Windows 7 Forums
Welcome to Windows 7 Forums. Our forum is dedicated to helping you find support and solutions for any problems regarding your Windows 7 PC be it Dell, HP, Acer, Asus or a custom build. We also provide an extensive Windows 7 tutorial section that covers a wide range of tips and tricks.


Windows 7: A whole bunch of hardware questions - assistance greatly appreciated!


13 Apr 2011   #1

Vista Home Premium x86 SP2
 
 
A whole bunch of hardware questions - assistance greatly appreciated!

Hello all!

I am considering building my first computer from scratch not exactly soon, but some time. I am quite a hardware noob, and so have been reading lots of stuff online, but I still have a few questions. I would be immensely grateful to anybody who helps me with any of them. Sorry for having so many!

1: In the 250 range, who are better, Intel, or AMD, or is this just benchmark differences, and I honestly wouldn't notice the difference (I think that I wouldn't notice it?)

2: Some people say that AMD and ATI work better together than Intel and ATI. Again, is this just benchmark stuff, or should I actually consider trying to match up AMD and ATI?

3: Is all thermal paste from a vaguely decent manufacturer created equal?

4: Is it possible to have too many Watts? I quite like the look of 750/850W to give me room to expand.

5: Are Corsair and Antec PSUs any good?

Thanks a lot, everyone! I really do appreciate what you kind people do and know!

Richard

My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

13 Apr 2011   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by niemiro View Post
Hello all!

I am considering building my first computer from scratch not exactly soon, but some time. I am quite a hardware noob, and so have been reading lots of stuff online, but I still have a few questions. I would be immensely grateful to anybody who helps me with any of them. Sorry for having so many!

1: In the 250 range, who are better, Intel, or AMD, or is this just benchmark differences, and I honestly wouldn't notice the difference (I think that I wouldn't notice it?)

2: Some people say that AMD and ATI work better together than Intel and ATI. Again, is this just benchmark stuff, or should I actually consider trying to match up AMD and ATI?

3: Is all thermal paste from a vaguely decent manufacturer created equal?

4: Is it possible to have too many Watts? I quite like the look of 750/850W to give me room to expand.

5: Are Corsair and Antec PSUs any good?

Thanks a lot, everyone! I really do appreciate what you kind people do and know!

Richard

1: Speaking of CPU prices only, AMD is very competitive in the lower area--say at $100 US and under. Intel dominates among higher price CPUs.

3: Pretty much. You might get a couple of degrees difference, but you can get that much difference or more simply by how well or poorly you apply it. The standard recommendation is Arctic Silver 5.

4: It's easily possibly to buy too many watts and to buy a poor quality PSU. If 400 of something is good, then surely 800 is twice as good. Right? Buying unnecessary power is very common. You'd just be wasting money. Make an estimate of how much power your chosen hardware will actually use and then buy an efficient PSU from a highly reliable manufacturer.

5: Generally yes. Some models are better than others. Some are more efficient than others. Some are quieter than others. Seasonic is another good brand.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Apr 2011   #3

Windows 8.1 Pro RTM x64
 
 

Hi Richard,

1. For a while, AMD were certainly in the lead here, mainly because the memory controller was integrated on the CPU die whereas Intel still used the Northbridge as a memory controller/interface. Since then, Intel has also brought the memory controller on-chip, so the differences aren't quite so clear cut. The choice of CPU brand will depend on a couple of factors, namely cost and the motherboard you choose.

2. AMD and ATI are now part of the same stable, so in theory they should work better together. In practice, it shouldn't make any difference.

3. Yes and no. Broadly speaking it is, but you should use thermal paste from a reputable manufacturer (such as Arctic Silver) and apply it according to the instructions.

4. It is better to have a PSU capable of pumping out more power than you actually need - a PSU rated at 750W drawing a load of 450W is going to run cooler and last longer than the same model only rated at 500W. Plus it means that you have some headroom for possible hardware upgrades.

5. I would read the reviews of the various PSUs available, and also see what feedback they have from users who have them installed. I would consider using a modular PSU since you only need to connect the cables required, allowing for better cable management and system cooling.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


13 Apr 2011   #4

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

1. This tends to be a moving target. Because the 2 companies compete fiercely, what is true this week may not be true next week. The best you can expect is to buy the best platform at the moment you are making your purchase. I suggest making the decision on a cost/benefit basis.
Because of the common CPU marketing strategy in both companies, the most recent, flagship processors enter the market at peak prices. The current 6 core intel i7 is (was) $1000 US, for example. The older processors, that used to be priced at the peak, then drop down. This is where you can find your best "bang for the buck".
Also: some processors perform better for certain tasks in benchmark tests. One may excel at video compiling or CAD applications, while another may not but have much better gaming scores.

2. No company is going to intentionally make a product that will not run well on 1/2 of the worlds PCs. The only issue I am aware of is the handling of drivers. The sad tales I have read have had more to do with the misuse of cleaning programs and the misunderstanding of a chipset driver and a graphics driver.

3. Yes, but. For normal use a well respected brand of thermal paste will work just fine. But it you are intending to do any overclocking then the performance of the thermal paste becomes much more important and can justify the higher price for the top line stuff.

4. No. But you can waste them! I like to buy my supplies to produce the max wattage that is calculated multiplied by 2 (a few calculators are available on PS manufacturers sites). So if I calculate I need 346 watts I'll buy a 650W or 750W supply. As well as headroom for future expansion, power supplies lose strength as they get older. I believe you get more life out of one if they don't have to work too hard.

5. This is a moving target also. Both Corsair and Antec farm their supplies out to manufacturer's to be built to their specs. Antec tends to change manufacturers often. I'm not up on Corsair. For instance Seasonic was making Antec's True Power supplies for a while. This is a very hard product to shop for intelligently for this reason - unless you have a degree in electrical engineering and the product's white sheets.
I go by customer reviews. These tend to give a good snapshot of problematic products. I have a Corsair. Two years old and still running.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Apr 2011   #5

Vista Home Premium x86 SP2
 
 

Hello all!

First, I would like to sincerely apologise for the delay in responding. My family has not been very well, and I had to take a few days of leave. I really need to go now, but I have read all of your replies, and I do greatly appreciate your responses. Basically, you have answered all of my questions perfectly, and so a massive thank you to all three of you! I shall send you all a proper reply tomorrow when I shall be slightly less rushed!

Thank you all so much again!

Richard
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Apr 2011   #6

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1
 
 

I will work on just a few.
3/ Arctic has been doing a great job for years. Go to there web site for instruction on how to use it.

4/5. If you need 400 w and you are using a 400w power supply of quality then you are working it very hard. If you install a 650w power supply it will just coast along enjoying a long life. Plus if down the road you want to add something you have the power. Another power supply you might want to look at are Seasonic. Corsair and Antec are rated high in quality. Some of Antec and Corsair are made by Seasonic.
You can't have to much power if your pocket book will allow it. Your computer will only use what it needs. The rest of the watts is there if your computer needs more for what ever reason. My power supply cost more that my mother board. More than my video card. More than My than tower. Corsair AX-850 I don't think the fan ever comes on. The power supply is wheir all good computer start.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Apr 2011   #7

windows 7 ultimate 64 bit
 
 

Watch out for the old....800WATTS!!!....then in small print....for 30 seconds....
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Apr 2011   #8

W7x64 Pro, SuSe 12.1/** W7 x64 Pro, XP MCE
 
 

I have normally used Arctic Silver for the CPU, but after lapping the heatsink once, so that it was a perfectly flat mirror, I found that after only a short time, that the electrolysis had etched the outline of the CPU on it, and each time that I checked later, it got worse. It is my understanding that Arctic Silver does not block electrolysis, and that Ceramique does. I think that Ceramique doesn't provide quite as good of heat transfer, but then neither does pitting of the mating surfaces. I have not tried Ceramique on a CPU yet, but I shall the next time I need to paste the CPU.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Apr 2011   #9

Vista Home Premium x86 SP2
 
 

Good day to you all!

Thank yoy so, so much for all of your answers. I apologise again for the delay, and I do greatly appreciate the time you spent. I think I understand now. You have made perfect sense (eEen to the hardware half of me! That is impressive!) and I don't have any more questions (yet! I shall be back!).

Thank you all, again,

Richard
My System SpecsSystem Spec
Reply

 A whole bunch of hardware questions - assistance greatly appreciated!




Thread Tools



Similar help and support threads for2: A whole bunch of hardware questions - assistance greatly appreciated!
Thread Forum
Is it worth Upgrading my GTX 550tI + bUNCH Of Other questions too :D Hardware & Devices
Hardware for Analog TV questions Media Center
Advice greatly appreciated.. routing gmail to Livemail? Browsers & Mail
Any advice greatly appreciated. General Discussion
Hardware Upgrade Questions General Discussion
I have a bunch of questions General Discussion
Two questions about hardware, will it work? Drivers

Our Sites

Site Links

About Us

Find Us

Windows 7 Forums is an independent web site and has not been authorized, sponsored, or otherwise approved by Microsoft Corporation. "Windows 7" and related materials are trademarks of Microsoft Corp.

Designer Media Ltd

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:49 PM.
Twitter Facebook Google+



Windows 7 Forums

Seven Forums Android App Seven Forums IOS App
  

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33