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Best Spec Computer for the ultimate gamer - question

By SuSHiNiNJA
Jun 5, 2006
  1. Hi, i'm brand new to this forum , and my friend recommended me to join since i can get best support for my questions here.

    I'm sorry too for the double forums post , just that i wasn't sure i'll get the best answers from a gaming forum only and i wasn't sure that alot of hardware specialist are reading the gaming forum anyway so my appologies.

    i know some of you will concider me a geekchick for this question
    but i just like to enjoy a good game on my spare time rather than get annoyed by my boyfriend so i wanted to buy a new gaming PC because mine is getting abit outdated, and i want to get a good outcome from the money i'll spend on the box, as well as to hope it will serve me for the next few years without the need of adding or replacing anything anymore.
    so..

    I recenetly got myself a new gaming PC, haven't ordered it yet, just made the build for it.
    but i still have some questions about it as i was recommended on a few pointers that i might want to change so i had just a few primary questions that i wanted to ask you for.

    My current spec that i am ordering is this :

    MainBoard : Intel Sandusky 945PSNLK
    CPU : Intel P-Dual 3GHz
    Memory : 1GB DDR2 Geil Dual Kit.
    Storage : two WD 250GB HDDs SATA II
    GFX card : pcx7900GTX DDR3 512MB 256Bit card with imp clock speed (don't remember what speed exactly).
    Sound Card : Creative X-Fi Fatality full bundle
    CDROM : Dual Layer DVDRW
    Case : Asus Vento 3600
    WaterCooling system : ThermalTake Aquarius III (already had that on my priveous machine).
    Mouse : mx518 Logitech
    Monitor : Toshiba 32' plazma monitor.
    -----------------------------------------------
    this is the spec right now.
    i had a few pointers that i wanted to ask
    but first i would like to get some recommendations about the spec i have now,
    is it any good or i should concider changing some hardware?

    about the questions..
    well, i know that AMD is an all-out-better machine than intel when it comes to gaming and gfx processing in general. but i know that it's very hard to pick a good amd + mainboard combo as they overheat quite much if you don't make the right choice, what you think i should go with?

    2nd question is about the SLI techonlogy. not ashamed to say that at this subject i have no clue how SLI works and what exactly it does , only thing i can figure out (i think) is that it takes all the GPU usage from one card and balancing it out 50/50 between the two SLI-Ready cards that i'll be using.
    in that case, what mainboard should i best pick and can i use the gfx card that i want to buy (pcx7900gtx) as SLI and if so then how exactly it will improve my gaming experience.

    another question about the gfx card is what is the best chipset that goes now with the 7900 series and what's the best mainboad combo for that card.

    that's about it i think.

    feel free to send any recommendations and whatever else you might want to say. all your advices are welcome and thank you very much.

    forgot to add a question about the watercooling
    my last mainboard , Asus P4S800D , was burned because of the major overheating in the CPU area.
    iwas using thermaltake AQuarius III on it and seemed to not just overheat, but totally burn my transistors on the CPU area, even the back of the MB was all brownblackish and crispy
    i was told that i might have used too much thermal glue when i placed the waterblock on it.
    im not sure it's true but that kinda makes me to be afraid to use that Aquarius III again on the new box ill get.
    are there any other alternatives like a water cooled fan or something?
    the reason i liked the aquarius is cuz it was silent 90% but it's hard to keep up with replacing water all the time when im not at home often and my PC is running, as well as spending tons of anti-freeze coolant on it. which btw never seemed to help.
    are there are other alternatives for a good cooling on the CPU? even if it will make abit more noise.
    maybe there's some good Case that can down the noise level abit?

    thanks,
    Alysia.

    Edit: I have deleted your other thread. I understand your concerns, but your thread here is more than enough. Thanks.
     
  2. DonNagual

    DonNagual TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,404

    Hello, and welcome to techspot!

    First, before we go any further, are you aware that Intel will be releasing a new CPU in the next month(s) or so? If I were building a new system, since the release date is so soon, I'd recommend waiting. Assuming you don't want to wait, then I'll answer your questions based on the technology currently on the market:

    The AMD/Intel question is always a hard one. What you have heard is true, for gaming AMD is a better choice than Intel, and if you are strictly wanting a gaming machine, then AMD is what I'd recommend.

    A CPU in about the same price range of the Pentium you were looking at would be the AthlonX2 3800+ (AM2). A motherboard like this one:
    http://www.asus.com/products4.aspx?l1=3&l2=101&l3=301&model=1160&modelmenu=1
    would be a nice choice.

    I notice you are getting a high end sound card as well. What kind of speakers do you have? Unless you have extemely high end speakers, you do not need that powerful sound card. The board I have recommended above has a very strong sound chip built into it. More than enough for most home PC speakers and they have great sound. With the money you save, you could upgrade the CPU to something more powerful, or upgrade to 2Gb of ram.

    I didn't see a Power Supply in your list. You should be looking in the 550w range, and I'd suggest getting an Antec or Enermax.

    You basically got it right. An "sli" motherboard has two PCI-E slots for putting in graphics cards. You install two, and they can work together to improve your performance. I have an SLI board, but I am only using one graphics card at the moment. If you get a 7900GTX card, just one is more than enough for today's games. The SLI slot gives you the option of getting a second one in a year or so when you feel the performance is getting slow. The questionable part is, there is a high chance that in a year, there will be a newer graphics card that will outperform two 7900GTX cards for a better price. Only time will tell.

    As for your question about watercooling, I am not the best person to answer that. My opinion is that watercooling is for enthusiasts who either a) like to overclock and need extreme cooling or b) like to have the flashy looks of a water cooled system. I am neither ;) Stock cooling has always been fine in my systems.

    Hope this helped!
     
  3. SuSHiNiNJA

    SuSHiNiNJA TS Rookie Topic Starter

    thank you

    was very helpful :)
    the speakers i use are Creative 7.1 Speaker System GigaWorks S750 for my home theater thus i wanted to get a crystal clear card such as creative's or maybe thought between this and M-Sound soundcard.. but i decided to go with creative.

    althou if you are saying that the asus motherboard supports a great sound quality with it's sound chip then maybe i will indeed improve the RAM instead.
    the PC is basicaly for gaming, but im planning on installing a media center windows or vista for good video streaming and ofcorse interactive designing working with tools like flash,3dsm and maya and bryce, as well as sound editing tools like cubase SX and reason.

    about the CPU, i wish i could wait but i really can't , not because the patience issue, for some other issues. about graphics card for the future.
    the latest card that came out was the 7950GTX 1GB MB/512bit bus , and from my research of it on the web, it pretty much sucked compare to it's price. and i was thinking between x1900 and 7900GTX and figured i'd go for nvidia since i was an ATI costumer for all this time and want to try something new.

    is the board you gave me the link for really good? i mean concidering it's compatability for the AMD processor you recommended me.
    and if so then what is the best AMD processor on the market today in a afordable price range. i mean comparing to Pentium D 3.4GHz price range and performance.

    about the power supply , i didn't concider adding it the list but the one i am getting is CoolerMaster Real Power 550Watt SLI

    Thank you,
    Alysia.
     
  4. DonNagual

    DonNagual TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,404

    I'd agree on the 7950GTX. It looks like an amazing card, but not worth that pricetag. In fact, I'd say the same about the two cards you are looking at. The X1900XTX and the 7900GTX are also (IMHO) still overpriced. They are the top performance cards out now, and for that you pay extra.

    I'd personally get a 7900GT. It is much cheaper, and will have NO problems playing any game that comes out for some time to come. Again, all a matter of opinion. I personally always choose to go one step down from the performance champs and save a massive amount of money. And one step down, really, isn't all that far.

    I'll be honest and say.... I think so. ;)
    The AM2 socket has JUST been released, so I have not yet had the chance to use that board myself, nor have I read any reviews on it yet. I am strictly going on Asus' reputation. They make high quality motherboards, and I am pretty confident that the one I linked you to will be no exception.


    Check prices in your area, but I myself would want the AthlonX2 4400+ AM2. That would be my first choice on a performance/cost basis here using Japan prices. Anything higher than that and the price skyrockets. If that is a bit out of your range, then the AthlonX2 4200+ or the AthlonX2 3800+ would be good choices as well. Just be sure you get the AM2 versions (in order to match your motherboard).

    Here is a great site you can use to compare the CPUs against each other. They don't list the AM2 cpus (as they were just released) but their performance is about the same as the ones listed on those charts (socket 939 versions)

    http://www23.tomshardware.com/cpu.html
     
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