Building a PC, Part IV: Now It's Your Turn

I previously documented the "Ultimate Developer Rig" I'm building for Scott Hanselman:

This is a companion discussion topic for the original blog entry at:

Ha! Didn’t you write some time ago that every system manually built must have a Raptor 10k drive? :slight_smile:

Sure. If it was my machine I’d absolutely have a Raptor as the boot drive, no question.

But $165 (and that’s the price only after rebate, which is also annoying) is a lot to swallow for many folks.

Like I said, feel free to swap parts between the three configurations to taste, or add parts of your own. They’re just recommendations.

Is the E6300 a type for the E6320 or do you really mean the E6300? :slight_smile:

typo. The irony…

I notice that you didn’t include the price of the OS!? Was it free?

Great series, Jeff!!

“But in the meantime, if this peaked your interest”

Shouldn’t it be “piqued” instead of peaked?

The main downside of the NSK4400 case is that you’re unable to cool your hard drives. The big brother of the NSK4400, the NSK6000, has 2 mounting places for 92mm casefans in front of the HDD cage. It costs only 20 euros more, so if you’re looking for a nice looking case with enough space I think you should buy a NSK6000. I bought one back in May, and uploaded some pictures:

To answer some of the CPU choice questions-- remember, when overclocking, you do NOT want chips that use a natively high bus speed. You’ll be turning up the bus speed as part of your overclocking.

Unless you like buying really, really expensive memory…

I’m surprised you recommended the EVGA 680i motherboard, given the huge number of problems these boards had when they first came out about 8 months ago. One would hope that these have been sorted out by now - though I don’t know that they have. I think this is a poor choice and you can do much better if you’re serious about building a quality system - the P5N32 or the Striker boards come to mind.

The motherboard is not a component you want to skimp on quality if you’re going to overclock your system.

Graphics cards come with 768 MB of memory onboard now? Wow, I’m behind the times lol

Why recomend the E6600? The Q6600 is down to $266 if you know where to look, and the new E6850 is now the same price.

Thanks for the series! It has motivated me to build a new system to replace my aging laptop. The last system I built was an S100 bus system with a 4Mhz Z80…so it’s been a while! I used you’re configuration as a base but changed some of the components to fit my own requirements (and budget). Regardless, I now have in the mail an MSI P6N Platinum, Intel Q6600, 4GB (Crucial 4x1GB), two 500 GB Samsung HDs for RAID 1, dual EVGA 7600GT graphics cards and two new ACER 1920x1200 monitors for just over $2000. I don’t play any games, so I cut costs on the graphics card…I hope I don’t regret it.

Aaron G: The Antec Sonata III is configured with an EarthWatts 500 PSU. Since I just purchased one, I’m hoping that the power supply problems are now resolved with the new unit.

Thanks for documenting this adventure, I found it to be interesting and highly informative. And I am planning to build my own PC pretty soon. I think I might disregard the overclocking process though, I am sure I will find some way to screw that up :slight_smile:

Thanks again!

Are there vista drivers 32 and or 64 bit for the audio on the mother board?

Great series, Could you comment a bit on how (looking at newegg) you can make sure the various components work with each other. In particular the mother board/ memory/ processor.

ahem don’t mind me but don’t you think it is CHEAPER to buy the darn PC?

Thanks again for the good article. Now for Building a PC Part V… getting the wife to agree…

Great series. I’m starting to get the urge to build another PC but wanted to try something different. Have you ever tried building a mini-itx system? I’m thinking of a small one just for email etc.

‘Graphics cards come with 768 MB of memory onboard now? Wow, I’m behind the times lol’ – ditto, sir; I thought 64 MB was decent…

‘Most “craftsmen” as you put it can’t get by for long with only 150GB of storage.’ – In the words of the neanderthal, “uhhhh -what???” ONLY 150 GB? You’re either collecting DVD-quality footage of every single comeback-tour there ever was, or sequencing the human genome, or both…

I am both saddened and shocked that what passes for quality these days is thinly-veiled quantity.

Nice series nonetheless. I am always amused by the squeemish squeels of ‘just buy it’.


Thanks for the list!! This is great! Would this list be something that you could keep updated say every two months. I’m resolved to build my own computer next time and enjoy the parts list from a non-gamer. Most likely I’ll be building another computer in 2 months, but that two months could turn into 4 or 6, by which time the list above would change. Knowing a list exists (like Scott H’s tools list) out there would be a GREAT resource!!!