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First PC Build - help?


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#1 KeepIt

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Posted 04 July 2009 - 01:10 AM

Hey, I'm building my first PC from scratch, and I really don't know about how everything I'm thinking of buying will go together. Can anybody help me out here on if everything I've purchased will work with each other, and if there's anything better in a similar price range, would you mind sharing with me what I should get? Thanks so much, I'm pretty excited to order and start building this. Here's my list (as of right now):


Motherboard: ASUS M4A78 Plus AM3/AM2+/AM2 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard
CPU: AMD Athlon X2 7850 Black Edition Kuma 2.8GHz Socket AM2+ 95W Dual-Core Processor Model AD785ZWCGHBOX
Memory: Crucial Ballistix 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Triple Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model BL3KIT25664TB1608 - OEM
Power Supply: RAIDMAX HYBRID 2 RX-730SS 730W ATX12V V2.2/ EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Modular Modular LED Power Supply
Video Card: XFX PVT98GYDLH GeForce 9800 GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card
Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
Case: ABS Aplus ABS-CS-EL Diablo Black 0.8mm SECC ATX Full Tower Computer Case
Keyboard: LITE-ON SK-1688U/B Black USB Wired Standard Keyboard
Mouse: Logitech MX518 8 Buttons 1 x Wheel USB Wired Optical Gaming-Grade Mouse
Monitor: HP 2009m 20" HP 16:9 Wide HD Ready LCD Flat Panel Monitor

I'm also getting Fallout 3 and apparently CoD 5 comes as a free gift with the video card. Will my setup run either game? I know what I have is as good or better than the suggested Fallout specs, but I'm still not sure if any sort of product will clash with another one. Thanks for everyone who helps. :thumbsup:

P.S. everything was ordered from Newegg, and total price (including Fallout) is about $795. Good deal or not? Sorry for all the questions, but I really don't know much of anything about building a computer. Once again, thanks.

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#2 Sterling14

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Posted 04 July 2009 - 09:32 AM

Are you talking about this processor: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16819103678 . It's a pretty good processor for gaming, and the black editions are suppose to overclock well (if you're into it).

I noticed that the motherboard you selected uses DDR2 ram, while you chose DDR3 ram. DDR3 ram will not work in a motherboard that only supports DDR2 ram. I suggest getting 4gb or DDR2 800mhz ram (2x2gb sticks so you can have two slots opened for future upgrade). This will also be significantly cheaper than the DDR3 ram you selected by around $50. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16820227267 .

You should note that your motherboard supports dual-ATI graphics cards. You can't use dual-Nvidia cards, like the one you chose. However, the second slot runs at a reduced speed of x4 instead of x16, so it's almost not worth it. You're better off just sticking with single cards, and upgrading them more often if need be. You can still use a single Nvidia card in that motherboard.

EDIT: You should be able to run both of those games on high-highest settings with minimal lag.

Edited by Sterling14, 04 July 2009 - 09:33 AM.

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

#3 joester

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Posted 04 July 2009 - 11:10 AM

A system like that shouldn't need overclocking, and I would go ahead and fill all 3 RAM slots.

I agree that you should see excellent performance. Just make sure you have sufficient air flow for cooling. Also, I'm partial to Arctic Silver for thermal paste. The interface between processor and heatsink is a crucial one for adequate thermal transfer. Since that wasn't mentioned on the list, I would suggest a copper based one with a good fan. You should have several options with that board.

Sounds like a great toy in the making!

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#4 KeepIt

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Posted 04 July 2009 - 02:39 PM

Sterling, would a new motherboard solve the problem, Instead of changing both memory and graphics card?

Also, Joe, apparently the case I bought has two 220mm fans and a water cooling system built in. Would I still need thermal paste if I'm not gonna really be burning this thing up and i've already got a lot of cooling?

edit: New setup: (hopefully everything works now)


Motherboard: ASRock M3A780GXH/128M AM3 AMD 780G HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard
CPU: AMD Athlon II X2 250 Regor 3.0GHz Socket AM3 65W Dual-Core Processor Model ADX250OCGQBOX
Memory: Patriot Viper 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model PVT36G1600ELK
Power Supply: RAIDMAX HYBRID 2 RX-730SS 730W ATX12V V2.2/ EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Modular Modular LED Power Supply
Video Card: MSI N250GTS-2D512-OC GeForce GTS 250 512MB GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card
Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
Case: ABS Aplus ABS-CS-EL Diablo Black 0.8mm SECC ATX Full Tower Computer Case
Keyboard: LITE-ON SK-1688U/B Black USB Wired Standard Keyboard
Mouse: Logitech MX518 8 Buttons 1 x Wheel USB Wired Optical Gaming-Grade Mouse
Monitor: HP 2009m 20" HP 16:9 Wide HD Ready LCD Flat Panel Monitor

I changed the motherboard, video card, and memory. I checked specs and apparently everything works with each other, but I'm not totally sure on this.

Edited by KeepIt, 04 July 2009 - 03:53 PM.


#5 DJBPace07

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Posted 04 July 2009 - 05:56 PM

Looks good, but I have a few suggestions.

CPU: If you have the money, I suggest the AMD Phenom II X2 550 Black Edition Callisto 3.1GHz. This is about $20 more but has several features the Athlon does not. This one is slightly faster, has 6MB of L3 cache instead of none with the Athlon, double the L2 cache, and is Black Edition, thus, it is easily overclocked.

Memory: Getting three sticks is not necessary with an AM3 platform as the memory is not triple channel. If you want something more cost effective, the G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 will work. If you want to fill all RAM slots, get two kits.

Video Card: Your motherboard has several PCI-express X16 slots. If you want the ability to use more than two cards at a later date, I suggest getting an ATI card. THe SAPPHIRE 100245HDMI Radeon HD 4850 512MB is of a similar price as the GTS 250 and has near identical performance. The better performing HIS H487FN1GP Radeon HD 4870 1GB is about $40 more (only $20 more after rebate) and can be a good choice.

Don't forget, you need a 64-bit operating system.

Edited by DJBPace07, 04 July 2009 - 05:56 PM.

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#6 joester

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Posted 05 July 2009 - 01:31 AM

Regardless of the cooling system, the interface between the heat source (processor) and the cooling device (heatsink) is a crucial point. Absolute thermal contact must be made. In reality, any thermal paste will do... and it's cheap insurance.
You could have a liquid nitrogen based heatsink, and still overheat your processor if positive contact with the processor isn't made. As long as the connection is complete, you can push to maximum performance with little worry of overheating.
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#7 KeepIt

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Posted 05 July 2009 - 11:18 AM

I added DJB's CPU and memory instead of what I have. I skipped out on the video card cuz I doubt I'll be putting in a whole lot of stuff after I buy this (budget..) and I've heard a lot of good stuff about the video card I have. I picked up the thermal paste too.

Oh yeah.. if I'm going 64-bit, would 6 gigs of memory be preferable to 4? Especially when running games/overclocking.

#8 DJBPace07

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Posted 05 July 2009 - 05:03 PM

The heatsink and fan is included with the CPU, so you technically don't need to apply any thermal paste. However, some people choose to apply their own higher quality paste or get an aftermarket heatsink and fan unit. 4GB is plenty for most users, unless the games you run have been coded to run as a 64-bit native application, and few are, 4GB will be plenty. The 6GB RAM kit is designed for the i7 motherboards which are triple channel DDR3 and have six RAM slots. To fill all RAM slots on these boards, you need two RAM kits with three sticks. Almost all other motherboards, such as yours, use dual channel memory with four slots. To fill these up, you need two RAM kits with two sticks. To max out the the motherboards RAM using the Crucial RAM you chose, would take one three RAM stick kit and an additional stick to fill up four slots. The Crucial RAM is very expensive, and purchasing two of the G.SKILL memory kits I suggested will cost less than a single Crucial 3x2GB kit plus it is on the QVL for the ASRock motherboard. As for your video card, it is decent for some light gaming, but it is not as good as a 4850 or 4870. But, if you already have this card you're saving money by reusing it, and if it meets your needs, it doesn't make sense to upgrade if your budget does not permit it. Just remember, you cannot use two or more NVidia cards with that motherboard as it will only allow for ATI cards in dual or triple GPU configuration.

Edited by DJBPace07, 05 July 2009 - 10:34 PM.

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#9 KeepIt

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Posted 05 July 2009 - 10:07 PM

Alright, well to stay in budget I picked up a 2x2gb of OCZ, which I guess I'll try and sell. I ordered one Crucial 2gb before realizing that'll screw with my dual channel, and I'd rather have some nice Crucial than the OCZ and then the extra memory just laying around. Overall though thanks a bunch. You guys helped a lot.

My final build was:
Motherboard:ASRock M3A780GXH/128M AM3 AMD 780G HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard
CPU:AMD Phenom II X2 550 Black Edition Callisto 3.1GHz Socket AM3 80W Dual-Core Processor Model HDZ550WFGIBOX
Memory: OCZ Platinum AMD Edition 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Voltage Desktop Memory Model OCZ3P1600LVAM4GK
and
Crucial Ballistix Tracer 2GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory (with LEDs) Model BL25664TR1608
Power Supply: RAIDMAX HYBRID 2 RX-730SS 730W ATX12V V2.2/ EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Modular Modular LED Power Supply
Video Card:MSI N250GTS-2D512-OC GeForce GTS 250 512MB GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card
Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
Case: ABS Aplus ABS-CS-EL Diablo Black 0.8mm SECC ATX Full Tower Computer Case
Keyboard:LITE-ON SK-1688U/B Black USB Wired Standard Keyboard
Mouse:Logitech MX518 8 Buttons 1 x Wheel USB Wired Optical Gaming-Grade Mouse

also, a grounding strap (rosewill) and some arctic silver thermal paste. I'm good to go hopefully.

#10 DJBPace07

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Posted 05 July 2009 - 10:37 PM

Yep, you're good though I don't know of anyone who uses a grounding strap.

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#11 DeathStalker

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Posted 06 July 2009 - 05:44 PM

Yep, you're good though I don't know of anyone who uses a grounding strap.


LOL I do. But then again, I also read directions so by that you know I'm weird.............

#12 joester

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Posted 07 July 2009 - 02:13 PM

I use a ground strap as well. Having been in the electronics industry for my entire professional life, I have seen and experienced the result of unintentional electrostatic discharge. If you feel the spark, it's too late. The ground strap is an insurance policy well worth the inconvenience.

In fact, I went as far as building a grounded workbench for my CPU and electronics repair needs.

Joe
Common sense to some is the higher education others strive to attain.




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