Good Rig?

Hey All,

been hunting around Tom's (awesome site by the way) for a couple weeks now doing research and comparisons on components and came up with a machine that will mostly be used for gaming purposes and photo-editing every once in a while(not an Overclocker or LANer). My old comp just comes up short with the newer games coming out like Farcry, D3 and HL2, and whatever else comes down the line.

But since this is my first attempt to build a computer, need a little advice from those who know the in's and out's. My price range is $1000 to $1100, too much more and my wife will kill me unless I have good reason.

Here's what I came up with:

CASE: Thermaltake VA3000 Tsunami with transparent X side panel - $136
CPU: AMD Athlon 64 3200+, 512 l L2 Cache (Newcastle) - $215
MOBO: MSI nForce3 250 Socket 754 KN8 NEO PLATINUM - $126
RAM: CORSAIR XMS Xtreme Memory Speed Series 184 pin 512mb DDR PC-3200C2P - $121
HD: Western Digital Caviar WD1600JD 160gb Hard Drive - $105
GRAPHICS: EVGA nVidia GeFORCE FX5900SE, 128mb DDR, 256-bit 8X AGP - $183
DVD/CD: Lite On 8X Double Layer DVD+/- RW Drive with NERO and Power DVD Software #SHOW-832S - $76
PSU: Thermaltake Silent PurePower 480W Xaser Edition ATX 2-Fan # W0014 - $56
OS: WIN XP Home - (oem) $90

I looked a long while before I found a case that I really really liked, so am not changing that even though a little pricey.

Reason for the only 160 gig HD is I dont' really keep that much on my comp, no MP3's, AVI's, etc. I don't burn much except for personal info or backups, so I don't think I need much, but I do typically play 4 to 6 games at a time, have full Office Suite, etc etc. I have seen some posts here where 200 gig is not enough - crazy!

Only 512 on the RAM right now. I plan on getting another stick when my wallet allows it.

Reason for the 5900 nVidia is because the 6800GT is just too expensive right now for me, and it seemed like the next best nVidia. I do prefer nVidia over ATI.

Prices are mostly from NewEgg; wondering if Ebay is alright to hunt for quality unused unopened components or not as it might drop price a tiny bit.

Does everything on this list marry up to everything else? was a little confused about the whole SATA, Sockets etc at first, but think I got the basics now. Or is there something better or am missing thats within my budget you would recommend?

Thanks in advance for any help.

Prepare for Ramming Speed!!!
11 answers Last reply
More about good
  1. Sounds good but i recommend 2x512mb of generic ram instead of a single stick of corsair, the difference in performance isn't big, especially since some samsung ram will run at Cas2 if given extra voltage. For video card i'd recommend the 6800nu if budget allows, if it doesn't buy the Radeon 9800pro.

    Don't listen to anything Kanavit says, because he's a limped dick Intel loving pussy.

    <A HREF="" target="_new">DON'T CLICK HERE!!</A>
  2. Not good. Great, enjoy.
  3. Quote:
    I do prefer nVidia over ATI.

    too bad for you because ATI has better cards in that generation

    <A HREF="" target="_new">please dont click here! </A>

    Don't listen to anything Kanavit says, because he's a limped dick Intel loving pussy.
  4. Get Radeon 9800 Pro instead of FX5900SE

    <A HREF="" target="_new">My Website</A>

    <A HREF="" target="_new">My Rig</A> & <A HREF="" target="_new">3DMark score</A>
  5. hmmm,

    get a Corsair Value Select stick of 512 for $80, thats $40 less... (remaining with Corsair because browsing the MSI forums showed that Corsair seemed to have the least issues with the board)
    get the GeForce 6800, thats $100 more...
    can maybe fudge al lil high with the spending cap and hope the wife doesn't take away certain privileges :P

    ...then get another stick of 512 a little bit later

    Question (yeah yeah a bit newbish oh well)... there are obviously diff companies that make the 6800 ... EGA, Leadtek, MSI etc. Is there any real diff between them? besides going up in price by a few bucks? And since I am getting the MSI Neo Plat, will the MSI 6800 be a better fit? meaning like a better match equaling less component issues?

    Prepare for Ramming Speed!!!
  6. Just some advice on that power supply because I use it as well. Make sure you hook up the manual control and set it to about 1/2 power, otherwise it sounds like a lawn mower

    AMD 64 3400+
    MSI K8N Neo Platinum
    1 GB Kingston HyperX PC3200
    ATI AIW 9600XT
    WD Raptor 74GB
  7. Difference is mostly in the software. PNY is Nvidia's release parter, but EVGA and XFX both make good cards as far as I know, no probs yet with my XFX 6800 GT.

    "It's too late now anyway. That song is stuck in my head and the only way to get rid of it is to blow it out. With a bullet!! - Carl
  8. My computer will come to around $1000-
    -AthlonXP 2500+ Mobile($90)
    -NF7-S Rev.2($85)
    -Kingston 2x256mb PC3200($95)
    -DVD-RW drive mentioned above($90)
    -Antec 350w Mid-Tower($70)
    -Logitech Z640 Speakers($60)
    -17" NEC/Mitshubishi Monitor($150)
    -ATI Radeon 9800Pro 128mb($225)
    -Good Heatsink(~$60?)

    All this comes to around $1000, you can overclock the 2500+ to 2.2ghz, I have mine at 2.4ghz and it idles at 34c. This is a great setup for under $1000.

    <font color=blue>AthlonXP-M 2500+(12x211)</font color=blue>
    <font color=green>Abit NF7-S</font color=green>
    <font color=red>Kingston DDR400 2x256Mb</font color=red>
  9. Bad choice of Vid card and hard drive. Go Samsung on drive and get a better video card if you plan on playing ANY decent games. Games these days are much more card dependant than CPU dependant. :smile:

    Abit IS7 - 2.8C @ 3.5ghz - Mushkin PC4000 (2 X 512) - Sapphire 9800Pro - TT 420 watt Pure Power
    Samsung 120gb ATA-100 - Maxtor 40gb ATA - 100
    Sony DRU-510A - THAT'S MORE LIKE IT!
  10. Alright, then going for the 6800. Will make it the last purchase and hope it drops a bit since its still a hard item to find right now anyways it seems.
    I've always understand Western Digital to be of high quality from just about every techy I've spoken to. Or is it just the particular HD from Western I had listed you mean? I'm not a Western fanboy or anything, just trying to pay attention to lots of input so that when I want to pay for quality, I get quality.

    technical question on RAM - Cas Latency 2.5 or 3? I seem to recall seein lower latency is better somewhere but not sure

    Prepare for Ramming Speed!!!
  11. I think WD has shifted a lot of production to Mexico. Their Special Edition drives have turned into junk. Makes me shy away from them. And yea, get a better vid-card over a faster CPU etc. I'm going to have to mod this 9800Pro just to stay at high quality in Doom3 unless I want to replay levels after it boots me. I'm tired of getting killed over and over even with this 2.8C pumped to 3.5ghz. VERY DISAPPOINTING! :frown:

    Abit IS7 - 2.8C @ 3.5ghz - Mushkin PC4000 (2 X 512) - Sapphire 9800Pro - TT 420 watt Pure Power
    Samsung 120gb ATA-100 - Maxtor 40gb ATA - 100
    Sony DRU-510A - THAT'S MORE LIKE IT!
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