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SBM 3: High-End System

Conclusion

We never intended to budget our system to include software and peripherals, yet today’s build came up thrifty enough to add some of the stuff you probably already own.

Current SBM High-End PC Component Cost
CPUIntel Core 2 Extreme QX6850$1050
CPU CoolerIntegrated Thermaltake LCS liquid cooler$0
MotherboardAsus Striker Extreme$300
RAMCrucial Ballistix DDR2 1000 PC2-6400 - 2 GB$110
Graphics2x Gigabyte GeForce 8800GTX - GV-NX88X768H-RH$1,000
Hard Drive2x Western Digital Caviar RE2 WD5000YS$380
SoundCreative Sound Blaster X-Fi Fatal1ty FPS$180
CaseThermaltake Armor LCS$260
PowerUltra Products X3 1000W Modular Power Supply$250
DVD-RWToshiba Samsung Storage Technology SH-203B$35
Auxiliary FanAntec SpotCool Motherboard Cooling Fan$15
Floppy DriveSony 1.44 MB Floppy Drive$10
Total Price$3,590

In an amazing coincidence, our current high-performance system cost exactly the same to build today as the former system did in its May debut. Today’s system is actually a little cheaper to build, as this time we included the cost of the floppy drive needed to load RAID drivers at Windows XP installation’s F6 prompt.

What would the former system cost if we were to buy its parts today ?

Previous SBM High-End PC Component Cost (Updated Prices)
CPUIntel Core 2 Extreme X6800$975
CPU CoolerUltra ChillTec$130
MotherboardAsus Striker Extreme$300
RAMCrucial Ballistix DDR2 1000 PC2-8000 - 2 GB$140
Graphics2x XFX GeForce 8800GTX PN : PVT80FSHF9$1,060
Hard Drive2x Western Digital Caviar RE2 WD5000YS$310
SoundCreative Sound Blaster X-Fi Fatal1ty FPS$180
CaseLIAN LI PC-60A PLUSII$130
PowerPC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 Quad$170
DVD-RWSony NEC Optiarc 7170 SATA$35
Floppy DriveSony 1.44 MB Floppy Drive$10
Total Price$3,440

The new build costs only 4.4% more than the former system, and we just know that the upgrades will pay off in multiples when we do our performance analysis. Let’s begin with games, where our "slower" reference-speed 8800GTX cards should have been "clearly outclassed" by the previous build’s factory-overclocked parts.