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Building new computer this weekend (parts already purchased)

Last response: in Systems
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August 25, 2010 11:58:59 PM

Hi everyone! While I've lurked here a little bit before, this is clearly my first time posting. I want to thank in advance those people kind enough to give me any tips or advice on my build.

To start, I'll list all of the parts I've bought; they're all waiting for me to get started this weekend, so I don't need any advice on what hardware to buy. Hopefully I've made pretty sound decisions. I'm looking mostly for people with experience and/or knowledge with any of my parts, especially the Antec 1200 and mounting the Noctua cooler.

Case: Antec 1200
Power Supply: Antec CP-1000
Motherboard: ASUS P6X58D Premium
Processor: Intel Core i7-930 2.8GHz
CPU Fan/Heatsink: Noctua NH-D14
GPU: ZOTAC AMP! GTX480 1536MB (Fermi)
Memory: Muskin Enhanced Redline 6GB DDR3 1600
Storage: Intel X25-M 160GB SSD + Western Digital 1TB 7200RPM HDD
Thermal Paste: MASSCOOL G751
CD/DVD Burner: PLEXTOR CD/DVD Writer


I've never built a computer before, so I'm excited about the opportunity to learn as I go through this. While I'm pretty sure I'll be able to figure it out eventually, I know I can undoubtedly benefit from hearing from people who know this stuff well. Ideally, I'm hoping for some idiot-proof step-by-step guide to consult while I put this together. I've read some guides like this one and that has helped, but I'm still wondering about a few things more specific to my build.

I've read the Antec cases have some bottom-mount tray for SSDs; how do these work? (I haven't had a chance to open or examine any of my parts yet) Where should I put the SSD? SATA RAID 0? And then the WD HDD in a SATA 6gb/s connection? Also, is it difficult specifying just the OS and select games on the SSD and then everything else on the HDD? What exactly do I need to do with my 2 drives after completing the build?

Also, I want to mount the NH-D14 vertically. I know it's huge like xbox, but I should be able to make it fit in that case, right? I feel like mounting the CPU cooler and applying the thermal paste might be the trickiest part. Any heads-up or advice regarding these steps would be greatly appreciated.

What software will I want right away after completing the build? And potentially for OCing? I've read the i7s OC beautifully, and I would like to try this out - both as another learning experience as well as something to help justify the cooler I bought and ensure no CPU bottleneck. I don't need to push it to the limits, but I want to get a little more out of what I bought. I'd like to stay sub-75 on temps, so I'm not hung up on reaching 4.0 or 4.2.. I'd be content stopping at 3.8, but I'll have to see how it goes first to know where is a good stopping point. I don't know exactly at what speeds I should incrementally set the CPU and RAM.. but I guess specific OC questions can wait until later after I get the assembly figured out.

Anyway, in order to make this go as smoothly as possible, I'm planning on having all of the programs (such as Prime95, I know, but what else?) all on a USB drive ready to go as I start the build. Oh yeah, and drivers too. I'll need to get the Win7 64bit drivers for.. my GTX480, the SSD, and?

Please forgive my ignorance in this area; again, like I said this is my first time attempting a build. I guess I'm just a bit anxious having spent a couple thousand dollars on hardware and now I need to get it all together. Again, thanks in advance for any help.
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