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First homebuilt advice - Yikes

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January 20, 2007 2:06:24 AM

Well, after deciding to build my next computer and snooping around at Newegg for a few days, I was lucky enough to end up at this forum. Before proceeding further, I’d like to post what I’ve come up with. I’d be very interested in hearing about any glaring conflicts or omissions that I may have overlooked. All comments are appreciated.

My gaming days are over for now and, until a few days ago I didn’t even know what “overclocking” meant. I may, however, pursue either or both at sometime in the future if I run out of things to do. I do often involve myself in video/graphics/audio editing, 2D and 3D CAD. No matter what my activities are, it seems that I always have a large number of programs running and tons of browsers running at the same time. I’d like to experiment with some alternative operating systems, too. I’m not too concerned with costs. I got a nice bonus this year and if I don’t spend it, my wife will get it and spend it for me. For now, I’m going to continue to use my two SyncMaster 19” vga monitors, which I am very fond of. Also, my “Avant Stellar” keyboard stays. I type a lot and I love that thing.

Here it is:

Antec Solo Black/Silver Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case -

ASUS P5B-E LGA 775 Intel P965 Express ATX Intel Motherboard -

Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 Conroe 2.4GHz LGA 775 Processor Model BX80557E6600 –

Thermaltake W0101RU ATX 12V 2.0 Version 550W Power Supply -

ATI 100-505151 FireGL V3100 128MB DDR PCI Express x16 Video Card -

Crucial Ballistix 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel
Kit Desktop Memory Model BL2KIT12864AA804 -

2 ea - Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 (Perpendicular Recording) ST3250620AS 250GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive -

SONY 16X DVD±R DVD Burner With 5X DVD-RAM Write Black IDE Model DRU120C -

LITE-ON Black ATAPI/E-IDE DVD-ROM Drive Model SHD-16P1S -

I'll also add a FDD and some sort of card reader and who knows what else.

As best I can tell, the MB, CPU, RAM and PSU and other hardware are physically compatible, but I’m not sure. If anyone thinks I should ditch any of these items and consider something else, I'd like to know about it. I also keep wondering if maybe some of these items are known to not get along well with each other or if I've forgotten something important.

Thanks for your interest and help with this. It is greatly appreciated.

More about : homebuilt advice yikes

January 20, 2007 2:48:11 AM

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I got a nice bonus this year and if I don’t spend it, my wife will get it and spend it for me.

Now you are someone I can relate to!

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...Also, my “Avant Stellar” keyboard stays. I type a lot and I love that thing.

And you've started with an outstanding component. I was so excited when Avant started making the old Northgate designs. Avant Prime here! The three pieces of a computer that people actually interface with are the keyboard, mouse, and monitor. It is important to get those right.

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Here it is:

Antec Solo Black/Silver Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case -

Since you said you have the money to do it right, I must say I am not excited by this choice. It is the old standard ATX design where heat gets trapped under the video card and where the PSU is left as the primary exhaust (which increases noise considerably). Cases are a personal decision and you have to choose something you like the looks of, but from a purely utility standpoint I'd look for something with more contemporary thermal engineering.

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ASUS P5B-E LGA 775 Intel P965 Express ATX Intel Motherboard -

Excellent choice.

Quote:
Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 Conroe 2.4GHz LGA 775 Processor Model BX80557E6600 –

Another excellent choice.

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Thermaltake W0101RU ATX 12V 2.0 Version 550W Power Supply -

Fine. I prefer the Seasonic units but this isn't a bad choice.

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ATI 100-505151 FireGL V3100 128MB DDR PCI Express x16 Video Card -

Unusual choice. For the same money you choice instead buy a SAPPHIRE 100189L Radeon X1900GT

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Crucial Ballistix 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model BL2KIT12864AA804 -

Good choice.

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2 ea - Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 (Perpendicular Recording) ST3250620AS 250GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive -

Great choice. Hopefully the Qty 2 is for RAID 1.

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SONY 16X DVD±R DVD Burner With 5X DVD-RAM Write Black IDE Model DRU120C -

LITE-ON Black ATAPI/E-IDE DVD-ROM Drive Model SHD-16P1S -

fine. whatever. These are largely commodities to me these days.

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I'll also add a FDD and some sort of card reader and who knows what else.

It's cheap so fine, but do you really use a floppy anymore?

For whatever they're worth, those are my thoughts. Good Luck!
January 20, 2007 3:27:22 AM

Quote:
Since you said you have the money to do it right, I must say I am not excited by this choice. It is the old standard ATX design where heat gets trapped under the video card and where the PSU is left as the primary exhaust (which increases noise considerably). Cases are a personal decision and you have to choose something you like the looks of, but from a purely utility standpoint I'd look for something with more contemporary thermal engineering.


I'm not stuck on this one at all. Just so it doesn't look too bizarre. (I will get laughed at if it does.) I'll look around some more.

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Fine. I prefer the Seasonic units but this isn't a bad choice.

I read some other good comments about Seasonic here. I will investigate them.

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Unusual choice. For the same money you choice instead buy a SAPPHIRE 100189L Radeon X1900GT


I just looked at this at your suggestion and liked it alot. I mainly need something that will run 2 vga monitors, which this does. I'm going to look again. Thanks.

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Great choice. Hopefully the Qty 2 is for RAID 1.


RAID is like "overclocking" to me. Heard of it and have only a vague idea what it is. That will all change tomorrow. I will dig into RAID then.

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It's cheap so fine, but do you really use a floppy anymore?

I have to admit, it's been a while. I'm afraid if I don't include it, I'll be needing one for something. If I end up with a case that doesn't want a FDD, I'll ditch it. I can always drag out my old laptop that has one if need be.

Thanks for your comments. They have been very helpful.
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January 20, 2007 3:50:03 AM

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RAID is like "overclocking" to me. Heard of it and have only a vague idea what it is. That will all change tomorrow. I will dig into RAID then.


With 2 drives, you essentially have 3 choices.

1. Run them as separate drives, so you'd have a 250GB C: drive and a 250GB D: drive.

2. RAID 0 - Striping. With Raid 0, the disks are combined into 1 big 500GB C: drive and data is split between the drives to improve performance. This does boost speed, but at the price of reduced reliability. Since files are spread across the drives, if either drive fails you lose everything. Except in very specific circumstances, I don't recommend RAID 0 in a home machine.

3. RAID 1 - Mirroring. With Raid 1, everything is written to both drives so that they are exact copies (mirror images) of each other. This makes reliability outstanding - if a drive dies everything is duplicated on the second drive. However, it does so at the cost of storing everything twice and therefore cutting your capacity in half. With RAID 1, those two drives would still only give you a single 250GB C: drive.

There are more advanced forms of RAID with their own advanatges and disadvantages, but they all require more than 2 drives.
January 20, 2007 10:21:13 AM

RAID 1 sounds like me for sure. I'm going to look closely at it. 250GB will do me for a long long time.

Thanks

M
!