View Full Version : Recommendations?

07-21-2005, 06:18 AM
Feel free to move this post elsewhere, I wasn't too sure whether to post it here or in a hardware forum.

Hello, and thanks for any advice given in advance. I've been looking to put together a new PC based on an AMD chipset. I love TweakTown's reviews and thought maybe this would be a good place to ask around. Here is what I am looking at:

CASE - Lian Li LL Warrior (Black)
PSU - Here is where I begin my questions. Any recommendations?
Cooling - I am looking for any advice on extra fans or coolers. However, I don't have the money for water cooling hehe.
CPU - As I said I would like to base my PC on an AMD chipset. I am looking for one for around the $200-250 price range.
Memory - 2 512 chips is about all I can say that I am looking for.
Hard Drive - 1 SATA 80gb drive. I'm not really looking for much storage, but if anyone has some other ideas I would love to hear them.
Mobo - The best mobo I can get that would be compatable w/ all of the above. Been looking at alot I've had compatability issues in the past. I plan to use the onboard sound
Video Card - Huge toss up. I'm looking at a 6600GT due to budget right now, but would like to get an 800XT, I'll just have to see. However, if anyone has any recommendations between the $150-400 price range, it would be much appreciated.
Extras - Anything that you have found to be a near necessity such as temp control and wire management.
I am a beginning Mod Enthusiast and Overclocker, but first and foremost I am a gamer. I'm 16 and I've built 2 systems in the past, and am currently working on my 3rd. I'm trying to build the most upgradeable and flexible machine for around $1500-1700. As I said before, thanks for the advice ahead of time, it's greatly appreciated.

Zeenk :wavey:

07-21-2005, 10:03 AM
Case - That's fine, whatever you want. I prefer to stick with cheap ($30-$45 shipped, shipping being about $15) cases so I can spend money on better hardware and cooling. Besides, a little modding can make a cheap case better than an expensive one thermally and acquistically. Granted, it takes more skill if you actually care about how the case looks. I don't care much, so my opinion may be irrelevant.

PSU - Get something over 500W, preferably. I'd say OCZ, Antec, Enermax, and Thermaltake are looking very attractive right now.

Cooling - The Thermaltake Venus series HSFs are good, as are the Thermalright heatsinks with other fans attached to them. If you didn't want to overclock for whatever reason, go with the stock cooler.

CPU - Get an Athlon 64 3000 Venice. If you didn't want to overclock, a 3500 would be better.

RAM - Go for any 2x512MB CAS 2 PC3200, at the least. If you're willing to spend more for much better overclocking, go with 2x512MB of either OCZ VX or Mushkin Redline (whichever is cheaper; for all practical purposes they are identical). If you really want to save money, some budget CAS 2.5 could also be used. Whatever you do, though, get 2x512MB. My Athlon XP will outperform your system in modern games if you don't get 1GB of RAM.

HDD - You're fine where you are. I generally recommend Seagate for the five-year warranty, but Western Digital and Maxtor are good, too. I tend to stick with those three, though there are other good ones.

Motherboard: DFI nForce 4 Ultra. For overclocking, features, performance, and stability, it pretty much can't be beat. It's not overpriced, with that in mind. If you're not overclocking, I'd look to a budget nForce 4 Ultra motherboard. Chaintech seems to be the best in this area. Foxconn is good too, if it's cheaper (don't feel like checking right now).

Video card - Get a 6800GT. Better quality than the ATI cards due to Pixel Shader 3.0 and will perform better where it matters (Half-life 2/CSS won't matter as neither your eyes nor your monitor will take advantage of the framerates provided by an X800 or 6800GT). This is not the area to skimp. Go with a cheaper motherboard, RAM, PSU, case, and CPU before you cut here. This is easily your most important part for gaming. RAM comes second, followed closely by CPU.

Extras - Some of what I said about case modding comes into play here. Without looking at that case, let's say the case is lacking in a CPU duct fan or proper room for a front fan. Either change the case, or get a rotary tool and mod it. Use duct tape for your wires that need to hang out, and hide the unused ones behind the drive cages. It's best to keep them out of the way of airflow.

07-22-2005, 03:17 AM
Ya, I see where you're coming from about the case. Have any recommendations on a more affordable one? I'm not looking for a case with flashy looks, all i want is one that can produce a large amount of airflow w/ a window. The boxy look of the LL Warrior is the way I would like to go. After all, it is the inside that counts.

And as for the other parts, thanks a ton on the advice. It's really helped me out alot.

07-22-2005, 02:58 PM
I'm assuming you're American, since Aussies and Kanucks tend to mention it's their respective currency when giving budgets.

A quick power search on Newegg reveals plenty of cases that would be good for you:


I haven't spent more than a few seconds looking at them, but they share a couple things in common; they're relatively cheap and they have a fan spot right above where the CPU will be on a socket 939 board.

In addition to that, should make sure whatever case you gets has nice exhaust in the back. Two 80mm or one 120mm fans is what I suggest you make the requirement for back exhaust. Even if you're up to modding, the back can often be just about impossble to change significantly. If you can get one with a spot for an 80 or 120mm fan on the top for exhaust, that's good too. The final goal would be one with both fan grills on the front inside and some way for it to draw air from the outside. Many cases will have the inner fan grills, but they'll be drawing air from nowhere, which means there's no actual intake. Side intake, in addition to the CPU intake fan, will work too.

If there's no case with the CPU fan and the fron My own case is a cheap Raidmax that came with no CPU intake and no way for front intake. It did come with 2x80mm back intake and 2x80mm side intake. However, I cut through the front bezel so I can get front intake, too. I also cut an 80mm in the top, and may add more later. The only thing I have yet to do is cut a hole in the window for a CPU duct. From what I can tell experimenting with different air cooling, a CPU intake fan seems to help a lot more than adding more intake and exhaust in other areas, which is while I'll mod the case more.