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$2200-$2400 Budget - First-Time Build

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May 3, 2008 12:30:37 AM

Hello everybody.

Planning my first build ever.... I am basically clueless about the technology and am hoping to be led through this process by some experts!

What I do NOT need - either have already or will buy later:

Keyboard
Mouse
O/S (already have Vista Ultimate)
Speakers

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Does anybody see any compatibility or other issues with this build?
It's very close to being final as it stands now, so last minute advice would be appreciated:


Case:
Antec P182 Gun Metal Black 0.8mm cold rolled steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
XCLIO Windtunnel Fully Black Finish 1.0 mm SECC Chassis ATX Full Tower Computer Case

Motherboard:
ASUS P5K DELUXE/WIFI-AP LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX Intel Motherboard
ABIT IP35 Pro LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX Intel Motherboard

Wireless:
D-Link DWL-G550 PCI High-Powered Wireless Desktop Adapter

Video Card:
XFX PVT88PYDF4 GeForce 8800GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card
EVGA 512-P3-N861-AR GeForce 9600GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card
XFX PVT88GYDF4 GeForce 8800GTS (G92) 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card (out of stock at NewEgg)
other options:
1. EVGA 512-P3-N845-AR GeForce 8800GTS (G92) KO 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card
2. XFX PVT88GYDD4 GeForce 8800GTS (G92) 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card

PSU:
CORSAIR CMPSU-550VX ATX12V V2.2 550W Power Supply
PC Power & Cooling S610EPS EPS12V 610W

Processor:
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 Kentsfield 2.4GHz LGA 775 Quad-Core Processor Model BX80562Q6600
Intel Q9450 (already purchased)

RAM:
OCZ SLI-Ready Edition 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model OCZ2N800SR4GK
CORSAIR 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model TWIN2X4096-6400C5
G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F2-6400CL5D-4GBPQ

Hard Drives:
Western Digital Raptor WD360ADFD 36GB 10000 RPM SATA 1.5Gb/s Hard Drive
Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD5000AAKS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive

Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - x 2

Monitor:
SAMSUNG 220WM Black 22" 5ms Widescreen LCD Monitor
SAMSUNG 2253BW Black 22" 2ms(GTG) DVI Widescreen LCD Monitor

DVD Drive:
Pioneer 20X DVD±R DVD Burner Black IDE Model DVR-115DBK
SAMSUNG 20X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe Black SATA Model SH-S203N


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May 3, 2008 12:54:44 AM

Only thing I would change is the Q6600 to the Q9450
May 3, 2008 1:29:07 AM

If your doing heavy graphic work get a Nvidia quadro, their made for proffesional rendering, very pricey but you would definately benefit.

I second the Q9450.

Raptors aren't worth it, get a seagate 7200.11 HD.

Onboard sound will be fine.
Related resources
May 3, 2008 2:04:18 AM

Third on the Q9450 vote. A Quadro is the way to go (although I'd only do it if you're getting paid - nicely- for the work you'll be doing on the graphics side), otherwise the 8800GT or 9600GT should fit the bill nicely. Don't get the Raptor. Go for either 7200.11 or 3200/6400/7500AAKS Western Digital HDD. Don't get the Samsung you listed. If you're doing graphic work you need an S-IPS or S-_VA panel, the Samsung 245T should fit the bill (and be inside your rather large budget). You're not overclocking, so DO NOT waste your money on an after market cooler (unless you're a quiet freak, and in that case let me know and I'll point you in the right direction)

If I were you:
GIGABYTE GA-P35-DS3L LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX All Solid Capacitor Intel Motherboard - $90
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Intel Q9450 - ~$360 (currently unavailable on Newegg)
CORSAIR CMPSU-550VX ATX12V V2.2 550W Power Supply - $85 after MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Antec P182 Gun Metal Black 0.8mm cold rolled steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - $140
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
CORSAIR 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model TWIN2X4096-6400C5 - $85
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
EVGA 512-P3-N861-AR GeForce 9600GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - $140 after MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
OR
EVGA 512-P3-N801-AR GeForce 8800GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - $160 after MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - $110 x 2
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
SAMSUNG 245T-BLACK Black 24" 6ms HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor - $660
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
SAMSUNG 20X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe Black SATA Model SH-S203N - $34
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
D-Link DWA-552 32-bit PCI Xtreme Desktop Adapter - $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

You'll also need a couple SATA cables, because the OEM drives do not come with them, and your motherboard only has a couple with it.

Total - $1894-1914 (before shipping, however a lot of the items have free shipping)

Let me know what you think. It's pretty much a perfect build for your use (in my opinion).
May 3, 2008 2:29:47 AM

I would probably stick with the ASUS P5K DELUXE/WIFI-AP, the GIGABYTE GA-P35-DS3L doesn't have onboard 1394

You could save $50 with the ASUS P5K-E/WIFI-AP

If it was me I would get this PSU for $10 more:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
PC Power & Cooling Silencer 610 EPS12V
May 3, 2008 4:33:02 AM

Thanks to everybody who has replied so far - this is exactly the type of help I was hoping to get here! All of your input is greatly appreciated.

I have made some adjustments to my original post.

Couple of notes:

For now, I will stick with the ASUS Motherboard, only because I was a little worried with the user reviews that the D-Link DWA-552 received.

The Quadro was probably a bit more than I will need, so upgraded to the 9600GT. Will likely upgrade my monitor, though the negative reviews for the
SAMSUNG 245T (buzzing sounds?) scared me off of it.

I still have a few weeks to tweak this, so anybody else would like to weigh in, I'd love to hear your input.

May 3, 2008 5:03:03 AM

8800GT is a better card than the 9600GT. I know it's kinda counter-intuitive, but it's true. Stick with the 8800GT if it's still in the budget, or if you're looking for cooler/quieter operation the 8800GTS 512MB is the way to go.

My brother owns the 245T and is infatuated with it. He's an Industrial Designer and does a fair amount of graphics on his home computer. The buzzing thing seems to be a hit-or-miss as reviews go, but it's a definite plus to not have a TN-based panel for color spectrum and replication.

I would not go for an on-board based wireless solution. I haven't heard much good about them (and almost all the examples are made by Asus, go figure - who's a great company otherwise). Pick a PCI-based card from a major manufacturer (Linksys, D-Link, Netgear) and a different motherboard (the DS3L is by far the most popular).

To the person that states the on-board Firewire as a plus: it's a dying interface and the OP did not state they have any need for it. That's the case of buying a board with features you'd never use (if indeed the OP doesn't own any devices that utilize it).
May 5, 2008 2:22:12 AM

Zalman coolers have been surpassed in the past year. The performance they offer is no longer comparable to newer designs. Xigmatek, Scythe, Thermalright and Cooler Master offer better bang/buck. On top of that, if you do not plan on overclocking, do not get an aftermarket heatsink. If you're planning on overclocking, or you're looking for low-noise computing, let me know and I'll provide you with a recommendation.
May 5, 2008 2:36:54 AM

Hey Kyle - with all the changes I have been making to my build, your first comment about after market coolers sort of slipped my mind. Sorry about that.

Anyway, as of now, I do not plan on overclocking, but in case I change my mind in the next few days or so, what would your heatsink recommendation be?

Thanks again for all of your responses.
May 5, 2008 3:35:29 AM

Cooler Master TX2 or Xigmatek HDT-S963, they're both cheap, quiet and perform much better than stock cooling.
September 10, 2008 8:24:49 PM

Wonderful post. Was looking to make my own post with damn near the same requirements...though I wanted sub $2k.

Am 80% photo editor via elements, watch TV, and play "some" games. S-PVA or S-IPS minimum.

Think this thread is about money...and all for less/same than the imac 24" I was thinking of buying.
September 10, 2008 9:02:02 PM

sromain said:
Wonderful post. Was looking to make my own post with damn near the same requirements...though I wanted sub $2k.

Am 80% photo editor via elements, watch TV, and play "some" games. S-PVA or S-IPS minimum.

Think this thread is about money...and all for less/same than the imac 24" I was thinking of buying.

Oh God. You were almost the victim of good advertizing. Laptop components in a 'pretty' desktop case does not a good computer make (especially for 'elements, TV, and games').
September 10, 2008 9:08:44 PM

wow talk about...ugh i forget (its whats worse than a bump)
Cant think of the word....

but yea this was a bad bump (May ROFL)
September 10, 2008 9:23:34 PM

May have been a helluva bump but it answered some questions for me. And hell, who needs more of the same posts?

And part of the imac's appeal (for me) is its form factor. Active duty Army, lots of moves...space premium...all that jazz.

September 10, 2008 9:26:03 PM

Yea but was it needed to say...."lovely post, this helped me a lot" when the stuff hes buying is TOTALLY outdated atm...

New cards, new everything....
!