Trimming the fat on i7 build. Opinions?



SYSTEM USAGE: Gaming/Net use

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: KB/Mouse/Monitor (22" lcd)/Case/Win7U/Optical Drive




OVERCLOCKING: Down the road

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Prefer one higher end card.


ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Emphasis on upgradability and lower initial price.

ASUS EAH5870/2DIS/1GD5/A Radeon HD 5870 (Cypress XT) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported ... - Retail

Intel Core i7-920 Bloomfield 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80601920 - Retail

1. ASUS EAH5870/2DIS/1GD5/A: $404.99
2. Intel BX80601920: $288.99
Combo Discount: -$30.00
Combo Price: $663.98

Open Box: ASRock X58 Extreme LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard


Crucial 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1066 (PC3 8500) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model CT3KIT25664BA1067 - Retail


Antec TruePower New TP-750 Blue 750W Continuous Power ATX12V V2.3 / EPS12V V2.91 SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE ... - Retail


Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3320418AS 320GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

Any items to swap for a better price:performance ratio appreciated!
5 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about trimming build opinions
  1. Best answer
    Switch to an i5 build. It's better price/performance for gaming. ($94 less)

    Pick up a Gigabyte GA-P55A-UD4P for $185. It's got USB 3/SATA 3 ports. You don't want open box anyway. ($66 more)

    Get some G.Skill Ripjaws 1333 mhz CAS Latency 7 for $100. ($54 less)

    Don't mess with the Antec TruePower's. Either go with the Earthwatts, or switch to Corsair or OCZ. OCZ has a 700W StealthXStream for $55 after rebate. ($65 less)

    Switch the Seagate for a Samsung Spinpoint F3 500 GB for $55. It's the best (and cheapest) drive out right now. ($5 more)

    Total changes: $142. Lower price, better performance.
  2. Memory - here's some CAS 7 DDR 1600 which will allow better OC's for just $10 more.

    That TruePower gets a 9.5 performance rating on jonnyguru so it's a very solid choice. By comparison, the Earthwatts and the Corsair TX get only an 8.5 ....and the OCZ gets a 7.5

    HD - That 320 Gb 7200.12 is an old generation model. You will want to move to current generation 500 GB per platter drives. WD has the 2 TB Black model but none smaller....the Seagate and Spinpoint 1 TB models are 500 GB per platter drives. If quiet and cool is a goal, the 7200.12's really shine. If solid performance is all that matters, peruse the THG performance charts and look at your particular's some,1019.html?prod[2371]=on&prod[2770]=on

    Gaming Seagate 14.60 / Spinpoint 13.90
    Moviemaker Seagate 50.30 / Spinpoint 57.60
    Avg read Seagate 101.89 / Spinpoint 110.41
    Windows Media Seagate 143.80 / Spinpoint 107.50

    Avoid open boxes.,,,,fir 13666, budget buy is
    Gives two full x 16 PCI lanes
  3. Some TruePowers are good (Trio and Quattro). However, some are bad (II, III). For that alone, I'd avoid them. I don't know what jonnyguru's looking at, as Corsair are quite possibly the best available. The old StealthXStreams were bad, but the new ones are good.

    I always use this list to determine quality. It's never let me down before. Eggxpert Tiered Power Supply List. Generally, you don't want to go below tier 2. Note the TruePowers are split between tier 2 and 3. New OCZs are tier 2. Corsairs are tier 2. Smaller Earthwatts (<700W) are tier 2.
  4. Price/Performance the 5870 is an iffy choice. It's ~12%-15% greater performance than a 5850 for ~28% increase in price.

    Both a 5850 and 5870 will run anything except Crysis at 1920 x 1200 resolution at max settings with 8xAA at >35 FPS (standard TV is 24 FPS). Incidentally neither will run Crysis at those setting a >35 FPS. Need a 5970 or Xfire 5850/5870 for that.

    For gaming, the i5 is better performance and lower price than an i7-920. There isn't a clear upgrade path, but currently, 3 cores is really all that's needed for gaming, and hyper threading has been shown to be basically useless for gaming.

    Regardless, most games these days are not CPU, but rather GPU bound.

    Some people are concerned with the limited PCIE lanes in the P55 platform when xfire/sli (x8 vs x16), but Toms showed it to be negligible unless you're gaming at 2560 x 1600.
  5. MadAdmiral said:
    S I don't know what jonnyguru's looking at, as Corsair are quite possibly the best available.

    There's no Corsair's in Tier 1 on your eggxpert list. Corsair's HX line is, IMO, one of the best electrically. Right up there near the Antec SG and CP series, along with the Seasonic and some Enermax. While most people think that because Company A makes a great PSU in their ABC line, that all their lines must be good. Not only is this not true but their are dogs even within a series. The Antec CP-850 has got to have the best price / performance ratio on the market but the CP-1000 was kind of a disappointment. Not a bad PSU, but offers just a few amps more than the 850.

    I start my searched w/ the Editor's Choice List here

    Then head over to for a 2nd opinion

    The eggxpert list is "an update of the tiered power supply list originally posted on a few years ago" and is a bit dated methinks with some carryovers that shoulda been dropped....I much prefer the 4-7 page reviews and in depth testing to mull over in my mind.

    eggxpert folks recommend silentpcreview and jonnyguru as the source of in depth information.
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