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What to do after building my PC

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Last response: in Systems
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May 18, 2013 4:58:29 PM

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/YcCW
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/YcCW/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/YcCW/benchmarks/

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Pro3 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($94.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: Crucial 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($63.24 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.99 @ Microcenter)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7870 XT 2GB Video Card ($253.29 @ SuperBiiz)
Case: Cooler Master Storm Enforcer ATX Mid Tower Case ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: XFX 550W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($54.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-224BB DVD/CD Writer ($17.98 @ Outlet PC)
Total: $824.46
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-05-18 19:42 EDT-0400)

There is my build, all of the parts should come in by next week. Once I build my PC and install Windows, what programs should I use to stress/benchmark my PC? And will installing drivers through Windows update be sufficient?

How long should I run my stress tests, and what should the average temperatures be?

If there is anything else to do, please let me know.

More about : building

May 18, 2013 5:01:15 PM

Go to the motherboard and GPU websites to download the latest drivers.

Just play some games. No real need to stress test things.

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May 18, 2013 5:05:12 PM

stress tests:
CPU Test: Prime95. After overclocking let the program run overnight to test for a stable overclock.

GPU Test: GPU_Tool. Download it, and click "Test for stability" to test it while overclocking.

There is no reason to stress test if you arent overclocking.


Benchmarking:
FRAPS to see in-game FPS
3D Mark 11 to get rated on your cpu and gpu


GPU/CPU information:
Get the programs GPU-Z, and CPU-Z to check the overclocks, voltage, etc. of your cpu and gpu.


Good build btw. Have fun with your new computer


EDIT:
As stated above, Drivers are... MILDLY important ;) 
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Related resources
May 18, 2013 5:06:11 PM

Furmark (gpu stress test)
Prime ( cpu stress test)

Make sure all components are detected
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May 18, 2013 5:32:52 PM

ballerslife said:

There is my build, all of the parts should come in by next week. Once I build my PC and install Windows, what programs should I use to stress/benchmark my PC? And will installing drivers through Windows update be sufficient?


Nononononono. Turn off the option automatically to install drivers through Windows update. In some isolated cases, generic windows drivers will do the job, but you should get your core-component drivers straight from the manufacturer. It helps if you can download the drivers before you build the system; toss 'em on a flash drive or HDD so they're ready at the appointed moment.

In your case, you want to get the drivers for your motherboard from ASRock's website, and the newest GPU drivers from AMD. Other than that? Make sure Windows is fully updated, run a few benches if you want, and then have fun. :) 
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May 18, 2013 5:45:12 PM

Intel Burn Test (cpu)
MSI Kombustor (gpu)
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May 19, 2013 12:15:19 PM

So what I'm reading is that CPU stress test is not needed because games rarely use 100% CPU power. Correct?

Although a GPU test should be mandatory.
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Best solution

May 19, 2013 12:59:07 PM

ballerslife said:
So what I'm reading is that CPU stress test is not needed because games rarely use 100% CPU power. Correct?

Although a GPU test should be mandatory.


Neither stress test is really necessary unless you've overclocked. You might run a few loops of Prime95/Furmark/3dmark/etc just to make sure that your CPU/GPU cooling is sufficient, but there's no need for exhaustive (stability) testing at stock settings. If there's a problem with either your CPU or GPU at stock settings, then it will likely become apparent even without your running any benchmarks.

That said, a few passes of memtest might not be amiss. And of course, it goes without saying that if you overclock, you're gonna have to do a good bit of stress testing -- but personally, I wouldn't worry about overclocking immediately after you've set everything up. You generally want to do your Windows install, your driver install, and your updates on stock hardware, so you can make a clean-slate disc-image backup in case something goes wrong later.
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May 20, 2013 3:34:52 PM

Fulgurant said:
ballerslife said:
So what I'm reading is that CPU stress test is not needed because games rarely use 100% CPU power. Correct?

Although a GPU test should be mandatory.


Neither stress test is really necessary unless you've overclocked. You might run a few loops of Prime95/Furmark/3dmark/etc just to make sure that your CPU/GPU cooling is sufficient, but there's no need for exhaustive (stability) testing at stock settings. If there's a problem with either your CPU or GPU at stock settings, then it will likely become apparent even without your running any benchmarks.

That said, a few passes of memtest might not be amiss. And of course, it goes without saying that if you overclock, you're gonna have to do a good bit of stress testing -- but personally, I wouldn't worry about overclocking immediately after you've set everything up. You generally want to do your Windows install, your driver install, and your updates on stock hardware, so you can make a clean-slate disc-image backup in case something goes wrong later.


I won't be overclocking in the near future. So at stock levels perhaps 20 minutes of Prime95 will be good? And the same for the GPU?

Thanks for the answers, first time using a real first-hand build of myself. (Been leeching off my siblings hand-me-down laptops).
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