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Old 08-31-2010, 05:35 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Buy a FragBox or build my own?

I'm planning to get an easily portable machine for work. (I currently use my Sager NP8760 laptop) I would use it for AutoCad, CorelDraw, Sketchup and other graphics programs. I would like it to be capable of pushing 2 30" monitors and I will not be using it for gaming.

The last time I built a machine was about 2003. Since then the have been a lot of technology changes and processor types. I was considering buying the Falcon Northwest Fragbox. (Falcon Northwest Configurator) However, if it was possible for me to build something similar for less and /or more powerful for the same price would be great. Also I would renew my comp knowledge that has lapsed of late.

I'd appreciate any info from users about any of the components to help me decide.
I've been looking at the Micro ATX mobos and the cases that go with them.

First the case:
I'm liking the Apevia X's
Small Form Factor Cases at Xoxide.com - Micro ATX Cases

The mobo and Processor. Intel - Amd
Intel: Not sure what processor. Probably i7 930. with the Rampage III Gene ASUS Rampage III GENE Socket 1366 uATX Motherboard Intel X58 Intel Core i7 Processor Triple channel DDR3 NVIDIA SLI ATI CrossFireX USB3.0 SATA III SupremeFX X-Fi 2-Best Computer Online Store Houston Buy Discount Prices Texas-Directron.com
AMD : This Gigabyte board & processor. Phenom X6 Combo 2: Gigabyte GA-880GM-USB3 Socket AM3 Micro ATX Motherboard and AMD Phenom II X6 1055T Thuban 2.8GHz 4000MHz Socket AM3 Six-Core 45nm Processor-Best Computer Online Store Houston Buy Discount Prices Texas-Directron.com

I'm at a loss for the cooler as I'm not sure about sizes that will fit in the cases.
Suggestions? Socket AM3 Cooling Coolers Overclocking AMD CPU Processor Computer Gaming Enthusiast-Best Computer Online Store Houston Buy Discount Prices Texas-Directron.com

Video Card:
ATI Radeon 5870

And hopefully a SSD hardrive.

Any observations or suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks
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Old 09-03-2010, 11:59 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Buy a FragBox or build my own?

Just noticed this. Since you didn't mention a budget I am going without one. I am also using NewEgg.

* APEVIA X-QPACK2-NW-BK/500 Black Aluminum Body/ Front Mask MicroATX Desktop Computer Case 500W Power Supply
* Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - OEM

Combo Price: $223.87

* AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition Thuban 3.2GHz Socket AM3 125W Six-Core Desktop Processor HDT90ZFBGRBOX
* MSI 890GXM-G65 AM3 AMD 890GX SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard

Combo Price: $400.98

Newegg.com - ZALMAN CNPS8700 2 Ball CPU Cooler
$44.99

Newegg.com - G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (4 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL7Q-8GBRM
$209.99

Newegg.com - ASUS Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 24X DVD Burner - Bulk - CD / DVD Burners
$19.99

Newegg.com - OCZ Agility 2 OCZSSD3-2AGT120G 3.5" 120GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
$279.00

Newegg.com - Western Digital Caviar Black WD1001FALS 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
$87.99

Newegg.com - XFX HD-587X-ZNFC Radeon HD 5870 1GB 256-bit DDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
$389.99
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Old 09-04-2010, 12:35 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Buy a FragBox or build my own?

what is your budget?
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Old 09-06-2010, 12:01 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Buy a FragBox or build my own?

Trotter, thanks for the info.

Would like to keep under $2000 or close to it. What is appearing problematic for me to discern if I build, is the right cooler that will fit in the case, and what I really need in a power supply. The smallest offered with the Fragbox is 750w.
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Old 09-06-2010, 12:03 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Buy a FragBox or build my own?

Also, would a 5850 be acceptable for my purposes instead of a 5870?
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Old 09-06-2010, 07:22 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Buy a FragBox or build my own?

I would advise at least a 650 to 750 watt psu, things to look for in a PSU are operating temp, how efficient it is, the design to make sure it will work optimally in your case, the lowest number of 12 volt rails you can get, i personally will only buy a PSU with a single 12 volt rail.
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Old 09-11-2010, 12:32 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Buy a FragBox or build my own?

Reviews of the Apevia X case all say the PSU is junk. Anyone suggest a good small 750W unit? Also can someone explain 12v rail to me and why a single might be better than multiple rails.
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Old 09-11-2010, 11:38 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Buy a FragBox or build my own?

Your building a Fragbox or a small form factor PC, is there room for SLI or Crossfire? Is this even an option you are considering? If this is not an option then you don't need a 750 watt power supply, I would go with something like this.

A Great price after the rebate and it's more power than you need
Newegg.com - CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply

This one is cheaper still and it has less power but it should still work just fine.
Newegg.com - OCZ Fatal1ty OCZ550FTY 550W ATX12V v2.2 / EPS12V SLI Ready 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
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Old 09-11-2010, 09:28 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Buy a FragBox or build my own?

To be honest, I don't know if I need SLI or Crossfire. I don't want it if I don't need it. As I mentioned, I want this machine for graphics work. AutoCAD, CorelDRAW Sketchup. I would like to push two 30" monitors. However, because of cost I'll probably start with 1. I just need the machine to be capable of it when I get the second monitor. I don't know enough about the differences in requirements for a gaming machine and a simple graphics box. I've been told a gaming machine needs a lot more from it's video card/s. So, my questions is what is the best but least expensive Vcard form my purposes. I've been told 5870. but could a less expensive 5850 handle it?

Thanks for all the comments. I'm refreshing my knowledge.
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