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$1700 Build Advice Final Thoughts..

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May 5, 2009 3:16:10 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Possibly Today BUDGET RANGE: Current Cost 1700, Ideal 1500 or less.

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming: (RPG, FPS, Fallout 3, Mass Effect, HL2 mainly),Multitasking, Programming, Image Editing.

OVERCLOCKING: CPU yes, GPU maybe.

MONITOR RESOLUTION: Looking at buying that 1920x1200 so would like to run at least all the games out now as close to full effect as possible.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I am looking for advice on the parts ive chosen and also trying to figure out what type of VID card I should get. Posted a few days ago and I was looking for a way to run 3 monitors so I wanted 2 vid cards but if I get the monitor listed below I dont think ill want 3 for a long time. :D  Is the 4850 CF the best way to go for your money at this point? Or will just 1 4870 1GB do the trick nicely? Or should I look at the Nvidia side now. Also The ASUS mobo looks good but I get the feeling its for an enthusiast (Ive never spent 280 on a mobo before..) and I am not thinking ill need one that powerful? So if thats the case got any recommendations? Any additional comments MORE than welcome! Thanks!

Not Needed: OS, Keyboard, Mouse, Speakers.. Going with Windows 7 RC.

Current Build Parts

Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80601920 - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.186986

ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.187088

LG 22X DVD±R DVD Burner Black SATA Model GH22NS30 - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827136152

Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Hard Drive - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319

SAPPHIRE 100259-1GL Radeon HD 4870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102801

CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power ... - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139006

OCZ Platinum 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model OCZ3P1600LV6GK - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227381

XIGMATEK Dark Knight-S1283V 120mm Long Life Bearing CPU Cooler - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233029

Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.187088

Hanns·G HG-281DPB Black 27.5" 3ms Widescreen HDMI LCD Monitor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824254026
May 5, 2009 3:19:37 PM

Ok $1260.37 including ship+MIR if you swap out my 24" for your 27.5" Hanns-G (if you open to non i7 options)


May 5, 2009 3:25:33 PM

I dont know, For some reason im really leaning towards i7 for this build. I have done AMD for the last like 2-3 builds the past 10 years or so, but I really am looking at going i7 for this one.. But thanx for the info.. Why choose the 4770's CF tho?
Related resources
May 5, 2009 3:28:07 PM

Nearing GTX 285 country?
May 5, 2009 3:51:00 PM

Dual 4770's in Crossfire meet or beat a single 4870, so its better bang for your buck. Check out this review.

With you're budget I would get this i7 920 and HD 4890 combo. A 4890 overclocked can match or beat a GTX 285 (review). This brings your build up to around $1600 after shipping.

IMHO the i7 is overkill for gaming, especially at resolutions over 1680x1050 because at the point the game is very GPU dependent. If you really want to play every game at the highest settings at a 1920x1200 resolution I would go AMD Phenom II and Crossfire 4890's.

Swap these out into your build:

AMD Phenom II 955 BE and Gigabyte 790FX mobo combo
OCZ 4GB(2x2GB) DDR3 1600 memory kit
2 XFX HD 4890 graphics cards

Total comes to $1608 after shipping. The PHII 955 won't be as fast as the i7 920 in general computing and multitasking, but IMO its fast enough and not worth the extra money. With that extra money you save, you'll get A LOT more performance from dual 4980's in Crossfire. The 4890's not only scale very well (~93% in 1920x1200 resolution) but are also faster than a GTX 285 when overclocked. If you really want to play every game in max settings, this is the way to go.
May 5, 2009 3:52:27 PM

Actually, 4830 CF will perform about the same as 4870...so I think it's safe to assume 4850 CF will out perform a single 4870. Although the free PCI-E lane from using a single card will allow future upgrade by doing 4870 CF.

I think the i7 mobos are just expensive in general, nothing you can do there.
May 5, 2009 3:56:31 PM

I wouldn't recommend Vista 32-bit. Get the 64-bit Vista Home Premium, or give Windows 7 a try like you said.

HD 4770 CF will beat one HD 4870, and you get support for 3 or even 4 monitors instead of two, so it's not a bad idea IMO. Of course, if you can buy a HD 4870 1GB (or HD 4890 1GB) now and add another later that's better - but it costs more.

If you get a GTX 285 upgrade the PSU to Corsair 850TX so you can add a second GTX 285 later.

There are cheaper boards for the i7, like the GA-EX58-UD3R. You should compare features before deciding, of course.
May 5, 2009 4:19:14 PM

Ya, windows 7 rc today ^_^. Can't wait to get home and download.

By the way...anyone bit torrenting that windows is guaranteed trojans!
May 5, 2009 4:22:01 PM

I already have Windows 7 RC (64bit version) downloaded and on a DVD :D  , So thats the way I plan to go. I am a multitasking addict I think, I run lots of things at once, Before Ive had Visual Studio 2008 up and playing a tv show and downloading stuff and plus photoshop running, etc etc. Gaming is a big thing for me.. But to be honest playing them at THE best settings isnt the highest priority. I mean im currently using a 1440x900 monitor and running a 7950gt. I want the 1920x1200 because that would be an awesome desktop space for programming/picture editing as well as gaming.

So what I THINK ill do is get the 4870 1GB for now and maybe a second later *shrugs* What id like to know is will just 1 4870 be able to run say Fallout 3, Mass Effect, Empire:Total War oh and X3-Terran Conflict, at good settings if not the best in 1920x1200?
May 5, 2009 4:24:54 PM

I know! i got about a hundred free trojans when i went to panama city for spring break . . . oh wait you mean computer viruses . . .

but yeah, just download it from microsoft, theyre actually giving it away for free. all the torrents are loaded down with viruses.
May 5, 2009 4:29:21 PM

Don't forget, you can get that card for now...but DX11 is coming soon. The line up of graphics cards coming Q4 '09' is pretty good. And the cards that are out now will be way cheaper too...
May 5, 2009 4:46:30 PM

KyoZed said:

So what I THINK ill do is get the 4870 1GB for now and maybe a second later *shrugs* What id like to know is will just 1 4870 be able to run say Fallout 3, Mass Effect, Empire:Total War oh and X3-Terran Conflict, at good settings if not the best in 1920x1200?


Yes.

That card can get an average of 64 fps at 1920x1200 in Fallout 3 with all the eye candy maxed. That's more than the typical monitor's limit of 60 Hz already.
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/graphics/2009/04/14/sapphire-radeon-hd-4870-2gb-vapor-x-review/6

I don't know about the other games (too lazy to find benchmarks for them too), but I'm 100% sure they're playable on the HD 4870 1GB. It gets 19 fps even in Crysis at 1920x1200 with very high quality. That is the nastiest test for a graphics card these days. Most games are a lot less demanding than that.
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/graphics/2009/04/14/sapphire-radeon-hd-4870-2gb-vapor-x-review/4
May 5, 2009 4:53:20 PM

Thanks for the info Aevm +1.
May 5, 2009 5:43:28 PM

Asus Computer International
M4A78T-E 790GX AM3 ATX Motherboard
http://microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?pro...
$170

AMD
AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition
http://microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?pro...
$250

Corsair Memory
TX750W 750 Watt ATX 12V Power Supply
http://microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?pro...
$160

OCZ Technology
Gold Edition 4GB DDR2-1066 (PC-8500) DIMM Memory Kit (Two 2GB Memory Modules)
http://microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?pro...
$50

Western Digital
Caviar Black 1TB 7,200RPM Serial ATA-300 Hard Drive
http://microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?pro...
$150

Samsung OEM
12x Double Layer 20x DVD±RW Burner
http://microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?pro...
$30

BFG Technologies
GeForce GTX 295 1792MB GDDR3 PCIe 2.0 Graphics Card
http://microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?pro...
$520

$1375

Just my 2 cents. If you wanna replace the gtx 295, remember, benchmarks show this getting 40fps on crysis at 1920x1080, 4x aa. This setup could probably play most any game at 60+fps indefinately. And the cpu is very overclockable. Also the gtx 295 is gonna be cheaper than anything like dual 4890's, and fairly comparable.
May 5, 2009 6:46:14 PM

Most of those components are cheaper on New Egg. The mobo is $30 cheaper, the CPU is $5 cheaper, the HD is $45 cheaper, and the PSU is $40 cheaper. Oh, and that memory wont work with that AM3 socket Mobo, you'll need to either get an AM2/AM2+ or DDR3 memory.
!