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Black Friday Build Advice

Last response: in Systems
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November 27, 2008 2:22:22 AM

OK after surfing this forum for the better part of the night, I think I have narrowed down all of the components for my Black Friday purchase. I just need the help of the experts here to validate that I haven't made any idiotic choices, and in a couple of places ask for a bit of advice.

Note that I'm looking for a good performing system, but I'm not a gamer, so 3D performance is really not much of a priority. I do however work with large media files and datasets, so I need excellent IO performance (hence my choice of a WD Velociraptor as my primary drive).

Without further ado, here is my config:

Case
Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
$60

Power Supply
Thermaltake Purepower W0100RU 500W ATX 12V 2.0 Power Supply
$15

Motherboard
GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3R LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard
$94

Processor
Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 Wolfdale 3.0GHz 6MB L2 Cache LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor
$160

Memory
CORSAIR 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory ($25) after rebate

Video Card
EVGA 256-P2-N761-TR GeForce 8600 GTS 256MB 128-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported
$30

Hard Drives
Main: Western Digital VelociRaptor WD3000GLFS 300GB 10000 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive
Secondary: Western Digital Caviar Black WD1001FALS 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive
$199 / $120

Optical Drive
SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW
$28

Monitors (Dual)
Dell S2209W Full HD Widescreen Flat Panel Monitor
$239 each

-OR-

SAMSUNG 2253BW Black 22"
$229 each

I'm curious to hear folks opinions on the config. Note that I am looking for a good performing system, but in some cases made the trade-off to buy some budget parts to keep the cost low. My approximate total costs with dual monitors is $1190. Some specific questions I could use some help with:

- Any opinions on the Dell vs. the Samsung monitor? The Samsung is well thought of, but that Dell model is new and it sure looks sweet. Note that I'm not a gamer, so a high refresh rate is not important to me.

- I know people thing really highly of the G.SKILL DDR2 SDRAM, but the CORSAIR RAM is literally half the price with the rebate. Is it worth paying double for?

- The PSU I chose is dirt cheap at $15. I assume 500W should suffice for a single video card, a 65W processor and 2 hard drives. If I am misguided in this, please let me know.

- The video card I chose seemed like a good deal. As I said I'm not a gamer, but want a decent card with dual-DVI. Does the EVGA model I chose look like a good deal at $30?

Thanks,

Jonathan
November 27, 2008 2:31:51 AM

you can get the 300gb raptor on ebay for about 100$ less.
November 27, 2008 2:37:20 AM

A q6600 or q9300 would be worth the extra $ if you deal with media files in general.
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November 27, 2008 2:46:32 AM

titdoctor said:
you can get the 300gb raptor on ebay for about 100$ less.


Are you sure about that? I just checked and for this model the lowest price I see on eBay is $195 incl. shipping. Can you provide a link to an item that is substantially less than the $199 Newegg is selling it for?

Thanks,

Jonathan
November 27, 2008 2:51:51 AM

Huttfuzz said:
A q6600 or q9300 would be worth the extra $ if you deal with media files in general.


I'd be willing to move up to the Q6600 for an extra $30. Do you think the performance difference between the Q6600 and the E8400 would be noticeable?

Thanks,

Jonathan
November 27, 2008 2:58:16 AM

I'd spend more on a better power supply . The only way to sell a cheap psu is to make it cheap .
Corsair , antec , seasonic are favourite brands .

November 27, 2008 3:28:57 AM

i will go for a better PSU, since graphics is not a demand here, the 8600GTS is fine, but maybe you should change it, that video card is not so powerful. and of course a Quad Core will be better knowing that you deal with larger amount of media files, also a Quad core will be something like future proof in some way
November 27, 2008 3:32:51 AM

It's very difficult for me to comment on this system because I wouldn't build something like that for myself, however, a quad core processor, a better power supply, ( both of which advised above are good ), and I'd drop the raptor.......but that's just me. And I think I purchased a gigabyte g31 with on board video for somebody a short time back. decent performer.....not saying the one you picked isn't good. You may want the extra pci slots.
November 27, 2008 4:10:12 AM

Keep the velociraptor, I would buy it from newegg and not ebay just in case there are problems you have the egg to back your purchase. Also the guys that said buy on ebay must not have realized newegg had it on sale.

Consider quad core for large media files. I would say $30 for a q6600 would be worth it.

Your RAM selection is fine.

Your PSU is ok. Don't let the rebate scare you, its still a $55 power supply. According to the XS tiering it is tier three, right in there with Antec. So it is for regular users who don't OC or have multiple video cards.
http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?t=10...

The dell looks absolutely beautiful and its 1920 x 1080, which is quite nice. I would go with the higher resolution Dell.
November 27, 2008 10:24:50 AM

Thanks so much for all of the replies. They have been hugely helpful! I am definitely going to go for those Dell monitors since they look like they rock. Dell has a generous return policy, so I figure I've got 30 days to eval them.

I'm going to upgrade to the Intel Q6600 as everyone seems to think it's worth the performance boost.

As for the Power Supply, I realized that while at $15 the Thermaltake was a probably a great deal, I don't need 500W to power this system. Plus the Thermaltake was only 70% efficient, so I think I'm going to go with the Antec earthwatts EA380 instead at $40.

I'm going to keep the Velociraptor drive because drive performance is big for me. The rest of it will be pretty much as laid out. I appreciate all of the help!!! Any other comments welcome!

Thanks,

Jonathan
!