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Building an i7 computer

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#1 Bash141


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Posted 15 April 2009 - 05:58 PM

So, my faithful desktop fried today and I am frantically looking for a good computer and fast. (Engineering student). I like having power on my side without breaking the bank terribly (heavy gaming), so this is what I came up with:

Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower

EVGA 132-BL-E758-TR LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard

Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor

CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply

OCZ Gold 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory

Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive

ASUS Black 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 22X DVD Burner with LightScribe

PPA 1424V 8 Channels 24-bit 96KHz PCI Interface Sound Card

Now I get stuck here: I cannot decide if I want:
NVidia 9800 GTX+ 512 MB x2 in SLI

EVGA 260

EVGA 285

I guess the 260 beats a 9800, but maybe not two? I know the 285 is better than the 260, but is it so better that the price is worth it? Any and all help on which video card to go with would be very much appreciated. With the video card, I would rather spend the extra money to get the card that can really perform, as I am very particular to graphics...But if the increase in performance is not as good as going with SLI or something...Help please =]

I don't think I missed anything. I am looking to start ordering parts tomorrow at the latest, so please, any and all help is much, much appreciated. Thank you very much =D

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#2 dpunisher


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Posted 15 April 2009 - 06:45 PM

Just random stuff:

Make sure memory works at spec with no more than 1.65V (your pick does). The i7 memory controller supposedly has longevity problems above that.

My personal choice as far as video cards are between the ATI 4890 and the GTX 275. 4890s and GTX275s are around the $240 mark now. 4890s can be found for nearly $190 if you look really hard and jump on the deals (and deal with rebate hassles). 4890 overclocking is supposedly very very good. GTX 285s are nice but I can't justify that much cash for the improvement over a 275.

No need for that sound card, or any sound card yet.

Sweet build. I am about a month behind you on my i7 journey.

Edited by dpunisher, 15 April 2009 - 06:46 PM.

I am a retired Ford tech. Next to Fords, any computer is a piece of cake. (The cake, its not a lie)

3770K @4.5, Corsair H100, GTX780, 16gig Samsung, Obsidian 700 (yes there is a 700)

#3 Sterling14


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Posted 15 April 2009 - 09:23 PM

I'd say go for a single card and spend more on it instead of splitting the cost and doing SLI with two or three. If you're using a 24"+ screen that runs 1920X1080 resolution, than you'll probably want at least an ATI 4890, or Nvidia 275. If you're planning on running games at 2560x1600 resolution, than you may want to consider SLI.

Edited by Sterling14, 15 April 2009 - 09:23 PM.

"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers." - Thomas Watson, Chairman of IBM, 1943

#4 DJBPace07


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Posted 15 April 2009 - 11:25 PM

Note that the GTX 285 and 295 are dual GPU cards. The GTX 285 is only slightly faster than a GTX 280 but the GTX 295 is better than a GTX 260 in SLI. You should only get a sound card if you listen to a great deal of music, have a home theater setup, or have a 5.1 or greater sound system. If you meet those conditions, you may want higher end one that has all the Dolby technologies, like the Xonar D1 or D2, to get the most from your sound setup. Otherwise, the on-board sound will do fine. Remember, you need an operating system for that PC and, given the amount of RAM you'll have, you should get a 64-bit OS.



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