Hello I am new to the forum so excuse my ignorance if I post something in the wrong fashion. I am a student and I am hoping to build a rig for both cad and gaming. I have pretty much narrowed it down to the core i7 940x for the processor. My biggest concern is the graphics card(s). I'm having troubles deciding on one that would work well for both CAD work and gaming. So if I could get suggestions on what the best options would be keeping the price reasonable (under 800 for the graphics cards). I do like the idea of SLI/CrossfireX either now or in the future.
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Thanks A lot!
pproximate Purchase Date: Within a month
Budget Range: Under $2000
System Usage from Most to Least Important: AutoCad (2d &3d) , Gaming, A little photoshop work, Blu ray ripping and enoding
Parts Not Required: Operating System, Case, Power Supply
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg but open to other suggestions
Parts Preferences: by brand or type: Intel core i7 cpu, graphics card is up for grabs
SLI or Crossfire: Yes
Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080, 1920x1200
Additional Comments: As said above mainly for cad and gaming. I am pretty much set on the core i7 940x but am open to suggestions on graphics cards and mobos.
Just a couple more questions/comments. What case do you have? Need to make sure the graphics cards fit. What is your power supply? How old is it? That may also affect the choice of GPU.
Also, the i7-940 is not actively being sold - Newegg is out of stock, for example. The cpu being marketed right now is the i7-930, and it is in the process of being replaced with the i7-950.
Finally, do you live near a MicroCenter? They have really good prices on processors.
Thanks for the information. It will really help get you a better configuration.
Bit of an intereasting case, the reason I assumed the 940x is because I did some sales work for intel and they market it to us at really good prices. Not sure what they'll be doing this holiday season. It may very well be the 950x. The case I don't actually have it just isn't something of great importance and I will select that after deciding on the hardware. I find the hadware much more important than the case. The PSU is a CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX.
Intel has been marching up the chain, phasing out the low end i7-9xx CPUs at the rate of about one every other month. MicroCenter still has the i7-930 for $200. Newegg has the i7-930 and the 17-950 for $285 and $299, respectively. These are all essentially the same product, with different stock settings. I have an i7-920 that I purchased in February, overclocked to an everyday 3.33GHZ, the same as the i7-970 stock speed.
750 Watts rules out multiple high end nVidia (470 and 480) and the AMD 5970 graphics cards because they are such power hungry GPUs. It will still get you some decent graphics, so don't worry.
I can get you a config this evening, if someone else does not do so first.
If you can't get the i7 930 for $200 at a Microcenter, I would get the 950 since it's essentially the same price anywhere online.
For your setup, a pair of GTX 460s would work well. I have a pair of these ones and they are phenomenal: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130566&cm_re=evga_gtx_460_1gb-_-14-130-566-_-Product
They are external exhaust, which will keep the PC cooler, they have a lifetime warranty, and are part of EVGA's Step-up program (within 90 days, you can send in the card and pay for the difference for a 470 or 480) so if you decide 470s or 480s will work better, you can upgrade at essentially the same cost as buying them.
Processor: The i7-930 CPU is $15 cheaper than the i7-950 and they really are essentially the same, so I chose the former.
SSD: OCZ Vertex 2 OCZSSD2-2VTXE90G 2.5" 90GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive. 90 GB will hold your OS and most of your applications. The speed on this drive is right near the top of the market at the moment.
Combo CPU i7-930 and SSD for $427. If you really want to purchase the i7-950, then the same deal is offered for that CPU too.
Motherboard: MSI Big Bang-XPower LGA 1366 Intel X58 for $254
Graphics: 2 X GIGABYTE GV-R587UD-1GD Radeon HD 5870 for $680 after rebate.
HDD: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1 TB for $59 after promo code .
Case: I know you did not say to include a case, but here was a combo with the Hard drive that I just couldn’t resist. Thermaltake V9 Black Edition mid tower case Combo Hard Drive and Case for $129. That is just $80 for this case, after shipping, which is a very good price.
Memory: G.SKILL PI Series 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 for $155. Low voltage (1.5v), Very good latency of 7. Should overclock nicely.
Heat sink. Here, don’t skip the cooler: ZALMAN CNPS10X Performa for $40. You can pay more for these chillers, but this one gets high marks in almost every review.
DVD: Can't forget the optical: These things continue to drop in price. ASUS Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW for $19. This one was not the cheapest, but it runs 2x faster and has 5 eggs on Newegg.
Total: $1704. Hmm, is that too much less than $2000? This configuration will play any game at ultra settings, and should neatly handle any cpu intensive task you throw at it.