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Gaming/3d modeling, texturing rig 1500-2000 CAD

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November 27, 2009 10:35:17 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Some time over the next couple months BUDGET RANGE: 1500-2000 CAD (could possibly go higher if it seems justified).

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: It's a split between gaming and using various 3d modeling/texturing programs (including 3dsmax, XSI, photoshop, zbrush, mudbox, etc etc). I want to be able to play whatever game I choose on my tv (1080p resolution...thats 1920x1080 I believe) at max or near max settings. I have no real interest in Crysis, upcoming/recent games I'm interested in: Dragon Age, The Old Republic, L4D2, Starcraft 2, Diablo 3.

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Monitor (using my tv), speakers, mouse, keyboard (I might decide to upgrade some of these pieces way down the line, but definitely not a priority).

SLI or XFIRE: I would like to have a nice beefy card for now, but I would definitely be interested in adding another down the line.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Canadian sites, other than that I have no preference if it'll save me money and it's a reliable site, I'll use it.

PARTS PREFERENCES: I've always been a Nvidia man, but I could go with either, chances are the new Nvidia line up will be poking its head out soon, but I hear ATI is the leader currently.

OVERCLOCKING: I would like to overclock my CPU for sure, possibly the vid card and ram also.
MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1080p resolution (1920x1080)

PARTS I'M CURRENTLY CONSIDERING:
proc: i7 920 - I hear good things about its overclocking abilities, and it seems to be an all around decent proc
power supply: CORSAIR CMPSU-1000HX 1000W ATX12V 2.2 - for future SLI, plus corsair does good work typically
case: HAF 932 - this is is still up in the air, but I kind of like the look, it's supposed to have good airflow
ram: 6gb of ddr3 ram to start, upgradeable to 12gb down the line. Not sure on the brand, thinking possibly corsair again
motherboard: compatible with the i7 920, 6 slots for ram, possibility for SLI/Xfire. No idea on brand here, one of the areas I really need help.
hard drive: Not sure if I should bother with SSD, maybe a small one for the OS/select programs with a decent size normal HD for everything else.
OS: definitely thinking 64 bit windows 7

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I would like to try dipping my toe in to the water cooling pool. Mostly because of the temps my room reaches in the hot months.

That is all I can think of currently, I'm looking to build this beast myself/with a little local help from friends (BC Canada). Will be my first build. Any help I could get from this fine community would be much appreciated.
November 27, 2009 11:19:37 PM

Hmmm, should I add more detail? Prices and links perhaps?
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November 27, 2009 11:47:40 PM

CPU - you're fine

MoBo - Asus P6T Deluxe V2 or P6T7 WS

Case / PSU - HAF 932 w/ Corsair HX-850 or Antec 1200 w/ Antec CP-850

RAM - careful here ..... the ones with better cooling are generally unable to fit 12 GB. You want DDR3 1600 w/ lowest timings that fit ya budget. CAS 6 vanished from the planet 2 weeks ago. CAS 7 is next but Corsair's are way overpriced at present so look at OCZ.

HD - Any of the 500 GB per platter drives - WD Black (2 TB model only) Seagate 7200.12 or Samsung Spinpoint F3
SSD - if ya got the money

OS: Win 7 - 64 Ult or Pro OEM

GFX - NvIdia Quadro as hi up as ya can afford for 3D rendering ... unless fermi has some capabiity in this regard when released.
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November 28, 2009 12:01:18 AM

Hmmm, a quadro eh? How do they handle gaming? Honestly I never really had any problem using a decent gaming card for my 3d stuff (in the past of course). A corsair HX 850 for PSU? This will handle SLI down the road with a water cooling setup? Also need suggestions for a water cooling solution.

The MoBo both seem good. I'm leaning towards the Asus P6T Deluxe between the 2 though. Not only is it like 150-200 cheaper, I can't imagine needing more than 2 16x PCI E slots. They both seem to support SLI and Xfire from the looks of it.
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November 28, 2009 12:32:58 AM

Also, any suggestions on a vid card? I would like a nice beefy single card for now, preferably one with a decent product life. I had my 8800gtx for 3 or so years, and even today its not a horrible card.
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November 28, 2009 1:07:57 AM

I use AutoCAD but not 3D max...friends that do use the Quaddro for demanding work. Those looking for a compromise between modleing and gaming have a 295 and are content. I thought proces on these would go in the toilet when the 5970 came out but with the 5970's price at $625....it seems to have given extended life to the 295 at the $500 price point...last week they were $460, now all over $500

You should get by fine with a 250 (seen under $100) or 260 ($180-200).
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November 28, 2009 1:14:22 AM

Hmmm, ya I wouldn't be doing a ton of rendering, maybe some stills or a minute or 2 clip every now and then for a reel if need be. 250 I doubt would run some of those games at the resolution I'm looking at. A 260 might, and adding another down the line wouldn't be that difficult. I hear good things about the 295, obviously coming at a premium, but when I get more of an idea of the cost once I've picked my other parts I'll take another look at the 295 to be sure. Of course the new nvidia line could push them down cheaper, who knows.
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November 28, 2009 3:02:25 AM

Anyone have any suggestions on a SSD? Also still need some advice on water cooling in general. Once I get at least the water cooling solved I'll be able to put together a rough estimate of what I'd be spending so far :D  :bounce: 
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November 29, 2009 5:11:56 AM

Honestly SSD is nice but like crossfire or sli it's generally a waste of money unless you have it to burn

With regards to your cooling, I live in the hottest city in Canada (Kamloops) and can tell you air cooling will do you just fine. You might need a good cooler but it'll still be cheaper and just as good.
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November 29, 2009 6:29:57 AM

Ya the ssd is still up the in air. You think good air cooling will do me for overclocking? And kamloops may be hot as hell, but I live in a room with the sun blaring in. The humidity is crazy and the heat gets to freakish heights. Suggestions for both air and water cooling would be good so I could make my decision a bit easier. Perhaps if some more people weigh in. I'm just thinking water cooling will help me regulate the overall temp better, with SLI or Xfire (down the road), and some overclocking coupled with the heat of my room I'd rather it be super cool instead of me having to worry about it at all :D 
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November 29, 2009 1:26:41 PM

JackNaylorPE said:
I use AutoCAD but not 3D max...friends that do use the Quaddro for demanding work. Those looking for a compromise between modleing and gaming have a 295 and are content. I thought proces on these would go in the toilet when the 5970 came out but with the 5970's price at $625....it seems to have given extended life to the 295 at the $500 price point...last week they were $460, now all over $500

You should get by fine with a 250 (seen under $100) or 260 ($180-200).


When you say "5970" and "295", what cards are you actually referring to?
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November 29, 2009 1:28:15 PM

^ um the cards that are named ATI Radeon HD 5970 and nVidia 295?
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November 29, 2009 7:16:25 PM

You'd think that the numbers would give them away :D  My next post I'll post/add up what I've got so far, and see what you guys think.
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November 30, 2009 8:33:36 AM

Okay so here are some of the parts I'm thinking of currently. All these prices are from newegg because (so far) they've been much cheaper than ncix.

proc: i7 920 - $304.99 Link

case: Haf 932 -$149.99 Link

ram: 6gb (3x2gb) ddr3 1600 corsair xms3 -$162.99 Link

OS: windows 7 professional 64 bit OEM -$154.99 Link

MoBo: Asus P6T Deluxe v2 -$339.99 Link

Power supply: Corsair 850w -$169.99 Link
Theres 2 models for the corsair 850w, what are the big differences between the 2? I've listed the slightly cheaper one.

HD: Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 1TB -$94.99 Link

DVD drive/burner: Samsung 22x DVD+R -$34.99 Link

Total thus far: Around $1412 before rebates and taxes/shipping

Okay so I'm still missing extra cooling goodness and a video card. Is there anything else I'm forgetting? Let's say I want a 5970, will I be able to add another down the line with my current PSU/setup? I'm not sure if I will go that way, I may wait for the new nvidia line to see how it measures up. How about the motherboard, it seems to have what I need, but the reviews are very mixed (on newegg anyways). Still looking for some advice on the cooling though, I have no idea on that (at least video cards I'm fairly familiar with).
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November 30, 2009 5:00:13 PM

Any opinions? Anyone know a good set of reviews for some coolers?
*edit* Okay so I looked up some water cooling systems...there are so many parts I'm still fairly confused on what I specifically need for water cooling. Suggestions still welcome :) 
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November 30, 2009 9:08:17 PM

Checking another site (tigerdirect.ca) I've got the total of the parts so far down to around $1181.87 (the haf 932 alone was like 40 bucks cheaper). Though I'm not sure if the 920 I'm looking at has d0 stepping (which I hear is good for overclocking...any info on the difference between the normal and the one with d0 stepping?).
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December 10, 2009 11:59:19 PM

ssandulak said:
Theres 2 models for the corsair 850w, what are the big differences between the 2? I've listed the slightly cheaper one..


The TX is a 2nd tier PSU .... the HX is the premier series.

Top Tier (Electrically)
Antec SG -850
Antec CP-850
Corsair HX-850
Seasonic M12D 850W

See more here:

http://www.silentpcreview.com/Recommended_PSUs
http://www.jonnyguru.com/index.php


Quote:
Okay so I'm still missing extra cooling goodness and a video card. Is there anything else I'm forgetting? Let's say I want a 5970, will I be able to add another down the line with my current PSU/setup? I'm not sure if I will go that way, I may wait for the new nvidia line to see how it measures up. How about the motherboard, it seems to have what I need, but the reviews are very mixed (on newegg anyways). Still looking for some advice on the cooling though, I have no idea on that (at least video cards I'm fairly familiar with)


They'll be a lot of strong opinions on GFX cards, witha s much emotion as facts behind the advice. Just plug ya cards into a PSU calculator

http://www.antec.outervision.com/

Lotta inexperienced people buy enthusiast boards and really don't have the guidance they need to put one together....their frustration winds up with broken and burnt boards and lotsa "It didn't work" because they didn't RTFM, follow proper procedures or put all the power plugs in
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December 11, 2009 12:27:03 AM

ASRock X58 Extreme ATX LGA1366 DDR3 4PCI-E16 2PCI-E1 Quad CrossFireX Quad SLI Eup Ready Motherboard

$199.99

Corsair HX1000W CMPSU-1000HX 1000W ATX 20/24PIN ATX 80A 12V Afc Modular Power Supply W/ 140MM Fan

$219.50

Patriot Extreme Viper PVT36G1600LLK 6GB DDR3 3X2GB DDR3-1600 CL 8-8-8-24 Triple Channel Memory Kit

$194.49

Cooler Master Haf 932 Full Tower Black EATX Case 6X5.25 1X3.5 5X3.5INT No PSU USB eSATA 1394 Audio

$136.96

Western Digital WD1001FALS Caviar Black 1TB SATA2 7200RPM 4.2MS 32MB 3.5IN Dual Proc Hard Drive OEM

$98.28

Intel Core i7 920 D0 Stepping Quad Core Processor LGA1366 2.66GHZ Bloomfield 8MB LGA1366 -SLBEJ-

$314.08

Sapphire Radeon HD 5850 GDDR5 PCI-E 2XDVI HDMI Display Port DirectX 11 Full Retail Video Card

$288.08

Coolermaster Hyper 212 Plus Direct Touch 4 Heatpipe Heatsink AM2 AM3 LGA1366 LGA775 LGA1156 120MM

$23.65
Replaced the Intel with the OCZ Agility Indilinx 60GB 2.5IN SATA2 Solid State Disk Flash Drive SSD

$229

Also added a basic writer/dvd drive: Samsung SH-S222A/BEBE 22X Dual Layer DVD Writer Black IDE OEM

$30.80

Total is around $1944'ish with tax. So I'm pretty much at the limit. Let me know what you guys think. Updated after some great advice from the guys over at hardware canucks.
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