HardwareZone Iron Tech 2008 - The Grand Finale!


The Component Buffet

The Grand Finalists

Unlike the semi-finals, the grand final had an additional criteria: the cost of the PC components used, which is determined by the contestants' hardware choices. Instead of being judged purely on performance, they will be evaluated on the performance-to-price ratio of their assembled systems. While the less expensive component is usually also less powerful on paper, the contestants can always try to overclock and tweak that component to be the equal or better than a more expensive part. This is where the judgment, experience and decision making of the contestants are tested.

Before that happened however, the emcee for the occasion tried to get the contestants settled down and relaxed for what was to come. Out of the ten finalists, eight had traveled from neighboring countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand after winning the regional semi-finals. The final ten are:-

  • Alva Jonathan (Indonesia)
  • Rekky (Indonesia)
  • Ng Teng Liang (Malaysia)
  • Alex Tan (Malaysia)
  • Ronaldo Bejarin (Philippines)
  • Gil Navarro (Philippines)
  • Chen Tianyi (Singapore)
  • Jeremiah Ong (Singapore)
  • Rangsee Traiwongyoi (Thailand)
  • Thirdsak Phokha (Thailand)

Choosing the Components

For this selection phase, contestants were given a choice of two different PC components for each category, namely the processor, memory, motherboard and graphics card. To aid them in this selection process, the latest US retail prices were given for the components (so that pricing is more neutral to all our regional contestants). They are then given sufficient time to look through and decide which components to select. This information is listed as follows:-

 

Iron Tech 2008 Component Pricelist
Components Model Cost (USD)
Processor 1 Core 2 Quad Q9400 (2.66GHz, 6MB L2) $275
Processor 2 Core 2 Quad Q9550 (2.83GHz, 12MB L2) $325
Motherboard 1 MSI P45 Neo2-FR $150
Motherboard 2 MSI P45 Platinum $180
Memory 1 2GB Kingston HyperX KHX8500D2K2 (DDR2-1066) $42
Memory 2 2GB Kingston HyperX KHX9200D2K2 (DDR2-1150) $60
Graphics Card 1 MSI GeForce N9800GTX Plus T2D512-OC $200
Graphics Card 2 MSI Radeon R4850 T2D512 $190
CPU Cooler 1 Intel boxed reference CPU cooler Free
CPU Cooler 2 Cooler Master Hyper TX2 $30
Hard Drive Hitachi Deskstar 250GB SATA HDD $55
Optical Drive LG 22x DVD-RW Drive (SATA) $26
Casing Fan Thermaltake ModX 120mm case fan $29
PSU Corsair HX620W PSU $170
Keyboard & Mouse Cyber Snipa Warboard +Stinger Mouse $119
Monitor Philips 190CW 19" widescreen LCD $209

The lowest possible cost of the system is US$1265 and the highest possible cost of system is US$1403.

And then it's time to select the components. Like a buffet table, contestants lined up to collect their components and return to their assigned workbench. There, they will report to the marshals on what they have chosen and this information will be used later to determine their performance to price ratio.

Here's what the contestants chose for their systems:-

 

Components Chosen by Contestants
Contestant Processor Motherboard Memory Graphics CPU Cooler Total System Cost
Ng Teng Liang (coolice) Intel Core 2 Quad 9550 MSI P45 Platinum Kingston DDR2-1150 MSI Radeon R4850 Stock Intel US$1363
Alex Tan (sup3rfly) Intel Core 2 Quad 9550 MSI P45 Platinum Kingston DDR2-1066 MSI Radeon R4850 Cooler Master Hyper TX2 US$1375
Alva Jonathan Intel Core 2 Quad 9550 MSI P45 Platinum Kingston DDR2-1150 MSI GeForce 9800 GTX+ Cooler Master Hyper TX2 US$1403
Rekky Intel Core 2 Quad 9400 MSI P45 Neo2-FR Kingston DDR2-1150 MSI GeForce 9800 GTX+ Cooler Master Hyper TX2 US$1323
Thirdsak Phokha Intel Core 2 Quad 9550 MSI P45 Platinum Kingston DDR2-1066 MSI GeForce 9800 GTX+ Cooler Master Hyper TX2 US$1385
Rangsee Traiwongyoi Intel Core 2 Quad 9550 MSI P45 Platinum Kingston DDR2-1150 MSI GeForce 9800 GTX+ Cooler Master Hyper TX2 US$1403
Ronaldo Bejarin Intel Core 2 Quad 9400 MSI P45 Neo2-FR Kingston DDR2-1066 MSI GeForce 9800 GTX+ Cooler Master Hyper TX2 US$1305
Gil Navarro Intel Core 2 Quad 9400 MSI P45 Platinum Kingston DDR2-1066 MSI Radeon R4850 Cooler Master Hyper TX2 US$1325
Chen Tianyi Intel Core 2 Quad 9400 MSI P45 Neo2-FR Kingston DDR2-1066 MSI Radeon R4850 Stock Intel US$1265
Jeremiah Ong Intel Core 2 Quad 9550 MSI P45 Platinum Kingston DDR2-1066 MSI GeForce 9800 GTX+ Cooler Master Hyper TX2 US$1385