Budget System Building Guide Summer 2006

Others/Miscelleneous by rutar @ 2006-08-23

Looking to upgrade your PC? Now would be a good time, with fast hardware available at affordable prices we take an in-depth look at how you can speed up your machine without breaking the piggy bank.

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CPU Cooling and Motherboards

CPU Cooling:

A lot of older heatsinks can be upgraded with a cheap mounting bracket to fit the 775 socket or they already are compatible. On the cool running Core 2 they will perform great and it?s recommended to re-use them if possible because they outperform the stock Intel heatsink.

Madshrimps (c)
Cheap effective CPU Cooling: Arctic Cooling Alpine 7

The Budget Buyer will probably stay with the stock heatsink. When buying a tray processor (without heatsink), the Arctic-Cooling Alpine 7 provides quiet cooling for a very low price.

The Silent Buyer has the option of either going with the inexpensive Alpine 7 or he can buy a Scythe Ninja or similar high end tower design heatsink designed to be run passive.

Madshrimps (c)
Silent High-End CPU Cooling: Scythe Ninja

The Overclocker can go with stock cooling or the Arctic-Cooling Freezer 7 Pro if he?s short on money. Otherwise the roundup of A64 coolers (most are 775 compatible) and the 120mm fan roundup provide information about other options.

  • CPU Cooler Reviews
  • 120mm Fan test

    Mainboard (MOBO):

    Those with a good AGP 4x/8x graphics card will most likely find the ASRock 775Dual-VSTA an interesting product. It is not just very cheap, but it will allow you to re-use your older graphics card, and it supports both DDR/DDR2 modules. ASRock is the budget brand of Asus and provides excellent value motherboards.

    Madshrimps (c)
    Budget Core 2 motherboard with backward compatibility features

    If you already have a good PCIe card or simply don?t need a dedicated VGA card (office/internet machine) you are better off with the ASRock 775Twins. This board has an onboard GPU and can use DDR or DDR2 memory like the Dual-VSTA.

    Madshrimps (c)
    Onboard ATI Graphics and PCIe slot with DDR/DDR2 support

    Both motherboards are cut down in features that 90% of the users don?t need anyway but before you making a purchase decision you might want to check first if your needs are covered with these ASRock motherboards. SATA 3 GB/s Hard disks can be set to SATA 1.5 GB/s with a jumper to run properly if they don?t switch automatically, you won?t notice the ?performance? difference anyway.

    Overclockers and people who need more features could go with the Gigabyte GA-965P-DS3 and GA-965P-DS4. The main difference between the two is the DS4 has heatpipe cooling for north-and Southbridge, 2 bios chips and Firewire, both feature excellent overclocking potential. Retail motherboards of those models have been successfully overclocked by members of different forums to frequencies beyond 400 FSB (enough for 3.2 GHz with the Core 2 6400 CPU). A bios upgrade is recommended as it improves the overclocking abilities of the motherboards and there are some issues with G-Skill ram.

  • GA-965P-DS3 Specifications
  • GA-965P-DS4 Specifications

    Silent Buyers should look pay attention to how the chipset are cooled, passive cooling is the obvious choice.
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