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Budget phenom x3 720 build. Need some help

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March 9, 2009 3:23:23 AM

I'm building a new computer for school work right now. Going to play games after this school semester so going to save up money for a video card and buy it later. Can someone critque on my build please and tell me what changes I could make? My maximum budget is $630 after taxes and right now I am already there with the parts I chose.


Stuff I already have and plan to use in the computer:
Antec Sonata Case
DVD-Burner


Stuff to buy:

AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition Triple Core Processor AM3 2.8GHZ 7.5MB Cache 95W 45NM Retail Box
$181.49

Arctic Cooling Freezer 64 PWM AM2 S754 S939 S940 900-2200RPM 40CFM 4PIN Heatsink Fan
$22.49

Gigabyte GA-MA780G-UD3H AMD780G ATX AM2+/AM3 2PCI-E Video Sound GLAN CrossFireX HDMI Motherboard
$112.99

G.SKILL F2-8500CL5D-4GBPK PC2-8500 4GB 2X2GB DDR2-1066 CL5-5-5-15 240PIN Dual Channel Memory Kit
$69.40

Western Digital Caviar Black 640GB 7200RPM 32MB Dual Proc 3.5IN SATA Hard Drive OEM 5YR Mfg Warranty
$85.95

OCZ StealthXStream 600W ATX12V 20/24PIN Active PFC ATX Power Supply 120MM Fan Black
$88.03

Total: $627.59 (Includes all taxes)

I'm from canada and prices are in canadian dollars
March 9, 2009 4:15:34 AM

I would probably go with the Xigmatek HDT1283, myself...

The motherboard you've chose is a peculiar pick...I'd get a lower-end 780G board, or a higher-end 790GX board...the x16x4 crossfire is a waste of time...you probably won't get great scaling out of a Phenom II 720, anyway, unless overclocked into the 3.3 range, even on a x16x16 board like a 790 FX.
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March 9, 2009 4:51:23 AM

I'm looking at canadian prices. The CPU is $181 at newegg.ca and I am going to price match it that from NCIX. The reason I am buying from NCIX is becasue I can save on shipping.
March 9, 2009 5:01:08 AM

You are better off with the original 1066 MHz memory . The Phenom can use the extra bandwidth .

But if money is tight then why not use the stock cooler till you do the gaming upgrade . You wont need to overclock anything to get your school work done , and you will have the foundation for a really good gaming computer when you do add the gfx card and cpu cooler
March 9, 2009 5:05:26 AM

Yeah I guess you're right. I should probably just stick with the stock hsf for now and save up more money later.

As for the motherboard, is there a better one that you'd recommend? I prefer a full sized ATX motherboard, but doesn't matter to me too much. I was only able to find the one I choose and and ECS one that uses the 780g chipset.
March 9, 2009 5:06:07 AM

Ilander said:
I would probably go with the Xigmatek HDT1283, myself...

The motherboard you've chose is a peculiar pick...I'd get a lower-end 780G board, or a higher-end 790GX board...the x16x4 crossfire is a waste of time...you probably won't get great scaling out of a Phenom II 720, anyway, unless overclocked into the 3.3 range, even on a x16x16 board like a 790 FX.



its not a board for crossfire , its a board that supports hybrid crossfire X where the onboard gfx can work with a low end gfx card . The OP is not considering crossfire ,

Id say its a great budget board with potential to do anything EXCEPT crossfire , which is fine since single card solutions make way more sense anyway

EDIT: on a scale of 1 - 10

gigabyte 9.99 [ because nothing is perfect ]
ECS 2.7 [ because its no where near perfect ]
March 9, 2009 5:08:02 AM

Sorry about that. At those price you really can't do much better then what you picked. Do what Outlander said. Dump the after market heatsink and run things stock.
March 9, 2009 5:23:00 AM

I think I'm going to go ahead and order this then. Thanks for the help.
March 9, 2009 4:10:51 PM

Hello again
I found a bundle deal for the xigmatek hdt-s1283 with the phenom x3 720 cpu for only about $20 more than buying the CPU alone. I am thinking of getting this, but I noticed that it is really big.

Would I have any problems fitting this cooler on my motherboard that I chose or the antec sonata case?

Goign to order once I get this answer.

thanks
March 9, 2009 6:39:04 PM

hanleychan said:
Hello again
I found a bundle deal for the xigmatek hdt-s1283 with the phenom x3 720 cpu for only about $20 more than buying the CPU alone. I am thinking of getting this, but I noticed that it is really big.

Would I have any problems fitting this cooler on my motherboard that I chose or the antec sonata case?

Goign to order once I get this answer.

thanks


Just based on a guesstimatation:

HDT-S1283 = 159mm/6.26 in tall
Antec Sonata Elite = 205.74mm/8.1 in wide

Since there's no side duct on the left (looking from the front of the case) panel, so you have about 46.74mm/1.84 in clearance minus the height from the top of your CPU socket to the right case panel (which is probably in the neighborhood of about (20-25cm/0.8-1.0 in).

You should have clearance for that big beast, so long as the dimensions I just looked up are okay.
March 10, 2009 4:02:01 AM

Outlander_04 said:
its not a board for crossfire , its a board that supports hybrid crossfire X where the onboard gfx can work with a low end gfx card . The OP is not considering crossfire ,

Id say its a great budget board with potential to do anything EXCEPT crossfire , which is fine since single card solutions make way more sense anyway

EDIT: on a scale of 1 - 10

gigabyte 9.99 [ because nothing is perfect ]
ECS 2.7 [ because its no where near perfect ]


Well, just for correctness sake....this board DOES support crossfire, just not a useful implementation of it. My comment to the OP was that it was an unnecessary feature, and that if he or she were being charged extra for that feature, to drop it.

How does it support crossfire? The board has one x16 slot that is x16 electrical, and one x16 slot that is x4 electrical. BOTH x16 slots support hybrid crossfire with the onboard HD 3200, BUT, CROSSFIREX only refers to "impure" crossfire configurations, such as triple, quad, and mixed crossfire. Hybrid CrossfireX is a specific implementation that allows the use of the onboard video.

I would happily pay less for a Micro ATX motherboard, as they are cheaper, and most people don't need seven expansion slots anyway. MicroATX motherboards are completely compatible with ATX cases, so, the only reason to avoid them is to get more expansion bays, or for purely aesthetic reasons. As nothing was mentioned about the former, I'm going to assume the latter, and conclude by saying this: The case is usually closed. No one is going to see it but you. MicroATX isn't a cramped format to work in...it's the same as ATX, just with 3 expansion slots dropped.

Take the plunge! :) 
!