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Thread: Spec me a rig...

  1. #1
    chown -R me ./base BlackDwarf's Avatar
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    Spec me a rig...

    Hey all.

    I've been a Mac user for 3 years now, and I'm so out of touch with the PC market, I need some help speccing a good rig for gaming.

    I really do have no idea what the stuff of the times are now, preferably dual, if not quad core, decent gfx, maybe SLI/ATI equivalent, at least 4Gb RAM, possible overclocking potential, you know the drill.

    Max budget, well, none really, but don't want to go overboard, so if i say £800ish, £1K with a decent monitor.

    Cheers all
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  2. #2
    finding nemo staffsMike's Avatar
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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    What size monitor would you want. 20-22" or 24-27"?

    There are some cheaper quads on route from intel so it might be worth waiting for them.

    There are two intel routes at the moment, cheaper and older S775 core 2.. or Core i7 which is new but more expensive in all areas concerned (motherboard ram and CPU)

    I'd be tempted if it's just for gaming to get a cheap S775 setup now and see what happens.

    For that I would build,

    E5200 pentium dual core ~£60 + Xigmatec cooler ~£25
    4GB PC6400 RAM ~£35 (corsair, ocz, crucial.. whatever tickles your fancy)
    Biostar P45 motherboard ~£90
    Enermax PROe82+ 525W or Modu82+ ~£60 - £80
    Case is down to preference but I wouldn't spend much over £100.
    Western Digital 640GB AAKS ~£60
    Optical/ blu ray ~£15 - £60

    Up to there is roughly £450 choosing mostly the expensive options.

    Graphics depends on the monitor size.
    20-22" (1680 x 1050) I would get an HD4850 from ATi or 9800GTX from nvidia ~£120-£130

    24-27"
    HD4870 or GTX260(or 265 now I think) which are around £180 (last checked) - £250.

    There are more expensive/better cards out there but to keep the cost reasonable that is what I would do since they are more than capable of playing most games at the highest settings.

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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    This guy got a 3.75GHz overclock from the e5200 without too much work. It got to 3.2GHz without touching the voltages.

    Not too bad for a 60 quid chip!

    multiplier . . . 12.5x? Intel is pretty-much asking us to overclock the life out of this thing.

  4. #4
    chown -R me ./base BlackDwarf's Avatar
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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    Thanks for the suggestions guys.

    I've decided I want t go the Intel Quad route, and will be getting a 22" monitor with it, so, any advances on ideas taking that into account?
    Diablo (Main PC): Corsair Air 540; Gigabyte Z77-D3H; i5 3570k @ 4.4Ghz; 16Gb Corsair Vengeance PC3-12000; 120Gb Samsung 840 EVO; EVGA 980 Ti Hybrid; 2x Dell U2414H; Windows 10 x64.
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  5. #5
    finding nemo staffsMike's Avatar
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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    As above with the flavour of quad you prefer. If the pentium quads come out soon they might be worth a look. Q6600 is an old favourite, or a Q9550 would be my shortlist.

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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    I see you'll be using the rig for gaming, still yet to find any game that sweats my system (Apart from SupCom : FA - massive maps with loads of AI, and thats only the occasional slowdown - albeit only running 1680x1050).

    If you've got that kind of budget (I had £700 excluding mon/spk/kb+mouse + £100 on external storage), there is no reason to buy budget and overclock, buy close to top end, and in 18 montths time overclock whilst those that bought budget have to buy out of date gear!

    Loving the name.
    "Don't wanna see your face, don't wanna hear your voice . . ."

  7. #7
    finding nemo staffsMike's Avatar
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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    I don't see it as buying budget, I see it as not spending twice as much on a few fps for which mostly the graphics card is responsible for anyway

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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    True!

    I just like to flex my e-peen
    "Don't wanna see your face, don't wanna hear your voice . . ."

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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    I wouldn't discount the Phenom II cpus if you are looking for a quad. The performance is around the Q9400 mark and they are priced very reasonably, under the £200 mark. The Phenom II 940 is £190 and the Phenom II 920 is £160. They can be paired with a 790GX motherboard which are priced between £70 and £120.

    Quote Originally Posted by staffsMike View Post
    Modu82+ ~£60 - £80
    Last I saw the price of a Modu82+ had jumped to over £100. When you are spending £800, I know that £20 is a drop in the bucket but it is still £20.

  10. #10
    finding nemo staffsMike's Avatar
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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    Blimey.. well the modu 525W is £85 and pro is £75.. crazy. I suppose the modu makes more sense with those prices.

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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    Quote Originally Posted by staffsMike View Post
    . . . a Q9550 would be my shortlist.
    This get my vote too.

    I was all set to go for a Q6600 but as those are now floating around £160-170 and Q9450/9550's are creeping nearer the £200 mark they have become much more attractive option if you are not ready for Core i7.

    There is also a sound review of the Phenom II's along with a host of others including Q9450/9550 at bit-tech:
    intel = performance option
    amd = competitive pricing and power saving (quote:the Phenom IIs use far less power, but at the same time they also do less work too)

  12. #12
    Bows out! CAT-THE-FIFTH's Avatar
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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    Quote Originally Posted by Time Bandit View Post
    This get my vote too.

    There is also a sound review of the Phenom II's along with a host of others including Q9450/9550 at bit-tech:
    intel = performance option
    amd = competitive pricing and power saving (quote:the Phenom IIs use far less power, but at the same time they also do less work too)
    You are slighlty distorting the facts there!! They say that the Phenom II does less work when compared to an i7. Here is the quote:

    "The load power is still higher than the Intel Core 2 Quads, but not by much, and compared to the Core i7s which also contain several MB of L3 cache and a memory controller, the Phenom IIs use far less power, but at the same time they also do less work too. "

    Even the Core2 Quad does less work than an i7 too.


    The problem when it comes to gaming at least is the review conclusions are quite flawed!! In both Farcry 2 and HL2 the Phenom II X4 940 is the same speed as a Q9650. Only in the original Crysis was it not as fast. This NOT surprising as Crysis is more optimised for the Intel Core2. In multithreaded Cinebench it is as fast as a Q9550.

    Looking at Techreport's review it is seen that a Phenom II 940 is around the speed of either a Q9550 or Q9650 in games and rendering benchmarks:

    http://techreport.com/articles.x/16147/1

    Looking at the Guru3D review the 940 is quite competitive with Core i7 in other games. Even in Crysis Warhead it is as fast as an i7 920. This may indicated that Crysis Warhead is much better optimised for AMD processors than the orginal game.

    http://www.guru3d.com/article/amd-ph...review-test/22

    The cheapest price I have seen for a Q9550 is £217 for an OEM CPU from Ebuyer whereas the cheapest I have seen for a Phenom II 940 BE is £192 from Scan. On Today Only this weekend it is 184 quid which makes it cheaper than even a Q9300. The motherboards are far better specced for the price.

    If you are going the Intel route and are overclocking I would forget the Q9550 and just get a Q6600 instead.The former is around 60 quid cheaper in retail form than an OEM Q9550. The OEM Q6600 is still 75 quid cheaper than an OEM Q9550. Scan have OEM Q6600 processors for around £143.It should be quite easy to get it to 3.0 to 3.2 ghz with a decent motherboard. The Biostar P45 motherboard should be fine or if you can get a P35 based motherboard for under 70 quid it would do the job.

    I would try to spend as much on the graphics card as possible.
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 25-01-2009 at 03:44 PM.

  13. #13
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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    Quote Originally Posted by tonpal View Post
    I wouldn't discount the Phenom II cpus if you are looking for a quad. The performance is around the Q9400 mark and they are priced very reasonably, under the £200 mark. The Phenom II 940 is £190 and the Phenom II 920 is £160. They can be paired with a 790GX motherboard which are priced between £70 and £120.



    Last I saw the price of a Modu82+ had jumped to over £100. When you are spending £800, I know that £20 is a drop in the bucket but it is still £20.
    You can use one of the better AMD 780G motherboards for under 70 quid instead as they support the Phenom II X4 920 and 940:

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/152580
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 25-01-2009 at 03:34 PM.

  14. #14
    chown -R me ./base BlackDwarf's Avatar
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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    How about this spec, just a little over budget, but vaguely future-proof?

    CoolerMaster Stacker RC-832 V2 Black Tower/Black Trim Case w/o PSU £121.49 £139.71
    LG GGC-H20L Lightscribe SATA 16xDVD±R +RWx8/-RW x6 Also READS - Blu-Ray & HD Disc's black £72.99 £83.94
    NorthQ Siberian Tiger Liquid Cooling All AMD/Intel with 120mm Ceramic NorthQ Fan control. Retail £49.99 £57.49
    DFI LANPARTY UT 790FX-M2R, AMD 790FX, S AM2+, PCI-E 2.0 (x16), DDR2 667/800, SATA II, SATA RAID, ATX £110.19 £126.72
    4GB (2x2GB) Corsair Dominator DDR2 PC2-8500 (1066), 240 Pin, Non-ECC Unbuff, CAS 5, EPP, DHX + Fan £69.95 £80.44
    AMD Phenom II X4 940 Black Edition, Deneb, S AM2+, 3.0GHz, 8MB Total Cache, HT 2000MHz, 125W, Retail £159.99 £183.99
    20" Samsung SM2043NW, Black Widescreen, 5 ms, 1680x1050, 8000:1 DCR £89.99 £103.49
    620W Coolermaster Real Power M620 Modular PSU SLi, PCI-E, SATA, 80%+ Eff' ATX 12V V2.3 EPS £53.00 £60.95
    1GB EVGA GTX 285, PCI-E 2.0 (x16), Mem 2480MHz GDDR3, GPU 648MHz, 240 Cores, 2x DL DVI-I/ HDTV £275.00 £316.25
    640 GB Western Digital WD6400AAKS Caviar Blue, SATA 300, 7200 rpm, 16MB Cache, 8.9 ms £51.50 £59.23
    Diablo (Main PC): Corsair Air 540; Gigabyte Z77-D3H; i5 3570k @ 4.4Ghz; 16Gb Corsair Vengeance PC3-12000; 120Gb Samsung 840 EVO; EVGA 980 Ti Hybrid; 2x Dell U2414H; Windows 10 x64.
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  15. #15
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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    Do you have a copy of an OS??

    I would go for a 790GX motherboard:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/DFI-D...-SATA-RAID-ATX

    You could probably use a normal CPU cooler too. Some of the members here consider the following a good cooler:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/Product.aspx?W...source=froogle

    This XClio 650w is cheaper and is under 60 quid:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/Product.aspx?W...source=froogle

    It has got decent reviews:

    http://www.anandtech.com/casecooling...spx?i=3231&p=7

    http://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/163...ply/index.html

    The optical drive you chose is under 70 quid at Ebuyer:

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/139985



    If you go for 4gb of low latency PC6400 RAM you could save around 35 quid:

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/154644

    Also replace the GTX280 with a GTX260 216 shader version. It has most of the performance of a GTX285 for £100 less especially since you are using a 1680x1050 resolution screen!

    This EVGA GTX260 SSC 216 shader version is nearly 20 quid cheaper at Ebuyer too when compared to Scan:

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/155943

    This should all save you at least £165.
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 26-01-2009 at 02:03 AM.

  16. #16
    chown -R me ./base BlackDwarf's Avatar
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    Re: Spec me a rig...

    Ok, hows about now?

    Coolermaster RC-1100 V2 Cosmos S
    625W Enermax MODU82+ EMD625AWT
    120mm Noctua NF-P12 Vortex-Control Quiet Case Fan
    Thermalright Ultra-120 eXtreme 120mm Heat Sink Fan for AM2 CPU (Without Fan)
    DFI DK 790GX-M2RS, AMD 790GX, SAM2+, PCI-E 2.0 (x16), DDR2 1066/667/800, SATA II, SATA RAID, ATX
    4GB (2x2GB) Corsair Dominator DDR2 PC2-8500 (1066), 240 Pin, Non-ECC Unbuff, CAS 5, EPP, DHX + Fan
    AMD Phenom II X4 940 Black Edition, Deneb, S AM2+, 3.0GHz, 8MB Total Cache, HT 2000MHz, 125W, Retail
    20" Samsung SM2043NW, Black Widescreen, 5 ms, 1680x1050, 8000:1 DCR
    896MB EVGA GTX 260 SSC, 2304MHz GDDR3, 55nm GPU 675MHz, 216Cores, 2x DL DVI-I/ HDTV
    640 GB Western Digital WD6400AAKS Caviar Blue, SATA 300, 7200 rpm, 16MB Cache, 8.9 ms

    Do AMD boards not do SLI?
    Diablo (Main PC): Corsair Air 540; Gigabyte Z77-D3H; i5 3570k @ 4.4Ghz; 16Gb Corsair Vengeance PC3-12000; 120Gb Samsung 840 EVO; EVGA 980 Ti Hybrid; 2x Dell U2414H; Windows 10 x64.
    Imperius (VM Server): 2x Intel 5640, 64Gb RAM, 2x1Tb, 6x Intel NIC, VMware ESX 5.5
    Tyrael (File Server): Synology DS410 w/ 4x HD154UI; 2Gb RAM; DSM 5.2

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