New PC parts list

Posted: January 14, 2011 in PC
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

It’s been a long time since I bought the Cooler Master Centurion case for my upcoming PC, and since then I’ve been thinking which pieces should I get for my new build…

I even had to sit down, grab a bunch of part models and check which build would give the best performance for the average price.

When you use a Dual Core for at least 3 years now, and you look at the new processors out there in the market, either the Black Edition unlocked CPU from AMD or the Core iX series, a Dual core looks like a Pentium processor. I just need to jump to the next generation ASAP.

I can’t complain, the E2200 dual core CPU wasn’t that bad at it’s golden days. Heck, even paired with my old Geforce 8400GS, I was able to beat Crysis: Warhead. When I moved to my current 9600GT 2gb, detail level went up three levels. From min-normal I had to use on the 8400GS, I could now max everything (depending on the game) on the 9600GT and get excellent FPS, taking aside the new “can my build run…” DX11 “burner”: Metro 2033, which ran at DX10, 1024×768 and high settings on the so/so mark, yet it was playable. GTAIV doesn’t count. It took my GPU to the “less than 10 FPS” point even with all settings to min.

Though, despite the 2gb VRAM DDR2 and the 256-bit bus, the stock clocks are lower than the regular DDR2 version and even lower than the DDR3 one. True, you can overclock the GPU to a high rate, yet stable mark, but performance just went up a bit and sometimes I didn’t even notice a performance increase (though there was an increase, but let’s be honest. 2-4 FPS isn’t “increase” at all). Now with the Fermi cards out there, I was planning to move to the 400 series.

Time passes, technology advances. My original idea of a Core i5 750 and a GTX 460 either running alone or SLI, went down when I saw the new Core i 2 series and the 500 series with the famous “vapor chamber”.

True, you can get nice performance with a Core i5 processor, but when you work on CAD applications, work with pictures and render stuff, you need a beast of a CPU. And let’s be honest:

  • i5 750, 4 cores-4 threads running at 2.66GHz stock, 3.2GHz at turbo. Avg price: $199.99
  • i7 2600, 4 cores-8threads running at 3.4GHz stock, 3.8GHz at turbo. Avg price: $299.99

Taking a view on the price range, it’s kinda debatable, since the 2nd gen Core i Processors have less than1 month on the market and the i5 will be 2 years old at Q3. Both motherboards for these CPUs can be bought for the same avg price, $179.99, including 2 PCI-E2.0 @16x, 8×8 on SLI due to the P67 (LGA1155) and P55 (LGA1156) specs.

I didn’t wanted to compare the little i5 against the “big guns” that Intel offers at this time on the 2nd gen CPUs: The Core i7 2600k unlocked CPU.

Unlocked means “play with the multipliers and get amazing clock speeds”. Heck, I’ve seen one of these run at 4.7GHz on AIR (no LN2, AIR) and STABLE after a stress test. Yet, avg price on this one is $327.99, True, you can get better performance for a few bucks, but sadly, it’s out of my budget.

Despite there’s a new motherboard socket and new processors, RAM on the LGA1155 runs at Dual Channel, so basically, if you’re moving from a LGA775 (DDR3) or a low-end LGA1156 system, you can recycle your RAM modules (they should be DDR3 running at min. 1333. 1600 will be recomended for workstation/gaming rig). I will be going with 4GB at 1333, then moving to the Dominator 4x2GB + cooler combo in the future.

Now another concern: CPU cooling. Some people doesn’t trust Intel coolers at all when doing OC sessions (well DoH!). Thanks to Linus on his YouTube channel, he demonstrated that LGA1156 coolers do fit and work on LGA1155. Also, when I went into the Corsair website to check the Hydro H-70, the compatible socket list includes 1155 (probably referring to the 1156-1155 compatibility?). I’ll be getting the H-70 (who knows if I get the 2600k in the near future just for teh lulz?)

Now, 2nd gen CPUs do come with integrated graphics, but the P67 doesn’t have a VGA/DVI/HDMI output, so that means I need a GPU. I think I won’t be using the 9600GT on this build (bottleneck way too much), but upgrading to the Geforce GTX 570. Better performance vs price compared with the 480, generates less heat and requires less amps on the +12v rail.

Hard drive, optical drives, kinda irrelevant. I might be getting a WD 1tb Caviar Green (save the planet!) and a simple LG/Samsung DVD-RW combo (no Blu-Ray, though I’m still thinking of it).

Now, a 3rd party PSU won’t be enough for this “monster”, and it doesn’t have enough amps for the 570 (in fact, that brand has high performance fan coolers, but they didn’t put on the box that it was loud as hell). I’ll be moving to a Cooler Master Silent Pro M 800w PSU. Modular (now I know why the “M” on the model), 80PLUS GOLD certified, 50+a on the +12v rail. Perfect for future single-GPU upgrades.

So basically, what do I have on the shopping cart?

  • Intel DP67BG extreme board
  • Intel Core i7 2600 CPU
  • Corsair H-70
  • Corsair XMS3 2x2GB DDR3 1333
  • EVGA Geforce GTX 570
  • Cooler Master Silent Pro M 800w
  • WD 1tb HDD Caviar Green
  • LG/Samsung DVD-RW combo

Everything for less than $1200. It kinda looks high, but since it’ll be a workstation after all, it’ll produce more money than what it’s worth.

Now, it’s time for the “patience game”, since I’m waiting for the company to bring the pieces to my country, pay for them and start building!

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