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Guest Stratus_Fractus

Whoohoo! Performance Plus!

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Wow what a difference this machine is! Finally got my new race horse built, and FS is a new ballgame! So sweet to run the Falcon 50 and my new fav the Dash 8 at max everything, plus ActiveSky, FSFlightMax, in ANY area, at max settings (except: Terrain Texture Detail at 84%) at 1792 x 1344 x 32 with 16x AF and have it run liquid smooth. This set me back some $$, but dang it finally does the job!Lian Li PC-68 case w/ Enermax 431W whisper quiet powersupplyP4-2.53GHz @ 3.04 at default vCore!ASUS P4G8X Deluxe Granite Bay mainboard with the works, including dual-channel DDR1GB Crucial PC-2700 DDRSeagate X15.3 15,000 rpm SCSI U320 drivesATI Radeon 9700 Pro w/ DirectX 9, Catalyst 3.1 virgin installedWindows 2000 Pro with slipstreamed SP3 (activation technology free, thank you very much!)Sony GDM-F520 21" (free from Sony after my 19" died a month before the warranty expired-this one's two months oldAnyway, I feel very fortunate to get to design and build this system. It seems super fast, quite quiet due to a very creative (if I do say so myself!) cooling solution: the case is nicely designed to accomodate a "shoe" that it sits on that ducts air from under my subfloor, where it's very cool year round, directly across both Cheetahs and into the case and on out via the speed-controllable powers supply fans and four case fans as well. I put a fan bus in as well to rheostatically control the case fans, two of which are ATTA fans the blow across the drives. The fans can turn at low speed, so this combined with the all-aluminum case with its excellent layout and thermal conduction properties contribute to an amazingly quite machine, despite the dual Cheetahs.Bring it on baby!Noel

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When you told me more than 6 months ago you were going to run that ducting system, I had to confess I thought you had gone slightly nuts ;) But there you go, a man of his word and I'm glad you are happy with the end result. By the time FS9 is out, you'll have it completely fine tuned and ready to put the nice new CD in.And I see after months of agonising you finally did plumb for the SCSI. So now you can answer the question we've been dying to know. Is it worth it? :-beerchug

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Jon, to be honest, I have no way to evaluate SCSI or no SCSI since the entire system is fast and FS performance is all I could have hoped for. Perhaps with ATA I'd still feel the same. But I can verify load times are seriously improved, and there is no stuttering, EVER! So very cool to start radar and not have the system stop with FSFmax. I have changed my refresh rates in FSFMax to as quick as possible, so that's nice too. And that is during coming in for for a gorgeous approach and landing at sunset at KSEA, with lights on, the terminal looking fantastic, and with the most fluid flight dynamics ever at that insane resolution, in the wonderful Falcon 50. I may go ahead and move one of my old ATA drives over to compare FS performance and perhaps I report something of value in doing this. I had other motivations for the Cheetah drives, namely low latency for using the Gigasampler and oh so awesome East West Steinway Grand sample. That program loves access times that the Cheetahs offer: 3.5msIf I load up FS on my ATA66 I will report the results.Here are some benchmarks from Sandra. I definitely ended up with what I intended. And not one blue screen--go Win2K Pro!Note the bottom bars on some of the benchmarks showing my old 1G P3 and ATA33 drive. No wonder I'm impressed! Also note the drive benchmarks that are similar to my racehorse are RAID configurations, and won't hold a candle in terms of latency.Noel

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Also interesting you decided on Win2K Pro. How did you get it? I can't find it for sale here anymore, although I know a few OEMs still offer it. I actually wish at least one of my machines ran Win2K.

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It seems to be available from several web sources. www.pricegrabber.com shows some.I am very happy so far with Win2K. There is only one issue, and that is it does not correctly support Hyperthreading. My 2.53GHz CPU doesn't either, so that's ok. I was happy to get a new solid OS with no activation ever required, and it is supported to 2008 anyway. Hopefully by the time I upgrade my CPU there will be something more mature than XP, which I guess is doing better already. I am using Object Desktop to sweeten up the GUI in Win2K--very nice!Cheers,Noel

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Nice to have both power and good looks in FS. I bought my PIV 2.53 last September with 512mb PC1066 ram and the 9700 Pro. Not only got a new computer, but got a whole new sim. Running mine at clock speeds with XP Home. Works perfect. If you have IL2, wait till you see that one in OpenGL maxed out. Enjoy!!

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Noel, Very impressive system. How do you like the Enermax power supply. Im using the same type Lian Li aluminum case with a 400W Sparkle power supply with AMD 2400XP and a KT400 MoBo by Gigabyte. My system sounds like a "Shop Vac" after a few minutes of operation. Very loud and 60 percent of the noise is coming from the power supply cooling fan, Ive got to do something about it. Various case fans in the Lian Li loud enough without the power supply pushing things over the top. Don't think your elaborate cooling system will work for me. Marriage would not survive remodeling house to duct cooler air into my upstairs computer room. JayDub

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I'm jealous. :-) Would you mind posting a screenshot of it in action?

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The enermax if fine. The model I chose has the rheostat to change the dual fan speed, however they do make one that does this automatically. They are pretty pricey, so I don't know if it would be worth it. There may be other things you can do.I have serious heat issues with dual cheetah drives, Radeon 9700, P4's fan, etc, plus my box sits about 14" away from my left ear! The dual cheetah drives are not exactly quiet, and I would have to think these aluminum cases conduct noise pretty good (or bad as the case--cough cough--may be)The ducting really took almost no work. The diagram shows what the case sits on, the the rest is just a pathway through the wall into the crawlspace, which was accomplished by cutting a hole in the sheetrock between two studs, and cutting another one under the house so the duct is really just the space between studs.It comes to this: when I am doing non-gaming stuff on the PC, I turn all fans down to their lowest speed, and ASUS's Q-Fan controller slows the P4's fan down to a crawl as well. When I do the high intenstity stuff I dial up fans as needed. When all fans are maxed out, I'm sure it sounds similar to yours for sure. You may seriously think about a Rheobus to be able to turn down your case fans when you don't need more cooling.Some more creative things you could do: consider moving the box farther away from you if possible. I'm going to see how this thing works this summer when it gets very warm here, and if it's too noisy I may move the SCSI drives into an external enclosure and place them, of all places, in the crawlspace where they can spin themselves silly away from my ears!

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Interesting. Looking back, I see that the title of the reply referred to the PSU. I actually meant the rig. Let's see some screenshots of FS! Cheers

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