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Old 11-22-2009, 05:28 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default New Computer for Christmas

My boyfriend is currently without a computer since his died a few months ago. Since then he has hijacked mine. In order to get it back I have decided to build him a machine for Christmas.

Originally I wanted to build him a duplicate of my machine (780i sli motherboard, sli 9800gtx, 4gb 800 mhz ram, 3.0 dual core) but not only are half my components no longer manufactured, I've realized I can put together a lot better of a machine for not too much more.

With his help, I built my computer a little over two years ago, and since then it seems everything has changed. I've attempted several times to put together a system but I'm not sure exactly where to start. I can't decide between a Quad Core, i7 or i5 based system. And I'm completely lost when it comes to graphic cards. I've read that my 9800 gtx cards are now considered under powered, but so far I have yet to play a game at anything less than maxed settings and at least 40fps. With that in mind I'm not entirely sure exactly how much of an upgrade from my cards I should go. My current thinking is a single 260 with a second card for a birthday present later next year. However, I don't want to jip him on graphics because I have gotten amazing performance out of my cards.

I'm setting a budget of 2k (but can go higher if that is really what is needed for the best pc for the money). I'd like to stay with Intel chipsets as I've never researched into AMD and wouldn't know even how their series are numbered. I'd also like to build a system that would be capable of high performance for several years with minimal upgrades (which makes me lean towards the newer i7 or i5 processors).

Would anyone be able to provide some suggestions? At this point I need the entire kit including the case. Also, please keep in mind this is only my second build so ease of assembly and configuration would be strongly strongly appreciated since I can't go to him for assistance.

Thanks in advance!
-Rhy
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Old 11-22-2009, 08:58 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Computer for Christmas

ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
&
Intel Core i7-920 Bloomfield 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80601920 - Retail
&
OCZ 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model OCZ3X1600R2LV6GK - Retail
&
XFX HD-489X-ZSFC Radeon HD 4890 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail

$909 w/free shipping and $20 MIR card

Newegg.com - Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
$75

Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
&
Antec TruePower New TP-650 650W Continuous Power ATX12V V2.3 / EPS12V V2.91 SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE ... - Retail

$150 w/free shipping on the PSU

Newegg.com - LITE-ON Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW SATA CD/DVD Burner - Bulk - CD / DVD Burners
$29

Newegg.com - Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - Operating Systems
$140 w/free shipping

Total = $1303 plus shipping on the case and DVD burner. Use the rest to buy him some nice games.
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Old 11-22-2009, 09:11 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Computer for Christmas

Why not go for 5850 or even a 5870, they should be in stock pretty soon. 4890 is still a pretty good card. I'd imagine win7 home edition will suffice. Does he already have a monitor?


What kind of gifts does he get you for you to be giving him such nice gifts? lol..
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Old 11-22-2009, 10:22 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Computer for Christmas

I just grabbed the combo to save some money. If he is using her two year old computer right now then the 5xxx series won't be an issue for him.
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Old 11-22-2009, 11:38 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Computer for Christmas

Is there a reason (other than that deal which is pretty awesome) you went with a i7 over an i5? I hadn't been looking at the combo deals and saw that standalone the i7 is roughly 100 bucks more yet reviews seem to indicate the i5 as the better of the two.

Before reading your post the system I had been considering is:

EVGA 017-P3-1295-AR CO-OP Edition GeForce GTX 295 1792MB 896 (448 x 2)-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card

MSI P55-GD80 LGA 1156 Intel P55 ATX Intel Motherboard

Intel Core i5-750 Lynnfield 2.66GHz 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core Processor

CORSAIR XMS3 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMX4GX3M2A1600C9 x2 for a total of 8gb

Western Digital VelociRaptor WD3000HLFS 300GB 10000 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive

Thermaltake Armor Series VA8003BWS Black Full Tower Case w/ 25CM Fan I'll admit the pretty LEDs pulled my hand on this.. stupid ovaries and shiny things. However, in my defense, the case gets decent reviews.

Rosewill BRONZE series RBR1000-M 1000W Continuous@40C, 80Plus Bronze Certified,Modular Cable Design,ATX12V v2.3/ EPS12V,SLI Ready,CrossFire Ready,Active PFC"Compatible with Core i7, i5" Power Supply



And then the same $30 DVD drive you had picked. For a grand total of $1,676.20 prior to shipping. He has a 1TB WD drive he had bought for his old rig right before it died that I plan on sticking in. The Velociraptor is for an OS drive.

Of course now I'm going to look at the HD Radeon series. I hadn't been considering those. How well do those generally do for gaming? Since his computer died he's been buying everything new for xbox360 so he hasn't had he need for higher graphics than my system can provide. However, once he has a system capable of it I'm sure that will change, not to mention we recently were victimized by RROD. Everything seems to go at once : (

Thanks to win741 the operating system is covered, 64-bit Win7 Professional. Requires installing XP first and a little fancy iso mounting but it'll get the job done with time and a little effort.

As to what he gets me to deserve this... just being him and awesome. Also, I really really want my computer back...

Thanks for the help!
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Old 11-22-2009, 01:06 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Computer for Christmas

I'd get a different case, I got that one and I believe it weighs 45 lbs empty, too much of a chore to move it or get behind it. Nothing really that great about that case anyways, fans aren't laid out that well and some psus are a pain to get in. Not that hard to get pretty lights in if thats what you want.

This one seems highly recommended at the moment:
Newegg.com - COOLER MASTER HAF 932 RC-932-KKN1-GP Black Steel ATX Full Tower Computer Case - Computer Cases

Quote:
Originally Posted by aliasaid View Post
Why not go for 5850 or even a 5870, they should be in stock pretty soon. 4890 is still a pretty good card. I'd imagine win7 home edition will suffice. Does he already have a monitor?
Any time line for the 5850s and 70s? I've been waiting for 2 weeks and doesn't seem to be a date planned for when they will be available. Comments on 5850 vs 4890?

Quote:
Originally Posted by supermidgetrhy View Post
Is there a reason (other than that deal which is pretty awesome) you went with a i7 over an i5? I hadn't been looking at the combo deals and saw that standalone the i7 is roughly 100 bucks more yet reviews seem to indicate the i5 as the better of the two.
Hopefully someone comments on this, I came to the same conclusion when coming up with a build and was going to go the i5 route as well.
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Old 11-22-2009, 04:36 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Computer for Christmas

The i5's are great for those on a budget but the i7's are better. Also the 1366 socket offers more future compatibility over 1156 because the new 6-core Gulftown's will be on 1366. Not to mention that the i7-920 overclocks like a beast.

The GTX295 isn't worth the price anymore, try to get a 5870 if you want really high end.

The Velociraptors are also not worth it IMO, a simple WD Black would suffice or if you want speed go with an SSD.

For a PSU I would stay away from Rosewill. Corsair and PC Power and Cooling are both great picks.
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Old 11-22-2009, 09:21 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Computer for Christmas

Well, with a gigantic budget like that and the fact that you have until Christmas to get the parts, why not get one of these?

Newegg.com - 5970

The 5970 is thee most powerful graphics card on the planet and has a better bang for the buck value than the 5870. And it will fit your budget!!!!

His rig will max most games for a good 3 years maybe, and it should be able to play games for probably 6 before not meeting minimum reqs.
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Old 11-22-2009, 10:00 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Computer for Christmas

They don't seem like the type of couple to hold on to a computer system for 6 years... they're tech savvy enough to know that 3yrs is a good time to upgrade! She said she's content with the 9800GTX that she has, so the 5850 should be a large enough upgrade to meet all of their requirements. The 5970 is awesome, but way over and above what they need/want. BUT, in fairness to druid, she did link a GTX295 in her build, which shows she's more than willing to put the cash in for the BEST. And since the 5970 isn't far on price, it would make sense on that rationale to get the 5970.

And like burn said, the i5 is recommend a lot based on its price/performance ratio, not out of sheer performance. The i7 trumps all others for now on performance.

And while you're at it supermidget, you may as well buy a solid state drive. It'll increase considerably the speed of your system, mainly through fast load times!
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Old 11-23-2009, 01:07 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Computer for Christmas

Well, yeah, they can upgrade it after 3 years cause it won't be maxing stuff anymore, but I'm just stressing the longevity that amount of power is going to have. I'm really not going to get anything new in my rig until it is at least 3-4 years old. I might sli another 285 before then when they get cheap and add an SSD, but that will be it. I'm sure the i7 is going to be fine in games for quite some time. Games seem to be way behind the cpu's, so I think my rig is going to be pretty solid for some time. I do have an aftermarket cooler, so I think I'll OC next summer. I'll probably have to reapply some thermal paste though. When I built my rig, I put the cooler on wrong the first time, and I had to remove it and reapply the rest of the tube, so I only have a thin layer on there. Man, that stuff is like glue!
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