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Old 12-03-2006, 01:43 PM   #1
Decado
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Concensus on DX10 preparation?

Buy to upgrade or buy to replace? Is it possible/reasonable to buy a current system with the intention of upgrading the video card and OS in a year (or less)? Or does compatability with MOBOs, CPU, RAM etc. and power usage become a factor?

Obviously I've held off getting a new system (turns out I won't be moving until Jan. or so of next year). But now that is only a month away I'm looking again. Seems the X1800XT has disappeared (or the 256mb one has, anyway). What do people think of the X1950 PRO? Tomshardware seems to like it, does anyone here have that card?
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Old 12-03-2006, 03:40 PM   #2
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If you buy the right hardware, then yes, you could realistically just upgrade the video card and OS later. Therefore, the compatibility between CPU, mobo, memory and power supply is the most important for your initial purchases since all of those suitable for DX10 are available now.

Get a good dual core CPU, compatible mobo, sufficient memory and power supply.

Unfortunately, I went about it this way: purchased a decent video card, CPU and power supply, which would be replaced, but acquired a mobo and memory to be kept. My mistake came when the single core CPU I selected two months ago incorporated a 939 socket and the upgraded dual core CPU I just bought utilized a AM2 socket. Furthermore, every AM2 mobo out there has the 4x240 pin configuration for DDR2 memory. Because of this, I had to needlessly replace the mobo and memory.

I haven't looked into the X1950 Pro video cards, so I can't tell you one way or another if they are worth it.

Edit: In terms of Vista maximum memory, I forgot to add this when finding an appropriate motherboard:

32bit versions - all 4gb mobo

64bit home basic - 8gb mobo
64bit home premium - 16gb mobo
64bit other versions 128gb+ mobo

So get yourself a 8GB or 16GB mobo if you want 64bit.
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Old 12-03-2006, 03:48 PM   #3
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nah, just wait till ATI releases their DX10 cards in Febuary I heard now cause they couldn't make the release date of Jan 30th or something like that.

not that far of a wait really.

But I have a question for some of you compuwizs, before I buy my mother board, which socket is actually the best to get in terms of upgrading in the future, I'm looking at AM2, but I have no clue about this kind of stuff cause I've always just bought my computers from stores prebuild, but I want to build my next computer, since it is actually cheaper to build a high computer yourself then buy one from a store.
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Old 12-03-2006, 04:57 PM   #4
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In terms of upgrading, AM2 currently offers more options than 939. Use the maximum memory supported example with motherboards and Vista if you want 64bit.

Check out Newegg and select AMD compatible 939 socket motherboards. Out of 68 total, only 3 allow for 8GB of max memory support - all the others are 2-4GB. So if you plan on getting Vista Home or Premium, and you want to maximize memory, you don't have many options.

On the other hand, AM2 socket motherboards range between 8GB-32GB of max memory support. As it seems, AM2 is the way to go.
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Last edited by Daniel4802; 12-03-2006 at 05:09 PM.
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Old 12-03-2006, 05:01 PM   #5
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What does Vista need 16GB of ram for?!
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Old 12-03-2006, 05:10 PM   #6
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By all means no OS should need that. But with Vista, and M$'s attempts to out doing Apple, they made a very Ram hungry "Aroa" Os. And for no good reason at all other then to try and look pretty like a Mac. Not even Apple 64Bit OSes, which run more stable and are pretty dang fast, require such over the top spechs for even home use.
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Old 12-03-2006, 05:10 PM   #7
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Well, I rephrased the statement. Vista Premium edition's maximum memory support is up to 16GB.
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Old 12-03-2006, 06:38 PM   #8
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Alright Spider, after a break, I came back to give you a bit more info on 939 compared to its current replacement, AM2 in terms of performance.

One of the reasons why AM2 has become so popular is because it uses DDR2 memory instead of DDR(1) memory.

To see a good yet lengthy article on the differences between 939 and AM2, check out this link:
http://www.tomshardware.com/2006/05/...nvents_itself/

I hope it helps explain things from a performance angle.
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Old 12-03-2006, 07:28 PM   #9
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but as far as I know, DDR1 in Dual-Channel mode is comparable to DDR2. Also, what's so significant about the max memory an OS can support?
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Old 12-03-2006, 07:29 PM   #10
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If you have to upgrade right now then go with the intel Core Duo for a cpu. Try to get 2gigs of ram, and also as a video card just grab the cheap 7600GT. Brilliant card and not that expensive. Will run majority of games at full detail or almost max. The first big DX10 game isnt out till april or a bit later <crysis>, so your dx10 upgrade shouldnt be till about may/june.
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Old 12-04-2006, 11:17 AM   #11
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After doing a bit more research, I decided to make a change and void my order from Newegg. For a while I have been purchasing AMD CPUs and nVidia video cards. However, from what has been consistent with various benchmark tests is that the best current setup is an Intel CPU (Intel Core 2 Duo or Extreme) and ATI video card (X1900). So come time to upgrade, I'll be placing my bets on getting an Intel CPU and most likely the ATI R600.

Oh, Burpingcat, some corporations require larger memory demands from their OSs and motherboards. For us gamers, it's a non-issue.
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Old 12-04-2006, 12:06 PM   #12
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Good choice on a card. Make sure to get ATI tray tools and increase the fan speed at temperatures as the cards default fan speed are too low and causes it to overheat, though when you hear how loud the fan is you'll know why they are set low. The card overclocks fairly well as long as you got good ventilation in your case.
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Old 12-04-2006, 12:48 PM   #13
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With the full tower case your getting I imagine air flow wont be to hard to achieve once you get some fans in there. Some good fans I found are Cooler Master's CrossFlow Fans.



These things push a very wide angle of air. Covering 2x-3x the air space a normal fan would. They also push more air them my thickest 120mm fan with easily half the noise. And while they are deigned to fit only in CoolerMaster's own cases, they are very easily modified to fit almost any case. Such as drilling two simple holes in its casing to allow you to screw it on you motherboard tray.



Others simply make them own stands (out of wood or something) and place the fan on their door so it'll blow on the Ram, Motherboard, graphics card, ect.
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Old 12-04-2006, 01:19 PM   #14
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I had added a fan to my Intel setup wishlist because a good number of consumers stated that the stock fan for the Intel Core 2 Duo was subpar. It either didnt cool well or was loose to the point that it would cause the OS to turn off. Because I will have a lot of room in the full case, I may purchase an additional fan if the R600 would benefit from one. I'll check out the fans from Cool Master.

But I am looking forward to seeing the end statistics on the R600, though, as well as the cost upon release compared to the 8800GTX series. Come February, the eVGA 8800GTX ought to cost under $600. If the performance of the X1900 was any indication of ATI vs nVIDIA, then it should outdo the 8800s.
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