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Hate to do this but...

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December 21, 2006 6:31:43 PM

Alright, so I built my own rig back in 2001 while I was in college. I had lots of time did all the research, etc. For some reason I think I've lost whatever skill I had in understanding all this sometime around 2003.

Amazing how a job, a fiancee, and all that will slowly rot your brain, am I right? haha.

Anyway, I would REALLY use some help. I'm looking to build a new gaming box. None of my old components are reuseable as far as I can tell, so I'm starting from scratch.

I'm getting married in August, so I'm on a pretty tight budget. I need to stay around $1000, and I do not need any peripherals. Just a box.

My only requirement is that the machine be able to run some of the newer FPS recently on the market (mainly Rainbow 6 Vegas).

My thinking is going with:
C2D 6400
7600GT
2 GB memory (help?)
975X MSI board (help?)

I don't need a large hardrive, just something relatively fast would be fine. I do very little file storage and the rig is almost exclusively used for gaming and internet browsing.

I have no clue on a case, but something non-flashy and if possible compact (?).

Really all I want is a competitive gaming rig for the cheapest price that will last me two-three years. I really don't need it to last beyond that. Am I overdoing it on processor and mobo?

Thanks for any help! It will be much appreciated.

-Justin

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December 21, 2006 6:37:56 PM

Do you plan to overclock?

8O
December 21, 2006 6:56:44 PM

Quote:
Do you plan to overclock?

8O


Not really, unless I'm a fool not to.
Related resources
December 21, 2006 7:05:59 PM

Stick with the 2GB of ram. Change the C2D 6400 to a 6300, change the 7600 GT to either a X1950 Pro or 7900 GT, and get a Cheaper (not cheap) motherboard based off either the 945 or the 965 chipset. You will get much better performance for the same amount of money and you can still moderaetly overclock if need be. Plus, one of those video cards will get you closer to the 2-3 year upgrade then the faster processor will.
December 21, 2006 7:37:04 PM

If you're not going to OC, stay with the e6400, but most here will tell you that you'd be a fool not to.... It's pretty easy to OC a little... without doing much... Anywho..., that mobo would be overkill, try this:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813128012

a good board at a great price.., and it allows good OC, if you decide to later...

For the memory, 533MHz is all you need if you don't OC, but, I'd get the 667 just in case you OC a little... again, it is very easy to OC a little....

As for the case, if it's going to sit under your desk.., try a Centurion, it's cheap and sturdy... with good airflow...

The video card, the 1950 pro is great, but 7600GT is half the price with MIR..., so it depends on your game setting...

And, make sure you have a good quality PS 500-600W range, and you'll be set...

8O
December 21, 2006 8:42:33 PM

Wait until next month to buy a computer. The C2D is suppose to drop in price (January 7th), so you will be able to get the E6600 for about the same price as an E6400 today. Since you don't plan on OC'ing, I'd go this route. Plus, if you do OC in the future, the E6600 will OC nicely.

Other recommendations:

Mobo: ASUS P5B-E, Gigabyte GA-965P-DS3
HDD: Seagate 7200.10 (pick the size you want)
Video Card: See what developes next month when the R600 comes out. Though for somewhat serious gaming, get at least a $200 video card. The X1950Pro would be a starting point.
Memory: Since you're only on a $1000 budget, get a 1GB stick for now and then another 1GB stick later.
PSU: FSP has a 450W version that will even handle an 8800GTX, here.
Case: Take a look at Lian Li, Antec, ThermalTake and CoolerMaster. The one I'm planning on getting is the Lian Li B-20B. This would definitely take a big chuck out of your budget. But it's something to compare other cases to.

Any $30 DVD drive is going to be fine. I have the LG 18X version. I like it alot. Logitech MX518 mouse or the G7 laser wireless. Pick a keyboard you like. If you already have a mouse and keyboard then that's more money to spend elsewhere.

The OS is going to set you back another $100. You'll have to take this into consideration also.
December 21, 2006 10:15:51 PM

The x1900gt just drop in price http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681... it's a rev2 so that means no OCing or temp monitoring :x The up side is you can run them in crossfire without a mastercard now and they have VIVO. At $150 it's a good card. I have one and can say video looks great on this card but since I can't OC I'm getting a x1950xt next month. ATI is rumored to be lowering the price on the x1950 series next month.
December 22, 2006 12:52:23 AM

Quote:
If you're not going to OC, stay with the e6400, but most here will tell you that you'd be a fool not to.... It's pretty easy to OC a little... without doing much... Anywho..., that mobo would be overkill, try this:

8O


what? You're NEVER a fool if you dont OC... :S
December 22, 2006 1:35:01 AM

Quote:
If you're not going to OC, stay with the e6400, but most here will tell you that you'd be a fool not to.... It's pretty easy to OC a little... without doing much... Anywho..., that mobo would be overkill, try this:

8O


what? You're NEVER a fool if you dont OC... :S


I never said he was a fool, I just mentioned that most people would think so..., in reply to his question..

Crapola wrote:
Do you plan to overclock?


jdiddyesquire7th wrote:
Not really, unless I'm a fool not to.
December 22, 2006 1:50:37 AM

Don't bother with the 7600GT now; try for an X1950Pro or higher if you plan to play the newer titles at high qualities with decent framerates.
December 22, 2006 2:28:02 AM

Quote:
Do you plan to overclock?

8O


Not really, unless I'm a fool not to.

Overclocking can be a bit fun and it can give a cpu the same performance as a higher priced cpu, but its not for everybody. I go along with what Purdueguy wrote, to wiat until next month when the price is supposed to drop and then get the E6600. Who knows? You might even be able to afford the E6700? Just have to have the patience to wait a couple weeks.
December 22, 2006 3:07:59 AM

Since ure getting married, u may want to rethink the HDD idea...
Factor porn into the equation, cos thats the only way ure gonna get satisfied after 6months of marriage :lol:  :lol:  :lol:  :lol: 

On a budget id suggest...
6300 - Can still OC well
ATI x1950xt - Cant say enuf good abt this card. Will run any game max everything @ 12x10 (And thats onmy crappy 925D)
1Gb ram 800 - more than this u prob wont REALLY notice
965mobo - newer chipset i think? I like asus p5b deluxe: its good for OC. Expensive tho.
Add a case, psu, hdd, dvd and u SHOULD be very close to a grand US.
December 22, 2006 3:24:10 AM

Or the X1650XT... a little cheaper than the X1950 PRo & XTs with roughly the same specs.

running $199 at the egg vs. $250 for the 1950XT... and it'l get ya there.
December 22, 2006 2:06:47 PM

I had nothing to do so I made a list for you.
https://secure.newegg.com/NewVersion/WishList/MySavedWi...
You my want to hide this system because if shes anything like my wife your gaming machine will soon become the IM,myspace and MP3 system with her friends as a screen saver. Nothing sucks more the having a IM pop up when in a death match. I always have two systems but she needs the fast one to check email.
December 22, 2006 2:40:24 PM

Quote:
I had nothing to do so I made a list for you.
https://secure.newegg.com/NewVersion/WishList/MySavedWi...
You my want to hide this system because if shes anything like my wife your gaming machine will soon become the IM,myspace and MP3 system with her friends as a screen saver. Nothing sucks more the having a IM pop up when in a death match. I always have two systems but she needs the fast one to check email.


You have to copy and paste the list as it is on a secure site and cannot be opened by others.
December 22, 2006 2:48:18 PM

Quote:
Wait until next month to buy a computer. The C2D is suppose to drop in price (January 7th), so you will be able to get the E6600 for about the same price as an E6400 today. Since you don't plan on OC'ing, I'd go this route. Plus, if you do OC in the future, the E6600 will OC nicely.


I thought some new processors were coming out January 7th but that the current C2D's weren't going to price drop until Q2?
December 22, 2006 3:37:41 PM

I've heard that Rainbow 6 Vegas runs better on ATi cards, but don’t take my word for it (there's a few threads around here claiming less-than-stellar performance on even the almighty 8800 GTX). It might have something to do with the crappy shader branch-prediction of the G60/G70/G80 architectures.

Also, you mentioned you want a compact size. It is totally possible to build a nice gaming machine in a microATX case.. There's actually an article on here about microATX motherboards for Core 2 Duo:
http://www.tomshardware.com/2006/11/22/four_microatx__mobos_for_core_2/

As for a nice microATX case, I've had good experiences with the Ultra MicroFly mATX case, and it's great for the LAN gamer due to its portability:
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=1800612&Sku=ULT33117
December 22, 2006 3:42:16 PM

I clicked share so thought it could be viewed, should have saved as public :oops:  I hadn't finished my cup of joe yet.
COOLER MASTER Centurion 532 RC-532-SKN1 Black Aluminum-54.99
MSI 975X Platinum V.2 Socket T (LGA 775)-169.99
SAPPHIRE 100186L Radeon X1950XT 256MB-249.99
Sunbeam NUUO SUNNU450-US-BK ATX12V/ EPS12V 450W Power-49.99
Intel Core 2 Duo E6400 Conroe 2.13GHz-220.00
G.SKILL 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800-209.00
Seagate Barracuda 160GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s OEM-57.99
Subtotal: $1,012.94
theres a 10.00 mail in rebate on the case but after shipping cost it will be like $1060.00 or so. You could save money by getting a 965 mobo or a x1950pro.
I would suggest a overclock on stock setting, just push the FSB up until you get a error in prime then take it down a notch. You can get a few mhz and not have to mess with voltages and after market cooling. It's a good place to start and rather save.
December 22, 2006 3:56:42 PM

Quote:
I clicked share so thought it could be viewed, should have saved as public :oops:  I hadn't finished my cup of joe yet.
COOLER MASTER Centurion 532 RC-532-SKN1 Black Aluminum-54.99
MSI 975X Platinum V.2 Socket T (LGA 775)-169.99
SAPPHIRE 100186L Radeon X1950XT 256MB-249.99
Sunbeam NUUO SUNNU450-US-BK ATX12V/ EPS12V 450W Power-49.99
Intel Core 2 Duo E6400 Conroe 2.13GHz-220.00
G.SKILL 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800-209.00
Seagate Barracuda 160GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s OEM-57.99
Subtotal: $1,012.94
theres a 10.00 mail in rebate on the case but after shipping cost it will be like $1060.00 or so. You could save money by getting a 965 mobo or a x1950pro.
I would suggest a overclock on stock setting, just push the FSB up until you get a error in prime then take it down a notch. You can get a few mhz and not have to mess with voltages and after market cooling. It's a good place to start and rather save.


Pretty Good... I would go with a little better RAM myself... but a good price to performance Ratio I would imagine.
December 22, 2006 4:05:19 PM

Quote:
Since ure getting married, u may want to rethink the HDD idea...
Factor porn into the equation, cos thats the only way ure gonna get satisfied after 6months of marriage :lol:  :lol:  :lol:  :lol: 


That is just too sad for words.
December 22, 2006 4:59:37 PM

Case: Thermaltake Lanbox Vf1000BWS - $161.56 (Xoxide.com)

Power Supply: RAIDMAX RX-630A ATX12V/ EPS12V 630W Power Supply (retail) - $99.00

Motherboard: BIOSTAR TForce 6100-939 (retail) - $76.12

CPU: AMD Athlon 64 3200+ Venice 2.0GHz Socket 939 Processor Model ADA3200BPBOX (retail) - $61.00

Ram: CORSAIR ValueSelect 2GB (2 x 1GB) 184-Pin DDR SDRAM DDR 400 (PC 3200) System Memory Model VS2GBKIT400C3 (retail) - $211.98

Video Card: eVGA 256-P2-N615-TX GeForce 7600GT 256MB GDDR3 PCI Express x16 Video Card (retail) - $135.63 (optional replacement for onboard video)

Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 7200.9 ST3250824AS 250GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 8mb cache (OEM) - $74.99
Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 7200.9 ST3250824AS 250GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 8mb cache (OEM) - $74.99 (optional for Raid 0)

Sound Card: Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Xtreme Audio 70SB079000000 Sound Card (retail) - $72.33 (optional replacement for onboard audio)

Network Adapter: LINKSYS WMP54G IEEE 802.11b/g, Wireless-G Adapter 54Mbps (retail) - $49.99 (optional for wireless networking)

Optical Drive: LITE-ON 16X DVD±R DVD Burner Black SATA Model SH-16A7S-06 (retail) - $42.12

:D 
December 22, 2006 5:33:42 PM

Since you're getting married, you may want to think about noise. Things change and you may find that the leaf blower in the corner doesn't cut it. All I'm suggesting is to take noise into account. For more info along this line, please visit: http://www.silentpcreview.com/

That being said, I think it would be a poor choice to save $50 to buy a X1650 card vs. a X1950 variant. Check out the VGA charts.

Save your knuckles, get a mid-tower. Antec Solo or maybe Cheap EverCase. The quality of the PS is very important. The FSP unit recommended, or a Seasonic would be my recomendation.
December 22, 2006 6:17:25 PM

I never heard much on the Sunbeam NUUO psu but it's very well reviewed by customers an a few sites.
I consider a good case,psu and drives investment pieces. They don't add much to performance in games but add a lot to the over all system. You have to make cuts some where to stay in budget and it is a gaming setup. You could save a lot going with a matx 965 mobo and a x1900gt [ around $150] but would have to upgrade mobo when gpu physic is released.
January 3, 2007 12:39:50 PM

Thanks everyone for the replies. I was out of pocket for the holidays. This is great information and exactly what I was hoping for.

All the best, I'll let you know how the build goes.
!