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KevMeister's Custom Rig: Need help and opinions

By KevMeister · 11 replies
Jul 9, 2009
  1. I just signed up in Techspot looking for advice on a custom rig I'm putting together. Hoping you can help me out here :)

    Here is what I've drafted so far:

    Gigabyte x58 UD3R

    Intel i7 920

    Something compatible w/ Mobo
    Drafted OCZ (3x2gb) 1600 DDR3 Gold from a pricelist but I'm unsure if it matches the 4 slot configuration on the Mobo or if its compatible.

    Antec TruePower 750W

    Need a suggestion here but Inno3D 896M GTX 275. I heard that similar brands of Mobo and GFX usually don't perform as well together?

    NZXT Alpha Black

    W.D. SATA 1TB


    What I'm after here is something around a 1k budget mark, with hardware that are compatible and will run great together. Emphasis on value and compatibility. I'm for a setup that's mid-range and complement each other instead of blowing cash on high-end gear. Also almost forgot to mention my main intention is for gaming.

    This is going to be my first custom built rig, so I'm open to any advice. Thanks for the help in advance :D
  2. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 7,103   +422

    Here's my limited 2 cents. Since you want something under a budget, you probably should say what that is. For triple channel RAM use the white colored RAM slots and skip the blue one.
  3. KevMeister

    KevMeister TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Sorry, edited 1k budget in.
  4. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,443   +36

    That's £1000 I presume? Specifying the location would allow us to give you specific recommendations.
  5. KevMeister

    KevMeister TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I'm in Australia, but about 1000USD.

    Here is the updated list:

    Asus Rampage Extreme x48


    Intel Core2Quad Q9550

    4G Kit(2x2G) DDR3 1600 G.Skill

    Corsair 650TX

    XFX ATI HD4890 1GB

    CM Storm Scout


    LG 22X DVDR Burner Black IDE GH22NP20
  6. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,443   +36

    That would be about 1300AUD right? For that kind of budget, I would highly recommend a 790X\FX motherboard like the GA-MA790FX-UD5P and a Phenom II X4 920\940 (whichever is cheaper). You would be able to spend a bit more on the rest of the PC then. I would also recommend going for a full-tower ATX case like the Antec Twelve Hundred, Thermaltake Armor or Kandalf, or the Cooler Master Stacker. Mid-tower cases can get quite cramped with long cards and quad-core CPUs.

    Your other parts look great though.
  7. KevMeister

    KevMeister TS Rookie Topic Starter

    What would be a good Core2Duo and Mobo combo given that we keep the 1gb 4890?

    Downgrading to ddr2 RAM won't be a huge problem, just that looking at the prices here now I think that I'd have to cut costs.

    So downgrade to Core2Duo and ddr2?
  8. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,443   +36

    That would be the E8400 for a CPU and the GA-EP43-UD3L, or GA-EP45-UD3P. The latter supports Crossfire, the former doesn't, so that's what you should think about before buying either.
  9. 04ihegba

    04ihegba TS Rookie

    I agree with Rage, a Phenom II processor is THE choice for anyone who is building on your budget. Grab a X4 940 for half the price of an i7 920 and massage another 1000mhz out of each core easily with 20AUD worth of cooling, and still have another 100 extra left to put into your GFX. Might I suggest an Antec 900 and a further 50 saving and an EVGA GTX 285 FTW for a big smile when gaming. :)
  10. KevMeister

    KevMeister TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I'm running 1400x900 on my 19" wide atm, and won't be upgrading for a while. Would there be much advantage in running crossfire or SLi in a dual core system? Or would I be better off investing in a better video card like a 4890?

    Here is the comparison for processor prices from the retailers here:
    -AMD2+ Phenom II 940 $269AUD
    -Intel Core2Duo E8400 $235AUD
    -Intel Core2Quad 9550 $335AUD

    -EVGA GTX285 1GB $569AUD
    -ASUS GTX285 1GB $569AUD
    -ASUS 4870 1GB $239AUD
    -XFX 4890 1GB $285AUD

    -E8400 + GA-EP43-U3DL = $380AUD

    As you can see the 4890 is half the price if the nvidia card, and i've also been recommended the 4890 several times so thats why I'm quite keen on it.

    What are the pros and cons on running P43 or P45 chipsets?

    Is it smart to invest in a better processor and stick to a single VGA card? I could always upgrade to crossfire later if i also get a compatible mobo now. TBH I quite like the 9550 personally. Also the GA-EP45-UD3P only supports 2x8 channels if i run crossfire.
  11. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,443   +36

    Unless you are upgrading to a larger monitor in the future, you don't need the extra power of the HD 4890. The HD 4850 will be good enough for you IMO. If you need some more power, go for the HD 4870.

    And no, there will not be any advantage to using a dual-GPU solution at that resolution.

    There are no cons to running a P43 or P45 chipset; they differ only in on-board features, and the P43 chipset doesn't support Crossfire.

    And don't believe that nonsense about X8+X8 Crossfire being slower than X16+X16. The card slots on any P45 motherboard are PCI-E 2.0 slots, which effectively means that compared to PCI-E 1.1, transfer speeds have been doubled. So a PCI-E 2.0 slot running at x8 is actually comparable to running a PCI-E 1.1 slot at x16. Either way, running X8+X8 has little to no effect on performance compared to X16+X16.

    Lastly, as much as you may like the 9550, it is still overpriced IMO. The X4 940 is cheaper and performs exactly the same as the Q9550, and has an unlocked multiplier as a bonus, which makes OCing the CPU a breeze. You may also want to look at the Phenom II X3 720 BE as an excellent alternative to the quad-core CPUs. It delivers performance better than that of the E8400 in most cases, and is cheaper to boot.
  12. KevMeister

    KevMeister TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Okay taken rage's assurance on the crossfire capability on x8, I've decided to go Asus P5Q3. It's only about 30 dollars more than the P43 chipsets and it will let me crossfire later if I want.

    I had a look at the price of the X4 940 as opposed to Q9550, and its only about a 70AUD difference.

    ASUS P5Q SE-R/SE2 $150/161 (MSY) or
    ASUS P5Q3 ddr3 $192 (MSY)

    Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 $335 (CPL)

    G.Skill-PI 4GB Kit (2x2G) DDR2 1066 $95 (MSY) or
    G.Skill Trident (2x2gb) ddr3 $101 (MSY)

    Corsair 650TX $179 (CPL)

    XFX HD-489A-ZDFC Radeon HD 4890 1GB $285 (MSY)

    CM Storm Scout $149 (CPL)

    W.D. SATA CAVIAR 320G or 640G $68/88 (MSY)

    Something SATA $49 (MSY)

    I went the P5Q3 and DDR3 combo and it brought me to 1378AUD for the whole rig. 50AUD went into the total for the mobo and ram combo which upgraded it to ddr3 plus an extra PCI-E slot for crossfire (if needed later on though its a long shot).
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