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First Build - Quick & Quiet for under $650- Feedback Please

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June 28, 2009 8:13:14 AM

Ready to try my first build.. seeking feedback on the following solution for internet, basic photo editing, occassional video editing using Pinnacle Software. Seeking a system that is quick, cool and quiet (and not too hard on the budget). Also trying to keep the size of the case to a minimum due to limited space. Suggestions welcome!

Gigabyte MA790GP-UD4H motherboard paired with an AMD Phenom II X4 940 Black Edition 3.0GHz (B69-2076 combo at Tiger direct) 340.00
4GB PK G.SKILL 4GB DDR2 1066 PC2 8500 (F2-8500CL5D NewEgg) 55.00
Western Digital 500 GB HD 7200 RPM SATA 3.0 GB OEM Version 57.00
PC Power and Cooling Silencer 610W PCI Express SATA Ready Copper PS, 80 Plus 80.00 (Alternate, OCZ/ Stealth XStream 600W PS 69.00)
Samsung Lightscribe CDRW DVD Recorder that I already own 00.00 (Might eventually add Blu-Ray for use with a 47" HDTV or build a mATX HDCP specific system)
Antec 300 Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Case 60.00 (Also considering CM 690 / open to suggestions. Need cool and quiet with front ports for at least USB.)
Existing Olevia 26" LCD Monitor/TV, Wireless Keyboard and Mouse
Windows XP SP3 (or possibly Vista Home Professional) until Win 7 adopted

Reviews suggest the onboard graphics may be adequate. If not, considering Radeon 4850 or 4870. Had not planned to add additional fans or cooling unless necessary, was hoping to achieve what is needed through a good power supply and the right case.

Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback.
June 28, 2009 12:51:08 PM

First off, at the egg, that mobo goes for $120 with an addition 10% off right if you get their newsletter and the cpu is only 190. Even with shipping for the mobo, you'd come out ahead at newegg.

If you're not doing 3D gaming, this is a bit overkill. Using the intergrated graphics would be fine and then a smaller PSU. You could go with more appropriate PSU like an antec earthwatts.
Check this out, the case is smaller and comes with a great PSU. Theres also a nominal Vista combo discount if you wanted.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
If you don't like that case, search for the EA380 and look at the combos, lots of good cases to choose.

Not sure if the DDR2 1066 will boost performance vs the 800, but the price difference is nominal. Someone else could give a better answer for that.

Hope this helps and saves some cash.
June 28, 2009 1:32:41 PM

Because of the onboard controller in the processor it can actually use DDR2 1066 however if you are not doing gaming or a ton of photo editing the speed advantage of a quad over a triple probably isnt going to be noticable for the price, and the 720 comes with a hell of a combo
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Also you can get the 300 combo'd with various PSU's
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
That 500 Watt will be more than sufficient for what you need. Those two would reduce the price of your build by about $170. Granted for that board you need DDR3, but even with this memory your savings are still over $150 so its probably worth it, and it leaves you alot of potential upgrades for the future.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Related resources
June 28, 2009 10:47:43 PM

skora said:
First off, at the egg, that mobo goes for $120 with an addition 10% off right if you get their newsletter and the cpu is only 190. Even with shipping for the mobo, you'd come out ahead at newegg.

If you're not doing 3D gaming, this is a bit overkill. Using the intergrated graphics would be fine and then a smaller PSU. You could go with more appropriate PSU like an antec earthwatts.
Check this out, the case is smaller and comes with a great PSU. Theres also a nominal Vista combo discount if you wanted.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
If you don't like that case, search for the EA380 and look at the combos, lots of good cases to choose.

Not sure if the DDR2 1066 will boost performance vs the 800, but the price difference is nominal. Someone else could give a better answer for that.

Hope this helps and saves some cash.


skora,
Thank you for the tip regarding Newegg combos and PSUs. Looking at other MA790GP-UD4H/940 builds seems 500W might be just enough, but see reports that there can be "noise" problems with the Antec 500 PSU if just barely enough. Newegg has a deal on the OCZ ModXStream Pro OCZ600MXSP 600W ATX12V CrossFire Ready 80 Plus Certified Active 82% Efficiency 120mm fan. is 89.99 with a $30 rebate. Seems like a good deal. Your thoughts on PSU / pairing it with the Antec 300 case?
June 28, 2009 11:13:09 PM

hunter315 said:
Because of the onboard controller in the processor it can actually use DDR2 1066 however if you are not doing gaming or a ton of photo editing the speed advantage of a quad over a triple probably isnt going to be noticable for the price, and the 720 comes with a hell of a combo
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Also you can get the 300 combo'd with various PSU's
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
That 500 Watt will be more than sufficient for what you need. Those two would reduce the price of your build by about $170. Granted for that board you need DDR3, but even with this memory your savings are still over $150 so its probably worth it, and it leaves you alot of potential upgrades for the future.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


hunter315,
Really appreciate the advise- the combos and discount options at Newegg seem to be the way to go.
Looked at the X3 combo, came with an Asus board. Haven't done much research on this board yet as it appeared Gigabyte for AMD (and HDCP in particular) seemed to be highly recommended. Is the combo just as good for photo and media / HDCP?

Staying with Gigabyte, after further research at the one vendor, this is what I have come up with.

OCZ ModXStream Pro OCZ600MXSP 600W PSU 12V, CrossFire Ready, SLI 80 Plus Certified 82% Efficiency 120mm fan $59.99 after rebate
Antec 300 Mid Tower Case 59.95
GSkil 4 GB 2X2 DDR2 1066 (can opt for the DDR2 800 but only 8.00 difference in price) 54.99
GZ-MA790X-US4P 109.99
AMD Phenom II X4 940 189.99
WD 640GB HD 59.99 (3.00 more than the 500GB)
Existing LightScribe, Monitor, Keybd and Mouse
Vista 64 Home Premium from Fry's (comes with upgrade to Win 7) 119.99

Thanks to the tips- almost dead-on with my budget. Welcome further feedback / will this system go together with minimal fuss / any issues?

June 29, 2009 3:05:45 AM

Its always good to help someone thats also doing their own homework. Good on ya for it.

You're way over estimating how much power you'll need. A 500w PSU is enough to run some crossfire and SLI setups and you won't be using a vid card at all. I plugged into this calc with generous extras for your setup and it was well under 300watts. So don't right off some of the smaller PSU if they have quality and quit going for them.
http://extreme.outervision.com/psucalculatorlite.jsp

Definately keep an eye on the combos. The Antec 300 and Gskill ram $15 off, or the case with the HDD. Lots of options.

And while I make it a rule not to disagree with the veterans around here, if you're doing any video editing, the 4th core will be faster. Whether its worth the price difference is up to you.

And not that I'm a newegg fan boy (but I kinda am) Vista Home Premium comes with the upgrade also and is $10 cheaper at the egg.

This combo has the Antec 300 with an antec 430w PSU and Vista HP.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
!