Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Building a new PC

I got this Antec LanBoy mini tower case nearly two years ago when I was rebuilding my PC. And now its dying on me. Ever since I put a second harddrive, the USB port has not been supplying enough constant power. It could be my motherboard - but I suspect its the SmartBlue 350Watts ATX PSU that came with my LanBoy.

It might be time for me to get a new case or a new PSU. I am beginning to hate my LanBoy. The PSU has two fans - so its noisy as hell. I only have two other fan running which is my Aerocool Glacier and the stock HSF on my graphic card. My CPU fan is running at full 2400rpm speed since I am overclocking my AMD Athlon XP 2100+ to 2.17Ghz, but its not noisy at all. At times when I throttle the speed down to 1500rpm, my PC still makes enough noise to be heard outside my room.

Hell, I think I will wait for 6-10 more months before building a new PC. I already have my eyes set on the AMD Athlon 64 3500+ Socket 939. Reusing my collection of 1Gb DDR400 RAM could easily be done since the 3500+ supports PC3200. The only problem is I have yet to see a motherboard for AMD CPUs that support PCI-Express slot. I know VIA is preparing a chipset with PCI-Express support but when will it be sampled to manufacturers?

Right now the old junk is working fine for me. Its fine for running normal stuff but chokes when running new games and encoding DivX videos from my DVDs and TV recordings.

I hope to be able to re-use as much components from my nForceII powered PC on the new PC. But its not looking good. Because I want to finally move to SATA and PCI-Express platform, I can't reuse my harddrives (these can go into a harddrive enclosure or my girlfriend's PC) and graphic card (also can move to her PC). Obviously the only things I can re-use would be my Hauppauge WinTV Nova-T Digital TV tuner as it works on PCI slot and my 1Gb worth of PC3200 DDRAM.

So in 6-10 months time I would need the money for all of these:

AMD Athlon64 3500+ Socket 939
A A64 939-pin motherboard with PCI-Express support
A new ATX case
256Mb ATi Radeon X800 XT PCI-Express card
Two Maxtor DiamondMax Plus 10 200Gb SATA harddrive (for RAID 0)

Better start saving...

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