An Upgrade Review. From buggy to problem free.
Mind you this is totally subjective, my opinion, my feelings and what impression spending 500$ to upgrade my computer had on me using those parts.
No pics... I totally forgot to take any.
So I went from...
-A buggy EVGA 750i FTW. It had a defective SATA port, USB was starting to turn off by itself randomly(usually during games I would loose audio in my headset, G5, G13 or G25 or all 4...), would sometimes take USB sticks, sometimes I wont...
-A very mint running E8500 running at 4.0ghz cooled by a Xigmatek 1283
-Some equally mint running Mushkin Redlines 4gb.
-Asus P7P55D-E LX(USB3.0, SATA6, 1 pcie16X, no SLI)
-Intel i5 750 sporting a Zalman CNPS10X Performa. To be overclocked later.
-4gb of DDR3 G.Skill ram(1.5v 8-8-8-24 I Think) that was on special at Canada computers.
From my old system, I was keeping my EVGA GTX460SC, SB X-FI Titanium, Kingston 64gb SSD, 2x 500gb WD HD and my trusty Corsair TX750.
I started by taking out everything from my current box, a Panzerbox... I love the way this case looks on the outside and the ventilation but I hate the layout inside. You cant slide the motherboard tray in/out with large coolers... anyway.
I then started to assemble the new system in. The SATA ports being at the bottom are easily accessed. They are out of the way once the videocard is in, I like that. People will tend to complain there is no side-ports on some motherboards but in many new smaller cases, you dont have much room for them. No issues for me. Tons of USB ports on the board available for the front or back if you want to add more. I also like the heatsinks on the board. They are well placed, should be effective and yet they are not in the way of anything like the huge pieces of aluminium used on some higher end boards.
Next was the CPU/Cooler... CPU went in easily... the cooler... well... this is one big mofo. It hangs slightly on top of one ram bank. Not preventing from using it but I will have to unmount the fan to install a second 4gb in there eventually. The fan went on without a hitch using the brackets.
Having a TX750 means I got long enough wiring to reach the power connector on top, no issue there.
Everything is plugged in, double check... press the power button... and it works. No issues, no bios crash, no unrecognised ram, I am greeted by the bios screen right away after a quick boot sequence. I review quickly the boot priority, time and date, check default CPU and ram settings just in case, save and boom... off I went to a fresh trouble free Win7 install.
A little over an hour later, everything was installed, updated, patches, blablabla, Ran 30 minutes of RealTemp/Prime95 to check the temps and to see if everything is stable. I know it's not enough by some standards but on a new system I find it enough to detect if there will be any issues. Everything went smooth as predicted, the CPU not going over 47C on all cores at any given time at the current stock speeds. This CNPS10X rocks and is quiet also by my standards.
I then fired up Bad Company 2, Blur and Borderlands without a single hic-up. Finally I can drive my C4'd ATV around without fear of loosing it...
I was interrupted in my enjoyment of my new found bug free gaming sessions by my wife around midnight telling me to let go of my toy and get my ass to bed. I had to oblige.
So am I happy about the money I spent?
I had a strict budget of 500$ tx incl and wanted the best bang for the buck. I ended up a little under what I had planned and It was a trouble free install. I did not have to break some fingers to make them bend the other way to install a SATA cable somewhere, the RAM or the CPU cooler, everything booted fine right away. The temps are well in check with the Zalman cooler. The ram... is ok for now, it works, that's the important part.
So, yeah, i'm happy with my upgrade, I don't think I'll run out of CPU for a while now. If need more "power" down the line in 1-2-3 years, I'll upgrade the videocard and that's it. I cant see being that CPU limited otherwise with this setup.
That's all folks!
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