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building computer 1,200 advice

hello - i am building a new computer and buying the parts this weekend. it is my first computer build, so i'd like to make sure everything is alright before i buy. here are the components. i put the link to where i'm getting it from newegg also.

i am buying this weekend, so any quick advice is much appreciated.

Intel Q9400 Quad
ASUS P5Q Pro LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Inte

Antec 900 Case


SAPPHIRE 100259L Radeon HD 4870 512MB 256-bit GDDR5

G.SKILL HK 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800


2x Western Digital Cavair Black 640mb 7200 RPM 32MB cache

ENCORE ENLWI-N IEEE 802.11b/g, IEEE 802.11n

Asus VW224U 22" black

total + vista: $1,207

a few things on my decisions:

my budget is $1,200, pre-tax
i really want a case with a window. so i'm splurging on that kind of.
i will be RAIDing the drives, so i need the intel chipset for the intel RAID matrix.
i use the computer mostly for autoCAD and 3dsmax. games are fun, but not a priority.
i want to keep my crossfire option open in the future (for upgrading), so i went with the ATI card.
i can get the same combo with the Q9550, but its about $50 more. is it worth it? i have checked out the performance charts and the Q9400 seems to be a little better per dollar. i need a fast computer, but price is tight now.

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In reply to: building computer 1,200 advice

since you're on a budget, go with a cheaper card. the hd 4770 is only $100 and 80% as fast as a hd 4870. the q9550 is worth the extra $50.

i suggest you matrix raid your hard drives. mirror the first 60 or 80gb of each for your boot device (c:), and stripe the remainder (d:). move your pagefile and temp/scratch directories to d:.

hd 4870s are exactly the same except for the cooler and the software bundle. this powercolor unit is a better choice for the price:
but the 1gb version performs better and is about the same price as your 512mb version.

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new build

In reply to: suggestions

thanks for the advice. i have been newegging this morning and have come up with an altered build. i will be ordering tomorrow morning if its all okay.


combo $380

SAPPHIRE 100259-1GL Radeon HD 4870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5
combo $270

Acer X223Wbd Black 22" 5ms Widescreen LCD Monitor - Retail

Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
Antec EA650 650W Continuous Power ATX12V Ver.2.2 / EPS12V version 2.91 SLI Certified
combo $150

i've decided to stay with the 4870, but to go to the 1gb version. i found a combo with windows vista that makes it the same price. the reviews for the powercooler gpus looked pretty bad.

i also changed the Q9400 to a Q9550, and changed the ASUS to a gigabyte board.

i found a combo with the antec power supply, so i changed from the corsair to that. the corsair was recommended by many people, but the antec has good reviews on newegg, and comboed with the case is really cheap.

all in all, the grand total is $1,238. not bad!

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Why not go with DDR2-1066 vice DDR2-800 ?

In reply to: new build

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