WEIGH IN: $1200 AMD system for Sept. System Builder Marathon

cleeve

Illustrious
Moderator
Hi guys,

Its me again. I'm specing out the $1200 AMD system for the next system builder marathon and I wanted your feedback, folks.

Here's the Newegg link to the components I've got my eye on. Let me know if anything looks bad, or if you guys have any better ideas.

Note that the $1200 *includes* the operating system as a lot of folks requested, making it a little tougher to squeeze things into the budget.

Anyway, have a look and let me know what you guys think. Thanks!

http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx?WishListNumber=15240227
 

shortstuff_mt

Glorious
Moderator
The build looks pretty solid. I would go with a 790GX motherboard like the GA-MA790GPT-UD3H and step up to the Phenom II X4 955. I also don't see an aftermarket cooler. It seems like you'd want a black edition chip and nice cooler since you'll be overclocking the system.

The 650TX seems a little underpowered for crossfire 4890's. You'll have to use adapters to power both cards since the 650TX only comes with 2 x 6+2-Pin PCI-E connectors. I would step up to the 750TX.
 

skora

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For dual GPU, I'd spring for the Corsair 750TX. 4xpcie connectors vs the 2 and adapters you'd need on the 650tx. If you factor in combo prices, the OS can be combo'd with just about everything for $15 savings giving you the room for the $20 PSU upgrade.

For the 945, is it better to get the 125w or the 95w flavor?
 

cleeve

Illustrious
Moderator
Thanks shortstuff - forgot the cooler. Not sure I have space in the budget for a 750TX though, especially after I add the cooler...

790GX is a good idea to save a few bucks though, but I don't want to give up the second x16 slot for Crossfire. I'll play with it and see.
 
Id stick with the 945 since they seem to top out at the same level as the 955 and 965

The gx boards have 8x/8x crossfire so stay with the fx

drop the wd 640 black for a seagate 500 gig 7200.12 , or the samsung f3 .
The money you save would put a decent cooler in the budget .


edit the OS doesnt have the upgrade to win7 , but that wont matter for this build I guess

and when you have finished testing it I volunteer to look after it for you :)
 

cleeve

Illustrious
Moderator
I added the 750TX and a Noctua NH-U12P cooler, but I had to drop the CPU down to an X3 720... and I'm STILL $20 over budget.

Crap. It's the devil's choice. Do I use the 790GX and a better CPU and give up 2x PCIe x16 slots? Or do I keep the X3 720 and use the two PCIe x16 slots the FX board allows?

Personally, I'd prefer the X3 720/ 2x PCIe x16 slots just because I'd like to show what an X3 720 can do.
 

skora

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How imperative is dual 4890s? You said yourself in the conclusion for the gaming value i7 vs 955 that both systems delivered playable framerates. Hit the 4870 1gbs. That would free up enough to get the quad core back in there and drop you under budget.

Though it would be cool to see the x3 benched with that kind of graphics power.
 

cleeve

Illustrious
Moderator
Well, I'm pitting this system against a $2500 AMD system, so I want to game as hard as I can. It seems most folks are only interested in the game benches anyway... :p
 


I say lets see if we can melt a 650 tx !

[ but then I dont have to pay for it so I think "science" is fun ]
 

cleeve

Illustrious
Moderator


Good thinking Outlander, the F3 puts us right at $1200. Perfect!
 

shortstuff_mt

Glorious
Moderator
That particular 790GX board (the GA-MA790GPT-UD3H) says in its description on Newegg that it has two PCI Express 2.0 x16 slots. I don't know if that's a mis-print or not. I'll have to look into it. I would go with the 790GX even if it did go down to 8x crossfire. Your own benchmarks on this site indicate there's hardly any speed penalty by going with 8x crossfire.

I'd much rather see a quad core and 790GX than a triple core and 790FX. What about everybody else?
 

cleeve

Illustrious
Moderator



Heheh. I like the way you think!
Unfortunately, the price difference only gives us enough to get the X4 810.

I suppose I could say to hell with it and up the budget to $1250 and just get the 945... but it seems like cheating. And the X3 would probably do a nice job...

...then again, I might be crazy saving a measly $50 to go with a 945. The X3 might overclock better since it's a BE. And having said all that, am I crazier not spending the extra $80 to go with a 955 BE?
 

skora

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For value of the article, there's loads of 955 dual 4890 benchmark reviews out there. If I'm going to drop $1200+ on a build, I would like to see a review using the x3 and how it compares. If it's an utter disaster, then I know to spend the extra on a quad. If it performs close to the same, I might get a second drive for a raid array or a shinier case. Boldly go where no other x3 has gone before.
 

cleeve

Illustrious
Moderator
The problem is, I choose the 790GX and I get a million guys telling me I hate AMD in the forums because I've purposefully handicapped the $1200 system with 8x PCIe slots.

I'd like to avoid that if possible, shortstuff.
 

skora

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Take what technical merit from this you want, but it used 4850 CF and concluded that the P45 x8/x8 did effect performance vs the x16/x16 on the X48. It is over a year old and the drivers have come a long way.

http://www.tweaktown.com/articles/1472/intel_p45_vs_x48_crossfire_performance/index.html

Or Don can buy a 790GX to do a head to head article with all the same parts except the mobo switched out.
 

cleeve

Illustrious
Moderator


Heheh.

Seriously though, I've run 2GB on a ton of Vista boxes with no problems at all. 2 GB will do the job - load times might be a little longer for game levels, but it's very livable.
 

skora

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If you're worried about the fanboys chastising you for bottlenecking a pair of 4890s, some of them might actually show up at your doorstep if you do that to 4870x2s.

And whose going to buy a modern PC with just a CD burner on it?
 

cleeve

Illustrious
Moderator


Single graphics card, or even integrated... save a ton of cash. A $60 780G motherboard would do the job nicely with no graphics card expense at all. A much less beefy power supply.

Then use the extra cash for the CPU. There's other stuff you can option out, but that's the bare basics.
 

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