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December 14, 2009 5:25:14 PM

So it has been a long time since I have build a new system. I was wondering if you all could critique my new system. TD = Tiger Direct and NE = NewEgg

289.99TD CP1-I7-920 :: Intel Core i7 920 Processor BX80601920 - 2.66GHz, LGA 1366, 4.8GT/s QPI, 8MB L3 Cache, Quad-Core, HyperThreading, Bloomfield, Retail (1.65 lbs)
154.99NE CORSAIR XMS3 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMX6GX3M3A1600C9 - Retail
239.99NE ASUS P6T LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
139.99NE EVGA 01G-P3-N981-TR GeForce 9800 GT 1GB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card - Retail
59.99NE Creative SB X-Fi Xtreme Audio 70SB104000000 7.1 Channels PCI Express x1 Interface Sound Card - Retail
34.99NE Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 ST380815AS 80GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
119.99NE COOLMAX CUG-950B 950W ATX12V V.2.2 SLI Certified CrossFire Ready Modular Active PFC Power Supply - Retail

I will most likely dual boot this system, however I will generally be using Arch Linux. So if anyone sees any issues with compatability please let me know.

I have 2 other HDs that are identical already. I will be doing a RAID 5.

I will be doing SLI at a later time and I will buy another graphics card.

If anyone can better the system and or make it cheaper in price with the same quality, it would be much appreciated. I plan on getting a cheap case and modding it myself.

Please let me know anything negative about the system, or positive! : )

Thanks,
Brian

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December 14, 2009 5:53:46 PM

Refer to the thread "How to Ask for New Build Advice." We need a budget, usage, and much more info...

HDD: All kinds of wrong. Unless you have absolutely no need for speed and/or space, I wouldn't get that HDD. Go with a 500 GB Samsung Spinpoint F3 for $20 more. This is probably the fastest drive available.

PSU: You do not need a 950W PSU. And you shouldn't get a Coolmax. At most, get a 750W Corsair, OCZ or Antec Earthwatts. These will be quality and provide you with more than enough power for Crossfire later. And yes, that is CROSSFIRE, leading me to...

GPU: Do NOT buy a nVidia GPU right now. ATI is currently destroying them with their new HD 5xxx series. These support DirectX 11, and are faster, quieter, cooler and more energy efficient than anything nVidia has out. Go with a 5770 for an extra $30.

Sound Card: Completely unnecessary. Waste of money unless you're an audiophile...

CPU: Good choice, unless you're gaming (which I assume you are). The best CPU for gaming is currently the i5-750 for $200 ($150 if you're near a Mcrocenter). This will also make the rest of the build cheaper as well. For here down, I'm assuming you're switching to the i5...

Mobo: Gigabyte GA-P55A-UD4P. This board is not cheap (about $180 on Newegg), but supports USB 3.0 and SATA 6 GB/s. Thus, it will be good for a while. It has 2 PCIe slots at 8x/8x, which doesn't sound perfect, but there's actually very little (noticeable) difference between 8x/8x and 16x/16x

RAM: G.Skill Eco 2x2 GB DDR3 1333 mhz CAS Latency 7 sticks. These are good sticks, fairly cheap and low voltage.
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December 14, 2009 6:20:43 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: In a couple of months, probably slowly buying parts over time.
BUDGET RANGE: Under 1500USD (Not Strict)

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Development, Home Server, Video Editing, Media Center, Gaming

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

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: TigerDirect or Newegg
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA

PARTS PREFERENCES:
GPU: nVidia (I have a huge problem with ATI issues and Linux)
HDD: I am planning on doing some sort of RAID setup (probably 5). So I need more than one disk for mirroring or parity (whichever I choose later). What is the best option for speed vs price?

OVERCLOCKING: Maybe
SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Yes

MONITOR RESOLUTION: (1024x768, 1280x1024, 1440x900, 1600x1200, 1680x1050, 1920x1080, 1920x1200) Not of a huge concern but around 1600x1200 would be fine.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Quiet, few or no lights

Would the recommended still be recommended?

Thanks,
Brian
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December 14, 2009 6:24:17 PM

IMO, yes. Have you seen anything on the issues with ATI and Linux with their new cards?

As far as the RAID, if you're doing it later, why not get an excellent drive now, and pick up another once you decide?


Strike that. Didn't see the few months timeframe.

If it's a ways off, wait until 2-3 weeks before, and then ask again. A lot is about to change... The new Intel i3 options, new nVidia DirectX 11 cards, whatever SSDs are going to do, more 500 GB platter HDD options... The next couple of months will be very interesting
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December 14, 2009 6:50:33 PM

Yea, I planned on asking again before I started making purchases. After Christmas (by a few months) is when I plan to start buying.

Glad to hear about the nVidia DirectX 11 cards, I refuse to get ATI. (Even if they now work better on Linux) I might later be doing some programming with CUDA.

Aside from waiting, I am trying to get an idea of what I want, then buy it later (possibly better parts) for the dimminished price.

So now I am at:
99.99NE Antec EarthWatts EA750 750W Continuous Power ATX12V version 2.3 SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC ... - Retail
199.99NE Intel Core i5-750 Lynnfield 2.66GHz 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core Processor - Reta
54.99NE SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
97.99NE G.SKILL ECO Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL7D-4GBECO - Retail
184.99NE GIGABYTE GA-P55A-UD4P LGA 1156 Intel P55 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard w/ USB 3.0 & SATA 6 Gb/s - Retail

What would you recommend for an nVidia card with SLI?

Thanks,
Brian

EDIT: Wrote wrong language.
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December 14, 2009 7:04:48 PM

Instead of a 9800 get a GTS 250. Its the same performance specs but newer mfg method and takes less power. If you were running windows I would not go with an Nvidia card as the ATI cards now have DX11 and have generally stronger price/performance than nvidia.

Right now the best price/performance drive is the Samsung F3 500GB. (or 1TB). It is a new HDD with 500GB platters which makes it much faster than older 7200 RPM drives and even the 10K RPM velociraptors.
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December 14, 2009 7:13:37 PM

I rarely plan on running Windows, just for testing (possibly virtual box), so I will be going with nVidia.

How does this look:
154.99NE EVGA 01G-P3-1158-TR GeForce GTS 250 1GB 256-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card - Retail
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December 14, 2009 7:19:27 PM

If graphics power isnt an issue, you could even drop down to the new GT 240.

EVGA and XFX are both good GPU manufacturers. They are the two I would recommend most.
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December 14, 2009 7:20:06 PM

EDIT: Answered, and completely irrelevant with the "not using Windows much" info...
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