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Nasty Win7 build; Gamer + HTPC; Radeon 5750

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November 20, 2009 7:28:38 PM

I've spec'd this system and am already over budget but wanted a somewhat future-proof build. This will be running Windows 7, 64-bit. Would appreciate any feedback, especially if there are incompatibilities, red flags, or if I might save some $ somewhere. Also, please recommend a cheap solution for S/PDIF optical input (for sound from my PS3).

-Purchase: before December, '09
-Usage: gaming (Eve Online, Starcraft, Bioshock), home theater, Matlab
-Not req'd: have Dell 2408 WFP, Sound Blaster Audigy Platinum circa 2003, HDDs, case, etc.
-Newegg preferred
-Asus and Antec preferred
-Not planning to overclock or use crossfire


PARTS:
ASUS M4A79XTD EVO AM3 AMD 790X ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail

AMD Phenom II X2 550 Black Edition Callisto 3.1GHz

OCZ Gold AMD Edition 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3

SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 5750

OCZ ModXStream Pro 600W

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November 20, 2009 8:01:16 PM

Over budget already, so if a quad is desireable right now (I dont think it is) then the Athlon IIx4 620 or 630 would fit in the budget better. To save money an Athlon II x3 435 for $77 or x2 240 for $65 are good options.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

The onboard 8 channel sound might be better than a 5 year old sound card.

If your old HDDs are not SATA 3GB, you probably should get something like a Samsung F3 500GB HDD to boot and run software from.

With the MIR, that power supply is a hard deal to beat right now. Look at the Antec Earthwatts 550 or OCZ Fatal1ty 550 also when you purchase.


The 5750 is a bit weak of a graphics card for that nice 1920x1200 monitor you have. A 5770 would be substantially better and a 5850 would make a great gaming system.
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November 20, 2009 8:26:45 PM

The best way to stay "future-resistant" is to just make sure you have a solid AM3 motherboard that can accept the higher-power processors. Since yours does, that CPU should be fine for now (you can drop in a better CPU in two years after AMD releases its Fusion platform - which should make the AM3 CPUs dirt cheap).

The 5750 is a bit underpowered for that resolution, but since the games you are planning to run will not be uber graphics-intensive, there's really not a whole lot of motivation to go for a huge GPU. Blizzard does a lot of smart modeling so their games don't require top-of-the-line systems, so that rig should be ok to run SC2 and D3 when they come out. The 5770 isn't that much more expensive, though, and might be a better choice. If it were me, I would just spend the extra $30, drop in the 5770, and then look to Xfire down the road.
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November 25, 2009 2:25:49 PM

I haven't built a pc in 10 years but I was recently researching the possibility. I was looking at exactly the same CPU, RAM and Video as you. I also looked at your PSU and MB, but I haven't decided yet. You probably already found this combo, but just in case:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...



Why did you choose that motherboard? Why not save some money with a 770 chipset? Is it a matter of graphic lanes and future crossfire possibilities?


I'm gathering information for my own project that I will probably start after Christmas. My background is Mechanical and Computer Engineering, but I have kids now, develop software professionally (high abstraction level C++, C#, SQL, etc. - I haven't seen assembly since the '90s). I'm very much removed from the current trends in hardware.
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