CASE: (OLD) Antec 300
No gpu listed as I believe I will go with a new 6950 and not reuse my 4870....
Any glaringly obvious disasters looming?
I have never tried to reuse a HDD before, I have backed up my itunes/pics/docs to a flash drive.
Am I supposed to just clear out this HDD and reinstall it in the new build?
Any links for this process? windows boot disc + format?
No shot at reusing vista i already own I assume. So, I just go buy a Win7 disk and fresh install on an old HDD basically?
I have never followed motherboard compatibility lists, only HSF compatibilities (RAM too tall = fitting issues). As long as you know the DDR version + speed rating needed for the mobo+CPU combo, any good manufacturer ram will work nowadays (Corsair, G.Skill, Kingston, Patriot, etc, etc, etc...)
And just FYI, almost everybody I know who's built a new system in the last few months have used the Vengeance type of RAM (I've got the low profile version myself because of the massive Noctua NH-D14) without as much as a glitch.
You want documented ram compatibility. If you should ever have a problem, you want supported ram.
Otherwise, you risk a finger pointing battle between the ram and motherboard support sites, claiming "not my problem".
One place to check is your motherboards web site.
Look for the ram QVL list. It lists all of the ram kits that have been tested with that particular motherboard.
Sometimes the QVL list is not updated after the motherboard is released.
For more current info, go to a ram vendor's web site and access their ram selection configurator.
Enter your motherboard, and you will get a list of compatible ram kits.
While today's motherboards are more tolerant of different ram, it makes sense to buy ram that is known to work and is supported.
The current Intel nehalem and sandy bridge cpu's have an excellent integrated ram controller. It is able to keep the cpu fed with data from any speed ram.
The difference in real application performance or FPS between the fastest and slowest ram is on the order of 1-3%.
Synthetic benchmark differences will be impressive, but are largely irrelevant in the real world.
Before you reuse the hard drive, you can use windows easy transfer to export your settings and files.
If you are using vista 64 bit, you can do an upgrade in place to windows 7 64 bit. Otherwise, you are looking at a clean install.
When you boot from the dvd, you can specify a clean install which will format the old drive. No problem there.
I would get a windows 7 upgrade kit which should cost the same as oem. It has three advantages. 1) it is considered retail, so you get ms support. 2) Because it is retail, you can, in the future transfer it to another pc with a different motherboard. 3) You get both 32 and 64 bit dvd's.
Xigmatek gaia and cm hyper 212 are good $30 coolers. They are 160mm or so high, and will fit your Antec 300.
I suggest you reuse your 4870, at least for a short time. You know it works, and you might find that you do well enough to allow you to wait for the 28nm 7000 series, or kepler. Graphics card prices for 6850 will probably go down, the longer you wait. The market is very competitive.
Thanks! In regards to: "I would get a windows 7 upgrade kit which should cost the same as oem. It has three advantages. 1) it is considered retail, so you get ms support. 2) Because it is retail, you can, in the future transfer it to another pc with a different motherboard. 3) You get both 32 and 64 bit dvd's. "
I have purchased the Vista I am currently on/using as an Oem, does this rule out the upgrade path you explained? Or do i go Vista-> Win7 Upgrade on my current configuration... and then move it to the new configuration?
I am correct that my current vista is locked to my current hardware right?
Also, in regards to "Before you reuse the hard drive, you can use windows easy transfer to export your settings and files."
Is this applicable if this hard drive will be the only hard drive present in the new config and that I have access to in general?
Sadly no. You need to have a second place to export your stuff to, so you can import it back later.
Yes, oem is tied to the motherboard. The windows 7 upgrade package will work fine with your oem vista. It will in the end convert you to a retail os with transferability so you can transport it to another motherboard.
If you will upgrade 32 bit to 32 bit, or 64 bit to 64 bit, you can do an upgrade in place and keep all your files and stuff.
Regardless, I would protect anything you have of importance. If you care about any files you have, you should have a plan to back it up to an external source anyway.
For the GPU, as stated, wait for the 7xxx series to drop this month or next month. It'll perform cooler if not better than the current series for around (should be) the same cost. So that's a recommendation. Otherwise the 6870's are good deals right now or the 6950 1GB/560 Ti 1GB (Don't get the 6950 2GB unless it's on sale, the 1GB vers. performs practically the same).
Shinobi, I actually purchased that RAM and Cooler from a store today price matching to amazon. (with a shot at a $20 rebate from the retailer too on the ram, lol 50/50 at best). Id honestly say at this point my budget is gone...
$325 on the CPU + Mobo (tax +ship included)
$40+tax for the RAM ($20 Rebate possible)
$20+tax for the 212+ (box didnt have thermal paste and appears to have been returned but not installed...)
$3 Rhino motherboard speaker (as Im very nervous given the volume of issues Ive read about boot loops etc.)
$113+tax for Win 7 pro oem (which i still can't decide what is cost efficient for me, as I do not have a .edu email atm/yet.)
so barring any real disasters, hopefully I will be done purchasing until I sell the mobo/cpu I am on and/or select a GPU.
Oddly, really not feeling too confident...lol seems like Im just asking for a headache with some of it.
What would you do with the need for an OS at this point?
BUT NO JOKE: THANKS AGAIN EVERYONE!
any final thoughts? opinion of how i did? or words of advice?
I would suggest returning the 212+ and getting a box with Thermal paste just because you never know about returns.
As for everything else good luck. On my first build I was thinking the same thing you were specially buying off Newegg, all those DOAs I was scared to heck to. But everything worked out and I didn't have to return anything, you'll be fine.
As for any words of advice, don't work on carpet. Only surfaces like Wood or slick plastic(?) I worked on wood w/o a strap and I had no static issues.
When you're finally working on the computer, remember Google is your friend.