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True Dream Machine! Seeking Expert advice!!

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August 30, 2009 9:02:58 AM

My brother and I feel the need to build the ultimate gaming machine. Don't ask me why, but let's just say we've got a lot of money and need something to spend it on. Was wondering if I could get some advice from people who've already used i7 procs or any of the parts we plan on buying.

Projected date of completion: Not 100% sure but sometime over the next couple months.
- I am aware that there could be some major upgrades in the hardware over a couple months.

Right now were sitting between two major components: the motherboard. It just so happens that our choice will change the system drastically.

We have built many custom pc's but not to this extent. There definitaly are areas we struggle in. Currently Im running a 790i ultra, 8 gb of ddr3, 2x 9800 gx2's in quad-sli, core 2 extreme 6850, 3x 300 gb raptors in raid 0 and have my cpu liquid cooled.

At first we wanted to get a dual CPU board. However, we noticed that its insanely hard to find a dual proc board that supports SLI or Crossfire (for our build we dont have a preference). Most dual cpu boards are server boards which creates a whole new set of problems. Some would be little to no overclocking abilities due to server board bios, not optimized for gaming, only 1333 mhz ddr3 support, only 2 pci-e 16x and most have a northbridge heat sync directly behind the pci-e slots thus creating an obstacle for the gpu's. I won't list specs for this build cuz we are not 100% positive about this. Just wondering though if anyone has any insight on this choice? Whether it is a good idea? Bad idea? Or just completely out of the question?


Here is a list of parts for the more likely build, which will not be dual CPU:
- Please comment and voice your expertise

Motherboard: Asus P6T7 WS Supercomputer - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
OR EVGA E760 - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Processor: Intel Core i7-975 extreme edition - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
OR Intel Core i7-960 (when it comes out sometime in 2009)

Ram: G. Skill Trident 6 GB DDR3 2000 mhz

Case: Coolermaster Cosmos 1000 RC

Power Supply: Thermaltake Toughpower 1200W

Hard Drives: 4x Fujitsu MAX3036RC 36.7GB 10k SAS drive - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
OR 3x Fujitsu MBA3147RC 147GB 15K SAS drive - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
-I will have raid configured. However, I'm not positive on which flavor. I'm leaning more towards raid 0 for sheer performance but we'll see.

GPU's: These are still yet to be determined, seeing as there is a brand new card out ever other week. More than likely it will be one that supports Direct3D11, given the fact that it will be released in October. As I said earlier we will go with ATI or Nvidia cards.



These next couple pieces I am asking for some major help and/or suggestions. For the liquid cooling, we want to have two loops going. One for the graphics cards and the other for the CPU.

Any ideas on cooling systems are welcome!

Raid Controller: Highpoint RocketRAID 2640x4 - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
-Another piece we're not familiar with buying. Only ever used the integrated controller on my current 790i and past 780i.

Sound Card : We've never bought a sound card either. So we don't know whats good and whats bad. It's only a sound card though right? Can't be that complicated.
- Here's one I found that looked decent. Asus Xonar DX 7.1 - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Any help will be very much appreciated! I want this build to be perfect!




August 30, 2009 1:12:56 PM

all of the intel 5520 chipset dual LGA1366 support crossfire
example: SUPERMICRO MBD-X8DAH+-F-O Dual LGA 1366
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

does have 18 DDR3 memory slots

wast of money in my opinion though for gaming

though i would get the i7-920 and a good cooler and take it to the i7-975 speeds
don't get DDR3-2000 ram, DDR3-1600 is more than able and give plenty of OC headroom
you really don't need a separate sound card, though the Xonar would be a great choice
August 30, 2009 1:51:05 PM

and those drvies aren't worth it you looking at almost $600 for 3 147gb drives for that price you could get a 120-160gb ssd as primary drive and a 1tb drive secondary
Related resources
August 30, 2009 7:58:59 PM

So there are no huge differences between the i7 920 and 975 except the speeds?
Any good liquid cooling kits you guys know of for the i7's?

Obsidian. So ur saying that one ssd drive is faster than 3 15k sas drives in raid 0? What do you think about getting multiple ssd drives and implementing raid 0? Would there be much performance increase over a single ssd?

August 30, 2009 8:12:18 PM

3 15k drives in raid 0 is jus a lil slower then a single ssd .ssd's are the fastest period intel gen 2 ssd's will abe round soon and will be untouchable in raid 0 if you wanna wait a bit ocz gonna be launching 1tb ssd's in december and liquid cooling kits swiftech is a good choice
August 30, 2009 8:14:04 PM

the 975 also has n unlocked multiplier for easier overclocking but the 920 jus bout match it clock for clock
August 30, 2009 8:33:46 PM

Yeah I looked at the intel ssd's on newegg and they looked to be the best out there. Will be sweet if we get two of those in raid 0.. Is deff a possibility now that I checked them out.

Do you know any exact clocks that the 920 and 975 could reach on a real nice water cooling loop?
August 30, 2009 8:42:17 PM

the 920 can get too 4ghz+ most top out at 4.2.-4.4 the 975 to over 4.6 but some selected ones get too 5ghz + but they very rare
August 30, 2009 9:50:34 PM

extremebuild222 said:
My brother and I feel the need to build the ultimate gaming machine. Don't ask me why, but let's just say we've got a lot of money and need something to spend it on. Was wondering if I could get some advice from people who've already used i7 procs or any of the parts we plan on buying.

Projected date of completion: Not 100% sure but sometime over the next couple months.
- I am aware that there could be some major upgrades in the hardware over a couple months.

Right now were sitting between two major components: the motherboard. It just so happens that our choice will change the system drastically.

We have built many custom pc's but not to this extent. There definitaly are areas we struggle in. Currently Im running a 790i ultra, 8 gb of ddr3, 2x 9800 gx2's in quad-sli, core 2 extreme 6850, 3x 300 gb raptors in raid 0 and have my cpu liquid cooled.

At first we wanted to get a dual CPU board. However, we noticed that its insanely hard to find a dual proc board that supports SLI or Crossfire (for our build we dont have a preference). Most dual cpu boards are server boards which creates a whole new set of problems. Some would be little to no overclocking abilities due to server board bios, not optimized for gaming, only 1333 mhz ddr3 support, only 2 pci-e 16x and most have a northbridge heat sync directly behind the pci-e slots thus creating an obstacle for the gpu's. I won't list specs for this build cuz we are not 100% positive about this. Just wondering though if anyone has any insight on this choice? Whether it is a good idea? Bad idea? Or just completely out of the question?


Here is a list of parts for the more likely build, which will not be dual CPU:
- Please comment and voice your expertise

Motherboard: Asus P6T7 WS Supercomputer - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
OR EVGA E760 - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Processor: Intel Core i7-975 extreme edition - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
OR Intel Core i7-960 (when it comes out sometime in 2009)

Ram: G. Skill Trident 6 GB DDR3 2000 mhz

Case: Coolermaster Cosmos 1000 RC

Power Supply: Thermaltake Toughpower 1200W

Hard Drives: 4x Fujitsu MAX3036RC 36.7GB 10k SAS drive - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
OR 3x Fujitsu MBA3147RC 147GB 15K SAS drive - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
-I will have raid configured. However, I'm not positive on which flavor. I'm leaning more towards raid 0 for sheer performance but we'll see.

GPU's: These are still yet to be determined, seeing as there is a brand new card out ever other week. More than likely it will be one that supports Direct3D11, given the fact that it will be released in October. As I said earlier we will go with ATI or Nvidia cards.



These next couple pieces I am asking for some major help and/or suggestions. For the liquid cooling, we want to have two loops going. One for the graphics cards and the other for the CPU.

Any ideas on cooling systems are welcome!

Raid Controller: Highpoint RocketRAID 2640x4 - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
-Another piece we're not familiar with buying. Only ever used the integrated controller on my current 790i and past 780i.

Sound Card : We've never bought a sound card either. So we don't know whats good and whats bad. It's only a sound card though right? Can't be that complicated.
- Here's one I found that looked decent. Asus Xonar DX 7.1 - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Any help will be very much appreciated! I want this build to be perfect!


No build is ever 'perfect', so get over it. There are new MB's being released, new CPU's and new GPU's, all coming out within the next month or so. It would be a shame to build a system right now, then in a month find that it is just so much wasted money.

First thing I would do is decide on the function that you want out of the 'perfect' PC. Then pick out the parts that fulfill that function, get the best at the time of purchase and DON"T LOOK BACK!

The Highpoint raid is good, but there are some adaptecs that are much better. Does the Highpoint that you are thinking of have hardware XOR? If software, might as well just use the onboard... Adaptecs are not cheap, for a reason.
August 31, 2009 12:59:00 AM

Thanks for the info on the i7 920. Since it will oc in 4-4.4 range we deff will consider this proc when purchasing it.
August 31, 2009 1:08:13 AM

obsidian86 said:
the 920 can get too 4ghz+ most top out at 4.2.-4.4 the 975 to over 4.6 but some selected ones get too 5ghz + but they very rare


Your are dreaming... Many D0's cannot get past 3.8. There are too many variables to just make a flat statement as you just did. Case cooling, HSF used, MB, MB's bios are just a few I can think of off the top of my head That said, a 20% clock increase is still a pretty good OC, and it should be do-able even on C0's while keeping voltages and heat well in the 'safe' zones.
September 1, 2009 2:54:58 AM

Check out the TYAN (S7025) mobo. I am almost certain it is the board in the TESLA supercomputer, it sports dual 5520 IOHs so it could actually support 4 dual slot GPUs at true PCIex16 and it will physically accommodate this configuration.

http://www.tyan.com/product_SKU_spec.aspx?ProductType=M...
September 9, 2009 3:55:22 AM

Quote:
Raid Controller: Highpoint RocketRAID 2640x4 - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6816115050
-Another piece we're not familiar with buying. Only ever used the integrated controller on my current 790i and past 780i.


I suggest you to use RocketRAID 4310 or 4320, because I have this card of RR4310, this card is really hardware raid card. It gave me unprecedented performance and incapable to describe steady. So I think you can use the RocketRAID 4300 Series RAID Card.

Best Regards.
!