Ultimate Computer... or maybe not.

I am looking to build my first computer. I have been a gamer for some time, and my brother has turned me to the computer building. I have done quite a bit of research online and feel that i have a pretty good understanding, but i would really hate to make a really bad decision. I will start with the similar products for both lists:
CASE:NZXT lexa s lexs
HDD: WD Caviar Black- 6gb/s, 1 TB,
7200 RPM
VIDEO CARD: Gigabyte 470
OPTICAL: LG Blu-ray burner
SSD: WD silicone blue 64gb

I am trying to decide between GA-x58A-UD3R vs. GA-P55A-UD3P for MB:
i7-930 vs. i7 860, respectively:
and then ram/psu to match.
I was looking at Mushkin 4gb "Enhanced Ridgeback" DDR3 2000 cl 7 and any psu really.

I am a university student, so i will have programs like matlab, CAD, and my wife really wants photoshop. you might be able to tell that it will be used for blu-ray movie watching. I plan to game on it a little bit also. i hope that that is enough info with out going overboard. i am a noobie, so any and all advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
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  1. Fill out form in sticky, link in my sig.

    We need stuff like budget and country.
  2. bluray movie watching isn't really that taxing. That GPU and CPU is more than enough. I noted my CPU was at about 5% with a E3300/GF9300 HTPC.

    Processor and Motherboard choice probably comes down to how much you want to spend in this case- the x58/i930 will most likely be faster on paper, but you might not notice it. I have an i860 and it's plenty fast.

    Spend the money on a decent PSU. it's worth it and you'll have a fair amount of draw with a system like what you're building. Plus that 470 is going to need a lot of power.
  3. Purchase date: 1-2 months
    Usage: School work ( CAD and matlab), movies, gaming, music, general browsing.
    Parts: All new components
    Store: Newegg, no real preference though.
    Country of origin: US
    Brand: no preference
    Overclocking: maybe in the future, but not right now
    SLI: i hope i dont have to with the 470, so no.
  4. Budget?

    In general for a cad and matlab build you'll want a i7-930.

    Case get a somethign decent like an Antec 300 or HAF 922 or Antec 902

    HD Samsung spinpoint F3 1tB is a better buy. $75 on newegg atm.

    If you want an SSD, get an Intel or OCZ. X25-M 80gb and vertex2 or agility 2 are best bets.

    RAM if you go x58, a g skill pi cas 7 1600 6gb kit.

    P55, g skill eco or ripjaw cas 7 1600 4gb kit.

    You also need a PSU. A Corsair 650TX would be fine for your needs long as you don't plan on sli. Combo's w/ a 1tb F3.
  5. So is the Sata 6gb/s not that big of a deal? The x58 has 2 of them, while the p55 has 0. The other thing would be the USB 3.0 on the x58. Is that something that i should be concerned about?

    Budget: 1500 -1800 (after rebate)
  6. Quote:
    So is the Sata 6gb/s not that big of a deal? The x58 has 2 of them, while the p55 has 0. The other thing would be the USB 3.0 on the x58. Is that something that i should be concerned about?

    Budget: 1500 -1800 (after rebate)

    I built a custom i7-860 rig and had some of the same questions that you had. Personally, I don't think that SATA 6Gb or USB 3.0 is a huge deal, since it's only on high-end SSDs that you might run out of headroom with plain ole SATA 3Gb -- and there will be precious few USB 3.0 devices around for a while yet.

    But I got an ASUS P7P55D-E mobo with SATA 6 and USB 3, since I want the system to last for at least 5 years -- in which time we'll probably see these technologies be useful.

    I agree with banthracis on the RAM, HD, PSU choices. You shouldn't have to spend US$1,500 unless the money is burning a hole in your pocket. I put together a series of posts on the custom i7-860, including component choices and runners-up at http://j.mp/9weyOT.

    Hope it's helpful to you, good luck! Keith
  7. SATA 6 is useful for SSD's which will be dropping in price significantly soon.

    USB 3 is great for backing stuff up on external drives. USB 2.0 is just painfully slow in that regard.

    There are 2 relevant differences btwn x58 and p55 for you.

    The first is tri channel vs dual channel memory. In gaming, there's no diff, in workstation tasks, there is.

    The second is PCIe slots. If you're ever need more GPU's, the PCIe limitation, once again insignificant for gaming, is relevant, as it limits the pure GFLOPS of bandwidth to CUDA. You'll have to do your research to determine if this will be an issue for you.
  8. OK, so would you know a good site to visit to research the CUDA thing? i am not exactly sure what that is...

    Also, it was mentioned to get the samsung spingpoint. The reason i was going with the western digital was because it was also the 6gb/s. Is there a benefit with the faster sata? I have read that the samsung is faster because of data density, but i guess i am not sure how exactly that 6gb/s is beneficial in the first place.

    sidenote: i have pretty much decieded on the p55, and therefore, the i7-860. but i had read in another blog and checked on the intel website, that the 860 supports ddr3-1066/1333. does that mean there is no benefit to a higher speed?

    Thanks for all of your guidence folks...
  9. I was also not to worried about the sli, i dont plan on doing that i think. i was initially looking at the GA-x58a-ud3r because it had all sorts of bells and whistles and could support the sli at the x16 speed for both. I had turned away to save a little bit of money on the mb and ram.
    Is that something that i should reconsider if i am willing to spend the extra money? if i remember correctly, it is around a 100$ difference.
  10. Although, i do hope to be able to tinker with it, and wouldnt mind making the computer easily upgradable...
    My problem is i bounce back and fourth so much...
    I will rethink the important things and the neccessities, and then i will come back with my thoughts, Thanks again.
  11. OK, so here is what i have come up with:
    From most important to least, I need this computer to be
    -Efficient in CAD and MATLAB
    -Capable of highend graphics for Blu-Ray and Gaming
    -Efficient at everyday tasks
    -Large memory for video, music, and picture storage

    I would Like
    - As future proof as possible, w/o going overboard
    - Upgradable without needing to remove parts (ie: take out one video card to put in a new one)
    - Budget of between 1500-1800 after rebates

    Case: Thermaltake Element G VL18501W2Z (comes with 850W PSU)
    GPU: Gigabyte GV-N470UD-13I GTX 470
    SSD: OCZ Vertex 2 50GB OCZSSD2-2VTX50G
    OD: LG Blu-Ray Burner WH10LS30
    MB: GA-P55A-UD4P vs. GA-X58A-UD3R
    CPU: i7-930 vs. i7-860
    RAM: (4GB)-G.SKILL Ripjaw vs. G.SKILL PI (F3-12800CL7D-4GBRH vs.F3-12800CL6D-4GBPI)
    (6GB)- G.SKILL PI vs. OCZ (F3-12800CL7T-6GBPI vs. OCZ3F1600LV6GK)
    HDD: WD Caviar Black WD1002FAEX vs. Samsung Spinpoint F3 (HD103SJ)

    Specific Questions:
    1. Should i be as worried as i am about the 6gb/s sata for the HDD, and why?
    2. What are the benefits of P55 vs. X58 models of MB?
    - After all, this will help with the board choice
    3. Could i actually see a big difference between i7 930 vs. 860?
    4. Intel's site stated that the 860 could support 1333/1066. How does this apply to my choosing of RAM?

    I am still taking any and all help, advice, and suggestions. Hopefully i was a little more specific this time. Thanks.
  12. 1. SATA III for a mechanical HD is a joke. Mechanical drives barely saturate original SATA I, not even close to maxing SATA II. You'll need a SSD to even consider SATA III.

    2. P55 and x58 are different chipsets. They are not itnerchangable. If you get an i7-9xx you must get a x58 mobo and should get a 6gb RAM kit. If you get an i3/i5/i7-8xx you must get a p55 mobo and should get a 4gb RAM kit.

    3. Depends on usage. Architecture wise, the two chips are the same. However, x58 supports Tri channel memory makes a difference. In addition, as I mentioned the PCIe limitation, though it doesn't seem to be an issue for you.

    4. Any DDR3 mobo supports ram at ANY(1333, 1423, 1825, w/e) speed, as long as voltages are in spec.

    getting a 50gb SSD is kinda, not worth it. Also prices are dropping a ton in a few months for SSD's with 25nm flash INC
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