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Help with system configuration

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September 28, 2010 4:28:28 PM

Hello,

I am new to custom building, and wanted your opinions before I purchase my parts. I just want to make sure that what I bought is compatible and makes sense. Thank you for your input!

CPU: Intel Core i7-860 Lynnfield 2.8GHz LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core Processor BX80605I7860

Graphics: PowerColor PCS AX5870 1GBD5-PPDHG2 Radeon HD 5870 (Cypress XT) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX ...

Case: COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Steel Plastic and Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

Motherboard: ASUS P7P55D LGA 1156 Intel P55 ATX Intel Motherboard

PSU: CORSAIR CMPSU-850TX 850W ATX12V 2.2 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply

Memory: CORSAIR DOMINATOR 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model TR3X6G1600C8D

Hard disk: Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

DVD reader: LITE-ON Black SATA DVD-ROM Drive Model iHDS118-04 - OEM

Wireless adapter: Rosewill RNX-N180UBE USB 2.0 External 5dBi Antenna Wireless Adapter

All your comments are much appreciated. I am buying this stuff from newegg. Money is less of a concern. I care about performance and reliability. Since I am new to this, I would prefer an easy build. This is for playing games like SC2, CIV5, WOW and Dawn of War2.

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a b B Homebuilt system
September 28, 2010 6:38:50 PM

The WD black 640 is an older model. The WD Black 1TB "FAEX" (not "FALS") is newer and faster, as is the Samsung F3 500GB/1TB and Seagate 7200.12 500GB/1TB.

Corsair RAM is generally overpriced. You should be able to get Gskill, Mushkin or Geil DDR3-1600 cas7 for cheaper than the corsair cas8.

Its not much more to get the P7P55D-E motherboard, which is newer and has SATA3/USB3.

If your primary use is gaming, then an i5 760 will be as fast as the i7 860 and cost less.

You could easily drop down to a 750W PSU like this Seasonic silver certified.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
They only recommend 600W for a single 5870 so even a good 620 or 650 would be plenty.
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September 29, 2010 3:22:31 PM

Thanks for the useful information dndhatcher. I have made some changes in the light of your advise and came up with the following build:

RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL

OS: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - OEM

Case: COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Steel + Plastic and Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

MOBO: ASUS P7P55D-E LGA 1156 Intel P55 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

Graphics Card: PowerColor PCS+ AX5870 1GBD5-PPDHG2 Radeon HD 5870 (Cypress XT) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX ...

PSU: CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power ...

CPU: Intel Core i5-760 Lynnfield 2.8GHz LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor

Hard Disk: Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

Monitor: ASUS VH242H Black 23.6" 5ms HDMI Full 1080P Widescreen LCD Monitor

DVD-ROM: LITE-ON Black SATA DVD-ROM Drive Model iHDS118-04 - OEM

Wireless Card: Rosewill RNX-N180UBE USB 2.0 External 5dBi Antenna Wireless Adapter

The whole system is 1595 dollars before mail rebates, shipping and taxes. I switched to 8gb ram from 6gb. I read that 8gb enables me to utilize the dual channel feature. I don't know if it is hard to implement, I hope not. Also, does that (PC3 12800) written by the ram has any important implications? In terms of compatibility especially?

A second concern was about the mother board. I considered going with one that has the crossfire option if I want to pursue that in the future. What do you guys suggest?

All comments are welcome. Let me know if you guys think there are some incompatibility issues or obvious bottlenecks in the system. Thank you for your help.
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September 29, 2010 4:24:56 PM

I already posted a 2x4GB kit. Room for expansion in the future.

Honestly, I went for a 8gb instead of 4gb simply because 8 is greater than 4. I decided to invest the money I save by downgrading to i5-760 to memory or video card. Upgrading the memory was way cheaper so I went with it. I don't have a more sophisticated reasoning. Are you saying that 8gb instead of 4gb won't really do much difference just like going beyond i5-760 won't?

Thank you for your time and attention.


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a b B Homebuilt system
September 29, 2010 4:41:19 PM

exactly. Not much uses more than 4 GB, so for gaming, it's plenty. your 5870 is pretty solid, but you might look for a better quality brand that Power Color. They aren't *BAD* (I had a Power Color 5500 back in the day that lasted 5 years), but an XFX or Gigabyte might have better cooling and build quality
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a b B Homebuilt system
September 29, 2010 4:43:35 PM

Correct, its rare for someone to need more than 4GB RAM, especially gaming. Some games have "mods" you can load which may increase RAM usage but people doing that usually know that they are going to exceed 4GB.

If you are in the US, I would go with XFX for the 5870 because they have a lifetime warranty if you register it within 30 days. Most other companies have a 2 year from purchase date or 3 year from manufacture date warranty.
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September 29, 2010 4:57:10 PM

This was very helpful, thank you both for your input. I am not a complicated gamer. I buy a game and then do the official upgrades only. I am not very interested in third party released software for a game, which means I am not using any modes (I am not even sure what they are). I had a couple of programs running on the background with WOW in the past, but they were simple things.

I will drop ram amount to 4, switch with a crossfire friendly board and change the brand of the graphics card and come back with my updated configuration. Thank you.



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a b B Homebuilt system
September 29, 2010 4:59:24 PM

one more suggestion: Look for combos!

Newegg combos can easily trim $100 or more off your costs. Careful choices can get $200 and more off your price
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September 30, 2010 5:44:52 AM

I have made some more changes and the new system build is as follows:

CPU: Intel Core i5-760 Lynnfield 2.8GHz LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80605I5760

MOBO: ASUS P7P55D-E Pro LGA 1156 Intel P55 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

Memory: CORSAIR XMS3 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMX4GX3M2A1600C8

GPU: XFX HD-587X-ZNFC Radeon HD 5870 1GB 256-bit DDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card

PSU: CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power ...

Case: COOLER MASTER HAF X RC-942-KKN1 Black Steel/ Plastic ATX Full Tower Computer Case

Monitor: Dell SP2309W, 23'' Full HD Widescreen Flat Panel Monitor

Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

DVD Rom: LITE-ON Black SATA DVD-ROM Drive Model iHDS118-04 - OEM

OS: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - OEM

Wireless: Rosewill RNX-N180UBE USB 2.0 External 5dBi Antenna Wireless Adapter

This costs 1441 without the monitor from newegg. Monitor is another 240 from Dell website. I have changed the mobo so that I have the option of crossfire in the future. I dropeed to 4gb of ram and changed the brand of the videocard. In addition I changed the case and the monitor. I decided to switch to a full tower for comfort and better ventilation.

Please let me know if you spot any inconsistencies. I think I am getting close to finalizing this deal and start putting it together. Thanks for your comments and help!
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October 1, 2010 5:48:33 PM

Best answer selected by hasim.
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 1, 2010 5:58:34 PM

you won't need a full tower unless you're cramming in a bunch of DVD drives or Hard drives. a mid-tower is plenty
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 1, 2010 6:09:46 PM

The HAF X is a top quality case. Its also huge. You may need to buy a couple power cable extenders to help routing. You could get a case half that price without any problems, but if you like the HAF X its a great case.
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October 1, 2010 6:31:25 PM

Actually I changed my mind after posting that, just did not update. I will not get the HAF 942. I am now split between the HAF 922 and 932 and I am leaning towards HAF 922. As far as I understand the mid-tower is enough for my needs, even if I go corssfire in the future. As far as I understand, given my system, HAF 922's cooling seems to be good enough.
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 1, 2010 7:10:30 PM

Even the HAF 912 with an extra fan or two would be good. The 912 is newer, smaller but better laid out and has dust filters.
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