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Thread: help with a major upgrade please

  1. #1
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    help with a major upgrade please

    My first post here so please bear with me.

    Haven't upgraded my pc for many a year - used to be well into modding and pc's - so am well over due for a complete upgrade and grateful of some advice.

    I'm currently running two pc's (one as a server but sameish spec) Pentium 4 3.20, 2GB ram, supermicro P4SPE mainboard. When these systems were put together I made one a server due to storage needs at the time (films etc) am now just planning on having one machine.

    The only bits I am planning on keeping are:

    various sata hard drives

    supermicro case (SC-750A - quite a monster! - has been modded to have a 120mm outlet fan on side as well). Being a newbie I can't post a direct link so add a couple of ww's to the addys

    w.arstechnica.com/reviews/1298/sc750a.html

    Enermax Liberty ELT500AWT psu

    w.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817194003

    I am thinking of an Intel i7 cpu (have always had intel since 8086's so want to stay).
    SSD for o/s and progs (maybe 30gb enough??)
    windows 7 64 bit
    over to you experts for the rest !!

    I am completely lost as regards graphics card - my system runs two monitors in independent mode (via DVI connectors). I would like to keep this set-up - at the time dual monitors was unusual and I used a matrox card for them. Do all reasonable cards give me dual DVI in independent mode now ? I see some are very fancy prices but I assume these are for the more hardcore gamers only ??

    Do people think my existing case and psu will be ok ?

    I do a lot of photography and since moving to a better camera with much larger image files I have really noticed the slow speed. So main application will be photo editing (photoshop) and sorting (lightroom). I do some video converstions too. Obviously the normal office and browsing stuff too, machine will also act as movie storage for downstairs media player.

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    Senior Member Pob255's Avatar
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    • Pob255's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Asus M5A99X EVO
      • CPU:
      • PhenomII x4 955 & CM Hyper 212+
      • Memory:
      • 2x 4gb Corsair Vengence 1600mhz cas9
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      • Operating System:
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      • Dell 21" ips something

    Re: help with a major upgrade please

    Holy heck in a hand basket that's more than a monster that's a behemoth
    http://www.bluesmoke.net/review3.html

    CPU
    ether i5 2500k or i7 2600k there's a big price jump and the main difference between them is the i7 has HyperThreading
    Motherboard look at a Z68 chipset
    SSD two options, one is Intel SSD cacheing 30-40gb is ideal for this, this is a feature of the Z68 chipset it lets you use an SSD as a hard drive cache instead of a drive to greatly speed up thing you use often.
    personally I'd look at ~90gb or ~120gb for a system SSD

    Without games or 3d work graphics card is far less an issue and yes most cards can do dual output without too great an issue.
    3 is where it generally gets tricky.

    Ram 8gb of ddr3 1600mhz, 1.5volt ram is best. Gskill ripjaws and corsair vengeance come well recommended.

    PSU, it's a good one but for the age it might have issues.

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    Senior Member Blackmage's Avatar
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    • Blackmage's system
      • Motherboard:
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      • Intel Core I7 2600k
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      • Graphics card(s):
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    Re: help with a major upgrade please

    Whats the budget?

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    Re: help with a major upgrade please

    I pretty much recommend what's in my signature, I settled on that after a fair amount of research.

    The graphics card I picked is a sort of stop-over though (expecting new cards Q1/Q2 next year I would guess), I'll probably upgrade that more regularly. I'm not interested in SLI/Crossfire etc, too much noise/hassle/power - I make my PCs within power and noise budgets as well as coinage!

    Ivy Bridge ready for next year as well.

    Corsair stuff seems to be a consistent winner for me, the RAM I picked is Vengeance Jet Black, CL8 1600MHz, I'd recommend that as a baseline minimum unless your budget is tight.

    Steer clear of Thermalright Venomous X heatsinks, crappy mounting mechanism caused me huge problems.

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    Re: help with a major upgrade please

    thanks for all the suggestions so far - as regards budget there isn't one but like everyone we don't have much dosh so am looking to spend as little as poss that will give good performance now and for a reasonably long time.

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    • ShavedApe's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Asus Crosshair V Forumula
      • CPU:
      • AMD FX 8150 @ 4.6
      • Memory:
      • Corsair Memory Vengeance Blue 16GB DDR3 1600 Mhz CAS 9
      • Storage:
      • 1x Corsair Force GT 120 GB(OS), 1x Cruccial M4 128GB(games) 3 TB Seagates(games/everything else)
      • Graphics card(s):
      • Sapphire HD7970 GHZ Edition
      • PSU:
      • Antec True Power 750W
      • Case:
      • Coolermaster Haf X
      • Operating System:
      • Windows 8 x64
      • Monitor(s):
      • Benq XL2420T 120 hz
      • Internet:
      • Virgin Media 120MBit

    Re: help with a major upgrade please

    As far as processor etc is concerned have you considered a bundle from scan I havent bought one myself but they come well recommended I guess it would depend on if your looking to put it all together yourself http://3xs.scan.co.uk/Category.asp?S...rCategoryID=38

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