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Old 02-07-2010, 03:13 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Post Upgradable Gaming Build

Hey, lately I have been having troubles with keeping up with any new software with my current computer that has gotten pretty bad. I built it about 4-5 years ago at least so I have the feeling its just about time to build a new one. I haven't really been keeping up to date like I should have been the past few years with computer hardware so forgive me if I am way out of the loop but I attempted to produce at least a potential build. Basically, I am looking to build a very upgradeable system that I can add on to over the next 2-3 years at least little by little when the need comes. My last pc had the problem a year after I built it, the processor socket became obsolete so my upgradeable abilities were completely wiped out and I was pretty mad to say the least. I am worried it would happen again if I were to say go for AM3 that there would be a new socket type that will dominate it and it too soon would be obsolete.

I will go ahead and say I am far out of the loop with both video cards and processors. I am aware Intel is pretty much dominating the cpu market at the moment but AMD seems to be a far cheaper alternative and I am not quite sure why as the Phenoms are quite popular and cheap and to say the least is 10x faster than my current 3800+ x2. Graphics cards are also a new change, or should I say realization of what makes a card faster and better. I am not quite sure about this whole streaming processor unit stuff. I always judged a card solely by its core clock and its effective memory clock. Well here is my attempt at a build, feel free to recommend any alternatives, or opinions on how I should go about a more upgradeable computer. Any fill ins on the two issues I mentioned above would also be very helpful and appreciated. Also, if not too much to ask, I am curious as to how a build like this would be rated by you all. I know that it is probably pretty bad, but I am a quick learner. :P Also... again, my budget is in the 700-900 dollar range... but as I said, I dont exactly need everything at once. I plan to upgrade when needed. I play a few heavy games but I am no super hardcore gamer who needs a beastly machine at all times.

Thanks

Processor(read i can activate the 2 other cores manually)
Newegg.com - AMD Phenom II X2 550 Black Edition Callisto 3.1GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Socket AM3 80W Dual-Core Processor - Processors - Desktops

Motherboard
Newegg.com - ASUS M4A785TD-V EVO AM3 AMD 785G HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard - AMD Motherboards

Memory
Newegg.com - G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBNQ - Desktop Memory

Video Card(plan to buy a 2nd at some point in time unless suggestions say otherwise)
Newegg.com - SAPPHIRE 100279-1GL Radeon HD 4870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards

Power Supply (i only ask this because I might consider SLI/Crossfire depending on the VC I get and want enough power)
Newegg.com - CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply - Power Supplies

case/harddrive/etc isnt as much a problem for me.
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Old 02-07-2010, 03:43 AM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Upgradable Gaming Build

If you're going to buy a second video card, I'd make sure that motherboard supports Crossfire.
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Old 02-07-2010, 10:19 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgradable Gaming Build

Quote:
Originally Posted by iFargle View Post
If you're going to buy a second video card, I'd make sure that motherboard supports Crossfire.
Oh, hmm... glad you noticed that. Well, I am not quite sure if I want to do double video cards or if it would be better to buy one card but it be a better faster one. Is everything else I have pretty good in terms of upgrade ability and performance? That cpu seems more than fast enough for me once I would enable the 2 other cores, and 4 gigs of ram is probably enough RAM as well. My real concern is the upgradability of the motherboard as well as making sure I dont screw up on video cards.

Mostly, any opinions of how well you think this setup is from a scale from 1 to 10 for the price (around 800 bucks for everything including the few things i didnt list). I know its kind of lame to ask for a rating, but I am hoping to come up with something I can rely on to be once again upgradable for many years and is relatively fast but not necessarily extreme of course. I am probably repeating myself over and over again but I really dont want to make the same mistake I did the last time I built my own PC and my upgrading chances struck ZERO less than a year after I built it.

Thanks
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Old 02-08-2010, 01:22 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgradable Gaming Build

Hm, so no suggestions? I don't mind upgrading say my video card and processor in say 2-3 years but I don't want my motherboard socket support being out of date by then making it all useless.

I am sure if I went Intel, i would be more safe, but I dont see the big deal about these extremely high prices i5-7's. The phenom seems like a CPU thats just a little bit slower than an intel of double the price.
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Old 02-08-2010, 01:26 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Upgradable Gaming Build

Well seeing how often AMD has changed their socket type in the last ten years, I'd say it would be much safer to go with Intel on this one.
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Old 02-08-2010, 01:35 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Upgradable Gaming Build

Be warned... It's an X2 usually because the other 2 cores are usually unstable. While they may be unlockable... It might just lock up your system alot.

Basically, don't count on it becoming a quad
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Old 02-08-2010, 01:45 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgradable Gaming Build

dang, yeah i agree with amd always making some new socket. how long has am3 been out? i know am2 came out not long after i built my old computer.

is the unstable cores only unstable if you overclock or just in general? the stable 4 core one is about 50 dollars more so its not that big of a deal.

i would like to go intel because i feel like i could upgrade longer but their CPU's are twice as expensive and i cant determine speeds and how great each cpu is like I can with athlons. Do they still have that awkward bus speed stuff or are they more like AMD? I notice a lot of high caching for them however.

thanks
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Old 02-08-2010, 02:05 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgradable Gaming Build

sry for the double post here, wont seem to let me re-edit for some odd reason...

i think i will go with the intel route and attempt a new build and post it up on here. im going to look around a bit on the forum first however. i guess you could say im a somwhat budget build being around 800-900 dollars at the most but really intending to build an upgradable pc. i plan to like upgrade the cpu or video card again in the next few years. so either i could save a bit of cash on a lesser CPU or a lesser video card. however, i still dont want socket issues if i were to upgrade from say an LGA 1156 to an LGA 1366 in a year or two that i wouldnt have to swap out motherboards or worse neither are ever sold/updated. Or will LGA1156 probably be still updated regularly or at least sold for a few years to come still? I could get the i5 750 and in a year or two upgrade it but now that there is a newer 1366 will 1156 chips even get faster at all?
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Old 02-08-2010, 07:10 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgradable Gaming Build

Alright, here is my new build. I decided to go the intel path and a ati card. However, I have two mobo's I havent decided on which one yet. Combo'd they are relatively the same price with the cpu. How does it look? Will it perform pretty fast? I may find a few cheaper alternatives if possible to lower the price another 50-150 dollars possibly.

Case
Newegg.com - Thermaltake V9 Black Edition ATX Computer Gaming Chassis with Dual Oversized 230mm Ultra-Silent Cooling Fans VJ400G1N2Z Mid Tower - Computer Cases

Harddrive
Newegg.com - SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

Video Card
Newegg.com - SAPPHIRE 100270SR Radeon HD 4850 X2 2GB 512-bit (256-bit x 2) GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards

Power Supply
Newegg.com - CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply - Power Supplies

Memory
Newegg.com - G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL - Desktop Memory

CPU
Newegg.com - Computer Parts, PC Components, Laptop Computers, Digital Cameras and more!

MOBO (one of the two)
Newegg.com - Computer Parts, PC Components, Laptop Computers, Digital Cameras and more!
Newegg.com - Computer Parts, PC Components, Laptop Computers, Digital Cameras and more!
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Old 02-08-2010, 09:04 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgradable Gaming Build

If you are looking for future upgrade-ability by intel, I would suggest the 1366 socket and not the 1156 as the future of intel is pointed more towards the 1366. Comes at a relatively steep price jump though.
Yes AMD has changed their socket type a few times recently, but they have also been considerably backwards compatible. For instance there are motherboards that support am2, am2+, and am3 socket processors. On the other hand with AMD, if they are planning on a complete change in CPU architecture and socket type to compete in the high-end market, then you may get stuck. I'm not too sure what to tell you with this, but just felt i could throw some ideas into the mix. In my opinion the best route to go for future upgrade-ability would be the intel 1366 socket... but as stated before, you may run over budget.
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