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Budget dev PC, some gaming, media server

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June 14, 2013 6:12:22 AM

Hi, I am really struggling to decide on what hardware to order for a new build, especially cooling options - I really don't know where to start there. Haven't build a pc for years and think my current selection may be overkill for what I need. Please help.

Machine will mainly be used as a dev pc, in the evenings it will be a media server so needs to be quiet and have plenty of hd space. A little bit of gaming would be nice as well (one graphics card is more than enough). I like the Asus P8Z77-V board, mainly for it's built in wifi and some other features that have caught my eye, price is pretty good as well I think. Case, struggling here, like the Corsair 650d but don't really want to pay that much. RAM 8gb, not fussy on brand would like suggestions. PSU, no idea really, not sure what wattage I need. Thinking low to mid range graphics card.
Any help will be very much appreciated.

Thanks.
a b 4 Gaming
June 14, 2013 6:16:45 AM

How's your budget and where do you live? Do you plan to OC? And what type of games? Do you already have OS and/or peripherals?Most silent cases don't have sidewindow, therefor nice board won't mean much there. As for wifi module it's easy to get a decent one for around 20$.
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Best solution

June 14, 2013 6:21:07 AM

Motherboard looks good.
Case - look at a miditower case. This is one with enough HDD space and a good airflow - http://www.coolermaster.com/product/Detail/case/mid-tow...
RAM - 8GB is enough. Look for RAM with 1600MHz speed, most brands are good, some trusted brands are Corsair and OCZ.
PSU - Depends on the graphics/CPU. 600 Watt is probably enough.
GPU - I personally prefer NVidia GTX cards. If you want to play some games and use the PC for media, look at the GTX660 or GTX660Ti.
CPU - Did you forget this in your discription? Anyways, Intel i52500k is a great CPU, I personally like AMD Bulldozer processors like FX-8120 and FX-8350.

edit - if you want a very silent PC, look at the Silencio case series of Cooler Master - http://www.coolermaster.com/product/Detail/case/mid-tow...
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a b 4 Gaming
June 14, 2013 6:36:08 AM

also i would for that price gett somthing like the 400r or 500r
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a b 4 Gaming
June 14, 2013 10:26:58 AM

Media Server:
I use a Western Digital TV LIVE device for my media server. It plays Netflix and you can get a WD Elements USB drive (3.5") quite cheaply for any video files. It's a far better solution in my opinion as it is quiet, has a remote control etc. You can play files stored on any local PC as well through it.

CASE:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKIsrwS3fX4

This is a BUILD GUIDE (there are others) for building a Bitfenix Prodigy case.

Other parts:
*Not really sure on your budget but here's an example based on the new HASWELL CPU/Motherboard (mini-ITX for this case).

1) Motherboard (Asrock 1150 Z87 mini-ITX). About $175
http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/Z87E-ITX/
- uses the new wi-fi standard 802.ac
- must use Haswell CPU

2) DDR3 RAM: 8GB (2x4GB) unless you edit video and need more (I like G. Skill)

3) Good air cooler with PWM FAN, or a Corsair H80i or similar water cooler that fits.
**Make sure to setup the FAN PROFILE in BIOS and the motherboard software. If you have a case fan you can't control replace it with one you can (like a Noctua PWM fan if supported). Few motherboards support 3-pin Voltage fans, most only support PWM fans for the CPU and probably the case fans as well.

4) ATX Power Supply (quality 550W or 650W).

5) Graphics Card: http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=73627&vpn=HD7870-DC2-...
*Points:
- make sure it has a good, quiet cooler like the Asus DCU II
- the AMD cards come with some digital games to download

6) Windows 8 64-bit OEM

7) Start8 from Stardock ($5; bypass the new StartScreen and Charms Bar etc.)

8) HDD/SSD (depends on budget; I recommend an SSD as well as an HDD for backups including C-drive IMAGE backup).
- 120GB Samsung 840 SSD (non-Pro); about $93 on sale for WINDOWS and APPS
- HDD (1TB or greater. data and possibly games etc. I have STEAM on my hard drive)

9) CPU: i5-4670K


OTHER OPTIONS:
1) HASWELL LAPTOP for main PC
(can keep lid closed, use desktop monitor and nano-USB receiver for wireless keyboard/mouse. Recommend monitor with HDMI input and audio outputs to attach desktop speakers to).

2) XBOX ONE or PS4 for gaming/media.

*Depending on your budget and exact needs there are several different approaches you can take. We're still not quite at the point were I recommend a PC to be used with an HDTV due to the size noise, booting into games/media etc.
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a b 4 Gaming
June 14, 2013 10:44:26 AM

Quiet PC links:
http://www.endpcnoise.com/?gclid=COHBu9mL5LcCFYJxOgodtz...

http://www.quietpc.com/

http://www.silentpcreview.com/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quiet_PC

Parts:
- Power Supply (fan and quality to prevent "squealing chokes etc).
- Graphics cards (quality cooling solution; see reviews; Asus DCU II etc.)
- CPU cooler (PWM fan, or water-cooler with built-in sensor/fan)
- case fans (1 front intake, 1 top/rear exhaust such as 300 to 1000RPM PWM if supported)

Software:
- BIOS
- Motheboard (i.e Fan Expert 2; for CPU and case fans)
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June 20, 2013 6:11:50 AM

Hi sorry for the late reply - been on leave.
Thanks for your help with this, I'm going to order that case you suggested (Silencio), I think it's exactly what I was after. Forgot about a GPU but I was thinking about the GTX660i so as you've suggested this as well I feel a bit more confident about ordering it. Think I am going to order an intel i5-3570k, I'd like to have a dabble with over clocking at some point but not straight away. Would you be able to suggest a suitable CPU cooler please? I was thinking air cooling should be enough shouldn't it? RAM - found some 8GB 1600mhz Corsair going for a good price.
Cheers :) 

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June 21, 2013 2:22:02 PM

lostinhardwarehell said:
Hi sorry for the late reply - been on leave.
Thanks for your help with this, I'm going to order that case you suggested (Silencio), I think it's exactly what I was after. Forgot about a GPU but I was thinking about the GTX660i so as you've suggested this as well I feel a bit more confident about ordering it. Think I am going to order an intel i5-3570k, I'd like to have a dabble with over clocking at some point but not straight away. Would you be able to suggest a suitable CPU cooler please? I was thinking air cooling should be enough shouldn't it? RAM - found some 8GB 1600mhz Corsair going for a good price.
Cheers :) 



Probably the most popular CPU cooler is the Cooler Master Hyper 212EVO wich is very good.
I myself have a Zalman CNPS7x cooler. You should look at the Zalman CNPS series and consider one that suits your budget.

Btw the Corsair 8GB @1600MHz is a good choice!
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a b 4 Gaming
June 21, 2013 6:17:27 PM

CPU Cooler:
*Make sure to get one with a PWM FAN as that's what most motherboards support for fan control. Many have the older Voltage-controlled fans and they'll just spin at full speed.

I agree the CM 212 Direct or Evo are great for the price (one or both of those twist slightly even after installing. that's normal, just leave it alone though).

Overclocking can be tricky. I could use the BIOS' built-in overclock feature to get to 4.2GHz but when I tried to do things manually I crashed at only 4.4GHz. Considering how LITTLE DIFFERENCE it really make in games I couldn't be bothered to read the guides to get things working at that frequency.

Graphics Card:
The Asus GTX770 DCU2 OC is an awesome card. It's more money, possibly too much, but I thought I'd link the PERFORMANCE SUMMARY for you so you can easily compare other cards:
http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/ASUS/GeForce_GTX_770...

VIDEO of GTX770 (ASUS): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=24RqCK_Rhes
*Great video but can skip to eight-minute mark.
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