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Thread: General Help with building my new "dream machine"...

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    Question General Help with building my new "dream machine"...

    Hi,

    I have recently started building my so called "dream machine". Ive heard alot of good things about overclockers.co.uk so naturally i came to have a look around...and ended up buying the following:

    1 x Coolermaster Stacker in blue (ooh shes lovely)
    1 x Western Digital Raptor 36.7GB 10,000RPM SATA 8MB Cache
    1 x Tagan TG480-U01 480W ATX2.0 Silent PSU
    1 x Plextor PlexWriter 52x/24x/52x CD-ReWriter (Black)
    1 x OcUK Value Floppy Drive - Black
    1 x Genius Comfy KB-06X Black PS2 Keyboard


    And have already got:
    1 x 19" Iiyama CRT (i love it)
    1 x Microsoft Optical Intellimouse thing. Its cool.

    So anyway, what i would like to ask you guys is:

    I am planning on buying:

    1 x Asus A8N-SLi Deluxe nForce4 SLi (Socket 939) PCI-Express Motherboard
    1 x Corsair 1GB DDR XMS4400 TwinX (2x512MB) CAS2.5
    ...is this a reliable, high performance, generally decent RAM manufacturer and model?
    1 x AMD Athlon 64 3200+ Winchester 90nm (Socket 939)
    ..anyone recommend a higher clock speed or do they think the 3200+ mode would suffice? Not sure about this one.

    - Quick question on the CPU...which is better, the Winchester or Newcastle codename? And why? I notice a different "nm" number? Different socket type aswell?

    And i havent really gone into huge detail with my graphic solution yet, but am thinking of a Nvidia 6800 256mb SLI Ultra card initially and then getting another one when money permits me to...

    My main question is - will this be an efficient rig? Will these parts work at full capacity together? Will there be any hardware conflicts? Will these parts give me the dream machine i am willing for? Will it be farly straight forward to setup my WD Raptor HDD with SATA on the ASUS board i mentioned earlier? Considering im used to IDE...IDE...and well, IDE, and have never touched an SATA drive, i have no idea what the physical hardware differences are...

    Basically i would love for all you lovely people on these forums to take a look at the parts i am thinking of ordering and giving me a smile or a punch in the face...

    BTW im also thinking of getting a secondary WD Raptor HDD in the near future to setup a RAID array...will this be harder to do if i already have data on the initial disk? Should i setup this RAID array BEFORE i install an OS etc etc etc? Will it be easier to do now or later?

    Thankyou for any help you can give me, i really appreciate your thoughts and comments.

    Oh and is there any advantage to DDR2 over DDR? Whats the difference between the two? Should i be looking at DDR2 rather than DDR if i want an insanely high performance machine?

    Cheers!

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    • BenW's system
      • Motherboard:
      • ASRock Dual SATA2
      • CPU:
      • AMD64 3500+
      • Memory:
      • 1GB Crucial DDR
      • Storage:
      • 160GB Samsung 8MB Cache
      • Graphics card(s):
      • Sapphire Radeon HD 3850
      • PSU:
      • Seasonic S12 600W
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    I thinj atm DDR2 is actually slower than DDR so don't bother with it.

    Just having a quick look, i'm thinking that you should go less graphics power and more cpu power. The cpu seems alot worse than the graphics

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    0iD
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    The 36gig Raptor isn't that fast compared to the latest disks. If you want nippy save a bit more cash & go for it's bigger & faster brother, the 76gig Raptor.
    Plus, the benefits of on-board raid are debatable tbh. I've used a raid & non-raid setup & found no discrenable difference. You're better off using a dedicated raid card.
    [
    Quote Originally Posted by Blitzen
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    • BenW's system
      • Motherboard:
      • ASRock Dual SATA2
      • CPU:
      • AMD64 3500+
      • Memory:
      • 1GB Crucial DDR
      • Storage:
      • 160GB Samsung 8MB Cache
      • Graphics card(s):
      • Sapphire Radeon HD 3850
      • PSU:
      • Seasonic S12 600W
      • Case:
      • Silverstone TJ-04
      • Monitor(s):
      • Dell 17" Ultrasharp
      • Internet:
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    or the maxtor one with 16MB Cache

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    You'll need a much more powerfull CPU if you plan to go sli in the future...

    Quote Originally Posted by RichL.com
    1 x AMD Athlon 64 3200+ Winchester 90nm (Socket 939)
    ..anyone recommend a higher clock speed or do they think the 3200+ mode would suffice?

    Well you are going to OC it right? That is why you got DDR 4400 I asume...
    Last edited by myth; 28-12-2004 at 07:59 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ben_wade
    or the maxtor one with 16MB Cache
    Cant stand Maxtor - too many experiences where they have failed in my experience. I did alot of research and all the information i could find pointed me in the WD Raptor direction...the fact that i truly do not need more than 30GB in all honesty means i would much prefer a smaller capacity disk, the 37GB is perfect for my needs.

    Is it true i should have a quicker CPU if im planning to go with SLI? What is the recommended CPU speed for SLI then? Ive read alot of reviews, benchmarking tests etc, and some sites used the 64bit 3200 winchester s939 in their tests with 2x 6800GT's?

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    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by 0iD
    The 36gig Raptor isn't that fast compared to the latest disks. If you want nippy save a bit more cash & go for it's bigger & faster brother, the 76gig Raptor.
    Plus, the benefits of on-board raid are debatable tbh. I've used a raid & non-raid setup & found no discrenable difference. You're better off using a dedicated raid card.
    Your saying if i bought a mobo w/o onboard RAID and used the disk on its own on SATA there would be no difference if i was using onboard RAID with two 37GB Raptors in Raid 0?

    Are you saying it would be more beneficial (speed wise) to use a RAID card and two disks that i would get better performance over the single disk on SATA?

    Im new to SATA and RAID - so i appreciate your help.

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    ok, the 3200 90nm core is a great Over Clocker (OC) but if you dont plan on OC ing then you'll need diferent ram! 3200 for stock speeds... And perhaps a 3500 cpu if you want to go sli....

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    Quote Originally Posted by RichL.com

    And i havent really gone into huge detail with my graphic solution yet, but am thinking of a Nvidia 6800 256mb SLI Ultra card initially and then getting another one when money permits me to...
    I meant buying another one when money permits to add to the SLI setup so i would have two 6800 ultras running at 8x each on PCIE?

    Think i should have a faster CPU? What would you suggest?

    Keep in mind im not too keen on spending £500 on a CPU, and yes, i know its a key component, id prefer the £2-maybe300 mark...

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    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by myth
    ok, the 3200 90nm core is a great Over Clocker (OC) but if you dont plan on OC ing then you'll need diferent ram! 3200 for stock speeds... And perhaps a 3500 cpu if you want to go sli....
    Ok, so if i were to go with the 3500 (which sounds perfect, its just under £200 where im looking...overclockers.co.uk, unfortunately theyre currently out of stock) - what ram speed do you recommend?

    Is the slower RAM speed generally more efficient and "going to work better" with the 3500...e.g. is the high speed ram i was looking at for a 4000+ or FX55 or something?

    Thanks

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    Ok so how about this for updated specs:

    1 x Corsair 1GB DDR XMS3200C2 Pro TwinX (2x512MB) CAS2 (MY-026-CS)

    1 x AMD Athlon 64 3500+ Winchester 90nm (Socket 939)

    To future proof for an extra SLI card in the future? This machine should be fairly quick right? Is the RAM mentioned better suited than my previous choice with this CPU?

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    • Thorsson's system
      • Motherboard:
      • ASUS P8Z77-V PRO
      • CPU:
      • i5 3570k
      • Memory:
      • 2x8Gb Corsair Vengeance PC1866
      • Storage:
      • 256M4 SSD; 2Tb 7200RPM Barracuda; 2Tb Linkstation
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    Basically the "high speed" RAM is the same as the low latency RAM, except configured differently and costing a lot more. And if you're not going to OC then it's a complete waste of money.

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    0iD
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    Quote Originally Posted by RichL.com
    Are you saying it would be more beneficial (speed wise) to use a RAID card and two disks that i would get better performance over the single disk on SATA?
    Generally yes. An independant Raid card is going to perform better. However, make sure you have a backup if one of the disks goes down, with a Raid0 setup you'll lose all of your data.

    And as for cards, I've always found Promise cards (I usa a Promise FastTRAK S150 SX4 SATA-RAID card), to be better performers than most & v-reliable.
    Last edited by 0iD; 28-12-2004 at 10:09 PM.
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    I prefer the HighPoint Rocket-RAID.

    And in my opinion onboard RAID is usually faster than a PCI RAID card (especially if you have lot's of traffic on the PCI buss). The reason I prefer PCI RAID is because I can move the controller and drives from system to system with less problems.

    Also, if you haven't got the money for a couple of very nice PCI-E VC's and a huge PSU I'd rethink the ASUS A8N-SLI. To pay for something as costly as SLI and not use it is not a good idea.

    And the memory? You're much better off with Corsiar Twinx PC3200 XL (has TCCD Samsungs that run at 600MHz+ if fed properly). Stay away from that Pro crap and leave the flashing lights on your Christmas tree!
    Last edited by StormPC; 28-12-2004 at 10:10 PM.

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    Ok so to summarise roughly:

    I dont really need to setup any sort of RAID array, i can just use one disk on SATA.

    Ill go for the PC3200 RAM, not the pro version...i agree about the flashing lights...

    If not the board i specified, what board can you recommend? I would like to have PCI express at least, ive seen a lot of ATI x800 cards doing very well in benchmarking tests....?

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    I'd go for either 2 PCI-e 6600GTs, or 2 PCI-e 6800GTs, whichever you can afford. Also depends on how much you like gaming, although I don't think the difference would be noticable to a gamer. 6800GTs and Ultras are more for people with FX-55s who bench a lot.

    Again, it makes no sense to buy SLI and then just 1 VC.

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