Hi all!

Though I'm new to the forum, I've been reading THG for quite some time. The prob is that I quite lost it when all the AMD64 fuss began...

I want to upgrade my current setup to run HL2 & D3, and to arrange my hardware a bit better (got a 40g, 80g and 120g hd, running low on space).

I was thinking about a system with a recent AMD processor (for gaming, I don't use that much office apps). I'd like to get a S-ATA Raid setup too. Memory not a prob, I got tons lying around.
Now, what do I look for.

I think my only option, $ concidered, is the 754 socket. Is the Athlon64 2800+ a good one?

For the mainboard, I'm a bit in doubt - should I go for the MSI K8T800 (neo FIS2R sata+audio) -or-
MSI K8N Nforce3 NEO Plat DDR400,SATA,Raid, 7.1aud, Glan -or-
Asus K8V Deluxe -or-
Asus K8N-E Deluxe?

I havn't got any experience with onboard raid, and was thinking about getting a PCI card offering SATA Raid, after reading the 'Raid 5 tests', I was interested in the Promise FastTrak s150 - are the benefits of this card enough over onboard raid?
Also important - what drives should go with the RAID, is the Raptor really worth the price, as I can get 2 80GB HDD for the price of 1 36GB Raptor...

For a case I was thinking about a Chieftec Matrix, to accomodate my HDD & Plextor SCSI burner, and maybe a 2nd PSU (don't yet know how to hook 2 psu, will do some research, maybe someone can give me a link?)

I think I'm going to keep my GeF FX 5200 until the new cards are released, the 6600 looks nice with a good price.

This was just an idea, composed from my experience with my boards & what I think will perform well.. I got a good base setup, good 19" Flatron monitor, all peripherals and memory I want, I just want a mainboard, CPU and storage that will keep me going for quite a while. I don't favor any brands that much, and would rather take a more 'stripped' mainboard, as I got enough peripherals myself - like PCI Gigabit, PCI surround (both professional and multimedia, I work as IT manager in an IT/audio environment) - what are advantages of onboard/pci? I thought the PCI cards took calculating power off of CPU...
So, do feel free to suggest whatever you want, change whatever I said, it's my $ and I don't want to spend it wrong!

(I got a ASUS a7v8x, A-XP 1800+, 2* apacer 512 pc3200, GeForce 5200 128Mb, Creative SB Audigy 2 ZS, Plex 40x SCSI & generic DVD Ram writer, and generic case modded with 2 exhaust pipes sucking air away from cpu & vid, makes noise like a heli tho :s still, this would still serve me right for other purposes, no?)

And, last but not least : thanks in advance for reading through my blabla and taking the effort to reply!
12 answers Last reply
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  1. If you go AMD don't go with 754 socket mainboards, it old and doesn't support dual channel memory, go for the 939 AMD mobos.

    The good thing about onboard devices is that they save you money buying them seperately, other than that not much of a difference to notice.

    I would go with the ASUS Nforce mobo, ASUS usually makes higher quality mobos than MSI or other companies.

    Be advised that Doom 3 will run better on Nvidia cards and Half-Life 2 will run better on ATI cards.

    <A HREF="http://www.clancas.net" target="_new">clan CHAOS</A>
  2. 366€ for the cheapest 939 processor and 130€ for the only mainboard my dealer has got (Asus A8V Deluxe K8T800 Pro ?) is my only option then?

    I used to be able to buy a system, without monitor, for 600€ all together, but almost 400€for just a processor is a bit much! I may be able to buy some parts cheaper, I'm not Bill tho! No other options? Are these processors going to drop in price any time soon (few months or so)?

    Also, I've heard that the dual-channel setup on AMD mainboards doesn't really affect performance, is that a rumor then?
  3. Dual Channel doesn't do much for current AMD setups.

    The 754 Platform is going to be AMD's lower end/mainstream platform for a few years, so it's not going to be obsolete yet. They have no plans to release any chip faster than 3700+ for it, IIRC, but you're looking at a 2800+ anyway, so that hardly matters.

    I personally don't care much about upgradability of motherboards - by the time I would want to upgrade I usually want a new mobo anyway!

    Epox 8RDA+ V1.1 w/ Custom NB HS
    XP1700+ @200x10 (~2Ghz), 1.4 Vcore
    2x256Mb Corsair PC3200LL/1x512Mb Corsair XMS PC4000 2.5-3-3-7
    Sapphire 9800Pro (VGA Silencer Rev3) @418/742
  4. Just go socket 754 for your mobo. Socket 939 CPU are too expensive right now and doesnt perform that much faster...

    And as Chipdeath say, you'll want to upgrade both motherboard and CPU when you'll upgrade next time.

    -Always put the blame on you first, then on the hardware !!!
  5. Stick with S754, youll save some dollar and you wont need to get a VIA motherboard! All the extra money spent on a s939 board wont give you more than 5% performance increase so it will only help you to upgrade to more powerfull cpu cuz s754 should top at 3700+ or something like that. A 2800+ should do fine BTW.

    You mentionned raid 5 dont know if thats whats your planning on using if so on board raid support 0 and 1 thats it...PCI solution will probly be faster by a fair margin than onboard.

    For the rest I like onborad makes a less cluttered case and usually plain easier to work with.

    Sound card, your PCi cards will be better altough nvidia solution is real good ans the new intel too.

    Hd I think youll be better with 2 bigger ones in raid than smaller faster raptor...check out www.anandtech.com they got a article about raid0 with raptors.

    Hope this helps some.

    Asus P4P800DX, P4C 2.6ghz@3.25ghz, 2X512 OCZ PC4000 3-4-4-8, Leadtek FX5900 w/ FX5950U bios@500/1000, 2X30gig Raid0
  6. If you go with s754, then have a look at the Soltek k8an2e-gr at newegg. And this <A HREF="http://www.neoseeker.com/Articles/Hardware/Reviews/soltekK8AN2E-GR/index.html" target="_new"> review </A> of the board show that it perform better than the MSI and you'll have hd test in RAID mode.

    I just ordered this board as my other soltek still give me satifaction and stability after nearly 2 years.

    -Always put the blame on you first, then on the hardware !!!
  7. I live in Europe, I don't think NewEgg ships to here (and if it does, the prices will be too high anyway!)

    Also not many Soltek mainboards here. I'll tyy to find it. As I said, I don't favour MSI, still, I don't know how Soltek mainboards perform generally... I don't want to be a Cryptophobe, but generally I use H/W that has proven itself to me!
  8. As I thought ^_^

    And I also don't believe in just plugging in a new CPU, the raw CPU speed doesn't matter as much as new maiboard technology these days anyway!
  9. Get the K8N-E Deluxe. It's a quality board with all the bells and whistles.
  10. Yeah, I updated my flash disk, and concluded that the Asus K8N-E Deluxe Nforce3 SATA/Raid/1394/G-Lan would be my best bet at the moment. Now, has anyone got experience with S-ATA RAID PCI cards? Are they really worth it over onboard RAID chips?
    Any more things I should keep in mind?
    Thanks in advance!

  11. For onboard Raid and PCI cards, I would say it depends on what you are planning on doing. Are you just looking for a large amount of storage space?

    Price is huge plus to onboard, generally PCI RAID card can cost at least what a motherboard will, if not more.

    For PCI cards you always know that you can take your RAID array from board to board without having to try and get the same exact on-board controller.

    Generally I don't think the RAID cards are worth the extra cost over on-board, but thats me.

    My Desktop: <A HREF="http://Mr5oh.tripod.com/pc.html" target="_new">http://Mr5oh.tripod.com/pc.html</A>
    Overclocking Results: <A HREF="http://Mr5oh.tripod.com/pc2.html" target="_new">http://Mr5oh.tripod.com/pc2.html</A>
  12. Quote:
    If you go AMD don't go with 754 socket mainboards, it old and doesn't support dual channel memory, go for the 939 AMD mobos.

    Please stop talking.......
    Socket 754 is not old and as of right now it's the best buy you can get. A s939board+cpu is going to cost alot(last time i checked the cheapest 939 cpu is the 3500+ at around $500+). And if you never owned or built a amd64 system than how do you know the difference dual channel memory makes?

    Watch out for the <b><font color=red>bloody</font color=red></b> Fanboys!

    AMD64 2800+ :: MSI Neo-Fis2r :: 512mb Kingmax ddr400 :: Sapphire 9800pro 128mb :: 10K WD Raptor

    Addicted, finally.
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