My new gaming systems, please critique or add suggestions

Here are the specs of my new system, if you think I should swap some things out let me know. I plan to do some minimal overclocking. It's been years since I've built a computer, and I know I'll probably need a better heat sink too. *NEW SPECS*

GIGABYTE GA-X48-DS4 LGA 775 Intel X48 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128336=N82E16813128358

Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 Wolfdale 3.16GHz 6MB L2 Cache LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115036

900244 Radeon HD 4870 512MB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814129113

CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139006

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

Crucial Ballistix 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148212

2X Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136218

SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD+R 22X DVD-R 16X DVD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 22X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827151173

XIGMATEK HDT-S1283 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233003

XIGMATEK ACK-I7751 Retention Bracket
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233019
20 answers Last reply
More about gaming systems critique suggestions
  1. I personally don't trust Hitachi drives. You would be better off with Western Digital, Seagate, or Samsung. I would also suggest getting one smaller drive for your OS and software and a big drive for storage. The WD 6400AAKS drive is awesome. It's very fast and only $75 for 640GB.

    Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136218 $74.99

    I would also try to get a brand other than Sapphire for the GPU. Visontek GPU's have a lifetime warranty if you can find them in stock.
  2. is sapphire known to be bad?
  3. Looking good!
    I hope you know that only x38/x48 mobos have both pcie slots at 16x for future crossfire. The p45 mobo you chosen will run single card at 16x or two at 8x/8x. Also the 1gb ddr5 ram is more of marketing thing since games dont use over 512 so you just wasted ur money.

    I would go with antec twelve hundred.
  4. took your advice, and added a 160gb WD 7200rpm drive, then added the 640gb drive too

    Also changed out the vid card for the visiontek
  5. alvine said:
    Looking good!
    I hope you know that only x38/x48 mobos have both pcie slots at 16x for future crossfire. The p45 mobo you chosen will run single card at 16x or two at 8x/8x. Also the 1gb ddr5 ram is more of marketing thing since games dont use over 512 so you just wasted ur money.

    I would go with antec twelve hundred.



    well i didnt buy it yet, so youre saying, change out the mb for a x38/x48 and drop the card down to a 512mb?
  6. what would be the big difference in running games like WoW, and warhammer at two crossfire cards at 8x instead of 16x?
  7. Build looks pretty good, in general. I have a few suggestions to consider:

    If you didn't know you could save some $ on the Gigabyte/e8500 combo!!!
    9th combo down from the top. The Asus P5Q pro is offered on the same page for less, but no MIR like what you'd still have on the Gigabyte board!!

    You can get faster DDR2 800mHz, but for the $ and since your not going to OC too much you should be fine. You should be able to easily get to (9.5 x 400fsb) 3.8ghz and above with your stock 800mHz DDR2, so if that is what your looking for in a "mild" OC than you should be good!!

    I think your PSU selection is quite a bit overkill at $200, but your the one buying the parts. I'd opt for the Corsair 750tx for $84 after $20 MIR. It has 60A (65A on the Antec) on the 12v rail and has 4x6 +2 pin PCI-e power connectors (2x6 and 2x6 +2pin on the Antec).
    $104 - $20 MIR = $84!!! Hard to beat at that price/performance!!!
    Corsair TX CMPSU-750TX ATX12V & EPS12V Power Supply
    Newegg's link for the Corsair 750tx PSU. It's $15 more at newegg, but there is more info at newegg than on Buy.com's website.

    You can also save $30 and buy the same case (Antec 900) at Buy.com for $100 shipped!!
    Antec Nine Hundred Chassis
    or get the Cooler Master 690 case for less!!!
    $78 shipped!!! As good, if not better, as the Antec 900 case.
    Cooler Master 690 without Power Supply - RC-690-KKN1-GP
    Neweggs link for more indepth viewing. Still is about $15 more at Newegg!

    Memory - $96 - $40 MIR = $56!!! This is the faster CAS4 stuff (4-4-4-12 timings) that I was referring to earlier. Not much more $, but improved speed over the CAS5 stuff (5-5-5-18 timings) that you selected.
    Crucial Ballistix 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail

    Other CPU HSF's to consider (not needed under light OC'ing, but will keep things cooler if you decide to buy them).

    $27 shipped!!! One of the cheaper and more efficient CPU HSF's for Intel builds.
    ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro 92mm CPU Cooler - Retail

    $45 + $14 retention bracket = $59. You can save some $ at another place, but I'll just post the Newegg links for it.
    XIGMATEK HDT-S1283 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler - Retail
    XIGMATEK ACK-I7751 Retention Bracket - Retail

    Like I stated before these are just little tweaks that I'd consider. If you implement my suggestions, it'll save you about $150-$175 depending on which options you go with.
  8. seer37 said:
    what would be the big difference in running games like WoW, and warhammer at two crossfire cards at 8x instead of 16x?

    Currently I don't think there is really much difference, if at all. This may change in the coming years, but for now I'm not too concerned about it. The x38/x48 mobo's will OC more, but if your just doing "mild" OC's than you should be fine with the Gigabyte p45 mobo you selected.
  9. shortstuff_mt said:
    I personally don't trust Hitachi drives. You would be better off with Western Digital, Seagate, or Samsung. I would also suggest getting one smaller drive for your OS and software and a big drive for storage. The WD 6400AAKS drive is awesome. It's very fast and only $75 for 640GB.

    Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136218 $74.99

    I would also try to get a brand other than Sapphire for the GPU. Visontek GPU's have a lifetime warranty if you can find them in stock.

    I'd 2nd just about everything he's mentioned. I must say that I've had very good luck with Sapphire GPU's, so if you can get an AMD GPU with lifetime warranty go with it.
    I also forgot to mention that you should be running Vista 64bit OS if you want to take full advantage of the 4gb's of DDR2 that your proposing on using.
  10. if you want to crossfire pick up x48 motherboard
    if not and you will be using single card then go with p45.
  11. I liked your suggestions a lot, also another thing, should I be using a dedicated sound card, or on board is fine enough?
  12. Onboard should be just fine. Unless you are a very picky person with sound. 99% of current onboard sound chips are quite good. I use a headset when I'm gaming, so I only use 2 jacks on the back. Most onboard setups will allow 5.1 surround sound. I would first try the onboard sound and if you don't like it, get a dedicated card.
  13. k, editted it to reflect my final build, I think this is going to be it

    as far as an OS, I'll be running Vista Ultimate 64bit, I have a copy sitting here.

    edit: I heard the Asus P5Q Pro is not user friendly board to setup for newbies
  14. I don't agree with the comment about the 1GB 4870 being a marketing ploy. Check out this review.

    http://www.anandtech.com/video/showdoc.aspx?i=3415

    Depending on what resolution you game at and what games you play, there is a significant advantage to the 1GB card.

    Nice job on the motherboard choice! I've had very good luck with Gigabyte boards and like was mentioned, the X48 chipset will run full speed crossfire if you add another card down the road.

    I know I said to get a smaller drive for the OS and software, but you might just want to get two 6400AAKS drives. It's only $15 more than the 160GB drive and much faster.
  15. Save some $ on your small OS HD!! Your selection is $67 shipped!!
    $55 shipped!!!
    Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD3200AAKS 320GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM

    Personally if your only going to run 1 GPU than the p45 that you originally selected will do just fine. That'll save you about $100. Of coarse if you plan on doing some extreme OC'ing than the x48 will one of the better selections.
  16. wouldnt it be about the same to go with an 1gb card instead of crossfiring 2 cards so i wouldnt have to get a new mobo?

    also any advantage to running 8gb of ram? obviously it would be faster, but noticeable?
  17. No, the 1GB card is not equal to two crossfire cards. I would go with the 1GB card and X48 motherboard to allow the option of adding another card down the road if that will fit in the budget.

    The difference between 4GB and 8GB in gaming is negligible.

    Edit: Here's an article on 4GB vs 8GB

    http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/2008/07/08/is-more-memory-better/1
  18. who makes a good 1gb 4870 other than the one i originally had in there
  19. I really like this Powercolor model since it has a better cooler:

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814131120

    Asus makes a 1GB model, but it's currently out of stock at Newegg.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814121277

    Gigabyte and MSI also make 1GB models, but they're a little more expensive.

    The Sapphire card you originally posted would probably be OK. They just don't really offer much of a warranty.
  20. All of the 1gb cards are about the same, but the support and the cooling solution that each one offers will be a bit different. I'd consider getting a double slotted cooling solution for whichever GPU you go with. This will allow the heat generated to be expelled out the back of the case and not allow the heat to float around inside the case.
    Any of these should be okay, just remember that the support can sometimes make/break a good purchase.
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