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Intel vs. AMD $1000-$1400 for typical boring use (but w/ potential)

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September 8, 2009 1:12:54 AM

Hi all!

Just need help deciding what's best for me right now for my first full build, particularly the classic Intel vs. AMD (but not the classic gaming circumstances) ...

EXPECTED PURCHASE DATE: closer the better ... this week or next

BUDGET RANGE: flexible ...
- up to ~$1400 w/o monitor
- lower (<=$1000) better based on price/performance diffs and my needs (e.g., if Intel config is 10% faster and 50% more $$, I'll pass; if 20% faster for 25% more $$, I'm game)
- the "COMPONENTS IN CONTENTION" trinity below should account for from <$300 to ~$600 of the total

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT:
- Internet (including web-powered games) / Office / Quicken/TurboTax / etc.
- low-powered games: Civilization4, Myst, the Diablo family (but want it able to handle the future of graphics on similar or more intense games)
- background Netflix movies, DVDs, music (+ripping CDs)
- dual-boot to some Linux (to relearn UNIX, escape MS, and to serve a few non-MS home network games)
- minor audio/video editing (xfers from tapes) & photos (red-eye)

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: monitor and 1st OS (XP)

PREFERRED WEBSITE FOR PARTS: newegg.com, amazon.com, zipzoomfly.com (not ebay)

OVERCLOCKING: wanna try, air only

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: No

MONITOR RES: 1680x1050

ADDITIONAL WANTS/GOALS:
- lasts as long as possible
- upgradabilty
- keep lots of windows open
- not too hot or too loud (but doesn't have to be cold or absolutely silent)
- may try a simple RAID config or two (willing to reinstall/play with the config a few times ... have an operational backup PC)
- mobo: sound + wireless g & n
- nice to have (beyond reliability): parts that draw less power for similar performance


COMPONENTS NOT LIKELY TO CHANGE (unless you advise it) ...

Case: Gigabyte Triton 180 looks fine (no lights, no windows, no DVD door, flat top, etc.) main concern: that the case easily fits my config (e.g., no "cooling hitting the PSU" or the like)
PSU: Corsair CMPSU-650TX (previously recommended for my build; need more W?)
Sound Card: built into mobo should be fine
Hard Drives: 2x WD6401AALS (came recommended)
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-S223B seems fine
Speakers: Logitech S220 2.1 looks fine
Cooling: keep hearing about Zalman and Arctic Silver 5 (necessary here?)
Keyb/Mouse: still looking for a good wireless w/ classic home keys layout

Operating System: Win XP (have) => Win7 later + best 1st-timer flavor of Linux (suggestions?)

Graphics Card: single, otherwise no idea really ... GTX 260 Core 216 used to be recommended ... what's good for my above needs/goals now?


COMPONENTS IN CONTENTION ....

INTEL:
- word of their future socket changes disturbs me and risks my "compatible with foreseeable future upgrades"
- makes me think socket AM3 is more long-term starting now

CPU: i7 920 (this is all I hear about ... beats AMD in tests, overclocking potential, 8 threads, etc. but is it a fit for me?)
Mobo: Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD5 vs. GA-EX58-UD3R (big price diff; which is needed?)
RAM: 6GB Crucial, G.Skill or Corsair @ 1600?? (overkill on RAM? what RAM speed is best now?)
Cost today (Newegg): $485 - $690 depending

AMD:
- much less experience here ... don't know their models and mobos as well
- am I going to much care/notice the 24% performance deficiency scanning for viruses w/ AVG (Tom's H/W charts: i7-920 vs. Phenom II X4 955)
- given so many recommend Intel, will it be hard to find peer-to-peer/forums support for AMD issues, such as overclocking?

CPU: Phenom II X4 955BE vs. 965BE (is this the right comparison to Intel? $50 price diff worth it? compared value for my needs to Intel?)
Mobo: Gigabyte GA-MA770T-UD3P ?? ASUS M4A78T-E ?? MSI 790FX-GD70 ?? (complete guesses)
RAM: 4GB Crucial, G.Skill or Corsair @ 1600?? (enough RAM? can save on above due to 2-ch)
Cost today (Newegg): $335 - $520 depending


Reminder: Any of this good/bad for dual-to-Linux?

Would also like to know of any buggy experiences/hearsay with the parts or the manufacturers.

I am putty in your hands now.
September 8, 2009 2:00:59 AM

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You can take out the HDD and get two of the 640s for a raid 0 (That would be sweet)

If this fits your budget why get a cheaper setup now just to up grade latter

The 650 will be ok, but if you want to sli or xfire latter you will want the 750TX

Some might say a 260GTX or a HD4870 is good for 1680X1050 but why not get something that you will have some head room with

You might be able to build a system for 300 bucks less and have 20% less power but why if your budget is 1400?

Hope this helps

Sure the new GPUs might have dx11 but what game or games are they working on atm that will use dx11?

PS if you live by a fry’s pick up the i7 920 there for 199.99 If you want a cheaper i7 setup we can do that also
September 8, 2009 2:30:26 AM

Oh, Man this was pure literature :sol:  .

Quote:
"niklas_13" Wrote:
------------------------
f this fits your budget why aim for a lower setup and upgrade latter

If you could go with the 650 PSU but why not have more for a 2nd GPU latter down the road or have it last longer PSU do age over time

some might say a 260 or a 4870 is good for 1680X1050 but why not max out all you play and have room for games to come

you might be able to build a system for 300 bucks less and have 20% less power but why if your budget is 1400 ?

Sure the new GPUs might have dx11 but what game or games are they working on atm that will use dx11 ?
Related resources
September 8, 2009 3:27:17 AM

psycho sykes said:
Oh, Man this was pure literature :sol:  .

Quote:
"niklas_13" Wrote:
------------------------
f this fits your budget why aim for a lower setup and upgrade latter

If you could go with the 650 PSU but why not have more for a 2nd GPU latter down the road or have it last longer PSU do age over time

some might say a 260 or a 4870 is good for 1680X1050 but why not max out all you play and have room for games to come

you might be able to build a system for 300 bucks less and have 20% less power but why if your budget is 1400 ?

Sure the new GPUs might have dx11 but what game or games are they working on atm that will use dx11 ?


I fixed it up a bit for you lol :) 


You can take out the HDD and get two of the 640s for a raid 0 (That would be sweet)

If this fits your budget why get a cheaper setup now just to up grade latter

The 650 will be ok, but if you want to sli or xfire latter you will want the 750TX

Some might say a 260GTX or a HD4870 is good for 1680X1050 but why not get something that you will have some head room with

You might be able to build a system for 300 bucks less and have 20% less power but why if your budget is 1400?

Hope this helps

Sure the new GPUs might have dx11 but what game or games are they working on atm that will use dx11?

PS if you live by a fry’s pick up the i7 920 there for 199.99 If you want a cheaper i7 setup we can do that also
September 8, 2009 3:30:54 AM

I didn't say it's bad :D  !!!
September 8, 2009 9:31:58 AM

Try the new i5. :) 

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September 8, 2009 2:42:47 PM

and everything changes due to the core i5 right?
September 8, 2009 4:22:36 PM

erdinger said:
and everything changes due to the core i5 right?


But in a good way Erdinger...in a good way. :) 
September 8, 2009 4:38:43 PM

Ubuntu 9.04 for your Linux OS. Mainstream and well supported.

I like Why_Me's i5 recommendations. It meets many of your extra additional wants/goals: Longevity, Upgradeable, Power Savings at a very good 'bang for buck' price.

No Mobo's with wireless G/N built in at the moment. The built in wireless trend pretty much stopped with the B/G nForce 590 and P965 boards of a few years back.
September 11, 2009 6:31:16 AM

Thanks to everyone for your advice here.

niklas_13: I didn't get that "literature" comment either (sorry, PS) but I can say the reason to shoot lower than budget is I can use the savings for something else (the budget's a made up number anyway). I don't want to waste $$ on overkill, esp. if my listed needs won't require more for quite a while.

Anyone want to say more about WHY they recommend the above?
(And I notice a complete lack of AMD. Any reasons?)

As I alluded, one of my major concerns w/ Intel is upgradability, meaning:
That they've recently changed directions so many times they seem to have 3 active sockets supported now. What about when I want to upgrade CPUs?
The 775 is almost out (certainly by the next time I upgrade). The 1366 is going high-end only. The "whatever" for i5 is new (too new?). Right?

With everyone apparently recommending Intel, do you have any concerns about that?

Thanks again!
Spiff
September 11, 2009 6:47:51 AM

Go for the i5, It offers great Performance/Price ratio.
The reason of lacking AMD is because they're simply awful for the price and the new i5 outperforms it in nearly EVERY test and the new turbo-mode adds even greater value.

The LGA775 is already dead and Intel won't be making more CPUs for it, And the new LGA1156 is quite affordable to replace the LGA775 in "enough" time, BUT the 1366/i7 is much better as now you can find X58 mobos for ~200 USD and the CPU for 200-280 USD

Oh, And what did you mean about the "literature" ?!! (Sorry didn't catch that :??:  )

Regards.
September 11, 2009 8:09:55 AM

I don't really think that you'll need an i5 for your purpose... but that's the cheapest cpu intel has to offer for an upgradeable socket. Otherwise I think even a C2D 7 series should be able to handle the tasks that you specified.

If you're sure that you won't be doing any high power gaming (e.g. crysis, CoD 5, or stuff like that) in the next few years, I really don't think you'll need anything above the 4770/4850 grade GPUs, especially considering the resolution you'll be using. I think at 1680x1050, even the 4870 would be an overkill. You could always get a crossfire board to have some room for future upgrade.

On the other hand, if you just want a badass system that is top of the line and stay as a high/mainstream system for the next few years, get the intel CPUs. The 1366 and 1155 were just introduced this year, and will have a lot more CPUs using this socket for the years to come.
September 12, 2009 1:21:21 AM

spacemanspiff2000 said:
Thanks to everyone for your advice here.

niklas_13: I didn't get that "literature" comment either (sorry, PS) but I can say the reason to shoot lower than budget is I can use the savings for something else (the budget's a made up number anyway). I don't want to waste $$ on overkill, esp. if my listed needs won't require more for quite a while.

Anyone want to say more about WHY they recommend the above?
(And I notice a complete lack of AMD. Any reasons?)

As I alluded, one of my major concerns w/ Intel is upgradability, meaning:
That they've recently changed directions so many times they seem to have 3 active sockets supported now. What about when I want to upgrade CPUs?
The 775 is almost out (certainly by the next time I upgrade). The 1366 is going high-end only. The "whatever" for i5 is new (too new?). Right?

With everyone apparently recommending Intel, do you have any concerns about that?

Thanks again!
Spiff


niklas_13: I didn't get that "literature" comment either (sorry, PS) but I can say the reason to shoot lower than budget is I can use the savings for something else (the budget's a made up number anyway). I don't want to waste $$ on overkill, esp. if my listed needs won't require more for quite a while.


Nods i can understand that (was only try to get the best for 1400)

I will give WhyMe build a +1 he does a grate job

someone said maybe a C2D, i would not go there the socket is EOL and you might only save 100 bucks

September 25, 2009 7:37:49 AM

Thanks again. Did some reading/looking.

QQ: Is there anything wrong with a Radeon HD 4830? Bad decision?

It's just that no one mentioned it, even though I don't require heavy graphics (at this time, per above).

Much appreciated.
Spiff
September 25, 2009 7:42:21 AM

Because for the same price the HD4770 and HD4850 are available.
The HD4770 beats both when OC'ed while the HD4850 is the winner at stock. The HD4830 is a shame.. (just an opinion)
You might want to hold off the GPU till HD5770 is released and prices of HD4890 are decreased dramatically... (i hope so)

Medo
!