This machine should be:
- At least somewhat kick-ass, but without being incredibly expensive (somewhere in the ~$1500-2000 range is good)
- Well-balanced (for instance, a quad-core machine with 256MB RAM doesn't make much sense)
- Quiet (I'll use it to listen to music, at least, if not watch movies and the like)
- Reliable -- if I have problems with even one component during its first 5 years of life, it fails the reliability test.
- Running Linux, and only Linux (unless Windows happens inside VMware or something)
- A good development box (which means at least dual-core -- yay threads)
- A good library (I have lots of music and anime, and will only collect more as time passes)
- An okayish gaming machine (if anyone ever gets around to releasing Linux games...)
I picked components by going through Newegg and looking first at the brands and specs -- did the brand seem reliable, and did the product come with a lengthy warranty? Did the specs fit with the rest of the machine (for instance, getting 1.5GB/s SATA drives is silly when the motherboard supports 3.0GB/s)? Did the device fit within a reasonable price range (neither really cheap, nor really expensive)?
I'm pretty clueless about hardware, so I would like you, my lovely readers, to give me feedback.
[Edit: Yes, I know the prices might be a bit on the steep side. I've done no shopping whatsoever -- just threw the numbers together to get a ballpark figure.]
[Edit again: Dropped the CPU speed, because I found a 2.2GHz with 1MB cache for ~$200 cheaper. :p]
|CPU||2.2GHz||Dual-core (1MB L2 per core)||AMD||Athlon 64 X2 4400+||$460.00|
|Motherboard||Sock 939||4 DIMM, SATA2, PCI-express||DFI||Lanparty UT CFX3200-DR||$230.00|
|RAM||2GB||DDR 400 (PC 3200)||Kingston||ValueRAM 2GB||$160.00|
|Video||256MB||PCI-express x16||ASUS||GeForce 7600GT||$190.00|
|Audio||Dolby 6.1||SPDIF||Creative||Audigy2 ZS Platinum||$200.00||Supported in Linux?|
|Hard Disks||SATA 3GB/s||Seagate||Barracuda 7200.9 st3300822as|
|DVD Burner||16x (IDE)||Plextor||PX-740A||$80.00|
And now, here are my questions:
- Does anyone have experience with the Audigy2 under Linux? I know the first generation works, but what about the second?
- What is the difference between Athlon 64 X2 and a dual-core Opteron? I couldn't find any explanation of this on AMD's website, and their specs look to be the same (even though the Opteron costs ~$100 more).
- Anyone know anything about the virtualization instructions AMD is supposedly putting into its newer processors? Can I buy a CPU with that now, and if so, which ones have it?
- I'm thinking about the SATA version of the DVD burner, but it's more expensive and I'm not sure it gives me any benefits. Thoughts?
- What sort of power requirements will this machine have?
- Any case/fan/PSU recommendations? (Keep in mind, the machine needs to be quiet, although I'm OK with reasonably large cases.)
- Any positive or negative experiences with the brands I've listed? Please share.
- Can you think of any better brands/products? If this were your machine, how would you change the configuration?
- Is there anything at all wrong with the configuration of this box?