My first post - I am upgrading to a core2 system and will be overclocking, so I figured it would be a good time to join the TH forumz!
I am about to order the following, and wanted to ask if the components I've selected are compatible with each other, and if the components are a good base for attaining an overclock of around 3ghz. Any additional advice would be greatly appreciated!
Intel E6400 Core2Duo
Gigabyte DS3 Mobo
Gigabyte 7900GT 256mb PCI-e x16
Thermaltake Mambo Case (want something that gives off minimal light)
Patriot 2GB (2 x 1GB) DDR2-800MHz 4-4-4-12
550W PSU (24pins)
Cool-Trek Vostok Watercooling Kit
Arctic Alumina Ceramic 14g Thermal Compound
Antec would be my top choice from the list. Switch the thermal paste to Arctic Silver 5. 550W should give you quite a bit of room... but if the budget becomes an issue, you could drop to a 500W without a problem.
DONT GET THE GIGABYTE DS3...save yourself 20 bucks and get the regualr S3. it is the EXACT same mobo as the dsc but the little capacitators are something fancy that supposedly makes them last longer. but unless u wanna keep the board for like 20 years i wouldnt worry bout it.
i dont see why so many people went ds3 for an extra 20 bux. its the exact same thing (actually the eternet chip is slightly different ive heard) but neither of these effect the boards atualy performance. ive seen both boards next to each other, AND SPOken to a gigabyte tech person bout it before i bought my s3
i have a hiper 580w psu powering a similar setup, its goin fine.
people say "name brand" but id recommend the hiper (its 100$ and i believe its great quality)
antec is probably what most would consider name brand, but also fsp, seasonic, ocz sometimes, and theres more. if ur conservative go antec, but if you like to be different, the hiper is pretty sweet
also consider x1900xt - im a bit of an ati person (dont know why) but it seems to do well in the benchies.
Thankyou kindly for the tips - I've since updated my setup based (kinda) on the replies:
Case: Thermaltake Mambo (low cost, looks alright)
PSU: CoolerMaster iGreenPower 500W SLI Ready (good review)
Mobo: Gigabyte 965P S3 (good point ChaseD13, thankyou)
CPU: Core2 Duo E6400 (fast, good oc potential, affordable)
Memory: 2Gb Patriot DDR2-800MHz (PC2-6400) 4-4-4-12 (good review)
Graphics: Gigabyte 7900GT 256Mb PCIe (instinct says so)
Cooling: Cool-trek Vostok 775 watercooling (curiosity, further fueled by good review)
Total is now AU$1815 with a better PSU, I also found a little catch with the retailer having multiple branches. They are offering the exact same 7900GT card at both stores, however one is about $100 cheaper. I cancelled my first order in hope to take advantage of the cheaper card at that branch.
ChaseD13 - By opting for the S3 over the DS3, i'm saving AU$60. I really hope the S3 doesn't poo itself in the first 6 months for the sake of $60. I've decided to go with the S3 becuase it frees up a bit more funding for the better PSU.
On the graphics card - I'm not a nvidia fanboy as such, but I will be sticking with the brand I know best. Nvidia just happened to be the first brand I ever used, has never failed me (an old dusty punished geforce 3 ti-200 128mb I have lying around is *still* kicking from about 5 years ago)
The Core2 system being built is replacing my current:
This still-very-functional setup will be going to my younger brother, who is keen to start getting into gaming and image editing, I've been told i'll be able to use a crossover cable so the two can be networked for LAN gaming.
Coming from the old XP 3200+, can I expect to be wowsered by the speed of a stable oc'd & watercooled Core2? Probably a stupid question... feel free to throw your 2c in nonetheless
You're spending $1900, so why not spend a little more and go with a better MB. Like the Gigabyte DQ6, Asus P5B-D, Abit Aw9d. Not that your choice is not good, but there seems to be more help on the net for people looking to OC their rigs when they select the board that I mentioned above, at leat that has been my experience with my C2D OC journey.
Question 1: What is the difference between the 965p-ds3 and 965p-s3?
Response: Their is no difference except for the solid state capacitors on the ds3.
Question 2: Does not having the solid state capacitors on the s3 affect overclocking on core 2 duo.
Response: The solid state capacitors have no impact or bearing on the boards ability to overclock. The solid state capacitors are used for long term durability.
Question 3: When you say durability can u elaborate on that?
Response: By durability I mean the S3 board will last probably about 3-4 years. The DS3 will last 5+ years.
Question 4: The DS3 is shown to hit high FSB speeds above 400 easily. Can that be expected or attained on the S3?
Response: Again as I mentioned the boards are the same and we have reached those speeds in testing.
All depending on the credibility of the person posting it, (i'm not doubting it either), this confirms what ChaseD13 was saying.
The only thing is still nagging me is whether or not the Patriot PC6400 memory will be okay with the Gigabyte D/S3 board, as I've heard alot of complaints about memory incompatability problems (haven't heard anything concerning Patriot memory though). The F5/F6 bios update seems to alleviate problems for some, but I'd rather try and avoid as many problems as possible. If anyone has experience with Patriot memory and a Gigabyte DS3/S3 mobo and could offer any input, it would be greatly appreciated!
You'll have no problems getting to 3ghz, might have to bump CPU volt up a tad (I had to in my case). After 3.2ghz it gets a little tough (so that's what I settled on), but my CPU needed a lot of juice to be stable though, about 1.48125 in the BIOS. It's cool though.
The Patriot ram is very nice. Rated at 800mhz, mine topped out at about 950mhz with 4-4-4-10. The motherboard will go with a 475mhz FSB, maybe more. My CPU just didn't want to, just 460x7 . Maybe with a better CPU and 1066 ram, the motherboard will do more. One thing...the Partriot ram is rated at 2.2v. It can run with 1.9 (default in BIOS) at 800mhz (400x8). At 920mhz (460x7), I needed +.3 in BIOS or it wouldn't boot. It's also expensive, if you'll just looking for 800mhz get 667mhz insteas, the Patriots 667mhz have no problem reaching 800 mhz.
As for the power supply, I had no problems running the above with my Antec SL 400, even overclocking the 1900 and E6400. There's no dual rail, 24 pin, or fancy SLI support. But it still ran and benched my computer. It probably won't be enough for a dual setup though. My new Antec is more efficient, I guess. It's got triple 12v rails and a modular wire setup. It's very quiet too. Kind of plain though.
Some people say... get the 6300 and not the 6400, it'll oc to 6400 levels and beyond very happily as it is the same component... or get a 6600 and Oc to 6700 levels, I've just pushed mine to 2.7Ghz without any problems on a board that is not great for OC, temps are up 2-3C on idle, 1-2C on load.
Also consider the 7900GS as it overclocks to GT levels very easily, and is signifcantly cheaper, or if you can find them get a 7900GTO as it is a GTX that has slightly reduced memory speed, but using the same Ram modules and hence overclocks to GTX happily, and is dirt cheap... (think they are dumping ready for G80)
cd14 - thanks for the excellent reply, comes in very handy especially since you are running a similar setup. I will stick with the Patriot memory, everything i've managed to turn up so far on those modules has been nothing short of excellent.
I'd be happy if I can get the E6400 to around the same clock speed as the X6800 (2.93ghz). That there would be about a free $1146 gain alone, minus the extra 2MB cache. With watercooling I'll eat my hat if I can't get 3ghz.
13thmonkey & deluxe - thanks for the advice, I have previously considered that option and seeing as though the prices don't differ too much here in Australia between the 7900GS and 7900GT, I've decided to stick with the GT. Price difference from my retailer between the GS and the GT is about AU$90.
Cheers for all the feedback so far guys, it's helping alot
I just noticed you said you were in NT, I'm in VIC.
Do you mind letting me know how much each component is. I should be building my new PC within the next month and will go with something pretty similar, was going to go with Asus P5W DH Deluxe MB and 2GB OCZ Platinum PC6400 RAM which I think I can get for around AU$670 all up.