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Looking for some advice/criticism

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August 21, 2007 6:47:39 PM

It's been about 2.5 years since I built my last system, and I'm about to do another one. After reading The Penryn Preview - Part I: Wolfdale Performance on Anadtech and seeing the following quote: "There's no doubt that Wolfdale is faster clock-for-clock, but keep in mind that you won't see Wolfdale until Q1 of next year and the performance advantage simply isn't great enough to justify delaying a purchase by 6+ months if you need a system now," I don't think I will be waiting for the 45 nm Intel cores.

Here's a list of my proposed system, please note I don't have a motherboard included yet. I'm thinking about going with a P35 chipset/MSI board, but I am really undecided and could definitely use some advice there.

  • Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 Kentsfield 2.4GHz LGA 775 Processor Model BX80562Q6600 - Retail
  • Motherboard: ???
  • Two kits of (so 4x1 GB) Patriot eXtreme Performance 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop
  • XFX PVT80GGHD4 GeForce 8800GTS 320MB 320-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported HDCP Video Card - Retail
  • Western Digital Raptor WD1500ADFD 150GB 10,000 RPM Serial ATA150 Hard Drive - OEM
  • Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
  • FSP Group (Fortron Source) FX700-GLN ATX12V V2.2/EPS12V 700W Power Supply - Retail
  • SAMSUNG 226BW Black 22" 2 ms (GTG) DVI Widescreen LCD Monitor - Retail

    Also, while I'm at it, what are the odds I could easily up the FSB to 1333 and run the chip at 3.0 GHz for the long term with air cooling (with the memory matching at 1:1)? I'll probably get a Zalman copper heatsink (or the Al-Cu one).

    Anyway, thanks for looking over my list. Please let me know if you see any problems that might arise. I appreciate the advice.
  • More about : advice criticism

    August 21, 2007 7:38:08 PM

    If u want SLI :

    ASUS P5N32SLI-E or P5NE SLI

    P35 :
    ASUS P5K- ASUS P5K-E - GIGABYTE P35 DS3R (these only support DDR2)

    ASUS P5KC - GIGABYTE P35C DS3R ( These support both DDR2 and DDR3) ,

    other looks fine
    August 21, 2007 8:28:37 PM

    Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R would go great, like the person above me suggested.
    Make sure you get the G0 stepping Q6600, they overclock a lot better and run cooler than the B3 ones. You can get one for $295 here:

    http://clubit.com/product_detail.cfm?itemno=A1938452

    Consider getting LG L226WTY-BF instead of the 226BW, better quality panel with wider viewing angles (160 vs 170 degrees).

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

    For Cooling I suggest Tuniq 120 Tower or Thermalright 120 Ultra + S-Flex Fan, with these + your 1066 ram you should expect 3.2Ghz at the very least (with G0 stepping), 3.2Ghz is 1:1 ratio if you run your memory at 800MHz (400Mhz (x2)x8 multiplyer=3.2Ghz), so you still have a lot of headroom. Here are the links:

    http://www.xoxide.com/tuniq-t-120-hsf.html

    http://www.xoxide.com/thermalright-ultra120-extreme.htm...
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

    Good luck.

    Related resources
    August 21, 2007 8:39:55 PM

    I just built a computer with the Q6600 for a friend. it was the B3 stepping:(  but it is running at 9x333 = 3.0GHz @ stock vcore at about 55*C full load, with the stock heatsink! It's running on the GA-P35-DS3R.
    August 21, 2007 8:54:20 PM

    Whatever you do, don't get an overpriced ASUS crapboard, you're better off getting a GA-P35-DS3R. I would rather get a Corsair 520HX or 620HX for that build, however the FSP will probably work just fine.

    I think you're pretty much good to go.
    August 22, 2007 6:17:37 AM

    asus maybe expesive but it isnt crap !
    August 22, 2007 8:07:39 AM

    I've been using ASUS for a long time, and I love them. I consider them reliable and worth the investment. The only problem I have is they are sometimes overpriced for their products. But that still doesn't stop me from buying them.

    The boards that support DDR2 & DDR3 have only 2 slots for EACH type of ram, so if you wanted 4GB you'd have to get 2GB sticks of RAM. Also not that you cannot use DDR2 and DDR3 simultaneously.

    I built a computer with a Q6600 chip yesterday with an ASUS P5K motherboard, and it is great. I'm not sure of the overclockability of the motherboard as I wasn't interested in overclocking the motherboard in this build. I would expect it to be overclockable to 1333 if not more. I'm not sure if your RAM can handle 1333 though. Reading about overclocking to 1333 the RAM was usually the limiting factor for 1:1 FSB
    August 22, 2007 1:34:25 PM

    Thanks everyone for all your advice.

    I will probably avoid an Asus motherboard. I have had bad experiences with them in the past. I will have to do some more research on motherboards before I choose.

    If the RAM I've selected won't make it to 1333 in a 4x1GB configuration, what might?

    Thanks again.
    August 22, 2007 2:04:46 PM

    The ram you selected will support even non-existant FSBs of 2133 running on 1:1, remember DDR stands for Double Data Rate i believe. (1066 x 2 = 2133)
    August 24, 2007 3:11:07 PM

    I have made some more decisions and here's an update list of the things I plan on getting. This list is fairly locked in, so if you disagree with a choice please suggest some better and let me know why. Thank again for all the advice! (red indicates a change)

  • Q6600 Intel Quad Core 2.4 GHz (G0 stepping if I can guarantee it)
  • Tuniq Tower 120 CPU HSF
  • MSI P35 Neo2-FR motherboard
  • OCZ Vista Upgrade 4GB(2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 667 OCZ2VU6674GK
  • XFX PVT80GGHD4 GeForce 8800GTS 320MB Video Card
  • Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD3200AAKS 320GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive
  • CORSAIR CMPSU-620HX ATX12V v2.2 and EPS12V 2.91 620W Power Supply
  • Antec P182 Case
  • SAMSUNG 226BW Black 22" 2 ms (GTG) DVI Widescreen LCD Monitor

    Since I don't plan on pushing past a 333 MHz FSB the new ram ought to do fine and it is significantly less expensive. I've also read good things about the Corsair PSUs and the Antec case although I am concerned that the PSU cables might not be long enough. Does anyone have any experience with that combination? Also, do you think I'll have enough airflow in the P182 to OC the CPU to 3 GHz?

    I changed to a 320 GB drive for more space and to save some money. And I'm still considering my options for LCD monitor. The LG monitor recommended above is still in the running.

    Thanks again for all your past help and future suggestions.
    August 24, 2007 4:12:57 PM

    Why do you plan to limit yourself to a 333FSB?

    This is a good 20% below what you can reach on this CPU w/o an voltage increases.
    (Take note of the fellow doing 3.0 On Stock Voltage with the old stepping.)

    You can also get 4x1Gb for as little as $125 if you shop around with a pair of respectable 2x1 DDR2-800 Chips.

    Do you need 4gb of RAM? It is of no use to most folks.

    August 24, 2007 5:57:13 PM

    looks good , but why not get a ddr2800 if u want to OC ?
    August 24, 2007 6:24:34 PM

    I don't really intend to go crazy overclocking. I think getting 25% more with an FSB of 333 MHz will be enough. Also, I am under the impression that 4x1GB setups stress the memory controller more than 2x2GB. If that is incorrect, please let me know.

    As far as 4GB in general, well, I probably will be using this setup as is for the next couple of years or so. With memory so cheap, why not get 4GB? Especially since I'll need Windows Vista to run DX10 games and I hear Vista is a crazy memory hog.

    I hadn't actually noticed that the memory I chose was DDR2-667. I'll probably go with DDR2-800 when I make my final purchase.
    August 24, 2007 7:00:00 PM

    Dont buy 4 sticks of ram. you are cruisin for a bruisin if you do. Not saying it wont work for ya, it just triples your chances of having a problem.

    Dont buy the zalman. Buy the tuniq tower or better. Can't go halfass with that quad
    August 24, 2007 8:23:46 PM

    He's buying 2 2GB sticks not 4 sticks... Wow some people need to read before they post. It looks good to me, the only things I'd change (And this is personal preference only, your list is fine the way it is) would be a GA-P35-DS3R mobo (I prefer Gigabyte over everyone else for mobo) and an Antec Nine Hundred case instead of the P182.

    You could say the P182 and Nine Hundred are quite the opposites, the Nine Hundred excels at cooling, however it sounds like a jet turbine, while the P182 has pretty good cooling, but is very silent. Depending on how you feel about noise, you should consider changing case or keeping it :p 
    !