First Gaming Rig Build, need suggestions

By creflo · 9 replies
May 13, 2008
  1. I posted a previous build on these forums but then I had to study for finals (which I kicked **** at) and I also had a few different choices in parts so here goes:

    XtremeGear / CoolerMaster RC-1000 Cosmos Silent Gaming Tower Case - EVGA 132-CK-NF78-A1 LGA 775 NVIDIA nForce 780i SLI ATX Intel Motherboard - Intel Motherboards - Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9650 Yorkfield 3.0GHz 12MB L2 Cache LGA 775 130W Quad-Core Processor - CPUs / Processors - Crucial Ballistix Tracer 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Desktop Memory

    3X - Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 ST3500320AS 500GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - Internal Hard Drives
    (2 for Raid 0, and one for Data storage) - COOLER MASTER Real Power Pro RS-850-EMBA 850W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply 100 - 240 V CE, cUL, TUV, NEMKO, BSMI, FCC - Power Supplies

    2X - SAMSUNG Black 20X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 20X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache PATA 20X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe - CD / DVD Burners

    2X - EVGA 512-P3-N845-AR GeForce 8800GTS (G92) KO 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards
    in SLI

    The reason I choose to go for a QX9650 is because I am not familiar with overclocking as I have had this pos Dell for 8 years now. So in that regard, I will be running this system at stock for the first 3 weeks or so before I start tinkering with overclocking...maybe longer.

    Now for my RAM selection, if I'm running at stock speeds would pc8500 be a better choice?

    I know my PSU is overkill, however I want this system to be highly upgradeable.

    Going with Cosmos Silent Gaming Tower because the Dell I have now is LOUD and I hate it.

    What cooling fans, heatsinks, thermal paste/grease, should I go with? I'm not savvy on cooling setups and my tower will have multiple spots for fans (they come with fans but I heard they aren't good quality).

    I have a $3k budget for this system.

    Any suggestions?

  2. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    Spend the highest percentage of your money on the motherboard and CPU. After that it's the Video Card(s), memory, hard drive(s), then CD/DVD burners. Go with a good 3rd party CPU cooler. Get the highest speed memory the motherboard supports. Check these specs carefully. Keep the case fans to minimum. 1 fan blowing in from front. One on hard drive cage, and 1 in the back case pulling air out. Arctic Silver 5 or 6 will be fine... Don't use too much
  3. creflo

    creflo TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I've decided to switch up the RAM to this: - OCZ Reaper HPC 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Desktop Memory

    and I'm switching the PSU to this: - PC Power & Cooling S75QB 750W EPS12V Power Supply 100 - 240 V UL, ULC, CE, CB, RoHS - Power Supplies

    I would really like to know what you recommend for cooling the processor though, what are some good cooling solutions?
    Also, people are telling me that the QX9650 is not that much of a gain vs. the Q6600, how can this be?
  4. Bruce2

    Bruce2 TS Rookie

    Cpu wise I didn't like the "extreme". On the graphic card, I would look at the 98's for a week and pick one. Good suggestion on psu and rams by creflo.
  5. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,443   +38

    The 780i mobo is useless, since it's practically the same as the 680i but with support for PCI-E 2.0, and has the same hot northbridge, which is the ages-old nForce 570 BTW. I'd recommend an Intel chipset motherboard, preferably an X38-based one like this one.

    Get this E8500 instead of the QX9650, since it will run cooler and you won't have any programs that actually take advantage of the QX9650's two extra CPUs, so why waste money getting it? The E8400's cores are also at a higher frequency than the quad-core CPU, which makes it an even better proposition.

    I'd recommend this as a cheaper and equally powerful alternative to the PC Power & Cooling 750W PSU.

    As far as memory goes, I'd recommend Crucial's kit, because it guarantees compatibility with any motherboard.

    Lastly, for fans, I'd recommend the Scythe SFF21F, Yate Loon D12SM-12 and the Panaflo M1A 120mm, in that order.
  6. creflo

    creflo TS Rookie Topic Starter

    A lot of people are recommending the Corsair 750w on the other forums as well so I think I'll take your advice on that.

    However, I really want an SLI board and if you don't think the 780i is up to the task, how about this one:

    I just wanted the Quad-Core for future programs that take advantage of them, plus I plan on dabbling into the realm video editing, which I heard Quads really excel at. I'm still open to persuasion though.
  7. mako man

    mako man TS Rookie Posts: 50


    Do yourself a favor pay close attention to what Rage suggests you can't go wrong..
  8. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    mako man,
    my thoughts exactly :grinthumb
  9. creflo

    creflo TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Maybe I should go with a MSI Platinum 750i, they supposedly have 8 phases and better overclocking ability for Quad-core. And since I'm not going tri SLI this would be cheaper anyway. What do you guys think?

    Also, I'm thinking about going this route for cooling (as soon as I can find it)
  10. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,443   +38

    The 750i SLI has one PCI-E slot running at x16 and the other running at 8x, but this shouldn't limit performance noticeably. Go for it but I tend to stay away from SLI, since it has issues with new games that take a while to be sorted out. BioShock is a major reminder of that fact.

    As for the CPU, most programs have hardly begun to use the two cores on a dual-core CPU, so the extra two cores on a quad-core are essentially going to waste unless the program is optimized for multi-CPU usage, and these programs can effectively be counted on your fingers. Thus, a very fast dual-core CPU wll perform much better than a lower clocked quad-core CPU. Also, programs that take advantage of dual-core CPUs have just begun to show up, so quad-friendly apps are still a long time away IMO, and by then, we'd probably have octo-core CPUs.

    Stay away from eVGA's motherboards, they usually have issues with SLI. Get the MSI board instead, or one from ASUS or Gigabyte.

    You should get a SATA burner instead of a PATA one, simply because SATA cables help airflow as opposed to the bulky PATA cables. The price difference is minimal too, so there no reason to get a PATA drive when a SATA one is available for $2-3 more.

    Lastly, watercooling is unnecessary for your setup, since your case would have plenty of air cooling and the GPUs themselves have coolers that throw the hot air out of the case directly. The only heat-generating components in your case would be the CPU, the HDDs and the northbridge. This heat can easily be expelled by 3-4 case fans, so watercooling is unnecessary. Also, watercooling is a risky business and the rig needs to be drip-tested thoroughly so it doesn't screw up your $3K worth of components. Unless you have experience with it, or have someone around your place to help you out, I'd recommend staying away from it.

    Good luck and let us know how it goes. :)
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