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Firstbuild review/advice please!

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November 24, 2010 8:42:03 PM

Hi all,

This is the first time I'm building a comp from scratch. I'm looking for a computer which is quiet (my current one is like a jet engine), and am aiming for it to be a good multitasking computer (ie. lots of browser windows, photoshop, other programs etc open at the same time, but no video editing). Occasional gaming (but I'm not too hardcore on max settings).

I've planned the following build with a budget of about $800AUD in mind. Sorry, links are to Australian websites which I've used simply to get an idea of the prices they have here.

ThermalTake VL90001W2Z Armor A90 Midi-Tower Case $109
http://www.umart.com.au/pro/products_listnew.phtml?id=1...

Vantec ION2 460W Ultra Quiet $49
http://www.umart.com.au/pro/products_listnew.phtml?id=1...

ASRock 880GM-LE AM3 M/B microATX 2DDR3 $75
http://www.umart.com.au/pro/products_listnew.phtml?id=1...
(I went with the microATX as it has probably all I need, though when I want to upgrade in a few years, case still has space for ATX)

AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition 3.20GHz $156
http://www.umart.com.au/pro/products_listnew.phtml?id=1...

GSkill 4G(2x2G) DDR3 1333 $75
http://www.umart.com.au/newindex2.phtml?bid=7

Samsung SpinPoint F3 Desktop Class 1TB HDD $57
http://www.umart.com.au/pro/products_listnew.phtml?id=1...

Asus DRW-24B1LT 24x DVDRW SATA LightScribe $35
http://www.umart.com.au/pro/products_listnew.phtml?id=1...

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-bit $108
http://www.umart.com.au/pro/products_listnew.phtml?id=1...

Total $813AUD

I just have three questions:
1. The motherboard is a 64-bit, does that mean I need the 64-bit version of Windows?
2. Do I need a network card to hook it up to my LAN?
3. Does anybody have any other suggestions on advice? Are all these components compatible with one another? (So far as I can tell they are, and the powersupply is more than adequate I think).

Thank you so much in advance!! :D 
a c 91 B Homebuilt system
November 24, 2010 9:11:24 PM

1) No you don't, it just means it supports it, HOWEVER you can't use 32bit with 4 gigs of ram, 32-bit only recognizes 3 gigs at the most. So you may need to change your ram (I don't suggest) or change your OS from 32 to 64 (Suggested)
2) No you don't need to or at least I don't think so. Pretty sure you don't need to since you really just need to hook them up through Ethernet right?
3) I think you should look into a GPU, the onboard isn't even going to cut it at low settings (depending on your res) what is your resolution going to be? Your PSU may cut it, but I've never heard of them so I think you should change it for an 80+ PSU. Like this one, http://www.umart.com.au/pro/products_listnew.phtml?id=1...
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November 24, 2010 9:45:40 PM

Thanks for your reply aznshinobi.

1. Will do, I didn't know 32 bit didn't work with 4gb RAM, I'll get the 64 bit.

2. Yes I'm just hooking up with Ethernet, so I'll try without a network card for now.

3. Sorry, it's so stupid, I forgot to put down the GPU I planned, but the price above includes the GPU. Sapphire ATI HD5770 1GB http://www.umart.com.au/pro/products_listnew.phtml?id=1...

The PSU you suggested looks good. Thanks! :) 
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 24, 2010 9:51:53 PM

2) No network card required. As you can see here, it has an onboard NIC.

3) Parts look fine, though the case is eating up a large portion of your budget. A 5770 will be ok at 1920x1080, if you're gaming at a lower resolution, then it will be more than adequate. If you can stretch your budget a little, you might consider looking at a GTX 460 1 GB or an ATI 6850.
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a c 91 B Homebuilt system
November 24, 2010 10:19:05 PM

NP! Umm yeah, as to the gpu, look at some of the GTX 460's. I checked them out, some of them are pretty close to the 5770's pricing. But if your going to play at like 1440x900 then you should be fine with that 5770.
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November 25, 2010 12:22:53 AM

Awesome, thanks both for your advice. I think I'll stick with the 5770 as gaming isn't a HUGE part of what I do (although definitely a part of what I do hehe), and I'll go with the OCZ Fatal1ty 550W Modular PSU.

THanks again for your help! Fingers crossed I put this thing together a-okay :D 
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November 25, 2010 6:37:07 AM

Hehe cheers for the link :) 

I've actually decided to fork out an extra $110 and get the Gigabyte GTX 460 1GB (http://www.pccasegear.com/index.php?main_page=product_i...) and the AsRock 870 Extreme3 mobo (http://www.pccasegear.com/index.php?main_page=product_i...).

It seems to me like a good investment for future expansion and upgrades/future proofing. I've checked it, and I think it all works together/will fit together properly, and the power supply (the OCZ Fatality 550 modular) is still adequate. Is that a fair assessment?

Thanks again for all your help :D 
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a c 91 B Homebuilt system
November 25, 2010 6:41:02 AM

Alright nice, that board is great! But don't get the GTX 460, you won't be able to SLI in the future =P I suggest getting the ATI 6850, any brand works really but the best imo is Asus DirectCu 6850.

http://www.pccasegear.com/index.php?main_page=product_i...

review: http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/ASUS/Radeon_HD_6850_...
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November 25, 2010 7:09:09 AM

Ah ha, thanks, I didn't pick that up until you pointed it out. I've decided to go with the Sapphire 6850 simply because it's easier and cheaper to source in my current location. The temperature it runs at is comparable to the Asus DirectCu though, which is a plus:

http://www.hexus.net/content/item.php?item=27537&page=1...
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a c 91 B Homebuilt system
November 25, 2010 6:51:25 PM

Alrighty then, anymore questions you'd like to ask!?
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November 25, 2010 7:10:58 PM

Haha, no thanks I'm all good now.

Thanks again for all the help! :D 
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November 25, 2010 7:12:17 PM

Best answer selected by outsidemyself.
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a c 91 B Homebuilt system
November 25, 2010 7:32:49 PM

Thanks for the BA! Gl with the build!
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