Dilemmas on new PC Build...

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Hi all,

I'm planning on building a pc on a budget, main uses would be occasional gaming (high end games though), media and general use. Last pc I built was an athlon 64 3000 and having looked at all the up-to-date hard ware, there's just too much choice, so would like your opinion on a few things.

Firstly the processor: AMD or INTEL?
All my previous builds have been AMD as I heard they were good with games and are cooler to run. Intel on the other hand are less power hungry.
I was going to go budget on a C2D, but then realised that it's worse than an AMD Phenom Tricore which comes up cheaper? So now it's either:

AMD Phenom Tricore or Intel C2Q (cheaper ones). If out of the two which models do you recommend for both?

Secondly the motherboard (one with most headaches) :o
Basically I'm hoping to do a hybrid build where the graphics switches from integrated to external depending on what I'm doing. It's not completely necessary but would be nice.

Then there's the option of Crossfire or SLI? Just the case of NVIDIA or RADEON really. I'm thinking of going for a 9800GT but I heard there are some on par Radeons out there as well, although not sure which. I'm hoping to just install one card for the moment and maybe purchase a second later on.

So the mother board must be so that I can at least put two gfx cards in SLI or Crossfire mode, and so 2xPCI-E x16 is essential. I want a mobo also with integrated graphics to at least 9400gt performance level if that exists?

The rest of the components are okay with me, just these main components which always troubles me.

Thanks for any input.

WKY:)
 
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When you say phenom do you mean the original or phenom II? The phenom II X3 720 looks like a pretty good chip imo and you could pair it with a 790gx board. AFAIK there aren't many, if any, intel boards with 2x pci x16 slots and a good igp.


EDIT: If you were referring to the original phenoms then i would probably go the C2D route, not sure on the mobo though. In my experience intel and ati igp have been more stable than nvidia but that cud just be my experience
 
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I think I'll be referring to Phenom II. What's a mid range C2Q you can recommend paired with which Mobo?

Thanks
 
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There are plenty 2nd hand E82/4/5/00 chips going round at the mo which are really good cpus. If new it depends on your budget really, same for mobo. Tbh i would consider if you really need a xfire or sli board as that really narrows yr options if you want an igp as well.
 
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Would it be best to leave the IGP and just get a board with 2 pci-e x16s? Also if I were to run dual sli or xfire, do I need both to be x16 speeds? One question I forgot to ask is how hard is it to setup up SLI or XFIRE? as I've never done that before.

Well I might actually then buy a board with XFIRE and go with ATI. Buy a single gfx card and later on get a second. I'll just forget about the IGP I think...

As for the processor, I'll have a look around for the second hand chips, suppose a lot of people are upgrading to i7s and all that, so would be selling their old hard ware?
 
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Personally i wouldnt bother with a dual card setup (which is very easy to setup) imo its better to just get the best single card you can afford. That way you dont have to worry about scaling, heat, space etc. The slots are best run at at x16 speed but it doesnt take that much of a hit if one runs at x16 and the other at x8 (unless its 2x 4870X2s)

The amd/ati 790fx/gx/x boards look good but if going intel youre pretty much limited to X48 or high end P45. They really dont make it easy to choose do they!?
 
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Yeah, well my budget is £500 for the tower. What's the best card on the market nowadays? How does ATI fair against NVIDIA? I'll have a look around anyways, thanks for the input.
 
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Well for the graphics card ati seems to have 'won' this generation. The 4830 seems particularly good value imo. The best cards are the 4870x2 and the gtx 295 but they are very expensive! My last few builds have been intel but i think amd offer better value right now. Intel have faster cpus but imo the mobos are overpriced.

http://forums.overclockers.co.uk/showthread.php?t=17883751

Offers a good starting point if you go the intel route
 
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Hey,

Planning on getting: AMD PHENOM X4 9950 2.6GHZ - £134.83
Motherboard is hardest to choose but came up with:
SAPPHIRE PC-AM2RS790GX 790GX SOCKET AM2+ ONBOARD GRAPHICS 8 CHANNEL AUDIO ATX MOTHERBOARD - £93.35

What do you think? good pairing?
 
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Processor is a bit naff compared to the newer ones since it is only Phenom 1. Not sure about the motherboard, since the last sapphire one I saw was some god awful amd/ati chipset circa socket 939.
 
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Hey,

Planning on getting: AMD PHENOM X4 9950 2.6GHZ - £134.83
Motherboard is hardest to choose but came up with:
SAPPHIRE PC-AM2RS790GX 790GX SOCKET AM2+ ONBOARD GRAPHICS 8 CHANNEL AUDIO ATX MOTHERBOARD - £93.35

What do you think? good pairing?

I would advise against the orginal Phenom, the Phenom 2s are much faster CPUs. I don't know much about the motherboard but have heard good things about the asus below:

Asus M3A78-T AMD 790GX (Socket AM2+) PCI-Express DDR2 Motherboard - £114.99

AMD Phenom II X3 Tri Core 720 Black Edition 2.8GHz (Socket AM3) - £114.99

Sub Total : £199.98

Shipping cost assumes delivery to UK Mainland with:
DPD Next Day Parcel
(This can be changed during checkout) Shipping : £9.50
VAT is being charged at 15% VAT : £31.42
Total : £240.90

Ok so its Tri Core rather than Quad but its a great chip and good value.
 
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^^^ Good spec

If your budget doesnt stretch that far the 780g boards will accept up to 95 tdp cpus. Which means you could get the x3 720 listed above.
 
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If you can stretch a bit, this is excellent set up

Gigabyte GA-MA790XT-UD4P (Socket AM3) PCI-Express DDR3 Motherboard £116.99 (£101.73)
AMD Phenom II X3 Tri Core 720 Black Edition 2.8GHz (Socket AM3) - Retail £114.99 (£99.99)
XFX ATI Radeon HD 4850 "XXX Edition" 512MB GDDR5 TV-Out/Dual DVI/HDMI (PCI-Express) - Retail £109.99 (£95.64)
OcUK Value Bundle - Coolermaster Elite 335 Case / Akasa Ultra Quiet 400W Paxpower Active PFC ATX2.2 PSU - Black Nickel. £77.48 (£67.37)
Corsair XMS3 4GB DDR3 10666C9 1333MHz TwinX Dual Channel Kit (2x2GB) (TW3X4G1333C9) £54.04 (£46.99)
Samsung SpinPoint F1 320GB SATA-II 16MB Cache - OEM (HD322HJ) £40.24 (£34.99)
Samsung TS-H653F 22x DVD±RW SATA Dual Layer ReWriter (Black) - OEM £16.09 (£13.99)
Sub Total : £460.70
Shipping cost assumes delivery to UK Mainland with:
DPD Next Day Parcel
(This can be changed during checkout) Shipping : £10.50
VAT is being charged at 15% VAT : £70.68
Total : £541.88
 
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