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Old 02-09-10, 04:08 PM   #1
logan
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Default Looking for suggestions on a lower priced AMD system

I recently moved my e8400+MSI P35 Platinum+gtx260 to a Cooler Master 922 HAF and I'd like to buy something equivalent to fill out my now unused case. I'm planning to use the e8400 for games (windows) and the new one as my main system running linux (probably with some gaming via native and wine). I've got 4*2GB DDR2-667 that I could split between the two and an 8800GT, all I need is the motherboard, processor, and psu. I'm going to go with a higher end ~650W power supply, but I was hoping to get the cpu and motherboard for less than $100 each. Something that would last me a few years or so. I'm not interested in SLI or Crossfire on either system. I actually thought about getting another e8400, but the prices are still up there. AMD seems to be my best bet.

I'll be bringing back my SB Live! and 3ware 9650se from the e8400, so I need a PCI slot and a 4-8x PCIe in addition to a 16x PCIe for video. I'd prefer the PCI slot not be directly under the 16x PCIe so I could actually use it with a dual height video card (a layout similar to the P35 Platinum would be best).


AMD Athlon II X4 620 (no L3) for $99 or a AMD Phenom II X2 550 for $91

Quad core would be kindof fun, but I think the 550 would be the best fit for me.

GIGABYTE GA-MA785G-UD3H for $90

This is one of the motherboards that mwave has and will build out and test as part of a mobo+cpu combo. I definitely wasn't as meticulous selecting this as I was when I chose my P35 Platinum. This selection was more influenced by what mwave has for motherboard combos. I've been buying assembled combos and barebone systems from them for about 10 years now and I'll probably stick with them for this build as well. I'm not necessarily looking for an upgrade path here, just something solid. It sounds like a good board (although I'm not familiar with AMD boards), has the features I want, and there's a decent amount of good reviews on newegg. My Crucial memory (CT25664AA667) isn't on their supported memory list, but it's worth a shot.

Corsair CMPSU-650HX for $120 or a Corsair CMPSU-620HX for $150

I have a Corsair HX520W right now and it's been great. I could save some money if I didn't go with a modular PSU, but I really like that.


I don't know if people will scoff at these selections as far as the usable life expectancy goes, but I think my e8400 and P35 Platinum still hold up pretty well to the newest hardware and they're both 2+ years old. I'd have to spend a hell of alot more than $180 to get a real bump and I'm just not interested in doing that right now. I'd much rather have a decent second system and then find a good buy in a few years time.
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Old 02-09-10, 04:16 PM   #2
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Default Re: Looking for suggestions on a lower priced AMD system

Relevant topic/shameless plug: http://www.nvnews.net/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=144489

And as far as the cpus are concerned, I really think the L3 cache is a hidden weapon that really helps tangible (not on paper, performance you can feel) performance, and I think at least a third core helps a lot.

I'd really like to see a benchmark of BattleField: Bad Company 2 and America's Army v3 with a Phenom II in x2, x3 and x4 configuration.
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Old 02-09-10, 04:33 PM   #3
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Default Re: Looking for suggestions on a lower priced AMD system

Yep, I was reading that and some of the other related, but some of the cpus are a bit lower than I was looking for and some boards suggested aren't sold anymore and others don't have a second PCIe 4-8x slot or a PCI slot I could use with a dual height video card.

The main thing I want to do is make sure I'm not going with an absolutely awful motherboard or miss out on something alot better that's only a few $ more. I'm certainly open on the processor, x3 and x4 (w/L3) seems like they'd push me above $100. The Phenom II X3 710 sounds nice, but it's not sold anymore. The only other X3 I looked at was the Phenom II X3 8750. It's about $20 cheaper, but only has 2MB L3. Are there any odd problems caused by the use of triple core processors?
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Old 02-09-10, 04:41 PM   #4
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Default Re: Looking for suggestions on a lower priced AMD system

The one motherboard I saw suggested in another thread (or two) that caught my eye was the GIGABYTE GA-MA790XT-UD4P. The only difference I see is the chipset and I don't know enough to say if it's worth the extra $20 (doesn't look like it at first glance).
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Old 02-09-10, 09:12 PM   #5
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Default Re: Looking for suggestions on a lower priced AMD system

If you can find the x3 720 anywhere I think it's the best bet for you.
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Old 02-09-10, 09:19 PM   #6
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Default Re: Looking for suggestions on a lower priced AMD system

The Phenom II x3 710 is still available for as low as $99.

http://www.google.com/products?q=Phe...N&hl=en&tab=wf
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Old 02-09-10, 10:02 PM   #7
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Default Re: Looking for suggestions on a lower priced AMD system

Neither seller with the x3 710 at $99 has it anymore. Anand's benchmarks put the 710 and 720 pretty even with the e8400, but the 720 is $40-60 more than the x2 550 (oem for ~105, but then I need a cooler). The benchmarks of the x2 550 I've seen are close to the e7500 and that's pretty close to the e8400. I think the 550 is probably the best bang for my buck..
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Old 02-10-10, 12:12 PM   #8
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Default Re: Looking for suggestions on a lower priced AMD system

I ordered the X2 550, the GA-MA785G-UD3H, and the CMPSU-620HX.
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Old 02-10-10, 01:50 PM   #9
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Default Re: Looking for suggestions on a lower priced AMD system

If you have a microcenter near you they sell the 720 for $119.
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