Topic: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve  (Read 16356 times)

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Offline Khalee1

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buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« on: August 16, 2009, 11:34:28 pm »
From time to time look at the computer sites and I realize after having 4 computers starting with a Tandy color computer three,I still know nothing about them, other than the bare basics.  What I would like to have is one for rendering and modeling first gaming second. I really would like to get my studiomax back up and running but I don't think it would do it on this wall mart emachine I got.

So any advice on what A good computer to get that would do what I want to do with it will be appreciated.   

Offline toasty0

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2009, 08:30:12 am »
My advice--as much as it pains me--is to purchase a pre-built machine. It is no longer cost effective to build your own unless you're doing so for the pure joy of building your own.
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Offline Nemesis

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #2 on: August 17, 2009, 11:36:50 am »
Price isn't the only reason to build your own.

1/ Quality

2/ Customized/optimized for your purposes

I have found that my machines have been much more stable than the "generic" machines others buy off the shelf as I stick to quality components. 

Khalee  as a modeler would likely in a custom build get key components that perform much better for modelling than a "generic" machine would. 
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Offline Lono

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #3 on: August 17, 2009, 04:39:32 pm »
I would have to agree with Nemesis - everytime I cut a few bucks off by purchasing a dell or some other pre-made hunk-a-junk I always get messed over in the end...

If it's not the questionable quality of the internal parts - and the constant yet mysterious instability of the system - then it's the utter difficulty upgrading or over clocking minor parts.

IMHO - when you build your own system - not only does it run so very much better all the time - but it basically gets around the normal 3-5 year obsolecence of your machine as you can upgrade seperate parts - at your leisure - when the best deals come along.

(only doing a major comp replacement when a hugh innovation comes through - and even then it usually only requires a motherboard,chip, and basic case replacement)

I also regret that I am not able to overclock my chip on my current Dell - because Intel's Core Duo chips can nearly double their power with very minor and safe tweaking...

Now this pertains much more to desktops than laptops - but sometimes building is better in those cases too (or going with a slightly higher priced but non closed/proprietary model)

New Egg is still the king for me for great Comp Parts - and fatwallet.com and bensbargains.net are great for finding out about awesome (though usually short lived) deals.


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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #4 on: August 17, 2009, 04:50:23 pm »
My advice--as much as it pains me--is to purchase a pre-built machine. It is no longer cost effective to build your own unless you're doing so for the pure joy of building your own.

How you figure?

I can get all the components I need from places like newegg.com and get better performance for less money. I can price out a kick ass intel I7 system for around 300 bucks cheaper than I see for pre-build systems from HP or Dell.

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Offline toasty0

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2009, 05:53:19 pm »
My advice--as much as it pains me--is to purchase a pre-built machine. It is no longer cost effective to build your own unless you're doing so for the pure joy of building your own.

How you figure?

I can get all the components I need from places like newegg.com and get better performance for less money. I can price out a kick ass intel I7 system for around 300 bucks cheaper than I see for pre-build systems from HP or Dell.

For Kalee that is not an option. He's better off at his price point, imho, purchasing an off the shelf model than trying to make a top-of-the-line white box.
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Offline Nemesis

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #6 on: August 17, 2009, 09:05:49 pm »
For Kalee that is not an option. He's better off at his price point, imho, purchasing an off the shelf model than trying to make a top-of-the-line white box.

You don't have to build at the high end.  You can build mostly to the low end but with crucial components for your purpose of higher (higher not high) quality and get much better performance for your purposes.

As an example of this the first time I did substantial "building" of a computer was a rebuild and when I had replaced only the motherboard and RAM a friend with a machine twice as fast had me run a utility to compare their performance.  My machine though with the same processor at half the clock speed was rated at 90.7% the performance of his.  He was not pleased.  The machine had a superiour video card. L2 cache and RAM the rest of it was older from when the machine had first been built (it was good when bought but was considered low performance by the time of the rebuild).

So Khalee could build a machine with one or two higher end components than an off the shelf machine would have and get much better performance if he chooses well.  If he chose his components well he would be able to do incremental upgrades over the next few years as the weaker components showed their age and higher performance replacements became cheaper.
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Offline Dash Jones

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #7 on: August 17, 2009, 09:41:39 pm »
Look inside the emachine you have, if it's the one that was currently at Walmart.  I would imagine that it also has a place for you to upgrade the RAM and the videocard, relatively easy things to do.  Why not combine the best of both, by upgrading the RAM (I think it may go up to at least 4 Gig available) and install a new card?
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Offline NJAntman

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2009, 11:21:45 am »
How about trying a middle of the road approach? Use a build to order shop (last one I used was CyberpowerPC), they offer standardized models for differing uses (gaming, graphics, office), and then allow mixing of components.

For instance I choose a mid level gamers rig that could have cost between $800 to $2000 depending on the components. I cut the price by going with the lowest CPU, minimum RAM for XP, and one card in an SLI video option. Planned ahead for upgrading by getting a bigger power supply and a case with lots of room. Started upgrading a year later by buying the second SLI card, next I've doubled the RAM (since that is now cheap), and next year will upgrade the CPU when the top of the line for that motherboard stops being producing (difference in price just for that is close to a $1K between when I bought and when it will last be offered). This way the computer can evolve over time instead of needing a whole replacement.

Most of these shops have easy to use menus that allow mix and match menus at each step of configuring, kind of like Dell but a lot more informative with better options.
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Offline FCM_SFHQ_XC

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2009, 11:23:05 am »
another thing to consider is buying and building it on its own is that every part will usually come with a much better warrenty that the prebuilt packages at Dell, Gateway, etc.
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Offline marstone

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #10 on: August 18, 2009, 10:21:04 pm »
From time to time look at the computer sites and I realize after having 4 computers starting with a Tandy color computer three,I still know nothing about them, other than the bare basics.  What I would like to have is one for rendering and modeling first gaming second. I really would like to get my studiomax back up and running but I don't think it would do it on this wall mart emachine I got.

So any advice on what A good computer to get that would do what I want to do with it will be appreciated.

You guys have to consider the statement made here.  "I still know nothing about them".  The amount of time to compare all the different pieces to buy the better ones would take alot of time for someone who doesn't follow hardware (like myself, tell me a video card and I can give you a funny look). 

Going to a manufactures site and piecing one together from the parts listed is eaiser and makes a fair machine.  Now if one of you guys would contact him, find a price point and give a list of what to buy, it might help more then just saying do it yourself.

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Offline Javora

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #11 on: August 19, 2009, 12:09:27 am »
another thing to consider is buying and building it on its own is that every part will usually come with a much better warranty that the prebuilt packages at Dell, Gateway, etc.

When I bought a Dell a few years back it came with a parts warranty.  I had to replace the modem, video card, hard drive, and the motherboard... twice.  When I build my last system, I had a four year old hard drive fail on that system and that's it.  Now your mileage may very, but IMHO if you buy quality parts the warranty doesn't mean as much.

Offline Tulwar

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #12 on: August 19, 2009, 02:21:11 am »
Personally, I plan on buying a netbook in the next month.  I need something to store my manuals and parts catalogs on.  An 8 Gig SS HD won't cut the mustard, but 160 Gig HD is overkill.   For $300.00, how can you go wrong?  The plus is that having Win XP as the OS, it should run SFC!  You just aren't going to build a system for that little dough.
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Offline Rod ONeal

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #13 on: August 19, 2009, 03:33:18 am »
What's your budget, Khalee? We already know you want to Model 1st, and game 2nd. What size monitor. Are you going to use one you already have or purchase a new monitor as well? With that info it wouldn't be difficult to make a recommendation. If you aren't needing rock bottom price on every component, you should be able to get everything at one location and have it assembled there and end up with a better machine than you'll get from Dell, etc... Buying computer components isn't that hard.

Off the shelf computers unfortunately tend to use the cheapest components available wherever they can. Cheap barely adequate power supplies and motherboards, for example. Not all Intel (or AMD) processors are created equal. Nor are all video cards. Just because it's ATI or Nvidea w/512 meg RAM doesn't mean it'll be sufficient. It's easy for manufacturers to play numbers games.
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Offline Pestalence_XC

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #14 on: August 19, 2009, 03:55:42 am »
another thing to consider is buying and building it on its own is that every part will usually come with a much better warranty that the prebuilt packages at Dell, Gateway, etc.

When I bought a Dell a few years back it came with a parts warranty.  I had to replace the modem, video card, hard drive, and the motherboard... twice.  When I build my last system, I had a four year old hard drive fail on that system and that's it.  Now your mileage may very, but IMHO if you buy quality parts the warranty doesn't mean as much.


Lets see..

I build custom gaming machines as a living.. sets check warranty product information based on off the shelf vs build your own.


Dell, standard 2 year warranty (unless you pay the extra $250 for an additional year)
Same for HP, Compaq, Sony, Toshiba, Etc..

2 Years is the standard warranty for the entire computer, which includes all internal parts.

Custom build system

Case, Lifetime Warranty
1000 watt power supply, Lifetime Warranty
2 NVidia Video Cards in SLI, Lifetime Warranty
gigabyte Motherboard, 5 year warranty
intel CPU, 3 Year Warranty
Hauppage TV Tuner card, 2 year warranty
Patriot Extreme RAM, Lifetime Warrany
Asus PCIE x4 Ethernet Card, Lifetime Warranty
3 1/2 Floppy Drive, 3 year warranty
DVD Burner internal, 5 year warranty
DVD Burner External, 10 Year warranty
Western Digital 3gb/s HDD x2 in Raid 0 Striped (1 TB total space), 3 years warranty each drive.

Now the only component that has the same warranty that a pre-built machine has is my TV Tuner card.. the rest of the system exceeds the standard warranty.. and half my system is lifetime warranty.

So what you stated about your pre-built system warranty vs a custom built system warranty holds absolutely no water what so ever.


Now going apples to apples on a decent machine.. Go to the Dell site and find a system that you like.. and I will price out the parts in a custom system that will either meet or exceed the Dell system with a much better warranty option and costing less than what Dell is offering by at least 20%.

Just pick out a system within you current price range.. and with the difference in price, I'll even put in some options that exceed the options that Dell offers.. when I can direct you on the ordering and how to build..

it is pretty simple.. and I am only doing this once.. I am looking for business, not trying to teach others how to do my business..
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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #15 on: August 19, 2009, 04:06:37 am »
Not all Intel (or AMD) processors are created equal. Nor are all video cards. Just because it's ATI or Nvidea w/512 meg RAM doesn't mean it'll be sufficient. It's easy for manufacturers to play numbers games.

Couldn't agree more.. for top of the line Vid Cards.. BFG, hands down. Sure you could go with a more popular brand.. but just ask SFHQ about his "Popular Brand" Video Card.. and his is the most widely purchased aftermarket.. ask SFHQ how they treated him on the warranty when the card went bad after 2 years..

with BFG.. I get a replacement vid card with no hassles if mine ever goes bad.. and they upgrade me for free to a newer model of the card if my current card is no longer being manufactured.. My problem is that my Vid Cards from BFG have never gone bad :P

Intel Chips.. I agree.. not all are built the same, you want to check die cast, lot number, as well as chipset series, and then CPU speed, etc.. Dell goes with bottom of the barrel components.. basically Intel's throw away series.

Other sales places online have much higher quality components with similar or better specs for approx the same price with 10x the quality...

So doing your homework does make a difference..

buy a Dell top of the line gaming computer now.. next year it will be similar to the quality of an office machine.. custom build your system for the same price and have a computer that will outperform anything Dell will put out for the next 4 years.
« Last Edit: August 19, 2009, 04:42:19 am by Cptn_Pestalence_XC »
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Offline Age

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #16 on: August 19, 2009, 03:53:28 pm »
I would say there some decent prebuilt machines and you can get longer warranty through the store you bough it at.I did buy my first machne being an HP and ordered one for buid at my local cmputer store where they built it.I am like Khalee1 I know alot about them except how to build one.

I would say that my hp performed well for computer that is 8 years old.I did get some extra work done to it.

What about laptops though those are store bought. 

Offline Javora

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #17 on: August 19, 2009, 08:35:19 pm »

Lets see..

So what you stated about your pre-built system warranty vs a custom built system warranty holds absolutely no water what so ever.


Ram, system cases, and video cards are more likely to become obsolete before they become defective.  But then most of those parts with lifetime warranties are items that have been tested to handle heat and have no moving parts.  Warranties on items with moving parts are usually based on proven designs, which the companies making those items know exactly how long those parts will last.  Those warranties usually require you to keep the receipt and/or register the part with the company so those companies (and others) can bombard people with spam. That plus most companies are betting that people will just replace the part then try to bother with the warranty.  So IMHO the warranty is more of a marketing gimmick. Thus the warranty doesn’t mean as much to me (remember the IMHO part in my previous post??!? )

On the other hand Dell tries to pack the system with the cheapest parts possible to maximize profits.  Thus the warranty on a Dell is a little more important to consumers.  The fact that Dell only offers a 2~3 year warranty on its systems should speak volumes about the parts quality that Dell uses. 

In my own way I was trying to reaffirm what SFHQ was saying while at the same time cautioning people about the value of warranties.  That is the point I was trying to make, sorry you missed that.  To me (can we say IMHO??!? ) a good reputable company is more important then the warranty itself.

Offline toasty0

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #18 on: August 19, 2009, 09:24:12 pm »
Pesty's offering to build you a system I would take him up his good offer. I'm sure he's offering to do so at cost or very very close to it--that's a deal you won't be able to beat anywhere.
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Offline Age

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #19 on: August 20, 2009, 01:45:06 am »
This is really no different than car bought prior 1990s as most just replace it after warranty was up.This is unless you modified the car then warranty was null anvoid.Today most people just lease their cars as what businesses are doing possibly with computers.

Offline marstone

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #20 on: August 21, 2009, 04:46:55 am »
This is really no different than car bought prior 1990s as most just replace it after warranty was up.This is unless you modified the car then warranty was null anvoid.Today most people just lease their cars as what businesses are doing possibly with computers.

Guess I am not like most people.  Dang wish I had the money to replace a car just because the warranty was up.  Those are the cars I can afford to buy, the ones old anough to not have a warranty left on it.
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Offline Khalee1

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #21 on: August 21, 2009, 05:33:47 am »
Well here is what I came up with dont know if it's a good one or not. But the price is about the same as my last computer too
And this is the site I went to not dell tho  http://www.cyberpowerpc.com/


CAS:NZXT Whisper (Black Color) Full Steel Silent Tower Case

CASUPGRADE:NONE

CS_FAN:Maximum Enemax 120MM Case Cooling Fans for selected case (Maximum Silent Operation) [+29] (1,000 RPM Black Color with No LED Enlobal Magnetic Barometric Bearing 17 dBA)

POWERSUPPLY:In-Win Power Supplies [+49] (1,200 Watts Commander IRP-COM1200 SLI/CrossFireX Ready 80 Plus Modular Active PFC [+140])

CPU:Intel® CoreT i7-950 3.06 GHz 8M L3 Cache LGA1366 [+270]

OVERCLOCK:No Overclocking

FAN:Asetek Liquid CPU Cooling System (Extreme Cooling Performance + Extreme Silent at 20dBA)(Venom Boost Extreme OC Certified)

MOTHERBOARD:(3-Way SLI Support) EVGA X58 SLI Classfied Intel X58 Chipset SLI/CrossFireX DDR3 Mainboard w/GbLAN,USB2.0,IEEE1394a,&7.1Audio (Venom Boost Extreme OC Certified) [+205]

MEMORY:12GB (2GBx6) PC1333 DDR3 PC3 10666 Triple Channel Memory [+117] (Corsair or Major Brand)

FREEBIE_RM:None

VIDEO:PNY NVIDIA Quadro NVS420 512MB DDR3 16X PCIe Video Card

VC_GAMES:None

MULTIVIEW:Non-SLI/Non-CrossFireX Mode Supports Multiple Monitors

MONITOR:NONE

MONITOR2:NONE

HDD:Single Hard Drive (1TB (1TBx1) SATA-II 3.0Gb/s 16MB Cache 7200RPM HDD)

HDD2:750GB SATA-II 3.0Gb/s 16MB Cache 7200RPM Hard Drive [+75]

USBHD:NONE

CD:Lite-On IHOS 104 4X Blu-Ray Player

CD2:(Special Price) LG 22X DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Dual Layer Drive (BLACK COLOR)

SOUND:Creative Labs SB Audigy SE [+30]

SPEAKERS:None

NETWORK:Onboard Gigabit LAN Network

MODEM:US Robotics PCI 56K v.92 FAX Modem [+16]

KEYBOARD:Xtreme Gear (Black Color) Multimedia/Internet USB Keyboard

MOUSE:XtremeGear Optical USB 3 Buttons Gaming Mouse

TEMP:NONE

WNC:NONE

FLASHMEDIA:None

VIDEOCAMERA:NONE

PRINTER:None

PRINTER_CABLE:None

UPS:(Recommended) OPTI-UPS ES1000C 1000VA/700W Uninterrupt Power Supply [+149]

IEEE_CARD:NONE

USB:Built-in USB 2.0 Ports

FLOPPY:USB 1.44 MB EXTERNAL FLOPPY DRIVE [+59]

OS:Microsoft® Windows® XP Professional w/ Service Pack 3

OS_UPGRADE:None

FREEBIE_OS:None

TVRC:None

CARE:Professional Wiring for All WIRING Inside The System Chassis - Minimize Cable Exposure, Maximize Airflow in Your System [+19]

SERVICE:STANDARD WARRANTY: 3-YEAR LIMITED WARRANTY PLUS LIFE-TIME TECHNICAL SUPPORT

Offline Panzergranate

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #22 on: August 21, 2009, 02:44:36 pm »
As an electronics engineer for many years than I care to remember, I can remember building Z80 based computers on Vero (strip) board, having to sort out the ROM code and watching it come to life.

I've both built up my own PC and used ready made ones. With ready made machines, like my motorcycles, it isn't long before I've taken out all the "manufactuer's compromise" compnents and tweaked it up a bit.

Even my old COMPAQ "Lugable" II runs a non-standard 80286 - 10 instead of the OEM 80296-6.

I prefer to tune up bought computers to a better spec than originally sold.

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Offline Rod ONeal

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #23 on: August 22, 2009, 02:04:10 am »
My $.02 ;)
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

CAS:NZXT Whisper (Black Color) Full Steel Silent Tower Case Looks like an excellent case for the money.

POWERSUPPLY:In-Win Power Supplies [+49] (1,200 Watts Commander IRP-COM1200 SLI/CrossFireX Ready 80 Plus Modular Active PFC [+140]) Probably overkill, but better too much than not enough. Looks like a good power supply. I like the modular design.

CPU:Intel® CoreT i7-950 3.06 GHz 8M L3 Cache LGA1366 [+270] I'd go with the 920 and O/C it. Don't be afraid of overclocking. There's nothing to it.

FAN:Asetek Liquid CPU Cooling System (Extreme Cooling Performance + Extreme Silent at 20dBA)(Venom Boost Extreme OC Certified) What are they charging you for this? I'm assuming it's just the LCLC system. Is there an upgrade option available?

MOTHERBOARD:(3-Way SLI Support) EVGA X58 SLI Classfied Intel X58 Chipset SLI/CrossFireX DDR3 Mainboard w/GbLAN,USB2.0,IEEE1394a,&7.1Audio (Venom Boost Extreme OC Certified) [+205] Which board is this exactly? If it's this one ->EVGA 141-BL-E769-A1 <- it's W-A-Y overkill. This one-> EVGA 141-BL-E760-A1 is probably still overkill, but not as bad. Personally, I'd go with this one -> GA-EX58-UD5 <- by Gigabyte. Plenty of capabilities and a lot less expensive than either of them. Especially the 1st one. There are a lot of good boards out there though. I just happen to like Gigabyte.

MEMORY:12GB (2GBx6) PC1333 DDR3 PC3 10666 Triple Channel Memory [+117] (Corsair or Major Brand) It's debatable whether or not you'll ever need 12gig of ram. Six is probably plenty.

VIDEO:PNY NVIDIA Quadro NVS420 512MB DDR3 16X PCIe Video Card I wouldn't pay the premium for a Quadro or FireGL/Pro card. Sept 10th is the soft release date, which means it'll probably be a week or two after that before you can buy one, for DX11 cards. We're only talking a few more weeks. Don't buy a card until then. 

HDD:Single Hard Drive (1TB (1TBx1) SATA-II 3.0Gb/s 16MB Cache 7200RPM HDD) If you have a choice get a WD Caviar Black.

HDD2:750GB SATA-II 3.0Gb/s 16MB Cache 7200RPM Hard Drive [+75] Get a second HDD that matches the first one, ie the same model. It gives you more flexibility.

CD:Lite-On IHOS 104 4X Blu-Ray Player There are compatibility issues with blue ray and 64 bit OS. Check that out first. You need 64bit OS to take advantage of all that RAM you are buying.

CD2:(Special Price) LG 22X DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Dual Layer Drive (BLACK COLOR)

SOUND:Creative Labs SB Audigy SE [+30]Doubt you'll need that. On board sound is really good

MODEM:US Robotics PCI 56K v.92 FAX Modem [+16] You still use dial up?

UPS:(Recommended) OPTI-UPS ES1000C 1000VA/700W Uninterrupt Power Supply [+149] I can count the number of times I've needed a UPS on one hand with fingers left over and I used to live in East Tx. Odds are you won't need this, but it's your call.

FLOPPY:USB 1.44 MB EXTERNAL FLOPPY DRIVE [+59] Definately don't need this.

OS:Microsoft® Windows® XP Professional w/ Service Pack 3 64bit to use all that RAM. I'd consider Win 7 for DX11. If you have compatibility issues use some of the money saved above to have both OS and dual boot

CARE:Professional Wiring for All WIRING Inside The System Chassis - Minimize Cable Exposure, Maximize Airflow in Your System [+19]

SERVICE:STANDARD WARRANTY: 3-YEAR LIMITED WARRANTY PLUS LIFE-TIME TECHNICAL SUPPORT
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Offline Nemesis

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #24 on: August 22, 2009, 06:09:09 am »
Quote
POWERSUPPLY:In-Win Power Supplies [+49] (1,200 Watts Commander IRP-COM1200 SLI/CrossFireX Ready 80 Plus Modular Active PFC [+140]) Probably overkill, but better too much than not enough. Looks like a good power supply. I like the modular design.

The power supply is NOT an area to stint on. 

Quote
UPS:(Recommended) OPTI-UPS ES1000C 1000VA/700W Uninterrupt Power Supply [+149] I can count the number of times I've needed a UPS on one hand with fingers left over and I used to live in East Tx. Odds are you won't need this, but it's your call.

A study was done years ago indicating that 85% of all computer "glitches" were bad power.  I find that those with a UPS have fewer problems even if they THINK they have "good" power.

Quote
MEMORY:12GB (2GBx6) PC1333 DDR3 PC3 10666 Triple Channel Memory [+117] (Corsair or Major Brand) It's debatable whether or not you'll ever need 12gig of ram. Six is probably plenty.

He is doing image editing which does tend to be RAM intensive.

Quote
OS:Microsoft® Windows® XP Professional w/ Service Pack 3 64bit to use all that RAM. I'd consider Win 7 for DX11. If you have compatibility issues use some of the money saved above to have both OS and dual boot

He should be able to use it as the claimed limit for 32 bit Windows XP is 16gb.
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Offline Pestalence_XC

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #25 on: August 22, 2009, 12:24:38 pm »


He should be able to use it as the claimed limit for 32 bit Windows XP is 16gb.

No, the limit for Windows XP 32 bit is 3GB natural or 4 GB using the /3GB switch in the system.ini file, and even then this dedicates 1 GB to the OS and leaves the other 3 GB to the programs.

64 bit XP has a 16GB limit IIRC.

Vista and Windows 7 Ultimate editions 64 bit have no decernable limits ATM.. the standard rating for Windows Vista / Windows 7 Ultimate Edition 64 bit is 128+ GB.

Now the limitation of Vista / Windows 7 is the fact that older modeling programs such as 3D Studio Max 4 /5 are incompatible because of the CDilla authentication tool built into the software and there is no work around for it as of yet.

Simple solution is to Install Windows 7 Ultimate for newer modeling programs and then Dual Boot to XP (not VM or XP Desktop.. gimps all your hardware), Meaning a full install of XP on a second partition of your HDD to where you can select the OS on boot.

XP will be gimped with anything more than 3GB requirements, but it is nice to have for older programs such as 3D Studio Max 5 and SFC OP (Dynaverse playability).

I agree with the post above.. Quattro is a great card, however even though it is designed for use my animators and modelers, the GeForce series has way more options available plus the SLI factor is totally kick ass.. but I will price out for both the Quattro and the GeForce.. though IMHO the GeForce blows the Quattro out of the water currently on performance, especially on the Physics.

also I agree with above posts.. wait on a new series of NVidia cards to debeut with Windows 7 for DirectX 11.. it will be the NVidia GTX 3XX series cards.

as for CPU.. an i7 on the 920 chipsetr will work for you, however there are problems getting the i7 920 to overclock properly, especially when Intel put overclocking blocks on the i7 chipset series up until the 960 series (discontinues) so a 970/975 shipset series is what you actually want in order to overclock in the future to pull more life out of the CPU. for the most capability, the 980 series is the best, but it is a bit price prohibitive.

Asus / Gigabyte are both good Mother Boards.. but performance wise, it is always best to go top end on your mother board.. never gimp on this as some people above have stated.. Consider, I get a top of the line board, it is already set up for Windows 7 / DirectX 11 and high performance out of box, plus I have many upgrade capabilities on the board.. or I can go with a mid grade board suggested above and in a year or 2 my system is gimped because of newer softeare requirements and the lack of ability to upgrade my system thus requiring a new mainboard yet again. Pay 2 times in 2 years for a 1 time price that will last you for the next 4 to 6 years.. tough call.

as for system RAM.. many games coming out now require 4 GB ram to play and the Windows 7 / Vista with all eye candy on requires 1.5GB itself.. as such a system with 6GB should be enough, however Patriot Extreme makes DDR3 Lifetime Warranty that is 12 GB in 6 Dims and currently it is priced nicely.. $259.99 for 12 GB. Now keep in mind that this is low latency gaming ram with an extremely high heat range plus it is rated to overclock for more speed and it has built in heat syncs. Works great on memory / Graphic intensive games such as AoC or Crysis. and there is very little degredation over time.. meaning your system can be gaming 24 / 7 for about 4 to 5 years before any noticable decline in performance.

I'll look up components from my supplier tonight and get a system similar to the one you have listed...

Give me the total price of what you are willing to spend on a system..
"You still don't get it, do you?......That's what he does. That's all he does! You can't stop him! It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead!"

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Offline Nemesis

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #26 on: August 22, 2009, 01:12:52 pm »
No, the limit for Windows XP 32 bit is 3GB natural or 4 GB using the /3GB switch in the system.ini file, and even then this dedicates 1 GB to the OS and leaves the other 3 GB to the programs.

 :smackhead:

You're right of course. 

I haven't actually hit the RAM limits on a PC since DOS days.  None of my current machines has more than 2gb, which is enough for my purposes.

Sorry Rod for my erroneous "correction" on that.
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Offline Khalee1

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #27 on: August 22, 2009, 01:18:24 pm »
Sent you a pm Cptn_Pestalence_XC

Offline FCM_SFHQ_XC

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #28 on: August 22, 2009, 06:15:48 pm »
Quote
EVGA X58 SLI Classfied Intel X58 Chipset SLI/CrossFireX DDR3 Mainboard w/GbLAN,USB2.0,IEEE1394a,&7.1Audio (Venom Boost Extreme OC Certified) [+205]
Stay AWAY from EVGA if you can at all possible levels.. their RMA is worse than dying a million times over
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Offline Rod ONeal

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #29 on: August 23, 2009, 01:18:46 am »
A couple of caveats with Pestalence. Not too start a pissing contest or anything. :angel:

Top of the line motherboards are a waste unless you are going to do extreme over clocking. The ASUS Rampage II Extreme and Gigabyte GA-EX58-EXTREME, for example, are designed for things like LN2 and dry ice cooling which Khalee isn't going to use.

I know you're a big fan of Nvidea, but it isn't the only viable graphics processor company and you might very well be waiting until next year to get the 3XX cards. Nvidea, to my knowledge, doesn't even have a release date for those cards yet. The 5XXX from ATI will be out in Sept. and are worth looking at.

920's can be OC'd just fine. While the multiplier is locked you can still adjust the FSB. The additional cost for an i7 with an unlocked multiplier is a complete waste of money for a daily use PC. On Newegg, for example, the 920 is $280.00 the 975 is $1000.00. With good cooling you can get 920's to run at 3.8ghz 24/7, typically, at stock voltages.
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Offline Pestalence_XC

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #30 on: August 23, 2009, 12:29:02 pm »
The factor you miss is that the mainboard is not FSB based on an i7 system, thus the multiplier is what you are actually overclocking.. as such when you adjust FSB on older systems, it is the multiplier and frequency that you are adjusting to gain speed.

I7's on the 920's you can adjust the frequency but the multiplier is locked, thus gimping OC builds..

On the i7 970 and above series, the multiplier is unlocked and the frequency is unlocked so you can actually OC to well over 5 Ghz. If using stock cooling (read fans / air cooling), then you can hit 4.6Ghz with a comfortable heat threshold limit given that the 975 CPU has a max heat limit of 130 W, where the 920 has a max heat limit of 90 W. I'm not even going into Standard CPU 920 vs Extreme 975 performance factors or processing capabilities, etc.. the 975 series blows the doors off anything on the market ATM next to the actual 980 series wich is OC capable of 1.3 times the 975 speed limits. for Cost Effectiveness, the 975 is the best buy on the market ATM.

Besides, I am thinking long term not short term.. the 920's are considered a mid grade shipset currently.. so that means next year they will be base model chipsets that you can buy at Wal-Mart / Best Buy..

With the OC capabilities of the i7 975 chipset.. the system will be viable for any software coming out for the next 5 to 8 years without upgrading, just use a simple OC to hit a comfortable stability for any new software.

I mean think about it seriously.. say a new game / program comes out requiring a 3.6 Ghz CPU.. well you will have to either upgrade or Overclock in order to use it.. on a system that is already OC'd to 3.8 GhZ, some instability may occur due to actually pushing the CPU to that speed 100% of the time playing the game..

Now with an i7 975 with the appropriate board, say 4 years from now, a program comes out that you really want for your computer and it requires a system with 4.2 / 4.4 GhZ requirements.. what are you going to do.. buy a new mainboard and a new CPU costing you about $800 on top of what you paid on your old board which was what $675.. so your overall cost for old board / cpu + new board / CPU = $1475 compared to spending $1250 now for a mainboard / CPU that can handle any program coming out with requirements up to 5.4 Ghz (i7 975 OC'd on water cool)... where the 920 would have already been obsolete 2 years prior.

I understand you are looking at Cost vs performance.. however so am I... You are looking at the here and now or the next year or so.. I am looking at 5 to 8 years down the line and removing the need to upgrade each year (Except maybe Video Cards).

Anyhow.. just letting you know where I am coming from.
"You still don't get it, do you?......That's what he does. That's all he does! You can't stop him! It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead!"

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Offline Javora

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #31 on: August 23, 2009, 08:43:28 pm »

If using stock cooling (read fans / air cooling), then you can hit 4.6Ghz with a comfortable heat threshold limit given that the 975 CPU has a max heat limit of 130 W, where the 920 has a max heat limit of 90 W.

I understand you are looking at Cost vs performance.. however so am I... You are looking at the here and now or the next year or so.. I am looking at 5 to 8 years down the line and removing the need to upgrade each year (Except maybe Video Cards).

Anyhow.. just letting you know where I am coming from.

4.6Ghz on stock cooling??!?  That's insane.  What do you think is the life span on that processor is after being overclocked that much.  I can't think that type of overclocking can be all that healthy for it over the long run.  BTW I think your cost analysis for upgrade path was dead on, assuming that the processor doesn't get nuked.

Offline Pestalence_XC

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #32 on: August 23, 2009, 09:37:52 pm »
so long as you don't exceel 70% of the maximum heat threshold, the CPU will run just fine OC'd at that speed.

so that means the CPU, as long as it doesn't go over 90w will be just fine at 4.6 GhZ.. with proper heat sync gel, Arctic Silver, applied properly on all heat syncs in the system (excluding the Heatsyncs on the RaM from Patriot, they already use Artic Silver), and have proper air flow afross the main board, meaning side cooling over the vid cards, Northbridge cooler fan, Ram Cooler fan, upgraded Cooling fan for the CPU, PSU with its own independant 140 MM cooling fan like Ultra PSUs, 140 MM intake cooling fan (filtered to prevent dust contamination that traps heat / silicon shorting) 2 exhaust fans of at least 120 MM and proper exhaust fron the Vid cards, and having throttled cooling fans in each location so that the cooling can scale with the heat generation.. the system should never go beyond 55w on the main board, and the CPU should never go above 65w. now pushing the CPU to its limits, I agree, at 5.4 GhZ with water cooling, the life of the CPU will be about 5 years tops since the average heat generation on the CPU die will be about 90% of threshold.

Now heat generation will also be determined by CPU load as well.. currently there is no software on the market that requires a CPU running faster than 3.0 GhZ on a dual core.. since the i7 975 is an extreme quad core, the heat threshold will be lower than the heat threshold of a Core 2 Duo dual core (the cores process at a faster rate = less processing time = less load = lower heat generation, spread across 4 CPU instead of 2 = a much lowe load = much lower heat generation).

Also a determining factor is the break in and how it is done.. if running CPU stock, you have a break in period of about a week.. if you decide to OC later on, you need to repeat the break in process for optimal performance at the new speed..

Now a lot of this is case dependant for having the proper cooling... If you go with a compact tower case, then heat build up is a problem.. if you go with a case that has proper ventalation and has proper intake / exhaust fans, then cooling becomes a moot point since the air flow itself will disapate the majority of the heat, and you only have to worry about the physical heat of each component, instead of components and ambient internal case temperature (cascading heat generation).

the COre 2 Duo's on the E8750 series could easily overclock to 4.2 Ghz with stock cooling, however this took the CPU above the 70% air cooling threshold, and as such, the CPU only had a 3 year life, which is why most OC experts recommend a 3.8 GhZ limit on the Core 2 Duo series CPUs for aircooling, with water cooling, the limit was 4.6 GhZ, however the Core 2 Duo's have a heat limitation of 90w unless you were using the Extreme 9XXX series Intel Core 2 Quads which had the 130 W limit, however because of Core 2 limitations, OCing the Extremes wasn't gaining much more speed than the Core 2 Duo CPUs could gain.

On the i7, for the money, the 975 is probably the best CPU for OCing on the market currently, even the 980 and 985 i7 CPUs can't OC faster than the 975, add to that the cost of the 980s is way too prohibitive.

Anyhow.. just check out some OCing sites that have OC'd the 975 i7 Extremes and their comparrison to the other i7 series chipsets..

That is the best I can tell ya..

Anyhow, the main factor is how much are you willing to dedicate to your system .. do you only have enough to build a per year system (replacing components each year) or do you have enough to build a system that needs no part replacements for the next 5+ years (excluding Video Cards).

It is all about your budget.. You buy what you can afford, but make an informed decision.. look at all the variables involved.. OS, Software progression, DirectX 9 for XP vs DirectX 11 for Windows 7, More powerful Vid Cards for years of gaming vs a mid grade vid card that may only last the next year of game development.. etc..

I'm just saying weigh all the factors involved and make decisions based on how long  you want your system to work with software development vs cost of build vs cost of upgrading to keep up with software..

Now in my business I always go from Top of the line best possible stuff and then downgrade the system to meet my customer's budget, which is how all PC manufacturers should operate.. not like Dell starting with a dirt machine and attempting to build it up using substandard materials.

The only other company that orperates building gaming machines like I do is Alienware.. they make different class machines based on different budgets, and I start with top of the line and work down.. so Alienware has a better "Selection" than I have, but their markup is almost 150%. Mu "Selections are based on component downgrades of non essential components and then start down grading components like RAM and Vid Cards and CPU.. so in essance I can build any system that Alienware offers, but I build in reverse order based on budget, where you have to build up a system within your budget with most other companies.

Anyhow.. am still looking up components for Khalee's system.. some parts I normally use are out of stock ATM, so looking at other vendors / pricing.
"You still don't get it, do you?......That's what he does. That's all he does! You can't stop him! It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead!"

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Offline Rod ONeal

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #33 on: August 23, 2009, 10:42:16 pm »
Sorry mate, looking around I can't find the figures you are quoting. Tom's Hardware and Anand Tech, 4.14 to 4.17 for D0 975's on air, and that's not stock, but after market coolers. 920's 3.8 seems pretty typical. I've read articles comparing the 920 to either the 965 or 975, can't remember which one, but at the same clock speed there was no performance difference. $730.00 for 350mhz is not worth it to me.
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Offline Pestalence_XC

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #34 on: August 24, 2009, 01:37:10 am »
welp.. Just to show you

And This is Air Cool ATM.. though this type of OC really needs water cool.. now a stable running system is 4.6 Ghz under air cool..

so I guess Tom's Hardware know jack sh*t about overclocking a system. look at my CPU-Z below.. 5455.4 Mhz.. and this is the limit I can reach without having a a Cryo system on board.

Under 5 benchmark programs, the CPU scores between 4.98 Ghz to 5.45 Ghz with the current configuration with an ambient temp maxing at 87 C, still below the 90C degradation threshold under air cooling, however the Motherboard is not rated for this temp range, the motheer board is only rated 90 C max, as such, water cooling is needed to bring temps down to around 68 to 70C.

Please, I hate having to tweak my systems like this to prove a point.. I usually run this one at 4.6 Ghz. It is just a shame that this isn't my system personally but one that I'm selling.. wish I could afford to have these components for my main box :(

CPU-Z posted below ... this is an i7 975 XE
« Last Edit: August 24, 2009, 02:44:40 am by Cptn_Pestalence_XC »
"You still don't get it, do you?......That's what he does. That's all he does! You can't stop him! It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead!"

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Offline Javora

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #35 on: August 24, 2009, 08:21:47 am »
Excellent couple of posts Pestalence, they were good reads.

Offline Rod ONeal

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #36 on: August 24, 2009, 05:56:10 pm »
welp.. Just to show you

And This is Air Cool ATM.. though this type of OC really needs water cool.. now a stable running system is 4.6 Ghz under air cool..

so I guess Tom's Hardware know jack sh*t about overclocking a system. look at my CPU-Z below.. 5455.4 Mhz.. and this is the limit I can reach without having a a Cryo system on board.

Under 5 benchmark programs, the CPU scores between 4.98 Ghz to 5.45 Ghz with the current configuration with an ambient temp maxing at 87 C, still below the 90C degradation threshold under air cooling, however the Motherboard is not rated for this temp range, the motheer board is only rated 90 C max, as such, water cooling is needed to bring temps down to around 68 to 70C.

Please, I hate having to tweak my systems like this to prove a point.. I usually run this one at 4.6 Ghz. It is just a shame that this isn't my system personally but one that I'm selling.. wish I could afford to have these components for my main box :(

CPU-Z posted below ... this is an i7 975 XE



Rather than pick out one site and proclaim that, "so I guess Tom's Hardware know jack sh*t about overclocking a system", I think it is more likely that what THW, and every other professional site I've checked, calls stable and what you call stable are two different things.

Here's another consideration when looking at what's a stable OC. A quote from "another" site. They had OC'd a 975 to, what they thought was, a stable 4.2Ghz. Upon further examination they found this out.

http://techgage.com/article/intel_core_i7-975_extreme_edition/1

<snip>
After some investigation, it turns out that the CPU was indeed throttling due to temperatures, and in Cinebench, the CPU would drop down to around 4.0GHz, whereas with a more robust benchmark like LinX, it'd drop to 3.7GHz. Even at 3.7GHz however, it was completely stable with LINPACK testing for hours, and that in itself is impressive.
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Offline toasty0

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #37 on: August 24, 2009, 09:54:58 pm »
Ok, that's it....each of you...jumper clips at 30 paces.
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Offline Rod ONeal

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #38 on: August 24, 2009, 11:08:53 pm »
Ok, that's it....each of you...jumper clips at 30 paces.

Back off buddy or I'll say something derogatory about Microsoft. :P
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Offline Just plain old Punisher

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #39 on: August 27, 2009, 02:31:14 pm »
I'm willing to bet that the CPU is throttling due to high temp. Is speedstep enabled in your BIOS?

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Offline toasty0

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #40 on: August 27, 2009, 08:38:21 pm »
Ok, that's it....each of you...jumper clips at 30 paces.

Back off buddy or I'll say something derogatory about Microsoft. :P

Oh, you cruel cruel man.  *runs off crying*
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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #41 on: September 03, 2009, 02:59:29 pm »
To increase / solve the cooling problem you could just do what a friend did with his machine..... knock out the blanking slats at the back and fit a homebrew venturi fitted with extra PC fans.... noisy but more eficient.

I have always run all my machines with all the balnking slats removed and careful consideration of where I route cables and place cards in slots so that the air flow isn't hindered and compromised.

The motherboard in one of my PCs (LEX Cyrix P3 550Mhz.) has built in thermometer which reports CPU temperature, which comes in handy when it comes to sorting out the internal ventilation issues.

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Offline candle_86

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #42 on: September 05, 2009, 11:48:40 am »
to fix cooling first of all organize your cables, get them out of the way.

Second make sure the front fan pulls and the rear push's. This bring in the cooler air from the bottom and pushes that cold air up through your stuff.

Third make sure your thermal paste is applied properly, Id reseat everything, CPU, Vid and northbridge heatsinks, get some AS5 and reset everything, use barley enough to cover it, it should be almost transparently thin.

If your good with sanding you can also sand down your heatsink bottom to a mirror finish and then do the same to the top of your cpu, but only attempt if you know what your doing. We PC enthusiants call this lapping

Offline Panzergranate

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #43 on: September 05, 2009, 12:17:18 pm »
You kind of forgot the important health and safety tip with using heat sink paste.... Don't eat during handling of the paste and wah hand throughly afterwards.

Some or most heat sink pastes contain Berylium Oxide which is a particularily fatal and nasty poison WITH NO KNOWN ANTIDOTE.... so be warned!! >:(

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Offline candle_86

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #44 on: September 05, 2009, 12:32:15 pm »
lol I eat all the time, your not supposed to get your fingers in the paste, apply it with a plastic bag or use the pressure of the heatsinks to push it down. If you apply this stuff with your finger your doing it wrong, you just added oil to the mix which is an insulator

Offline Panzergranate

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #45 on: September 14, 2009, 01:15:21 pm »
As with motor vehicles, mass produced computers are a compromise between reasonable performance (just enough to compete with rival manufacturers) and costs.

And as with motorvehicles, computers can be "Hot Rodded" to milk every drop of performance out of them.

Drilling extra holes in the casing and bolting on additional strategic fans to improve heat management is one option to explore.

Don't forget that inserting a top flight graphics card, with its own processor and mini-fan, will whack up the volume of heat that your computer will have to deal with.

It does pay to hold one's hand over the exit airflow occasionally just to monitor how things are going.

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Offline candle_86

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #46 on: September 15, 2009, 06:15:27 pm »
The factor you miss is that the mainboard is not FSB based on an i7 system, thus the multiplier is what you are actually overclocking.. as such when you adjust FSB on older systems, it is the multiplier and frequency that you are adjusting to gain speed.

I7's on the 920's you can adjust the frequency but the multiplier is locked, thus gimping OC builds..

On the i7 970 and above series, the multiplier is unlocked and the frequency is unlocked so you can actually OC to well over 5 Ghz. If using stock cooling (read fans / air cooling), then you can hit 4.6Ghz with a comfortable heat threshold limit given that the 975 CPU has a max heat limit of 130 W, where the 920 has a max heat limit of 90 W. I'm not even going into Standard CPU 920 vs Extreme 975 performance factors or processing capabilities, etc.. the 975 series blows the doors off anything on the market ATM next to the actual 980 series wich is OC capable of 1.3 times the 975 speed limits. for Cost Effectiveness, the 975 is the best buy on the market ATM.

Besides, I am thinking long term not short term.. the 920's are considered a mid grade shipset currently.. so that means next year they will be base model chipsets that you can buy at Wal-Mart / Best Buy..

With the OC capabilities of the i7 975 chipset.. the system will be viable for any software coming out for the next 5 to 8 years without upgrading, just use a simple OC to hit a comfortable stability for any new software.

I mean think about it seriously.. say a new game / program comes out requiring a 3.6 Ghz CPU.. well you will have to either upgrade or Overclock in order to use it.. on a system that is already OC'd to 3.8 GhZ, some instability may occur due to actually pushing the CPU to that speed 100% of the time playing the game..

Now with an i7 975 with the appropriate board, say 4 years from now, a program comes out that you really want for your computer and it requires a system with 4.2 / 4.4 GhZ requirements.. what are you going to do.. buy a new mainboard and a new CPU costing you about $800 on top of what you paid on your old board which was what $675.. so your overall cost for old board / cpu + new board / CPU = $1475 compared to spending $1250 now for a mainboard / CPU that can handle any program coming out with requirements up to 5.4 Ghz (i7 975 OC'd on water cool)... where the 920 would have already been obsolete 2 years prior.

I understand you are looking at Cost vs performance.. however so am I... You are looking at the here and now or the next year or so.. I am looking at 5 to 8 years down the line and removing the need to upgrade each year (Except maybe Video Cards).

Anyhow.. just letting you know where I am coming from.

I must disagree, anyone that knows how to OC knows how to lower operating frequencies of ram and chipset and only raise the CPU speed, mutli lock does impose a limit but not a large one. Lower your ram divider and if you have to chipset divider. Also ocing on stock cooling is the stupid idea you could do, you should never do this, ever. Go to any respected tech site and say your running an i7 @ 4.6 on stock and they will laugh at you and demand proof for the simple reason its not only impossible unless you live in the artic but also foolish. But also no computer will get you 8 years if you plan to do more than email and word prosessing its that simple. My old system ran an Athlon 64 3500, that was bought when it came out, It lasted from 2004 till 2009 thats 5 years and by then it started to feel rather old and slow. If all your doing is word processing and email you can use a Pentium3 and 512mb of ram with windows XP and do just fine. Just because a CPU is supposed to last a minimum of 10years in lifetime of the silicon doesnt mean they expect them to be fielded that long as a primary CPU.

Offline Dash Jones

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #47 on: September 15, 2009, 10:13:04 pm »
The factor you miss is that the mainboard is not FSB based on an i7 system, thus the multiplier is what you are actually overclocking.. as such when you adjust FSB on older systems, it is the multiplier and frequency that you are adjusting to gain speed.

I7's on the 920's you can adjust the frequency but the multiplier is locked, thus gimping OC builds..

On the i7 970 and above series, the multiplier is unlocked and the frequency is unlocked so you can actually OC to well over 5 Ghz. If using stock cooling (read fans / air cooling), then you can hit 4.6Ghz with a comfortable heat threshold limit given that the 975 CPU has a max heat limit of 130 W, where the 920 has a max heat limit of 90 W. I'm not even going into Standard CPU 920 vs Extreme 975 performance factors or processing capabilities, etc.. the 975 series blows the doors off anything on the market ATM next to the actual 980 series wich is OC capable of 1.3 times the 975 speed limits. for Cost Effectiveness, the 975 is the best buy on the market ATM.

Besides, I am thinking long term not short term.. the 920's are considered a mid grade shipset currently.. so that means next year they will be base model chipsets that you can buy at Wal-Mart / Best Buy..

With the OC capabilities of the i7 975 chipset.. the system will be viable for any software coming out for the next 5 to 8 years without upgrading, just use a simple OC to hit a comfortable stability for any new software.

I mean think about it seriously.. say a new game / program comes out requiring a 3.6 Ghz CPU.. well you will have to either upgrade or Overclock in order to use it.. on a system that is already OC'd to 3.8 GhZ, some instability may occur due to actually pushing the CPU to that speed 100% of the time playing the game..

Now with an i7 975 with the appropriate board, say 4 years from now, a program comes out that you really want for your computer and it requires a system with 4.2 / 4.4 GhZ requirements.. what are you going to do.. buy a new mainboard and a new CPU costing you about $800 on top of what you paid on your old board which was what $675.. so your overall cost for old board / cpu + new board / CPU = $1475 compared to spending $1250 now for a mainboard / CPU that can handle any program coming out with requirements up to 5.4 Ghz (i7 975 OC'd on water cool)... where the 920 would have already been obsolete 2 years prior.

I understand you are looking at Cost vs performance.. however so am I... You are looking at the here and now or the next year or so.. I am looking at 5 to 8 years down the line and removing the need to upgrade each year (Except maybe Video Cards).

Anyhow.. just letting you know where I am coming from.

I must disagree, anyone that knows how to OC knows how to lower operating frequencies of ram and chipset and only raise the CPU speed, mutli lock does impose a limit but not a large one. Lower your ram divider and if you have to chipset divider. Also ocing on stock cooling is the stupid idea you could do, you should never do this, ever. Go to any respected tech site and say your running an i7 @ 4.6 on stock and they will laugh at you and demand proof for the simple reason its not only impossible unless you live in the artic but also foolish. But also no computer will get you 8 years if you plan to do more than email and word prosessing its that simple. My old system ran an Athlon 64 3500, that was bought when it came out, It lasted from 2004 till 2009 thats 5 years and by then it started to feel rather old and slow. If all your doing is word processing and email you can use a Pentium3 and 512mb of ram with windows XP and do just fine. Just because a CPU is supposed to last a minimum of 10years in lifetime of the silicon doesnt mean they expect them to be fielded that long as a primary CPU.

Actually, I'll call you out on that one.  IF you stick with the games that came in the same period of the computer (so for my 2000 comp, which actually still has millenium...BUT doesn't go onto the internet as it's simply not secure enough with that anymore) you may have to replace a fan or power supply, but your computer CAN last that long and do the games of the period too.  The difference is the components.  If you have a Pentium or Intel from that many years ago...they actually are EXCELLENT quality.  Of course you can't overclock it too much...THAT'S WHY you run through the processors so quickly.  As for Athlons...they were ALWAYS junk...but cheap junk so that you can get more for your money in the short run.

That's important if you are going to keep up with the latest and greatest upgrades, and hence a cheap processor that you're going to replace in six months to a year doesn't really matter anyways...but for durability you NEVER go with an athlon.  I have a Pentium (I think it's an original even, I'll have to buzz it up) on a Gateway from 1997 that I got second hand in 1999 (first computer I ever played SFC on actually) that has a 3 CD changer and still runs fine to play any of the older games.  It still even has Win 98 on it!

My main browsing computer for internet actually HAS had more problems, had to replace the motherboard twice (in just the past few months actually, once from it just getting old, the other from something that actually peeves me off), the Vid card has been upgraded, and running XP (refuse to get WinVista, though the constraints with not being able to play any new PC games has me jumping at the bit to get Win 7 almost the day it comes out along with a top of the line new computer...and I'll be getting a Pentium with that one too).

I've also had Athlon processors, and I've only had ONE that's actually lasted more than 2 years of abuse from me.  I would suppose I'm hard on them, I kill them quick.  I think they average about a year and a half lifespan with me...they overclock, but I think Pentium's do it better.  However, perhaps the current crop is different, as I said, I haven't gotten a new computer for around 3 years now...which is ANCIENT in computer terms.  Just refused to get into the entire WinVista thing...which makes my computers currently ancient in terms of what they can do.

If you're experience is with Athlon's however, I'd say half the problems with getting a computer to last...or at least the processor, starts right there...

In my (I'll admit) over arrogant and presumptuously jerked and pompously foolish opinion.
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Offline candle_86

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #48 on: September 16, 2009, 09:38:13 am »
The factor you miss is that the mainboard is not FSB based on an i7 system, thus the multiplier is what you are actually overclocking.. as such when you adjust FSB on older systems, it is the multiplier and frequency that you are adjusting to gain speed.

I7's on the 920's you can adjust the frequency but the multiplier is locked, thus gimping OC builds..

On the i7 970 and above series, the multiplier is unlocked and the frequency is unlocked so you can actually OC to well over 5 Ghz. If using stock cooling (read fans / air cooling), then you can hit 4.6Ghz with a comfortable heat threshold limit given that the 975 CPU has a max heat limit of 130 W, where the 920 has a max heat limit of 90 W. I'm not even going into Standard CPU 920 vs Extreme 975 performance factors or processing capabilities, etc.. the 975 series blows the doors off anything on the market ATM next to the actual 980 series wich is OC capable of 1.3 times the 975 speed limits. for Cost Effectiveness, the 975 is the best buy on the market ATM.

Besides, I am thinking long term not short term.. the 920's are considered a mid grade shipset currently.. so that means next year they will be base model chipsets that you can buy at Wal-Mart / Best Buy..

With the OC capabilities of the i7 975 chipset.. the system will be viable for any software coming out for the next 5 to 8 years without upgrading, just use a simple OC to hit a comfortable stability for any new software.

I mean think about it seriously.. say a new game / program comes out requiring a 3.6 Ghz CPU.. well you will have to either upgrade or Overclock in order to use it.. on a system that is already OC'd to 3.8 GhZ, some instability may occur due to actually pushing the CPU to that speed 100% of the time playing the game..

Now with an i7 975 with the appropriate board, say 4 years from now, a program comes out that you really want for your computer and it requires a system with 4.2 / 4.4 GhZ requirements.. what are you going to do.. buy a new mainboard and a new CPU costing you about $800 on top of what you paid on your old board which was what $675.. so your overall cost for old board / cpu + new board / CPU = $1475 compared to spending $1250 now for a mainboard / CPU that can handle any program coming out with requirements up to 5.4 Ghz (i7 975 OC'd on water cool)... where the 920 would have already been obsolete 2 years prior.

I understand you are looking at Cost vs performance.. however so am I... You are looking at the here and now or the next year or so.. I am looking at 5 to 8 years down the line and removing the need to upgrade each year (Except maybe Video Cards).

Anyhow.. just letting you know where I am coming from.

I must disagree, anyone that knows how to OC knows how to lower operating frequencies of ram and chipset and only raise the CPU speed, mutli lock does impose a limit but not a large one. Lower your ram divider and if you have to chipset divider. Also ocing on stock cooling is the stupid idea you could do, you should never do this, ever. Go to any respected tech site and say your running an i7 @ 4.6 on stock and they will laugh at you and demand proof for the simple reason its not only impossible unless you live in the artic but also foolish. But also no computer will get you 8 years if you plan to do more than email and word prosessing its that simple. My old system ran an Athlon 64 3500, that was bought when it came out, It lasted from 2004 till 2009 thats 5 years and by then it started to feel rather old and slow. If all your doing is word processing and email you can use a Pentium3 and 512mb of ram with windows XP and do just fine. Just because a CPU is supposed to last a minimum of 10years in lifetime of the silicon doesnt mean they expect them to be fielded that long as a primary CPU.

Actually, I'll call you out on that one.  IF you stick with the games that came in the same period of the computer (so for my 2000 comp, which actually still has millenium...BUT doesn't go onto the internet as it's simply not secure enough with that anymore) you may have to replace a fan or power supply, but your computer CAN last that long and do the games of the period too.  The difference is the components.  If you have a Pentium or Intel from that many years ago...they actually are EXCELLENT quality.  Of course you can't overclock it too much...THAT'S WHY you run through the processors so quickly.  As for Athlons...they were ALWAYS junk...but cheap junk so that you can get more for your money in the short run.

That's important if you are going to keep up with the latest and greatest upgrades, and hence a cheap processor that you're going to replace in six months to a year doesn't really matter anyways...but for durability you NEVER go with an athlon.  I have a Pentium (I think it's an original even, I'll have to buzz it up) on a Gateway from 1997 that I got second hand in 1999 (first computer I ever played SFC on actually) that has a 3 CD changer and still runs fine to play any of the older games.  It still even has Win 98 on it!

My main browsing computer for internet actually HAS had more problems, had to replace the motherboard twice (in just the past few months actually, once from it just getting old, the other from something that actually peeves me off), the Vid card has been upgraded, and running XP (refuse to get WinVista, though the constraints with not being able to play any new PC games has me jumping at the bit to get Win 7 almost the day it comes out along with a top of the line new computer...and I'll be getting a Pentium with that one too).

I've also had Athlon processors, and I've only had ONE that's actually lasted more than 2 years of abuse from me.  I would suppose I'm hard on them, I kill them quick.  I think they average about a year and a half lifespan with me...they overclock, but I think Pentium's do it better.  However, perhaps the current crop is different, as I said, I haven't gotten a new computer for around 3 years now...which is ANCIENT in computer terms.  Just refused to get into the entire WinVista thing...which makes my computers currently ancient in terms of what they can do.

If you're experience is with Athlon's however, I'd say half the problems with getting a computer to last...or at least the processor, starts right there...

In my (I'll admit) over arrogant and presumptuously jerked and pompously foolish opinion.

Well then you have very bad luck, my Athlon XP 1500 ran at 1.8ghz from 2001 till 2004, my Athlon 64 runs to this day at 2.8 from a stock 2.2 stable for 5 years. Also I ran a K6-2 400 at 550 for about 4 years also. Also to state a Pentium was a good chip from 2000-2006 is a very bad idea. Pentium4's where known for there heat and very poor ability to do there work. You may have had bad luck with Athlon's but most of the community does not, proper cooling is a must with any overclock, and you must maintain proper thermal effenciy dust and old thermal paste will kill any overclock. Also Athlons are voltage sensitive, you have to know the safe ranges if you want a practical overclock. I dont replace my computers because they break, I replace them because im a gamer. But do remember from 1999-2006 AMD had the fastest processors for gaming, and even today the new Phenom X4 can keep up with there Intel price partner or beat it, also they can be oc'd to 4ghz rather easy at which point they are very much capable of tackling an i7. AMD isnt cheap because of build quality, its cheap because they sell to the mass market and right now price matters, there was a time when an Athlon was more expensive than an Intel.

Offline Dash Jones

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #49 on: September 16, 2009, 03:18:13 pm »
I can see we have fanboys from two different sides of the coin.  I do have experience though with Athlons, though maybe you're right, mine is abominable.  I would say more I'm REALLY hard on processors and Athlons just can't keep up.  :)

I'm also an Nvidia fan...would you happen to be an Ati Fan?
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Offline candle_86

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #50 on: September 16, 2009, 05:58:48 pm »
im a fan of neither i go for best bang for buck actully. But I also push my CPU's that A64 3500 was rated for 2.2ghz and its a Venic E6 2.8ghz on Air was excellent for them, and running that stable for 5 years is great. Ive had a PentiumD 820 also overclocked to 3.6ghz stable but sold it as gaming preformance was by far worse and went back to my Athlon64.

What I own and operate today still in one form or fashion

Intel i7 920
DFI LP x58
4890 Crossfire

AMD AThlon 64 3500
DFI LP 939 Ultra-D
Geforce 6800GT

AMD Athlon XP 1500
ECS KT233 mobo
Geforce 4 ti 4200

Intel Pentium 3 800mhz Dual CPU Hack
Tyan Thunder 440BX Dual Socket370
Radeon 7500

AMD K6-2 400 @ 550
ASUS Super7 Board
Rive TNT2 Ultra

There are more specs of course for each one but tahts the basic break down.

The i7 is maing gaming
The A64 is for my wife/company
The AthlonXP is for Windows 98 for newer games that wont run right on my dos box but are unstable on XP
The P3 is a file server
and the K6-2 is a DOS/Windows 3.1/Windows 95 Box

Offline Dash Jones

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #51 on: September 16, 2009, 07:33:32 pm »
That's cool.
"All hominins are hominids, but not all hominids are hominins."


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Now where in the Bible does it say if someone does something stupid you should shoot them in the face?"

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Offline Sirgod

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #52 on: September 17, 2009, 12:57:34 am »
That I7 is just way to much Computer for ya there Candle, I'll try and help you out by taking it off your hands. :D

stephen
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Offline Nemesis

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #53 on: September 17, 2009, 05:49:31 am »
but for durability you NEVER go with an athlon. 

I can't agree.  I built 2 dual processor Athlon XP (had to do a "hardware hack" to make the XPs run as MP's) and ran them for literally years 24/7 on SETI @ Home which runs the processors hard.  Last I heard a friend was still running an Athlon 2100+ machine I built and used for SETI as well.

I'd say it depends on the quality of the total hardware not just the CPU.

Some people just have bad luck with certain hardware it seems.   I know people who swear by Western Digital HDs for example but I have had NOTHING but trouble with them.  On the other hand my Maxtor drives are like the Energizer bunny they just go and go and others had nothing but trouble with Maxtor.
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Offline Sirgod

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #54 on: September 17, 2009, 06:06:11 am »
I'm one of those guys who has always had trouble with Maxtor drives.

I used to love Seagate drives, as they had a company here in Oklahoma City that built them. They went out of business a while back, so I started looking elsewhere.
 
Anyways, I have always had good performance with AMD CPU's. I just think for my next build, which Pesty has given me great advice on, It will be the I7.

Stephen
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Offline marstone

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #55 on: September 17, 2009, 06:45:51 am »
but for durability you NEVER go with an athlon. 

I can't agree.  I built 2 dual processor Athlon XP (had to do a "hardware hack" to make the XPs run as MP's) and ran them for literally years 24/7 on SETI @ Home which runs the processors hard.  Last I heard a friend was still running an Athlon 2100+ machine I built and used for SETI as well.

I'd say it depends on the quality of the total hardware not just the CPU.

Some people just have bad luck with certain hardware it seems.   I know people who swear by Western Digital HDs for example but I have had NOTHING but trouble with them.  On the other hand my Maxtor drives are like the Energizer bunny they just go and go and others had nothing but trouble with Maxtor.

I have to agree, I have an Athlon in my machine, built 5 years ago.  Runs SETI in the background, and is the main machine run in my house.  Has almost never been shut down in those 5 years.  Still running strong.
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Offline Dracho

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #56 on: September 20, 2009, 09:25:39 am »
AMD's run red-hot and poor cooling configurations or use of poor thermal paste probably accounts for the bulk of longevity issues.

Most PC's I've had die went belly-up due to a chip on the motherboard, not the processor.  The worst I've had was an Intel motherboard that literally blew a capacitor and  gouged a chunk from board form.  I have a photo somewhere I'll look for.
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Offline Nemesis

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #57 on: September 20, 2009, 11:25:36 am »
AMD has just released (may take a month or 2 to get to store shelves) the Athlon II X4 620 suggested retail price apparently $99.  Should make for a powerful low end system.
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Offline Nemesis

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #58 on: September 20, 2009, 11:28:32 am »
The worst I've had was an Intel motherboard that literally blew a capacitor and  gouged a chunk from board form.

There was a problem with a capacitor manufacturer a number of years ago where they used a stolen and incomplete electrolyte formula.  The capacitors exploded due to released hydrogen.  The result was a lot of electronic products failing due to the faulty capacitors. 
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Offline candle_86

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #59 on: September 20, 2009, 12:36:00 pm »
well heat with AMD isnt really a big issue if you know what your doing, otherwise if you dont understand how to apply thermal paste, thats kinda your fault. My AMD rig runs at 34c under an ASUS X-Mars, and under stock cooler with stock speeds it did 31c and im in texas. Heat death is the fault of the user.

Offline Bonk

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #60 on: September 20, 2009, 01:12:30 pm »
I used to build my own. (Philosophy: buy parts from manufacturers that specialise in those parts.) My old mid-line self built PIII system out-performed many pre-built P4 systems built up to eight years later.

However now with multi-core processors and huge amounts of memory and insane bus speeds it all doesn't matter so much anymore. Particularly if you buy last years pre-built model on sale. (e.g. this Toshiba Satellite L300D I got for $400 or the Compaq Presario sr5648f I got for $550 that canada-east.ca runs on - both systems came complete - monitor, keyboard etc.)

That said, if I were to build my own today I would probably follow the same philosophy I used to. It would likely cost about twice as much as last years pre-built on sale but would likely last twice as long.)

Case: InWin Full Tower or equivalent

Power Supply: Powerman >=450W or equivalent

Mainboard: Asus Or Gigabyte without any on-board anything with as many expansion slots as possible of as may types as possible (ISA,PCI,AGP,PCIe,etc. ...) ... with a Traditional BIOS if still possible. None of this EFI crap. Phoenix or better.

Processor: I used to say a $300 Intel processor with a solid QA record, though now I'm tempted to say a $170 AMD processor with a solid QA record. Boxed with fan.

Chassis fan(s): Solid ball bearing fans - should run about $20 each.

Hard Disk: Western Digital - $150-300 depending on required capacity.

Optical drive: I used to say SCSI Yamaha or Plextor @ about $600, but these devices are effectively disposable now, I suggest a $70 Sony DVD burner.

Optical Drive 2: Again disposable these days... look for cheap and quiet.

Floppy (yes, a floppy drive): Panasonic - $40.

Modem (yes a modem): a USR 56K full hardware modem. (the kind that can answer the phone)

A serial IO board if not provided in the mainbord. IOTech?

Memory: Kingston or better to fit the mainboard. (but not the bogus super memory crap)

Video: Matrox Parhelia (yes, Matrox - they simply are the best - but don't expect to run the latest games designed to sell NVIDIA cards), You see, Matrox has a history of providing real open source drivers for Linux and "just working" on any OS.

Network: D-link 100Mbit. Gigbit only makes sense if you invest in a gigabit switch for your lan and actually have the need to transfer hundreds of GB over the network.

Internet connection: Motorola Surfboard Cable modem. Network interface. Nothing less.

Router: Linksys. Wired. (I'd say D-link but their port range forwarding is still lacking)

Keyboard: Keytronics 104 (indestructible) or an old IBM clickety-clack (also indestructible) with an AT->PS2 adapter.

Mouse: Logitech three button wheel mouse (DO NOT install the drivers).

Monitor: Philips CRT.

Um what's left? I imagine I'm a little out of date, but this is still the construction philosophy I would apply. None of this N-force chipset stuff. I want everything in the machine to be made by a manufacturer that specifically makes those parts and has been doing so for more than 10 years.

But it is a bunch of work running around to get all the parts then building it, when I can just go grab a machine on sale for a few hundred bucks that will probably do everything I need.

But if you custom build with this philosophy, you will find that your computer can run just about any OS out there. I had five operating systems on that old PIII system at one point.

Offline candle_86

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #61 on: September 20, 2009, 04:01:24 pm »
I used to build my own. (Philosophy: buy parts from manufacturers that specialise in those parts.) My old mid-line self built PIII system out-performed many pre-built P4 systems built up to eight years later.

However now with multi-core processors and huge amounts of memory and insane bus speeds it all doesn't matter so much anymore. Particularly if you buy last years pre-built model on sale. (e.g. this Toshiba Satellite L300D I got for $400 or the Compaq Presario sr5648f I got for $550 that canada-east.ca runs on - both systems came complete - monitor, keyboard etc.)

That said, if I were to build my own today I would probably follow the same philosophy I used to. It would likely cost about twice as much as last years pre-built on sale but would likely last twice as long.)

Case: InWin Full Tower or equivalent

Power Supply: Powerman >=450W or equivalent

Mainboard: Asus Or Gigabyte without any on-board anything with as many expansion slots as possible of as may types as possible (ISA,PCI,AGP,PCIe,etc. ...) ... with a Traditional BIOS if still possible. None of this EFI crap. Phoenix or better.

Processor: I used to say a $300 Intel processor with a solid QA record, though now I'm tempted to say a $170 AMD processor with a solid QA record. Boxed with fan.

Chassis fan(s): Solid ball bearing fans - should run about $20 each.

Hard Disk: Western Digital - $150-300 depending on required capacity.

Optical drive: I used to say SCSI Yamaha or Plextor @ about $600, but these devices are effectively disposable now, I suggest a $70 Sony DVD burner.

Optical Drive 2: Again disposable these days... look for cheap and quiet.

Floppy (yes, a floppy drive): Panasonic - $40.

Modem (yes a modem): a USR 56K full hardware modem. (the kind that can answer the phone)

A serial IO board if not provided in the mainbord. IOTech?

Memory: Kingston or better to fit the mainboard. (but not the bogus super memory crap)

Video: Matrox Parhelia (yes, Matrox - they simply are the best - but don't expect to run the latest games designed to sell NVIDIA cards), You see, Matrox has a history of providing real open source drivers for Linux and "just working" on any OS.

Network: D-link 100Mbit. Gigbit only makes sense if you invest in a gigabit switch for your lan and actually have the need to transfer hundreds of GB over the network.

Internet connection: Motorola Surfboard Cable modem. Network interface. Nothing less.

Router: Linksys. Wired. (I'd say D-link but their port range forwarding is still lacking)

Keyboard: Keytronics 104 (indestructible) or an old IBM clickety-clack (also indestructible) with an AT->PS2 adapter.

Mouse: Logitech three button wheel mouse (DO NOT install the drivers).

Monitor: Philips CRT.

Um what's left? I imagine I'm a little out of date, but this is still the construction philosophy I would apply. None of this N-force chipset stuff. I want everything in the machine to be made by a manufacturer that specifically makes those parts and has been doing so for more than 10 years.

But it is a bunch of work running around to get all the parts then building it, when I can just go grab a machine on sale for a few hundred bucks that will probably do everything I need.

But if you custom build with this philosophy, you will find that your computer can run just about any OS out there. I had five operating systems on that old PIII system at one point.

Well powerman PSU = garbage, I wouldnt go there, ASUS has fallen off in credibilty and build quality recently. You wont get a matrox parhphilla working on any new computer they where never ported to PCIe, matrox has newer card out, but nvidia has come light years in there linux drivers, and is the top recomended linux card, also has the advantage of having a GPPU (General purpose processing unit). I can tell you have been out of the game awhile. 130 dollar hard drive will buy 1.5tb of diskspace, a 320gb now goes for around 60 bucks.

The main problem with OEM systems is the PSU wiring pattern for the 24pin is non standard and usally 300-350W so adding a video card is almost useless, unless you go with a smaller company, E-Machines, Dell and HP use non stanard 24pin wiring. Also the boards in most OEM box's tend to be PC Chips or ECS boards, meaning realibilty is always in question. Then also comes to mind the bloatware installed on to it and the questionable cooling system

Offline Khalee1

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #62 on: September 20, 2009, 04:14:32 pm »
I used to build my own. (Philosophy: buy parts from manufacturers that specialise in those parts.) My old mid-line self built PIII system out-performed many pre-built P4 systems built up to eight years later.

However now with multi-core processors and huge amounts of memory and insane bus speeds it all doesn't matter so much anymore. Particularly if you buy last years pre-built model on sale. (e.g. this Toshiba Satellite L300D I got for $400 or the Compaq Presario sr5648f I got for $550 that canada-east.ca runs on - both systems came complete - monitor, keyboard etc.)

That said, if I were to build my own today I would probably follow the same philosophy I used to. It would likely cost about twice as much as last years pre-built on sale but would likely last twice as long.)

Case: InWin Full Tower or equivalent

Power Supply: Powerman >=450W or equivalent  Would'nt more power be better like 500 to maybe a750 or 1000w


Mainboard: Asus Or Gigabyte without any on-board anything with as many expansion slots as possible of as may types as possible (ISA,PCI,AGP,PCIe,etc. ...) ... with a Traditional BIOS if still possible. None of this EFI crap. Phoenix or better. Had both boards with my last two computers last one was a Gigabyte. And whats EFI

Processor: I used to say a $300 Intel processor with a solid QA record, though now I'm tempted to say a $170 AMD processor with a solid QA record. Boxed with fan.

Chassis fan(s): Solid ball bearing fans - should run about $20 each. Like how many with a full tower case

Hard Disk: Western Digital - $150-300 depending on required capacity. only way to go

Optical drive: I used to say SCSI Yamaha or Plextor @ about $600, but these devices are effectively disposable now, I suggest a $70 Sony DVD burner.

Optical Drive 2: Again disposable these days... look for cheap and quiet. what about blueray drives
 

Floppy (yes, a floppy drive): Panasonic - $40. ok internal or external

Modem (yes a modem): a USR 56K full hardware modem. (the kind that can answer the phone) Again internal or ex

A serial IO board if not provided in the mainbord. IOTech? have no Idea what this is

Memory: Kingston or better to fit the mainboard. (but not the bogus super memory crap) but which ones ddr2 or 3 I'm still looking min 8 gigs max maybe 12

Video: Matrox Parhelia (yes, Matrox - they simply are the best - but don't expect to run the latest games designed to sell NVIDIA cards), You see, Matrox has a history of providing real open source drivers for Linux and "just working" on any OS. how good are they with rendering and what min size would I need for it.

Network: D-link 100Mbit. Gigbit only makes sense if you invest in a gigabit switch for your lan and actually have the need to transfer hundreds of GB over the network. Have no idea what this is and  Do I really need one

Internet connection: Motorola Surfboard Cable modem. Network interface. Nothing less. Why not the wireless stuff

Router: Linksys. Wired. (I'd say D-link but their port range forwarding is still lacking) For what I want to do why a router

Keyboard: Keytronics 104 (indestructible) or an old IBM clickety-clack (also indestructible) with an AT->PS2 adapter.

Mouse: Logitech three button wheel mouse (DO NOT install the drivers). Trac ball all the way

Monitor: Philips CRT.

Um what's left? I imagine I'm a little out of date, but this is still the construction philosophy I would apply. None of this N-force chipset stuff. I want everything in the machine to be made by a manufacturer that specifically makes those parts and has been doing so for more than 10 years.

But it is a bunch of work running around to get all the parts then building it, when I can just go grab a machine on sale for a few hundred bucks that will probably do everything I need.

But if you custom build with this philosophy, you will find that your computer can run just about any OS out there. I had five operating systems on that old PIII system at one point.



Offline Bonk

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #63 on: September 20, 2009, 04:17:24 pm »
I can tell you have been out of the game awhile.

Yup, part of why I bought pre-built.

Then also comes to mind the bloatware installed on to it...

Bingo! Biggest strike against pre-built. It took me literally weeks to strip all the crap off these two machines. Probably would have been less work to get up-to-date and build my own.

Offline Bonk

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #64 on: September 20, 2009, 04:48:40 pm »
Quote
Would'nt more power be better like 500 to maybe a750 or 1000w


Proabably, depending on how much stuff you cram in there. Note candle's comments on the power supply manufacturer as well. Now that I think about it that Powerman did fail on me.

Quote
And whats EFI


Extensible Firmware Interface. BIOS should be on a chip, not a hidden partition on the disk. A computer should be able to boot without a hard disk. (Floppy, Optical, Network...)

Quote
Chassis fan(s): Solid ball bearing fans - should run about $20 each. Like how many with a full tower case


Normally just one, in addition to the one in the power supply. Again, depends on how much stuff you pile in there. Put a RAID array in and you might want two. Or one of those front panel ones, right in front of the array.

Quote
Floppy (yes, a floppy drive): Panasonic - $40. ok internal or extern


Internal. (do mainboards still have floppy IDE headers?)

Quote
Optical Drive 2: Again disposable these days... look for cheap and quiet. what about blueray drives


I suppose. I'd wait a while before putting one in though. Don't see much use for it other than watching movies unless it's a burner, whcih will probably cost a mint. I'd give blu-ray at least another two years before buying in.

Quote
Modem (yes a modem): a USR 56K full hardware modem. (the kind that can answer the phone) Again internal or ex


Either. Internal is preferred, though RS232 serial external is fine. (not USB) Must be a full hardware modem to be of any use. May require serial I/O board if none on mainboard. But, only get one if you have a use for it. (dial-up server, phone answering system...)

Quote
Memory: Kingston or better to fit the mainboard. (but not the bogus super memory crap) but which ones ddr2 or 3 I'm still looking min 8 gigs max maybe 12


Probably ddr3 if you want 8gigs, as you will be going with a 64bit processor, OS and applications in order to make use of that much memory. But it really depends on your mainboard specs.


Quote
Video: Matrox Parhelia (yes, Matrox - they simply are the best - but don't expect to run the latest games designed to sell NVIDIA cards), You see, Matrox has a history of providing real open source drivers for Linux and "just working" on any OS. how good are they with rendering and what min size would I need for it.


Excel at rendering. 2D accuracy is Matrox's speciality. Min size?  :huh: Color accuracy is unsurpassed. Note candle's remarks however, they have newer PCIe models. Note NVIDIA Linux drivers are proprietary/restricted.


Quote
Network: D-link 100Mbit. Gigbit only makes sense if you invest in a gigabit switch for your lan and actually have the need to transfer hundreds of GB over the network. Have no idea what this is and  Do I really need one


Network Interface Card (NIC). You need one if your mainboard does not have one (which is good) and you want a LAN or High speed internet. If you are just going with a single PC with no network and no access to high speed, then the modem will do fine.

Quote
Internet connection: Motorola Surfboard Cable modem. Network interface. Nothing less. Why not the wireless stuff


Wireless sucks. Period.

Quote
Router: Linksys. Wired. (I'd say D-link but their port range forwarding is still lacking) For what I want to do why a router


Sorry, I didn't read your requirements. This was a general post on the subject. If you only have one computer then you don't really have the need for a router. If you have more than one computer and want to be able to access the internet from all of them then a router is the best solution. (56K modem routers are hard to find now, but the old 3com office-connect series was good)

Quote
Mouse: Logitech three button wheel mouse (DO NOT install the drivers). Trac ball all the way


 8)
« Last Edit: September 20, 2009, 05:08:07 pm by Bonk »

Offline Dracho

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #65 on: September 20, 2009, 06:11:23 pm »
I run a quad core and an X2 video card.  I burn up any power supply under 800w in 6 months.
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Offline Khalee1

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #66 on: September 20, 2009, 06:26:30 pm »
for rendering is it the vid card or memory or both that desides on how fast it renders, also what would be a min size card to get for it 256 512 756 or maybe a 1024 size card.

And what should I look for it terms of features on the card.

Offline candle_86

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #67 on: September 20, 2009, 06:31:56 pm »
its dependant on what hardware your running as for your PSU wattage requirements. Someone running a Sempron 2gb of ram an 8400GS will do fine on 300W someone running a Phenom X4 965BE, GTX295 Quad SLI, and 8gb of ram will need 1kw of power. To little power supplied kills it from overstress, and to much power kills a PSU also, you want leeway upwards of 100-150W max, but not below at all.

As for connectors boards no longer come with an FDD and some dont come with IDE anymore, and none come with two IDE controllers period

Offline candle_86

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #68 on: September 20, 2009, 06:32:51 pm »
for rendering is it the vid card or memory or both that desides on how fast it renders, also what would be a min size card to get for it 256 512 756 or maybe a 1024 size card.

And what should I look for it terms of features on the card.

for rendering work, it depends what your rendering honestly. But id say 1gb Geforce 8800GT/9800GT minimum, with 4gb of Ram minimum and a quad core CPU

Offline Rod ONeal

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #69 on: September 20, 2009, 11:55:28 pm »
for rendering is it the vid card or memory or both that desides on how fast it renders, also what would be a min size card to get for it 256 512 756 or maybe a 1024 size card.

And what should I look for it terms of features on the card.

Depends on what "rendering" you are referring to. If you are talking about the final render, that's all on the CPU. If you're talking about editor rendering then that's the video card.

I'd recommend minimum of 4gig (2 channel) to 6gig (3 channel) of RAM, and 1gig V RAM per GPU as the least you should go for if you are building a new machine for modeling. Doubling that, especially your system RAM. would be even better though.

Minimum card, with the current cards, either NVidea GTS 250/9800GTX+ or ATI 4850. From what I've read, and nothing has been actually released yet, the new 5000 series ATI cards are going to destroy anything that's out now. Apparently though they are going to start at about $300.00 (USD).

Get the fastest quad core CPU you can and hyperthreading is big plus for final rendering speeds. AMD Phenom 2 X4 or Intel Core II quad are good processors and I wouldn't replace either of them yet if that's what your current system has. Buying new though I'd definately opt for Intel i7.
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Offline candle_86

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #70 on: September 21, 2009, 01:09:22 pm »
the 5870 will cost 399, and will be able to tie a GTX295 not beat it which goes for 450 right now. Also I would go for cuda support as Maya and 3ds are supposed to implement Cuda support putting the render work on the GPU instead of the CPU which will make it hundreds of times faster

Offline Rod ONeal

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #71 on: September 21, 2009, 04:52:13 pm »
Well, the exact performance isn't known yet. So, no point in debating that. I've seen more impressive figures where it beats it handily. I wasn't drawing any direct comparisons between models. There's also a 5850 which should be in the $299 range. Again, the figures I've seen show it easily beating a 285. For the folks that "nothing is ever good enough for them" there's also going to be a 5870 X2.

The 200 series Nvidea and 4000 series ATI are old tech. No DX11 or Open CL support. If you already have one it's a fine card and you might as well hang on to it and wait to see what Nvidea comes out with in the next few months. I sure wouldn't go out and buy a 295 now. While there might be 3D aps out there that will render through your GPU using CUDA, I don't know of any. Any that I've used (and I haven't used every single one, but a lot) render through the CPU and use OGL in the editor viewer.
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Offline candle_86

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #72 on: September 21, 2009, 06:38:46 pm »
well nvidia white papers report the next version of maya will and 3ds max 10 will also render via cuda, take a look at there white papers on companies there working with, also lightwave should already do it, but I havnt meet anyone that uses lightwave, im under the impression lightwave is more for the professionals

Offline Rod ONeal

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #73 on: September 21, 2009, 07:37:28 pm »
Most hobbyists use max for some reason that I've never been able to figure out. If Max and Maya do it that will help it out a lot. From what I've read though OCL is going to be the way the industry is going to go. Nvidea, ATI, and Intel are supporting it rather than just Nvidea.

I'm curious why nobody has made even a separate renderer that supports CUDA?
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Offline candle_86

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Re: buying pre made computers or build it yourselve
« Reply #74 on: September 21, 2009, 07:44:06 pm »
because Cuda is a wider option of physx, game titles can run it already because they had years, Cuda didnt get activated till the GTX280 release, though the 8800GTX has support for it, it wasnt turned on till the GTX280. But the promise for it is undeniable though. F@H was one of the first to take advantage, and we say a 100fold increase in how fast calcuations are done.