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  1. #1
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    Neil Hewitt's Avatar
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    New gaming rig - FSX finally maxed out

    I've been replying to a few threads recently giving advice on a good spec for a new FSX box, so I figured I might as well briefly talk about mine

    I've had the parts for a while now, but only just got it working. My first attempt failed dismally after the second or third boot and after much searching I discovered a pin in the CPU socket (LGA 1155) had snapped off. LGA sockets are the bane of my existence. So, new motherboard time; and then I got busy at work so no time to build. Until this weekend.

    Now, this is going to be the main PC in my cockpit setup and I want to do something slightly unusual with it - I'm going to rack-mount it. More specifically, I'm going to build a rack myself for optimal cooling and cable management. I had already experimented with rack-mounting PC boards in my previous sim build, so I took it from there. Cut a large enough piece of 6mm MDF board to accomodate the motherboard, PSU, cooler duct (I'm using a Corsair H80 hybrid water cooler which that has a separate cooling radiator that has to go somewhere), and SSD. Mark the mounting holes for the motherboard, drill holes out, insert some stand-offs, and you can then mount the board directly. The PSU goes up against a support board and is attached with velcro tape; the Corsair H80 radiator assembly is positioned against the CPU intake fan so you get one single airflow through both, and similarly taped in place. The SSD is just velcro'd to the board in the same fashion. Finally, the graphics card is meaty enough and heavy enough that it just sits in place very stably without the need for any kind of overhead rail to attach it to.

    Couple of (bad quality camera phone, sorry) pics:

    WP_000067.jpgWP_000068.jpgWP_000069.jpg

    When I got the rig up and running, I was pretty happy. It took an overclock to 4.7GHz with only a 3 MHz FSB increase, and the RAM is performing like a champ. Once I was happy it was stable and the drivers up to date, I fired up FSX and just maxed more or less everything and took it for a quick spin around San Fransisco Bay. This is stock FSX, no add-ons installed at this point, zero tweaking done. Right in the middle of downtown SF I was getting high twenties to late thirties in terms of framerate, very very smooth, even with the graphics card overriding the settings up to insane levels.

    I have to say, I'm impressed. If it's this good out of the box, imagine how it'll be after some extensive tweaking

    For the record, the specs are:

    • Asus P8Z68-V/Gen3 - this is a really good board for overclocking. Just don't install the AI Suite, cos it breaks Windows.
    • Intel Core i7 2600K (3.4GHz stock, clocked to 4.7GHz stable)
    • Corsair H80 closed-loop hybrid water cooler
    • Corsair Vengeance DDR3-1600 RAM (4GB x 2)
    • OCZ Vertex 3 SSD 120GB - this is a proper 6GB/s job, and the motherboard fully supports it. Fast!
    • Corsair GS800 PSU - slight overkill for this job, but it's a very solid PSU and I trust Corsair kit.
    • AMD ATI Radeon HD 6970 - it's last-gen now, but really only just. A very quick card indeed. Eyefinity support, of course.



    Not the cheapest rig I ever put together - especially considering there's no case, no optical drive etc - as I reckon it must have cost me around 800 (not counting the broken motherboard). But well worth it to finally max out the sliders and not see a single stutter or crawl into land at 5fps.

  2. Thanks radiosigs, Matt Olieman thanked for this post
  3. #2
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    Matt Olieman's Avatar
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    Re: New gaming rig - FSX finally maxed out

    Excellent Neil.... Thank you.

    Matt Olieman

  4. #3
    500+ This must be a daytime job



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    Re: New gaming rig - FSX finally maxed out

    That is great to hear, as i am planning on building a rig very much like that!

    Thanks for the info Neil.

    Reid
    http://juneaucessnasim.blogspot.com
    N58243 (virtual)- Low and Slow...

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    Re: New gaming rig - FSX finally maxed out

    Tks much, Neil.
    Just went to the local Microcenter, bought a buncha gubbins, and built the rig up, with a few changes: it's in a LIAN LI T60 frame, 16gB RAM, 2 GIGABYTE HD7870 GPUs in c/f, 2 SSDs in r0, 2 terabyte 10krpm wheeldrives for bulk storage, no o-clk at all yet, and, yes, holy cock robin! does it blow smoke: 60plus stock FSX fps, *all* sliders to the metal, buzzing Park Avenue NYC in the F/A18, full flaps and gear down so I can control it, waving at the faces I occasionally see in building windows . Man! Suuuuuue wheeeeeat!
    Got the H80 waterbucket, but, so far, the stock INTEL air cooler does well, keeping everything 30-50 degrees above ambient worst-case.
    You oughtta see what this rig does for FS9 and FS2002!
    Just didn't know what a pleasant experience stutterfree flying and no-crawl landing is, before this.
    'Snot cheap, but, then, flyin' always was a poor man's money sink, heh heh.
    Haven't tried any other games yet. There may be an ersatz shooter in my future, but I usually scratch that itch with live ammo in the local armory's krangbang ranges. I suppose that's when I may need the H80. We will see.
    Tks agn and brgds,
    -radiosigs

  6. #5
    500+ This must be a daytime job Sean Nixon's Avatar
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    Re: New gaming rig - FSX finally maxed out

    I just built a new FSX machine too, very similar specs to yours Neil. Not overclocked yet and stock FSX runs sweet fully maxed out. However, I then installed a scenery add on and PMDG and it certainly bring FSX back down to earth. Just as well I won't need PMDG in the sim proper, coz I wouldn't be happy with this performance. I'll have to experiment with the scenery tho, wouldn't want to live without that.