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Build based off NOV 1250 enthusiast build. need oppinions!

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January 8, 2009 4:54:11 PM

Hey after reading http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/cpu-graphics-overcl... i decided to tweak my build a little. All i use my computer for is gaming and internet. Once in awhile i will run other programs but not very much. I have a few questions about this build.

1. Will this computer last me 2-3 years for my purpose?
2. What would you add / tweak about the system?
3. Would you run raid0? If so what drives would you use for this(keeping it around the same budget range as the one HD)
4. Can i expect to overclock the system in much the same way Tomshardware did in the article?(planning on learning all about OC'ing and doing it down the road for the experience of it and maybe slightly boosted performance)
5. Should i upgrade to the Crosair 750w if i want to OC?
6. Is the fact that Articsilver 5 is semi conductive mean its not safe to use on the CPU?

I don't want to spend very much more then i already am. I am willing to however for a noticeable increase in performance.

Thank you to everyone who take's time to read this post. I am ordering on hte 10th my build can be seen here https://secure.newegg.com/WishList/MySavedWishDetail.as...
January 8, 2009 5:10:32 PM

Thank you Proximon! Glad to see you share your computer know how with the community. Your articles are extremely informative. I will be joining the community as i am planning on adding computers to my list of few hobbies.

Will be posting in the Overclocking section soon! Much to learn.
Related resources
January 8, 2009 6:02:50 PM

If it comes back in stock by the time you place your order I'd pick up the 640GB Black edition drive for an extra $5. It's faster and has an extra 140GB.

Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $79.99
January 8, 2009 6:26:37 PM

Yep, a better drive for sure ;) 
January 8, 2009 6:55:39 PM

I didn't even notice it was slower. Hopefully it comes back into stock in time, if not maybe ill run Raid0 with two smaller drives.

January 8, 2009 7:07:18 PM

I would go with the Arctic Silver Ceramique thermal paste instead. It lasts 4 times longer than the silver and is awesome stuff to work with. I love it.! And do you really need a 12 gram tube?


Are you planning to OC the e8500? if so I would go with DDR2 1000 or 1066 to make sure you keep your memory speed above your bus speed x2.
January 8, 2009 7:14:16 PM

Yeah im planning on learning how to OC on this build. So what would your recommended ram be per say i would get at least 4 gigs? I want budget ram.
January 8, 2009 7:21:17 PM

I'd get this RAM:

G.SKILL PI Black 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 900(PC2 7200) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $49.99

That RAM is awesome! DDR2 900 with 4-4-4-12 timings at 2v is a good indicator of quality RAM. I just got the same RAM, except the ones rated at DDR2 800 4-4-4-12 @1.8v. I've been very happy with them.

DDR2 900 RAM will allow you to push the E8500 to almost 4.3GHz (450 * 9.5 = 4.275GHz). I doubt you'll get it that high anyway.
January 8, 2009 9:33:27 PM

Updated the RAM .. read some reviews about the ciramic artic silver paste actualy raising cpu temps?
January 8, 2009 10:15:34 PM

Arctic Silver works good and is safe as long as you follow the directions. If you're worried, you could pick up some non-conductive compound. MX-2 cools at least as well as Arctic Silver and is non-conductive.

ARCTIC COOLING MX-2 Thermal Compound - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $6.99
January 8, 2009 11:30:01 PM

Thanks short stuff ill look into it.

Do you guy's think it would be worth it drop an extra $100 for a quad core? http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

How easy is this chip to OC? Will getting a quad core give me alot more milage on my pc? What do you guys for see / suggest?

Remember i'm mainly a gaming person, but it is nice to run Itunes in the backround and i HATE it when things run slow :sweat: 
January 9, 2009 12:01:57 AM

i think you should spent more money and get a quad more and more games are going to come out using multi core, also good for multitasking. there fairly easy to oc my q6600 is oc to 3.2ghz. if your interested im actually selling my gaming rig message me for info if you like.
January 9, 2009 12:47:09 AM

I went on newegg, configured a system.

It was about $1295 (plus $70 in MiR) for the following:

AMD Phenom II 940
8GB DDR2-800 memory
Asus 790GX motherboard
Sapphire 4870x2 (2GB GDDR5) video card
1.5TB hard drive
Antec 900 case
CORSAIR 750W PSU
LG 22x CD/DVD burner

For a system that would come out to about $1265 shipped after mail-in rebated, that seems like a whole lot of computer for the money.
January 9, 2009 3:04:51 AM

Yeah, except for that price you could get a Q9550 CPU and a P45 board, and have a faster system by a good bit.
January 9, 2009 7:01:12 AM

Personally I would buy a quad core but If I wasn't going to I would change your list slightly to this:

https://secure.newegg.com/WishList/MySavedWishDetail.as...

If you wanted to keep the other case you selected you would still be under $1250 after rebates.
It would come down to a 4870 1GB versus a 4870x2 2GB. I think you know who wins =).
January 9, 2009 7:36:01 AM

if your gonna spend 1250, follow core i7 1250 toms build....thats if you are going to spend that much.
January 9, 2009 7:37:35 AM

I also realized no one answered your questions directly so here we go:

1. Will this computer last me 2-3 years for my purpose?

Its hard to say if it will last you this long because of games like crysis that show up by companies but yes overall you should be well off, if it comes down the road where you find your not able to get the settings you wanted in a game than simply upgrade the graphics card as needed because the processor your getting overclocked shouldn't be a bottleneck for awhile now.

2. What would you add / tweak about the system?

My above post answers that question =)

3. Would you run raid0? If so what drives would you use for this(keeping it around the same budget range as the one HD)

Looking through reviews and hearing peoples real world results from the sounds of it RAID is slowly becoming pointless. The HD's now being produced are so large and fast it makes you question why even bother. So my answer to that is no.

4. Can i expect to overclock the system in much the same way Tomshardware did in the article?(planning on learning all about OC'ing and doing it down the road for the experience of it and maybe slightly boosted performance)

Overclocking Intels Core 2 Duo's is a piece of cake to a certain limit. When I first started overclocking 5-20Mhz was HUGE now im running a Q6600 with a 1.4GHz overclock.. things have changed =P. Just make sure you read guides and get advise from people that have been doing it for awhile, I mean thats how most of us had to learn =). So my answer to you is you should be able to reach around what they got as long as you look for a little advise and set up your case with proper airflow.

5. Should i upgrade to the Crosair 750w if i want to OC?
I always play to it safe with power supplies and find it to be one of the most important parts of the computer. So yes I personally would upgrade to a Corsair 750TX especially with the 4870x2.

6. Is the fact that Articsilver 5 is semi conductive mean its not safe to use on the CPU?

I have been using Articsilver 5 since it has come out on CPUs and have never had a problem with it. Read the instructions on there website on how to properly apply it to your CPU and you should be fine!

Hope some of that helped and sorry to ramble on so much!
January 9, 2009 12:31:08 PM

use the Dec $1,250 build. You might sacrifice a little with the gpu right now but it will give you a system that will be easy and feasible to upgrade for a few years. The nov build is very nice but any system built around the core i7 is going to be better.

Something else to keep in mind. Crysis, even if it is neet, is basically a benchmarking tool. Look at the new games including Crysis Warhammer. All/most have been coded better so they either use a better combination of cpu/gpu or the developers are becoming better at optimizing they games. Either way, new games do not and will not have the requirements of Crysis for years to come. Why? The hardware requirements for Crysis killed the game.

Get the Dec build and if needed upgrade the gpu in 1-3 years.
January 9, 2009 12:35:21 PM

I agree with Mexpedip.

I will say this much. My buddy has a new i7. And it is by far just ridiculous. It is a VERY powerful chip and very overclockable. He is running 8800gtx's in Tri-sli

Think of this this way to. How often do you upgrade your cpu,mem, and mobo? Not as often as a GPU? My board right now is seeing it's 3rd video card. I say get the i7 and get a nice card to go with it. It's much easier to swap out a video card than the whole guts down the road. It will be a little more expensive but it's worth it. The x58 lets you run sli or crossfire as well so you get the best of both worlds. Asus has a $250 x58 board that seems like a really good deal.
January 9, 2009 2:44:28 PM

Guys I want to see you attempt to build a i7 rig with everything he needs under $1250 its close but I've tried about 3-4 times and still am over by a reasonable amount everytime. I think everyone would agree the i7 core is better but worth the money for the memory / motherboard at this point.. I personally don't think so, not for what he needs from the sounds of it.
January 9, 2009 2:58:36 PM

I just did it and it came out to like $1400. So you go $200 over for a crazy good system. I left the oem cpu cooler.
January 9, 2009 3:36:25 PM

You have to remember he also needs wireless, vista, thermal paste, and from the sounds of it he wants to attempt to overclock for his first time so an aftermarket cooler. Making that rig jump atleast another $150-$200. Personally for what he wants to do I would stick with either what he had or what I had suggested. That way he will stay under his limit and have plenty of fun overclocking things =)
January 9, 2009 5:05:41 PM

I would love to build an i7 computer. Unfortunately i'm already 200$ over my original budget(Started at a $1,000 build) and i don't think going another $300+ is an option for me. This is my first time build and i'm going to be ocing too so a full tower+3rd party cpu cooler is kind of a must. If i was going to build an i7 i would probably have to wait a few months and i've already been waiting to build sine Last June. (since then gaming has came to a hault since my computer run's games frustratingly slow. Game's such as WoW and CS:S).

The way i see it is i'm going to have to replace my system in 2-3 years regardless. I think by the time the i7 starts to become a must in computing it will be time for a new build already.

On the other hand dropping the extra cash might make a much more enjoyable experience half way in ><.


Thank's for everyones feed back so far. Keep it coming, let me know your opinion's.


p.s i think i'd rather drop the extra money on a monitor that can refresh higher then 60hz then an i7 build

edit:updated PSU
January 9, 2009 5:30:38 PM

A corsair 650W PSU will be plenty for that system. You can save some money on that. Unless you want to crossfire 2 4870's you won't need the 750.

Also that tube of compound is enough to do 25 CPU's My buddy gets those because he build's PC's. I had a little tube and it was enough for 5 CPU's. You can save like $11 right there.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Nice memory choice to!
January 9, 2009 5:38:20 PM

Well there is a distinct possibility that i will upgrade my gfx card down the road and i want to have enough power for that, do you still think 650w is enough?

Also thanks for the save on the compound! Thought 17$ was a little overpriced.

Thank's jay
January 9, 2009 5:45:44 PM

To play it safe I would get the 750TX just to make it more future proof but the 650TX should easily be enough for what you have. If your trying to cut the price down a bit im still wondering why you would want to spend 160 on the case alone. I mean its a nice case but you can surely bring that down a bit and still get a high quality case.

You can always use a website like http://www.thermaltake.outervision.com/Power to estimate the Watts you need, but only use it for estimating and make sure you well above what they said would be max Wattage. Also this doesn't take into account the Amps needed to supply most importantly the graphics card.
January 9, 2009 6:21:52 PM

I am getting that case because its a fulltower at a decent price with good options. I went with the full tower so i could have good airflow for OC and because i didn't want to struggle getting all my components in. If you think i can get away with a midtower then that would save me 100$ give or take.

edit: also i can justify it since i figure i can use it for my next build as well which will be a little more beefy.
January 9, 2009 6:22:40 PM

Generally speaking, in a moderate build without a ton of extras:

Corsair or PC P&C 750W = enough for two 4870s
Corsair or Antec 850W = enough for two GTX 260s

I always try to look at the case and PSU as longer term items. They can last for many years longer than your current build, so it pays to put a little more into them up front.
January 9, 2009 6:25:52 PM

No problem.

If you are on a budget I would get the 650 power supply and a cheaper case as suggested above. 650 is plenty for what you want. And honestly by the time you are ready to put another 4870 in there, you could probably sell it and get the next best single card. That's what i do.

Do you need a FULL tower case? you don't have much to put in it. a Mid tower would be plenty and cheaper:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
or
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

You could also shave a vew bucks off if you went with the e8400 instead. its a 9x multiplier instead of a 9.5 It would still OC like a bat outta hell.
January 9, 2009 6:53:04 PM

Awsome thanks everyone. Ill update everything when i get home from work. What do you guys think of this case? I love the look of the blue fan shining through the mesh on the front. I also read its REALLY roomy and gets good airflow.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Thanks guys for not only giving me tips on what parts to buy but also saving me tons of money!
January 9, 2009 7:26:34 PM

I would personally go with either the Antec 900 or Antec 300. I love Antec's build quality and the Antec 900 has TONS of mods to keep you busy for a life time =). With the Antec 300 you would have to pick up 2 120mm Fans to complete the front but it would still be cheaper than what you were looking at and should supply better airflow.

Antec 900
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Antec 300 + Fans
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
January 10, 2009 12:26:00 AM

The antec 900 is the coolest case I've seen yet!

I have been reading some review's talking about how even after removing one of the internal fans their gfx card barely fit. Also how wiring neatly is extremely hard.

Tbh i think I'm just going to go with the case i was originally planning on getting. I don't mind dropping the extra 50$ for piece of mind on wiring and space issues. Also the removable MOBO tray and the fact that i can use this case for my next build are all very attractive.

If i upgrade a component ill look at mid cases but at this point i'm going to drop the 50$.

Thank you for your guys advice! Keep it coming, every bit helps.

edit: With rebates the 750 comes out being $5 more then the 650 so i'm getting the 750.
January 10, 2009 1:12:34 AM

I own a Antec 900 that I have modded myself. My EVGA 280 SSC fits perfectly without a problem at all. The newer Antec 900's come with holes precut for making wiring easier and personally I would just add another one where the power supply is and one behind the mobo where the cpu power connector is. Other than that.. which will build your case modding skills, I LOVE this case. Eventually you can buy fans for the front and side of the case and you will have unbelievable airflow. If you want to spend the extra money on the other case be my guest! I just love my Antec 900 =).

P.S. If you want a case similar to the Antec 900 and cheaper / lessing modding needed look at this:

NZXT TEMPEST Crafted Series
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
January 10, 2009 2:35:56 AM

I LOVE the way the Antec 900 looks. What tools would i need to do the necessary modding? I would seriously think of buying it if modding isn't too hard / risky.

Only reason I'm willing to drop 50$ more is because i know i will be able to use the case for my next more beefier build. Then again maybe i could just sell my computer for a few hundred when its time to build anew and put that money towards a new case.

I think i'm almost sold on the Antec.
January 10, 2009 2:53:52 AM

Easiest tool to mod the case is a Dremel but if you dont have that a large drill bit could do the job. Oh yes and some sand paper to round the edges a bit =). Thats about all you'll need, if your thinking of other things you would like to have done for the case there are HUGE forums with Antec 900 Mods. To list the biggest I know of :

http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?t=12...

Take into consideration that the original poster had the first release of the Antec 900 with no precut holes. As you can see though if you look farther into the forum you can do some extreme modding to the Antec 900 and have EXCELLENT wire management.
January 10, 2009 3:06:33 AM

Oh man. That looks daunting. I love how the case looks so much though. Argh. I honestly don't know if i can do that right. ><

50$ and a case i love the looks of or a case that is easier to work with for a first time build. Decisions, decisions.

Btw ordering on the 11th now.
January 10, 2009 3:50:22 AM

you don't "need" to mod anything on the Antec 900. All your parts will fit fine.
January 10, 2009 3:55:05 AM

We are talking about wire management. My build might be small but i would still like to have a clean looking case. Thank's for your input though. ;) 
January 10, 2009 4:26:40 AM

ok, speaking from experience sine I have 2 900's; you do not need to modify the case for wire management. You can route the cables through the case itself to keep them out of the way. The only limitation will be the length of you cables. ie: psu pci cable is typically no that long so there is not much that can be done with it.
January 10, 2009 4:31:41 AM

Okay sweet. Well this is my first build so i guess it will be a learning experience on the cable management side. A bit daunting.

edit: updated case.
January 11, 2009 12:09:34 AM

Depends on your usage. I would guess at this point two years before you start to really feel the need for a quad.

I can honestly say that I have absolutely zero need for a faster CPU, or more cores. An E8400 overclocked to 3.6Ghz is insanely fast.
January 11, 2009 12:13:45 AM

Okay thank you : ).

I'm going to get a duel core this time around and save the extra money for my next build.

Thanks for the great help, Toms hardware forums rock!
January 11, 2009 5:33:51 AM

semlethe3rd said:
Personally I would buy a quad core but If I wasn't going to I would change your list slightly to this:

https://secure.newegg.com/WishList/MySavedWishDetail.as...

If you wanted to keep the other case you selected you would still be under $1250 after rebates.
It would come down to a 4870 1GB versus a 4870x2 2GB. I think you know who wins =).


I missed this post all together and i'm sorry for not addressing it. That is a great suggestion. I'll look into it before i order tommaro.

Ordering tommaro. I'll post pics of my build a few days from now. Thanks guys.
!