Help with my build (from a semi-newb)

hey, I've decided i need a new pc and have about $2500 CAD to spend on it. I somehow keep getting screwed over when i buy pcs Hopefully some1 here can help

MB - P4 S775 Gigibyte GA-965P-S3
CPU - Core 2 Duo E6300 (will be OC)
RAM- Corsair 800MHz DDR2 2048MB TWINX C4
VideoCard- BFG PCIE GF8 8800 GTS 640MB
HDD - 2x 250GB SATA2 Seagate 7200 16m

this all comes out to about 2k. Would I be better off with 4 gigs of ram or if i went with the 8800 GTX OC from BFG in the end it would be arround the same price Or would i be better getting the E6600 since it has double the cache or should i just save the extra 500 for later upgrades? any tips or suggestions?
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  1. Will you be overclocking?

    What resolution will you be gaming at?

    What is this computer primarily to be used for?

    Need some more info.......;)

    Off the top of my head though.....

    -get the OCZ 600w instead, it's more than enough.
    -that Corsair is expensive......OCZ Platinum is cheaper and will do just as good.
    -if you're gaming at 1600 rez or lower (ie-20" or 19" LCD) then get the 320mb 8800GTS...that'll save some money there.
    -upgrade that mobo to the DS3, should only cost about $15 more tops.
    -don't get 4 gigs of RAM unless your OS will use it. No point in tossing money out the window if your OS won't recognize 4 gigs.
    -if you're overclocking, then get an aftermarket heatsink. It'll keep things cooler and quieter. The Noctua UH-12F is amazing, cool and quiet, I highly recommend it for that case.
    -The P180 case is great for noise reduction, but it is a pain to cable cleanly. If you're up for the challenge though, I've posted a Cable Management 101 for the P180 in the case mod section of Tom's forums.
  2. i will be overclocking. currently my screen only goes to 1280x1024 but i am buying a new screen with it that goes to 2048 x 1536, mostly this rig will be used for gaming although i do a lot of high rez image editing. i will also be using windows vista. i would eventaully like to get sli. oh and since i'm an artist i'm one of the biggest graphics enthusiast out there but i'm also a student so i dont have money to upgrade for a while after this. i'm also going to a place to have this built for me so i couldn't care less how hard it is to wire the case thats their problem.
  3. OK, in that case, then definitely stick with the 640mb 8800GTS.

    Also, if you want the option to go SLI, then you need a different motherboard. Consider a MSI P6N.....getting great reviews, good layout, overclocks well, and won't break the bank. It's still fairly new, so subsequent BIOS revisions will fix any tweaks so be sure to update your BIOS as time goes by. It also won't break the bank since you're a student.

    680i boards are more expensive but are da shiz for SLI and overclocking. If it fits within your budget, consider an EVGA 680i mobo instead.
  4. neither the 680i or MSI P6N are available at the store i'm buying it from. and from the s to the ds it's 30 dollars but keep in mind i'm in canada
  5. I'm in Canada too. Whereabouts are you? I can point you to some retailers.

    Keep in mind the 965 boards, while amazing, are NOT for SLI. To go SLI, you HAVE to go 650 or 680.

    There is the ASUS P5N-E SLI board, take a look for that. Not as good as the P6N but it's still SLI.
  6. Even if you Vista, 4GB is not really going to help you (it can only address 3.something). The 6600 will be overkill almost anything you want to do (outside of video encoding or ... calculating PI). Personally, I think the best thing to do is simply save the money for upgrades (like a better video card 1+ years down the road) or I suppose a nice 22'' monitor now.
    Out of curiousity, why 2 drives are you going to use them in a RAID Configuration? If not, I would simply get 1 320GB and save money there too.
  7. Gotta head out now....I'll check this after dinner and see if we can find you a good mobo that's available in your area (or online?)
  8. I'm in montreal. i was going to microbytes since they have a good selection and ship stuff in from the us. i dont do video editing just image editing i also use a ton of layers, since i do illustrations using photoshop. and i got 2 hdd because i want as much space as i can get, for my drawings some get to 200 megs and i have multiple versions of it. and since 2x 250 gigs are cheaper than 1x 500 it seems like the logial way to go. oh never mind i think i found the msi p6n but it's called P4 S775 MSI 975X PLATINUM V.2 975X PCIE is that possible?
  9. 2 x 250 is much better. Better security can backup your data to the other drive in case one takes a dump.

    MSI Platinum is a good mobo. But it's not SLI. Intel-based boards won't run SLI because that's a proprietary Nvidia technology. 650 and 680 boards are based on Nvidia chipsets so they're the only ones that support SLI. The MSI Platinum has 2 PCI-e slots, so you can run dual cards, but as far as I know it's not capable of running SLI.

    This will run SLI, it's 650i board:

    It's the cheapest one available at Microbytes. Seems they have limited brand selection there. In any event, if you want SLI it looks like it's the ASUS P5N-E for you. If you don't want SLI then the MSI Platinum is one choice, the Gigabyte 965P-S3 is another that's cheaper and amazing, and a very affordable basic (but solid) board is the MSI Neo-F.

    Hope that helps.
  10. thx alot for your help, and just one more question am i better off following tom's hardware's tutorial on overclocking the 6300 or should i just spend more money on the 6600 or 6800 to be safe?
  11. Do NOT get the 6800....way overpriced for you. 6600 is a very good chip, but for the graphics you describe it's probably not necessary.

    If you end up getting the Gigabyte board, I wrote a noobie Overclocking Guide I can give you if you'd like. You'll easily surpass a 6600 with a 6300 OC'd.....IF you get an aftermarket heatsink. Don't bother overclocking much with the stock's ok but not the quietest, nor the best performer.

    If that's the case, then see if you can find the 6300 as need for the retail box because you'll just toss the stock heatsink anyways....but doesn't look like Microbyte has OEM :(
  12. i know how to overclock i just dont feel like taking a chance and having my cpu being damaged, so i'd prefer to follow a guide rather than test out safe speeds for myself. so a gigabyte would be better than the asus 650i for overclocking?
  13. Actually both OC very well. The ASUS is more touchy with RAM from what I hear.

    Honestly, the big difference between the 2 is SLI or not. If you want SLI, then the ASUS is a good choice. If no SLI then the Gigabyte is great.

    Gotta figure out if you want/need SLI or not ;)
  14. i doubt i'll be able to keep enough money to afford 2 vidcards, with all the games and school supplies i need, so it looks like gigabyte is the best choice. thanks again for all your help
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