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Gaming, Video Editing, Multitasking Upgrade

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July 26, 2010 3:40:39 PM

Subject

Upgrade time. Why? My motherboard died for mysterious reasons. Keep in mind this is a 3 year old rig.

Specs:

- PSU: OCZ Game X Stream 600 Watts
- MB: GIGABYTE GA-P35-DS3L
- CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo e6750 @ 2.66 GHz, 4 MB L2 Cache, 65 nm
- GPU: NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GT, 512 MB, Superclocked version
- RAM: G.Skill 2 x 2 GB (4 GB) DDR2 1066 MHz Memory

(I do not plan on upgrading the rest of the components, no real point)

What it needs to handle

- Gaming: Bad Company 2, Left 4 Dead 2, Source Games, Starcraft 2, etc...
- Media: Encoding, converting, etc...
- Multitasking: Several Chrome tabs, instant messaging, music playing, scanning pictures/files, etc...

So far I'm thinking
- i5 760 + ATI 5770 (Will this be be strong and last me 2-3 years?).
- No clue about which DDR3 RAM to get or motherboard

Budget

Flexible, let's start around $600. (I know how these things work... you add this, then that, yadda yadda, boom bam bing and you're over $9,000!) :) 

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Thanks in advance!
July 26, 2010 3:55:39 PM

Here's two choices of what I'd do with $600.

#1:

CPU/Mobo: X4 955 and Gigabyte GA-790XTA-UD4 $285 after rebate (with free game)
RAM: G.Skill Eco 2x2 GB 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7 $105
GPU: GTX 460 1 GB $230 (with free game)

Total: $620. The X4 955 is cheaper (by about $100 counting the board) thant he i5, has a better upgrade path in that it actually has one, and performs only slightly less (which doesn't really matter for gaming). The 460 is a lot more powerful than the 5770, and has an excellent upgrade path. It's literally the only nVidia card I'd recommend right now.

#2:

CPU/Mobo: X3 440 and Gigabyte GA-790XTA-UD4 $183 after rebate
RAM: G.Skill Eco 2x2 GB 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7 $105
GPU: HD 5850 $285

Total: $573. Again, a weaker CPU, but it's powerful enough for gaming, especially if you overclock and unlock it. The 5850 is even better, and still has a great upgrade path.
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July 26, 2010 4:02:54 PM

Very interesting, I like what I'm seeing!

I will make a list of options and narrow it down, then ask for your final suggestions on the matter.

Thanks, keep the suggestions coming!
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July 26, 2010 4:28:17 PM

Second build by Mad is the better choice. You can not SLI the GTX 260 on that mobo, or any mobo with AMD chipset for that matter. You'd require a mobo with a Nvidia chipset, which will work, but is not supported by AMD if there are ever issue.



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July 26, 2010 4:33:01 PM

Crap. I keep forgetting that board doesn't allow SLI. Been looking at ATI cards exclusively for too long. Here's a board that's advertised to do SLI for $10 less:

Asus M4N98TD EVO and X4 955 $275.
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July 26, 2010 4:47:02 PM

What are you working with for a power supply?

I'm liking Mad Admiral's #2 option.
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July 26, 2010 6:24:03 PM

My power supply is currently: OCZ Game X Stream 600 Watts.

Would I need to upgrade it for i5/Phenom II & ati 5000 series/nvidia gtx 400 series?
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July 26, 2010 6:27:29 PM

Not for a single one. If you wanted to add a second later, you'd need to get a larger unit.
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!