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Old 12-26-2008, 01:20 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default My first build, need opinions!

My old PC finally kicked the bucket, so this can't be put off any longer. I did a lot of research about a year ago so I know the basics about all of this, but I'm trying to catch up because a lot can change in a year. I plan on using the PC for gaming primarily. This is what I have so far, followed by a few questions.

COOLER MASTER RC-690 Mid Tower Computer Case
Seagate Barracuda 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s
Corsair 650W PS
G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 800
Intel Core 2 Duo E8500
Creative X-Fi Xtremegamer

And I can't decide on a video card, or whether or not to SLI two... currently looking at these two, I'm trying to figure out what kind of performance differences I'd see between the two individually vs. SLI'ing a pair of either one.
ASUS 9800GT 512mb
ASUS Radeon 4850 512mb

This may be a dumb question, but if I just want Vista 64-bit is this the one I'm looking for? There's like 9 choices for 64-bit Vista, I was a bit overwhelmed.

I also need a monitor. I like this Acer I found recommended on another forum, but would a 24" make a differnce in performance, or just give me more "real estate?"

Also, I really find the whole motherboard discussion to be a bit overwhelming. Seems like they're all so picky about what they'll let you stick in them, so my plan is to figure out all the other parts that I want and then once I have them all set in stone I can choose a motherboard that will house it all.

Am I forgetting anything? Right now, with all this stuff (even both video cards and the monitor) I'm only looking at $1161.89 + 35 shipping on Newegg and there's even a few mail-in rebates. I've got more like $1500 to spend so unless I'm missing some huge component or reading this wrong, where can I upgrade to spend a little more money? (never thought I'd say that).

Sorry for the huge post, and thanks in advance for your help. I'm hoping to have it all ordered in the next week, then I get to build my first computer. Doesn't seem too difficult though.
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Old 12-26-2008, 05:07 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: My first build, need opinions!

You can't SLI HD 4850's..

But its performance is better than an 9800GT..

Don't bother with SLI or CFX, too much hassle for such a little performance gain and that monitor's resolution is so low that, getting another GPU is pointless (the monitor is fine btw)
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Old 12-26-2008, 06:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: My first build, need opinions!

If I want to get a 24" monitor and improve longevity and be able to crank up the graphics to max on everything, is there a single card I can upgrade over the 4850 for a reasonable price increase?
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Old 12-26-2008, 06:34 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: My first build, need opinions!

4870 is a good upgrade from a 4850.
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Old 12-26-2008, 06:34 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: My first build, need opinions!

HD 4850's are still enough for maxing games at that res.. but if you feel the need..

GTX 260 Core 216/ HD 4870 / HD 4870 1gb are decent
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Old 12-26-2008, 07:00 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: My first build, need opinions!

Thanks for the quick replies. The 4870 sounds good to me. Is this the one I would want? One of the reviews says that there's a commonly known problem with this card being incompatible with DVI?! That sounds nuts to me, but he says even ATI knows about the problem. Is this the right card and does that sound like something I should worry about?
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