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Feedback wanted ~$2000 gaming system

Last response: in Systems
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January 23, 2010 6:49:25 PM

Hey guys, this is going to be a little less serious since I've already ordered a stack of products. The main purpose of the computer rig is gaming and general entertainment, take a look and tell me if you would do anything different within the same budget.

Ordered merchandise:

Monitor: Asus VW246 24"
Case: Cooler Master HAF 932
CPU: Intel i5-750 2.66Ghz
Mobo: Asus P7P55 Deluxe
GPU: XFX Radeon HD 5870

Parts being ordered on Monday:

Headset: Razer Carcharias
DVD-Burner: Lite-On DVD Writer
Boot SSD: Intel X25-M G2 80gb SSD
Storage HD: Western Digital 500gb Caviar Green
PSU: Corsair TX850W
Memory: G.Skill Eco Series 4gb DDR3 1600
CPU cooler: Noctua NH-D14
Thermal Paste: Artic Silver 5

Any and all thoughts welcome. By the way, will Noctua NH-D14 fit on/in this motherboard and case?
January 23, 2010 7:13:53 PM

I have to disagree with ares on the SSD. I would stick with your intel. +1 to his storage drive suggestion.
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January 23, 2010 7:19:32 PM



Yeah I have heard great things about the Samsung F3, but why that PSU? I've heard great great things about the Corsair TX850W, and ordering from Newegg adds tax for me so Tigerdirect offers sligthly cheaper products.

Edit: Yeah, I'm sure I could've saved a penny here and there, but I'm happy with the base items I've ordered. Really wouldn't change any of them other than the motherboard :) 

foolycooly said:
I have to disagree with ares on the SSD. I would stick with your intel. +1 to his storage drive suggestion.


Yeah, I've heard so many great things and seen so many great benchmarks from the Intel SSDs, can't say I've seen any from that particular Corsair SSD though.
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January 23, 2010 7:28:05 PM

well, the only problem with that one is it isnt as fast with writes as most ssds...look at these benchmarks:

http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...

http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...

that was compared to the much slower ocz version and others, which are now much, much faster...this is a direct comparison of the corsair and the intel x25-m:

http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...

http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...

these and several other clearly show the corsair as better, and it also costs less per gb.
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January 23, 2010 8:53:22 PM

but the corsair does not support TRIM like intel does afaik.
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January 23, 2010 8:55:40 PM

ahhh, i hoped i could bring this up...that is true, but the corsair has something called SelfHeal, which basically moves used or damaged cells to the "back" repairs them, and circulates them when in idle, basically making the lifetime far greater, and speeds much more consistent.
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January 23, 2010 9:17:09 PM

Maybe it has faster writes...but the question is will the user notice it??

-How about i answer my own retorical question...No!

-For him, his important thing is gaming, and the intel will excel at his needs, plus intel has trim, both automatic and a manual version "ssdtoolbox".

-And i say stick with the corsair 850tx, you can downgrade to a 750watt though. Plus if you money get the HX series for modular ones.

-As much as the speed of the samsung spinpoint is awsome, they aren't known for thier reliabilty as a company in hard drives, if you will only store data on the hard drive get western digital.
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January 23, 2010 9:22:17 PM

wait, so we are going to recommend a inferior, more expensive drive just because the user wont notice the difference??? well, he might not, since ssds are getting crazy fast, but i would still get the corsair. trim is the same/inferior to selfheal, and the psu recommendation is ok, no argument against corsair, although that silverstone is extremely good. and what are you talking about samsung isnt very reliable??? the f3s are faster!!!, more reliable, and have higher capacity.
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January 23, 2010 9:35:14 PM

ares1214, the SSD you suggested seems to very good. I'm nearly convinced, I tried to find another review for it but haven't had any luck. Do you got any other review links?

Are these different? Which is better?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
or
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

If I do choose Corsair, I might spit out an extra 70 bucks (Tigerdirect is tax free for me while Newegg is not) to get:
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

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January 23, 2010 9:39:24 PM

the second one is the better version, and to be honest, either one is good, practically any ssd is good. but, the intel has slow writes, and fast reads, the corsair has fast writes, and fast reads, with some additional perks, so i would personally choose the corsair, its corsair...what can go wrong :lol: 
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January 23, 2010 9:40:55 PM

ares1214
Exactly my point, why recommend the corsair when he can get the superior intel. And self heal is actually different then trim by a lot...self heal just replaces bad sectors with newer ones, trim has nothing to do with that, it deletes data on sectors effectivly wiping them to keep write speeds very consistent. You can't say that self heal is same to trim, they are two completely different things. Maybe my sources are lying to me though, never know.

Quote:
and what are you talking about samsung isnt very reliable??? the f3s are faster!!!, more reliable, and have higher capacity.


First of all, samsung are known to be very unreliable, google it up, i can even confirm this from personal expirience and many other people.

Secondly, i agree, they are faster then most normal drives but as i said in my previous post, if reliablity is a greater concern get western digital, a little slower (although not by much) but have a better record/reputation of reliablility, seagate is also very good.

Thirdly If the op is using the drive as just a storage device (he will probably install OS and apps on the SSD) then the speed won't matter, he'll never notice.

And what do you mean by higher capacity?...western digital and the others make up to 2TB drives?... the f3's max out at 1TB if i am not mistaken, they might have larger platters but thats just a repetitive arguement because thats why they are faster.
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January 23, 2010 9:41:36 PM

It all sounds great but I feel kind of foolish if I would change my mind over one review, I need to get my hands on more benchmarks.

Edit: Just read up a little bit on TRIM, but not yet on selfheal
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January 23, 2010 9:51:23 PM

well, no the corsair is better, and trim and selfheal both do the same thing, just in different ways. and companies change, i will never buy another seagate after 3 failed on me, but now they are supposedly so much more reliable. samsung might have been unreliable in the past, but the f3s are the best drive out there, period.

and to qwertinator,

http://www.ssdflashdrivereviews.com/flash-drive-review/...

theres another not comparing it, just recommending it.
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January 23, 2010 10:08:01 PM

The backup HD will not only be used as storage, which is why I will go with the F3. I have a couple of friends who has the Samsung and they've told me it works splendidly.

As far as the SSD, I feel the Intel is a more sound option due to all the publications that speaks well of it, but I also feel that an SSD will be good regardless, and that I might need more than 80gb for my applications. I will think about it over the weekend, either it's the 128gb corsair or the 80gb intel x25.
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January 23, 2010 10:17:00 PM

i would get the corsair, but the intel, or vertex are all amazingly fast, and wont dissapoint, although i would be weary of the slow write speeds...
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January 23, 2010 11:53:57 PM

2 year warranty and the relatively unknown selfheal...Mmmh, it's a thinker.

Anyone else got any general feedback on the setup?
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January 24, 2010 2:47:36 AM

No! get the intel!

Quote:
the second one is the better version, and to be honest, either one is good, practically any ssd is good. but, the intel has slow writes, and fast reads, the corsair has fast writes, and fast reads, with some additional perks, so i would personally choose the corsair, its corsair...what can go wrong


-Actually let me inform you that the Intel's reads are actually significantly faster.
-And also let me just point out that read speeds really don't matter that much on the Operating System drive. Access Times matter much more and even in the links you provided ares, the Intel is shown to be faster in random reads/writes and access times and thats what really counts.

-And to the OP, qwertinator think about it yourself, when was the last time or have you even heard of self heal?...or some kind of corsair drive?...probably not right?
On the other hand, Trim, how much have you heard of trim?, its discussed everywhere along with the Intel drive...so obviosly Intel is more popular, known for its amazing performance over other drives, think about it yourself.

Quote:
but the f3s are the best drive out there, period


Very bold statement, infact, i wouldn't repeat that because its to vague and anybody can argue that. And also its wrong.

-You'd be weary of slow writes?....pffffffff lol intel with it's "Slow" write speeds is one of the most popular and fastest MLC currently available, anybody will tell you that thier writes are perfectly fine and fast, intel has yet to find a person who has complained about the intel's write speeds.
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January 24, 2010 4:10:27 AM

You won me over blackhawk, although I might not be head deep into all the nitty gritty details, the Intel SSD and TRIM is always the topic when SSD comes up in discussions. I'd be doing a safe call going with Intel, and I think with my little knowledge about the technicalities of SSDs, the safe call will be the best call.
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January 24, 2010 11:28:56 AM

fine, the f3s are the best 7200 rpm sata 2 hard drives out right now. and just because you have never heard of something, doesnt make it bad. and look at the benchmarks, and the specs, the intel drive definitely shows slower writes. im not saying intel is bad, im just saying IMHO the corsair is better, but either one is good.
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January 24, 2010 1:52:45 PM

hah, i already won the op over :) .
And i said in my previous post that intel has slower writes, but as i also said, nobody has ever complained about these "slower" writes which as a matter fact are very fast totatling at around 100mbps.

And the f3 statement...better, i can still argue that, but its better (more specific).

And to finish this off, I as a matter of fact have the Intel X25-M 80GB Solid State Drive (look in my sig)...and i have tested it and used it in every way possible and it works flawlessly, with no stutter, writes are perfectly fast especially with trim doing its job. I have been using it for about 2 months now maybe less and writes remain consitently at top speeds with trim and reads are very fast (around 275mbps at max).

-Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit boot time=6-7 seconds
-Loading of your account=1 seconds with no delay

As for the OP, your main thing is gaming right?...well if you play online multiplayer games, you will be the first person to connect to the server and load new maps/arenas every single time...i can garentee that.
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January 24, 2010 2:11:30 PM

i submit then, intel does make extremely good, possibly the best ssds, but just on a side note, i build a computer with a patriot torqx in it, and this thing flew, a little less than 6 seconds for windows 7 boot, and loading bars were almost non-existant. he said that in empire total war, loading bars and turn taking would be pretty long, now it literally just goes straight thru, no stopping at all. the partiot has something called wiper, which is literally the exact same as trim, so it bascially has trim. soooo...would that seem like a viable option? also, the fastest ssd ive seen is the ocz vertex turbo:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/NewProduct.aspx?Item=N82E...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/NewProduct.aspx?Item=N82E...

proven right here:

http://www.techspot.com/review/181-solid-state-drive-ro...

that also has 120 Gb for more storage...

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January 24, 2010 3:54:20 PM

The wiper feature isn't automatic though, unless i am mistaken, you have to manually run it on a daily or weekly basis and it could take a long time to complete. If you don't then performance degrades very fast over time...the Intel on the other hand, you never have to worry about running anything manually, everything is done automatically for you which is why trim is such a popular point of discussion and reviewing.

Moreover the benchmarks you linked me to show that the Intel has faster reads then the OCZ...it does have slower writes but i've already repeated that nobody has ever complained about its writes. Secondaly, the benchmarks compare the Intel Generation 1 ssd...the old one, not the new one which is faster and supports trim, the older one doesn't.
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January 24, 2010 3:58:58 PM

Aye, I will be using the computer for gaming mainly. blackhawk1928, I have a few questions about the Intel SSD if you will humor me...

How much space should I leave untouched for optimal performance?

Are there any Windows 7 optimizations that I should be aware of?

Do I need to update, activate TRIM, or anything alike once I do get the Intel SSD straight out of the box?
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January 24, 2010 5:48:02 PM

The SSD, isn't a hard drive, i think you can fill it up to the very last bit of data and performance will be the same :)  I am not sure though as i filled mine up with only around 30GB...its your to expiriment with, if you fill it up and see performance is the same then leave it, if not then empty some things out, it can't hurt either way.

Optimization?, yes there are.
-Disable Defragmentation, dont ever ever ever defragment an SSD, firstly there is no need, and secondaly it doesn't do anything since most SSD's have a wear leveling meaning they write throughout the drive evenly so no sector is being worn more then another, so even if your OS think its defraged, it really isn't, plus since access times are basically 0, it won't help at all.
-Secondaly in windows 7, disable superfetch and prefetch (they do nothing on the ssd, they are just good for hard drives to increase performance)

-A big optimization i recommend is disable the page file and hibernation file. Assuming let you have 4GB of ram, thats an instant 4-6GB pagefile and 4GB hibernation file. Thats 8GB of lost space at minimum. If you don't use hibernation, disable it and delete it and same with pagefile, you have plenty of ram so pagefile is useless for you.

About Trim, there are some things you need to do.
-First off if you want trim, you will need to buy the Generation 2 Intel SSD, not generation 1. The newer one is 34nm and old one is 50nm, get the 34nm.
-Secondly, update it to the latest firmware "02HD".
-Thirdly, make sure in Bios, your connection is AHCI, not anything else like IDE.
-Then install windows 7.
-Once you have everything installed, you can get the intel SSD toolbox which has a manual version of trim but since you have the auto-trim command, it will be useless for you.
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January 24, 2010 8:15:31 PM

Thank you so much for the information, do you have any links to guides on where I can read how exactly to do these things?

How do I update the firmware to 02HD without installing Windows?
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January 24, 2010 8:52:13 PM

It can be done after, doesn't really matter...but do you have another computer that has a DVD/CD burner?
Well i'll give you instructions on this:
If you get the Intel SSD 80GB G2 MLC SSD 34nm!

Do this to update firmware:

Go to this Link-http://downloadcenter.intel.com/Detail_Desc.aspx?agr=Y&...

Then Download the firmware "110902HD88208850.iso"

Once you downloaded the .iso image file, use your DVD burner software or whatever and burn to a DVD/CD.

Insert into your new computer (make sure bios sees your SSD first) and boot into the CD with the firmware and it will guide you through it, its very self-explanatory.

-Caution: If you lose power or do anything to your computer while the firmware is updating its almost garenteed to brick your SSD...so be careful.

About enabling AHCI mode, i can walk you through it if you have an asus motherboard as we have the same bios.

Disableing superfetch is just going to services and setting it to disable and disabling prefetch is going into the registry which you can google it up for windows 7, i forgot it already :) 
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January 24, 2010 8:56:24 PM

Yeah I will have an Asus P7P55 Deluxe motherboard.

Luckily I have this laptop with a CD burner ;) 

Thanks for the help.
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