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Old 03-01-2011, 09:36 PM   #1
FrenchToast
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Another irritating Help Build My Computer thread!

So apparently using Boot Camp to put XP on your MacBook Pro breaks hard drives, so I've decided to build a separate machine. Plz no mac v windows argments plzkthx

Anyways... hoping to keep the budget around 1000 CAD (that is somewhat flexible). Since it's been about 9 years since I last built a PC I have ZERO idea what I'm doing at the moment. I don't have any prospective parts either as I'm just starting to look into this.

Advice received so far:

AMD CPU
AM3 motherboard from Asus or MSI
EVGA built nVidia video card

Please help add to this list. I can't go from NewEgg so I'm basing prices off tigerdirect.ca

Also: Should I bother buying a separate network card or should I be good with the on-board one?

Please suggest stuffs.

EDIT: Oh hey, there's a newegg.ca, never mind previous comment about newegg.
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Old 03-01-2011, 10:03 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrenchToast View Post
Plz no mac v windows argments plzkthx
I can't help much on this, but I can enforce that request for ya.

The only advice I can give you on the machine itself, is don't go higher than a Quad Core processor(most programs aren't optimised for even 4 cores, let alone more than that). Also, make sure you can expand your RAM to at least 8GB. You'll need a 64bit OS to take advantage of more than 4, but better to be overpowered than underpowered.

Speaking of that, go for a good Power Supply.
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Old 03-01-2011, 10:26 PM   #3
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Don't use tigerdirect unless you're perfectly happy waiting 2-3 weeks to get the parts shipped in.

http://www.directdial.com/ can have some awesome deals, and prices are pretty much the same, but will have stuff shipped to you within 1-3 days depending where the part comes from.

No comment on newegg as I haven't used it, but I've used tigerdirect and directdial, and directdial is far better.
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Old 03-02-2011, 06:36 AM   #4
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The built-in NIC should be fine.
While you only NEED 4gb of ram, 8gb helps if you plan on doing anything with heavy ram usage.

I don't know enough about AMD to give advice, but if I remember correctly, EVGA has fantastic support. Also, are you planning on a high-end GPU or 2 mid-end GPUs?

Lastly, install 64-bit Windows 7. At this point there is no good reason to install XP unless you need 16-bit software support that can't run via DOSbox.
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Old 03-02-2011, 09:52 PM   #5
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Here's where I'm at so far:

HDD: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product...3&Tpk=WD20EURS
MB: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product...=M4N98TD%20EVO
GPU: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product...01G-P3-1373-AR
PSU: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product...82E16817189017
RAM: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product...X4GX3M1A1333C9
CPU: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product...=HDZ955FBGMBOX
CASE: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product...82E16811119196

Haven't decided on a CPU fan yet, apparently Zalman is good money.

Thoughts?
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Old 03-03-2011, 07:28 AM   #6
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Zalman is definitely my favorite. Get a nice copper heatsink/fan for like $35-$50 and u should be good.
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Old 03-03-2011, 09:25 PM   #7
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Wait a few months before building anything. Unless you absolutely need new hardware right now, there's absolutely no reason to upgrade to 'current' technology, which will be outdated in a few months. We're on the cusp of some new CPU sockets coming out.

I wouldn't trust that PSU, either. It's not exactly a well-known brand, and PSU's are an absolutely integral part of your build. A shitty PSU will shorten your computers lifespan, whereas a good PSU will dramatically increase it's lifespan. If you absolutely need a modular power supply, pretty much the best quality PSU's you can buy are the Corsair HX series.
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Old 03-04-2011, 05:04 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by GenghisTron View Post
Wait a few months before building anything. Unless you absolutely need new hardware right now, there's absolutely no reason to upgrade to 'current' technology, which will be outdated in a few months. We're on the cusp of some new CPU sockets coming out.
That's every 6 months in a nut shell...
If you keep waiting to build, you never will build.
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Old 04-15-2011, 02:19 AM   #9
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Looks like you are building a good computer,

If you have any spare money when buying these components, I would recommend buying a Solid State Drive, just 64gb would do really, if you are unaware of what one is, it is a hard drive with no moving parts (like a memory stick), normal hard drives have spinning heads and all sorts, hence why they make such a noise when doing things, and can wear out over time.

An SSD having no moving parts, makes it considerably faster and reliable, the reason to get one is to install the Operating System on it, the OS running on an SSD can do things much faster, if a normal start up takes 15 seconds, the SSD can probably do it in 7 seconds. Files are easier to find and everything, it is just a huge performance increase.

And, with the extra room, you can put other core programs on it that you use most, and they will run smooth and fast, more than a normal HDD.

And, as an added bonus, if you like to download Torrents, like me, on a normal HDD fragments of the torrents are thrown all over the hard drive, the heads spin crazy downloading, and over time, the heads start clashing, the hard drive loses performance and starts to slowly break. And it gets badly fragmented.

I don't have an SSD yet, and I have been downloading torrents for years on my current 500gb hard drive, and when I did a health check on it, the program pretty much laughed in my face and told me the hard drive is almost dead...

So it is an ideal solution to download torrents directly onto the SSD, then have the files channelled across to your normal HDD, to avoid wearing out your hard drive.

A solid state drive will be my next purchase, I want a 128gb or so, so I can fit my OS, and my entire Steam folder on it, which is nearing 50gb alone, and also have space to download torrents onto it and maybe throw some other programs I use a lot, Firefox, Photoshop and whatnot.
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Old 04-17-2011, 05:01 PM   #10
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Meh, not really interested in an SSD yet. Most of the speed benefits don't quite hold up yet, and it's not worth the gigantic amount of money yet.

Also - computer was bought and built weeks ago.
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Old 04-17-2011, 11:12 PM   #11
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The speeds hold up if you know what you're doing, but the prices are quite high for what you're getting, hopefully in the next few years prices will be more reasonable.
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