Building a PC

King of the Hello Kitty Fanclub
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Ok, so while I consider myself a technical computer person, when it comes down to hardware I'm a bit of a lost puppy (never could bring myself to reading those PC magazines). So essentially, my current rig is going on 3 years old and I'm having some minor problems with it as well as it just starting to chug as old pc's tend to do.

So here's where all you lovely people come in. What's good and works well these days? I'm looking at a budget of $2000 AUSD which I don't know how it converts to other currencies, but essentially I'm gonna scrap up my current rig and recycle the:
Hard Drives (2x 160gb which only one is really chockered the other is mostly empty).
DVD burner (might get a second one) and the
Monitor (never had any problems with it).

So what I'm really looking for is:
Chip (currently have an AMD Athlon 3800)
MB
GFX card (current Nvidia GeForce 7600GT)
Sound card (currently using the MB's onboard sound ugh) and
RAM (current 1gb of Kingmax or something can't remember)

I'm not too fussed on brands (AMD vs. Pentium, ATI vs. Nvidia etc.) but obviously I want what works best together and top of the range stuff (hopefully within budget) as I expect this new rig to last the next 3 years without the need for upgrading.

Thanks in advance :D
 
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You gotta love the Tweakers Pricelist. I know it is a Dutch website, but you should fairly understand what the words mean on the page.

For example, a GFX card (Video Card) which can be found here.

You'll see the text "Populairste producten" just below all those fancy yellow folders. I bet you understand it means "Popular Products". You'll see the XFX GeForce 9600GT 512MB DDR3 is being sold the most (popular product) here in the NL through tweakers.

I have to take break now, but gave you a small example. Heck, I even got my custom pc checking through tweakers for all the popular products.
 
King of the Hello Kitty Fanclub
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That site doesn't work :eek:
 
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You'll want to hit intel this time around for the Core 2 Duo. nVidia 8800 series is a must.
 
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Intel and geforce are king's of the pcverse atm
 
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List with prices. Not concerned with the prices atm as I just pulled them from the website I found the parts from, but just if any techie people wanna have a breeze through and see if that all will work well together.

Also some advice on speakers and power supplies would be wonderful (note the lack of names in the last two rows just budgets) Speakers don't need to be super fancy surround sound awesomeness, just looking for something thats good and doesn't fry if you make it too loud. PSU looking for 550W+ since my current 350W or something kinda sucks.

CHIP: Intel*Core 2 Quad Q6700 $661.90
MB: Asus*P5E M/board X38 $312.40
RAM: Kingston*4GB KIT 667MHz(PC5300) DDR2 $119.80
BURNER: Sony Sata AWG170SB2B $55.70
GFX CARD: Gigabyte*GF 8800GTS PCI-E 512MB $402.90
SOUND CARD: Creative*Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer Fatal1ty Pro $186.00
SPEAKERS: $100.00
PSU: $150.00
 
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I had the P5E, RMAed it once I stated having issues. It got to the point that after unplugging a few hard drives oddly enough it would refuse to post, however after at least 10 restarts it would sometime boot. Eventually, it would not boot at all after staying up all night to pinpoint the problem and trying lots of CMOS clearing and rebuilding my pc piece by piece. An Altech rep informed me that ASUS are undergoing a new revision of the P5E.

Instead of waiting on the store to take time with the RMA, I paid a restocking fee + the difference for a Asus Striker II Formula. Doesn't seem to clock nicely in the way that it won't do 1333mhz (Quad-pumped) fsb like most intel chipsets are capable of (Either that or I need to find the time to look in depth at tweaking voltage settings). I sometimes get an issue where it doesn't post and the only way to fix it is by pulling one or my ram sticks out and after it posts turn it off and put it back in. Looks like I'll RMA this and go get the EVGA 780i, sick of problems :(.

Enough about my rant though... Ashame though that ASUS seems to be going down the toilet.

Parts I would Recommend:
CPU: Intel Core2 Quad Q6600 - $269
Mainboard: EVGA 780i $329
Ram: 4GB (4x1GB) Corsair DDR2 4-4-4-12 800mhz $198
GFX Card: Sparkle Geforce 8800GT SLI $518
Sound Card: Creative X-Fi XtremeGamer Fatal1ty Pro $176
Power Supply: Silverstone 650W ST65ZF $176
LCD Screen: ASUS MW221C (16:10/2ms) $352

Total: $2017

Not worth getting the QX6700, it's a bit overpriced for a processor alone as it is. As for speakers, I myself just make do with a $80~ Logitech X-530 5.1 set that is okay. You can probably forgo SLI if necessary for other parts you may want to pursue purchasing if a solid budget is set in stone. And what a difference buying from the right place makes Price wise, I originally bought my P5E for $275.
 
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COOLER MASTER Centurion 5 Black/Silver Aluminum Bezel, SECC Chassis ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

ASUS MAXIMUS FORMULA Intel Motherboard

Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 Kentsfield 2.4GHz Quad-Core Processor

EVGA GeForce 8800GTS (G92) 512MB GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card

OCZ Platinum Revision 2 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory

Western Digital Raptor X 150GB 10,000 RPM Serial ATA150 Hard Drive

Western Digital Caviar SE16 750GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive

OCZ GameXStream ATX12V 700W Power Supply

LITE-ON 20X DVD±R DVD Burner with 12X DVD-RAM Write Black IDE

Pioneer 20X DVD±R DVD Burner Black IDE

SONY Black 1.44MB 3.5" Internal Floppy Drive

ZALMAN 9500A 92mm 2 Ball CPU Cooler

built this last month for under $2,000. My ASUS board has treated me well so far, course I haven't tried OC'ing yet. I agree with Quag, avoid the QX6700. Its not worth the extra $400.
 
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Whatever you do, do not buy cheap ram, mobos, or power supplies because it will absolutely 100% come back and bite you in the ass.

My personal recommendation would be try to go with Mushkin ram, Asus mobo, and Enermax for the power supply. I've never had a single problem with these brands when I've used them. But just going down to Fry's electronics and getting a cheap stick of ram and stuff has made me regret it enough times to never do it again.

You can save enough money by shopping places like newegg that you shouldn't have to skimp on cheaper brands.
 
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this is what i got for 500£ stirling pound

Genuine Windows Vista™ Ultimate Edition
Intel® Core™ 2 Quad Extreme QX9650
(3.0GHz ,12MB L2 Cache, 1333MHz)
Coolermaster Stacker Professional Chassis
9 Blue LED Cooling Pack (Optional)
High Performance Mainboard nForce 780i SLi
4GB DDR2 667MHz Memory
1TB (1000MB) SATA2 Fast Hard Disk
3x 768MB nVidia 8800GTX Graphics Cards
3 Way SLi (3x cards for ultimate Graphics)
24" Iiyama Widescreen LCD Display (MM,
HDMI, DVI, 3ms)
Blu-ray ROM Player / Dual Layer DVD Writer
On-board 7.1 Digital Sound
Creative Inspire A500 5.1 Speakers + Subwoofer
6 USB, 2x Firewire, GB LAN
Multi-format Memory Card Reader
Logitech G11 Programmable Gaming Keyboard
Logitech MX Revolution Gaming Mouse
i did a currancy conversion on google and it came back to me as
1055 (aus)dollers
 
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Yeah before reading this I had come up with a similar list with the Quad 6600 which was significantly cheaper.

The main thing that confuses me is motherboards since there's just so many types and with very little difference between them. I reorganised the list and took a lot from Quag's suggestions (you're a life saver dude :D) and heres what it looks like.

chip: Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 $349.80
mobo: EVGA 780i $363.00
ram: Corsair DDR2 4-4-4-12 800mhz $198.00
burner: Sony Sata AWG170SB2B $55.70
gfx: Gigabyte*GF 8800GTS PCI-E 512MB $402.90
sound: Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Xtreme Audio $126.50
speakers: Logitech R-10 Black 2-piece Speakers $38.50
psu: Silverstone 650W ST65ZF $176.00

Total $1710.40 (subject to price shopping)

Couple notes, my current rig uses mostly gigabyte products which have worked really well for me. so I've gone for the gigabyte gfx card (also significantly cheaper) also downgraded to a cheaper sound card and some cheap little speakers. I think I'm ready to take the list to the PC shop. Any more comments/suggestions are highly welcomed.
 
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well i hope my suggestions helped you two
 
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well i hope my suggestions helped you two
I only just read yours, and I think your final price is very wrong, or you got a very good deal cause what you've listed looks like it'd cost a small fortune.

-edit

Also I'm wondering if I need an SLI compatible mobo since I don't think I'll ever use it. I guess it might be nice in the future if I ever upgrade and get another gfx card, but at the moment I'm only looking at buying one and most likely gonna stick with one.
 
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well i did get a discount since its a family member that built it for me in his shop lol but if you lived in england i would have been able to cut you a deal :D
 
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More tweaking. Ignore everything else before this :)

Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 $269.00
EVGA 780i $329.00
Corsair DDR2 4-4-4-12 800mhz $198.00
Sony Sata AWG170SB2B $55.70
Gigabyte*GF 8800GT PCI-E 512MB $352.00
Gigabyte*GF 8800GT PCI-E 512MB $352.00
Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Xtreme Audio $126.50
Logitech R-10 Black 2-piece Speakers $38.50
Silverstone 650W ST65ZF $176.00

Found some cheaper stuff and went for the 8800GT (no 'S') with the extra gfx card its still under budget by about $100 so it looks like a superior option atm. Think this'll be my final list that I'm gonna go shopping for.
 
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Wouldn't you rather save $160 among both cards however? (Comparing the sparkle cards to gigabyte cards price wise) and use it elsewhere for other things in the budget?

as you can see here, for the same amount of cash you'd throw on SLI 8800GT, another vendor sells the 8800GTS 512 for the exactly the same price.
 
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Firstly as I said in the OP, I'm not *too* fussed on prices as I plan on visiting my local PC guy who I've done business with in the past and hope to get a good deal on the whole shebang. Secondly, I'm a bit worried about brands I'm not familliar with? As you said about having problems with Asus, I'm concerned I might have a problem with MSI which I've never really heard about. Instead of say Gigabyte which I know from my previous PC lasted quite a while with minimal problems.

Anyway the little things like brand isn't so important to me as much as the item itself which is where I really struggle as far as what to get. I originally wasn't planning on running SLI at all, but now that I've selected a cheaper chip and cut a few cost corners elsewhere I think it might actually be for the better.
 
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Firstly as I said in the OP, I'm not *too* fussed on prices as I plan on visiting my local PC guy who I've done business with in the past and hope to get a good deal on the whole shebang. Secondly, I'm a bit worried about brands I'm not familliar with? As you said about having problems with Asus, I'm concerned I might have a problem with MSI which I've never really heard about. Instead of say Gigabyte which I know from my previous PC lasted quite a while with minimal problems.

Anyway the little things like brand isn't so important to me as much as the item itself which is where I really struggle as far as what to get. I originally wasn't planning on running SLI at all, but now that I've selected a cheaper chip and cut a few cost corners elsewhere I think it might actually be for the better.
That $160 though easily covers the cost of your sound card or PSU alone. You shouldn't be fussed about brand though, most of the gfx cards you are selecting are all based upon the nvidia reference design for the G92 8800GTS/8800GT. All manafacturers aren't perfect, even those that are widely regarded for good product records will even ship products that have one fault or another, it just depends how often it happens. In regards to the the questionable $160 that you'd perhaps save or could go buy a GTS for, you should think of it as Economically.
 
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I buy from the awesome www.auspcmarket.com.au

My Current system which I built rather cheaply consists of:

Pentium 2160 @ 3.0ghz (Dual Core, based on the Core 2 Architecture)
2gb of memory
Crossfire 3850's

But here goes:

Processor: Intel Core2 Duo E6750 2.66Ghz, 1333mhz FSB, Dual core - $253

Motherboard: Gigabyte EP35-DS3P - With Crossfire support. - $214

Motherboard: Gigabyte EP35-DS3 - No Dual Video card support - $176

Memory: Corsair Twin2X 2048MB (2x 1024mb) XMS2-5400 Twin Pack - $93.50

Video Card: Sapphire Radeon 3850 512mb - $273.90 (547.80 for two)

Sound Card: Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer Fatal1ty Pro - $204.60

Monitor: Samsung 206BW 20" - $374

DVD Drive: Pioneer BDC-S02BK black SATA DVD-RW drive and Blue-Ray Player - $231

Case: THERMALTAKE SOPRANO FX - $264

PU: Thermaltake 600W Toughpower - $181.50

Total Price: $2132.90 Minus $11 on the Core 2 Duo + Core 2 Duo motherboard special.
You could ditch the sound card for a cheaper one like the:
Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Xtreme Audio PCI Soundcard - $118 Which brings the price down to $2037.10
All Prices in Australian.
I Have the Crossfire 3850's and they are actually rather good in Crysis, Managing High Quality some settings on very high - And I have the exact same cards overclocked slightly past the 3870 Stock speeds and can outperform any single Geforce 8 or 9 card available.
And I can't forget to mention the Prices Include GST, Freight and insurance.
 
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I spoke to my guy yesterday and he's supposed to call me back sometime today with a list of prices and availabilities of stock. I do need to discuss with him in-depth about alternatives for the list, but I'm hoping in general he'll give me a cheaper price than those online sites (auspcmarket.com.au was actually recommended to me by a friend). Anyway if he can't give me a better price I will shop online for it.
 

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