bit-tech.net

PC Hardware Buyer's Guide March 2011

Comments 1 to 25 of 75

Reply
soviet_ 10th March 2011, 15:50 Quote
Some truly awful looking cases picked this month, especially the Coolermaster HAF 912 Plus
wuyanxu 10th March 2011, 15:52 Quote
Raven RV2 and Fortress FT02 are brilliant picks. not awful.

when i saw FT03, i thought it's going into the Premium player build :(
soviet_ 10th March 2011, 15:58 Quote
When you are used to looking at the beauty of a P182, these cases looked like they've been molested with the ugly stick
wuyanxu 10th March 2011, 16:02 Quote
i am used to the look if P182, it's housing my setup now!

but still can't get the look of FT03 out of my head, it's so elegant, so different and so well designed.
soviet_ 10th March 2011, 16:06 Quote
Yeah the FT03 is quite nice actually but they didn't choose it for any of the set ups. And it's micro-ATX, bummer
Snips 10th March 2011, 16:09 Quote
You could put to gether a sweet sandy bridge system using a mATX board but everything else could be top notch. You won't be sacrificing any of the performance.
xaser04 10th March 2011, 16:42 Quote
Once again (and for the exact same reasons I have commented on before) the Affordable all rounder needs revisting:

CPU - The i3 540 is available for only a tenner more than the hard-to-find G6950 yet offers better clock for clock performance.

GPU - 1GB models of the GTX460 are available for under £140. There is no reason to reccommend a 768mb model when the prices are so close. £140 can easily get you a HD6850 as well.

Memory - 4GB DDR3 PC12800 is available for well under £40. Given the couple of quid difference between it and PC10666 there is no reason to go for the latter.

Alternative suggestions for the CPU and MB would also be nice. AMD offer some excellent boards around £70 that have I/O conenctively that the GB intel board is missing (USB 3.0 & SATAIII).

Links:

GTX 460 1GB
HD6850
4GB PC12800 DDR3 (TWO)
Ross1 10th March 2011, 16:44 Quote
My current main pc takes up far too many expansion slots for a mATX build. 5850 with accelero twin turbo: 3 slots, tv tuners: 2 slots, esata card: 1 slot, raid card: 1 slot. Its lucky I decided to go with an external sound card (0404 UBS).
t5kcannon 10th March 2011, 18:10 Quote
On the gaming workhorse list, why is there no mention of the Gigabyte GeForce GTX 560 Ti SUPER OC 1GB? It's an excellent version of the 560 and better than the MSI. On dabs.com for only £209.98 too.

On the premium list, I'm not sure I buy the explanation regarding why a Sandy Bridge based system was not recommended. Sure the i7 950 is very nice, but a i7 2600K is superior. How components fair over time, and the performance they offer over time seems to me key. Got think of how upgradable things are.

Awesome premium case recommendation, SilverStone FT02B.
Snips 10th March 2011, 18:37 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH
In the previous buyers guide the reason the AMD build was not recommended before was due to the MSI 770-C45 not being made any more:

http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/buyers-guide/2011/02/10/pc-hardware-buyer-s-guide-february-2011/2

This is because the MSI 770-C45 was replaced by the MSI 870-C45 at the same price point:

http://www.scan.co.uk/products/msi-870-c45-amd-770-s-am3-pci-e-20-%28x16%29-ddr3-1600%28oc%29-sata-3gb-s-sata-raid-atx

An Athlon II X3 450 or Phenom II X2 555BE should do the job:

http://www.scan.co.uk/products/amd-athlon-ii-x3-450-rana-triple-core-s-am3-32ghz-15mb-cache-ht-4000mhz-95w-retail

http://www.scan.co.uk/products/amd-phenom-ii-x2-555-black-edition-callisto-dual-core-s-am3-32ghz-7mb-total-cache-80w-retail

This would leave enough money left for an HD6850 1GB or GTX460 1GB:

http://www.scan.co.uk/products/1gb-asus-hd-6850-oc-4000mhz-gddr5-gpu-790mhz-960-stream-processors-dp-dl-dvi-i-dvi-d-hdmi

http://www.scan.co.uk/products/1gb-msi-gtx-460-cyclone-3600mhz-gddr5-gpu-725mhz-shader-clock-1350mhz-336-cores-2x-dvi-i-mhdmi

http://www.scan.co.uk/shopoffers/index.aspx

That's all well and good if you are a fan of AMD but tests on the G6950 show it to be the better option allround.
leveller 10th March 2011, 18:44 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by arcticstoat
Our monthly guide to getting the best components for your PC build, whatever your budget.

http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/buyers-guide/2011/03/10/pc-hardware-buyer-s-guide-march-2011/1

Shouldn't the premium player have an ATi 6990 if you are doing single card solutions, although for a premium player, possibly 2x 6990's?

Added: I just re-read what was written about the 6990 in the article. The problem is, what is the definition of the premium player? You have 3 other categories catering for everyone else, surely premium should be the best money can buy? In which case, until next month, that is the 6990?
microsoftPerson 10th March 2011, 18:50 Quote
I love checking back here to see almost my exact system configuration recommended... just makes you feel, well, good... you know?
carpetmonster 10th March 2011, 18:51 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by soviet_
When you are used to looking at the beauty of a P182, these cases looked like they've been molested with the ugly stick

The P182 has all the cooling ability of a hot water bottle. I went from a P182, with the tricools on med or high to a Haf922 and my temps dropped considerably across the board. The biggest issue with the P182 is the side is not perforated. Might look nice, but cooling wise, it's crap.
Fingers66 10th March 2011, 19:05 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by t5kcannon
On the gaming workhorse list, why is there no mention of the Gigabyte GeForce GTX 560 Ti SUPER OC 1GB? It's an excellent version of the 560 and better than the MSI. On dabs.com for only £209.98 too.

On the premium list, I'm not sure I buy the explanation regarding why a Sandy Bridge based system was not recommended. Sure the i7 950 is very nice, but a i7 2600K is superior. How components fair over time, and the performance they offer over time seems to me key. Got think of how upgradable things are.

Awesome premium case recommendation, SilverStone FT02B.

On your first point, I would suggest that it is because they haven't tested it. Bit-tech have only tested the MSI. I asked about other tests and the reply I got was "we'll test them when we get them". If bit-tech don't get the cards for review, they can't recommend them.

On your second point, I respectfully refer you to the guide itself:
Quote:

Of course, we were in the same tough old boat this month as we were last month, when we were umming and ahhing between an X58 or P67 based system for out Premium Player rig. In the end, as you can see, we’ve decided to plump for an X58-based system. This is because we try to make this a guide to what’s best right now and, even though P67 boards are filtering back into the country, we can’t be certain that they offer the same blistering level of performance until we’ve tested them properly.

As a result, we’re hedging our bets by recommending an X58 based system that we know will be quick - LGA1366 processors never stopped being fast, after all. They also have the bonus of offering triple-channel memory support and native dual 16x PCI-E lanes as well.

On your third point, I have to agree, it is a lovely case. It is a shame that it is simply too big for me.
CAT-THE-FIFTH 10th March 2011, 19:19 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snips
That's all well and good if you are a fan of AMD but tests on the G6950 show it to be the better option allround.

The main reason given was because the MSI 770-C45 was not made any more. The MSI 870-C45 is virtually the same motherboard and is at a similar price.

The G6950 recommendation is based on overclocking potential which is not guaranteed. Even one of my mates managed to unlock their Athlon II X3 435 to a Phenom II X4 with 6MB L3 cache but again like overclocking it is not a given.

Also,not all people overclock or unlock even if they assemble their own systems. At least in the past Bit-tech used to specify a range of options at each price point.

On top of this both the X3 450 and X2 555BE are not slower than the G6950 for gaming:

http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/123?vs=189

http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/123?vs=120

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/phenom-ii-x2-555,2540-8.html

http://www.techspot.com/review/273-budget-cpu-roundup/page9.html

Even in Call of Duty Black Ops the Athlon II X3 and Phenom II X2 are much faster:

http://www.techspot.com/review/336-cod-black-ops-performance/page8.html

Like a previous poster said the Core i3 530 is a better choice for a socket 1156 based build. It has more L3 cache,runs at a higher default clockspeed and has HT too.

At least when OcUK used to sell the G6950 for around £58 it was decent value but it is around £70 now and a Core i3 can be had for around £75 to £80.
Landy_Ed 10th March 2011, 20:25 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by carpetmonster
Quote:
Originally Posted by soviet_
When you are used to looking at the beauty of a P182, these cases looked like they've been molested with the ugly stick

The P182 has all the cooling ability of a hot water bottle. I went from a P182, with the tricools on med or high to a Haf922 and my temps dropped considerably across the board. The biggest issue with the P182 is the side is not perforated. Might look nice, but cooling wise, it's crap.

P182 in action
http://www.cpcff.co.uk/phpBB2/download/file.php?id=347&mode=view

I put it to you that you did something wrong, or chose/built the wrong combination of components. Or you ran it with the door shut & the fans switched to their lowest possible settings. P182 cooling capabilities are fine, you just need to use them all.
prisoner369118 10th March 2011, 21:08 Quote
Actually, you can get the Fractal case in the US. I have a Fractal Define R3 right now.
Redsnake77 10th March 2011, 21:12 Quote
Isn't Z68 due in May? Why not hold off recommendations until you've tested the new new 1155 boards?
kzinti1 10th March 2011, 23:01 Quote
While I'm certainly no fanboy of AMD cpu's I'd still like to see a suggested build using one of these cpu's.
I have no idea how to decipher the AMD naming scheme or how the motherboards compare to Intel driven ones. Quite a few of the AMD fans are fond of saying that their AMD systems are cheaper and at least the equivalent of Intel driven systems. Besides that, it really isn't fair that the fans of AMD are continually ignored in your recommendations. There really must be something to AMD processors or they'd have gone out of business years ago. I wouldn't mind an AMD build but I have no idea as to proper component selection. If I didn't like it I could always sell it and still be ahead just by the experience of trying something new. To me anyway. I haven't built an AMD system since the K7 series, I think. It's been years, though.
ian8415 10th March 2011, 23:05 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by leveller
Quote:
Originally Posted by arcticstoat
Our monthly guide to getting the best components for your PC build, whatever your budget.

http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/buyers-guide/2011/03/10/pc-hardware-buyer-s-guide-march-2011/1

Shouldn't the premium player have an ATi 6990 if you are doing single card solutions, although for a premium player, possibly 2x 6990's?

Added: I just re-read what was written about the 6990 in the article. The problem is, what is the definition of the premium player? You have 3 other categories catering for everyone else, surely premium should be the best money can buy? In which case, until next month, that is the 6990?

I preferred when this was referred to as 'crazy but cool', now has it become something that we should be able to afford and find value in the components? I strongly disagree, we should have the opportunity to learn and lust after the top performing hardware, set out in a deserving and respectable guide. Its what we aspire to fundamentally in this game.

I suppose what I am getting at is the 6990 is 'crazy but cool' and should be known as such.
Material 10th March 2011, 23:59 Quote
Man doing the buyers guide is a thankless task.

I'd like to stress that in the buyers guide we only recommend products we've tested - how can we recommend you go out and spend your hard earned cash on something we've not even laid hands on? Please bear this in mind when you are typing the message decrying our recommendations as incorrect.

Quote:
Originally Posted by soviet_
Some truly awful looking cases picked this month, especially the Coolermaster HAF 912 Plus

There are two alternatives provided in the article for the HAF 912 as we realize it's design may not be everyone's cup of tea.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ashane
Where is the Folding Rig again this month??I asked the same question last month! Has the Folding Rig folded?

We haven't tested many of the most recent cards in regards to folding performance so any recommendation we could make here would be pointless as we haven't got all the facts. This will change soon though, stay tuned for more info.
Quote:
Originally Posted by leveller
Shouldn't the premium player have an ATi 6990 if you are doing single card solutions, although for a premium player, possibly 2x 6990's?

Possibly, and we do mention the 6990 in the actual text for the Premium Player. We actually argue for it's inclusion but end up going with the 580 as you're hardly likely to need any more if you only have a single screen. If however you have more than one screen then we do say the 6990 is your best bet.
Quote:
Originally Posted by prisoner369118
Actually, you can get the Fractal case in the US. I have a Fractal Define R3 right now.

Cheers for the tip, we didn't know this. Where did you pick it up from?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redsnake77
Isn't Z68 due in May? Why not hold off recommendations until you've tested the new new 1155 boards?

It's due out soon yes but we'll deal with that when it's released. If we delayed our buyers guide every time there was a new technology on the horizon we'd never actually manage to publish one.
thetrashcanman 11th March 2011, 00:41 Quote
I don't get it, for heavily multithreaded applications you guys recommend the 980x? why not go for the 990x if you can spend that sort of money, and if you need a good cpu for heavily multi threaded task why not get a 970? for just over £400 instead of near £800
Dragon7Samurai 11th March 2011, 00:51 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Material
Man doing the buyers guide is a thankless task.

Thanks!

Seriously though I look forward to the buyers guide both for the systems and the comments. Interesting to see the differences in opinion.
Kingsley813 11th March 2011, 08:28 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Landy_Ed


I put it to you that you did something wrong, or chose/built the wrong combination of components. Or you ran it with the door shut & the fans switched to their lowest possible settings. P182 cooling capabilities are fine, you just need to use them all.

+1

My P182 runs super-cool, even with the tri-fans on low, and with the door shut. Cabling does impact things though. For a case that's circa 2006/2007 to be even discussed now says alot about the quality of the case.
Log in

You are not logged in, please login with your forum account below. If you don't already have an account please register to start contributing.



Discuss in the forums