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Old 02-16-2010, 04:43 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Question building my first pc

Hello,
this is the first time I intend to build a computer from scratch, so I wonder if the experts could have a look at my configuration and see if there are incompatible parts that I missed, or if there are better parts/deals for a similar price out there? My budget lies around 800 (euros,unfortunately, this makes price comparison somewhat complex). I live in Belgium, so I'll have to rely on local shops (shipping usually adds a lot of costs). This computer will be used for basic office tasks (word processing, powerpoint, pdf, etc), statistical analysis programs like SPSS, and gaming (mostly strategy and rpg, maybe some fps. On medium settings, basically where it remains comfortable to look at). I'll keep away from overclocking for now, at least until I know what the **** I'm doing.

This machine is to replace the breaking down laptop I'm using now. I have some spare time coming up in the next two months, so I'd prefer to build it in that period (the sooner the better).

Anyway, components I've found:



motherboard: ASUS Crosshair III Formula (Socket AM3-AMD 790FX-ATX-DDR3) - €169.50

RAM: Kingston 4GB (2x 2GB) 1333MHz DDR3 Lifetime Warranty €96.00

Processor: AMD Phenom II X4 965 3,4 GHz AM3 Boxed With Cooler* (HDX965FBGIBOX) €175.00
*(I have no idea if the cooler is adequate... :s)

HDDrive: Seagate 250GB SATA II 7200RPM 16MB (ST3250318AS) €36.50

Graphics: ASUS ATi Radeon HD 4870 PCIe 512MB HDMI Dual DVI* €139.00
*Model EAH4870/HTDI/512M; Clock Core 750MHz - Mem Core 3.60GHz

DVD- Samsung DVD Writer SATA 22x DL Zwart (SH-S223F/BEBE) €25.00

Case: Cooler Master Elite 310 PC €45.00

Power Supply:Trust 520W PSU Big Fan PW-5550 20-pins 24-pins

Wireless Network card: Linksys WMP 600 Wireless-N PCI €45.00
(I need a wireless due to internet infrastructure here)

I have a mouse, keyboard and computer screen from another computer.

Also, currently I think I'll install xp on it for now and in a few months, when I have more money to throw away, and when Microsoft has made improvements, I'll buy windows 7.

Current pricing comes at €775. I've never built a computer, and haven't been paying attention to the hardware market, so I doubt this is the best rig for the price, and I'm sure there are elements I've overlooked.

Any and all comments or suggestions are appreciated...
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Old 02-16-2010, 01:13 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: building my first pc

Motherboard - Only get a 790FX motherboard if you plan to do Tri or Quad Crossfire in the future, otherwise a 790X motherboard is fine for regular crossfire.
If you don't want to do crossfire, go 785G, 770, or 780L

RAM, that's fine
Processor: Go Phenom II X4 955, it's the same as the 965, but 20-30$ cheaper and only .2Ghz slower, you can easily overclock and make up the difference.

HDD? Seagate 250Gb?
Consider a Caviar Black or Spinpoint F3

Graphics Card, that's a good card.

DVD burner's good

Power Supply, check the PSU guide and get one from a trusted brand.
You're going to need a decent PSU to power that 4870.
I suggest a 520w Antec Neo or OCZ ModXStream 500w
The Case?
I suggest a Rosewill Blackbone, a Gigabyte 20$ case, an Apex Vortex 3620, an RC332, or a cheap Cooler Master. (Whichever is cheapest for you to buy, shipping included, do it.)

I doubt Microsoft is going to do any 'improvements' to Windows 7
The version that's out now, is THE retail version.
They won't change much.
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Old 02-16-2010, 05:09 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: building my first pc

Quote:
Originally Posted by orihS ‪‪‪Shiro View Post
Motherboard - Only get a 790FX motherboard if you plan to do Tri or Quad Crossfire in the future, otherwise a 790X motherboard is fine for regular crossfire.
If you don't want to do crossfire, go 785G, 770, or 780L

RAM, that's fine
Processor: Go Phenom II X4 955, it's the same as the 965, but 20-30$ cheaper and only .2Ghz slower, you can easily overclock and make up the difference.

HDD? Seagate 250Gb?
Consider a Caviar Black or Spinpoint F3


Power Supply, check the PSU guide and get one from a trusted brand.
You're going to need a decent PSU to power that 4870.
I suggest a 520w Antec Neo or OCZ ModXStream 500w

The Case?
I suggest a Rosewill Blackbone, a Gigabyte 20$ case, an Apex Vortex 3620, an RC332, or a cheap Cooler Master. (Whichever is cheapest for you to buy, shipping included, do it.)
Thanks for the reply. I'm looking through your recommendations -browsing shop sites to look at the prices.

On a different forum they also recommended the Evo, so I may go with that one.
I had also considered the 955 processor, but read somewhere that there was a problem with the heatsink?
I've seen a lot of recommendations re:caviar but it seems a difficult brand to get here. I haven't seen spinpoint at all. The caviar I found -for the price range I consider for a hard drive- is a Western Digital 500Gb Caviar Blue 16mb 7200rpm SATA II for €44.50. Would this be a good one?
I've been made aware that I need at least a 500-55O W major brand power supply. I'm still looking into it, but one I'm considering is a VX550W Corsair Power Supply 550Watt for €79.
I've decided to wait with selecting a specific case until all other components are selected. -Motherboard size and my remaining budget are my primary considerations..


Thank you for your help...
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Old 02-21-2010, 11:29 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: building my first pc

All right, I think I have a final list of components - could you see if I've forgotten anything, or if there are better alternatives for a similar price?

Processor: AMD Phenom II 955 - €142.90
Motherboard: Asus M4A79XTD Evo - €99.9
Video Card: Asus ATI Radeon HD 4870 PCI-E 512MB - €139.0
Hard Disc Drive: Western Digital Blue caviar Blue 500 GB - €48.0
DVD Drive: Samsung SH S223F - €25.0
RAM: Kingston 4 GB (2x2) 1600MHz DDR3 - €125.0
Network card: Linksys Wireless-N WMP 600 N) - €44.0 (note: I need a wireless internet card, local internet cable access is sadly lacking)
Power Supply: Antec Basiq PS 550W - €73.0
Case: Antec 300 Gaming - €50.0
Keyboard: Logitech deluxe 250 - €10.00

I already have a screen and mouse that's salvaged from an older computer. OS will have to be xp for now. I am still uncertain whether the video card gives the best bang for a buck, and whether I'm committing overkill on the PSU....
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Old 02-21-2010, 11:43 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: building my first pc

the PSU isn't overkill imo... just about right but if you plan on crossfire in the future may not be enough. everything else looks good except that psu... not sure on that one, yes its an antec but I don't know that model, just me *READ FIRST* Updated Power supply guide
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Old 02-21-2010, 11:55 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: building my first pc

The Power Supply is, in Reality, the single most important piece of hardware you can buy. It's supplying every component in a PC with power much like the Human Heart is powering your body. If it's weak, erradict or damaged the PC or the Body Suffers from Weak or Lackluster Performance, Random Component/Organ Failure and finally Death.
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Old 02-21-2010, 12:06 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: building my first pc

for reference, this is what the psu description says:

Quote:
Antec Basiq Power Supply 550 Watt (BP550 PLUS EC)
* Advanced cable management for improved airflow and ease of use

* ATX12V version 2.2

* 120mm low noise cooling fan

* Heavy duty protection circuitry prevents damage resulting from short circuits, over currents, over voltages, and other dangers

* Universal input with active PFC

* SATA connectors for Serial ATA drive

* MTBF: 100,000 hours

* Safety approval: UL, CE, TόV, CB, FCC, CCC, C-TICK

* Backed by a 3 year parts and labour warranty

* Unit dimensions:

• 3.4¨(H) x 5.9¨(W) x 6.1¨(D)

• 8.6cm(H) x 15cm(W) x 15.5cm(D)

* Net weight:

• 4.4 lbs

• 2.0 kg
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Old 02-21-2010, 12:19 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: building my first pc

specs I garnished from newegg... and please someone specify if I have this wrong!
The card you listed, the 4870, takes 2x6 pin pci-e connectors. the psu you have listed only has on, and a 6+2 pin. I don't know if that makes a difference
psu
PCI-Express Connector 1 x 6-Pin, 1 x 6+2-Pin
card
System Requirements Minimum 450W Power Supply
Power Connector 2 x 6 Pin
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Old 02-21-2010, 12:28 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: building my first pc

A 6+2 connector can be used as a 6-pin or an 8-pin pci-e connector. All is Good.
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Old 02-21-2010, 12:29 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: building my first pc

yea, that psu would be enough for a single 4870.

there would not be a problem with the pci-e connections. the 6+2 pin is just that, a 6 pin with an extra 2 at the end that can be used as an 8 pin if the gfx card requires it. if it is not needed, you can just slide off the extra 2 pins from the side.

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