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Building PC for 3D Work & Gaming (ut2007). Help plz !! =D

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May 23, 2007 2:49:54 PM

Hi im just going to try build a decent pc ,at mid prices , to cope with some decent gameplay like ut2007 and C&C Tiberium wars, as well as work at same time based mainly on 3D Apps like 3D Max 7 & Maya as well as Adobe products etc ~.Heres my specs & links of what im going to get , any help or advice appreciated as well as recomendations for other products =D.
thanks
Paul

Im trying to keep My Budget at like £500 - 600 (think thats like $1200 ? lol) , but could go over if necessary !
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DVD RW : £25
http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...



Case : 60 £
Was thinking :

http://www.eclipsecomputers.com/product.aspx?code=CA-XT...


or

http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...

or


http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...

Id prefer without screws but im not sure with these .



MSI P965 Platinum Motherboard - £90 (eclipse)

http://www.eclipsecomputers.com/product.aspx?code=MBM-P...




Cpu:£130 - 140 : Core 2 duo 6600

http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...






Ram: £58.21

http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...



PSU:£25~ http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...

Not sure if its cheap might not be to suitable and might fail ?


HDD : 40~£
http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...




GFX :£190
320MB BFG Technology 8800GTS Overclocked, PCI-E, Mem 1600MHz, GPU
550MHz, 96 Streams, 2x DVI/HDTV

http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...


OR £210

320MB BFG Technology 8800GTS OC2, PCI-E (x16), Mem 1700, GPU 580MHz, 96Streams, HDTV/2xDual Link DVI

http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...
May 23, 2007 3:15:20 PM

Personally, I would get the 8800GTS with 640 for UT3 (formerly known as UT2007).

I also would not get the MSI mobe. Go for a Gigabyte DS3 or ASUS P5B-E Plus. Or you can look at the new P35 chipset mobos, they will support, supposedly, the new 45nm Intel processors.
May 23, 2007 3:39:10 PM

According to Tom's, the MSI 965P PLAT is on par with the other top P965 mobos. So that's a good choice.

Out of the caese you listed, the Raidmax alienware ripoff would provide the best air flow with 2 120mm fans & 1 80mm side fan. Front & side should be intake. Rear & PSU should be exhaust.

The PSU ain't good enough. You want a brand name to last a while. 400W 26A for a 8800gts pc or 450W 30A for a 8800gtx pc. You should get a 500-600W so that the pc will be able to power the latest x2900 etc.

http://forumz.tomshardware.com/hardware/modules.php?nam...
Related resources
May 23, 2007 4:08:39 PM

Like the setup, except go with 6400 speed memory if you are thinking of over clocking, which with your rig 30% is very easy, even on the stock hsf. That way you can keep your memory at 1:1 or better.
May 23, 2007 4:37:01 PM

MSI board does not OC well, would be a miracle to hit 400 FSB. Tom's does rate it highly, but if you look around the web for other reviews you will find that it is a stable but otherwise blah board.

There are several P35 chipset mobos out and they would at least offer a future upgrade path, if that is important.
May 23, 2007 5:00:56 PM

You may want to drop the CPU to an E4300, OC It, and consider bumping the RAM to 4gb.

3D and graphic work is often very intense on memory usage since the images and data files used are often quite large.

While 2GB is more than enough for gaming, it may be insufficient for you graphic work.

If you are already using these tools, you may be able to judge if this will be the case for you. It really depends on the size and image quality of the items you are working with.

I have seem memory usage jump by nearly 1gb by simply opening some of these types of files.
May 23, 2007 7:28:26 PM

hi, thanks for those who replied ! firstly the 8800 gts 640 mb + cost a bit to much for me , and i would think it wouldnt make major difference, but perhaps it would i dont know lol.I have kinda set my eyes on the PSI 965 Plat from the start so i think i will probably stick with that.

akhilles could you say which case you was refferring to ? thanks.

I know the psu isnt good enough , so i will change this probably get a decent make , like the ones of the other thread that you said akhilles for about 50 - 60 £.

As for overclocking i am not to familiar with it , and i dont think with my experience i can risk it lol , so perhaps keeping the E6600 , but also having 4 gb ram =D.. As for the P35 chipset and the 630i i think its called , they are way to expensive for my budget most are double price of the MSI Plat 965

I dont think my mobo supports SLI but im sure the graphics card will work quite well neverthless in future perhaps run 2 at same time,I also intend to upgrade to Quad core in the comming summer also as i hear prices are going to drop !

sorry if i sound confusing , i am not geniuses at this kinda stuff with the right knowledge lol ,like you guys :p  but thanks alot everyone !

Any more recommendations ? =D


Paul
May 23, 2007 8:07:04 PM

If you won't overclock then that motherbaord is OK. If you will be gaming at 1280x1024 then the 320 is OK. If your monitor has a resolution of 1600x1200 or greater get the 640 version.
May 23, 2007 8:58:49 PM

Don't Fret about Overclocking.
Ask and learn about it.

It is SOOO simple.
At least for what can be considered moderate overclocks.

Come on man.
Do it!
Everyone Else is.
Join the "in" crowd.

We won't tell your dad. (Intel)
May 23, 2007 10:05:29 PM

I was referring to:

http://www.eclipsecomputers.com/product.aspx?code=CA-XT...

By the looks of it, the front fan seem to be 80mm. Couldn't it at raidmax site. They have only the new cases.

There's a MSI P6N-SLI-FI which should command for about the same price as the P965 PLAT. Or less. The P6N is 650i. Look at its features & you'll probably like it. BTW, 650i overclocks nearly as well as the much more expensive 680i.
May 23, 2007 11:06:05 PM

well my gfx card will be OC already , im still unsure about OCing the rest lol, & thanks akhilles ,this one does look more interestting , SLI, supports Quad ,cheaper ! , i am not to familiar with the terms "650i " or the "680i" , not that it seems to be much different lol , but could you explain the difference between these 2, also there is a MSI P6N-SLI-FI PLAT as well as the MSI P6N-SLI-FI for about £20 + more , any big differences between these 2 ? i cant seem to find much info on the MSI P6N-SLI-FI PLAt version (could only find this :http://www.cclonline.com/product-info-pc.asp?id=13482&p...)

Also guys any recomendations on keeping this beastly system to be nice and cool =D ? lol

thanks all
paul
May 24, 2007 2:27:09 PM

650i/680i duke it out

http://www.anandtech.com/mb/showdoc.aspx?i=2964&p=12

650i is about 20mhz short of the 680i's overclock in that setup. Have you looked at the price of a evga 680i mobo? The competition is over. I won't deny 680i is better than 650i, but at what price?

http://www.msicomputer.com/product/p_spec.asp?model=P6N...
http://www.msicomputer.com/product/p_spec.asp?model=P6N...

Well, they look similiar. The platinum has much better copper chipset & mosfet cooling. It'll overclock better than the FI out of the box. The plat has an esata jack so it can be hooked up to an external sata drive.

This C534 is decent for such a price:

http://www.cclonline.com/product-info.asp?product_id=67...

This cools better & is kinda cheap:

http://www.cclonline.com/product-info.asp?product_id=95...
May 24, 2007 3:15:42 PM

I vote 650i as well: although the Gigabyte DS3 (965 chipset) comes in as a very close second. And the number of people that have quoted that damn MSI article.. it was written when the 965 had only just been released. Gigabyte are on Revision 3, BIOS update 14 or something. Don't be mistaken as accepting that article as being indicative of the current market- please read around these forums and you will find much more current & accurate advice. MSI are not widely thought of as being a top componet manufacturer (not that I'm saying they're bad- just don't think your buying the Ferrari of the component world).

If you want to have a go at overclocking, I'd pick the 650i. The bios has an excellent feature where you set the memory frequency at a static level (basically you don't have to worry about the ratio's.. it does that for you). A great beginners board (plus you can use nTune.. although I have no idea how good it is with the chipset).

Also, save yourself £40/50 and drop down to the E6300/6400. You should be able to hit 3ghz with it.. and the extra cash will go toward something much more important-the gpu (relative to your use.. gaming & 3d apps). Basically spend as much as you can afford here if you work above 1280 res.

As for cooling, take your pick of any of the Antec cases. Very well designed, easy to build with (imo) and cooling is fan-tastic. The 180 or 900 would be my pick depending on taste.
May 24, 2007 3:32:22 PM

hi , i appreicate all your help , but im getting really frustrated with what to pick now lol :p  !! , and i dont know how to overclock , thats why i was gonna get the e6600 core 2 duo , any easy guides on overclocking the e6400 etc ~ and the mobo ?, (yes easy guides plz !) lol, also that evga ultra seems nice , but has no SLI option.
May 24, 2007 4:59:04 PM

Frustration is part this process you learn to live with.

Let me give you a couple of reference points. Firstly this article (which isn't too bad to read, & I include it because its from a chipset manufacturer- so many people are put off because they think what they are doing is wrong). Read page 1: it says how much easier overclocking has become, and how products are being designed with o/c in mind.

Nvidia Guide to Overclocking 680i

An essential read is Wusy's guide. Now, if you are reading it without staring at your computers bios, your probably thinking it doesnt make sense- but if you follow the instructions step by step (and choose from his recommended components)- you can't go wrong.

I also googled a random article on overclocking practically the same spec as my rig (below). It was from an australian website- I'd find it again except the damn work firewall prevents me :evil:  I didn't agree with the exact methodology they use (without going into the details)- but the overclock they come up with is well inside saftey levels (and was very easy to follow).

However, before you overclock, you need the build. Having recently built with the 650i, 680i LT (below) and DS3- you cant go wrong with any of them. The Nvidia chipsets (680i & 650i) are really very good for beginners (imo)- but take on board other advice / reviews- just bear in mind if you read an article that is 10 months old, then your advice is 10 months old.

And, even if we assume that you don't overclock, for a gaming rig your most important purchase is your graphics card. So start with that and work down. The key factor- what res are you gaming at? Check out the charts (linked from the main page).

For your purposes, anything paired with a E4300 / E4400 will probably suffice, and with a little learning you should be able to make it fly :) 
May 24, 2007 8:35:18 PM

hey thanks alot guys, ive placed my order on scan.co.uk lol ! total £710 =O !! 8O , i hope its worth it and wouldnt have been best to buy from a retailer lol !

I decided to get the MSI P6N-SLI-FI, i would have gone for the MSI P6N-SLI-FI PLAT or the Evga, but i couldnt find these on the scan website , i needed to keep the items together ;)  and also the Evga didnt support SLI incase i was gonna go with 2 graphic cards in the future , but hopefully the MSI P6N-SLI-FI will be stable enough for me, i know its not a ferrari but it can be a mercedes ? :p 

I also decided to keep the E600 Core 2 duo , basically because the E400 or E430 was only around £20 difference , but i understand what you guys were saying thanks, i intend to replace this with a quad in the summer anyway as well as some more ram.

That Antec 900 case by the way is pretty awesome , although looks arent the best its still kinda stylish but what amazed me was a freaking 200mm Fan !! , i think this would be one of the best cases for pc ventilation !! so i bought this =D .

I may try to overclock the e600 & the mobo , but i'll see how things goes or if i can find a guide to this specific mobo as well lol .

Anyway thanks alot everyone , you all did help !

Cheers
Paul
May 24, 2007 9:05:27 PM

Good luck with the build, Even if you have problems, when you are done the feeling of satisfaction is worth it. Especially knowing you didn't give your hard earned coin to a manufacturer for lower quality parts and a half assed warranty.

wood
May 24, 2007 10:15:41 PM

Nice build- good luck with it mate- you'll get your Mercedes no doubt. Let us know how you get on. And as for the cost, go and price your build up @ Dell- it'll put a smile on your face :) 

If your close to that part of the world (Bolton), the guys at Scan are really helpful and are one of the more 'understanding' retailers when it comes to returns (unlike Microdirect who are unbelieveably picky). Give them a bell inside 7 days if you get any problems.

Oh, and just because I wouldnt want you to forget anything, did you get remember to get some thermal paste and an after-market hsf. Ive put those 2 in cos theyre both good, Scan stock them and they dont cost a bomb. And while your at it- try and pick up some thermal compound remover & a lint free cloth. Always handy to have in case you need to reseat the cpu for any reason ;) 
May 24, 2007 10:37:05 PM

i hav a e4300 with 8600gts superclocked, use the gigabyte mobo 965p-ds3

clocked to about 3ghz, the fsb is 300 its stock voltage with ram at 600mhz(i hav 667 ocz gold xtc ram) and of course my comp is for unreal tournament 3 as well, but i dont do gfx work. of btw i got 4gb of ram for about 200 canadian

http://www.legionhardware.com/document.php?id=610&p=2

that link will giv u steps to oc an e4300, make sure u use custom heatsinkfan to cool if u oc. i use the zalman 9500
May 24, 2007 11:01:57 PM

Congrats on your new build! You're not a sodding idiot. Did you watch Lost late night? lol.

The guides except the 680i one given here are for P965. The cpu/ram ratio doesn't apply to 650i. If you're new to o/c'ing, leave it at stock. Just unlink them & o/c the cpu only. The nvidia 680i guide is a must-read.

http://forums.anandtech.com/messageview.aspx?catid=29&t...

That crazy-s thread is dedicated to msi 650i. The fellow did all the work for getting the most out of 650i.

Oh the evga 650i ultra mobo is crap. There's no mounting holes in the northbridge so you can't upgrade the crap cooling. You would think they had figure out heat is the #1 issue in o/cing.

If you picked the antec 900, horay. The 200mm fan is a blow hole that pulls warm air out of the dead spot in the top. Most cases will have warm air stuck in there.

There's an o/c forum here if you need further help.
May 24, 2007 11:04:49 PM

i live in bmirmingham so not to close ! ,yeh i had some thermal paste from before lol , its some good one silver~ something lol , and i bought http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...

that fan and heatsink with my order, i liked it because it had adjustable fan =) and decent price :p  ! i have a polo 735 ~ which is adjustable fan from 1800 rpm ~ 5600 rpm, but i wasnt sure if this would work with my new system and i lost the washer screws for the lga775 installation for it lol, as for lint cloth i got some old piece somewhere =], and i use nailpolish remover for removing the paste , it mainly contains acetone so is a good formulation !! hehe , has worked fine for me before lol.

thanks ryo~ i'll take a look at that overclocking link ;)  , any for the e6600 ? =)

ty guys
paul
May 24, 2007 11:09:15 PM

@ akhilles haha , no but i wish i could watch lost lol ! :p 

that antec is pretty nice , i cant wait till it comes i will have my own central fan for the room within a pc ! rofl

thanks for the links i will look into them , if i need help overclocking i will be sure to contact you :p  !!!

thanks again ;) 
paul


p.s. anyone used scan before , because i cannot see no orders or outstanding orders whatsoever within my account , it says not to try buy again as may cause further errors , so i think i just wait and contact them soon ! ..
May 25, 2007 6:46:38 AM

Scan are my main supplier- give them a call this morning and make sure you're order processed ok.

For the overclocking- its no different from processor to processor except for the multiplier. Its the board that distinguishes how you overclock- the board bios specifically- and the 650i is a cracker. Akhilles advice is bang on- the 650i makes it easier because you don't have to worry about the memory ratio- just unlink it (its an option in the bios) set it to the same speed as your ram at stock and off you go.

(Just had a read of that article- its very good- should get you there no probs).
May 25, 2007 2:19:07 PM

That reminds me that some Brits get american tv shows from ... :)  & the same for amercians getting british tv shows from ... cuz the broadcasting networks are too late to get them.

Sorry, I gave you the wrong link. lol. That's for ASUS P5N-E SLI. It's about the same except for the bios layout.

I lost that msi p6n overclock link. It's just a post that lists the bios settings for overclocking. It looks similiar to this:

http://www.pcstats.com/articleview.cfm?articleid=2099&p...

The link/unlink option is on cell menu in bios. Oh there's no unlink for msi. Just MANUAL which means the same as unlink. Then you put in the memory timings & voltage. Disable everything you don't use. I disable the 2nd IDE & IEEE & 2nd SATA. This offloads the chipset so that it can take more heat. The most changed options would be FSB quad-pumped & voltages:

E4300 = 200FSB (X 9 = 1.8GHZ) x 4 = 800FSB
PC2-6400 = 800MHZ

That's stock.
June 5, 2007 2:28:30 PM

hi again , well i got my parts but when i turned it on the fans etc came on for like once second , and thats it , i tried everything , so i sent the cpu and motherboard back to scan , as on the motherboard there was one pin slightly higher than the rest for the cpu fits in, possibly being the fault ? well i sent this to scan , and the results show no fault ? the guy put down : Scan diagnosis Installed cpu nad memory with 8500gt Corsair vs tx 1gb Hiper 580. for both the cpu and motherboard.. I was wondering if any of oyu guys could help me out ? , and yes this post probably needs to be moved to somewhere else but i am unsure where , please help guys !!

thanks
paul
June 6, 2007 6:20:09 AM

Ahh the frustration of building.

Okay, have you done the usual snagging? The good news is (yes there is some) you now know that both the cpu & mobo are fine. RAM and PSU are your prime suspects.

- try it with only one stick of ram. If that stick doesnt work, try the other stick. It could be a compatability issue with the ram (maybe it needs more volts than the mobo is setup to provide at stock). Find out what its rated to run at from the corsair website- unless your unlucky, you should be able to get the board to boot from just one stick where upon you can change the volts in the bios. Can you beg, borrow or steal some different DDR2 to complete the same test? Try and isolate whether or not its your ram.

- Apols if this is stating the obvious- but you did rememeber to connect both power cables to the mobo right? And to the gpu? IF not, erm, do it. Also, when you build, try minumum components first (ie just cpu, mobo, ram, gpu- and only connect the Power SW from your case- leave everything else off). If you get the same issue, add a HD. Ive seen rigs not start with just a 'bench build'- then magically restart. If they fail, again- can you get an alternative to test with?

If they fail- I'd consider sending the ram back- at least they'll test and you know whether yours rams ok. Let us know how you get on.
June 6, 2007 1:27:17 PM

hey
thanks for your reply, at the momment im just asking scan to send my items back lol , they say maybe i should send the ram & psu etc back , but thats just gonna cost more money and time ..., and i am really wanting to have this pc right now lol !, but like i said the mobo had a pin in the socket slightly raised , i dont know if this mobo is suppose to be like this but i thought there was some fault , obviously not ... when i did test it i did try it alone with the ram , psu, mobo and cpu but only got the one "vroom" for a second , i tried 1 stick of ram and the same , but the ram i have is dual so i think i have to run it with both sticks in it, also if you look at the manual : http://global.msi.com.tw/index.php?func=downloaddetail&...

on page 21 it shows the configuration of the ram , i dont think i did it this way , i put the 2 sticks of ram on the 1st 2 slots , and also the mobo does not have any vga (graphics) , and since my graphics card was a 8800 gt costing £200 i didnt want to try it incase something went wrong , but do you think this could have caused the problem , with no vga ? , and possibly wrong configuration of ram ? i was thinking surely without ram or vga it should still run for more than 1 second right ? ...

any help thanks guys
paul
June 6, 2007 2:19:56 PM

To be honest, putting the card in would be a good idea. And also plug the card in a monitor so you can see the bios. Its actually pretty difficult to damage your computer- not seating the cpu heatsink correctly & ESD are two I can think of- so take usual precuations here, plug it all in & go.

The mobo will boot fine with one stick- dual channel just means that it will optimise ram usage with two if the right slots are used. If youve used the wrong slots it might be the problem- but either way, just try getting it to boot with 1 stick.

Also, like I said, I do know of some psu's that are a bit funny about booting unless enough load is placed on them. So, plug in the gpu in as well. Also, you did plug the heatsink fan into the motherboard. Again- should still boot without it, but all possibles.

Did you get a speaker attachment with the mobo? If you did, plug it into the mobo so you can hear beep codes. They should also be referred to in the manual (soz: cant download it at work).

Basically, connect:

mobo, cpu, cpu heatsink & fan, gpu, monitor, all psu power (ie to 4/6 pin, 20 pin atx connectors, 4/6 pin gpu connector). Then play around with one ram stick (ie try one stick, try it in each slot): if that doesnt work try the other stick. Again, do you have a mate or someone that can lend you a different DDR2 stick- when you sent it back to Scan all theyll do is try your components out in this way.

If you do get into BIOS, look at the ram voltages- find out what the corsair recommened ram voltage (ie maybe MSI is booting at 1.8v, your ram needs 2.1v) and change it in bios straight away. Reboot, if all is good again, drop your 2nd stick in.

Also, remind me, what psu did you get again?
June 6, 2007 2:35:25 PM

hey thanks dude, i will be trying all of that as soon as i get my parts back lol !, and i kinda got a cheap psu the total of all this was coming up to £700 i didnt want to go much over , but its 700w :
http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...

(700W EZCool Infinity SLi pPFC Low Noise ATX v2.2 Dual +12v Rails EPS12v 2.1 SATA/PCIE Ready 12cm Fan)

im sure the heatsink was fine i took like an hour on it lol, and if it wasnt, the cpu must have been damaged which cant be the case as scan hasnt said anything =] !, what is ESD by the way ?

Also i dont have any ddr2 i have a pair of ram on this machine but not ddr2 , and i dont know anyone else :/ , the ones i bought are brand new , i just dont see why this system wouldnt work if everything is brand new lol :p 

thanks anyway i will be trying all this and updating as soon as i get my components back !
paul
June 6, 2007 3:46:43 PM

by googling ESD you can learn more than you ever wanted to know about Electro-Static Discharge. it will basically tell you that the spark and "SNAP" you hear when you touch your computer parts after shuffling your feet across the carpet or rubbing your nylon covered legs together has just given your computer parts a 40KV jolt that renders them inoperable since a part that is designed to work on 12volts or less just can't take 40,000 volts.
June 6, 2007 4:58:46 PM

Quote:
i just dont see why this system wouldnt work if everything is brand new lol :p 


Ahh, the naviety of the 1st time builder :) 

To be honest, Im guessing that either your ram is dead, or its not compatible, or you simply had installed them incorrectly.

But, you have taken that classic risk with the psu. Its always a gamble saving money here- that model youve bought 'should' be ok- but its not really the wattage that you need to look out for. Its the number of Amps on the 12v rails. Its got dual 12v rails: without doing any research- Im guessing its gonna be ok. But youd have been better off getting a lesser wattage psu from a brand: silverstone / enrmax etc. Check out the psu forums.

Anyways- let us know how it all turns out. Good luck :) 
June 6, 2007 6:05:31 PM

lol yeh , i kinda have built up parts and stuff before , but last time i built from scratch the mobo got fried cus the case was somehow giving off static, and sparks if i remember correctly ^^, but yeh i know i should have got a better psu but money money !, if this all gets sorted i will be intending on upgrading the psu for sure as well as to quad core =) !,

& to Nova i think its gonna be probably around september - october (fingers crossed =) ) !, p.s. you dont happen to know {Dub} Nova^ do ya ? lol :p 

thanks all
paul
June 13, 2007 3:12:02 PM

hi all , well i got my stuff back , tried a bunch of stuff as said , but i come to a conclusion it might be the psu , as my mobo needs a 8 pin connection, my psu only has 6 and 4 pin lol thinking that with only a 4 maybe its not getting enough power , and needs a 8 pin connection, so i am purchased this item :

http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...

i thought and hope this will work as its already been dispatched but as i have spoke to my friend he says it is not a adaptor , so if this doesnt work but i hope it will i wil be purchasing :

http://www.cablecity.co.uk/product_info.php?products_id...

Any ideas or advice ? as soon as posssible plz ! lol
thanks
paul
!