Please push me off the fence

Reaching out….

I’ve learned much the past few weeks here; this is a great source of info.

So, I’m at a crossroad now and looking for help to choose a path. Here’s how I got here; sorry for the length:
My current pc is over 6 years old, a ThinkCentre w/ P4 and Radeon X600. At first I was going to have a pc built for me, but after browsing here I thought maybe I should build. This will be my first build. I expect it to be used for the next 5 years – I’ll upgrade some parts as “necessary”. For the next 2 years or so it will be my primary PC, then maybe I look into the newer architecture debuting soon, and I’ll pass this one down to family members.

Until recently, my first inclination was to go with i7-950 build. I know I probably don’t need HT too much, if at all, right now but I assume as time goes on it will become more and more useful. But now, I am reluctant to build on a 1366 – mostly due to the great amount of RAM recognition issues I am reading about. I fear spending a month or so just figuring out if I have the CPU seated right, if I bent a pin, or if the cooler is wrong, or how to set my timings so that all of my RAM is recognized. Anyway, I’ve concluded (right or wrong) that an 1156 build would be easier for me, being a first-timer and all.

So, I have 2 wishlists – my original 970 and then my 760. I’ll show both.

Approximate Purchase Date: before Thanksgiving
Budget Range: 1500-1700 after rebates
System Usage from Most to Least Important: multi-purpose, gaming (currently WoW), streaming vid, NetBeans ide, surfing, spreadsheets, may often have a game, Vent (or some chat), browser(s) open at once.
Parts Not Required: need everything
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg
Country of Origin: USA
Parts Preferences: leaning toward Intel cpu and AMD 6800 or 6900 series
Overclocking: not immediately, maybe in the future, most like something small
SLI or Crossfire: maybe Crossfire, might depend on which cpu I choose, likely to try Overdrive on 1 card first
Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

Original i7-950 build ($1605):
HAF 922 case
i7-950
Hyper 212 Plus
Sabertooth Mobo
GSkill PI Series 6GB DDR3 1600
XFX RADEON 6870
XFX Black Edition P1-750B-CAG9
Spinpoint F3 1tb
ASUS VE248H monitor
Lite-On CD/DVD
Win 7 pro

i5-760 build ($1290):
HAF 922 case
i5-760
Hyper 212 Plus
ASUS P7P55D-E Pro Mobo
GSkill Ripjaws Series 4GB DDR3 1333
XFX RADEON 6870
XFX Black Edition P1-750B-CAG9
Spinpoint F3 1tb
ASUS VE248H monitor
Lite-On CD/DVD
Win 7 pro

I am open to comments on either one, or both, or none - feel free to flame me for being a noob and worried about building a 1366! Just looking for feedback to help me move my azz along.
7 answers Last reply
More about please push fence
  1. jake1121 said:
    Reaching out….

    I’ve learned much the past few weeks here; this is a great source of info.

    So, I’m at a crossroad now and looking for help to choose a path. Here’s how I got here; sorry for the length:
    My current pc is over 6 years old, a ThinkCentre w/ P4 and Radeon X600. At first I was going to have a pc built for me, but after browsing here I thought maybe I should build. This will be my first build. I expect it to be used for the next 5 years – I’ll upgrade some parts as “necessary”. For the next 2 years or so it will be my primary PC, then maybe I look into the newer architecture debuting soon, and I’ll pass this one down to family members.

    Until recently, my first inclination was to go with i7-950 build. I know I probably don’t need HT too much, if at all, right now but I assume as time goes on it will become more and more useful. But now, I am reluctant to build on a 1366 – mostly due to the great amount of RAM recognition issues I am reading about. I fear spending a month or so just figuring out if I have the CPU seated right, if I bent a pin, or if the cooler is wrong, or how to set my timings so that all of my RAM is recognized. Anyway, I’ve concluded (right or wrong) that an 1156 build would be easier for me, being a first-timer and all.

    So, I have 2 wishlists – my original 970 and then my 760. I’ll show both.

    Approximate Purchase Date: before Thanksgiving
    Budget Range: 1500-1700 after rebates
    System Usage from Most to Least Important: multi-purpose, gaming (currently WoW), streaming vid, NetBeans ide, surfing, spreadsheets, may often have a game, Vent (or some chat), browser(s) open at once.
    Parts Not Required: need everything
    Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg
    Country of Origin: USA
    Parts Preferences: leaning toward Intel cpu and AMD 6800 or 6900 series
    Overclocking: not immediately, maybe in the future, most like something small
    SLI or Crossfire: maybe Crossfire, might depend on which cpu I choose, likely to try Overdrive on 1 card first
    Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

    Original i7-950 build ($1675):
    HAF 922 case
    i7-950
    Hyper 212 Plus
    Sabertooth Mobo
    GSkill PI Series 6GB DDR3 1600
    XFX RADEON 6870
    Corsair AX850 Gold
    Spinpoint F3 1tb
    ASUS VE248H monitor
    Lite-On CD/DVD
    Win 7 pro

    i5-760 build ($1260):
    HAF 922 case
    i5-760
    Hyper 212 Plus
    ASUS P7P55D-E Pro Mobo
    GSkill Ripjaws Series 4GB DDR3 1333
    XFX RADEON 6870
    XFX P1-650X-CAG9
    Spinpoint F3 1tb
    ASUS VE248H monitor
    Lite-On CD/DVD
    Win 7 pro

    I am open to comments on either one, or both, or none - feel free to flame me for being a noob and worried about building a 1366! Just looking for feedback to help me move my azz along.


    If you intend to crossfire in the future you need a bigger PSU http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817207001&Tpk=xfx%20850 - $150

    and if you want to get a SSD to put the OS on and most used apps that would speed things up a bit.
    OCZ Agility 2 60GB http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227542&cm_re=ocz_agility-_-20-227-542-_-Product - $145

    and if you want (good idea for $10) get a 2nd matching fan for the other side of the hyper 212 for push/pull effect. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835103069&cm_re=blade_master-_-35-103-069-_-Product $10
  2. TY vindictive:
    1. Yep, when I did the 760 build I figured no crossfire, only single card upgrades. If that changes I surely will get more power.
    2. I have always considered an SSD for OS, just haven't included (yet?)
    3. Yeah I planned on push-pull, forgot to mention that.
  3. jake1121 said:
    TY vindictive:
    1. Yep, when I did the 760 build I figured no crossfire, only single card upgrades. If that changes I surely will get more power.
    2. I have always considered an SSD for OS, just haven't included (yet?)
    3. Yeah I planned on push-pull, forgot to mention that.


    Ok then your PSU will work for what you have picked :D

    Yea, I'd suggest getting one. this is the one I'm getting http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148357 running on SATA 3. Its read is allot faster than its write but thats what I want because it will be for an OS and maybe 1 or 2 games so I will obviously be reading from it more than writing to it.

    Okay, then theres the matching fan link :p
  4. I would vote for the i7-950 approach, but the i5-750 would be about as good. Each can be conservatively overclocked.

    If you will be multitasking while gaming, you will want more than 4gb. It turns out that 6gb is a nice size, and you get that with the X58 chipset.

    Do not worry about the ram. Just get a supported 6gb kit of DDR3 1333 is fine, but 1600 is usually at a similar price. Do not spend more on fancy heat spreaders, speeds, or better timings. It makes a miniscule(1-3%) difference in real application performance or FPS.
    The ram will work just fine with the default auto settings. If you go the i5-750 route, I would suggest you get a 8gb kit made up of 2 x 4gb sticks.

    To insure compatibility, go to the ram vendor's web site and access their configurator. You will get a list of compatible kits for your motherboard. Order from that list. If there ever should be an issue, then you will get support. The motherboard vendor will also have a QVL list of compatible ram, but that list does not get updated comprehensively.

    Do not worry about seating the cpu. There is a notch that lets it fit only one way. There are no pins, just bumps that align with the socket. The mechanism is the same with either cpu. The pressure on the latching mechanism is fairly high, do not be alarmed.

    You will have to mount the cpu cooler before the motherboard is put in the case. Not a big deal. If there is any common mistake, it is to use too much thermal material. Look at the arctic cooling web site for some photos of how to apply the material. It really is not all that important.

    Before you order, I suggest that you download and read, cover to cover the Motherboard and case manuals. Many things will be explained.

    I see that you have selected different psu's. The psu requirement is dictated by the graphics configuration, not the cpu. The Corsair unit is nice, but much more than you will need. In this case, I would suggest the XFX750w unit for either build.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817207003 It should handls dual 6870 cards with extra reserve:
    http://www.amd.com/us/products/desktop/graphics/amd-radeon-hd-6000/hd-6870/Pages/amd-radeon-hd-6870-overview.aspx#3

    A 6870 should be appropriate for either build. You might want to wait until later in November since the 69xx series will launch, and Nvidia will launch the GTX580.

    Is there a reason for W7 pro? W7 Home premium 64 bit should be fine for most users.

    I would budget $100 or so for a SSD for the os and apps. It will make your system feel much snappier.

    Are you near a microcenter? If so, they will sell you a i7-950 for $230 to a walk in customer. i5-750 might be a deal there also.

    If your need is not that urgent, wait until January 9 when "sandy bridge" 32nm quads are supposed to launch.

    If your need is not urgent,
  5. ty geofelt.
    I edited both builds to use the same XFX 750 silver psu.
    Win7 is for xp-mode and remote desktop (to access home from work).
    I am now feeling better about i7-950, but I still read about the ram issues in Tom's forums, and ASUS, and others. Maybe I'm just paranoid and I wouldn't have a problem.
  6. jake1121 said:
    ty geofelt.
    I edited both builds to use the same XFX 750 silver psu.
    Win7 is for xp-mode and remote desktop (to access home from work).
    I am now feeling better about i7-950, but I still read about the ram issues in Tom's forums, and ASUS, and others. Maybe I'm just paranoid and I wouldn't have a problem.

    Go with G.Skill, I like how on newegg they actually reply to every single post that says they have had a problem. So just get new ones sent if it doesn't work.
  7. thanks guys, I'm hoping to find more feedback for x58 reported ram situation. I'd would prefer going with a 950 build, but a 760 would still be ok I think.
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