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Thread: Custom PC build dilemma

  1. #1
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    Custom PC build dilemma

    Hello all,

    I'm going to build my first PC and need a little advise it thats OK?

    I am looking at the following specs:

    Intel Quad Core Q6600 2.4Ghz
    BFG 8800 GTS OC 512MB (675Mhz) SLI x2
    EVGA nForce 680i SLI,Vers-A1
    Cooler Master Mystique 631
    OCZ nVIDIA SLI DDR2 PC6400 4096MB KIT
    Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 250GB (will be plenty to start with)
    Fortron/Source Epsilon 800W
    Samsung DVD±RW burner, SH-S202N, 20x, Dual, LightScribe
    Samsung 22inch 2ms Monitor


    I was wondering how easy it is to build an SLI machine and if there is any pitfalls I should know about?

    Also, I would like to hear your views on whats better:

    TWO - 8800GTS 512MB SLI
    or
    ONE - 8800 Ultra 768MB

    Anyway I'd like to hear what you all think.

  2. #2
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    Re: Custom PC build dilemma

    8800 GTS SLi is a pretty easy choice over the 8800 Ultra. Neither are what I call great value, but it looks like you have the money to spend. It may be worth just buying one GTS and see how you get along with it.

    The RAM you picked should be good RAM, but it may also be pricier than absolutely needed to get most out of your system. Again, at your discretion - if you have no objection paying for it, there should not be anything wrong with it.

    In my opinion, your choice of HD doesn't make a whole lot of sense - most of your other components are past the 'bang for buck' line because you went for 'excess' and here you pick a part that misses the 'bang for buck' line because you decide you decide to go very cheap. For less than £20 (+27&#37 more, you can get a faster, quieter hard drive with twice the capacity (+100%). But if you really must go for a 250GB HD, go for the WD2500AAKS - the Seagate 7200.10 is decisively average by modern 7200RPM drive's standard. Similarly, if you decide to go for a 500GB drive (as I would suggest), go for either a WD AAKS, or a Samsung T166.

    I won't comment on your case/PSU choice - wouldn't be my first choice, but I've not heard anything inherently wrong with them either.

    This nitpicking but the Samsung 203 burner is out, and not likely more expensive in a significant manner of the 202 (£17 at Play.com).

    You should also get a 3rd party cooler for your Q6600. I am going to be boring and suggest the Scythe Ninja, Thermalright Ultima-90 and the Thermalright Ultimate 120 Extreme. The Scythe S-Flex is a tried and tested fan for those. There are other HSF and fan option (Mike would vouch for the Xigmatek too), but the aforementioned yield satisfactory results for many.

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    Re: Custom PC build dilemma

    Thanks for the response, there are so many options to choose from..

    With regards to the HDD, I need to save some cash as all the other stuff is pulling on the old purse strings a little heavy, I thought the HDD would be the best thing to save on now and upgrade at a later date.

    Thanks for the advice on the after market cooler, that didn't cross my mind as I thought the stock one would be fine!

    I have been reading on this forum about the importance of a good PSU, the one above is costing about £125, if anyone thinks there is a better alternative then please let me know.

    As for the case itself... I didn't have a clue what else to go for, theres not that many topics on whats the best case.

    Thanks again.

  4. #4
    finding nemo staffsMike's Avatar
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    • staffsMike's system
      • Motherboard:
      • evga 680i
      • CPU:
      • e6600
      • Memory:
      • geil ultra pc6400
      • Storage:
      • WD 320gb
      • Graphics card(s):
      • leadtek 8800 GTS 640mb
      • PSU:
      • ocz gameXstream 700w
      • Case:
      • akasa eclipse
      • Monitor(s):
      • dell 2007wfp and Lg L194WT
      • Internet:
      • pipex homecall

    Re: Custom PC build dilemma

    Corsair 520w HX will be enough for a single GTS system and probably an SLi to. It's only £60 and whisper quiet.

    You don't really need to SLi the GTS's for running games on a 22". A single one will do any game justice (apart from crysis but everything struggles to give good results with that).

    This way you can get a better and cheaper motherboard. Something like the Abit IP-35 dark raider can be had for £60 and offers amazing value for money. Overclocks very well too.

    That case doesn't seem to get great reviews but cases are very subjective so it if does it for you then it's kool.

    If you want the best bangs for bucks though something like the Antec 900 has far superior cooling, still looks pretty good and is very quiet. The antec P182 is also very good and even quieter

    How much is that RAM kit? You should only be spending £60/£70 on that amount of RAM at the moment.

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    Re: Custom PC build dilemma

    Ram kit is £80.01 from Komplett. I read somewhere that the SLI RAM makes better use of the memory when using an SLI mobo, thus getting better performance.

    Do you think that x2 GTS will future proof it? the reason I am trying to get the best I can afford now is that the wife has agreed on the spend!!! (Place thumb on head and push) So my idea is to spend up to my budget now as I doubt I'll get chance to upgrade latet !!!!!!!!

    What cases are good then, the one above is £59 from Komplett?

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    Re: Custom PC build dilemma

    For case I second Mike's opinion for the Antec 900 or P182, and the PSU's recommendation. If 520W feels like it's cutting a little close, then the 620W would definitely do at £80. For the difference, you could also get a better HD.

    In my opinion your system could use a little of reshuffling. You are trying to save £20 while opting for something that is significantly lesser value, yet spending £400 on graphic card on top of the additional cost of the motherboard.

    There is really no such thing as 'future proofing'. In my opinion, it makes sense to spend £150-200 on graphics card now, and another £150-200 12-18 months from now. But if you think that you may not be able to get your wife to accept that, then I suppose there is no helping it. Going SLI would give about 50% boost in games that supports it (very rough estimate, some games scale better, others don't scale at all) at 100% additional cost. For what it's worth, going GT SLI instead would save about £80 of the final costs, without hurting the performance by more than 10-15% (I suppose that if I was in a position where I had to spend £400 now or lose it, I'll just take it - but it's not good value) - it's about £40 more than the 3870 X2, but faster in most instances (where the game supports both).
    Last edited by TooNice; 11-02-2008 at 12:45 PM.

  7. #7
    finding nemo staffsMike's Avatar
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    • staffsMike's system
      • Motherboard:
      • evga 680i
      • CPU:
      • e6600
      • Memory:
      • geil ultra pc6400
      • Storage:
      • WD 320gb
      • Graphics card(s):
      • leadtek 8800 GTS 640mb
      • PSU:
      • ocz gameXstream 700w
      • Case:
      • akasa eclipse
      • Monitor(s):
      • dell 2007wfp and Lg L194WT
      • Internet:
      • pipex homecall

    Re: Custom PC build dilemma

    Regardless of the performance boost in games there will be next to no noticable difference with two card even if it is 100% effective boost.

    As long as you frame rates are above 40 or 50 you will not noitce anything difference about 100 - 150. That is my opinion as i'm not a die hard gamer.

    TooNice's logic about spending half your graphics budget now and then the other half later on an upgrade card is spot on. Not only will you be able to sell the old card you will get a card that is bang up to date. You will always get an amazing graphics card for £200, you don't need to spend more than that really. If you do just get the single HD3870 X2 but you don't need that at 1680x1050 (22"),

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    Re: Custom PC build dilemma

    Actually, considering the additional savings on the motherboard, it could shift the bang/buck of the X2 closer to a SLI GT than I thought minutes ago. Definitely worth considering. Just don't go wondering about doing X2 in Crossfire

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    Re: Custom PC build dilemma

    OK thanks, it seems that you guys see no benefit in SLI, it will save some money.

    The money I save then I could get the better PSU, case and HDD which makes sense. Shall I stick with the BFG 8800GTS 512 OC or is it worth upgrading to a 8800GTX OC. I read that the GTS are just as good is this true.

    Its hard to know whats right and whats bull on some of these other sites.

  10. #10
    finding nemo staffsMike's Avatar
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    • staffsMike's system
      • Motherboard:
      • evga 680i
      • CPU:
      • e6600
      • Memory:
      • geil ultra pc6400
      • Storage:
      • WD 320gb
      • Graphics card(s):
      • leadtek 8800 GTS 640mb
      • PSU:
      • ocz gameXstream 700w
      • Case:
      • akasa eclipse
      • Monitor(s):
      • dell 2007wfp and Lg L194WT
      • Internet:
      • pipex homecall

    Re: Custom PC build dilemma

    It's true that the new GTS (512mb) is very close to the performance of the older GTX. It hasn't been refreshed like the other cards. For the price I would stick with the GTS

  11. #11
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    Re: Custom PC build dilemma

    The GTS is indeed as good. The GTX is a little better in some game, the GTS a little better in others. Average it all, it's more or less the same, yet the GTS is cheaper and runs cooler.

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