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Old 06-18-2004, 10:12 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Wink Planning on building a new computer, need some advice

Alright, I have done a lot of research here with all the smart people's postings , but I am still a bit confused. I wanted to ask a few questions and get some advice on what I should put in my new computer. For starters, its been 2 years since I built a computer, so mine is "outdated".

OLD Computer:
Athlon XP 2200+
Asus A7N8X-E Deluxe
1 GB PC2700 Corsair XMS Pro LL
GeForce 4 Ti4600 128mb
420 Antec Quiet PSU
120gb SATA Maxtor 7200rpm
60gb Maxtor 7200rpm ATA133 (not sure what mb cache is but its only for cheap storage)
80gb Maxtor 7200rpm ATA133 (crapped out last week so bout the SATA, smartest thing I ever did)
Basic floppy, cdrw, dvdrw, etc.

This computer is basically a heavy gaming computer (CS, WC3, Halo, UT2k4, Far Cry, eventually HL2 and Doom 3). I do a lot of sound editting as well (guitar, bass and vocals). Just to give some headway into what this computer will be used for

New Chip? I was looking at the AMD 64 3200+ or the 3800+, my question is...I want to be able to utilize the Dual Channel ability in the RAM I get, so which socket is best for that? I wanted to get the socket 939, know if it will become usable with Dual Channel RAM anytime this summer?

New Ram: Corsiar XMS Pro LL 3200, would it matter to get something like 3500 or 4000? Would it make a noticeable difference or should I just not mess with anything like that at this point?

New Mobo: MSI or Asus...Not too sure which to shoot for yet, but as of now I have the ASUS and have had it for last 6 years. Advise me here please

New Videocard: After extensive forum viewing it has been decided to wait for the x800xt, but I havent had the chance to find out when it comes out, anyone happen to know something?

Power Supply: 500 watts or so should be enough for a nice case with SEVERAL fans, and lights

Hard drives: So far I have an SATA Maxtor 120gb 7200rpm. My question for you guys is, should I use that as storage and get some Raptor's 10k rpm?

HSF: I have always hated the retail boxes with the useless HSF, I burned one fan out in my complete newbie days and didnt know, so the guys at CompUSA made me spend the big bucks to get a whole new chip. Luckily I thought about it afterward and was able to sell it in a motherboard to a friend. Which HSF would you guys go with for a system like this?

Drives: I figured just get the standard floppy drive, get a Plextor 8x or 12x depending on what it costs when it comes out, and then a dvd rom/cd rw combo drive by sony.

Round cables, 5-9 case fans, maybe some neon lights and hard drive coolers. I dont think I left anything out at this point but all advice is truly appreciated. Thanks!
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Old 06-18-2004, 10:58 AM   #2 (permalink)
ag3
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Old 06-18-2004, 11:01 AM   #3 (permalink)
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haha, come on! I know you know your stuff, help me make my final decisions!
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Current Computer Specs
Athlon XP 2200+ (266 FSB)
Asus A7N8X-E Deluxe
1GB Corsair PC2700 C2 Pro Series (2x512)
Thermaltake 11+ HSF
Asus GeForce 4 Ti4600 128mb
420 Antec TruePower
4x Plextor DVDRW
Soundblaster Live 5.1!
120gb Maxtor SATA 7200rpm
60gb Maxtor ATA/133 7200rpm

Currently building a new one (ETA July/August)
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Old 06-18-2004, 11:09 AM   #4 (permalink)
ag3
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Chip: AMD 3200+ is fast enough... If u have a lot of money to spend, then go for the 3800+
Dual channel is currently not supported. But IMO, who the hell needs it with a system like that!

RAM: Stay with 3200. It is the fastest official speed. Anything over could be considered unstable.

MOBO: I wouldn't go for an Asus. They are getting cheap (i have no idea why). MSI is good, but personaly, I am taking the Abit (for there unique onboard cooling system).

G-CARD: The Radeon X800XT will be out shortly. Like I mentioned before, if u have the extra cash... go for it. X800 alone is fast enough!

PSU: 500 Watts is way more than enough. Go for the Antec TruePower 480 Gold (480 Watts). The best IMO.

Optical Drives: DVD. Make sure you have one. All of the new games are going to be coming out on DVD disks. You can get a drive for no more than $50 cdn.

Good luck... I hope this helps a bit. If u have any questions, i'll be checking back frequently so feel free to post!
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Old 06-18-2004, 11:31 AM   #5 (permalink)
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That cleared up quite a bit. Thanks!

But I do have more questions. What exactly is the benefit of dual channel? Do you know if it will be supported with the new motherboards?

X800 XT by ATI, is it cooled well enough by the small HSF they put on it? If not, would the x800 pro be the better choice?

Does it matter if I get the ATI brand or one of the "other" brands (ie Sapphire, Gigabyte)?

The ABit board, got a product name/id I could use to search for?

Thanks much for answering some of those questions!
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Current Computer Specs
Athlon XP 2200+ (266 FSB)
Asus A7N8X-E Deluxe
1GB Corsair PC2700 C2 Pro Series (2x512)
Thermaltake 11+ HSF
Asus GeForce 4 Ti4600 128mb
420 Antec TruePower
4x Plextor DVDRW
Soundblaster Live 5.1!
120gb Maxtor SATA 7200rpm
60gb Maxtor ATA/133 7200rpm

Currently building a new one (ETA July/August)
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Old 06-18-2004, 12:14 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Dual Channel gives you double the bandwidth, it transfers 2x64 bit packets between memory and CPU.

Single Channel DDR400 = 3200 MB/sec
Dual Channel DDR400 (2x64 bit)(DDR800) = 6.4GB/sec

In theory it is on the same lines as RAID -0, as it writes and reads at the same time on both memory modules.

the X800 XT from ATI will be sufficiently cooled, if it is actually made by ATI they wouldn't want to ruin their reputation. Expect it to be very stable.

I stick with MSI/Asus motherboards, they have served me well in the past.
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[size=0.5]Full Aluminium ThermalTake Case
Asus A7N8X-E-Deluxe
AMD Athlon XP 3200+ *400 FSB* Barton (2.2GHz)
ThermalTake Volcano 11+ Xaser Edition Air Cooling
1024MB Corsair TwinX XMS 3200 (Dual Channel 2x512) 2-3-2-6
256Mb XFX 7800 GS EXTREME
2x WD Raptors (10krpm 8MB Cache) 36.7GB using RAID -0
Video Logic SonicXplosion 5.1 Soundcard
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Old 06-18-2004, 12:14 PM   #7 (permalink)
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MORE QUESTIONS!

Alright, is there some type of big differnce with the NewCastle and Clawhammer chips? I noticed that the NewCastle is fairly new compared to Clawhammer.

Socket 939 > Socket 745? I read on here that they "retired" 745 basically?
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Current Computer Specs
Athlon XP 2200+ (266 FSB)
Asus A7N8X-E Deluxe
1GB Corsair PC2700 C2 Pro Series (2x512)
Thermaltake 11+ HSF
Asus GeForce 4 Ti4600 128mb
420 Antec TruePower
4x Plextor DVDRW
Soundblaster Live 5.1!
120gb Maxtor SATA 7200rpm
60gb Maxtor ATA/133 7200rpm

Currently building a new one (ETA July/August)
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Old 06-18-2004, 12:20 PM   #8 (permalink)
ag3
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Dual channel memory transports information much quicker. It's splits up information into two paths, rather than sending it all together, in one. The AMD 64 FX series supports dual channel, but IMO it really doesn't make too much of a difference (considering 1600 Mhz FSB, and the power in general of the AMD).

X800XT will be fine with the stock heatsink/fan. I would save for the XT. The X800 Pro (believe it or not) has a much slower clock speed (memory) than the Radeon 9800 Pro (other features (like fillrate) is slightly faster).

ATI Radeon 9800 Pro: 680 Mhz (memory)
ATI Radeon X800 Pro: 450 Mhz (memory)

Take my advice... Do not buy a card that is only powered by ATI (like Saphire, etc.) Make sure it was built by ATI. I had a Saphire at first. All sorts of problems... Then the card went defective. Sent it back and got a new card that was built and powered by ATI. Never had problems since.

For the motherboard, I would highly recommend getting the following (same one I have):



Abit KV8-MAX3

It is for the 754 socket and IMO, the best for it.

Goodluck!
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Old 06-18-2004, 12:55 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Alright, with that advice I think I have decided to go with:

CPU: AMD 64 3200+
Mobo: Abit KV8-MAX3 / Asus SK8-V / MSI K8T Neo
Ram: Corsair 3200LL Platinum (1 gb, 2x512)
PSU: Antec TruePower 480 Gold
Video: ATI 9800XT or wait for X800XT and keep my GeForce 4 for a while
HSF: Still questionable
New Harddrives: 2x 74gb 10k rpms or another SATA 7200 by Maxtor

Pretty much sums it up, will be an expensive haas machine, and whats sad is it will be outdated by September lol. Which brings me to another question, is the socket 939 really that much faster than the socket 745 since it can "send more" data throughout the pins? Makes me think I should go ALL OUT and just build an FX-53 machine to use Dual Chan Ram with the insane socket/speed!
__________________
Current Computer Specs
Athlon XP 2200+ (266 FSB)
Asus A7N8X-E Deluxe
1GB Corsair PC2700 C2 Pro Series (2x512)
Thermaltake 11+ HSF
Asus GeForce 4 Ti4600 128mb
420 Antec TruePower
4x Plextor DVDRW
Soundblaster Live 5.1!
120gb Maxtor SATA 7200rpm
60gb Maxtor ATA/133 7200rpm

Currently building a new one (ETA July/August)
archon45 is offline  
Old 06-18-2004, 03:58 PM   #10 (permalink)
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you crazym an get a GIGABYTE K8 TRITON!!!!!!! those are kick *** boards! ya stick with two 512 stix of 3200. and if your low on cash get a gefroce FX 5700 ULTRA those thing kick sooo muich ASSS. i guaruntee you that that card will play anything out right now in very high
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gigabyte P4 titan GT PRO 865G chipset; GA-8IG1000pro
7200rpm 8mb buffer 40gigWD ATA100
52x DVD rom
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WIN XP pro
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DUAL monitor setup: 17 in proview crt, and 15 in IBM crt
priamry mon-gainword geforce FX 5600 ultra 256mb core-378 mem-560
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