I suffered my first hardware failure a few days ago and it just couldn't have come at a worse time.
Recently, I built a "new" PC for my sister, pretty much cobbled together from my spare parts (and the dual-core AMD and Hiper 580 PSU right out of Sprocket).
When I returned from Chicago I had a few new watercooling parts to install and had mostly decided that my next build (almost certainly an Intel of some flavor or another) was going to be aircooled and very possibly caseless as well, so this was going to be Sprocket's grand finale as a looped and lavishly enclosed beauty queen.
I took my time and finally completed the main assembly last Thursday (made all the easier by a lightning-quick blizzard that raged through Colorado and gave me the perfect excuse to miss work and stay home ).
Early Friday morning I began the Windows install and immediately could tell that something was amiss.
Blue screens, various error messages and the complete inability to load an OS tipped me off that all was not right with poor old Sprocket.
My hardrives recertified OK and MemTest ran without errors so I was left with three possible culprits- CPU, motherboard or PSU.
QuickTech passed the processor but locked on the motherboard tests and doesn't test the PSU at all.
The easiest next step seemed to be trying a different power supply so I nabbed one from work but it didn't solve the problem.
Motherboard then- and just to be safe, a PSU as well.
But, says my inner child, why spend any money at all on a antiquated s939 setup- why not just go Conroe now?
So I made a few wishlists and did some pondering.
Finally decided that it's still just a tad too soon to make the leap.
I want to see the DX10 vid cards and the quad-core Kentsfields(?) before I make any decisions and honestly, I'm still somewhat nonplussed by the plethora of options...so many chipset choices and really not much consumer feedback on the newest stuff.
When I jumped to s939 it was easy, by then the DFI was the clear performance motherboard and I had lots of experience with DDR memory so the field was relatively clear.
With the Intel PC I have no clue what mobo to get or who is making the best DDR2 RAM so I've targeted March/April as the next upgrade date and opted to keep investing in Sprocket's current incarnation.
I didn't feel like waiting on Newegg so I shopped Microcenter, knowing that I'd pay a bit more and have a narrower range of selections.
Ended up with a Corsair 520 PSU and an Asus A8N SLI-Deluxe.
Just got her back up and running a few hours ago.
It was weird not having Sprock available- all the other PCs I have access to are so slow and clunky in comparison that I realized how spoiled she has made me.
Pics of the new build will follow soon.