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Last chance before i screw this up

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December 21, 2008 9:16:22 PM

This is the first computer I've ever built :hello:  . I'm about to buy the hardware below and was hoping I could get some confirmation that I am making the right decisions. It is important to me to be able to perform roughly the following computing load with about HALF (or so) of my resources. I have another thread on this build but I think I must have made it so confusing it became a hopless read :(  .

Typical applications running in some combination:
Adobe reader (30 instances--yes I need many papers open)
Power Desk or Directory opus
Google desktop
NOD32
Spysweeper
Task switcher
Zone alarm Pro
Acronis True Image
Windows media player
Winedt
Yap
constant Latex compilations
google earth
streaming news
VPN network
Google IM
Outlook
IE explorer (10)
Nero—usually ripping or burning something
Maple10
Mathematica 6
Quicken—banking notifications
some kind of Registry Monitor app
Math type 5
Deep fritz 8 chess program
Download manager
Password manager
Wintasks for killing all unnecessary processes/services
Blue tooth synch with laptop
wi fi Connection utility
Running various scheduled cleanup tasks
Autohothey
I'll be running most of these together (except e.g. maple and mathmatica), streaming some news, and I want to make a computer that will do all this without a hicup. I don't want to notice when my backups/scans etc are running :non:  .
2) I am running two large digital flat panel monitors
3) On board sound is fine (on, say, a nice ASUS)
4) Sometimes all the programs will be shut down except mathematica, which will be doing a calculation for perhaps hours, or until it says uncle.
5) As I said I am NOT DOING ANY GAMING, but I dont want to have to go to 16 bit color to free up resources either.
6) I don't want to change from XP 64 bit until I have to. I just want everything to run smooth and not distract me from the work--preferably ever. I'm not doing this build because im interested in it--for me this thing is just a tool. I hope you will help people like that too :)  .
7) I want to apply the doctrine of overwhelming computation power: I want to be able to do all this with like...half my resources. This is because I think it wont be long till each of my application updates add some bologna i dont need but cant get rid of without taking time to think about it.
8) Say 4 or so 1Tb internal hard drives
9) really nice dvd burner and a dvd player/cdrom burner.
10) are there benchmarking sites dedicated to seeing how components perform under what i have noticed is quite normal academic use. (in e.g. math and physics departments)
11) The budget is not an issue (grant) but I don't want to waste either.


Is the following going to be OK? :sweat: 


Antec TruePower Quattro TPQ-1000 1000W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
------------------------------

Antec Twelve Hundred Black Steel ATX Full Tower Computer Case
------------------------------

ASUS P6T Deluxe LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard
------------------------------


EVGA 896-P3-1267-AR GeForce GTX 260 Core 216 Superclocked Edition 896MB 448-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card
-----------------------------

Intel Core i7 Extreme Edition 965 Nehalem 3.2GHz 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor
-----------------------------

Two of these:
G.SKILL 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory
-----------------------------


Four of these:
Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
----------------------------


Two of these:
SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 22X DVD Burner - OEM
----------------------------


OCZ OCZTFRZTC Freeze Extreme Thermal Conductivity Compound
---------------------------

Bose 40274 2.0 Companion 2 Series II multimedia speaker system


More about : chance screw

December 21, 2008 9:32:20 PM

well, that pretty much looks like a kick ass system.

I used to work with a lot of professional apps and the only thing I can think of is to make sure that the professional apps will not be better suited with a server configuration - ie a dual quad core zeon setup.

I haven't seen any comparisons with the hyperthreaded quads vs dual quad core configs but if it is really important to you I'd check it out.

other wise, it looks like it should work
December 21, 2008 9:37:22 PM

Thanks so much for your feedback bc4
December 21, 2008 9:48:53 PM

Like in your other post. Get the i7 920 instead, unless you like to throw away $1200.
December 21, 2008 9:51:54 PM

roadrunner197069 said:
Like in your other post. Get the i7 920 instead, unless you like to throw away $1200.

You can always OC the I7 that cost 300 to 3.2+
December 21, 2008 10:19:04 PM

You might add a SSD --- say 128 gb drive for windows and programs --- depending on how much you get for your grant.

I'm not sure how well xp handles SSD but it would be nice to have lying around if its free :) 
December 21, 2008 10:40:53 PM

A couple of questions:

1) What is an SSD and what are the benefits?
2) If you can OC a 2.66 processor to 3.2 (or 4 for that matter) why can't you OC a 3.2 processor to 3.8 (or 4.6 for that matter). Not to mention the QPI numbers. Do people claim that there is no difference between 2.6G and 3.2G duo cores that are both moderately priced? I'm suspicious that folks are just irritated because the thing is definitely overpriced. However this is a logically distinct issue from (possibly moderate) performance gains.

I'm totally open to being convinved but the argument "you can OC the slower one to the speed of the faster one" does not fly because "you can then OC the faster one by the same ammount, mantaining the difference" Am I wrong? I can imagine being wrong if there is an "OC ceiling" that each can reach but none can exceed.
December 21, 2008 11:01:46 PM

tod gaak said:
A couple of questions:

1) What is an SSD and what are the benefits?
2) If you can OC a 2.66 processor to 3.2 (or 4 for that matter) why can't you OC a 3.2 processor to 3.8 (or 4.6 for that matter). Not to mention the QPI numbers. Do people claim that there is no difference between 2.6G and 3.2G duo cores that are both moderately priced? I'm suspicious that folks are just irritated because the thing is definitely overpriced. However this is a logically distinct issue from (possibly moderate) performance gains.

I'm totally open to being convinved but the argument "you can OC the slower one to the speed of the faster one" does not fly because "you can then OC the faster one by the same ammount, mantaining the difference" Am I wrong? I can imagine being wrong if there is an "OC ceiling" that each can reach but none can exceed.

SDD faster loading speeds. Well can you justify the extra cash?
December 21, 2008 11:36:42 PM

suppose we dont worry about the cash for a minute...what is the performance difference e.g. between a 2.6 533 duo and a 3.2 800 duo? Do they offer the same performance because you can OC the 2.6 to 3.2?
December 21, 2008 11:59:18 PM

well the 3.2 is obviosly faster if you don't oc them; also I would think if you oc them the same they would have same performance because they have same artitect basically. I not 100% about this though
December 22, 2008 5:26:21 PM

Last time.

i 965 and i 920 are the same except i965 has a unlocked multi, and the i920 is locked @ 20.

You can OC the i965 by changing the multiplier, or the bclck.

The i920 has to be done by bclck only.

Both can be overclocked 4.0-4.5 depending on luck.

The 2.3 533 would perform the same as the 3.2 800 if it had the same cache.

2.3 wouldnt be 533 no more if it was overclocked to 3.2.

My e8400 has a 3.0 1333 stock, now that its overclocked it is 4.05 1600.


Alot of rich noobs buy extreme edition processors because its easier to oc by changing the multi, atleast in their minds. In reality the lower end CPU with a lower locked multi will run faster then the unlocked one because the locked one has to run such a higer FSB, or Bclck, therefore the rest of the system runs faster as well..
December 22, 2008 6:51:56 PM

Don't mean to change the subject, but I just wanted to comment on your HDD choice. I can see where you're going, but with that setup, I would consider this model of HDD instead: Caviar Black 1 TB. In the spirit of 'overwhelming computational power', the Caviar Blacks are faster than the SE16 models and the 1TB has the highest platter density (hence, speed).

In that same spirit, also consider this HDD architecture as an alternative:

A) System: 300GB Velociraptor or SSD drives, in RAID 0.

B) Data: 1.5TB Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 or 1TB Samsung Spinpoint F1 drives in RAID 1.

My only point here is that in sharpening up the build, I would use drives that are each more optimized for its role, as opposed to 4 identical drives (which would be a slight compromise).

You could play with different RAID configurations to improve on the suggestions above, as well as optimize your partitions for even better speed.
December 22, 2008 9:11:47 PM

Awsome...thanks roadrunner! Saved me lots of $$!
December 22, 2008 9:15:29 PM

thanks to you too Akebono. I will take this advice.
December 22, 2008 10:39:49 PM

If you not going to play games and you're trying to save money, you really dont need that gtx260, something like say a 9800gt or a 9600gt will do fine running two screens. Oh and i agree "extreme" editions are defenitly not worth the money :)  .
December 22, 2008 10:47:18 PM

Will I be able to have two digital displays (not one VGA)? They are both ~25 in. What if I want to run some streaming news; and do all the stuff in the first part of the post...will everything work smooth?
December 22, 2008 10:51:39 PM

Oh and thanks for the advice. This forum is terrific! Sorry for being such a bonehead on so many issues.
December 23, 2008 2:57:05 AM

If your grant is unlimited, or if your going to be doing ANY GPU computing, i would go ahead and get the gtx260. But if no than any fairly new card will handle two displays easily. You really don't want a high end card using power and heating up your computer if its not going to be used. Here are two low end cards that that will work fine.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Here is a 8800gt (same card as the 9800gt) so if you wanna stick with nvidia, this is what i would get (its what i have too :)  )


http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Or here is an ati, not a monster, But fine for running two displays, if that's all its going to be used for its perfect.

Personally i would get the 8800gt, just because i own one :)  . Yes these are Kinda low-end compared to the rest of the build but its all you need, and both perform reasonably well. You'll have no trouble running xp or even vista on two monitors , Both of these cards are FASTER than the one in the xbox 360 :) 
December 25, 2008 12:43:42 PM

So, I'm changing the order above to reflect some of the great advice i got here. Could I get further comments?

going with i7 920 (thanks roadrunner) :D 

Corsair XMS3 Dominator TR3X6G1600C8D 6GB DDR3 3X2GB DDR3-1600 CL 8-8-8-24 Triple Channel Memory Kit
does it make any sense to get faster RAM than this for my needs? (2133?)


Also I want to change the drives (and get some SSD drives):
I don't even know what (OS, programs, data, backup) to put on which drive! Where can I find out how to do this accurately? How many drives can i have on my system?

Thermalright LGA1366 BOLT-THRU Kit for All Ultra Series HR01 Plus HR01 4U HR01 3U Ultima 90

Thermalright Ultra 120 Extreme 1366RT Heatpipe Cooler LGA1366 120MM Fan FDB 1600RPM 28.0DBA 63.7CFM

Is there anything else someone can see i am missing? Besides know-how?

Cheers
December 25, 2008 12:48:24 PM

Also I just found out that Google desktop doesn't work in x64!!!!!!! This sucks. What can one do?
!