[Yet another] Request for advice on a new system

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Engine
Posts: 118
Joined: Thu May 18, 2006 10:07 am

[Yet another] Request for advice on a new system

Post by Engine » Fri Jan 12, 2007 11:02 am

The time has come for me to build my new computer. I've planned a socket 939 quiet system for about a year now, but it looks like I'm going to do Socket AM2, instead. I've considered a Core 2 Duo system, but I'm not familiar enough with the components to design one I'm fully confident in. So this is what I'm planning on building:
  • Antec Performance One P180B Black
  • ASUS M2N-SLI Deluxe
  • XFX PVT73GU1D4 GeForce 7600GT 256MB GDDR3 PCI Express x16 Fatal1ty
  • Antec Phantom 500 ATX12V 500W Power Supply - Retail
  • AMD Athlon 64 X2 4600+ Windsor 2.4GHz Socket AM2 Processor Model ADA4600CUBOX - Retail
  • CORSAIR XMS2 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model TWIN2X2048-6400 - Retail
  • Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD5000KS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
  • Scythe SCINF-1000 120mm CPU Cooling Fan/Heatsink - Retail
Add to that 3 Nexus 120mm fans, one in the lower tunnel, one on the Scythe, and one in the rear exhaust position.

Are there any conflicts or improvements anyone notices at first glance? I'm also willing to hear arguments regarding price/performance/silence for a Core 2 Duo system. My priorities are stability, quiet, and performance, in roughly that order. This system, as quoted, as about as slow as I'm looking to go, but I wouldn't mind paying a little more for increased silence, or finding a solution that's faster but cheaper. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

jackylman
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Post by jackylman » Fri Jan 12, 2007 12:47 pm

I've considered a Core 2 Duo system, but I'm not familiar enough with the components to design one I'm fully confident in.
We can help you with that :wink:
If you do a lot of gaming or other CPU-intensive tasks, Core 2 Duo is the optimal solution. If you spend a lot of time with your CPU idling, then AMD is better at that. Of course, both C2D and X2 are very good overall and could work well in either situation, so it's not my intent to sway you one way or the other. I'm just saying, don't be afraid to buy a C2D because you're not familiar with the platform.

For an AMD system, your component picks look pretty solid. My only suggestion might be to get the X2 4200 EE 65W. It's a little slower than the 4600, but it should stay cooler under extended loads.

kater
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Re: [Yet another] Request for advice on a new system

Post by kater » Fri Jan 12, 2007 1:46 pm

looks like a good choice of components

what are you going to use the machine for? *if* you want to do some gaming you might want to consider a bit faster vga - there are 7900gt and 7950gt cards with passive heatsinks, too. however, if gaming is not your cuppatea you might save a few bucks (not much tho) by getting a passive 7600gs or event 7300gt/gs (i know nothing about ati cards so can't recommend any of them)

Engine
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Joined: Thu May 18, 2006 10:07 am

Post by Engine » Mon Jan 15, 2007 7:00 am

jackylman wrote:If you do a lot of gaming or other CPU-intensive tasks, Core 2 Duo is the optimal solution. If you spend a lot of time with your CPU idling, then AMD is better at that. Of course, both C2D and X2 are very good overall and could work well in either situation, so it's not my intent to sway you one way or the other. I'm just saying, don't be afraid to buy a C2D because you're not familiar with the platform.
One of the things I'm trying to figure out is if it's worth it to do the research I'd need to do to put together a Core 2 Duo machine. Originally, I was going to do this all on Socket 939, and I still think about that, but the pricing doesn't make it competitive. The machine will spend most of its time idling, and then will be under heavy load when I'm using it, but for 95 percent of what I'll be doing, the processor won't be my bottleneck.

I'll be using the machine as a [recording] studio computer, where it won't be challenged at all. I'll also watch - and edit, to a lesser degree - video, but the machine won't really be challenged at all. The only thing that'll push the machine - besides my periodic video editing - is gaming, and I just don't do that very often. I do it enough that it's worth getting - I think - a 7600GT, but not, for instance, a 7900GT...although I'm still considering it.

My main concern right now is power supply. I re-read the SPCR review on the Phantom 500 and I'm not crazy about it. However, what other silent/quiet power supply works well in the P180? My problem is with the fan orientation on the Seasonics - otherwise my ideal choice - which makes one of the fans totally worthless. My plan had been to use a fanless power supply, but put a 120mm Nexus in the tunnel to cool the drives and the power supply. Does anyone else with a P180 have a better suggestion of power supply tunnel setup?

puscifer
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Post by puscifer » Mon Jan 15, 2007 6:00 pm

You're right about the phantom, best bet would be a Corsair HX520w or a Seasonic S12+ 550w. Can't go wrong with those. I got a Corsair on my P180B and its awesome. After you get it you'll mess around with fan positioning and you'll see that best cooling for HDs and cpu is with the two top fans and one in the middle chamber (and maybe with a kamabay you won't need one on the ninja, i don't). The corsair is completely closed inside the case and it doesn't send air back, so it won't need a lower tunnel unless you fill it with hdds.
For gfx card i'd recomend the Xfx 7600GT Fatal1ty, it's passive and fast. It might need the middle fan (with the clip) rendering the middle hdd cage useless.

cmthomson
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Post by cmthomson » Mon Jan 15, 2007 7:43 pm

To balance that, I'm a Phantom user, and mine has been rock solid and completely silent, cooled by a severely undervolted Nexus in the middle of the case.

There were lots of problems with Phantoms 18 months ago, but I haven't seen any recent complaints.

The other fanless supply to consider is Fotron, but I have no actual experience with it.
i7 4790K [email protected] GHz, ASUS Z97-PRO, 16GB G.Skill 2400C10, Intel 335 240GB SSD + WDC EFRX 1TB, Internal i7 graphics, Antec P180 case, Seasonic X-400 fanless PS, Megahalems CPU HS, Nexus 3-pin & AC PWM fans < 600 RPM, AcoustiPack foam, homemade ducts.

Meato
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Post by Meato » Mon Jan 15, 2007 8:18 pm

If you do plan on springing for something better than a 7600GS, I wouldn't suggest a 7600GT. The ATI Radeon x1950 PROs are really the best bang for your gaming dollar. A pretty good recent write up done here on Toms. Be aware however the x1950 PROs are almost 11 inches in length. A might bit larger than the nVidea 7600 series.

jaganath
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Post by jaganath » Mon Jan 15, 2007 8:41 pm

The other fanless supply to consider is Fotron
Also Silverstone ST30NF, probably the pick of the fanless PSUs.

Engine
Posts: 118
Joined: Thu May 18, 2006 10:07 am

Post by Engine » Tue Jan 16, 2007 6:25 am

Looks like I'm getting the Corsair HX520, which actually will work out pretty well. I've seen a system wired with it, so I know the cable's will reach, and I may be able to leave off the tunnel fan if the power supply fan is sufficient to cool the drives in the tunnel.

I am going to stick with AMD. Does anyone know if the Infinity will mount to the M2N-SLI without problems? Scythe's web page doesn't have compatibility information for ASUS.

Engine
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Joined: Thu May 18, 2006 10:07 am

Post by Engine » Tue Jan 16, 2007 6:30 am

I'm considering - gods know why - getting a 7900GT instead of a 7600GT. [I'll be sticking with nVidia, for software reasons.] First, how great is the performance difference, really? Second, what good fanless 7900GTs are out there? If I can't find one I like that'll work, I have no problem putting a fanned cooler on, but fanless would be nice.

What about a 7950? Worth it?

kater
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Post by kater » Tue Jan 16, 2007 6:36 am

engine - here's a nice little & handy script for comparing vgs cards

http://www23.tomshardware.com/graphics.html

afaik there are 7900gt and 7950gt passive cards - check msi and xfx - they both should have some passive cards

to stir things up i'll say - galaxy 7900gs - overclocks like mad (if you ever need that extra fps) and comes with a factory fit zalman vf 700 cooler - pretty quiet. performance is just a wee bit worse than 7900gt - see the tom's hardware chart

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