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1st build - looking for feedback on selected components

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June 3, 2007 4:46:52 PM

Hello – I’m building my first gaming system, which happens to be my first build period, and I was hoping I could get some feedback. My selected hardware (based on sharkyextreme.com's March Extreme Gaming PC Buyer's Guide) is below and I have a few questions:

1. Are there any incompatibilities?
2. Is there one component that is an obvious bottleneck or overkill?
3. Considering budget, should I stay with two graphics cards and the Core 2 Duo E6700 or should I go with one graphics card and get the Core 2 Extreme X6800?
4. Any other case fan recommendations that are 120mm, LED, and quiet?

Thank you in advance for all your input and feedback, it is greatly appreciated! Adam

Hardware - Supplier - Model #

Case - Cooler Master - RC-830-SSN2-GP (Stacker 830, Silver)
Cooling - Thermalright - Ultra-120 eXtreme
DVD Burner - Lite-On - LH-20A1S (20x DVD+RW/-RW)
DVD Rom - ASUSTeK - DVD-E616A3T
Fan - Scythe - S-Flex SFF21E (120mm for CPU cooler)
Fan - SilenX - IXP-74-14B (120mm Blue LED for case)
Graphics card - eVGA - 768-P2-N831-AR X 2 for SLI (GeForce 8800 GTX)
Hard Drive - Seagate - ST3320620AS X 2 for RAID 0 (Barracuda 7200.10)
Memory - PDP Patriot - PDC22G6400LLK 4 Gb total (eXtreme Performance DDR2-800)
Mice - Logitech - G7 (USB RF Wireless Laser Mouse)
Motherboard - ASUSTeK - P5N32-E
Operating System - Windows - XP Pro (OEM)
Power Supply - NZXT - Precise 1000 (1000W Modular PSU)
Processor - Intel - BX80557E6700 (Core 2 Duo E6700 Conroe Dual Core)
Sound Card - Creative - Fatal1ty FPS (SoundBlaster X-Fi Fatal1ty FPS)
Speakers - Logitech - Z-5500
a c 159 à CPUs
June 3, 2007 5:05:53 PM

If you going to spend $$$ for a system to last several years, I would wait for the q6600 on July 22nd and see if the price drops to $266. I would also opt for vista just for the directx 10 support. For the power supply, 1000w is overkill. I would opt for a 700w in seasonic, corsair, or pc power and cooling. Be sure to order everything and build your system immediately, in case you have to exchange anything, especially the memory. Asus boards can be picky about memory.
June 3, 2007 5:08:20 PM

Quote:
Hello – I’m building my first gaming system, which happens to be my first build period, and I was hoping I could get some feedback. My selected hardware (based on sharkyextreme.com's March Extreme Gaming PC Buyer's Guide) is below and I have a few questions:

1. Are there any incompatibilities?
2. Is there one component that is an obvious bottleneck or overkill?
3. Considering budget, should I stay with two graphics cards and the Core 2 Duo E6700 or should I go with one graphics card and get the Core 2 Extreme X6800?
4. Any other case fan recommendations that are 120mm, LED, and quiet?

Thank you in advance for all your input and feedback, it is greatly appreciated! Adam

Hardware - Supplier - Model #

Case - Cooler Master - RC-830-SSN2-GP (Stacker 830, Silver)
Cooling - Thermalright - Ultra-120 eXtreme
DVD Burner - Lite-On - LH-20A1S (20x DVD+RW/-RW)
DVD Rom - ASUSTeK - DVD-E616A3T
Fan - Scythe - S-Flex SFF21E (120mm for CPU cooler)
Fan - SilenX - IXP-74-14B (120mm Blue LED for case)
Graphics card - eVGA - 768-P2-N831-AR X 2 for SLI (GeForce 8800 GTX)
Hard Drive - Seagate - ST3320620AS X 2 for RAID 0 (Barracuda 7200.10)
Memory - PDP Patriot - PDC22G6400LLK 4 Gb total (eXtreme Performance DDR2-800)
Mice - Logitech - G7 (USB RF Wireless Laser Mouse)
Motherboard - ASUSTeK - P5N32-E
Operating System - Windows - XP Pro (OEM)
Power Supply - NZXT - Precise 1000 (1000W Modular PSU)
Processor - Intel - BX80557E6700 (Core 2 Duo E6700 Conroe Dual Core)
Sound Card - Creative - Fatal1ty FPS (SoundBlaster X-Fi Fatal1ty FPS)
Speakers - Logitech - Z-5500


It's quite a system! Not cheap! :-)

I won't address #1. But re #2: No bottleneck problems.

#3:Good question!, and there are a lot of possible good answers. Mine: First the x6800 isn't a good buy. And, Unless you really don't care about the money, dual high end graphic cards make sense only for the most extreme ego gamers. I'd tend to want instead to consider a quad core, even though you don't need it yet! People will tell you accurately you don't need a quad for a top end gaming system, but....that's for now, next year could be different. Note: Intel quads will be cheaper in late July.

One interesting strategy for someone will plenty of cash: get an e4300 (cpu) for that system now, play around a couple of hours overclocking it to a nice high GHz level, and wait for the price cuts on the Intel quads coming soon.

OH! And don't forget!! For a high end gaming system, the monitor(s) should be a priority, just like the video card. Those are the top two priorities.
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June 3, 2007 5:23:49 PM

Unless your running your games on a res of over 1600*1440 2 gtx's will only give you a few more fps than 1 gtx on most of todays games, I would also do as our learned friend has suggested and wait for the price decrease on the q6600 and go quad for future proofing. It'll be a nice system though just in time to play crysis very nice!!!!!!
June 3, 2007 5:48:08 PM

Always 6800 haters on the boards. j/k
the set up you listed is a really nice machine, the only part I would re consider is the motherboard.
I would think about a p35 chipset board.

IF you are building for gaming you are going to be all set with that setup.
I built nearly the same rig myself a week ago and I am soooo glad i did.
Even more glad i wasnt swayed into going with another chip.
I figure in july and august you will be able to get a Quad core cheaper and if I want to compare its running performance to the x6800 I will grab one then.

one card. faster chip, for me was the ticket.

Lump


Asus p5k
Intel duo core 2 extreme x6800
crucial ballistix pc8500 4x1 gig
Evga 8800gtx superclocked 621/2000
X-Fi extreme gamers card
Antec trio 650 psu
Plextar 16x dual layer dvd/rw
seagate 400 gig sata 7200.10
Zalman 9700 cpu cooler
Thermaltake Armor 8000bws full tower
dual boot Win xp pro/ Win Vista ultimate 64
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June 3, 2007 5:55:01 PM

I heard that SilenX is a bad choice, their fans make more noise than advertised. Sctyhe Flex has a good reputation.

You don't need a DVD-ROM if you already have a DVD burner. Also, the Asus DRW 1814 BLT or recent LG models would probably be better than Lite-On.

I'd go for a Q6600 or an E6850 (if you can wait until July 22).

The case is big enough to fit the 8800 GTX. For the kind of money you're spending you might prefer a Silverstone TJ09 though, it's specially designed to help cool SLI setups and it's quiet.

Vista is nice but you'll have trouble with your SLI configuration on it. Stick with XP until nVidia's drivers are ready.

Don't know about NZXT. I'm planning to get something very similar to yours on July 22 (but with a Q6700, not E6700) and I decided to go with a Thermaltake 850W. Great reviews...

Good motherboard. There are at least 3 flavours called P5N32-E, make sure you know which one you want. One is based on the 650i chipset and overclocks better than the others, but the SLI will not work so well because one of the cards will run at 8x instead of 16x. Personally I'll just get the Striker Extreme, because it's got all solid capacitors and better cooling. Consider the Gigabyte n680i DQ6 too, it's probably the best mobo for SLI these days. Great reviews at anandtech and firingsquad, btw.

Creative Fatality is a more expensive than ExtremeGamer and I don't think you need the additional features. I may be wrong...

Great cooler. I'm getting the Zalman 9700 because my #1 priority is silence, not lowest temps possible.

Raid 0 is overrated IMO. Do backups often if you go that way. Also, I think 500 GB models are good value for money already, I wouldn't get 320 GB models any more.

Good luck :lol:  :lol: 
June 5, 2007 5:49:49 AM

Just a note to say thank you all for your input. I’ve already made some hardware changes based on your feed back. I assure you there will be no flame wars, I take all responses into consideration and weigh them to what I know (however little that is). Please keep posting if you think of something else.

BTW: the people here at Tom's Hardware have, by far, been the most responsive and helpful out of all the forums (sorry...forumz) I've posted on to date! Thanks!

Tupera
June 5, 2007 5:58:03 AM

you're most certainly welcome.

click here to provide us with some feedback.











sorry... i had to do it. you just seem so nice and it'd be a shame not to make fun. but really, we do appreciate the "thanks" ;-)
June 5, 2007 7:07:31 AM

Quote:

You don't need a DVD-ROM if you already have a DVD burner. Also, the Asus DRW 1814 BLT or recent LG models would probably be better than Lite-On.


It's funny you should say this cause I just had an ASUS combo drive conk out on me (the second one in one three months). The only nice thing I'll say about ASUS is that their drives ship PowerDVD rather than the typical Nero bloatware.

As for the Lite-On 20X DVD burner, these burners are very fast and very cheap, and so far, I haven't have any problems with them at all. Nice burners...would recommend them to anyone.
June 5, 2007 8:56:39 AM

heres the best advice I can give and even u PRO's shud read this^^

GET A 2ND hardrive.....I recommend a WD 74gb Raptor for your primary hard drive.

Why? Because it small and fast so it 'scans' or 'defrags' fast...
also....it is a small footprint when u make primary HD backup IMAGE (fast)

system restore dont work...period!

IF u have a current pri HD image on a 2nd HD...then no matter WHAT u do to ur windows install or how bad u get infected....it only 3-6 minutes to Restore from ur backup image.......system restore will NOT remove infections.

I use Norton Ghost 2003 it simple, it fast, and u can even access ur backup image when windows wont boot.

There is NO better system to protect ur primary OS install than a backup that is store on a different HD (external is even better)

good luck...

and like someone posted earlier....wait....the entire industry is all messed up right now and wont settle down till 2008 probably. All the manufacturers are just sellin things that will PROBABLY be great..but ya never know.

for example: an 8800gtx is fast no doubt....but until there are many DX10 applications released...noone knows ..YET...
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June 5, 2007 1:26:20 PM

Oops! Good to know, thanks!

BTW, LG comes with both PowerDVD and Nero, or at least my current drive did. I've had several LG drives so far and they all worked nicely. Yeah, PowerDVD is great.
June 6, 2007 9:53:49 AM

I vouche for easyg's recommendation for a Lite-on dvd burner i have one already and im gettin a second one in a month. They do come with nero just ONLY install nero express...the rest is pointless.

Good luck with ur build, when you get it done lemme know.....please include name address and when you will NOT be home :) 
June 8, 2007 6:40:18 PM

Quote:
I vouche for easyg's recommendation for a Lite-on dvd burner i have one already and im gettin a second one in a month. They do come with nero just ONLY install nero express...the rest is pointless.

Good luck with ur build, when you get it done lemme know.....please include name address and when you will NOT be home :) 


With the price of gas the way it is, it will cost you more in fuel to come to my place than to build the system :wink: Besides, once I do build, I'll never be off the thing :D 

PS: Thank you for the advice
June 8, 2007 6:40:43 PM

Quote:
I vouche for easyg's recommendation for a Lite-on dvd burner i have one already and im gettin a second one in a month. They do come with nero just ONLY install nero express...the rest is pointless.

Good luck with ur build, when you get it done lemme know.....please include name address and when you will NOT be home :) 


With the price of gas the way it is, it will cost you more in fuel to come to my place than to build the system :wink: Besides, once I do build, I'll never be off the thing :D 

PS: Thank you for the advice.
June 8, 2007 8:05:28 PM

if u haven't built the system yet, heres my take on your system

looks like money is not an issue (wtf 8800gtx sli you rich gun)

the only things i'd change is

1. Tuniq Tower or Scythe Infinity for Heatsink
2. Silverstone fm121 120mm fans


tuniq tower and scythe infinity simply whoops the ultra 120

and if u want uber 120mm fans those are the ones to get

everything else you picked is great, the system will overclock like mad and have mad performance.
June 9, 2007 2:51:54 PM

Yeah thats a killer sysops. The NZXT Zero case has LOTSA 12 cm fans to go with the watercooled. Benny and a half at the egg.

The G.Skill in the siggy build is rated at 1.8V: as previously mentioned check the memVolts.
f61
June 9, 2007 3:53:11 PM

I would wait till July 22nd. Then go with the Q6600 and overclock it to 3.0Ghz. Also for your Hard Drive I would go with a WD Raptor 150gig then create a 60 gig partition for your OS and other programs.

Also for the motherboard I would look at the P35 chipset or wait for the X38 chipset that is supposed to be even better. That way if you ever want 2 upgrade your ram to DDR3 you are set.

That power supply is overkill. I would look at the SilverStone 750W.

Other than that enjoy that new build!
!