December 28, 2004

My Custom–Built PC

Right, it’s been 3 months in the making, finally companies have decided to make enough processors, motherboards and graphics cards that joe bloggs can actually find one to buy! Ordering everything on Christmas Eve Eve (23rd) wasn’t terribly smart, but it “should” all arrive by Friday:

Case: Coolermaster Stacker – Blue with Window and Crossflow Fan£149
Motherboard: Asus A8N SLI Deluxe£150 (had to pay a bit more to get one before term)Antec Silver Thermal Compound£7
Power Supply: Tagan 480W£67
Processor: AMD64 3500+ 90nm Winchester£197
RAM: OCZ EL DDR PC-3200 Dual Channel Platinum Rev 2 2×512MB PC3200 CL 2-2-2-5£175
Hard Drive 1: Western Digital Raptor 74GB 10,000RPM SATA 8MB Cache£118Secure Connect Serial ATA Cable£7
Hard Drive 2: Maxtor DiamondMax Plus 10 300GB SATA 16MB Cache£128
Graphics Card: Leadtek GeForce 6800 GT 256MB DDR3 TV-Out/Dual DVI£330 (will add a second 6800GT 6 months down the line)
DVD Writer: NEC ND3520 16×16 DVD±RW Dual Layer ReWriter£47
Keyboard: Microsoft Digital PS2/USB Media Pro Keyboard£20

Total: ~£1,400 with assorted delivery and unforseen costs.

Now all I need to do is wait in for courier men on Wednesday and Thursday too to collect it all! Oh, and it needs to be painstakingly built too and have all the software installed and tuned… then the overclocking can begin!

- 7 comments by 1 or more people Not publicly viewable

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  1. .


    28 Dec 2004, 09:11

  2. software?

    28 Dec 2004, 11:23

  3. amiles you annoying IP hopping bunny rabbit! Now you have a good computer maybe you can come get owned at UT2k4? ;-)

    Where are you buying the stuff from btw? I’m STILL trying to justify the spending of a mere £300 on CPU/mobo/gfx. Although if I do that I’ll have to get a new PSU as well (250W just doesn’t hack it, plus it’s making funny noises), and maybe a logitech MX 510 mouse, and maybe a new case.
    Hummm…that’s like, a new computer pretty much…call it £400 then.

    28 Dec 2004, 12:12

  4. I do hope you’ll be trying out 64-bit Linux on it. ;) It’ll keep your software costs down as well… although money doesn’t seem to be much of an issue here, and most people just find a pirated version of XP. Oh well.

    I find HDD No. 1 interesting – seems expensive for what it is. Is the cost because it’s a little bit faster? I’d probably have gone for a few identical drives, and set up a RAID array, or something, but I’m sure you know what you’re doing…

    28 Dec 2004, 12:26

  5. in reply to . – i have a 19” CRT already which I’ll “make do” with for now then upgrade as and when I have the money to upgrade, ie a 21” CRT (forget TFTs everyone)

    in reply to Nicholas Wake – well, everything that needs to be put on a PC before it works properly. Operating system and update, drivers for every bit of hardware, then things that you can’t do without. Such as video codecs, media players, games, benchmarking software :).

    in reply to the ever charming Simon – Yeah I played a bit of UT2K4 on my last machine but it wasn’t really up to the job, I can’t blame my tools for losing any more, though i get to be on speakfire’s team! Me and speakfire versus! I’m buying my stuff from: – Graphics Card, Hard Drives, DVD Writer – CPU – RAM and assorted cables
    Special – motherboard

    in reply to Timothy – Well I’ll dabble with a 64 bit linux distro I’m sure, but I’ll also try my hand at 64 bit Windows XP. 32 bit Windows XP Pro will feed all my gaming needs until enough 64 bit Windows software comes out to justify using it as my main OS. Also the 64bit Beta version of Longhorn will be due in May/June so I’ll experiment with that.

    Yeah the Raptor is expensive for it’s capacity but the higher transfer rate makes it a good candidate for holding the operating system(s) and program files. I will probably end up partitioning off 75GB of the 300GB drive and making a Raid 1 (mirroring) array of the raptor. Read performance will be marginally higher but having a back up of the OS and installed programs is very useful.

    The board thankfully supports 8 (eight) SATA drives and 2 PATA, so I can use my existing PATA drives to Raid 0 as much of the remaining 225GB I can. What I end up doing with partitions and RAID entirely depends on how many bright ideas I have between now and the end of the week :)

    28 Dec 2004, 12:55

  6. Alex M

    I’ll try my best to break it within the first week. I might actually nick the ND3520 – I actually bought some blanks on SVP Christmas Eve (24th) but don’t have a DVD writer yet.

    My dad has the Tagan 480W on my recommendation – it is a psu that is built to last, however when it’s in use it is a complete radiator.

    The case looks to be a complete beast, better rest it on the floor rather than the desk mate.

    When the SLI kicks in, it’ll totally cream my 9800 pro.

    I have a stick of OCZ pretty good stuff (I mix memory like a complete twit mind – 1GB dual channel 512 OCZ cheapo stuff and 2*256MB twinmos and adata even cheaper – runs at 2.5-3-3-7 or 2-3-3-7 if I can stomach a few memtest errors).

    Will look forward to seeing it in action.

    29 Dec 2004, 16:36

  7. Hey Alex nice to hear from ya. Thanks for the christmas card btw :). I have hit the world’s largest ever snag. The fact special reserve lied to me when they said they were despatching my motherboard, in fact it is now back ordered. Every component except the motherboard arrived today, but unfortunately the motherboard is kind of crucial.

    I have two orders for this motherboard now, one with CPUCity and one with Special Reserve, so it’s a race to see who’ll get my money. When I’m back you can see all the shiny components, just not in the case… lame huh.

    See ya next week.

    30 Dec 2004, 12:29

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