Upgrading my computer

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abarax66
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Post by abarax66 » Mon Jan 30, 2006 10:06 am

Well, for those recommending I update my rig, here's the specs on my system:

AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+ (couldn't afford the pricier versions)
2 Gigs Corsair XMS PC3200
256 MB PCI-ex X800
400 GB Seagate Barracude H/D
72.6 GB Raptor H/D
Windows XP Pro SP2 Full Version (purchased at retail, so not OEM or warez)

So I doubt seriously it's my "old" hardware.

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DisabledTrucker
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Post by DisabledTrucker » Mon Jan 30, 2006 2:48 pm

My current system is:

Chaintech 7NJS Zenith (Finally trashing this POS!)
AMD XP-3200+ (Going to keep unless I get a good enough offer.)
Corsair TWINX 3200C2 XMS (3yrs old and still going in next one.)
PNY GForce-6600GT-AGP-128 (MCE computer gets this one. Bye Bye ATI!)
Soundblaster Audigy 2 Platinum (pre-zs) (Anyone need a sound card?)
Opteron DD4405 DVD+\-RW (Stupid Plexy! :mad: )
2xHitachi 120G 7200 Sata 1's (Raid 0) (Movies/Music)
1xWD1000JB 100G 7200 8MB IDE (O/S resides on this one for now.)
1xWD1600JB 160G 7200 8MB IDE (Gotta have some place for backups.)
Antec SuperLanBoy II (Nice case, weak in design though.)
Antec Neopower 480 (Nice quiet power supply, gotta love those modular cables too!)
Samsung SyncMaster 172x (Excellent LCD monitor that hangs nicely on the wall!)

System I just purchased, but parts are in shipping phase: (Will be here 1/2/06.)
From NewEgg
NewEgg wrote:MSI K8N Diamond Plus Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce4
SLI X16 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail (Can't beat the onboard sound on this puppy, Asus still uses crappy cap's for their systems so there is no better motherboard for x64! You really don't want me to tell you what DFI stands for do you?!? :twisted: )
Model #: K8N Diamond Plus

GIGABYTE GV-NX66T128VP Geforce 6600GT 128MB GDDR3 PCI Express
x16 Video Card - Retail (Why bother with SLI right now? Most games can't even take advantage of it's full potential at this point, also price is a consideration for not going with 7800-GTX too and I need VIVO.)
Model #: GV-NX66T128VP

AMD Athlon 64 3700+ San Diego 1GHz FSB Socket 939 Processor Model
ADA3700BNBOX - Retail (Who really needs X2 right now, especially when Quad core is just around the corner and this puppy will overclock to a FX-57, beside money is a factor here.)
Model #: ADA3700BNBOX

Arctic Silver ASTA-7G (2-PC-SET) Premium Silver Thermal Adhesive - OEM
Model #: ASTA-7G (2-PC-SET)

ZALMAN CNPS7700-CU 120mm 2 Ball Cooling Fan with Copper Heatsink - Retail (Gotta keep this puppy cool when I have it running as an FX-57!)
Model #: CNPS7700-CU
NOTE: This is to replace the similar parts above.
Last edited by DisabledTrucker on Thu Feb 02, 2006 3:13 am, edited 7 times in total.
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5eraph
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Post by 5eraph » Mon Jan 30, 2006 2:57 pm

That's a nice update to 64-bit, DisabledTrucker. I use Arctic Silver and Zalman on a couple rigs here. Cold and silent. :)

Be careful with the AS you ordered. It's an epoxy glue, not paste! I'd recommend getting Arctic Silver 5 paste, it works very well and won't permanently bond the heatsink to your CPU. If you try to separate them when they're epoxied together you'll lose the CPU heatspreader.

I have a question for you, though. Do you plan on dual-booting XP 32-bit and x64? If so, I'd really like to know how that works out; I've been planning to do that for ages.

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DisabledTrucker
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Post by DisabledTrucker » Mon Jan 30, 2006 4:19 pm

Yeah and I plan on over clocking it too, hopefully to at least FX-57, I didn't pay attention to the Artic Silver I was ordering, oh well I'm only getting it for emergencies since I still have some of the original Artic Silver left I've been using for the last three years... Besides I may have to go that route when I add that monstrosity of a heatsink on top of it to assure myself it's not going to fall inside my case... :lol:
I'm also hoping that it will fit within the confines of that motherboard, although I thought I had ordered the other one, the

Code: Select all

ZALMAN CNPS9500 LED 92mm 2 Ball Blue LED Light Cooling Fan with Heatsink - Retail
Model #: CNPS 9500 LED
I had both of them there, so I'll have to go back and look again at what I actually purchased...

Another thought is I'm hoping that it doesn't blow my case over or pop the doors off of it since the Antec SuperLanBoy II is such a flimsy case to begin with... :lol:

As far as dual booting, I'm not sure yet, I'll initially have to use x32 but I've downloaded the recent version of x64 trial to try that at some point as well, I'm waiting to find out if there is any real difference between that and x64 PR2 first though because I can use my key with that one if I can find it again, I did have a copy somewhere here I downloaded which M$ said I could register to use in place of x32 but I can't remember where I put it at the current time... I love Zalman, I had one before of the "flower" variety but it got so clogged with muck that I had to stop using it besides with the processor I'm currently using I don't need it as I can't get it to overclock enough to justify it anyways... One day I may take the time to clean the other one up and use it elsewhere in one of my systems but for now it's staying shelved...
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Post by DisabledTrucker » Wed Feb 01, 2006 11:57 am

Just as an update to the post above, I did get the CNPS9500 instead of the CNPS-7700-CU, which if memory serves was the reason I got the adhesive instead of the paste, to make sure that puppy didn't fall off over time, as it's rather huge. I wasn't sure that with the redisign of the motherboard to include the massive heatsink for the northbridge so close to the cpu that it wouldn't fit, so I instead opted for the upright model, with a slightly smaller and louder fan. I really wanted to get the older motherboard, now called the A8N Diamond, but it wasn't available when I made up my list and I didn't see a time-frame when it would be available, but this one seems to be a better deal imo anyways, as it includes an upgraded version of the Audigy 2 soundblaster on-board as well. Besides, I can live without all those extra PCI slots as I only need one anyways for the time being so I can plug in my DVico Fusion III - T/Q. I'm not going to keep the Audigy 2 card in this new rig since it has it already on-board and the difference is so slight between them. If/when I ever do decide to upgrade the sound, I'll be getting a X-Fi soundblaster to do it with.

Reason for my choice in processors was because I couldn't see having any slower speed processor than I am currently using now as a starting point, it's also a great overclocker too from what I understand it will exceed or at least meet the FX-57 speeds over-clocked on Air. Also tihs one uses the same dies the FX-55 and FX-57 was cut from. I looked at the 4000 but I couldn't justify the price increase for it, when I could get a 3800 x2 for nearly the same price and if I was going to go with x2 at this time I would get the 4400 which is almost double the price of the one I decided on and from what I understand can over clock to beyond the capability of the FX-60 that was just released and therefore would be an even better deal. I looked at both the L1 and L2 speeds when I made my choices as well, because I didn't want to get a processor which has 1/2 the speeds of the one I'll be trying to over clock to thus crippling my overall performance increases. It's been well documented that the processors which use 512K L2 caches aren't as peppy as the ones which use the 1MB L2 caches when doing a side by side overclocked comparision.
Last edited by DisabledTrucker on Thu Feb 02, 2006 3:27 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by 5eraph » Wed Feb 01, 2006 9:27 pm

I'm using a couple Zalman CNPS7000B-Cu LEDs and they're working out pretty well. I was considering that MSI motherboard too but figured I'd be using an X-Fi anyway. I want EAX for games.

The Asus A8N-SLI Premium I got instead turned out to be a wet dream. Onboard RAID5, 8 SATA ports, and a PCI-e x4 slot should I decide to upgrade to a better RAID solution later. Rock-solid, too. I've filled the case with so many cards and hard drives that I can't even see anything on the motherboard anymore except the processor and memory. It took me six hours just to fit everything together neatly and try to tuck the cables out of the way.

I had to pull out the X-Fi because it's a bit noisy. I'm guessing there's interference on the PCI bus with the RAID5, but hoping their next driver can overcome the issue. If not then I'll put it in my nForce3 and be done with it, I think. I have an Audigy2 ES in an older system that I can try instead.

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DisabledTrucker
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Post by DisabledTrucker » Thu Feb 02, 2006 12:36 am

This MSI board has all those things as well, which is why I went ahead and got it plus it's got the audigy on-board as well, sure I can always add-in my Audigy2 card anytime I want but I'm going to put it off until I can afford to get an X-Fi card, I'm looking more towards the $400 one, when it comes down in price. Besides I thought this has EAX capability on-boad as well, I'll have to recheck on that one then. Also I looked at the Gigabyte eqiuvilent, which I almost got, but then I decided it all boiled down to sound quality and those ancient PC87 sound chips just aren't quite hacking it for me these days, since I also use onboard sound for front panel headphones as well. Even though the Audigy2 Platinum I have has a front panel box, I rarely use it or install it. I primarily got the card for the better sound quality it provides over the regular one, which is why I'm looking at the super expensive X-Fi version for a possible upgrade, even though I will probably never bother hooking up the external box to the system.

If memory serves I had read somewhere that Asus and Creative were in the blame game again over who's at fault with the sound issues, they always were, one of the reasons I quit fooling with Asus, not to mention I had a A7N266-VM motherboard that had bad caps in it and it took 3 returns to get them to finally replace the stupid board with decent enough caps in it that they would last more than a month, shoot now that motherboard has survived and outlasted ever other piece of equipment I have and I got rid of the sound problems when using a Creative sound card on it as well, (I have a regular Audigy in that one, that I replaced at the same time, but I'm also using nVidia's onboard sound on it too, for front panel headphone sound.) :lol: That's how I ended up with this crappy Chaintech 7NJS Zenith Ultra, I was looking for a motherboard to replace the one I sent back to Asus for the third time trying to get it fixed that would be stable enough to use in it's place, what a joke that was, I ended up fighting with Chaintech over the replacement of this motherboard and it's still not right and I never did get it replaced, but I'm still using it even though it causes a lot of hardware failures and isn't very stable, but hey I needed something to do beta testing on right?!? That old Asus motherboard, makes for a great media server motherboard, since it really can't do much else anyways.
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avneet25
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Post by avneet25 » Thu Feb 02, 2006 1:27 am

I have

Intel 3.2 Ghz Prescott (Socket 478)
2 Gb Ram
Total Storage 500 GB
Asus P4c800 Deluxe Motherboard
Creative Audigy 2 Sound Card
Nvidia Geforce Fx 5900 Video Card


Those are the main stuffs..

its pretty old now.. nearly 3 years..

i wanted an AMD..but where i live (Fiji) AMD is not even sold heer.. :(

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DisabledTrucker
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Post by DisabledTrucker » Thu Feb 02, 2006 3:03 am

Sorry to hear you can't get AMD where you live there in Fiji, but what you have isn't all that bad either, for an Intel based system. Even Intel has some decent stuff out now in the way of the x64 platform, especially since they finally let nVidia produce motherboards for their processors, you may want to look into obtaining one of those setups, I almost did, until I decided that I love AMD too much to switch back now. You may also want to look on the internet for parts this time around and build it yourself especially if you have relatives/trustworthy friends you can have the parts shipped to who can then ship them to you if need be. I know a few people who live in Japan who do the same thing to obtain games and such from the U.S. over there and visa versa. Surely if you want something bad enough and have the currency to obtain it, you shouldn't be held back from doing so because of your geological preference of residence, especially in this day of the internet commerce. There are things I have purchased here that you can't go into any store here in the states and purchase, but I was able to obtain them online and have them shipped to me here and I've still got them and use them today. So I know it can be done, it's all in what you're creative enough to come up with to obtain what you want.

On another note, I just read MaximumPC for March 2006 that come in the mail today and they recommended both the AMD64 and x2 version of the 3800 processors for overclocking, but if you look at both of those processors they are crippled by the fact they have only 512K L2 caches in them, why they made they poor choices they did is beyond me. Then again it's not the first time I've totally disagreed with them on one of their reports. As I edited and mention above I would have chose the AMD64 3700 and x2 4400 processors over the 3800's any day, mostly due to the fact they have 1MB L2 cache per core, which provides a noticable increase in performance when you're overclocking.
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Post by DisabledTrucker » Thu Feb 02, 2006 11:50 pm

An update on this new system and deal with the cpu heatsink, I'm glad now that I chose to go with the 9500 over the 7700 due to the fact that I don't believe that the 120cm fan will work with this motherboard at all. The 9500 as it is barely has enough clearance between it and the northbridge heatsink as it is. I even removed the chipset heatsinks from the motherboard long enough to attach that monstrocity to it so as not to damage either one while trying to get those screws into their proper positions. I'll take a pics of the before and after install of this motherboard setup so you can see what I'm talking about, probably tommorrow when I have more natural light. Thankfully I had enough of the Artic Silver 3 compound left that I didn't need to use the Artic Silver 5 adhesive I got on the processor, although I did use it on the heatsink on the graphics card to keep that puppy from moving around so much, I was just going to put some Artic Silver 3 on it too, but boy did that thing move around a lot. Besides, I'm sure in the future I'll find other uses for it as well, I'll just have to go and get me some regular compound before I attempt any more cpu heatsink replacements, as that tube is now depleted, mostly from using it on the processor, man that's a lot of space to cover!

Anyways, sometime tommorrow I'll install this bad boy and start to over clock it, I'm not going to do it tonight as already getting late and I got a lot more reading to do yet. I like to read my manuals before I do the total install, I had just read enough of them to get as far as putting on the heatsink thus far so I got a lot more to do on that aspect of it, and I'd really like to get an integrated disk setup so I don't have to install all kinds of drivers and updates when I get to the desktop. As it is I'm already not looking forwards to having to install all the testing software I usually run when testing one, as that in of itself is a headache to setup. Then I got the initial "burn in" that I do which will also take me at least a few days to get done, so you all may not see me for the next week in here much once I do start to install this baby. ;)

Don't worry though I'll be back, especially if something goes wrong... :twisted:
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Daemonforce
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Post by Daemonforce » Fri Feb 03, 2006 12:29 am

There is nothing wrong with your computer. An Athlon 64 can do anything and everything I need to do at this point(I need to manufacture 64-Bit binaries). 2GB ram is enough for a media center let alone game/dev PC. You have the PCI-E model of the X800, drivers won't crap because of your DeviceID. You have a raptor to boot from and a big storage device for God knows what. Go away! o.O

Here's my specs:
Workstation:
CPU: Intel Pentium IV 3.00E
Board: ABit IS7
Ram: 512MB Mushkin PC4000
Video: ATi Radeon 9200 LE 8X 128MB AGP
PSU: Aerocool Aeropower 550W ATX
Sound: AC'97
Case: Koolance PC2-601BLW
IDE00: Quantum Fireball CX20.4A
IDE01: Maxtor 4K080H4
IDE10: Sony CRX175E2
IDE11: Sony DW-Q28A
SATA: Maxtor MaXLine 7L300S0
NIC: 1394 Net adapter | Realtek RTL8139 | Vmware | Vmware
FLP: Sony 3½"
Speakers: Altec Lansing 2.1
Gamepad: Game Elements Wireless Controller
Mouse: Logitech Corded 3-Button
Host OS: Windows XP Media Center 2005
Current Uptime: 4 days


Server:
CPU: AMD K6-2/400
Board: ASUSTeK P5A-B Super 7 "Pentium" Board
Ram: 384MB PC133
Video: ATi Rage Magnum
PSU: TOUCH 250W AT
Sound: Creative SB Live! 5.1
Case: BitStop AT Case
IDE00: Maxtor 90432D2
IDE01: NEC 28B
FLP: Sony 3½"
NIC: Linksys LNE100TX
Modem: SupraExpress 56iVoice
Mouse: Microsoft Serial
Host OS: Windows Server 2003 Enterprise
Current Uptime: 75 days

KVM:
Logitech Corded Access Keyboard
Gateway VX1120 (22" Flat-CRT)

It's like an obese cat with polio. :?
Do you have stairs in your house?

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DisabledTrucker
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Post by DisabledTrucker » Fri Feb 03, 2006 3:05 pm

Image Image Image Image Image

This is what it looks like with the humungous Zalman CNPS9500LED prior to installation. When I get it installed, I'll post the ones of it below in this post of what it looks like installed. Hope this will help someone else in their future descisions with this board. (That's the best I do with the box, it's holographic and made it difficult to photo.
Last edited by DisabledTrucker on Sat Feb 25, 2006 9:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
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5eraph
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Post by 5eraph » Tue Feb 07, 2006 3:59 pm

That's a beautiful setup, DT! When I was shopping for parts back in September I found references to that heatsink by Zalman, but it wasn't available yet so I settled on the ones I have now.

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DisabledTrucker
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Post by DisabledTrucker » Tue Feb 07, 2006 7:12 pm

Thanks, I'm still waiting to install it though, I'm trying to figure what I can do to back up my 2x120 GB Hitachi's before I take a chance and lose everything that's on them. There is a lot of work and money on those two disks alone! :?
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Post by 5eraph » Tue Feb 07, 2006 8:17 pm

Well, if you don't already have a solution then the only solid advice I can give you is to estimate how much that work and data are worth and use that estimate to determine how much you can afford to spend on the hardware and media needed.

If you have a dual-layer DVD burner then buying the maximum of 30 discs shouldn't cost you more than $105 +tax. Good burners can be found for around $50-$80.

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DisabledTrucker
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Post by DisabledTrucker » Tue Feb 07, 2006 9:42 pm

For that money I can just go purchase another drive, hell a 250GB SATA Hitachi/Seagate HDD is only $110 from ZipZoomFly.com... :mrgreen:

I'm trying to devise a way to do it without having to go through all that, since I just spent nearly $1000 on parts already, I'm not able to affored to spend anymore. :?
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