ASUS 8800GTS 512MB DDR3 Dual DVI HDCP HDTV out PCI-E Graphics Card
Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme + fan
This is taking me to about £1400 (including keyboard, mouse, os and some other sundries)
Reasons for some of the choices:
Fast hard disk speeds up visual studio no end, as does the 4gb of memory (I will have Vista 64bit)
CPU is still best bang for buck, quad core for faster compiles, and is still ok for gaming?
SLI motherboard to buy me some time before I have to upgrade so I can bang another card in later
Have I made any huge numpty mistakes?
Enough power in the PSU?
What about overclocking, not closed this off with any of my choices?
hey nachojammers, nice build man reason why most people are trying to stay away from SLI cause its way to over priced and Crossfire is starting to outperform SLI if I were you I would try to get a x38 motherboard or x48 will help you with overclocking and wait for the 4850 or 4870 way better GPU's and they seem to be outperforming 9800's
Also I wouldn't get the enermax from from alot of people I heard that it is very loud and pricy.. best to get Corsair PSU would save you some cash
This is just my thought's but with gaming try to stay with Dual cores they tend to be better for gaming
Yeah I was planning on overclocking a little, not essential though.
Why not that board or any 680i board? Just steer clear of nforce chipsets and stick with interl?
I picked the 8800gts and q6600 as the advice on the stickies on these boards rate those as best around that price point. Although I'm happy to hear reasons why not to take that advice!
The Q9450 is more than 50% extra over here, and from what I can see I'm not gaining that much? Am I missing something?
If I'm going SLI with an 8800gts, can you or anyone suggest a suitable board?
The Q6600 is a very good chip and for the price it's a good choice so I would stick with that. If you weren't overclocking I would suggest the Q9450 for it's increased performance due to it's higher clock speed and larger cache.
Prices on Nvidia cards have been dropping like a stone due to the release of the new ATI cards. The ATI cards are built on a smaller manufacturing process which allows ATI to fit more chips on a wafer which increases yield thereby reducing the end user's cost. This also has the added benefit of reducing the heat generated by the card. ATI's new cards have performed very well and over the next month or so as they get the driver's fine tuned the performance should be even better. So the benefit of ATI over Nvidia is more performance and less heat for less money. Nvidia still has the highest performing card which some people equate with all Nvidia's cards being better, Nvidia knows this so they price their cards accordingly (high)
680i is a bad chipset period. 650i isn't much better. I used to have the P5N32-E SLI and it was nothing but a headache, random instabilities and crashes add that to the fact that their overpriced by Nvidia due to the fact that only Nvidia chipsets can run SLI and Nvidia (according to Nvidia) has the best (overpriced) video cards. Nvidia's newer chipsets the 780i and 750i are really just updated 680i and 650i's, they are more stable but suffer from some of the same issues that plagued their predecessors. 790i is overpriced and although it is a ok board it still doesn't overclock Quads as well as Intel based boards do and the only real reason to get one is if you plan on 3 way SLI. I would also stay away from the P35 due to the fact that the P45 has more features and is priced similarly. So that leaves us with the P45, X38 and X48. The P45 is a good chipset and has a lot of features for a decent price, the X38 is a little higher end and the boards tend to have more features built in as well as a slightly better overclocking ability. The X48 is a speed binned (they choose the best chips) X38, it officially support FSB1600 and is supposedly capable of higher overclocks and more stability. It really depends on the features your looking for but I would choose from one of those chipsets.
If you really want Nvidia and SLI the most stable option would be the 790i the only problem being that the 790i requires the use of very expensive DDR3 but for a solid mid range system I would go with the Q6600 a P45 motherboard and a ATI 4850 or if you can afford a few bucks more the ATI 4870. You will end up with a solid stable system which will overclock well and not break the bank. The P45 with Crossfire only operates at 8x for each slot but that is PCI-E 2.0 8x which is equivalent to PCI-E 1.1 16x so you'll have plenty of bandwidth if you plan on Crossfire.
AMD/ATI is starting to come back and they are looking to regain some of their lost market share so they are pricing their products accordingly. I would still stay away from their CPU's because price/performance and overclockability wise Intel is still better but their video cards have a much better price/performance ratio than Nvidia.
Another thing is, and why I asked about your choice of 1066 memory, is that the Q6600 has a 1066FSB which means to run 1:1 with the FSB you only need DDR2 533. If you purchase DDR2 800 instead and overclock you can put the FSB all the way up to 1600 before you will have to worry about overclocking the memory. DDR2 800 is much less expensive than DDR2 1066 and you won't be able to tell the difference between the two. Your best bet would be 2x2gb DDR2 800 if your planning on a 32bit OS and 4x2gb for a 64 bit OS.
One last thing is the Ultra 120 Extreme is an outstanding CPU cooler, I have one, but it's pricey and there are coolers that have come to market recently that perform at the same level for quite a bit less money. I wouldn't suggest you not get the Thermalright but you might want to look around a little and see if there is something else you might prefer.
Very good choices and with the 4850 you have to realize that in a short time they will release new BIOS's and drivers which will solve the heat issue and improve the performance. When the 8800GT was released everyone was commenting on how hot it was and eventually they released a new BIOS which cured it.