System Builder Marathon: Day Three

Synthetics, Continued


Here's the total cost of the system, less software and peripherals we already owned:

Swipe to scroll horizontally
High-End PC Component Cost
CPUIntel Core 2 Extreme X6800$975
CPU CoolerUltra ChillTec$130
MotherboardAsus Striker Extreme$320
RAMCrucial Ballistix DDR2 1000 PC2-8000 - 2 GB$220
Graphics2x XFX GeForce 8800GTX PN: PVT80FSHF9$1090
Hard Drive2x Western Digital Caviar RE2 WD5000YS$320
SoundCreative Sound Blaster X-Fi Fatal1ty FPS$170
PowerPC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 Quad$200
DVD-RWSony NEC Optiarc 7170 SATA$35
Total Price$3,590

The system cost nearly three times as much as the mid-priced build. We're certainly glad we didn't go "all out" on factory-overclocked parts or redundant CPU cores, because we need to justify this expense, relative to performance in our final system build!

Author's Opinion

We all like fast parts, but none of the editors were particularly interested in specifying the high-end build. Why? Perhaps because none of us could afford to have all these parts in our personal-use systems, or more likely because removing the strict budget cap takes much of the challenge out of choosing a configuration. We still saved money in a few places where it wasn't going to make a large performance difference, but high-end buyers know they're going to be scoffed at by value seekers. If they listen closely, they might just hear envious undertones in that laughter...

Now if I can just convince Shelton to overclock these systems!

The Complete Series Of Articles

Join our discussion on this topic

Thomas Soderstrom
Thomas Soderstrom is a Senior Staff Editor at Tom's Hardware US. He tests and reviews cases, cooling, memory and motherboards.