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ace_85
19-10-06, 15:35
Hi :wve:

I've been meaning to upgrade my PC for the last few months, and I finally have enough money to go through with it. However, I'm a little unsure about the specs I have in mind. I'm fairly sure that all the components are compatible, but as this is a first time for me I thought I'd check here first. Obviously the list is missing a GPU, and that's because I haven't decided which one I want yet (I'll probably get an nVidia Geforce 7900).

I took a few recommendations from a list that Joseph posted recently, so I know that most of it is fairly good equipment. However, before I do anything else I'd just like to be sure that everything is OK with what I have so far :D

So, here is my proposed list:
Motherboard - Gigabyte GA-965P-DS4, P965, Socket-775, Firewire, ATX, GbLAN, DDR2, 2xPCI-Ex16 (https://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?sku=323507)
CPU - Intel Core 2 Duo E6400 2.13GHz Socket LGA775, 2MB, BOXED w/fan (https://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?sku=322632)
RAM - Crucial DDR2 PC4200 1024MB CL4 Kit w/two matched DDR2 PC4200 512MB CL4 (https://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?sku=312369)
PSU - OCZ Technology Powersupply ATX 520W 120mm Fan, SATA, 20/24pin (https://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?sku=315953)
DVD Rewriter - Plextor DVD±RW burner, PX-755A, 16x, Dual, Black Retail (https://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?sku=316441)
HDD - Western Digital Caviar SE16 250GB SATA2 16MB 7200RPM (https://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?sku=309535)Thanks :)

Joseph
19-10-06, 15:59
Yes, fine. But i would change the RAM, because PC4200 is quite inefficient DDR and under spec for your fine motherboard and CPU. Take PC 5300 at least. Only a few pounds more.
Then, the Plextor. Excellent device, but much too expensive while it is not needed. The NEC is just as good and reliable at a fraction of that price.
Better take the NEC, move the money you save to the PC5300 RAM and maybe also a Audigy4 soundcard.

And then, later a 7900GT, all makes a very fine setup! :tmb:

ace_85
19-10-06, 16:10
Thanks for replying Joseph :tmb: I decided in the end (after my last thread) to wait until I could afford some better upgrades, so I'm pushing the boat out now :D Would something like this be a better option for the RAM then?

Corsair TWIN2X 6400 DDR2, 1024MB CL5 Kit w/two matched CM2X512A-6400 Dimm's (http://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?sku=308713)

:)

Joseph
19-10-06, 17:03
You are not planning (i guess) to overclock. Of course the Corsair TwinEX PC6400 is very good, but you don't need it. Also i would advise to take 2 GB RAM and be very prepared for Windows Vista. Vista in idle state is taking 570 MB Ram. On top of that you want to render Images, play movies and games. Better have 2 GB od Value Ram than 1 GB of expensive specialist RAM. And in that case, better not use sticks of 512MB, but of 1GB each. You want to set them in Dual Channel mode. Corsair Value S. PC5300 DDR2 2048MB Kit w/two matched Value Select 1024MB (http://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?sku=313834)£167.00
So, spend more on RAM, save on the DVD-burner.
NEC DVD-recorder ND-3570 IDE Black OEM DVD+R/+RW/DVD-R/-RW (Dual layer) (http://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?sku=324680)£26.00

ace_85
19-10-06, 17:13
You are not planning (i guess) to overclock. Of course the Corsair TwinEX PC6400 is very good, but you don't need it. Also i would advise to take 2 GB RAM and be very prepared for Windows Vista. Vista in idle state is taking 570 MB Ram. On top of that you want to render Images, play movies and games. Better have 2 GB od Value Ram than 1 GB of expensive specialist RAM. And in that case, better not use sticks of 512MB, but of 1GB each. You want to set them in Dual Channel mode. Corsair Value S. PC5300 DDR2 2048MB Kit w/two matched Value Select 1024MB (http://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?sku=313834)167.00
So, spend more on RAM, save on the DVD-burner.
NEC DVD-recorder ND-3570 IDE Black OEM DVD+R/+RW/DVD-R/-RW (Dual layer) (http://www.komplett.co.uk/k/ki.asp?sku=324680)26.00
Ok, thanks for the advice Joseph - I was perhaps planning on 2GB of RAM anyway. If I'm going to spend a lot I might as well future-proof it as much as possible. So, the final spec would look like this:

Gigabyte GA-965P-DS4, P965, Socket-775, Firewire, ATX, GbLAN, DDR2, 2xPCI-Ex16
Corsair Value S. PC5300 DDR2 2048MB Kit w/two matched Value Select 1024MB
Intel Core 2 Duo E6400 2.13GHz Socket LGA775, 2MB, BOXED w/fan
NEC DVD-recorder ND-3570 IDE Black OEM DVD+R/+RW/DVD-R/-RW (Dual layer)
OCZ Technology Powersupply ATX 520W 120mm Fan, SATA, 20/24pin
Western Digital Caviar SE16 250GB SATA2 16MB 7200RPMAdd in the 7900GT, and perhaps an Audigy soundcard and that will be the complete PC. My poor current PC is looking scared, it knows it's time is almost up :D The only things I will probably be keeping are my original case and perhaps my current HDD, to serve as a secondary HDD

Joseph
19-10-06, 17:52
My poor current PC is looking scared, it knows it's time is almost up :D Awww....:( :pThe only things I will probably be keeping are my original case and perhaps my current HDD, to serve as a secondary HDDNOO!!! Watch it! Your current case will be too small and your old PC is still very usefull: you can connect both new and old to move files from one to the other, to use as backup etc... so i would leave the old PC intact.
Your new PC can get hot inside, as it is much faster than the old.
Most imporant: you cannot use the old hdd in the new PC, as old = IDE system and the new system is SATA system.

ace_85
19-10-06, 18:27
NOO!!! Watch it! Your current case will be too small and your old PC is still very usefull: you can connect both new and old to move files from one to the other, to use as backup etc... so i would leave the old PC intact.
Your new PC can get hot inside, as it is much faster than the old.
Most imporant: you cannot use the old hdd in the new PC, as old = IDE system and the new system is SATA system.

Ok, I'll forget that idea then :o Which case do you recommend then Joseph? It looks like I might as well go all the way and get a whole new PC :D If so, will I be able to use my Windows XP disc on the new system too? I still have the original OS installation disc :)

EscondeR
19-10-06, 18:34
IMO, I'd better suggest Seagate HDD instead :) But so many men so many minds ;)

Joseph
19-10-06, 18:55
If the Windows XP cd is a retail version, you can switch it one time to another PC. But, what will you do with the old PC then? :confused: It must have an Operating System to work.

EscondeR
19-10-06, 19:08
Get Unix then :tmb:

ace_85
19-10-06, 19:23
If the Windows XP cd is a retail version, you can switch it one time to another PC. But, what will you do with the old PC then? :confused: It must have an Operating System to work.
Hmm, my original plan was just to upgrade, but it looks like I'll be replacing this PC instead, so I'll probably still only need the one OS. As long as I can reuse the XP CD from this PC, it should be fine. It's a bit of a shame to 'lose' the old PC, but I'm already near the top end of my budget, so I can't really afford another £100+ for a new version of Windows XP. Linux is a possibility though, although I'm unfamiliar with that OS :)

Joseph
19-10-06, 19:41
Upgrade is simply out of the question because none of the old parts is compatible with your new motherboard. Except the case (hopefully, or buying a cheap Coolermaster Centurion -the model without inbuilt psu!) and your XP-license (as long as it is a retail version). I understand you must save as much as you can because it is already over the original planned budget.

ace_85
19-10-06, 20:40
Ok, that case looks good Joseph, and it's a bit cheaper than I was expecting :tmb: The XP CD I have is a retail version, so it should be fine to use again. I'm just thankful I don't have to pay for a new monitor as well :D

Joseph
19-10-06, 21:01
Oh yes! And ehh...are you going to assemble the parts yourself? Or have someone helping you?

ace_85
19-10-06, 21:13
Well, I'll use one of two options - I'll either take the components to a local PC shop (which I know is fairly reliable) or, more likely, call an IT specialist who lives nearby to come to my home and help me build it. It might cost a bit extra, but I'd rather have someone who knows what they're doing to give me a hand. I have a pretty good idea of the steps I need to take to build it, but I don't want to take too many chances with the expensive equipment :)

ace_85
20-10-06, 06:04
Sorry for the double post, but I have just one more question. I've been studying online tutorials for PC-building (this (http://www.buildyourown.org.uk/pc-building/) one seems quite good) and in truth it all seems quite simple, except for the installation of the CPU. How difficult is it to fit the CPU (including applying the thermal paste) and is this, realistically, beyond the skills of a first-timer? The other stages seem relatively straightforward, but I obviously don't want to damage a brand-new CPU.

Joseph
20-10-06, 13:32
Whether that is "beyond the skills of a first-timer" depends completely on your general talent for 'insightfullness' and 'handyness'. I once had my first time too, and i did it well. It is important that you take your time and be very quiet in your head. For the assembling, you would not even need a experienced builder helping you as long as you read and reread all the manuals very carefully, it only takes much less time if such person would help you.
First, place the CPU on its socket.
The CPU can only be placed in one way (look for the triangle mark on one of the four edges on the cpu which corresponds with the same mark on the socket). The hazardous part is to watch out that you not bend any of the pins while you press it on its place.
Place the motherboard on its platform in the case and apply all the screws according to the manual.
When this is done, it is time to place the cooler on the CPU. But first apply the paste. Apply a little (the size of a rice grain) on the centre of the cpu die. Then place the cooler. Pressing the cooler on its place and setting the four clamps is the hardest to do, as it all fits very tightly. So you must do it gently yet strongly. And indeed the most efficient is when you have done it ofter, so either let the guy do this for you while you watch, or do it yourself but have a very stressfull half hour. :D

Arctic says to put a worm of paste on the cpu-die:
Arctic Silver 5 Intel Dual Core CPU with heatspreader instructions (http://www.arcticsilver.com/pdf/appinstruct/as5/ins_as5_intel_dual_wcap.pdf)
Well just read both instructions to get the idea:
Arctic Siver 5 Intel Single Core CPU with heatspreader instructions (http://www.arcticsilver.com/pdf/appinstruct/as5/ins_as5_singlecore_wcap.pdf)
The point is anyway, to not apply too much paste because the paste is only needed to fill in the microscopic holes on the metal surfaces of both cpu-die and cooler-plate to optimize the contact; while too much paste inbetween the two would have the opposite effect.

ace_85
20-10-06, 14:16
Ok, I've read these guides fully, and I think that I'm willing to give it a go :D I'm definitely slightly nervous about it all, but I'd like to learn how to build a PC properly, so this is as good an opportunity as any. The rest of the procedure is fairly self-explanatory, but I'll certainly be taking my time with the CPU. Just need to add a couple more things to the shopping list then (some Arctic Silver 5 and an Antistatic wristband) and I'll be all set for my first ever build :D

Crofty_Tomb
20-10-06, 14:34
Aren't you gonna get a Windows Vista and DirectX 10 card? :confused:

ace_85
20-10-06, 14:41
Aren't you gonna get a Windows Vista and DirectX 10 card? :confused:

Bit out of my price range at the moment ;) There's a while yet before DirectX 10 becomes the standard anyway, so I'll cross that bridge when I come to it. I'll definitely be checking out the RC version of Vista though (there's no point in even trying with my current rig :D)