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Trying to build a very basic, but rock solid desktop/htpc that I can upgrade as my needs change.

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May 28, 2013 5:07:00 PM

I owned my last computer for 8 years. From Windows XP to Windows 7, I was able to upgrade my components through all the years. I finally let my old computer go and now I want to build a very basic, but rock solid platform that I can upgrade as my needs change. Primarily, I surf the Internet; downloading and streaming a massive amount of video and music to my computer. I use my Xbox and Ipad for Hulu and Netflix with mixed/mostly poor results. Ideally I would like have a nice desktop in my bedroom that connects wirelessly to my living room TV, Xbox and Ipad. Using my Ipad as the control center in the living room and when i travel. This is what I'm thinking so far...

Intel Core i5-3570 (BX80637i53570) 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($194.99)

ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 (90-MXGKX0-A0UAYZ) Motherboard with free 8GB Crucial Ballistic Sport (BLS8G3D1609ES2LX0) DDR3 memory ($140.91)

Crucial M4 (CT128M4SSD2) 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($119.99)

Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($14.99)

Total: $470.88

(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-05-28 19:54 EDT-0400)
May 28, 2013 5:10:07 PM

A Z77 chipset motherboard isnt necessary if you aren't buying the 3570-k
You cant overclock the non-k version
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May 28, 2013 5:16:50 PM

well u mentioned upgrading, lga 1155 is not getting anymore cpus, but again with a i5 i dont see any need to go higher b4 an upgrade even a few years down to road with ur use, but AMD is still using FM2 and upcoming richland cpus, not sure if after richland they will continue fm2, but they do have a better igpu but weaker cpu and produce a little more heat.

Agree'd with rex u dont need z77 unless u rlly want one lol but it comes with the ram which is nice, so that seems good except ur upgrade path is an i7 but the ivy bridge i5s are great cpus and will prob last quite a while
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May 28, 2013 5:24:21 PM

An i5 is over-slaughter for these uses.

If you want basic and upgradeable, get an A10-5800K.
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May 28, 2013 8:04:34 PM

lazyboy947 said:
well u mentioned upgrading, lga 1155 is not getting anymore cpus, but again with a i5 i dont see any need to go higher b4 an upgrade even a few years down to road with ur use, but AMD is still using FM2 and upcoming richland cpus, not sure if after richland they will continue fm2, but they do have a better igpu but weaker cpu and produce a little more heat.

Agree'd with rex u dont need z77 unless u rlly want one lol but it comes with the ram which is nice, so that seems good except ur upgrade path is an i7 but the ivy bridge i5s are great cpus and will prob last quite a while



My most intensive task would be probably be converting video or transferring large files between removable drives, all while downloading more files or watching Hulu. I think the CPU power might be more important than the igpu and maybe adding a discrete card if I run into display issues? With the motherboard I'm just trying to give myself as many options by adding cards, memory, ssd/hdd drives or whatever I can to keep the computer relevant as long as possible. I see the motherboard as being the MOST important and filled with interchangeable parts. Would you agree or should I look at my first build in a different way?

P.S. I am not attached to any of the components I listed, I'm mostly guessing they're decent based on popularity and price point. I'm open to whatever works best.
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May 28, 2013 8:13:16 PM

Joeblk said:

My most intensive task would be probably be converting video or transferring large files between removable drives, all while downloading more files or watching Hulu. I think the CPU power might be more important than the igpu and maybe adding a discrete card if I run into display issues? With the motherboard I'm just trying to give myself as many options by adding cards, memory, ssd/hdd drives or whatever I can to keep the computer relevant as long as possible. I see the motherboard as being the MOST important and filled with interchangeable parts. Would you agree or should I look at my first build in a different way?

P.S. I am not attached to any of the components I listed, I'm mostly guessing they're decent based on popularity and price point. I'm open to whatever works best.


- If you're just watching movies, even 1080p while streaming and etc. The HD 3000 is fine. The HD4000 has support for 4K resolutions, so I think you're covered in the IGP department.
- Moving files takes very, very little CPU power. All this is handled by the drive managers and controllers. Having a fast CPU does not affect this. Having an SSD or a fast HDD does. Downloading takes next to no resources.
- Converting files is about the only intensive application here. Nonetheless, it is daunting enough to overshadow the IGP entirely, making AMD's FM2 platform not optimal here.

What software will you be using to convert your movies? This will dictate your processor choice, as both the IGP of Sandy Bridge and above CPUs are enough for your needs, and a cheap GPU or motherboard IGP are good enough for your needs on the AMD side.
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May 28, 2013 9:38:12 PM

elemein said:
Joeblk said:

My most intensive task would be probably be converting video or transferring large files between removable drives, all while downloading more files or watching Hulu. I think the CPU power might be more important than the igpu and maybe adding a discrete card if I run into display issues? With the motherboard I'm just trying to give myself as many options by adding cards, memory, ssd/hdd drives or whatever I can to keep the computer relevant as long as possible. I see the motherboard as being the MOST important and filled with interchangeable parts. Would you agree or should I look at my first build in a different way?

P.S. I am not attached to any of the components I listed, I'm mostly guessing they're decent based on popularity and price point. I'm open to whatever works best.


- If you're just watching movies, even 1080p while streaming and etc. The HD 3000 is fine. The HD4000 has support for 4K resolutions, so I think you're covered in the IGP department.
- Moving files takes very, very little CPU power. All this is handled by the drive managers and controllers. Having a fast CPU does not affect this. Having an SSD or a fast HDD does. Downloading takes next to no resources.
- Converting files is about the only intensive application here. Nonetheless, it is daunting enough to overshadow the IGP entirely, making AMD's FM2 platform not optimal here.

What software will you be using to convert your movies? This will dictate your processor choice, as both the IGP of Sandy Bridge and above CPUs are enough for your needs, and a cheap GPU or motherboard IGP are good enough for your needs on the AMD side.



I've used "Any Video Converter" and "FormatFactory" to convert video/audio files. With my old computer "Windows DVD Maker" took overnight to convert/burn a DVD. Just using "Tribler" to download torrent files made my computer otherwise useless until the downloads were finished. And transferring 10GBs of TV shows to a removable drive would take almost 2 hours with no other programs running. My cpu was ALWAYS maxed out. I knew my equipment was in terrible shape, but I also thought those were labor-intensive tasks... Most of my converting is to make my files compatible to play on my Xbox or Ipad. I know there is a easier way, but I'm still learning these things. Thank you for taking the time to answer what might seems like obvious questions.
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May 28, 2013 9:41:09 PM

Joeblk said:


I've used "Any Video Converter" and "FormatFactory" to convert video/audio files. With my old computer "Windows DVD Maker" took overnight to convert/burn a DVD. Just using "Tribler" to download torrent files made my computer otherwise useless until the downloads were finished. And transferring 10GBs of TV shows to a removable drive would take almost 2 hours with no other programs running. My cpu was ALWAYS maxed out. I knew my equipment was in terrible shape, but I also thought those were labor-intensive tasks... Most of my converting is to make my files compatible to play on my Xbox or Ipad. I know there is a easier way, but I'm still learning these things. Thank you for taking the time to answer what might seems like obvious questions.


If I may ask, what was your old rig? A Pentium 4 perhaps?

I'll look into these converting programs and see which CPU would be better for you.
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May 28, 2013 9:52:53 PM

Sorry for the double post, but went looking around:

http://www.any-video-converter.com/products/for_video_u... ; "Intuitive interface and fast conversion speed with CUDA Technology and full multi-core support."

I found no information on FormatFactory, but it apparently is single threaded with multicore support as an option.

I think your best bet here is to go with an AMD FX processor and used the saved money to get an Nvidia GPU. What is your budget for this build?
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May 28, 2013 10:14:18 PM

elemein said:
Sorry for the double post, but went looking around:

http://www.any-video-converter.com/products/for_video_u... ; "Intuitive interface and fast conversion speed with CUDA Technology and full multi-core support."

I found no information on FormatFactory, but it apparently is single threaded with multicore support as an option.

I think your best bet here is to go with an AMD FX processor and used the saved money to get an Nvidia GPU. What is your budget for this build?


My old rig:
Windows 7 Ultimate running on a Intel Celeron D 3.33GHz CPU with 2GB of RAM and a NVIDIA GeForce 8400 GS card.

My budget ideally would be $400 immediately up to around $800 finished product if I buy one part at a time. My main concern is longevity. This build will be my computer for quite awhile as I only make about $13,000 a year for work!
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May 28, 2013 10:19:50 PM

Joeblk said:

My old rig:
Windows 7 Ultimate running on a Intel Celeron D 3.33GHz CPU with 2GB of RAM and a NVIDIA GeForce 8400 GS card.

My budget ideally would be $400 immediately up to around $800 finished product if I buy one part at a time. My main concern is longevity. This build will be my computer for quite awhile as I only make about $13,000 a year for work!


Yeah, the Celeron D wasnt exactly a fast processor in it's day; and 2 GB of RAM is quite low. An 8400 GS is alright though. How long did you use this build for?

800$ finished project is PLENTY. Would you like me to make a build and see if you like it?
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May 28, 2013 10:38:49 PM

elemein said:
Joeblk said:

My old rig:
Windows 7 Ultimate running on a Intel Celeron D 3.33GHz CPU with 2GB of RAM and a NVIDIA GeForce 8400 GS card.

My budget ideally would be $400 immediately up to around $800 finished product if I buy one part at a time. My main concern is longevity. This build will be my computer for quite awhile as I only make about $13,000 a year for work!


Yeah, the Celeron D wasnt exactly a fast processor in it's day; and 2 GB of RAM is quite low. An 8400 GS is alright though. How long did you use this build for?

800$ finished project is PLENTY. Would you like me to make a build and see if you like it?


I believe I bought it in 2005, sporting win xp and 512mb ram! I added the 8400 a couple years later followed by a rocket fish sound card and an additional 512mb ram. Finally getting the 2gbs of ram last year only to lose the machine to my ex! But whatever, bigger and better things, right?!

And yes! It would be a HUGE help if you could help me come up with a build! I'm hoping to get something up and running soon all I have now is an Ipad and a remote connection to my old rig... lol ;(
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May 28, 2013 10:46:18 PM

Joeblk said:

I believe I bought it in 2005, sporting win xp and 512mb ram! I added the 8400 a couple years later followed by a rocket fish sound card and an additional 512mb ram. Finally getting the 2gbs of ram last year only to lose the machine to my ex! But whatever, bigger and better things, right?!

And yes! It would be a HUGE help if you could help me come up with a build! I'm hoping to get something up and running soon all I have now is an Ipad and a remote connection to my old rig... lol ;(


If you made that build last as long as you did and all you did with it was work with videos, you are going to be in love with your new rig. Will get to work on it now.
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May 28, 2013 11:14:46 PM

Here you go:

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10WYA
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10WYA/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10WYA/benchmarks/

CPU: AMD FX-8320 3.5GHz 8-Core Processor ($163.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: MSI 970A-G46 ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($78.56 @ Amazon)
Memory: Corsair XMS3 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($52.99 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Samsung 840 Series 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($93.99 @ Adorama)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($62.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card ($199.99 @ Microcenter)
Case: Athena Power CA-GSB01DA (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($28.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Silverstone Strider Essential 600W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($60.59 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $792.05
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-05-29 02:04 EDT-0400)PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10WYA
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10WYA/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10WYA/benchmarks/

CPU: AMD FX-8320 3.5GHz 8-Core Processor ($163.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: MSI 970A-G46 ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($78.56 @ Amazon)
Memory: Corsair XMS3 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($52.99 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Samsung 840 Series 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($93.99 @ Adorama)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($62.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card ($199.99 @ Microcenter)
Case: Athena Power CA-GSB01DA (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($28.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Silverstone Strider Essential 600W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($60.59 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $792.05
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-05-29 02:04 EDT-0400)

- FX-8320; One of AMD's top performaing CPUs in the commercial market, second only to the 8350, which is an overclocked version of the 8320, which can be overclocked to 8350 levels easily on stock cooler. Will really help with video conversion on Any Video Converter and it's multicore support. Also, the 8320 will be upgradeable in the future with Steamroller CPUs, unlike Intel's 3570K which has a dead socket and wont be continued.
- MSI 970; A great chipset with SLI support in the future in case you want to SLI.
- XMS 8 GB; Dual channel 1600 MHz 8 GB is plenty for your needs.
- Samsung 840; Very fast SSD with great reliability. Use it as a boot drive.
- WD Caviar Blue 1 TB; Lots of space, reliable, and pretty fast as far as a standard HDD goes.
- EVGA GTX 660; CUDA support for Any Video Converter, 3D support, tons of power, and an amazing overclocking software if you need more of it.

Enjoy!
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May 28, 2013 11:17:06 PM

elemein said:
Joeblk said:

I believe I bought it in 2005, sporting win xp and 512mb ram! I added the 8400 a couple years later followed by a rocket fish sound card and an additional 512mb ram. Finally getting the 2gbs of ram last year only to lose the machine to my ex! But whatever, bigger and better things, right?!

And yes! It would be a HUGE help if you could help me come up with a build! I'm hoping to get something up and running soon all I have now is an Ipad and a remote connection to my old rig... lol ;(


If you made that build last as long as you did and all you did with it was work with videos, you are going to be in love with your new rig. Will get to work on it now.


Thank you!
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May 29, 2013 8:00:34 PM

elemein said:
Here you go:

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10WYA
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10WYA/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10WYA/benchmarks/

CPU: AMD FX-8320 3.5GHz 8-Core Processor ($163.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: MSI 970A-G46 ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($78.56 @ Amazon)
Memory: Corsair XMS3 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($52.99 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Samsung 840 Series 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($93.99 @ Adorama)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($62.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card ($199.99 @ Microcenter)
Case: Athena Power CA-GSB01DA (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($28.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Silverstone Strider Essential 600W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($60.59 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $792.05
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-05-29 02:04 EDT-0400)PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10WYA
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10WYA/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10WYA/benchmarks/

CPU: AMD FX-8320 3.5GHz 8-Core Processor ($163.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: MSI 970A-G46 ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($78.56 @ Amazon)
Memory: Corsair XMS3 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($52.99 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Samsung 840 Series 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($93.99 @ Adorama)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($62.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card ($199.99 @ Microcenter)
Case: Athena Power CA-GSB01DA (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($28.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Silverstone Strider Essential 600W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($60.59 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $792.05
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-05-29 02:04 EDT-0400)

- FX-8320; One of AMD's top performaing CPUs in the commercial market, second only to the 8350, which is an overclocked version of the 8320, which can be overclocked to 8350 levels easily on stock cooler. Will really help with video conversion on Any Video Converter and it's multicore support. Also, the 8320 will be upgradeable in the future with Steamroller CPUs, unlike Intel's 3570K which has a dead socket and wont be continued.
- MSI 970; A great chipset with SLI support in the future in case you want to SLI.
- XMS 8 GB; Dual channel 1600 MHz 8 GB is plenty for your needs.
- Samsung 840; Very fast SSD with great reliability. Use it as a boot drive.
- WD Caviar Blue 1 TB; Lots of space, reliable, and pretty fast as far as a standard HDD goes.
- EVGA GTX 660; CUDA support for Any Video Converter, 3D support, tons of power, and an amazing overclocking software if you need more of it.

Enjoy!


Looks great! Although I've upgraded an existing system, I've never built one completely from scratch... Should I setup this built in a specific way to take full advantage of the components/features you've chosen? Or just use any generic tutorial for first time builders? Also, what else should I buy (tools, cables, connectors, etc) that might not be included in this list? Is the stock heat sink and fan decent enough? Should i add a front fan for the case? I'll use my existing flat screen tv for the monitor, pickup a wireless keyboard combo and some new speakers... I already have a wireless USB stick for internet. I have a license for Windows 7 Ultimate and have been using Advanced System Care 6 PRO to keep my computer optimized and Web Root for my Anti-Virus/Security Suite. Any other recommendations?
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May 29, 2013 8:14:15 PM

Joeblk said:

Looks great! Although I've upgraded an existing system, I've never built one completely from scratch... Should I setup this built in a specific way to take full advantage of the components/features you've chosen? Or just use any generic tutorial for first time builders? Also, what else should I buy (tools, cables, connectors, etc) that might not be included in this list? Is the stock heat sink and fan decent enough? Should i add a front fan for the case? I'll use my existing flat screen tv for the monitor, pickup a wireless keyboard combo and some new speakers... I already have a wireless USB stick for internet. I have a license for Windows 7 Ultimate and have been using Advanced System Care 6 PRO to keep my computer optimized and Web Root for my Anti-Virus/Security Suite. Any other recommendations?


- For building: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_56kyib-Ls
Extremely in depth; more than you'll need to know for your first build, but it's a very good video.

- Tools? Different kinds of screwdrivers always help. Also, you may need and HDMI cable for your TV if you dont already got one.

- All the stock cooling components are A-Okay.

- All your software seems good, and I used to use Advanced SystemCare myself. Good software.
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May 29, 2013 8:26:31 PM

elemein said:
Joeblk said:

Looks great! Although I've upgraded an existing system, I've never built one completely from scratch... Should I setup this built in a specific way to take full advantage of the components/features you've chosen? Or just use any generic tutorial for first time builders? Also, what else should I buy (tools, cables, connectors, etc) that might not be included in this list? Is the stock heat sink and fan decent enough? Should i add a front fan for the case? I'll use my existing flat screen tv for the monitor, pickup a wireless keyboard combo and some new speakers... I already have a wireless USB stick for internet. I have a license for Windows 7 Ultimate and have been using Advanced System Care 6 PRO to keep my computer optimized and Web Root for my Anti-Virus/Security Suite. Any other recommendations?


- For building: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_56kyib-Ls
Extremely in depth; more than you'll need to know for your first build, but it's a very good video.

- Tools? Different kinds of screwdrivers always help. Also, you may need and HDMI cable for your TV if you dont already got one.

- All the stock cooling components are A-Okay.

- All your software seems good, and I used to use Advanced SystemCare myself. Good software.


Thank you so much for your help! I'll post some updates as I piece it together!
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May 29, 2013 8:40:57 PM

Joeblk said:
elemein said:
Joeblk said:

Looks great! Although I've upgraded an existing system, I've never built one completely from scratch... Should I setup this built in a specific way to take full advantage of the components/features you've chosen? Or just use any generic tutorial for first time builders? Also, what else should I buy (tools, cables, connectors, etc) that might not be included in this list? Is the stock heat sink and fan decent enough? Should i add a front fan for the case? I'll use my existing flat screen tv for the monitor, pickup a wireless keyboard combo and some new speakers... I already have a wireless USB stick for internet. I have a license for Windows 7 Ultimate and have been using Advanced System Care 6 PRO to keep my computer optimized and Web Root for my Anti-Virus/Security Suite. Any other recommendations?


- For building: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_56kyib-Ls
Extremely in depth; more than you'll need to know for your first build, but it's a very good video.

- Tools? Different kinds of screwdrivers always help. Also, you may need and HDMI cable for your TV if you dont already got one.

- All the stock cooling components are A-Okay.

- All your software seems good, and I used to use Advanced SystemCare myself. Good software.


Thank you so much for your help! I'll post some updates as I piece it together!


Looking forward to it, keep me posted! :) 
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August 25, 2013 4:45:38 PM

elemein said:
Joeblk said:
elemein said:
Joeblk said:

Looks great! Although I've upgraded an existing system, I've never built one completely from scratch... Should I setup this built in a specific way to take full advantage of the components/features you've chosen? Or just use any generic tutorial for first time builders? Also, what else should I buy (tools, cables, connectors, etc) that might not be included in this list? Is the stock heat sink and fan decent enough? Should i add a front fan for the case? I'll use my existing flat screen tv for the monitor, pickup a wireless keyboard combo and some new speakers... I already have a wireless USB stick for internet. I have a license for Windows 7 Ultimate and have been using Advanced System Care 6 PRO to keep my computer optimized and Web Root for my Anti-Virus/Security Suite. Any other recommendations?


- For building: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_56kyib-Ls
Extremely in depth; more than you'll need to know for your first build, but it's a very good video.

- Tools? Different kinds of screwdrivers always help. Also, you may need and HDMI cable for your TV if you dont already got one.

- All the stock cooling components are A-Okay.

- All your software seems good, and I used to use Advanced SystemCare myself. Good software.


Thank you so much for your help! I'll post some updates as I piece it together!


Looking forward to it, keep me posted! :) 


Hi again! So I have all the parts except the PSU and the RAM. I have it all put together in the case and ready to plug in. With the side of my case being perforated/open, I was looking at the best fan configuration and controlling those fans with the motherboard when I came across this post concerning the processor: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/330572-30-970a-warnin... should I be worried about this or has the bios been updated or a solution found already? If everything is ok there, any advice on fan placement/control? I think as you designed it will stay cool enough but might let a lot of dust thru the perforated side. I was thinking about either making a filter for the whole side or sealing off 90% of the side and adding a slightly higher cfm front fan to create positive pressure inside the case. Maybe even adding a cardboard tube to isolate and give the CPU fan direct access to air outside the case. I know all of this may not be necessary, but buying the components one by one is giving me a lot of downtime and all I can think about is working on this project! Also, buying each piece over time is giving me a slightly looser budget. If the best components for my purposes have changed over time or spending a little more on the power supply or memory will make a difference, I am willing. Thanks again, this has been a great (albeit long drawn) project so far! =)
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