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First Time PC Gamer Build. LF Constructive Criticism

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June 28, 2009 11:35:17 PM

As the title says this is my first gaming rig. I am not trying to build a monster, but at the same time I want something that will run games smoothly and I also want it to be able to run newer games that come out in the future. This is what I have put together after weeks of research, hopefully you guys can give me some suggestions on how to improve it, while staying in the same general price range. Assuming that I buy all the items linked below the total cost would be about $1150.00 FYI I have about $150 dollars more that I can put toward any part of the computer. Any suggestions are greatly appreciated : )


PSU: Cosair TX850W
http://www.amazon.com/Corsair-CMPSU-850TX-850-Watt-Cert...

CPU: i7 920
http://www.amazon.com/Intel-2-66GHz-Hyper-Threading-LGA...

CPU Cooler: Cooler Master V8
http://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-Nickel-Aluminum-Hea...

Case: Antec 902
http://www.amazon.com/Antec-Nine-Hundred-Steel-Ultimate...

Mother Board: EVGA X58 3x SLI
http://www.amazon.com/EVGA-132-BL-E758-A1-Motherboard-T...

Graphics Card: EVGA GTX 260 Core 216 SSC edition (I want to get a second one eventually to run in SLI)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM: !!!!! Not too sure on this one I was looking at the one linked below, but I was also looking at getting 6gb of Corsair Dominator so that I wouldn't have to upgrade my RAM once I get Windows 7.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black 640gb
http://www.amazon.com/Western-Digital-Caviar-Black-WD64...

OS: Windows XP Pro (Will be upgrading to Windows 7 Home Premium at release)

I have not found a CD/DVD drive yet, but I factored it into the price I posted at the top for about $30, so if you have any suggestions on one of these for around that price that would be great. Once again, thanks for all your help.

BTW, below is a link to the Corsair Dominator Memory that I mentioned I was thinking about getting, but I figured I'd ask you guys if the money isn't better spent elsewhere.
http://www.amazon.com/Corsair-TR3X6G1600C8D-Dominator-P...

June 29, 2009 1:21:46 AM

^+1.... On Hunter315's memory choices

Since you like the EVGA board (good choice :)  ), look at their new board below. It is a "stock" version of the classified for a $150 or so less.

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

With the money you save, you can add the other GTX260 or upgrade your one card to a GTX285 or GTX275 than add a second one of those later when you get more money. What resolution are you looking to game at? Depending on that info., we might recommend a different card (GTS250, GTX295...etc.)
Related resources
June 29, 2009 1:28:25 AM

Can I ask why you like the Antec 902?

Have you looked at the Coolermaster Storm Scout?
June 29, 2009 1:39:25 AM

I chose the antec 902 because the 900 got a lot of good reviews and it looks nice but I saw the 902 and it had some nice features, such as dust filters, fan control and an optional hard drive fan. Also it has a lot of fans out of the box, and room for more fans, which is good because I plan to overclock my pc. As far as the resolution goes, I really don't know( sorry i'm kind of a tech noob). At first I am going to be using an older 17 inch thin flat screen, but I do hope to upgrade to a nice 22" in the near future.
June 29, 2009 1:48:37 AM

Probably not worth wasting money on i7 for gaming

http://www.overclockersclub.com/reviews/phenom2_955/8.h...

Even nVidia told buyers not to use i7 . Outlander says i7 is ok but only if you have huge money to spend on gfx cards and you dont

so be smart , build a Phenom system and use all the money you save on the mb and cpu to buy a better gfx card
June 29, 2009 2:57:58 AM

Outlander_04 said:

so be smart , build a Phenom system and use all the money you save on the mb and cpu to buy a better gfx card


Depends on what you see as smart - buy a cheaper performing Phenom system now, and be faced with upgrading both cpu and gpu next year or two, or buy i7 now and only worry about graphics cards over the longer term.

Truly NOT interested in another AMD/Intel measuring contest. Just need to say there are several ways to look at "value".
June 29, 2009 3:25:07 AM

Outlander_04 said:
Probably not worth wasting money on i7 for gaming

http://www.overclockersclub.com/reviews/phenom2_955/8.h...

Even nVidia told buyers not to use i7 . Outlander says i7 is ok but only if you have huge money to spend on gfx cards and you dont

so be smart , build a Phenom system and use all the money you save on the mb and cpu to buy a better gfx card


http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/cyberpower-gamer-dr... <---- Maybe you should have linked him to the recent benchmarks here at toms.

June 29, 2009 4:50:49 AM

+1 for the RAM suggestions...
And as for the i7/ Phenom II debate, I would suggest if you can get an i7 in your budget, then you should get it...The Phenoms are good low budget alternatives...

Here is a revised build for you...

Core i7 D0 stepping(If you plan to overclock, else get it from Amazon)
http://www.antaresdigital.com/customer/product.php?prod...

Mobo - The EVGA is a very good board...but check if the chipset heatsink doesnt block the CPU cooler...
Another very good alternative for the mobo, for less...Though it has only 2 PCIe slots, it is more than suffice...
Asus Rampage Gene...
It is a ROG product, which implies it would have very good features with high quality components...
Review of that mobo on TOMs...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/rampage-gene-lanpar...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM -
+1 for the OCZ Platinum...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
or
OCZ XMP Ready Series 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Graphics card - $230 for GTX 260...NO...
Get the GTX 275 instead - Same price
EVGA 896-P3-1170-AR GeForce GTX 275 896MB 448-bit DDR3 PCI Express
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU Cooler - The V8 is good but you can get comparable performance for less

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Productcompare.aspx?Submi...
June 29, 2009 5:31:27 AM

The P6T Deluxe V2 mobo is one of the best rated i7 mobos out there...
June 29, 2009 6:20:59 AM

-In order to get your full performance of your CPU you need to get triple channel RAM and at least 3GB! You can get very high quality OCZ 6GB for 90bucks on newegg right now. Just make sure its Three sticks of ram otherwise ur choking your i7.

-Save like 50 and get a p6t

-Unless you absolutly need an extra 140GB of space, I would get a 500GB drive as I am pretty sure it will have 1 less platter making it significantly faster, although i am not sure about this specific drive.
June 29, 2009 6:25:39 AM

^ The P6T is a very good option but if you check that combo, the price difference becomes nearly negligible....
June 29, 2009 6:36:21 AM

gkay09 said:
^ The P6T is a very good option but if you check that combo, the price difference becomes nearly negligible....


How so? It seems like it would save me exactly what it says, $105. It seems like an excellent deal to me, especially since I was looking at that Dominator RAM anyway. Unless I'm missing something...
June 29, 2009 6:45:32 AM

@serdna117 that post was for blackhawk1928 and not for you...Read his post...

And that combo deal is very good and does save you that much...
June 29, 2009 6:46:19 AM

gkay was talking to blackhawk, not to you.

Blackhawk suggested getting the P6T (not P6T deluxe) and OCZ memory to save money. Add in the cost of the 920, and that comes to $630 or $610 if you count the MIR of $20.

gkay responded by saying since the combo (P6T Delux, Corsair mem, and 920) only cost $625, the difference was either non-existent or negligible for the quality difference in parts.
June 29, 2009 6:56:11 AM

^ :)  Thank you for explaining on my behalf...
June 29, 2009 7:00:40 AM

Link, don't expect good 3-way SLi performane out of the P6T. Just say'n.
June 29, 2009 7:01:50 AM

Twoboxer said:
gkay was talking to blackhawk, not to you.

Blackhawk suggested getting the P6T (not P6T deluxe) and OCZ memory to save money. Add in the cost of the 920, and that comes to $630 or $610 if you count the MIR of $20.

gkay responded by saying since the combo (P6T Delux, Corsair mem, and 920) only cost $625, the difference was either non-existent or negligible for the quality difference in parts.


Oh, lol my bad. Anyway, does anyone know how the Asus board is on overclocking? And how their warranty is with regards to damage from overclocking?
June 29, 2009 7:31:53 AM

For o/c they do offer more than enough options to take the i7 to 3.6GHz+ with very good air-cooling...
But don't have any idea about warranty though...And would you even say them that the damage was caused because of O/C ??? I don't think you should :p ...
Mostly the mobo don't get damages by o/c ( The mobo gets damaged mostly because of the PSU) ...O/C would mostly damage the CPU but the current gen can easily take a good beating though...
June 29, 2009 7:41:15 AM

gkay09 said:
For o/c they do offer more than enough options to take the i7 to 3.6GHz+ with very good air-cooling...
But don't have any idea about warranty though...And would you even say them that the damage was caused because of O/C ??? I don't think you should :p ...
Mostly the mobo don't get damages by o/c ( The mobo gets damaged mostly because of the PSU) ...O/C would mostly damage the CPU but the current gen can easily take a good beating though...


Ah, I see. I just assumed that they would be able to tell. Anyway, thanks alot for linking that Newegg bundle. It will save me a bunch of money. BTW, I am also switching to a Coolermaster HAF 932, since I have had so many people suggest that I not go with the Antec 900.
June 29, 2009 8:14:45 AM

Why_Me said:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/cyberpower-gamer-dr... <---- Maybe you should have linked him to the recent benchmarks here at toms.



You linked to benchmarks that prove my point exactly

When you combine i7 and a hugely powerful crossfire or SLI gfx set up it can produce higher frame rates , but in this instance its an utterly pointless comparison since the computer the OP is proposing to build includes ONE GTX 260 ... exactly like the system in the benchmarks I linked to in the first place .

Once again you let your i7 fanboy status blind you to obvious truth .

oops
June 29, 2009 8:21:19 AM

I could just as easily say your economy build is pointless - it just guarantees the need to upgrade both the cpu AND the gpu as games progress, as well as perhaps the mobo, depending on what AMD does . . . if anything.

No one is blind to the fact that a cheaper AMD/ATI system can perform well enough in current games, delivering superior price/performance. Some people want more than that.

Stop imposing your values on everyone else, and stop assuming everyone who chooses a different path is a blind fanboy.
June 29, 2009 8:31:37 AM

Twoboxer said:
Depends on what you see as smart - buy a cheaper performing Phenom system now, and be faced with upgrading both cpu and gpu next year or two, or buy i7 now and only worry about graphics cards over the longer term.

Truly NOT interested in another AMD/Intel measuring contest. Just need to say there are several ways to look at "value".



ROFLMAO

even if you pay the extra for an i7 now it will still just be an old computer in two years time

value is getting the most cost effective system to achieve a result , and i7 is a complete failure at achieving that goal
June 29, 2009 8:39:01 AM

Twoboxer said:
I could just as easily say your economy build is pointless - it just guarantees the need to upgrade both the cpu AND the gpu as games progress, as well as perhaps the mobo, depending on what AMD does . . . if anything.

No one is blind to the fact that a cheaper AMD/ATI system can perform well enough in current games, delivering superior price/performance. Some people want more than that.

Stop imposing your values on everyone else, and stop assuming everyone who chooses a different path is a blind fanboy.



Every generation of cpu has utterly thrashed whats gone b4
A budget e5200 completely demolishes the Extreme edition Pentium 4 that cost over a thousand dollars just for the cpu 3 years ago .

Todays top end is tomorrow junk .

In 2 -3 years time a complete new system will be required to play the latest games even if you buy i7 today


As for imposing my values.... what are you on that another opinion is too much for you to handle?
The immaturity pill?
June 29, 2009 5:21:16 PM

First off, if you go with the i7, you should get triple channel memory, not the double channel you have listed. Id suggest one at 1333mhz, 3x2gb with low CAS timings. probly cost you around $90 on newegg.

second, get a better graphics card. the 260 is aging quick. Either go with a 275 or 280 for $60 more or get a Radeon 4890. the radeon is currently within the top 5 cards on the market... according to the benchmarks from tomshardware.

Also, you might not need such a large power supply. a 650 or 700 is more than enough, especially if you go with an amd build.
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