Need PC build opinions

By Drahk ยท 9 replies
Nov 5, 2011
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  1. Case - Aztec Nine Hundred Two V3 Black Steel ATX Mid Tower

    MoBo - MSI 890FXA-GD70 AM3 AMD 890 FX SATA 6GB/s ATX

    CPU - AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition Thuban 3.2 GHz Socket AM3 125W Six-Core

    RAM - G. SKill Ripjaws Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-pin DDR3 1600 (PC3 128000)

    V.C. - EVGA 012-P3-1570-AR GeForce GTX 570 (Fermi) 1280MB 320-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

    S.C. - Creative 70SB088000004 7.1 Channels PCI Express 1x Interface PCI Express Sound Blaster X-Fi Titatnium

    P.S. - Corsair Gaming Series GS800 800W ATX 12V v2.3

    HDD - Western Digital Caviar Black WD5002AALX 500GB 7200RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5"

    Other - As for disk drives, just ripping a standard CD and a DVD drive from this old computer for now.

    First experience in building a computer from the ground up. Got some advice from a co-worker in what to look for and have been doing a little research myself. Just had a few questions concerning it.

    1. Is everything compatible?
    2. Are there enough "plugs" on the motherboard to fit all the equipment listed?
    3. Is a 800W power supply too much?

    I tried to used common "put circle block in circle outlet" knowledge. Spending this much on a machine and being a new experience, I'm wanting to make sure it's a decent one. Any answers/suggestions/advice would be much appreciated.

  2. Drahk

    Drahk TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Some extra information.

    What are you going to use the PC for?
    - Mainly to play FFXIV and other video games, hoping for 'high' graphics capability
    How much is your budget?
    - $1200 at most, buying Windows 7 is putting me a little above that which is fine.
    Are you willing to buy online?
    - Buying from, has been recommended to me by multiple co-workers.
    Are you going to re-use any parts from an earlier build?
    - Just the CD and DVD disk drives
    Do you need other peripherals like a monitor, keyboard and mouse, among others?
    - Plan on hooking up to a Sony 32" HDTV with a MiniHDMI to HDMI cable.
    Will you need any aftermarket cooling, such as a CPU\GPU cooler or a watercooling setup?
    - Will I need a cooling setup is a good question. Case is built with 4 fans, hoping that will be enough.
  3. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,672   +9

    Looks pretty good.

    My suggestions:

    1. For the case, consider the CM 690 II. Would make much more sense in terms of room, cable management and airflow.

    2. Get a 990FX based motherboard if possible. The AM3+ chipset will be able to best support the Bulldozer CPUs from AMD. However, keep in mind that the current iteration of these CPUs is quite disappointing.

    3. 1 TB HDD. Just an opinion.
  4. Drahk

    Drahk TS Rookie Topic Starter

    The bigger case was actually cheaper (go figure) and the motherboard only a couple bucks more.

    Thanks for the suggestions :grinthumb much appreciated.
  5. madboyv1

    madboyv1 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,471   +375

    FFXIV? I'm sorry... jk. If you decide to stick around the forums, let me know when that game is starts getting better, I'm probably going to wait till "2.0" before reactivating my service when it expires I think this month.

    As for suggestions... yeah you won't need an 800w PSU. You could probably get away with 650w, but considering the price, you might as well stick with it. Going cheaper anywhere near that wattage means more +12v rails, and I'm a fan of the single rail design, partly out of laziness.

    Considering how well equipped onboard sound is nowadays, a dedicated sound card is essentially a luxury. Many ATX motherboards, including the one you have initially chosen come with 6 audio ports, allowing up to 8 channels (7.1 surround), and most also come with optical out and S/PDIF. Unless you're trying to set up a specific recording/output scheme you could leave it out and save the money in my opinion.

    This system in its lifetime will likely never use 8GB of RAM, let alone 16. But... it's SO CHEAP nowadays... lol

    I second getting a 990FX board, but you seem on top of that already.

    Cooling, you should be okay, since your processor will come with a heatsink since you're most likely buying the retail version. Many people opt for a third party cooler for better heat dissipation, but you can make that call later if you need too.

    As for Hard drive... right now there is a severe shortage of hard drives, so the price is gonna be quite high. An extra hard drive would be good to have, but may end up being something you add later when you/if need it. I'm a fan of the WD 640gb black and the 500 blue, samsung has excellent drives as well if you want to actually look around for the better bargain. Black of course has its price premium which other than the feel good feeling of the longer warranty does not offer much in terms of performance increases from my experience.

    tl;dr: blah blah it should all work just fine.
  6. dikbozo

    dikbozo TS Booster Posts: 82

    After digging through the specs on the 890 based board above, I second the sound card option as unnecessary. I did notice the motherboard has a third party IDE controller and a onboard E-SATA port. Do you need these? Is your old CD/DVD drive IDE or SATA?

    As the 990 based boards are widely available and do offer the option to go with next gen CPU, (irregardless of the general perceptions as spread by various websites as the performance is generally a bit better than the Phenom II series in a slightly lower power envelope and as modern gaming performance is more GPU bound than CPU there is little reason to with old tech), the back and forward compatibility allows you to mix and match as your budget allows. These boards also allow the use of hybrid Crossfire, which should mature nicely over the next year. This set up would allow the desktop GPU to shut down while running the desktop and save in both power and cooling terms. The difference here would be in the realm of 60C versus 90C and as much as 100W.

    I do find there are limits on how much RAM is truly usable in current desktop machines. I find in my own, with 3 different browsers running and a mail client, a file sharing app and a sound app and AV, and a firewall and several Explorer windows and a wall paper changer running a dual monitor set up uses under 3 GB of RAM on 64bit W7 Home Premium. No big tweaks and this under normal usage. I feel that above 8GB RAM it sits mostly unused and idle while wasting unnecessary electricity.
  7. madboyv1

    madboyv1 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,471   +375

    one instance of Crysis 2 with the high res texture pack and DX11 enabled at 1600x900 (for the sake of my GTS 450, it is a little rough at higher resolutions) takes nearly 2GB on top of the 1.5GB I have when I'm idling (1.7-1.8 with browser + tabs open). FFXIV @ 1680x1050 with relatively high settings, that takes around 1.2GB I think.

    So while 4 GB is doable for running many high demanding games, 6GB and 8GB seem to be the surefire amounts to have fextra left over for anything else. Sure, physically having more sticks of RAM would increase the amount of electricity being used, but as far as I know this is almost negligible when you consider the rest of the components and even the motherboard itself. Buying more memory has usually been about cost vs utility, and as of late costs have been very low.

    I mean, you figure at $15-$20 USD per 2GB stick, and $25-$35 USD per 4GB stick, it really isn't much of a investment as it used to be, where 2-3 years ago a 2GB stick was $40, and a year before that $50-$60.

    So my current stance on anyone who asks about 4GB vs 8GB vs 16GB, I say if you have the extra money it won't hurt to have nor expensive to get it, though when on a budget it should be considered an accessory first.
  8. Drahk

    Drahk TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Will do :haha: Even if the game is crap (for now), the graphics should keep me entertained enough while the game-play is being revamped. Spent a good 10+ years playing FFXI and have been looking forward to FFXIV ever since they announced they were making a second MMO. Honestly, I would have like a FFXI-2 with just updated graphics, but, new game-play style will be interesting to see.

    It appears to be IDE, both the CD and DVD ROM drives. Is there any connectors on the 990FX? I may not be looking in the right places, but after looking at the connector on this (unknown) motherboard... I'm not seeing any. :suspiciou

    After reading what has been posted about the RAM, it has made me want to reconsider the 16GB, but like madboy said.. it does appear to be relatively cheap. May get four sticks and just put two in, having two back up wouldn't hurt. But, may reconsider that as well, since it may appear that I have to invest in a new CD/DVD ROM.
  9. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,714   +3,695

  10. madboyv1

    madboyv1 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,471   +375

    Well, ASRock motherboards tend to have a TON of legacy hardware on their motherboards, including IDE sometimes. At the same time an OEM SATA DVD burner is like $18-$25 USD, and bumping down to 8GB would afford that and a little extra left over. By the way, just making sure this is out there, but the DVD burner would replace both of your drives in terms of capability, so you'd only need one (in mid towers I tend to prefer 2 ODD, but I'm stupid that way).

    IE, they need to totally drop PS2, add PS3 and update the graphics for everyone~ Too bad the FFXI devs are totally running out of ideas, so doing something like that would be a waste of development resources. What server were you on in FFXI? I was on Gilgamesh for 5 years before they tossed all of us onto Carbuncle... the place sucks. =(

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