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newbie p4 system approval (final analysis)

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Anonymous
a b à CPUs
May 28, 2002 7:36:38 AM

o.k so this is the semi-final list of parts.. it's changed a wee bit since i posted the first time.. please share your thoughts & suggestions regarding any part listed here or the overall system, because i am still very new to this.. but have learnt heaps thanks to all the various people on the hardware forums around... i am a student and this is a major pruchase for me i'm having to sell some f my loved audio equipment to get this system so i want it to be as good as possible and last me as long as possible.. (will be used for design and maybe a little music production)...


Maxtor D740X 60Gb IDE Hard Disk Drive Ultra ATA133

Matrox Millennium G450 16Mb DDR Dual Head AGP Display Card: 360Mhz DAC, DDRAM,

Intel Pentium 4 Socket 478 2.0GHz Northwood & Fan CPU

ENERMAX FS-710B, Black front, Black sides, NO PSU.

350w Enermax EG365P-VE ATX Power Supply

56K V92 Upgradeable PCI

Viewsonic E95 19" monitor

Gigabyte GA-8ITXE Socket 478 ATX Intel 850 Chipset

512B RDRAM, PC800MHz, Kingston

MS Optical IntelliMouse USB & PS/2 (OEM)

IBM SELECT TOUCH KEYBOARD - Quiet 104 key PS2 connector -BLACK


(if your wondering about the 56k modem - dailup 56k connections are the norm down here in new zealand...)


couple of thoughts currently rolling over in my head...

go with ASUS P4T-E mobo instead of gigabyte ?
go with 1gb kingston instead of 512 ?


:) 
May 28, 2002 6:37:08 PM

1. That 16 meg vid card looks like a serious bottleneck in that system. I'd go with a Radeon 8500 or a GF4 Ti4200. Really depends on your needs though, which you didn't post.

2. Your best investment is your monitor, it will become obsolete at the slowest rate compared to other hardware like cpus, mobos, etc. I don't know a lot about Viewsonic, so I can't say either way, but my point is a good monitor is a good investment.

3. No CDRW or DVD ?

The rest seems pretty high end, if you are on a budget are you sure you need all that? Why not get something cheaper and then invest in a good sound card and speakers so you won't miss your audio equip so much.

Sound Card:
Hercules Fortissimo II only about $30
or (better) Hercules Game Theater about $90

Speakers: as much as you want to spend. Klipsch are probably the best. I recommend you go to a store though, and listen for yourself. Sound quality is a pretty subjective thing.

hope this helps

----
A newbie is only a newbie for as long as you allow him to be.
-Anonymous Veteran
May 28, 2002 7:07:43 PM

Ok, everything is good, but if you want to play basically any new games, that Matrox is gonna have to go. Ti4200 or a R8500/LE would do nicely. Get the ATi R8500LE 128MB if you get the LE card. You only need a 1.8A P4, and if you need more speed you can easily overclock it higher. I don't know much about that monitor, but I personally prefer NEC, although they are a little more expensive. The Asus P4T-E is probably a little better although my opinion may be biased since I like Asus boards. 512MB of RDRAM is plenty. And a Lite-On writer is very nice and are cheap ~$85.

My firewall tastes like burning. :eek: 
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May 28, 2002 7:36:46 PM

Recommendations from the other guy in the Intel fan club.

If it were my pc i'd do the following in order of priority.
1. Switch Maxtor to Western Digital Hard Disk.
2. Switch the Gigabyte board to Asus P4T-E.
(both of those two i would consider very important personally)
3. Be very certain you don't intend to play any games or do graphics work beyond web design or desktop publishing. If you do intend to, Switch to a GF4 TI 4200 with vga and dvi outs so you can still get dual monitor support.
4. You didnt even list a sound card that i see, highly suggest the Herculees GTXP 6.1 package and klipsh 5.1 speakers for you since you sound like your into nice audio.
5. Up power supply to 400Watt for your high end system.
6. Get Samsungs best RDRAM with heat spreaders.
7. Take a look at logitech's optical mice, you might find em preferable, i do.
8. I have yet to find a really good 56k v.90 or v.92 pci modem. If you know of one PLEASE let me know! At this time i'm still using a USR v.92 but its got some funky problems in certain games.
9. Take a look at Antec's Performance Plus 1080 case. Just take a look..just to make sure you've seen it all and don't regret it later.

The itsy bitsy spider climbed up the empires state building, along came goblin, wiped the spider out
May 28, 2002 8:10:41 PM

Here's what I like/dont like about it.

HD: I don't care for maxtor, and ATA133 is no big deal, as it has no performance increase over ATA100 due to physical HD limitations. In addition, the 850 chipsets don't support it anyway (I believe the 850E doesn't) Go for an IBM or Western Digital drive. This is a personal preference however.

Video card: Why the matrox? ATI and Nvidia make low priced video cards with dual output that have much better 3D performance, which could extend the life of the machine.

CPU: Nice CPU. If you plan to OC it to a 133 FSB (2.6 GB) it should make it, especialy if you go with a 850E chipset board.(You should anyway, it will extend the life of the system making a CPU upgrade posable and easy much later on.)

Case and PSU: Looks good.

Modem: Hey, they're cheep and they can be useful in many systems.

Net card: Why not get one of these too? They can run about $30 US for a 3C905C card (high end personal) and can be usefull as well.

Monitor: Personaly, I will never get a monitor that isn't a trinitron or other flat screen CRT tech untill LCD screens become a viable solution for price and refresh performance. I'd recomend looking for something with one of those tubes (Dimondtron, trinitron,ect). If this monitor has it, great.

Motherboard: Is this an 850 or 850E? Get an 850E. The USB 2.0 support alone is worth the price, and the upgradability is nice too. As for what brand, I've had an Asus and Gigabyte board, and I like the Asus boards I've had better, but I rushed to get a KT266A chipset board for my Gigabyte, so I may not have gotten their best board. Both are good though.

Memory: Samsung is better, especialy if you intend to OC the machine. It's not a real big deal, but it's nice to have the very best if there isn't a big price difference. More won't hurt, but people rarely need over 512 at the moment (in fact, 256 is usually fine for most apps)

Mouse + Keyboard: I love the mouse (That's the optical with 2 extra buttons right?), and keyboards are very personal.

Sound Card: I don't see one listed. If you intend to do music production, you shouldn't use the built in card. There are several good ones out there, the only one I am familiar with is the Sound Blaster Live however.

Hope that helps.

"Search your feelings you know it to be true, I am your... twin sister" - Darth Vader
May 28, 2002 8:58:16 PM

1. For the most silent drive experience I recommend Seagate Barracuda IV. Listening to my current WD1200JB, I really miss my Cuda IV. This constant high pitch whining it emits during idle is really annoying. If you chose anything else than Cuda IV, MAKE SURE it has fluid bearings. Maxtor D740X is also available with fluid bearings and it performs better than Cuda IV, so that would be a good choice.

2. Go for an ATI Radeon 8500 based card. They're not so expensive and with the newest drivers they're neck and neck with GeForce Ti4200. Furhermore ATI solutions often delivers a better picture both in 2D and 3D than NVIDIA based solotions and you can also find dual monitor support.

3. P4 2.0A is a good choice. We the recent price-cuts this will give you the biggest bang for your buck also when overclocking.

4. All depending on how much you have to pay for the Enermax FS-710B (which is in very close family with Chieftec and Antec cases) it could be a nice choice. Personally I think it lacks USB connectors on the front and the front-cover makes it more difficult to gain quick access to the front CD-ROM, DVD, CD-RW drives and the like. Of course the benefit is slightly reduced noise from the drives and it doesn't matter what color the drives has, because you can just close the front-cover and it all looks nice. I've come across a good alternative which is built of the same quality steel as the Enermax: The Compucase CI-6919. It doesn't have a cover and it has USB connectors at the front together with a nice design. This case is nothing less than a steal !!! Don't tell anybody, because I don't want them all to be sold before I have a chance to buy one. :wink:

5. For P4 use I would prefer the new Antec TruePower series of power-supplys. I think they are both cheaper and better. You can chose between True330, True380, True430, True480, True550. Take your choice. I think I would go for the True430.

6. Motherboard: Hmmmm. Maybe the best solution for you is to go for an Intel 845G chipset based motherboard. I don't think they're quite available yet in retail, but it can't be that long. They have built in graphics support which has better 3D performance than Matrox G450. Also unofficially the chipset supports DDR333. Get yourself some cheap Samsung PC2700 DDR RAM. I think you can save a lot of money and get almost the same performance with this kind of solution.


<i>/Copenhagen - Clockspeed will make the difference... in the end</i> :cool:
May 29, 2002 1:46:32 PM

Strange, my WD drives are 100% undetectable by hearing when the case is closed, and barely audible when its opened.

The itsy bitsy spider climbed up the empires state building, along came goblin, wiped the spider out
May 29, 2002 5:39:13 PM

<blockquote><font size=1>Svar på:</font><hr><p>Strange, my WD drives are 100% undetectable by hearing when the case is closed, and barely audible when its opened.<p><hr></blockquote><p>I think something must be wrong with my unit. I've heard a lot of different 7200 RPM drives, but none of them has been whining like my current WD1200JB. I think I could remove most of the noise by mounting it in rubberbands in a 5½" slot, but that shouldn't be necessary with a new modern drive. I think I'm going to RMA it soon, problem is where to store my data in the mean time :frown: . Buy a new one ? and then set up a RAID configuration when the first one is returned ? That's almost a massive 1/4 TB (Terra Bytes) of storage in RAID 0 !!!!!


<i>/Copenhagen - Clockspeed will make the difference... in the end</i> :cool:
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
May 31, 2002 9:51:35 AM

thank for your replies..

couple of changes made to the list:

seagate 60gb 7200
looking at asus P4T533-C (i850E) now.
samsung pc800 rdram (probably 1024mb)

to tell the truth i am not sure if i should be getting something like this instead..

xp2100+
Asustek A7V333 KT333 Chipset Supports DDR 333
512MB samsung PC2700 DDR


it's not really price although i don't want to feel ripped off .. it's more performance.. i thought p42.0A but then after seeing all the benchmarks and whatnot..(xp2100+ beating a p4 2.2 and even 2.4... :(  (content creation)
which is pretty much what i'l be doing -> flash, freehand director fireworks pshop other multimedia apps also with regards to web design....

[-peep-] i don't know.. maybe i should just wait for the tbred..
if the 2100+ can almost keep up with the p4 2.53 then tbred should be the cram of the crop and much faster than the p4 right?
May 31, 2002 9:56:38 AM

If you overclock the p4 usually can beat the athlon, however if you do not overclock the 2100+ will offer you better performance for less.

The choice is yours my friend, but be wary, for only if you are at least 2.3ghz on a p4 with rdram will you have the better performance over the 2100+, anything less and your extra dollars are for naught.

:wink: The Cash Left In My Pocket,The BEST Benchmark :wink:
May 31, 2002 12:22:09 PM

About modem, get a HARDWARE modem (intern or extern), US Robotics. The best modems I worked with. Rockwell modems are also goof but Rockwell produce only chipsets, so if u buy a cheap chinese modem with Rockwell chipset you may have run in troubles with drivers with XP, and line drops..
Do not buy a winmodem!!! Also nonhardware modems require pentium 200 MMX at minimum. With nowadays computers it is not a problem of CPU, but u realy get into troubles with drivers of WIN modems (software ones), which runt through a emulator thus are using CPU..
If u wanna know more just post..
I have currentlu US ROBOTICS extern modem, it rocks, but you maybe will opt for a intern one..
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May 31, 2002 1:31:42 PM

the tbred will only be faster than the current palomino core if you overclock it. At stock speeds they are the same (tho granted tbred should be available in higher stock speeds, but I meant in an even comparison). The tbred should OC better than the palomino since it generates less heat at stock speeds (and therefore should be able to push it further).

But either way, its supposed to come out in like 10 days so unless your in a rush, it couldn't hurt to wait and see what, if any, price difference there is.

----
A newbie is only a newbie for as long as you allow him to be.
-Anonymous Veteran <P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by endless_n00b on 05/31/02 09:51 AM.</EM></FONT></P>
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