Need help on finishing a homebuilt

d3n1x

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Apr 19, 2009
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Hi everyone.

I'm pretty new to Home built process, this is my second time i have built a computer, however this time i have done almost everything by myself. I have been thinking about going either Intel quad or Intel duo for about 3 weeks now even though AMD quads are cheaper and you get almost as good performance as the q9650 and the q9550 for the price of a Duo. Despite this I have decided to go with Intel this time around. So i have debated whether i should go with the Q9550 ($270) or Q9650 ($325) or this E8500 ($189). I don't really multitask, the most I have open at one time is iTunes, two or three messengers, Skype maybe internet explorer and play poker. I do play some older games (<5hr a week), mainly Counter Strike and Soccer (FIFA) but I will be buy GTAIV as soon as I finish building. So my main question is how much programs need to be running to put the 4 cores to use and if it makes since to just got with the e8500 for not and in 2 years maybe go quad when there are cheaper. Also is it worth spending money on ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro 92mm CPU Cooler and ARCTIC COOLING MX-2 Thermal Compound?

I’m hoping on as many suggestions as possible on any of the listed parts especially the processors choice dilemma.

Thank you all

System:

CPU : Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 ($189)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115036

MOBO : GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P ($114 after rebate)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128358

RAM: ( GG.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 ) x 2 = 8gb ($86)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231122

HDD: Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" ($74)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319

PSU: CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V ($89 after rebate)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139005

GPU: SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 4870 1GB ($189)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102801

CASE: RAIDMAX SMILODON Extreme Black ($65)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811156078

DRIVE: LG Black 22X (CAV) ($25)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827136152

Monitor : Acer X223Wbd Black 22 ($160)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824009145


 

xthekidx

Splendid
Dec 24, 2008
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GTAIV needs a quad core, so its merited in your case. If you can afford the Q9550 or Q9650 then get them.

Get this ram instead: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231219&Tpk=g%20skill%20hk

Its really not necessary to get more than 4gb of Ram for gaming, but if you do some heavier stuff like video editing then it can be useful.

On the PSU, you should either go a bit bigger to allow for xfire and get a 750tx instead, or go with a smaller PSU like a PC P&C 500w silencer if you will only use one 4870 (in which case you can get a GA-EP45-UD3R, same MB you chose with one less PCIEx16 slot and therefore cheaper).

Look at getting a CPU cooler so you can OC the CPU a bit and really get your money's worth out of it: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835185093&Tpk=scythe%20mugen%202

The rest of the build looks good. Get Vista 64 bit so you can use all the ram. I would personally get a different case, but thats mostly just personal preference.
 

d3n1x

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Apr 19, 2009
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Thanks man,is there a case you would recommended and i have couple of question to further figure out what i really need?

1. Are all 4 cores going to be put to use with the small amount of multitasking i described above?

2. Do you think from what i described above i will ever need 16gb of ram (even 2 years from now ) or i should just get a board with 8gb max and save some money?

3.I'm not planing on xfiring the cards anytime soon so should i invest in a MB that has only 1PCI express slot now and save some money or think long term?

What im trying to figure out is if For my needs i should just built a e8500 4gb or 8gb and upgrade to a quad in 2/3 years with 8gb or 16gb ram when more games use quad and the quads are cheaper or is it worth for my needs to investing in a quad today.

thanks

 

xthekidx

Splendid
Dec 24, 2008
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I think for your needs, I would go for an AMD build instead. The Phenom II x3 720 is a very good fit for you. It is a tri-core CPU which gives it some multitasking power, and GTAIV uses 3 cores so it will run it fairly smoothly. For gaming, it usually is on par with the E8400 in single-threaded games, in multithreaded games like GTAIV and FSX its better. And its cheaper than the E8400 too. If you want to be able to upgrade the processor in a couple years then it also has that in its favor, since if you get it with the AM3 chipset you can drop a later Phenom II CPU in the MB. Look at something like this:
CPU/MB:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.182106
Ram: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227293
 
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129042 $59.95 Free Shipping*
Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817341022 $69.99 ($44.99 after $25.00 Mail-In Rebate)
OCZ Fatal1ty OCZ550FTY 550W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Modular Active PFC Power Supply - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128359 $114.99 ($99.99 after $15.00 Mail-In Rebate) Free Shipping*
GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3R LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
2 oz copper PCB + Easy Tune 6 for OC

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115131 $219.99 Free Shipping*
Intel Core2 Quad Q9400 2.66GHz 6MB L2 Cache LGA 775 95W Quad-Core Processor - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835185093 $31.99
Scythe MUGEN-2 SCMG-2000 120mm Sleeve CPU Cooler - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835154003 $4.99
Tuniq TX-2 Cooling Thermal Compound - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150361 $169.99 Free Shipping*
XFX GX260XADJF GeForce GTX 260 Core Edition Core 216 896MB 448-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail
Free Call of Duty: World at War w/ purchase, limited offer

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231219 $42.99
G.SKILL HK 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319 $74.99 Free Shipping*
Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827136152 $24.99 Free Shipping*
LG Black 22X (CAV) DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 22X (CAV) DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 22X DVD±R DVD Burner - OEM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824236050 $169.99 ($149.99 after $20.00 Mail-In Rebate) Free Shipping*
ASUS VW224U Black 22" 2ms(GTG) Widescreen LCD Monitor w/ HDCP Support 300 cd/m2 1000:1 (ASCR 5000:1) Built in Speakers - Retail

Total: $984.85 | $924.85 w/rebates *not including shipping

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116488 $99.99 Free Shipping*
Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit for System Builders - OEM
 

Helloworld_98

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they're on par with each other assuming you mean the 1gb version of the '870.

nvidia's offering will come ahead in some games but with the addition of 10.1 the '870 closes the gap.
 

xthekidx

Splendid
Dec 24, 2008
3,871
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The two GPU's are really neck and neck. But if you want the option of expanding your graphics later on without having to completely replace the GPU, then going with ATI is a better option, since xfire chipsets are more stable than SLI chipsets.
 

d3n1x

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thanks guys. do think im better off going with the quad thats 2.66 and not the 3.16ghz e8500 since i have never OC so im kind of hesitant and scared of f'ing something up.
 

xthekidx

Splendid
Dec 24, 2008
3,871
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Doing a light OC is very easy to do, even the noobiest of noobs can handle it. Download Prime95 for stress testing and RealTemp to monitor your temperatures. All you really need to do is move up the FSB in small increments, while keeping your voltages at stock, and keeping the ram frequency as close to its rated speed as possible by changing the divider/multiplier until your PC encounters errors in Prime95. When it does, give the CPU voltage a small bump (like .005-.01v) and run Prime95 again and repeat until you don't get errors (if your ram frequency is above its rated speed it may need a .1v bump as well to stabilize). That should give you a light stable overclock. There is really much more risk in you assembling your own PC than there is in you overclocking the CPU. I think you should go with the quad and OC to 3.2ghz or so.

Give this a read through, its very thorough and more than you need, but all wonderful info and if you were to decide to push it further you could:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/240001-29-howto-overclock-quads-duals-guide
and then look at this to get an idea of how your temperatures stack up:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/221745-29-core-core-temperature-guide
 

xthekidx

Splendid
Dec 24, 2008
3,871
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Here is a review of the Q9400 on newegg that may interest you:

Pros: This processor is wonderful! It has a x8 multiplier. So just setting your FSB to 400 will take it to 3.2 ghz with no problems at all. One simple bios setting and your done. I used the cooler master TX2 cooler and was able to get this thing to windows at 4ghz. I am currently running 100 percent stable at 3.6 ghz and 450 FSB. With factory settings and the cooler master heatsink I idle at 21 and at load it is 31. Overclocked while stressed at full load my temps only get to 50 Celsius so the only limiter to overclocking this is your motherboard.
 


HS and thermal compound....Darknight w/some tuniq or MX-2 maybe ?
 


I just added that scythe and tuniq to the build up above, and it keeps it under $1,000 total. :)
 

d3n1x

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Apr 19, 2009
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I think im going to get exactly that, i talked to a friend and its funny that he recomanded the exact same thing. However he chose the ASUS P5Q Pro but i think doesnt make much of a df either way. Also the GPU you recomanded is sold out so i switched it. My friend will help me overclock it so here is the set up let me know what you think.

System

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129042 $59.95 Free Shipping*
Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817341022 $69.99 ($44.99 after $25.00 Mail-In Rebate)
OCZ Fatal1ty OCZ550FTY 550W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Modular Active PFC Power Supply - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131299 $119.99 ($104.99 after $15.00 Mail-In Rebate) Free Shipping*
ASUS P5Q Pro LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115131&Tpk=N82E16819115131 $227.99 Free Shipping*
Intel Core2 Quad Q9400 2.66GHz 6MB L2 Cache LGA 775 95W Quad-Core Processor - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835185093 $31.99
Scythe MUGEN-2 SCMG-2000 120mm Sleeve CPU Cooler - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835154003 $4.99
Tuniq TX-2 Cooling Thermal Compound - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130434 $167.99 Free Shipping*
EVGA 896-P3-1255-AR GeForce GTX 260 Core 216 896MB 448-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231219 $42.99
G.SKILL HK 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319 $74.99 Free Shipping*
Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827136152 $24.99 Free Shipping*
LG Black 22X (CAV) DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 22X (CAV) DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 22X DVD±R DVD Burner - OEM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824236050 $169.99 ($149.99 after $20.00 Mail-In Rebate) Free Shipping*
ASUS VW224U Black 22" 2ms(GTG) Widescreen LCD Monitor w/ HDCP Support 300 cd/m2 1000:1 (ASCR 5000:1) Built in Speakers - Retail

SubTotal $1020.84
Shipping $20.5
Mail-in-Rebate - $80

Total $961.34

Please feel free to let me know if i should swtich something.

Thanks a lot
 

xthekidx

Splendid
Dec 24, 2008
3,871
1
22,790
If you go with the P5Q Pro, then you should go with a 4870 1GB because its an xfire supported MB. The UD3R that was suggested in the original build is a better motherboard if you don't want to xfire. If you want to have the option of xfire, then also pick up a better PSU, like the 750tx.
 

d3n1x

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Awesome, thanks a lot, i hope everything gets here in one pice and the OC works. ill let you know how it goes ;)
 

d3n1x

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Apr 19, 2009
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Hi guys, just a quick reply. I got everything about a week ago, put the system together last weekend, OC to 3.2 Ghz and it has been working great so far. Its a huge difference from mine old AMD 3000+ 512mb cache and 1gb memory :)))). I still need to install Vista on my new Hard drive but everything is great. Thanks for the help