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System rebuild out of existing bits - need help! (£500 budget)

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  • Homebuilt
  • Systems
Last response: in Systems
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March 26, 2010 9:06:34 AM

Hi guys, my first post on the TH forums! ^_^

Quick summary of what I'm trying to do:
- build/rebuild primary system, main uses will be gaming, music creation and work
- make some use out of my currently unused second machine!
- budget of approx. £500, open to selling existing components.

Basically, my problem is this: I have 2 systems at the moment but both have problems/require new components. I have no idea what to do, so any useful suggestions would be good!

Current system 1 (primary system):
Corsair TX 850W
JW-IP35-S (poor motherboard IMO, having multiple issues and looking to change)
Intel E6750
2x2GB Kingston HiperX DDR2 (800MHz)
Radeon HD 2900 XT
Maxtor Diamondmax 250GB SATA (OS drive - failing and needs replacing)
Samsung DVD-RW drive (failing and needs replacing)
2x Dell 17" LCD (1707FP and 1708FP)

Current system 2 (no use at the moment - any ideas welcome! :)  ):
(No working PSU)
Asus ABN-E
Athlon 3000+
2x 512MB DDR400
Radeon X1900 XT
80GB SATA drive + 80GB IDE drive (no OS currently installed)
CDRW drive
1x 15" generic LCD

I am looking to ditch the LGA775 motherboard in the primary system, so I am looking to move to a new socket/platform. Not sure whether to go AMD or Intel at the moment! Any suggestions at all, please let me know, fully open minded! ^_^

More about : system rebuild existing bits 500 budget

a b B Homebuilt system
March 26, 2010 11:43:50 AM

On one hand i would advise a DDR3 platform but on the other seeing u have some very decent perfectly working DDR2 RAMs there:

This AM2+/760G board has a spanking new BIOS ready to support the incoming six cored offerings to be the little board that can @@ Am assuming you reusing your case and thats a very decent PSU as well ^^ Hardware parts/prices off Ebuyer UK


For the 2nd machine - assuming it is working i would either
a. Sell it off if u have no need for it or
b. Install linux and make it a rig just to surf the net and open office hehe Buy a PSU in this case

Lastly unless u require dual monitors why not sell all those smallish LCDs and hit a nice juicy 22"?

March 26, 2010 6:51:25 PM

Thanks for your quick reply :) 

That board looks good for a semi-future-proof DDR2 option. Good to know it will support the upcoming 6-core AMD CPUs, but considering that I have an extra £200 to spend above what your proposal comes to, would it be better to switch now to DDR3 rather than later? I'm not really clued up on how much of a performance improvement DDR3 is over DDR2. As I understand it, a Core i7 is required at the moment to make use of triple channel?

Interesting that you've included a Radeon 5770 in your build - I would have thought that the HD 2900 XT is OK for now? I'm quite keen on multiple displays as I find them really useful for work, so I can't see myself playing games above 1280x1024 for a while. I ask because I honestly don't know, I haven't really been keeping up with the top-end requirements of the latest games recently.

6-core Phenom support on DDR2 though is a result! I'd assumed DDR2 was obsolete and dead in the water.

One possible slight problem actually I've just noticed is that it's an mATX board - I might well add a 3rd display at some point in the future so a second GPU slot would be good. Will any of the current Gigabyte ATX boards support the 6-core Phenoms?

Related resources
a b B Homebuilt system
March 26, 2010 7:40:33 PM

A 5770 can output to three monitors, so not strictly necessary to have an extra PCI-E slot to add another card. Another bonus for the 5770 is the much less power consumption and it will have a bit more longevity.
It is quite likely that most DDR3 AM3 boards will have a bios update before long, if they don't already, that means they will be able to support 6-core phenoms.
4GB of DDR3 will cost around £100, so that leaves £100 to upgrade the mobo. If you want the most future proof one you can get, it's hard to beat this: Gigabyte GA-890GPA-UD3H £112.68
a b B Homebuilt system
March 27, 2010 12:07:13 PM

The problem with a 2900XT is it's one hot, inefficient and power guzzling (for its performance) GPU by today's standards so if u can recoup some $$ via it's sale that would be good.
March 27, 2010 12:52:47 PM

OK good stuff! Happy about the board and some decent DDR3 for £100.

re. the GPU, I wasn't aware that the 5770 could output to 3 displays, that's handy. Am I right to think it can also CrossfireX with other 5xxx Radeons? (i.e. not necessarily another 5770)?

For a CPU, does anybody have any thoughts on the Phenom II X3 720 BE? (http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=CP...) Apparently you can unlock the 4th core? But it seems like a good value CPU anyway for £100?
a b B Homebuilt system
March 27, 2010 4:34:04 PM

1. Yes previous gen prior to the HD5k series peeps had CFed GPUs of the same family but different model

2. Unlocking is a bonus but due to some variables must not be seen as a given 100% sucess - either way 720BE is an awesome choice for a mainly gaming rig
!