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Pio's new (lol) projects


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Let me introduce you folks to some blasts from the past!

My goals here are pretty simple.  I'm curious to see what old, older, and ANCIENT parts can still do today in 2021.  I also miss having old junk, I don't really know why..... ?

I got to thinking since I have an old Apevia X-Plorer case sitting here (green), and I have an old Dell beigebox sitting here....I kinda want to see those function again as they were intended to.  So after I'm done torturing them with modern gaming / browsing (best I can pull off), they'll be retired to their appropriate OS with appropriate gaming titles installed, so I can plug them in and enjoy them anytime I want to.  Eventually, when I get a house instead of an apartment, I'll set them all up in my office room or shop / garage.  For now, I can drag them out one at a time, why not?

But then I got to thinking, why stop there?  Why not just build the ultimate machines from those eras?  Why stop at those 2 eras?  Why not build one great rig from every gen?  That got me thinking.  Which parts though?  Decided to go all AMD / ATI because its easier and because I ran them a lot.  Yes, I ran Intel and GeForce too.  I even have a G92 sitting here that was my first "high end brand new" GPU I ever bought (literally my first one, still have the newegg receipt too).

So here's the goals on specs:

  • K6-2 era / Radeon 7500 ish GPU / SCSI Raptors or Cheetah drives / Windows 95
  • Athlon Thunderbird / Radeon 9800XT / cheap SSD maybe (for XP and newer) or same as above / Windows 98SE
  • Athlon XP / Radeon X1950XT / drives? / Windows 2k or XP x86
  • Socket 939 Toledo dual core / HD5870 / SSD / Windows XP x64
  • Socket 939 Toledo dual core / SLI G92 8800GTS 512's / SSD / Whatever OS I can plug on it (because I accidentally have 2 939's)
  • Phenom I / AMD HD6970 / Windows Vista
  • Phenom II x6 / HD7970 / Windows 7
  • FX 8350 or better / R9 290x / Windows 8.1
  • Ryzen 3600 / 5700XT or 6800XT (once prices get better, have a 580 in it now)
    Note:  I do have 2 Ryzen rigs already, one 2600 and one 3600.  Eventually those will have a 5700XT / 6900XT respectively


Links to the builds:
1.  

2.  

3.  

4. 

5.  

6.  Phenomenon

7.  

Edited by pioneerisloud
Updated / organized
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Posted (edited)

Well, let me introduce you to my latest, new to me, build!  Why?  Because I can!!!  :classic_laugh:

Phenomenon:
Specifications:

  • AMD Phenom 9850BE CPU
  • Thermalright 120mm CPU cooler (forget model)
  • Biostar TA790GX 128M AM2+ Motherboard
  • 8GB (4x2GB) GSkill PQ DDR2-1066 CAS 5
  • Seasonic M12II 520w Modular PSU
  • Asus AMD Radeon HD4890 1GB
  • 120GB AData SU650 SSD
  • WD Black 2TB
  • TP Link Wireless N300 PCIe card
  • NZXT Source 210 (from my original Phenom build actually 15 years ago lol)
  • Windows Vista x64

(Note:  A few parts are still on order and I'm using Win7 right now, but this is the final specs of it)

I'll be doing some modernizing on it and trying to run Windows 10 soon once the rest of my ebay parts arrive.  Curious to see if I can even launch Cyberpunk on it. :wheee_orange:

Picture is right after first startup.  I'll update once I get the rest of the parts installed, but really shouldn't look too much different.

Benchmarks upon request.  I'll do my best to run it if it can even run it.

Benchmarks:
-blank

20210304_114958.thumb.jpg.924a0bd6b18e9430ed3c788ad9be2668.jpg

Edited by pioneerisloud
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  • pioneerisloud changed the title to Pio's new (lol) projects
Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, BWG said:

But, will it run Crysis? Might want to screw the chassis to the table and the table to the floor.


With a quad core Phenom and HD4890 1GB?  Oh yeah, it should max Crysis at 30 FPS lol.  Just like the old days!  We'll see, I'm still playing with it waiting for the rest of the junk to arrive.  Ordered SSD, more RAM, the quad core (on a tri atm) for it last night.  It's honestly unusably slow at the moment due to the drive in it.  How did we EVER use Vista on a hard drive back in the day?  Honestly?

I figure I have junk, might as well make the junk work.  Then I got to thinking, I might as well add even more junk to my junk pile, so I have a giant junkpile of usable junk instead of just junk in boxes.  Makes sense? :classic_laugh:

New stuff is boring.  There's no messing with it physically.  There's no overclocking.  That's boring.  I want to overclock by jumpers again!  I have 3 modern rigs in the house.

Edited by pioneerisloud
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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, BWG said:

Get a 2600k!

I have my old 2600k and 3770k still and z68 boards for them. :)

AMD parts TEND TO last longer with modern stuff though.  You're right, Intel CPU's (when Intel was better) would obviously perform better.  I never got to try a Phenom 9850 though. :p  Or a Thuban.  The FX I had really wasn't THAT bad, it played games just as well as my 3770k did, and FX parts are cheaper to find used.  I don't want to spend new build money on old crap. ?

Obviously on the flip side I could be going for Intel / GeForce builds, or literally search and hunt for the "best" at the times.  But meh, this keeps things easier for my hunt since I still remember the AMD parts that were good at the time.

EDIT:
Also updated OP and put first build into its appropriate reserved spot.  Will run benches on command on any of the rigs as I get them going too.  Bare with me though, these rigs aren't exactly fast.  Plus, I gotta wait for parts to arrive before I bother installing more crap.  Right now, I only have the Phenom rig going, but more is coming.  This is absolutely a project I intend to finish. :)  I'm really curious to see what its like using a K6-2, Athlon XP, etc, in 2021. :D

Edited by pioneerisloud
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Premium Bronze
233 111

Hi Pio, glad to see you on the forums again.

 

My wife can possibly scrounge you some old parts from storage or stuff headed to e-waste. Her company is constantly junking stuff.

 

I love your idea of building these retro rigs. As always it's working motherboards that are hardest to find.

 

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8 hours ago, pioneerisloud said:

Also updated OP and put first build into its appropriate reserved spot.

Number 4 out of 7, interesting :classic_biggrin:

I like the idea of benching old hardware, have fun!

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, damric said:

Hi Pio, glad to see you on the forums again.

 

My wife can possibly scrounge you some old parts from storage or stuff headed to e-waste. Her company is constantly junking stuff.

 

I love your idea of building these retro rigs. As always it's working motherboards that are hardest to find.

 

 

Yes indeed.  Or in the case of Sandy Bridge setups as previously suggested to me, finding working CPU's that haven't degraded themselves to death from overvoltage torture.  Not just my tortured examples either, I'm sure any K model sku at this point (from these ages) are probably degraded to some point by now.

But yes, mobos on the really old stuff is going to be hard.  Shoot, Socket 939 and Socket A boards are like $100+ still for good ones on ebay, when they're available it looks like.

 

8 hours ago, Bastiaan_NL said:

Number 4 out of 7, interesting :classic_biggrin:

I like the idea of benching old hardware, have fun!

 

They're in the correct order for me. :p
Edit:  Oh, the rig numbers.  Got it.  Derp.  I'm still learning the layout of EHW some lol.

Edited by pioneerisloud
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i have "old junk" dating back to Athlonx2 and ATI 5770 

 

and i may still have my 2500K.....i know the only board id have for it is ITX though. i've been an ITX builder since that point.

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736 318
12 hours ago, pioneerisloud said:

They're in the correct order for me. :p
Edit:  Oh, the rig numbers.  Got it.  Derp.  I'm still learning the layout of EHW some lol.

Well actually, it was the fact that you are working on 7 projects which made me point that out :classic_tongue:

 

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Parts are starting to slowly arrive for the Phenomenon build.  Wifi cards arrived today.  Still waiting on CPU, more RAM, and the SSD for it.  My EKWB 240mm AIO arrived today too, dunno what I'm gonna put that in yet but that was a neat surprise.

Anybody got some benchmark goals I can shoot for?  I intended on running AIDA64 memory bench, Cinebench, and Crysis of course, but dunno what else I could still try to run.  Hoping to see how "modern" I can make old rigs but of course instruction sets and DX versions might be a problem on some newer titles.  This is just the first of many I plan to throw together (obviously).  

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Posted (edited)

Okay well I just did a thing today.  Not going to say what just yet.  "Phenomenon" is up and functioning fully with all 8GB RAM, SSD, etc.  I'm still missing a Phenom 9850 since the one I bought arrived damaged.....grrrr.  But its got Windows 10 on there with the x3 720 I have for now.  Ordered another 9850 for it, it should arrive this week sometime.  Got some stuff on there to play with too, it runs DX11 with the 4890.  Never thought I'd see that. :)

I won't give away any secrets......but anybody that knows me from OCN will know what I bought today.  I'll give you a hint, I'm now in the market for DDR-400 sticks or better. :wheee_orange:  I still hold the #11 spot on hwbot too.  This is gonna be GOOD!

Edited by pioneerisloud
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11 hours ago, damric said:

Did you get those ocz reapers from the market?

 

I saw some Phenom x4 9950s on Ebay.

 

Phenom II also works in that socket.

That'd be a negative.  I don't see a market here?  I do need to find me some really good DDR though, probably not OCZ sticks though, as those won't work on the board in question that I just bought. :D

I forgot about the 9950.  Oops, that woulda been a little better at stock, oh well.  I have a Phenom II x3 already its in there for testing.  This board wasn't good enough for a Phenom II though (my 790GX), and a HD4890 is too weak of a card to pair with a Phenom II too.  That's why I chose a Phenom for this build.

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EHW News Editor
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DDR-400 is the first type of ram I ever bought for myself IIRC, back when I was using the family HP Pentium 4 2.53ghz PC for gaming. Ahhh the memories... BF1942, Far Cry 1, UT 2003/4... the golden age of mods. 

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, BWG said:

Already checked my trike, it won't unlock a core. :)  You got really good results out of that B55 though, wow.

This 790GX board I have currently has ZERO CPU-NB voltage adjustments, so a Phenom II is a no go on this board to PROPERLY tune it.  I can get about 2.5GHz NB clocks and that's about it.  Phenom II's love 2.8-3GHz+ NB clocks.

Edited by pioneerisloud
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On 3/5/2021 at 11:25 PM, pioneerisloud said:

AMD parts TEND TO last longer with modern stuff though.  You're right, Intel CPU's (when Intel was better) would obviously perform better.

Well if you ever have interest in an X58 Rampage III Formula, i7-960, and 6GB triple channel DDR3 kit, let me know. Looking to get rid of these.

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9 hours ago, BWG said:

I ran mine at 3k. What about using FSB to oc it.


Yeah just finished a little stability testing on the x3 last night.  Best I can get the board to run at is 260 FSB.  Highest CPU-NB clocks I can achieve are around 2.6-2.65GHz or so.  Any higher and it breaks things from BSOD'ing.  Needs CPU-NB voltage adjustment, and it doesn't have that.  Same as my old DFI DK 790FX I had years ago.

That's why I was saying this 790GX board I have just isn't good enough for a Phenom II.  2.6GHz NB isn't enough. :D

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Well, slight update (no pictures yet, sorry).......

Ordered everything to build my next old new to me rig.  I coulda bought a brand new laptop for the cost of this 15+ year old rig, but whatever.  Parts are on their way now.

Ordered a new monitor too, I badly needed one.

And some Jeep stuff.

And lots and lots of SSD's.  That stimmy money didn't last too long in my hands, but whatever.  Bills are paid, got money in savings.  So......time to build? :wheee_orange:
________________________________________

On topic a little further:
I was able to achieve somewhere in the realm of 3-3.1GHz out of the Phenom 9850.  The 4x2GB DDR2 I was able to get as high as 480MHz CAS 5 seemingly stable anyway on the Phenom.  I've never played with a regular old AM2 Phenom before, this is a whole different setup than Phenom II's were, wow.  NB and HT Link both want to stay around that 1.8-2.0GHz mark.  I'm getting it all figured out.  SSD died in it already, so ordered a BX500 240 that just arrived today since I already have 9 BX500's around the house already, they seem like good drives.  So bought 6 more. -_-

Still looking for potential benchmarks / games that I could get running on all these "old" rigs.  GTA V plays on the Phenom.

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Far Cry 2 has a nice built-in benchmark and the game engine is very friendly to quad-core CPUs. You will be able to compare your overclock scaling with the graphs that it generates. It's DX 10 if I recall, so good for that HD 4890.

 

3D Mark Vantage was also a very good benchmark for that era.

 

Trying to remember the name of the Unigine benchmark that was before Heaven...

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7 hours ago, damric said:

Far Cry 2 has a nice built-in benchmark and the game engine is very friendly to quad-core CPUs. You will be able to compare your overclock scaling with the graphs that it generates. It's DX 10 if I recall, so good for that HD 4890.

 

3D Mark Vantage was also a very good benchmark for that era.

 

Trying to remember the name of the Unigine benchmark that was before Heaven...

That'd be Tropics I think you're thinking of.  The Phenom rig runs Heaven fine though too.  It runs at settings of "low" / 1080p, but runs smoothly enough (over 30 FPS).

And......

Stable!  Here's proof:
 

stable.png

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