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[Solved] Pls. comment on my AMD gaming build :D

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February 18, 2010 4:44:28 AM

This will be my second home built system (after my AMD K2 almost 20 years ago!!!). I've tried to read up on the latest in computer technology, but i'm just overwhelmed :(  So, after reading the various builds and suggestions and reviews, I've come up with this AMD rig. I'm an AMD fan so, even if Intel seems to be holding the crown for the moment, I'm still looking for an AMD-based platform.

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: within 2 -4 weeks

BUDGET RANGE: $700-$900

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming (FPS/RPG/online), Photoshop, DVD conversion.

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: LCD, keyboard/mouse, casing, DVD-RW

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg.com

PARTS PREFERENCES: AMD cpu

OVERCLOCKING: If possible, yes, but not a priority.
SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Not familiar :(  enlightenment, anyone?

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I'm just after a stable rig that will play most of today's games and probably last me a good couple of years before there's a need to upgrade. Also, if it's capable, overclock. Am not an extreme gamer, I just want to be able to play most of the latest games smoothly. Happy with medium settings, but if capable of better, why not? :D 
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So, here are the parts I've selected based on suggestions I've read on the various builds here and ratings:

FINAL LIST:

CPU: (edited)
AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MOBO: (edited)
GIGABYTE GA-790XTA-UD4 AM3 AMD 790X SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU:
SAPPHIRE 100283-3L Radeon HD 5770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: (Edited)
CORSAIR CMPSU-550VX 550W
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MEMORY: (edited)
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD: (edited)
SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CASE: (edited)
LIAN LI Lancool PC-K62 Black
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HEATSINK/FAN: (edited)
COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This will cost me $894.92 (edited) without rebates; just right below the budget :D  . Will be running Windows 7 Home Premium.

So, how does this setup look? Can you suggest other parts that will offer considerably better performance that will not go over my budget? Or, are there parts that will offer just as good a performance for a lower price? I'm hoping to build a computer that has a really high price-performance ratio. :D 

Lastly, even if I am an AMD fan, will an Intel setup offer a much better performance for a similar price? I've read about core i5 beating Phenom II x4 for almost the same cost. I know they compare benchmarks when testing, but in real life, will I even notice the difference?

Thanks in advance for all your input :) 
February 18, 2010 5:45:40 AM

I'll see what I can do here.

First off, there are a number of quick and easy references stickied at the top of the forum, aside from the format sticky... but if you were going to look at one that was the place to start :) 

AMD/Intel - Well, there is really only this: Getting an Intel system would be coming in at the lower range of the platform. I mean, buying that i5 750 leaves you with upgrade room, several CPUs available today and likely some more in the future. AMD might give you some future CPUs in the AM3 platform also, but there aren't any today. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush, or something like that.

Otherwise, no you won't see much difference except perhaps in some heavily multi-threaded strategy games.

Motherboards - Crossfire is when you use two ATI video cards together to increase performance. A board capable of crossfire can be a good investment if you are a very serious gamer, but most people that purchase a crossfire board never get around to actually getting that second card. Usually by the time they need it it's obsolete and a newer, faster, cheaper single card solution is available.

As to your MB choice, you would probably do a bit better to get a newer USB3.0/SATA 3 type board.
Gigabyte UD4
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
An inexpensive basic crossfire board that has the newer hardware.

Not the Thermaltake. Here's a high-quality Antec:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

What case were you going to use? Modern hardware needs more cooling.


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February 18, 2010 6:19:44 AM

you're gonna oc, so why waste money one the 965. get the 955 and oc for starters in 200mhz, now you have the 965. from there one, it is up to you as the 965 is a factory oced 955.
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February 18, 2010 6:25:29 AM

For a case i personally suggest

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

At the 100 dollar range. Very quiet PC, Great cooling, nice looking, and incredibly easy install. Tool-free design :D  Plus the blue LEDS look quite nice, and the top two LED's just put a nice glow in the system while not being too bright.
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February 18, 2010 6:47:06 AM

I love all your suggestions!

Daggs, you've just saved me $20 :D  And I begin overclocking :D  thanks!

truhls, it looks very clean, sharp, and cool! Love it! thanks! :p 
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February 18, 2010 7:36:33 AM

A black interior looks absolutely great :) 
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February 18, 2010 8:38:28 AM

I'm a very easy guy to please :D  Followed all your advices. Thanks, guys! I hope to get this up and running within a couple week's time :D 
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a b À AMD
February 18, 2010 11:21:12 AM

I'm assuming that Crossfire IS something you'd like to do in the future, otherwise a 750W PSU is overkill. A 500W Earthwatts, 550W Truepower New (both Antec) or Corsair 550VX would be enough for a single card.
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February 18, 2010 1:52:09 PM

Hmmm... knowing me, I probably won't be using two video cards. So, until I make my purchase, I'll set my power supply at 550W. Meanwhile, I'll think about Crossfire...
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February 18, 2010 10:16:39 PM

Last question: Any suggestions on a good heatsink and fan if I'm going to overclock this? Will the stock heatsink and fan be enough?
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February 18, 2010 10:35:42 PM

If you are looking to go AM3 and 3 or 4 way Xfire, this is the best board out there.
Also consider this GPU instead of the one you have now. Or for xfire, you could get 3 radeon 4850s.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

2 0r 3 of these for xfire is the best bang for the buck you can get. 2 would cost the same as a 5770, and totaly anihilate it in a benchmark.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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February 18, 2010 10:41:19 PM

He just said he considering xfire.
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February 18, 2010 10:41:30 PM

Read the comments on it, too. Yup, this looks like what I'll need. Thanks, man! :D  (This is referring to the heatsink)
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February 18, 2010 11:21:15 PM

Thanks for the advice builder and shortstuff. 2 GPUs better than one 5770? Hmmm.... tempting.... grrrr.... (debating in my mind)... argh! I'l just stick to one GPU for now. Thanks, though :) 

The memory, yes! Will get this one :D 
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February 19, 2010 12:25:18 AM

Well, then get the 4890 instead of th 5770. Also, you should serisoulsy reconsider not buying 2 4850s, they will be much, much faster than either a 5770 or a 4890.


With a 175$-220$ budget, you have 4 options. I will list them from fastest to slowest, and you can pick wich one you want.

1. 2 radeon 4850s in xfire.

2. 1 single radeon 4890.

3. A GTX 275. (Not recomended, do not buy)

5. A 4870 1gb.

4. A radeon 5770. ( Not recomnded)

Cons are slow speed, Pros are the Dx 11 of the 5770.
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February 19, 2010 1:18:17 AM

There are more cons to a Crossfire system. Going with Crossfire right off the bat limits your upgrade options, uses more power, generates more heat, and some games don't scale well with multiple GPU's. I would buy the best single GPU you can afford.

There are more pros to the 5770. It uses less power, runs cooler, and is quieter than the 48xx series.
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February 19, 2010 4:38:10 AM

shortstuff_mt said:
There are more cons to a Crossfire system. Going with Crossfire right off the bat limits your upgrade options, uses more power, generates more heat, and some games don't scale well with multiple GPU's. I would buy the best single GPU you can afford.

There are more pros to the 5770. It uses less power, runs cooler, and is quieter than the 48xx series.


QFTW

Get a 5770 and a larger PSU and keep your options open.
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February 19, 2010 8:02:16 AM

Well, after a downpour of suggestions, I've decided on the current setup I've listed above. All your inputs are greatly appreciated and mostly followed, too :D  For my purposes, I believe I will be able to enjoy a lot of games with this rig. This should keep me satisfied for awhile :)  It will also introduce me to overclocking without going extreme. I suppose by the time I become a hardcore gamer and overclocking enthusiast, I'm going to be needing a major upgrade, so that should be a good couple of years down the road. Thanks again, everyone!
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