The Challenge - 2nd Build - Frankencomp

I built a computer several years ago (early 2003) that was decently capable and could be overclocked and upgraded, neither or which I really ended up doing. I needed to upgrade anyway and my PSU just died but have not really kept up with things. I’d like to salvage what I can and build a capable system while scavenging or saving as much as I can just because I hate to see it wasted.

Current System Components:
- ThermalTake Xaser III V2420 Full Tower
- 420 W power supply (Dead)
- Was going to post the specs but called emailed ThermalTake and short of the two USB 3.0 connections at the front, machine is similar to the Xaser VI and will work with my new mobo.

- AMD Athlon XP 2500+ 333MHz
- Asus A7N8X Deluxe Rev 2 mobo
- CoolerMaster Aero 7
- ATI Radeon 9600 Pro 128Mb
- ViewSonic VX900
- Corsair CMX512-2700C2PT 333MHz
- Plextor PX-760A DVD±R/RW CD-R/RW internal E-IDE (ATAPI)
- NEC NR-9100A 40x10x40 CD-RW IDE Drive (Extra Drive)
- HD 1 - Western Digital Caviar Enhanced IDE Hard Drive – 120Gb, 3.5”
- HD 2 – Fujitsu MPB3026AT IDE – 2.6 Gb, 3.5” (scavenged from another sys and currently not being used)

Proposed System Upgrades – I’ve gone to was local shops and both have said that Intel is the better chip these days. So based on that I’m thinking the following:

- Case: Keep the Xaser III
- Need new power supply
- Need rails to mount xtra drives, etc.
- IDE to SATA converters

- CPU: Intel i7-3770K
- Mobo: ASRock Z77 Extreme6
- Memory: Corsair Vengeance 1600 MHz 2x8Gb
- eVGA GeForce GTX680 - Might go SLI in the future
- CPU Cooling: Noctua NH-D14 (it's ugly, but it works)
- HDD: Corsair Force Series GT CSSD-F120GBGT-BK 2.5" 120GB SATA III (SSD)
(I have a 1Tb external , plus the legacy 120Gb internal so don't really need anything bigger)
- Power Supply for case: Not sure. I've heard the XFX Pro750W XXX Edition Semi-Modular 80Plus Silver 750 Watt is good and seems reasonable if I can get away with 750W. I saw an online power supply calc that said I needed upwards of 1100+W...especially if I drop in another GTX680
- Monitor: Really not sure. I know I need to upgrade and drop my response time, input lag, etc. Would like 27", but don't want to pay much more than $300. Suggestions appreciated.

Ok, all laid out I see I'm basically upgrading pretty much everything. I think I can get away with keeping my optical drives, thoughts? Also, I'm not sure about the memory and config 2x8 vs 4x4, etc. Power supply - not sure how much juice I need. Monitor - really not sure.

Any assistance and feedback would be appreciated. I tried to do a fair amount of HW so as not to ask completely stupid questions that can be answered by taking 5 mins and reading through posts, but who knows if I accomplished that. I'm just a little out of touch with things and figured I'd turn to the brain trust. Thanks in advance!

Oh, and I think I'm going to put Windows7 on it ...although I really can't stand it. I think that may make a diff in memory utilization, but I might be wrong there.
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  1. Best answer
    You don't need 16GB of ram if its for gaming. 8 is more than enough.

    Windows 7 is a must. XP is a dead OS and does not support direct X 10 or 11. So no choice. nevermind 7 is great and companies aren't going to keep wasting time on XP drivers.

    The GTX680 is a 200W card. A 850W PSU should be plenty for SLI and that 750W would probably work. No way you'd need a 1100W unit.

    That board does not have IDE, you will need new SATA optical drives. SATA to IDE convertors are unreliable (i dont think they even work for optical) and the drives are only a new bucks more anyway. SATA to IDE convertor is not worth it for a 9 yearold 120GB harddrive either and I wouldn't trust data to that drive.

    You don't need an i7 for gaming. and really anything will be such a massive upgrade over what you had you wont know what hit you. I'd get an i5-2500K, unless you need the i7 for something else
  2. I realized after I posted that I didn't say what I was going to use this for and actually it's very similar to the other post at currently at the top of Homebuilt: 1) Gaming, 2) Video/Picture editing (daughter is getting more into that so planning ahead), 3) Streaming & Web Browsing....also will work from home so decent Excel modeling. I know Windows 7 is a must...I just have it on my work comp and I hate it! :-) Thanks for the uinput regarding the legacy drives (both optical and HDD). I also figure I'll have this system for a while again so I leaned towards a little extra. It worked for me the last time. Btw, I don't game muchbut I'm a big fan of BattleField...and again, planning some longevity here. Thanks again!
  3. Best answer selected by ddsalkin.
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