APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Beginning-Middle of September 2010.
BUDGET RANGE: No limit.
SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming, multi-tasking, multimedia center, photo/music editing.
PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Monitor(s). Currently using the Hanns-G 28" sold on newegg.com.
PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg.com.
PARTS PREFERENCES: mATX parts and case. EVGA nvidia for graphics card(s) and Intel for the processor.
OVERCLOCKING: Yes, but I've never tried it before.
SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Yes.
MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1080, 1920x1200.
ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Money is not an issue. I'm aiming at building an mATX computer that is easy to move from place to place with enough storage to not worry about external hard drives. I don't know if choosing an SSD would be better than the raptor. I don't know if DDR3 1600 is going to suffice or if I should switch to DDR3 2000. I want to avoid liquid cooling.
Any and all feedback is welcome. I've had a few other custom computers, but I've never made any attempt at overclocking.
I hghly recommend not going with mATX and nVidia. The Fermi cards run crazy hot and there just isn't enough space in the smaller cases to disapate that heat.
Ditch the VR. There are drives that are just as fast and a quarter of the price, namely the Samsung Spinpoint F3 1 TB. Use them for your storage and pick up a SSD or two for some real speed. I like the Intel X25-M 80 GB.
I'm specifically avoiding the mid-ATX cases because they won't fit inside my box when moving my gear from place to place during deployments. I was also trying to avoid the ATI graphics cards because I've had bad experiences with their software. Is there no alternative to the EVGA's 480 GTX? What about the blocks they advertise on their web page?
The products you posted, specifically the motherboard and CPU heatsink, will they fit inside the Vulcan case? I'll take your advice and give ATI another shot. Is there going to be a significant difference between two 5970's as opposed to just one?
Those will not fit in a mATX case. Nor will a 5870 or 480. The larger cards are a good 12" long. That's why I changed the board and case. If you absolutely need mATX, you're going to have to scale down the performance. You should be looking at the HD 5770, 5850 or the GTX 460 (which is a good card).
As for using two 5970s, there's a huge difference. You'd nearly double the performance. You'd be able to play every game ever made on anything up to the maximum of six monitors with all the details turned up. Of course, that'd cost you a good $1,400 just for the GPUs.
a psu from silverstone, corsair or XFX depending on which GPU you chose
A bit faster ram cl 8 or 7 unless you may need 16gb in the future than 2X4gb is probably best
the rest of the components you mentioned are good
Yea I saw the reviews regarding the NZXT Vulcan case and how it can hold TWO full size graphics cards. That's why I want to attempt this build. I have a mid-tower computer already, but something more compact with higher capabilities would be nice. Would this be a better choice for RAM? It costs a little more than the one MadAdmiral posted.
I don't think the case will hold two 5970s. After looking at the pictures, the first one fits in the gap between the top (optical, etc.) cage and the bottom (HDDs) cage. However, the second card would run into the HDD cage. Given that the case is 16" long, the HDD cage likely takes 4" of that (3.5" for the HDD, add .5" for the fan and the cage itself). That leaves about 12" for the second GPU and the power cables. The 5970 is 12.16" long. That means it won't fit without some modifications.
Obviously, you could just remove the HDD cage, but then you'd need to squeeze all of the HDDs/SSDs/opticals into the top external bays. There's only four, which won't leave a lot of room for expansion.
I'd just go with a single 5970. It's more than powerful enough for a long, long time.
Those would probably be the best sticks on the market.
sombody recommends a different PSU because AMS isn't exactly high quality. If you were going to get dual 5970s, I'd get this Silverstone 1000W 80+ Silver unit. It's got enough power that you could add a third 5970, not that you'd ever need to.
if the mars II comes out anytime soon it's worth taking a look at though. But with the current products a 5970 is a no-brainer and as Madadmiral said I'd get one and add a second later. And maybe a third although I don't think that's possible and either way your mobo doesn't allow it anyways.
I was thinking more with the UD3R, but somebody's right. The mATX board won't allow it. I guess if you replace the board and case with ATX versions once you stop moving, you could just move everything over...
I'll take your advice and roll with 1 5970 for now and the Silverstone PSU. The majority of components will be moved over into a larger case after my next deployment. I don't think I'll be moving around nearly as much at that point.
Is the Samsung HD not a good choice? I'd like to run 2 HD's in RAID 0 rather than going with SSD's. No budget means no budget with everything EXCEPT SSD's. The Army doesn't pay me THAT much.