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Expensive Homebuilt Computer System (Possibly 2000 Dollar Quota)

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October 24, 2009 7:05:23 PM

Hello, I currently have an Asus AMD Athlon 3700+, A8N-VM CSM Motherboard, G. Skill 3x1GB DDR 400 (Dual Channel), HIS Sapphire x1600+ pro 512 MB, Hanns-G 27.5" LCD.

I am looking to go above and beyond, by building quite an expensive computer system that will take quite some time to fix-up (mainly due to the fact that I wanted to do watercooling). I expect by the time that I am finished with this system, I will have landed about 2 grand on it.

Before I go any further, I do have some products picked out that I am interested in as of right now. I was perhaps hoping on some inputs and remarks from other users on my products of interest. They are as follows:

1.) CPU: Intel i7 940 (I have looked at multiple benchmarks of this CPU. My only question is, how much better than is the 940 than the 920 on a scale of 1-10)

2.) Motherboard: EVGA Classified 3-way SLI+ PhysX 1366 Intel X58 Intel Motherboard (I have picked this motherboard mainly because i need a good motherboard that could take heavy overclocking; also the number of pci express 2.0x16 x4 speeds interests me. The only lacking side of this board that I see right now is that ddr3 1600 is its top speed.)

3.) Graphics Card: x2 Asus HD5870s (Will increase later if needed. As for right now, two should be well more than enough to slam and deliver)

4.) RAM: "??" No idea. The EVGA Motherboard that I have picked out requires triple channel DDR3 1600 RAM. My intents are to get the quickest, most efficient, reliable, RAM that I can get, and to stuff all six slots. Prices vary on RAM, and I am quite lost on this choice.

5.) PSU: "??" I have looked into some 1,000 Watt PSUs. Alot of them seem to be less than 90% efficient. I would like something efficient and in the 350 dollar range if need be.

6.) Sound Card: "??" I'm looking with something that has a very good signal-to-noise ratio, and something that could produce top-of-the-line sound quality. I am a big car stereo fan, and am a fanatic when it comes to sound quality.

7.) Monitor: Already own it. Hanns-G 27.5" 1080p LCD Monitor.

8.) Case: Already picked out. Xclio 2000. The large display of lights and fans has grabbed my interest greatly (especially for the overclocking that I plan on doing).

9.) WATERCOOLING: Exos-2 LX

Thank you guys on Tomshardware.com for your time!
-Infs
a b V Motherboard
October 24, 2009 7:18:32 PM

The 940 isnt good enough to justify the significant price premium it has, you can easily OC a 920 past 975 levels especially with a good water cooling system.

A good 850 watt PSU is sufficient for 3 5870s which is likely more than you will ever need, the XFX PSU is 80+ silver rated and did extremely well in the jonnyguru review
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=...

For the ram, the OCZ platinums are high speed and low latency so they perform very well
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Closed loop water cooling systems tend not to perform extremely well, the H50 from corsair performs about as well as a good air cooler, you will need a large radiator and large slow fans to have a benefit from it over good air coolers. Will you be doing your GPU's as well or just the CPU? If you do the GPU's as well you wont get heat throttling issues like toms encountered.
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a b V Motherboard
October 24, 2009 7:19:14 PM

I would change a few things and will definitely suggest some parts for you, but first if you wouldn't mind filling this little form out, it would be most helpful (it would help me answer questions such as why you're crossfiring 5870s).

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/261222-31-build-advic...
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October 24, 2009 8:33:56 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: ( Christmas.)BUDGET RANGE: (2,000) Before Rebates

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: (Strictly used for gaming)

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: (keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS,)

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: (newegg.com for everything except CPU. eBay for the intel i7 CPU) COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: (United States)

PARTS PREFERENCES:
CPU: i7 920/940 (Will greatly take your input)
Motherboard: EVGA x58 3-way SLI
Graphics Card: HD 5870 x2 (possibly 3 if games become much more extensive and detailed)
RAM: Crossair
SOUND CARD: Definitely up for grabs. (Somehting with amazing signal-to-noise ratio would suite my needs)
CASE: XCLIO 2000
WATERCOOLING: Koolance Exos-2 LX (Or whatever performs best for cooling of CPU, RAM, GRAPHICS CARD)
PSU: 850W (most efficient possible)

OVERCLOCKING: Yes CROSSFIRE: Yes

MONITOR RESOLUTION: (1920x1200)

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: (I have parts picked out. But if there is anything better out there for my intentions, please make me aware of that. I would rather use someone with experience as opposed to what I've read, which may or may not be false claims from the computer companies in means of making money.)

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October 24, 2009 8:39:00 PM

hunter315 said:
The 940 isnt good enough to justify the significant price premium it has, you can easily OC a 920 past 975 levels especially with a good water cooling system.

A good 850 watt PSU is sufficient for 3 5870s which is likely more than you will ever need, the XFX PSU is 80+ silver rated and did extremely well in the jonnyguru review
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=...

For the ram, the OCZ platinums are high speed and low latency so they perform very well
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Closed loop water cooling systems tend not to perform extremely well, the H50 from corsair performs about as well as a good air cooler, you will need a large radiator and large slow fans to have a benefit from it over good air coolers. Will you be doing your GPU's as well or just the CPU? If you do the GPU's as well you wont get heat throttling issues like toms encountered.


I'm sorry but I am kind of confused by your response about the closed loop water cooling. I read an article on Tom's that spoke highly of it (was even the same water cooling system that I had picked out).

Here is the article on Tom's: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/a-beginners-guide-f...

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a b V Motherboard
October 24, 2009 8:39:45 PM

Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OCZ Platinum 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Voltage Desktop
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS EAH5870/G/2DIS/1GD5/A Radeon HD 5870 (Cypress XT) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Intel X25-M Mainstream SSDSA2MH080G2C1 2.5" 80GB SATA II MLC Internal
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CORSAIR CMPSU-850TX 850W ATX12V 2.2 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Active PFC
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
LIAN LI Lancool PC-K62 Black 0.8 mm SECC, Plastic + Mesh ATX Mid Tower
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I would go for something like that. Hunter's PSU is better, but the Corsair is great as well for half as much.
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October 25, 2009 2:49:17 AM

Okay, thank you all for your help. After reading your posts, I have come to the conclusion of:

CPU:
Intel Core i7-920 Bloomfield 2.66GHz 4 x 256KB L2 Cache
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Cost:$288

Motherboard:
ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Cost: $289.99

Graphics Card:
ASUS EAH5870
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Cost: $779.98 (Two tallied-up in the price)

Memory (Short-Term):
OCZ Platinum 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Cost: $153.99

Memory (Long-Term):
Intel X25-M Mainstream SSDSA2MH080G2C1 2.5" 80GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid state disk
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Cost: $289.00

Hard Drive:
Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST31000528AS 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Cost: $89.99

PSU:
XFX P1850BCAG9 850W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready 80 PLUS SILVER
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Cost: $179.99

Case:
XCLIO 2000 Black &Ttitanium Finish 1.0 mm SECC / ABS Plastic ATX Full Tower Extreme Cooling Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Cost: $279.99

Watercooler:
Exos-2.5, Black [no nozzles]
http://www.koolance.com/water-cooling/product_info.php?...
Cost: $374.99

Total: Around $2726
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