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Old 09-25-2005, 11:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Hardware for the Gamer

As the tittle leads to hint; Im looking to build a new computer. (These new CSS game updates have crushed my FPS.)

I haven't built a computer in a good 3 years and new technologies and names are out there. Little weary on which way to lean.

Pretty much what Im looking to upgrade is: CPU, MOBO, VIDEO CARD, RAM, CASE.

So I was looking at the following products; keep in mind that Im looking to keep it somewhat budgetable and under the $700 range. Please feel free to comment and give me suggestions on the stuff I've picked out.

CPU: AMD Athlon 64 3500+ ClawHammer

MOBO: (Not really sure.. Soo many brands and features.. Steer me in the right direction somebody )

VIDEO: eVGA 256-P2-N376-AX Geforce 6800GT 256MB

RAM: I know I want atleast 1gig. I really don't know a lot of the terms either like "unbuffered" -- ect..

CASE: I got a alienware case lined up. So I'm good on that.

Thanks Guys.
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Old 09-26-2005, 12:06 AM   #2 (permalink)
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The core you've got picked out is really outdated now and takes a lot of vcore as you can see, you would be best off buying a 3500+ Venice...basically, Clawhammer, newcastle, winchester, they're all old now and the venice costs about the same

Unbuffered is all you need to worry about since you don't need error checking memory as your board won't support it and it's intended for server machines...value RAM if you're running stock, TCCDs if you have money and wanna overclock, and BH-5s if you wanna overclock, don't got a lot of money, and have a lanparty board or a DDR booster

As always I will recommend a DFI board with an AMD64, however if it can't fit your budget an MSI would be my next choice followed by a gigabyte if you're really short on money
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Old 09-26-2005, 12:29 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks for the info gaara.

So now I'm looking at a AMD Athlon 64 3500+ Venice

A friend of mine has a DFI mobo, and he raves about it all the time.

So I was thinking about this one:
DFI LANPARTY UT nF4 Ultra-D Socket 939

RAM:
CORSAIR ValueSelect 1GB (2 x 512MB)

Another question: Does it matter if I go with 1gig 1x1GB? or 2x512MB? Is there any reason for going with one choice not the other?
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Old 09-26-2005, 12:41 AM   #4 (permalink)
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you should go with dual channel ram a gig is sufficient and get something like Corsair XMS, value is decent but for gaming you want more bang.
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Old 09-26-2005, 07:05 AM   #5 (permalink)
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2x512 would be faster
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Old 09-26-2005, 07:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by RaiN
Thanks for the info gaara.

So now I'm looking at a AMD Athlon 64 3500+ Venice

A friend of mine has a DFI mobo, and he raves about it all the time.

So I was thinking about this one:
DFI LANPARTY UT nF4 Ultra-D Socket 939

RAM:
CORSAIR ValueSelect 1GB (2 x 512MB)

Another question: Does it matter if I go with 1gig 1x1GB? or 2x512MB? Is there any reason for going with one choice not the other?
2x 512 is alot faster, due to the dual channel design.

Good thing for going to venice core, as it is faster, and saves ALOT of money on electricity.

And I recomend this newer, more powerful video card for 46$ more http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814130247

Also what do you have lined up for the power supply?
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Old 09-26-2005, 10:34 AM   #7 (permalink)
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i can't say anything that hasn't been said really. venice is a lot better than clawhammer and 2x512 better than 1x1024. that is an alright choice of video card
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Old 09-26-2005, 11:29 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by DJ-CHRIS
Good thing for going to venice core, as it is faster, and saves ALOT of money on electricity.

And I recomend this newer, more powerful video card for 46$ more http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814130247

Also what do you have lined up for the power supply?
Thanks for the tip on the 7800 over the 6800 not much more for such a better card.

As for the Case/Power supply I am looking at a 500W.
ASPIRE X-Navigator

Questions about the CPU core. What are the main differences with the core names? Are they produced by the third party vender? Ive seen so many.. San Diego.. Venice.. ClawHammer.. ect.. -- Its sad because not building a computer for so long has left me drowning in all this newer technology

---------------------------

Revised list.

CPU = AMD Athlon 64 3500+ Venice

MOBO = DFI LANPARTY UT nF4 Ultra-D Socket 939

VIDEO CARD = eVGA 256-P2-N515-AX Geforce 7800GT

Memory = CORSAIR XMS 1GB (2 x 512MB)

CASE/Power Supply = ASPIRE X-Navigator (500W.)
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Old 09-26-2005, 03:23 PM   #9 (permalink)
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AMD Athlon 64 Core Explanation

Note: No processor is guranteed to do anything apart from operate safely at advertised specifications. Although some cores have reputations of high overclockability, chips of the same core vary based on speedbinning, fab location, and week and stepping numbers.

AMD Roadmap - Submitted by DJ-CHRIS

Update - It seems that the trend for all cores released by AMD are the same. The early cores produced during earlier weeks seem to yield better results than the same cores produced at a later date. I suspect that this is the result of AMD perfecting the production of the core over time, and testing them through tighter speedbins. If a new core is released, expect to yield better results when it is newer.

A common question which seems to be asked is the difference between the numerous cores which AMD offers on the Athlon 64 lineup. Each core offers a variation of improvements over its predicessor, and this will explain the relations between the current cores offered for Socket 939 Athlon 64s.

One of the large differences between AMD cores is the process size. The process size is measured in nanometers (1 nm = 0.000000001 meters). Smaller process size is in theory a superior core, simply because the circuits consume less power, and uses less current as it can charge faster.

Consider a 130nm core, and a 90nm core. Imagine the 90nm core is a 200mL cup, and the 130nm core is a 300mL cup. Not only can the 200mL cup fill faster, it fills up with far less liquid or voltage, therefore it uses less power and produces a smaller heat output.

The only problem with smaller process size is the fact that as transitors get smaller, the insulation also gets smaller and current can have a tendency to leak, or give out excess heat output. AMD has not reached this problem as of yet and their 90nm cores are still energy and heat conservative, however the Intel "Prescott" suffers from this problem.

AMD currently has five single cores availible to the socket 939 family; Newcastle, Clawhammer, Winchester, Venice, San Diego. AMD also offers multicores: Manchester and Toledo.

Newcastle
Newcastle is one of the older AMD Athlon 64 cores, being brought to the socket 939 family from socket 754. Newcastle chips are based on the 130nm process, and have the largest power consumption and heat dump overall next to the Clawhammer core. They've got the normal Athlon 64 cache size of 512KB.

Newcastle is availible in chips such as the 3000+, 3200+, 3500+, and 3800+. It's a dated core and as far as overclockability goes, don't expect much more than 400MHz on air. I really would stay away from this core as I don't think there's any difference in price between it and the more power conservative 90nm cores.

Clawhammer
This core is another one that migrated from the socket 754 family, and assumed the role of dealing with the high end processors in the family, such as 4000+ and FX series processors. It is also avalible in 3400+ format however. It's nearly identical to the Newcastle except it pumps out more heat, consumes more power, and has a larger 1MB L2 cache.

Like the Newcastle, this core has bitten the dust recently, and is outshown in both overclockability and overall performance by newer 90nm cores.

Winchester
This is the first native socket 939 core that AMD introduced, and is also the first core to boast the 90nm process size. The Winchester is near identical to the Newcastle, however it has a smaller heat dump and consumes less power. Again, a modest 512KB L2 cache.

These cores scored some big points in the overclocking catergory early on, you should expect about a 400-600MHz increase on these cores. Unfortunetely however, the 90nm process wasn't perfected and couldn't sustain higher clock speeds, and was only availible up to 3500+. A Winchester generally caps at around 2.6-2.8GHz since the silicon couldn't support higher clock speeds. The Winchester has been revised, and replaced with the "Venice".

Note: Some Motherboards require an updated BIOS in order to use 90nm cores.

Venice
The Venice is notorious for it's ridiculous power and voltage conservation, reaching clock speeds as high as 3GHz with little overall vcore increase. The Venice uses an improved intergrated memory controller which can account for all 4 DIMM slots running at 400MHz. Previous memory controllers would underclock the RAM to 333MHz if all four slots were in use.

The Venice specifically fixes the silicon problem found in the Winchester and can handle higher clock speeds. It's also the first AMD core to add SSE3 instruction sets, the third iteration of the SSE instruction set for the IA-32 architecture. It is a SIMD instruction set. If you are purchasing a midrange processor, get a Venice based chip.

Note: Some Motherboards require an updated BIOS in order to use 90nm cores.

San Diego
Once the silicon problem found within the Winchester was fixed, the 90nm process could support higher clock speeds. AMDs high end cores such as the 4000+ and FX series were stuck on the 130nm Clawhammer core since the 90nm silicon could not support them, however, using the Venice architechture, the San Diego, with a larger 1MB L2 cache, was born.

The San Diego is identical to the Venice, same instruction sets and memory controller, as well as same notorious overclockability. The introduction of the San Diego effectively migrated all Athlon 64 cores to 90nm process technologies. If you are buying a high end core, the San Diego is for you.

Note: Some Motherboards require an updated BIOS in order to use 90nm cores.

Manchester
This core is the lesser of the two multicores avalible, with a 512KB L2 cache on each of its cores. The Manchester consumes a lot of power and gives off quite a bit of heat despite running on a 90nm process, however, still achieves impressive overclocks ranging between 2.6-3GHz.

Note: A BIOS update is required to use AMD multicore processors.

Toledo
Toledo, in theory, offers the fastest processor on the market at the moment, the 4800+. Toledo offers a 1MB L2 cache on each of its cores, and uses a 90nm process. It consumes more power than the Manchester and gives off quite a bit of heat dump, but still provides impressive overclockability.

Note: A BIOS update is required to use AMD multicore processors.

To summarize, in my personal opinion the only two cores worth considering right now are the Venice, and the San Diego. The previous cores are outdated , and price is relatively the same when comparing to their predicessors.

As far as multicore processors go, multithreaded applications to take advantage of Toledo/Manchester are a rarity. Performance gains over single core processors are neglible, and the price is still too much for what they are offering. I suggest waiting 6-12 months before purchasing a multicore processor.

posted by gaara in the amd64 overclocking guide in the overclocking section
http://techist.com/showthread.php?threadid=59883

i wouldnt go with the corsair XMS ram, cause corsair makes good valueram but not good OCing ram. i would go for some OCZ ram.

everything else looks good, but i would be looking into a separate psu. sense most psu that come with cases are generic and are just crap. with some exceptionsAMD Roadmap
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Old 09-27-2005, 11:42 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thanks for the information guys!
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