Advice on new computer


I’m planning on buying a new computer, but need some advice on the components. I know that there are people with much knowledge here, so therefore I’m asking. I have $830, so not enough for a super computer, but should get a decent one. Anyway, will get to my questions now.

Processor: AMD or Intel? Dual, tri or quadcore? What’s the difference between amount of cores, and when is it an advantage/disadvantage to have many cores? 32-bit or 64-bit?

RAM: 4 GB seems to be enough for me. I’ve heard that 2x2 GB would give better performance than a single 4 GB. Is that right?

CPU cooling: I’ve thought about getting water cooling, as it’s supposed to be way more effective than a fan, but how does it work?

Also, it’s okay if you want to give feedback on other components, or any other information. :slight_smile:

Intel, the advantage is more speed, get 64-bit its faster.

If placed in the right socket it 2x2 will be faster then 1x4, you would have better preformance with 2x2 then just 1 4GB stick, since it gives you more Memory Channels to the CPU.

Water colling does work, but you have to refill it ever cuple months and there can be leeks AND you cant use water with it, it makes rust.

If you get a fan get a good one, also get some filters to keep the dust out of your PC.

I would also recommend you get a SSD insteed of a HDD. Most have a life time waranty and are faster then HDD when it comes to reading.

I have watercooling and have yet to have any problems. You need a good pump for it to work right, along with good water block and radiator. I use only swiftech products, I have the Swiftech PMC655 pump along with the 3 core radiator, apogee GT cpu block, mwc30 northdridge block, MCRES reservoir, smart coils tube wrapping and a glycol based coolant that is mixed with distilled water to prevent corrosion. All of this is connect with high quality tubing and you will have a great system with great cooling and is very quiet.

I have Intel and it does do hardware virtualization, I have a setting in my Motherboard to turn it on.

I use a Swifteck H2O-220 water cooling. It does a great job of removing much more heat than air-cooled, and since it is a sealed system, it won’t need refilling for maybe 5 years (I’ve had mine a year with no issues - computer runs 24/7 OC’d @ 3.627GHz on a Intel Q6600 Quad Core CPU, spread-spectrum disabled).

Tarantela’s hardware minus the memory comes to $672 on Newegg. 2 or 3 gigs shouldn’t be too much but remember, this is without an OS. If you want a prebuilt machine I would look at Gateway or ASUS. Both are building quality machines these days at reasonable prices.

Thanks for the advice guys. I’m thinking of buying a ‘cheap’ computer for now, and later when I have more money ($2,000+), I’ll buy a new one. Here’s what I possibly will buy:

$1 = 7.84 SEK

Computer case: Just some cheap one (~$57), plus ~$20 for a fan.

PSU: I need help with choosing a good one, I don’t want one that dies after a year. Manufactures I can choose from:

  • Cooler Master
  • Antec
  • Corsair
  • Hiper

Will cost ~$130.

Motherboard: ASUS M4N72-E, NVIDIA nForce 750a SLI, 5200MT/s HT, 4DDR2 / 2PCI / 2PCIe x1 / 2PCIe x16 / 6SATA / 1IDE, FireWire / 6USB / GBLAN / HD-Audio, ATX, Socket AM2+ (~$170)

Processor: AMD Phenom II X4 940 (~$270), supports both 32-bit and 64-bit?

RAM: Kingston DDR2 (2 GB + 1 GB), PC2-6400, 800 MHz (~$60)

Graphic card: GeForce 9500GT, 512MB DDR3, PCIe x16, VGA (~$73). I know it’s Intel and Nvidia and AMD and ATI, but will this be a problem?

HDD: Western Digital RE3 WD5002ABYS, 500GB (~$107)

DVD: Samsung (~$26)

Estimated price: ~$1,000

I shouldn’t have any problem to get some extra money from my parents. :smiley:

EDIT: I could save ~$113 by going with a cheaper motherboard, but it comes with an integrated GeForce 8300. I really don’t like integrated parts.

few of my recommendations, get an antec PSU, I would say at least 750W to be safe.

I say drop the AMD and get a Intel i7 920 it is the same price but beats the AMD at everything. Overclocking: Core i7 Vs. Phenom II | Tom's Hardware

With that I also say get a gigabyte motherboard, I have had nothing but great success with them.

For ram, kingston is overpriced, think about G-skill but do your research to grab the right ones with the right memory chips to achieve best OC.

for the HDD I don’t like samsung, get a seagate or WD but make sure they have the 5 year guarantee.

All right, then I’ll probably go with the Antec PSU, unless I get some other recommendations.

Same price? Not where I live… the i7 costs like $130 more. Most likely buying an Intel next time, but for now, I’ll go with AMD, as it’s cheaper. I’m not going to overclock.

From what I’ve read, both ASUS and Gigabyte seem to be good.

No G.Skill-items available from where I’m buying.

Yeah, a WD sounds better. Changed that.

I have to disagree on two things

First most good ram companies offer lifetime grantees on their ram sticks.

Second the your temp of the WD HDD might be right on older units but I just upgraded my desktop with one and I can tell you it runs cooler than anything I have had before. Right now the temp in my room is 21C and the HDD is 30C. Also it’s even quieter than my older seagate that is running as a backup drive. All I did is made sure that I got the Caviar Black which is an enterprise edition made for reliability.

AMD CPU’s run best on boards with AMD/ATI chipsets and with ATI graphic cards. ATI drivers are fine.

I recommend you my config.It’s good,fast and cheap.
MB:Asus P5QL Pro;CPU:Intel Pentium Dual Core E5200(2500 MHz default) ,runs on 3.5 GHz LGA775; VC:Sapphire Radeon HD4850 1GB GDDR3(GPU clock:625->700 MHz;CPU clock:993->1123 MHz) ;RAM:A-data DDR2 Kit 2x2Gb 800+MHz(runs on 900 MHZ) ;HDD:HITACHI 250GB/7200/SATA2/8MB ;PSU(not the best):Fortron 450W PNR;Case:Foxconn TLA570A

Intel i7 (it’s 64-bit) with Triple Channel Memory (buy ‘matched triplets’). Make sure the Memory Speed is equal to the Bus Speed.

These aren’t typical Memory/Bus Speeds, but to make things simple to read/describe:

FSB = Front Side Bus.

  • If you’re CPU’s Bus Speed is 3000MHz, I would buy a Motherboard with a Bus Speed of 3000MHz. (To Match the Bus Speed of the CPU.)
  • If you’re going to use ‘Dual Channel’ Memory, I would buy Memory with a Speed of 1500MHz. (To Match the Bus Speed of the CPU & Motherboard.)
  • If you’re going to use ‘Triple Channel’ Memory, I would buy Memory with a Speed of 1000MHz. (To Match the Bus Speed of the CPU & Motherboard.)

32-bit versions of Windows can only address up to 4GB’s. Meaning that for Triple Channel operation, the System is stuck with a Maximum of 3GB’s. 64-bit Operating Systems love Memory, so 6GB’s would be best as the Minimum.

3GB’s = 3 Giga Bytes. (Good for measuring ‘Capacity or Space’.)
3GB/s = 3 Giga Bytes per Second. (Good for measuring ‘Data Transfer Speed’.)
3MHz = 3 Mega Hertz. (Also good for measuring ‘Data Transfer Speed’.)

RAM: 4GB seems to be enough for me. I've heard that 2x2GB would give better performance than a single 4GB. Is that right?

It depends on the Bus Speed of your CPU, Memory and Motherboard.

For example, if the System’s Bus Speed was 1600MHz (the CPU & Motherboard), and your Memory was capable of running at 1600MHz, then just one 4GB DIMM would be fine.

If the System’s Bus Speed was 1600MHz (the CPU & Motherboard), and your Memory was only capable of running at 800MHz, then 2x 2GB DIMM’s would be required, but they would also need to be placed in ‘Dual Channel’ Mode. (In this case, be sure that the Motherboard supports ‘Dual Channel’ Memory, and buy a ‘matched pair’.)

Your System’s Bus Speed depends on all three; CPU, Memory and Motherboard. What ever is the Lowest, will be your entire System’s Bus Speed.

Imagine it like this:

CPU Bus Speed = 1MHz.
Memory Speed = 2MHz.
Motherboard Speed = 3MHz.

In this case, your System’s overall Bus Speed (FSB), would be just 1MHz.

This is where n00bs will usually say, “Yeh’, like I said, you need Faster RAM!”. Then, you go out to buy the Fastest RAM money can buy, put it in your System, and notice that it has made absolutely no difference what so ever. (Because the System’s Bus Speed is still the same.) :smiley:

CPU cooling: I've thought about getting water cooling, as it's supposed to be way more effective than a fan, but how does it work?

It’s not “way more effective than a fan”, and I would advise you to buy a good quality Fan instead. If you want to make your self look special in front of n00bs, then go ahead, buy a Water Cooler. :smiley:

Also, it's okay if you want to give feedback on other components, or any other information. :)

If you want to make your parts last a long time, peel your eyes away from Water Cooling, and look at PSU’s. I would recommend a Low Power Tagan (450W).

N00b’s look for a cheep as possible, High Wattage PSU. They later believe that the reason their Hardware (CPU, Motherboard, Memory or HDD) has died, is because of, “not enough Cooling”. When its usually because of the cheep ‘dirty current’ PSU.

Pro’s look for an average priced ‘smooth current’ Low Wattage PSU.

Also, don’t get confused with ‘SATA 150 and SATA 300’. Many n00b’s believe that SATA 300 HDD’s are twice as fast as SATA 150 HDD’s. Just remember that the 150 is only the Maximum Interface Speed, and has nothing to do with the ‘throughput’ of the HDD.

HDD = Hard Disk Drive.

Imagine it like this:

Pro buy’s an expensive SATA I Car:
“I have a Car which has been designed to not break apart into little pieces if I reach the Speed of 150MPH. My Cars Engine will allow the Car to reach around 140MPH.”

N00b buy’s a cheep SATA II Car:
“I have a Car which has been designed to not break apart into little pieces if I reach the Speed of 300MPH. My Cars Engine will allow the Car to reach around 40MPH.”

Which Car is faster in this case? Exactly…

If you’re buying a HDD. I would recommend buying Two:

  • A Small Fast one (like a 36GB Raptor) for your Operating System and Applications.
  • A Big Slow one for all of your Data, Big Files and Backups etc.

If you can only afford One, get a Small Fast one. You can always buy a Big Slow one when the Prices fall again later.

I believe Abit, Asus and Gigabyte make good boards. :-TU

I never said the buffalo ram does not offer a 10 year guarantee, I said good companies offer lifetime guarantees on the ram.

I use Everest Ultimate to monitor my system and it’s also good.

My last system was liquid cooled. I loved it until the controller fried without warning. CPU was not happy… Of course, fans can also ■■■■ out, but of all the fan cooled systems I’ve owned, you tend to know when a fan is unhappy.

As for recommendations, I’ve always liked AMD CPUs. Generally you get more ■■■■ for your buck. I’ve run both nVidia and ATI cards with them and can’t say either of them performed better than the other with AMDs.

I’ve had good luck with ASUS and Gigabyte motherboards.

I like Thermaltake PSU’s and fans.

Arctic Silver is nice heat sink goo.

I have no real preference on HDDs.

RAM? Mushkin all the way. 8)

Too many cooks spoil the broth.

Everybody says “My system is great” " Your system is not good"


-AMD or Intel: Intel.
-Core:For the purpose of multitasking-Quad, otherwise Dual. I think you don’t need a Quad core.
-advantage(Quad): works great for multitasking. You can make your room worm and hot during winter.
-disadvantage(Quad):electric charges go High.
-32-bit or 64-bit: most of CPUs support 32, 64 both of them.

RAM:4GB fine, 2x2 better.

CPU cooling: You will not do extreme overclocking.
So you don’t need a water cooling system. Think about a car radiator.

Processor: AMD Phenom II 955 (+ Scythe Mugen 2 for cooling)
MB: Average AM3-board (ddr3), ~$120
Memory: 4GB of cheapest DDR3 1333MHz
Video: GeForce GTX260 55nm with cheapest brand
HDD: Cheapest 1GB SATAII with 32MB cache
PSU: Corsair CX400W, Corsair HX450 or Enermax Modu82+ 425W

[ How to fry an egg ]

Thats my department, JK lol ;D

But i would say get a SSD not a HDD.

I would also recommend ‘Arctic Silver’. :-TU

But don’t put too much on. When you apply it, just acknowledge the fact that you are about to fill-in the microscopic pockets of Air in between the CPU and Heatsink. The Air is what prevents the Heat from being transferred to the Heatsink. But too much goo will also prevent Heat from being transferred to the Heatsink; use a tiny amount.

Last time I looked at Small SSD’s, they were way too expensive. Though now, the prices seem to be coming down fast! ;D

[ Mtron Professional Series 16GB Solid State Drive ]

… The 32GB Model is currently around £100 in the UK. :-TU

If you want fish and chips, you’ll need something like ‘this’.