Building my custom desktop tommorow ?

Hi experts,

I have purchased the items off of ebuyer for my custom computer that I will be building once the stuff gets here but I have never used thermal grease before or ever known how to take a heat sink and fan off of a P4 system before and wanted precise step by step advice on how you do it , what I need to use to do it etc etc and also any other advice you can give me that will help me put this system together with as less fuss or problems as possible ??

Also I have the nvidia fx 5900 that I brought back with me from the USA and since I am purchasing the motherboard etc here in England will I have any issues with it being an NTSC graphics card ?

Also I have purchased the 3ghz Prescott 478 socket P4 CPU and wanted to know if I would have any issues with that and the motherboard I have gotten.

The motherboard I have gotten is the Asus P4C800 E Deluxe.

Thanks for all the help
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Shane Russell2nd Line Desktop SupportAsked:
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here's my favorite guide on how to use thermal paste
putting on a heatsink is scarry...especially the first time.
With Althons you have to apply quite a bit of pressure to get the heatsink on and is very easy to crack the core if not lined up correctly
but with P4's it's much easier and little chance to crack the core.

thats a link for P4's specifically...much easier than athlons to install.
make sure the paste covers the core....and not too much that it squishes out the sides.  I've seen poor pasting jobs (some by me) that are responsible for the chip running 10 degrees celsius hoter.

As for the Video card NTSC issue...I have no clue...dunno if the card is PAL capable.  but if you have problems you know you have to buy a new one.

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The P4 cpus are fairly easy to manage - the hardest thing is to make sure the clips are lined up with the fingers of the holder.

When applying paste, keep in mind that it is supposed to displace small air gaps, so if the surface is shiny smooth, you will need very little paste.  The metal-to-metal contact is what transfers heat most effectively; put a tiny drop on the cpu and use a plastic card to spread it as thin as possible over the contact surface.

You only need to worry about the NTSC aspect if you are going to use the s-video port to connect to a TV.  It will not produce a picture compatible with PAL.
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Shane Russell2nd Line Desktop SupportAuthor Commented:
So I dont have to worry about the power consumption of the graphics card or anything like that ?

Also thanks for the links and info !! I will take a look at those guides now :)
The video card is not a known power monster, but you do need a power supply over 350watts with the special 4-wire square connector for the motherboard.
power consumption of the fx 5900???

I think you need at least a 350.....

I would also go with a halfway decent power supply from a name brand like Antec...Enermax...
Don't buy a $20 power supply even if it says its 500w.... thats the peak... what matters is what it can take consistantly.  Just stick to a name brand and you'll be fine, pay more than $50 but less than $100 for around a 400 w ps.
Unless you plan on having alot of drives...I mean like 8+...then go for a 500w
Shane Russell2nd Line Desktop SupportAuthor Commented:
thats ok, I purchased a 600 watt power supply, here is the one I am getting psu wise :

The case I have ordered is this one :

Which comes with a 350 watt PSU.

Is that PSU I ordered ok ?
I don't know about eBuyer brand psu's...they can't be very good for that price.
With cheap power supplies 350w or 600w doesn't make much difference, since they're not built to last very long.  Somtimes you get lucky and they go years without a problem or somtimes they blow in a week.

but they have Antec's on that site, alot more money though
Any of the Antec Smartpowers or Truepowers >350 are awesome.. this one is 380w.

As for the probably comes with the same psu as your 600w only the 350w version....I would not waste any money buying the 600w one... since you will not notice a difference.

If you're looking to save money, try the one that comes with the case.  If you experience problems like lockups,bluescreen, or standby issues then pick up a halfway decent one.
That power supply doesn't have any specs - it could be a problem.  I like to see around 18a or more on the +12v rail to convince me of quality, and that doesn't come cheap.
Shane Russell2nd Line Desktop SupportAuthor Commented:
Its too late they have sent the 600 W one out now !!

Anyway I will try it out and as long as the 600 Watt one lasts me about a few months or so then I will be fine becuase then I can purchase an antec one in a few months time.

Thanks for all the input !

I will post back with the ampage of the PSU when I get it and if you could let me know what you think.

Thanks all !!
Hi Gecko,

I think everybody is helping with a great deal of expertise.  I use an Athlon 2700 2.17 Ghtz and I think perhaps it might use a bit more power than your Intel.  350 should do but you do wan a quality case.

Here is the one I used.  I purchased two from as It's well built and was within the dimensions I wanted:

Having said that, I would still like to use an Antec case because they are quality and quiet is very important  and come with an Antec Power Supply.  But the next box will have a glass door like yours but I think I shall get a real good one like this Thermaltake:

And by all means, use fancy color coded round cables so when we come to England and visit you we don't have to look at those ugly flat gray things through that plexiglass door.

How much do you figure you will save over that mesh computer you had figured?


Use a flat tooth pick for the thermal paste and don't use too much.  Not sure but Intel may include a tube of paste or  heat tape with the CPU.  Arctic Silver is the name preferred by most builders

Heat sink/fan included with Intel boxed (retail) CPUs has a thermal pad attached and no additional thermal compound is required.

Main trick to P4 CPU coolers is to ensure that they are lined up properly and are seated correctly before pressing locking levers.  I prefer to install CPU and CPU cooler prior to mounting motherboard.  Can be pretty tight quarters once mobo is installed in case.

Also don't forget to swap back plates prior to mounting mobo.
Looked at case you purchased.  Appears not to have a rear exhaust fan mounted.  From picture seems to accept both 80mm and 92mm fans.  Larger 92mm fan is preferable (moves more air and usually quieter).  Regardless, you must have a rear exhaust fan.  If not already purchased or included with case, purchase and install prior to running system with side panels installed and then limit to testing and setup only.  A portable fan blowing into case would be a big help.
Shane Russell2nd Line Desktop SupportAuthor Commented:
can you show me the rear exhaust fan that I would need from that ebuyer website if you can find a one and also you say swap back plates but what are those and can you explain how I do that.

I purchased 2 case fans but nothing else aside from that.

If the rear exhaust fan is cheap enough I will order that ASAP provided someone can help me find a one.
James GoetheCommented:
Its the simple questions that get the most chit chat.
Rear exhaust fan is a "case fan" just a specific place to mount.  An 80mm or 92mm case fan is what you need.  Back plate is adapter plate on back of case that mates with mobo external connectors (USB, parallel, kybd, mouse, serial,NIC, etc).  Ones that come with cases are nearly always old venus design.  Motherboard should come with a back plate made for it.  Install prior to installing mobo in case.  They usually pop in and out.  Some have clips or screws.
Shane Russell2nd Line Desktop SupportAuthor Commented:
ok this is probably another question and if you want me to ask it as a new question just say so, however the display colours of my monitor are all funny and they arent as they should be as thought they are tinted, I think it is because the graphics card I have is an NTSC US graphics card but is there a work around someone can help me with or something I can do to get the colours right ?
First and foremost, NTSC applies only to TV, VCR, DVDs, etc and not to computer monitors.  VGA and its variants (e.g. SVGA, XGA, UXGA) is a totally different spec as is DVI.  Therefore a US of A video card is not the problem per se.  

Is color tinted toward or lacking one of these colors, red, green, or blue.  If so, color gun in monitor is probably not firing.  If general hue is off, try changing color temperature using video settings or monitor controls.  Also ensure signal cable is properly seated.  A broken or loose wire in signal cable can cause colors to be off as well.

To see if monitor is problem, disconnect VGA cable and bring up on screen controls.  If colors are off there, problem is in monitor itself.  Or connect another monitor.
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