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"necro-rise" AM3 Build

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
After using 939 for nearly 7 years and completely skipping a generation of AMD CPUs (AM2) I'm ready for AM3 for a number of reasons. Most notably...
  • Quadcore, Hexacore and beyond(?)
  • DDR3
  • Virtualization (now almost MANDITORY for windows and mac apps for virtual machines)
  • USB3
  • SATA3
  • and of course an all new overclocking experience

Here's what I've got for my new rig:

Phenom II x6 1090t ($200 shipped)
Crucial 3 x 2GB kit ($111 shipped)
Gigabyte GA-890FXA-UD5 ($183 shipped)

...Which comes out to about $494 for my upgrade costs. Not bad at all considering I could have paid $60-80 more. Somehow I managed to find great deals on all but the motherboard (which, actually, is the only part I haven't ordered; there's a chance I'll get some deal on that too still ).

I didn't realize it until a few weeks ago, but this CPU would put me at AMD's current second best AM3 processor! This is crazy to think about when you consider I've used 939 hardware for nearly 7 years. If it wasn't for that Opteron 165's overclocking ability, I may have broken down sooner.

Some of you may wonder why I picked the motherboard I did.. Well, I certainly didn't pick it for overclocking features (although those are nice ) but I've been trying to achieve a certain compatibility with a certain OS that I was able to use with my previous 939 Lanparty board.

It is actually BETTER in my situation to have both USB3 and SATA3... AS WELL AS having USB2 and SATA2.. I would not settle with a board with just one or the other. Nor would I settle with a board with one NIC

I have no idea where this motherboard in question stands in terms of overclocking though. Does anyone happen to know of it's ability? I'm sure someone here owns the board anyway.

Any comments, questions or feedback on my build are welcomed and appreciated.

For the record, I am using the same video card as my previous build (iirc i named it "Smilodon" here on OCN).
Smilodon
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Opteron 165 CCB1E DFI Lanparty UT nF4 Ultra-D Evga GeForce 9800 GT 512MB RAM 2GB RAM (OCZ Platinum DDR; 1T) 
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WD Raptor 35GB, Maxtor 300GB, Seagate 320GB Samsung DVD+/-RW (TS-H552U) XP Pro / Fedora 8 Dual Boot Dell 22" Widescreen LCD 
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Ideazon Merc Stealth OCZ GameXStream 700W Raidmax Smilodon Radtech BT600 (Black) 
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Smilodon
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WD Raptor 35GB, Maxtor 300GB, Seagate 320GB Samsung DVD+/-RW (TS-H552U) XP Pro / Fedora 8 Dual Boot Dell 22" Widescreen LCD 
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Ideazon Merc Stealth OCZ GameXStream 700W Raidmax Smilodon Radtech BT600 (Black) 
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post #2 of 6
First off, you don't need more than 2x2gigs. 3x2gigs is for X58 systems with triple channel RAM. AM3 only has dual channel RAM, therefore you only need 2 sticks.

As far as ram:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820211463

That is one of the best kits you can get for under $80. It is rated at 2000mhz so it will give you lots of room to OC. If you just want something cheap, you can get a 2x2gig kit for under $50.

I'm not sure what your budget situation is, but I think you could save 50 bucks on that gigabyte board and get this one:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813128435

It is the same in almost every way. But it lacks an extra x16 lane and eSATA. If you aren't buying 2 or 3 gpu's right away x2 sli is enough. My friend bought an MSI board with 5 x16 slots and she is still only using 1. If you need eSATA then it is a deal breaker.

I recommend picking up some Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB HDDs. They can be had for $55 and they are very good performers as far as a mechanical drives go and probably the best price to performance for drives. I have 3 in RAID0 Short Stroked and I can break the 5.9 Windows Experience Score limit.

To be honest, I would just wait another few months and get a bulldozer from AMD and skip 2 generations.

That is what I am waiting for. I almost upgraded my system like 3 times in this past year. It is hard, but dicipline will pay off, Bulldozer will be awesome.
Edited by Ktulu - 1/5/11 at 12:44am
Avenger
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Avenger
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post #3 of 6
What you're considering (Phenom II) is already starting to age as well, and about to become outdated when AMD's new architecture (Bulldozer) debuts in a few months. How about invest in that? A few measly months away. You've waited 7 years to upgrade, so what's a few more months? Or, Intel has a nice offering in a mere few days (Sandy Bridge). Then the Ivy Bridge platform after Summer. Alot of exciting options in 2011 now. Phenom II architecture is so... 2008 now.
Edited by Diabolical999 - 1/5/11 at 12:49am
●๑۩۩๑●
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●๑۩۩๑●
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post #4 of 6
AM3 can upgrade to AM3+, though it's a bit different than the AM2+/AM3 issue (with AM3 > AM3+ you must upgrade motherboard first, then AMD FX (Bulldozer) CPU; AM3 CPUs will work in AM3+, but AM3+ (including Bulldozer/AMD FX) won't work on AM3). Perhaps the best choice would be to go with a budget AM3 processor/mobo now (i.e. Athlon II + cheaper mobo) and then go big with Bulldozer/AMD FX later on.

Also, you should not be going with a 3x2GB on AM3; that is basically asking for bad performance, your 3x2GB will run in SINGLE CHANNEL (not triple channel, not dual channel either) which will moderately-severely impact performance. 2x2GB, 2x4GB or 4x2GB or bust, mate
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
Since everyone mentioned something about the RAM, maybe I should address that first.

Believe me, I thought the same thing. Four slots? Triple channel? Yeah right. Good luck with even dual channel. Well triple channel is definitely out of the question, but redhat_ownage claims i can run dual channel fine on AM3 with three sticks.

Internal logic refuses to believe this and wants to reject it, but he seems serious? Page two has a screenshot, but i'm not ruling out that it could be a shoop.

http://www.overclock.net/amd-general...l#post11608602
http://www.overclock.net/amd-general...l#post11613018

Maybe I got trolled hard?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ktulu View Post
First off, you don't need more than 2x2gigs. 3x2gigs is for X58 systems with triple channel RAM. AM3 only has dual channel RAM, therefore you only need 2 sticks.

As far as ram:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820211463

That is one of the best kits you can get for under $80. It is rated at 2000mhz so it will give you lots of room to OC. If you just want something cheap, you can get a 2x2gig kit for under $50.

I'm not sure what your budget situation is, but I think you could save 50 bucks on that gigabyte board and get this one:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813128435

... If you need eSATA then it is a deal breaker.

...

To be honest, I would just wait another few months and get a bulldozer from AMD and skip 2 generations.

That is what I am waiting for. I almost upgraded my system like 3 times in this past year. It is hard, but dicipline will pay off, Bulldozer will be awesome.
I hear you for sure-- bulldozer will undoubtedly kick ass! But I'm at the point where the programs I run and the games I play are starting to choke on me. I've missed out on XP mode in Windows 7 for quite some time now, and am dying to get a taste of it.

eSATA would be extremely useful for me. I'm all about storage solutions, and I've got nearly 3TB of storage across 4 HDDs. Two of those I'll probably replace to get me at 4TB of internal storage or higher. Whatever the case, I'm a big fan of having a fast read/write external storage solution.

BUT, ironically that board was the first Gigabyte board I looked at for my 'compatibility' situation. That board is documented to work. However the 890fx board i'm looking at is not, but most Gigabyte boards tend to work. Maybe I can find something even more budget oriented to tie me over until bulldozer. I'm not shy to list my gear on the OCN marketplace or ebay, so if I feel I really want bulldozer, I'll make attempts to make it a reality for me. But IMO 6 cores is pretty damn nice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Diabolical999 View Post
What you're considering (Phenom II) is already starting to age as well, and about to become outdated when AMD's new architecture (Bulldozer) debuts in a few months. How about invest in that? A few measly months away. You've waited 7 years to upgrade, so what's a few more months? Or, Intel has a nice offering in a mere few days (Sandy Bridge). Then the Ivy Bridge platform after Summer. Alot of exciting options in 2011 now. Phenom II architecture is so... 2008 now.
Can't bring myself to go Intel strictly due to budget ><.. but you're right, a few months is almost nothing. Right now I know I can afford to make this jump to AM3 and Phenom II, but I'm not sure about bulldozer and it's price range.

The problem is I'm potentially going to make another trip to Japan (stayed for 4 weeks last summer.. loved it) to meet up with friends and to immerse myself in the language again (tied to my educational goals). If I can't make my trip, it's not the end of the world.. But it's certainly of high priority to me, unless my buddy comes to the states to visit this summer. In that case, he'll probably be staying here at my place.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xd_1771 View Post
AM3 can upgrade to AM3+, though it's a bit different than the AM2+/AM3 issue (with AM3 > AM3+ you must upgrade motherboard first, then AMD FX (Bulldozer) CPU; AM3 CPUs will work in AM3+, but AM3+ (including Bulldozer/AMD FX) won't work on AM3). Perhaps the best choice would be to go with a budget AM3 processor/mobo now (i.e. Athlon II + cheaper mobo) and then go big with Bulldozer/AMD FX later on.

Also, you should not be going with a 3x2GB on AM3; that is basically asking for bad performance, your 3x2GB will run in SINGLE CHANNEL (not triple channel, not dual channel either) which will moderately-severely impact performance. 2x2GB, 2x4GB or 4x2GB or bust, mate
Oh yeah, I avoided breaking my dual channel like the plague on 939, but I'm only considering three sticks because I was told the rules are a little different on AM3.

I already have the RAM and CPU in posession, but the RAM is sealed still. If it's true that the RAM can't be ran in dual channel, maybe i'll sell it and get some 2x 4GBs. If I find another good deal on those.. hm.. maybe it'll save me even more cash.
Smilodon
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Opteron 165 CCB1E DFI Lanparty UT nF4 Ultra-D Evga GeForce 9800 GT 512MB RAM 2GB RAM (OCZ Platinum DDR; 1T) 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
WD Raptor 35GB, Maxtor 300GB, Seagate 320GB Samsung DVD+/-RW (TS-H552U) XP Pro / Fedora 8 Dual Boot Dell 22" Widescreen LCD 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Ideazon Merc Stealth OCZ GameXStream 700W Raidmax Smilodon Radtech BT600 (Black) 
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Thermaltake Flare 
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Smilodon
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Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
WD Raptor 35GB, Maxtor 300GB, Seagate 320GB Samsung DVD+/-RW (TS-H552U) XP Pro / Fedora 8 Dual Boot Dell 22" Widescreen LCD 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Ideazon Merc Stealth OCZ GameXStream 700W Raidmax Smilodon Radtech BT600 (Black) 
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Thermaltake Flare 
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post #6 of 6
I would go with 1155.

The 2500K totally destroys any X6, for about the same price.

Pretty much every 1155 board has USB3/SATA6, and the 2500K supports VT
Alienware M9700
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Alienware M9700
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