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Buying custom, store - bought PC (Canada). Suggestions?

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January 13, 2007 10:14:55 PM

Essentially I got this list of components by looking around this forum and I asked some questions last year. Just want to confirm everything and clear a few things up before I order.

Intel Core 2 Duo E6300 Dual Core Processor LGA775 Conroe 1.86GHZ 1066FSB 2MB Retail

Sapphire Radeon X1950 XT 625MHZ PCI-E 256MB GDDR3 Dual DVI-I HDCP HDTV Out VIVO OEM Video Card (is OEM ok?)

Gigabyte GA-965P-S3 ATX LGA775 Conroe P965 DDR2 PCI-E16 3PCI-E1 3PCI SATA2 GBLAN Audio Motherboard

OCZ Gold XTC PC2-6400 2GB 2X1GB DDR2-800 CL5-5-5-12 240PIN DIMM Dual Channel Memory Kit

Coolermaster CAC-T05 Centurion 5 Aluminum ATX Tower Case 5X5.25 1X3.5 4X3.5INT SILVER-BLACK No PS

OCZ GameXStream 600W ATX12V 24PIN SLI Ready Active PFC ATX Power Supply 120MM Fan Black

THERMALTAKE CL-P0092 SILENT775 LGA775 ALUMINUM /W COPPER-BASE 2500RPM 42.91CFM 21DBA

Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 320GB SATA2 3GB/S 7200RPM 16MB Cache NCQ Hard Drive

Pioneer DVR-111D Black DVD-RW 16X6X16 DVD+RW 16X8X16 DL 8X IDE OEM DVD Burner

Sony Black 1.44MB 3.5IN Floppy Drive
_____________________________________________________________

Don't know if I need a better power source (in which case, do you buy the case with a psu, then buy another psu?) or the fan.

Is the sapphire X1950 XT much good? There is also the HIS version available, but it is nearly $40 more.

Is the E6400 that much better than the E6300? Price gap is $50-70, depending where you buy. Pretty big increase.

Is the MOBO alright and will work with the ram & other components?

I will probably overclock moderately at some point in the future, of if some of the more power hungry games like FEAR make it necessary.

Cheers
January 13, 2007 11:59:15 PM

PCAnalyst is right about needing more power. The one he suggested was good, although you might want modular cabling possibly for airflow. Not saying youll need it, just saying its nice.

the gfx board you picked is pretty good, although you might want to consider stepping down a little and upgrading to a dx10 card when prices drop.

no incompatibilities that i can see.

and IMHO the e6400 isnt worth as much as 50-75 dollars extra, unless you want to overclock it to its limits. Otherwise, the e6300 will do just as well. What kind of speeds were you thinking of reaching?
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January 14, 2007 12:38:04 AM

What would you suggest stepping down to? I'm not hugely concerned about DX10 since there are only a few games even announced for it.

As for OCing...it depends on what the games I play need. I wouldn't do anything extreme, though. I don't know how well the E6300 OCs.

The power source he suggested isn't in stock where I intend to buy. What about this one:

OCZ GameXStream 600W ATX12V 24PIN SLI Ready Active PFC ATX Power Supply 120MM Fan Black

Feels like a waste of money buying a case w/ a PSU...then immediately replacing the PSU. Is there a really good case in terms of air flow w/ no PSU?

Also, do you think there will be a big price drop on Radeon cards next month after they introduce their DX10 cards? I don't really want to wait, but if there is a significant benefit....

thanks
January 14, 2007 12:51:01 AM

Quote:
What would you suggest stepping down to? I'm not hugely concerned about DX10 since there are only a few games even announced for it.

As for OCing...it depends on what the games I play need. I wouldn't do anything extreme, though. I don't know how well the E6300 OCs.

The power source he suggested isn't in stock where I intend to buy. What about this one:

OCZ GameXStream 600W ATX12V 24PIN SLI Ready Active PFC ATX Power Supply 120MM Fan Black

Feels like a waste of money buying a case w/ a PSU...then immediately replacing the PSU. Is there a really good case in terms of air flow w/ no PSU?

Also, do you think there will be a big price drop on Radeon cards next month after they introduce their DX10 cards? I don't really want to wait, but if there is a significant benefit....

thanks


Upcoming Games for Dx 10 cards (PC)

The e6300 Overclocks like MAD!

The OCZ PSU you chose will do nicely.

Best case for the money:Coolermaster Centurion $50 great airflow

Its hard to say really... certainly their upper level cards such as the X1950XTX should come down in price to make room for the R600 next Gen cards, but I wouldnt expect too much... at roughly $400 now they -AMDATI- still have room to release a higher priced card, and they still need to sell the old ones.

I think the price changes will come from the Nvidia side to counteract what will likely be a superior card from ATI released in March or April.

With that said... if you can wait that long then so be it, but lets be honest here... the GTX/ GTS cards are serious business and will keep your gaming up to par for at least the next 18 to 24 months.
January 14, 2007 3:11:12 PM

Thanks.

I've edited the original message with the latest configuration. Look good? The fan acceptable?
January 14, 2007 5:08:57 PM

Actually the fan seems a little weak, and possibly weaker than the stock fan. The noise level is a constant 21dBA max airflow is 43CFM... not exciting numbers.

You could get double the airflow from a thermaltake for $10 more at the same Noise level.
January 14, 2007 8:24:52 PM

Thanks. Will an extra fan help the video card, too (if I OC it)? Is it even necessary? If so, what fan are you referring to?

thanks
January 14, 2007 8:46:11 PM

If you buy a quality video card you will get a quality fan pre-attached to it so no worries there.

If you feel you are not getting sufficient airflow, ventilation or cooling, you can add fans in key places. There are adjustable swivel fans that can be attached pretty much anywhere inside the computer and directed to the component that needs it.

Like the Antec Spotcool or the Vcool might help a bit.

There are a lot of ways to get the air moving in your case you just need to do some research on it.
January 14, 2007 11:49:52 PM

I used to own that VCool thing, and IMHO its a piece of shit. Just thought you might wanna know.
January 15, 2007 1:28:42 AM

Thats good to know thanks...

Did it not work right or just not enough to make a notable diference?
January 15, 2007 2:39:36 PM

Well it moved a good amount of air, but somehow it increased my temperatures by 5-10 degrees Celsius, so maybe it'll work for others.
January 15, 2007 3:05:27 PM

Hope your not buy it from Canada Computers :(  , although there the cheapest Computer store that I know of, they never have anything in stock. If you are buying from them, call them first to check the stock.
January 15, 2007 3:50:26 PM

Some Other Canadian Stores I Use:
NCIX - BC
Direct Canada - BC
Canada Computers you already know. NCIX price matches an direct canada has pretty good prices as well. I have used NCIX a lot lately because they price match and have great deals every week.
January 15, 2007 9:21:26 PM

I'm getting it built by NCIX. They have retail locations where I live.

Thanks for the advice. I'll guess I'll drop the fan as long as the cooling is decent for the Sapphire card and Intel chip.
January 16, 2007 1:43:28 AM

Would a 700 w PSU be overkill? I'm considering it because for upgrading purposes, too (not to mention I can get a decent deal).
January 16, 2007 1:49:12 AM

Yes, it is overkill, but if you can get a good price I'd say go for it. Im considering upgrading mine to a 700.
January 16, 2007 3:56:56 AM

Great, thanks.

So I take it you think I need an extra fan?
January 16, 2007 3:32:55 PM

I think that if you're going to get an after market heatsink/fan it should be one of those two. As for if you need one or not, well you probably don't unless you are doing a good amount of overclocking, have the computer in a hot environment or any other unique circumstances.
January 16, 2007 5:01:42 PM

For $27 Cdn, I'll play it safe and get the fan.

What do you guys think of this card:

EVGA E-GEFORCE 7950 GT PCI-E 550MHZ 256MB 1.4GHZ GDDR3 Dual DVI-I HDTV Out Video Card

It's about $50 cheaper than the Sapphire x1950xt.

Or this one for an even shorter term solution:

EVGA E-GEFORCE 7900 GS KO 500MHZ 256MB 256BIT 1.38GHZ GDDR3 Dual DVI-I HDTV Out Video Card

http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=20496&vpn=25...

All that's left is to decide on the video card! Thanks guys!
January 16, 2007 5:12:42 PM

I think its a matter of personal preference. I would probably go with the 7950GT just because its middle ground. But if you're worried about saving money the 7900GS is a good idea, and if you really want performance the x1950xt.

Here you can check benchmarks

http://www23.tomshardware.com/graphics.html?modelx=33&m...
January 16, 2007 5:14:18 PM

The question really is... Do you think you will want to upgrade a vid card soon after you just purchased one?
January 16, 2007 5:47:13 PM

that's the thing. I'll want DX10 features (I always like trying to play PC games on the highest settings or I don't play them at all), but beyond Crysis I can't see a single DX10 game coming out this year that I care about. With my backlog of games I want to play (my PC is 5 - 6 years old and hasn't been in good shape for a long time), I may be able to put it off until late next year.

I'm having trouble telling what the jump is between the 256 mb GF 7950 and the 256 mb X1950XT (particularly hard finding benchmarks for the latter).

EDIT: I hear that the X1950XT runs pretty hot. With the fan, case and standard cooling, am I set if I go for that card? Thanks.
January 16, 2007 9:24:15 PM

Oh yeah, what are a good pair of speakers at a decent price?

Can't forget the sound!
January 16, 2007 10:41:54 PM

The Bose Companion 3 or 5 series is superior quality... but a bit pricey... and if you don't need surround sound the Companion II is very nice for $99

Here is the Circuit City Ad:Retail Bose Companions
January 17, 2007 1:15:20 AM

Bose are very nice, Id go for the IIs because surround sound is overrated. i got it and it was a waste of teh money.
January 17, 2007 1:47:58 AM

I never use speakers, only headphones, but if I were you I'd check out other opinions on whether or not surround sound is "overrated." I could see you being at a severe disadvantage in many games if you do not have surround sound, or maybe not. Like I said, I don't know anything about speakers, but surround sound seems like it could be very important.
January 17, 2007 2:31:29 AM

I agree that "while in Game" surround sound plays a small part (especially Shooters), but as a seasoned gamer I have learned its best to just keep moving around like a skitzo 8)

Price issues were my only point in suggesting the Bose II... and one can purchase components later when the funds are available.
January 17, 2007 3:50:07 PM

I was looking at some Logitec ones X-530, I believe. The price difference between the 2.1 and 5.1 don't seem that significant (obviously these aren't high end).

The thing is, though, would I have to buy a sound card to get 5.1 running and do many games support it?
January 17, 2007 4:04:11 PM

Wouldn't that depend on you motherboard? and most games do support it I think.
January 17, 2007 4:15:36 PM

Gigabyte GA-965P-S3 ATX LGA775 Conroe P965 DDR2 PCI-E16 3PCI-E1 3PCI SATA2 GBLAN Audio Motherboard

That is my motherboard. Doesn't say anything about 5.1, 2.1 etc. Does say that there are jacks for surround sound. *shrugs*
January 17, 2007 5:20:45 PM

That Motherboard supports 8 channel audio... I think your good :wink:
January 21, 2007 10:04:09 PM

yeah you wont need a card. although a card makes everything sound better.
!