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Old 09-10-2010, 12:34 AM   #7
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Join Date: May 2006
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Originally Posted by Darth333 View Post
As for the CPU...I so love/hate this eternal AMD/Intel "feud"..which one to chose??? I'm an eternal infidel so I guess I'll do my homework and start reading about it
Here's an unbiased answer to that question. This is the most direct comparison of each architecture. Once the Intel's turbo kicks in, they're actually running at the same speed (2.8GHz), and the i5 750 is just a straight quad-core with no hyperthreading or triple-channel memory support to skew the results. You can also use the Anandtech Bench to compare GPUs and SSDs, and your old CPU is also on the list for comparison.

Keep in mind that Intel's Sandy Bridge is going to be released late this year/early next year. I honestly don't know much about it (and, since I recently went into the red upgrading to a Core i7, I don't want to know about it ), but it appears that Intel might purposefully limit it's overclockability to promote sales of the higher-end models.
Originally Posted by Darth333
@ Liverandbacon: I'm not anti-sli. But in the past it didn't really offered noticeable advantage over a single high end gpu...and replacing that single gpu by another single gpu during the lifetime of the comp was less expensive and offered a more uniform overall performance as new games were released (this is meant to be a gaming PC).
I used to feel the same way until I found 2x9600GSOs for $40 apiece. Together they give me roughly the graphics power of a GTX 260 for less than half the price. Both SLI and XFire have improved dramatically in the past couple of years, but, if you have the $$$ to spend, I do agree that a single, powerful GPU is still preferable.
Originally Posted by Darth333
I currently have 3 HDD on my gaming comp which is 4-2yr old depending on the components (I tend to keep files in case I'd use them again in the near future but most of them are totally useless..and my filing system is such a mess...).
Luckily, HDD space is cheap.
Originally Posted by Darth333
How about getting a small SSD drive and a bigger Hard drive for storage? Is that worth it or should just I get two regular HDD?
It's now getting to the point that it is worth it, IMO. With garbage collection and TRIM, SSDs are a lot less maintenance-intensive and the new SandForce controllers make them almost 50% faster than the previous generation. They're still expensive, but not prohibitively so, and, from what I've heard, their impact on system performance is outstanding. I'm currently looking for one myself.
Originally Posted by Darth333
(I am very partial to the 1TB Western Digital Black drive, at least for storage). Don't know if I've been lucky but those WD drives never failed me.
Same here. My main HDD is a Caviar Black. I've trusted WD since the early 90s.

The Samsung F3s (500GB platters) and now the new F4s (667GB platters) are also worth a look. The Samsungs are currently the fastest 7200RPM drives available.
Originally Posted by Darth333
I have a Radeon 4870, is it worth replacing it with one of those cards or the one proposed by L&B at this time or would you keep it a bit longer and wait for the next gen? (obviously, this may also influence the mobo choice...)
I know that you've always preferred ATI hardware, so it's definitely worth mentioning that the HD 6000 series is due to be released late this year/early next year (along with Sandy Bridge), so it's probably a good idea to hold onto that 4870 for just a little longer. I use Nvidia because I prefer their drivers, but there's no denying that the HD 5000 series' hardware is generally superior to the GeForce 400's (except in the case of the GTX 460, which has a redesigned GPU), and there's little doubt that HD 6xxx will be worth the wait. The graphics card should usually be the last part that you buy, anyway, because it's the first one to become obsolete. The better motherboards (P55 and X58) support both SLI and XFire nowadays, so there's no need to choose along those lines (Yes, thank you, Intel, for slapping Nvidia down and making them your bitch - No more putting up with craptastic Nvidia chipsets if you want SLI! ).
Originally Posted by Darth333
Also, the noise is also a factor for me (my ears are abnormally ultra sensitive). I always have earphones when I use my gaming PC, even if I'm not gaming because the noise just drives me mad. I chose the Radeon 4870 because at the time because it was less noisy than its nVidia counterpart but still, every time I turn on my PC I feel like an old jet is flying right over my head even with earphones on...for the same performance, I am ready to pay a little extra for a few less decibels (one the reasons why my budget is flexible...the same applies to the case and the fans). Any other case suggestions in that regard (good space/ventilation/sound insulation compromise)? - current case is an Antec P180-b for info.
All (or nearly all) of the current-generation high-performance graphics cards are pretty loud, so the best solution would be to get an XFX brand card (yeah, they do ATI cards now, too) and replace the stock heatsink with a high-quality fanless one like an Accelero, along with some RAMsinks. As long as your case has good airflow, it will cool your card just fine even if you overclock it, and XFX's warranty is the only one that I know of that covers mods like aftermarket heatsinks. The only downside is that good fanless heatsinks are huge, so make sure you have the room.
Originally Posted by Darth333
That is definitely a given for the heatsink fan... For the cfm fans, I usually go for a compromise between quality and noise.
High-CFM fans that are also quiet are usually pricey, but to get good airflow with low noise there's no other way around it. Just check the decibel rating before you buy. If you're sensitive to fan noise, you're not going to want anything louder than 25db.
Originally Posted by Darth333
Btw current built it:
Intel C2D E8400 @ 3400 GHz (tried higher but Mobo didn't like it at all).
Gpu: Ati Radeon 4870
Mobo: Motherboard Asus P5WDH
3 Western Digital 1x250GB + 2X500GB @ 7200rpm
Corsair XMS 2GB PC-6400 DDR2 CL4 (with an additional little kick in the lower back from d3)
Sound Card: modified Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer
PSU: Antec True Power Trio 650W
case: Antec P-180b

It might not be half bad but everyone has whims...and this is one of mine!
Yeah, that system isn't too old at all. Well, the motherboard is, but it's a 975X, so I can see why you held onto it for so long. That was the flagship Intel chipset around four years ago. Really, though, the near-simultaneous release of Sandy Bridge and HD 6xxx make a compelling case for waiting just a few months if you want the best of the best.

Here's my build and what I paid for it after rebates and promotional discounts (including Microsoft's Bing cashback program):
Good GAWD! Even with the great deals I got, with Windows it was still close to $1000.00, and I haven't added an SSD or BluRay, yet. It's a freakin' powerhouse, though. You should see how it chews through massively multithreaded apps like RAD Video Tools! I haven't even started overclocking it yet; I haven't really felt the need.

If you haven't yet, sign up for Newegg's newsletter and you'll get promotional codes for discounts and free shipping, and be sure to check for combo deals offered on the components that you need. The daily "shell shocker" deals are also worth looking at. Some of the discounts that you can get are pretty awesome, and they're fun to look for, regardless.

Happy hunting!

"They should rename the team to the Washington Government Sucks. Put Obama on the helmet. Line the entire walls of the stadium with the actual text of the ACA.
Fix their home team score on the board to the debt clock, they can win every game 17,000,000,000,000 to 24. Losing team gets taxed by the IRS 100%, then droned."
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