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Advice on a New Build (i7)

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March 23, 2009 3:18:37 AM

EDIT: I updated the build with the recommendations that I have been given.

Hello all, I am currently coming from a Dell Dimension 8400 and have finally reached the point where I need to upgrade the CPU.

I've had this for about 5-6 years and have decided that it is time to start anew with a new system.

I have never built a computer on my own, I've had experience with upgrading various parts on my previous computer and from searching various resources, I feel comfortable and competent to build my own.

On one hand I do not really have a budget on the system, but I do not want to spend a lot of money on only a little bit of an improvement so any suggestions on different products that will lower the overall price but not reduce the performance of the machine too much is appreciated.

I will be using this machine primarily for gaming and also web design and software development.

I also am looking to buy parts that I will be able to upgrade in the coming years so I do not need to purchase another system, so in giving advice please keep that in mind.

From researching parts over the past week I have come up with this list:

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

PSU: Antec Signature SG850 850W Continuous Power ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Motherboard: ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU: Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU Cooler: Thermalright Ultra-120 Extreme 1366 RT CPU Cooler
http://www.heatsinkfactory.com/thermalright-ultra-120-e...

Video Card #1: SAPPHIRE 100251SR Radeon HD 4870 X2 2GB 512-bit (256-bit x 2) GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD: 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...

DVD Reader/Burner x 2: LG Black 22X (CAV) DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 22X (CAV) DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 22X DVD±R DVD Burner - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Ram x 1: G.SKILL 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OS: Microsoft Windows Vista Ultimate SP1 64-bit for System Builders - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Monitor: I currently have a 23" LCD and down the road when I am able I am planning on purchasing another 23" to dual screen.

I really appreciate any and all advice!

One other thing, I have very little experience in OC'ing, but I do plan on beginning with a little bit of OC'ing my system and later down the road after I do a lot more research I plan on doing a little bit more.

Thanks again for reading my post and giving me advice!

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March 23, 2009 4:33:24 AM

gkay09 said:
You are buying this combo right???
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
The case and the PSU together have a discount of $60...


Yes, I will be buying that combo if I actually follow through with purchasing this setup. I didn't post any of the combos I currently have in my shopping cart, but here they are:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

If there are any combos that I am missing that will save me even more money I am all ears (I guess, eyes in this case)

Thanks for looking out for me, gkay09.
March 23, 2009 4:38:25 AM



I believe the motherboard that I have chosen doesn't support DDR3 1600. The specs say "DDR3 1600(O.C)/1333".

I am not set on the motherboard, that is probably the area where I could use the most advice.

And Proximon, thanks for that link. From reading that and some other posts I think I will stick with the Antec Twelve Hundred; however I'm considering the CM Storm Sniper now, even though it is labeled a mid size tower it is basically as big as the Antec case.
March 23, 2009 4:47:59 AM

Looks very good. The only thing I would do is change the cooler. The case you are looking at has Blue LED's and the V8 has red, so they will clash a bit. So I would change the cooler to something that had the LED's that match like the Vigor Monsoon III LT (although this one doesn't cool as well as some) or change the cooler to something that doesn't have an LED, like the TRUE (which just happens to be the best cooler on the market right now).
http://www.heatsinkfactory.com/thermalright-ultra-120-e...
or maybe this one:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... (this one is supposed to be as good as the TRUE, but you need to buy a separate fan for it. Its very new on the market.)

Or maybe change the Case to the CM HAF 932, which has excellent cooling and red LED's to match the V8...
March 23, 2009 4:49:42 AM

On the motherboard, you might look at the Asus P6T Deluxe V2.
March 23, 2009 4:53:51 AM

Ahh...I thought so...The WS is a very gud mobo but u can still get a powerful setup with cheaper mobos...
Get the P6T V2 Deluxe...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

EDIT: Thought of giving the EVGA but I would stick with the P6T V2

And about the RAM...Its wont be a problem...they would adjust automatically to the proper compatible frequency...
Even this RAM is gud...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

And also you are planning to overclock...so you can easily set the appropriate frequency...
March 23, 2009 5:04:08 AM

Yeah like I said in my original post, I don't have any practical experience on overclocking, but I do plan on researching it a lot more and will do some basic to moderate OC'ing with this system.

Thanks for the mobo reccomendations gkay09 and xthekidx. I think I will switch to that motherboard. Are you certain there will be no problems with getting DDR3 1600? I don't want to spend $400 on the motherboard and end up damaging it.

Thanks again for all the advice! I really am loving this site, it has definitely increase my knowledge on computer hardware.
March 23, 2009 5:07:34 AM

No problem with the RAM...
But if you still have doubts, you can google around and check the mobo reviews...It will give you more info on how they setup the RAM and how they overclock...
March 23, 2009 5:59:12 AM

This was a manufacturer's response on the DDR3 1600 ram (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)

we apologize for this inconvenience. however, the Intel I7 memory controller is not good to run with 6 modules installed. they need to have stronger single. if you use rated DDR3 1600 memory 6 modules, the best you can get is DDR3 1333. if you want to run DDR3 1600, you need to purchase DDR3 1800 or 1866 memory. there is nothing wrong with each memory modules, it just I7 doesn't support over DDR3 1066 if you check out the Intel I7 website. they only support up to DDR3 1066...........

http://www.intel.com/products/processor/corei7/specific...

Thank you
GSKILL SUPPORT

Does this mean that it is pointless to get 1600 ram? Or how exactly does this impact my choice of ram?
March 23, 2009 7:29:41 AM

eadwyn said:
This was a manufacturer's response on the DDR3 1600 ram (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)

we apologize for this inconvenience. however, the Intel I7 memory controller is not good to run with 6 modules installed. they need to have stronger single. if you use rated DDR3 1600 memory 6 modules, the best you can get is DDR3 1333. if you want to run DDR3 1600, you need to purchase DDR3 1800 or 1866 memory. there is nothing wrong with each memory modules, it just I7 doesn't support over DDR3 1066 if you check out the Intel I7 website. they only support up to DDR3 1066...........

http://www.intel.com/products/processor/corei7/specific...

Thank you
GSKILL SUPPORT

Does this mean that it is pointless to get 1600 ram? Or how exactly does this impact my choice of ram?

No. You can run the higher speed memory. The guaranteed supported memory is that speed, but third party motherboard manufacturers make it easy to tweak the bios and use a faster memory speed. You just need to make sure that the motherboard you get can support it I think. Since they cannot speak for the motherboard manufacturer, that is the default response you will get from them, they won't tell you to use something outside of specifications from Intel. I don't know how the motherboard you are looking at will do with 6 dimms of ram, but do you really need 12gb? This seems like serious overkill to me. Most apps cannot take advantage of the massive memory bandwidth supplied by 6gb of DDR3 Ram on the i7 platform. Just get 3x2gb sticks for now, you can add 3 more sticks later if you really need to, but I doubt you will.
March 23, 2009 7:38:16 AM

You've got a valid point there :D  I really wasn't thinking to hold off on getting more ram later down the road if I needed it. That just saved me a hundred dollars.
!