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I need advice on my latest build plans :D

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August 4, 2008 12:08:04 AM

Hello I am a first time poster and soon to be a first time PC builder and I was hoping that some of you guys would analyze the parts that I plan to use for my first build and answer a few questions that I had about PC building.
The purpose of this build is to create a powerful bang-for-buck gaming rig on a budget of 1000 USD not including the monitor. Bellow I have listed my parts that I plan on using as well as a few questions that I have about them.

Thanks in advance for any help, information, or comments that I receive. :D 

CPU – Intel E8400 - $169.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115037

Motherboard – ASUS P5Q-E LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail – $159.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131296

I chose this motherboard because of the high front side bus speeds that it supports, its DDR2 1200/1066 support, PCI-E 2.0 slot, and its great price. I do have two questions about this board. Will DDR2 1066 ram (I plan to get DDR2 1066) work as well on this board as DDR2 1200 or will I see a performance loss? I also wonder if this board will be a good one for over clocking my CPU. Chose this over the P5Q because the dual gigabit Marvell LAN controllers on the P5Q-E seem like they might be better (higher quality) than the single PCIe gigabit LAN controller on the P5Q, am I right?

RAM - G.SKILL 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - $59.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231144

Here is where I need some real help. As I understand my real front side bus on my CPU is 333 (1333/4) and I need to make sure that my ram speed can match or exceed that. My ram speed is 533 (1066/2), well above 333 but allowing plenty of room to over clock the CPU to 4.0GHz. Is my understanding correct or am I wrong as can be? If I am correct will I see a performance loss compared to using DDR2 800 or DDR2 1200? I just don’t know much about how the FSB, RAM and CPU should be set up to get maximum performance. Please help me out and explain this to me guys, this is my biggest problem going forward with this build.

PSU - CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply 100 - 240 V UL, CE, CB, TUV, FCC, CCC – Retail – $109.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139005

The newegg write up on this product says that it has a 52amp 12 volt rail. The 750watt PSU has a 60amp rail according to newegg, is that a big difference? I didn’t see any info about the amps on the rails on the corsair site. Is 650W enough power for my system?

GPU- VisionTek 900244 Radeon HD 4870 512MB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card – Retail - $284.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814129113
I am not sure which brand of ATI card to get so I chose the one with the highest percentage of five egg reviews. The Sapphire brand would have been my other choice but its stats were slightly lower. If anyone knows what the best ATI brands are let me know incase I should pick a different one.

HDD - Seagate Barracuda ES.2 ST3250310NS 250GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive – OEM - $79.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822148309

I chose this drive because of its 32mb cache size. I’m not really sure if 7200RPM is good enough or if it even matters but I was under the impression that it was more reliable in the long run than 10000RPM.

Heat sink - XIGMATEK HDT-S1283 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler - Retail - $36.99 (also getting the $6.99 retention bracket)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233003

This heat sink received some good reviews from various sites and is nice and cheap. The heat pipes on this model are actually touching the CPU so I’m not sure how mounting will go. If anyone has any experiences with that type tell me about it.

Case - Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail – $119.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129021

DVD Burner - LITE-ON Black 20X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 20X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA DVD Burner - Retail – $28.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827106057

Is Light-On any good? Are they super noisy?

Total cost $1057.90 just a tad over 1k :D 

Another question I have is does anyone have a good gaming LCD to recommend. Preferably one with a 2ms response time. These are the two that I am looking at on new egg right now. Any info or suggestions would be great.

ViewSonic X Series VX2240W Black-Silver 22" 2msDVI Widescreen LCD Monitor 300 cd/m2 1000:1, 4000:1 (DC) – Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824116096

SAMSUNG T220 Rose-Black 22" 2ms GTG Touch of Color series Widescreen LCD Monitor 300 cd/m2 DC 20,000:1 - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824001273

Thanks again to everyone who took the time and effort to read, review, explain, comment, laugh, and get assaulted by my tower of text. I really appreciate it.
August 4, 2008 12:40:49 AM

Hi, and welcome to the forums!

-Great board and good overclocker.

-Yes the ddr2-1066 is just as good as ddr2-1200. You may even want to just get ddr2-800 as the 1066 is just overclocked 800. I would get 4GB of high quality DDR2-800

-I'm going to let someone who overclocks to those speeds (4.0Ghz+) tell you about the fsb speed, ratios, and all that stuff.

-The Corsair 650 is fine for a single GPU, but if you plan to go to crossfire later the 750 would be a good investment.

-Good GPU, just pick the brand with the lowest price and best warranty.

-Good hard drive but I personally like the WD640. Don't bother with raptors or 10,000RPM drives.

-Great cooler and case.

-Fine DVD burner

Overall, this is a Perfect build! Great job!



EDIT: I would go with this monitor if you are going with 22"........

LG L226WTY-BF Black 22" 2ms Widescreen LCD Monitor 300 cd/m2 3000:1
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
August 4, 2008 2:58:15 AM

Thanks a lot for the advice. I still have a few questions though that maby you or someone else would be willing to field. Even though good ddr2 800 might oc to 1066 speeds woudn't it still be safer to just get 1066 to garuntee that performance? Also is ddr2 800 going to make my system perform better than 1066 assuming that I don't decide to over clock it right away?

I am also wondering if I would see a performance gain with 4gb vs 2gb of ram since I will be running Windows XP 32bit and I am not sure that it will access the whole 4gb. I know ASUS recomends less than 4gb for a 32bit opperating system, does this make a differance?

Finally I am also on the edge with my power supply, the 750watt corsair is very close in price and that extra wattage would be a nice safeguard I would think. Is there a way to calculate how much power I will need?

Thanks again for the information and that is a great monitor sudgestion I am really considering that one :D 
Related resources
August 4, 2008 3:11:23 AM

You can get the E8400 for only $150 from microcenter right now.

The rest of the build looks good.

Have fun building.
August 4, 2008 3:12:40 AM

You can find a basic PSU size calculator at http://www.extreme.outervision.com/psucalculatorlite.js.... 650W is enough for a single 4870.
When helios says that DDR2-1066 RAM is just overclocked DDR2-800, what he means is similar to (I'm not putting words in someone else's mouth);
The JEDEC standard voltage for DDR2-800 RAM is 1.8v. If the voltage is increased, however, the same chips can typically be clocked up to DDR2-1066 speeds. You can do that yourself, if you start with quality DDR2-800 RAM. In fact, if you buy DDR2-1066, that's typically what you have to do. When you boot your system, it will look like DDR2-800 until you go into the BIOS and make manual settings changes, then it will appear as DDR2-1066.
August 4, 2008 3:52:23 AM

That power supply calculator is an awsome little utility, thanks for showing it to me. That is also some good info about the ram jtt283, thanks.

If it was you guys building this and using 32bit Xp would you guys buy 4gigs of ram or just 2?

Gotta admit that I am still on the fence when it comes to ddr2 1066 or ddr2 800. Keep the sudgestions and information comming people :D 
August 4, 2008 4:05:22 AM

If you want to be on the safe side, just get some DDR2-1066 so that you are guaranteed that speed. I bought 4GB of cheap 1066 ram and it has been problem free.

I would go with 4gigs of ram for several reasons: 1) it is cheap right now 2) newer games will probably continue to use more ram 3) You may upgrade to Vista or the next windows and you will definitely need it!

So for me, I would go for 4gigs of DDR2-1066 with descent reviews (if you can afford it). Don't bother with DDR2-1200!
August 4, 2008 4:57:31 AM

You will be able to over the E-8400 to over 4ghz with ease. and I have the g-skill 4gb 1066 this is excelant ram just can not run it above 1066 but this is not problem with overclocking. as my PC is running at 4gz with the FSB at 444 or 1776 and i have my ram at 1066 or a little below i can not remember for sure..
August 4, 2008 5:01:40 AM

And i would also go with 4gb of memory even if using 32 bit system because of price and can use it later if you want to go to 64 bit. I know a lot of people will disagree with me but i have been running visat for over 18 months with no problems on my lap top. have had Vista 32 bit on my daughter pc that i built for 10 months and no problems and have had 64 bit vista on my pc for 4 months with no problems. I like vista and can not see speed difference. i like it better than xp.... hope i dont get flamed to much for saying this.
August 4, 2008 5:02:15 AM

Thanks for the ram sudgestions guys that is one of my main sticking points right now. If I can decide on a ram type and amount I will be doing great.

Thanks for all the help tonight guys, I really appretiate it :D 
I am going to grab some sleep and will check back in this thread tomorrow.
August 4, 2008 5:18:41 AM

Gskill 4gb 1066 is on sale at newegg or was for 80 dollars for 2 X 2gb. i would get this.
August 4, 2008 5:21:15 AM

Ooh I like that price! Thanks for the info pcnut.
Ok im off to grab some shut eye, thanks for all the help guys, I will check back tomorrow :D 
August 4, 2008 5:59:34 AM

As I have the P5Q-E I'll throw in my two cents.

The -E has THREE PCI-E slots. A bit of a waste. I would have liked the setup on the P5Q Pro better.

However, the -E has the better cooling and is probably the better OCer.

I also used the same cooler, and you can read all about it and see pics:

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/248035-29-xigmatek-s1...
August 5, 2008 3:17:35 AM

Thanks for the review of your P5Q-E Proximon. I have been getting some good sudgestions so I am going to tweak this build plan and post back :) 
!