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Old June 21, 2009, 01:45 PM
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Default My 2nd computer, first build, need advice

After having my current computer for nearly 7 years going to school and having to enviously listen to my friends talk about the latest and greatest of games which I could never play on this old beast, the time has come that a new tower is possible within a months time. I've already been shopping around comparing gaming packages custom builds and was looking for something around the $1500 (yep JUST the tower). So far the best system appears to be this from Boomers Computers

Asus P5Q-E Motherboard
Intel Q9550 (Quad Core)
4GB DDR2 800Mhz ram (2x2)
ATI 4890 (1GB)
500 GB 7200rpm SATA Hard Drive
6 channel Audio & Gigabit NC
20x Dual Layer DVD+ R/RW
Antec Sonata III (500W power supply included)
Option of WIndows XP home edition or Vista Home Premium
Norton Anti-virus
2 year labour warranty but not parts oddly enough
This will all cost roughly $1300 to $1400 tops

As of now this is the only information I have available. I've gone through so many forums and reviews that I'm almost feeling dizzy. This motherboard will be crossfire ready if I later choose to go that route, but so many questions remain such as...

Is this a worthy setup for the price? I want a computer that is upgradeable but some have said that the Q9550 quad isn't worth it because it can only clock so much. Also I've heard issues with the 45nm chip only being able to handle so much voltage thus limiting it's OCing ability.

The power supply I imagine is good for now, but if I were to crossfire the ATI 4890, I imagine I'd need at least a 600W power supply, again could my setup even handle that?

Then once it's all been figured out I'll have to remember cooling, jeez it's like buying a new car.

Now I plan to overclock this a bit but in reality I just want to be able to run games like Fallout 3, Left For Dead and anything made within the last year really lol. I have no paticular preference to brand names though reliability is important. As stated before it'll be used mostly for gaming but really it'll also be the basic everything computer, gaming I imagine will be it's most taxing chore.

ANY feedback is appreciated

Last edited by whitelight; June 21, 2009 at 01:55 PM.
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Old June 21, 2009, 01:59 PM
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You are paying too much, in my opinion.

Get a different PSU. A PSU is something you can generally keep for a few years, even a few hardware changes so it's generally an alright idea to get yourself one that will hopefully work with your future plans.

Get a different case. The Antec 300 has *WAY* more airflow than the Sonata. IMO, the Sonata is only really good for low end systems.

4 gigs of ram is alright, motherboard is off in the right direction, and cpu is good (but you could probably save some decent $$$ by buying a used processor from the forums here - like a Q6600)

6 channel audio and gigabit should already be on the motherboard, I wouldn't get add on cards for those.

You should be able to get all this in under $1000 if you really watch what you're doing.

I don't think at this point you should worry too much about overclocking. You can do it later, and get some experience dabbling in it now with what you've got. The general idea you've got for a computer isn't slow and should play any game out there at good or acceptable framerate.

Where abouts do you live?
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Old June 21, 2009, 02:30 PM
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I live in Victoria that's in B.C. Canada

I agree with the new power supply and I just researched the casing and discovered that changing out the power supplies is a hassle because of fixed mounting brackets so a new case does seem to be a viable option, something that could easily mount a 600 or 750W PSU.

The Intel Q9550 was a $100 upgrade option from a Intel p4 E8400 3Ghz 6MB 1333FSB, it seemed worth it but I've heard many people toot the Q6600, what's the deal with that CPU and why is it so highly endorsed?
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Old June 21, 2009, 03:08 PM
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note on your anti-virus, norton sucks---a lot
id recommend you go with the paid version of AVG or Kyspersky
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Old June 21, 2009, 03:19 PM
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I'm just off Scott Road in Surrey.

The Antec Sonata doesn't have fixed psu mounts, it's got a brace bar across the inside of the case so that you can't take the psu out without pulling the motherboard, or at least without taking the heatsink off the cpu. 20 seconds with a drill fixes that problem and the bar is removed. Not really sure why it's there in the first place. You can actually just tear the thing out. Only a few rivets holding it on.

People like the Q6600 because it worked well and was a great overclocker. Very common for the 2.4ghz quad to hit 3.6ghz. To me, it seemed almost like Intel found it too popular because it seemed to rob the sales of some of their newer processors.

By the way, an "old" 8800GT video card will play L4D, Fallout3, etc, with absolutely no problems.
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Old June 21, 2009, 03:21 PM
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Some people like Norton and others hate them like the previous poster. On computers I've built for relatives I always put Norton Internet. And so far no problems whatsoever.
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Old June 21, 2009, 03:25 PM
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Drop the 500gb hard drive for a 640gb western digital black, make sure you grab a good set of either G.Skill/Mushkin DDR2 6400/8500s or if they are on sale the patriots are normally dirt cheap, Deffinetly drop that PSU and case, personally id go for a coolermaster case like the CM 690, way better cable management and case design then the 300 or go with a newer antec 902 (nine hundred and two). The Q9550 overclocks like a beast and is a much better CPU then the Q6600, it runs cooler and can hit 4ghz+ on air ;)

Personally I would grab a P5Q-Pro or vanilla (not the E), a Q9550, some G.Skill 8500s, a western digital 640 black, a TX650 PSU (corsair), a CM690 or 902 or coolermaster haf 922/932 (the new one or the old), Theres no video card listed but id grab a 4870 or GTX 260 (just noticed you want a 4890 go with that) as they are on for a steal lately and can be seen at $150 or less! I also highly doubt you could crossfire the 4890s on a 600w PSU... I could be wrong but Id be looking at atleast a reputable 650w.

Personally I would build the rig yourself and save the extra $400+ the Q9550 is the same retail price as most Q6600s right now ($259 CND) and there has been no better time to buy/build a new rig, apparently custom PC companies know that and are charging a premium for their stuff. You really dont need 2x 4890s to run any of the listed games, a 4890 will handle crysis and farcry 2 but will destroy any other current game title available even on a 24" monitor.
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Old June 21, 2009, 03:27 PM
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Norton has been known to manufacture viruses and adware in the past ;) I wont deal with a company like that, aside from that norton is hands down the biggest performance robbing AV out there >.< Personally I just run AVG free and be done with it, watch what you download and you should never get a virus.
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Asrock P67 Fatal1ty, Intel i5 2500K @ 5.1ghz, 16gb HyperX 1600 CL8, Evga GTX 580 SC SLIed and water-cooled, HX850, Crucial M4 64gb, 640 black, 1tb + 3x 2tb greens, Haf X.


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Old June 21, 2009, 03:35 PM
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Here is a quickie run down of parts from NCIX. You can most likely save more by pricematching and looking for shipping specials. I forgot to put an OS in so add that on. Build it yourself, it is not that hard!


Del
Item Description In Stock Part # QTY Price Ext. Price ASUS P5Q-E ATX LGA775 P45 DDR2 3PCI-E16 2PCI-E1 2PCI SATA2 Sound GBLAN eSATA 1394 Motherboard
Usually ships in 1-2 business days. In Stock 30299 $168.72 $168.72 Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 Quad Core Processor LGA775 2.83GHZ Yorkfield 1333FSB 12MB Retail Box
Usually ships in 1-2 business days. In Stock 30576 $295.35 $295.35 Mushkin Ascent PC2-8000 4GB 2X2GB DDR2-1000 CL5-5-5-12 240PIN Dual Channel Memory Kit
Usually ships in 1-2 business days.
In Stock 30219 $84.99 $84.99 PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 Quad CrossFire 750W ATX V2.2 EPS12 24PIN Active PFC Power Supply Red
Usually ships in 1-2 business days. NCIX.com SURPRISE SPECIALS!
The Surprise Special price on this item is guaranteed for ONLY 3 minutes. Available in limited quantities only, with a limit of one (1) per customer. Hurry! No rainchecks or Price Matches for these items are available after limited quantities are sold out. Note: Your order for these items are counted only after you've completed your purchase.
In Stock 25177 $129.99 $129.99 XFX Radeon HD 4890 1GB 850MHZ 1GB 3.9GHZ GDDR5 PCI-E 2XDVI HDTV Video Card
Usually ships in 1-2 business days.
In Stock 37430 $224.99 $224.99 Coolermaster cm 690 Mid Tower Black ATX Case 5X5.25 5X3.5INT No PS Front USB Sound Firewire & eSATA
Usually ships in 1-2 business days. In Stock 26048 $89.79 $89.79 Western Digital Caviar Black 640GB 7200RPM 32MB Dual Proc 3.5IN SATA Hard Drive OEM 5YR Mfg Warranty
Usually ships in 1-2 business days.
In Stock 34286 $77.99 $77.99 LG GH22LS30 Super Multi 22X SATA Lightscribe DVD Writer OEM
Usually ships in 1-2 business days. In Stock 38568 $37.61 $37.61 Shipping Estimate: Postal Code:



YOUR TOTAL $1,109.43
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Old June 21, 2009, 04:25 PM
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+1 to stoanees build but drop the mushkins for these
NCIX.com - Buy G.SKILL F2-8000CL5D-4GBPQ PC2-8000 4GB 2X2GB DDR2-1000 CL5-5-5-15 240PIN Dual Channel Memory Kit - F2-8000CL5D-4GBPQ In Canada.

Same performance, overclock well, but $20 cheaper ;)
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Asrock P67 Fatal1ty, Intel i5 2500K @ 5.1ghz, 16gb HyperX 1600 CL8, Evga GTX 580 SC SLIed and water-cooled, HX850, Crucial M4 64gb, 640 black, 1tb + 3x 2tb greens, Haf X.


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advice , build , gaming build , new computer , q9550

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