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My Plans for a Rig

Discussion in 'Sim Racing Hardware' started by glight, Jan 23, 2011.

  1. Hello RaceDepartment, I have been living on the F1 2010 boards for a couple weeks now and now I am delving deeper into simracing. I am about to put together a rig since racing on my couch with just one tv screen is not enough now that I am addicted :rolleyes:

    So here is what is on my list. I am setting this up for PC Gaming, F1 and Forza.

    $600-1000 3x 23" Monitors (Found 3 Samsung BX2350s (LED) for $530)

    $450 Obutto (might be able to pick it up instead of paying shipping)

    $500 Fanatec GT2 and Clubsport Pedals and Shifters (paid for, but patiently waiting)

    $600 3x Xbox 360's (Already own one, picked up 2 Pro's for $120 at the pawn shop)

    $240 Raedeon 6870 (for eyefinity)

    $80 650W PSU (to fuel the 6870 beast)

    $150 $60 HDMI Cables, displayport adapter

    $100 Surround sound

    $120 3 copies of Forza 3 (own one, need two more)

    (I will be using a desk for the monitors and not the Obutto frame)

    So a total investment of $3160 assuming I paid full retail prices. I was lucky and saved BIG on the monitors and xbox's plus, I already have a PC around to upgrade; I will have payed $2080 to upgrade from my current setup. I just have the Forza Discs, the 6870, the Obutto, and cables to buy now.

    What are your thoughts on my planned setup? Will I be lacking anything? My PC has a Core 2 Quad Q6600 and 2GB ram, do I need any other upgrades? Do I really need a 6870 or will a 6850 do fine? (Don't want to waste money, but I will not compromise the performance too much). Will I be fine with a 500W PSU?
  2. Abdul Al-Amry

    Abdul Al-Amry
    2011 RD Indy 500 Winner

    500W PSU is a no no. Corsair 650W should do
    Another 2GB RAM for your puter
    Get 6950 if you can and upgrade for free to 6970 performance.

    $150 for HDMI cables, adapters? Dude!!!! HDMI cable can be found for £1-£10 with differing length.

    Good luck. That rig will look great.
  3. Kris Vickers

    Kris Vickers
    Hardware Staff

    You could do with more RAM.

    Also, the Q6600 is a nice CPU for overclocking, so look into decent cooling and ramp that mother up! :)
  4. Kris Vickers

    Kris Vickers
    Hardware Staff

    Beat me to it ya bugger
  5. Thanks guys, since I didn't include the PSU but overestimated on the cables/adapters looks like the cost is around the same. I think I have some spare DDR2 lying around from an HTPC that died...

    Looks like I am sticking with the 6870 because a 6950 goes for around $300 and a 6970 is closer to $400 (YIKES!)
  6. One thing that is not necessary, but might be nice would be to find a decent price on 3 120Hz refresh rate monitors that way you can handle 3D support should you need to at a later date without needing to upgrade your rig. The graphics should be fine with what you have chosen. I would consider upgrading your OS to 64bit if it isn't already as things work faster/better on 64bit systems. One last thing is the PSU. I know that 650w would work for what you have, but it is getting close to not being enough. I would consider the possibility of getting a 750w - 800w to allow for expansion in the future. Also, double check and make sure that the PSU that you buy has more than 1 12v rail. The more rails, the less load on the PSU to a single rail, which will make the PSU last longer.

    If you are going to overclock, there are 2 things to keep in mind. 1) Cooling. 2) More cooling. Not only should you be worried about cooling the CPU, but also the chipset on the motherboard and most definitely the GPU. The stock cooler is ok, but aftermarket is much better, allowing for the possibility of overclock the GPU as well. If you are not familiar with the procedure for overclocking your system, then read up on it on tomshardware.com or let a professional do it as this could potentially cook your CPU and shut you down till you get another one.

    Hope all goes well with that rig and hope you get many many hours of enjoyment out of it. :)
  7. Abdul Al-Amry

    Abdul Al-Amry
    2011 RD Indy 500 Winner

  8. Jim, 3D is a bit out of the question as triple 120Hz is a significant cost increase (looking at close to $300 for ONE monitor vs $500 for 3). I am not looking at upgrading the GPU past a 6870 anytime in the future. My mobo is not capable of crossfire so no 2nd card and therefore no need for a more powerful PSU. I might look into OC on the CPU so thanks for the tips on COOOOOLING :D

    I realize I am not quite at the limits of what is capable with a rig like this but I will need:
    3 120hz monitors
    New Mobo
    May as well get a new CPU since the Q6600 is old (and probably unsupported now)
    Bigger PSU than what I was thinking

    In other words a brand new PC, which is well outside of my budget. But if I was starting from scratch you have some good points, Jim.
  9. Cheapest way to increase performance on any system is OC if the system is capable of handling it. I have seen the Q6600's run at near 4.0Gig in the past and am sure they can still be run like that, but it requires quite the investment in cooling and making sure the rest of the system can handle it. Least expensive way will probably result in your seeing about a 15% to 25% increase in speed for your processor. I would run the system without OC first to see if it can handle it personally. If the system can handle what you want without it, why risk the downside to OC.
  10. Alex Ball

    Alex Ball
    Web Nerd

    Mental to spend that much to play forza, imho. (and I am a forza fan).

    Get the PC upgraded, and then you'll have a sweet setup.
  11. I agree, all this work just for Forza is (only a little) over the top .... if you are paying retail for the 360's.

    I got lucky and caught a good deal at the pawn shop for the 360's and online for my monitors so that is why I am building this rig asap. Otherwise I would be saving up for the PC first and then hunting ebay and the pawn shop for some cheap 360's later.

    I love Forza and have always wanted to play it triple screened, I am a bit of a graphics junkie instead of a physics junkie I guess.:wink:
  12. Alex Ball

    Alex Ball
    Web Nerd

    Then go for GT5! ;)

    Good going though - I wouldn't say no, if I had the cash.
  13. Agree , I only have an xbox , but if i would have that amount of money to spend I would buy a monster PC with 3 monitors
  14. So this week I ordered all the upgrades for my PC; here are my new specs (upgrades in bold)

    CPU: Intel Q6600
    Cooler: Coolermaster Hyper 212
    RAM: 4GB DDR2 667MHz (added 2GB from an old PC)
    GPU: XFX 6950 2GB
    PSU: XFX XXX 650W modular
    Case: Antec 900 (drilling holes for cable management)
    Boot: 64GB SSD
    Storage: 500GB HDD

    I also got some good deals on:
    6ft HDMI cables ($10 each)
    Minidisplayport adapter ($34)
    8GB thumbdrives for the 360's ($13)
    Gigabit switch ($30)
    Gigabit Powerline ethernet ($100)

    I overspent my budget a bit, but there were a lot of savings since I was buying a lot of things on special (SSD, 6950, Gigabit switch and Powerline adapters). I know my PC will have too much horsepower for racing, but I am planning on playing a lot of PC games also so I should get a lot of mileage out of it. I am planning to overclock the CPU to 3.2 or 3.6 GHz, does anyone have a good setup or a guide they can point me to? Also planning on unlocking the 6950's shaders and OC to 850MHz core (not touching the memory).
  15. Kris Vickers

    Kris Vickers
    Hardware Staff

    Have a good read through HERE

    Also, any good of 'Q6600 overclock' should bring up a million and one useful forum posts on what settings to try :)
  16. The key to overclocking is to take it slow. One step at a time and test thoroughly after each step. This is not something that you are going to be able to accomplish in one or two tweaks unless you want a chance of a system that is unstable. When overclocking, don't take any shortcuts as this could fry your processor or worse, some other major component of the system that would require further expense to get back up and running.

    I would suggest taking a look at tomshardware.com as well to see what they say about overclocking and how to proceed. That site has been doing some serious hardware testing for years and knows what they are talking about. I would trust no other site personally.
  17. So I got my monitors and PC upgrades delivered last week only to be let down by a 6950 that was DOA. After drying my tears I used the weekend to setup the office with everything except eyefinity. But the anticipation has made today's arrival of my replacement card that much more glorious!

    I can't believe my eyeballs:eek: I just finished a race in F1 2010 on High settings, and now I am exhausted. I literally can't play anymore because I've been visually overwhelmed. The speed feels like its been amplified x100 and it's crazy, I can actually see all the way around the corners!

    I'm still waiting on the obutto and Fanatec but I don't think they will be here until early March... I will have to make do with the DFGT but there is no way I am using the MS wheel to play Forza. I tried it out just so I knew the setup would work but man is the MS wheel light compared to the DFGT (and do they really call that force feedback:confused:)