Another Guy Doing His First System

Hi all, this is my first real build ever. I've tinkered around with my families computers, removing and adding different parts, but I have never built a computer from scratch. This build is under $900 but I'm willing to go up to $1000. By the way I already have two DVD-ROM drives, floppy drive, OS, keyboard, and mouse.

Motherboard: GIGABYTE P43 - $85
- This is what I need the most help on. The only thing I was going on was that I wanted something around $100. I know the CPU and MOBO have to have the same FSB and slot type, the RAM has to be the right kind/speed, etc. but I could use a lot of help here.

CPU: Intel E8500 Core 2 Duo 3.16 GHZ - $189
- My only question with this one, was whether I should go for the Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 2.4 GHZ instead? which is only a dollar more. I'll be doing mostly gaming if that makes a difference.

CPU Fan: ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 - $27

GPU: MSI 9600GT 512M GeForce 9600 GT 512MB - $80
- This seems to be a great deal for this price, but I'm open to suggestions.

RAM: OCZ Reaper 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR2 1066 - $70

PSU: Antec EA500 500W ATX12V v2.0 - $50

HD: Western Digital Caviar 500GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache - $75
- Is it a good idea to get a small HD to put the OS on?

Monitor: Acer X223Wbd 22" Widescreen - $165

Case: Antec Nine Hundred - $110

Total after rebates: $851

Thanks a lot for any help or comments.
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  1. it looks pretty good but if you are mostly going to be using the rig for gaming i would suggest a better graphics card a 9800gt should only be about $30 more and you would see a large improvement in gaming
  2. It looks pretty bad, but we can fix that :)

    NZXT Tempest $80 - similar to Antec 900 but $30 less and has more fans

    P5Q Pro $100 - you get a better chipset, more SATA ports, Crossfire ability

    The E8500 is a better choice than the Q6600 in your case ("mostly gaming")

    You don't need the Freezer or any aftermarket cooler. Buy a Xigmatek HDT-S1283 later if you want to overclock. You don't sound ready for that yet, and you might as well use the money for better purposes for now. You don't need DDR2-1066 either, same reason.
    Mushkin DDR2-800 4GB $38

    Good monitor.

    Video card: HD 4850. If it's ATI you have the Crossfire option. You don't get that with 9600GT or 9800GTX. It's also faster than the 9800GTX or 9800GTX+.

    No, it's not a good idea to buy a small HDD for the OS. They cost a fortune per GB and they're slower than the 640GB HDDs.

    WD 640GB $75

    Corsair 650TX PSU, $80

    80 (case)+100 (MB)+189 (CPU)+38 (RAM)+165(monitor)+75(HDD)+140(GPU)+80(PSU)total 867

    You can even add the second HD 4850 if you want, for a total of $1007. Just so you get some idea what those graphics cards can do:
    Call of Duty 4 at 1680x1050 and 1600x1200
    HD 4850 Crossfire 116 fps
    HD 4850: 78 fps
    9800GTX 64 fps
  3. ^ +1...nothing more to say...
  4. +1 for everything aevm said
  5. How does the HD 4850 compare to the ASUS 9800 GT Ultimate?
  6. Not to be redundant......but......... +1 to the aevm
  7. 9800gt ultimate is still using the same chipset as the 9800gt, looks to me like its a name gimmick thing. because nvidia is losing marketshare to ati since the ati cards are so much better in the same price ranges.
  8. Go with the GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P bundled with the E8500

    The difference in price is only $10 after the MIR and you get a much better board. But since newegg doesn't have free shipping on the P43 board, the difference actually comes out to be about $2.50

    And this combo will actual be cheaper than the P5Q Pro by $5 + the saving from shipping(around $8).
  9. kurtyboh - u r correct the 9800GT ultimate uses the same 9800GT chip but mayb higher clocked...but then again in that 150$ price range the clear winner is 4850...

    nvidia still make gud cards but have lost their touch bcos of limited competition during the 8800GT period whne there was no gud offering frm ATI..But time has changed and ati are hot on their heels...hope this competition stays so we consumer get gud performing cards at competitive rates...
  10. i did some more research it does have a higher clock than the gt, but still slower than even the gtx... so i guess its similar the the gtx+. which means still slower than the 4850
  11. P5Q Pro and E8400 newegg combo deal for $250.

    +1 for the 2 x 2 mushkin ddr2 800 $38

    +1 for the WD 640 $75

    Antec 300 case. Well built, cool and about the same size as the 900 case. $54

    MSI 4850 (best cooler and after sale support) $160

    Best value---Acer X223Wbd 22" Widescreen - $165

    Corsair 750 watt PSU $99

    Your missing a DVD drive and OS from your list.

    HP retail DVD burner with lightscribe and Nero 7: $28

    Windows Vista 64 Premium: $99

    Total before rebates: $1040.86 after rebates $968.86
  12. Sorry, I forgot to mention that I already have the mouse, keyboard, OS, two DVD-ROM drives, and floppy drive.

    It seems that the HD 4850 is the way to go over the 9800/9600 but I will eventually want to buy another one and use Crossfire. So my question is what MOBO is under or around $100 that supports Crossfire? The ASUS P5Q Pro does, but it seems to be not as reliable and I don't think the GIGABYTE P45 can.

    And if I eventually want to buy another GPU, how many AMPs should I look for on the 12V rail? The two Corsairs that you guys suggested have 52A(650 W) and 60A(750 W). Is 60A overkill? It is only $20 more, but if I don't need it, why buy it?

    Thanks again, I would be lost without everyone's suggestions.
  13. 52A/650W is already overkill, unless you'll overclock the CPu and ad TV tuners and lots of HDDs. No worries there. The ATI recommendation for HD 4850 Crossfire is "at least 550W".

    The P5Q Pro and the GA-EP45-UD3P and the GA-EP45-DS3R all support Crossfire and are betwen $100 and $120 at newegg IIRC. They're all reliable, i.e. it works. Of course, they're all P45 and that means Crossfire at 8x+8x and you lose some performance (say, 10%) compared to a more expensive X48 MB (P5E Deluxe, Asus Rampage Formula, GA-X48-DS4, etc.) which does it as 16x+16x but costs $225 to $300. This article shows you the performance difference between P45 and X48 with two HD 4850 cards.
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