Okay, I'm building my first computer and I really wanna make sure I'm doing everything just right before I go and spend some serious cash on it. I've done alot of research and this is what i've put together. I'll probably be ordering sunday with the new release and the price drops! Critque please
as for the processor I'll probably choose either the E6750 with the AF7 heatsink or tuniq, or if budget fits maybe the Q6600 with the tuniq. The problem is, is the Q6600 real show that great deal of improvement over an overclocked E6750? The price is somewhat flexible. I can maybe stretch it to 1,300 if necessary and would the tuniq feet the antec case?
I love it when a real budget shows up! This is where fun begins. With some budgets, you can afford all the nice parts and its just "what do I do without" in order to squeeze in another 8800GTX. In other news, Dick Cheney's father was Darth Vader. Do not even ask why that is there.
Anyway, to the parts! We will not pretend we can do SLI GPUs. Also, I am going to pull a lot from the "budget gamer special" that was developed a few months ago, but add better parts since now they will be cheaper coming up on Sunday. Also, how overclocking adverse are you? This build assumes you'd be willing to attempt to overclock an processor to 2.66 gigahertz from its stock speeds, which really should require not much work at all, but could still be risky if you do not know what you are doing. I recommend, of course, the C2D overclockers guide.
I am on a time frame so I will skip the Newegg links and just post Newegg prices and what the parts are.
MSI 8800GTX :$499.99 (and there is a $20 rebate available)
E4400 Allendale: $113 after price drop on the 22nd. With stock cooling you should be able to reach 2.66 gigahertz, add a Rosewill heatsink (which the egg has combos for) and 3 gigahertz is not out of your reach
XFX 650i Ultra MOBO: $99.99 and a $20 rebate (you are only doing one GPU, so this board has OC ability, its reliable as can be, and its cheap)
G.Skill CAS 4 latency DDR2-667 RAM, 2x2gigabytes $219.99 (everyone always goes for 2 gigs of RAM, but Vista loves resources so 4 is the new "plenty of ram")
Hard Drive: Samsung makes a 200 gigabyte SATA drive for $55.99.
Case: Rosewill R604-P BK. It has a 120 mm fan and its only $32.99
PSU: HIPRO HP-W700WC3 LF ATX12V / EPS12V 700W Power Supply: $99.99. Some people prefer the name brands, but they all use most of the same source parts and this one has the power to push your system without fail.
DVD: Asus makes a Lightscribe DVD burner with quite some capability for only $27.99.
That's a really nice GPU but really I don't think it's really necessary. The largest size screen I'll be getting is 20". I only plan on playing World of Warcraft and possibly battlefield. FPSs really don't appeal to me that much.
I'll be using this computer for gaming and slight video editing, me and my friends like to make short movies when we're bored.
There's lot of Quad vs Dual core threads around the net you might want to read for more in depth decision making factors. My $ is going for the Q6600 and a P35 motherboard (the GA-P35C, which supports DDR2 and DDR3) for the 25% "free" OC to 3.0GHz, which brings it right up to QX6850 speeds.
That may not outperform an OC'd 6750 today, but as more apps/games take advantage of 3+ cores you'll notice significant improvements despite the lower clock speed (I think I read they got the 6750 to 3.6ish on stock settings at AT). But again, read around the different threads for the Quad vs Dual debates before you make any decisions!
Ah, thanks for clarifying that you will not be doing high end gaming. That makes the whole thing much, much easier to do. I almost totally agree with your GPU choice, but knowing that WoW takes so few resources, maybe it wouldn't be better save the cash and get an 8600GTS? TF2.... Team Fortress 2? that is not going to take a lot of resources is it?
As for GPU, the one problem with an E6750 that I see is that its a quad pumped 333 FSB. So the motherboard needs to be rated at 1333 to run it. Now here is the kicker:
this means if you overclock from a 333 to lets say a 400 FSB, you will also be overclocking the motherboard. If you overclock a Q6600 to 333 and get 2.97 gigahertz, its no stress on a P35 board, but a 1600 FSB on existing boards? That is like pro stuff there. You will need some serious Northbridge cooling and Processor cooling I think to keep it stable and lasting for a long time. AND your processor will only be dual core: like someone else has stated, eventually the two extra cores on the Q6600 will give you more performance as 3+ threaded apps become available.
My advice? For the money, a overclocked Q6600 is where its at.
Don't recommend an 8600 series to anyone, they suck. If you can't afford/justify an 8800 series, then the best options are always an ATI X1950XT, or perhaps a Geforce 7950GT.
Case: Your choice of Antec Nine Hundred is fine.
Hard drive: Your choice ofa Seagate 7200.10 is fine here as long as 320GB is sufficient for your needs.
Video card: Your choice of a stock speed 320MB EVGA 8800GTS is great (overclock it yourself instead of paying the manufacturer to do it for you). If you want to save a little money here due to not being interested in hardcore cutting edge gaming, consider swapping down to an X1950XT.
PSU: That 520W Corsair is a great choice. The Rosewill probably won't be bad, but IMO you should never skimp on a PSU so I'd stick witht eh Corsair.
RAM: That Crucial is the best DDR800 you can get and will OC really nicely, but if you're not going to try crazy overclocks you could probably save a bit of money by getting Patriot or another decent brand with rebates.
Motherboard: Perfect choice with the P35-DS3R.
DVD: I've heard those Optiarcs don't work properly in Vista 64, so I'd consider a different SATA-based writer.
OS: As long as you're willing to put up with potential teething issues, Vista Home 64 is a logical choice.
All in all though that's a great build and you won't go wrong with it.