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Ultimate Gaming PC?, money no problem

Last response: in CPUs
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March 23, 2004 7:01:34 AM

I'm building a new PC this year as my AthlonXP and 4600TI are not doing it for me. Basically money is of no matter and I am planning to do this this summer as some new technologies will be debuting soon.
I have a few items already. SB Audigy 2 and a set of Logitech z680s. Other than that everything will be bought new.
If I could get a MB with these technologies on it(I hope!)
PCI-Express
DDR2
BTX Form Factor
SATA II
I wish to go with the Athlon FX 55 on the socket 939 board but am unsure whether or not those technologies are supported on that socket. If not I will take what I can get. Around what time frame would I be expecting the best time frame for purchasing the most 'horse power' for this computer?
Then all the periphials etc...
Either the NV4# or R4##, new monitor, case etc..
Thanks for the help!!

<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by FlawlessVictory on 03/23/04 04:28 AM.</EM></FONT></P>
March 23, 2004 8:24:02 AM

Well it's too early really to make any specific reccomendations about what actual hardware to use, but I would just say that if money is <i>really</i> no object then get an air compressor cooling system (prometia) and overclock the hell out of everything. an Athlon FX would be a good choice probably, but see what's about at the time.

---
Epox 8RDA+ rev1.1 w/ Custom NB HS
XP1700+ @205x11 (~2.26Ghz), 1.575Vcore
2x256Mb Corsair PC3200LL 2-2-2-4
Sapphire 9800Pro 420/744
March 23, 2004 8:39:50 AM

Forget BTX and DDR2, They are for intel. The DDR2 will slow the P4s down, and AFAI can see BTX is a good concept but heat rises, it does not go front to back, and I've never heard anyone comment on how quiet a windtunnel is.
Pci express will be mostly harmless for a couple of years, then it may be helpfull for sound cards and nic.
Socket 939 will be the only platform for the FX55. If nvidia can get the Nforce3 250 out and debugged, that may be your best bet for mobo chipset.
I wish I could say that Sata2 was going to be ready soon, but not till next year.
The new graphics engines will be debuting in the next 3 weeks. Should be a great show, major wars for points between Ati and Nvidia.
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March 23, 2004 10:04:37 AM

Right now, the best CPU you can get for gaming is the A64 3400+. If you can wait a while though, the FX-55 on S939 will be out in May. By that time, motherboards for AMD supporting PCI-E will be also out. And since money is not a problem, you could also get a Vapochill with your FX-55 and overclock the hell out of it, since it will also have its multiplier unlocked (all FX do).

Also, don't be fooled by names. DDR2 is NOT going to offer any increase in performance, at least not before CPUs supporting a 300MHz FSB will be out, and this will take quite a long time. DDR2 when compared to DDR is slower at the same clockspeeds, and DDR2 will only be beneficial when it reaches speeds which DDR can not achieve. Having in mind that there are DDR533 modules available, which means that they can support up to 266MHz FSB, I believe you see my point here. Also, AMD hasn't said anything about adopting DDR2 anytime soon.

The same goes for SATA II, don't expect any gains in performance any time soon. Did you even see a single HDD being able to achieve 150MB/s that SATA can offer?

Finally, BTX is just a way from Intel to solve all their heat issues. I believe adoption of BTX will be generally very slow so that's nothing to worry about right now.

Anyway, to sum up answering your last question, I believe wait until May and then you get the FX-55 on S939 with NV40/R420, whichever is faster. If you pair that up with even a Vapochill, then you will have an insanely fast gaming system there!
March 23, 2004 11:17:47 PM

Thanks for the replies. In regarding the DDR, does the NForce board have dual channel memory support?
You guys gave some great advice. Looks like May or June wil be a good month. Thanks again.
Derek
March 23, 2004 11:58:35 PM

Socket 939 boards will support dual channel ram.
March 24, 2004 1:46:23 AM

Heh, no $10,000 laying around. :) 
Single, no bills, decent income, and can save really well. Again thanks for the help. Once I get the system up and running I'll run some benchmarks and post them.
Derek
!