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I want to build you a computer

prophetik music

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Looking for a new, preferably smaller form factor (cube, server rack, slim tower) machine as a sample farm. What kinda price can you get me;

* 2.4ghz quad core, minimum (45nm preferred, eg. Q9550, but give me a range of prices vs. Q6600, preferably)

* 8gb RAM - DDR2

* 500gb hard drive, 640gb is OK if it's only marginally more expensive

* Don't care about video at all, but no integrated video

* No audio card needed

* MOBO needs to support processor NATIVELY!!! With no bios update. Also, needs gigabit lan.

* No OS needed, I'll use Windows XP 64bit

it's too bad that there aren't any cheaper mobos out that support i7 - the price ranges on them are REALLY good.

in that thread, do you REALLY need quad-core for a sample farm, or would a really fast single processor (aka, e8x00) be good enough? don't forget that most rendering outputs are based off of single-thread calculations, and four cores at 2.4 won't be faster than two at 3 or higher.

you should look at prices for hard drives before you worry about cost. read this. i'd prefer you give me a price range rather than a size range, with costs being SO low for space nowadays. always better to go more than less.

with xp64? i'd go with a mid-level 8-series gpu. probably 8400 or 8500, they're really cheap and do the job for what you'd need.

mobo, nowadays it's rare (if you get a good one) to have issues with cpu support, like you had a while back. whatever cpu you'd get would likely be underclocked slightly to allow it to run in a smaller environment without an issue. gigabit lan is pretty much standard nowadays, too - even my atom board came with one, and that's intended for in-car dashboards =)

i'll pm you with pricing info based on what you've told me, but more specifics would definitely help.

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This thread needs a big ol' bump in the form of "All hail prophet, builder of computers!"

Been playing around with my new desktop he made for me, and it is niiiiice. Fallout 3 and X3: Terran Conflict play like a dream on it; I expect other games will as well. Naturally, since it's not a top-of-the-line graphics card in here, the highest graphics settings are a bit too much, but I'm not bothered at all by not being able to run on max settings at some absurd resolution. There's also plenty of room for me to keep all my stuff on here without using my slow USB external drive while still leaving room for more stuff and experiments with operating systems. The computer runs great, and I haven't even tested the full extent of its capabilities yet. I got this computer as a quad-core for doing some relatively rough flow analysis and CAD modeling (engineering work), so hopefully I'll be able to test those soon. It should make my design project this year much more manageable.

Prophet, you are awesome. Thanks!

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I definitely want to look into it at some point. Of course, I'll need to save up for a high end HD projector first, since I want the full home theater (and home gaming!) experience.

Advice is free, right?

P.S. Any news on the oil-cooled fishtank machine? Would probably run less than a tower, too...

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projectors are overrated. go with a bigass monitor (newegg sells a 27.5" hanns-g monitor for 350$) and you'll be fine until you've got 3k for the projector and a good screen.

the fishtank is cool =) well, not literally, it runs near 90 degrees C - but it doesn't matter, because science says that it's not spiking and so as a result will last forever. seriously, though, a year at 90c and no ill effects on anything? sign me up.

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Any news on the oil-cooled fishtank machine?

My brother and I recently had a go at making a mineral oil fishtank computer, and the main thing that we learned was that things can quickly become very messy. So if you plan on making one, you have to plan on getting it right the first time, because once a part gets dipped in oil, then it becomes virtually impossible to truely get all the oil off again, so dont even think about being able to switch out parts once you pore the oil in. Upgrades are out of the quiestion too. Also, if you plan on using old parts you have lieing around, then dont be surpised if the mineral oil gets mirky for a while from all the dust that was on them. Additionally, once you fill the tank up with mineral oil, the thing weighs a ton, and while it might sound obvious, it really makes it hard to move, so its probably a good idea to have a place set aside that you want to put it... permanently.

Another thing we learned while doing this is that it's definitly not a good idea to immerse the hard drive in oil, because even though the drives apparetly have a way of keeping all dust and foreign airborn stuffs away from the drive heads, apparently it doesant do the same thing for mineral oil. It was interesting to note, however, that the drive worked for maybe a day or so before crashing. It was an old twenty gig harddrive however, so maybe the crash was purely coincidental, or maybe the HD had a leak, and a newer HD would work just fine immersed in oil... haha well i'm not really willing to risk it again just to satisfy my curiosity.

Well, even though most of the above remarks were negative, I must admit that the project was quite fun, if exasperatingly messy at times, and I plan on eventually doing it again.

So, to sum things up: Only attempt this project if

1)You dont mind getting mineral oil all over the place. or

2)You plan on getting everything right the first time.

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the heads on the hard drive can't spin fast enough with the added resistance caused by the oil. all hard drives have a hole in them to allow pressure to equalize, which is where the oil gets in. SSDs are fine in oil, but optical drives and hard drives - aka anything that moves but isn't a fan - will crap out quickly. i'm surprised yours lasted as long as it did!

and you're right, dust will foul the oil quickly and raise the heat index of the oil to a dangerous level. i'd advise against using anything but new components in a system like this unless you're going to filter the oil, which really is a waste of energy unless you're using a radiator that might clog or something.

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