Building a system around a Video Card?

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pduan87

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Hi, I'm going to be completely overhauling my pc and I've got about 1300 to spend. I need to spend $170 on a sound card(need a creative with opt out), Dangerden GPU and AMD64 CPU block $100 so that leaves me with 1030 to buy a video card, motherboard,cpu,2gigs ram(need it for BF2 load times). I want to get a good overclocker for the cpu AMD64, a good overclocking mobo(nforce4 ultra?). The thing is I dont know what video card and CPU is the right combo. I dont know which is the bottleneck for which. Since I am going to be going PCI express its hard to decide. Since the x800xl is such a poor overclocker it makes me not want to get it. I dont really want to go with a 6800GT because then its hard to cool the ram once you take off the stock stuff to put on the watercooling. And Also, I know that ATI gpu's are better for handling high resolutions with AA and AF turned all the way up in games OTHER than Doom3. PLEEEEEASE help me decide.

The overall question is whats the best way to go with about 1000 bucks in the way of Video Card, Mobo, 2gigs of ram and a AMD64 CPU?

Am I better off gathering more money?
 

CleanSlate

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Poor overclocker or not, the XL is a very good card and on water it should OC well enough.

I'd suggest a 3000+ (cause I know you're going to OC, the 3000+ has the same amount of cache as the 3500+ and OC's well I think, do some research to confirm please), pc3500 or higher (for OCing) Corsair/OCZ/Kingston 2gigs ram, SATA 10k or 15k rpm drives in raid if you think you'll use it, and an audigy 2 since you want one of those types, though I'd suggest not getting an audigy because they suck IMO not because of their power but because of their compatibility issues.

~Adam
 

kirbyrj

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The only problem I think you'll run into is that 1GB RAM modules aren't designed for the same speeds the 2x512mb are. You're probably not going to be able to overclock them as far. That being said, I'm not sure with the current memory controller on A64 chips you can run 4x512mb without some sort of divider (166 I read I believe). So you're going to take a hit somewhere.

I'd say 3000+ - ~$155
1GB of TCCD - ~$250-300
x800xl - ~$300
DFI NF4 Ultra-D - ~$145

CleanSlate - I didn't know they had 15k SATA drives. The only ones I had heard of were SCSI.
 

pduan87

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yeah, I was going to run 4x512 because the Nforce4's have 4 dimm slots. Idk about the DFI though, I have a waterblock for the chipset and I'd like to use it.From what I've seen of the motherboard layout and user reviews from newegg, you cant put a waterblock on the northbridge because the videocard gets in the way. If the active cooling on it is almost dead quiet I'l just leave it. As for the XL overclocking higher with watercooling, there are the XL's that have the huge Artic coolers on them and they still only overclock the extra 45-50mhz.

As for the amd64 3000, which one? winchester or newcastle? what about this 3200? it comes at 2.0 and is a winchester instead of the newcastle. Its 191 for the retail, thats only 35 bucks more than the 3000 winchester.

I have to get the Audigy 2 ZS platinum because its the cheapest Audigy with optical out. I need optical out for my surround sound and my 5.1 HCT headphones. The turtle beaches get crappy reviews.
 

pduan87

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If I spent 180 bucks on Audiophile quality headphones, why would I buy a junky sound card?
 
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you're a fool to call that one junky....i believe it has an evny chip, which is better then anything creative as to throw around (with the exception of games)


and 2gbs of ram just isn't going to work
 
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CHAINTECH 7.1 Channel PCI Sound Card, Model "AV-710" -RETAIL

Model# CT-AV710
Item # N82E16829120103

Specifications:
Channels: 7.1
Audio Processor: VIA ENVY 24PT
Max Sampling Rate: 24-bit/192KHz
PC Interface: PCI
I/O Interface: Mic In/Line In/4 Line outs & Digital Optical Output, 2 separate CD audio stereo inputs
Package Contents: See pics

Looks like a nice card to me.
 

Foz2001

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I think your going to want a winchester. As far as OC, most 3000+ OC quite well, I've got mine very stable at 2.3ghz and thats on stock cooling with minimul voltage. It is still below 40C under load, so I'm sure it could go quite a bit further. I just like to play it safe.

The 3200+ has a 10X multiplier I think thats the only difference? Besides that its .2ghz faster.

It's up to you really, If your going to end up getting some better than stock cooling I'd say just go for the 3000+ and put the extra money elsewhere.

-Foz
 

pduan87

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Either way I'm going with the WInnie they seem to OC the best. As for the sound card, I need the thing to play games good, why else would I be spending hundreds of dollars on a video card?? Can the chaintech not take a hit on frames per second? Can the Chaintech do well in games? I'l check a review tommarow. As for the 2 gigs, why dont you think that will work? You dont think 2 gigs will be better than 1 gig for load times in Battlefield 2? I have a gig now for Battlefield 1942 and Vietnam and I know BF2 is going to be bigger badder so I would think I would need more ram. I was also liking the recommendation of a few guys to get a 10K or 15K rpm hard drive. I could do that and have my OS and my main games on that one. How much do the almost 80gb raptors cost? Does the speed of the hard drive affect load times more than the amount of ram?
 

Absentee

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yes...speed of the HDD greatly affects the speed of load times
the 74GB raptors are $181 at newegg
 

Warrior

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CleanSlate said:
though I'd suggest not getting an audigy because they suck IMO not because of their power but because of their compatibility issues.

~Adam
got a link?...i have a audigy and NEVER have had a problem..hell it works on old DOS games... id like to see where you get this information
 

CleanSlate

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I had an audigy LS and it caused great stability issues in my system and my soundblaster 16 before that in a completely different machine. I have learned through experience and money spent that it isn't worth the money to buy sound blaster cards.

~Adam
 

Warrior

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pduan87 said:
Either way I'm going with the WInnie they seem to OC the best. As for the sound card, I need the thing to play games good, why else would I be spending hundreds of dollars on a video card?? Can the chaintech not take a hit on frames per second? Can the Chaintech do well in games? I'l check a review tommarow. As for the 2 gigs, why dont you think that will work? You dont think 2 gigs will be better than 1 gig for load times in Battlefield 2? I have a gig now for Battlefield 1942 and Vietnam and I know BF2 is going to be bigger badder so I would think I would need more ram. I was also liking the recommendation of a few guys to get a 10K or 15K rpm hard drive. I could do that and have my OS and my main games on that one. How much do the almost 80gb raptors cost? Does the speed of the hard drive affect load times more than the amount of ram?

ram has barley to do with load times..LMAO...what you think is pushing it all to the ram?..the HARD DRIVE!!!...and if you got a slower HDD then your ram..( which we ALL do) then your load times will suffer...re think your whole money thing now..1 gig is enough !...and save the money for raided raptors!...
 

Shifra

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pduan87 said:
Either way I'm going with the WInnie they seem to OC the best. As for the sound card, I need the thing to play games good, why else would I be spending hundreds of dollars on a video card?? Can the chaintech not take a hit on frames per second? Can the Chaintech do well in games? I'l check a review tommarow. As for the 2 gigs, why dont you think that will work? You dont think 2 gigs will be better than 1 gig for load times in Battlefield 2? I have a gig now for Battlefield 1942 and Vietnam and I know BF2 is going to be bigger badder so I would think I would need more ram. I was also liking the recommendation of a few guys to get a 10K or 15K rpm hard drive. I could do that and have my OS and my main games on that one. How much do the almost 80gb raptors cost? Does the speed of the hard drive affect load times more than the amount of ram?


To give you an idea how how ram intensive a game is. Everquest 2, one of the most ram intensive games out, uses around 1.5gig of ram under its highest visual qualities. Thats for an MMORPG supporting much much more content and visuals then any FPS.

Games such as Farcry, Doom3, and HL2 show improvment when going from 512mb to 1gig, but once any more is added there is no improvment.

My advice, go with 1Gig and use the extra money elseware. Going over that for a game is rediculous, even the thought that BF2 is going to use anywhere near 2gig would be simply stupid. The average gamer has 512, the most common high end gamer has 1gig. No game company would outright force someone to run out to increase their PC memory amounts to that used by Graphic designers. Its on in transitions, not leaps. You may think its cool to have that much, so more power to ya, just telling ya right now, it wont be needed. I'd personally would rather put the extra 200 or so dollars into the next step up graphics card or some decent OC stuff. Just FYI the recommended amount of memory for BF2 is 768MB. Email them yourself if you like.
 

Warrior

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CleanSlate said:
I had an audigy LS and it caused great stability issues in my system and my soundblaster 16 before that in a completely different machine. I have learned through experience and money spent that it isn't worth the money to buy sound blaster cards.

~Adam
i had a LS too..and they suck...but the ZS's are awesome..and id like to see a link on where it has compatibility flaws
 

Warrior

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Shifra said:
To give you an idea how how ram intensive a game is. Everquest 2, one of the most ram intensive games out, uses around 1.5gig of ram under its highest visual qualities. Thats for an MMORPG supporting much much more content and visuals then any FPS.

Games such as Farcry, Doom3, and HL2 show improvment when going from 512mb to 1gig, but once any more is added there is no improvment.

My advice, go with 1Gig and use the extra money elseware. Going over that for a game is rediculous, even the thought that BF2 is going to use anywhere near 2gig would be simply stupid. The average gamer has 512, the most common high end gamer has 1gig. No game company would outright force someone to run out to increase their PC memory amounts to that used by Graphic designers. Its on in transitions, not leaps. You may think its cool to have that much, so more power to ya, just telling ya right now, it wont be needed. I'd personally would rather put the extra 200 or so dollars into the next step up graphics card or some decent OC stuff. Just FYI the recommended amount of memory for BF2 is 768MB. Email them yourself if you like.
ahmen! ...use the cash for a HDD set up
 

lithium726

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be careful with oc'ing the winchesters. current batches of them have been a real mixed bag, there are alot of them that wont go past 2.1ghz, many users here and over at XS have gotten the duds. i got lucky, mine is running at 2.6 stable w/ 1.585v. ive got a 3200+, i wanted the 10x multi instead of the 9x, it gives me more freedom.

edit: personal preference: creative sound cards blow. nothing but problems with htem for me, get something else. i dont have any suggestions, as i run onboard (i run all my music through my home stereo, so its not an issue)
 

CleanSlate

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Warrior said:
i had a LS too..and they suck...but the ZS's are awesome..and id like to see a link on where it has compatibility flaws

If you want a compatibility list talk to the mfg, what am I an all knowing being? Certainly not. I just know from experience and I've read about peoeple on the forums who've had problems as well.

~Adam
 

CleanSlate

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lithium726 said:
edit: personal preference: creative sound cards blow. nothing but problems with htem for me, get something else. i dont have any suggestions, as i run onboard (i run all my music through my home stereo, so its not an issue)

Stuff like that, I hear all the time, and ussually with a compatibility issue to back it up as well.

~Adam
 

pduan87

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well, from what I have seen in battlefield 1942 is that 512 ram will have your maps loading SLOOOOW. One gig is a huge improvement. Also keep in mind that BF2 is just like those mmorpgs when you think about it. The maps are HUGE, sure not as big as mmorpgs maps, but the graphics are more intense with BF2. Theres alot of explosions, vehicles, tracking systems etc. I will go with 1 gig of good ram along with the 73gb raptor drive and if I need more ram I'l get some.


And what are some of the compatibility issues you guys have experienced with the creative series? I used to have the SBLive 5.1 and didnt have any issues.
 

kirbyrj

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There's a whole hardware section on sound cards. I didn't realize how much was involved with headphone amps and the rest. Cruise on over there and read some posts before you decide what kind of sound setup you want. I did and decided to stick it out with my SB Live 7.1 onboard sound on the Neo4 SLI :).
 

swatX

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if you are mostly gamer then get a creative audigy or but if you are audiophile then get the chaintech av710. if are both get both cards and install them in your cp. all you need to do change the settings when playing game or when playing music. so yea.

i would suggest gettinga nforce 4 ultra with 1 gig pc3200 your choice of brand and 6800gt. SM 3.0 all the way
 

Absentee

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Warrior said:
ram has barley to do with load times..LMAO...what you think is pushing it all to the ram?..the HARD DRIVE!!!...and if you got a slower HDD then your ram..( which we ALL do) then your load times will suffer...re think your whole money thing now..1 gig is enough !...and save the money for raided raptors!...
yes..it has some to do with load times...if you had a game taht had sucky graphics and was not stressing on the PC at all and you had 64MB of ram (hypothetically(sp?) of course, no one has 64mb in a serious gaming PC anymore :rolleyes:) BUT it took a long time to load, the HDD would need to page most of the data, thus making MUCH slower load times, but if the PC had 1-1.5 gigs(i have a gig and i STILL need 500megs of virtual memory in UT2k4, with all my BG programs losed too) of memory then the HDD could just push it all into the memory and thus making much faster load times.

it does have an effect, just not as big as a much faster HDD would be (my suggestion would be get some solid state storage device as the drive you store your OS and games on :p

THAT would be schweet
 

Warrior

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4b5eN+EE said:
yes..it has some to do with load times...if you had a game taht had sucky graphics and was not stressing on the PC at all and you had 64MB of ram (hypothetically(sp?) of course, no one has 64mb in a serious gaming PC anymore :rolleyes:) BUT it took a long time to load, the HDD would need to page most of the data, thus making MUCH slower load times, but if the PC had 1-1.5 gigs(i have a gig and i STILL need 500megs of virtual memory in UT2k4, with all my BG programs losed too) of memory then the HDD could just push it all into the memory and thus making much faster load times.

it does have an effect, just not as big as a much faster HDD would be (my suggestion would be get some solid state storage device as the drive you store your OS and games on :p

THAT would be schweet
well if you want to be a prick and compare what i sayed to a fucking computer with 64mb of ram then be it..i was saying from a 512mb to a 1-2gb range..not no damn 64MB!!..and

btw You know your a Red neck if youve played Battlefeild Vietnam on a 64mb computer
 

yodster

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I'd say a gig of good quality ram and a raptor HD should give you good load times. If your not to sticky on a Nforce4 mobo check out Soltek boards. Thier VIA however. K8TPro and K890Pro. One AGP the other PCI-E. The sound opions your seeking are on theese boards. Both offer Optical in and out. OCing abilities are fair. The onboard sound is very good and can save you some bucks that you can put to a really good video card, like my X800XT PE. Awsome power.
 

Absentee

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Warrior said:
well if you want to be a prick and compare what i sayed to a fucking computer with 64mb of ram then be it..i was saying from a 512mb to a 1-2gb range..not no damn 64MB!!..and

btw You know your a Red neck if youve played Battlefeild Vietnam on a 64mb computer
relax dude....you don't have to be an asshole about it...wow

i was only saying a 64mb pc to better show my point...you don't have to be a dick about it.... :mad:



ps. i reported your post
 

Mcseiam

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4b5eN+EE said:
relax dude....you don't have to be an asshole about it...wow

i was only saying a 64mb pc to better show my point...you don't have to be a dick about it.... :mad:



ps. i reported your post


Yes you did, now both of you should leave that topic to die..... there was a misunderstanding and there is no reason to go over it any more.
 
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