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Hurray for the picnic boys!

Pro Member Trainee
Craig (Sno0ze) Trainee

Hey all,

Just wondered if anyone had any suggestions for my new rig before the components are bought. Here's what I've got down at the moment *Looks around for Langevin* 😀 -

ASUS Striker Extreme 680i SLi Socket 775 ATX
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Intel Core 2 Extreme QX6700 2.67Ghz
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BFG NVIDIA 8800GTX OC 768Mb GDDR3 2xDVI
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2 x OCZ 2GB Kit (2x1GB) DDR2 800MHz/PC2-6400 CL 4-4-4-15 PLATINUM XTC
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Seagate 500GB HDD 7200RPM 16MB Cache
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Coolermaster RealPower Pro 850W PSU 6x 12v Rails, 4x PCI-E Connectors, 13.5cm Fan
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Antec 900 Gaming Case with 200mm top fan
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Windows XP Home 32bit

Edited thanks to Ollyau's post!



Last edited by Craig (Sno0ze) on Thu May 24, 2007 3:48 pm, edited 1 time in total
Pro Member First Officer
Orion (ollyau) First Officer

Looks good to me. That should do really good. The only thing I can think of that is better than that list is upgrading to 4gb of ram.

I have a machine that I recently upgraded which now has:
CPU: AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ Socket AM2
Video Card:Nvidia GeForce 8600 GT
Motherboard: ASUS M2R32-MVP
Power Supply: Antec Smart Power 500
Memory: Corsair XMS2 DDR2 2 GB (macthed pair 2x1024)

Pro Member Trainee
Craig (Sno0ze) Trainee

Hmm yeah see the thing is I'm kinda stuck budget wise here, what I can do is I can throw out the Raptor in exchange for another 2 gigs of ram and vice versa. I think at the moment I'm better keeping the Raptor for two reasons. One I've never had one before hehe excitement! And two I can always upgrade the ram later on, but I suppose it would be the same scenario for the HDD if I wanted that later.. Hm.. Ahh I think I'll go with 4GB of ram actually, thats something I've never had before either and I know it's going to give a massive performance boost.

More ram it is! Thanks Ollyau! 😀 Been trying to make my mind up on that for awhile but your post for some reason really finalized a decision, btw what frame rates do you get on FSX with that rig?

Guest

no use buying the GTX today.

FSX is NOT on DX10 yet.
might as well buy a lower grade card for now.

when FSX is out on DX10, the DX10 card choices will be plentiful -- both cheap(er) and even more powerful !!!

just a thought if you are on a budget.

Pro Member Trainee
Craig (Sno0ze) Trainee

Anonymous wrote:

no use buying the GTX today.

FSX is NOT on DX10 yet.
might as well buy a lower grade card for now.

when FSX is out on DX10, the DX10 card choices will be plentiful -- both cheap(er) and even more powerful !!!

just a thought if you are on a budget.

Hmm not too strict on the budget. I just want to be able to save a good few hundred compared to the faulty alienware one. Buying a lesser card now will amount to more expense in total when I do buy a new one. Plus, even although FSX isn't DX10 compatible yet doesn't really matter to me, I just want to be ready for when it is. And I don't want to be keeping up to date with graphics cards every year so I might as well take the best I can right now. Thanks for the post though 😀

Guest

FSX DX10 won't come out until 2008. (they say end of 2007, you know what that means.)

the key is, there will be LOTS of DX10 cards available by the end of the year. And they will be twice as powerful as the ones available now... you will sure be kicking yourself in 6 months if you buy GTX now.

PhilTaylor Guest

Anonymous wrote:

FSX DX10 won't come out until 2008. (they say end of 2007, you know what that means.)

the key is, there will be LOTS of DX10 cards available by the end of the year. And they will be twice as powerful as the ones available now... you will sure be kicking yourself in 6 months if you buy GTX now.

No, we said Fall 2007 and we will deliver.

doogle Guest

if you are building on a budget then I would suggest you buy a cheap maxtor sata2 hard disk and maybe corsair value select memory (no fancy branded gimmicks)...these two components will not have any impact on the performance of a gaming machine.

A raptor drive is only worth the investment when used in a raid system and high performance memory is not worth the extra cash over value memory.

2GB of memory is more than enough for any gaming system, any more would just be left untouched.

😉

Pro Member Trainee
Craig (Sno0ze) Trainee

That's not what I've heard doogle. From what I've heard Windows XP allows the system to use more than 2Gb. But, I can't remember where I saw that lol! The graphics card situation isn't too big a deal. By the time the next latest and greatest card is out my budget will be renewed, plus I will be setting up a business, well my dad will but he's making me the managing director so I'll be able to get money off things in a few different ways. 😉

Pro Member Chief Captain
RadarMan Chief Captain

XP will recognise 3 gigs unless your mobo has a BIOS update that will recognise 4 gigs.

Radar

Guest

on OS issue:

On many 32-bit machines you can physically attach 4gb of RAM, and if you look at the BIOS you can verify that it's there and functioning. However, if you check with WinXP, either by running System Information (in Accessories>System Tools) or by looking at the General tab of your System Properties, it will report that you have 3 to 3.5 gb of RAM installed. That's because WinXP uses the top 1gb for memory-mapped I/O, and will ignore any RAM above that.

HP has a note on this at: http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/genericDocument?docname=c00612217&cc=us&dlc=en&lc=en&jumpid=reg_R1002_USEN

on hardware issue

4.2 GB is the max that WinXP (32-bit) can read. It has to do with the number of bits ! 2**32 = 4.2 GB.

The only real issue may be the hardware (HW). If the motherboard's memory bus and/or BIOS can address 32 bits then it will use all of the memory, but some motherboards/BIOS don't. If the HW does not see the memory you may have the wrong type of memory for your HW. If it see the memory but only shows 2.1 GB then there is either a HW or BIOS restriction on the number of memory address lines available.

The extra memory won't hurt anything but if the HW / BIOS does not support it it won't be used.

on 64-bit WinXP

WinXP-64 can address more than 4.2 GB, however in some cases the same issue of the BIOS and memory bus again come into play. Some cheap motherboards have the capability of running a 64-bit CPU but they run it on a 32 bit bus bringing into play the 32-bit issue.

Caveat emptor..

Pro Member First Officer
Orion (ollyau) First Officer

Sno0ze wrote:

Hmm yeah see the thing is I'm kinda stuck budget wise here, what I can do is I can throw out the Raptor in exchange for another 2 gigs of ram and vice versa. I think at the moment I'm better keeping the Raptor for two reasons. One I've never had one before hehe excitement! And two I can always upgrade the ram later on, but I suppose it would be the same scenario for the HDD if I wanted that later.. Hm.. Ahh I think I'll go with 4GB of ram actually, thats something I've never had before either and I know it's going to give a massive performance boost.

More ram it is! Thanks Ollyau! 😀 Been trying to make my mind up on that for awhile but your post for some reason really finalized a decision, btw what frame rates do you get on FSX with that rig?

I get about 20-30 FPS with SP1. I have weather on "High" and Aircraft at "Medium High". All the other settings are on "Custom" and they are somewhere around "Medium High" or "High"

Pro Member First Officer
JLangevin First Officer

Sorry that I am late on getting to this. Ive been rebuilding my comp all day 🙂 New watercooling, WOHOO!!!

In any case, You have not mentioned what type of cooling you will go with. This is important. Good equipment generates a lot of heat (wait till you see what the GTX does to your case temps!) - Go with at least a ThermalTake Big Water SE. In my opinon, its better than air, and is upgradeable. I just installed one in my rig, and so far so good. Its superior to the Alienware unit I was using prior.

Also, why are you wanting to go with the Core 2 Extreme? Is it for the "extreme" name? I would say that you should go with something simple, and cheaper like the E6700. Reason being, its much cheaper, and still a fancy overclocker! Stick with the 2 gigs of ram. In fact, I just returned my second 2 gig kit and left my system at 2 gigs with Vista, and there is no change whatsoever in performance in the OS, or FSX. All it did was overcomplicate my memory controller and the power it had to supply to the RAM for overclocking. If you feel the need to go 4gigs, get two 2gig sticks, not four 1gig sticks. Again, this has to do witht he memory controller and its capabilities.

I dont know the cost of that Asus board, but after having issues with THREE Asus boards when building this system, decided witht he Gigabyte. HOWEVER, I hear great things about the Nvidia 680i Chipset. If you are hell bent on an nvidia set, and not an intel, go with the EVGA brand. Its a killer board! And the black PCB looks nice to boot!

Once you build your system, do not overclock it right away. Let the components burn in for a while. Wait a week or so, and use the computer often. Let it idle a bit, keep it on when you would usually turn it off.

Its also important make sure you look up the proper way to add Thermal Grease or Arctic Silver to the CPU heat spreader in order to get optimum dissapation of heat. Too much or too little will cause overheating issues.

Lastly, this will be an LGA775 socket, and if you have never built one, they are VERY delicate! There are hundreds of tiny pins sticking up, and if you drop the CPU in, or bend a pin during installation.... the entire board is junk. Trust me, I have a perfectly operational D955XBK Intel board sitting in the garage as a nice "wall ornament" because I dinged the socket when reinstalling the Pentium D. WHOOPS!

A good place to do some late night reading is www.hardforums.com There is some great information there about how to DIY. Best advice I was ever given (and learned the hard way) was to research, and research again before you ever touch your tools!

Pro Member Trainee
Craig (Sno0ze) Trainee

Hmm thanks for the info Langevin. I would buy the E6700 but I can't risk overclocking since I'm not paying for the machine, I'm not that ignorant that I'd buy it for the title 😀 . I'm going with the Core 2 Extreme because I've already used one before and it gave me excellent fps on FSX, and right now I figure if a comp can run that on full settings with or without SP1 (excluding your system here since I won't be overclocking 😀) it can run just about anything for a good while.

I'm keeping with passive cooling for the moment I'm afraid. Too scared to muck around with water cooling cause bearing in mind this will be the first system I've ever built. I also chose the Asus Striker Extreme because I've seen some performance tests on it, and it was also featured on 3dmark06 with the guy with the best comp, fits all my other needs too anyway. Plus I was kinda under the impression any socket type had loads of pins and if they're bent its junkpile time, so to me it doesn't make much difference.

This system will not be used for overclocking at all, not anything. I will try overclocking one day but that will be a good few months off yet. Once the business gets started up I'll have a pretty good income so I'll burn it pardon the pun on self taught overclocking 😛

I must admint though, I am rather worried as per the cooling situation. I know already the GTX emits so much heat plus the processor and the ram. (Mind you the ram I'm using has heat spreaders) I maybe am jumping in with two feet here but I'm pretty sure I'll manage. Oh and the thermal grease! I read/saw most fans that come with processors already have thermal grease applied so I'm just hoping they will on the Core 2 Extreme package.

Thanks everyone for the info on the ram. I'll double check the motherboard. And Langevin, I'll compare it will the EVGA 680i and see what the pros and cons are. Once again thank you to everyone for the advice! 😀

doogle Guest

Sno0ze wrote:

By the time the next latest and greatest card is out my budget will be renewed, plus I will be setting up a business, well my dad will but he's making me the managing director so I'll be able to get money off things in a few different ways. 😉

looks like you are going to have to start making your own decisions if you are going to become an MD.....you don't want to be asking in forums when it's time to make a purchasing decision 😂

Pro Member First Officer
JLangevin First Officer

The Thermal Paste that comes on the stock sink is junk. By removing that and puting on your own Arctic Silver, will drop the temps significantly. Intel did not put the best design work into their sinks or paste, since they knew that most people will junk them anyways...

I reccomend this cooler if you are going to stay passive cooled. It has been known to be one of the very best air coolers that money can buy. It also has a uniqe pull and push fan design.

I would also couple that with this case. This is the case . I went to this P182 from my Antec 900, since the 900 had horrible cable management. This case will also seperate the PSU from the rest of the case, cutting down on some of the heat. Also, if you do go with this case, get the P182 and not the P180. They are the same case, but the 182 has some cutouts for better cable management. Take a look at how roomy it is inside my case. (Plus I can show off the professional grade wire and hose management in my case, hehe. The pump is actually located behind the removable hard drive tray.)

Pro Member Trainee
Craig (Sno0ze) Trainee

doogle wrote:

Sno0ze wrote:

By the time the next latest and greatest card is out my budget will be renewed, plus I will be setting up a business, well my dad will but he's making me the managing director so I'll be able to get money off things in a few different ways. 😉

looks like you are going to have to start making your own decisions if you are going to become an MD.....you don't want to be asking in forums when it's time to make a purchasing decision 😂

This is quite a different matter indeed doogle. Rest assured my methods will be of harder stroke with quieter sound when I'm an MD 😀

Pro Member Trainee
Craig (Sno0ze) Trainee

Aslong as nothing overheats I'm not overly concerned. Intel's heatsink can't be that useless, nor the paste. Remember I'm not overclocking anything like you are, the temps in my comp won't go up as high as yours will. Tbh I'm not that fussy about cable management either, as long as the wires aren't poking out everywhere which I'll make sure won't happen it's not too big a deal. A few plastic ties are all that takes. I do have a couple of questions though.

Just when to do things basically, I'm going to put the CPU and RAM in before the mobo goes into the case, so I'm just wondering is it better/more convenient to put the heatsink on before the mobo goes into the case or after?

Thanks for the reply Lang!



Last edited by Craig (Sno0ze) on Tue May 29, 2007 6:21 am, edited 1 time in total
Pro Member First Officer
JLangevin First Officer

Depending on the cooler that you go with, you may be REQUIRED to put the CPU cooler on before the motherboard is installed. Some coolers have a back plate that goes behind the board to secure the mount. Obviously, the CPU will need to go in before the cooler. If you are insistant on keeping the hunk of junk Intel cooler (which is assanine), you can mount it before to make it a little easier.

I just dont get it. The Extreme costs $$$, but you are going to rely on a $14 cooler to make sure that it stays cool?? Staying cool is not only better for the processor, but the cooler the processor, the faster it responds as well. Dont be cheap. Do it right the first time. The only reason Intel included a fan in the new chipsets is because you HAVE to have a fan to make the CPU work. You can choose to ignore my advice, but when you are feeling smoking hot air come out of the back of the case, and are creating random errors and cant figure out why, remember these words. "I warned you" -

I dont know how old you are, so I cant compare my computer knowledge to yours, but I have actually been using computers since the age of 3. At the age of 7, I was encoding my own little proggies on a Commadore 64, and at the age of 11, built my very first 486 Machine. I now work for an Internet Technology and Development Company (to be left nameless) developing and improvising ideas for PCs and server racks to get the job done, and KEEP them working.

Its great that you are going to be MD of this new company, but you really need to get a grasp of the larger picture of why things are done, and certain methods are tried and true... and some are proven to be false.

Take my advice. Do it right the first time, be happy all the time.

Guest

JL: very nice pix. Your computer is a piece of art !

Pro Member Trainee
Craig (Sno0ze) Trainee

Sorry it's taken so long to get back to this topic, I've been busy the past few days. Anyway Langevin in response to your last post: Thanks for the answer on adding the heatsink. And the reason I'm not buying a diff heatsink is not solely by my choice, my dad wants it that way. Ultimately he can make any choice he want's here because it's his money so if you want to call someone cheap, call him it. I wouldn't consider someone who has bought 2 computers in a span of two months from respectable companys, notably Alienware at rediculous prices, trying to get the best he can afford "cheap".

In addition to that, I'de rather you didn't patronize me with such as the following "you really need to get a grasp of the larger picture of why things are done, and certain methods are tried and true" Once again, this was my dads decision, not mine. I suggest next time you really think about how much you don't know before branding someone cheap and also patronizing another. Sorry to say this but what you have said is rather ignorant and annoying.

P.S - Asinine* 😀

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