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New Builder seeking advice on build

Last response: in Systems
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April 6, 2010 4:21:54 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE:
This month or next month

BUDGET RANGE:
Less than $1,500

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT:
Gaming

PARTS NOT REQUIRED:
Monitor and other peripherals

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS:
Newegg

PARTS PREFERENCES:
Leaning towards AMD due to price

OVERCLOCKING:
Overclocking? No. Slight underclocking to reduce thermal footprint? Yes

SLI OR CROSSFIRE:
Yes

MONITOR RESOLUTION:
1920x1080, as I will be using a 32" Vizio LCD HDTV as the primary display via HDMI

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS:
First off, I live in Southern Nevada, which gets pretty toasty in the summer. The build I am looking to put together must be able to run cool without having to go with watercooling. Secondly, this build is replacing a 5 year old Pentium 4 Prescott (PressHOT!), which sits at 55C idle and 80C load during the cooler months. During the summer (where the inside of the house gets to upwards of 85-90F), the computer is almost unusable due to sitting at 65C idle and 85-90C load.

That being said, the primary goal is to build a computer that can withstand desert summers without having SpeedFan going bananna's. I am prepared to do a slight underclock to decrease thermal footprint to help facilitate this if needed. Noise is not a concern, as the machine will be sitting 5-8 feet away from me... and I've already gotten used to a lot of ambient noise from my existing computer (which, due to having a Sapphire Radeon 3850 set to 100% fan speed to keep it cool, sounds like a car engine most of the time).

This is what I've got:

Power Supply:
CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power ... - Retail
Item #: N82E16817139006
$109.99

Case:
COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Steel + Plastic and Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
Item #: RC-922M-KKN1-GP
$89.98

Side intake Fan:
COOLER MASTER Megaflow 200 R4-LUS-07AR-GP 200mm Red LED Case Fan - Retail
Item #: R4-LUS-07AR-GP
$19.99

Replacement rear exhaust Fan:
Scythe DFS123812-3000 "ULTRA KAZE" 120 x 38 mm Case Fan - Retail
Item #: DFS123812-3000
Price: $9.99
NOTE: Will be moving the stock 120mm rear exhaust fan to the bottom of the case to be utilized as an intake fan.

Motherboard:
GIGABYTE GA-MA790GPT-UD3H AM3 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
Item #: GA-MA790GPT-UD3H
$114.99

Processor:
AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor - Retail
Item #: HDZ955FBGIBOX
$159.99

Processor Heatsink/Fan:
Sunbeam CR-CCTF 120 mm Core-Contact Freezer CPU Cooler W/TX-2 - Retail
Item #: CR-CCTF
Price: $39.99

Memory:
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL7D-4GBRH - Retail
Item #: N82E16820231276
$109.99

Video Cards:
Two (2) HIS H487Q1GH Radeon HD 4870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card - Retail
Item #: H487Q1GH
$341.98

Optical Drive:
LG DVD Burner Black SATA Model GH22NS50 - OEM
Item #: N82E16827136167
$23.99

Hard Drive:
Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Item #: N82E16822136319
$74.99

Operating System:
Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - OEM
Item #: N82E16832116758
$139.99

Price (before rebates/shipping/etc): $1235.87

Any thoughts/suggestions/feedback?
April 6, 2010 4:34:51 PM

Here's what I would recommend.

CPU: X4 955 $160
Mobo: Gigabyte GA-790XTA-UD4 $125 after rebate. There isn't much benefit to getting an 890 chipset. The only real difference is that you might need to flash the BIOS to get a six core CPU, but you will never need one.
RAM: G.Skill Ripjaws 2x2 GB 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7 $120
GPU: HD 5970 $700. Do not start a new build with Crossfired cards, especially older ones. This GPU will easily last you 5 years.
HDD: Seagate 7200.12 500 GB $55. A much faster drive. Not to mention cheaper, quieter and cooler running.
PSU: Corsair 750W 80+ $100 after rebate
Case: HAF 922 $80 after rebate. Extra fans are completely unnecessary.
Optical: Cheap SATA DVD burner $23
HSF: Coolermaster Hyper 212 Plus $35. A much better cooler.

Total: $1,398. And Windows puts it at about $1,500
!