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New build question: please help me understand this?

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May 26, 2006 4:45:41 AM

A few days ago, I posted asking for advice on building a brand-new machine. My main question was whether to get an Intel motherboard that would support Conroe, or whether to just build an AMD machine. (Unfortunately, just waiting isn't an option, since I'll need a PC in June.) The majority of the advice suggested buying AMD, and I'm trying to understand why.

It seems to me that if I go Intel, I'll need:
Conroe-ready Motherboard: Intel 975X ATX Intel Motherboard $233
Temporary CPU for June/July/August: Intel D930 $196
Conroe CPU, once released and stable: E6600, 4M cache, 2.4GHz, $316
(based on the pricing here.)

A total of $745 gets me the Conroe chip in August/Sept, and I can still keep the D930 for use as a VERY good CPU for a file server/whatever.

If I go AMD, I'll need:
Motherboard: DFI LP nF4 $122
CPU: AMD 4400+ $460

I've now spent $582, and in Fall, I'm locked into a chip that everyone seems to agree is inferior to Conroe, *and* there's no upgrades for the 939 socket.

It seems like the $170 difference is a small price to pay for the improved performance of Conroe *and* the upgradability of the system. Then again, frankly, I know next to nothing about this. Where have I gone wrong in my thinking? Are there hidden costs I should be worrying about?

(Not a fanboy of any sort, just a confused prospective first time system builder.)

Thanks!
Todd

p.s. Apologies if I just triple-posted. Maybe cross-posting to newsgroups doesn't work so well?
May 26, 2006 4:51:39 AM

I don't think you've gone wrong in your thinking anywhere. I'd go with your first-mentioned Intel plan... That's the conclusion I came to myself after much deliberation.
May 26, 2006 5:10:23 AM

How do you know that motherboard is Conroe ready? Did Intel tell you that? The only motherboards I have seen that Intel has said publically are Conroe reasdy are not availabe yet. I would hate for you to buy something and Conroe not work on it.
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May 26, 2006 5:16:24 AM

Well, that would certainly be a gotcha...

Do you think this article discussing Conroe-compatible motherboards is unreliable? It seemed pretty legitimate to me, but, again, I'm new to all this...

Is there a good place to find verified Intel information on motherboards?

Thanks, again...
May 26, 2006 5:26:01 AM

Quote:
Well, that would certainly be a gotcha...

Do you think this article discussing Conroe-compatible motherboards is unreliable? It seemed pretty legitimate to me, but, again, I'm new to all this...

Is there a good place to find verified Intel information on motherboards?

Thanks, again...


It all depends on the rev of the board. Thats the problem. You don't know what you will get. Rev A Rev B Rev X its all the same SKU.. all the same pile at the warehouse...

Intel has said some of them will work.. maybe.. the only boards they have said for sure will work are not available yet.
a b V Motherboard
May 26, 2006 3:12:08 PM

Quote:

It all depends on the rev of the board. Thats the problem. You don't know what you will get. Rev A Rev B Rev X its all the same SKU.. all the same pile at the warehouse...

Intel has said some of them will work.. maybe.. the only boards they have said for sure will work are not available yet.


Actually they said rev 304 of the board is conroe ready and it's already begun shipping.... your point about not knowing what rev you'll get is good though.

Quote:

Conroe CPU, once released and stable: E6600, 4M cache, 2.4GHz, $316
(based on the pricing here.)


Actually you're going to pay more than $316 for an E6600.... those prices that were shown were bulk pricing (1000 unit quantities). Based on the bulk prices of the Pentium D 900 lineup.... expect to pay more like $370-380 (before appplicable taxes) for the E6600.

However, your line of thinking was good.... socket AM2 is AMD's latest and greatest, which means 939 is basically done. For what you're going to use it for... i'd say head the Intel route.
May 26, 2006 3:28:29 PM

if youre worried about the next big thing...youll never have a computer...just get a dual core chip if youre worried about it being obselete....939 is not done et....until faster memory shows uptthats 1066 and up....look how long socket 754 has been here..dont misinform...939 is not going anywhere... anytime soon
May 26, 2006 3:56:36 PM

Quote:
if youre worried about the next big thing...youll never have a computer...just get a dual core chip if youre worried about it being obselete....939 is not done et....until faster memory shows uptthats 1066 and up....look how long socket 754 has been here..dont misinform...939 is not going anywhere... anytime soon


Well, AMD does plan to stop production soon, right? For now and into the near future, sure, 939 CPUs will be available and in my mind, a decent alternative. But clearly, AM2 is no longer the future, it's here.
a b V Motherboard
May 26, 2006 5:33:08 PM

939 will be around for some time, yes.... it's just that AM2 is now their latest and greatest platform...
May 26, 2006 5:45:27 PM

Quote:

It all depends on the rev of the board. Thats the problem. You don't know what you will get. Rev A Rev B Rev X its all the same SKU.. all the same pile at the warehouse...

Intel has said some of them will work.. maybe.. the only boards they have said for sure will work are not available yet.


Actually they said rev 304 of the board is conroe ready and it's already begun shipping.... your point about not knowing what rev you'll get is good though.

Here's a way to ensure you get the correct rev of the Intel 975XBX: Go pick it out in person. Yesterday I went into my local computer hardware retailer and found no less than 3 i975Xs with the magic number D27094-304 right there on the barcode sticker...
May 26, 2006 7:02:57 PM

Quote:
939 will be around for some time, yes.... it's just that AM2 is now their latest and greatest platform...


For now I think you should have stopped at "latest".

But of course, we can always hope...
!