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$1500 Gaming System Build, Please Give Your Opinions!

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May 8, 2009 12:08:11 AM

Hello everyone!
I've been wanting to build a desktop for the past few years now, and I decided to spoil myself as I get ready to go off to college and blow (invest) much of my cash on a sweet gaming rig. A few weeks ago I found tomshardware.com, and after going through... a lot of articles, in addition to reading the forums and searching other websites, I came up with this build:

https://secure.newegg.com/WishList/MySavedWishLists.asp...

That should work, I made the Wish List shared.

I'll break it down here, though (prices include mail in rebates, and are rounded):
2- GTX 280: $450
1- XCLIO STABLEPOWER 1000W Power Supply: $150
1- OCZ Gold 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 2000 Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory: $110
1- LG 22X DVD±R DVD Burner: $23
1- Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case: $60
1- EVGA E758-TR 3-Way SLI (x16/x16/x8) LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX: $270
1- Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz LGA 1366: $280
1- Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 750GB 7200 RPM SATA: $80
3- IPCQUEEN IPC-12025 120mm Case Fan: $11
Total (including mail-in rebates and shipping): $1459.52

So, I'll explain the parts I chose and why I chose them.

Graphics Cards:
For $225 a pop, I really couldn't resist the idea of having two of them in SLI. I will be playing FPS games, among other things, at 1920x1200, and I would really love to have all the fancy effects on (AA, etc.). I am planning on overclocking them somewhat (I am planning on overclocking much of my build, actually), so they should be quite potent.

Power Supply:
Alright, so for calculating the size of the power supply I would need, I drew from a few sources. I saw from a few articles on tomshardware.com and on other sites that two GTX 280's in SLI drew, at the most, 575ish watts. I was planning on overclocking the I7 to 3.3ghz, which, according to the article here, drew a peak of 251 watts. I called eVGA, and the representative told me the mobo would draw a peak of 50-60 watts (that would be including the ram, I believe). The hard drive will draw a peak of 7 watts, and I have no numbers for the DVD drive. So, that gives me a peak draw of 900something watts. Now, seeing this, I wonder if I could afford to go down to a 950w power supply, or if I should just play it safe with the 1000w. If I were to go to the 950, I could save $30 and buy this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Ram:
I wanted 2000Hz. This was the cheapest option in a 6GB format. I admit, not much thought went into this one...
A question, actually. The rep I talked to said that the only way that I could use more than 1600Hz was if I overclock my CPU (which I was planning on). Why is that?

DVD/CD Drive:
It had good reviews, it was cheap, the same specs as the DVD drive that is recommended by this website (the one they recommend is a few bucks more :(  ).

Case:
I chose the case largely based on the review given on this website. I also liked the three fan bays, and the way it opens up. And, it wasn't too expensive.

Mobo:
Again, I used tomshardware.com's article on the $200-$300 I7 mobos. I wanted a card that could have two cards with space between them, so it was this one or the DFI LANPARTY DK X58-T3eH6. However, the iffy reviews on newegg.com made me lean torwards the one I selected. However, if you have experience with the LANPARTY mobo and recommend it, please let me know!

Processor:
Going into this, I knew I wanted an I7. And I knew I wanted to overclock it. I will be trying to overclock it to either 3.3 GHz or 3.6 GHz.

Hard-drive:
It was the cheapest hard-drive I found that went at 7,200 RPM and was of a sufficient capacity for what I need.

Fans:
They were the cheapest fans, they have many good reviews, and the numbers seem good.



So, that's my build. Any advice or comments are appreciated!

And, I guess I should ask. As I see this now, I wouldn't mind taking the price down a bit. Would you all recommend going with an AMD processor an overclocking it to save some dough?





Edit: I forgot to follow the rules :non: 

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Next two weeks

BUDGET RANGE: Ideally, it would be around $1200. However, it seems that if I want to go with the I7 and the two GTX 280's it will be $1500.

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming, Internet, CAD, Word Processing

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Mouse, Keyboard, Monitor, Sound System

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: None. I used newegg.com, but I have no real preference.

PARTS PREFERENCES: None. Will buy a part based on its merits.

OVERCLOCKING: Yes

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Yes

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920 x 1200

More about : 1500 gaming system build give opinions

May 8, 2009 10:39:51 AM

here are better parts for 1494-70 mail in rebates=1424$

2xSAPPHIRE 100269SR Radeon HD 4890 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail (these would beat a gtx 280 in sli)

CORSAIR CMPSU-850TX 850W ATX12V 2.2 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply - Retail (less wattage but better brand)

OCZ Platinum 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model OCZ3P1600LV6GK - Retail (cheaper than the ocz gold and it has a lower latency so it would be better)

LG 22X DVD±R DVD Burner Black SATA Model GH22NS30 - OEM

COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail (more expensive but has better cooling and looks better)

ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail (the V2 has a lot of space between the cards so it would suit you and it is better than the evga)

Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80601920 - Retail

Western Digital Caviar Black WD7501AALS 750GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Hard Drive - OEM (it is better than the segate)

that's the end of the build i would add a little more and get a cooler so that i can overclock to more than 3.0 GHZ

best coolers:

XIGMATEK Dark Knight-S1283V 120mm Long Life Bearing CPU Cooler - Retail

COOLER MASTER V8 RR-UV8-XBU1-GP 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler - Retail

Noctua NH-U12P SE1366 120mm SSO CPU Cooler - Retail

i would get the noctuca because it will allow you to over clock a hell and it is one of the best coolers
May 8, 2009 11:25:12 AM

computersss said:
here are better parts for 1494-70 mail in rebates=1424$

2xSAPPHIRE 100269SR Radeon HD 4890 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail (these would beat a gtx 280 in sli)

CORSAIR CMPSU-850TX 850W ATX12V 2.2 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply - Retail (less wattage but better brand)

OCZ Platinum 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model OCZ3P1600LV6GK - Retail (cheaper than the ocz gold and it has a lower latency so it would be better)

LG 22X DVD±R DVD Burner Black SATA Model GH22NS30 - OEM

COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail (more expensive but has better cooling and looks better)

ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail (the V2 has a lot of space between the cards so it would suit you and it is better than the evga)

Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80601920 - Retail

Western Digital Caviar Black WD7501AALS 750GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Hard Drive - OEM (it is better than the segate)

that's the end of the build i would add a little more and get a cooler so that i can overclock to more than 3.0 GHZ

best coolers:

XIGMATEK Dark Knight-S1283V 120mm Long Life Bearing CPU Cooler - Retail

COOLER MASTER V8 RR-UV8-XBU1-GP 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler - Retail

Noctua NH-U12P SE1366 120mm SSO CPU Cooler - Retail

i would get the noctuca because it will allow you to over clock a hell and it is one of the best coolers

^ +1
;)  Very nicely put...
Related resources
May 8, 2009 11:30:47 AM

But as for the graphics card, you can go with either of the options(GTX 280/4890)...
May 8, 2009 11:36:59 AM

i think too that both have the same performance but i read somewhere that 2x4890 scales more in 1900x1200 and higher resolutions
May 8, 2009 11:57:36 AM

Well that depends more on the games that you play as some games scale/favour well on nvidia h/w and some on ATI...So it is more of game specific...
May 8, 2009 12:35:45 PM

computersss said:
here are better parts for 1494-70 mail in rebates=1424$

2xSAPPHIRE 100269SR Radeon HD 4890 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail (these would beat a gtx 280 in sli)
Dang, seems like you're right. And they overclock quite well, too. Thanks!


CORSAIR CMPSU-850TX 850W ATX12V 2.2 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply - Retail (less wattage but better brand)

Well, my concern would be that 850w isn't enough for what I'm going to put in this. The 4890 will draw about the same as the 280 (when overclocked), so I don't think 850 is enough.


OCZ Platinum 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model OCZ3P1600LV6GK - Retail (cheaper than the ocz gold and it has a lower latency so it would be better)

Quite a nice mail-in rebate there. But, I have a question. Would I get better performance from the 1866MHz with 9-9-9-28 timing (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...), or with the 1600MHz with the 7-7-7-24 timing (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)?


LG 22X DVD±R DVD Burner Black SATA Model GH22NS30 - OEM

COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail (more expensive but has better cooling and looks better)

Are you sure it has better cooling? The 300 has room for five fans. Though it does look much nicer... alright, I'll go for it.


ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail (the V2 has a lot of space between the cards so it would suit you and it is
better than the evga)

A lot of reviewers seem to be using it. And they have it open-box for $200! That's definately replacing my eVGA.


Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80601920 - Retail

Western Digital Caviar Black WD7501AALS 750GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Hard Drive - OEM (it is better than the segate)

What are you basing that off of? Just wondering, is it personal experience?


that's the end of the build i would add a little more and get a cooler so that i can overclock to more than 3.0 GHz

Yeah, I can't believe I forgot about that :pt1cable: 


best coolers:

XIGMATEK Dark Knight-S1283V 120mm Long Life Bearing CPU Cooler - Retail

COOLER MASTER V8 RR-UV8-XBU1-GP 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler - Retail

Noctua NH-U12P SE1366 120mm SSO CPU Cooler - Retail

i would get the noctuca because it will allow you to over clock a hell and it is one of the best coolers

Those are all quite expensive. Will the XIGMATEK be enough if I'm just going to 3.6 GHz?


My replies are in red. Thanks for the advice!
May 8, 2009 12:41:15 PM

Oh, I'll update the initial build I posted once I figure out the ram and the hard drive!
May 8, 2009 1:02:32 PM

Well just a point about the HDD...
The WD Black 640GB are newer are more efficient than the 750GB ones...
So you might want to change them...
If you dont want to loose that extra capacity, then get this -
Western Digital Caviar Black WD1001FALS 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Hard Drive

And as for your power supply issue, the 850TX is more than suffice for that setup...
You should take a look at this...Just select the components and click on calculate...
http://extreme.outervision.com/PSUEngine

That PSU is actually an overkill...for HD 4890 crossfire even a Corsair 750TX is suffice...

Go with a 1000W PSU only if you are going to add one more HD 4890 in tri-crossfire...
And as for your PSU I would get a better quality than that...the Corsair 850TX would be a better alternative than that PSU...
May 8, 2009 1:22:50 PM

well i would get the ocz platinum 1600 because IMO it is the best

for the case the cooler master comes with 3x120 mm fans while the antec 300 comes with 1x120 and 1x140 and as my experience overall the cooler master 690 is one of the best cases

As for the asus p6t V2 open box! duh ?! i would never get an open box because you don't know what happened to it maybe something is broken or maybe it is even fired(i maybe wrong as i don't have an experience with the open boxes)

the seagate has some problems and it is obviously that you would be better getting a high quality western digital, gkay09 said it the western digital 2x640 gb with 32 mb cache or 1tb with 32 mb cache would be the best and he is also right about the psu even the 850 would be an overkill as the whole machine with the 2x4890 will draw less than 750 watt

As for the cooler the Xigmatek will do an excellent job if your ambition is to overclock to 3.6


May 8, 2009 1:29:00 PM

Alright, I'll go with the Corsair PSU.
How are Rosewill PSU's? They are $30 less for 850w.

And 640GB of storage is fine, I switched that as well.
Now what should I do about the ram?
May 8, 2009 1:33:44 PM

computersss said:
well i would get the ocz platinum 1600 because IMO it is the best

for the case the cooler master comes with 3x120 mm fans while the antec 300 comes with 1x120 and 1x140 and as my experience overall the cooler master 690 is one of the best cases

As for the asus p6t V2 open box! duh ?! i would never get an open box because you don't know what happened to it maybe something is broken or maybe it is even fired(i maybe wrong as i don't have an experience with the open boxes)

the seagate has some problems and it is obviously that you would be better getting a high quality western digital, gkay09 said it the western digital 2x640 gb with 32 mb cache or 1tb with 32 mb cache would be the best and he is also right about the psu even the 850 would be an overkill as the whole machine with the 2x4890 will draw less than 750 watt

As for the cooler the Xigmatek will do an excellent job if your ambition is to overclock to 3.6


Well, I'd assume the open box is covered under the manufacturer's warranty. However, there is no info given on this (there's a newegg.com 30 day refund thing, but that's also all that's listed for the new mobo). I'll give newegg.com a call later today and ask about it.
And I'll go for the 1600MHz, thanks!


Edit: You say the 850w is overkill. Is that true even if I plan on overclocking the two 4890 (the link gkay09 gave doesn't allow you to change this option)? I really don't want to end up screwing this whole build up because I went with a 750w that falls just short or something.
May 8, 2009 1:38:02 PM

rosewill! hearing only the name of this company makes me vomit,they are crappppppppppppppppppppp everything made by rosewill is crappppppp as for the ram get the ocz platinum 1600 with 7-7-7-24 because they will run at the 1600 with the timing listed as for the ocz 1866 it has many problems in running at 1866 as you see from the reviews

Edit:the 750 will do the job fine but go with the 850 to feel safe and there isn't a huge difference in price
May 8, 2009 1:53:12 PM

^ Yes if you are so concerned about the PSU, then get the 850TX...
!