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 Post subject: Need build advice
PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 2:12 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2011 1:49 am
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Hey everyone,
This is my first build ever and I have no understsnding of cooling or power supplies needed. The build I was planning on was an Antec ISK 100 case, ASUS F1A75-I-DELUXE motherboard, either an AMD A4-3400 APU or an AMD A6-3500, 2 4Gb G.Skill Ripjaws-X DDR3-1600 ram. I am not sure of the cpu cooler or the HDD I will use in it but the case only supports coolers up to 40mm in height.

I am wondering if the included 65w psu will be enough to power the system or if I have to consider another case. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


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 Post subject: Re: Need build advice
PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 12:22 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
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Location: Monterey Bay, CA
Hi and welcome to SPCR!

The short answer is no - 65W isn't enough. Reviews of the A6-3650 show system idling at 40W+ and load power of 110W to 140W.

Maybe you can back up a bit and tell us about your build needs - $ budget, applications, etc.
and we can provide some guidance on a more appropriate CPU/mobo/PSU/etc..

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1080p Gaming build: i5-4670K, Mugen 4, MSI Z87-G45, MSI GTX 760 2GB Gaming, 8GB 1866 RAM, Samsung Evo 250GB, WD Red 2TB, Samsung DVD burner, Fractal Define R4, Antec True Quiet 140 (2 front + rear) case fans, Seasonic X-560. 35-40W idle, 45-55W video streaming, 170-200W WoW, 200-230W Rift, 318W stress test (Prime95 + Furmark)


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 Post subject: Re: Need build advice
PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 11:36 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2011 1:49 am
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Basically my main concern is trying to keep the noise level to a minimum as my primary use for it will be as a HTPC with some light gaming thrown in. My budget for this system would be around $500. I have considered using a ASUS E35M1-I DELUXE motherboard in the antec isk 100 case as the E-350 apu should work within the power supply. In saying this however I have never seen any of the systems running on any of the low powered processors and as such have no clue what to expect. As a HTPC from what I have read the E-350 would be perfect but I am curious about it's gaming capabilities. For the most part the games that I play are quite old, age of empires 3 would be the newest game I have played recently, so I am aware that I do not require very good graphics to play. Is the E-350 able to handle some multi-tasking or is the processor too slow to handle multiple programs with any degree of speed.


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 Post subject: Re: Need build advice
PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:57 am 
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Location: Switzerland
A cheap Sandy Bridge dual-core or even an underclocked quad should work with that PSU as well, at least if you avoid unreasonably power-hungry boards. The disadvantage compared to a low-power CPU is that you're going to have to use an aftermarket heatsink if you don't want a fan or if you want a very quiet fan. In a large case that only increases the cost of the build but what heatsink could one fit into the case you want to use? I don't know.

Unless you really want a feature exclusive to that Asus board, get a cheaper one. If you want a fanless board, there's another by Zotac with a better heatsink. Asus often puts flashy but realtively ineffective heatsinks on their boards.

If you want a totally fanless HTPC but are OK with very limited gaming capabilities, look at the new Atoms (D2700 boards have been built and put on manufacturers' websites but are not yet available). They're more power-efficient than AMD's products so you'll get lower temperatures.

The E-350 is very slow compared to mainstream CPUs but adequate for many tasks. Multitasking does not require powerful CPUs as such. It depends what you want to do.


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 Post subject: Re: Need build advice
PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 7:39 am 
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Location: UK/Eire
True new Atom's are on the way
However right now the E-350 is a pretty good choice v current Atom's

Neither has the grunt of a desktop processor but then for many folks they don't need it anyway


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 Post subject: Re: Need build advice
PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 8:58 am 
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I was curious what Age of Empires needed. So, I did a bit of backward regression looking at old gpu benchmarks. For 60fps at 1080p, you'd need an 8800GTX. Today, that equates to a HD 5570/6570. The gpu in the A8-3850 is the 6550D and it performs somewhere between an HD 6450 and an HD5570/6570. Call it 15% slower, or 51fps. The gpu in the A6-3500, 6530D, is about 80% of the 6550D. So, about 40fps. The A4-3400's GPU has 160 cores (half of the A6-3500), but runs faster at 600MHz vs 443MHz. So, maybe 26fps.

So, yeah. Probably playable with the gpu in the A4.

The E-350 has 80 GPU cores running at 500MHz. So, not playable at 1080p. Might be playable (guessing 20fps) if you drop the resolution to 720p.

So, the E-350 *might* work for your needs. But, if you end up needing a discrete GPU, you'll need another case. The ISK-100 doesn't have room for a card.

I'd lean toward the G620 Pentium for $70 and an H61 motherboard for $70-90. If you wanted to up the performance a bit, go with the i3-2105 for $135.

If it turns out you need a discrete GPU for your light gaming, a fanless 6570 runs $70, the 6670 ~$100.

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1080p Gaming build: i5-4670K, Mugen 4, MSI Z87-G45, MSI GTX 760 2GB Gaming, 8GB 1866 RAM, Samsung Evo 250GB, WD Red 2TB, Samsung DVD burner, Fractal Define R4, Antec True Quiet 140 (2 front + rear) case fans, Seasonic X-560. 35-40W idle, 45-55W video streaming, 170-200W WoW, 200-230W Rift, 318W stress test (Prime95 + Furmark)


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 Post subject: Re: Need build advice
PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:23 pm 
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Location: UK/Eire
Depends what "light gaming" means.
I play the odd game though bar RE5 and Fallout new vegas most are not that demanding (some older ones, some non graphics heavy stuff)

Then resolution comes into play if you're playing on a smaller TV/monitor at 1366 x 768 (I have one at that res) a 6450 will do a great job for most games that are not super heavy graphics wise heck it can run RE5 well at higher detail settings. I got one to replace an older card and eventually replaced it with a more modern AMD dual core CPU. Runs great even for most newer games.

But if you're up to higher resolutions such as 1600x900 or 1920x1080 it's going to put a lot more demand on gaming.
Personally I see the AMD APU's are possibly intersting to some "If" they want not bad graphics and want to get a more cost effective CPU/GPU combined without buying an add in card. I will say though I still prefer using Athlon II's to APU's for some builds because I've a much bigger selection of boards (and prices) and CPU's

The Antec isn't a bad little case buy it's pretty tight space wise it might be a better bet to look at a pre-built Zotac and just get a bare bones one adding your own HDD and ram. The E-350 will have a not bad stab at some games certainly respectable for the outlay:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/amd ... ,2905.html

But none of these are really aimed at "gamers" but if the main aim is a compact pc for internet, video watching, and light gaming (ie turning the settings down on the game to get ok frame rates) the E-350 is a pretty good bet.


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 Post subject: Re: Need build advice
PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:39 pm 
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What is the performance of the E-350 like compared to an old pentium 4 2.7ghz single core processor? My partner's system that she is using at the moment is very old and we've gotten along fairly well with it since my laptop stopped working. The main issues with the old junk computer is that at any time the fans in it practically scream to the point where you can barely hear anything that you're watching over the noise and the fact that if you open around ten flash based sites in seperate tabs the computer pretty much crashes hence why i'm trying to build a silent computer and was asking about multitasking on the e-350. My primary reason for choosing the expensive asus motherboards is that they include bluetooth and wifi so no matter what build I end up with it would probably be one of those. I have considered buying a zotac barebones system but most of the prices i've found in australia are up around $600 which is a bit pricey for a e-350 system. If I build a system myself using a ASUS E35M1-I DELUXE motherboard, antec isk 100 case, and 4gb kingston ram the total price would be only $380 since i already have a HDD from my laptop to salvage.


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 Post subject: Re: Need build advice
PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:02 pm 
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Location: Switzerland
For some things the Pentium 4 would probably be a bit faster. But for others the E350 would be much faster thanks in part to its two cores. Overall the E350 is faster but that's only because Pentium 4s are terrible, not because it is a fast CPU.

Note that boards with an E450 (an minor update) have been released but I don't know if they're available at this point. If not, there's no guarantee they'll be available soon.

I urge you not to reuse a very old hard drive. New hard drives such as the very quiet 5K500.B are cheap.

I don't know what Flash problem you're having (you didn't spell out the details). For all I know, no hardware will put that right. It sounds like a software problem but if your old P4 really "crashes" because of a hardware issue, it's more likely because it lacks RAM than because of its CPU architecture. 4G would be more than enough. I'd only use 2G myself but then I wouldn't open 10 Flash tabs.


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 Post subject: Re: Need build advice
PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 2:13 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2011 1:49 am
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Sorry i'm not being overly clear. My partner uses an online forum/games site called gaia. Within this site she likes to use quite alot of tabs. A better description of what happens would be that the system puts a fair load on the cpu, task manager puts the cpu usage at 100% and the system freezes.Sometimes it gets better sometimes we need to force a restart. I'm not sure if a higher RAM capacity would help prevent this or heck even a somewhat decent graphics as the system is ridiculously old and I think uses the integrated graphics and only 512mb of ram. For the most part we don't have many complaints of this system,we aren't huge pc users. The HDD I have is from my laptop, only a year old, though I have considered throwing an ssd into the case instead as our main storage is connected to our rt-n16 router. The ASUS E35M1-I DELUXE motherboard has overclocking capability built in allowing the e-350 to be overclocked to 1.8ghz without any serious heat gain from what i've seen. Would it be better to get a e-450 motherboard as it allows for higher ram speed or just stick with what i've found.

At this point i'm mostly leaning toward the system i outlined above as a replacement for my partners computer at the very least in the meantime as if it became necessary for more power the computer would still get used as purely a HTPC and i would grab a replacement for my laptop.


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 Post subject: Re: Need build advice
PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 3:25 am 
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Joined: Thu Jul 03, 2008 4:27 am
Posts: 1728
Location: Switzerland
Yeah, any way you look at it, you really want to replace that Penitum 4. You also want a new drive and at least 1G of RAM. Your plan would certainly achieve all that even if it gets you a really weak CPU considering the money you're spending. In doubt, ask the people who make that Flash game (as well as any other software you want to be able to run) what hardware they recommend.

I'd get the latest version of the board if it's available and not too expensive. I bet they updated a few things but I didn't look into it.

If the drive is one year old, it shouldn't be too crappy. You can always replace it if you find it makes too much noise.


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