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New i7 LGA1156 build

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September 18, 2009 1:00:13 AM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: this week, maybe next week BUDGET RANGE: $1100 - $1200

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: IT admin work (e.g. 50 firefox tabs, plus a few VMs on Virtualbox), gaming, general productivity, watching movies

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: newegg.com COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA

PARTS PREFERENCES: I like the new Intel i7-860 from a power/heat/performance perspective, I want a small case to fit nicely on the desk, and quiet is important to me, too.

OVERCLOCKING: Maybe mild overclocking SLI OR CROSSFIRE: No

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 2 1280x1024 monitors

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: No bling required. I like the idea of having eSATA up front, hence the mini P180.

Here's what I propose:
Antec Mini P180
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Corsair HX620 PSU
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Gigabyte GA-P55M-UD4
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Intel I7-860
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CoolerMaster RR-B10-212P-GP
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CORSAIR XMS3 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 - qty 2, for 8GB total
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

BFG GeForce 260 GTX OC MAXCORE 55 896MB
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=9348725&s...
***I have a Best Buy gift card that will cover this.

WD Caviar Black 1TB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

LG 22x Super DVD SATA
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
*** has to be a DL burner

Scythe SFF21F 120mm case fan to drop in the front of the Antec
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I don't think I left anything out. One question about the graphics card: it has two dual-link DVI ports. Does this mean it will support four monitors? Or just that higher resolution monitors require duallink DVI connections?

Any and all advice is appreciated. Thanks!

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September 18, 2009 5:12:30 AM

Hi...you have a good list of parts there...But I think you might have problems with that CPU cooler and the case...First make sure it would fit the case...That CPU cooler is BIG...
You can check out this one too...It is smaller and is still far better than the stock...
Cooler Master Intel Core i5 compatible Hyper TX3
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM - You get better RAM with tighter timings for less...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Do check out for combos too...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
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September 18, 2009 5:48:56 AM

http://www.ewiz.com/detail.php?name=MB-P55M-D2 Combo Price: $379.98 | $$349.99 $30 off w/ code SAVINGS30 on I5-750BOX combo Free Ground Shipping
GIGABYTE GA-P55M-UD2 Socket 1156/ Intel P55/ DDR3/ CrossFireX/ A&GbE/ MATX Motherboard
Intel Core i7 Processor i7-860 2.80GHz 8MB LGA1156 CPU, Retail
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September 18, 2009 12:49:28 PM

gkay09 said:
That CPU cooler is BIG...
You can check out this one too...It is smaller and is still far better than the stock...
Cooler Master Intel Core i5 compatible Hyper TX3
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM - You get better RAM with tighter timings for less...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

gkay--many thanks for your suggestions. I had looked at that cooler, but something about $20 scared me off. I think you're right, though--120mm high is just not going to fit nicely in that case.

For the RAM, I've never heard of g.skill. In terms of quality, anything to worry about?

Thanks again...
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September 18, 2009 1:06:56 PM

Also, according to Tom's, at least, the GTX 260 (core 216) is the card to get in this price range, but I can't tell if this one from best buy (listed above) is the 216 core model one or the older 192 model. My guess is that if it was 216 it would say so?

So... am I going to notice a difference?
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September 18, 2009 1:45:54 PM

G.Skill is a good performance brand. I've had bad modules in the past, but I can say the same for just about every manufacturer I've used for RAM. If it happens, just RMA till you get ones that are good.
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September 21, 2009 6:12:52 AM

to answer your question

"I don't think I left anything out. One question about the graphics card: it has two dual-link DVI ports. Does this mean it will support four monitors? Or just that higher resolution monitors require duallink DVI connections? "

supports two monitors.

why not hd 4870 or 4890 over 260?

is that case a must because e-sata?

take a look at this $119

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

this will fit the cooler master 212 heat sink
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September 21, 2009 12:53:30 PM

gkay09 said:
GSKillz are very good brands...
And as for the Graphics card, that GTX 260 is a Core 216 and not Core 192...
These are some sites with the same model listed and the specs confirm that...

http://www.jellydeal.co.uk/bfgrgtx260mc896ocde-bfg-gefo...
http://www.take2.co.za/electronics-bfg-nvidia-graphics-...
http://www.scan.co.uk/products/896MB-BFG-GTX260-OC-MAXC...(x16)-Mem-1998MHz-GPU-590MHz-216-Cores-2xDL-DVI-HDTV


Many thanks. I actually caught this last week and switched it out for a PNY - NVIDIA GeForce XLR8 GTS 260 896MB DDR3 PCI Express Graphics Card
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=9262424&s...
And still got to use the Best Buy card.
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September 21, 2009 1:00:24 PM

overshocks said:
to answer your question
...
supports two monitors.

why not hd 4870 or 4890 over 260?

take a look at this $119

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

this will fit the cooler master 212 heat sink


Thanks the info re monitors.

I'm following Tom's best card for the money article re the 280, and I've always been an Nvidia fan over ATI.

That Nine Hundred Two case looks cool, but the desk is in the bedroom, and there are aesthetic compatibility issues (read: girlfriend). And yes, I need front-mounted eSATA.
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September 21, 2009 1:02:23 PM

Ok, so I ordered the above specs, except I swapped out the BFG 260 for the PNY listed above, the Corsair RAM for the GSkillz, and the 120mm cooler for the 92mm. Everything should arrive this week, and I'll post results of the build when I get it all put together.

Thanks, everyone.
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October 2, 2009 5:56:29 PM

Result:
Everything went really well. The case is easy to work with (for a mini tower), the cooler fits nicely, etc., and the install went so well that the very first time I powered it up I booted from a Win7 DVD and installed successfully.

Now that I've been using it for a week, I can say that this system is *fast*. I can comfortably OC to 3.36ghz without the fans running too loud.

Thanks for all your help, everyone.
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