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What I am thinking for my next system <$1000

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March 21, 2009 2:06:19 PM

Having some small issues with my current system in overheating (CPU) and video stability. So I decided to just go out and build a new one and shelf this current system. I will eventually make the fixes I need, but this system is 2 years old and I dont feel like dumping alot of money into it. I don't plan to overclock the new machine. Will be using the new machine for every day use and gaming (MMORPGs mostly). I do alot of multitasking but didn't go for the quad core. Most people on here have been saying that for gaming, a dual core is good enough. Will be using Vista Ultimate 64 as my OS. Anyways, my new system will look something like this, please provide any useful feedback and I am still debating on a couple items (amount of RAM, video card and possible quad core). Thanks!

Link to my current system with current issues:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/262902-31-problems-cu...

New system:

Case: Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: OCZ GameXStream OCZ700GXSSLI 700W ATX12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 Wolfdale 3.0GHz 6MB L2 Cache LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Video Card: EVGA 896-P3-1260-AR GeForce GTX 260 896MB 448-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Hard Drive: 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...

RAM: G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Other stuff: MOTOROLA SURFboard SB5101 38Mbps Downstream, 30Mbps Upstream USB and Ethernet 10/100Base-T Cable Modem - Retail I have an old SB 4200 surfboard, I am sure I am not getting the optimal speeds with it
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Other stuff: ARCTIC COOLING MX-2 Thermal Compound - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Other stuff: ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro 92mm CPU Cooler - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

More about : thinking system 1000

March 21, 2009 2:17:00 PM

tojo78 said:
Other stuff: ARCTIC COOLING MX-2 Thermal Compound - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Already pre-applied to the bottom of the ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro so you don't need to order this.

For just a few dollars more (less after $10 rebate) you can get the excellent ZEROtherm ZEN FZ120 120mm CPU Cooler

To be honest, for a non-OC'd system the stock Intel cooler will do just fine. It's actually very quiet and does adequate cooling.

Your Antec 900 case choice might be more than you need for a non-OC'd system. CM Centurion 534 / Antec 300 / CM Centurion 590
March 21, 2009 2:22:37 PM

Do you already have Vista Ultimate 64? if not Vista Home Premium 64 will do just fine. Vista versions compared

The MOTOROLA SURFboard SB5101 38Mbps modem probably won't increase your Internet Performance.
Run the TOOLS over at BroadBand Reports to test and trouble shoot your internet connection. Also check what others are reporting from your ISP in your area. Any limits on your Internet performance is almost 100% sure to be issues with your ISP.
Related resources
March 21, 2009 2:31:17 PM

In terms of your Mobo/Ram/CPU/GPU and Cooler

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... AM3 X3 720 $150
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... Giga 790X $110 (xfire)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... Corsair DDR2 800 $45 - $25MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... Xigma $37 - $10MIR (AMD)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=P... 1GB 4870 $200 - $30MIR

IMO the 720 provides better value the E8400. At worse the 720 is just as good as the E8400 and at best, when the game takes advantage of more than two cores then 720 has the edge. In additon, switching to a 4870 (either with an intel or amd) will give you the back door option of upgrading to crossfire. As for the memory I recommend because (if you go AMD) because better timings doesn't justify the cost. Also check the mobo combos for the 720 because you save a good deal of money.
March 21, 2009 2:41:56 PM

You chose the wrong mobo. The one you chose is for Crossfire, and your running an Nvidea card. The mobo you want is the one down below. And seeing how you are only running one vid card, a decent 550w like the new OCZ Fatal1ty 550w will push that card just fine not to mention it's modular. Also give that RAM down below a look. It has great timings and low latency.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $114.99 ($99.99 after $15.00 Mail-In Rebate)
GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3R LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
2 oz copper PCB + Easy Tune 6 for OC

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $79.99 Free Shipping*
OCZ Fatal1ty OCZ550FTY 550W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Modular Active PFC Power Supply - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $41.99
G.SKILL HK 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail
March 21, 2009 2:50:33 PM

Why_Me said:
You chose the wrong mobo. The one you chose is for Crossfire, and your running an Nvidea card.
The motherboard you chose is just fine for a GTX 260. It won't run 2 of course, but for 1 it's a good choice.
March 21, 2009 2:56:00 PM

WR2 said:
The motherboard you chose is just fine for a GTX 260. It won't run 2 of course, but for 1 it's a good choice.


Why would you spend more money on a mobo that's cut for Crossfire, when you can get the identical mobo but with one less PCI Express 2.0 for cheaper when your on a budget? If I was on a budget, I would say ya, that's the wrong mobo to get even though I know it will run the vid card I chose.
March 21, 2009 3:05:13 PM

Why_Me said:
Why would you spend more money on a mobo that's cut for Crossfire, when you can get the identical mobo but with one less PCI Express 2.0 for cheaper when your on a budget? If I was on a budget, I would say ya, that's the wrong mobo to get even though I know it will run the vid card I chose.
If you had said the OP didnt order the BEST mobo I wouldnt have objected.
The MB he ordered will work just fine with a GTX 260.
March 21, 2009 3:23:56 PM

So the only difference between the 3P and 3R is the extra PCI express 2.0 slot? If that is the case I will save a few bucks and go with the 3R. What is the difference between DDR2 1066 and DDR2 800? Is the GSkill DDR2 800 still faster than the DDR 1066? I think I am going to stick with the PSU I chose and I am not too keen for the red fan light.
March 21, 2009 3:39:26 PM

Here are some PSU options in the OCZ line: OCZ StealthXStream 600W & OCZ ModXStream Pro 600W The StealthXStream 600W is about half the cost of the GameXStream 700W. It doesnt have the blue LED fan or modular cables. But it will get the job done.

StealthXStream 600W review (note the section where they mention it uses some of the same parts as the GameXStream 700W)
March 21, 2009 3:48:00 PM

Here are some results from a few broadband tests I took. I am in central Illinois. I am on Comcast cable. To be honest, I have no idea is these speeds are normal or not.

Chicago
Speed Test #68826550 by dslreports.com
Run: 2009-03-21 12:39:42 EST
Download: 5090 (Kbps)
Upload: 1012 (Kbps)
In kilobytes per second: 621.3 down 123.5 up
Boost: 162219
Latency: 15 ms
Tested by server: 68 flash
User: anonymous
User's DNS: comcast.net
Compared to the average of 2200 tests from comcast.net:
* download is 39% worse, upload is 61% worse


New York
Speed Test #68826786 by dslreports.com
Run: 2009-03-21 12:44:27 EST
Download: 5049 (Kbps)
Upload: 857 (Kbps)
In kilobytes per second: 616.3 down 104.6 up
Boost: 5651
Latency: 26 ms
Tested by server: 9 flash
User: anonymous
User's DNS: comcast.net
Compared to the average of 2201 tests from comcast.net:
* download is 39% worse, upload is 67% worse

San Fran
Speed Test #68826786 by dslreports.com
Run: 2009-03-21 12:44:27 EST
Download: 5049 (Kbps)
Upload: 857 (Kbps)
In kilobytes per second: 616.3 down 104.6 up
Boost: 5651
Latency: 26 ms
Tested by server: 9 flash
User: anonymous
User's DNS: comcast.net
Compared to the average of 2201 tests from comcast.net:
* download is 39% worse, upload is 67% worse

March 21, 2009 3:49:04 PM

Took me a bit to dig this out:

Here is an example of the difference between DDR2 800 and 1066 RAM
Note DDR2 800 CAS 4 and DDR2 1066 (or 1067) have almost identical performance.

More benchmark tests here
March 21, 2009 3:53:58 PM

Check the Review section and see what other Comcast users are saying in your zip code.
Have you check the Comcast modems? They could be optimized for better performance over Comcast cable.
Also surf through the forums over there. Maybe even post asking for advice, it's where the experts hang out.
March 21, 2009 6:53:34 PM

Updated build based on some of the feedback I have received. Thank you all for taking the time to reply. I am now >800$ before shipping so I have some room to add some stuff. Any further suggestions? Upgrade to quad core? Better video card? I am ~$200 under budget at the moment. Thanks again!

New system:

Case: Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6811129021

PSU: OCZ StealthXStream OCZ600SXS 600W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready Active PFC Power Supply - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 Wolfdale 3.0GHz 6MB L2 Cache LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6819115037

Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3R LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Video Card: EVGA 896-P3-1260-AR GeForce GTX 260 896MB 448-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6814130370

Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6822136319

RAM: G.SKILL HK 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Other stuff: ARCTIC COOLING MX-2 Thermal Compound - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6835186020
March 22, 2009 2:25:07 PM

Is the AC MX-2 thermal compound in your list for your other system?

I don't think a quad upgrade (or going with E8500/E8600) would actually give you a "notice-able" increase in performance.

What size/resolution monitor will you be using? A GTX 260 / HD 4870 is an excellent choice right up to 22" 1680x1050 monitors. They are also adequate up to 1920x1080 "1080" 22/23/24 monitors for all but the most rabid gamers.

Want to look at other good case options to save $40-55? Antec 300 (-$55) CM Centurion 590 (-40)
Either alternate choice would not affect performance or limit upgrade-ability.
Antec 900 @ Buy.com $109 shipping included

I think you have the makings for a well balanced & powerful system.
March 23, 2009 12:40:27 AM

Yeah I had the AC MX-2 in my other system

Yeah I am going to stick with the dual core

I have a Dell 22" LCD monitor and its 1680x1050. If I wanted to spend $300 on a video card, what would be recommended? I'd be willing to consider ATI or Nvidia. I want to get a card that will give me the best FPS for $300. Is the extra $ even worth it?
March 23, 2009 12:47:57 AM

tojo78 said:
Yeah I had the AC MX-2 in my other system

Yeah I am going to stick with the dual core

I have a Dell 22" LCD monitor and its 1680x1050. If I wanted to spend $300 on a video card, what would be recommended? I'd be willing to consider ATI or Nvidia. I want to get a card that will give me the best FPS for $300. Is the extra $ even worth it?



http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $339.99 ($309.99 after $30.00 Mail-In Rebate)
GIGABYTE GV-N285-1GH-B GeForce GTX 285 1GB 512-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $199.99 ($179.99 after $20.00 Mail-In Rebate)
EVGA 896-P3-1265-AR GeForce GTX 260 Core 216 896MB 448-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail

http://techreport.com/articles.x/16229/1
!