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Thread: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

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    Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    My trusted Socket-A pc has decided it's had enough - motherboard has gone kaput

    So now I need another pc to play supcom/trans/re-encode things (yes, a seven year old Socket-A PC can play supcom- just ).

    I've tried to keep up to date with all of the new kit out, but any advice would be really helpful

    I'll still be using my two 19" monitors (2x 1284x1024) as there's nothing wrong with them, and my current HDDs will be put in ext. enclosures (one is starting to grind anyway, so probably not too much life left in any of them)

    (Bought)
    Case: CM Storm Sniper
    Mouse: Razer Lachesis

    (Current wish-list)
    CPU: i7 920 (£240 approx)
    Cooler: TRUE 1366RT 120mm with fan (£50 approx)
    M/B: Gigabyte EX58-UD5 or DFI DK X58T3eH6 (£220 approx)
    PSU: Corsair 650 TX (£80 approx)
    RAM: 3GB OCZ (1333 C7) (£80 approx)
    GFX: Sapphire Radeon 4870 Toxic 512MB (£195 approx)
    HDD1: WD VelociRaptor 150GB (£140 approx)
    HDD2: WD Caviar Blank 640GB (£40 approx)
    K/B : Razer Lycosa (£50 approx)
    Some cheapish SATA DVD drive

    The main components I'm having trouble with are the motherboard, and if the PSU will cope (planning to go Crossfire when I need a graphics update)

    Lastly, is it worth getting 64-bit windows and 6GB of RAM? Otherwise I'm planning to stay with 32-bit XP until Windows 7 has been out 5-6 months.

    Thanks muchly for any/all help

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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    I would get an HD4870 1gb or a GTX260(216 shader version) instead of the HD4870 512mb. The GTX260(216 shader version) is faster than the HD4870 1gb. Also the x58 motherboards you listed seems to support both crossfire and SLI too!

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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    I thought about the 1GB version, but unless there is going to a huge difference at the resolutions I'm on I can't really justify the price (I was going to stick with a 4850) - and I think a 4850x2 out-performs a 1GB 4870 as well (which are about the same price)

    £200 is pretty much the most I can spend on a graphics card.

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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    Quote Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH View Post
    I would get an HD4870 1gb or a GTX260(216 shader version) instead of the HD4870 512mb. The GTX260(216 shader version) is faster than the HD4870 1gb. Also the x58 motherboards you listed seems to support both crossfire and SLI too!
    Agreed especially as @ £195 the xtra cost for the 260 isnt that great.

    The corsair should cope with a single card however Corsair by thier calculation recommends the 850 TX
    http://www.corsair.com/psufinder/res...se&vc_oc=False

    Also I wouldnt bother with the expense of the WD HDD the Samsung is faster in most tests and therefore you could ofset the cost of the higher powered TX and still afford another Samsung. Either then RAID 0 them or just have massive amounts of storage
    See Here on Bit-Techs review

    The mobo is a personal taste but I would go for DFI it has some rave reviews especially in the OC department.
    Supershanks has a Living Review on Clunks forum. Linky


    I am sure you will have plenty of other opinions but thats my two-pennyworth
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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    Quote Originally Posted by daimonart View Post
    I thought about the 1GB version, but unless there is going to a huge difference at the resolutions I'm on I can't really justify the price (I was going to stick with a 4850) - and I think a 4850x2 out-performs a 1GB 4870 as well (which are about the same price)

    £200 is pretty much the most I can spend on a graphics card.
    Well were talking £20.00 diff for the EVGA 260 and £12 on a Sapphire. Depends on your monitor and what res you play at. Long term the extra memory will count.
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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    You can get an HD4870 1gb for well under £200:

    http://www.novatech.co.uk/novatech/s...html?nov-48701

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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    So the extra memory for the 1GB is worth more than the 5-10% increase in speed for the Toxic card?

    I've had a quick (admittedly very quick) look at benchmarks, and at the resolution I'm on the stock 512MB 4870 Just outdoes the 260 without AA, and slightly behind with AA. (2x 19" monitors both at 1284x1024) - so will be doing more research into that.

    As for the HDD, I looked into that as I thought the raptor was meant to be a fair bit faster. Other sites seem to agree that the Samsung is better for burst speed than any WD drive out; however the the WD drive tested there is the Raptor drive, not the VelociRaptor (which is faster for avg read/write performance).

    I've read the living review for the m/b - and I am leaning towards DFI (been meaning to try one of their boards for a while)
    Last edited by daimonart; 10-02-2009 at 04:21 PM. Reason: grammer for the HDD paragraph

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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    Quote Originally Posted by daimonart View Post
    So the extra memory for the 1GB is worth more than the 5-10% increase in speed for the Toxic card?

    I've had a quick (admittedly very quick) look at benchmarks, and at the resolution I'm on the stock 512MB 4870 Just outdoes the 260 without AA, and slightly behind with AA. (2x 19" monitors both at 1284x1024) - so will be doing more research into that.

    As for the HDD, I looked into that as I thought the raptor was meant to be a fair bit faster. Other sites seem to agree that the Samsung is better for burst speed than any WD drive out; however the the WD drive tested there is the Raptor drive, not the VelociRaptor (which is faster for avg read/write performance).

    I've read the living review for the m/b - and I am leaning towards DFI (been meaning to try one of their boards for a while)
    Your right there is a gain on the Velciraptor, my bad
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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    Quote Originally Posted by DratUK View Post
    Your right there is a gain on the Velciraptor, my bad
    It's still not far off the speeds though, 10MB/s or so between the samsung and VR?
    And when comparing the WD caviar black, samsung spinpoint and seagate barracuda (the new 320GB one) it's all swings and roundabouts depending what you're measuring by the look of it.

    At least decided on mb and HDD, and I think changing the PSU to 750W should be enough..

    The corsair site came as ok for OC'd proc, 2x 4870s (again OC'd) , and 2x internal HDDs - but if I was to go for the 260 (and future proof for adding a second for SLI) it says 850 should do, but if the graphics cards are OC'd at all only the 1kW is enough... so I think I'll stick to one of the Radeon solutions as it seems a little more versatile on their requirements

    Still trying to find somewhere to help with deciding speed over memory, as a pre-OC'd 1GB 4870 is about £250 which is too much over the £200 limit (and the 4850x2 having better performance at the same price).
    Last edited by daimonart; 10-02-2009 at 05:21 PM. Reason: clarifying first paragraph a bit

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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    The HD4870 1gb from Novatech is £183.99 including postage. You can always overclock the graphics card yourself!!

    Even OcUK have it for the same price if you have free postage with them:

    http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showpr...odid=GX-120-XF

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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    Quote Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH View Post
    The HD4870 1gb from Novatech is £183.99 including postage. You can always overclock the graphics card yourself!!

    Even OcUK have it for the same price if you have free postage with them:
    (removed url as not up to 5 posts yet)

    I had seen it, but thought at my resolutions the speed increase would be more useful than memory, but there seems to be a consensus otherwise - so changing that as well

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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    Quote Originally Posted by daimonart View Post
    (removed url as not up to 5 posts yet)

    I had seen it, but thought at my resolutions the speed increase would be more useful than memory, but there seems to be a consensus otherwise - so changing that as well
    Ok I've done my research on this now...

    http://techreport.com/articles.x/14230/5 shows that for single monitor up to 1920x1440 the amount of gfx memory makes no difference.
    On http://forums.hexus.net/graphics-car...mory-make.html people seem in agreement that clock speed and RAM speed is more important than jumping to 1GB.

    Based on that I'm going to drop back to the pre-OC'd 512MB 4870.

    Still not found anything much for a dual monitor setup, but as only a couple of games support that for the moment I'm happy to just disable one while playing anything other than supcom if it's too much of a performance hit.

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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    IMHO spending £200 on an overclocked HD4870 512mb is waste of money!! If you want to spend £200 buy the cheapest GTX260 216 shader version as this is quicker than the HD4870 in most games.

    You can get an overclocked HD4870 512mb with for under £165 delivered:

    http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showpr...=56&subcat=939

    Also the problem is that with newer games the 1gb HD4870 is faster than the 512MB version especially with AA:

    http://www.guru3d.com/article/amd-at...024mb-review/8

    http://techreport.com/articles.x/15651/9

    http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/gra...olden-sample/4


    If you are running dual monitors you are having an effective resolution of 2560x1024 if you span a game accross both of them!!
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 11-02-2009 at 03:10 PM.

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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    Quote Originally Posted by daimonart View Post
    Ok I've done my research on this now...

    http://techreport.com/articles.x/14230/5 shows that for single monitor up to 1920x1440 the amount of gfx memory makes no difference.
    On http://forums.hexus.net/graphics-car...mory-make.html people seem in agreement that clock speed and RAM speed is more important than jumping to 1GB.

    Based on that I'm going to drop back to the pre-OC'd 512MB 4870.
    Not necessarily for high end cards which can make use of the RAM. Games are only going to start using more and more video RAM. With high end graphics cards with AA enabled video RAM can make a difference. The 8800GT is much less poweful than a GTX260 or a HD4870 for example.
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 11-02-2009 at 03:11 PM.

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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    Quote Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH View Post
    IMHO spending £200 on an overclocked HD4870 512mb is waste of money!! If you want to spend £200 buy the cheapest GTX260 216 shader version as this is quicker than the HD4870 in most games.

    The 30mhz overclock of the overclocked HD4870 can be done with a cheaper HD4870 512mb using ATI Overdrive,Rivatuner or ATItool. I have done this with every desktop graphics card I have bought in the last 5 years.

    Also the problem is that with newer games like Crysis Warhead and Farcry 2 the 1gb HD4870 is faster than the 512MB version especially with AA:

    http://www.guru3d.com/article/amd-at...024mb-review/8

    http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/gra...olden-sample/4

    http://techreport.com/articles.x/15651/9

    This is only at 1680x1050 too!!

    If you are running dual monitors you are having an effective resolution of 2560x1024 if you span a game accross both of them!!

    Ok thanks for those links - I've read up a bit on those tools you mentioned and it does seem to be easier to OC yourself, and a lot of people have got more out of the cards on stock coolers?

    The price difference between the 512 and 1GB models currently seems to be about £35, so back to the 1GB model and OC it myself...

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    Re: Yet another i7 build (gaming/transcoding)

    If you want to save a bit of money check the 512mb HD4870 I linked to previously. It has a custom cooler and is pre-overclocked. Not bad for just under £165 delivered!!

    However I would go for the 1gb version as in some games it will make a difference.Also the re-sale value will be higher!!

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