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First build - Core i7 have I done much wrong??

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January 30, 2009 7:32:41 PM

So this is my first serious attempt at specing my first build. Take a look:

Antec Nine Hundred/Ultimate Gamer Case no PSU
http://www.dabs.ie/productview.aspx?Quicklinx=49XS

CoolerMaster 1000W REAL POWER PRO MODULAR PSU
http://www.dabs.ie/productview.aspx?Quicklinx=4QZP

Gigabyte S1366 Intel X58 DDR3 ATX Audio 2GbE Lan 3 Channel
http://www.dabs.ie/productview.aspx?Quicklinx=5BRP

Intel Nehalem i7 920 S1366 2.66GHz
http://www.dabs.ie/productview.aspx?Quicklinx=5CC9

Corsair Memory 4GB (2X2GB KIT) DDR3 1600MHZ 240PIN UNBUFFERED
http://www.dabs.ie/productview.aspx?Quicklinx=50TW

Samsung SpinPoint 320GB 7200RPM S300 16MB
http://www.dabs.ie/productview.aspx?Quicklinx=4LZJ

Gigabyte Radeon HD 4870x2 2GB DDR5 PCIE 2xDVI
http://www.dabs.ie/productview.aspx?Quicklinx=57BL

LG Electronics 22xDVDRWL/SBlackRetailSATA
http://www.dabs.ie/productview.aspx?Quicklinx=5CXX

Windows Vista Home Premium
http://www.dabs.ie/productview.aspx?Quicklinx=5088


including delivery its €37 over my €1500 budget. Power supply is a bit high but I want the option to add stuff like a second graphics card, a Blu Ray DVD drive at a later stage, more hard disk drives maybe a tv card with out much issue.

Whats the ram like? Are the latency timings a bit slow? I'll more than likely buy more when the money builds back up.

I want to use this for first person shooters played at a decent quality. Also I want it to be upgradeable into the future.

Since I'm in Ireland if you make any recommendations could you use www.dabs.ie

More about : build core wrong

January 30, 2009 7:39:36 PM

It's best to set up your ram in a the tri-channel set up, which can not be done with the 4 gb that you have. Look for 3 x 1 gb set ups or 3 x 2 gb set ups that advertise saying core i7 ready or something of that nature.
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January 30, 2009 7:41:15 PM

Good catch Quickwind, that completely slipped my mind. Yes, definitely get a tri-channel set of RAM
January 30, 2009 7:58:05 PM

So this would be a more suitable set of ram....

Corsair Memory Corsair 6GB 1333MHz DDR3 CL9
http://www.dabs.ie/productview.aspx?Quicklinx=5CYP&Cate...

(bye bye budget :sarcastic:  )


Could I ask what the difference is between the two hard drives? We use Samsung spinpoints at work (the 1 Terrabyte ones) and they seemed fine to me. If it's just a memory/buck thing 320 gigs is loads for now. I'd rather save the bucks since I've gone over on the ram
January 30, 2009 8:36:23 PM

That Western Digital drive is known for being pretty quick.
January 31, 2009 12:55:42 AM

The WD Caviar Black 640gb WD6401AALS is the fastest 7200rpm drive. Its about 40% faster than that spinpoint drive you picked out, so its worth the money in my book. The WD6400AAKS is just a hair slower than the other WD drive.
February 5, 2009 7:16:58 PM

Ok

So I'm going to pull the trigger on this build either tonight or tomorrow night with the tri channel RAM I posted above as well as the WD Caviar Black Hard Drive in place of the spin point. (Thanks for the tips)

I'm just wondering if anyone has anything further to add to this or changes that should be made.

Also (I know quite an open question) what kind of performance can I expect from a system like this playing modern first person shooters if it's kept at stock clock speeds. I'll look into over clocking at a later stage.
February 5, 2009 7:38:08 PM

its a lot more dependent on your GPU than your CPU when it comes to gaming, although a faster CPU will give you a boost. But with a 4870x2, I can't imagine there being a game you can't play at full settings with max AA. It also depends on the size of the monitor you have too though. If you play at greater than 1900x1200 you may need to tune it down a bit...but I doubt it.
February 5, 2009 10:38:39 PM

xthekidx said:
its a lot more dependent on your GPU than your CPU when it comes to gaming, although a faster CPU will give you a boost. But with a 4870x2, I can't imagine there being a game you can't play at full settings with max AA. It also depends on the size of the monitor you have too though.

:sol: 

My current monitor isn't exactly top class just stock 19" with my current compaq. but that will get upgraded eventually.

I'm going to go with this Sony/NEC drive since it comes with Nero 8 instead of the LG. Also I could actually find the product on a manufacturers website which gives me a bit more confidence when it comes to firmware updates and such support.

Optiarc (Sony/NEC) 20X SATA DVD-RW/RAM Lightscribe black + Nero 8
February 6, 2009 3:23:15 AM

quickwind said:
It's best to set up your ram in a the tri-channel set up, which can not be done with the 4 gb that you have. Look for 3 x 1 gb set ups or 3 x 2 gb set ups that advertise saying core i7 ready or something of that nature.


I would take 2x2 over 3x1. Tri-channel does not give much performance increase.
February 6, 2009 8:58:04 AM

True, Tri-channel doesn't give that much performace over dual channel. So it would be a waste if u do it.
February 6, 2009 11:24:56 AM

Does all the RAM have to be bought at the same time to get tri channel? Can I get a stick from the same manufacturer with the same spec as say the original pair I speced at the top and just slot that in at a later stage. Or does itnot work like that?
February 6, 2009 2:54:23 PM

theshadow2001 said:
Does all the RAM have to be bought at the same time to get tri channel? Can I get a stick from the same manufacturer with the same spec as say the original pair I speced at the top and just slot that in at a later stage. Or does itnot work like that?


You could add a stick later.
February 6, 2009 4:46:21 PM

screw it. I think I'll go with the six. It could come in handy for work related stuff. (running virtualised O/S)
February 7, 2009 7:35:33 PM

Go with the six man plus alot of manufacturers won't sell individual sticks that go with the tri channel config. Plus it might cost you more. I wld really look into that monitor man. Max res on a 19" is crap upon crap man. Try to go for at least a 22" man. Asus and Acer have good ones that have 1080p and hdmi port. Or go 24" and get the 1900x1200 res. Games look great on 24 and 26" and good on 22" even but 19 can eat **** and die with a sorrowful howl.
February 7, 2009 7:39:08 PM

19" is only too small if you have played on something bigger for a while. If you have a 19" and stay with it, you will be perfectly happy. You always want more that what you have. I'm perfectly happy with my 19", games look better on it with my graphics card than they would if I had a 24"
February 7, 2009 7:42:14 PM

I'm talking on the bases of what he is getting ready to use man. I know u can get good G's on a 19" w certain GPUs but W/ the 4870x2 its a waste.
February 7, 2009 7:46:32 PM

Yeah. He could put that graphics card to beter use.
February 7, 2009 7:49:08 PM

Either that or get a single 4870 and opt for another later and save. Plus if he did that then he cld get a 22 or better w/ those savings.
February 7, 2009 9:26:11 PM

If your going vista use ultimate at least.. but id scrap that all together and pick up an XP 64bit oem... yeah.. im a vista hater
February 7, 2009 9:28:18 PM

Wldnt use Ultimate. More stuff to process and Home premium is the same except back up utilities.
February 7, 2009 11:16:44 PM

All in good time. I'm just starting off with the basics and using what I have. Expansion and upgrades will be added with time. I'll just be happy to get it up and running first.
February 7, 2009 11:30:18 PM

I also have full intentions of plugging it into the 37" 1080p TV when I have the house to myself to see what happens.
!