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Need Opinions on New Build

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May 9, 2009 4:24:53 AM

I am planning on putting together a new computer that will mostly be used for gaming, but it will also be used for things like media editing. it is possible I may upgrade my monitor some time down the road, but right now I am content with a 22" monitor. Also, I do plan on using SLI or CrossFire later on down the road, so please keep this in mind. I put together two builds, one cheaper than the other, based on the recommendations I've received from a few people. I am having some last minute concerns and I wanted to get your advice and opinions on these two builds before making my decision.

When you look at these builds you'll notice that the main differences are the processor (and consequently the RAM and Mobo) and the monitor. My biggest question is if the increase in performance justifies the increase in price (in your opinion). I've looked at the benchmarks and the second build will no doubt run faster, but is it worth the price?

My second concern is if these builds, especially the second one, are good builds and if there is any room for improvement. Because I'll be using this computer for gaming, performance is important. If it's possible I'd like to refine these builds more than I want to downgrade them.

Please give me whatever input you can about these two builds and which you think is the better decision (in light of whatever recommended changes you might make to them).

First Build:

CPU: Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 Yorkfield 2.83GHz
RAM: G.SKILL PI Black 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM
GPU: SAPPHIRE 100259-1GL Radeon HD 4870 1GB
HDD: Western Digital Caviar Black 640GB
MOBO: GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P LGA 775 Intel P45
PSU: CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W
DVD: LG Black 22X
CASE: COOLER MASTER RC-690
MONITOR (Choice 1): LG L227WTG-PF Black 22" 2ms Widescreen
MONITOR (Choice 2): ASUS VW224U Black 22" 2ms(GTG) Widescreen
HEATSINK: Noctua NH-U12P SE1366 120mm SSO CPU Cooler
COMPOUND: Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound

Choice 1 Monitor:
Total Price (w/ S&H): $1,231.08 - Before Rebates
Total Price (w/ S&H): $1,171.08 - After Rebates

Choice 2 Monitor:
Total Price (w/ S&H): $1,161.08 - Before Rebates
Total Price (w/ S&H): $1,101.08 - After Rebates




Second Build:

CPU: Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz
RAM: G.SKILL 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM
GPU: EVGA 896-P3-1170-AR GeForce GTX 275 896MB
HDD: Western Digital Caviar Black 640GB
MOBO: GIGABYTE GA-EX58-UD3R
PSU: CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W
DVD: LG Black 22X
CASE: COOLER MASTER RC-690
MONITOR: ASUS VW224U Black 22" 2ms(GTG) Widescreen
HEATSINK: Noctua NH-U12P SE1366 120mm SSO CPU Cooler
COMPOUND: Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound

Total Price (w/ S&H): $1,366.80 - Before Rebates
Total Price (w/ S&H): $1,298.80 - After Rebates


As you can see, the difference between the two builds is $100 - $200 before and after rebates.

Again, any input would be appreciated before I go ahead and decide on which build to get. Thanks.

More about : opinions build

May 9, 2009 4:35:22 AM

The 920 and here is why:

DDR2 is becoming obsolete. Prices are rising and if you ever need to add more RAM it will cost you.

6GB will certainly hold you longer than 4GB, and will still be easy to add to in a year.

The 920 will OC better than the 9550, and is faster at stock too.
May 9, 2009 6:18:33 AM

Proximon said:
The 920 and here is why:

DDR2 is becoming obsolete. Prices are rising and if you ever need to add more RAM it will cost you.

6GB will certainly hold you longer than 4GB, and will still be easy to add to in a year.

The 920 will OC better than the 9550, and is faster at stock too.

Anything to say about the monitor choice?

Something else I was wondering about was whether it might be worth it to opt for the EX58-UD4P in place of the EX58-UD3R, but is it worth the money?
Related resources
May 9, 2009 10:01:39 AM

I have heard a few anecdotes about each, but most seem satisfied. So I guess it would depend on the features you need.

As to the monitor, check my parts list in my sig, and I think there is a monitor guide link there as well. If not it's in my guide for sure.
May 9, 2009 6:29:07 PM

With your budget, and a desire/need for a quad, the i7-920 is the best way to go.
It is faster, clocks higher, and delivers 8 threads.

The price difference of your builds is minimal.
Your low priced build also has less ram, and a slower vga card.

The LG monitor has a better viewing angle, which makes it better.

Why not get a 24" monitor for less? The Soyo 24" has had some good reviews, and costs $199 at officemax.
http://www.officemax.com/catalog/sku.jsp?skuId=21649600...

A good monitor is one of the best "future proof" purchases you can make today. You will be looking at it for several generations of pc's.

I suspect that by the time you want to upgrade your vga system, sli will not be a good option. It will be better and cheaper to sell your current card and get the next generation single high end card.

May 9, 2009 6:50:44 PM

i7 for sure,only way a q9550 would make sense is if you already had a complete socket 775 system to throw it in.
May 9, 2009 7:36:55 PM

So what about the motherboard? Would it be better to go with the EX58-UD3R or the EX58-UD4P?

The problem I'm in is that with this build I can't afford a different monitor. If I took out the UD4P and replaced it with the UD3R, I could probably invest money into a different monitor, but then I wouldn't be able to SLI. If I'm not able to use SLI, then it would probably be better to invest that money into a better one-card GPU anyways, which still leaves me with the same monitor I already have. So I'm in kind of a rut with that.
May 9, 2009 9:52:27 PM

SLI/crossfire has been a poor upgrade path in the past. It should be used only by
those who will not currently be satisfied by the fastest available single vga card
which is currently the GTX295. The 4870, or GTX260-216
offer very good performance for the money now.
To get SLI. you have to spend more up front for a SLI capable mobo,a
more powerful SLI capable PSU, and better case cooling. Upgrading a single card later with a
second equal card does not get you 2x increase, it is more like 1.3x to 1.8x depending on the game.
At that time, you will still be paying top dollar for a card that is closer to
being obsolete.
It would be better to sell the old card and use the proceeds
towards a better new generation single card.
May 9, 2009 10:32:02 PM

So assuming I only use one GPU instead of SLI, what should I do about the monitor and the motherboard?

If I swap out the UD4P for the UD3R, I could do this:

EX58-UD3R
GTX 275 (896MB)
LG Monitor
TOTAL PRICE: $1,411.81

EX58-UD3R
GTX 275 (896MB)
ASUS Monitor
TOTAL PRICE: $1,341.81

EX58-UD3R
GTX 275 (1792MB)
ASUS Monitor
TOTAL PRICE: $1,396.81

EX58-UD3R
GTX 275 (1792MB)
LG Monitor
TOTAL PRICE: $1,466.81

* All prices include S&H and are before rebates

What should I do?
May 10, 2009 12:00:44 AM

The UD3R has 4 ram slots, the UD4P has 6. For triple channel use, I think a 6 slot board gives you more options.
Tha Asus P6T of some variety is also a quality board.
May 10, 2009 3:37:23 PM

geofelt said:
The UD3R has 4 ram slots, the UD4P has 6. For triple channel use, I think a 6 slot board gives you more options.
Tha Asus P6T of some variety is also a quality board.


If i get the ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 LGA 1366 Intel X58, I can combo it with some RAM and the total cost of the computer comes out to $1,393.89


So...
UD3R vs. UD4P vs. P6T Deluxe V2
!