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Overclockable, Upgradeable system for £950 ($1750) Need Help/Opinions

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August 14, 2008 1:02:37 PM

Hi there. Looking to build myself a computer that will be overclockable and upgradeable when i get some more money a little bit later down the line. I will need a monitor with it too. I have built a computer before but made a lot of mistakes with it and therefore want to try again. Therefore I'd say i'm quite new to this but i have been reading all the articles on this site and tried to research as much as possible. All the prices are in GBP.

Basically i want to be playing games like crysis and Far Cry 2 when it's released with excellent quality. I need it to be able to last me a good amount of time but i will be upgrading it a bit later on. Looking to probably add another graphics card when i get the money to work in SLI/Crossfire and may upgrade the CPU to a quad core when they come down in price. Looking to build this for my birthday at the start of september so don't really want to wait around for the new i7 Intel processors. I also believe they'll probably be out of my price range for quite a while. Here's the spec i've got so far:

Processor
Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 Socket 775 (3.0GHz) 1333FSB 6MB L2 Cache Retail Boxed Processor
£103.01

MOBO
ASUS Maximus Formula Republic of Gamers iX38 Socket 775 8 channel audio ATX Motherboard
£150.79

Graphics
PowerColor HD 4870 512MB GDDR5 Dual DVI HDTV Out PCI-E Graphics Card
£170.54
I am happy to go for the 4850 if you think i need to spend some more money somewhere else

Hardrive
2 times CAVIAR RE2 500GB SATA II - 7200RPM 16MB RAID EDITION IN (in RAID o setup)
£67.63 each

Memory
OCZ 4GB (2x2GB) DDR2 800MHz/PC2-6400 Memory REAPER EDITION CL4
£59.79

Power Supply
Corsair 750W TX PSU - 120mm Fan, 80+% Efficiency, Single +12V Rail
£76.37

Case
NZXT Tempest Steel Mid Tower Case - No PSU
£68.99

DVDRW Drive
Sony DRU-190S 20X DVD±RW DL & DVD-RAM Serial ATA - Retail Multi Bezel & Nero
£16.15

CPU Cooler
Zalman CNPS 9700 LED Socket 754, 940, 775, 939 & AM2 CPU cooler
£33.93

Monitor
LG W2242S 22" TFT Monitor 1680x1050 8000:1 300cd/m2 5ms VGA Silver/Black 3 Years Onsite Warranty
£129.97

Total for this build would be £944.79.
What do you think about this setup?
Would it all work together?
Is there anywhere where i should be spending more/less money?
Any better ideas?

Thanks in advance for all the help.
August 14, 2008 1:06:56 PM

Completely forgot about OS. Would go for:
Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium - Licence and media - 1 PC - OEM - DVD - 64-bit - English
£59.99

Obviously will need to reduce the price on something to keep it below the £950 mark. What do you think i should reduce?
August 14, 2008 1:29:36 PM

Go with a P35 board will knock of about £80.

I have an MSI P35 Neo2-Fr which is a good all rounder (Q6600@3.6Ghz)

Perhaps look at a Patriot 4Gb memory kit. It's had some good reviews.

I don't know how the Zalman compairs to the Freezer 7 pro, but they are cheap and cool very well (the Freezer that is :D )
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August 14, 2008 2:12:02 PM

do you need 1tb hdd space? that would be a place you could save a little money. WD has a 640 gb drive for only around $10 (US) more than the 500gb. Unless you need all that space for something the speed increase of the RAID 0 set up isn't going to be outstanding.
August 14, 2008 2:19:26 PM

oops didn't notice which 500gb drives you chose. that 640gb is actually cheaper. if i am doing the math correct you are spending about $270 (us) on your harddrives ($135 each?). For around that price you have lots of options. $290 or so for a velociraptor (300gb) 10k rpm drive. $190-$200 for a 1tb 32mb cache drive and no having to deal with RAID. Or save a bunch and do my first option of the 640 gb ($85) and spend that money elsewhere.

just some ideas.
August 14, 2008 2:42:53 PM

Nah stick with that mobo, its great. A good save would be to trade the 4870 for a 4850, it will run all games around this year on high smoothly. And id also say switch that cooler for a Freezer 7 pro.
That will leave you with a bit of extra money, for windows vista.
August 14, 2008 2:53:11 PM

I don't know about the difference between canadian dollars and pounds too well, but I know those hard drives are only like $65 CAD which means they are like just over $50 USD which means you should be getting them for waaaay cheaper unless people in the UK get screwed over that badly on PC parts which I didn't think they did. Also, as the previous poster mentioned go for the 640GB drive as they only cost a few dollars more. Also as someone else said go for a P35 for sure, will save you a lot of money. It also seems like you might be spending a bit too much on that PSU, again i'm not sure of the prices over in the UK but that seems like an awful lot for that PSU. Where are you buying the parts? That PSU would cost about $75 CAD, so it shouldn't be 75 pounds.

Just as personla taste I love Antec cases...the 900 i have for my gaming rig is great, and some of their other cases are great looking. I find they have pretty good prices too.

If you got with the HDD and mobo suggested and maybe find a better price on the PSU you might even be able to turn that 4870 into a 4870X2 which would mean youd kill every game out there now.

Than again, I see you're looking at a monitor with 1680X1050, you could probably go for a cheaper card here and get almost the same results...yes, the 4870 is going to out preform pretty much everything, but lots of the cheaper cards will stay very very close at that resolution. I suggest you take a look at a few benchmarks and only look at the 1680x1050 resolution and ignore all the fuss about how well that card preforms at 1900X1200 with AA on since that won't really help you.

I find people tend to stick with their monitor for a lot longer than their video card so pick a card that fits your monitor since chances are youll have a new card by the time you get a new monitor.

another suggestion is if you manage to save some money maybe upgrade to a larger 1900x1200 monitor. one 48790 will preform well at that res and look great and you could always pop another one in in a while to upit even more.

I probably gave you more questions that i did answer them but hopefully it'll result in a better system....or a cheaper one of the same quality
August 14, 2008 3:17:22 PM

Ok, taken some of your advice and these are the changes i've made so far:

MOBO
ASUS P5K Premium WiFi-AP iP35 Socket 775 8 channel audio ATX Motherboard
£98.92

Hard Drive
Western Digital WD6400AAKS 640GB Hard Drive SATAII 7200rpm 16MB Cache - OEM
£48.99

CPU Cooler
Arctic Cooling AC-FRZ-7P Freezer 7 Pro Socket 775 Processor Cooler
£15.56

Monitor
LG W2452T 24" LCD Monitor widescreen 1920x1200 400cd/m2 10000:1 5 ms DVI/VGA Black 3 Years On Site Warranty
£225.05

Case
Antec Nine Hundred 900 - Gaming Case with 200mm Top Fan - No PSU
£67.99

New Total Price (Including OS this time):£946.00[/b

Couldn't find the powersupply any cheaper. Using www.ebuyer.com to buy all my stuff which i believe is the cheapest site for UK parts. If anyone knows of anywhere cheaper that would be great.
August 14, 2008 3:24:08 PM

Hawler, prices are pretty much the same between usa and canada now (don't look at ncix or tigerdirect they are expansive). A good place to compare woudl be directcanada. And yes i think parts are more expansive in UK (i saw a post sayind around 25%).
August 14, 2008 3:37:25 PM

Why pay extra for the onsite warrenty for the monitor?
August 14, 2008 3:40:52 PM

georgy, even though the dollars are more or less equal now-a-days everything, and i mean everythign is still always about 10% more in Canada, I don't know why but thats the way it is, from video games to clothes to computer parts. Obviously there are exceptions to this rule, but for the most part take a US price and take on 10-15% and you have the Canadian price...sucks for us lol
August 14, 2008 3:44:13 PM

hawler said:
georgy, even though the dollars are more or less equal now-a-days everything, and i mean everythign is still always about 10% more in Canada, I don't know why but thats the way it is, from video games to clothes to computer parts. Obviously there are exceptions to this rule, but for the most part take a US price and take on 10-15% and you have the Canadian price...sucks for us lol


Yup it sux... maybe if our dollar stay strong we will finally have ome price drops.
August 14, 2008 3:56:29 PM

on site warranty just comes with the monitor as a deal. Not paying any extra for it at all
August 14, 2008 3:56:40 PM

looks like the corsair PSU is quite a bit less on the above site. may want to check out other components. +1 to that post.
August 14, 2008 4:00:46 PM

That site deals with ex VAT. It's actually only £2 cheaper and for that i'd rather stick with ebuyer reliability
August 15, 2008 10:20:58 AM

How does the new setup look? Anything else i should be doing?
August 15, 2008 1:31:45 PM

looks great!
!