Which mobo/vid card to go with...

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mcseguy9

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Hey all,

So I'm getting ready to buy some new stuff from Newegg and I need help deciding between two possibilities. They have this mobo/video card combo - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813138051 - which I do like. However, I had already chosen the following mobo - http://www.newegg.com/product/product.asp?item=N82E16813130060 - and the following separate video card - http://www.newegg.com/product/product.asp?item=N82E16814102041.

The combo mobo supports twice as much memory as the MSI mobo, twice as many PATA drives, but doesn't have better built-in sound. The nVidia card that comes with the combo looks good except that it has half the memory as the ATI card I have chosen.

What do you guys and gals think? Which of these two setups is better?
 
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The MSI and the X1600Pro would be my suggestion. Biostar's aren't exactly high end boards. MSI's are generally OK.

Either way, however, picking an Intel chipset is a good move. Neighter of those video cards is bad--why not the MSI and the 7600GS?

If you're looking to match the drive and memory capacity of Biostar, take a look at Intel boards. Excellent quality, you can put any PCIex16 card in them, and Intel on Intel is always a good choice.

Are you reusing PATA drives? The P965 chipset isn't coming with native IDE support anymore. There is a third party driver now. Going all SATA (including opticals) is recommended now.
 

mcseguy9

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Thanks for the suggestions. I'm not planning on reusing a PATA drive, I just noticed that difference between the two mobo's. Since you like the MSI board better, how about your take on the two different vid cards? I really like the fact that the ATI one has 512 MB RAM. It also boasts faster clock speeds than the 7600GS. What do you think?
 
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That was an error in my post. That X1600PRO would likely stomp the 7600GS.

A consideration with MSI--2GB of RAM, with Vista coming up and games getting more and more hungry for memory, might be limiting yourself more than you want. That's a good board, I think, but getting a bigger RAM capacity for future expansion might work out better for you.

I like the MSI better because it's not a Biostar. I would seriously recommend that you look at ASUS and Intel with the same chipset you've selected. I think you'll get more bang for your buck that way. The X1600PRO is an excellent GPU, though.
 

mcseguy9

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Okay, cool. So the vid card is set. Regarding the mobo, check out this other one I can select from. I'm basically trying to spend no more than $75 while getting as many SATA II ports as possible, DDR2 667 MHz RAM up to 4 GB w/dual channel support, and FSB of 1066/800 MHz. Oh yeah, and support for core 2 duo for later on. This seems to be the best my budget can support. Let me know what you think about this one compared with the others. Regarding Vista, I'm pretty sure I won't be going to that for a few years. I literally just went to XP maybe a year ago. However, I see your point. I really appreciate your help and insight in this matter.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813135208
 
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No no--you're going DOWN in the quality ladder here.

You'd be better off with the Biostar than that. I would avoid ECS.

Try to push just a little harder and get yourself a board you'll be satisfied with. The extra $30 to $50 will seem like nothing when your board is running strong in 5 or even 10 years. Once you bite on one of these things, you're stuck with it, so try to think long term about it. You're on the right track, but ECS, PC Chips, Jetway, Machspeed--those are the boards that we specifically name as "don't buy" boards.
 

mcseguy9

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Check this out:

BIOSTAR TFORCE 550 Socket AM2 NVIDIA nForce 550 MCP ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
AMD Athlon 64 X2 3600+ Brisbane 1.9GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM2 Processor - OEM

Original price: $183.99
Discount: -$20.00
Combo Price: $163.99

This is a combo and it looks pretty good. Would an AMD dual core setup like this be better overall? I'm mostly thinking about how it will perform in America's Army versus a straight P4 3.0 GHz processor single core. It seems like it will and it will be a little bit more future proof, perhaps.
 

mcseguy9

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Joined
Jun 11, 2001
Messages
387
Check this out:

BIOSTAR TFORCE 550 Socket AM2 NVIDIA nForce 550 MCP ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail

AMD Athlon 64 X2 3600+ Brisbane 1.9GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM2 Processor - OEM

Original price: $183.99
Discount: -$20.00
Combo Price: $163.99

This is a combo and it looks pretty good. Would an AMD dual core setup like this be better overall? I'm mostly thinking about how it will perform in America's Army versus a straight P4 3.0 GHz processor single core. It seems like it will and it will be a little bit more future proof, perhaps.
 
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Messages
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The best overall setup currently would be a Core 2 Duo Intel dual core, currently.

What you have will torch a P4 even at 3.0 Ghz. The Core 2 Duo, however, will have a minimum 2 x 1MB L2 cache, which is going to boost your performance significantly. That's a great price for a pretty good setup you're looking at here. But you might want to hold off and save a little more and go Intel on C2D or ASUS on C2D.

Then you'll be much more future-proofed--although the idea of future proofing is a little bit of wishful thinking, things change constantly without any warning.

This is a good setup you're looking at. I wouldn't complain about owning it. But if it were me, I'd try really hard to come up with the green to lay down for the C2D.
 

mcseguy9

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Joined
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Messages
387
Alright ladies and gents, I have the new system built and up and running. It is amazing compared to what I've been running. And from the perspective of playing America's Army I have never played on a machine that runs the game so well. It's great. Here are all the components:

Foxconn 3GTS001-W-NP White Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
SAPPHIRE 100145ADVL Radeon X1600PRO 512MB GDDR2 PCI Express x16 CrossFire Video Card
AMD Athlon 64 X2 3600+ Brisbane 1.9GHz Socket AM2 Processor Model ADO3600IAA5DL
ASUS M2NPV-VM Socket AM2 NVIDIA GeForce 6150 Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
DYNAPOWER USA EP-50X.C563-BX ATX12V 500W Power Supply
NEC 18X DVD±R DVD Burner With 12X DVD-RAM Write Beige E-IDE / ATAPI Western Digital Caviar SE WD2500JS 250GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive
WINTEC AMPO 1GB (2 x 512MB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model 3AMD2800-1G1K-R
 
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