New Rig Question

Ok ive been thinking and read for the last month and still cant make up my mind. Ive never had a crossfire system. Im building a new rig

i7 930
Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R Intel X5
G.Skill Trident 6GB (3x2GB) DDR3 PC3-16000C9 2000MHz Triple Channel Kit
PSU not decided yet will see why.
Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB SATA 6Gb/s 64MB Cache
Coolermaster Storm Sniper All Black

I want to water cool the system probably start with the cpu and gpus.

Now my question is,

is it worth buying 2 5770s or 1 5850?

Ill spend quite abit on the wc if its worth it. Im looking to spend about 1500 on the system. Any advice would be great. Do i crossfire and clock or just buy single 5850 and clock? ill have a 27" monitor too.
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  1. Honestly I have to say go with a single 5850 as you can OC to nearly 5870 standards, and then in a few months if you save another $300 crossfire those.
    Power wise you should go with a good 750 watt source. You can probably get away with less, but then if you go with watercooling and run the pump and fans off your PSU then suddenly 750W is cutting it close. ATI recommends 750W for crossfire 5850s as well... so if you do go that route with watercooling, 1000W is probably more appropriate.

    Anyway, 2x5770s will give around the performance of a 5850, but then you're limited to just that. Whereas like I said you can get a second 5850 down the road for a huge improvement.

    Oh about the RAM, 2000mhz is a bit high as you'll need a 200mhz base clock to hit that, which is a pretty severe overclock. RAM speed doesn't make a huge difference on overal performance either, so you may consider saving a few bucks and going with 1800mhz RAM.

    Also, 27" monitor doesn't say much it's the resolution that matters. 5850 does pretty well into the higher resolution ranges.
  2. Thanks for the response. The monitor will get to 1920x1080. The ram, i could go with this for near enough the same price OCZ Gold 6GB (3x2GB) DDR3 2000MHz PC3-16000C10 Low-Voltage Triple Channel. What would you suggest?
  3. Well, RAM is only a small part of performance. 2000mhz low voltage RAM sounds nice. Just make sure it's 1.65V (or less).

    At 1920x1080 resolution the 5850 can handle just about anything. I play Crysis on High 4xAA with great FPS (min around 30, generally at 50 with 875/1200 stock voltage OC). Games like STALKER: Call of Pripyat or Fallout 3 or NFS: Shift or Dirt 2 can be maxed out with 50-60 FPS.
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