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Yet another advice thread I would like input on a new AMD build.

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December 28, 2009 6:13:30 AM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: March BUDGET RANGE: Not really Important

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming, Movies, Music, Gener Purpose computing tasks

PARTS NOT REQUIRED:I'll be getting everything new, but this only focuses on the box and internal parts, plus the monitor and OS

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: newegg or any place with good customer support COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: United States (Texas)

PARTS PREFERENCES: AMD, 21" or larger monitor, ASUS mobo and Video cards unless someone has a better idea

OVERCLOCKING: Maybe SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Yes (Eventually)

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1080

PARTS SHORT LIST:
Case - Antec 300 Illusion
Power Supply - CORSAIR CMPSU-750HX 750W
CPU - AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz
CPU Cooler - ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro Rev.2 92mm Fluid Dynamic CPU Cooler
Mainboard - ASUS Crosshair III Formula
Memory - Mushkin Enhanced Blackline 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Dual Channel Kit
Video Hardware - ASUS Radeon HD 5750 1GB
Sound Hardware - The Mainboard's built-in SupremeFX X-Fi Audio Card
HDD - Western Digital Caviar Green 500GB SATA
Optical Drive 1 - LG Black 8X Blu-ray Burner - OEM
Optical Drive 2 - Sony Optiarc Black SATA Combo Drive - OEM
Card Reader - SABRENT CRW-UINB 68-in-1 USB 2.0 Internal Card Reader
OS - Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - OEM
Monitor - Acer H213H bmid Black 21.5" 5ms HDMI Full HD 1080P Widescreen LCD Monitor

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS:see below

It's about time for me to get rid of my dinosaur eMachine. It's way too old to just upgrade (2GHz P4, 768 MB DDR, Geforce FX6200), so I've been pricing parts to build a whole new system. I'd like any advice or input I could get about it. This will actuall be the first new machine I've ever owned, and I'm hellbent on building instead of buying. I'm tired of struggling to keep old-*** machines running for years after they're obsolete. One thing, though, I'm hella poor right now, so I won't be able to start ordering parts until probably March. On one hand, that ought to make everything a little cheaper, but I suppose it might also make my list obsolete.

It will be my main system, so I will need it to do whatever I want to do, really. Gaming (mmm, new Mechwarrior :D  ), playing my music collection, messing around a little bit with creating music, light video editing, web browsing, and all the basic productivity stuff.

Here's a link to my Newegg Wish List, and the following is my prospective build, along with the reasons I have for choosing each component. If you have a better, cheaper, or just different-er idea on how I could do this, let me know. I really want to make this build come off right.

Case - Antec 300 Illusion
Seems to be a good compromise between cost and awesomeness. Looks alright, no windows to worry about, and comes with fancy-pants blue LED fans included. I had looked at the Antec 200, and decided against it because 1) the 300 is slightly bigger, and 2) I'd never be able to look at the 200 without thinking 'Something, something, Dark Side. Something, something, complete.' Bottom mount power supply is also a bonus for me.

Power Supply - CORSAIR CMPSU-750HX 750W
Expensive - yes. Overkill - also yes. I picked Corsair after noticing that every Tom's benchmark article seems to have a Corsair PSU attached. I went with this one in particular because it's 80+ Silver rated, it's modular so I can keep the un-needed cables in my toolbox instead of laid out in the case, and 750W should keep me through the entire life of this machine and into at least one full rebuild. I don't want to have to turn around and buy another PSU as soon as I upgrade, ya know?

CPU - AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz
It's an AMD because dammit, I always wanted an AMD system, and also they seem to give more bang for your buck. I was looking at the 720 Black Ed., but decided I'd save money in the long run if I went a step up to begin with. I plan on experimenting with overclocking, hence the 955 Black Ed. instead of any of the middle steps between the 720 and the 955.

CPU Cooler - ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro Rev.2 92mm Fluid Dynamic CPU Cooler
I'm lost on this one. I literally just picked this one because it has a lot of good reviews and says it's AM3 compatible. If anyone has a better idea, I would love to hear it. I will be using Arctic Silver 5 to stick it to the CPU.

Mainboard - ASUS Crosshair III Formula
Another overkill part. I picked the Crosshair because I've heard it's a really good board. The onboard sound hardware and motherboard POSTer are a cute lil' bonus, too. I'm not dead set on this mobo, or even this brand, though. I want something that will last me until AM3 is obsolete, that I can OC the processor with.

Memory - Mushkin Enhanced Blackline 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Dual Channel Kit
I'm kinda lost here, too. This is a bit more than I want to spend for 4GB of RAM, but it has slightly lower latency than the other 'budget' ram kits. I heard it runs really hot. Any input here would be especially appreciated.

Video Hardware - ASUS Radeon HD 5750 1GB
This may (probably will) change between now and when I start ordering parts. I was looking at 5770 cards until the price went up. My intention is to get one when I built the system, and Crossfire a second when upgrade time comes around. I went with Asus just so I could have Asus cards with an Asus mobo (not sure if this makes a difference anywhere but in my head). If anyone has a good reason why I should change my mobo so I can SLI with Nvidia cards, let me know. I'm not opposed to anything, but I want to keep price down a little bit. I also want to be able to use dual monitors, eventually.

Sound Hardware - The Mainboard's built-in SupremeFX X-Fi Audio Card
I'm cool with the onboard sound here, and the Crosshair seems to have a better onboard setup than most.

HDD - Western Digital Caviar Green 500GB SATA
Here's a big question mark for me. I want a giant hard drive to begin with, and I'll likely add another one or two down the road. I have always had good luck with Western Digital drives, but I don't fully get the label system (Black, Blue, Green, whatever) that they use now. I don't know much about Seagate drives, and I've never seen any other brand (Maxtor, etc.) that wasn't dead or dying.

Optical Drive 1 - LG Black 8X Blu-ray Burner - OEM
Because it's a cheap Blu-Ray burner. Will only be used to play and burn Blu-Ray discs.

Optical Drive 2 - Sony Optiarc Black SATA Combo Drive - OEM
A good CD/DVD drive to play/burn CD's and DVDs

Card Reader - SABRENT CRW-UINB 68-in-1 USB 2.0 Internal Card Reader
Seems like a good idea.

OS - Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - OEM
OEM Win 7 Ultimate. Because I can.
I will probably be playing around with Ubuntu as well, also because I can.

Monitor - Acer H213H bmid Black 21.5" 5ms HDMI Full HD 1080P Widescreen LCD Monitor
Seems to be a good deal on a 1080P Monitor w/HDMI and lousy speakers. I won't be using the speakers on it though. $160 is about all I want to spend on a monitor.

Overall, this system is more than I really need, but I figure more high-end parts now equals less money spent in upgrades later.

I plan to upgrade down the road to 8GB of RAM. I read somewhere that AMD systems don't like to have all 4 RAM slots full though. Will I have a problem with adding 2 more sticks of 2GB RAM, or will I need to get a 4GB x 2 kit?

Also, I'm going to start with one video card, and add a second one later on. Is there any special thing I should know about doing this?

When upgrade time comes around, I'll also probably be replacing all the case fans with high-end models, and maybe dremeling out the side panel for one or two giant fans (like 250 MM monsters)

Any advice will be good, so please let me know what you think of this setup.

-Dustin-
December 28, 2009 6:47:12 AM

^ Hi...save the wishlist as Publicwishlist and not Mysavedwishlist as other will not be able to see it...
And as you have explained things clearly, why not even this ? This will be easier for people to get an idea without having to go through the full post, hence you can get more responses...
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/261222-31-build-advic...
December 28, 2009 6:56:44 AM

gkay09 said:
And as you have explained things clearly, why not even this ?


I guess I don't know what you mean by this...

I feel like an idiot. I can't seem to make the wishlist save as public. I checkmark it and click 'make public', and it checks shared, but doesn't do anything else.

EDIT: Fixed the format of my 1st post. Is that a little better?
Related resources
December 28, 2009 7:44:39 AM

^ My bad...I should have given the sticky link after that statement...

As for suggestions,...
It is good to see that people prefer AMD too...But frankly for the amount you are spending on the mobo and other components, I feel the P55 chipset(i5) route is better suited for you...
As you will be buying the PC by March, I think you should wait till March before finalize the components like the mobo, CPU, graphics card...The reason is that Intel will be launching new i5 CPUs in JAN and also mobos with SATA 6GB/s and USB3.0 will also be launched(Actually there are many P55 mobos available which support them)

PSU - You wont need 750W PSU... Drop to 650HX...It would suffice...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

And also check out this case + PSU combo...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Graphics card - Definitely a better one if you have planned for gaming...
If you want to game at high settings at 1080p, then you would need HD 5850 and above...And by the time you buy the rest of the components, the price of this card would come down to $250 or less...

HDD - You should check out the Samsung F3 drives..these are newer, faster and would cost around the same or even less...
But if you want to stick with WD, then I would suggest WD Black(These are the faster ones - suited as boot drives) - 640GB/ 1 TB/ 2TB...the rest of the Black ones are older and slower...
December 28, 2009 8:31:53 AM

Thanks for checking this out. I really do appreciate it. I'll make sure to look into the intel stuff.

If I go with AMD, is there a cheaper mobo that will overclock well? Quality and OC'ing ease are my main wants for a mainboard.

As for the PSU, Newegg's wattage calculator gives me a figure of 622W (after a round of upgrades i.e. 2nd HDD, more memory, 2nd video card. I think I'm going to go with the big 750W PSU, not because I need it now, but because with upgrades and a couple big fans, I feel like I'll need it later.

As for the graphics card, can I expect 1080p performance from a pair of 5770's in Crossfire?
December 28, 2009 8:52:59 AM

yes the 2 5770's is bout as strong as a 5870 you could get the tx750 instead if you not fussy bout modular the msi fx board holds the amd clocking record but for future proofing i'd go with the gigabyte 790x board with usb 3.0
December 28, 2009 9:16:11 AM

@dstewart If you have planned for 2x HD 5770s, then am pretty certain the 650HX would suffice...It would be better if you check out this PSU calc...And select capacitor aging to 25%...
http://extreme.outervision.com/psucalculatorlite.jsp
I got around 530W with the above mentioned setup and with the added components that you had given...

And as for 2x HD 5770s, yes they perform very well in crossfire...
http://www.guru3d.com/article/radeon-hd-5770-review-tes...

If you want a cheap and a good AM3 mobo, then check out this one -
ASUS 790X - Would offer decent overclock settings and is a good value board...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

or even the Gigabyte that obsidian specified would be good... would be good...
December 28, 2009 3:16:25 PM

For memory you could go with DDR3-1066 or DDR3-1333 and save some cash.
December 28, 2009 3:28:03 PM

790 FX are the top overclocking boards, but I have found that great results can be acheived from less expensive models. The crosshair in particular is one of the more expensive ones, but I won't argue if thats what you want.

The ASUS EVO 790x looks like a great value:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
WHOOPS! Someone already suggested that one. It is nice!

Here's a 770 board from ASUS, it is more budget though.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

For me, I am looking at getting a new board from MSI:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
December 31, 2009 3:50:09 AM

Thank you all for your input! Hopefully I'll be able to pull this whole thing off.
!