My new Workstation spec

Published: Sat, 01 Oct 2011 18:55:45 GMT

Zalman CPU Cooler

My current workstation is a Dell Dimension 9200 and it has served me well for the past 6 years or so, but it is starting to show its age, so I decided to build myself a new one.

The most intensive work I do on my workstation is editing large photos from my DSLR, and editing HD video from the same camera. A nice fast processor and lots of RAM will make a huge difference.

I found that had very competitive prices and this has the added advantage of only dealing with one supplier - you may be able to find some of the parts cheaper else where, the prices seem to change daily! The prices below are correct as of 30/09/2011.

Intel Sandybridge i7-2600 Core i7 Quad-Core Processor (3.40GHz, 8MB Cache, Socket 1155) £230.04 Buy one for yourself at Amazon

Note: When I received this processor, it came with a small heatsink and fan. The heatsink has thermal compound pre-applied. You can probably save yourself some money by not buying the CPU cooler I have specified below.

Gigabyte Z68X-UD5-B3 (GA-Z68X-UD5-B3) £261.91 Buy one for yourself at Amazon This motherboard allows overclocking the CPU, and I have read at least one report of the i7 2600 being overclocked to 4GHz, so I may give this a go. If I was more serious about overclocking, I would have gone for the unlocked 2600k which is only a few quid more expensive.

M4A1600CCorsair CMZ16GX39B 16GB (4x4GB) 1600MHz CL9 DDR3 Vengeance Blu Memory Four Module Kit £90.18 Buy one for yourself at Amazon

Graphics Card:
Gigabyte GV-R687OC-1GD; 1024 MB; GDDR5-SDRAM; 256 bit; 4200 MHz; ATI Radeon; Radeon HD 6870 (GV-R687OC-1GD) £219.10 Buy one for yourself at Amazon

Power Supply:
CiT 750W Power Supply Unit with PSU and Dual 12V Rails - Black Edition £27.99 Buy one for yourself at Amazon This is a pretty cheap power supply - I'll see how it holds up and maybe upgrade to something better if necessary. As expected, this power supply wasn't up to the job. The motherboard needs a 20+4-pin ATX power connecter and an extra 4+4-pin CPU power connector. Additionally, the Graphics card needs 2x6-pin PCI-E power connectors which were not all available on the cheap power supply. I bought an OCZ TECHNOLOGY OCZ-ZS750W-UK OCZ ZS Series 750W Power Supply from the ever helpful Silicon Edinburgh Buy one for yourself at Amazon

Hard Drive:
Seagate ST31000524AS 3.5 inch Barracuda 1TB GB 7200rpm SATA Drive with 32MB Buffer £44.29 Buy one for yourself at Amazon

Sony AD-7261S-0B 24x Internal DVDRWRAM SATA Black Lightscribe £18.02 Buy one for yourself at Amazon

CPU Cooler:
Zalman CNPS9900-NT CPU Cooler (PC World £29.97) Buy one for yourself at Amazon (£36.99) I've heard really good things about this CPU cooler, and it should keep the chip a reasonable temperature if I do decide to overclock - besides, it's got a green LED fan, so it must be good ;-) Note: This cooler comes with a tube of thermal grease, so you don't need to buy any extra unless you have a preferred brand.

Antec Three Hundred Midi Case £49.98

Originally published on my blog at

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