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$500-600 gaming/3d rendering computer

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September 11, 2010 7:50:57 PM

Hi, I am currently looking to build a new computer as my current one is getting too slow

Stuff that i want to do:
3d rendering (3d max, autocad 3d, etc)
gaming (SC2, D3 [when it comes out], etc

Current spec
CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E6550 @ 2.33GHz
RAM: 2.0GB Dual-Channel DDR2 @ 399MHz (5-5-5-18)
MB: ASUSTeK Computer INC. P5KPL-VM (Socket 775)
Graphics Card: 256MB GeForce 8600 GT (EVGA)

I am going to reuse my current harddrives and monitor x2

SyncMaster @ 1680x1050
SyncMaster @ 1440x900

39.1GB Maxtor Maxtor 6E040L0 (IDE) 38 °C
488GB Western Digital WDC WD5000AAKS-00YGA0 (IDE)

My budget is around 550-600, prefer to buy locally (Canada Computers, Infonec)
September 11, 2010 10:55:01 PM

Intel DP55WB Micro ATX Motherboard
Core i5-760 Lynnfield 2.8GHz Quad-Core Processor [$317 Mobo/CPU combo]
Sapphire 1GB Radeon 5770 [$140]
Kingston HyperX Blu 4GB(2 x 2GB) DDR3 1333 [$83]
Thermaltake TR2 600W PSU [$60]

Total: $603 from Directron.com
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September 12, 2010 2:45:30 AM

Thanks for the suggestions

I've came up with another spec for now, any other suggestions will be welcomed!

MB: $115 Intel Desktop Board DP55WB Media Series - Motherboard - micro ATX - iP55 - LGA1156 Socket - Serial ATA-300 (RAID) - Gigabit Ethernet - FireWire - HD Audio (8-channel)
CPU: $210Intel Core i5-760 2.8GHz 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor
RAM: $170Corsair DDR3, 1333MHz 8GB 2x240 DIMM, Unbuffered, 9-9-9-24, XMS3 with Classic Heat Spreader - Core i7, Core i5 and Core 2 / AMD Phenom II - Dual Channel
Video Card: Not sure yet
ATI 5770 seems to be around 150-160
ATI 5670 seems to be around 100-110
Is there a big difference here?

Nvidia cards seems to be much more expensive, not sure if its going to fit within my budget

I currently have a Antec 500W PSU, if possible i can keep it and save some money :) 

Thanks for the help
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September 12, 2010 2:48:37 AM

The Thermaltake TR2 is a crappy PSU; the little voltage switch gives it away. A HD5770 will be happy with a 430W-500W Antec, Corsair, or Seasonic PSU.
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September 12, 2010 2:50:28 AM

A HD5770 will be much better than a HD5670.
Unless it's really old, your Antec PSU should be good.

Edit: you would probably be just fine with 4GB of RAM. That would save some money.
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September 12, 2010 2:58:52 AM

8gb - 170
6gb - 145
4gb - 90

i guess i could move the money else where, where do you suggest is invest the extra money into? CPU, MB, or Video card?

I am also thinking of getting an antec 300 case for about $55

Thx for the help
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September 12, 2010 3:08:25 AM

If you are interested in overclocking, you may want a better HSF for your CPU. A mobo from someone other than Intel will probably have more overclocking options. Both of those could readily consume the $80 from getting just 4GB of RAM. You won't get 6GB btw; that will be a 3x2GB triple channel set which is for LGA1366 boards. You want a dual channel set, which will be 2x2GB.
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September 12, 2010 3:16:23 AM

never really knew how to overclock, maybe i'll look into it. which CPU is good for overclocking?

since that MB has 4 ram slots, i guess later i could just plug in another 4gb to make it 8gb if i need to?

and what about video cards, any suggestions as to ATI vs Nvidia?
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September 12, 2010 3:32:33 AM

Yes, you could add another 2x2GB later.
The i5 (and i3 and i7) CPUs all overclock pretty well.
If you were going to spend $200-$230 on a GPU, I'd probably suggest a nVidia GTX460, although the two games you mentioned are not extremely demanding. I tend to prefer ATi cards, particularly in your price range. If the money's there, get the HD5770. A HD5750 would be the next step down, but would probably also work quite well for you, given your 1680x1050 resolution.
Would any of your non-gaming applications take advantage of PhysX? That's another reason to consider a nVidia card (perhaps a GTS250), otherwise I would stick to ATi.
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September 12, 2010 3:39:40 AM

well, i don't know if in the future i'll be using any applications that uses PhysX, but i right now, i'll have to say no, so i think i'll just stick with the 5770

For cooling, should i get 1 for CPU and 1 for my video card? in the past my video card tends to get pretty hot, 67c right now with just browsing lol. And what brand do you suggest?

When you say i should get a mobo other than intel for better overclocking, which mobo brand do you suggest?
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September 12, 2010 3:57:38 PM

You will not need a video card cooler with a HD5770; it is efficient and stays cool.
Any of the 120mm "core contact" (the heat pipes directly touch the top of the CPU) models will be decent. The 92mm ones will keep your CPU cool enough for light to moderate overclocks, but may get noisy doing it.
I use mostly Asus, ASRock, and Gigabyte. I've also used Biostar, but not lately. My mini-ITX system is ECS, but most people are likely to suggest avoiding ECS. Some people like MSI, others hate them; I know years ago they had major quality issues, but I suspect that's past history.
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