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Rate/Help my build

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November 1, 2010 9:41:55 PM

Building a new computer for my wife and with Neweggs November deals seems like a good time. This will be my second computer built and as I received great advice the first time through thought I'd do it again. The computer will be used for gaming (mainly MMO's: WoW, eventually SWTOR or others). I'd like to be able to run the games at highest settings and have the computer be as "future proof" as possible. Budget is around $1600 (tax and shipping not included). Here are the two builds I'm mainly looking at (no monitor at this time as wife needs to decide still...):

http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx...

http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx...

Only real difference between the two builds is an i5 760 with corresponding motherboard and i7 950 with corresponding motherboard.
Some questions:
Is PSU enough (used some of the PSU calculators and I think it is, but want to confirm here)?
Can't decide between the HD 6870 and others, but I do like the price on the 6870 and from what I've read it will perform more than adequately with Crossfire at the levels I want it to.

Thanks in advance for help.

More about : rate build

a c 103 B Homebuilt system
a b Ý World of Warcraft
November 1, 2010 10:28:04 PM

For gaming anything over the I5 760 is an overkill. I would go with the first system.
November 1, 2010 10:42:12 PM

6870 & i5-750
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 1, 2010 10:50:42 PM

Ok let's go item by item:

RAM: It's DDR3-1600 with CAS 9 latency, you would be better off with this RAM for 79.99 it's the same speed, it's CAS 7(faster) and it has lower voltage, meaning it is more stable/cooler

Also that Seagate HDD is 750 GB. That means it has 2 platters(Im not sure what size) I'd probably stick with the 7200.12 500 GB for a main drive. It has 1 single dense platter for faster speeds.

For your PSU that seems pretty expensive for an 80 PLUS BRONZE. I'd get this XFX 80 PLUS SILVER Modular 850W for 30 bucks less.

Thats my opinion of the 1st build. When I get more free time at work I'll look at your 2nd build

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a b B Homebuilt system
November 1, 2010 11:11:08 PM
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1. 850W psu is fine for 2x6870
2. There's one disturbing anomaly about (6870) crossfire that you might want to consider:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-6870-rade...

As the chart shows, the minimum frame rates in crossfire dip below the minimum frame rate of a single card. Seems to me one doesn't crossfire to get 300FPS; what you want is improved minimum frame rates.

2. Normally I'd suggest the 760 instead of the 9XX for gaming . . . but frankly if you're primary gaming is MMOs, I think its a reasonable choice when the budget permits. However, the 950 will produce more heat; if the tower is nearby count on a degree or two warmer local ambient temps lol.

3. If you're on the cusp over the two systems, you might look at going i5 and investing in an SSD. Again, this is something I don't normally recommend. But when I'm late for a raid its nice to boot up WIndows and WoW quickly - and zoning in is a lot quicker which is important if you die a lot :)  But perhaps more important is this potential benefit:

http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/hard_data_pro...

Can't claim its real - could be just advertising - I only know I don't have any stuttering :) 

4. To complete the list of things I don't normally recommend lol, I'd advise 8GB of memory if you go i5 (6GB is plenty on the 950). The reason is to give WoW and your addons maximum available memory while still running Ventrilo, perhaps a browser, your antivirus, and maybe even iTunes looking for a new release :) 

5. Memory: Hard to not consider 1 (or 2) of these kits, lower latency (7), same price after MIR:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

6. The particular Antec psu you chose is a good one - not all Antecs are:

http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=...

You might consider this Corsair for better efficiency, just a suggestion:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=...

Enjoy the build - your wife is a lucky lady . . . but you are even luckier lol.
November 2, 2010 12:00:22 AM

I would also recommend the corsair PSU, my 850HX is amazing. The XFX 850 is pretty good, but not as good, but also costs a bit less (also recommended).

I have an i7-930 with a 5850, and even in Metro 2033 and BFBC2, by CPU isn't coming anywhere close to 50%, so I suggest you save the money with the i5 (and maybe get an SSD)

I've never liked Gigabyte boards, I prefer ASUS or EVGA, but theres nothing bad about them. (just a personal bias)

Also, the 6870 is a Great choice, especially because it has the new Tessellation engine.

Hope this Helps

Side Note: Sandy Bridge will come out in early 2011, so you may want to conciser waiting.
a c 103 B Homebuilt system
a b Ý World of Warcraft
November 2, 2010 12:10:54 AM

Twoboxer said:

2. There's one disturbing anomaly about (6870) crossfire that you might want to consider:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-6870-rade...

As the chart shows, the minimum frame rates in crossfire dip below the minimum frame rate of a single card. Seems to me one doesn't crossfire to get 300FPS; what you want is improved minimum frame rates.

Borrowed from the crossfire SLI scaling article "Once again, we notice that the low frame rates occur at the start of the benchmark as things are loading. Soon after, the Radeons perform quite smoothly, as demonstrated by the solid FPS averages."
a b B Homebuilt system
November 2, 2010 12:14:10 AM

^ good catch, I was too lazy to dig
November 2, 2010 2:57:29 AM

Thanks for the responses all. This really helps me out.
November 8, 2010 11:08:28 PM

Best answer selected by Trinak.
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