Hey all, this will be my first do-it-yourself computer build ever. It will be used almost exclusively for gaming (fallout 3 making me get new pc...my current is 4+ yrs old). Looking for any and all feedback. I hope to eventually experiment in some light to moderate cpu overclocking, but probably won't right away. My biggest question is the cpu as I am on the fence for cheaper dual core or more $ quad. My budget is approximately $1500. I already have a monitor, mouse, speakers, etc. Any suggestions for a newb to make this as easy as possible? THANKS.
COOLER MASTER COSMOS 1000 RC-1000-KSN1-GP Black/ Silver Steel ATX Full Tower Computer Case - Retail
COOLER MASTER Real Power Pro RS-750-ACAA-A1 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply - Retail
Combo Price $299.98 (was going to get corsair 750 watt psu but this looked like a decent combo deal)
(POSSIBLE ALTERNATE CASE: COOLER MASTER HAF 932 RC-932-KKN1-GP Black Steel ATX Full Tower Computer Case $159.99)
SONY Black 1.44MB 3.5" Internal Floppy Drive Windows 98SE/ ME/ 2000/ XP $7.99
Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 ST3750330AS 750GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive $109.99
SAMSUNG 22X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe Black SATA Model SH-S223Q/BEBN $27.99
Unless you have a specific need for a floppy, you probably don't need one. Everything today is on CD or DVD, so floppy drives aren't really necessary anymore.
The Western Digital 640GB HDD (WD6400AAKS) will be faster and cheaper ($85). It's up to you to decide how important the extra 110GB of storage is.
Unless you have a pretty decent speaker setup, you probably don't need the descrete sound card. Onboard sound has come a long way, and unless you're a real audiophile you'll probably never notice the difference.
You should definitely get 64-bit Vista Home Premium. If you're buying a new licence of Vista there really isn't any reason or excuse not to get the 64-bit. It's the same price and it'll allow you to fully utilize your memory.
+1 for the WD6400AAKS drive, onboard sound, and 64-bit Vista.
I personally would look for a case without a power supply and go with your original instinct of the 750W Corsair PSU. The Corsair will be a much higher quality PSU. You definitely don't want to take any chances on your PSU with a nice build like this.
I don't like to recommend cases since they are more a matter of taste, but the Antec 300 & 900 cases have awesome airflow if you like their design.
That case and PSU will easily handle and E8500 and Dual 4870 GPUs if you upgrade.
Use the Extra $150 to Either get an X48 Mobo that can handle the other 4870 when you buy it, or keep the Mobo and use the Money to get the 4870x2 now. ( Use the $150 and The Money saved by using the E8500 instead of the Quad.)
I have gone back and forth between those two coolers (Sunbeam vs. Xigmatek)...just feel like they rape you for $6.99 shipping on a $6.99 retention bracket for the Xigmatek...and newegg is the only place I can find that sells that bracket. But I guess if I am spending $1000+ already whats another $6.99.
Another question...is it worth bumping the 4870 512mb to one of the new 4870 1GB. Sapphire, HIS, and Diamond brands are available but I cannot find any reviews yet on them, and the Visiontek (512mb) is highly rated. I am going to start off using my 4 yr old 21" viewsonic lcd but eventually I will probably upgrade to a 24" widescreen lcd (maybe 6 mos to 1 yr). The price difference with rebates is about $40. Think I could see the difference?
Not to confuse things, but if your only going to do some mild OC'ing of the CPU than I'd either stick with the stock CPU HSF or even go with the Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 pro show at newegg, but I'd buy for $16.38 + $9.35 shipping = $25.73 here
Well as far as the 1gb GPU instead of the 512mb GPU, that'll depend on whether or not you want to spend the $40 more. It might help in certain situations and might give you better performance, so you'll have to decide on that one. I've only read a couple of reviews that give about a 10% performance increase with 1gb version. Hexus review of 1gb 4870
Hey all. Wanted to let you know I finished building my PC over the weekend with the parts below and I had no problems. It ran the first time I hit the power button and I can now play Crysis on the highest settings at 1600x1200 with 4x AA, etc, and it looks damn good. Thank you everyone for your advice. To anyone debating whether or not to build yourself, do it. I am no technical wizard so if I can do it most can. Thanks again.
Pretty nice, however I'd think about the Sound card. Sometimes these guys can be too practical and don't see the point for it. It is in my opinion a great upgrade, but not a must-have. Will you hear quality improvements? Definitely. Can you benchmark them? I wish...
I was one of the skeptics that thought onboard was enough, but I had about a hundred bucks lying around and decided to buy it just for fun, since it couldn't hurt. To be completely honest, out of all the things I've bought for this PC, this has been the most rewarding upgrade of all (Probably because I didn't really expect any sound quality improvements).
The X-Fi (Or any other decent sound card like Asus Xonar) are truly a marvelous purchase in my opinion for those that have the money and want to give themselves a treat.