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Most powerful build? i7 - no money wasting

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November 7, 2009 1:05:10 AM

I've always had a great computer, but recently with the frustration of being "...so close..." to performing at the level I've wanted (cpu and gpu) I've decided to just go all out and spend the extra $$$ on building the absolute best.

When I say best, I don't mean best psu, best ram speed, or best dvd drive. I mean everything that actually MATTERS. Having a 1000w or 850w psu or having 1600mhz DDR3 instead of 800mhz DDR2 does nothing for real life performance. I don't care about that crap. I care about creating the best in REALITY.

Thanks for any suggestions, help, or information.

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Tomorrow
BUDGET RANGE: Max $1000+ (not including gpu) (ignoring rebates) no wasting money on $800 components that give 2% performance increase!

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: I wanna be... the very best. Like no one ever was... to catch them is my real test! TO BUILD IT IS MY CAUUUUSE! Computer-mon! Gotta build them alllllll...

PARTS NOT REQUIRED:
Storage HDD's (Have 1TB raid0 7200rpm) and 1TB external hdd

PARTS PREFERENCES: No pointless spending. No extra $ just for "brand name". No ignorant advise.

OVERCLOCKING: Yes
SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Yes

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Quiet, Motherboard with lots of OC headroom and no OC problems.
November 7, 2009 1:19:34 AM

Here are a few components I've scouted.

Intel Core i7-920 Bloomfield 2.66GHz
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...
$288.99

Open Box: ASUS P6T SE LGA 1366 Intel X58
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...
$149.99

SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD+R
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...
$29.99

Crucial Ballistix Tracer 3GB (3 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...
$75.99

Thermaltake V9 Black Edition
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...
$99.99

Seventeam ST-750ZAF 750W
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...
$109.99

Intel x25-M G2
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$289


Total Price (S&H): $1078
With 5870: $1478

INFORMATION: If you have questions about any component, I have some information about each one that may help.



RAM: I do not know if there is any difference between Triple Channel and Dual Channel memory, so I went with 3GB triple channel. 6GB is way too expensive, and 3GB is 50% of the price anyways, so no fear of buying 3GB more if needed. I do not care to waste money on latency or ram speed as that is almost entirely pointless. The only thing I want is to make sure the Ram speed is fast enough to match the OC of the CPU. I don't want my RAM to give out when OCing.

Motherboard: I require 2 PCI-E slots both at x16/x16, but would prefer more (4 if applicable, but this MB has 3). I want a motherboard that can allow for a lot of overclocking headroom. I do not want my MB to cause me a bottleneck in OCing because the NB gets too hot or the bios was made poorly.

Power Supply: I do not want to waste tons of money on a PSU. I debated over getting a Rosewill (a great, reliable company despite any false rumors you may have heard) but went for the normal priced PSU because it gives me $30 savings on the case (which means free shipping for the case). 750w seems to be plenty to power OC'd i7 and a 5870 gpu, or even 5870 x2 gpu. I do not need to waste money on any more than 750w unless I absolutely must. Also, the idea of having a modular PSU for once made me very very happy.

Case: I love this case. I've noticed I spend a lot of time inside my computer, and would enjoy it a lot more with the black inside. I also am a big fan of huge fans all around the case (especially the side) and this is reasonably priced. I do NOT like antec for several reasons, so please don't suggest one.

GPU: 5870 or 5870x2, but they're all sold out or not yet released. Currently have a 4850 until they come in stock.

CPU: I originally was going to get a Phenom II X4 550, but decided to go spend the extra $100 for the i7. I want the fastest computer I can have, and would really enjoy knowing there isn't much more I can do for cpu. I have read about the i5, and don't know too much about it but would prefer the i7 just to feel safe I didn't skimp on the cpu.

SSD: I've heard this can be a HUGE difference in your system. I decided for it. I know next to nothing about SSD's but have read this is a good one. Cheaper than raid0 (two) veliraptors, and I care more for read/access than I do write times. This seems to be the way to go.

HDD: My 7200rpm 500GB's in raid0 and my 1TB external drive is more than enough for storage. Do not need any HDD.
November 7, 2009 1:39:26 AM

Hey, thats a high price for some unknown PSU. But this PSU is exact same price as the one you suggested but hast 80 + certified and is pregered by many people.
Corsair 750TX
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Motherboard: You've just contradicted yourslef. You do not want a motherboard that runs too hot, but the on you have chosen runs hot:
A lot of newegg reviews says that: http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductReview.aspx?Item=N...
Go to that site and Ctrl+F for hot.

If you still want an open box board, then get this one: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Graphic Card: Its hard to find stock. BTW, i heard there will not be a 5870X2 it will be called 5970. But I am not too sure. But I am sure that the Dual GPU in a stick version of 5870 hasn't come out yet. So, a single/CF 5870 or 5850 will do. I suggest a 5850.
Related resources
November 7, 2009 2:43:02 AM

I changed a few things around.

Changes:

Motherboard:

Open Box: ASRock X58 Extreme LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$120

Ram:
OCZ Gold 3GB (3 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$60

total New Price: 998

By changing the RAM (cheaper, plus free shipping) and dvd drive (free shipping and $3 cheaper) and motherboard
Saving: $50


The other MB choice would be

Open Box: ASRock X58 Deluxe
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$155

total price: +36

Original Motherboard choice was
Open Box: ASUS P6T SE LGA 1366 Intel X58
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 813131386R
$150

total original price: +30
November 7, 2009 4:37:13 AM

I am really wondering which motherboard to get.

I don't understand the differences really. What's the difference between a 200 dollar Motherboard and a 400 dollar motherboard, when they both have 4 pci-e slots, excellent memory ability, etc.??

Is it all based on OC? Or the $300-400 motherboards are just hallow candy for rich people to feel good about themselves??
November 7, 2009 5:12:34 AM

Higher priced motherboards will overclock better, have more settings you can adjust, have better cooling solutions, and may have more PCI-e lanes for dual, triple, or quad GPUs. They're also generally more reliable.
The P6T SE and ASRock x58 E are both excellent boards, as is the P6T v2 deluxe. I'd recommend any of them.

You really do need to dump your current PSU for a Corsair unit - it'd be a pity to build your rig and have it blow up a week later.
November 7, 2009 2:27:40 PM

nitros85 said:
I am really wondering which motherboard to get.

I don't understand the differences really. What's the difference between a 200 dollar Motherboard and a 400 dollar motherboard, when they both have 4 pci-e slots, excellent memory ability, etc.??

Is it all based on OC? Or the $300-400 motherboards are just hallow candy for rich people to feel good about themselves??


a 400$ is for those enthuisists that like putting 3 gpu cards at once overclocking those for no reason.
November 7, 2009 8:51:48 PM

frozenlead said:
Higher priced motherboards will overclock better, have more settings you can adjust, have better cooling solutions, and may have more PCI-e lanes for dual, triple, or quad GPUs. They're also generally more reliable.
The P6T SE and ASRock x58 E are both excellent boards, as is the P6T v2 deluxe. I'd recommend any of them.

You really do need to dump your current PSU for a Corsair unit - it'd be a pity to build your rig and have it blow up a week later.


Most PSU rumors about brand name are a complete myth. Don't buy into it.

If I could, I would buy a Rosewill just to prove to everyone how Rosewill won't explode or gimp a system.

Unfortunately, the case I want to buy does not come with free shipping unless I buy a seventeam PSU as well.

Seeing as how the seventeam is the same price as the corsairs, I severely doubt it will "blow up" on me or be any different from a corsair unit. But even a Rosewill which would be $30 cheaper that might be made with cheaper parts won't "blow up" either. I own one, I think I'd know.


Thank you everyone for your help on the Motherboard.

Before I purchase.... is this setup good? (Saying I pick one of the $150 motherboards?)

I really want the BEST for ram/cpu/OCing
November 7, 2009 9:18:53 PM

I've had two Rosewill power supplies explode in my face, literally. While I'll agree that some brands are given more trouble than their worth, buying a PSU from a well-known and well-respected company is just a good idea. It's a case of QC, and won't occur on every unit - however, Corsair power supplies are well-known and well-respected to be the best in the industry. I've never heard of seventeam, but looking at a few reviews of their products, they don't seem to beat Corsair. For the same price, I'd go for the better brand. Why not? It's your choice, though.


For high OCing, you might want to opt for DDR3 1600 RAM, but the difference isn't too great. The quality modules you have should do just fine.
November 7, 2009 9:35:36 PM

I am having a hard time finding a motherboard.

How does the Foxconn BloodRage compare to the Asus P6T or ASRock X58 Deluxe?

I don't mind the fact it only has 3 memory slots.
November 7, 2009 9:53:57 PM

Bloodrage<ASRock X58<P6T
November 7, 2009 10:15:19 PM

frozenlead said:
Bloodrage<ASRock X58<P6T


Why?
November 7, 2009 10:49:24 PM

The Foxconn board is the company's first good board in a long, long time. They're pretty well known for making cheap stuff. Seems they want to overturn that. It performs okay and overclocks pretty good.
The Asus board is well known and is very solid, will overclock very well and performs nicely. If you're going for max performance for a higher than normal budget, this is the guy to have.
The ASRock (which is a subset of the Asus corporation) is pretty much a cheaper knock off of Asus's block. It wins hands down with performance, value, and overclockability/dollar.
That being said, the Foxconn board is stuck in the middle - with no high ground to stand upon, I put it in last place.

There are apparently also some issues with the Foxconn board and it's warranty (though I didn't mark that in my decision).
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/motherboards/2009/02/2...
November 8, 2009 12:21:20 AM

If I want to overclock my i7 to 4ghz what is the cheapest motherboard (16x/16x pci.e) can I get?

Will the ASRock X58 Extreme be enough?
November 8, 2009 12:24:54 AM

ASRock board should be fine for that, I believe there is a review on Tom's Hardware about that board.
November 9, 2009 9:23:14 AM

I decided to go with:

CPU: i7 920 - $289
RAM: Crucial Ballistix 6GB DDR3 1600 triple channel- $140
SSD: Intel X25-M G2- $290
DVDR: Sony 24X $27
MB: ASRock X58 Extreme- $119
PSU: Thermaltake Toughpower 750w modular $120
Cooling: ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro- $34
Case: Thermaltake V9 Black Edition- $84

Total: 1100

Already have:
HDD: Raid0 7200rpm (1TB)
GPU: 4850HD (5870's out of stock, sticking with old gpu until then)
Sound Card: X-fi Fatal1ty platinum
Mice: Razer Lachesis & Logitech G7 mice
Monitor: 46" 1080p hdtv + 28" 1920x1200 HannsG monitor.
Sound system for TV is 7.1, but since monitor is not setup in the same spot, I needed headphones, as well as a new keyboard.

So I went to Buy.com (great website, which includes zipzoomfly in it + coupons) and bought Razer Megalodon headphones for like $120 and a Razer Lycosa Mirror Gaming Keyboard.


By the end of the week if everything works, I'll be drooling while I use my new hardware!

THANKS EVERYONE FOR ALL ADVICE AND INFORMATION!!!!!!!!
November 9, 2009 12:32:38 PM

Looks pretty nice, grats :) 
November 9, 2009 2:46:06 PM

Thank you :) 

Now if only I can find a 5870 somewhere...

Or do you think I should just wait for the 5970?

I wish I knew when 5870's will come back in stock, so I can know to just wait that "One extra week" or if it'll be significantly longer than that.
!