Advice: New I7-3770K build

Hello People, I am building a mostly new computer and need a bit of advice. These are the parts I currently have (either gifts from friends or things I bought on sale)

I7-3770K (it was a gift or I'd of bought an I5)
Radeon 7870 Powercolor GPU
seasonic 660w psu
Corsair 300R case

I also have a few old hard-drives (64gb SSD) a (120GB 10,000RPM Drive) and a 500GB 7200RPM Drive)

The most intensive use I have for the computer is strategy gaming (Hearts of Iron 3, Sword of the Stars, Civ5, et cetera).

Another concern is maintaining a quick internet connection for online chats/gaming (I heard some talk about motherboards playing a big role, but I'm not knowledgeable.

I've never overclocked, but I'd like to mildly play around with it this summer just to learn the process. (I'm a technology teacher in an elementary school).

I need help deciding on these items:

1. A reasonable/quality motherboard
(leaning towards Asrock Z77 Extreme4, with just reading reviews)

2. Quality Ram
(I figure 8gb will do, unless 16 gb will truly give me a benefit.

3. Cpu cooler (if stock won't cut it). I worry about the Coolermaster 212 EVO being to large/noisy, but that is just my guess.

I'm thinking about $250-300 total.

I appreciate any thoughts.
6 answers Last reply Best Answer
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  1. Best answer
    ASrock Z77 Extreme4 is a good choice...

    Also, the Asus P8Z77 as well...

    The Gigabyte Z77 UD3 is also a good choice.

    RAM: Corsair or Kingston or G.Skill 8 GB is fine, get 1866 MHz DDR3

    Cooler Master 212 EVO won't be that loud, it will rev up and wind down based on your temps, so at idle you won't notice...only under load does it get loud. A well insulated case like the Zalman Z11plus or the Bit Fenix GHOST will keep noise down as well.

    G.Skill 8 GB DDR3 1866 MHz RAM
    ASrock Z77 Extreme4/Asus P8Z77 (either one really)
    CM 212 EVO

    Those should keep you under $300 easily.

    If my advice is helpful to you please pick it as the solution :)

    Good luck!
  2. The AsRock z77 extreme 4 or 6 are both great options.

    You only need 8GB of ram - it's enough to simultaneously run battlefield 3, photoshop, AND 30 tabs in chrome. (And as for the ram speed, on an intel rig, you get NO perceptible benefit from going from 1600MHz to 1866.)

    As for the cpu cooler, the 212 EVO is actually very small, compared to large air coolers, and it's pretty quiet. However, there's something you have to keep in mind: The larger the fan, the quieter it is. That means that the huge Noctua D14, which cools like a beast and has 140mm fans, is actually extremely quiet.

    The EVO will be WAY quieter than a stock fan, and than many other options out there. It's also, like I said, one of the smaller tower coolers out there.
  3. All the networking stuff on any of todays motherboards is sufficient. You'll have a lot more variables than that to worry about. Wired is better than wireless, but wireless N is not bad at all. I use it. Wireless G sucks, don't buy any G revision stuff, it's slow and horrible. Other than that, your ISP and the game servers are what is really going to make much difference nowadays, and that stuff is out of your control.

    The stuff on the motherboard wont make any difference that you will notice, whether it is a cheap onboard "Realtek", "Broadcom" or $400 "gaming" NIC (snake oil).
  4. Thanks everyone, I appreciate everyone's help.
  5. I love my Z77 Extreme4. It has been a great board.
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