I'm actually copying my exact post from the Tomshardware forum. I didn't get any answers from those clowns, figured I'd give you nerds a go.
Alright guys, my four year old 3200+ Winchester and 6800GT are old enough to be stealing my social security, thought it's about time to make a new build. I haven't read up on computer hardware since so excuse me for being completely ignorant. =)
Figure you have ~$1000
to waste on a completely new build.
What do I need this computer for?
It's mostly going to be used as a workstation. I'm a big photographer and need RAWs to be drawn/processed rather quickly. I spend plenty of time in Lightroom 2 and Photoshop CS4. I already own a 360 so I don't anticipate too much PC gaming albeit I want to try the likes of Crysis and such. I know I'll be playing games on occassion so I'm not dropping down to some integrated graphics nonsense.
I've currently been doing all of my work on my laptop.
It has a 2.2ghz Core 2 Duo T7500, 2x2GB (only 3GB found by windows, 4GB in BIOS - fail) and an nVidia 570m, which is actually pretty decent. But I can only assume that current spec hardware would run circles around this ***. I got the laptop through school, went mech eng so they gave everyone ****** rendering laptops.
I need some kind of backup drive system.
Losing originals is not an option. I need my photos to be in two locations. I don't really know much about RAID, only that RAID 0 is haul *** mode. Apparently that's not what I need though since RAID 1 only protects against drive failure. Burning to DVDs is not an option, and I know nothing of these online backup services. Opinions?
I overclock albeit I wouldn't consider myself an overclocker
. I'm not going to spend hours and hours and hours tweaking voltages and timings and *** just to squeeze out a lousy hertz. Anyway, I hear these Intels seem like they come underclocked.
Anyway, here's with what I've come up with so far:
Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80601920 - Retail
ASRock X58 Extreme LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
OCZ Gold 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Voltage Desktop Memory Model OCZ3G1600LV6GK - Retail
PNY VCGGTX260CXPB GeForce GTX 260 Core 216 896MB 448-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail
OCZ ModXStream Pro OCZ700MXSP 700W ATX12V V2.2 / EPS12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC ... - Retail
2x Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500418AS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - OEM
LIAN LI Lancool PC-K56W Black 0.8 mm SECC, Plastic + Mesh ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
Budget is expandable to $1150
, but I'd like to keep it as close to $1000
I was initially considering the i7 860 Lynnfield given the uber reviews it's been getting. But after doing some reading, most people seem to suggest the i7 920
(1366) over the i7 860
(1156) because of triple channel memory. Some also say the 920 would be a better path for upgrading in the future, which is obviously important. I'd imagine the 920 vs 860 debate could be beat to death. Could anyone provide some opinions on this?
To take advantage of the 6GB RAM
, I think I need 64-bit Vista, correct?
I know nothing of the current generation GPUs. All I know is that way back when SLI came out, it didn't make any sense. Pay double the price for less than a 50% performance increase? I don't know if SLI/Crossfire
has improved since then, but I'm not yet convinced. I'm somewhat partial to nVidia, but I've been seeing ATI (are they still ATI?) all over the place.
I already have a DVD burner, mouse/keyboard, monitor. Am I forgetting anything? Ixnay the OS of course. =)
That's the deal folks. I'd greatly appreciate any advice or opinions. Thanks guys!