First Time DIY Build. Feedback on parts before I buy?

Hey Folks,

I'm looking for some feed back on these parts I've picked for a new build. This will be my first DIY build and I'm hoping some of you can help point out any terrible compatibility issues between the various parts.

I'm not looking for a screaming gaming system, just a basic home system for doing some web work, running Adobe CS, Flash, Dreamweaver, editing video, music, etc. Anything will be better than the 4-5 year old system I'm plugging away on now.

The most I'll be looking to do for games would be Flight Simulator and NASCAR. I'm trying to keep this at $750 or less, which is where it is now.

The two different brands of memory are because each brand is offering a rebate, I assume each brand has a ''one rebate per household'' sort of thing.

Thanks for any feedback you can offer!

- SAS24
17 answers Last reply
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  1. You shouldn't mix ram. Have identical ram. You don't need a 750W PSU. And i would recommend Corsair HX-620 or a Antec 650w trio. As for CPU, i would get something better, if you like amd go with a Phenom X4 or X3, if intel i would go with something like a E4400 or if you have the extra money go E8400. As for mobo, try to go for a gigabyte one or an Asus one. If you are gonna do alot of multi-threaded applications, i would go the Phenom X4 or X3 (unless you have the cash to go for a q6600 but i doubt it). As for rebate, its should be one per product. Hard drive is ok but i would go for a 320 GB from WD or seagate for maybe about $10 more.

    P.S. - I am not sure about prices in US in i live in Canada.
  2. Thanks for the tips! I was actually leaning toward Gigabyte as that is what I have now and I've been very happy with it. Went with the Biostar based on it's ratings at Newegg. Will reconsider that one more time.

    Changed to the Seagate 320 Gb, good call there. Also changed memory to 4Gb of the OCZ

    I'm wondering if the vid card is overkill for what I need (see original post)? The only reason I went with the 750w PS was thinking of possibly going SLI in future by adding another 8800GT. Wouldn't I want the extra juice?

    What do others think out there?
  3. There are no compatibility issues that I see.
    The Biostar TA770 motherboard comes with 2 SATA cables in the accessory pack. Unless you're bringing over some hardware from your current PC you can leave those items off.
    The CM RC590 case has 2 120mm fans. That should be plenty to keep your case cool.

    Are you sticking with Windows XP?
    If so I'd suggest going with 2GB or RAM and using the $$ saved by leaving off the case fan & extra 2GB and upgrading the CPU.
    Nearly all SIM games (FSX & NASCAR) are heavily CPU dependent. Will also help speed along the editing and web content creation tasks.
    (and it's easy enough to sneak in a RAM upgrade a bit later)

    You could easily step down a size (or two) on the PSU. Also Im not impressed with the 2 SATA power connectors on a PSU of that size.
    For the same price you could get a Corsair 650TX with 8 SATA power connectors, 2PCI-e x6 and 2PCI-e x8 video card connectors.
    [:wr2:2] Or the Corsair 550VX $74 after rebate (also with free shipping) with 6 SATA power connectors, 1 PCI-e x6 and 1 PCI-e x8 video card connectors and is still nicely oversized compared to what your hardware really needs.
  4. sasmith868 said:
    I'm wondering if the vid card is overkill for what I need (see original post)? The only reason I went with the 750w PS was thinking of possibly going SLI in future by adding another 8800GT. Wouldn't I want the extra juice?

    The motherboard you picked wouldn't support either a SLI or Crossfire setup.
    In any case most of the time you're better off getting a single upgrade video card than a 2nd matching 8800GT.
    Of course that changes if you're getting a 24" widescreen monitor and using 1920x1200 resolution.
  5. That motherboard will only support one video card. A cheaper, but decent power supply would be it's 500 watts and plenty of power for a single card system. Excellent power supply would be even the 450 watt Corsair would be fine for that system. You might look at for a pretty good video card for a 19 inch monitor.
    Some prices at newegg are better.
  6. Hi WR2,

    In reply to your first: Excellent advice! Thanks for the tips. Yes, I'm sticking with XP Pro for now, figure I'll migrate to Vista Biz if/when they finally get it working better than WinME. Already lived that nightmare once. Following your tips, I'm now back down to around $710 with the current CPU.

    This gives me another $40 to play with, so I'm thinking of bumping the CPU up to the Athlon 64 X2 5600+ (2.9Ghz). that's only 300Mhz faster, is it really going to make that big a difference? I'd love to go with the X3 or X4 as night-stalker suggested above, but that's around $200, which blows the budget all to shreds.

    As for your second note (RE: SLI) that would be the newbie mistake I was sure I'd be making in here somewhere! Thankfully I have an IT friend who will help me assemble the thing. He'll be glad I did my homework, so thanks for the help.

    I've put this together at Tiger, will double check all final components on Newegg to see who's cheaper, but I suspect they'll be about the same. Any other sites you folks recommend?

    I really appreciate your detailed replies and the reasoning behind them! Thanks again!

    - SAS
  7. Sweet! Thanks Dirtmountain, with that bit of savings I can now go to the X4 Phenom 9500 Quad core and still come in at about $750!
  8. BTW, DM... I'm running two 19" Samsung Syncmaster 940BW monitors. That card has two DVI outputs so I'm happy there, but you mention it's good for "a" 19" monitor... how about two of 'em?

    Thanks so much for your input!

    - SAS
  9. Hello again folks,

    One last post before I crash for the night... I just realized while looking over a different thread that I have no CPU heatsink on here! Any suggestions?

    Thanks for all your help!

    - SAS

    Ok if you go with the Sonata III case you get a 80% rated PSU total 89.00

    the Q6600 out preforms the AMD offering for the same cost 219.00

    the money saved on the PSU you can upgrade the Vid card to a GTS 189.00

    the MoBo is a solid P35 platform good for basic ocing 89.00
  11. Thanks Houston, I'll work up a comparable Intel system based on these recommendations and compare to the AMD system I've got going.

    I appreciate it!

    - SAS
  12. Right now your case and PSU choice add up to $190 or more than 25% of your $750 budget.
    Thats a large percentage for items that dont really add to your PC performance.
    At $90 (after rebate) HoustonSerenity's suggested Antec Sonata III and Antec Earthwatts 500W PSU is 12% of your budget - a much better "fit".

    The Core2 Quad6600's $219 price is consistent with it's performance advantage over the $195 Phenom X4 9550.

    Each CPU in a retail box comes with the stock AMD or Intel heat sink & fan. You won't need to buy an aftermarket HSF unless you choose the OEM version which doesn't include the HSF. On the other hard with a $25 HSF you and your friend should be able to easily and safely overclock the Q6600 and EP-35 DS3L combo to ~3.0Ghz and get about the same performance as the $1000 Core2 Extreme QX9650 (at it's stock 3.0Ghz speed).
  13. Once again WR2, some good and well explained advice! I appreciate the feedback. Hadn't thought about the percentage the Case/PSU were taking out of the budget. Very interesting point!

    Will rework yet again and post what I come up with for an Intel system.

    Thanks so much WR2 (and all of you really), you've taught me a ton in the last 10 hours!
  14. Hey guys,

    I'm thinking I can trim another $30 by dropping the SATA DVD Burner and using the IDE I already have. Any thoughts? Is the SATA going to give a noticable performance difference? The only advantage I can think of is airflow due to the SATA cable vs. IDE, but I do have a rounded IDE I can use. Any other reason to go SATA on that device right now?

    I'm thinking I'll put that extra $30 into either more memory or towards s&h costs. Thoughts?
  15. BTW, the IDE DVD burner I have right now is a 1.5 year old LG w/litescribe, much like this one:
  16. Your current IDE burner will work fine in the new system. Rounded cables are nice.
    More memory or an aftermarket CPU cooler? I think you'd see more performance gain from the CPU cooler and a bit of an overclock than you would through an extra 2GB of RAM.
    If you do go for 4GB of RAM you might as well get the 2x2GB kit.
  17. Very good sir, thanks!
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