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Feedback Please - $900 gaming PC.

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October 24, 2009 7:07:02 AM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: As soon as possible, want it built! (also don't want to miss out on any of the savings I've found) Just want/need some feedback first. BUDGET RANGE: Aiming for around 900 dollars.

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Web-design, gaming (GTA IV for example), surfing the web, multi-apps.

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Mouse and Monitor.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg.

PARTS PREFERENCES: Going with ATI/AMD. No real preference, just found they seem to be the best value for the money being spent.

OVERCLOCKING: Might a little. Heard the 955 BE is easy to overclock. SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Very unlikely.

MONITOR RESOLUTION: Going to be using an old big box monitor, not sure of the resolution. Will try to find a monitor to fit the computer come black Friday.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Be the first time I'm building a computer, so definitely want some feedback. I think all my parts will work together. Spent the past week googling like mad. My main goal was to build a computer with the AMD 955, ATI 4890, and 3G DDR 1600 at the lowest price I could while keeping good quality parts in the computer. Do hope to have a computer that could be upgradeable for the future, but I think these specs should be good for a few years, especially if I OC?

Another question. I've completed confused myself on how to get windows 7. The copies on newegg are only for computers with vista if I read correctly? Do want to go with Windows 7.

Parts list: Posting links to the combos I've come across.

*AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor Model HDZ955FBGIBOX - Retail

*ASUS M4A79XTD EVO AM3 AMD 790X ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail

Combo: http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
Price: $259.98

*XFX HD-489A-ZDFC Radeon HD 4890 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail

*G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL8D-4GBRM - Retail

Combo:http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
Price: $260.98

*COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail

*Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
(I've seen on here people recommend the Samsung Spinpoint, but combo has 45 off, and I don't think there is much of a difference in the speed between these two?)

Combo:http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
Price: $99.98

*G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL8D-4GBRM - Retail

Link: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Price: $80.99

*Rosewill RK-7300 Black USB Super Slim Unique Curved Design Multimedia Full-size Keyboard - Retail
(Just going for cheapest that had good reviews)

Link: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Price: $14.99

*Creative Inspire 245 4 Watts 2.0 Speakers - Retail
(Again going for cheap and good reviews. I know it won't be super sound)

Link: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Price: $24.99

*CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power ... - Retail

Link: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Price: $99.99

*Zonet ZEW1642 PCI Wireless Adapter - Retail
(Could hook it up with a cable, but the plan is to be wireless)

Link: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Price: $21.99

Thanks for reading and any/all feedback I receive.

Edit: Total cost - 863.89 (+ 29.31 SH). Doesn't include Windows 7.

Edit2: Forgot the optical drive, LOL.

*Sony Optiarc Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA DVD/CD Rewritable Drive - OEM

Link: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Price: $29.99

Also forgot about a heat sink/fan to add.

*Dynatron DC1206BM-L610-T/C22 60mm Ball CPU Cooling Fan - Retail
(Only a fan, but since I don't plan any major OC'ed, should be good enough?)
Link: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Price: $12.99

Total cost: 906.87 (+29.31).

More about : feedback 900 gaming

October 24, 2009 7:48:25 AM

Since you said crossfire is very unlikely, you could definitely drop down to a 770 with a non-crossfire PSU
GIGABYTE GA-MA770T-UD3P AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

would recommend this PSU, but it's sold out
CORSAIR CMPSU-550VX 550W ATX12V V2.2 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

so this one instead
CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

for small overclocks, the stock HSF is fine, otherwise check out this one
COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus Intel Core i5 & Intel Core i7 compatible RR-B10-212P-GP 120mm "heatpipe direct contact" Long life sleeve
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Finally, this is the OS you want
Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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October 24, 2009 8:11:26 AM

Thanks for the reply.

Good find with the motherboard! Has a combo with the 955 too.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
(Could also combo with the 965 and only increase the cost 5 dollars from my first pick.. hmm.. lol)

The CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V sounds good too. Saves me 20 there.

The HSF you showed looks good too. Might stick with the one I had, unless I decide to do bigger overclocks.

Thanks for the quick reply and feedback!
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October 24, 2009 8:53:50 AM

I'm not sure if I'm reading your initial post correctly, but I see 2 sets of 2x2gb ram? 1 set is with the combo, the other is separate. If this is in error, that drops your total down by $80
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October 24, 2009 12:50:14 PM

actually, in that budget I think you can get a i5-750 rig which is better then that setup
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October 24, 2009 4:29:20 PM

Actually I was going for 8G Ram. Bad idea?

Daggs, the i5-750 is listed at 2.66 while the 955 is 3.2. So wouldn't the 955 be better..? I realize I could be completely wrong. I've also read/been told AMD is usually better for gaming than Intel.
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October 24, 2009 6:38:54 PM

You'll be fine with 4gb for gaming. The frequency is misleading actually, here's a review that includes the 750 and 965 (3.4GHz) for comparison.
http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/showdoc.aspx?i=363...

Although the 750 is a little better than the 955, it'd be a little more expensive and might take away from your GPU as you're already at your budget. On the GPU subject, since you can drop down to 4gb, you could upgrade to a 5850.

ASUS EAH5850/G/2DIS/1GD5 Radeon HD 5850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

It would be better if we knew your resolution though because both GPUs might be complete overkill

Edit forgot to paste review.
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October 24, 2009 7:01:33 PM

Thanks for the reply and links.

So the 750 looks to be able to beat out even the 965. If I go 750, might as well try to overclock it too. Time to go searching for a new set up and it's price!

Question on Ram. Wouldn't that help with running multi-apps too or 4gb should be good enough? I also was thinking of trying to move up to the 5000 series if I dropped to 4gb, but looks like newegg is currently out of them. Could there be a good NVIDIA option too? Not as familiar with them.

Yeah, resolution would help.. and I might be doing this backwards getting the monitor later on (wouldn't be an expensive one lol), but I don't mind some overkill. I've always had computers that were too weak, so too strong would be a nice change. Plus I do hope for it to be good for 2-3 years without needing to upgrade.
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October 24, 2009 7:09:31 PM

If you're doing animation or something like that 8gb would be better, but for gaming and everyday multitasking 4gb is plenty.

Yeah the 5850 availability is underwhelming but there is no real Nvidia alternative that I would recommend.
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October 24, 2009 7:12:01 PM

I would get a 5850 instead of the 4890. If you don't plan to OC, just stick with the the stock cooler. It's a waste of money anyway at lower resolutions.

Also, I got an Asus AM3 motherboard and I hate it! Find something else... personally, I would have gone MSI. My M4A78T-E is driving me mad! Hypertransport errors with X4 cpus. Stay away from Asus on AMD platform right now. Go check their forums for your motherboard before buying anything.
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October 24, 2009 7:15:52 PM

daggs said:
actually, in that budget I think you can get a i5-750 rig which is better then that setup


If you don't put enough graphical power to use the i5 perfectly, an Athlon II X2 will render the same result with a 4870.

Investing in a 5850 is a much wiser choice than going core i5.
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October 24, 2009 10:47:41 PM

Wow, my head is spinning, LOL.

Not sure if I should go 750 or AMD now. I tried looking around at the motherboards for the 750 and they seemed to be a bit pricier. Didn't seem like I could do i5, without going up a bunch in price. Wasn't seeing as good combo savings either.

Did make some changes to my current built though.

*AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz Socket AM3 140W Quad-Core Processor Model HDZ965FBGIBOX - Retail
(Changed. Improvement over the 955 and could OC for even more)

*Thermaltake CL-P0464 DuOrb 80mm CPU Cooler - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

*XFX HD-489A-ZDFC Radeon HD 4890 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail
(Could go 5850, but figure 4890 should be more than enough for me? Plus who knows when Newegg will have more in, a lot of the savings I've found could expire by then)

*G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL8D-4GBRM - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

*CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power ... - Retail
(with MIR this is the same price as the 650)

*GIGABYTE GA-MA770T-UD3P AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

*COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail

*Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

*Zonet ZEW1642 PCI Wireless Adapter - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

*Sony Optiarc 24X DVD/CD Rewritable Drive Black SATA Model AD-7240S-0B - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Plus the speakers and keyboard from above and windows 7.

Price including SH is $972.20 which is a savings of $299!

I am new to newegg and maybe that's not good? Seems like it to me, so as mentioned, that's why I really don't want to wait to see the 5850 come back. I think the 4890 should pretty much cover all games in this set up. Won't bother me if the settings aren't maxed. Then perhaps upgrade the video card within two years when the 5850 or a better card has gotten cheap.

Anymore opinions to consider? Anymore mistakes? Did I miss a cheaper i5-750 build?

Thanks a ton. :) 
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October 24, 2009 10:56:11 PM

No, you didn't miss anything, I think AM3 is better for your situation.

I would just get the 955 and then up the multiplier one (harmless, effective, and cheaper).

Also, this HSF
COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus Intel Core i5 & Intel Core i7 compatible RR-B10-212P-GP 120mm "heatpipe direct contact" Long life sleeve
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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October 25, 2009 4:26:40 AM

harp said:
Wow, my head is spinning, LOL.

Not sure if I should go 750 or AMD now. I tried looking around at the motherboards for the 750 and they seemed to be a bit pricier. Didn't seem like I could do i5, without going up a bunch in price. Wasn't seeing as good combo savings either.

Did make some changes to my current built though.

*AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz Socket AM3 140W Quad-Core Processor Model HDZ965FBGIBOX - Retail
(Changed. Improvement over the 955 and could OC for even more)

*Thermaltake CL-P0464 DuOrb 80mm CPU Cooler - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

*XFX HD-489A-ZDFC Radeon HD 4890 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail
(Could go 5850, but figure 4890 should be more than enough for me? Plus who knows when Newegg will have more in, a lot of the savings I've found could expire by then)

*G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL8D-4GBRM - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

*CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power ... - Retail
(with MIR this is the same price as the 650)

*GIGABYTE GA-MA770T-UD3P AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

*COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail

*Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

*Zonet ZEW1642 PCI Wireless Adapter - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

*Sony Optiarc 24X DVD/CD Rewritable Drive Black SATA Model AD-7240S-0B - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Plus the speakers and keyboard from above and windows 7.

Price including SH is $972.20 which is a savings of $299!

I am new to newegg and maybe that's not good? Seems like it to me, so as mentioned, that's why I really don't want to wait to see the 5850 come back. I think the 4890 should pretty much cover all games in this set up. Won't bother me if the settings aren't maxed. Then perhaps upgrade the video card within two years when the 5850 or a better card has gotten cheap.

Anymore opinions to consider? Anymore mistakes? Did I miss a cheaper i5-750 build?

Thanks a ton. :) 

drop to pII955 and oc it, the 965 is and oced 955, you can save up to 60$ which can be invested in better gpu
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October 25, 2009 6:39:15 AM

LOL, whoops.. kind of went ahead and ordered already. With the 965. It seriously is just an OC'ed 955? At least it being the weekend, think I should be able to cancel and re-order before they ship!

Thanks.
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October 25, 2009 6:43:06 AM

harp said:
LOL, whoops.. kind of went ahead and ordered already. With the 965. It seriously is just an OC'ed 955? At least it being the weekend, think I should be able to cancel and re-order before they ship!

Thanks.


afaik, the 965 is a 955 which is factory oc 200mhz up
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October 25, 2009 7:03:19 AM

First of all, I'd wait for the NVidia cards to come out. At the very least this should force the AMD/ATI prices of the 5xxx series down.

I'd DEFINITELY build a system based around the following for a budget/high end system:

1) 1156 Motherboard
2) Intel i5-750
3) 4GB DDR3 (2x2GB)
4) ATI HD5850 1GB
5) Windows 7 64-bit OEM (OEM is much cheaper; only difference is it can't be reinstalled on a different computer but who cares?)
6) WD 640GB hard drive (and possibly a second WD 1TB Green drive)

The new DX11 cards from AMD/ATI have low idle power (27W) which is also very important. The cards are slightly more expensive compared to DX10 versions (mainly due to NVidia not having a card) but the DX11, power consumption, low noise and future proofing are well worth it.

Crossfire?
The HD5850 is a pretty powerful card. However, it's nice to have the slot open just in case. In a few years it might be an idea to drop in a Larrabee card which I'm hoping can perform BOTH CPU and Graphics tasks. All PCIe x16 slots can hold smaller PCIe cards (like a x1 sound card).
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October 25, 2009 7:12:12 AM

Thanks photonboy, only problem is I really want to have the computer put together by next weekend, and newegg doesn't even have any 5850's at the moment.

Do agree it could be worth it.. if I wanted to wait, lol.

New set up I have could crossfire the 4890. Still no 11, but should be able to get the job done for a few years.
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October 25, 2009 4:05:58 PM

may as well get a 5870 if you want to crossfire 4890s. 2 4890s would be slightly better, but it's not really worth it due to the fact you'll be missing full dx11 features, no eyefinity, and great power and heat. 2 4890s should only really be considered for someone who already has a 4890.
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October 25, 2009 4:11:55 PM

I wouldn't say I want to crossfire two 4890's, but its an option I'll have down the road now. Or perhaps the 5800 series will be fairly cheap in a year's time.

Thanks all for the help.
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October 26, 2009 5:28:16 AM

A single HD5850 1GB (with a suitably fast CPU) is still a really powerful card. I have a lowly HD3870 and many games play great though I would like a better card.

Even the best current games will look great at 60FPS. You really don't need 8x AA and 16x Anisotropic. In fact, it's pretty difficult to see any difference above a certain point.

It's interesting to note that a lot of graphics processing is involved in Anti-Aliasing however I've noticed when I set many games to 1600x1200 there's very little jaggedness due to the high resolution (but it's a LOT of processing to get rid of that little bit).

In two years from now when game titles do justice to DX11 (not just a few minor tweaks) games will still look great on a card like the HD5850 because the hardware will be used more efficiently as well (especially things like Tesselation).

A really, really great way to go is to get a single HD5850 and Crossfire a second one later when prices drop and more demanding games require it.

It used to be that nobody would get that second card if two years passed because they'd rather get a newer card. Part of the reason was reduced power (the HD4870 uses 90W in IDLE). At 26W for the HD5850 it's not as big a deal. Since DX11 is just starting these cards should be good for five years.

NVIDIA:
I'd wait and see what NVidia's DX11 cards are like. It's likely ATI will have to drop prices when they come out.

I have a strong feeling that NVidia won't match ATI's DX11 IDLE power which will make it a tough choice. I'm leaning towards NVidia but I'm starting to get annoyed by the choices we have to make (one card has better Idle or other features. The other has Physics, CUDA etc. Sigh!)
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