It took all day. Can someone QA this system for me?

Hey people,

I started this morning with a budget of £300 ($600) and ended up deciding theres no point in having an overdraft if im not going to use it and its now £460 ($910).

I am a newbie when it comes to making a system.. i mean i have replaced parts all my life but if you dont keep in with the hardware loop then it starts to become double dutch :pt1cable:

I would appreicate if someone could look though this spec and give it a tick or a cross... I dont want to buy a system if i cant use it this weekend (skint now so no beer for me!).

Coolermaster Elite 330 Black Mid Tower Case
Sony 20X DVD±RW Serial ATA
2*Hiper 120mm Case Fan - Clear HiperFlow Frame & Blades - 3pin with Adaptor/Screws Included
ATI HD 3850 Pro 256MB GDDR3 Dual DVI TV Out PCI-E Graphics Card
Seagate 160GB Hard Drive 7200RPM SATAII/300 8MB Cache
OCZ 2GB Kit (2x1GB) DDR2 800MHz/PC2-6400 CL 4-4-4-15 PLATINUM XTC
ASUS M2R32-MVP 580X CrossFire Socket AM2 8 channel audio ATX Motherboard
Arctic Power 500W PSU With PCI-E 2x SATA, 20+4 ATX12V 8pin +12V Connectors - Retail Boxed
AMD Athlon 64 X2 4800+ 2.5GHz Energy Efficient Socket AM2 L2 1MB (2x512KB) Cache Retail Boxed Processor
Microsoft Black Wired PS/2 Keyboard 500 - Retail Box
Microsoft Basic Optical Black Mouse - USB
Phillips 190S7 17" LCD Monitor 1280x1024 8ms 700:1 VGA/DVI

Cart total inc vat: Cart total ex vat: £447.81

I know i need thermal paste and also a wrist strap just to be careful but have i managed to pick a ok system? Can you think of anything i might have missed out? Is there anything i should change in your opinion? The thing im most worried about is compatibility.

PS Thanks to everyone that has contributed to this forum, without tomshardware id still be stratching my head!


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  1. Junk the Phillips monitor, bad response time it appears, and most of the experiences I've had with them have not been good. Also, consider an nvidia 9600gt video card instead of the 3850. It performs almost as good as the 8800gt, basically, I think it'd be a lot better card than what your getting for not much more. I am an AMD fan myself, but I think a lot of guys would tell you to look into an intel setup and overclock that and that you'd get better performance out of that.

    One final thought, though I know some will disagree, but if you are buying ram with heatspreaders on it, consider buying some without. The reason I say it is because I had a stick fry itself because the heatspreader trapped the heat under it and my memory fried itself, and it was less than 2 months old. So if you want to save yourself a headache.....that's my opinion.
  2. Btw, another thing, wrist strap, good, but if you just touch an unpainted part of your case and don't build on carpet, you should be ok as far as ESD is concerned, I am a computer tech, and ESD is a real thing, but on all of my own personal builds I've never used one, and have few problems. But if you want one, it certainly can't hurt. Also, you may not need thermal paste, if you are getting a retail version of the chip, it should come with a stock heatsink and a thermal pad preinstalled, which is all I'm using and my temps are excellent....under 30 degrees celcius on the core at idle.
  3. Hey dude, i really appreciate you taking the time to recommend things.

    A couple of problems i currently face on my budget is the monitor... i know its terrible.. its the cheapest tft i could get on ebuyer an i was thinking maybe in a couple of months i could get a HD setup. I didnt want to spend loads on it because of that. Looking around the other monitors (adding say another 50 notes) seems to still have a 8ms response time....

    The graphics card recommendation is fair play, ebuyer dont have that for sale so i looked at and the prices range from about 100-160 as opposed to the 90 ATI... to be fair, i have never owned a ATI card in my life as i was a nvidia boy but i took the FPS for oblivion into consideration and according to this website the ATI is pretty high up on the list.

    OCZ RAM is an issue i did wonder about but accoring to the reviews on the product people seem to rave about it. On the reviews it says in order to use the ram correctly it needs a voltage of 2.1v ... even the more expensive MOBO's seem to only list 1.8v if listed atall... This leads me to believe either all motherboards can be set to a higher voltage or im going to buy a couple of useless sticks. The funny thing is (and im sure also people will put me in my place on this) i think that shoving a plate of solid metal on a heat source simply heats up greater than if it wasnt there before. Im glad your view is similar to mine in that regard.

    So basically start again in your opinion? :P

    The funny thing is, give or take an hour i have been trying to build this for 12 hours!

    Ill see in the morning if i can make a similar core2duo rig for a similar price.

    For now though, im going to go and dream about letters and numbers.
  4. I mean personally, I always used about the cheapest memory I could, seems to be ok. ATI cards are not bad, I've had both. I hear that ATI may not do as well in FPS, but image quality is better. At least that is what people have said.

    The monitor, if you plan to game, I think your recommended response time should be 5ms or less.

    As far as the heatspreaders on the memory though, people can gripe or argue with me about it, but it happened to me so you can try it, but it's up to you. The other questions I would have are about the PSU, maybe someone else here knows that PSU better than I do, but I don't know that I've heard much about it.

    The other thing, it looks like you've got a crossfire motherboard, which if you are only ever going to run 1 graphics card, a crossfire board does not make too much sense. Save a little there and get yourself a better monitor.
  5. Check this out....

    You like nvidia so you should like that, check out some reviews online, see what you think...

    In fact that's even cheaper than the 256 mb 3850 on that site...
  6. heck if your from the UK check out

    Amazing service, next day delivary. Every order so far has arrived about 11am the next day, and i prefer them to any other company i've had to deal with. Scan is also great, but i find their range somewhat limited.

    Consider getting a bigger hard drive too, that space will fill up quick and an extra 100GB could set you back for as little as £5.

    Either 9600GT or 3850/70 would be good choices. Also look at possibly Overclocking a E2160, since its a good budget proccesor and can OC to about 3.0ghz fairly nicely.
  7. ASUS P5B Socket 775 Core 2 ready P965 chipset onboard audio ATX
    Intel E2160 Socket 775 Pentium Dual Core 2x1.8Ghz 800FSB Retail Boxed Processor
    OCZ 2GB Kit (2x1GB) DDR2 800MHz/PC2-6400 CL 4-4-4-15 PLATINUM XTC with LIFETIME WARRANTY
    Coolermaster Elite 330 Black Mid Tower Case - No PSU
    Sony DRU-190S 20X DVD±RW DL & DVD-RAM Serial ATA - Retail Multi Bezel & Nero
    Arctic Cooling AC-FRZ-7P Freezer 7 Pro Socket 775 Processor Cooler
    Hiper 120mm Case Fan - Clear HiperFlow Frame & Blades - 3pin with Adaptor/Screws Included
    Western Digital WD1600AAJS 160GB Hard Drive SATAII 7200rpm 8MB Cache - OEM
    Extra Value Gold 600W 12cm Fan Silent PSU - PFC 20+4pin
    Microsoft Black Wired PS/2 Keyboard 500 - Retail Box
    Microsoft Basic Optical Black Mouse - USB
    Hannspree XM New York 19" TFT Monitor widescreen 1440x900 700:1 300cd/m2 5ms DVI Speakers Black
    ATI HD 3850 Pro 256MB GDDR3 Dual DVI TV Out PCI-E Graphics Card


    Thanks for all your help guys it was most appreciated.

    In the end i decided to just stick to ebuyer because its next day delivery and just easier to buy everything from the same place.

    I hope this does oblivion some justice! :D

    I just know someone is going to tell me that i have missed something or got something wrong... but ill just have to wait and see!

    Thanks once again!

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