Building $1200 Form Factor

Been reading Tom's for a long time, I pretty much know what I'm doing but it's always good to get a second opinion right? I've built a system before, but its been many years.

As the title says, building a Form Factor, because I think they are cool.

My biggest concerns are upgrading to Vista, and the performance crapfest that seems to be, and making sure the system doesn't get too hot.

$1200 limit,

Time Frame: Late August





Shuttle Barebones SD39P2

Intel Core 2 Duo E6600

OCZ Vista Upgrade 4GB DDR2 800

Asus GeForce 8600GTS HTDP 256mb DDR3

Seagate Barracuda 7210.10 (perpendicular Recording) 250gb 7200rpm SATA hard drive

Samsung 18x DVD R SATA

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  1. the 8600 is a big heap of steaming dung

    for DX9 performance, a 7900 or X1950 based card is better
    although it says DX10 on the box, it won't actually run any DX10 titles with any settings turned up past Low (e.g. no point)

    with such a small case, an 8800 or 2900 will probably have heat issues
  2. I am also in the midst of a SFF build. I am only waiting for the price cuts to choose the processor and mobo. I have the rest of it.
    Cooling is one of my concerns in any build, so for mine I chose the Apevia X-QPACK2 because of its front and rear fans:
    It is roomy enough to fit a full-sized ATX PSU, in this case the same slightly longer Mushkin 550200 modular 550W: I'm using in my primary PC now.
    The metal of the case is a little flimsy when apart, but feels more solid when assembled. The front and rear fans run full speed (4-pin molex for power), but they don't roar. The mobo tray slides out in this one, rather than the top half hinging open like in some SFF cases. I'm a little concerned about the room available for a HSF, but I think the Arctic Freezer 7 Pro I ordered should fit.
    I'm using the 320GB version of that drive, and 2GB of DDR2-800 RAM. The mobo will most likely be a Gigabyte GA-G33M-DS2R LGA 775 Intel G33:
    ...but I will make a final decision when I choose the processor. I am leaning toward the e6750; nothing I run needs a quad.
    GPU will be a 7900GS.
    I will be installing XP Pro on it. I have no plans to use Vista until it is done with the beta testing that Microsquishy has duped businesses and consumers into doing for them at no cost, and at least one service pack has been released.
  3. And no, I'm not trying to hijack your thread; just offering an alternative.
  4. Andy what's your source for that? This article

    "If you are in the market for a mainstream video card that delivers great gaming, the GeForce 8600 GTS should be the only GPU on your list. It provides the best gaming performance for the price in today’s games, and has DirectX 10 support for tomorrow’s games."

    Granted it was written in April, but it compares a X1950 Pro and beats it in almost everything.

    Is it better to go with individual case, MB, PSU, than a barebone system like Jtt is suggesting?

    I have looked at the 6750, it should be nice, and I may reevaluate when it comes out, but it depends on price, and it may cause a slight price drop in the 'older' core 2s. So we'll see.
  5. I would suggest reading Cleeve's sticky thread "The Best Gaming Video Cards For the Money." Also, read the VGA Charts. It sounds to me like the guy who wrote that article was in Marketing, not a technical field.
  6. Andy watch your mouth! How dare you insult a pile of dung calling it an 8600GTS :S! More respect, I'd call the worst sin to the GPU market in the past year.

    The 8600GTS is the biggest joke of a DX10 card, and even of a DX9 card, your choices for GPU are simple X1950Pro/7900GS if in the $120-140 range, X1950XT if in the $170-190 range, 8800GTS 320 if in the $270-300 range, and if you have more then get the GTS 640/GTX.

    There are really no other cards worth considering
  7. Why is the 8600GT so bad anyway? I use a 7600GT and like it, so wouldn't the 8600GT be slightly better (for new systems that don't need high end graphics there is barely a difference in price between these 2 due to sales). Did nvidia choke the 8500's & 8600's compared with their last generation models or is the 8600's sucking just compared with the high-end models (7900's & 8800's)?

  8. Oh believe me, the 7600GT was (and probably is) a good card, but the 8500GT, 8600GT, 8600GTS, HD2600XT, and HD2600 Pro are just a joke. If I had one I'd piss or torch it, I wouldn't even think of tainting a PC's PCI-e 16x slot with that, otherwise I would've a REALLY hard time cleaning all the excrement from my slot :)
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