Mikhalia the Picky wrote:
Regarding the heatsink: I think the stock one might be fine, but if he feels strongly enough about it, there must be a reason and I'm willing to trust him; he's a reasonably intelligent guy. If nothing else, I'm a proponent of "too much" rather than "just enough".
The stock fan that came with my 860 was terrible. My CPU was hitting 95c running Prime 95.
When Intel sends out review samples they always send a Thermalright tower cooler in addition to the stock cooler. Intel has said that the stock cooler is intended for "standard" computer use and that applications like Prime 95 are "not standard use".
As for the case, you -can- get pretty -and- functional in one case. I dunno that I'd go with a -basic- case, but something that is still well ventilated and looks good should be fine. Definitely no less than two case fans, and that's bare minimum. 3-4 is a good number of fans to have, although I'm running 5 in mine (front, back, top, and two in the side). The big thing about the case is you don't want the ables obstructing airflow, and you want air to be both PULLED IN to the case and PUSHED OUT of the case, and you want enough room in the case for the air to move around.
More fans = more noise. Don't go overboard with more fans than you need. If you are running a single graphics card then two 1500 RPM low noise fans (one in front and one in back) should be enough. Also if you have a tower cooler make sure you orient your cooler front to back with the cooler blowing in the same direction as the airflow in the case.
First thing I'd do is go with a stock heatsink instead of the Titan.
Second thing I'd do is downgrade the case (If you can find a less expensive one that you still like).
Third thing I'd do is downgrade the hard drive.
Fourth thing I'd do is downgrade the motherboard.
Fifth thing I'd do is downgrade the RAM to 1333.
Sixth thing I'd do is downgrade the 5870 to a 5850.
Seventh thing I'd do is downgrade the CPU to an i7-920, or an i5-750.
The stock memory speed for a LGA 1366 is 1066
The stock memory speed for LGA 1156 is 1333
The X58 and P55 chipsets are not designed to go faster than the stock memory speed and running them with faster memory is actually overclocking. Not much is to be gained by going higher than the stock speeds. Maybe a few % speed increase, if that.
There is not much to be gained by low latency memory. The difference between 7-7-7-20 and 9-9-9-24 is so small that it's barely distinguishable from statistical noise.
Core i7 860 performs essentially the same as an i7 920, except with a cheaper MB and dual channel memory. 2x8 PCIE performs within 3-5% of 2x16 PCIE in SLI.
With LGA 1156 you need to make sure the memory you are buying really is
1.5v DRAM at the listed speeds. the OCZ memory I bought said 1.5v but turned out to need 1.6v to run at 1333, which was just barely within tolerance for an LGA 1156 CPU. It would boot up at 1.5v, but that was because the spd settings were 1066 at 1.5v. I really couldn't shake the feeling that they were passing off overvolted 1066 DDR3 as 1333 so I sent it back and got some actual low voltage 1333 DDR3 (actually it was 1600 1.35v DDR3, I only bought it because it was only a bit more than the 1333)
Most budget and midrange P55 MBs that have 6GBs SATA 3.0 will steal 8 PCIE lanes when running SATA 3.0 at 6GBs. This means that a single graphics card will drop to 8x PCIE when running 6GBs SATA (although only solid state drives can even take advantage of 6GBs) The higher end P55 boards have additional chips that add more PCIE lanes. But for that price you might as well just buy an X58 based board.
LGA 1156 is less expensive choice which doesn't sacrifice performance if you don't need the more advanced features of LGA 1366.
Just throwing out what I learned when building a new PC a few months ago in case it's useful to someone. Edited, Aug 12th 2010 7:39am by Lobivopis