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New Build, Pick it apart and tell me what’s wrong!

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June 22, 2007 1:33:14 AM

Okay, Below is my thoughts on my next build, overall what I am thinking of doing is adding a second 8800GTX card to the system in about 8 – 12 months, once I believe the cost have come down and I may need that little extra punch. I am planning on doing some overclocking, not much as I have never done any before, my first goal would be stability and performance and than overclocking as a secondary. I would like to try and get the CPU up to 3.0Ghz. From top to bottom I am un-certain if I have enough power, even or if the case can support the size of the PSU, the MoBo, or the two 8800GTX cards in the long run. Some things I haven’t picked out yet are case fans, heatsinks, and perhaps even some hard-drive fans. What I would like, from top to bottom, is for everyone to look at the build, tell me what you think, if possible, suggest some new parts, but please let me know why, and give me some ideas of what I may have missed.

Thanks

Case
COOLER MASTER Stacker 830 RC-830-SSN2-GP-W120
http://www.performance-pcs.com/catalog/index.php?main_p...
Thoughts on Cases, right now I am leaning towards this new version of the Stacker 830 Evo since it claims to be able to handle the larger PSUs, I read somewhere that the older version had some issues with larger PSUs, not certain though.
I am not stuck on this case but am uncertain if this is something better right now for the goals, basically I need something that has good air flow, will house everything I want to do, be easy/roomy, for working in, be tool-less, and have a removable MoBo tray.

(I was considering the Thermaltake Kandalf VD4000BWS Black Chassis: 1.0mm SECC Front door: Aluminum ATX/ BTX Tower at newegg but as I am not going water cooled, and I don’t know much of thermaltake, I wasn’t certain)

PSU (Pick one, will they work is this overkill, I would like for the PSU to last for 2 years, plan for decay in performance etc… Also, quad core, OCing a bit, SLI later)

Thermaltake Toughpower W0132RU ATX12V / EPS12V 1000W Power Supply 115/230 V CE, CB, TUV, FCC, UL, CUL, and BSMI certified
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SILVERSTONE OP1000 ATX12V / EPS12V 1000W Power Supply 100 - 240 V
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SILVERSTONE ST1000 ATX12V / EPS12V 1000W Power Supply 100 - 240 V RoHS, CE, FCC
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


MoBo
EVGA 122-CK-NF68-A1 LGA 775 NVIDIA nForce 680i SLI ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
This MoBo seems real user friendly, some good reviews, and a good price overall, plus some nice extras?

CPU
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 Kentsfield 2.4GHz 2 x 4MB L2 Cache LGA 775 Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
What can I say about this, nothing, I am going to wait until July 22 to purchase, I would to push it to 3.0Ghz, air cooled. Given the locked multipler am I selecting the right mobo and Ram, I read somewhere it is nice to have the RAM and FSB matched 1:1 (Still reading and learning though)

Graphics Card
EVGA 768-P2-N831-AR GeForce 8800GTX 768MB 384-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 HDCP
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
May Go SLI later, main reason, when I build a PC I build two at the same time, one for me, one for the wife, so in the future I can just snag the card out of the one system and put it in the second and go SLI for one and just upgrade the other system to a new card entirely.

Memory
G.SKILL 4GB(2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Is this good for OCing, is this Micron 9 and how important is that?

Sound Card
Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Elite 7.1 Channels 24-bit 192KHz PCI Interface Sound Card
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Wife likes the little extras so I will put this into one of the systems atleast.

Primary HD
Western Digital Raptor WD1500ADFD 150GB 10,000 RPM 16MB Cache Serial ATA150 Hard Drive – OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Media HD
Seagate Barracuda ES ST3750640NS 750GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Back up HD
Seagate Barracuda ES ST3750640NS 750GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

For the harddrives I was figuring to run the Raptor as the system and game drive, I don’t like running a raid 0 with my system drive, and than back the raptor data up on the media drive, and than back the media drive up on the back up drive under a basic Raid 0 setting.

Optical Drives
LITE-ON 20X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe Black SATA Model LH-20A1L-06 – Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Basically run two of these per system.

Fans/HeatSinks ??????
Open to all suggestions, how many fans given the case and the goals of the system, what is the right heatsink, and how about the fan to go with it. What about the Northbridge, I hear it runs really hot?

Monitor
Samsung SyncMaster 226BW (2X)
Already have two of these monitors

OS
Windows Vista Ultimate, (64bit of 32bit) Open to either but so far everything I read is telling me that 64bit may not be ready just yet in terms of the gaming community and such, which is my primary concern for this PC


Well this is the build and some of my thoughts overall, I welcome and appreciate all comments….

More about : build pick whats wrong

June 22, 2007 6:12:34 AM

64bit is fine for games and you;'d need it if you got 4gb of ram.

If you want to get to 3gig then you'll need some type of 3rd party CPU cooler. This one seems cool and Ive seen desent reveiws of it before:
http://www.performance-pcs.com/catalog/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=185&products_id=21569

If you were planning on getting a raptor Id say best deal is to get the one with the smallest possible space you can find, like 10 - 30gigs or something, and just shove windows on it.

Games wont benefit too much between a raptor or a fast 7200rpm drive, aslong as you got desent graphics memory and ram and you would have..

That RAM would be great for overclocking but iwth no real need to ever get above 4gig there isnt much point in buying 2x2. What really matters mroe is the actual RAM speed which most of the time can only be achieved thru overclocking/tweaking your compuer in BIOS.

You wont need either of those PSU's. much better off getting:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817171017
Been SLI certified, much better quality and you wont need 1000w of power!
June 22, 2007 7:10:06 AM

$390 for a case?! 1KW PSU? That's the definition of overkill 99% of the time. You could get a 700W psu from OCZ for $140 and a Thermaltake Armor, Antec P180, or Antec 900 for around $150 or less. They are all good products and if you want you could take the extra $400+ and spend it on something that will actually help performance.
Related resources
June 22, 2007 9:40:53 AM

No man coolermaster makes sh!t psu's! Recommend a nice sexy enermax galaxy 850watt PSU and he'll he sitting pretty. The OP silverstone is incredible! Has the tightest voltage regulation of any psu out there. No small feat by any means and deserves attention. You will be extremely happy with a good silverstone, stick to the DA/OP/ZF/ST varients but away from the strider pack. A quick tiered PSU ranking can be found here.

Aside from that there's not much to offer that the others havent said. Good luck on you're build!

Side note. I'd hold off on getting a second gtx for future upgrades, as its almost certain that a next generation card a year from now will outperform sli'd gtx's. Better off putting that money in a savings account and let it sit until you can buy a new beefy card 1-2 years from now when the gtx begins to choke on gaming goodness.
June 22, 2007 11:11:32 AM

I doubt very much if you would notice the difference in performance between a high-end Core 2 Duo and a Core 2 Quad processor.

Which games or software have you got that can make use of a quad-core?
June 22, 2007 12:56:04 PM

Hatman!!!

Thanks for the input, I going to see what reviews I can find on the heatsink and run with it, one thought, every where I go I keep reading that the Thermalright Ultra-120 Extreme is the way to go for heatsinks, any thoughts? As for the Raptor, the only reason I went with the larger size is because of Windows ULT, and I also run some other apps like AutoCAD, Photoshop, and office 2007 enterprise, all this is a real space hog, almost 30-35gigs total. I could probably go with the 80Gig Raptor if all I am going to do is drop the OS and such on there, that is if games really won't see any benefits from the drive. I will go back and see what I can find!!!

Oh, about the ram, I am planning on the 64bit system within the next year or two so I figured I may just go all out and get the 4Gigs now, money is tight for upgrades over the two+ year period I usually try to go before my next upgrade. Anyway, should I look at ram at a higher speed, will that make OCing easier, and more possible? Seeing as that I am only trying to get to 3GHz I didn't think it would be that hard, or matter too much, but I am new at OCing so what would I know.....

Thanks AGAIN
June 22, 2007 1:00:26 PM

My thanks prof_chaos,

Great Points, that is what I was concerned about. I am really re-looking the PSU, as for the case, I will admit it was inspired by someone else and for the first time I was feeding into the looks factor, it seemed rather nice in appearance, not that it really matters. I will look into the other cases, as I mentioned before, I want to make sure everything will fit, there is good airflow, and it is easy to work on..... In any case, the Overkill factor is just what I was looking for. I was thinking the PSU was much, even with all the case fans I could think of, SLI, and a Quadcore, with just a touch of OCing I figured I only needed about 700-750W, but I was concerned that I was wrong.

Thanks
June 22, 2007 1:07:20 PM

Thanks on the PSU Eric54, I am going to change PSUs and I really didn't see anything else I liked from Silverstone in the 850 range. The list you provided rocked so I am scoping a new PSU and will repost my change as soon as I made a new selection.

Oh, and regarding the second GTX card believe me, I am not buying two now for me, I am building two new systems, one for me and one for the wife, so my plans later down the road will be to drop the old GTX card from her system into mine, say a year or so down the road, and just upgrade her system with a new card and run my under SLI. This is a cheap way to upgrade later down the road, say mid way. I try to get about 2+ years on my systems, when I can, I try not to buy new cases but this time it seems like a necessary evil.
June 22, 2007 1:13:10 PM

Quote:
I doubt very much if you would notice the difference in performance between a high-end Core 2 Duo and a Core 2 Quad processor.

Which games or software have you got that can make use of a quad-core?


For the most part the only two I can think of is AutoCAD and Photoshop. Nothing beyond those at this point, but I usually try to get about 2+years out of my builds so I am planning to try and future proof the system to some degree. It is the degree that is always the hard part, walking the line between paying too much today for something that will cost a lot less later.

I am figuring that going with the quad will support the future proofing concept better than the Core 2 Duo. I will admit, I was considering going with the high end duo and just upgrading to a nice quad core in about 12 months, when the prices have dropped a bit, maybe even the QX6800. Who knows, in a year depending on the new cpus rolling out these days, it may be as low as the Q6600 (Wishful thinking)
a b B Homebuilt system
June 22, 2007 2:18:39 PM

What about memory cooling, HDD cooling, video card cooling, additional case fans? Are these useful or not really? Any recommendations, guys?

OP: I like Silverstone TJ09, Lian-Li PC73 and Antec P190, if you're still looking for case ideas. The first two especially are pretty quiet, according to reviews.
June 22, 2007 5:24:07 PM

Not really that useful for average use. Fans for ram can be useful if you're ocing them and they feel warm/hot to the touch, other than the most aggressive oc you wont need fans for the ram. If you do OC, plan on adding airflow to the NB if it doenst have a fan already as that is one place that certainly generates some impressive heat if unassisted by a fan. As for video card cooling the hs provided for them stock is perfectly fine for its application, you dont need an aftermarket cooler for vga cards unless you're planning a hefty oc with a voltage increase. For simplicity sake, equal input+equal exhaust is the best way to go, if that cant be done, favor the exhaust over input.

Glad I could help with the PSU selection, the enermax galaxy 850 watt is one of the few with 8pin pci-e2.0 connectors so its more futureproof than many out there. I recommend it fully, but the silverstone OP850 is another excellent PSU.

As for a case you should consider the antec p182, the cable management holes it has makes it incredibly easy to route cables in a professional looking manor. The stacker is very good as I've heard. Make sure your ps leads are long enough to reach everything that thing is a monster!
June 22, 2007 7:53:57 PM

Okay Post Update, for PSUs I have decided to go with the following:

ENERMAX Galaxy EGX850EWL ATX12V/ EPS12V/ BTX 850W Power Supply 100 - 240 V cUL, UL, TUV, CE, FCC - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This still leaves me up in the air on the case. Oh well, more to come.

Ah, but as some of you have pointed out I need some other information still.

Can someone recommend a good heatsink for the North Bridge, I am going to try some OCing, and in the future running SLi so this is something I will need to look at air flow too, any need to go with a select type of case fans, any suggestions?

Lastly, how is the Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme CPU Heatsink, if i wasn't doing any OCing can someone suggest something abit more dialed down!
!