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New Member, New to building a PC, advice on parts needed.

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June 11, 2007 2:03:52 PM

Hey guys, im off to Uni in September and want to get a PC built for the first time by myself to take to uni. Im not in need of a new PC, i just have an urge to build one and want some of the latest technology that is out. Anyway i am currently running an AMD 64 3500+ Single core. With an Asus A8NE-FM motherboard. 200 GB HD, 128mb Geforce 6600, 1GB Ram. This was bought ready built from Mesh computers just less than 2 years ago.

Now for this new computer i want to build i want to stick with AMD. Don't ask me why because i really don't know lol.
So far this is what i have in mind to get, please guide me on anything i might need as i've never built a PC before, i've read quite abit of the threads on these forums. The search feature is terrible, or doesnt work at all, because i've never got any results from it. Anyway back to the spec of the components i have in mind:

MB:Asus M2N32-SLI Premium Vista NF590 SLI, SAM2, PCI-E(x16), DDR2 533/667/800, SATA II, SATA RAID, ATX
http://scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProductID...

RAM:2GB (2x1GB) CorsairTwinX XMS2, DDR2 PC2-6400 (800), 240 Pins, Non-ECC Unbuffered, 4-4-4-12, EPP, DHX
(Check this list of RAM that is reccommended for my MB) http://scan.co.uk/search/search.asp?criteria=TWIN2X2048...

Case: ThermalTake Armour Jr
http://www.microdirect.co.uk/ProductInfo.aspx?ProductID...

Processor: AMD AM2 Athlon 64 6000+ Dual Core 3.0GHz, 2x 1MB Cache, OEM
http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...
This processor is an OEM version, which i've been told does not come with a fan. Im not going to do any overclocking with this computer. Is it best to buy the retail version with the stock fan for £20 more? Or should i buy the OEM version and buy the fan seperately?

For the Graphics card i've read the 8800GTS is pretty good, so i would get one from the list here: http://scan.co.uk/search/search.asp?criteria=8800gts&Su...
One around the £200 mark.

Im unsure as to what PSU i will need, DVD drive i will get from my current PC.

For my HD, I want something extremely fast, that i can use just to load the OS onto, as i save all my other bits and pieces on my external HD.
Thank you in advance for any help and responses given. This is quite brief, but i will add to it later when i find what else i want.

Oh just to add, i want this PC to be as quiet as possible, as currently my PC is like my mothers hoover.

[added] 74 Gb Western Digital WD740ADFD Raptor, SATA150, 10000 rpm, 16MB Cache, 5.2 ms
http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProdu...
thinking of getting this as my HD
June 11, 2007 2:47:47 PM

I would imagine that hard drive is too small for practical storage use. Raptors are fine if you have a few of them, or use one for the OS/apps and another large non-Raptor drive for file storage. They're also not very good bang for buck and I certainly wouldn't recommend them to a student who's presumably on a budget. I think for your needs you'll be much better off with one or two 7200.10 drives -- take your pick from Seagate, Western Digital etc. For you, the money saving and storage boost will win out over the Raptor's slightly quicker access times.

Any reason why you want to stick with AMD? I've been a big fan of their processors in the past but right now the onus is with Intel and I think you'd be better off going for a Core 2 Duo system. That said there's nothing wrong with AMD, they're just not numero uno right now.

For a PSU, the 520W Corsair unit is a good, stable option.
June 11, 2007 2:48:14 PM

what's your potential budget. it would be easier to critique your build once we know this. understand that for 2000 dollars you can get pretty much the latest and greatest while spending half that amount will probably get you the best value. also will you be needing a monitor, keyboard, mouse and speakers/headphones? you should probably look into the corsair 620watt power supply as that unit should be able to support whatever you throw into ur computer. it also has modular cables so you can take away unneeded cables. if you are against using modular cables you can also check out the silverstone sst-st56zf 560 watt power supply as it has a very stable single rail design that delivers a ton of amps (38) on the 12v rail.
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June 11, 2007 3:02:24 PM

Right now i have around £400=$786, but im working till september time and i should be able to get around £700=$1,376 by then. Lol i really have no reason to choose AMD, i've checked all the benchmarks against the intel processors, and intel always seems to beat AMD. Intel seems pretty expensive to me at the moment, i want a top of the range motherboard, and the good ones which i've read reviews on are very pricey, which i cannot afford.

Thanks for PSU recommendations ill look into it, both the recommendations given are above 500W, is that what i am to look for? Sorry im just not to sure on how to calculate the power needed to run this thing. Again thank you for the responses. No monitor keyboard mouse or speakers needed, i have my own.

Is there a reason i should be against Modular cables lol? Im a noob.
June 11, 2007 3:14:01 PM

For power supply, the Corsair 520watt or Fortron 500watt will probably cover anything you can push at it -- just make sure to get the models with PCI-E connectors, or you'll end up with extra clutter in there.

That specific processor does not come with a fan, and the only heatsink is the very small spreader on the chip. As a result, you will need to purchase a compatible heatsink and some thermal paste. There are a good many options, and they usually won't set you back too much.
June 11, 2007 3:53:22 PM

Quote:
Now for this new computer i want to build i want to stick with AMD. Don't ask me why because i really don't know lol.


Errm, why? Seriously dude, unless your aim is to build a budget dual core (ie keeping the costs to an absolute minium- like £300), any build will have a Intel C2D / Quad at its heart. Your nerfing yourself from the off otherwise. Don't take my word for it- read any posting in the general homebuilt / cpu forums. Or, check out the cpu performance charts.
June 11, 2007 4:54:56 PM

i wouldn't really worry about whether hes building an amd or intel machine. its his money and his choice. i wouldn't really recommend that processor for the money however. i would rather see a 5600 x2 as it is better bang for buck.
June 11, 2007 7:20:28 PM

He does hint that he doesnt know why hes in favour of AMD. Maybe its because they were the only choice 18 months ago- and for a good couple of years before that too. People come on here looking for all sort of answers- and if you hadnt been keeping up on hardware in that time period I could accept it being somewhat of a shock that its no longer king of the hill.

So, no I don't worry what he spends his money on: he could flush it down the toilet if he wants to. But I'd never advise anyone to spend £115 on a 5600 x2 when they could get a E6420 for the same cost. And thats before the upcoming Intel price cuts (where I think he moves into E6600 territory).

And then he wants to think about upgradability. Theres a natural upgrade path with 965 & 650i chipsets. I dont see that for AMD.

So its a no brainer for me.
June 11, 2007 7:38:36 PM

There are some good reasons to go AMD considering he isn't overclocking. The e6420 and 5600x2 both preform similarly with the intel consuming less power and able to video encode faster. but since he isn't planning to oc amd boards are cheaper than intel boards. also the p965 and 650i(to a very small extent as most but not all support 1333fsb) both have limited upgrade path as the penryn processors aren't compatible with all lga775 boards because of the different fsb. in contrast am2 will accept the upcoming barcelona cores. when intel cuts prices again in july 22nd it would probably be wiser to build with intel however.
June 12, 2007 10:16:05 PM

I would really go with Intel, especially if you have no particular reason for going with AMD.

If you're going to be working until September, you really should go with Intel, because of the price cuts to come.
June 13, 2007 1:49:40 PM

Hi thanks for the responses. You're all drifting towards intel, and i've been looking at some motherboards that would accept an intel processor, and if you all insist that it is the better option then i might have to go for an intel based computer. You're all more knowlegable than me, so i rely on what you guys say. At first i thought AMD would be cheaper, which is why i chose it. But most you guys, and i have read myself that Intel are cutting prices. But i have also read that AMD will cut prices. I have also read somewhere else that the AM2 boards will accept the future Quad core processors? Is that true?

http://scan.co.uk/Products/ProductInfo.asp?WebProductID... MB, or any other recommendations? as i havent researched for products suitable with intel processors.

Also any intel processors recommended? Baring in mind i was going to get the X2 6000+

http://www23.tomshardware.com/cpu.html

Just used this to compare the E6600 and the 6000+, encoding in itunes the AMd was faster. Virus scanning nearly 4gbs of files they were identicle.
June 13, 2007 2:25:39 PM

Actually AMD has a very good upgrade path.
The AM2 motherboards will support AMDs next gen chip.

However, with Intel you now have that option with the P35 which will support the upcoming 45nm chips.

In regards to OCing.
This is something the poster should really be planning on doing.

This does not need to be extreme overclocking, but there is not any reason to buy an entry level chip and clock it to the speeds of the high end chips. This leaves the chip easily inside of design specs and will not risk the computer. It will also save a lot of money and give very good performance. Even with these Clock speeds, good CPU coolers should still spin low enough to be fairly quiet.

In regards to sound, give strong consideration to "Seasonic" PSUs. They are very high quality and some of the quietest around.

You GPU may be a bit noisy too. Off the top of my head I'm not sure which of the 8800GTS cards may have the quietest cooling solution.
June 13, 2007 5:18:52 PM

i agree with the seasonic. it is made from the same components that the corsair units are made of and are extremely quiet and efficient. you can't go wrong with either path. it has always been my opinion that if you do not care for overclocking at all, then you should go with amd for the cheaper boards. however if you are into overclocking in the slightest bit you should look into intel. ooo and the am2 is not fully compatible as there are some features in barcelona it cannot take full advantage of (like different power planes). although the recently released x38 and p35 northbridges are extremely expensive, they are also the most future proof.
June 13, 2007 6:35:32 PM

Quote:
Anyone tried out the Thermaltake Toughpower PSU's?


The Toughpower series is ok but there are better options out there. I bought mine at CompUSA when they were going out of business for 40% off and wish that I had spent the extra on a better unit.
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