Originally Posted by jnev_89
dfi ultra-d or msi nforce4 mobo-$150-200
a64 3200 winchester- $200-230
1gb (depends if you oc or not)- between $150-300
that should be around 1k. the ram you should get really depends on if you want to oc or not.
Very good reccomendation, i second that.
Those two mobos are definately the top dogs, but the DFI does edge out the MSI in 9/10 tests by a tiny margin, ranging from 1% to 4% performance gains. But the MSI has better onboard sound.
As for the CPU, the 3200 winchester is your best bet now, best price/performance ratio while being in the top end of the gaming CPUs. But if you can wait, i would get a Venice core A64. It's got a tiny performance boost on top of the Winchester and supports the SSE3 instruction set unlike the winchester. But what's remarkable about it is it's overclockability.
Here's a good read about it: http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu...64-venice.html
In that article, they managed to get their Venice up to 2.88GHz on mediocre air. Imagine what it can hit on high end air or water.
As for the ram, as ive said countless times, low latency memory works the best with A64 due to much reduced latencies between the CPU and the memory controller due to it being on die instead of in the NB. for now, the best ram for this is the OCZ VX stuff, which is a very good competitor to the old BH-5 chips or any ram with the Samsung TCCD chips. For the best TCCD ram, i would reccomend the OCZ PC3200 Platinum Rev.2 sticks, but Corsair XL stuff is cheaper and does come very close to the OCZ stuff and is much more widely available (cant get OCZ in alot of places outside of the states).
As for the size, 1GB is pretty much a must nowadays for the new games, such as WoW, HL2, Doom3 and if the original BF1942 was any indicator, BF2 would gobble up enourmous amounts of system memory (1GB should suffice, dont worry about upgrading to 2GB, it's not worth it in gaming).
A Nvidia 6X00 card would be the best choice for a Nforce4 SLI mobo since that's what u already paid for the SLI function. You could probobly buy another 6800GT later on for an upgrade.
Anyway, the power supply thing was also a very valid argument. Gaming PC's power requirements are shooting through the roof now and with that 6x00 card, power requirements shoudl be much higher.
I would suggest you search up the Overclockulator to estimate how much power your system will draw. If you cant find it, PM me and ill find a way to send it to u.
As for cooling, yea, the XP line from Thermalright coupled with a good fan cant be beaten.