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First time building - Will be used for AoC/WoW

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June 4, 2008 7:30:29 PM

I've never built a comp before nor do i know much about it. So, i've spend some time just reading reviews and budgeting myself to around $2200. This is what i come up with, please critique it and any constructive feedback would be great on improving performance(while staying under budget) or maintaining performance(and cutting down on price). Thanks!

MoBo: Asus M3N-HT Deluxe/Mempipe Motherboard - NVIDIA nForce 780a SLI
CPU: AMD Athlon 64 X2 6400+ Processor ADX6400CZBOX - 3.20GHz, 2 x 1MB Cache
PS: OCZ / GameXStream / 850-Watt
VC: EVGA GeForce 9800 GX2 Video Card - 1GB GDDR3
Mem: OCZ SLI-Ready Edition Dual Channel 2048MB PC6400 DDR2 800MHz Memory (2 x 1024MB) (getting 2 of those)
HD: Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 320GB Hard Drive - 7200, 16MB, SATA-300, OEM
Mon: Samsung 245T 24" Widescreen LCD Monitor- 6ms, 1920x1200 (WUXGA), 1000:1, RGB Analog, DVI, S-Video, Black
Drive: Lite-On LH-20A1S SuperAllwrite SATA DVD Burner
SC: Creative Labs Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer PCI Sound Card
Case: hermaltake VH9000BWS Xaser VI MX ATX Mid-Tower Case (Black)
Sys: Windows Vista Home Premium 32-bit DSP OEM DVD

More about : time building aoc wow

June 4, 2008 7:50:14 PM

I'd recommend going Intel over AMD, partly personal preference since my last 2 machines were intel (and the new one I'm about to build).....Intel seems to be ahead of the curve now over AMD
June 4, 2008 7:51:10 PM

Hi imanoob. Couple of bits for you:

- Go Intel. And possibly Quad (go and research). Intel out performs AMD for the same clock speed.

- Unless you are going to want to SLI two NVidia cards then go for an Intel chipset motherboard, that is X48, X38 or P35 (budget). Intel chipsets are better performers than NVida. Also if you aren't SLI'ing now, or in the very near future, by the time you want to there will be graphics cards that will perform better than matching two of the card you have spec'ed avaliable, consequently you can look on SLI as less of a priority.
NB: You're choice of motherboard is going to be affected dependant on who wins the upcoming graphics battle.

- The GX2 is way over priced and not good value. Also new NVidia and ATi cards are due out this month so there is no point buying until you understand how they perform. Even if the new cards are too expensive at the start they should create a price war in the market and enable you to buy the same card cheaper or a better card for a given budget.

- HDD, monitor, optical drive are good choices.

- Onboard sound these days is very good. You most likely won't need a sound card. If you do you could always add one later. It will save money not having it or enable you to spend more somewhere else.

- Go for 64-bit Vista.

- Are you likely to overclock?

Hope that is helpful.
Jeremy
Related resources
June 4, 2008 7:57:49 PM

So nice to see that somebody still likes AMD :) 

I'm assuming the 780a MB is there because you want PCI-E 2.0, not because you're planning to add a second 9800GX2 later. If you do want a second video card later, get a 1000W PSU (Enermax Galaxy 1000W, Corsair 1000HX, ToughPower 1000W) because those are certified by nVidia for it.
http://www.slizone.com/object/slizone_build_psu.html

Get 2x2GB, not 4x1GB RAM. It will help if you ever want 8GB.

Nice monitor.

Check out WD6400AAKS at www.buy.com, I think it's the same price as that Barracuda at newegg after shipping, and it's twice the size and faster.

Get Vista 64. Since you're getting 4 GB of RAM you might as well use it all.

Maybe a full-tower case? That Xaser apparently needs you to remove a drive cage to fit a 9800-series card. Not sure about that. The guy who wrote it in a newegg review was retarded or drunk. It's totally not clear what he's trying to say. Read for yourself:

Quote:
Ok. This Thermaltake Case I have to is perfect...Let me begin to explain, ok if you gona plan on building a rig with nvidea 9800 videocard, its probly not the case for you, or maybe it is, i'll explain, you can take out the hard drive mount and take it out of the case and put your hard drive up were 3.5""space is, have yet to try it but i might, really for parts that i bought its the perfect case. Inside my Thermaltake Xaser VI MX VH9000BWS is the new intel classic motherbourd that came out not to long ago, Nice motherbourd, not only that it was perfect for this Build. Next I bought the Intel Classic DG35EC Motherbourd(outstanding motherbourd for the price), Now for the processor i got the new Intel BX80570E8500 Core 2 Duo E8500 3.16GHz LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor & for the videocard I got a nvidea 8800GT also 750GB Samsung Hard Drive w/CD/Blue-Ray 4GB DDR2 Crucial Memory, so I Had it all set to build.OK.Built it in a day and whoa, like whoa for real this comp is like whoa...tbc

Cons: NONE, those that complain its to small need to get a bigger case.

Other Thoughts: As for my build nothen but the best(quality,speed,reliability,nothen but the best quality products out, exceded my expectations as far a perfromance. Windows Vista Experience for those who care was rated 5.5, not bad eh? sup newegg 1st post


I'd get an RC-690, it's only $80 after shipping at www.buy.com.


June 4, 2008 7:58:14 PM

1) Gaming PC = E8400 processor
everything PC = Q6600 processor or better

2) pc power and cooling silencer 750w is plenty and kick ass PSU
3) Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 NOT 7200.10
June 4, 2008 8:02:19 PM

Here is the build I'm looking at for my wife's new PC (a Production Photo Editing machine, not for gaming)...if you go with an 8800GT Video Card instead of the 8600 I chose this would be a pretty stellar gaming rig. You could go with the a Q6600 quad processor and overclock it instead of the Q9450 and save some bucks. My build cost right at $1400 to give you an idea of $$

Motherboard
ASUS P5K-E/WIFI-AP LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX
CPU
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9450 Yorkfield 2.66GHz LGA 775 95W
CPU Cooler
XIGMATEK HDT-S1283 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler
RAM
CORSAIR XMS2 DHX 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 - (x2 for 8g total)
GPU
EVGA 256-P2-N751-TR GeForce 8600 GT 256MB 128-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16
Hard Drives
Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s - (x2 for 1tb total)
Power Supply
CORSAIR CMPSU-520HX 520W ATX12V v2.2 and EPS12V 2.91 Power Supply
Internal Compact Flash Card Reader
Rosewill RCR-103 USB 2.0 Internal Card Reader
DVD Burner
Pioneer 20X DVD±R DVD Burner
Case
NZXT Zero Black/Silver Aluminum ATX Full Tower
Case Fans
Scythe SY1225SL12M 120mm "Slipstream" Case Fans
June 4, 2008 8:09:00 PM

Johnnymac, your build is actually quite beautiful. But, the OP has a 24" monitor, running at 1920x1200. Choosing a 9800GX2 makes sense for that resolution, if he has the money. And if he gets the 9800GX2 he wants PCI-E 2.0, which means the P5K-E must go. He'd also want a PSU around 750W, like nVidia recommends.

June 4, 2008 8:33:07 PM

1816191,5,137755 said:
1) Gaming PC = E8400 processor
everything PC = Q6600 processor or better

True to most users, but he mentionned AoC, and AoC is multi core sensitive, and we will seriously start seeing more in the next months.

From a fervent WoW player that left a while back because of being bored and just now playing AoC (48 Barb!), I can tell you (and witnessed) just how good a Q9450 is compared to an E8400.

My computer is an E8400 @ 3.6GHz / 4GB RAM / 8800GTS OC, runs AoC on high settings with AA 8 at over 50FPS average frames. Not even funny how beautiful of an MMO it is, compared to anything out there (ESPECIALLY WoW, hell, FFXI looked better than WoW).

My brother's brand new 3 day old rig is a Q9450 @ 3.2GHz / 4GB RAM / 9800GTX, and AoC runs like insanity, gets 140FPS in so many areas on same settings, averages about 75FPS. The difference between the 9800GTX & 8800GTS OC aren't that big, but you can definitely see the quad cores moving along on the G15 LCD performance monitor compared to my dual core heh.

He's using a P5K3 Wi-Fi and I'm using a P5K-E. But like aevm mentionned, at that high a resolution, definitely SLI or X2 versions and steer clear of AMD, they just cannot even come close to competing in terms or raw horsepower, sadly (coming from someone who upgraded from a 4000+ that lasted him over 2 years!)
June 4, 2008 8:33:41 PM

Thanks Aevm, that build came with the help of the user community here....I haven't purchased yet, still contemplating...if you have any advice please visit my build thread http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/251933-31-build-revis...

On the 24" monitor, would the 8800GT handle that resolution? We dont go above 1080 resolution so I was unaware of the resolution limitations.
June 4, 2008 8:40:25 PM

The 8800GT can handle any resolution, up to 2560 x 1600. So can the 8600GT. The problem is that in some games, with lots of eye candy enabled, the fps will be horrible with the 8600gt and pretty bad with the 8800gt, while the 9800gx2 or the 8800GT SLI would still be playable. For a Photo Editing machine the 8600GT will be just fine at any resolution, no worries.
June 4, 2008 8:47:39 PM

In my opinion....If your gaming you want a 8800GTS minimum. AoC is a beast, i would love to see you run it on a GT with any decent FPS/resolution.
June 4, 2008 8:48:50 PM

@imanoob:
How about the latest and greatest AMD 9850? That's a quad, so it should help in AoC. There's a combo at newegg too for the 9850 and the M3N-HT together.

If you are willing to overclock, then Intel is definitely preferable, their CPUs tend to be better at that.


June 4, 2008 8:54:07 PM

johnnymac13 said:
Here is the build I'm looking at for my wife's new PC (a Production Photo Editing machine, not for gaming)...if you go with an 8800GT Video Card instead of the 8600 I chose this would be a pretty stellar gaming rig. You could go with the a Q6600 quad processor and overclock it instead of the Q9450 and save some bucks. My build cost right at $1400 to give you an idea of $$

Motherboard
ASUS P5K-E/WIFI-AP LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX
CPU
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9450 Yorkfield 2.66GHz LGA 775 95W
CPU Cooler
XIGMATEK HDT-S1283 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler
RAM
CORSAIR XMS2 DHX 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 - (x2 for 8g total)
GPU
EVGA 256-P2-N751-TR GeForce 8600 GT 256MB 128-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16
Hard Drives
Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s - (x2 for 1tb total)
Power Supply
CORSAIR CMPSU-520HX 520W ATX12V v2.2 and EPS12V 2.91 Power Supply
Internal Compact Flash Card Reader
Rosewill RCR-103 USB 2.0 Internal Card Reader
DVD Burner
Pioneer 20X DVD±R DVD Burner
Case
NZXT Zero Black/Silver Aluminum ATX Full Tower
Case Fans
Scythe SY1225SL12M 120mm "Slipstream" Case Fans


This is a nice machine....The 8600GT is a POS, drop that fast.

-I would get 4 gigs ram instead of 8 (8 is overkill...)
-8800GTS (g92) OR 9800GX2
-PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 PSU (just because it is top notch and plenty of power)
-I also like the Antec900 or 1200 for case... personal prefrence.
June 4, 2008 9:04:59 PM

Grieve, that's not a gaming machine. LOL 9800GX2 for editing photos. :)  We got confused here with two threads mixed up, one for gaming one for pictures.

June 4, 2008 9:05:03 PM

I agree with Vista 64 bit and 2x2gb memory, 750 PC P&W power supply is perfect unless you want two vid cards (SLI or Crossfire) in which case also look at the Antec 1000W units in addition to the ones listed above. I'd use the 750W PC Power and Cooling PSU over the OCZ 850W, the PC P&P 750W has a ridiculously strong 12v rail, which is what CPU's and Graphics Cards use.

I also agree that it's generally best to avoid the nVidia chipsets/motherboards unless you REALLY want to SLI two nVidia cards. Otherwise, I'd get an X38 like the ASUS P5E and would likely also get ATI's newest card coming soon. Then, you can add a second one in later this year if you wanted (for less $ than it'll launch at).

If you're building this rig for the long run I'd also recommend checking out Intel's quads. As more and more programs are able to make use of more than two cores, it'll be like free CPU upgrades. I recommend Intel processors because generally they have the performance crown right now and can overclock very well/easily, but if you have no intention of doing that then maybe you can look at cheaper AMD motherboard/processor combos.

The Western Digital 640gb is suppose to be a strong performer since it uses new 320gbx2 platters. The Coolermaster 690 case that was mentioned before is I think the best value case on the market, and I'd also try out the onboard audio as well before purchasing a dedicated sound card.

Good luck and happy building!
June 4, 2008 9:22:56 PM

Wow, great feedback. I won't be building for another month and i do intend to keep this comp for 2-3 years atleast. So i'll look more into the quad cores. I don't intend on running two video cards atm but do maybe in the future. As far as AMD and Intel i was just looking at the price diferrences but if Intel is significantly better than AMD i'll consider it. I'll def pick up the 2x2gb memory and vista 64 bit. The power supply you recommended looks pretty good and if its good for games then thats what i want. As far as overclocking i don't know much about it and i do want to prolong my comp not burn it out. I also liked the Coolermaster 690. One other question, is it worth the money to pick up the Killer NIC? I mean, how much lag will it really reduce? Thanks all!
June 4, 2008 9:28:12 PM

aevm said:
Grieve, that's not a gaming machine. LOL 9800GX2 for editing photos. :)  We got confused here with two threads mixed up, one for gaming one for pictures.


I am not confused... i was saying make those changes and you have a kick ass gaming machine :) 
June 4, 2008 10:21:08 PM

Ok, so after all the suggestions this is what i came up with. A lil more than what i wanted but if this will perform current gaming with ease for the next 2-3 years its worth it imo. Plus in a month some of the prices will drop as some of you have stated.

https://secure.newegg.com/WishList/MySavedWishDetail.as...
(Not a keylogger i promise) :p 

Still have some questions, i noticed you had a CPU cooler with your quad core...is it needed or is that just if i overclock it? And still wondering if Killer NIC is worth buying, game performance wise.
June 4, 2008 10:21:41 PM

imanoob:

If you are not going to put in a second graphics card in the near future you do not need to worry about SLI. With the 9800GX2 you are not going to feel you need to replace it in the next year or so by that point there will be cards that will out perform 2x GX2's.

I would be against a dedicated network card such as the killer NIC unless you are very serious about gaming online. Probably you wouldn't see the difference for anything other than a graphically demanding first person shooter. (Even then it might be nothing!)

I second the 520W corsair if you aren't going to try and SLI two GX2's.
I still hold that the GX2 seems massive overkill for what you are doing and not a good buy considering new cards are out next month
June 4, 2008 10:22:58 PM

I can't see the list that you posted without being able to log into newegg. Can you put it in a post.
June 4, 2008 10:37:28 PM

Sure, sorry about that Jp.

LITE-ON Black 20X DVD+R

Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive

CORSAIR DOMINATOR 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500)

ASUS P5K3 DELUXE/WIFI-AP LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX Intel Motherboard

PC Power & Cooling S75QB 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply 100

Intel Core 2 Quad Q9450 Yorkfield 2.66GHz 12MB L2 Cache LGA 775 95W Quad

EVGA 01G-P3-N892-AR GeForce 9800 GX2 Superclocked 1GB 512-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready

SAMSUNG 245T-BLACK Black 24" 6ms HDMI Widescreen LCD

Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit
June 5, 2008 9:58:38 AM

Thanks;

- Good processor choice. Are you intending to overclock (not everyone does, I don't) if you are you will want an aftermarket heat sink on it.

- Maybe discuss motherboard choice? I use a gigabyte DS3R which is great, I might get a chance to compare them this evening. There are others who have more experiance, can they pitch in?

June 5, 2008 3:12:50 PM

That thing will walk all over AOC and WOW....MAX Everything with awesome frames per second
June 5, 2008 3:49:54 PM

Oh, gosh...

Your monitor will probably explode with the FPS you get in WoW.

WoW is an insult to your build.
June 5, 2008 4:30:48 PM

I added the CPU cooler at the advice of a few other members here. It was only $36 to add and it got stellar reviews...I hope that my Q9450 will last at least 2-3 years before I build a new machine so I wanted to add a little extra heat protection over the stock HS. Its a little bulky so make sure you have enough room with your other parts/cables

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
June 5, 2008 4:45:16 PM

Cool, i'll pick up the additional cooler cuz i will overclock it a bit, not too much though. Any more input on the motherboard from anyone else will be great, looks like that is the last piece to decide on. And yes, it will blow WoW outta the water. Which is why i'm leaning to AoC and weening my way off WoW, almost done with endgame content again anyways :p  Thanks for everyones great advice i really appreciate it.
June 5, 2008 5:25:37 PM

totally off topic... since he has his machine completed..

I played WOW, maxed 5 toons and quit.... bought lord of the rings (lotro), and now play Age of Conan.

Lotro is the best of the bunch, it destroys AOC in every catagory including graphix, WOW sucks.. i dont know how it got so popular.

try Lotro on that new rig, you wont be disappointed
June 5, 2008 8:10:38 PM

WoW had its moments, sure 3 years later compared to stuff now it sucks...but back in the day it was awesome. End game raiding on that game beat everything else out there as well. I may look into Lotro but right now my focus is AoC, since thats were most of my WoW friends went.
!