for a second video card is in that extreme. I feel I can always get a second one later when they drop a bit in price. Also, from this point onwards, I'm probably looking at a major upgrade every 2-3 years, and I'm reasonably certain this'll be able to run anything that comes out in that time period, and anything worth playing twice, I can play again with al the eye-candy after an upgrade.

Vascular: The VGA cooler I'm not planning on touching for a while, but at that price, I'll get it when I order exverything else from that site, rather than having to pat for shipping again.

Regarding Conroe, I'd rather get something proven, with well-developed motherboards available, rather than jump on Conroe the moment it comes out, and have a bunch of problems.

Regarding the Opty 175, I want the extra multiplyer so I can keep tight timings on my RAM when I OC, and a 175 is enough to hit 2.6-2.7GHz easy with air cooling (assuming te CPU is happy going that far), ad keep my timings where I want them. Also, it's an extra $400-$500 AU to mae that jump.

Regarding the PSU, what would you recommend? I want something reasonably future-proof (could eventually run a crossfie setup), but is silent like te Noisetaker, and will fit in the PC-V1000+, which means standard ATX size, with no modular cables, and a fan underneath is best.

Also, it seems silly, but I'm wondering whether I should maybe go with the black version of the case instead, wit green lighting, to get a kind of Borg feel to it. If I did that, I could go the longer V1200+, as the black is $100 cheaper than the silver for some reason. Which increases my choice of PSUs.

And yes, this is definately a gaming machine, although I'll also be watching DVDs on it aplenty, and some programming as well.

I'm reluctant to get the raptor option, as I can't yet justify a $500 HDD in my mind. I don't have unlimited funds, and a $6000 gaming machine seems good enough for me, without going overboard. I've been putting off car payments to save up for this, so extra cost would mean waiting another month or two, which I don't want to do. I'm running a 4 1/2 year old computer as it is. This is my one big purchase which I've bee planning to get once I started working for ages now.
May 8, 2006 4:49:04 AM

Quote:
Well, while I want close to top of the line, there's an extreme I'm not comfortable with. And a extra $900 for a second video card is in that extreme. I feel I can always get a second one later when they drop a bit in price. Also, from this point onwards, I'm probably looking at a major upgrade every 2-3 years, and I'm reasonably certain this'll be able to run anything that comes out in that time period, and anything worth playing twice, I can play again with al the eye-candy after an upgrade.

...

Regarding the PSU, what would you recommend? I want something reasonably future-proof (could eventually run a crossfie setup), but is silent like te Noisetaker, and will fit in the PC-V1000+, which means standard ATX size, with no modular cables, and a fan underneath is best.


Well, you're certainly right about Xfire being a little extreme. Sounds like you have a plan in place and I certainly won't question it.

For a PSU, you may want to take a look at the FSP Group FX600 or FX700. It fits what you're looking for and all the reviews of them I've read have been nothing short of glowing. I plan on using the 700 in an upcoming build which will be very similar to yours...
May 8, 2006 4:53:30 AM

Also, when it comes time to upgrade, I figure I'll be replacing Mobo, CPU, GPU and RAM as definites. Possibly the soundcard, but hopefully I can hang onto the case, PSU and peripherals for at least one upgrade. So theres no justification for going AM2 or anything just for upgradeability or anything. I plan on buying something, sticking with it, and then replacing most of it, not incremental upgrades along the way.
May 8, 2006 5:48:31 AM

I just checked it out, the Noisetaker does have dual 6 pin PCI-e plugs.
May 8, 2006 6:35:07 AM

You have a great config there, the only thing I have a few doubts about is the PSU.

Antec, PC Power & Cooling, Seasonic, Silverstone and OCZ are normally very good.

Fortron / FSP Group is usually decent as well.

You might want to wait until after the 23rd for S939 prices to drop :-D

Good Luck :-D
May 8, 2006 6:54:14 AM

if you plan on oc'n may i suggest a dfi lanparty ut nf4 ultra-d and instead of that opty 175 try a 165 which will easily oc to 2.6-2.8 and save you quite afew hundred dollars and lastly for very good ram try some g.skill pc4000 ddr500 hz's...those parts are what i used to for my new rig which is only afew days old now and all i can say is performance is awesome and you wont be disapointed :D 
May 8, 2006 7:23:08 AM

Quote:
if you plan on oc'n may i suggest a dfi lanparty ut nf4 ultra-d and instead of that opty 175 try a 165 which will easily oc to 2.6-2.8 and save you quite afew hundred dollars and lastly for very good ram try some g.skill pc4000 ddr500 hz's...those parts are what i used to for my new rig which is only afew days old now and all i can say is performance is awesome and you wont be disapointed :D 



DFI is indeed great for OC'ing :-D

The 165 should OC very well but no two CPUs are the same :-D

Corsair, OCZ and Crucial are very good, I am not familiar with G.Skill.
May 8, 2006 7:43:25 AM

The only potential problem I see with the DFI board is that he wouldn't be able to upgrade to a 2nd X1900, which he previously indicated could be a future consideration... Otherwise, yeah, great board for oc'ing...
May 8, 2006 7:54:02 AM

Talk is cheap go and buy your stuff already.

Then report back to us.
May 8, 2006 8:06:05 AM

Quote:
The only potential problem I see with the DFI board is that he wouldn't be able to upgrade to a 2nd X1900, which he previously indicated could be a future consideration... Otherwise, yeah, great board for oc'ing...



I agree, but I also think by the time the single X1900XTX is obsolete it might be time to upgrade to a new single top of the line card or upgrade the whole system.

So maybe SLI will not be a problem :-D
May 8, 2006 8:59:15 AM

I'd say get a cheaper case and drop that soundcard get a 2.1 speaker, get a 150Gb HD and get a cheaper monitor you would be able to get an FX60 and 7900GTX SLI with a great water cooling system.

Take my advice and you would get a hell of a fast performance machine.
May 8, 2006 12:40:20 PM

Quote:
Talk is cheap go and buy your stuff already.

Then report back to us.


Believe me, I'll be posting before and after pics once it's all built.

And Chuck, I'm in the process of renovating my room to be in a good position for 5.1 surround, I'm willing to spend $1000 on sound, since I see the speakers lasting me for a long time. The headphones I bought were a $300 pair as well. :p 

Like I said, there are extremes I'm not comfortable with, and the FX60 is one of them. I want a kick-ass system, but I also want to be able to enjoy it. If I'm going to have blazingly fast graphics, they're for naught without a good way to display them, and if I'm going for great looks, I should go the whole way and match it with great sound. If I wanted a Beast, the best of the best, it's $13000 minimum in Aus, and that's just grabbing the cheapest prices for everything, which wouldn't happen, because I'd confine myself to buying from reputable sites.

Also, regarding the Mobo, I'm comfortable that the Asus has enough features for me to overclock to a level I'm happy with. I'm only a beginner overclocker, and I thing a DFI would be a wee bit overwhelming. Also, I want to steer away from NF4 mobos, so I won't suffer from the Creative squeal of death.

I thought more about it today, and I think I'll go the PC-V1200B+, with green lighting for a Borg look. The extra space will also make it easier to change to water cooling in the future, which is something I will definately consider after I've saved up my money again. Basically, once bought, the only incremental upgrades I can see me getting are a matching x1900xtx, and water cooling. Maybe if they come out cheaper I may consider a raptor one time when I format my computer.

From reading tomshardware reviews, I thought Enermax was a good brand?

What do you think about the Thermaltake 680W PurePower?
May 8, 2006 1:31:39 PM

mmmm how about the original coolermaster stacker instead of the PC-V1200B+...i have the cm and all i can say is well.....big..rather big lol and the airflow is terrific with afew additional fans
May 8, 2006 1:36:03 PM

Another guy with money to burn, a couple thousands will always get you a good computer :roll:
May 8, 2006 2:15:41 PM

Quote:
Regarding Conroe, I'd rather get something proven, with well-developed motherboards available, rather than jump on Conroe the moment it comes out, and have a bunch of problems.


Even if you don't want Conroe, it might be worth waiting for its release. AMD prices will drop like a rock at that time. They have to, otherwise AMD will be at an untenable price/performance disadvantage. It's generally true that prices are "always dropping" and if you keep waiting for the best price before you buy, you'll be waiting forever. But this is a very unique circumstance. AMD's top of the line will have to drop at least in half in order to remain competitive with the equivalent thing from Intel. At that time, Intel's chip that corresponds in performance to today's top of the line chip is projected to be priced at less than half of today's current prices. That doesn't happen every year. In fact, I can't remember the last time you could save multiple-hundreds of dollars just by waiting a few weeks (6 weeks?). So you should consider whether it's worth spending that much more money in order to have your new toy "right now". just my $0.02.
May 8, 2006 3:28:09 PM

if you expect to overclock the Opteron to 2.6 or maybe 2.7 ... get opteron 165 which will safelly reach 2.6 on a good air cooler . Opty 170 will offer you a better OC (some could reach over 3.0) but at half price... 165 would be wiser...
sure raptor are delightfull , but maybe WD caviar would be almost the same (unless you really play like Fatal1ty ...) and also can save you some money...
As you are building a gamming rig ...maybe should consider 1800XT ...almost the same as 1900 and price should be more reasonable...
May 8, 2006 3:33:25 PM

why not put in watercooling now. It 250 for a good system that can cool your CPU and VGA
May 8, 2006 4:11:08 PM

Quote:
Regarding Conroe, I'd rather get something proven, with well-developed motherboards available, rather than jump on Conroe the moment it comes out, and have a bunch of problems.


Even if you don't want Conroe, it might be worth waiting for its release. AMD prices will drop like a rock at that time. They have to, otherwise AMD will be at an untenable price/performance disadvantage. It's generally true that prices are "always dropping" and if you keep waiting for the best price before you buy, you'll be waiting forever. But this is a very unique circumstance. AMD's top of the line will have to drop at least in half in order to remain competitive with the equivalent thing from Intel. At that time, Intel's chip that corresponds in performance to today's top of the line chip is projected to be priced at less than half of today's current prices. That doesn't happen every year. In fact, I can't remember the last time you could save multiple-hundreds of dollars just by waiting a few weeks (6 weeks?). So you should consider whether it's worth spending that much more money in order to have your new toy "right now". just my $0.02.

You know this for a fact? Intel has yet to release anything that can touch AMD. Oh you must be one of those "engineering sample" wanna be's?!
May 8, 2006 5:35:03 PM

Quote:
Regarding Conroe, I'd rather get something proven, with well-developed motherboards available, rather than jump on Conroe the moment it comes out, and have a bunch of problems.


Even if you don't want Conroe, it might be worth waiting for its release. AMD prices will drop like a rock at that time. They have to, otherwise AMD will be at an untenable price/performance disadvantage. It's generally true that prices are "always dropping" and if you keep waiting for the best price before you buy, you'll be waiting forever. But this is a very unique circumstance. AMD's top of the line will have to drop at least in half in order to remain competitive with the equivalent thing from Intel. At that time, Intel's chip that corresponds in performance to today's top of the line chip is projected to be priced at less than half of today's current prices. That doesn't happen every year. In fact, I can't remember the last time you could save multiple-hundreds of dollars just by waiting a few weeks (6 weeks?). So you should consider whether it's worth spending that much more money in order to have your new toy "right now". just my $0.02.

You know this for a fact? Intel has yet to release anything that can touch AMD. Oh you must be one of those "engineering sample" wanna be's?!

I don't know any more than anyone else. But from lurking these forums, I've gotten the impression that there are a lot of benchmarks showing Conroe wiping the floor with anything AMD currently has. And you're right, Intel has yet to release anything for the desktop that can touch AMD (although Core Duo / Yonah is looking pretty sweet), but that's because Conroe/Woodcrest/Merom isn't released yet. The thing is, all the data out there seems to indicate Conroe will perform extremely well, and the pricing looks extremely attractive. Sure, nothing is certain until it happens. But for the chance to save several hundred bucks, I think it would be worth waiting a few more weeks just to be sure you got the best deal possible, even if you're going to buy an AMD chip. If the information out there is accurate, and it looks very likely to be accurate, then the next few weeks will see a massive price disruption that will overshadow any price movements we might see for a long time. Again, I want to reiterate that I don't know anything for a fact, but the possiblity of this information being true is strong enough that it would be prudent to hold off a few more weeks, unless a few hundred bucks is chump change to you. That's another of my $.02.
May 8, 2006 10:58:38 PM

Quote:
mmmm how about the original coolermaster stacker instead of the PC-V1200B+...i have the cm and all i can say is well.....big..rather big lol and the airflow is terrific with afew additional fans


Stacker was my choice in my original plan, but since then I've learned of problems with it that have put me right off, namely, the PCI bracket.

Quote:
Another guy with money to burn, a couple thousands will always get you a good computer :roll:


True, but I've been working for 4 1/2 years on something that wasn't even top of the line when my parents bought it. For once I'd like to have bragging rights with my friends, and to feel really good about what I have. Also, I'm recently graduated, living at home, and not planning on leaving for many years. Apart from this, and paying off my car, I can't think of anything I want to do with my money except put it away to save up for a house, so I'm comfortable with paying a premium for higher quality.

Quote:
why not put in watercooling now. It 250 for a good system that can cool your CPU and VGA


Well, I like to tinker, and rather than jump WAAAAAY out in the deep end, I'd prefer to start with air, and form my own opinion of it. My opinion is that people get water cooling for one of two reasons. They want to really overclock, or they find air too noisy. I want to know what air sounds like, and how far I can OC on it, so I have a basis for comparison if I switch to water.


Really I guess at this point I'm looking more for compatibility issues, like the one with the PSU. I wouldn't have caught that. As for waiting until prices drop, it's always been my intention to buy as soon as I get the money. If prices drop after I can afford what I want anyway, big deal, I'll always make more money. I've just been dying for a top of the line computer for ages, and I don't want to have to wait another month.
May 8, 2006 11:44:14 PM

Quote:
Another guy with money to burn, a couple thousands will always get you a good computer :roll:


I think that statement is totally unfair to the folks who spent their couple thousand on an Alienware Area-51 3550... :wink:
May 9, 2006 1:39:38 AM

What about if we assume I won't go crossfire, and will instead buy a DX10 card. Sticking with a single card solution, is my PSU ok?
May 9, 2006 1:48:56 AM

Quote:
What about if we assume I won't go crossfire, and will instead buy a DX10 card. Sticking with a single card solution, is my PSU ok?



It's hard to tell.

I would recommend Antec, PC Power & Cooling, Seasonic, Silverstone or OCZ.

The PSU you selected has mixed reviews on newegg and I do not believe it stacks up to the ones I mentioned above. At that price I would have expected it to rate a lot better.

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

This link is for illustration only, I realize you cannot purchase things from newegg since you are in Australia.

Good luck :-D
May 9, 2006 2:34:52 AM

Quote:
What do you think about the Thermaltake 680W PurePower?


Doesn't look like either the Thermaltake nor the Enermax is that great judging from customer reviews...

Check out FSP PSUs... Don't they look great? Look at that efficiency!

Here's a review of the FSP FX700... Personally, I think these things look awesome and it would definitely futureproof you for less than 1/2 the price of the 850W PC Power and Cooling unit.
May 9, 2006 3:09:58 AM

Farrr kin deep pockets mate! But we are still waiting for those pics?
May 9, 2006 5:22:42 AM

FSP PSUs are nowhere to be found in Australia, I'm afraid.
May 9, 2006 1:25:16 PM

Quote:
FSP PSUs are nowhere to be found in Australia, I'm afraid.


Bummer, dude... In that case, you should go with one of linux_0's suggestions... they all look pretty solid.
May 9, 2006 10:46:43 PM

Looks like Seasonic's the best option. According to the PSU calculator thingy, I'll need close to 600W, and while I realise I'll never be running everything in my system 100%, it's still be smart to go that bit bigger. However, Because they stick their cables out the opposite side of the PSU, I'm going to have to get the PC-V1200B+ just to be safe.

The OCZ looks good as well, but once again, we get no love in Australia.

Edit: Me = Stupid. The cables come out of the right side, I was looking at the PSU upside-down.
May 10, 2006 5:07:43 AM

Quote:
Looks like Seasonic's the best option. According to the PSU calculator thingy, I'll need close to 600W, and while I realise I'll never be running everything in my system 100%, it's still be smart to go that bit bigger. However, Because they stick their cables out the opposite side of the PSU, I'm going to have to get the PC-V1200B+ just to be safe.

The OCZ looks good as well, but once again, we get no love in Australia.



That really sux :-(

Maybe we could conspire to ship you some "contraband" computer parts down under :-D :lol: 

Quote:

Edit: Me = Stupid. The cables come out of the right side, I was looking at the PSU upside-down.
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