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Advise on new build

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Anonymous
August 21, 2009 11:26:36 AM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: tomorrow
BUDGET RANGE: US$1200-1500

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: gaming, music, photomgt, movies

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS

PARTS PREFERENCES: Intel I7 cpu, Asus motherboard
OVERCLOCKING: Maybe
SLI OR CROSSFIRE: YeMaybe

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1680x1050, possible upgrade next year

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: system needs to be windows7 ready, quiet system

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Here's an overview on a system I would put together :

Asus P6T DDR3 Socket I7
Intel core I7 920
Corsair TR3XG1600C7 1600 MHz DDR3 XMS3
Asus EAH4890/hdti/1GD5
Corsair HX620 PSU
WD6400AACS 640Gb 16MB
Coolermaster Centurion 590 Midi Tower
Samsung SH-S223B DVD writer

- I'm not sure about the graphics card and mainboard as there are a lot of different suppliers : Asus, Sapphire, MSI, XFX, ... There's also a TOP model from Asus and a 2GB version, ... difference with a GTX275 with less memory?
- Is there additional cooling necessary?

Any feedback on this build would be welcome.


More about : advise build

August 21, 2009 12:34:31 PM

If you're planning on crossfiring in the future, get a higher rated power supply, most likely a 750w Corsair/PC Power and Cooling/Antec. The VaporX 4890 by sapphire is rated very high for performance and quiet.
August 21, 2009 12:55:54 PM

I agree with the PSU recommendations, and will also add OCZ to the list. Large amounts of GPU memory is needed for driving multiple, or large displays at high resolutions. If you don't plan on hooking it up to a beast of a monitor, extra GPU memory won't give you more performance.
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Anonymous
August 21, 2009 1:45:17 PM

Thanks for the info. I'm not planning to hook it up to a super large monitor so I'll stick to the 1Gb version.

Regarding the memory. Why do you suggest OCZ? I also found this memory set from Kingston :
Kingston 6GB (3x 2GB) 1600MHz DDR3 HyperX Lifetime Warranty (KHX12800D3LLK3/6GX)
August 21, 2009 4:41:28 PM

I was actually referring to dirtmountain's comment on PSU suggestions, OCZ makes good quality power supplies at a fair price. In their memory department, they tend to have better timings, though it's not a huge difference, and only becomes important if you plan on overclocking everything. Here's the OCZ RAM similar to the kingston you selected: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Timings are a tiny bit better, purchase price is lower. Though with the $50 rebate, the Kingston is cheaper. I'd say it's a toss up, pick which ever you like more.
August 24, 2009 8:51:55 AM

OK, makes sense.

Any views on the graphics card. I'm still not sure wether to get the GTX275 or HD4890. Is there any info on how they will perform with directx 11?
August 24, 2009 12:06:33 PM

There isn't a whole lot out there on how DX 11 will perform, but I can say for sure that games that will fully support DX 11 will lag behind the card releases by 6 months to a year. That's how it went from DX 9 to DX 10. Any new games you will want to play in the next 6 months will look and play just fine on DX 10, so I wouldn't make direct X support a major factor in deciding between high-end mainstream cards.
August 24, 2009 2:22:05 PM

One final question regarding cooling. Is an additional CPU fan necessary to go with the I7 or is the fan coming with the mainboard enough to do a small performance increase?
August 24, 2009 3:19:16 PM

Core I7s run hot to begin with, the stock heatsink/fan cooler that comes with the I7 is adequate if you stay at stock speeds. If you want to overclock at all, get an aftermarket cooler and good thermal paste. The i7 cooler from Xigmatek seems to be the best value and easiest to install.
August 24, 2009 4:19:59 PM

The HD you have listed is the slower green edition. The green drives are nice for HTPC's and as storage only drives, but not fast enough to be the main system drive in an i7 build IMO. I would swap it out for the faster black edition drive for an extra $10.

Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS $74.99
August 24, 2009 4:29:46 PM

Good catch, didn't notice that was the model number for green drives. It was only a 16MB cache one as well. I think all the WD greens that end in "DS" are 32MB cache
August 25, 2009 9:55:44 AM

Thanks for the advise on the HD!!

The only coolers I can get hold off are :
Zalman CNPS9900 LED AMD AM2/AM2+/AM3 Intel 775/1366 (CNPS9900 LED)
Cooler Master V8 AMD 940/AM2/AM2+ Intel 775/1366 (RR-UV8-XBU1-GP)

My only question is if the performance increase through overclocking worth the cost for an additional cooler?
August 25, 2009 10:00:06 AM

^ the 9900 doesn't perform well with i7's and the V8 is overpriced and doesn't perform well.

Just stick with the stock cooler.
September 2, 2009 3:46:14 PM

Thanks to all for the help on this build.
When finally making my order I noticed differences in the Kingston memory I was going to buy. They have 6Gb (3x2) sets in CL9 CL8 and CL7.

Is it worth while making the extra cost in choosing CL8 or CL7 in this build?
September 2, 2009 4:00:16 PM

do all the kits have the same voltage ratings? if not, get the one with the lowest voltage. It will run a bit cooler, and marginally help keep your system from needing higher fan speeds. There is a performance difference between the CL7 and CL9, but it won't be very pronounced unless you overclock your system.
September 7, 2009 3:22:33 PM

CL7 is faster than CL9 because it runs with tighter timings.
!