What to buy and where from?

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by ray_gillespie, Dec 29, 2004.

  1. ray_gillespie

    ray_gillespie Moderator Staff Member Political User

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    Hi people.
    I'm gonna be upgrading my computer in the next few weeks, and wondered if you guys had any info for me. I've decided on an Athlon 64, at least 3000 but possibly up to 3400. I'm not sure what motherboard to get though, and I don't have that much money to spend. Where do you guys get stuff from (bear in mind that I'm in the UK)? Novatech always used to be a good option for me, but they don't seem to be as good as they used to, and I can't get to any computer fairs for the near future.
    Can anyone recommend a good mobo/cpu/ram set up?
    Cheers in advance. :up:
     
  2. ray_gillespie

    ray_gillespie Moderator Staff Member Political User

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    Cheers I'm just having a look now.
    Also, I forgot to mention, it's gotta be AGP no pci-express cos I wanna keep my geforce 4 graphics card for at least another 4 or 5 months.
     
  3. tommy

    tommy OSNN Member

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    www.microdirect.co.uk
    This site has always been good for me with next day delivery, when i got my 64 processor :)
     
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  4. Electronic Punk

    Electronic Punk Administrator Staff Member Political User Folding Team

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  5. ray_gillespie

    ray_gillespie Moderator Staff Member Political User

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    I've been looking at these mobos here:
    http://store.over-clock.com/Athlon64_Motherboards.html
    (Thanks to EP for the link)

    I'm still slightly confused however. Why are there so many Abit motherboards there? My existing one is Abit and it's been great so I'd get another, but which one?

    Oh yeah, and is it worth getting nforce 2 or 3?
     
  6. Electronic Punk

    Electronic Punk Administrator Staff Member Political User Folding Team

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    Ok, lets have a look... :D

    First two are socket 939
    Third, forth and fifth ones are socket 754

    I *think* as you want between 3000 and 3400 you will need 754 (could be wrong)

    either way, that should narrow the field a little.
     
  7. ShepsCrook

    ShepsCrook Red Sox Fan!

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    I'd go with Socket 939 actually. A good processor would be the 3200+ 939 90nm Winchester Core. They are top notch. If I were you, I'd go with Nforce3. The best boards for Socket 939 are the MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum, and one of the Gigabyte boards. The Gigabyte board is or was $200 when I was looking and the MSI was only $150 and they both performed about the same.

    If you wanted to save some cash but still be 939, then you could go with the 3000+ 939 90nm chip and that would be a little less.
     
  8. ShepsCrook

    ShepsCrook Red Sox Fan!

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    I'd go with Socket 939 actually. A good processor would be the 3200+ 939 90nm Winchester Core. They are top notch. If I were you, I'd go with Nforce3. The best boards for Socket 939 are the MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum, and one of the Gigabyte boards. The Gigabyte board is or was $200 when I was looking and the MSI was only $150 and they both performed about the same.

    If you wanted to save some cash but still be 939, then you could go with the 3000+ 939 90nm chip and that would be a little less.

    Also, as far as ram goes. The best ram for Neforce3 boards like the MSI K8N Neo2 is any ram that has the Samsung TCCD chips in it. Generally OCZ EL Platinum, Crucial Ballistix, and a few others are all the same chips with these samsung chips. The timings usually are 2.2.2.5

    If you are looking to stretch your money for what it's worth, and overclock your processor, then you'd want a good heatsink and fan setup. the XP-90 and XP-120 by Thermalright are excellent coolers, as well as the Zalman CNPS7000B-Cu.

    Topped with some Arctic Silver 5 and you're looking at a very nice machine.
     
  9. ShepsCrook

    ShepsCrook Red Sox Fan!

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    Sorry for the double post. I hit Edit bit it just added the 2nd post with the added information instead of just adding the information in. Someone Delete the first post...
     
  10. Electronic Punk

    Electronic Punk Administrator Staff Member Political User Folding Team

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    Ah ok, wasn't sure if they were still doing those "speeds" on the 939. Tended to block out 939 from my head as I jumped in and went for 754 ;D

    Tho in the grand scheme of how I do my upgrades, it does mean I can get the next one ;D
     
  11. Sazar

    Sazar F@H - Is it in you? Staff Member Political User Folding Team

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    they have sckt 939 cpu's for all the processors now I think EP...

    best route would be to go the dual channel route IMO... though dual channel really does not make a massive difference on a64 setups.
     
  12. ShepsCrook

    ShepsCrook Red Sox Fan!

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    It is rather pointless for Dual Channel because of the onboard memory controller that the AMD64s have. That's why Enhanced Latency is a much better way to go for ram then Dual Channel.
     
  13. Sazar

    Sazar F@H - Is it in you? Staff Member Political User Folding Team

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    buzz words == cha-ching :cool:
     
  14. ray_gillespie

    ray_gillespie Moderator Staff Member Political User

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    Cool, well thanks everyone for the advice. There's a lot of stuff here tho, it's gonna take me a while to get my head round it all. I'm still slightly confused about the different types of athlon64 chips etc. I'm not fussed about overclocking either, so I'm not sure how much cash to spend on the mobo. Is it still worth getting a good one like the MSI neo platinum thing that was mentioned, even if I don't O/C it? Bear in mind I'm looking at about £200 for mobo chip + ram. (poss. slightly more if needs be).
    Cheeers.
     
  15. Elektro Slime

    Elektro Slime Harware Guru

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    yup as ShepsCrook said A64s benefit more from enhanced latency ram then from dual channel. but dual channel is a must have for Intels, also intel doesnt seem to mind slightly looser timings as well.

    ray_gillespie since u mentioned wanting to save some $$$ so its better to get a 754 rig.

    here r some prices for 754 cpus:
    3000+ $147
    3200+ 512kb L2 cache- $192
    3200+ 1mb- $182
    3400+ 512kb- $222
    3400+ 1mb $219

    on 939:
    3200+ -$181
    3500+ $267

    prices in USD, please convert to pounds.

    as you can see price diff for the CPUs b/w the two sockets are minute but 754 mobos are a lot cheaper then 939.

    also go for a nforce chipset rather then via, chaintech makes some nice boards. Prices should be around $100.
     
  16. ray_gillespie

    ray_gillespie Moderator Staff Member Political User

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    Why do the cpus with more cache cost less?
     
  17. ShepsCrook

    ShepsCrook Red Sox Fan!

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    Because they are an older style CPU. The Clawhammer core was 1mb cache, whereas the Newcastle and Winchester Cores are 512kb. Most reviews and studies have found that the 1MB cache is only usefull in very specific programs and doesn't give that much extra gain.

    And yes, it would be sensible to go with a nice board. The Asus AV8 board is also a nice 939 board to go with but the Nforce3 MSI board is better. I have heard great things about the Asus AV8 and I personally have an MSI K8N Neo2 Plat. And love it.
     
  18. ray_gillespie

    ray_gillespie Moderator Staff Member Political User

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    That's great info, thanks everyone. Should get me started at least :)
     
  19. Elektro Slime

    Elektro Slime Harware Guru

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    as as ShepsCrook said, their prices are higher coz they are older and are in short supply.

    ray_gillespie you said your budget was £200 , so heres what i recomend getting, BTW these are all on the socket 754:

    -A64 3200+ 1mb cache (clwhammer) -$182
    -either a Chaintech nForce3 250 (754) VNF3-250 mobo-$73
    or a DFI nForce3 250 (754) LanParty UT- $109
    -Corsair PC-3200 512MB XMS -$100

    that brings us to a total of about £182 (with the Chaintech borad) or £201 (DFI board).

    Now as you can see from above the ram is only 512mb, look at post #13 on this thread.
    I went for the XMS ram instead of value as its got better latency so itll give you better performance. to add another stick of the ram will cost you £51 more, well worth it IMO.