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New build - opinions and help appreciated

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February 12, 2008 10:28:01 PM

I am building a new computer, and my budget is ~$600. Looking to do decent gaming with it and overclock the components to the max.

Here is what I have figured out so far for the AMD build:

AMD Opteron 1210 HE Santa Ana 1.8GHz 2 x 1MB L2 Cache Socket AM2 65W Dual-Core Processor - OEM - 69.99

GIGABYTE GA-MA770-DS3 AM2+/AM2 AMD 770 ATX All Solid Capacitor AMD Motherboard - Retail - 109.99

G.SKILL 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail - 46.99

Sapphire ATI Radeon HD2900Pro 512MB 512-bit GDDR3 2DVI/VIVO HDCP PCI-Express Video Card, Retail - $174

Western Digital Caviar SE WD1600AAJS 160GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM - 49.99

COOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-WW Black/Silver Aluminum Bezel, SECC Chassis ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail - 44.99

Thermaltake Purepower W0100RU ATX 12V 2.0 500W Power Supply 115/ 230 V UL, CUL, TUV, FCC, and CB certification - Retail - 59.99

ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 64 Pro 92mm CPU Cooler - Retail - 19.99

Comes out to almost exactly $600 with shipping.

Can you guys improve it at all? Should I go for Intel's offerings that are in this price range?

Any thoughts whatsoever?
February 13, 2008 2:16:59 AM

The HD 2900Pro is power hungry, look for an HD 3850 instead, similar performance, but uses much less power and runs much cooler.

If you are overclocking, try to get an Intel build going, they are much better for overclocking at the moment. A GigaByte P35-DS3L and a Core2Duo E4500 or Pentium Dual-Core E2160 would give you much better performance, especially once overclocked. You would then swap the Freezer 64 for a Freezer 7(the Intel version).

As for power supply, thermaltake is weak, you can pick up an Antec NeoPower 500W for $50 after rebate, which is a much better quality unit. They have the same amount of +12v power combined on their rails, so the Antec will provide as much power to the main parts of your system as the Thermaltake could, and will be higher efficiency.
February 13, 2008 3:27:50 AM

^^^ Seconded. Overclocking king is Intel. I still have my 5000+ black in my family pc. That's it for me from AMD. E8400 is the best x2 overclocker at around $200. My 5000+ o/c'ed to 3ghz can't touch my stock e8400 at 3ghz. I am gonna o/c this mofo to at least 4ghz for 24/7 operation. Next best thing would be Yorkfield - the 1333mhz fsb quads.
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February 13, 2008 5:23:18 AM

I'd go with Intel. You can always drop in a Q9450 when Nehalem comes out.

If your aren't overclocking, then save the $20 and drop the CPU cooler.
February 15, 2008 9:24:27 PM

Alright. now i have 2 options.

1. Same build as before except with an Opteron 1212 and an OCZ StealthXstream PSU

2. Same build (with the OCZ PSU) with a Pentium DC and a Gigabyte P35 board.

People report the Opty overclocking to 3.0 fine, and it has 2mb L2...

What should I do?
February 15, 2008 9:27:36 PM

Option 2
February 16, 2008 12:04:50 AM

2 votes Option 2. Cpt Deadboots, the tribe has spoken.
February 16, 2008 9:34:53 PM

Option 2 will be faster, even with less Cache, the Core2 architecture provides better clock per clock performance compared to K8, and can easily overclock to higher speeds on less cooling. People report doing 2.8-3.0GHz on stock cooling for the Pentium Dual-Cores.
February 16, 2008 10:58:07 PM

apparenlty even 3.4 / 3.5 if you're lucky, and i saw once 4 ghz with liquid nitrogen...

take option 2 - the 2160 ought to get you 3 ghz easy
February 17, 2008 3:58:12 AM

amd_fanboi said:
apparenlty even 3.4 / 3.5 if you're lucky, and i saw once 4 ghz with liquid nitrogen...

take option 2 - the 2160 ought to get you 3 ghz easy


And that coming from someone who's name is amd_fanboi, it's good to see people giving good advice rather then choosing sides and sticking with it no matter which performs better.

I hope ATI and AMD come back, I have a secret ATI fanboy inside me. I don't always recommend them, but I always have a secret desire for them to be on top again.(even though I have a 7900GS and love it)
February 17, 2008 9:01:50 AM

Did you need an Optical drive?

Samsung SH-S203B SATA

(Get the "Retail" version of the optical drive in order to get software with it. This will include the decoder you'll need to watch movies on it.)
!