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Finally going to purchase, but need last minute advice.

Last response: in Systems
October 16, 2007 3:44:31 PM

I have been planning this build for a looong time. I am finaly going home on the 27th and want the parts to be waiting for me so i will be ordering them in 4 days. My goal is a multi-applicaation/gaming system with all the bells and whistles for roughly $3000. The main componants are;

Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

EVGA 768-P2-N831-AR GeForce 8800GTX 768MB 384-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16

Update OCZ GameXStream OCZ700GXSSLI ATX12V 700W Power Supply

Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 Kentsfield 2.4GHz LGA 775 Processor

Patriot Extreme Performance 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory (x2 = 4gb)

Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 ST3320620AS (Perpendicular Recording Technology) 320GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive

SAMSUNG 226BW Black 22" 2 ms (GTG) DVI Widescreen LCD Monitor (maybe getting a second later)

SAMSUNG 20X DVD±R DVD Burner Black SATA Model (x2)

Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer 7.1 Channels PCI Interface Sound Card

Microsoft Windows XP Professional With SP2B

ABIT IP35 Pro LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX Intel Motherboard

Logitech G51 155 watts RMS 5.1 Surround Sound Speakers (Damn newegg is no longer carrying the speakers i wanted so im looking at these, grrr!!!)

There is also alot of little things i added that fill in the price alot, but these are the main parts. Any suggestions are greatly appreciated, especially with the speakers since they no longer have the ones i want. Also, whats a good place i can find the logitech speakers that i was originaly going to get?

October 16, 2007 4:01:58 PM

AH HA, I found them! Where would be the best place to buy these besides newegg? Im thinking amazon...

Logitech Z-5500 5.1 Speaker System
October 16, 2007 5:09:52 PM

That's a very nice system.

The 226BW is a lottery - you can get 3 types of panels at random (A,S,C) and the C type stinks, apparently. If you have the money and such a nice video card go for a Samsung 275T or at least 245BW instead. Either way, I'd get the monitor locally so I can check it for dead pixels first. Some online retailers will refuse to exchange or refund a monitor if the only thing wrong with it is 5 yellow pixels in the center, for example.

I want some Z-5500 speakers too, as soon as I can afford them :)  They are C$329 at my local computer shop and C$550 at BestBuy in the same neighborhood. Shop around. I'm in Canada but even I know about mwave and zipzoomfly and tigerdirect and ncixus, try them.

IP Pro is a fantastic mobo and very popular. I hear the LAN part is a bit slow, and there are some (cheaper) aBIT P35 mobos that don't have the problem. No idea if it's true or if it matters to you. I also like Gigabyte for P35 mobos.

The GameXStream is a pretty good PSU. Personally I went for a PC Power & Cooling 750, it's more expensive but it has better efficiency and acoustics, according to reviews.

Antec 900 - you sure get bells and whistles and flashy lights. If you like it go for it. I think the P182 is nicer because it's quiet and looks more serious. Of course, if you're still in school it doesn't have to look serious :) 

Are you planning to overclock? If you do, get a Thermalright Ultra-120 Extreme and a Scythe fan for it, and stick with the Antec 900.
Related resources
October 16, 2007 5:29:40 PM

I will slightly overclock and have an aftermarket cooler plus thermal grease;

Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Copound
ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro 92mm CPU Cooler

I read those are both good, would you agree? .

I also have a few things to make the case even more flashy like

NZXT SENTRY 1 Controller Panel

I would like to see the monitor in person but there isnt any good stores where i live plus i want the whole PC waiting for me when i finally go home. Ive read alot aboutthe multiple panels and it seems with proper adjustments even the C panel is just fine, but i will definatly look into your suggestions

Thanks alot for your advice!

October 16, 2007 6:41:40 PM

No problem. Yeah, the cooler you picked is good. There are better ones out there but they are harder to install and cost (a lot) more. Yeah, for "slightly overclock" your choices are perfect.

More flashy ??? :lol:  :lol:  Cool, post pics when you're done :D 
October 16, 2007 6:55:27 PM

You can save money if you want on the PSU. You only need 27-29 amps on the 12v rails. A 550 Watt PSU should do fine.
October 16, 2007 8:37:41 PM

I was thinking of taking the Q6600 from 2.6 to 3.0 or 3.2, is that about right? Ive never overclocked before but thats the number i had in my head.
October 16, 2007 8:50:40 PM

Post links if you've found a good deal somewhere please. I tried zipzoomfly and newegg. Both sell the GameXStream 700 for about $102..$105, and things like Antec NeoHE 550 or PC P&C Silencer 610 or Corsair 620HX for more.

I think I like the GameXStream 700 selection because it can handle that system without going over 70% of capacity, which means it will be in the sweet spot where efficiency is best and heat is lowest.

Overclocking the Q6600: I know it can reach 3.4 GHz or more with a Thermalright. The Q6600 runs at 2.4 by default, by the way, not 2.6. Here's a guy who says he reached 3.3 GHz with the same cooler you got:
October 16, 2007 9:32:20 PM

Im buying everything from newegg but the speakers which ill get from amazon. The "OCZ GameXStream OCZ700GXSSLI ATX12V 700W Power Supply" on newegg is $140.

So with my system what would you suggest overclocking at? Maybe 2.8? Like i said ive never overclocked, i just want to get a nice performance increase right off the bat and never have to worrie about overclocking again till im getting close to upgrade time.
October 17, 2007 2:09:06 AM

Honestly, I wouldn't overclock at all. The hard disk will act as a bottleneck a lot, so even the stock Q6600 will rarely work at 100%. The overclocked Q6600 will very rarely show an improvement over the stock Q6600. Try a bit, if you want, for educational purposes, sure :) 

Edit: you forgot the $35 rebate on the PSU, it comes to $105. I'm assuming, of course, that you are willing to invest half a dollar on a stamp for a chance to get $35 back. My personal experience with rebates is that they do work, they just take a few months.

This one is a better PSU I believe:
$120+$10 shipping after $40 rebate

Check out this list:

The GameXStream 700 is Tier 2. The Silverstone ZF 750 is Tier 1. Normally Tier 2 would be just fine, but for an expensive PC like yours and a price difference of only $25 I'd go for Tier 1. Also, you get better efficiency with a bigger PSU, i.e. save a cent or two on electricity every hour and get less heat. As far as I'm concerned, I got as very similar setup (Q6600, BFG 8800 GTX OC2, etc.) and I got a PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 (also Tier 1). That one is on sale for $180 now at newegg, BTW.
October 17, 2007 2:46:08 AM

I originaly had that exact PSU but changed to the OCZ due to the reviews of the two. You are not the first person to suggest that silverstone to me and i think i will probally switch back.

What would you feel is a better harddrive for me to get if that is a bottleneck? I would like to only have one harddrive so i dont have to deal with multiple drives, and also have enough storage. I was thinking of getting a raptor, but they are very expensive for very little storage.
October 17, 2007 2:53:37 AM

Would HDD be a large improvement and compatible with the motherboard?

Western Digital Raptor WD1500ADFD 150GB 10,000 RPM Serial ATA150 Hard Drive
October 17, 2007 3:06:29 AM

You could try RAID, but that means 2 or more drives and it's a bit complicated - several types of RAID exist and each has its advantages and disadvantages.

The simplest solution is to get a high-quality drive, like WD7500AAKS (750 GB) or the 1 TB Seagate 7200.11. They have some serious improvements over previous versions (WD5000AAKS or 7200.10), according to reviews.

Let's use a grain of salt here.

First, I have WD5000AAKS myself and haven't actually tried these two other types. I just loved their reviews and benchmarks, mostly at Anandtech.

Second, the bottlenecking I mentioned earlier often happened to me when doing something daft: I had some vob files on partition E: and I was creating compressed vob files from them on partition D:. Unfortunately, D: and E: were on the same physical drive. With a bit of attention I could have set things up to use different physical disks, and I bet the CPU would have worked at 100% instead of 81%. The issue remains, of course, you can't and don't want to care about such details all the time. Anyway, it may help to have two disks, just to be able to do tricks like this.

I'm guessing that the Raptor will beat the WD75000AAKS and the Seagate, but not by enough to make it worth the horrible price/GB ratio. I'll try to find some benchmarks...

October 17, 2007 4:47:51 AM

Thanks for that link. After reading that i again went back to the old HDD i was going for which is the Western Digital WD3200AAKS Caviar SE16 320GB
October 17, 2007 7:40:29 AM

zompton said:

Patriot Extreme Performance 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory (x2 = 4gb)

Microsoft Windows XP Professional With SP2B

Great build but make sure you get the 64 bit version of XP
October 17, 2007 9:31:39 AM

Great build but make sure you get the 64 bit version of XP

The main reason i started this topic is just in case i missed little things like this. Thank you sir, i will change to the 64 bit version. :) 

I do have a question though, what exactly are the differences in the 64 bit version and how will it affect my C++ programming?
October 17, 2007 9:39:58 AM

This is the one i want correct?

Microsoft Windows XP Professional 64Bit SP2C