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Game Build? Need some help

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July 3, 2009 7:17:51 PM

Hi! I am new to the site. My name is Daniel...Dan for short...you guys have some really nice guides for newbies like me to help assemble PCs :)  I have come up with a budget build and i need you guys to take a look at it.

Before i list the components i should mention that in my city Asus is the ONLY choice basically due to limited or no support of MSI/Gigabyte/others.

Now i need a system to play games like fallout 3, crysis etc and mostly for web development which doesn't take a lot.

Phenom II x4 955 BE (really looking forward to overclocking it...maybe after the warranty is over lol)

for the mobo i have gone with the M3A78-EM which is based on the 780G chipset and has a PCIe x 16 slot. I save a lot of money if i get this mobo in place of the M4A78T-E or something similar based on the 790GX chipset. this way i can afford to buy a HD 4850 1GB card or the 1GB 9800GT card. the 790FX is way to expensive to even consider.

Ram is DDR2-800, 4GB (2x2GB)

Seagate 500GB 7200rpm Sata 2

18.5' LCD Samsung

650W Power supply (is this too much? too little? could really appreciate some guidance regarding this)

i will mostly overclock the 955 BE after 3 years (warranty expires) by then i should have a new PC as a backup if something horribly goes wrong. is the 780G a good overclocker? and is the above combination good for a budget build?

More about : game build

July 3, 2009 10:38:00 PM

Welcome to the forums Dan.

First thing that sticks out it the LCD. What resolution does it max out at? Because if its as low as I'm thinking, you'll have WAY more GPU power than you can use. So the monitor has to change or you can back off the graphics card unless theres a new monitor coming sooner than later. Whenever I spec out a system for someone, I start with the monitor and then work back.

More importantly than how many watts a power supply has, who makes it and how much amperage is on the +12v rail?
Related resources
July 3, 2009 10:51:16 PM

650W is overkill (450-500 is more like it) for a 4850 / 9800GT, but amps are more what we're looking for (as skora said).
July 3, 2009 11:45:21 PM

skora and Raidur,
I was trying to point him to system configurations that were designed to work together.

Danmidou,
It takes a lot of research and experience to figure out what components go together. I was suggesting that you look at model system builds that other people have put together and see if you see something you like.

You don't need the biggest and baddest, just one that gives you what you need now and can be a foundation for more later. If you go with a middle of the road graphics card today, you can always buy another later and hook them together using SLI. Maybe spending $200 on a Viewsonic 24" HD/DVI display is a better investment up front.

Take a look at the EVGA X58 SLI micro motherboard. $200 isn't bad. Consider the Intel i7 920 CPU. There is a lot of headroom for over clocking.

Good luck and keep us informed.
July 3, 2009 11:55:47 PM

Whats with buying one of the biggest and baddest AMD CPUs, only to pair it with a 9800GT and 19" monitor? This is an even dumber move seeing as you are "really looking forward to overclocking it". Bump the CPU down a bit, you won't need the 955. You probably don't even need the 940. Hopefully this will get you the 790, and possibly the 4870/GTX260.
July 4, 2009 12:05:30 AM

How about this instead
Phenom X3 720 be
2 x2 gig 1333MHz ram
Gigabyte GA-MA770T-UD3P


as a core system its a lot cheaper and should make room in the budget for an acer 22 inch widescreen and a 4890 or gtx 275 gfx card . Gaming performance will be a better and much more fun on the larger monitor
July 4, 2009 8:39:04 AM

Thanks for the replies guys :bounce:  ...would have posted sooner but i wanted to research the prices a bit more before posting...have converted it to dollars to help give a better idea.

i modified this a little bit...i am overshooting my target price by $22...another option is to drop the GTX 260 and go with the 940BE and 1GB 9800GT DDR3...that keeps me well within the target limit...

Sr. No. Description Model Amount In $
1 Processor Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition $160.1
2 Motherboard M3A78-EM $99.8
3 RAM DDR2 800 4GB $52.0
4 HDD Seagate Sata2-500 GB (16 MB Buffer) 7200RPM $57.2
5 Monitor Samsung 2233SW 22'' Full HD Wide Screen Monitor $214.1
6 Keyboard+Mouse Combo Logitech Wired Keyboard + Mouse Set $12.3
7 SMPS Cooler Master 600-eXtreme Power RS-600-PCAR $72.8
8 Cabinet CoolerMaster Elite 330 Black $44.7
9 DVD Writter Sony Sata DVD Writter $22.9
10 UPS 1000VA UPS $87.3
11 Graphics Card GTX 260 $239.1
Total= $1,062.2
Excess= $22.7

1) Problem-I can only go with ASUS (Gigabyte/MSI/others are not an option dues to lack of / no service here whatsoever :(  ) and the M3A78-EM is the cheapest Mobo i can think of. Plus my current asus has stood abuse from power failures, blackouts, surges and a lot more so i have more faith in asus products.

2) Intel is waay too expensive for me to afford (or shall i say AMD is much cheaper?) and i7 is totally out of my reach (even the 920 with the DDR3)

3)I think the screen size is sufficient for good gaming experience? and IMO a PC which plays game well is normally good for other work too (web development) am i correct?

4) Power Supply is a CoolerMaster ATX from factor 12V V2.01 with 6.3A@230Vac/8A@115Vac as input current. I have no idea what this means...HELP! :o 

Oh and go nuts with the opinions / criticism...after all its my first time assembling a new PC and this is the only way to learn :na: 
July 4, 2009 11:49:24 AM

1) I wouldn't worry about Asus. Its not like you have to buy only Epox or even worse.

2) If your looking to game, this won't be much of an issue. If you look at CPU gaming benchmarks like game X at 800x600, yes the i7 920 will be the fastest. But once you get back to normal resolutions the burden is back on the video card, so the CPU is less important.

3) If you really like gaming, a 22" 1680x1050 is the smallest I'd get. Even better would be the 24" and 30" screens that are 1920x1080 and larger. The other part to this question is a bit trickier. A good gaming machine will be fine for web surfing, watching videos, programming, etc.l Because you bought such a good video card however, the CPU is probably smaller then you could have bought. If your into video encoding/transcoding, heavy photo editing, etc, this gaming beast won't be the best.

4) I'm a bit less sure here. I'm guessing this is the max draw of the PSU from the circuit breaker? I wouldn't worry to much about those numbers. What I would worry about is CM isn't one of the better/best PSUs makers out there. They have some good ones, and they have some junk ones. Might want to research some and see which you are buying.

Your build looks good overall, except for that possible PSU problem. You might want to tell everyone where your from, as they might be able to suggest a cheaper place to buy, or a good online site that will ship to your country.
July 4, 2009 12:43:25 PM

danmidou said:
Thanks for the replies guys :bounce:  ...would have posted sooner but i wanted to research the prices a bit more before posting...have converted it to dollars to help give a better idea.

i modified this a little bit...i am overshooting my target price by $22...another option is to drop the GTX 260 and go with the 940BE and 1GB 9800GT DDR3...that keeps me well within the target limit...

Sr. No. Description Model Amount In $
1 Processor Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition $160.1
2 Motherboard M3A78-EM $99.8
3 RAM DDR2 800 4GB $52.0
4 HDD Seagate Sata2-500 GB (16 MB Buffer) 7200RPM $57.2
5 Monitor Samsung 2233SW 22'' Full HD Wide Screen Monitor $214.1
6 Keyboard+Mouse Combo Logitech Wired Keyboard + Mouse Set $12.3
7 SMPS Cooler Master 600-eXtreme Power RS-600-PCAR $72.8
8 Cabinet CoolerMaster Elite 330 Black $44.7
9 DVD Writter Sony Sata DVD Writter $22.9
10 UPS 1000VA UPS $87.3
11 Graphics Card GTX 260 $239.1
Total= $1,062.2
Excess= $22.7

1) Problem-I can only go with ASUS (Gigabyte/MSI/others are not an option dues to lack of / no service here whatsoever :(  ) and the M3A78-EM is the cheapest Mobo i can think of. Plus my current asus has stood abuse from power failures, blackouts, surges and a lot more so i have more faith in asus products.

2) Intel is waay too expensive for me to afford (or shall i say AMD is much cheaper?) and i7 is totally out of my reach (even the 920 with the DDR3)

3)I think the screen size is sufficient for good gaming experience? and IMO a PC which plays game well is normally good for other work too (web development) am i correct?

4) Power Supply is a CoolerMaster ATX from factor 12V V2.01 with 6.3A@230Vac/8A@115Vac as input current. I have no idea what this means...HELP! :o 

Oh and go nuts with the opinions / criticism...after all its my first time assembling a new PC and this is the only way to learn :na: 


1) Regarding that M3A78-EM, stick with 800 MHx memory like you have specified.

2) Regarding Intel, Dual Core chips have been successfully used by gamers. Quad cores are the current fashion.

3) I bought a 24" Viewsonic HDMI 1920x1080 Full HD screen for $210 at COSCO (a local store)

4) ATX form factor: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ATX

Your system's components are designed to run off the main 12v (volt) rail

The ATX power supply standard has had numerous revisons. V2.01 was a revision made in June 2004.

Voltage coming out of your wall is either
100-127V in North America, parts of South America, Japan, and Taiwan
220-240V in most of the rest of the world

Power is measured in watts which is defined as voltage times current: 1W = 1V * 1A

So the rest of it is breaking down that wattage number into supported currents at the two different voltages. If the voltage coming out of your wall is 230v then you have 6.3 Amperes of current to play with. Here in NA, we would have 8 amperes to play with.

------------------------------------------

One more comment, dropping that graphics card down to the GTX 250 might get you back your $22. Also, in six months when you want to go SLI, a second GTX 250 would be cheaper. The thing about SLI is that if you add a little to a little then you end up with a big pile. :) 
July 5, 2009 3:52:49 PM

hey guys, thanks for the reply again :)  after reading this thread i am getting more and more confident in this build...

1) i read the smps link and also tried out some psu calculators to see how much supply i need...and it said that 600w supply would be just fine. however nvidia req for the gtx 620 are around 640w and some of my friends and even some dealers say that 500w will be enough. getting a bit confused in this regard. they say that 600w uses 3 times more power than a 500w supply.is that true? so what should i go with? 500w, 600w or nvidia suggested 640w+?

2) also will a gtx 260 fit comfortably in a ATX cabinet and on the mATX board? will it crush or touch any other capacitors or something? its a big card and is making me nervous lol

3) i am thinking of getting the M3N78-EM based on the 8300 chipset...is that a good chipset cos the guide thread on choosing parts i read said nvidia wasnt that good (wondering if it has changed...and a friend of mine uses that board and said it works good) i wanna get the 8300 board so i can use the hybrid power feature with the gtx 260 card.

ill post more later tomm cos i am getting prices from some other local dealers (no online shops here ^_^;;; ) i am willing to spend around a $100 more as long as i get a even better system for a good price.
July 5, 2009 3:53:09 PM

sorry! the window said

"The site is temporarily unavailable.
Please come back soon. "

and i pressed refresh 2 times and this happened :( 
July 5, 2009 3:53:27 PM

sorry! the window said

"The site is temporarily unavailable.
Please come back soon. "

and i pressed refresh 2 times and this happened :( 
July 5, 2009 4:07:26 PM

1) You can probably squeeze by with a 500W if you have the 720 and the GTX260. I'd go with a 550W or 600W just to be safe. A 600W doesn't draw any more power then the 500W would, not taking effciency into account. A PSU will only supply as much power as the computer wants. This means if a computer is only going to draw 400W from the wall, both a 500W and 600W PSU will supply 400W. There is the matter of efficiency, but thats slightly outside your question.

2) It should fit inside the ATX case just fine. I wouldn't guess if it would fit the mATX board without looking at a picture of it. It probably will, but make sure there is nothing tall behind the PCIe 16x slot.

3) Nvidia has lost its favor recently with chipsets. Intel based chipsets are the best for Intel machines, and AMD/ATI chipsets work the best with AMD machines. The 8300 isn't bad, but the 790 is better. Don't buy the 8300 for hybrid SLI, it won't work with the GTX260. I think it only works with cards up to the 8400 series, I don't think you can even use the 8600GT.
July 5, 2009 9:58:48 PM

Yes, stay away from hybrid-SLI. I would trust the power calculators at sites like Corsair. They want to sell you PSU's so they will not cut you short. :-)

Just make sure that you include all future enhancements that you have planned, such as two graphic boards in SLI. You don't want to tear that puppy out and replace it.

Also, some of the power is lost due to heating. Most PSU's limit this to less than 20%, some less than 10%. This is of course factored in by the power calculators so don't worry about it.
July 6, 2009 4:48:27 PM

Personally i would go with a Gts 250 1Gb and Sli later on. You will save 120.00$ alone and get an x2 550 paired with a mobo that has a SB750, you will have an 80% chance of unlocking all cores so in the end you will have a fully working quad for 115.00$, but this is just my opinion.

Btw the Gts 250 will run fine with a 500w PSU ex: Antec EA 500w - 44A on 2 rails.

Dual 250's in Sli will outperform a single 260 (core 216).
July 6, 2009 7:46:54 PM

Where did you come up with that calculation? lol.. In Jan I purchased the EA 500w and I was running a single 250 and it was running perfectly fine. The 250 only needs a power supply with a combined 12V current rating of 26A or more.

So I guess your reply : FAIL ........
July 6, 2009 7:51:30 PM

I even tested the EA 500w with a 9800 GTX and the card ran flawless.

Btw the 9800 GTX draws more power than the Gts 250.....
July 6, 2009 7:52:49 PM

Quote:
Where did you come up with that calculation?


Uhm, Ohm's law? I never said the EA500 can't run the GTS250. I was simply correcting your 44A on the 12V rails statement. If it did, it would exceed 500W, which wouldn't happen. According to the picture on the side of the unit, it has 34A between the both of them. 34A is plenty for the GTS250. Its plenty for nearly all single cards.
July 6, 2009 7:56:07 PM

The reason you stated that is due to the fact that the pic you pasted is the old version of that PSU, the new EA 500w has (2) 12v Rails with 22a on each.
July 6, 2009 7:58:08 PM

I guess newegg was too lazy to update the info (pic). You can clearly see on the reviews that some peeps got the 34a version while others got lucky and got the 44a version.
July 6, 2009 8:10:11 PM

Even if that was true, how do you explain the math? 44A x 12V = 528W. This is more then the 500W PSU can output. Might be true for the EA600W or EA650, but you can't have a 500W PSU output 44A on the 12V rail(s). Its impossible.

I know of two different versions of the EA series. The first is made by Seasonic, and matches the picture. Antec dropped Seasonic and now uses Delta to make their PSUs. The name got changed to EA500D. AFAIK however the specs remained the same.
July 6, 2009 9:10:00 PM

Ok today when i get home from work I will paste a pic of my EA 500w so you can see for yourself that it indeed has dual 22a rails. Not all PSU's put out the wattage that they specify. Some come close, some have the exact specified wattage and some are over. That's just the way it is. For example the Antec TP 750 has 4 rails at 25a per rail.. If you do the math thats 1200w, so in the end you cant just go by what the package says, you have to look at the specs to know what you are getting.
July 7, 2009 3:17:22 AM

Quote:
you have to look at the specs to know what you are getting.


And you have to know how to read them properly. Just because an INDIVIDUAL rail can output 17 or 22A, don't mean all of them as a GROUP can. My favorite example is the Dell 305W PSU. It has two 18A rails, but can only output 22A at the same time. (18 x 2) x 12V = 432W. This is well north of 305W. But 22A x 12V is 264W, which leaves some room for the 3.3 and 5V rails.

You might want to stop here and do some reading. I suggest reading up on ohm's law, and how PSUs are actually put together. From what your writing, I get the feeling you'd be surprised to learn that "multi rail" PSUs are in fact single rail units.
July 7, 2009 5:19:15 AM

I understand exactly what you mean when it comes to ohm's law. Im just saying that the EA 500w that i got from best buy has different specs than the one showed on Newegg. If you scroll down in the reviews you will see tonz of peeps complaining due to the fact that they got the 34a version as opposed to most that have recieved the Delta version which in this case has 44a between both rails.
July 7, 2009 6:10:01 AM

Ok, I'm done with this. I have no intention of hyjacking this guys thread, and you apparently want me to believe that a 500W PSU can output more then 500W. Delta didn't add a bunch of power to the PSU when they started making it, they just started making it. If you really wanted me to believe you, you should have posted a link, or a picture of the side of your model showing that the 12v1 + 12v2 = more then the PSU can output. I do not feed trolls, nor do I want to distract anymore from the OPs problem. (if anyone remembers what it is.)

Good day to you sir, I hope your PSU is all you ever wanted. For the record I own two EA500W. The one in my wife's machine is the Seasonic built model. Two 12V rails, 17A individual, 408W/34A combined. Mine is the EA500D. Two 12v rails, 22A individual, with the SAME 408W/34A combined. Again, you should probably stop trying to convince me. You have no idea how to read the side of the PSU, try to educate yourself before you say something really dumb. If you really want to convince, PM me, or start a new thread.
July 7, 2009 1:05:45 PM

This is from Wikipedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer_power_supply
"In computer power supplies that have more than one +12V power rail, it is preferable for stability reasons to spread the power load over the 12V rails evenly to help avoid overloading one of the rails on the power supply.
  • Multiple 12V power supply rails are separately current limited as a safety feature; they are not generated separately. Despite widespread belief to the contrary, this separation has no effect on mutual interference between supply rails.
  • The ATX12V 2.x and EPS12V power supply standards defer to the IEC 60950 standard, which requires that no more than 240 volt-amps be present between any two accessible points. Thus, each wire must be current-limited to no more than 20 A; typical supplies guarantee 18 A without triggering the current limit. Power supplies capable of delivering more than 18 A at 12 V connect wires in groups to two or more current sensors which will shut down the supply if excess current flows. Unlike a fuse or circuit breaker, these limits reset as soon as the overload is removed.
  • Because of the above standards, almost all high-power supplies claim to implement separate rails, however this claim is often false; many omit the necessary current-limit circuitry,[6] both for cost reasons and because it is an irritation to customers.[7] (The lack is sometimes advertised as a feature under names like "rail fusion" or "current sharing".)"
    July 14, 2009 9:49:02 AM

    Hey guys, sorry again for the lack of reply. Had some serious lack of internet here due to many things going wrong at once. :( 

    The update here is that i have my new system! :D  I now have : -

    1 Processor Phenom II X4 940 BE
    2 Motherboard M3A78-EM (based on the geforce 8300 chipset)
    3 RAM DDR2 800 4GB (its a Corsair xms2)
    4 HDD Western Digital Sata2-500 GB (32 MB Buffer) 7200RPM
    5 Monitor Samsung 2233SW 22'' Full HD Wide Screen Monitor
    6 Logitech Wired Keyboard + Mouse Set
    7 SMPS Cooler Master 600-eXtreme Power RS-600-PCAR3
    8 Cabinet CoolerMaster Elite 330 Black
    9 DVD Writter LG PATA DVD Writter
    10 UPS APC 1000VA UPS (its has that PowerChute software thingy)
    11 Graphics Card GTX 260 (from palit...the sonic overclocked one)

    got all this for 1180$ ...I was able to make some last minute additions to my build and get this system with the 940 BE and get a good quality Corsair ram and the APC ups (in place of a cheap alternative).

    THANKS FOR THE HELP!!! :bounce: 
    July 14, 2009 9:54:32 AM

    Overall not bad. I don't think I would have got the CM600W PSU, but I'm no expert on how good that model is. You gave your budget as $1,040, and you went over a bit. Overall however, very solid.
    July 14, 2009 1:07:18 PM

    On number 9... Change that to a SATA drive over a PATA drive.
    On number 10... Why do you need a $87.3 UPS? I would think you could cut cost there to get you within budget.
    !