Getting ready for first build, Need advice.

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Tim_IN

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Edit - I have posted this in the wrong spot if a moderator can move it please. Sorry I didn't see where to put it before.

I'm getting ready to technically build my first PC. I've taken a lot apart and put them back together, but never from scratch. I'm wondering what I should specifically be careful about, and if anyone has any suggestions or tips for a first time build. Below is what I have purchased and links to product information.

XFX nForce 680i LT SLI MB
Intel Core 2 Duo E4600
Thermaltake Silent 775D CPU Fan
GeForce 7300GT
Corsair TWINX 2048MB PC6400 DDR2 800MHz E.P.P.
WD 160GB SATA HD
Ultra 600w Powersupply

Thanks in advance, and just as an added note I'm going to be running Windows XP Professional.
 
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Not a big fan of Ultra Power Supplies. Cheap, and cheaper performance. Spend some extra money on a decent Power Supply. Other than that the only other thing I would say is that I'm not a big fan of XFX for motherboards either.
 

Tim_IN

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Hmm I figured ultra were half way decent since a buddy uses them all the time, I'll look into it though. What brands do you recommend?

XFX MB's haven't let me down in the past so I'm partial to them. ;)
 
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I've been an Antec person for a while - their power supplies are pretty good, and they're relatively affordable. Some other people recommend other brands, but I stick with Antec :)

XFX isn't bad, but it just wouldn't be my first, second, or third choice in motherboard brand selection.
 

Tim_IN

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I'll check them out :) Thanks for the advice....

Just out of curiousity are 2 of your top three ASUS and Intel? My HP has an Intel board but has slowly started crapping out. Thats what drove me away from Intel when choosing this.
 
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How old is your HP? Intel has superior stability and resilience when it comes to hardware components, no one can deny that. Remember, the typical fail rate for any hardware component is ~5% - and that's on really good brands such as Intel, etc. So if you happen to get one that's bad, you feel stemmed for life from buying that brand. When you look at another brand like say - Raidmax - their fail rates are far higher, ~10-20% which just shows a manufacturer/hardware issue.

Intel would be my first choice in a non-power situation, such as a workstation, some gaming, etc. But I'd go with ASUS, Gigabyte, and ABit with a more powerful setup.

Admittedly, in recent months I've been out of the hardware scene, so new brands may have emerged since.
 
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I'll just throw in my two cents here.

I'm working on a very similar build for a new gaming machine.

I've chosen the same 680i LT board from XFX, since it's gotten stellar reviews all over the web as a great value board that gives excellent gaming performance. Price is good too. Got mine for $100.

Also, I've had nothing but awesome experience with Ultra PSU's. I find them to be a great balance of price, performance and functionality. There are other great brands out there (such as Antec), but Ultra PSU's continually get great reviews, too. I find them to be very underrated.

I like the rest of your component choices, but the video card seems to be a bit weak.

Are you going to do any gaming? If so, you'd be much better off with something like an 8600GT. You can find them for about $70 online now, which makes them a great budget card that's still capable of giving decent performance.
 

Tim_IN

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The HP I have is 4 years old *bought from Cicuit City* It's an A410n. Now that I read your post and mine I'm wondering if I was right on it being an intel board lol. Out of the blue though my USB ports stopped working (even the one on the front) and the card reader where it plugs into the board is no good either. I checked the card reader in a friends PC to make sure that worked. When that failed and started having heat issues I decided it was time to replace.
 

Tim_IN

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@ Jones

The Vid card is weak :( But I'm not looking to upgrade it till mid summer when I may upgrade to a quad core processor. I do game some, and I stress some, but my HP with that 5500fx never let me down. The MAIN reason for the computer being built is to head off my crashing and leaving me stranded without being able to do my school work. I go to school online so a computer is a must....granted this is "overkill" for what I do with school lol.


I'm glad to see you chose the same MB :D I read a lot about it before deciding to use that board. Every review I've read as marked it as a great addition for a tight budget. I read one fairly indepth view at http://www.overclockersclub.com/reviews/xfx_680_lt/ even though it's almost a year old I found the review very helpful.
 
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@ Jones

The Vid card is weak :( But I'm not looking to upgrade it till mid summer when I may upgrade to a quad core processor. I do game some, and I stress some, but my HP with that 5500fx never let me down. The MAIN reason for the computer being built is to head off my crashing and leaving me stranded without being able to do my school work. I go to school online so a computer is a must....granted this is "overkill" for what I do with school lol.
what OS are you planning on? you dont mention ram i dont think
btw another good psu is coolermaster
 

Tim_IN

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It's not in my sig as I see I forgot it but it's in the first post but here ya go :)

Corsair TWINX 2048MB PC6400 DDR2 800MHz E.P.P.

Windows XP Professional is the OS I plan to use. I've been looking at Windows Vista but I want the Ultimate edition so I will wait on that. I'm also not sure if I'm even ready for that change :p I didnt want to upgrade from ME to XP lol.
 
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@ Jones

The Vid card is weak :( But I'm not looking to upgrade it till mid summer when I may upgrade to a quad core processor. I do game some, and I stress some, but my HP with that 5500fx never let me down. The MAIN reason for the computer being built is to head off my crashing and leaving me stranded without being able to do my school work. I go to school online so a computer is a must....granted this is "overkill" for what I do with school lol.


I'm glad to see you chose the same MB :D I read a lot about it before deciding to use that board. Every review I've read as marked it as a great addition for a tight budget. I read one fairly indepth view at http://www.overclockersclub.com/reviews/xfx_680_lt/ even though it's almost a year old I found the review very helpful.
Gotcha. Well, depending on how much you're spending on the 7300 card you posted, it might not be worth it. Those are REALLY low end cards.

But hey, if you're planning on doing another upgrade in the summer, I'd consider this card:
http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/EVGA/GeForce_8800_GS
It's a fantastic blend of great performance and excellent price. I just picked one up on an Easter weekend sale for $108. Plus if you overclock it (as I am planning to do :D ), you can get the same performance as an 8800GT, which costs about $80 more. :)

Here's another good review on the motherboard that I used to help make my purchase decision:
http://www.bjorn3d.com/read.php?cID=1083


Cheers bud!
 

Tim_IN

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After everything was said and done I only paid about $25 for the card. I justified it because of that lol. That GeForce 8800 looks nice :D
 
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