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Newbie Is Going To Make The Plunge

by Nascar4Num9 / May 27, 2008 4:15 AM PDT

Greetings,
Im a total nube but have made the commitment to pursue a new build:
Here is what I have so far. I can stretch for a $1,000 but would like to keep it under. First, I need a suggestion on the power supply wattage and a good one that will sync. well with the products below. Also, on this graphics card, it has a dual dvi link up. Do the monitors these days have dual dvi outputs or is it one dvi output from the monitor that splits into two at the graphics card? Also, I hear that there is "new" connection that is even better than DVI or HDMI. I just want to make sure that the graphics card that I have will match my existing dell monitor. (But then again, I dont want something that will be obsolete in a year or two) I cant really spring for the new monitor right away [[But can if its worth it ;)]]. Can the graphics card below work with just a single dvi source from the monitor. Anyways, this is what I have so far. Any comments or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
core2duo 3.0ghz e8400, $180: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115037
4gb ddr2-800, $85: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820145184
ecs 9600gt/512mb, $147: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814134038
gigabyte p35 mobo, $82: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128084

Thanks,
Red

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re: newbie plunge
by ramarc / May 27, 2008 6:16 AM PDT
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Thats Great News
by Nascar4Num9 / May 27, 2008 11:14 AM PDT

Thats great news on the graphics card. Concerning the PSU -- I have seen wattages that go to 750 and up. Are these power supplies really necessary for a everyday gamer? Im thinking that 600 watts should handle everything in a quality fashion. Also a note to anybody reading this: Can you make any suggestions on the components of the build above? Any sync. problems or just better components that I can get in that price range? I saw a report on that motherboard that it was difficult to see his usb keyboard on startup. This could be a issue for me considering that this is what I have. After I get the components, im gonna be a posting fool .....learning and posting....thats my intention. I feel a bit intimidated but I know that dedication and hard work will get me twice the machine for the money than if I went out and bought at like Best Buy...etc...etc..
Hope to Talk soon,
Red

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good start
by squirtlewa / May 27, 2008 11:37 AM PDT
In reply to: Thats Great News

re: cost
The 'puters at a place like Best Buy are made with a great economy of scale, and there's very little markup on them. Plus companies get paid money to put advertising on store bought computers, which helps with the cost (but annoys). So making your own system, it's possible to save a bit of money, but the real benefit is the system you make is the one you want, down to each component, and configured the way you like it. Plus it's just fun to mess with. :-D

You didn't list any storage or optical disk drive, which is gonna be a problem. Whatever SATA HDD, and either parallel or serial for the optical drive should be fine.

Unless you have a massive array of HDDs, 600W will be more than adequate for what you're listing. I'd not balk at 450W or 500W if it'd save you a bit $, unless you're planning bigger things later. More power capacity than you need in a PSU doesn't help you do anything.

I didn't check the link for your mobo, but I'm assuming it handles the Penryn CPUs. The E8400 is a good CPU choice for gaming. Using your old monitor will be fine, and honestly I don't see a strong need for dual monitors for a gaming system. It's nice to have more space if you're getting work done, but generally games you just run on one screen at a time.

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good quality 500w unit is fine for most video cards
by ramarc / May 27, 2008 11:45 AM PDT
In reply to: Thats Great News
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Gotcha
by Nascar4Num9 / May 28, 2008 12:09 AM PDT

First and foremost I would like to thank everyone for taking the time time to help. It appears that this is really becoming a group effort. Considering the time and price of the new build, im doing everything I can think of to have this be a calculated out project. On that cpu

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Continued....
by Nascar4Num9 / May 28, 2008 12:14 AM PDT
In reply to: Gotcha

Gotcha....Im that cpu ... will the fan come attached? If not...I guess I will need to use the thermal compound. Also, will I need a heat sink? Is this something I will need to buy seperate?
Another concern is : I actually might kick everything up one knotch for the future. Dont know if this is a good idea. Im thinking the things that have been picked out are quite sufficient. Just a bit concerned. I dont mind spending a little extra money to get a little better....or.....hmmmmm....dont know.

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Need Suggestions
by Nascar4Num9 / May 28, 2008 12:36 AM PDT
In reply to: Continued....

Ok..im getting overwhelmed on the case? I was looking hard at the Antec 900 case but then heard a review that it was loud. This computer will sit about 3 feet from my head in a small room. Noise is a factor. Possibly a package deal with a power supply would be sweet. I was also thinking that im going to need a sound card and a premo dvd player. You guys are the experts. Any suggestions. Im feeling a bit overwhelmed but im not taking my eyes off of the target.
Thanks again,
Red

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Remarc
by Nascar4Num9 / May 28, 2008 1:51 AM PDT

Dude, thanks so much for the feedback. Im gonna go with your suggestion on that antec. Looks like 50 watts is all that im gonna need. I need to find out if the motherboard that i have chosen has a onboard sound card or if I need to buy seperate. I already have a western digital hdd. Sound card and dvd player and I should be ready to roll... So I guess I will not need to do the thermal compound considering the fan is already attached?
Wow....this is getting exciting....im getting close to pulling the trigger. I would not mind putting a extra 200 bucks towards a better graphics cards.
Ill keep everyone informed,
Red

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This is a monstor
by Nascar4Num9 / May 28, 2008 1:55 AM PDT
In reply to: Remarc
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hmmmm....
by strongwinds / May 28, 2008 2:34 AM PDT
In reply to: This is a monstor

oaky sincce your said your a totally NOOB, (thats how its spelled, btw)
have you deiced on what CPU your going to get? becuase I would highly Recmoned that your go AMD, (MUCH faster, cheaper, etc..) also I would use Asus for my MoBo, maybe the M2N- SLI deluxe.. (if your going to be gaming) for figureing out how much power you need for your PSU, (power suply unit) the best idea is to (after you've decided on all your parts) go to each part and figure out how much power each one takes at MAX, then add them all up, and buy something with about 50 watts more. also when getting your PSU, if you use thermaltake of Coolmaster get there PurePower, of TurePower, becuase the effinccy on it is much better, (if you get a 500Watt PSU, with effincy or 70 percent, your only getting 70% of that PSU, A PSU thats PurePower of an effincy of 95% your getting most of your wattage if not all) also what excalty are you going to be using this PC for? if your gaming then your going to need diffrent hardware tehn if your not.. etc.. pleae post with what your going to be doing with your system. on cases you want AT LEAST 3 fans, mine has 1 120mm(millimeter) and 2 80mm.
hope this helps

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nub is teh 1337 spellin
by squirtlewa / May 28, 2008 3:03 AM PDT
In reply to: hmmmm....

newb noob nub is all good spelin on teh interwebz

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retail cpus & their coolers
by squirtlewa / May 28, 2008 2:51 AM PDT
In reply to: Continued....

"Box Coolers" as they're called are minimalist CPU coolers that come with the CPU in retail packages.

They suck.

Specifically bench tests show they don't do a good job cooling, but they somehow still make a whole lot of noise.

So yes, you need to get it separate. Spending ~$200 for a CPU and then cooking it cuz you didn't wanna buy a cooler for it is dumb.

CPU coolers are not optional, and you can get good ones for pretty cheap. One maker that I really like (just used for my most recent build) is ZEROtherm. The parent company is Apack out of Korea.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835887011
is an awesome cooler. I used their BTC90, which was ~$35 and is very pretty copper butterfly with a red LED on its fan. :-D

Coolers and CPUs tend to come with a lifetime supply of thermal compound.

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The Forum Post Have Helped - More The Help The Better
by Nascar4Num9 / May 28, 2008 4:07 AM PDT

This will defantely be a hard-core gaming box. Thats why I want to spend a little more on the graphics card -- The cpu that im considering was listed above.

core2duo 3.0ghz e8400, $180: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115037

Maybe I just need to step this whole project up a knotch. I dont want something that is obsolete in a couple of years and I want something that will play any and all games with ease.
thanks,
red

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getting questionable advice
by ramarc / May 28, 2008 5:11 AM PDT

take squirtlewa's advice with a grain of salt. intel's box coolers work fine and intel designs their coolers to keep the CPU within its rated thermal envelope. can they be outperformed? YES. will they let your cpu overheat? NO.

you only need to consider an aftermarket cooler if a) you plan to overclock or b) you want a very quiet pc. intel mobos implement pwm control for the cpu fan and intel cpus aren't even consided warm until they hit the high 50s. so if you let the mobo manage the temps, the stock fan will only run at about half-speed most of the time and be virtually silent.

if you do want another cooler you can do better than a zerotherm for less -- arctic cooling freezer 7 pro, $27: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835186134
it's cheaper, cools better, and is quieter. benchmarks prove it: http://www.anandtech.com/casecoolingpsus/showdoc.aspx?i=3210&p=6

also, game performance is highly dependent on the resolution. unless you have a 24" monitor (1920x1200), a $200 8800gts/512 will give you smooth gameplay in practically any game. yes some games are killers (like crysis), but they kill high-end cards also.
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/video/display/geforce9800gtx_9.html#sect1

any pc you buy will be over the hill in 2 years. intel will release the nehalem processor family later this year and it will supersede the core2 family. nehalem CPUs will have 2,4,6,or 8 cpu cores and will utilize a new socket and will require new motherboards.

likewise, ati/amd is preparing to release the rv770 gpu in mid-june. the hd 4850 is supposed to outpeform a 9800gtx by 10-15% but cost less. nvidia counter-response is the gtx 280 and it will make the whole 8800/9800 series obsolete.

so, i always suggest builders reserve a portion of their budget for a refresh in 12 months. why spend $400 on a video card when a $200 card will be perfectly playable now? and next year's $200 card will pwn last year's $400 unit.

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agreed
by strongwinds / May 28, 2008 5:36 AM PDT

agreed I wasn't aware those were coming out. if you want to wait, then do it almost always pays off. btw the config I listed is just one of the ways to make a good machine. not the only way, but one of the ways.

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THIS FORUM IS MAKING THIS POSSIBLE --- ALL I CAN SAY IS WOW
by Nascar4Num9 / May 28, 2008 6:23 AM PDT
In reply to: agreed

Great job guys, That would be a killer box! My mouth is salivating.
Are all these components compatible..meaning right PSU, graphics, memory, motherboard...etc..etc..? I need to make sure that the puzzle will come together niceley. Keep in mind that im a newb or noob...(however the hek you want to spell it) so my knowledge is limited but will give it my best go. This forum is making it possible. If anybodys is reading this....suggestions are wide open.
Thanks,
Red
P.S. I do plan on submitting forum post on the build and also pics of progress.....HEY...IM THINKING I CAN DO THIS!

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Extremely good advice Remarc

Thats such a big concern of mine.....I remember when my 1800 dual athalons were the bomb. Now they are practically worthless.
Great points
Red

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AH ! of course you can! (do it)
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keeping cool is cheap compared to . . .
by squirtlewa / May 28, 2008 6:28 AM PDT

For an office machine, I agree the stock cooler is fine. For MS Office, web browsing, etc your processor will be mostly idle most of the time, there's no incentive to overclock, and so things stay cool OOB.

The OP was talking about pushing the edge for gaming, and keeping things cool IS important.

by the way, even the benchtest listed above shows the zerotherm performing better than the arctic cooling freezer, and a few other places have tested it even better. Regardless which you choose, for ~10% of the cost of a CPU you can get a much better than box cooler.

Tom's Hardware did a series on CPU coolers, including the stock retail coolers.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/cpu-cooler-charts-2008,1784.html
Xbit labs (which does great reviews imo) wrote on the zerotherm:
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/coolers/display/apack-zerotherm.html

As far as CPUs go, the E8400 seems like a really good choice at this point. You can overclock it a good bit and it matches the intended use (gaming).

I'm totally with ramarc that there's generally not a great payoff for pushing to top of the line components. The best way to future-proof is to budget for upgrading, and 2nd tier components deliver near top tier performance for a good bit less $$.

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Checked That Big Build Option
by Nascar4Num9 / May 28, 2008 2:19 PM PDT

Just for fun....I put everything together in a cart at new egg.....wow...came out to about 1,500 bucks. Hmmmmmmmm ... I do think that it would last me much longe than 2 years. I know that it wont be the best in 2 years but who has that anyways? As long it plays all the new games for next 5 years. Ill be happy....Ill have to sleep on it. Still thinking....
hmmmm
Red

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well here some ideas...
by strongwinds / May 28, 2008 2:42 PM PDT

you dont have to buy necessary form Newegg, you can try other sites, or computer fairs are usually a good place to buy. also if you know what your looking at Ebay can be a good place to buy. (just be careful you want EVERYTHING NEW)

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UPDATE
by Nascar4Num9 / May 28, 2008 11:10 PM PDT

I would like to go for 8gb of ram....the ram is cheap....just about 110 bucks for 2 sticks....seems like a no brainer.....dont know about that graphics card that was suggested....im kinda partical to nvidia. I am also considering the dual cards with a mobo that supports sli. I really like that case you picked out wind. Looks like im gonna go with it. I might have to kick the psu up due to sli if I decide to go that route. Im seeing that some of these higher end NVIDIA are getting the best reviews...meaning I can get one thats cheaper and just as good. This is looking great though. I got my dvd players picked out as well. I already have a sata hdd here at home that im going to use.
Getting closer.
Hope to place order in the next couple of days and start building next weekend.
Red

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it's your money, but
by ramarc / May 28, 2008 11:37 PM PDT
In reply to: UPDATE

unless you plan on running vista 64bit, you won't be able to use half of that 8gb of ram. since you're an admitted newbie, you shouldn't be considering vista 64bit since it will bring more hassles.

likewise, going sli won't do much for you compared to a single 8800gts/512 unless you have a 24" or larger screen. look at these benchmarks: http://www.hothardware.com/Articles/NVIDIA_GeForce_9800_GTX_RoundUp_BFG_EVGA_Zogis/?page=5
8800gts/512 gives 70fps in ut3 at 1920x1200. sure the 9800gx2 does 88fps, but anything above 60fps is irrelevant and most folks consider 30fps to be playable.
about the only game that 'needs' sli is crysis: http://www.hardocp.com/article.html?art=MTQ5NiwzLCxoZW50aHVzaWFzdA==
but many folks think a) the game looks great in medium; and b) the game is not really that good (me included). and remember, that ati releases the hd 4850 in 3 weeks.

likewise, the OCZ 600w is only $90 before rebate: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817341010
and $133 for a case?

like i said, it's your money. if want to spend more fine, but realize that the extra money is not making any tangible perform difference.

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oaky reply to the last post..
by strongwinds / May 29, 2008 2:30 AM PDT
In reply to: UPDATE

okay Ramrc is right unless you go 64 bit 8GB of RAM isn't going to do you any good. also windows XP (32 bit) doesn't USUALLY pick up more than 3 1/2 Gigs of ram for some reason.. also SLI, In my opoion its not worth it. SLI is supposed to bring double graphic performance, but in reality most of the tests are performing only a 50% increase at best. so its really not worth it (I think) to go SLI, unless your trying to break Kindpin's 3Dmark06 record. Happy also the Mobo I suggested supports SLI.
Note on games... when playing NEWER games (like C&C3) there is definitely a HUGE difference between medium settings and high settings. I can personally vouch for that. also if your going to overclock your PC (which i hope your are) then yes go NVIDIA, becuse ATI can be cheaper, usally bang-for-buck, BUT quite often has less OC features, where as NVIDIA has TONS. hope this helps.

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reply to strongwinds
by ramarc / May 29, 2008 3:52 AM PDT
In reply to: UPDATE
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