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New budget gaming rig build - with some life to it

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August 26, 2009 4:51:46 AM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: (ASAP) BUDGET RANGE: (US$1250-1750)

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: (gaming, surfing the internet, watching movies)

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: (keyboard, mouse, speakers)

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: (I live in Japan, so my options are limited - www.faith-go.co.jp is the best supplier I have found in my area - open to suggestions for those who can ship to Japan)

OVERCLOCKING: Maybe

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Eventually - but I am open to either option. I have had better experiences with nVIDIA than ATI.

MONITOR RESOLUTION: (General operation at 1600x1200 probably, capable of running some games at 1920x1080/1920x1200. Future upgrades of GPU possible/likely)

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: (Japan is fairly hot and humid in the summer - might need to compensate for that)

I am looking for a new gaming system, that isn't too expensive.

Here is what I have found so far. Comments?

Window Vista Home Basic (with the upgrade to Win 7 when it is released)

Intel Core i7 920
Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD3R Intelx58 (not sure if I should upgrade to ASUS P6T Deluxe V2)
6GB PC8500 DDR3 1066MHz

WD1001FALS 1TB 32MB S-ATA2 7200rpm 3Gbps
nVIDIA GeForce GTX 285 (my plan is to eventually run 2 of these SLI)
onboard sound
onboard 1000Base GigabitLAN
DVD

EDIT: Antec 1200 gaming case. (I like the look, sturdiness and fans w/ filters)

I have older drives that I will install for extra room - unless someone knows how to make a specific drive have extra security, in which case, I may store personal files there. (is this even possible?)

I am not sure what to look for in a DVD player. Is there much difference in the market, or should I just focus on brand?

I am open to the idea of a different video card suggestion - especially since the 200-series nVIDIA may drop in price when the 300s are released this year.

As stated above, the GA MB was recommended to me, but I am open to the idea of a different MB.

Comments on the choice of HDD? It was the best one in the list of options at the store I will likely be shopping at.

Is the RAM sufficient? Again, I was limited by choices in their packages.

Finally, I am looking for a good flat-panel monitor in the 22-28" range.

It is possible for me to shop for individual components, but these were the choices available to me from the store. Suggestions are always welcome.
August 26, 2009 5:07:56 AM

Addendum to my questions above:

What is the difference in the ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 and the P6T SE?

Is the Rampage 2 Extreme worth the money?

Are some MBs specialized for nVIDIA technology vs ATI tech? I assumed that anything listed as CROSSFIRE was for ATI. DOes nVIDIA have a comparable designation?
a b 4 Gaming
August 26, 2009 5:09:45 AM

^ If you are looking for solely for a gaming rig, you can check the AMD AM3 rig, going with it can save you good money...
But thats upto you...if budget allows for an i7, then get it...

And dont get the GTX 285...they are not worth the extra money...instead get GTX 275...they have similar performance of the GTX 285 for resolutions upto 1920X1200...

And from where do you shop ??/ Are you from US and can buy from online storees???
Related resources
August 26, 2009 5:11:53 AM

Nope. I actually live in Japan, so my choices are VERY limited. Shipping is just too expensive and risky overseas, AFAIK.
August 26, 2009 5:24:19 AM

gkay09 said:
Well I think this should help get more info...
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/261222-31-build-advic...
Fill it and post it here...would easily give us the required info to help you out...


Sorry, I read the HOW TO POST guide for the General Homebuilt section - but not for this section. I edited the OP to include the information in the guide you linked. Thx.
a b 4 Gaming
August 26, 2009 5:24:48 AM

Here is a general i7 config that you can keep as referenace...

CPU - i7 920 (Preferrably D0 stepping if you want to overclock)
Mobo options - ASUS P6T, P6T Deluxe, Gigabyte UD4P, UD3R(If you will not be using more than 6GB of RAM) ASUS Rampage Gene, EVGA
RAM - Though 1066MHz is fine, but get somehting more faster...
Preferrably DDR3 1333MHz with CAS 7 or DDR3 1600MHz with CAS 8
HDD - The WD Black 1TB is a very good option...
Graphics card - GTX 275/ HD 4890 - Brands -> XFX, EVGA, Saphire, HIS, BFG, ASUS, Gigabyte, MSI
PSU - If you are planning for multiple cards - A high quality 700W PSU from Corsair/ PCP&S/ Seasonic/ Silverstone/ Antec EA, TPQ/ CM Real Power

Hope it helps...
August 26, 2009 5:38:48 AM

gkay09 said:
Here is a general i7 config that you can keep as referenace...

CPU - i7 920 (Preferrably D0 stepping if you want to overclock)
Mobo options - ASUS P6T, P6T Deluxe, Gigabyte UD4P, UD3R(If you will not be using more than 6GB of RAM) ASUS Rampage Gene, EVGA
RAM - Though 1066MHz is fine, but get somehting more faster...
Preferrably DDR3 1333MHz with CAS 7 or DDR3 1600MHz with CAS 8
HDD - The WD Black 1TB is a very good option...
Graphics card - GTX 275/ HD 4890 - Brands -> XFX, EVGA, Saphire, HIS, BFG, ASUS, Gigabyte, MSI
PSU - If you are planning for multiple cards - A high quality 700W PSU from Corsair/ PCP&S/ Seasonic/ Silverstone/ Antec EA, TPQ/ CM Real Power

Hope it helps...

Yes, thank you.

Questions:
What is CAS 7/8?
I take it you didnt like the Mobo choice I had?
Of the Mobo's listed, which is most likely to have a good lifespan to it and why?
RAM - hmm... that was the fastest they listed. maybe I will just have to buy/install faster myself.
GPU - I hear that EVGA has been getting good reviews lately.
GPU/water cooled - is this necessary? Do you get higher temps with 1 card, or running 2 in parallel? (ie: if you run crossfire/SLI do they share the load and thus run cooler? or is the combined output hotter?) When do you need watercooled cards?

Extra questions:
Do you ever need water cooling, or will a good tower compensate enough?
Any comments about the Antec 1200 gaming tower?

Thanks gkay09!
a b 4 Gaming
August 26, 2009 5:45:15 AM

And do add in an after market CPU cooler...

Xig Dark knight
Scythe Mugen 2
Sunbeam CCTF 120MM + 1366 retention bracket
Thermalright eXtreme 1366 RT
If you can find the above, do list what options you can get...so we could suggest which would be better...
a b 4 Gaming
August 26, 2009 5:54:10 AM

As for your questions...

1. CAS 7/ 8 is the latency of the RAM

2. The mobo you have listed is of very good quality but the only problem with that mobo is that it has only 4 RAM slots and it wouldnt run in Tri-channel once all the slots are populated, hence you wont get the addtional speed...
So you can check out other mobo like the P6T(non deluxe version and not the SE as SE only has crossfire support and not SLI) or Gigabyte UD4P...

3. RAM - Just check in other stores too...maybe this one alone you can think of exporting as shipping wont cost so high as this is small compoent...

4. EVGA is a solid brand...

5. It is not necessary...and when 2 cards are in SLI, if you have a very good case with good air-flow, then it again wouldnt be a problem...And the 1200 is a very good option...you can also check out the Cooler master HAF 932...
And water cooled cards are only required if they are heavily overclocked...

Extra Question - You would need water cooling when ->
1. Your case had many components that block air flow
2. You want to heavily overclock you CPU or GPU
3. You just want to have a Water cooling setup no matter what...

And the 1200 is a very good case...you can also check out the CM HAF 932 also...
August 26, 2009 6:00:12 AM

gkay09 said:
As for your questions...

1. CAS 7/ 8 is the latency of the RAM

2. The mobo you have listed is of very good quality but the only problem with that mobo is that it has only 4 RAM slots and it wouldnt run in Tri-channel once all the slots are populated, hence you wont get the addtional speed...
So you can check out other mobo like the P6T(non deluxe version and not the SE as SE only has crossfire support and not SLI) or Gigabyte UD4P...

3. RAM - Just check in other stores too...maybe this one alone you can think of exporting as shipping wont cost so high as this is small compoent...

4. EVGA is a solid brand...

5. It is not necessary...and when 2 cards are in SLI, if you have a very good case with good air-flow, then it again wouldnt be a problem...And the 1200 is a very good option...you can also check out the Cooler master HAF 932...
And water cooled cards are only required if they are heavily overclocked...

Extra Question - You would need water cooling when ->
1. Your case had many components that block air flow
2. You want to heavily overclock you CPU or GPU
3. You just want to have a Water cooling setup no matter what...

And the 1200 is a very good case...you can also check out the CM HAF 932 also...


Thx again! One more: what is the D0 you mentioned with the CPU? I missed that one.
a b 4 Gaming
August 26, 2009 6:01:01 AM

Just a note : The latency of the RAM is also specified as Timings...
a b 4 Gaming
August 26, 2009 6:07:47 AM

D0 is the stepping of the CPU...
generally the companies improve the die and fix bugs that are identified in the previous stepping and release them as newer stepping...
i7 currently has D0 stepping (Previously C0 stepping, and these are still available in the retail channel)
You can identify the stepping by checking the S-spec (on the box and CPU itself)
It should be SLBEJ.
SLBEJ = D0
SLBCH = C0

But I dont think you would have to worry about that much...unless you want to overclock the CPU to 4GHz(But even it is very much possible with the C0 stepping)...
August 26, 2009 12:12:00 PM

riven65 said:
Addendum to my questions above:

What is the difference in the ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 and the P6T SE?

Is the Rampage 2 Extreme worth the money?

Are some MBs specialized for nVIDIA technology vs ATI tech? I assumed that anything listed as CROSSFIRE was for ATI. DOes nVIDIA have a comparable designation?

The P6T Deluxe v2 will allow you to run SLI at full 16x speed, plus it has 16+2 phase capacitors and very good OC'ing, compared to the P6T SE that runs SLI ay 16x8 speed, moderate OC'ing and only has 8+2 phase capacitors.

Quote:
Is the Rampage 2 Extreme worth the money?
Not really.
Also see if you can find the ASRock X58 Extreme motherboard, it is consider a dark horse. Since Asrock parent company Asus makes the P6T Series it should do well also.

More info on the ASRock X58 Extreme
http://www.asrock.com/mb/overview.asp?Model=X58%20Extre...
August 26, 2009 1:30:53 PM

Alright, first things first i can't ANY way to understand what's on the site you posted/preferred (google translate wasn't enough for it neither was Babylon.com :??:  )

so i'll only give you a list of parts i see worthy and hopefully your local retailer will have/get them ;)  .

with Budget let's say um.. atmost 1550USD

1. for a case consider -Cooler master HAF 922, - COOLER MASTER RC-690, - Antec Three Hundred Illusion
2. PSU: Corsair TX850 if you're planning to go 2x285s later and 750w if just going to upgrade to another 1 card solution OR SLI with the next energy efficient GPU generation (GT3xx or HD5xxx).
3. 1ST PC CORP. 12" 8-pin EPS extension cable cause those cases requires bottom mounted PSUs.
4. Mobo. best option right now is the ASUS P6T -plain- (as gkay_98 said) or Deluxe V2 (yoosty) however it doesn't just help most people with something the -plain- P6T can't.
5. Ram. get corsair, g-skill, crucial or kingston also check this Corsair XMS3
it's low timings and lower fsb so you won't have to get to the bios to get it to rated speed.
6. CPU: of course the i7 920 but shoot for the D0 stepping ;)  .
7. Cooler: first consider this seriously Tuniq TX-3 thermal compound - Retail
. also see thisCorsair Hydro H50 - Retail
8. HDD. get 2 of those Samsung spinpoint F3 500GB
9. OD: See this Pioneer DVD +/- RW OEM
10. GPU: see eVGA GTX275 - retail

Total: 1109usd dependable.

sorry for stupid way of posting still learning :D  .

hope i helped you out.

Regards ;)  .

please note that i only linked to newegg for reference so if chose to go with those components search for them at your local store (and hopefully find them)

Good luck and Regards :lol:  :ouch:  :hello: 
August 26, 2009 7:16:35 PM

Uh, and about the OS unfortunately you CAN"T get a Win7 coupon code with a Vista Home Basic Edition as the lowest acceptable is the Home premium to be eligible for Win 7
free upgrade.

Regards.
August 31, 2009 10:31:13 AM

Ok, I got the system. Here it is:

Intel i7 920 quad core CPU

Corsair 6GB DDR3 SDRAM at 1333MHz - 3 x 2048MB PC10600

Asus P6T Delux V2 Motherboard

ELSA GTX 285 1GB

WD Caviar Black 1001FALS 1TB SATA HDD

Antec 1200 Gaming Case - this beast rocks!

Corsair TR850W Power Supply

DVD-R drive
Floppy drive/card reader
Logitech G5 Gaming mouse

I forgot to buy a floppy cable and case speaker - but I salvaged the case speaker from a really old computer that wasnt working in the house.

The system POSTs successfully, but I haven't installed the O/S yet.

I bought Windows Vista Ultimate - so that I qualify for the Windows 7 Upgrade later this year. I decided to get the 64-bit version of Vista - I assume that was a good choice?

Ok - here if the problem. The store told me that they cannot get an English version of Vista - unless I am willing to buy a 3-pack OEM. I live in Japan.

I know it is possible to download the Multilingual User Interface (MUI) for Vista Ultimate and change the language:

( the MUI lets you change the interface language of the operating system to any of the installed languages. This feature lets users select a language that they can use.

The MUI also lets you select different languages so that users can share the same computer. For example, one user may want to see the Windows Vista menus and other text in Japanese. Another user who logs on to the same Windows Vista computer may want to see the corresponding text in French.)

My question is this: Should I settle for the Japanese installation and just change the language pack - or is this a VERY bad idea?

Thanks
August 31, 2009 12:50:13 PM

Quote:
riven65 Wrote:
---------------------
My question is this: Should I settle for the Japanese installation and just change the language pack - or is this a VERY bad idea?


YES you can, i use here the Arabic version for my mother and it has no problems at all but i think we all settled for English to be the primary for electronics.

And if you're going to stay with English as the main lang. for the computer i suggest that you delete the Japanese language pack to save another GB as it sometimes cause problems with cleaning utilities and complete kits(like TuneUp utilities).

And yes the purchase of Vista Ultimate 64-bit OS qualifies you for the free W7 upgrade however i think it would be better to check this via your reseller.

Regards.
!