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Help clean up CS3/MMO Pre-iCore7 Build ($2000-$2500 budget)

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September 14, 2008 6:53:17 PM

Greetings all!

It is finally time to upgrade my current rig (Dell Dimension 8400). It has served me well these 4+ years in my web development business (CS3/Office 2003) and gaming in the past (EQ2, WOW) but I have noticed that it is not cutting it anymore for current games such as AOC, and all of the latest FPS'ers. Details below:

Pentium 4 3.2 GHz (2 MB L2 Cache)
Intel Alderwood i925XE (PCI Express)
4 Gigs of 533 MHz DDR2 SDRAM
NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GTX (256 MB)
350 W Dell Power Supply
160 GB 7200 RPM SATA/150 (Main)
74 GB IDE (Backup)
Microsoft XP Professional SP2

Dell 19" LCD 1905FP - DVI (1280 x 1024 - Main production screen)
32' Olevia LCD TV (1280 x 720 Desktop - Secondary production screen)
http://www.hdtvsolutions.com/Syntax-Olevia_LT32HVE.htm

I know that my new build is a canditate for quadcore (multi-tasking), and I have been eagerly awaiting the release of iCore7, but am not sure whether to make that quantum leap or save cash on current parts. I have spent a few weeks on these boards researching parts and came up with the following list:

https://secure.newegg.com/WishList/MySavedWishDetail.as...

I have many questions, since the last computer I built was during the Pentium 3 days with 2 separate processors....LOL! Anyone remember these days? My comments and questions are below:

0) I need advice on this build, as far as swapping out for better and cheaper parts if possible, or any other helpful information.

1) I may do mild OC for gaming only (3.2 GHz), but not sure yet (as main production rig).

2) I would like to raid 5 with 3 HD's for a performance/backup solution. I have been manually backing up my current rig with mirroring software(Casper XP).

3) Would my current 19' DVI LCD monitor work on the 4870 as secondary monitor? Do i need a converter cable? (DVI to HDMI)

4) How does my choice of UPS look for protecting the computer and monitor? Enough power for the job?

5) Is the Antec 1200 stock fan's enough for cooling all of these parts? Should I purchase additional case fans for more cooling? If so, which ones?

6) Is the 750 watt PSU enough for a 4870x2 in the future?

7) Is there better choice in HD's with 32MB cache?

8) Should I wait for a 4870 with 1GB video ram to get better gaming performance?

9) Last but not least, do I need any additional cables for this build? SATA or any other type?

10) I have gotten used to my 32 inch LCD TV as far as its size for gaming and movies, but the resolution is poor for anything else. Everything just gets cut off vertically and the desktop looks poor. Now that better LCD TV's are out, I'm not sure whether to go for the 4870x2 with 37' LCD TV or 4870 with 24' LCD monitor as main production/gaming screen. The 37' LCD TV specs are below:

http://forums.slickdeals.net/showthread.php?t=919435&pa...

I'm hoping you guys can talk me out of the 37' LCD TV because of it's poor resolution for desktop and web development. I know that I would be pleased with a 24' LCD monitor instead to enjoy both tasks. However, the gamer in me wants to know! = )

Thank you guys for any assistance!

Enlightened
September 15, 2008 4:14:35 AM

CS3/MMO Pre-iCore7 Build

Antec Twelve Hundred Black ATX Full Tower Computer Case - Retail
$179.99

ASUS P5Q Pro LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
$139.99

VisionTek 900244 Radeon HD 4870 512MB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire $260.00

CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC $129.99

Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 Yorkfield 2.83GHz LGA 775 95W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80569Q9550 - Retail
$324.99

mushkin 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model - retail
$86.99

Rosewill RCR-FD200 All-in-one USB 2.0 Black 3.5" Card Reader with 1.44MB Floppy Drive - Retail
Instant $29.99

SAMSUNG Spinpoint F1 HD753LJ 750GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
3 of them for raid5 $299.97

Logitech G15 2-Tone USB Wired Standard Gaming Keyboard - Retail
Instant $74.99

Acer P243WAid Black-Silver 24" 2ms(GTG) HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor with HDCP Support - Retail
$359.99

Logitech G9 Black 5 Buttons Tilt Wheel USB Wired Laser Gaming Mouse - Retail
Instant $74.99

SAMSUNG 22X DVD Burner Black SATA Model SH-S223F - OEM
$24.99

Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit English for System Builders 1pk DSP OEI DVD - OEM
Instant $99.99

Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound - OEM
$5.99

XIGMATEK HDT-S1283 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler - Retail
$34.99

XIGMATEK ACK-I7751 Retention Bracket - Retail
$6.99

Logitech Z-2300 200 watts RMS 2.1 Speaker System - Retail
$105.99

APC BR1500LCD 1500VA 900 Watts BACK-UPS - Retail
$190.99

Subtotal: $2,431.81
September 15, 2008 3:31:22 PM

Does everything look compatible? Other thoughts?
Related resources
September 18, 2008 3:51:33 AM

nehalem (core i7)
IS not compatible with any lga775 sockets motherboards or coolers.

you will need to buy a new mobo, the cpu and cooler because of the incompatability.
September 18, 2008 5:21:08 AM

Physicz said:
nehalem (core i7)
IS not compatible with any lga775 sockets motherboards or coolers.

you will need to buy a new mobo, the cpu and cooler because of the incompatability.

Also include ram in that incompatibility list. Core i7 will require DDR3. Since so much won't be compatible it seems silly to buy all this stuff knowing it won't work and you will just have to upgrade.

That said if you do want to go ahead with this build I have a few amendments.

Case- This is more of a personal choice. The Twelve hundred isn't bad by any means, but I think the Cosmos S and most of the Lian-Lis are better if you want full tower.

Mobo- You can really save money in this area if you aren't super serious about an OC. If you are serious you can get an Abit IP-35 Pro XE for $150. It supports 1600fsb out of the box which is more than enough for 3.2ghz OC.

PSU- Good choice, I think it should work with an 4870X2. 4870 crossfire seems more feasible if you already have one 4870, although you would have to get a different mobo.

CPU- Q6600 is a better choice since you should be able to hit 3.2ghz on air and at a much lower price.

Mem- Any DDR2 800 will do. That Mushkin seems over priced as I remember seeing G.Skill DDR2 1000 for $72.

HD- The WD 640gb is faster and cheaper if you don't mind loosing the extra space.

OS- I recommend Ultimate edition. No sense in buying a lesser version when you can afford the full blown one.

To answer some of your questions:

3) Yes, it would. GPU have two DVI inputs so you won't need a converter.

5) The Twelve hundred's stock cooling should be fine.

7) The higher amount of cache doesn't necessarily mean it will be faster. The WD 640gb is currently only second to the raptors in terms of speed and it only has 16mb of cache.

9) Your mobo should come with a bunch of cables. If I remember correctly mine came with about 8 sata cables... kind of insane.

10) Going for a 24" will be much better. The 24" will be of higher res (1080p isn't that impressive when compared to monitors). Also the 24" will most likely have a higher quality display than the 37" and a faster response time. So the 24" is better on all counts except size.
!