Gaming System Upgrade

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Sometime this week

BUDGET RANGE: ~800$

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Keyboard, Mouse, Monitor, HDD, Case, PSU, Windows

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg

PARTS PREFERENCES: Prefer Intel and Nvidia, but not set in stone

OVERCLOCKING: Yes

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Maybe

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1200

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Upgrading from a e8400, 8g DDR2 ram, and a SAPPHIRE 100259-1GL Radeon HD 4870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card. I would be fine with 6gigs of DDR3 ram, and I'm unsure if it's even necessary to replace the video card. I'll probably also buy another HDD that's faster. I'm running a Antec EarthWatts EA650 650W as the PSU so I may need to upgrade that if I go to Crossfire. I'm looking at an i5 or an i7 processor at the moment, though the Phenom seems like a good option too. I was also thinking about an SSD as a boot drive but don't really know much about SSDs and their pricepoint vs. performance anymore. Any help would be great!
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  1. You're going to be dissapointed if you drop 800 bucks on a new pc.

    Your e8400 performs on par with anything that's available today. Give it another year and go with Gulftown or Sandybridge.

    Yes, get an SSD. Right now it's the most significant upgrade you could make. It's like night and day and you'll never regret it. Intel x25-M is the way to go. OCZ can make a case with their Vertex line, but after weeks of research I still felt better about Intel.

    You'd need to check to see if your mobo supports crossfire. If it does you'd still be cutting it VERY close with the psu, but you already knew that. You could always pick up a 5870 and try to ebay the 4870.

    Seriously I do not recommend you trying to put together an entirely new rig. At 800$ you'll be seriously close to downgraded and at best you'll see a sidegrade. The ssd, a new 5 series videocard and you're good to go.
  2. That sounds like good advice. Not upgrading other pieces gives me more to spend on an SSD boot drive and a better/faster data drive. I hear that the spinpoint drives are some of the best out there now. Are they good drives no matter what the size? Most suggestions I see here is the 500g drives, but I was looking at 1T minimum. Also, my mobo doesn't support Crossfire so I'd have to stick with a single card. Is the 5870 the best for the price at the moment? I could drop more into a better video card if I'm not replacing the other parts. Thanks a4mula!
  3. Umm... 500gb out performs the 1tb version, but only by the smallest margins. You won't go wrong with a 1tb.

    Bang for buck the 5850 is probably the better deal, especially if you only plan to run a single monitor setup. If you have any interest in Eyefinity however I'd suggest the 5870. Something you want to really watch out for is the size of the 5870 and it fitting in your current case. You need 11" from pci slots to hdd cage. If you have less then you're either going to be doing some dremel work or settling for the 5850.

    The 5970 is King atm, but it's impossible to find and it's not going to fit in very many cases. In a perfect world I'd be recommending this as it's basically 2x 5870's for only 50pct more... but again availability and size make it a tough pick. It's also limited to only 1gb of vram so once you start reaching the massive resolutions that Eyefinity supports there have been some reports of stuttering.
  4. I have an Antec 900 so space isn't really an issue. I also use dual monitors as well. I'll take a look at what you suggested! Thanks for all of your help.

    Edit: Newegg is out of the 1T Spinpoints, do you know how the 2T drive compares?
    Edit2: I lied, they have the 1Ts.
  5. I'm personally a fan of the Intel X25-m which if you use bing cashback can be grabbed for 216$from

    http://www.thegreatguys.com/servlet/the-15311/Intel-Corp.-80GB-X25M/Detail?zmam=64461962&zmas=1&zmac=18&zmap=SSDSA2MH080G2C1

    There's nothing wrong with the OCZ, and they have top notch (the best) forums and support. It's really just a price difference. 120gb vs 80gb however. Either way you're looking at solid selections.

    Yes...

    Study SSD's. Do you homework. Especially if you're running Vista. There are a ton of things you can do to optimize them. Disabling superfetch, page filing, indexing to list a few. Really, take your time and look into it. Make sure you get TRIM support (both of the drives we've talked about do). It keeps the drive in top performing order. Google search "Optimizing SSD", visit the OCZ forums. It's not exactly plug and play, but nothing that I'm sure you can't handle.

    Looks like thegreatguys stopped doing their free shipping... here

    http://www.compsource.com/basket.asp 231.86 /w free shipping (after bing cashback).
  6. Excellent! I'm running Windows 7 currently. I'll do some research for sure. You've been a great help, thank you!
  7. That last link just shows an empty shopping cart :(
  8. http://www.compsource.com/ttechnote.asp?part_no=SSDSA2MH080G2C1&vid=211&src=JF

    Sorry, was checking to make sure it was really shipping free and must have linked through cart... that one should work.
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