First Build, about to purchase, rate please.

So i have a budget of $750 total after shipping and tax and rebates.

I have decided on this rig:


CORSAIR CMPSU-550VX ATX12V V2.2 550W - $85


Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 Wolfdale 3.0GHz - $200

OCZ SLI-Ready Edition 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 - $62

Western Digital Caviar SE16 7200rpm - $70

Pioneer Black 20X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW - $30

eVGA 8800GT 512-256bit - $120 (used a partial gift card)

Total: $808
minus $65 rebates =

just under my total budget of $750 for the system. What do you guys think? I will be purchasing the parts this week. Thanks in advance.

(making a new thread because the old one became a Q6600 versus E8400 debate.. trying to avoid that here)

My places to make changes are essentially anywhere, as long as the total for the budget stays under. Primarily though, RAM, PSU, and Optical drive are perhaps the most flexible items.

thanks in advance to all who reply!
13 answers Last reply
More about first build purchase rate please
  1. Missing the HSF? Good choices.
    You did a good job spreading your $$$ around. Check out Shadow703793's GUIDE: Overclocking On P35-DS3L v1.1
    The DS3L isn't limited to 400FSB (E8400 or Q6600 @ 3.8Ghz 424FSB ) More P-35-DS3L OC'ing info
    If you are curious about Dual/Quad performance @ same clock speeds use the THG CPU Charts. 4 doesnt always beat 2 [:wr2:5]
    You can configure the charts just the way you want - in this case showing 3Ghz E8400 & 3Ghz QX6850 plus 2.66Ghz E8200 & 2.66Ghz QX6700

    Be sure to let us know how things turn out.
  2. Yeah, basically I figured that by the time the e8400 would be the bottleneck on this system it will probably be in at least 2 years, and when companies finally start utilizing multithreaded gaming for the quads, the q6600 will likely be outdated heavily anyways.

    Is the stock heat sink and fan on the e8400 strong enough to use? I figure I wont OC the processor in the beginning, because I probably wont need to yet. So I decided on the faster stock e8400 over the faster stock q6600. That saved me $20, plus I assume the stock hsf would be strong enough if I'm not OC'ing the e8400 yet. That saves me another 20-40$.

    Later in the summer when money is more available, i'll go in and replace the heat sink and fan on the e8400. I assume that isnt too hard to do after installing the stock one?

    So although the q6600 vs e8400 debate still rages, I'd like to move away from it for a minute. is there anything else in the system that needs changing, or is there anything someone recomends over a piece I have chosen? The case was chosen with great care, but I had a few runner ups. The PSu has unlimited runner ups.

    Just want to make sure everything will be compatible, and should run nicely for the next 2-3 years without needing upgrades. Thats the goal, to come back to this board in 3 years and inquire about upgrades heh.

    All I do is basic school work, cd and dvd burning and gaming (primarily gaming) on this computer. So how does the overall setup look?

    *I am still in turmoil over whether to go q6600 or e8400, the q6600 will immediately need a new fan, and therefore cost about $50 more than the e8400.
    * I just found out that my wireless card is not supported by Vista... so I don't know what to do about that... pony up more money or just go XP64
    * If I do jump to the q6600, i'll need to save money somewhere else, perhaps in the PSU? (I only want a powerful single 12v rail.)

    sigh, I just want to be finished with this process for 3 years lol.
  3. The stock HSF is good enough if you're not overclocking on both the Q6600 and the E8400. The wolfdale is probably better for gaming right now since not too many games takes advantage of multiple cores. In the next couple of years that may change but who knows for sure. Either processor should work fine for you. The real bottleneck for gaming will be the 8800GT; either of those 2 processors should keep up fine.

    I would avoid XP64. The last time I messed with it (I admit this was about a year ago) it was still largely unsupported. Things may have changed since then but if you want to go 64-bit I'd stick with Vista. With 4gb of ram you're not really losing much sticking with a 32-bit OS so if you can't live without your wireless card then XP32 is still an option.

    That's a solid PSU. I'd stick with it. Get it at and save $15 more. ($70 after MIR and free shipping)
  4. Change the DVD drive to a SATA device, e.g. SH-S203B.

    Upgrade to WD6400AAKS if you can afford it - it's cheaper per GB and much faster.

    I like all the rest.
  5. uguv,

    I'm scared of I'd almost rather eat the extra $15 and get it from a site that i trust to take care of me like newegg. Ever get anything from

    Well, I wanted to utilize the 64 capabilities of the processor (been on XP32 my whole gaming life). Although finding real facts and data about which 64bit would be better is proving difficult. Everything from a year ago (most of the sites and posts im coming across) says Vista is terrible and unstable and performs worse than XP. To be honest... what are the benefits of Vista64 over XP64? I don't know any offhand..

    Yeah I'm hoping the 8800gt lasts me a few years. After a gift card i found online, I picked it up for $115 after rebate!
  6. aevm, i swapped to that one at the last second and didnt even notice it wasn't SATA, thanks for catching that!. I will switch to the Samsung:

    Can't afford the bigger HD, although if i'm checking correctly, they run at identical speeds all the way through.
  7. Vista 64 will give you DirectX 10 (better looking Crysis and FSX, not much difference otherwise, at least for now). It will also give you patches for a longer time, unless Microsoft changes plans and lets XP stay alive for a few more years. The best choices out there IMO are Vista 64 and XP 32. Try to pick one of those. XP 32 won't have DirectX 10, but it will have a bit better fps and games will be tested better on it.
  8. get Seagate 500GB 7200.11 for $85 at ... $15 more than the one you're buying for an additional 180GB.
  9. xrome said:
    aevm, i swapped to that one at the last second and didnt even notice it wasn't SATA, thanks for catching that!. I will switch to the Samsung:

    Can't afford the bigger HD, although if i'm checking correctly, they run at identical speeds all the way through.

    Damn, you're paying $70 for 320GB and can't find another $40 for another 320GB. Sorry to hear that, you're missing a decent deal. Oh well, if you don't need the space why pay for it...

    The problem with the speed is that there are two different kinds of WD3200AAKS, one older and slower with 2 platters of low density, and one new with a single platter of very high density and faster. No idea which one you'd get from newegg. Some details here:
    If you're lucky and get the new model, you don't lose any speed compared to the WD6400AAKS.
  10. mihirkula,

    Believe it or not $15 is alot to me, im just barely under budget as it is. And my current rig is only 160GB and i've never filled that up. 320 should be much more than enough for me. Plus western digital is a plus in my book. thank you for the find though!


    I see. But yeah, another $40 is impossible. Thanks for the info!


    My search for an affordable Modular power supply might be complete.
  11. I just officially purchased a PSU off Saw the deal and HAD to do it. The site was claiming very few quantity left so I snatched one up.

    Corsair 520W SLI Certified Modular ATX

    $80 after rebate, so i saved myself $5, got the modular unit style I wanted, and dropped 30w. However the corsiar PSU's are heavy duty, and there is 3 12v rails each with 18amp.

    So the system will look like this:

    Raidmax Smilodon
    Corsair 520w modular
    Intel e8400
    Gigabyte p35
    eVGA 8800GT
    OCZ 4gb pc6400 800 RAM
    Samsung SATA dvd burner
    Western Digital SATA 320gb HD

    Thanks to everyone who replied or made a comment thus far in the thread! :)

    $732 total after rebates! Now I get to hope that I receive all the rebates, lol.
  12. nice build....good luck..have fun!
  13. Wow, $732 buys you a lot these days :)
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