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Gaming Rig: i7 vs Core duo set-ups

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June 27, 2009 3:04:18 AM

I have two different builds I would love to make, but I can only afford one. Which would you guys go with, between the two builds? If I spent less on the CPU I could get the second graphics card faster, which is good, but will it still work out down the road? This computer will be used for gaming mostly, which makes me wonder if getting more cores is really worth it. I know that software/games will eventually be designed to use more cores, but if 'eventually' means 3 years down the road (before its standard), then wouldn't it be worth getting a dual core now and wait until there are 8x cores or more? Thanks for any discussion, and would love any suggestions to either build!

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Mid to late July

BUDGET RANGE: $1200 - 1500

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming, streaming movies/tv to television, surfing

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Mouse, keyboard, monitor, speakers, sound card

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: newegg.ca, tigerdirect

PARTS PREFERENCES: Intel, AMD, etc...

OVERCLOCKING: Yes

CROSSFIRE: Yes

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 22 inch LCD

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Will be running Windows 7


i7 BUILD

HDD: $69.99
Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - OEM

Cooler: $59.99 Had some trouble finding one to fit the i7 board
Noctua NH-U12P 120mm SSO CPU Cooler - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6835608002

GPU: $94.99 Will be getting a second quickly if not at the same time
SAPPHIRE 100245L Radeon HD 4850 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6814102810

CPU: $279.99 How high could this be easily O.C.'d?
Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6819115202

Case: $49.99 Want something roomy enough for upgrades as well as good air flow...
COOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-UW Black Aluminum Bezel SECC Chassis ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

DVD: Stock ~$20.00

MOBO: $291.99
EVGA E758-A1 3-Way SLI (x16/x16/x8) LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6813188039

RAM: $99.99
OCZ Gold 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Voltage Desktop Memory Model OCZ3G1600LV6GK - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6820227365

Paste: $8.95
Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: $119.99 Anything cheaper?
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/Prod [...] 6817139006

Total Cost: 1095.87


CORE DUO BUILD

CPU: $159.99
Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 Wolfdale 3.0GHz 6MB L2 Cache LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU: $94.99
SAPPHIRE 100245L Radeon HD 4850 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6814102810

Case: $49.99
COOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-UW Black Aluminum Bezel SECC Chassis ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MOBO: $119.99
GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3R LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM: $49.99
G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F2-8500CL5D-4GBPK - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Paste: $8.95
Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: $119.99
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/Prod [...] 6817139006

HDD: $69.99
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...

DVD: Stock ~$20.00

Cooler: $59.99
Noctua NH-U12P 120mm SSO CPU Cooler - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6835608002

Total Cost: $753.87

More about : gaming rig core duo set ups

June 27, 2009 3:27:12 AM

Also if you do a google on "ewiz coupons" or "ewiz promo codes" you can take another $5 - $15 dollars off that mobo/cpu combo down below.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $79.99
COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail

http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?Product... $100.00 ($70 after MIR) Free Shipping
PC Power and Cooling SILENCER 750W QUAD S75CF Power Supply Retail

http://www.ewiz.com/detail.php?name=MB-EX58U4P Combo Price: $492.99 Free Shipping
Intel Core i7 Processor i7-920 2.66GHz 8MB LGA1366 CPU, Retail
GIGABYTE GA-EX58-UD4P Core i7/ Intel X58/ DDR3/ CorssFireX & 3-Way SLI/ A&GbE/ ATX Motherboard

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $39.99
XIGMATEK Dark Knight-S1283V 120mm Long Life Bearing CPU Cooler - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $4.99
Tuniq TX-2 Cooling Thermal Compound - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $149.99 Free Shipping*
XFX HD-487A-ZHFC Radeon HD 4870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail
Double Lifetime Manufacture Warranty

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... Combo Discount: -$7.00 Combo Price: $162.98 $20.00 Mail-In Rebate Free Shipping*
OCZ Gold 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Voltage Desktop Memory Model OCZ3G1600LV6GK - Retail
Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - OEM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $25.99
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 SATA 22X DVD Burner - OEM

Total: $1,056.92 | $1,006.92 w/mail in rebates

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/evalcenter/dd353205.... <--- Save yourself some money on an o/s until March 2010 and dl the 64 bit version of Windows RC 7
June 27, 2009 5:18:01 AM

I would be very tempted to go for the Core 2 Duo setup and then put the money that I saved from not going core I7 into a huge GPU. GTX 280/285, 4870 X2 or something similar. I would expect better gaming performance then.
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June 27, 2009 5:37:32 AM

I'd go for the i7. Your config will game very well. In the next few years to come, there will be video cards that out perform what you can get today.

An i7 will allow you to take advantage of them, the C2D will likely not. If you go C2D you will be facing the need to upgrade BOTH gpu and cpu.
June 27, 2009 5:44:47 AM

Nice point Twoboxer, that definitely leans me towards the i7 setup.
June 27, 2009 5:48:14 AM

Honestly, I would go for the i7 setup, just because it's much easier to upgrade graphics cards in the future, while cpus can be a pain, plus u can always easily OC the cpu
June 27, 2009 6:12:52 AM

Going with the i7 is a no brainer imo. That and I just posted a build that got you a better gpu, and case for cheap.
June 27, 2009 6:02:51 PM

i7 is a nobrainer overclock anyways. 3.6 can be achieved by just increasing the BLCK
!