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New Gaming System Please

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Last response: in Systems
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September 24, 2008 3:08:35 PM

So as the title says I need to build a new PC. The last PC I built was back in 2000 and back then it was actually cheaper to build the PC from scratch. Technology has changed so much since then I just simply don't know what to look for when building a new PC. Is it even worth building a PC from scratch or simply purchasing a pre-built PC from like Dell?

This is what I found on Dell for my budget:

XPS 630 $1,929.00

PROCESSOR
Intel® Core™2 Q6600 Quad-Core (8MB L2 cache,2.40GHz,1066FSB)

OPERATING SYSTEM
Genuine Windows Vista® Home Premium Service Pack 1

MEMORY
4GB Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 800MHz - 4 DIMMs

HARD DRIVE
500GB - 7200RPM, SATA 3.0Gb/s, 16MB Cache

OPTICAL DRIVE
Dual Drives: 16x DVD-ROM Drive + 16x DVD+/-RW w/ dbl layer

MONITORS
22 inch UltraSharp 2208WFP Widescreen Digital Flat Panel Monitor

VIDEO CARD
Dual nVidia GeForce 9800 GT 512MB

SOUND CARD
Sound Blaster® X-Fi™ XtremeGamer (D) Sound Card

SPEAKERS
No speakers (Speakers are required to hear audio from your system)

KEYBOARD
Dell USB Enhanced Multimedia Keyboard

MOUSE
Dell Premium Optical USB Mouse

MEDIA READER
No Floppy Drive or Media Reader Included

More about : gaming system

September 24, 2008 3:14:30 PM

you could probably get those same parts if not some better parts for the same price if not less expensive if you built it yourself

www.newegg.com is a good place to start
September 24, 2008 3:22:37 PM

Ok I will check that out.

Next question, what is the best motherboard for gaming?
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September 24, 2008 3:30:24 PM

+1 on Newegg, you're going to save a lot of money taking that route.

As for mobo's keep a look out for P45 and X48 Asus and Gigabyte boards.
September 24, 2008 3:32:16 PM

You can absolutely do that for cheaper - my guess is anywhere from 400-600 dollars cheaper.

There is no "best motherboard for gaming." It all depends on what you want.

If you want 2 ATI cards at full bandwidth, then get X48. If you want 2 nVidia cards at full bandwidth, then get 780i/790i (790 is DDR3 only - too expensive for my tastes).

If you want to run only 1 card, get a P45.

Look at the reviews and ratings. Typically Gigabyte and Asus make good boards. I have always like the MSI boards I have gotten.

Yup...check out the newegg and get some ideas.

We'll be here to help you.
September 24, 2008 3:34:04 PM

it all depends on if you want intel or amd...

im personally like amd and thats what we use here and boards vary from asus, gigabyte to tyan here at the office but like 90% of the people here i believe perfer intel..

so its your personal call based on which type of CPU you want
September 24, 2008 3:37:28 PM

If you are looking for relatively high end, the performance and price for Intel is a better option (my opinion).

I like AMD for mid/low-range builds, but Intel make some great upper-end chips and the overclocking is great.
September 24, 2008 3:42:02 PM

Thank you everyone for your input.

I'm looking at nVidia for my GPU's and I will be sticking to Intel processors.

Now when looking at gaming, how much of a difference is a Quad going to be over a Dual?

Any suggestions would be great for processors.

My ultimate goal is to build a good PC that will last. I'm afraid that if I stick to a dual that the Quad I should I purchased now runs apps and games much better down the road.
September 24, 2008 3:42:03 PM

You can do a lot better than that for $1929 if you buy from newegg and build yourself. I'm going to assume you're not into overclocking and don't have a strong preference for any particular company (Intel/AMD, nVidia/ATI, Asus/Gigabyte, etc).

Here's a starting point:

Intel Q9550 $330 - better than Q6600
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115041

Visiontek HD 4870X2 $550- - much better than 9800GT
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814129114

GA-EP45-DS3R $107+9
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128344

Corsair 750TX, $110
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139006&Tpk=750TX

WD 640GB, $85
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136218&Tpk=WD6400AAKS

Mushkin 4GB DDR2-800 $63
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820146731

Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit OEM, $100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116488

XtremeGamer, $86
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16829102006
(not really necessary, IMO)

Acer AL2216Wbd Black 22" 5ms Widescreen LCD Monitor with HDCP support, $200+18
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824009094

SH-S223F, $24
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827151171&Tpk=SH-S223F

LG 20X DVD±R DVD Burner w/ SecurDisc Tech Black SATA Model GH20NS15 - OEM, $25
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827136149
(if you want two burners, it's best to have two different ones)

RC-690 case, $77
http://www.buy.com/prod/cooler-master-690-without-power-supply/q/loc/101/206177908.html

Let's say another $60 for mouse and keyboard.

Total about $1850 if I added them up correctly. You save about $100 and get a much better gaming machine.

Edit: When I started typing that there was only one reply in the thread :)  OK, if you prefer nVidia, change the HD 4870x2 to a GTX 280 or a 9800GX2. Plenty of benchmarks on the Web so you can compare what each card can do.

September 24, 2008 3:45:58 PM

johnlax38 said:

Now when looking at gaming, how much of a difference is a Quad going to be over a Dual?

My ultimate goal is to build a good PC that will last. I'm afraid that if I stick to a dual that the Quad I should I purchased now runs apps and games much better down the road.


Read this article. My own conclusion from it was that a quad does have advantages over a dual in gaming, but they're not major. It depends on your favorite games (e.g. in FSX a quad is much better than a dual), your resolution (at lower resolution the CPU matters more), your video card (they used a HD 4870X2, fastest card these days, so they had no bottllenecks; if you get a weak GPU it may be a bottleneck and then any CPU will give you the same fps).
http://www.legionhardware.com/document.php?id=770&p=5
September 24, 2008 3:53:52 PM

Wow...

Thank you so much for that post aevm, it is very much appreciated. I didn't notice a power supply listed. I'm assuming 700w+ that is SLI ready or compatible?

September 24, 2008 4:10:33 PM

For SLI:

Motherboard XFX nForce 780i SLI $249.99
Graphics Asus GeForce GTX 260 $269.99
Asus GeForce GTX 260 $269.99
Western Digital Caviar GP 1TB $149.99
Sound Auzentech X-Fi Prelude $174.99
Processor Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 $329.99
Mushkin 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR2-800 $71.49
LG GGC-H20L Blu-ray combo drive $149.99
Power supply PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 $139.99
Enclosure CoolerMaster Cosmos 1000 $189.99
September 24, 2008 5:04:41 PM

johnlax38 said:
Wow...

Thank you so much for that post aevm, it is very much appreciated. I didn't notice a power supply listed. I'm assuming 700w+ that is SLI ready or compatible?


It's there :)  The Corsair 750TX is a PSU. It has 750W. It's powerful enough for a GTX 280 or a 9800GX2.

Do you think you'll ever want to add a second video card in SLI? If yes, forget the 9800GX2 because that one won't scale well in SLI (it already has 2 GPUs, and SLI with that means 4 GPUs, not well supported). Get a GTX 260 or GTX 280. There's also a "GTX 260 Core 216" - think of it as GTX 270 to keep things simple. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130398

The problem in this case is that you would need to spend more on the PSU and the motherboard. You'd need something like Corsair 1000HX or Galaxy 1000W or similar, and a SLI motherboard (eVGA 780i, XFX 780i for example). That adds about $150 to your PSU cost and another $100 or so to the motherboard cost, so do it only if you're sure you will add that second card.

September 24, 2008 5:13:15 PM

Sorry about that aevm, I saw corsair and automatically though about RAM and not a PSU. :) 
September 24, 2008 5:35:12 PM

Build according to aevms blueprint and be a happy camper.
September 28, 2008 6:23:29 PM

One more noob question.

When working with dual cards in a SLI configuration, does it matter which card you plug the monitor into?

If not, how do I know which one?
!