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Thread: Final Parts Check

  1. #1
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
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    Default Final Parts Check

    Some of you might remember the thread I made a while ago about buying a new PC. I'm grateful to the knowledgeable Orgahs who helped me come up with this list. Since technology changes quickly these days, I'm wondering if this is a good list in terms of price and power, or if much has changed since I made this list. This is my final check before I buy the parts.

    Thanks in advance, I'm grateful that there's a place like this where good advice is always around.



    Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 2.40GHz / 4MB Cache / 1066MHz FSB / Conroe / Dual-Core / Socket 775 / Processor with Fan (Retail)

    Memory: Corsair XMS2 TWIN2X2048-6400 2GB 2X1GB PC2-6400 DDR2-800 CL 5-5-5-12 240PIN DIMM Dual Channel

    Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 500GB SATA2 3GB/S 7200RPM 16MB Cache Ncq

    Graphics Card: EVGA GeForce 8800 GTS Superclocked / 640MB GDDR3 / SLI Ready / PCI Express / Dual DVI / HDTV

    Sound: On motherboard

    Monitor: Hanns·G HW-191DPB 19" Widescreen LCD Monitor - 5ms, 700:1, WXGA+ 1440x900, DVI·D, VGA(D-sub), Black

    OS: XP Home SP2 w/ original disc

    Cooling: Not sure so far, probably just a couple fans, maybe a cheap water cooling system.

    Case/Tower: Apevia Black/Black X-Plorer ATX Mid-Tower Case with Clear Side, Fan Controller, Front USB and Firewire Port

    Keyboard/Mouse: Just something cheap but durable, not too picky.

    Motherboard: Asus P5B Deluxe / WIFI-AP Atx LGA775 Conroe 965P DDR2 PCI-E16 3PCI-E1 3PCI 8 SATA2 Sound Motherboard

    Power Supply: OCZ GameXStream 700W ATX12V 24PIN SLI Ready Active PFC ATX Power Supply 120MM Fan Black

    DVD writer/CD drive: Suggestions?

    Estimated final cost: 1300 Euro (give or take)


    If there's any other major parts I need, I'd appreciate it if someone could mention that. Thanks again.
    Last edited by Evil_Maniac From Mars; 08-30-2007 at 20:07.

  2. #2
    Nobody expects the Senior Member Lemur's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Looks like an extremely nice system! I'd be very careful with water cooling, though.
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  3. #3
    The very model of a modern Moderator Xiahou's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    You forgot the flux capacitor.
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  4. #4
    Needs more flowers Moderator drone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Quote Originally Posted by Lemur
    Looks like an extremely nice system! I'd be very careful with water cooling, though.
    The words cheap and water-cooling are a bad combination. Get a good setup, or not at all.
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  5. #5
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Quote Originally Posted by drone
    The words cheap and water-cooling are a bad combination. Get a good setup, or not at all.
    What sort of cooling system do you recommend? Fans, heatsink?

  6. #6

    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    For DVD-stuff, Pioneer have always had a good name in my book. I've also had several LG's, but while they work fine for a while, at some point they just ... die. If this happens after 3-4 years, it's no big deal, since they're so cheap - but it's still frustrating.

    Also, I'm a bit puzzled, I remember your old thread, but I don't remember why (if at all) you decided to go with the onboard sound ? I dunno about your specific motherboard, but, I'd reckon a sound card can easily do better... and they're relatively cheap, too.
    Therapy helps, but screaming obscenities is cheaper.

  7. #7
    Needs more flowers Moderator drone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Quote Originally Posted by Evil_Maniac From Mars
    What sort of cooling system do you recommend? Fans, heatsink?
    Well, you can go with water-cooling, if you don't mind the initial hassle and maintenance, just don't skimp on the system. A small failure could potentially ruin your entire system. Water works well though, especially if you are planning on overclocking, and the box will be quiet. It will cost significantly more, however. If you build a top system fairly regularly, you can reuse most of the cooling system on your top machine, and put fans/heatsinks back into your downgraded setups.

    If you aren't comfortable with it, stick with fans/heatsinks. Water-cooling is still fringe, but the components are getting better.
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  8. #8
    The very model of a modern Moderator Xiahou's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Quote Originally Posted by drone
    If you aren't comfortable with it, stick with fans/heatsinks. Water-cooling is still fringe, but the components are getting better.
    I'd say that, by and large, water cooling is for the geek factor as much as anything else. You average gaming PC will get by just fine with decent air cooling. If you're an overclocking fiend, water cooling might be worth looking into- but if you're going to spend so much money on a water cooling setup, why not just spend more money on better hardware and air cool it.

    *The obvious exception would be if you buy cutting edge hardware and still want to overclock it. If that's you, go nuts.
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  9. #9
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    I'm not a major overclocker, so I guess I'll stick with the fans and heatsinks.


    Can anyone recommend a sound card?


    This is what I've found for a DVD/CD burner/player:

    Pioneer DVR-112DBK OEM DVD Burner - 18x DVD±R Burn, 16x DVD±R Read, 8x DVD+RW, 6x DVD-RW, 10x DVD±R DL, 40x32x CD-R/RW, Black, with Software

    EDIT: Looking at fans right now, this is what I've come up with.

    -Ultra 80mm Dual Ball Bearing Fan (5-Pack) (at only about 16-20 Euro, good reviews too. I have a fan controller on my case as well, which is great)
    Last edited by Evil_Maniac From Mars; 08-31-2007 at 00:45.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    The dvd burner looks good; btw, it should be obvious that I don't have any stake in Pioneer, LG, or whatever other hw companies/vendors, that's just my (limited) experience.
    Btw, I've noticed in several cases that some vendors charge you more for _black_ components, like dvd/cd drives. Presumably it is because they look cooler, but I've always refused to pay the 3-5$ extra, as a matter of principle. If you have such principles as well, you might wanna see if that's the case with your chosen vendor (obviously, when you're paying 1.3k, 2-3$/euros have zero significance financially speaking).

    Unfortunately, I'm way out of touch with the soundcard market out there - sorry.
    Therapy helps, but screaming obscenities is cheaper.

  11. #11
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    AFAIK the black one is the only one this site stocks. There is a beige one, but it seems to be slightly different in terms other than colour. Anyways, I don't mind paying a couple Euro more, if I want to cut costs I'd rather do that in chunks of at least 20 Euro. It's just the way I am.

  12. #12
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Considering upgrading current processor to Intel Core 2 Duo E6750 Processor - 2.66GHz, 4MB Cache, 1333MHz FSB, Conroe, Dual-Core, Retail, Socket 775, BX80557E6750, Processor with Fan. It'll cost me about 30-40 Euro more.

  13. #13
    Nobody expects the Senior Member Lemur's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Quote Originally Posted by Evil_Maniac From Mars
    Can anyone recommend a sound card?
    I use this one, and it works real good. For gaming, there's really no alternative to Creative.
    "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them ... well, I have others." — Groucho Marx

  14. #14
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    I was looking at that, but someone told me to either go with motherboard sound or to buy a more expensive sound card. I guess I'll have to look into that a bit more, I've had mixed reviews with it.

  15. #15
    Nobody expects the Senior Member Lemur's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Oops, I sent you a link to the wrong card. This is the one I use. Bad lemur!
    "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them ... well, I have others." — Groucho Marx

  16. #16
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Thanks, I was wondering about that.

  17. #17
    The very model of a modern Moderator Xiahou's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    I use an X-Fi: Extreme Music card. (Extreme Music only because it was the cheapest of the X-Fi flavors) It doesn't seem to be widely available anymore, but it was basically the same as the Fatal1ty with less memory- which most games don't use anyhow, iirc.

    The few games that I did play that fully supported it sounded pretty sweet.
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  18. #18
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Alright, I've got a question about the sound cards. Should I go with the Creative Labs Sound Blaster X-Fi Extreme Audio or the Creative Labs Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer PCI Sound Card? The latter is about half the price of the former. Also, should I upgrade to the processor I mentioned in Post #12, or is it not worth it?

    Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 2.40GHz / 4MB Cache / 1066MHz FSB / Conroe / Dual-Core / Socket 775 / Processor with Fan (Retail)

    Memory: Corsair XMS2 TWIN2X2048-6400 2GB 2X1GB PC2-6400 DDR2-800 CL 5-5-5-12 240PIN DIMM Dual Channel

    Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 500GB SATA2 3GB/S 7200RPM 16MB Cache Ncq

    Graphics Card: EVGA GeForce 8800 GTS Superclocked / 640MB GDDR3 / SLI Ready / PCI Express / Dual DVI / HDTV

    Sound: On motherboard, or one of the two choices.

    Monitor: Hanns·G HW-191DPB 19" Widescreen LCD Monitor - 5ms, 700:1, WXGA+ 1440x900, DVI·D, VGA(D-sub), Black

    OS: XP Home SP2 w/ original disc

    Cooling: Ultra 80mm Dual Ball Bearing Fan (5-Pack)

    Case/Tower: Apevia Black/Black X-Plorer ATX Mid-Tower Case with Clear Side, Fan Controller, Front USB and Firewire Port

    Keyboard/Mouse: Just something cheap but durable, not too picky. Can use the ones on my old computer, they work fine, and I'm used to them.

    Motherboard: Asus P5B Deluxe / WIFI-AP Atx LGA775 Conroe 965P DDR2 PCI-E16 3PCI-E1 3PCI 8 SATA2 Sound Motherboard

    Power Supply: OCZ GameXStream 700W ATX12V 24PIN SLI Ready Active PFC ATX Power Supply 120MM Fan Black

    DVD writer/CD drive: Pioneer DVR-112DBK OEM DVD Burner - 18x DVD±R Burn, 16x DVD±R Read, 8x DVD+RW, 6x DVD-RW, 10x DVD±R DL, 40x32x CD-R/RW, Black, with Software
    Last edited by Evil_Maniac From Mars; 09-01-2007 at 14:14.

  19. #19
    Nobody expects the Senior Member Lemur's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Quote Originally Posted by Evil_Maniac From Mars
    Alright, I've got a question about the sound cards. Should I go with the Creative Labs Sound Blaster X-Fi Extreme Audio or the Creative Labs Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer PCI Sound Card? The latter is about half the price of the former. Also, should I upgrade to the processor I mentioned in Post #12, or is it not worth it?
    When it comes to X-Fi sound cards, go with the cheaper option. Very few applications use the special RAM Creative puts on the higher-end cards, so unless you're creating a home music studio with pro applications, don't bother with the upscale stuff.

    The 6600 is a pretty sweet CPU, what with 4 megs of shared cache. It used to be the cheapest 4 meg part you could get, don't know if that's still true. I don't think spending much more is wise, what with the law of diminishing returns.
    "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them ... well, I have others." — Groucho Marx

  20. #20
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Thanks Lemur, I'll stick with the first CPU then.

    I think I'll add a soundcard later on, when I have the money. Is it hard to add a soundcard after I've built the rest of the computer?


    By the way, costs total to 1157.11 Euro, excluding shipping and extra building costs, which is within my price range at the moment.

  21. #21
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Out of curiosity, what is a realistic time for a person who builds computers for a living to put this together? I called a local business that says they can do it in an hour and a half. Is this unrealistic?

  22. #22
    Nobody expects the Senior Member Lemur's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    That's pretty realistic for an experienced builder. The most time-consuming part, in my experience, is patching Windows, and that takes a long time, even starting with Service Pack 2. My brother is a bit more tech-savvy than I am, so he created a slipstreamed version of his Windows install disc, so that he can re-install and need almost no patching.

    But for the physical assembly? Hour and a half sounds reasonable.
    "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them ... well, I have others." — Groucho Marx

  23. #23
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    I got another shop offering me everything including Windows XP install in 2/2.5 hours, so I guess that's not far off. My average price is about 30-35 Euro per hour to put everything together.

    I would do this myself, but I'd rather practice with a bare bones kit first, so this computer I'll just get someone else to build.

    Quote Originally Posted by Evil_Maniac From Mars
    Is it hard to add a soundcard after I've built the rest of the computer?
    Last edited by Evil_Maniac From Mars; 09-01-2007 at 17:41.

  24. #24
    Nobody expects the Senior Member Lemur's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    The first build is nerve-wracking and exhilarating and frustrating and, eventually, triumphant. But it's not the best for a machine you want to have up and running smoothly soon.
    "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them ... well, I have others." — Groucho Marx

  25. #25
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Which is better - Windows Professional or Windows Home (XP)? I have Windows Home, and I'm used to it, but are there any great advantages Professional offers? I'm not getting Vista yet, not by a long shot.

    I'm ordering within the next few days, thanks so much to everyone who's helped me.

  26. #26
    Chieftain of the Pudding Race Member Evil_Maniac From Mars's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    This is the last, final check: Are all these parts compatible?

  27. #27
    Nobody expects the Senior Member Lemur's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Quote Originally Posted by Evil_Maniac From Mars
    Which is better - Windows Professional or Windows Home (XP)?
    Windows XP Pro is the only way to o, a I understand it. Xiahou, Husar or Whacker can correct me on this, but I believe Windows XP Home is crippled in ways you start to notice over time. Quite a lot of security features are stripped out of Home, and I think it doesn't utilize multiple cores on the CPU.

    I could be getting the specifics wrong, and I could look it all up, but why bother when there are uber-geeks on the board who can correct my lazy assertions?
    "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them ... well, I have others." — Groucho Marx

  28. #28
    Needs more flowers Moderator drone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    I always run XP Pro. If you have any kind of home network, Pro just works better.

    From Wiki
    Quote Originally Posted by Wiki
    Windows XP Professional offers a number of features unavailable in the Home Edition, including:

    * The ability to become part of a Windows Server domain, a group of computers that are remotely managed by one or more central servers.
    * A sophisticated access control scheme that allows specific permissions on files to be granted to specific users under normal circumstances. However, users can use tools other than Windows Explorer (like cacls or File Manager), or restart to Safe Mode to modify access control lists.
    * Remote Desktop server, which allows a PC be operated by another Windows XP user over a local area network or the Internet.
    * Offline Files and Folders, which allow the PC to automatically store a copy of files from another networked computer and work with them while disconnected from the network.
    * Encrypting File System, which encrypts files stored on the computer's hard drive so they cannot be read by another user, even with physical access to the storage medium.
    * Centralized administration features, including Group Policies, Automatic Software Installation and Maintenance, Roaming User Profiles, and Remote Installation Service (RIS).
    * Internet Information Services (IIS), Microsoft's HTTP and FTP Server.
    * Support for two physical central processing units (CPU). The number of CPU cores and Hyper-threading capabilities on modern CPUs are considered to be part of a single physical processor, therefore multicore CPUs will work fine under XP Home Edition.
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    If I werent playing games Id be killing small animals at a higher rate than I am now - SFTS
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  29. #29
    Dragonslayer Emeritus Senior Member Sigurd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    I guess I could answer this one as I have done it before (all though it has been a while).
    Quote Originally Posted by Evil_Maniac From Mars
    Is it hard to add a soundcard after I've built the rest of the computer?
    It is not hard at all.

    Insert the card in an empty PCI slot, attach the cables that's in the sound card package. (I remember two cables where at least one is attached to the DVD player).
    Disable the onboard soundcard (I remember jumpers on the motherboard) by following the instructions in the motherboard manual.
    Install sound device drivers.

    That should be all (if I remember it correctly).
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  30. #30
    Needs more flowers Moderator drone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Final Parts Check

    Quote Originally Posted by Sigurd Fafnesbane
    Insert the card in an empty PCI slot, attach the cables that's in the sound card package. (I remember two cables where at least one is attached to the DVD player).
    Disable the onboard soundcard (I remember jumpers on the motherboard) by following the instructions in the motherboard manual.
    Install sound device drivers.

    That should be all (if I remember it correctly).
    You can usually disable the motherboard sound from the BIOS these days.

    One thing to check when doing this: verify that the IRQs aren't shared after changing your setup. I put in a sound card once, disabled the onboard sound, and ended up with the sound card sharing the networking IRQ. Vista has nothing on that!
    The .Org's MTW Reference Guide Wiki - now taking comments, corrections, suggestions, and submissions

    If I werent playing games Id be killing small animals at a higher rate than I am now - SFTS
    Si je n'étais pas jouer à des jeux que je serais mort de petits animaux à un taux plus élevé que je suis maintenant - Louis VI The Fat

    "Why do you hate the extremely limited Spartan version of freedom?" - Lemur

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