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Need a little help with deciding on a system build.

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July 6, 2007 2:03:43 PM

Ok, right off the bat, I'm making a gaming system, but I'm trying to limit my spending for a few reasons.
1 - The monitor I want at some point is gonna cost around $500 or more.
2 - Wanna save the money for future upgrades and other important things.
3 - I don't really play DX10 games right now and probably won't for a year or two, so I don't feel like putting hte money into the current generation of cards, especially since most don't perform that well in DX10 to begin with and if Nvidia is right, their next generation of cards will be monsters (1 TFLOP from a single card, holy s***!)
4 - I play mostly World of Warcraft and a few not-so-powerful games like Command & Conquer 3, Warcraft III, Sims 2, etc. so I don't need too much power.
5 - Just about anything from today's parts would be an upgrade from my current system.

Ok, so here's what my current system is like (or as much as I know)

CPU - Intel P4 3.40 GHz w/ HT
GPU - Nvidia GeForce 6800
RAM - DDR2 533, 1 GB, Unknown Latency
HDD - 160 GB, Unknown make or model
PSU - Unknown
Mobo - Unkown
Case - DELL Dimension case

The reason why most of this is unknown is because it's a pre-built DELL I got for Xmas a while back. Anyways, here's what I'm thinking of upgrading to.

CPU - AMD 4000+ or 4400+ or Intel E6420 or E6550 (it all depends pretty much on what happens after the price cuts in two weeks)
Mobo - Unsure, mostly depends on cost and reliability and how much the processor costs and handles
CPU - GeForce 7900 GS
RAM - DDR2 800, 2 GB, CAS 4 Latency
HDD - 160 or 250 GB WD Caviar (probably the newest revision that was debuted just today)
PSU - 500-600W w/ 2 PCI-E connectors and 30+ amps combined. (This is to prepare for whatever Nvidia's next beastly card is)
Case - COOLER MASTER Centurion 5

I don't have an exact price on all of this yet, but so far I'm coming up with about $750. Also the Case, RAM, HDD, PSU and Mobo are all (hopefully) 'future-proof' and can handle Nvidia's G92 and maybe a future processor or two.

What do you think? Feel free to suggest some parts or specific brands.

Also as more guidelines for myself and for anyone suggesting anything.
- No more than $200 for any one part
- Total around $800 or less
- The cooler the system, the better

More about : deciding system build

July 6, 2007 2:51:58 PM

Why do you want to upgrade?

Your current system should handle your current games fine.
Perhaps a second GB of memory but that would be it.

Personally, I would keep what you have and put the funds aside and let them grow. Then when you get new games that you want to play, upgrade at that point. The hardware you get then will be so much better than what you could get for that price now.
July 6, 2007 2:58:32 PM

I don't know about 'just fine'. WoW and Warcraft III run great, don't get me wrong, but for anything even fairly modern and for anything I'd want to run at a higher resolution on a better monitor (say, 1920x1200 resolution), I'm screwed big time. Hell, to play Supreme Commander right now I gotta have all my settings but resolution at their lowest.

I want more power, but not so much that I'll go broke, hence why I'm making this new rig for no so much money. I'm also aiming for a 1920x1200 monitor.

Also, c'mon, my current rig is a 2 to 3 year old DELL with a P4. DELL and P4. I rest my case.
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July 6, 2007 3:03:50 PM

Yep, another for waiting. Dont see why you performance would be that low, i would think those specs to be higher, as my 4yr old pc runs fear on full NICE :) 

Quote:
Also, c'mon, my current rig is a 2 to 3 year old DELL with a P4. DELL and P4. I rest my case.


lol, true, in the end its upto you, those parts you are looking at look fine. ( i would get more HDD space my 160 is good, but i wish i had more now.

Have FUN :lol: 
July 6, 2007 3:21:11 PM

If you want to cut down on price more I'd recommend an E4300.... you can O/C the hell out of em, quite the bang for your buck.


And I'd recommend the ATI x1950pro... for around the same price it's a much better card
July 6, 2007 3:21:43 PM

My main "Gaming" machine is a Dell 9300 Laptop with a 1.8Ghz Pentium M and a Go 6800 and 2 gig of Ram.

I have bigger/nicer PCs in my home office/lab but I don't game on them.
I prefer to game on my laptop while sitting in my ez chair in front of the tube.

Mind you it's not the best gaming system, it works for what I have now.
I will be upgrading mine in about 6-12months.

I'm trying to hold out for the 45nm CPUs which should be really nice in a laptop. I should also be able to get a real nice GPU then over what I have go.

The reason I'm saying to hold off is because the system you are speccing out is nice, but not super. If in 6months you want to play some of the new really awesome games, you new system will do it poorly. However, if you wait to build your system for 6months until you have the game in hand that you want to play, you will be able to build a far better system.

Save your funds until you can afford an 8800 GTS w/ 320mb of memory.
By that time prices for the P35 boards will have settled some, the new C2Duos with the nice new stepping that lets them run cooler and faster will have trickled down to most of the CPUs and your new system will do what you want it to do.

I never tell people to wait who have a need today. That is silly.
However, I play the games you play on a very similar system everyday.
July 6, 2007 3:22:25 PM

The E4300 is a great CPU.
July 6, 2007 3:46:55 PM

Quote:
If you want to cut down on price more I'd recommend an E4300.... you can O/C the hell out of em, quite the bang for your buck.


And I'd recommend the ATI x1950pro... for around the same price it's a much better card


Like I said, I'm waiting on the Intel price cuts to see what happens before I go with a processor.

Also, while the cheaper ATI cards may be better, I'm probably gonna run Linux on my machine, so Nvidia is preferred due to compatibility.
July 6, 2007 3:51:23 PM

For now the Sapphire x1950pro at newegg.com is a great buy. Also, perhaps look at gb of RAM if you plan on running Vista. Get a P35 mobo, Gigabyte P35 DS3R with an e6550.
July 6, 2007 4:31:37 PM

Quote:
Why do you want to upgrade?

Your current system should handle your current games fine.
Perhaps a second GB of memory but that would be it.

Personally, I would keep what you have and put the funds aside and let them grow. Then when you get new games that you want to play, upgrade at that point. The hardware you get then will be so much better than what you could get for that price now.


i agree, maybe some upgrades (memory)
but i would save until early next year, beaouse you will have the new g90's
and all
July 6, 2007 7:05:08 PM

Yeah, memory is the one thing I mentioned.
I think thay may really boost performance.

He may also be able to OC his GPU to get a slight boost in performance.
July 10, 2007 12:11:33 AM

I'd get the X1950XT 256MB (Can be OC'd to XTX speeds) instead, just like $40 more and quite a decent boost in performance.

Anyway one thing I'd like to point out is that even though its perfectly understandable that you have a set budget, you shouldn't have a set budget on parts, the only thing that it'll do is keep you from having a balanced system. For example, Pairing an Athlon X2 6000+ [$170] (Trades blows with E6600) despite being a VERY nice CPU for a VERY attractive price if you pair it with say a... 7900GS/X1950Pro despite being very powerful cards, you WILL be bottlenecking your PC.

My advice is to spend at least 2X (preferably 3X) on the GPU as you would for a CPU for a gaming build. Just so you can see that this rule does apply, look at these examples

a.) Athlon 64 X2 6000+ ($170) => GeForce 8800GTS/X ($370/$530)
b.) E4300 ($117) => GeForce 8800GTS [320 or 640] / HD2900XT ($280/$370/$390)

Just something you should have in mind, you can always cut on stuff like the motherboard and ram in order for it to fit your budget.
!