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New build-recommendations for video card & memory

Last response: in Systems
February 9, 2008 5:41:01 AM

Hello all, my first post, thanks to everyone for keeping a good forum. Ya got a 57y.o. novice here.

I put together my first machine last year and kinda got the bug to try it again, would like to assemble a computer for a friends family of seven; ages 5 to 15, who would use it for gaming and schoolwork (?). They have had inexpensive machines in the past but nothing now.

Last night I ordered the MoBo: GA-P35-DS3L, the PSU: Corsair 550W, (2) HDD: Seagate 250 & Samsung 500. Also an Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 Pro and a DVD +/-Samsung SH-S 203B. Next order will probably be the processor: E8400 Wolfdale, VISTA 64-Home, and the rest of the stuff to finish the build.

Video Card Question: what would be your recommendations in the $200-$250 range; EVGA 8800GTS-320, EVGA 8800GT-512, or the Diamond HD 3870-512? Or something that would be a better match in this price range for the GA-P35 motherboard and the E8400 processor?

Memory Sugestions? I am inclined to get 2x1GB DDR2-800 with 5-5-5-15 timings. But memory is so much cheaper now than years past that 2x2GB would be OK if there really would be a noticable improvement in games or MS-X flight simulator. Does VISTA, the E8400, or the MoBo have any issues with different timings: 5-5-5-12, 5-5-5-15, 5-5-5-18, or 4-4-4-12? I will probably do a light OC of the E8400 to @3.6.

I think that the VISTA memory score may be 5.9 with either 2x2GB 5-5-5-15, or 2x1GB at 4-4-4-12?
February 9, 2008 5:51:15 AM

Wow, there are so many people here I find answers faster than I can ask the questions: will NOT get the 8800GTS, will go find the list of approved RAM for this motherboard.
February 9, 2008 6:06:54 AM

go for EVGA 8800GT-512....... 320 gts wont do any good

as for the memory go for Corsair Dominator TWIN2X2048-9136C5D
but i think you have to adjust the timings manually in the bios with your mobo
February 9, 2008 8:44:39 PM

The 8800GTS 512Mb (G92) is a great card TB, it's the G80 you might want to steer clear of: the 8800GTS 320 and 640Mb models : ). Good luck with the build!