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Help with gaming build with approx $1000 budget

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June 21, 2009 4:27:38 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: This week - approx. $1000 budget

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: gaming, surfing the internet, productivity software, watching movies (I tend to have several windows open at once)

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: newegg.com, microcenter.com (they have a local store)

PARTS PREFERENCES: None.

OVERCLOCKING: Maybe
SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Probabaly

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1200 - I have a Samsung 226cw

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I'm leaning toward running Windows 7


I found 2 VisionTek 4870 512mg cards for $129 each, I grabbed them on sale but can return them if they aren't any good. newegg has a card that looked almost the same that got really good reviews, but I noticed the part number was a couple digits offs.
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... (this looks close to the same, but I slightly different stock number)

I obviously need a crossfire board if I stick with these cards and a psu that can support them. I'm currently leaning toward AMD

Cases
Would this one fit the cards? Looks like it has good cooling.
99.99 (79.99 with $20 mail-in rebate 6/26/2009) NZXT TEMPEST Crafted Series CS-NT-TEM-B Black Steel / Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Should be plenty big but might be overkill. Combo discount brings it down another $30.
149.99 COOLER MASTER HAF 932 RC-932-KKN1-GP Black Steel ATX Full Tower Computer Case - Retail
119.99 (99.99 with $20 mail-in rebate) CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply - Retail
239.98 (-$30 for combo; 214.98 with $20 mail-in rebate) http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...


Motherboard + CPU
This combo has a nice discount. Not sure if this board would support crossfire with these cards?
129.99 (114.99 with $15 mail-in rebate) ASUS M4A78T-E AM3 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard – Retail
139.00 AMD Phenom II X3 720 2.8GHz Socket AM3 95W Triple-Core Black Processor Model HDZ720WFGIBOX – Retail
214.99 (-$54 for combo; 199.99 with $15 mail-in rebate) http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Same board with better processor. Is this processor worth the extra $130?
129.99 (114.99 with $15 mail-in rebate) ASUS M4A78T-E AM3 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard – Retail
245.00 (Free Shipping) AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor - Retail
354.99 (-$20 for combo; 339.99 with $15 mail-in rebate) http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...


RAM
64.99 G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL8D-4GBHK - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Drives
74.99 (Free Shipping) Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive – OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
22.99 SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache IDE 22X DVD±R DVD Burner – OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


I'm open to totally scraping what I have listed if you have better suggestions. I espcially need motherboard advice, I don't really know what to look for ensure my cards are properly supported. Thanks!
June 21, 2009 5:12:54 PM

I can build you a good core i7 rig for about 1000

COOLER MASTER Centurion 590- $59.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS P6T SE LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard- $209.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Patriot Viper 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600- $85.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Intel Core i7 920- $279.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Western Digital Caviar 640 GB- $64.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SAPPHIRE 4890 OC edition- $199.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CORSAIR 550w Modular-$99.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Samsung 22x SATA Burner- $24.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

$1025.99
June 21, 2009 6:11:35 PM

Thanks for the feedback!

Would the 4890 you listed at 199.99 be a better value than 259.98 for the two 4870s I listed?

I'm defintely open to Intel, but it seems like many of the post I've seen recently have been pushing AMDs as a better solution for the money. Do I really get the value for the extra cost for intel?
Related resources
June 21, 2009 6:52:04 PM

No, you'll get better performance with 4870CF. As to the Asus 790GX board, you'll take a small performance hit compared to the 790FX, but given your usage you should try to get into the quad.

The Tempest is a good case, and the HAF is excellent. Another case to consider is the Cooler Master 690.
June 21, 2009 7:21:09 PM

So, given my usage, what are your thoughts between intel and AMD? That FX motherboard is a bit more and makes me wonder if looking at intel starts to make sense. And I'm guessing this is the board you are recommending for the AMD route?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Also, any idea if those video cards will fit in the Tempest case? I keep reading how space tends to be a problem with some of these newer video cards.
June 21, 2009 7:30:23 PM

I would really consider going with the i7 build, but keeping your video cards and power supply...it will end up at about $1100, but the extra $100 will be getting you large gain in cpu performance, as at stock speeds in most usage the i7 will outperform the amd940 by about 15% - 25% (depending on the app). And if you need more power in the future you can upgrade the cooling and the i7 overclocks like a champ on the Asus p6t boards. 4.0 on good cooling ($70 -$100 hs/fan) is fairly easy.
June 21, 2009 10:55:04 PM

As belial2K has suggested, once you start looking at 790FX boards and AMD quads, you might as well get an i7.

No, I would not suggest a 790FX board. What I'm saying is spend your money were you will get the most performance out of it.... Let me look at the numbers here.

Actually, it's not as bad as I thought :p 

I think I would do this:

AMD X4 955 -245

Gigabyte 790X DDR3 -140
.... For 40 dollars more this is probably the better choice:
Asus 790FX DDR3
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OCZ 4GB 1600Mhz Platinum -71

Cooler master 690 -80

PC P&C 750W -110

The drives you listed.

After market cooler and paste:
Scythe Mugen - 37
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MX-2 -8
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


You can save a boatload on the X3/790GX combo. I had no idea the price had gone down. I think for a multi-tasker that wants to be happy with his build for a while, this will be better though.
!