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$2200 approx. budget for 1st system build and need EXPERT advice

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June 4, 2013 2:44:04 PM

I need the advice and input from the experts here.

I am building my 1st system and wondered how the following specs would work and what you would change, eliminate or add. I will use the pc for general work and hobby purposes. Performance is important to me but I am NOT a game player. I will use the system for Microsoft Office, Abode Illustrator CS6, Google Sketchup, web design and misc. utilities and productivity apps. I will not use any program heavily. I work from home and my work is spread out using various applications but none of them extensively.

I am a heavy internet browser/user with many tabs open.
I want a system which is slightly overkill for my needs. I need and want many internal USB 3.0 as well as plenty of internal SATA 3 ports.
Need cloning software to take current OS and applications from old system to the new build.
I am an American currently living in Spain and will purchase all components from Amazon.

I had thought about: (Not interested in any RAID or SLI setups)

Caching my SSD to a ram drive (what software and size would you recommend?)
Caching my 2 HD’s to a smaller SSD
Experimenting with overclocking
Experimenting with FancyCache or similar
Low-profile memory
Budget of approx. $2200.00

Option #1: LGA2011-based

Intel i7-3820k cpu (Archon SB-E X2 cpu fan)
Asus P9X79 Deluxe motherboard (I like the Bluetooth and Wireless features)
64MB ram or 32 MB ram (Kingston HyperX Genesis C9 1600 mhz)
Crucial M4 512GB SSD
Crucial M4 128GB SSD for caching both HD’s (large enough for both hard drives?)
Western Digital 1TB VelociRaptor 10,000 rpm
Seagate Barracuda 3 TB HDD SATA 6 Gb/s 64MB Cache ST3000DM001
ASUS 24x CD/DVD Internal Drive
EVGA 3GB DDR5 GeForce GTX 660 video card
Sharkoon SATA 3 QP Internal docking station 3.5 & 2.5 drives
CoolerMaster Storm Trooper case
Corsair AX860i 80 Plus Platinum power supply


Option #2: Socket 1155

Intel i5-3570k cpu (Archon SB-E X2 cpu fan)
ASUS P8Z77-V-Deluxe motherboard (I like the Bluetooth and Wireless features)
32MB ram (Kingston HyperX Genesis C9 1600 mhz)
Crucial M4 512GB SSD
Crucial M4 128GB SSD for caching both HD’s (large enough for both hard drives?)
Western Digital 1TB VelociRaptor 10,000 rpm
Seagate Barracuda 3 TB HDD SATA 6 Gb/s 64MB Cache ST3000DM001
ASUS 24x CD/DVD Internal Drive
EVGA 3GB DDR5 GeForce GTX 660 video card
Sharkoon SATA 3 QP Internal docking station 3.5 & 2.5 drives
CoolerMaster Storm Trooper case
Corsair AX860i 80 Plus Platinum power supply

Also need advice on low-cost but quality desktop speakers for on-board sound. I already have all applications and OS (Windows 7 64-bit) which I will clone from current pc. I will utilize my current 21 and 24 inch flat screen monitors.

Clarification...I thought in having a large SSD to hold my OS and all applications. I want opinion and thoughts in caching my large primary SSD to ram since I will have either 32 GB or 64 GB of system memory depending on which processor and motherboard I finally select. I will have 2 mechanical hd's and wanted to cache them to a 128GB SSD which will be separate from the large primary os SSD.
June 4, 2013 2:56:59 PM

You usage isn't that different from mine.
i5-3570K and 16GB Corsair RAM.

What, specifically, do you mean by these two statements?
"Caching my SSD to a ram drive (what software and size would you recommend?)"
"Caching my 2 HD’s to a smaller SSD"

Also, I personally recommend a fresh install vs cloning from your old system to the new. Why bring along all that old baggage?
June 4, 2013 3:06:15 PM

Okay so I'd like to add a build to your option list if I may as well. This is what I would do with your hard drives and maybe you can go at it this way and it'll work better for you. What you can do is not cache your hard drives to the SSD because you will lose the speed of the SSD by doing this. It'll be faster to install your OS and a few programs and then write items to your SSD like which is called scratching them move them over to your storage drives. You had interesting SSD, HDD configurations so I thought why not just go for something a bit easier especially for a first time builder this will be easier on you for sure. Also I change down to the AX750 its cheaper it's modular as well and is of good quality as well the money for the 860i didn't to me warrant the additional cost and you won't need much power given you aren't using a beefy video card. In terms of speakers I would take a look at logitech I believe they have a quality 2.1 thx surround speaker setup. I also went with the h80i its a closed loop water cooler its easy to install and will not take as much real estate up in your case I believe you will enjoy it more larger heatsinks may be more challenging for a first time builder. Plus it'll be MUUUUUUUUUCH quieter then the stock fan and I have a feeling for a work environment system that is appreciated. I added the SP120 quiet edition fans because they are better than the ones that come with the h80i.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-3930K 3.2GHz 6-Core Processor ($567.13 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H80i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($89.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock X79 Extreme3 ATX LGA2011 Motherboard ($263.78 @ Amazon)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance LP 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($114.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Samsung 840 Pro Series 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($219.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($95.80 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($95.80 @ Amazon)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card ($197.99 @ Amazon)
Case: Cooler Master Storm Trooper ATX Full Tower Case ($124.99 @ Newegg)
Case Fan: Corsair Air Series SP120 Quiet Edition (2-Pack) 37.9 CFM 120mm Fans ($27.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Corsair Professional Gold 750W 80 PLUS Gold Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($149.99 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($18.49 @ Amazon)
Total: $1966.93
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-06-04 18:11 EDT-0400)

Also this may fit the bill as well if you aren't going into to heavy of production don't purchase 3570k's anymore haswell's out :) 

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($249.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H80i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($89.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock Z87 Extreme4 ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($159.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance LP 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($114.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Samsung 840 Pro Series 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($219.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($95.80 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($95.80 @ Amazon)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card ($197.99 @ Amazon)
Case: Cooler Master Storm Trooper ATX Full Tower Case ($124.99 @ Newegg)
Case Fan: Corsair Air Series SP120 Quiet Edition (2-Pack) 37.9 CFM 120mm Fans ($27.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Corsair Professional Gold 750W 80 PLUS Gold Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($149.99 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($18.49 @ Amazon)
Total: $1518.00
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-06-04 18:11 EDT-0400)
Related resources
June 4, 2013 3:08:13 PM

USAFRet said:
You usage isn't that different from mine.
i5-3570K and 16GB Corsair RAM.

What, specifically, do you mean by these two statements?
"Caching my SSD to a ram drive (what software and size would you recommend?)"
"Caching my 2 HD’s to a smaller SSD"

Also, I personally recommend a fresh install vs cloning from your old system to the new. Why bring along all that old baggage?


I believe what he is trying to do is have a small SSD cache to a hard drive. But in the end I don't think its worth it given the amount hes putting into storage.
June 4, 2013 3:19:53 PM

bigshootr8 said:
USAFRet said:
You usage isn't that different from mine.
i5-3570K and 16GB Corsair RAM.

What, specifically, do you mean by these two statements?
"Caching my SSD to a ram drive (what software and size would you recommend?)"
"Caching my 2 HD’s to a smaller SSD"

Also, I personally recommend a fresh install vs cloning from your old system to the new. Why bring along all that old baggage?


I believe what he is trying to do is have a small SSD cache to a hard drive. But in the end I don't think its worth it given the amount hes putting into storage.


Right. That's what I figured too. Mostly negating the raw speed of the SSD's.
June 4, 2013 3:24:28 PM

USAFRet said:
bigshootr8 said:
USAFRet said:
You usage isn't that different from mine.
i5-3570K and 16GB Corsair RAM.

What, specifically, do you mean by these two statements?
"Caching my SSD to a ram drive (what software and size would you recommend?)"
"Caching my 2 HD’s to a smaller SSD"


Exactly caching is only really useful for those with a small ssd and a storage drive.
Also, I personally recommend a fresh install vs cloning from your old system to the new. Why bring along all that old baggage?


I believe what he is trying to do is have a small SSD cache to a hard drive. But in the end I don't think its worth it given the amount hes putting into storage.


Right. That's what I figured too. Mostly negating the raw speed of the SSD's.


June 4, 2013 3:25:49 PM

1000-1200$ for your build is plenty.
June 4, 2013 3:29:57 PM

jinayhvora said:
try out this build too http://pcpartpicker.com/p/12Zhh


The i7 isn't a bad option for him honestly so I'm okay with that if he is willing to pay for it. I feel he is fine with no thermal paste if hes getting a aftermarket cooler they come with it pre applied or with a small amount with it.

I don't agree with paying 6 dollars for fans. I believe if you are going to to get fans you want decent fans. Whether from Corsair, Noctua, or Cougar.

He didn't state he wanted wifi or a keyboard or mouse or a os.

And while I would agree that the GTX770 is a good card its a bit much to spend for someone not gaming. While it will have more production uses with it its not enough to me to spend that extra cash unless you were specifically looking for a workstation experience card. If you were serious about that sort of thing I'd look towards the titan which has the unlocked workstation card feature where as the other cards do not.

In terms of a case I wouldn't really push him one way or the other he has a case he likes and its something he will have to live with so I'll leave him with that plus he's looking towards a full atx case so a 30 dollar case may not be the best option.
June 4, 2013 3:39:44 PM
June 4, 2013 3:48:46 PM

Marcopolo123 said:
He lives in spain, he is going to purchase from amazon.es


PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($249.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z87M-D3H 1.0 Micro ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($121.97 @ Newegg)
Memory: Crucial Ballistix Sport 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($107.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($100.98 @ Newegg)
Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition 1GB Video Card ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Fractal Design Core 3000 ATX Mid Tower Case ($66.98 @ NCIX US)
Power Supply: Antec High Current Gamer 400W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($59.98 @ Amazon)
Total: $832.87
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-06-04 18:37 EDT-0400)

Links to amazon.es

http://www.amazon.es/Fractal-Design-Define-Fondo-120-14...

http://www.amazon.es/Sapphire-11201-05-20G-Tarjeta-de-V...

http://www.amazon.es/GA-Z87-HD3-Gigabyte/dp/B00CXK5AY6/...




Add a 256GB SSD.
June 4, 2013 8:25:29 PM

USAFRet said:
You usage isn't that different from mine.
i5-3570K and 16GB Corsair RAM.

What, specifically, do you mean by these two statements?
"Caching my SSD to a ram drive (what software and size would you recommend?)"
"Caching my 2 HD’s to a smaller SSD"

Also, I personally recommend a fresh install vs cloning from your old system to the new. Why bring along all that old baggage?


USAFRet...Thank you for your advice. I thought in having a large SSD to hold my OS and all applications. I want opinion and thoughts in caching my large primary SSD to ram since I will have either 32 GB or 64 GB of system memory depending on which processor and motherboard I finally select. I will have 2 mechanical hd's and wanted to cache them to a 128GB SSD which will be separate from the large primary os SSD.
June 4, 2013 8:38:39 PM

bigshootr8 said:
Okay so I'd like to add a build to your option list if I may as well. This is what I would do with your hard drives and maybe you can go at it this way and it'll work better for you. What you can do is not cache your hard drives to the SSD because you will lose the speed of the SSD by doing this. It'll be faster to install your OS and a few programs and then write items to your SSD like which is called scratching them move them over to your storage drives. You had interesting SSD, HDD configurations so I thought why not just go for something a bit easier especially for a first time builder this will be easier on you for sure. Also I change down to the AX750 its cheaper it's modular as well and is of good quality as well the money for the 860i didn't to me warrant the additional cost and you won't need much power given you aren't using a beefy video card. In terms of speakers I would take a look at logitech I believe they have a quality 2.1 thx surround speaker setup. I also went with the h80i its a closed loop water cooler its easy to install and will not take as much real estate up in your case I believe you will enjoy it more larger heatsinks may be more challenging for a first time builder. Plus it'll be MUUUUUUUUUCH quieter then the stock fan and I have a feeling for a work environment system that is appreciated. I added the SP120 quiet edition fans because they are better than the ones that come with the h80i.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-3930K 3.2GHz 6-Core Processor ($567.13 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H80i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($89.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock X79 Extreme3 ATX LGA2011 Motherboard ($263.78 @ Amazon)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance LP 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($114.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Samsung 840 Pro Series 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($219.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($95.80 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($95.80 @ Amazon)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card ($197.99 @ Amazon)
Case: Cooler Master Storm Trooper ATX Full Tower Case ($124.99 @ Newegg)
Case Fan: Corsair Air Series SP120 Quiet Edition (2-Pack) 37.9 CFM 120mm Fans ($27.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Corsair Professional Gold 750W 80 PLUS Gold Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($149.99 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($18.49 @ Amazon)
Total: $1966.93
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-06-04 18:11 EDT-0400)

Also this may fit the bill as well if you aren't going into to heavy of production don't purchase 3570k's anymore haswell's out :) 

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($249.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H80i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($89.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock Z87 Extreme4 ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($159.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance LP 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($114.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Samsung 840 Pro Series 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($219.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($95.80 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($95.80 @ Amazon)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card ($197.99 @ Amazon)
Case: Cooler Master Storm Trooper ATX Full Tower Case ($124.99 @ Newegg)
Case Fan: Corsair Air Series SP120 Quiet Edition (2-Pack) 37.9 CFM 120mm Fans ($27.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Corsair Professional Gold 750W 80 PLUS Gold Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($149.99 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($18.49 @ Amazon)
Total: $1518.00
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-06-04 18:11 EDT-0400)


Thank you for replying.
I want 2 SDD's. One large as the OS and application drive. One small for caching the 2 mechanical hd's only.
Why did you select the i5-4670k?
Your choice of water cooler has been quiet and works for you? I am afraid I could mess something up and ruin my system.
Thank you for your advice on speakers and power supply.
June 4, 2013 9:04:02 PM

bigshootr8 said:
jinayhvora said:
try out this build too http://pcpartpicker.com/p/12Zhh


The i7 isn't a bad option for him honestly so I'm okay with that if he is willing to pay for it. I feel he is fine with no thermal paste if hes getting a aftermarket cooler they come with it pre applied or with a small amount with it.

I don't agree with paying 6 dollars for fans. I believe if you are going to to get fans you want decent fans. Whether from Corsair, Noctua, or Cougar.

He didn't state he wanted wifi or a keyboard or mouse or a os.

And while I would agree that the GTX770 is a good card its a bit much to spend for someone not gaming. While it will have more production uses with it its not enough to me to spend that extra cash unless you were specifically looking for a workstation experience card. If you were serious about that sort of thing I'd look towards the titan which has the unlocked workstation card feature where as the other cards do not.

In terms of a case I wouldn't really push him one way or the other he has a case he likes and its something he will have to live with so I'll leave him with that plus he's looking towards a full atx case so a 30 dollar case may not be the best option.


You are correct. I want a very decent case as well as quiet, well-working fans. I only selected the most inexpensive i7 cpu which would support 64 GB of ram if it will work for the budget and is an option which would speed up my system.

I would like to experiment with wifi and bluetooth for my Android smart phone but I will not need a mouse, keyboard or the OS
June 4, 2013 9:06:51 PM

bigshootr8 said:
USAFRet said:
You usage isn't that different from mine.
i5-3570K and 16GB Corsair RAM.

What, specifically, do you mean by these two statements?
"Caching my SSD to a ram drive (what software and size would you recommend?)"
"Caching my 2 HD’s to a smaller SSD"

Also, I personally recommend a fresh install vs cloning from your old system to the new. Why bring along all that old baggage?


I believe what he is trying to do is have a small SSD cache to a hard drive. But in the end I don't think its worth it given the amount hes putting into storage.


Yes, I thought in using a small 128 GB SSD to cache the 2 hard drives. why do you think it is not worth it? Is it not large enough? or the drives are fast enough as they are with their built-in cache?
June 4, 2013 9:15:01 PM

Marcopolo123 said:
He lives in spain, he is going to purchase from amazon.es


PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($249.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z87M-D3H 1.0 Micro ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($121.97 @ Newegg)
Memory: Crucial Ballistix Sport 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($107.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($100.98 @ Newegg)
Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition 1GB Video Card ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Fractal Design Core 3000 ATX Mid Tower Case ($66.98 @ NCIX US)
Power Supply: Antec High Current Gamer 400W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($59.98 @ Amazon)
Total: $832.87
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-06-04 18:37 EDT-0400)

Links to amazon.es

http://www.amazon.es/Fractal-Design-Define-Fondo-120-14...

http://www.amazon.es/Sapphire-11201-05-20G-Tarjeta-de-V...

http://www.amazon.es/GA-Z87-HD3-Gigabyte/dp/B00CXK5AY6/...

http://www.amazon.es/INTEL-Procesador-Intel-Haswell-i5-...

http://www.amazon.es/quiet-Straight-Power-400W-Activo/d...

http://www.amazon.es/quiet-DARK-ROCK-0-25-Negro/dp/B007...

http://www.amazon.es/Crucial-CT128M4-Unidad-estado-sólido/dp/B004W2JKZI/ref=sr_1_cc_2?s=aps&ie=UTF8&qid=1370386351&sr=1-2-catcorr&keywords=128gb+ssd
128gb ssd is enough for Os and programs


Thank you Marcopolo123.
Why did you select the i5-4670k?
I do not play games but I do graphic work using ACDSee, Sketchup and Illustrator on a small scale. I will using a dual monitor setup. Your selected graphics card will be enough for me? I want just a little more than I actually need in the event things change and for future growth.
June 4, 2013 10:06:01 PM

Here is the issue with your build if you go with 2 SSD's one to cache the two mechanical hard drives. I don't know how you would go about doing that. That sounds like a very complicated thing. You would need to do something like raid the two mechanical drives and then cache them with the solid state drive and then set it up so that you could have the other SSD with the OS and programs.

From my experience I think what you are trying to do isn't worth it. I feel given your budget you could get 1 SSD thats 256 and be fine or get one that is half a terabyte and larger storage drives.

If someone though knows how to raid 2 HDD's and then cache it with a SSD please tell me how because I'm at a loss because you can't do it individually to both.
!