Sign in to follow this  

Thoughts on computer parts

This topic is 3591 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

If you intended to correct an error in the post then please contact us.

Recommended Posts

I'm about to do a major upgrade. Actually its more like building a new computer. I'll be keeping a few of my old hard drives, screen, mouse, keyboard and a few other non essential accessories. But otherwise all new. Now, its a long time since I've been on the PC market so I've been researching a bit to catch up. So far I think I've found a decent list for my price range: Gigabyte GA-MA790X-DS4 (motherboard) AMD Athlon 64 X2 6400+ Black Edition Sapphire Radeon HD 3850 512 MB Mushkin XP2-8000 4096 MB Extreme Performance (2 x 2048) NorthQ NQ-2210BLK (case) Western Digital Raptor 36,7 GB (fast HD, 10000 rpm, for OS install) But I figured I'd throw the list out here to hear any thoughts or recommendations. Maybe it will also be of some help for other people who is currently building or thinking of putting together a new PC.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
AMD is cheaper in amount of speed per dollar spent. You can get a faster machine for the same money if you buy AMD. Intel's chips are faster overall though, so if you're willing to spend more then go with Intel.

As for ATI, I've never used their cards before. I'm using Linux a lot and ATI's Linux drivers have always been a nightmare.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yeah, I've been using nVidia up to now because of that. But I wanted to give ATI a try both because I havent tried it before, and because there is a chance it will work better together with the AMD now since AMD bought up ATI and all.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I don't think AMD buying ATI will have any effect on how well AMD64 and ATI machines "work together." AMD bought ATI because it was the little fish and for their IP. With everything heading toward highly integrated multi-core machines with video chipsets integrated into the CPU, AMD needed ATI to remain competitive in the coming years.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by jonahrowley
AMD is cheaper in amount of speed per dollar spent. You can get a faster machine for the same money if you buy AMD. Intel's chips are faster overall though, so if you're willing to spend more then go with Intel.

As for ATI, I've never used their cards before. I'm using Linux a lot and ATI's Linux drivers have always been a nightmare.


Are you sure about that? About 4 months ago when I did the numbers, it came up as Intel blowing AMD out of the water on the benchmarks and cost. The only area that AMD was showing promise was the low end ($50 processors). Lots of other people were agreeing with my conclusions, so I didn't think much more about them when I went with a Core2 Duo.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
For $160 you can get an AMD X2 6400+ or for $170 an Intel Core 2 Duo E6550. The 6400+ performs better in benchmarks (and also overclocks well with a decent cooler) than the E6550. There's also the $10 or $15 you'll save on an AM2 board which are generally cheaper than LGA775 boards, mostly because AMD64 has an integrated northbridge (or half of it at least). So that's maybe $25 more you can put toward RAM or a video card.

On the other hand, Intel's quad core machines and fastest dual core machines perform better than anything AMD has out right now. You can get a faster machine if you're willing to pay more and go with Intel.

AMD almost always rates better in price/performance. This is their entire business model.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by jonahrowley
For $160 you can get an AMD X2 6400+ or for $170 an Intel Core 2 Duo E6550. The 6400+ performs better in benchmarks (and also overclocks well with a decent cooler) than the E6550. There's also the $10 or $15 you'll save on an AM2 board which are generally cheaper than LGA775 boards, mostly because AMD64 has an integrated northbridge (or half of it at least). So that's maybe $25 more you can put toward RAM or a video card.


The 6400 is faster in SOME benchmarks. As far as games go, the E6550 still wins. Another thing to consider, under load the AMD runs at 56 degrees using 146W. The Intel runs at 47 degrees and 118W. Plus Core 2 Duos have tremendous overclocking potential with their default heatsink and fan. Sounds like the Intel is a better buy to me.

Quote:
AMD almost always rates better in price/performance. This is their entire business model.


Apparently you haven't been paying attention for the last couple years. This hasn't been true since the Core 2 Duos came out. Intel has been dominating performance AND price/performance for quite some time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
My thoughts and recommendations are as follows:
Ditch some ram unless you plan on running a 64bit OS since it won't all get utilized.
Ditch the ATI card too if you plan on running Linux since it's linux drivers are subpar compared to Nvidia at best last time I tried using them.
Use that money to get at least a 74GB raptor if you are running Windows especially Vista since a 36GB drive get full pretty fast these days.
At least my 36GB raptor always seems to run out of space after all the windows updates,pagefile,etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Are any of the 10,000 rpm drives actually quiet? Any I've been around sound like a turboprop revving up.

Also, isn't the non safe RAID Setup generally cheaper for the storage volume compared to most 10,000 rpm drives? (You pay more upfront, but start at like 3 times the storage for the same cost)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
You can get a 750GB hard drive for the same price as a 150GB raptor. I'd rather have three cheaper drives in raid 5. Get a speed bonus and data redundancy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by tstrimp
You can get a 750GB hard drive for the same price as a 150GB raptor.


The point of a Raptor is that it's fast, not high capacity. 150GB is still a lot of space, I'm using a 120MB and it's more than enough. Then again, I don't have 50 games and 200 movies on my drive. But who wants that anyway?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by jonahrowley
Quote:
Original post by tstrimp
You can get a 750GB hard drive for the same price as a 150GB raptor.


The point of a Raptor is that it's fast, not high capacity. 150GB is still a lot of space, I'm using a 120MB and it's more than enough. Then again, I don't have 50 games and 200 movies on my drive. But who wants that anyway?


Yes, but for nearly the same price of a 150GB raptor, I can buy 3 320GB 7200RPM drives, and put them in a RAID (AKA, reading faster than the 10,000 drive when well maintained, plus I store more AND they can be recovered after the drive fails. Don't 10,000 RPM drives usually have a higher failure rate than the 7200s?)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Talroth
Are any of the 10,000 rpm drives actually quiet? Any I've been around sound like a turboprop revving up.

Also, isn't the non safe RAID Setup generally cheaper for the storage volume compared to most 10,000 rpm drives? (You pay more upfront, but start at like 3 times the storage for the same cost)

Not as loud as noisy as a scsi drive but still sond like a turboprop unless you put them in something like the antec P180 case with rubber grommets that muffle the sound. I got 3 raptors in my main system and I can hear the GPU and cpu fans before I can hear any noise from the raptor drives.
And yeah the new large sata drives like the 750GB and even 500GB ones are so fast now with their onboard buffers,etc that their burst speeds actually rival my raptor's speed. Raptors are still faster for bootup,snappiness and sustained speed though due to their low access times.
So if you need more space than speed get one of the new terabyte drives.

p.s. raptors have 5year warranty so you'd probably upgrade before worrying about it dying.


Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have a 74gig 10k rpm hard drive and one of the new 1 TB drives, and all my benchmarks tell me the large drive is faster. I've heard the same from other people as well. Plus it has 937 megs of actual storage when formatted, which has to count for something.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Intel beats AMD at pretty much every level now. I bought an 'Intel Dual Core' @1.8GHz for ~75USD. I've overclocked it to 3.2GHz with the stock cooler. It runs faster than all but the highest model Core 2 Duos. The 'features' that were removed in the Dual Core version I didn't need anyways... or at least I didn't need to spend an extra 300usd on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by daviangel
p.s. raptors have 5year warranty so you'd probably upgrade before worrying about it dying.


No, they promise to REPLACE it should it die, not that it won't die in those 5 years. RAID 5 gives you most of the space of the drives, and data loss protection. I would have gone with one if I had the money to spend (But I was left buying the cheapest parts I could to squeeze as much power out of my budget at the time for a project)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Talroth
Quote:
Original post by daviangel
p.s. raptors have 5year warranty so you'd probably upgrade before worrying about it dying.


No, they promise to REPLACE it should it die, not that it won't die in those 5 years. RAID 5 gives you most of the space of the drives, and data loss protection. I would have gone with one if I had the money to spend (But I was left buying the cheapest parts I could to squeeze as much power out of my budget at the time for a project)

Anyone who doesn't make regular backups deserves to loss their data.
I just RMA'd my 36GB raptor that ran for a good 4 years before dying.
Of course your brandnew harddrive could die tommorrow or in several years as shown by google's extensive report on harddrives they used in their servers a while back.
I'm just saying if it does die in that time period you don't get shafted completely like some harddrive makers that still sell drives with only 1 year warranty or less than 5 years. I've gotten burned several times in the past buying one of those drives and having it die usually right before the 1 year or 3 year warranty with no replacement in sight!-DOH!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
After good 15 years of computer using. And probably over 15 HD's I've surprisingly never had a harddrive fail on me. I just buy a new one when I need more space, and I throw out an old one when it's capacity is too low to justify taking up a slot in my PC. I wonder, is this just a statistical anomaly or is there some reason why HD's fail on some people and not others?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this