A middle range machine for conflicting needs:work and gaming

Hi, there. :) I haven't built a single computer by myself although I occasionally swap some components. However, probably during upcoming holiday season, I'd like to build a middle range PC for word processing, spreadsheet, email task and occasional gaming. I think the problem is power efficiency: General office tasks don't require system resources as much as gaming does. When I am doing office works, I'd like to limit the power both for environment and, of course, my electricity bill. ;) Also, I play games only occasionally, which doesn't mean the games are light on resource.

Are there ways to match my conflicting needs? :??:
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  1. no... CPU wise there's speed step to help out witht he power consumption. OC'ing will consume more power as well.
  2. As ZeCow stated. Of course, a very efficient PSU will help.
  3. Thank you for the replies. :)

    Zecow said:
    no... CPU wise there's speed step to help out witht he power consumption. OC'ing will consume more power as well.

    I assume your "no" means that I don't need to worry about the power efficiency since CPU does the job through something called "speed step." I am not willing to do overclocking...I'm a newbie. Besides, considering the decreasing price of Intel Core 2 Duo E8500, relying genuinely on the market rather than my knowledge, hopefully, I don't need such last resort.

    If CPUs have such function, do I need to simply choose power supply unit according to the estimated maximum usage of the power resource? Wow...I said "simply" but, actually, I have little idea on how to choose PSU. According to some reviews on the net, Antec, which is known for their cases, seems to be a good maker with Earthwatts for cost performance with a bit of noise and a bit costy Signature with efficient overall quality. However, what do I need to check the maximum power the machine need? :??: Also, I'd like to update the system if the market prices of some components go down. So, there should be some free room especially when the CPU calculates the efficiency. Could you give me some pieces of advice? ;)

    The below is the system I'm thinking of.

    Case:Antec 1200
    CPU:Intel Core 2 Duo E8500
    Motherboard:Asus P5Q-E
    Memory:Umax Pulsar DCDDR2-4GB-800
    Graphic Card:ATI Radeon 4850 or 4870 depending on the price

    Something like above. I'm not going to spend much money on a hard disk(s) and an optical media device. For hard disk, I'd like to take speed than amount, though.
  4. Without OC, I'd say with a 4850 you're taking up no more than 350w. I'd go with a 420w, just to give you a bit more headroom for furture upgrades. With the 4870 you should consume more than 420w so a 500w should do.

    HDD seedwise - SSD :D I've seen raptors and in my opinion, they are not worth the premium paid for based on price performance - I'd pay for the SSD though.

    Might want to look at Gskill rams - I would pay a bit more for quality ram.
  5. Thanks. You are very quick, ZeCow. BTW, I happen to have come across your post while waiting for a reply, which pretty nails on the system I'd like to build. :o
    Zecow said:

    midrange would be somewhere around $1000 +
    Q6600, E8xxx, E7xxx series CPU
    Nvidia 9800, ATI 4850 (single or crossfire)/ ATI 4870
    P35/P45 mid-end boards

    Zecow said:
    Without OC, I'd say with a 4850 you're taking up no more than 350w. I'd go with a 420w, just to give you a bit more headroom for furture upgrades. With the 4870 you should consume more than 420w so a 500w should do.

    Then, probably Earthwatts 500 but is there enough room for updates? Considering the price, I may go as far as Earthwatts 650.
    Zecow said:

    HDD seedwise - SSD :D I've seen raptors and in my opinion, they are not worth the premium paid for based on price performance - I'd pay for the SSD though.

    Yes...my eager eyes go to SSD, too, but I'd like to buy cheap HD with low volume and wait the price goes down. I don't need much volume on the system disk but SSD is still expensive. Considering the increasing demands, hopefully, it will go down to reasonable price in a year or so.
    Zecow said:

    Might want to look at Gskill rams - I would pay a bit more for quality ram.

    Gskills rams? Something like this one? F2-8000CL5D-4GBPQ

    Thanks, again. I appreciate your advices. ;)
  6. This G.Skill RAM is about the best money can buy. It has tight timings and runs at 1.8v.

    G.SKILL PI Black 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231209 $64.99
  7. I'm fast coz I'm at work and got nothing to do... LOL... typing makes my boss think I'm working hard... :P

    The GSkill verions Pi Black is a good series.

    The 650 PSU should be more than enough for your need. You can even crossfire a 4870 with that and still have some headroom.

    My comparion between the raptors and ssd - I'd pay a bit more for SSD and install the OS onto it - would speed things up. That said.. its just my wish. I'm usinga normal WD & Seagate 7200rpm... :P I couldnt be bothered to pay for the raptor and gain...errmm... 5 secs or loading time? LOL

    You're very much welcome! hope your build goes well. :D
  8. shortstuff_mt said:
    This G.Skill RAM is about the best money can buy. It has tight timings and runs at 1.8v.

    G.SKILL PI Black 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231209 $64.99

    Zecow said:
    I'm fast coz I'm at work and got nothing to do... LOL... typing makes my boss think I'm working hard... :P

    The GSkill verions Pi Black is a good series.

    You are right. While they are at the same spec (DDR2 800), pricing is reasonable. :love:
    Zecow said:

    The 650 PSU should be more than enough for your need. You can even crossfire a 4870 with that and still have some headroom.

    Crossfiring 4870 would be not friendly to my purse, though than to the PSU. :lol:
    Zecow said:

    My comparion between the raptors and ssd - I'd pay a bit more for SSD and install the OS onto it - would speed things up. That said.. its just my wish. I'm usinga normal WD & Seagate 7200rpm... :P I couldnt be bothered to pay for the raptor and gain...errmm... 5 secs or loading time? LOL

    I see. I'll think of it. The price is getting low but I thought SSD was still not reliable. At least the volume offered by cheaper SSD seems to be enough for system disk.

    I'm surprised by your knowledge and quick thinking. Thank you for your help. ;)
  9. If I had the cash, I'd use SSD for OS and normal HDD (or raptor if you wish) to install the Applications. OS does alot of read/write to the HDD. It will help alot. The raptors are still using moving parts - hence are as reliable as the 7200rpm HDDs.
    Its true that the SSD are in the early stages and are quite expensive in comparison to $ per megabyte, but since there are no moving parts I see it as a good investment - but its too early to tell how well it will last (altho, my sdcards lasted more than 5 years :P ). Maybe someday... but it actually depends on your requirement and needs. If you're not serious about boot time/etc... then normal hdd should fit the job. In notebooks, SSD should be a good requirement as you're on battery and bootup/read/write time are critical - saves time. On home PC... well.. I'm in no rush to go anywhere... lol

    Wish u the best in ur new build....
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