Best Value components for "easy" OCing

mattm

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I'm looking for the best value components to use in an "easy" and "safe" OC scenario. This has probably been answered 1000 times, but the more I read the more I can't decide.

Some say E7200 some say Q6600

I have no OC'ing experience (obviously) so I'm looking for a mobo that makes it easy and gives me the greatest margin of performance to cost.

So could I score an extra 800mhz out of the E7200 fairly easy "out of the box"? I don't want to run a rig that I will have to constantly watch temp's adjust clock settings, etc etc. I'm also not looking for bring bleeding edge performance. Simply buy low and tune it up to get better value.
 

JUSTJOEL73

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You can't go wrong with the E7200 if all you're looking for is 800MHz. I was going to go with that one myself but went with the E8400 in the end because I got a board that supports 1600MHz FSB and getting the E7200 up that high is a crapshoot. P35 boards are plentiful and cheap. 2 Gigs of DDR2 800 can be got for $20 after MIR.
 

rittia1962

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If you were thinking about the Q6600 OR the e7200, I'd spend a little less than a Q6600 and go for an e8400, since you are considering a dual core (e7200) anyway.

If you've read the motherboard threads, you'll see the P5Q-pro and P5Q-e getting high praises from most who have them. It's VERY easy on these boards to oc the e8400 to 4GHz. You just have to bump the vcore up a bit...don't really have to mess with any other settings. For the price, you can't beat the P5Q boards.
 

mattm

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awesome feedback. My original thought was the GIGABYTE GA-EP35-DS3L from newegg at $90USD.

Because of the high FSB support. Is DDR2800 still the best value standard or DDR21066?
 

JUSTJOEL73

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It depends on your budget and what numbers you want to hit with your OC. DDR2 800 for $20 after rebates or DDR2 1066 for $50 after rebates(2 x 1 Gigs sticks). As you can see there is quite a jump in price with 1066 costing 250% more. DDR3 is of course beyond the scope of this value discussion.
 

mattm

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I'm really looking to put together the best value system to run WarHammer Online coming out soon.
 

mattm

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Just trying to squeeze something together for ~$600. And then take that ~$600 and make it perform like a ~$900 machine, if possible ;)
 

gwarren007

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onedestinazn2

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that shellshocker deal is way out fo your budget, the e7200 seems more likely and i would go with the gigabyte ep43-ds3l. i dont know if you need a power supply but the antex sonata iii for 79.99 from buy.com would be great for you. if you had a frys near you that would be great since they have those mobo+cpu combos all the time, even though the ecs mobos aren't great overclockers its free who's going top complain.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128347

http://www.buy.com/retail/product.asp?sku=204559259&adid=17653&dcaid=17653
 

xtvrzero

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JUSTJOEL73

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You gotta keep up with the news. With the immenent release of new products prices on old ones drop. Q8200 is coming end of August.
 

screwballl

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I would say E8400 is your best bet. Most games barely take advantage of 2 cores so 4 cores is a waste for most gamers. The E8400 (stock 3GHz) can handle 4GHz on air with a decent cooler.
 

mattm

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I do need to build from teh ground up.

Best deal I think I can put together is $628.

- Cooler Master Centurion Case
- Cooler Master 500w PS
- E7200
- 2GB DDR2 G.Skill
- ATI 4850
- WD 640GB HD
- GIGABYTE GA-EP35-DS3L

Of course I can get below 600 without the 4850 and replace with 8600GT and also a -$20 HD. But from what I read those 2 are pretty big in the performance hike for the money.

What about RAM will 2GB be enough - planning on running Vista business x64
 

onedestinazn2

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I do need to build from teh ground up.

Best deal I think I can put together is $628.

- Cooler Master Centurion Case
- Cooler Master 500w PS
- E7200
- 2GB DDR2 G.Skill
- ATI 4850
- WD 640GB HD
- GIGABYTE GA-EP35-DS3L

Of course I can get below 600 without the 4850 and replace with 8600GT and also a -$20 HD. But from what I read those 2 are pretty big in the performance hike for the money.

What about RAM will 2GB be enough - planning on running Vista business x64
cant really tell which parts/price you mean for the case and psu but the antec sonata iii with the earthwatts 500w is exactly what you need for this kind of budget build. and what resolution are you planning to game at because you can shave off some money and get the 8800gt.
 

Dangman

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Ditch the CM 500W PSU. It's the Extreme Power PSU, correct? If so, then definitely ditch it since it's a poor quality 500W PSU.

I recommend going with this build instead:
Intel Core 2 Duo E7200 CPU - $120
Gigabyte GA-EP43-DS3L Intel P43 Motherboard - $95
G.Skill F2-6400CL5D-2GBNQ 2 x 1GB DDR2 800 RAM - $45
Gigabyte GV-R485-512H-B Radeon HD 4850 512MB PCI-E Video Card - $170
Western Digital WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - $85
Antec Sonata III ATX Case with Antec Earthwatts 500W PSU - $80
---
Total: $595 plus tax and shipping.

You get a significantly better PSU and an extra 2 SATA ports in addition to decent overclocking with the build above.
 

Acoustique

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some good ram is what you'll need for starters

even if you dont take a 1066 to the full 1066, say 1000 thats alot of headroom and pretty much guranteed stabilty leaving only the cpu for instability issues.
 

mattm

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Danny, thanks for the build out. I'm surprised a CoolerMaster PS is lacking behind an OEM type PS that comes with a case. I always expected those to be crap.

some good ram is what you'll need for starters

even if you dont take a 1066 to the full 1066, say 1000 thats alot of headroom and pretty much guranteed stabilty leaving only the cpu for instability issues.
I will have to look into that, it makes sense. Has anyone ran a rig like this and experienced stock performance? Wondering how much tweaking I would have to do to play games decently.
 

JUSTJOEL73

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How long can you wait?

Black Friday is only 2.5 months away. There are really awesome deals to be had on Black Friday online. Last year I picked up my Thermaltake Armour full tower for $60 and a Raidmax 530W Modular Hybrid PSU for $30. I swear Thermaltake has the best cases on the market.
 

msabo

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cant really tell which parts/price you mean for the case and psu but the antec sonata iii with the earthwatts 500w is exactly what you need for this kind of budget build. and what resolution are you planning to game at because you can shave off some money and get the 8800gt.
+1 Buy.com is offering the Antec Sonata III and Antec Earthwatss 500W PSU combo for $80 with free shipping. I paid more than that for the PSU & shipping.
 

mattm

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Yea that buy.com deal is insane - will def pick that up ahead of time
 

mattm

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Another question that comes to mind, can I "safely" OC this with the OEM cooler? Any idea what I can safely OC to, with it?
 

Dangman

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Danny, thanks for the build out. I'm surprised a CoolerMaster PS is lacking behind an OEM type PS that comes with a case. I always expected those to be crap.
That's generally true: the PSUs that come with case/PSU combos are crap. However, Antec and some Coolermaster combos are the exception. Antec actually bundles quality retail PSUs with its cases.

I will have to look into that, it makes sense. Has anyone ran a rig like this and experienced stock performance? Wondering how much tweaking I would have to do to play games decently.
Just OC your CPU to around 3.2Ghz and you'll be set. DDR2 800 RAM is all that you need, even with overclocking in mind. Some math:

Stated FSB/4 = Actual FSB
Multiplier x Actual FSB = CPU Speed
1:1 Ratio: 2 x Actual FSB = RAM Speed
1:1 Ratio: FSB = 1/2 RAM speed


E7200:
Multi x Actual FSB, RAM Speed = Clock Speed
9.5 × 266Mhz = 2.53Ghz, DDR2-533 <<== Stock speeds
9.5 × 333Mhz = 3.16Ghz, DDR2-667 <<== Easy OC
9.5 × 400Mhz = 3.8Ghz, DDR2-800 <<== Excellent OC

However, no idea how well the stock cooler on the E7200 will OC. Since it is a low-profile HSF, more than likely it won't be good for overclocking. Get a 3rd party HSF like this:
Xigmatek HDT-S963 92mm Rifle HSF - $25
 

mattm

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nice advice as always Danny - Thanks!

Tiger Direct has an 8800GT for $119USD (ad from this site) no rebate. Think it's worth the ~$50 savings over the 4850?
 

geok1ng

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nice advice as always Danny - Thanks!

Tiger Direct has an 8800GT for $119USD (ad from this site) no rebate. Think it's worth the ~$50 savings over the 4850?
Good rules when building from ground:

Cheapest CPU with acceptable performance- that would be the e2180/e7200 :)- OC for CPUs is a better rewarding experience than OC VGAs, but NO OC is smart choice if you have to increase ANY voltages- my E4300 CAN do 3,6 Ghz with 1,52 Vcore, but temps would go skyhigh, i consider the ability to do 2,7Ghz BELOW stock voltages way more interesting:)

Memory is another no issue: any CAS 4 DDR 800 2x2GB kit will do.

Best price performance VGA: that is the 4850 and will be until Q2 of 2009:cool:, more than double the performance of the 8800GT.

BEST MOBO your money can get. 95% of the research on forums must be on mobo choice. a good choice means better OC, hassle-free upgrades and great component survival.

A PSU capable of 20A on the +12v line for the VGA. All the other ratings are BS. OCZ 600w and similars come to mind.
 

JUSTJOEL73

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The Antec case seems to be lacking ventilation, but that's just my opinion. I would at least look for a case with a side fan to help keep the GPU cool.
 

onedestinazn2

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im using the case now and its not really that bad. i would definately buy the additional 120mm fan for the front but its a great case for a budget build considering how good the ea500w is
 

mattm

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I know this isn't probably the thread for debating but - my last ATI card (can't remember the model but was paired with my old 939) had terrible drivers. Have they made improvements since?
 

sequoia

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Microcenter has OCZ Vendetta 2 for $35 - $15MIR = $20. Cant beat that for one of the best HS. I just picked one up and now cooling my Q6600.
 

onedestinazn2

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hmm that vendetta 2 is looking pretty god can anyone tell me how that compares to the popular xigmatek s183 and how ocz is with their rebates?
 

Dangman

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hmm that vendetta 2 is looking pretty god can anyone tell me how that compares to the popular xigmatek s183 and how ocz is with their rebates?
The OCZ Vendetta II performs about the same as the Xigmatek HDT-S1283 actually. However, it is a bit more difficult to install since it still uses the push-pin system. The HDT-S1283 plus the Xigmatek retention bracket comes out to about the same price as the OCZ Vendetta II normally. Since the retention bracket allows for an easier install, the Xigmatek is recommended more often.

But at that price, the OCZ Vendetta II is a good choice.
 

JUSTJOEL73

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Actually the OCZ and Xigmatek are almost virtually the same, same size, same direct contact to heat pipe, same packaging, same fan. The optional retantion bracket for the Xigmatek also fits the OCZ (what a coincidence). The only difference is the fins on the HS of the OCZ have little bumps on there that help dissapate heat. It would take a fluid dynamics class in physics to explain how it works. I have gotten all my rebates back from OCZ so far.
 

mattm

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I guess the question now is.... I buy the E7200 and say it "safely" OC's to 3.0ghz after spending ~$40 for upgraded heat sink/bracket/thermal grease. Should I have just spent the $50 and purchased an e8400 off the bat?

I guess when building an OC'd "value gaming" rig, it's tough to find that really good ratio. :confused:
 

Dangman

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I guess the question now is.... I buy the E7200 and say it "safely" OC's to 3.0ghz after spending ~$40 for upgraded heat sink/bracket/thermal grease. Should I have just spent the $50 and purchased an e8400 off the bat?

I guess when building an OC'd "value gaming" rig, it's tough to find that really good ratio. :confused:
Clock for clock, the E8400 @ 3Ghz will be about 5% faster on average than a E7200 at 3Ghz. So let's do the math. A new E8400 will cost around $170 whereas a E7200 plus the OCZ Vendetta II HSF will cost $155 total. So for 91% of the cost of the E8400, you will get 95% performance of the E8400. Not a bad ratio.

And 3GHz is an easy OC for any Intel C2D CPU. The stock HSF that comes with the E8400 won't allow for much overclocking at reasonable temps. So you won't be able to push the E8400 any higher than 3Ghz. With the OCZ Vendetta HSF on the E7200, you could push the OC even further, to as high as 3.8Ghz or 4Ghz+ if you're extremely lucky. So at that point, you're getting about 105% to 115% performance of the E8400 for 91% of the costs. Really good ratio there.
 

mattm

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as always, you've brought common sense to the table! Nice breakdown and ratios. I guess even if 3.4ghz can be reached, I'm doing pretty good.
 
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