New i7 Build - Suggestions Please


Sep 3, 2008
I built my last computer about 6 years ago, and I am desperately in need of a new one. I don’t play games and am not into overclocking. I will be doing web design (Flash/Photoshop) and video encoding. I don’t need any HDDs, monitor or optical drive, and would like to keep it under $1000. This is what I have been thinking.

i7 920

Motherboard - I was thinking of these two...

Ram - Dont know much about RAM voltage and timing.

I have no idea here.

I would like to go with something simple. A simple black case, no lights, bells or wistles. I was thinking of one of these.
Antec Sonata III 500 or Antec Sonata Plus 550 (Would a 500w PSU be sufficient?)

CPU cooler?
Do I need one, or does the CPU come with one?

I would appreciate any suggestions.
The CPU comes with a cooler. You don't need to buy another one since you don't overclock.

The Sonata III 500 will be fine.

Add a HD 4670 card.

The GA-EX58-UD3R will also be fine; no need to spend more on the P6T since you don't overclock and don't need two nVidia gaming cards in SLI.

You need RAM that works with X58. Here's a good set for $100:
G.SKILL 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333
Just checking - when you say you don't need HDD or opticals, does that mean you already have 6-year old devices you want to reuse?

Keep in mind that a recent WD 640GB Caviar Black is three times faster than 6-year old hard drives and it's the most important part when it comes to video encoding.

Also, an X58 board will let you use one IDE HDD and one IDE optical, no more.


Sep 3, 2008
I have new HDDs (one 160gb SATA and two 500gb SATAs) and a new CD/DVD burner.

For the video card, what manufacturer?

After reading thru the forums I see Mushkin and Corsair recommended alot, but not G.SKILL. Any reason? And what about the voltage and the timing? Do I care about that much?

G.Skill is recommended a lot on this forum, I'd say. Anyway, all three are reliable brands IMO. Timings are not really that important if you don't overclock. Voltages - try to get something that works at 1.5V, if possible. That is, the lower the better.

About the video card manufacturer: I'd go with this one:

HIS Hightech H467QT512P Radeon HD 4670 IceQ Turbo 512MB $80

It's Newegg's bestselling flavor of HD 4670 (128 reviews, 5 eggs), and 512MB is just about right for this kind of card.


Sep 3, 2008
For $10 more I could get the 1GB model. Would I benefit from getting the 1GB instead of the 512MB?

Also, the motherboard has 4 slots for memory. I can fill three slots and that is OK?
I agree. 1GB of RAM is overkill for that card.

No worries about the memory slots. Yes, fill 3 slots and it's OK. Most people who buy that board (or any other x58) use 3 RAM sticks. That helps performance, i.e. the RAM works in "Triple Channel" mode.


Mar 5, 2009
I would pay the extra for the P6T simply for the extra RAM slots... you may not need them now, but being able to add an extra 6GB in the future will provide a nice performance boost. The P6T is about $50 more so it seems silly to cripple your upgrade path if you can afford the extra.

Heck, get the 12GB RAM now and you won't need virtual memory and can even have a ramdisk if you need it, which could dramatically improve performance, assuming you are running a 64bit OS. If you are running a 32bit OS, just get 3GB of RAM and upgrade it later if/when you go 64bit.
The second one has better timings and large coolers. That is, it's an overclocker product and will most likely allow a higher overclock.

The first one is probably a better choice for you. That is, it's still fine for a moderate overclock and the price is much better.


Jan 16, 2009
The first memory will have better OC potential due to its 1.5-1.6 volt, but the second has less timing which makes it faster than 1st one if no oc but ocing ram doesnt really make the difference.

Remember 3 gb drr3 1333 mhz is more than enough for games, but video encoding etc. You may need 6 gbs of 1333 mhz. there is a only 5 % gain between 1333 and 1600 :D hope it helps.



Sep 3, 2008
I think I've narrowed it down. No OCing for now...

CPU: i7
Video: HIS Hightech H467QT512P
Ram: G.SKILL 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666)

To save a few bucks I was thinking of using my old case. It has a 400w PSU, Will this work?
It might. HIS doesn't show PSU requirements for the HD 4670 on their Newegg page, but Visiontek does and they say 400W or more. You're right at the limit.

If your PSU has been used for years it will not be able to deliver as much power as when it was new. On the other hand these recommendations are usually padded a bit. I guess it depends on the model. Some PSUs claiming 400W are a lot more powerful than others who claim the same thing. What model do you have?

Take a look at this RAM down below. It has decent timings, and it hold back your overclocking. That and it's cheap right now. $114.99 ($104.99 after $10.00 Mail-In Rebate) Free Shipping*
OCZ Platinum 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail
I think you've got a pretty good chance. The Antec Smartpower 400W can deliver 21A, which is good compared to a lot of other so-called 400W PSUs that deliver only 18A (Coolmax, HEC).