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New High End Build - Suggestions Please!

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December 3, 2006 2:05:06 PM

Hi,

I'm looking to start building a new system and was hoping to get some suggestions to see if it looks good.

Components:
Intel Core 2 Duo E6700 2.66 mhz
eVGA GeForce 8800GTS
2x Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 320 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s *RAID 1*
CORSAIR HX620w PS
Lian Li PC-7 PLUS II w/ 120mm side intake fan modification
Intel 975XBX2KR Motherboard
Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeMusic 7.1
Artic Freezer 7 Pro Heatsink/Cooler
DVD-+R Drive (Undecided on make or model *Suggestions Please*)
DVD-ROM Drive
Mushkin 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400)

I don't plan to overclock anything at all for this system and am just wanting it to be stable. The main item I'm unsure about is the memory and how good the Mushkin memory is compared to Corsair, OCZ, and G. Skill's versions.

Please give suggestions!

Thanks!
December 3, 2006 2:55:39 PM

You could just as easily get an E6600 and not notice any performance differences.
December 3, 2006 3:06:16 PM

True, the 6600 will do just fine and will save you some money to put into something else......like a new laser mouse or something.

Which Mushkin? The value stuff, or......?
Corsair is overpriced. OCZ is a great deal. Mushkin is more high end, so to speak. If you're not planning on overclocking (that's a crying SHAME with your setup!!! ;)  ), then just get the cheaper 667 stuff.....OCZ is probably the cheapest and it runs fine.

DVD Drive.....get whatever's cheapest. Probably Pioneer....should do fine. Lightscribe feature is overrated.
Related resources
December 3, 2006 3:08:35 PM

I would personally go with a larger powersupply. That makes everything more stable. I would get a Thermaltake Toughpower 700-850 or a OCZ Gamer X-stream 700+.
December 3, 2006 3:55:21 PM

CPU - Go with E6600
Video Card - Use money from CPU downgrade to get 8800GTX
Power Supply - Corsair 520W is enough to power that system, unless you plan on upgrading to 8800 SLI
Sound Card - Isn't really needed, onboard works fine for most people
CPU Cooling - Arctic Freezer is useless for you. You only need aftermarket HSF if you plan on overclocking.
RAM - Useless since you don't plan on overclocking. Go with the cheapest compatible RAM, hell even generic would work.
December 3, 2006 4:25:30 PM

Thanks guys! I'm not sure if a 8800 GTX will fit in the PC-7 PLUS II case. I know the GTS will fit but unsure if the GTX will. I really want a great desktop for gaming etc so I'm hestitant to go cheap on any of the parts, even with not overclocking this setup. I don't mind putting the extra money into it mainly because I don't upgrade that often.

I was thinking up going with a 750W Silverstone Modular PSU but its 7 inches and that's tough to fit in a mid tower case. The Corsair 620HX I've heard a lot of good things about and its only 5.9 inches and seems to fit well. Do you really think I would need more then that, with not going SLI? How important is it to have a modular PSU?

I'm also hestitant to go with a stock cooler since my previous experience has been they are sub-par. I have to admit though I really don't know how hot the new conroe chips run. What's a normal operating temperature on the 6700 or 6600? Any reasons why I shouldn't go with an Artic Freezer 7 Pro just as a precaution? Who knows, maybe in a year or two I'll have a need to OC.

The memory is defintly a part I don't want to short change myself on. The memory I was looking at was "Mushkin 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail - 299.99". Is there a reason I would want to go with 667 rather then 800? Even without overclocking the 800 is better right?

Thanks again for all your help!!
December 3, 2006 5:37:30 PM

If you aren't going to overclock, the premium for the RAM is worthless. From this this you can see that the frames/second is barely affected by RAM speed. I would suggest getting 533MHz RAM from a reliable vendor.
December 3, 2006 5:59:08 PM

Personally I would go with a full tower like the Thermaltake Armor series. It gives you a lot of room to work with which is nice and you'll be sure everything fits. The power supply is good but if you want to avoid cable cluter go with the Hiper Modular Type-R 580W power supply. It looks great and has gotten a lot of good reviews. I agree with everyone else on the CPU, go with the E6600. The extra money for a E6700 isn't worth it, and you could use the money you saved to go with the 8800 GTX. Memory looks fine, however I've never had any experience with Mushkin. I prefer Corsair. Good choice on the soundcard.
December 3, 2006 6:11:31 PM

The GTX will fit in that case. You're wasting money if you buy that setup and don't overclock. Like I said before, you don't need more than 500W if you are not going with SLI, go with the Corsair 520W. The stock cooler works just fine if you don't plan on overclocking. There is absolutely no reason to go with the AC7 for you. You should decide now whether you are OCing or not, or else you will regreat it later. You won't see any difference between DDR2 533?, 667, or 800 if you don't overclock. The 800 is not any better than the lowest.
December 3, 2006 6:45:35 PM

Agreed.

OP needs to decide if he's gonna overclock or not. He's showing premium parts that are a waste of money if no OC'ing.

If you don't OC, then downgrade the RAM and cooler at least. If you are OC'ing, downgrade the CPU, keep the cooler, get the 800 RAM.

Also, the parts being suggested are not poor quality components, your build will still "last". So spending the extra money is really not the point, it's whether spending that money do actually do any good or if it's a waste. If you don't OC, then some of what you've shown is a waste. If you do OC, then you'll need what's being shown/suggested.



To OC or not to OC.......that is the question. ;) 
December 3, 2006 6:52:19 PM

Ah, ok. That makes sense then. I'll go with the E6600 and the GTX card since it'll fit. Save the cash from the extra heatsink as well. Would you suggest going with the Evga 8800 GTX or a different brand?

With not overclocking would it still be worthwhile to go with an Intel 975XBX2 motherboard? I just want something stable I won't have to worry about in regards to compatability or upgradability.

I'm also planning on using this system for software development with visual studio and probably will have one virtual machine using microsoft's virtual pc. I've been told that the virtual machines are memory intensive and I know that Visual Studio 2005 is. I understand the minimal impact on RAM for FPS in gaming but would it still benifit me to go with the DDR2 800 for the above reasons? Or would that also be less reliant on the speed but more so the total available RAM?

Thanks again for all the help, definetly appricated!
December 3, 2006 6:59:07 PM

Definitely more reliant on amount of RAM, not the speed. C2D isn't affect that much by speed of RAM, it's more affected by the FSB and speed of CPU by far.

Win XP will only utilize the 2 gigs RAM, but Vista will utilize more. Maybe stick with the 2 gigs for now and get more at that point? 2 gigs should do fine for now.
December 3, 2006 7:12:42 PM

You don't need the Intel 975XBX2 if you aren't going to overclock. I would recommend the 965 series (P965 specifically) because it is Intel's most recent chipset.

2GB of RAM is a good amount for you. As skyguy said, if you get Vista, you may upgrade to 4GB of RAM in the future if you need to.

About eVGA and the graphics card. It doesn't matter the company right now because it is such a new item. All the companies did was throw on a heatsink and their logo and shipped the product. I'd just look at price, warranty, and customer service for the companies.
December 3, 2006 7:19:04 PM

Agreed. The Gigabyte 965P-S3 is a cheaper mobo that will OC very well, should you decide to go that route in the future.

Agreed also on the vid card company. The 8800's are built to spec, so they're all the exact same except for heatsink and color. Get one from the company with best customer service, cheapest price, best warranty, and/or bonuses they throw into the deal.
December 3, 2006 7:32:27 PM

I don't agree about using the stock hsf. Even if you don't plant to o/c get the ac7 pro. It doesn't cost that much (25$). But it shaves a whooping 10*C at full load. my e6400 was 52ish at full load, with the ac7 pro it was brought down to 42*C!!!! Also it is very quiet at idle/normal load. I know that 52*C are acceptable (cpu limit around 65*C), but I feel more comfortable at 42! It is also ideal for moderate o/c and it only weights 70 gramms more than the specified (450 gramms). The big dogs in hsf weight a lot more, close to a kg, putting excessive pressure in your m/b.

Also I agree about E6600 instead E6700 and GTX over GTS.
The psu you chose is just fine.
December 3, 2006 7:38:51 PM

Should I be concerned at all with the 8800 GTX having buggier drivers then the 8800 GTS or are they all about the same?

The other thing I read when looking into the GTX just now is that it's CPU intensive and probably will be limited by CPU. Would you really gain anything on a GTX by using a E6700 rather then a E6600 without OC'ing? And on the other side of it, will I notice a big difference between the GTS and the GTX if I'm only running at 2.4 ghz?

Thanks again!
December 3, 2006 7:44:24 PM

Quote:
Should I be concerned at all with the 8800 GTX having buggier drivers then the 8800 GTS or are they all about the same?

The other thing I read when looking into the GTX just now is that it's CPU intensive and probably will be limited by CPU. Would you really gain anything on a GTX by using a E6700 rather then a E6600 without OC'ing? And on the other side of it, will I notice a big difference between the GTS and the GTX if I'm only running at 2.4 ghz?

Thanks again!


The drivers are the same for gts and gtx, the only buggy thing about them is with the sli thing. But I'm sure nvidia will get it right with upcoming release of drivers.

gtx is cpu intensive ONLY when ur playing in crazy resolutions like 2000*1600 and upwards. But for that you gonna need some serious monitor.
December 3, 2006 9:17:23 PM

Thanks everyone for the great info. I've never really OC'd much so that's why I'm hestitating but after reading all of your comments I may give it a shot. It probably won't be right away and will be moderate to low but at least I can learn the basics.

With that said, I think I'll get the E6600 as suggested, 8800 GTX card, and the arctic freezer 7 pro cooler. I also saw OCZ Platinum Revision 2 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 800 discounted to 215.00 which seems to be a pretty good price. That way I can still leave the door open to OC when I learn a little more about it.

The only thing I think I'm still undecided on is the motherboard. I'm also planning to run Raid 1 from the MB on the two hd's if that matters. I started checking out the P965 chipset boards and there seems to be quite a few. I was initially looking at the Intel 975XBX2KR board just because there wasn't many negative reviews but would a P5B Deluxe or a Gigabyte DQ6 work just as good? Since I'm now rethinking the OC issue due to your suggestions I would still like to leave the door open on the motherboard rather then go too cheap on one.

Thanks again for all your help!!
December 3, 2006 9:22:06 PM

Excellent stuff so far there. And good decision on the mobo........you've got everything else you need for a good OC, just the mobo to finish it off ;) 

P5B Deluxe is great, and a cheaper solution is the Gigabyte. You could go with the DS3, it OC's great as well for less money.

And the OCZ is a deal ;) 
December 4, 2006 3:18:35 AM

Thanks skyguy! I think it's really between the Asus P5B Deluxe and the Intel 975XBX2KR. I'm leaning towards the Intel 975 board because it seems to state it supports DDR2 800 ram and all of the reviews seem to state it's very stable and no real problems. I'm hestitant to go with Asus only because of their customer service and temperature probe issues.

Are there any reasons to not go with the Intel board with my setup? Anything I'm overlooking as far as stability / compatability / speed?

Thanks again!
December 4, 2006 4:02:08 AM

AFAIK, the Intel boards don't OC as well. P5B Deluxe definitely does.

Anyone here own an Intel board? Anyone........?



Bueller? Bueller?


*hears crickets*



Yeah, I'd go with the ASUS, it's a proven winner. Most people here will likely recommend the ASUS, but if you want objective answers, ask them WHY the Intel board isn't good, and make sure they give you facts, not opinion. But ask around, it's a fair bit of $$, make sure you get good value for your investment.
!