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-   -   Too many choices! Need advice! (http://www.hardwarecanucks.com/forum/new-builds/9326-too-many-choices-need-advice.html)

majingrim August 13, 2008 09:39 AM

Too many choices! Need advice!
Hey all, I'm looking to seriously upgrade my PC in the next couple of weeks, but since this will probably be the last time i can do it for a while, i want to make sure i get the best i can for the money i can spend.

I've already pretty much decided to go with the Intel Q9550 (NCIX has them going for $369.99) but everything else is kind of up in the air.

So far, i'm thinking:

ASUS Striker II Extreme 790I Ultra

EVGA E-GEFORCE 9800GX2 (thinking maybe two of these, NCIX: $299 each. They were $289, but the price on them changed today)

Noctua NH-U12P LGA775 AM2 Heatsink Heatpipe Cooler W/ NF-P12 120MM Fan
Enermax Galaxy Dxx 1000W Power Supply ATX V2.0 EPS12V SLI RoHS 24PIN 135MM Fan

OCZ XTC SLI Ready OCZ3N2000SR2GK 2GB DDR3 2X1GB DDR3-2000 CL 9-9-9-28 Dual Channel EPP Mem

Don't need any Hard Drives, case, DVD-RW or anything, already have them (Thermaltake Armor case, Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 3.5IN 500GB SATA2 8.5MS 7200RPM 32MB Cache, and LG 16x SATA DVDRW, AG Neovo 19" monitor (looking to upgrade that to at least a 24" soon enough)) I will also be adding a 47" 1080p HDTV in the next couple months, so that's a must.

The only thing is, with those new ATI 4870 X2s just coming out (NCIX shows they have the Sapphire's in stock for $599.99), I'm wondering if i shouldn't reconsider. I've done some searching around to try to see how the MB and Video cards match up, but can't find any real good reviews with both together. I did find one person who said he didn't think the board would fit two of the GX2's together cuz it would block parts of the board, but no one else has mentionned it.

I'd like some advice on what Motherboard and Video combination you all think would be best, and also.. is it worth it for me to go with the DDR3 Ram (and if so, is it worth going with the 2000mhz?).. If i change the board, should i change the RAM too? And lastly, is that power supply overkill, or is it a case of better safe than sorry? I'm not really looking to overclock, unless it would really be worth the difference.

Thanks in advance, and sorry if i sound like a n00b, it's been a while since i've had the funds to be able to even look at new parts like this :biggrin:

DK2 August 13, 2008 10:21 AM

I don't know much about Nvidia chipsets, but DDR3-2000 seems a little overkill, but thats a pretty good price.
If your going Vista, you might want to think about up'ing the memory 4GB.
NCIX has a flat view of that motherboard, and it doesn't look like there is anything that would block two cards???

majingrim August 13, 2008 10:53 AM

Thanks, I actually was thinking of going with 2 memory kits to make 4GB, but i read somewhere that Windows OS' only support up to 3gb.. i'm guessing that was for pre-vista setups. I was also confused about the card blocking thing.. i looked again and found it on a review:


Cons: I've only got 1 9800 GX2 installed and it runs great with the board. Problem I noticed is that if you want to run SLI there will be issues with the power and USB connections to the motherboard at the bottem. Connections are perpindicular to the board and don't allow enough room to install a 9800 in the bottem PCI-E slot. Will have to mod the connectors to get them to work...same goes for the 3 temp sensors. No joy with 2 of 3 using the recommended (slot 1) PCI-E for the 9800.
So i'm not sure. Most likely the person is just crazy, but i wanted to run it by someone again to see

g10 August 13, 2008 11:30 AM

Also know nothing about nvidia chipsets, other then they run quite HOT and suck up alot of juice, but the 3GB limitation you are referring to has nothing to do with the os, if you are running 32bit vista 3gb is the max but if you install 64bit (witch you should) that is no longer the case.

majingrim August 13, 2008 11:39 AM

Gotcha, 64-bit hasn't been my choice in the past, but i think the software part of things is starting to catch up. I heard about nVidia chipsets running hot too, but apparently the 790i board fixes a good part of that, especially with the Asus cooling setup, i think they called it Northwood or something.

If an nVidia chipset isn't the most popular thing, what would you all recommend for a motherboard to go with that processor/ram/vid combination?

Leclerc August 13, 2008 02:19 PM

Intel P45 are good chipsets for what I have heard about and it support crossfire so you could get a 4870X2 wich will give you hard to beat gaming rig with your Q9550.

majingrim August 13, 2008 04:25 PM

Cool, i just checked it out.. are there any out there that support DDR3 up to 2000mhz? i found this one:

Gigabyte EP45T-EXTREME ATX LGA775 P45 DDR3OC 2PCI-E SATA RAID Sound GLAN 1394 CrossFireX Motherboard

that goes to 1900, but i don't know if it's even worth going DDR3, and if so.. is it worth the 2000mhz stuff, or is 1800 still good?

Any other suggestions for a specific motherboard?

ASUS Maximus II Formula LGA775 P45 ATX DDR2 2PCI-E16 3PCI-E1 2PCI SATA RAID GBLAN 1394 Motherboard

This one looks a lot like what i had in mind already, but it doesn't have DDR3 support.

Thanks for all the feedback so far :biggrin:

majingrim August 13, 2008 04:29 PM

I also saw this:

ASUS Maximus Extreme LGA775 X38 ATX DDR3 2PCI-E16 2PCI-E1 2PCI 2GBLAN 1394A SATA RAID Motherboard

How does the X38 chipset stack up next to the P45?

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