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Old June 24, 2009, 04:59 PM
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Default First Build - $1500 CDN, Advice Please

Hey guys. I'm new to the forums so forgive me if I made some faux pas I'm unaware of. Anyways, I'm relatively experienced with working with computers and software (CS major) but I've never built a computer before. I understood the baseline components and how to measure them (i.e. processor speed, video-card memory), but nothing beyond that. I've done some research and reading, so I feel I've greatly expanded my knowledge. I have an operating budget of $1500 CDN, give or take. Don't need any software or I/O devices. This is what I built.

What I'm doing: Software design, gaming, hd video-editing, etc... on a 1920 x 1200 monitor.

Processor:
TigerDirect.ca 404 Error - Page Not Found [...] CP1-I7-920
Intel Core i7 920 Processor BX80601920 - 2.66GHz, LGA 1366, 4.8GT/s QPI, 8MB L3 Cache, Quad-Core, HyperThreading, Bloomfield, Retail
Price: $309.97 CDN

Video Card:
Newegg.ca - XFX HD-487A-CDF9 Radeon HD 4870 X2 2GB 512-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards
XFX HD-487A-CDF9 Radeon HD 4870 X2 2GB 512-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card
Price: $395.99 CDN after rebate

Motherboard:
http://www.directcanada.com/produc [...] cture=ASUS
ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 X58 ATX LGA1366 DDR3 LGA1366 3PCI-E16 PCI-E4 2PCI CrossFire SLI SATA2 Motherboard
Price: $336.00 CDN

PSU:
http://www.directcanada.com/produc [...] re=CORSAIR
Corsair TX850W 850W CMPSU-850TX 12V 70A 24PIN ATX Active PFC 140M Fan Power Supply
Price: $123.15 CDN

RAM:
NCIX.com - Canada's Premier Computer Store - Great Technology, Service and Selection. [...] re=CORSAIR
Corsair XMS3 TR3X6G1600C9 6GB DDR3 3X2GB DDR3-1600 CL 9-9-9-24 Core i7 Memory Kit
Price: $132.63 CDN

or

Newegg.ca - OCZ Platinum 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Voltage Desktop Memory Model OCZ3P1600LV6GK - Desktop Memory
OCZ Platinum 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Voltage Desktop Memory Model OCZ3P1600LV6GK - Retail
Price: $99.99 CDN after rebate

Case:
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Produ [...] 6811129021
Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
Price: $108.49 CDN

or anything else someone wants to suggest.

HDD:
Western Digital WD10EADS Caviar Green 1TB SATA 32MB Cache 3.5IN Hard Drive OEM - DirectCanada
Western Digital WD10EADS Caviar Green 1TB SATA 32MB Cache 3.5IN Hard Drive OEM
Price: $99.88 CDN
(is it 7200 rpm? It doesn't say)

or any 1 TB models someone wants to suggest.

Total: $1520.07 CDN (with the Corsair RAM)

So here is what I'd like to ask:
1. Am I getting the best possible computer for the money?
2. Am I getting good deals?
3. What's a good case I should go with that will keep my comp cool? I just chose a random one.
4. If I'm planning to OC, would I need any aftermarket cooling products? If so, what?
5. If I'm planning to OC, would the PSU give me the needed wattage and then some?
6. Is everything compatible?

I'm undecided about the RAM. The OCZ is better and cheaper, but I've heard that for some reason only 4 of the 6 gigs are utilized for whatever reason. Might have been compatability with the P6T motherboard.

And please, if you want to suggest alternative components (or better deals on the same components) to what I've chosen, by all means go ahead.

Thank you.

Whoops on the links, they don't work. I'm working on fixing them.
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Old June 24, 2009, 05:18 PM
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Welcome to the forums, I'm sure you'll get lots of helpful hints here.

First suggestion is to use PM (price match) over at NCIX which will allow you to order everything from the same place while still getting the best prices.

The only thing that stands out for me is the use of the 4870 X2. I've never been a big fan of X2 cards so my own personal preference would be for the best single GPU card you can afford. As far as CPU cooling goes, there are quite a few good CPU coolers out there for around $50 which makes it almost a "must have" if you have any inclination at all towards overclocking in the future. (I'd even suggest it for somebody who's going to run stock).
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Old June 24, 2009, 05:43 PM
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Welcome to the forum my friend.
Well everything seem realy good balace for me exept for the VGA card, try to avoid dual GPU card they all have many driver problem and most of the time you don't realy get an extra performance in gaming. At this price get a card like this one
NCIX.com - Buy EVGA E-GEFORCE GTX 285 648MHZ 1024MB 2.484GHZ GDDR3 PCI-E Dual DVI-I HDCP HDTV Out Video Card - 01G-P3-1180-AR In Canada.
way better way stable and I'm not an Nvidia fan as you can see in my sig I am using a ATI card wich I realy love:). Also stay with the corsais memory if you want long life build. Look at Mushkin and G.skill to. They are great and better for OC then corsair and most of the time lower in cost. For the rest eveything is realy good.
For OC you WILL need an aftermarket cooler, Go with OCZ vendetta 2+ LGA1366 mount or with thermalRight Ultra 120 1366.
Even OC the comp will suck max 600W ( and i'm adding extra to be sure ) so yes the PSU will give you everything you want. With this rig a corsair HX620 would be WAY enough.

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Old June 24, 2009, 05:57 PM
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Thanks for the quick replies guys. Choosing a video card was giving me lots of grief as well. I want to stay away from SLI or Xfire, but I'm not completely adverse to that. My trouble with the gtx 285 is that it rates very badly as far as money vs. performance goes (it was my initial choice as well, but someone pointed out that out to me). I saw a video on youtube where a guy matched a super-clocked 285 benchmark for benchmark with an overclocked 280. As far as I could tell, the x2 is one of the best deals when it comes to money vs. performance. Am I misinformed? What's the disadvantage of a dual GPU? Instability?

How about two 275s in SLI or two 4890s in Xfire? How do those perform compare to the 4870 x2 or the gtx 285?
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Old June 24, 2009, 06:09 PM
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Get a single 4890 or GTX275 (whoever the cheaper and if you fold) to see if you satisfied first. It should play every game at that resolution. Add another one if you want more performance. 2 GTX 275 or 2 HD 4890 will rape the GTX 285 and will perform better than the 4870X2

NCIX.com - Buy XFX Radeon HD 4890 1GB 850MHZ 1GB 3.9GHZ GDDR5 PCI-E 2XDVI HDTV Video Card - HD489AZDFC In Canada.

XFX hd4890 for 225$
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Old June 24, 2009, 06:54 PM
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Thanks. I might just do that; buy a single one and then upgrade. Put less strain on my wallet as well. Would you suggest the 4890 or the 275? As far as I can tell, the ATI cards seem like better bang for the buck, but i'm no expert. I heard some games seem to prefer nvidia though, like Crysis. As far as what I'll be playing, probably just about everything. It seems like most cards (4850, gtx 260, etc) will play everything fine single card except for Crysis. Since I'll be in the computer industry quite shortly, I'd like to have a comp that will perform very well for at least 2 years and hold its own for maybe another year without upgrades.

Now, as far as cooling goes, I'm a complete noob. Can somebody suggest a well-ventilated and roomy case, and maybe point me to a good cooling guide? If I want to OC with Xfire will I need a better PSU or liquid cooling system?

Will I need special cooling units for each component like the CPU, GPUs, and RAM? Does liquid cooling run quieter? Is it relatively cheap?
Thanks again.
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Old June 24, 2009, 07:40 PM
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Air cooling is more than enough, water is for pushing hard the CPU and is really expensive compare to air cooling. It should be quieter than air through. You only need an aftermarket heat sink for the CPU. I suggest the Mugen 2
NCIX.com - Buy Scythe Mugen 2 Heatpipe CPU Heatsink LGA1366 LGA775 Socket AM2 120MM - SCMG-2000 In Canada.

For the graphic card, if you are not planning to fold, than get the HD4890 since it's cheaper. Your PSU is enough for OC and crossfire.

For the case, it's subjective but I recommend the HAF 932

Buy COOLERMASTER [RC-932-KKN1] Cooler Master Haf 932 Full Tower Black EATX Case 6X5.25 1X3.5 5X3.5INT No PSU USB eSATA 1394 Audio

if you have the budget, the ATCS 840

NCIX.com - Buy Coolermaster ATCS840 ATX Tower Case Black 6X5.25 6X3.5INT 1X3.5EXT Front USB Firewire eSATA Audio - RC-840-KKN1-GP In Canada.
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Old June 24, 2009, 07:47 PM
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The problem with X2 card is a part of instability as well but the problem is the dividing of everything is to much based on the driver so many time it do shit and you get a game wich add reay good graphic lowered because the driver do it in a bad way. Rapmaster is right on this point if you don't plan to fold get a 4890 ( avoid the asus super tweak version ). if ever needed ( not for now i'm sure ) get one more. If you are playing on a 22 and under 275 and 4890 can play any game in max setting without a problem.

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Old June 25, 2009, 10:34 AM
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Is there a specific 4890 model anyone suggest I go with? And if I eventually set it up in Xfire and OC, I won't need any aftermarket gpu coolers?
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Old June 25, 2009, 10:56 AM
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NCIX.com - Buy NCIX Gaming Bundle Deal Intel Core i7 920 CPU & ASUS P6T SLI & CrossFire Motherboard -UNASSEMBLED - i7-920-P6T In Canada.
Might wanna check that out $550 for i7 920 and Asus mobo.

NCIX's current promo has almost all the things on your list on sale so you might want to look into it. if only free shipping was this week, lol...

I think generally the consensus for GPU is XFX brand just because of the double lifetime warranty and good customer service. With the Radeons there barely any premium on their price, so that's nice too.

However as far as I can tell the radeon 4870 and 4890 stock coolers are supposed to be ridiculously loud. (I just bought an xfx 4890 and will be putting it in my rig once all my components arrive so i don't have personal experience yet) but from all that i've read it's supposed to be pretty loud. Depending on how bad it is i might get an aftermarket vga cooler, heh.
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