Advice for buying new PC

Rob_B

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Mar 11, 2009
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Sorry if this is in the wrong section, it seemed like the best place to post...

I am looking at getting a new gaming PC, but I dont know anything about computer hardware so I am looking for some advice. I think I'm just going to buy it pre-built as I dont think doing it myself would be a good idea. I havnt fully decided yet though so I could still be convinced to do it myself.
I am currently looking at 2 pre-built systems, which I will link to and write out their specs in a minute. The 2 systems to me seem to be virtually identical, but there is approximately a $500CAD price difference which I am hoping you people will be able to explain to me.

The first PC I am looking at is from www.buydirectpc.com (that links directly to the customization of the PC I'm looking at. The system is called 'Performance PC') It comes in 4 main variations, 2 AMD and 2 Intel. A CrossFirex AMD, SLI AMD, CrossFireX Intel and SLI Intel. I have already been advised to go with the SLI Intel, and they list that as their most popular configuration. Here are the specs the default configuration comes with. Its all customizable, so parts can be upgraded, and some can be downgraded, but this is the default configuration:

Note: I know nothing about computer hardware, as already mentioned, so I will just write word for word what they have listed on the website because none of it means anything to me

This website lists the price for every part, so you can see exactly where the price is coming from, but there is approximately $600 added on afterward which I would assume is their cut.

Motherboard: EVGA 750i SLI NVIDIA nForce 750i SLI chipset $171.07

Processor: Intel Core 2 Quad Q8300 2.5GHz x 4 1333 MHz FSB 4MB cache $267.23

Memory: 4GB Corsair XMS2 2 x 2048MB dual-channel 800MHz PC-6400 CAS5 DDR2 $94.99

Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce 9800 GTX+ 512MB 740MHz Core/2200MHz memory Dual-DVI-HDTV $230.92

HDD: Wester Digital Caviar Black 500GB 32MB 7200RPM SATA2 Dual-processor $92.68

Optical Drive: LG 22x SATA Lightscribe DVD burner with Software GH22L30 $43.41

PSU: Corsair TX650 650Watt Single-Rail PSU $129.99

Removeable Storage Device: Internal 8 in 1 Card Reader $15.30

OS: Vista Premium 32 or 64 bit $130.00

Keyboard/Mouse: M$ Comfort Curve with Optical Mouse $32.71

Processor Cooling: 92mm fan $32.08

Case: NZXT Apollo Gaming Mid-Tower Black $110.01

Randoms: Dual Cold Cathode 12" Blue Light $15.00
Network Card: Integrated LAN with 10/100/1000 Fast Ethernet Controller $0.00

Total Price: $1,970.39CAD

The other computer I am looking at is from AlienWare. It is the Area-51 750i Value and Performance PC.

Here are its default specs, which again all can be upgraded, and there is at least 1 I am thinking about upgrading, but would like advice on whether I should or not from people who actually know what the stuff does.

Motherboard: AlienWare Approved NVIDIA nForce 750i SLI

Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 3.00GHz 6MB Cache 1333MHz FSB

Memory: 2GB Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 800MHz - 2 x 1024MB
I am thinking about upgrading that to 4GB Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 800MHz - 2 x 2048MB for an additional $128CAD. Is that needed/worth while?

Graphics: Single 512MB NVIDIA GeForce 9800GT

HDD: 500GB SATA 3GB/s 7200RPM 16MB cache <<<Not default item, I decided to upgrade from the 250GB

Optical Drive: 20x Dual Layer Burner (DVD +/- RW) with Lightscribe <<<Not default item, only change though is adding in Lightscribe

PSU: AlienWare 750Watt Multi-GPU Approved PSU

Removable Storage Device: AlienWare 28 in 1 Media Card Reader with Bluetooth <<<Not a mandatory item, is additional $65CAD. Is it worth while, something that would be usefull to have? (You can see everything that it supports on the AlienWare website)

OS: Vista Premium only 64 bit

Keyboard/Mouse: I do not like any of the keyboard/mouse that are offered on the AlienWare website, so does anybody know if its possible to order a PC from them and not get a keyboard/mouse with it?

Cooling: AlienWare Standard System Cooling For an additional $125CAD you can upgrade to the Standard System Cooling with Acoustic Dampening. Is Acoustic Dampening(which I assume just makes the PC quieter) worth $125? I just want the PC to be cool and not overheat. My sisters computer overheated shortly after she got it during the summer and something, I think it was the HDD, cant remember though, melted and she had to replace it and now she permanently has to keep the side off of the case otherwise it overheats. I dont want something like that happening, so cooling is something I really worry about. I only live in Vancouver Canada, which can barely even be described as a place that gets hot, but if it happened in my house to my sisters computer, it could happen again. So it is something I worry about.

Case: AlienWare

Randoms: Single High Perormance Gigabit Ethernet Ports
AlienWare system lighting

Total Price: $1,324.00CAD

I much prefer the price of the AlienWare computer, as a $2,000 price tag, before taxes, and before the monitor gets added in, really is turning me off. I do not want to spend that kind of money.


The monitor I'm thinking about getting is the Samsung T220. I partly want it because the computer will be next to my TV, which is the Samsung LN46A650 which has the same styling so I think it would look pretty good, but I'm not married to it. Another monitor I was thinking about was the Samsung 2253BW. I might just get the 20" version of those screens, as I really dont need the larger screen, but I noticed that if buying the screens online, I could actually get the T220 for cheaper then the T200.

Man that was long..hopefully I didnt forget to mention anything.. So of those 2 PCs, which 1 would you people recommend? Also, is there any parts on the 1 you recommend that you would recommend upgrading? If so, which ones? Please feel free to suggest other PCs altogether or suggest building it myself if you really think it would be worth while, even for somebody who doesnt know what they are doing.

I am currently leaning towards buying the AlienWare computer, as its a price I like, and I think the little extra cash for buying it pre-built will be worth it, especially since I'll know I'm getting really good quality as it would be AlienWare.

Thanks for any help and advice, and if theres more info you need just ask. :hello:
 

Translucency

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Mar 26, 2009
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If you build a gaming system, clock speed is more important than number of cores. thus the E8500 would perform better. Though a Phenom II 3.0GHz would beat the E8500 again.

If you're going for a single graphics card, you also don't need a power-hungry SLI-chip. With so much heat-producing equipment you also need alot of cooling thus generated noise. So you might want to consider more energy-efficient alternatives, like nVidia Geforce 9300 chipset for Intel or nVidia 8200/8300 for AMD or AMD 780G/790GX/SB750 chipset.

Aside from that, you seem to be looking for a high-end system. Just know the price-performance ratio will be lower. Buying an expensive PC will not significantly increase its economical lifespan. Its better to buy a computer each 1 or 1.5 years using cheaper components, overall you have more speed, more hardware and less cost.
 
First thought: the Q8300 is not a gaming CPU.
Downhill from there; the bang-for-buck on these is depressing.
You can build your own PC that will leave either of these in its dust for $1300-$1500. It just depends on how much patience you have. For your money, you'll also get an education, and will be freed from overpaying at some computer shop if anything goes wrong. The risk of being frustrated by a DOA component is very minimal these days.
There are many guides on the web (including sites like Youtube) for building a PC, and a lot of people at sites like this one here who will be happy to help you.
 

Helloworld_98

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Also SLI chips are known for being poor.

a P2 quad will own both of those chips in the future, but with a budget in that area you will be able to afford a 955 build with ddr3 so wait till the end of april. Or if you can wait for 7 months the 8xx series AMD boards will be coming out which will be superior to the current 7xx boards.
 

xthekidx

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Dec 24, 2008
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I strongly suggest you just take a little bit of time and research how to put a PC together yourself...if you know how to use a screwdriver and plug cords in, then you can build a PC yourself, it just takes a little time and patience. Alienware is the most overpriced brand of PC's, and that other site isn't much better. I strongly urge you to do it yourself, for the same amount of money you can build a much better PC that will last longer and perform better.

If you are insistent on not building it yourself, then you have a couple more options: several sites that you can buy from online will assemble the PC for you if you pay them like $60, or you can order all the parts and take them to a local PC shop and they will put it together for you...either of these options still gets you more for your money than buying a prebuilt from alienware or dell.

If you are not going to build this yourself, you might check out this website, their prices are fairly reasonable: www.ibuypower.com
 

Rob_B

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Thanks for the responses guys. I am no longer looking at getting either of the 2 PCs I mentioned in my post as that ibuypower.com site has much better prices lol. I am going to check out tigerdirect.ca as well when I get a chance. When I find something else I will post up again with its specs for you guys to comment :). Please keep giving suggestions and websites to check out though.
 

Rob_B

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I've got a couple questions about monitors. I am going to have the PC hooked up to my TV as well for when I'm playing racing games, and my friend mentioned to me that it is possible to have 1 picture on my Monitor, and a different picture on my TV at the same time. How would I set that up? My friend said I should get a DVI to HDMI cable to hook the PC up to my TV, and I would use a standard DVI cable from the PC to the Monitor. I also assume that with the quality of computer I'm looking at getting that it would be able to handle running a game and surfing the net etc at the same time? I still dont know exactly how much I'm going to spend on the computer, I do know I dont want to go as high/expensive as the Intel Core i7 and whatever would go with that though. I am definitely going to get slightly older stuff then that.

The other question I have, is when I looked up the Samsung T220/T200 monitor on cnet for a review of it, they said its a good monitor(which most reviews of it I've seen have said) but they say they dont recommend it because it doesnt have an HDMI port. What would I possibly need an HDMI port on a PC monitor for? Unless the PC itself hooks up through HDMI and gives better picture then through DVI, which I dont think so, then I dont see why I would need an HDMI port.

Something else I just thought of, what wattage PSU should I get? is 750 enough/more then enough? is 650 enough/more then enough? I'm thinking I should get a 750Watt PSU since it barely costs any more then a 650Watt and it would mean I could more easily upgrade the PC at a later date without needing to think about getting a new PSU.

Is the only difference between these 2 drives the fact one spins slightly faster then the other? Does 22x as opposed to 20x really make a difference though?
"LG 22X Dual Format/Double Layer DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Drive"
"Sony 20X Dual Format/Double Layer DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Drive"
The Sony drive is $3 more then the LG drive, I assume that would simply be because of the name Sony though, right?

What do you guys think of this PC? Just put this together on ibuypower.com


Motherboard: [SLI] XFX MB-N790-IUL9 Nvidia nForce 790i Ultra SLI Chipset w/7.1 Sound, Dual Gb LANs, S-ATA Raid, USB 2.0, 3-Way PCI-E MB

Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo Processor E8500 (2x 3.16GHz/6MB L2 Cache/1333FSB)
$10 less the E8400 (2x 3.0GHz/6MB L2 Cache/1333FSB). What difference does it make?

Memory: 4 GB [2 GB X2] DDR3-1333 Memory Module
I just happened to choose a DDR3 build, I didnt specifically choose it over a DDR2 build. I dont have a clue what the difference is, although I have noticed while just quickly doing a DDR2 build that it changes the graphics card completely and slightly changes the Motherboards.. I would probably buy a DDR2 build since it would be cheaper and I cant say I would need whatever 'extra it allows' <cant quite think of a more sensible wording

Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce 9500GT 1GB w/DVI + TV Out Video
Should this be upgraded? I'm assuming that since Crysis, the most GPU demanding game I know of, only requires NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GTS/640 that it doesnt, but I dont know a dam thing so figured I should ask lol

HDD: 500 GB HARD DRIVE [Serial-ATA-II, 3Gb, 7200 RPM, 16M Cache]
Should I get a 2nd internal 500GB(or bigger) HDD as well?

Optical Drive: [Lightscribe Technology] LG 22X Dual Format/Double Layer DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Drive

PSU: 750 Watt -- Corsair CMPSU-750TX Power Supply Quad SLI Ready

Removeable Storage Device: None
For $10 I could get the 12-In-1 Internal Flash Media Card Reader/Writer, but as far as I can tell, I wouldnt need any of the things it supports..

OS: Vista Premium 32 or 64 bit
Should I get 64 bit windows? I dont really see a reason why not to, but my friend said I should get the 32 bit version.

Keyboard/Mouse: None

Processor Cooling: XIGMATEK Dark Knight 120mm CPU Cooling Fan System H.D.T. (Heat-pipe direct touch) technology
I really dont have a clue what the differences in the cooling systesm are..

Case: NZXT Apollo Gaming Mid-Tower Black

Randoms: Cold Cathode Blue Neon Light
Sound Card: 3D Premium Surround Sound Onboard
Speaker System: iBUYPOWER 2.1 Channel Stereo Super Bass Subwoofer Speaker System Is only $4. Dont see any harm in not getting it for that price unless somebody says its a terrible system
Network Card: Onboard LAN Network (Gb or 10/100) I plan on having the computer hooked up wirelessly to the internet so I dont think I need to spend any money upgrading this eh? I'm not actually sure how to hook the PC up wirelessly atm though as my wireless router isnt strong enough. I only get around 30% signal or so in my room, if that
Temp. Display: Thermal Temperature LCD Display

Total Price: $1,191.96 CAD

Are any of these extras that ibuypower.com offer actually worth the money?

iBUYPOWER Specialized Advanced Packaging System Protect your investment during transportation! [+ $19]

Tuniq TX-2 High Performance Thermal Compound The best interface between your CPU and the heatsinks [+ $10]

Professional wiring for all cables inside the system tower Achieve exceptional airflow in your chassis [+ $19]

I really appreciate the help guys.
I'm really looking forward to getting a new PC. My current PC is such a POS and is so dam slow it really drives me crazy.
BTW, the earliest I'll be buying the PC would be mid May.
 

xthekidx

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Dec 24, 2008
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Don't get a 790i chipset board, they are very expensive and have a lot of problems.

On that kind of budget you should probably be looking at an i7

That GPU is garbage and won't play Crysis. I would suggest a GTX 260 or GTS 250 at the minimum.
 

xthekidx

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Dec 24, 2008
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I just played around with the configurator and built one for $1344 USD including shipping using these options:

Gamer Paladin F725 System Configurator

Case ( Nzxt Guardian 921 Gaming Tower Case w/420W Power Supply w/ NVIDIA Side Window )
Case Lighting ( None )
Power Supply ( 750 Watt -- Corsair CMPSU-750TX Power Supply Quad SLI Ready )
Processor ( [New !!] Intel Core i7 Processor 920 (4x 2.66GHz/8MB L3 Cache) )
Processor Cooling ( Coolermaster V8 CPU Cooling Fan System )
Motherboard ( Asus P6T Intel X58 Chipset CrossFire and SLI Supported w/7.1 Sound, Triple-Channel DDR3, Gb LAN, S-ATA Raid, USB 2.0, 3-Way SLI PCI-E MB 3-Way SLI )
Memory ( 3 GB [1 GB X3] DDR3-1333 Triple Memory Module Corsair Value or Major Brand ) just buy better ram yourself and add it in later
Video Card ( NVIDIA GeForce GTX 260 Core 216 896MB w/DVI + TV Out Video )
Video Card Brand ( === High Performance === eVGA Brand Video Card Powered by NVIDIA )
Hard Drive ( 500 GB HARD DRIVE [Serial-ATA-II, 3Gb, 7200 RPM, 16M Cache] )
CD-RW/DVD-RW Drive ( [** Special !!! ***] LG 22X Dual Format/Double Layer DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Drive Black )
Sound Card ( 3D Premium Surround Sound Onboard )
Network Card ( Onboard LAN Network (Gb or 10/100) )
Keyboard ( Logitech Deluxe Keyboard Black )
Mouse ( iBUYPOWER 1600 dpi High Sensitivity Internet Mouse Black )
USB 2.0 Accessories ( Built-in USB 2.0 Ports )
Operating System ( Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium + [Free 60-Day !!!] Microsoft Office 2007(Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, Access ....) 64-Bit )
External Wireless Network Adapter ( Zonet 802.11G 54 Mbps Wireless USB pen drive w/ Extended USB cradle hub the USB adapter provides 30% greater range than standard 802.11g — to maintain solid connections throughout your home or small business while providing a maximum performance of 54Mbps. )
Advanced Build Options ( Professional wiring for all cables inside the system tower Achieve exceptional airflow in your chassis )
Warranty ( Warranty Service Standard 3-Year Limited Warranty + Lifetime Technical Support )
Rush Service ( Rush Service Fee (not shipping fee) No Rush Service, Estimate Ship Out in 5~10 Business Days )

That will be much better than the system you put together.
 

Rob_B

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Thanks for the advice. I would like to try to keep the price for the PC under $999 USD(the 1200 is CAD) though since I then have to buy the monitor afterwards which will be another couple hundred or so.
This is why I ask you guys though, I could build something under that price, think its good, but turn out its crap..

Also, I've never bought anything from outside of Canada, I assume that if I were to buy the computer from a place like ibuypower.com, a US company, that I would have to pay heavy taxes bringing it across the border wouldnt I? When I get some time, I'm going to try to find a Canadian company that has good prices, but my minimal search so far hasnt brought up much.
 

Rob_B

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I've looked around a little bit, but I have been unable to find a Canadian store, like ibuypower, that I like. Theres the obvious NCIX(which actually has a store like 10 mins away from my house) but ibuypower has better options and prices it would seem.

So I've built another PC on ibuypower, which hopefully you'll approve of! I did some research myself on the parts, and the reviews were good, and importantly Crysis approved lol. I've done my best to take your advice(xthekidx) so I hope this PC is good.

The basic computer, none of the extras added in, and before shipping, is $877USD, and with the extras added in(which I'll list after wards) but still no shipping, comes to a total of $1,032USD, which is a price I am happy with, especially since theres a $114USD mail-in-rebate, assuming I buy before April 30th.

Gamer Paladin 950

Case ( [$15 OFF Mail-In Rebate] Nzxt Apollo Gaming Tower Case w/420W Power Supply Black )

Power Supply ( 750 Watt -- Corsair CMPSU-750TX Power Supply Quad SLI Ready )

Processor ( Intel Core 2 Duo Processor E8500 (2x 3.16GHz/6MB L2 Cache/1333FSB) )

Processor Cooling ( Certified CPU Fan and Heatsink )

Motherboard ( Asus P5Q3 Intel P45 Chipset w/7.1 Sound, Gb LAN, S-ATA Raid, USB 2.0, IEEE-1394, Dual PCI-E MB )

Memory ( 4 GB [2 GB X2] DDR3-1333 Memory Module OCZ-Gold or Major Brand )

Video Card ( NVIDIA GeForce GTX 260 896MB w/DVI + TV Out Video )

Video Card Brand ( Major Brand Powered by NVIDIA )

Hard Drive ( 500 GB HARD DRIVE [Serial-ATA-II, 3Gb, 7200 RPM, 16M Cache] )

CD-RW/DVD-RW Drive ( [Lightscribe Technology] LG 22X Dual Format/Double Layer DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Drive Black )

Sound Card ( 3D Premium Surround Sound Onboard )

Network Card ( Onboard LAN Network (Gb or 10/100) )

USB 2.0 Accessories ( Built-in USB 2.0 Ports )

Operating System ( Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium + [Free 60-Day !!!] Microsoft Office 2007(Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, Access ....) 64-Bit )


Extras:

Case Lighting ( Cold Cathode Neon Light Blue )

Speaker System ( iBUYPOWER 2.1 Channel Stereo Super Bass Subwoofer Speaker System )

Mouse ( iBUYPOWER 1600 dpi High Sensitivity Internet Mouse Black )

Meter Display ( Thermal Temperature LCD Display Black )

Additional Software ( [*** $99 OFF ***] Microsoft Office 2007 Home & Student Software )

Software/Game ( [Free Game] - Halo 2 Free with purchase of Microsoft Windows Vista operating system )

Advanced Build Options ( Professional wiring for all cables inside the system tower Achieve exceptional airflow in your chassis )


Interestingly, if I build that myself from the Custom Build Configuration drop down menu, instead of selecting it from the Core 2 DDR3 Systems drop down menu, it ends up costing more. I dont understand that at all...

Should I upgrade the Processor Cooling? I see when you built 1 a couple posts ago, you selected the Coolermaster V8 CPU Cooling Fan System, and not the default.

Should I also select a 2nd HDD, and if so, what size? I would assume it would be used for backups. I've never done HDD backups before so I dont know what they require...
 

xthekidx

Splendid
Dec 24, 2008
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I would upgrade the processor cooling, the stock heatsink will not allow for OC'ing, and the E8500 is just begging for it. OC that sucker.

Don't build a DDR3 system if you can build a DDR2 system for less, DDR3 isn't worth it. Try doing a configurator on with DDR2 and use the Asus P5Q Pro mb

Try using an ATI GPU so you can xfire later, SLI with nvidia cpu's isn't an option on the P45 chipset.
 

Fortunex

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Mar 16, 2009
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If you want a good computer in your price range, your best bet would be to build it yourself.

Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129021

AMD Phenom II X3 720
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103649

ASUS M4A78-E AM2+/AM3 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131368

SAPPHIRE 100259-1GL Radeon HD 4870 1GB
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102801

G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231122

CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139006

Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319

XIGMATEK Dark Knight-S1283V
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233029

Total: $1045.42CDN

That gives you slightly better performance in games than the build above, and better multi-tasking and performance in multi-threaded applications. You also have the ability to add another 4870 in later if you need it. Alternatively, you could scrap the 4870 and grab a 4890, which when overclocked, trades blows with the GTX285, from what I've seen.

If you're insistent on not building your own system, though, then your last system looks like the best so far, but like thekid said, scrap the DDR3 for DDR2, and get an ATI GPU.
 

Rob_B

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Thanks again for the advice :)

I tried building an identical system as my last post on ibuypower but with DDR2, and it ends up as more expensive then the DDR3. So unless I'm being retarded, it would seem the DDR3 build is cheaper. Before making my last post, I built another PC which I didnt post because the one I mentioned was better, and I also built it a 2nd time using DDR2 and it also came up as more expensive then the DDR3...

I dont have a problem with swapping the GTX 260 for the ATI Radeon HD 4870 1GB, as its cheaper, and all the reviews I've looked up for it show it as equal to, and in cases, superior to the GTX 260. I only selected the GTX 260 because it was what you(xthekidx) recommended I choose. I dont have a clue what you mean by "xfire it later" though...


Something I plan on doing is hooking the PC up to my 46" 1080p HDTV(Samsung LN46A650) so I can play racing games since I have a racing pod(which makes it impossible to play racing games on the PC monitor) I assume that these PCs would be able to properly display on a 46" HDTV via a DVI to HDMI cable? I've also been told I could have the racing game going on the TV, and still use the PC to surf the net etc on the PC and have that different image on the PC monitor. Would the PC I listed above be able to handle doing that? I should think so...

and thanks Fortunex, I am thinking about it because that would save buying from the US and paying extra taxes(of which I've yet to find anybody who knows an estimate range of what I'd be paying) but I dunno atm...I'm leaning towards the pre-built system as the extra cost is not very high at all, its rather quite low and it saves me quite a lot of hassle, and gives me the peace of mind knowing somebody who actually knows what their doing is putting it together. I know I could simply bring the parts to a store here and have them put it together, but I dont think that would be any cheaper, and would be more hassle, which isnt much I admit, but still...
 

Helloworld_98

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xfire is when you use two ATi GPU's or Graphics cards to produce one picture.

In some cases it is very effective and can double the performance in high resolutions in a game for less than buying a new, ridiculously powerful, single gpu.

However in other cases it can lower performance due to the games incompatibility with multiple GPU's but most games don't have this problem anymore.
 

xthekidx

Splendid
Dec 24, 2008
3,871
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xfire=crossfire which means running 2 graphics cards linked together to produce one image for better gaming performance.

the ibuypower configurators are tricky...if you go to different configurators and make the same exact PC, you will end up getting different prices. Try doing it from the Gamer Paladin Q740 configurator with these options:
http://www.ibuypower.com/ibp/store/configurator.aspx?mid=71

Case ( CoolerMaster CM 690 Gaming Tower Case w/420W Power Supply Black )
Case Lighting ( Cold Cathode Neon Light Blue )
Power Supply ( 750 Watt -- Corsair CMPSU-750TX Power Supply Quad SLI Ready )
Processor ( Intel Core 2 Duo Processor E8400 (2x 3.0GHz/6MB L2 Cache/1333FSB) )
Processor Cooling ( Sunbeam Core-Contact Freezer CPU Cooling Fan System Fan Controller Included )
Motherboard ( [CrossFire] Asus P5Q Pro Intel P45 Chipset w/7.1 Sound, Gb LAN, S-ATA Raid, USB 2.0, IEEE-1394, Dual PCI-E MB )
Memory ( 4 GB [2 GB X2] DDR2-800 PC6400 Memory Module Corsair-Value or Major Brand )
Video Card ( ATI Radeon HD 4870 1GB PCI-Express x16 )
Video Card Brand ( Major Brand Powered by NVIDIA )
Hard Drive ( 500 GB HARD DRIVE [Serial-ATA-II, 3Gb, 7200 RPM, 16M Cache] )
2nd Hard Drive ( None )
External Hard Drives [USB 2.0/eSATA] ( None )
CD/DVD Drive ( None )
CD-RW/DVD-RW Drive ( [** Special !!! ***] LG 22X Dual Format/Double Layer DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Drive Black )
Sound Card ( 3D Premium Surround Sound Onboard )
Speaker System ( iBUYPOWER 2.1 Channel Stereo Super Bass Subwoofer Speaker System )
Network Card ( Onboard LAN Network (Gb or 10/100) )
Floppy Drive ( None )
Monitor ( None )
2nd Monitor ( None )
Keyboard ( Logitech Deluxe Keyboard Black )
Mouse ( iBUYPOWER 1600 dpi High Sensitivity Internet Mouse Black )
USB 2.0 Accessories ( Built-in USB 2.0 Ports )
Meter Display ( None )
Flash Media Reader/Writer ( 12-In-1 Internal Flash Media Card Reader/Writer Beige )
Operating System ( Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium + [Free 60-Day !!!] Microsoft Office 2007(Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, Access ....) 64-Bit )
USB Flash Drive ( None )
MP3 Player ( None )
Video Camera ( None )
Headset ( None )
Power Protection ( None )
External Wireless Network Adapter ( Zonet ZEW2545 802.11n 130Mbps Wireless USB Adapter )
Advanced Build Options ( Professional wiring for all cables inside the system tower Achieve exceptional airflow in your chassis )

Came to $1003 without shipping.
 

xthekidx

Splendid
Dec 24, 2008
3,871
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So have you looked at www.ncix.com? They will assemble a PC for you and test it I believe for a $50 flat rate. You can also pricematch from any other online retailer and they will give you that price if you find a better price on an item that they have in stock.

P5Q-Pro gives free shipping on the whole order (ibuypower charges $100USD to ship to CAD :/)
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=30418&vpn=P5Q%20Pro&manufacture=ASUS

E8400
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=27784&vpn=BX80570E8400&manufacture=Intel&promoid=1029
Savings Code 27784-1029. SAVE $20.00 off our regular price of $224.99 if you buy today! Special price ends 04/14/2009.

HDD: WD6401AALS
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=34286&vpn=WD6401AALS&manufacture=Western%20Digital%20WD&promoid=1029
Savings Code 34286-1029. SAVE $12.84 off our regular price of $101.72 if you buy today! Special price ends 04/14/2009.

LG GH22NS30 Black DVD+RW 22X8X16 DVD-RW 22X6X16 DL 16X/12X 2MB SATA OEM
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=32234&vpn=GH22NS30%20BLACK&manufacture=LG%20Electronics

Coolermaster CM 690 Mid Tower Black ATX Case
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=26048&vpn=RC-690-KKN1&manufacture=COOLERMASTER

Corsair 750tx
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=26415&vpn=CMPSU-750TX&manufacture=Corsair

MSI Radeon HD 4890 850MHZ 1GB
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=37425&vpn=R4890-T2D1G&manufacture=MSI%2FMicroStar

Vista 64bit
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=22438&vpn=66I-01939&manufacture=Microsoft

Corsair XMS3 4gb DDR2 800
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=25228&vpn=TWIN2X4096-6400C5&manufacture=Corsair&promoid=1029

So that all would come to $1304, not counting those promo codes if you order by the 14th which save you about $30, and several mail-in rebates. They will assemble it for $50 and test it to make sure that none of the parts are dead (which is a good deal, you get the assurance you won't have to pay shipping to send dead parts back, and they build it for you and give you a 1yr warranty!) This is a better deal than the ibuypower pc because you get a better system for less, especially after you consider shipping. That is before pricematching too! shop around at other canadian retailers and get the best deals!!

If you want to OC (I recommend) then pick up this cooler too:
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=30008&vpn=CR-CCTF&manufacture=Sunbeam
 

Rob_B

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Mar 11, 2009
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Yea I noticed the price differences..thats really stupid and I dont understand it at all.

That system, using the extras I want, is slightly more expensive, aprox $20. It does have a differnet Motherboard though. Yours comes with the 'Asus P5Q Pro Intel P45 Chipset' instead of the 'Asus P5Q3 Intel P45 Chipset'. Is the P5Q Pro better then the P5Q3? The Q740 also comes with a mandatory external wireless adaptor, which isnt necessarily a bad thing since I will be hooking up wirelessly, does add an extra $40 odd bucks on though.
 

Rob_B

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Mar 11, 2009
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ah ok.


(just noticed your other post) I have looked at NCIX, but only at their pre-built systems. Theres actually an NCIX store like 10 mins from my house, never been there though.

I'll look more into buying the parts separate from NCIX, or online at least, and think about it. Too tired to think about it anymore now..just coming up to 4am..
 

Rob_B

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Mar 11, 2009
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Done some more research, and I've decided to buy from NCIX, I didnt realize before you mentioned it that you could custom build a PC and have them put it together still :) Buying from them will be a good bit cheaper, as I can get the monitor and keyboard included and have it come to cheaper then the PC alone from ibuypower with the shipping. Is there anything I'm missing from this build? I'm seriously considering purchasing this today as most of the savings end today, and they save about $170. I'm in no rush to buy it, I'm about to go away for 3 weeks, so I wasnt planning on buying it untill I got back, but the savings will have expired by then which is why I'm thinking about ordering it today..

Total: $1,551.42 CAD

Case: $110.01(Mail In Rebate if bought by April 20th $95.01)
http://ncix.com/products/?sku=21382&vpn=APOLLO-BK&manufacture=NZXT

PSU: $145.99 (Mail In Rebate and Instant Savings if bought by April 15th $115.99)
http://ncix.com/products/?sku=26415&vpn=CMPSU-750TX&manufacture=Corsair

Processor: $224.99 (Savings Code if bought Today $204.99)
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=27784&vpn=BX80570E8400&manufacture=Intel&promoid=1029

Processor Cooling: $45.30
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=30008&vpn=CR-CCTF&manufacture=Sunbeam

Motherboard: $163.59 (Mail In Rebate if bought by April 30th $148.59)
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=30418&vpn=P5Q%20Pro&manufacture=ASUS

Memory: $64.99 (Mail In Rebate & Instant Savings if bought today $28.99)
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=25228&vpn=TWIN2X4096-6400C5&manufacture=Corsair&promoid=1029

Graphics: $309.99 (Instant Rebate if bought today $294.99)
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=37425&vpn=R4890-T2D1G&manufacture=MSI%2FMicroStar

HDD: $92.07 500GB If not bought today, I'll get the 500GB, if bought today, I'll get the 640GB since its cheaper. So not both of these.
http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=33883&vpn=WD5001AALS&manufacture=Western%20Digital%20WD

$88.88 if bought today 640GB
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=34286&vpn=WD6401AALS&manufacture=Western%20Digital%20WD&promoid=1029

Optical Drive: $34.99 You selected an LG drive, this is a Samsung with Lightscribe. I would like to have the Lightscribe, but LG also comes with it. Is there any particular reason you selected an LG drive?
http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=35349&vpn=SH-S223Q%2FBEBS&manufacture=Samsung

OS: $148.77(32 bit)
http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=22437&vpn=66I-00715&manufacture=Microsoft

bah I'm going crazy deciding on 32 bit or 64 bit..

Keyboard & Mouse: $32.52
http://ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=16619&vpn=B2L-00047&manufacture=Microsoft

Monitor: $225.34 (Savings Code if bought today $183.98)
http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=35788&promoid=1029

Assembly: $50

Monitor Express Coverage: $9.20


This is the fans the case features:
COOLING SYSTEM FRONT, 1 X 120 mm (Optional)
REAR, 1 X 120 mm FAN
SIDE PANEL, 1 X 120 mm BLUE LED FAN

So I take it that means the case comes standard with 2 fans, and theres room for a 3rd?

I would like to have the maximum amount of fans the case will support as I dont want to take any risks of not having adequate cooling.
Would this fan be good to add in as the 3rd, front fan?

http://ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=21232&vpn=AF12025L&manufacture=Arctic%20Cooling

For an additional $5.99 I can get the Heavy Duty Shipping Box. I'm thinking that that would be $6 well spent?
 

sassan

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Mar 7, 2009
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Remember you can price match and save yourself some money

Dont get the heavy duty box they will just put the case in there, all your other stuff will be shipped separate.