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How to match computer components

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  • How to match computer components

    My first post. Hello everyone!!!

    I'm in the market to replace a computer.

    Here is my question:
    When I purchase the components or buy an off the shelf computer, I want to be make sure the components are in the same performance range. Is there a web site that can give me guidelines regarding matching components? The components that I understand are the most important to match are the cpu, motherboard fsb and memory speed. I understand the video card should be of sufficient quality so not to hog cpu and memory.

    I know this all boils down to "what are you going to use the computer for?"

    Are there other components I should consider? Are there other performance sub-measures of the cpu, fsb and memory that I should be aware of when matching components? Is this just way toooo technical to consider?

    My understanding the HDD is the slower component on a system so I will go with a SATA drive. I'm excluding DVD, network cards, USB and other peripherals.

    For example, if I purchase and AMD Athlon 64 Dual-Core 5000+ (rated at 1051 on PassMark) what should be the speed of the fsb and memory?

    OMG, , I looked up the above CPU specifications and it is not quite so simple! Please see below. Is there anything in particular below I should be aware of or should I just take what is given by AMD?

    Sorry I got so long winded.

    Thanks a lot for you input!


    Model Number: 5000+
    Frequency: 2.6 GHz
    CMOS Technology: 65nm SOI
    Total Dedicated L2 Cache: 1MB
    Packaging socket: AM2
    Thermal Design Power: 65W

    AMD64 Technology: Yes
    Simultaneous 32- & 64-bit computing: Yes
    L1 Cache (Instruction + Data) per core: 128KB (64KB + 64KB)
    L2 Cache (total dedicated): 1MB or 2MB
    HyperTransport™ Technology: One 16x16 link @ 2000 MHz bidirectional
    HyperTransport Iechnology I/O Bandwidth: 8 GB/s
    Integrated DDR Memory Controller: Yes
    Memory Controller Width: 128-bit
    Type of Memory Supported:
    PC2 6400(DDR2-800),
    PC2 5300(DDR2-667),
    PC2 4200(DDR2-533), and
    PC2 3200(DDR2-400) unbuffered memory (socket AM2)

    Memory Bandwidth: up to 12.8 GB/s

    Total Processor-to-system Bandwidth (HyperTransport plus memory bandwidth): up to 20.8 GB/s

    Process Technology:
    90 nanometer, SOI (silicon-on-insulator) Technology
    65 nanometer, SOI (silicon-on-insulator) Technology

    Packaging: socket AM2 (940-pin) organic micro PGA

    Thermal Design Power: 125W, 89W, 65W or 45W

    Die Size:
    90nm: 219 mm2
    65nm: 118mm2

    Number of Transistors:
    90nm: 164 to 243 million (depending on cache size)
    65nm: 221 million

  • #2
    You can ignore most of those specs.

    1) Pick the CPU you want.
    2) Find a motherboard (MB) that supports this CPU type. Pay attention to the socket. ("AM2" in your example). The CPU and motherboard must match. If you want to play games, get a MB without a built in video card.
    3) Look at what type of RAM the MB supports. Pick some mid range RAM that matches your MB. e.g. PC2 5300
    4) If you play games, buy the best video card you can afford. Otherwise just get something cheap.
    5) The performance differences between most new consumer hard drives is not dramatic. So just get a Seagate, Samsung or WD drive of the size you need.

    Of course there are MANY other things to consider, like power supply, case, cooling, noise, if you can upgrade the CPU, etc.. but this is not really a PC building site and all this information is available on the web.

    You didn't answer the question, "what are you going to use the computer for?"


    • #3
      Thanks for your reply!

      I have three purposes. The first reason is for IT development work. I could be running two instances Delphi (one for automation controller and the second for automation server), one instances of mysql, and a web server. The second is for light gaming. The only game I play is MS Flight Sim.

      The third is for sizing a server for document imaging purposes. A server like this will have an average of 50K images stored on striped disk. Some sort of optical disk for long term storage of images would be attachedt. It will also have a dbms to index the images back to the host application, such as accounts payable. In this case the most important objective of the server is through put. The images need to be delivered to the client ASAP. There are a lot of other detail that needs to be defined before the components of a server can be choosen. That's another question.

      Thanks again.