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Help building monster gaming rig

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April 10, 2009 11:19:45 PM

Hi Guys,

I posted a previous thread but i think I named it incorrectly and didn't get much response. I did get some help from a few users but didn't get all the answers I needed.

I'm putting together a p.c for gaming and this is what I've come up with so far (thanks to the help of some registered users)

My only question now is the memory. I will be running a 32 bit system but was advised to get 3x2g ram sticks? Is there not a 4g limit on 32 bit?

Spec as follows:


Motherboard: R 4,645.00
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/MB-AP6TDV2-ASUS-P6T-Del...

Asus Intel LGA1366
MB-AP6TDV2

ASUS P6T-Delux V2 ; LGA1366/i7 mb ; on-board on-board on/off/clear CMOS switch , fanless heatpipe design , 16+2 phase power design , 3-way , nVidia

SLI / ATi coressfire ready ; intel X58+iCH10R , 6x tripple channel 2-phase DDR3 2000 ( support XMP upto 1.69v ) , 7 x s-ata2 with raid

0/1//0+1/5/10 ( 6 x SATA + 1 x e-SATA ) , 1 x parallel ata133 , on-board ADI 2000B Dobly Digital live 7.1 audio with coaxial+optical S/Pdif out +

dual gigabit lan + ieee1394a ; 2x pci , 1 x pci-e(1x) , 3 x pci-e 2.0 (16x+16x+1x or 16x+8x+8x ) - 1 x PS2 only for kb

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Processor: R 4,040.00
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/CPU-i7920-Intel-Boxed-C...

Intel Core I7 Quad Core Socket LGA1366 Processors
CPU-i7920

Product Summary
Intel® Boxed Core™ i7 920 Processor - 2.66GHz Quad Core, Socket 1366, 8MB L3, 4.8GT/s QPI, 45nm, x64 Support, 3 Year

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Memory: R 2,830.00
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/ME-C2G3X16X9x3-Corsair-...

DDR3-1600 240pin PC3-12800
ME-C2G3X16X9x3

Product Summary
Corsair TR3X6G1600C9 , XMS 3 , with heatsink , 3 x 2Gb/2048mb kit - support Intel XMP ( eXtreme Memory Profiles ) , ddr3-1600 ( PC3-12800 ) , CL9 ,

1.65v - 240pin - lifetime warranty

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Graphics Card: R 5,930.00
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/SC-XGTX285B-Xfx-GX-285N...

SC-XGTX285B Xfx GX-285N-ZDB Black edition, geforce GTX285 Graphics card
XFX 16x nVidia PCIE SLI
SC-XGTX285B

Product Summary
Xfx GX-285N-ZDB Black edition, geforce GTX285 , SLi support , Pci-E 2.0 16x , support HybridPower , 1Gb/1024mb 512bit DDR3 , support DirectX 10 +

shader model 4.0 +FP32 HDR + 16x AA ; max resolution 2560x1600 , HDCP Compliant , RoPs : 32 , 159Gb/sec memory transfer , 240 stream processors @

1.476Ghz ( pixel shader engine + vertex pipelines ) , core/memory : 690/2600mhz , 2 x dvi ( with dvi to d-sub + dvi to hdmi ) , HDTV tvout

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Power Supply: R 1,885.00
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/PS-C750TXE-Corsair-TX75...

PS-C750TXE Corsair TX750W

Product Summary
Corsair TX750W , Eps12V , ATX 12V V2.2 - 750w ( 12v : 720w ) , nvidia SLi ready , 80PLUS certified for energy saving , 24pin ( 4pin detachable ) ,

with active-PFC , 4 x 8pin (2+6) PCI-E power connectors , 1x 140mm thermal controled fan ; with OCP, OVP, OPP, SCP, UVP - 5 years warranty


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P.C Chassis 1: R2852.62
http://www.prophecy.co.za/ikonik-smooth-chassis-without...

IKONIK RA X10 SMOOTH, ATX CHASSIS without PSU, BLACK
[A3_IK-X10-K]

SPECIFICATIONS

Model name Ra X10 Smooth
Case type full tower
Dimension (W x H x D) 220 x 572 x 606
Color Black / silver
5,25” drive bay 6 (incl. convert kit for 3,5’ external device)
3,5” internal drive bay 8
Expansion slots 8
Side panel Solid with noise absorbing foam
Material Entire aluminum (3.0 mm front door / 1.2 mm body construction / 2.0 mm material thickness construction bars
I/O panel top (dual e-SATA / quad USB 2.0 / one IEEE 1394 / one audio)
Cooling 1 x front 120 mm incl. LED + 1 x 120 mm optional / rear 1 x 140 mm / rear bottom 2x 80 mm / optional 1 x 120 mm bottom
Mainboard support µATX / ATX / CEB / E-ATX (extended-ATX)
Tool-less design One-touch removable front drive-bay cover / removable MB-tray / one-click HDD installation
Protection Rubber op HDD and PSU railing for anti-vibration and noise reduction
Maintenance Removable and washable filter, HDD cage and MB-tray
LED Front
Design Diamond-cut front door/ rotatable & removable anti-dust cover / EPS 12V PSU support/ 3D curve AL top cover

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

DVD Rom: R 335.00
http://www.take2.co.za/electronics-lg-gh22ls30-22x-ligh...

LG GH22LS30 SATA 22x LightScribe Dual Layer DVD Writer - Black / Ivory

LG GH22LS30 , 22x , Lightscribe , Sata , black+beige bezel , support SecurDisc technology ( password protection , digital signature , data

integrity check , PDF copy protection ) , super-multi : DL dvd+R , dvd±r/rw + dvd-ram + cd+/-rw ; 2mb - retail pack

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So that's it so far. I haven't done any research on hard drives and would appreciate any recommendations.
Could someone let me know about the ram issue?
April 11, 2009 4:44:10 AM

better kit of ram (nice low timings): http://www.comx-computers.co.za/OCZ3P1600LV6GK-OCZ-PC3-...

Step up the PSU to this so you can SLI later if you want:
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/PS-C850TXE-Corsair-TX85...

Excellent fast HDD:
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/computer-store-specific...

I think you are paying way too much for that case, its really not all that great. This one is awesome for the price:
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/CH-C690N-Coolermaster-R...
if you want something quieter...
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/CH-CC1000N-Coolermaster...
here's pictures of that one: http://www.newegg.com/Product/ShowImage.aspx?CurImage=1...

Good GPU choice...as long as you are getting a good sized monitor (at least 1680x1050 res)

Good CPU coolers:
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/CC-TU120X1366RT-thermal...
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/CC-Z99L-zalman-CNPS9900...
April 11, 2009 6:04:00 AM

Yes, there is a 4GB limit if you go with a 32-bit OS. You even have to subtract the GPU RAM from that to get the usable system RAM. That means there will be less than 3GB available to the OS if you go with a 32-bit OS. A new build like that absolutely NEEDS a 64-bit OS or you might as well just get 3GB, but that just seems silly. Is there any particular reason you're dead set on getting a 32-bit OS?
Related resources
April 11, 2009 6:23:36 AM

You will see ~3.25G of RAM total with a 32bit OS. I would suggest building with the hardware you like, then getting windows7 when it's available to you. You are putting a lot of money into a nice system, don't let the OS hold back the capabilities.
April 11, 2009 9:18:12 AM

Wow, thanks guys!

Let me explain some things:

The reason I'm running with 32 bit is because I already have the OS (Vista 32). Wish I hadn't gone that route as it's so hardware intensive. XP used to run so much better. I work from home but I also PLAY from home :)  I'm basically building a new machine but I'm going to keep some of the hardware I currently have:

Monitor 1: Samsung 22" SyncMaster 226BW 2ms
Monitor 2: Hanns.G 19" 5ms
Keyboard: Logitech
Mouse: Razor Habu
Speakers: Cambridge Soundworks

I can't afford to go 64 bit as I would have too many problems with my software compatibility (i'm assuming this as I've heard that you have to run 64 bit software which would mean I would have to then purchase all my applications all over again!... i think???). I'm an Art Director but spend my time doing graphic design. I would love to go the whole 3D graphics card route to enhance my 3D applications but they're very expensive when you try to get an equivalent to the high range gaming cards. I'm not 100% sure but there aren't that many games geared for 64 bit yet right? Can you run 32 bit software on a 64 bit p.c? I'm playing very hardware intensive games such as GTA IV and the likes ...

I was set on that box more for the look. I'm not really into the gamers style boxes. I prefer the slick and smooth looking stuff that looks like it could be in a James Bond movie :)  But I like one of the boxes you (xthekidx) recommended :)  Thanks!

I've kept future upgrades an option, but didn't realize I was under powering :)  Will definitely go with a bigger PSU as I intend on going SLI, maybe even 3xSli later :)  Also had to go with entry level i7 as the price jump to the next one is far too much. 8 months from now I will prob be able to go for a better processor for the same price I'm getting the entry level :)  LoL!!

Is it necessary to have a different CPU cooler to the one that comes with the cpu?

I would definitely consider going 64 bit(actually would LOVE to go that way), but what impact would it have on my software. I know I would have to purchase a 64 bit OS, but what about the rest of the software? Should I go with the 6g ram and use 32 bit in the meantime with the option of upgrading to 64 bit later? I see the CPU has 64 bit support. Is the rest of the hardware compatible?

Thanks so much for your knowledgeable inputs. It's working out more expensive than I intended but I don't care anymore. I just want to avoid having to build a new p.c a year from now. I've had my core 2 for a year now but it's waaaaaaaay too underpowered for my requirements already.

If you guys could clue me up on the whole 64 bit solution, I might just take the leap and do it! I'm just concerned about the rest of my software. I've spent almost R80.000.00 on software in the last year and a half and if I had to repurchase all of it again then it would run at a loss :( 

Your input is invaluable :) 
April 11, 2009 9:32:49 AM

Microsoft will send you a free upgrade to Vista 64bit if you pay for shipping.

Most programs are compatible with Vista 64bit that I am aware of, I was under the impression that only much older coded apps from the 90's weren't going to run on 64bit operating systems, but I might be wrong on that. What apps exactly do you use? I am sure there is online resources to check if they are compatible with Vista 64. Google search is your friend!
April 11, 2009 10:15:15 AM

Dude, you are a God! I didn't know that about Microsoft. Will check it out :) 

As for the software, well, it kinda makes sense to me because I never found software that i had to make sure it was 32 or 64 bit version. It's more the case of the drivers for the hardware. I'll have to do some research on that but you guys have been able to persuade me to go 64 bit!

I run quite a number of packages, far too many to mention but the main ones are:

Microsoft Office 2007 SBE
MS Frontpage 2003
Adobe CS3 Full package
CorelDraw 13
Cinema 4D (3D application)
3D max 6 (hardly use this now coz of Cinema 4D)
Truspace 7.6 (hardly use this now coz of Cinema 4D)
Nero 7 Ultra Edition

Then there's the games ... dunno if they can all run on 64 bit:

Grand Theft Auto IV
The Witcher
TrackMania United
Unreal Tournament III
Driver - Parallel Lines
Supreme Commander
Painkiller - Overdose
Assassins Creed
Gears of War
Micro Machines V4
Dark Messiah - Might and Magic
Battlefield 2
Need for Speed - Undercover
Need for Speed - Carbon
Flatout 2
Prince of Persia (all of them)
Need for Speed - Pro Street
Kane and Lynch - Dead Men
Command and Conquer - Tiberium Wars Kane Edition
Far Cry (can't wait to get the second one)
Dungeon Siege II
Age of Empires III - Collectors Edition
NeverWinter Nights (and all expansion packs)
NeverWinter Nights II
Escape from Paradise City
Titan Quest - Deluxe Edition
Sid Meiers Pirates
Return to Castle Wolfenstein
Call of Duty - Deluxe Edition
Quake 4
Quake 3
Doom 3
The Sims 2
Baulders Gate (and all expansion packs)
Icewind Dale (and all expansion packs)


Then there are all the new games I'm going to get!!! (The ones I just didn't bother coz I knew I wouldn't get the best performance)
Seriously suffering with GTA IV at the moment. Brilliant game but very chuggy. I got hooked on the game coz of the PS2. Played them all on console but when the new one came out I had to get it for P.C .... don't have a PS3 yet :(  ... or a 42" LCD tv for that matter. I don't see any point of plugging a PS3 into anything less!

April 11, 2009 11:21:41 AM

So I would like someone to just confirm whether going to 64 bit would only require me to get a 64 bit OS (Keeping the hardware above in mind.) Will the hardware I've listed run on 64 bit?
April 11, 2009 12:15:16 PM

Return to Castle Wolfenstein, runs fine on vista 64 bit
Most games will run on a 64 bit system.
Adobe CS3, run very fast on a 64 bit system. CS4 runs even faster. Build to 64 bit.
Happy days
April 11, 2009 12:30:11 PM

Microsoft Office 2007 SBE
MS Frontpage 2003
Nero 7 Ultra Edition
I can say for sure that these run great on Vista 64, Can't say about the others...don't run them, but most programs like you have will run on 64 bit, even better than 32 bit. But I can not be 100% positive as I do not run the others you listed, and as far as games go, Cod4 and 5 run great, GTA is fine.
April 11, 2009 12:34:48 PM

Right, so this is it guys, thank you for all your input and thanks for convincing me to go 64 bit. Here;s the list compiled from all the recommendations and is pretty much what I'm gonna go for ... unless someone can see something missing. I forgot to mention that I'm plugging in my T.V card as well to this rig. I don't watch tv on a normal set, i prefer my pc monitor :)  There' also other hardware that I haven't mentioned such as the external drives 1x1T and 1x500Gb. Then there's all the controllers for the games of course and my wireless headset :) 

Motherboard:
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/MB-AP6TDV2-ASUS-P6T-Del...


Processor:
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/CPU-i7920-Intel-Boxed-C...


CPU Cooler:
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/CC-TU120X1366RT-thermal...


Memory:
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/OCZ3P1600LV6GK-OCZ-PC3-...


Graphics card:
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/SC-XGTX285B-Xfx-GX-285N...


Power Supply:
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/PS-C850TXE-Corsair-TX85...


Chassis:
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/CH-CC1000N-Coolermaster...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ShowImage.aspx?CurImage=1...

DVD Rom:
http://www.take2.co.za/electronics-lg-gh22ls30-22x-ligh...


Hard Drive:
http://www.comx-computers.co.za/computer-store-specific...


Will get 64 bit OS with the setup :)  Please let me know if I've left anything out???

You guys have been amazing. With your knowledge you should be running training courses!
!