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Barebone Bundle Vs Previous spec

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Last response: in Systems
April 19, 2010 1:53:32 PM

Are barebone bundles worthwhile? or are they built with 'cheap' components?

This is my original spec:

Antec 300
AMD Phenom II 955
G.Skill Ripjaw 4GB
Corsair 650W

Coming to an approx. total of £500 ($763)


This bundle.

(# AMD Quad Core Phenom II X4 965
# 2 x 2Gb 240Pin DDR2 800Mhz
# ATX Black Gaming Tower Case
# 750w ATX Power Supply
# AMD 770 Chipset)

It has a better cpu. But I'm not sure whether the motherboard and memory are any good...? It could also save me approx. £120 ($183). Would it be better to switch?

More about : barebone bundle previous spec

April 19, 2010 1:57:21 PM

No, it has the same CPU with a factory overclock. You definitely want the original build. DDR2 is a dead technology, so you'd be getting a build that's was obsolete a year ago.

Something you can do to save some money is get a Gigabyte GA-790XTA-UD4 as your board. The 890 chipset is nice, but the only thing you really get for the additional cost is the ability to drop the upcoming hexa-core CPUs into the board without updating the BIOS. That doesn't mean you can't upgrade the CPU on the 790, it just means it takes an extra step.
April 19, 2010 2:06:07 PM

I'll save £10 with the different board! This one, right? But thanks for the info one the board chipsets, I think there may be others that might be cheaper still. The Ripjaw ram is a bit confusing too because although it says ddr3 in the name, in the features it says ddr2. See, with my current spec I know I'm spending too much so I need to trim the excesses. I'm just thinking that even if the last one is old tech it may still run what I need it to run. If it does, then I wouldn't be looking at making any modifications to it. More ram maybe if anything. But then again, I'll be using new software - would there really be such a significant difference?
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April 19, 2010 2:12:28 PM

That's the one. Something else to point out is that the 790 board doesn't have onboard graphics, if you need that.

The RAM all says DDR3 when I look at it. A real easy way to tell is if the speeds are above 1066 mhz, then it's definitley DDR3.

I can help you cut down the costs if you let me know what you're doing with the build. Also, you could get a much cheaper CPU and overclock it (assuming you're comfortable doing that). Typically you can get a X3 425 and a good CPU cooler for about $100 (65 pounds), which should allow you to unlock the fourth core and overclock it to the speeds of the X4 955.
April 19, 2010 2:25:24 PM

The computer is for 3d modelling so I'll be using software like 3ds Max 2011 and ZBrush. If they're covered then nearly any other program I may use is covered too. A more comprehensive list of my build is in this other thread. I'm currently at £855 ($1310), I'd like it to be less basically. Going back to the ram, in it's overview and in the reviews it says it's built for intel i5, will this be a problem with my amd? And in the other threa a poster mentioned my psu is a bit much so this could also be something to cut back on.

Thanks for the help. :D 

oh, and I've never overclocked before. I don't really know what's involved but it seems to suggest to me 'pushing' the cpu. This would probably cause my inept brain more harm than good in the long run if any problems were to occur.
April 19, 2010 2:42:20 PM

The RAM is just marketed towards Intel, as Intel is the major CPU manufacturer.

Ok, so here are my cuts (I'll link to Newegg, though you can't buy from there):

Mobo: Gigabyte GA-770TA-UD3. Won't allow Crossfire, but you should need it.
PSU: Corsair 450VX. You really don't need that big of a PSU for a single card, especially the 5xxx series cards.
Case: You can get a cheaper case. I'd look at the Antec 200 or Coolermaster Elite.
HSF: If you're not overclocking, you don't need the aftermarket cooler. The one you picked is a great one though.
GPU: Since this isn't a gaming build, you could get an HD 4850 for less, and you'd only lose a few features that shouldn't make much of a difference to you.

That's about all I can cut without hurting performance.
April 19, 2010 2:55:04 PM

Excellent. So I can cut the extra cpu cooler, the standard one will be fine? I don't know what Crossfire is and I'm unable to find that UD3 motherboard but is this Asus M4A785TD-V EVO AMD 785G any good?

The gpu, hd 4850 isn't that a different card to the one I was looking at - the ATI 5750? Is the gpu card only important for gaming? Could I cut that back further if I were (hypothetically) to do no gaming?

I'll get back to you on the psu, and case.

April 19, 2010 3:09:18 PM

The stock cooler is great as long as you don't overclock.

Crossfire is using two graphics cards linked together as one. It's basically a cheap way to get a lot of GPU power.

That board is a good one, but you'd be losing USB 3/SATA III support. Basically, you'd lose some future proofing. It won't matter too much if you don't plan on adding a bunch of HDDs or deal with transferring a lot of data to external drives.

The GPU can help in certain types of rendering, but the CPU is much more important for these tasks. The 5xxx series of cards introduced several features, most of which are only important to gaming (like DirectX 11). The 4850 is the old equivalent to the 5750. They've got about the same amount of power, but the 4850 doesn't have all the bells and whistles, so the 4850 is generally cheaper.
April 19, 2010 3:21:05 PM

I'm ok without those feature on the motherboard. I'll have a 1TB hdd so I won't be needing more. And I won't be doing any large data transfers any time soon. That's a £40 saving. :D 

The best card they seem to have on this site is the HD 4670, any good?

I've found this Corsair 450W, will 450 really be enough power?
April 19, 2010 3:29:46 PM

The 4670 is the best in it's price range. I would get the rest of the build set and then see what you have to spend on the GPU. Then pick whichever one fits that amount.

450W is definitely enough. Check out this PSU wattage calculator. You really don't need as much power as you would think. Keep in mind that you'd like to be around 50% of the PSU load for maximum efficiency. I wouldn't worry about it too much if you were closer to 75% though.
April 19, 2010 4:04:35 PM

ok, then this is the revised build:

AMD Phenom II 955
Asus M4A785TD-V EVO AMD 785G
G.Skill Ripjaw 4GB
Corsair 450W
Spin Point F3 SATAII 1TB
Antec 300
22" Acer

I've cut a good chunk off the original price tag there. I don't know about the GPU though. Let's say I've got £80 ($120), that'll bring me to a nice round figure, what's the best it could get me?

April 19, 2010 4:10:38 PM

Both the 5750 and 4850 would be in that price range. Either would be a good choice. I'd lean a little towards the 5750 because of the higher efficiency, lower hear and quieter operation, but either would be fine.
April 19, 2010 4:32:00 PM

The 5750 is £105 here and I was hoping not to spend that much and I can only go as far as the 4670 in the 4xxx series. How about the 5570? A mid-way between 4850 and 5750.
April 19, 2010 4:46:36 PM

The 4670 is about as powerful as the 5570, but both of those are less powerful than the 4850.

Here's the ranking I would use. The ones on the same row have about equal power. I'd stop once you've got a card in budget:

5750 => 4850
5670 => 4830 (might not be available any more)
5570 => 4670
April 19, 2010 5:01:28 PM

Excellent, I seem to have found the 4770 here. I just assumed the 5xxx series would be better than the 4xxx series. :sarcastic: 
April 19, 2010 5:05:02 PM

They are, just in aspects other than raw performance. The higher end cards (5850, 5870 and 5970) are all top performers, but ATI also introduced lower end cards that offered the same extra features (Eyefinity, lower power consumption, DirectX 11, etc.) to the low cost market as well.
April 19, 2010 5:12:07 PM

Well that place with the card is out of stock so I'm going to have to root one out from else. But, a huge thanks, you've helped me out tremendously, I'll review my case and monitor and then I'll be ready to order I think. Exciting.

But then I'll have to put it all together.... :??: