Skybuck's updated dream pc design for 2005 (version 4)


Skybuck Flying

Skybuck's updated dream pc design for 2005:

( version 4 created on 10 november 2005):

All prices are in euro's.

*** Overview ***:

Case: Chieftec, smart series, SH-01W-W-W, miditower (white)
Price: 65

Power supply: Seasonic S12-600 (600 watt)
Price: 137

Motherboard: ABIT AN8 SLI 32x (dual core, dual graphics card support)
Price: unknown, max 200 bucks

Processor: Athlon 64 X2 Manchester 3800+ (dual core)
Price: 341

( might switch to 2 GB memory sticks, depending on availibility )

Memory module1: Samsung Original DDR SDRAM, 1 GB, PC3200, 400 MHz, -
Price: 96

(memory module 2,3,4 optional/expansion)

Memory module2: Samsung Original DDR SDRAM, 1 GB, PC3200, 400 MHz, -
Price: 96

Memory module3: Samsung Original DDR SDRAM, 1 GB, PC3200, 400 MHz, -
Price: 96

Memory module4: Samsung Original DDR SDRAM, 1 GB, PC3200, 400 MHz, -
Price: 96

( might switch to 512 MB graphics cards... depending on cooling solution <-
not to large/noisy)

Graphics card1: nVidia GeForce 7800 GTX (Gigabyte GV-NX78X256V-B 256 MB, PCI
Express x16 )
Price: 498

(Videocard 2 optional/expansion:)

Graphics card2: nVidia GeForce 7800 GTX (Gigabyte GV-NX78X256V-B 256 MB, PCI
Express x16 )
Price: 498

Sound card: Creative Soundblaster X-Fi Elite Pro
Price: 291

Network card: Linksys EG1032
Price: 29

Harddisk1: Hitachi Desktstar 7K500 500 GB, 7.200 rpm, 16 MB, SATA II
(HDS725050KLA360 )
Price: 328

(Hardisk 2,3,4,5,6 optional/expansion:)

Harddisk2: Hitachi Desktstar 7K500 500 GB, 7.200 rpm, 16 MB, SATA II
(HDS725050KLA360 )
Price: 328

Harddisk3: Hitachi Desktstar 7K500 500 GB, 7.200 rpm, 16 MB, SATA II
(HDS725050KLA360 )
Price: 328

Harddisk4: Hitachi Desktstar 7K500 500 GB, 7.200 rpm, 16 MB, SATA II
(HDS725050KLA360 )
Price: 328

Harddisk5: Hitachi Desktstar 7K500 500 GB, 7.200 rpm, 16 MB, SATA II
(HDS725050KLA360 )
Price: 328

Harddisk6: Hitachi Desktstar 7K500 500 GB, 7.200 rpm, 16 MB, SATA II
(HDS725050KLA360 )
Price: 328

Disk drive: 3.5 diskstation and 7-in-1 cardreader (white)
Price: 30

CD/DVD combo drive: IDE, DVD Rewriter: Plextor PX-740A 16 x, 4 x, 16 x, Wit
(white), Retail
Price: 65

Monitor: Iiyama HM903DTB 19 inch, Ivory (HM903DTB)
Price: 377

Keyboard: Logitech Internet Pro Keyboard Wit PS/2 (white), OEM
Price: 10

Mouse: Logitech Pilot Wheel Mouse Grijs PS/2 (gray), OEM
Price: 6

Speakerset: Creative GigaWorks S750
Price: 380

*** Total costs: ***

Basic system:

Case: 65
Power supply: 137
Motherboard: unknown, max 200 bucks
Processor: 341
Memory module1: 96
Graphics card1: 498
Sound card: 291
Network card: 29
Harddisk1: 328
Disk drive and 7-in-1 card readers: 30
CD/DVD combo drive: 65
Monitor: 377
Keyboard: 10
Mouse: 6
Speakerset: 380

Basic price: 2853

Extra system:

Memory module2: 96
Memory module3: 96
Memory module4: 96
Graphics card2: 498
Harddisk2: 328
Harddisk3: 328
Harddisk4: 328
Harddisk5: 328
Harddisk6: 328

Extra price: 2426

Total price: 5279 (ouch! :))

*** Comments ***

1. Nice case, fits well with the rest of the components, and isn't too big.
Concerns might
be the airflow because multiple fans could cancel each other out <-
investigate ;)

2. Power supply is cool, quite and efficient and is/should be able to supply
all juicy necessary =D
It has a slow fan, so the question is if it can draw enough heat out of the
case... but
since a slower processor is chosen it should not be a problem... however the
and the graphics cards also produce lot's of heat... especially the
harddisks ;) <- can be as much as 60 degrees.
The case does have optional harddisk cooling fans... the question is if this
is smart..
see above point 1 <- airflow.

3. The little brother of amd x2 4800+, the amd x2 3800+ almost performs as
well as it's bigger
brother... but the bigger brother is almost 3x times more expensive while it
only delivers about 20% performance
increase, so the athlon x2 4800+ is waaaay too expensive and will also run
hotter and will require more cooling,
which means more noise... so the athlon x2 3800+ seems like a nice deal... a
little bit less processing power... but
cool, quite and cheap <- and lasts longer ;) =D

4. I don't know yet how much noise or heat the GTX creates... however I can
remember reading
that it's quite quite ;) meaning low noise which is good.

5. It might be wise to fill in, amd's power chart, to be sure that 600 watts
is enough for
the basic+extra system stuff ;) But it's kinda boring haven't done that yet.

6. The new abit motherboard will have 2 extra sata connectors on top of the
4 sata connectors
so 6 sata drives becomes possible... which is how many drives the case can
mount ;)
Otherwise a bigger case would need to be selected for 8 drives... but that's
a bit over the top
and too much external drive bays... <- 5 or 6 no thank you ;) <- however
that would leave
room for some air/heat to go up there... maybe that s good I dont know...
but the midi tower
case should be just fine as well... and the full tower might be a bit too
big... the power
supply has a little short wire for it's main power connector... but it
should be just fine
for the midi tower oh yeah.

7. The previous motherboard.. the fatality sli 16x... <- probably has waaaay
too many fans
so I will wait for this new motherboard with passive cooling etc. <- cool
and less noisy.
and full 16x sli slot bandwidth... hopefully ! =D

8. The case has easy access to all external drives and power button... no
stupid doors :)

9. I haven't found any good monitor review site... so I am not 100%
convinced about the monitor.

*** Details ***:

Power supply: Seasonic S12-600 (600 watt)

6x 5.25 inch 4 pins power connectors
4x sata drive power connectors
2x floppy drive power connectors
24pin or 20pin main power connector Separable
2x PCIe Graphics power connectors:
Suited for dual core: yes
Low noise and efficient.

16" cable for main 20+4 pin ATX connector.
26" cable with two 6-pin PCIe video / SLI connectors
18" auxiliary 12V connector
19" auxiliary 4x12V connector (for dual CPU boards)
33 " cable with three 4-pin IDE drive connectors and one floppy drive power
27" cable with two 4-pin IDE drive connectors and one floppy drive power
2 x 24" cables with two SATA drive connectors each
21" cable with 3-pin PSU fan speed monitor connector for motherboard

Posting comments:

Hello there folks,

Selecting and building your own PC can be quite time expensive so here is my
nice list of components all hand picked and looked at from review sites and
specifications and manuals etc.

The basic price of 2853 euro's is quite affordable for a high performing,
high quality, at least 3 to 5 years last PC ;)

Follow some software/windows optimization tricks... and your/this system
will fly fly fly fly and fly woeeeh.

The only unknown factor so far is the motherboard... so I will wait for this
new motherboard to be available at nearby internet stores.

I welcome any questions or comments about this design.

And yes, the extra price is quite expensive, isn't it ! ;) :) <- extra
components/harddisks etc wow, it's almost as expensive as the basic system !




Doug Warner

Siix fast SATA drives and no RAID? My dream machine will include a
hardware SATA RAID adapter and a X8 PCIe slot to put it in. so I can
run RAID5.



Skybuck Flying

Probably just 4 sata drives because the power supply only has 4 sata power
connectors. Unless there exist sata harddisks which can be connected using
the "old" power connectors ;) Or maybe it's possible to add more sata power
connectors to the power supply via power splitters ?? ;)

I would need to know the algorithms (or the way they work) of the raid
controllers to be able to evaluate them and to understand their performance
and limitations, otherwise raid is just a gamble.

In short here are some benefits and drawbacks of RAID 5 or so I believe:

The good:

1. Increased throughput for larger files, maybe even smaller files if they
fit in one block and depends on raid controller.

2. Perceived increased redundancy.

The bad:

1. Raid 5 decreases write/modify performance, stripes need to be re-read,
re-calculated, new data written back and parity information written back.

This site explains it quite nicely:

2. Multiple harddisks needed from the start <- higher costs, un-used space
during first years.

3. Harddisks need to be off the same type and size <- otherwise bottlenecks
or space lost.

4. Harddisk space is lost to parity information.

5. All harddisk receive lot's of stress which might even cause multiple
harddisk to fail at the same time.

6. Complete data loss if one (or two drives <- depending on total number of
drives) fail. <- Bad backup solution.

7. Could be bad for multi tasking <- reduced i/o operations. (Harddisks need
to seek to same location, instead of each harddisk reading one file in
parallel when software/data is distributed over multiple drives
in a non-raid fashion )

8. Individual harddisks/data can not be used in other system.

9. Inflexible, adding higher capacity harddisk in the future will be useless
<- space lost.

10. What about replacing one or multiple harddisks ?

11. Increased noise.

12. Increased heat.

13. All data is made redundant <- not all data needs to be redundant.

14. Raid controller onboard of motherboard could put a burden on the CPU.

15. Seperate raid controller requires an extra PCI slot.

16. Bad raid controller spells trouble.

17. Does not protect against data corruption on harddisk due to bad drive ?!

The new a-bit motherboard already has a raid controller onboard which allows
raid 0 or raid 1.

Which could increase throughput performance. This could be interesting to
create a special drive for games which need to load fast ;) or maybe even
some throughput hungry applications ;)

So the new motherboard of a-bit allows some experimenting with raid now or
in the future when additional harddisk are bought.

The motherboard only has 2 free pci slots, one will be used for the
soundblaster and one for a network card both to unload the cpu, so that
leaves no room for an extra raid controller.

I myself do not require the redundancy of raid. I simply use a backup
solution to backup the operating system/settings and maybe even the
applications and settings and finally ofcourse the important
information/data, so I sleep very well at night =D

Finally I like to keep things simple and reliable. Raid 5 isn't simple and
it isn't reliable and it isn't high performance in my eyes... it's way to
risky for my taste. For websites or so which need to be up in the air all
the time I can imagine that it could be good.

I rather have a high performing system most of the time and then having to
wait a week or so for a new harddisk to be deliver etc... and restore the
system drive etc. Having bad luck is part of life ;) hihihi.

However having slow performance is something I would like to ban out =D

( This will after all be a workstation/gaming station and not a file/web
server :) )


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