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New Build Advice. Dual Montiors. 13 windows open. 1.1k$?

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February 28, 2010 2:59:34 AM

I work off my computer. I don't play games with heavy graphics. I will have over a dozen windows open. I will be powering a 30" 2500x1600 monitor and two of them in the future.

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: soon

BUDGET RANGE: 1100$

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: only need the tower plus internal components (I have monitors,keyboard,mouse)

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: I'm Canadian

PARTS PREFERENCES: Don't care

OVERCLOCKING: No idea what that is :) 

MONITOR RESOLUTION: from 1920x1200 through to 2560x1600

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I've heard 2 harddrives are faster....Should I build or just go to Bestbuy...

Thanks for any advice. Not happy with what I've seen in the big department stores...

More about : build advice dual montiors windows open

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February 28, 2010 2:36:24 PM

I noticed that the gamer ones only have one harddrive. Is that to cut on costs? Is it going to sacrifice much performance? Would it be worth having adding an extra one?
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February 28, 2010 2:38:45 PM

At $1100 not worth it stick with one 7200.12 Seagate 500gb drive.
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February 28, 2010 3:34:50 PM

So originally I was just going to head to future shop and buy this:

HP Pavilion Elite Intel Core i5-650 3.2GHz
GB PC3-10600 DDR3 SDRAM
NVIDIA GeForce GT220
Super Multi LightScribe DVD Burner
1 TB Sata
Win 7
1 gb Vid mem
Priced at 999$


Just to give me an idea, how much better would one of the gamer builds be? Maybe in terms of percentage? And how do the bargain builds compare? Really appreciate giving me some perspective. Thanks.
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February 28, 2010 6:57:04 PM

Bump, really curious :) 
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March 1, 2010 12:59:55 PM

1100 us or 1100 canadian.

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March 1, 2010 1:49:46 PM

WOW the Canadian site was killing me. NO COMBOS.........

Well I am a little over budget because wanted to put a 955 and at least a 5850 in the build and with out the combos pushed it a little too far.

$1179.42 (With Canadian Prices) before rebates. (-30 in MIR's)

Cheapest Optical I could find $30

HAF 922 $109 Believe it or not it is cheaper then the Antec 300 Illusion if you factor in rebate

Seagate 7200.12 500 GB $60

ASUS M4A79XTD EVO AM3 $132

XFX HD-585A-ZNDC Radeon HD 5850

Earth Watts 650 $90

G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) $123

AMD 955 Black $171

Win 7 $120


Sorry it took so long but was looking on the CA site for ya.
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March 1, 2010 1:51:38 PM

Looks like the amount of ram got cut off when you copy and pasted. How many gigs of RAM does it have?


socratitties said:
So originally I was just going to head to future shop and buy this:

HP Pavilion Elite Intel Core i5-650 3.2GHz
GB PC3-10600 DDR3 SDRAM
NVIDIA GeForce GT220
Super Multi LightScribe DVD Burner
1 TB Sata
Win 7
1 gb Vid mem
Priced at 999$


Just to give me an idea, how much better would one of the gamer builds be? Maybe in terms of percentage? And how do the bargain builds compare? Really appreciate giving me some perspective. Thanks.

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March 1, 2010 3:26:24 PM

Thanks for the input. Is that neweqq? Where would I order this? As long as it's close to 1k, I'm not too picky.

So that could be upgradable to 8gb of ram later? Really hoping to order something by tonight or tomorow. Any other thoughts?

Really appreciate it.
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March 1, 2010 3:29:50 PM

It was from Newegg.ca. Also yes you would be able to upgrade to 8 gigs later.

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March 1, 2010 3:30:31 PM

To answer an earlier question, the primary reason to have 2 (or more) hard drives is so that you can write to multiple drives simultaneously.

This isn't an issue for most users. Where it becomes important is if you're running a database all the time or editing video or audio files. If you are doing that work, then by all means, get a 2nd hard drive. If you aren't, then you aren't going to see a lot of benefit unless you need additional storage space (in which case, you should be buying a larger hard drive).
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March 1, 2010 5:54:25 PM

One more clarification. Was this a custom builder? As in they would put it together for me? I really am not planning on building it myself. Was hoping to get suggestions and specs on this site and have an online builder assemble it....

Again, really appreciate all the feeback guys. Hope to order by tomorrow.
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March 1, 2010 6:02:59 PM

Not a custom builder unless you consider yourself a custom builder...

Really building the PC yourself is a great way to learn about it and is fun for me.
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March 1, 2010 6:08:45 PM

socratitties said:
One more clarification. Was this a custom builder? As in they would put it together for me? I really am not planning on building it myself. Was hoping to get suggestions and specs on this site and have an online builder assemble it....


Not trying to be a jerk here, but you do realize that you have multiple threads open on Tom's Hardware Homebuilt Systems forums. Note the emphasis. Basically no one on here is going to recommend buying a pre-built system because, well, this isn't a forum devoted to that.

We can recommend parts and configurations and etc. but if you're not going to be building it yourself, a lot of the info you're getting isn't going to be all that usable, at least in that you can't tell most pre-built companies that you want, say, a Corsair power supply, as opposed to the no-name they were planning on using.

You can still get decent pre-built systems, but either you will pay extra for quality parts and service, or you'll pay what seems like a reasonable price, but the parts may be substandard.
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March 1, 2010 6:14:25 PM

No problem, I really appreciate all the feedback. I figured if I was going to have it custom built through Ibuypower or somewhere, this would be the place to get the custom specs down.

I'll keep looking around for a prebuilt system with the quality and parts I'm willing to shell out for. Thanks again.

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March 1, 2010 6:45:35 PM

I swear I'm close to ceasing to harass you guys for your opinions! :)  So how about this custom built from ibuypower? It's 1k us. The only thing I'm not sure of, is that I need DVI-D duallink to run that 30" monitor at max res. How do I know if this computer has Dvi-D Duallink? Also, is that motherboard adequate? And what about the power supply? Any thoughts? Think I will order one from ibuypower just a matter of getting the details down. Again, really appreciate any thoughts.

Case ( NZXT Gamma Gaming Mid Tower Case - Black )
iBUYPOWER Labs - Noise Reduction ( None )
iBUYPOWER Labs - Internal Expansion ( None )
Case Lighting ( None )
Processor ( [== Quad Core ==] AMD Phenom™ II X4 945 Quad-Core CPU )
Processor Cooling ( [Free Upgrade] Liquid CPU Cooling System w/ 120mm Radiator [AMD] )
Memory ( 8 GB [2 GB X4] DDR3-1600 Memory Module - Corsair or Major Brand )
Video Card ( NVIDIA GeForce GT 240 - 1GB - Single Card )
Video Card Brand ( Major Brand Powered by ATI or NVIDIA )
Motherboard ( ASUS M4A77TD -- AMD 770 Chipset w/8-ch HD Audio, Gb LAN, S-ATA Raid, USB 2.0, 1 PCI-E MB )
Motherboard Add-on ( None )
Power Supply ( 650 Watt -- Corsair CMPSU-650TX Power Supply - SLI Ready )
Primary Hard Drive ( 500 GB HARD DRIVE -- 16M Cache, 7200 RPM, 3.0Gb/s - Single Drive )
Data Hard Drive ( None )
Optical Drive ( 22X Dual Format/Double Layer DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Drive - Black )
2nd Optical Drive ( None )
Flash Media Reader/Writer ( 12-In-1 Internal Flash Media Card Reader/Writer - Black )
Meter Display ( None )
Floppy Drive ( None )
Sound Card ( 3D Premium Surround Sound Onboard )
Network Card ( Onboard LAN Network (Gb or 10/100) )
Operating System ( Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium + [Free 60-Day !!!] Microsoft Office 2007(Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, Access ....) - 64-Bit )
Keyboard ( iBUYPOWER USB Keyboard - Black )
Mouse ( iBUYPOWER Internet Mouse - Black )
Monitor ( None )
2nd Monitor ( None )
Speaker System ( None )
External Hard Drives [USB 2.0/eSATA] ( None )
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March 1, 2010 6:51:20 PM

GPU is a bad choice. get the 5770

you do NOT need 8 gb's of ram.
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March 1, 2010 6:55:00 PM

Alirght cool. I'm sticking with 4gb of ram then and the 5770 (though I have 5570 below I'll change it). How do I know if it has DVI-D dual link? That's a must. How does this look?

010 Mage
Netbook / Notebook Bundle ( None )
Case ( NZXT Gamma Gaming Mid Tower Case - Black )
iBUYPOWER Labs - Noise Reduction ( None )
iBUYPOWER Labs - Internal Expansion ( None )
Case Lighting ( None )
Processor ( [== Quad Core ==] AMD Phenom™ II X4 945 Quad-Core CPU )
Processor Cooling ( [Free Upgrade] Liquid CPU Cooling System w/ 120mm Radiator [AMD] )
Memory ( 4 GB [2 GB X2] DDR3-1600 Memory Module - Corsair or Major Brand )
Video Card ( ATI Radeon HD 5570 - 1GB - CrossFire Mode (Dual Cards) )
Video Card Brand ( Major Brand Powered by ATI or NVIDIA )
Motherboard ( [CrossFire] ASUS M4A78T-E -- AMD 790GX CrossFire Chipset w/8-ch HD Audio, Gb LAN, S-ATA Raid, USB 2.0, 2 PCI-E MB )
Motherboard Add-on ( None )
Power Supply ( 650 Watt -- Corsair CMPSU-650TX Power Supply - SLI Ready )
Primary Hard Drive ( 1 TB HARD DRIVE -- 16M Cache, 7200 RPM, 3.0Gb/s - Single Drive )
Data Hard Drive ( None )
Optical Drive ( 22X Dual Format/Double Layer DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Drive - Black )
2nd Optical Drive ( None )
Flash Media Reader/Writer ( None )
Meter Display ( None )
Floppy Drive ( None )
Sound Card ( 3D Premium Surround Sound Onboard )
Network Card ( Onboard LAN Network (Gb or 10/100) )
Operating System ( Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium + [Free 60-Day !!!] Microsoft Office 2007(Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, Access ....) - 64-Bit )
Keyboard ( iBUYPOWER USB Keyboard - Black )
Mouse ( iBUYPOWER Internet Mouse - Black )
Monitor ( None )
2nd Monitor ( None )
Speaker System ( None )
External Hard Drives [USB 2.0/eSATA] ( None )
USB Flash Drive ( None )
Power Protection ( None )
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March 1, 2010 7:06:33 PM

Most, but not all of the 5770s on newegg come with 2 DVI ports. It seems like it's common, but not a required feature for the card.

You can try asking ibuypower, I guess. Not to beat a dead horse, but this is one of the problems with getting a pre-built. :) 
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March 1, 2010 7:08:39 PM

Yeah, building it yourself sounds like the way to go. I just don't have the time at present. So if it as 2 dvi ports, does that mean the port is "dual link DVI-D". Is there a difference? Just need to be sure. That monitor only runs on that.
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March 1, 2010 7:14:46 PM

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DVI-D for more info, but no. Dual-link DVI-D is a specific type of port, having 2 DVI ports doesn't make them dual-link.

If the card comes with a different type of connector, you can likely get an adapter. I like monoprice.com for that sort of thing.
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March 1, 2010 7:31:53 PM

Ahh interesting. Hmmm. So I guess I need to research the mobo's to see which ones have dvi-d dual link eh? Is that correct, the port would be on the motherboard?
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March 1, 2010 7:34:05 PM

socratitties said:
Ahh interesting. Hmmm. So I guess I need to research the mobo's to see which ones have dvi-d dual link eh? Is that correct, the port would be on the motherboard?


No, the port would be on the graphics card.

Some motherboards may have a DVI port on them, but that's for the integrated (if any) graphics, not for the 5770 that you are adding (which is the one you want to use).

Again, this is a question that only the builder can answer.

Take a look at this XFX 5770. If you look at the detailed, end-on view showing the ports, you can see that it has 2 Dual-link DVI-D ports (as detailed on the wikipedia link). Without knowing exactly which card they intend to use, we can't answer whether or not it has Dual-link DVI-D ports.
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March 1, 2010 7:53:35 PM

Ah, interesting. I didn't see that you were looking at a 5570, I read it as 5770.

Different brands put different numbers and types of connectors on their cards. XFX may put 2 DVI-D ports on their card, while ASUS puts just one. That's what I was trying to say. It varies by brand within any given model.

However, for the 5570, one dual-link DVI-D connector, 1 VGA, and 1 HDMI port appears to be pretty standard. This is not a guarantee, just an observation based on looking at individual cards on newegg.

Looking at 5570s though, this is what I was talking about. This XFX card has 2 DVI-D ports. This HIS card only has one DVI-D port.
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March 1, 2010 10:13:45 PM

Alright. It's making sense now. Really appreciate all the time you and others have spent responding to my newbie questions. I'm going to post my final configuration and, if nobody has any suggestions, order it tomorrow!
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March 1, 2010 10:41:38 PM

So I phoned IBUYPOWER and the 5570 has the duallink dvi-i. So I should be in good shape. My only concern is that one vid card may not me enough for a 30" at 2560x1600 and a 24" at 1600x1200 but getting a second vid card put in is easy enough if I need to. So here is my (final? :)  ) custom system to order! Any last suggestions? Thanks again.

Gamer Mage D275 Netbook / Notebook Bundle ( None )
Case ( NZXT Gamma Gaming Mid Tower Case - Black )
iBUYPOWER Labs - Noise Reduction ( None )
iBUYPOWER Labs - Internal Expansion ( None )
Case Lighting ( None )
Processor ( [== Quad Core ==] AMD Phenom™ II X4 945 Quad-Core CPU )
Processor Cooling ( [Free Upgrade] Liquid CPU Cooling System w/ 120mm Radiator [AMD] )
Memory ( 4 GB [2 GB X2] DDR3-1600 Memory Module - Corsair or Major Brand )
Video Card ( ATI Radeon HD 5570 - 1GB - Single Card )
Video Card Brand ( Major Brand Powered by ATI or NVIDIA )
Motherboard ( [CrossFire] ASUS M4A78T-E -- AMD 790GX CrossFire Chipset w/8-ch HD Audio, Gb LAN, S-ATA Raid, USB 2.0, 2 PCI-E MB )
Motherboard Add-on ( None )
Power Supply ( 650 Watt -- Corsair CMPSU-650TX Power Supply - SLI Ready )
Primary Hard Drive ( 500 GB HARD DRIVE -- 16M Cache, 7200 RPM, 3.0Gb/s - Single Drive )
Data Hard Drive ( None )
Optical Drive ( 22X Dual Format/Double Layer DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Drive - Black )
2nd Optical Drive ( None )
Flash Media Reader/Writer ( 12-In-1 Internal Flash Media Card Reader/Writer - Black )
Meter Display ( None )
Floppy Drive ( None )
Sound Card ( 3D Premium Surround Sound Onboard )
Network Card ( Onboard LAN Network (Gb or 10/100) )
Operating System ( Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium + [Free 60-Day !!!] Microsoft Office 2007(Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, Access ....) - 64-Bit )
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