Overclocking System Summary

 Hardware  Component  Price
CPU & Cooling AMD Athlon XP 2500+ Mobile (OEM). SLK-947U HSF + Vantec Fan $151
Motherboard ABIT NF7-S Rev.2 (nForce2 Ultra 400) $98
Memory 2 X 512MB Mushkin PC3500 CAS2 $215
Video Card 128MB Gigabyte Radeon 9600 Pro $138
Monitor Samsung 955DF DynaFlat CRT $200
Computer Case Kingwin K11 Aluminum ATX plus $68 430W Antec PSU $138
Sound Card Creative Labs Audigy 2 6.1 OEM $70
Speakers Logitech Z640 5.1 $62
Networking Onboard 10/100 Ethernet or 10/100/1000 Gigabit controller $0
Hard Drive Western Digital 1200JB (120GB) $87
CD-RW Plextor 52x32x52 CDRW $44
Bottom Line - $1203

$1203 is the final price of our overclocking system, not including any money you'll spend on software (Windows XP Home or Professional, Office, etc.) or a keyboard and mouse.

Long-time overclockers are absolutely going to love a setup like this. They'll have quality DDR that they can use for many months, if not years, to come, and will enjoy great performance and stability at the same time. Beginning overclockers should consult our forums for more information on how to overclock, as it can be dangerous for inexperienced users. What we've talked about in this guide may be difficult to understand if you don't have some type of background in modern day overclocking, making AnandTech's forums (or any good online hardware forum, really) the best place for you to ask for building advice.

UPDATED March 18th, 2004
Keyboard, Mouse, and Cooling
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  • greendonuts3 - Friday, March 26, 2004 - link

    Thanks for this guide. I used it to build a nf-7 and 2600xp-m system and am pleased as punch with it. I'm at 400 fsb and 100f cpu temp.

    I have some feedback about the stinkin'
    Thermalright SP-97 Copper Heatsink with Heatpipe :

    Incredible cooling, but designed by sadistic sons of female dogs, including:
    --tiny, windborne, nearly invisible clear plastic washers (you only get 1 extra).
    --screw holes that are nearly inaccessible through the maze of heat pipes unless you have 3 hands (or use needlenose pliers to load screw)
    --instructions that read "use needlenose pliers to tighten heatsink nuts to back bracket" which caused me to gouge my mobo cutting 3 traces. This was on the nf7-v2 which has no room for a socket wrench between the zif lever and the heatsink nut.

    Nevertheless, thanks for the good work and keep the guides coming.

  • magratton - Thursday, March 25, 2004 - link

    BTW: I noticed that there is an extra little tab that is sticking out on the SLK-947U. It is sticking out about a millimeter or so. Pulled out my handy-dandy dremel tool and ground it down so that it is flat with the rest of the aluminum mounting plate and voila! no longer touching the capacitors.
  • magratton - Monday, March 22, 2004 - link

    The thing that I am most worried about is heat. After a pass at installing Windows XP (not completed) my CPU is at nearly 40 degrees C. I have the SLK-947U with AS5 paste in between. Any thoughts? Aside from removing CPU/heatsink from mobo and checking that it seated properly... just paranoid too much in and out of cpu/heatsink, I am gonna zap something.
  • magratton - Monday, March 22, 2004 - link

    #29 - I noticed that mine was essentially "pushing" the capacitors as well. I was able to secure it though. VERY tight fit.
  • Furse001 - Friday, March 19, 2004 - link

    Nice article. I decided to try out the system. Problem is the thermalright heatsink will not fit on the abit nf7-s Rev.2 motherboard… Went to the manufacturer’s website and it states the same thing. Anyone want to but a spanking new SLK-947U heatsink? Anyou have any suggestions to an alternative that will fit? Thanks.
  • Jeff7181 - Wednesday, March 17, 2004 - link

    I have my Muskin PC3500. It doesn't run at the default specs... 216 Mhz at it's rated 2-3-3 timings is unstable. Prime 95 crashes within within 4 minutes. If I let it run at 200 Mhz, adjusting the multiplier to keep the speed of the CPU the same, or slightly higher, it runs indefinately with no errors.
  • matt426malm - Sunday, March 14, 2004 - link

  • noxipoo - Sunday, March 14, 2004 - link

    I don't see the NF7-S mobo for sale anywhere for $82, they are all 100+
  • Zebo - Saturday, March 13, 2004 - link

    all that's left is to decide on the video card. "to spend or not to spend? that is the question." no time to hurry. ;)
    Come join the community..theres a video forum with plenty of advice.:) Good luck with your mobile.

  • DAPUNISHER - Saturday, March 13, 2004 - link


    How about adding the SoundStorm comment to the article? Lumping it in with the audio on the P4C800-E just ain't right! You should have mentioned how good SS is when hooked via SPDIF and doing the HTPC thing. Certainly we all know that but many who read that guide may not. They could use that $70 to get the 9800pro if they understand that SS will be a very nice solution for integrated. At least it'll give them a choice to weigh instead of the heavy handed feel of "you're missing out if you don't get the Audigy2"

    Other than that I say it's a great guide that will give neophytes the info they need to build and overclock a budget system that will kick some butt.

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