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Spec me a PC (Mac user)

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by TheMeekon, 24 Sep 2009.

  1. TheMeekon

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 24 May 2004

    Posts: 1,869

    Location: Manchester

    Hi all

    Spec me: Just a base unit

    Budget 600 pound

    Monitor: Apple cinema 20" 1650 x 1050 (I think). Planning on 2 x Dell 2209WA 22"

    Been out of the PC building for a long time. Currently selling my Mac laptop before it de-values anymore and fancy a bit of a gaming PC which I can also use for some out of work Maya/3Ds Max and photoshop/after effects.

    I first decided on:

    http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=FS-198-OK&groupid=43&catid=1444&subcat=

    But I am now thinking maybe I want something that will last a bit longer. I am open to either Intel/AMD with no loyalties but I have had problems with ATI twice. This was 1999 and 2005 but I am willing to give them another chance if the price is good!

    If Overclockers can offer me a system built at a similar price I would rather take that as I am very short for time and really cannot be dealing with faulty parts right now.

    Also on the FX front I was maybe thinking of picking up a cheap card of the MM with everyone going mad for pointless upgrades!

    Hope someone can help!

    Chris
     
  2. cmndr_andi

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2009

    Posts: 12,040

    Location: Glasgow

    If you want to stick with pre-built systems, then this one would be a good bet, though spending the extra £21 on an upgrade to a 4870 is a good idea. This is a bit over budget, and comes with no OS.

    If you want it on budget, then this PC with Windows 7 is a very good deal.

    However, my suggestion would always be to build yourself- you get exactly what you want, its cheaper and more fun.
     
  3. TheMeekon

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 24 May 2004

    Posts: 1,869

    Location: Manchester

    The second system looks pretty good. How does this compare to the Intel i5 and core duo2 processors? Can you unlock more cores on that processor (just noticed this).

    I actually just saw another build you posted:

    Very tempting to have a bash at building that, working out a similar price with removing the monitor and a cheaper case.

    Thanks
     
  4. cmndr_andi

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2009

    Posts: 12,040

    Location: Glasgow

    The Phenom X2 550BE is a bit faster than a e7400 at stock, and in general a very good processor at a low price. It doesn't really compare to an i5 as it is half the price and only a Dual core, but in games which aren't multithreaded (most of them) then the performance difference will be small (most of the time games are limited by the graphics card before the CPU becomes fully tested).

    You can unlock cores on the X2 550BE, but turning it into a tri/quad core is not guaranteed. The 550 is basically an X4 955 with cores disabled, this can mean that they are fully functional and one unlocked you have a quad core phenom 2. However, on many occasions one or more of the cores are damaged, these cores can then be locked down and sold as dual cores. If you get one of these, they you will not be able to get the power of the extra cores. So basically, its a nice easter egg - but don't make your plan based on getting extra cores, its the luck of the draw.

    As for my i5 build spec, nice find :D

    I took the liberty of turning it into a fully realised specification. It is £117 over budget, but i'm sure you will agree, rather cool:

    [​IMG]
     
  5. TheMeekon

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 24 May 2004

    Posts: 1,869

    Location: Manchester

    Thanks again for a informative reply.

    Just realised I have 750Gb Seagate from an old HTPC setup that I can use so that knocks 50 quid off.

    I am seriously tempted at picking those parts up and maybe picking up an FX card off the MM. I am sure a 4890 will do me for now.

    That would knock it down to 466.01 + 100 for a second hand card.

    Taken a week off work next week so maybe I should build it.

    You are 100% these parts are compatible? :)

    Are the I5's easy enough to overclock? A cheeky 3.0Ghz would satisfy me.

    Thanks again
     
  6. Franksi

    Gangster

    Joined: 8 Jul 2009

    Posts: 311

    i suspect that you could get 3 GHz out of that without breaking a sweat mate
     
  7. TheMeekon

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 24 May 2004

    Posts: 1,869

    Location: Manchester

    Right I have decided to go with building it next week.

    Cant decide on this:

    [​IMG]

    Or

    [​IMG]

    How is the coolermaster PSU? The corsair seems to get good review for the 20 quid extra. Also it worth getting 6Gb of memory? I use 4Gb at work and my system is sluggish now and again (probably because its a dell.)

    First PC since moving into my own place so saving every penny counts!

    Also is there any problems with the combination's I have chosen, really don't want any hassle.

    Thanks
     
  8. cmndr_andi

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2009

    Posts: 12,040

    Location: Glasgow

    The coolermaster PSU is a perfectly serviceable piece of kit, but you are right that the corsair is higher quality. If you don't mind sopending the extra £20, then it is a good investment.

    I suggest not going for the 3x2GB RAM as it is designed for triple-channel X58 (i7) platforms, not P55 (i5) which is dual channel. This means that if you put in all the RAM then it would only run in single channel mode, which is not good at all. 4GB is plenty for most modern applications, if you are editing massive photoshop images or running virtual machines, then you may require more RAM. However, in your current situation I suspect it is something other than the RAM which is causing the sluggishness, what is the spec?

    If you do want more than 4GB RAM then get two 4GB (2x2GB) DDR3 kits (like the one in the first spec) and run all four sticks together. It will run properly in dual channel mode - however more RAM sticks put more strain on the memory controller and will limit any overclock. Also, you may need to drop the RAM speeds down to get all 4 sticks working.
     
  9. TheMeekon

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 24 May 2004

    Posts: 1,869

    Location: Manchester

    Right I see, didn't even think about the triple channel. Dual channel it is then with extra memory if required.

    We have Dell machines at work and we have had a few problems. I have gone through 2, one that was constantly locking up and corrupting the HD and this second one generally ****es me off.

    Specs are:

    Q9400 stock
    3Gb Ram as we run XP 32bit due to in house software.
    9800GT - always playing up with dual monitors.

    Not sure about the rest. Just feels fairly sluggish at times running Maya and Photoshop. Its never anything to intensive as its mainly handheld game development so textures never exceed 512x512. Think the IT department on about overhauling the lot anyways.

    Ok so I think I will go for the Coolermaster if its fine and decide on wether I need the new ATI or a 4890 will do.
     
  10. TheMeekon

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 24 May 2004

    Posts: 1,869

    Location: Manchester

    Good to go

    Anyone see any problems before I order?

    Got a HD and a 4890 at home to go with it.

    [​IMG]

    ta
     
  11. cmndr_andi

    Capodecina

    Joined: 23 Apr 2009

    Posts: 12,040

    Location: Glasgow

    Looks fantastic, no problems at all.

    Have fun building it :)
     
  12. MCH

    Gangster

    Joined: 28 Sep 2009

    Posts: 334

    Location: London

    if u like cloth mats like that then get the Steelseries qck or qck+ , much better but a minute change :p
     
  13. TheMeekon

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 24 May 2004

    Posts: 1,869

    Location: Manchester

    R... Ordered now tho, had the large mousemat before and was impressed for how cheap it was, gets very grubby tho :(

    Will check out your suggestion though.

    Thanks peeps.