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Help me choose components to OC E8400?

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Last response: in Overclocking
June 19, 2008 7:30:45 PM

Understand most of concepts, but my first OC attempt. (Employer issues kept me to Dells with locked BIOSs.) Basic idea:

2 GB DDR2/800
GeForce 9600 GT/512 MB

Plan to purchase assembled system xcept maybe video card. Looking at CyberPower config $790. Need advice re options I should choose for safest OC:

1. Standard case Apevia 420W mid-tower; other brands/models various prices. Case designed for >420 not offered; instead 500W PS replacement $49. (Saw review of one 9600 GT model that says minimum 400W.)

2. Base fan Intel standard. Alternates Raidmax Maxcool $15, CoolerMaster Hyper TX2 $19, others.

3. Base MB Asus P5N-E nForce 650i SLI. Alternates MSI P7N SLI-FI 750i, EVGA NFORCE 680i SLI, Asus P5N-D 750i, others.

4. Base RAM "Corsair or major brand." Mushkin Value Select $10, Cosair XMS2 $50, Mushkin Extreme $60.

5. Base video card "major brand powered by nVIDIA." EVGA $5. Or I can take 7200 GS TurboCache for -$179 and purchase a 9600 GT separately.

Which of these--or none--are likely to serve OK?

All advice appreciated.

More about : choose components e8400

June 24, 2008 11:03:32 PM

If you can build your own. If not, get a nvidia 7xx series mobo, no 6xx. Get 9600gt. Get the mushkin value ram and 4gb of it. You can savely OC to 400mhz FSB with them.
If you do plan to build your own, get an intel p45 mobo or p35
June 25, 2008 1:20:03 PM

25 years ago I used to repair and build these things, but that is a very long time. These days I limit my self to minor upgrades.

You're right about the MoBo, and for an additional reason: the older ones don't have SATA-II.

If I go from 333x9 to 400x9 (every report I've seen on OCing E8400 has done much better than that), I don't necessarily have to OC the RAM; I could just step it down from 6:5 to 1:1. Since keeping it at 6:5 would be async, I wonder if there would be any performance gain anyway.

One thing I worry about is many new MoBos have no PS/2 and only 8 USB (4 rear, 4 internal). My current box has the usual PS/2 connectors + 8 USB and I am using all but 1.
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June 25, 2008 4:43:43 PM

It's really not that hard to build them, i was 13 when i started, didn't know squat and it all still worked.
If you want to use your old mouse and keyboard just get ps.2 to usb converters. You should check the RAMs latency and voltage also. The lower the better.

On the sync issue, keep them in dual channel and 1:1 ratio.
June 25, 2008 4:47:26 PM

Oh and since you plan to OC, check what heatsinks they offer and google some reviews of them.
June 25, 2008 5:48:54 PM

Been reading up on heatsinks, found at least one (from Thermaltake) that has good reviews and fairly cheap.

Not going to build one. My brother in law, with much more experience, built one for me 5 years ago and it never worked right. As Bush 41 said, "would'n be pruden."

June 25, 2008 5:50:21 PM

Most everyone here will say it's a great idea to build a pc. It may get a little complicated, not to mention that you'll have to buy a costly OS such as Vista.

But whatever the case, you should not go with Nvidia chipsets, meaning no SLI. This is because there's tons of issues with Intel and Nvidia chipsets, making overclocking a difficult process. Just google around, you'll find many people complaining.

I am not fond of dual card solutions, but if you want it, go with Crossfire. Currently, the best motherboards that offer this is the X38 or X48. The P35s or P45s do not offer full bandwidth of x16/x16 when in Crossfire, and these days, you'll need it.

Currently the best motherboard to oc with is the P45s. 600MHz FSB is entirely possible on air cooling, 400MHz FSB is nothing.

Do not use cheap brand PSUs. The Apevia 420W PSU would be one of them. If you can, get at least a 450W PSU from a solid brand company. Some of these would be Antec, Corsair, Enermax, PowerPC&Cooing...

Do you game a lot? Do you play intensive games like Crysis? The 9600GT is an excellent card, however after the launch of the HD4850, the 9600GT pales in comparison. People have reported to find these vidcards for $160. If you read around, this video card beats the former single GPU king, the 9800GTX, which costed around $300. Now it's around $200, but still isn't worth the performance.

For ram, I'd go with 4GB if you're gonna use Vista. Otherwise, 2GB would be plenty. You shouldn't see much of a difference in everyday applications between using some value ram or performance ram.
June 25, 2008 6:58:28 PM


I plan to let CyberPower build it. Almost every person in OC forums--who didn't build their own--seems to have used them.

Can't get a quality PS out of them. Will have to see how it goes and maybe replace.

You're the 3rd person in 24 hrs to recommend P45 for OC.

Plan is XP, one GPU. We have 4 desktops in the house, so I just replace my own every 2 years and pass on to a family member. Till now OC has not been possible because employer required Dells, which have locked BIOS.

My games are all TBS and RTS, generally low video demand (though a couple have outstripped my 7300 LE). So any mid-priced GPU will do for two years.
a b K Overclocking
June 26, 2008 6:05:07 PM

Evilonigiri said:
But whatever the case, you should not go with Nvidia chipsets, meaning no SLI. This is because there's tons of issues with Intel and Nvidia chipsets, making overclocking a difficult process.

I disagree.
June 26, 2008 7:07:22 PM

Just read reviews of makers on epinions and my3cents. Customer experiences with CyberPower and IbuyPower are nothing short of horrifying. Alienware not so great either. The few with good reviews are Dell (ugh) and several whose prices are almost as horrifying as the first group's service. I may have to build it.
a b K Overclocking
June 26, 2008 9:05:28 PM

Evilonigiri said:
The picture won't load! I'll assume it's some crazy OC on the...perhaps 780i? Whatever the case is, I'm giving my advice based on the threads I've seen here and articles I read that puts the Nvidia chipsets in a bad light.

I prefer personal experience myself as a lot of 'advice' does not correspond with what I see with my own two eyes. E8400 @3.993ghz on a 680i board with SLI enabled, by the way.
June 26, 2008 9:48:39 PM

If you are too lazy to build one i would reccomend an xps 630 after 2 weeks of research. believe me i looked at every site i can find from dell,cyberpower, ibuypower, velocity,war machine, peuget, alienware,blah blah blah there are alot of them and i think I've seen them all from custom to pre built. I had 1350 to spare. And i found dell to be the cheapest with at least a better rep than cyberpower and ibuy power.

There are so many horror stories about those 2 companies. I would check reseller ratings for company reps. And if you decide to buy a dell, make sure you look for coupons on the net just google xps coupon codes and there are tons of them. Hope this helps.
June 27, 2008 12:49:16 AM

Even a 420 would be adequate -- about 1050. But it means living with Vista and a locked BIOS. Quick check shows no coupons on XPS desktops just now.

Equivalent or better parts from Newegg about 850. So if I value my time at nothing, the choice I have to make is whether the self-assembly risk is < $200 + OC possibility + my preference for XP. For me, not an easy call.
June 27, 2008 7:11:46 AM

If you want oc capability you need either a 630 or 720. I don't know about the 420. Im currently oced to 3.8 with my e 8400 and lovin it.

might want to check out AVA direct. That's a pretty good site, you might find your rig there.