Cutting Edge Machine for a Quad Panel Display: Need help plz

Im in the process of trying to spec out a new machine. Ive been a long time Intel user and I think I would like to make the move to the AMD AM2. Ive read so much conflicting information on what components work together and what dont. So if you guys could help point me in the right direction as to what components to purchase I would appreciate it greatly.

I have 4 24" 2405FP Dell LCDs in a quad display.

Im thinking of going with:

CPU: AMD athlon 64 x2 am2 5000
Motherboard: ?
Memory: DDR2? Any particular brand? What type of modules?
Hard Drives: 2 Raptor 74Gig in Raid 0
VideoCard: Im having a hard time deciding what to go with here due to my quad panel display. I obviously need 4 video ports so if I purchased 2 GF7900 cards I wouldnt be able to run them in SLI since I would only be able to power 2 monitors. If I didnt run them in SLI I could power the 4 panels but would the Nvidia card be the best solution then? I was thinking of possibly going with 2 ATIx1900 cards. If I did go with the ATI cards would that have a big impact on what motherboard I decide to go with.

Any feedback is really appreciated. Its been a long time since I put a machine together so if my logic is off on what im trying to spec out please let me know. Thanks again.
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  1. A pair of ATI's 1900's would probably be better... imo...
    and something along the lines of ATI's latest chipsets would give you the best compatablity too.
  2. If the GreatGrapeApe shares his wisdom, we would be all the more enlightened, since he has the most informed details...
  3. So if i went with the x1900's do you think this motherboard would be a good one for me to get?

    ABIT AT8 Socket 939 ATI Radeon XPRESS 200 CrossFire ATX AMD CrossFire Motherboard

  4. Go with the newer XPRESS 3200 chipset
  5. ATi cards are NOT capable of pushing out that much resolution as compared to the nvidia's so get the 7900s, they will be capable of putting out all that resolution over the 4 monitors, the ATis won't...
    and its a credible source.... disapointing to say the least as i love the x1800xt i i have
    Source for the Max Resolution Chart

    lastly if you want toy run your cards in SLI check out Matrox DualHead2Go you'd be able to run 4 monitors out of the 2 DVI plugs, but i don't know if that will benefit you at all if your going to get 2 cards anyway, but its an option if you want to SLI...

    they also sell a TripleHead2Go, reviewed by THG here , just giving you some more options
  6. Ok, first of all, whats your budget for this computer? Personally, I wouldn't go with such a nice AM2 chip, as I would be upgrading in December when the 65 nm chips come out, which should offer a considerable increase in performance.

    Video Cards: Can you wait for the 7950's? If not, then go with 2 7900 GTX's. As was said, they do have higher resolution for those nice hot 24" Dells. :oops:

    HDD's: I would either say get a 150 GB Raptor or get 3 smaller raptor/other drive in RAID 5. That way you have backup, and you have speed.

    RAM: Right now the OCZ is the brand to go with, because they are pretty damn cheap for good performance. Definetly get 2 GB's.

    Motherboard: If your going to go AM2, the best board out right now, I believe, is the Asus M2N32-SLI Deluxe/Wireless Edition which looks to be a REALLY awesome board from the reviews I've read. Obviously since this was one of the first boards out, it does have some problems. But thats true with everything.

    PM me if you end up using that board, I'd really like to know.

    Also, at least think about if you want to go AM2 right now, you don't have to.

  7. My budget for this machine is about 3k. I would like to wait for the new .65nm to come out but I keep doing that everytime AMD releases a new chip and if I dont make the move now I feel like I never will. Part of the reason I would like to upgrade now too is due to the fact the machine I have now is starting to give me alot of problems.

    After the feedback about the NVidia cards I think you guys helped me decide that Im going to go with the 7900's. Im looking at the Forsa 7900GTX PCIe 512MB. Have you heard anything bad about this manufactuer? Im still a little fuzzy how doing SLI is going to work out on the 4 monitors. I think I still need to research this a little more.

    I was thinking about going with the 4x1gb CorsairXMS 667 memory. I think I will check out OCZ a little more.

    Im not sure if I want to do raid 5 instead of raid 0. I know in the past there has been some performance loss when going with raid 5. I understand I dont get the reliablity but all my data is stored and backed up to a raid 5 server everynight anyway.

    As for the Asus M2N32-SLI Deluxe/Wireless Edition motherboard. Im going to check it out tonight.
  8. As far using SLI with 2 7900GTXs over 4 monitors you won't be able to unless you get the Matrox DualHead2Go, but if you use them as two separate video cards w/o SLI you will be able to use the four monitors, but if you wanted to go with SLI then your only solution would be to buy two DualHead2Go connector boxes, that would allow you to run 4 monitors while running in SLI mode right now on ZipZoomFly(Price Link to ZipZoomFly )they run $145, you would need two of these so that would run you $300 bucks so you can run in SLI with four monitors. Granted i'm not sure how much this benefits you besides allowing you to run at higher resolutions over the 4 monitors...

    Enter the Matrox DualHead2Go, which uses a special graphics driver that doubles the horizontal resolution of the secondary or auxiliary graphics output

    Output resolutions of 1024 x 765 or 1280 x 1024 thus translate into 2048 x 768 or 2560 x 1024

    this would be an amazing setup and allow you to run at higher resolutions than if you didn't have the DualHead2Go, but if you didn't have that, you would still be able to run the 4 monitors but not in SLI, since you got a pretty liberal budget of 3K i don't know if this is feasible or not but it sure as hell would be nice... Oh and regarding the manufacturer for the 7900s i haven't heard of Forsa actually, but i would definitely recommend BFG or eVGA, they both sell quality products...XFX is ok too

    As far as the RAID configurations go, i would say if you can do RAID 5, go for it, i wouldn't want to worry about the RAID 0 configuration and have to rebuild the array if it fails, but a RAID 5 configuration will be more expensive, so its more like pick your poison, but i would most likely just say skip the RAID and get a good SATA HD or just get a 74GB or 150 GB Raptor for OS and Games and 300GB Seagate for any other info (music, downloads, or other random stuff) and you would be set, it would still offer good performance while not costing you alot of $$$, cause if you go RAID you don't exactly get what you pay for in that if you buy two 74GB Raptors, you don't always get double the performance, and most of all you might not even notice (which seems this is what makes people mad when they cant even tell) but its your money and its your computer so do as you please...
  9. What do you use 4 very big displays for?
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