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Building a gaming rig for a friend, need some feedback.

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October 5, 2013 8:23:11 AM

Hi folks,

I'm helping a friend build his dream gaming machine. I've built my own system before, but I need some advice on this gaming rig I've been looking at for him. This PC is basically only going to be used for gaming, and some music production (a hobby of his). I'll post all necessary information below.

Approximate Purchase Date: Either tonight or tomorrow.
Budget Range: $1400 before rebates.
System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, gaming, and more gaming.
Are you buying a monitor: No
Parts to Upgrade: None, starting from scratch.
Do you need to buy OS: No, he has a new copy of Windows 7 64 bit sitting at home.
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Open to anything US based.
Location: Los Angeles, California USA
Parts Preferences: Intel CPU is preferred
Overclocking: No
SLI or Crossfire: Yes, but not immediately.
Your Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080


I've come up with a basic idea of what I'd like to do with this rig. He has a few requirements that he is dead set on. I've tried to convince him that liquid cooling isn't necessary since he isn't going to OC his computer. He'd like it regardless. Also, the same with the case, he is dead set on it. From this list (below), this is what I've come up with so far.

He is looking to be able to play battlefield 4 on high settings. I've tried to design this build around the idea of gaming while trying to somewhat ''future proof'' it a bit. As you can see, I'm still at about $1500+ before discounts. I'm trying to decide where (if anywhere) I can shave the price a bit. Because he is planning on playing Battlefield 4, I wanted to go with a GTX 670 as a minimum. The 16 GB ram and the i7 are also there for means of future proofing. I've debated switching out his CPU with an i5-3570, but I'm unsure if this will cause any issues regarding his computers performance in the coming 3 years.

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/1L6Gg
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/1L6Gg/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/1L6Gg/benchmarks/

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($319.90 @ Outlet PC)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H100i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($89.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($124.98 @ Outlet PC)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($148.43 @ Amazon)
Storage: Samsung 830 Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($112.99 @ Adorama)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($59.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($374.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF 932 Blue ATX Full Tower Case ($117.00 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair Professional 750W 80 PLUS Gold Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: LG GH24NS95 DVD/CD Writer ($15.99 @ Microcenter)
Total: $1474.24


The total shown above is after all discounts and rebates have been applied. Any and all suggestions are welcomed and much appreciated.

Thanks guys,
Oregon

Best solution

a b 4 Gaming
October 5, 2013 8:54:06 AM

If, according to your answer above, he isn't interested in overclocking then we can take the "k" series of Cpu off the table, and also use an H87 chipset motherboard.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($309.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H80i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($79.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Asus Z87-PLUS ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($144.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($126.92 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($59.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 770 2GB Video Card ($395.30 @ SuperBiiz)
Case: Fractal Design Define R4 (Black Pearl) ATX Mid Tower Case ($89.99 @ Microcenter)
Power Supply: Corsair Enthusiast 850W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($94.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($18.49 @ Amazon)
Total: $1400.63
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-10-05 11:56 EDT-0400)

However, if overclocking is a possibility then I'd swap over to this:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($309.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H110 94.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Asus Z87-PLUS ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($144.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($126.92 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($59.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 770 2GB Video Card ($395.30 @ SuperBiiz)
Case: Fractal Design Define R4 (Black Pearl) ATX Mid Tower Case ($89.99 @ Microcenter)
Power Supply: Corsair Enthusiast 850W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($94.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($18.49 @ Amazon)
Total: $1420.63
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-10-05 11:58 EDT-0400)

Stuck with the I7 because I thought it could be fit into the budget. Motherboards are solid on either build. Cooling is good with the Corsair h80i. Plenty of power from the Psu to SLI/Crossfire down the road. Ram is a good price for 1866mhz and still Cas 9. Standard 1tb HDD with a 120 SSD from Samsung. The video cards are both very good performers, with a slight edge going to the 770. The difference isn't that much, and you certainly get better value with that 1ghz clocked NON-GHZ edition Msi 7970.
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October 5, 2013 8:59:01 AM

Swordkd said:
If, according to your answer above, he isn't interested in overclocking then we can take the "k" series of Cpu off the table, and also use an H87 chipset motherboard.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($309.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H80i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($79.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Asus Z87-PLUS ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($144.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($126.92 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($59.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 770 2GB Video Card ($395.30 @ SuperBiiz)
Case: Fractal Design Define R4 (Black Pearl) ATX Mid Tower Case ($89.99 @ Microcenter)
Power Supply: Corsair Enthusiast 850W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($94.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($18.49 @ Amazon)
Total: $1400.63
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-10-05 11:56 EDT-0400)

However, if overclocking is a possibility then I'd swap over to this:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($327.98 @ Outlet PC)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H80i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($79.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Asus Z87-PLUS ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($144.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($126.92 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($59.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7970 3GB Video Card ($279.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Fractal Design Define R4 (Black Pearl) ATX Mid Tower Case ($89.99 @ Microcenter)
Power Supply: Corsair Enthusiast 850W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($94.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($18.49 @ Amazon)
Total: $1323.31
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-10-05 11:51 EDT-0400)

Stuck with the I7 because I thought it could be fit into the budget. Motherboards are solid on either build. Cooling is good with the Corsair h80i. Plenty of power from the Psu to SLI/Crossfire down the road. Ram is a good price for 1866mhz and still Cas 9. Standard 1tb HDD with a 120 SSD from Samsung. The video cards are both very good performers, with a slight edge going to the 770. The difference isn't that much, and you certainly get better value with that 1ghz clocked NON-GHZ edition Msi 7970.


I'm loving these builds, I'm just trying to make it work with the case he wants. He's pretty dead set on this case, and sadly, it's expensive. I'll look over your builds a bit more and see what I can do. Cheers!
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a b 4 Gaming
October 5, 2013 8:59:59 AM

If, according to your answer above, he isn't interested in overclocking then we can take the "k" series of Cpu off the table, and also use an H87 chipset motherboard.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($309.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.98 @ Outlet PC)
Motherboard: Asus Z87-PLUS ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($144.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($126.92 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($59.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 770 2GB Video Card ($395.30 @ SuperBiiz)
Case: Fractal Design Define R4 (Black Pearl) ATX Mid Tower Case ($89.99 @ Microcenter)
Power Supply: Corsair Enthusiast 850W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($94.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($18.49 @ Amazon)
Total: $1350.62
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-10-05 12:01 EDT-0400)

However, if overclocking is a possibility then I'd swap over to this:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($327.98 @ Outlet PC)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H110 94.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Asus Z87-PLUS ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($144.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($126.92 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($59.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7970 3GB Video Card ($279.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Fractal Design Define R4 (Black Pearl) ATX Mid Tower Case ($89.99 @ Microcenter)
Power Supply: Corsair Enthusiast 850W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($94.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($18.49 @ Amazon)
Total: $1343.31
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-10-05 11:59 EDT-0400)

Stuck with the I7 because I thought it could be fit into the budget. Motherboards are solid on either build. Cooling is good with the Corsair h110 for the overclocked build. Plenty of power from the Psu to SLI/Crossfire down the road. Ram is a good price for 1866mhz and still Cas 9. Standard 1tb HDD with a 120 SSD from Samsung. The video cards are both very good performers, with a slight edge going to the 770. The difference isn't that much, and you certainly get better value with that 1ghz clocked NON-GHZ edition Msi 7970.

:edit: Swapped out some parts for better synergy. I realized I didn't need an h80i to cool a non-"k" Cpu, and the h87 motherboard didn't have SLI capability. Also, if there was room in the budget, the h110 would work better for cooling on the "k" Cpu.
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a b 4 Gaming
October 5, 2013 9:08:08 AM

Frack, double posts on edits. If he wants that case, then the 2nd build has the budget for it. Or, you could drop in the 7970 into the first build and he'd have the budget for the first build. Also, if he probably won't SLI/Crossfire, drop the Psu down to a 600W and save the money there.

Actually, the money is there on both builds after i edited them out, check out the last build post I made.
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a b 4 Gaming
October 5, 2013 9:11:10 AM

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($309.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Seidon 120M 86.2 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($34.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Asus Z87-PLUS ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($144.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($126.92 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($59.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7970 3GB Video Card ($279.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF 932 ATX Full Tower Case ($144.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair Enthusiast 850W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($94.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($18.49 @ Amazon)
Total: $1293.32
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-10-05 12:09 EDT-0400)

-very cheap watercooler since he wants one but doesnt overclock
-non k cpu
-hd7970 cause of better price/performance than the 770
-the case he wanted
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October 5, 2013 9:14:15 AM

Swordkd said:
Frack, double posts on edits. If he wants that case, then the 2nd build has the budget for it. Or, you could drop in the 7970 into the first build and he'd have the budget for the first build. Also, if he probably won't SLI/Crossfire, drop the Psu down to a 600W and save the money there.

Actually, the money is there on both builds after i edited them out, check out the last build post I made.


Thanks a ton for the replies. Could I get your opinion on this build?

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/1L7Sl
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/1L7Sl/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/1L7Sl/benchmarks/

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($219.99 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H100i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($89.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($124.98 @ Outlet PC)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($137.70 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung 840 Series 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($84.99 @ Adorama)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($59.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 3GB Video Card ($299.99 @ NCIX US)
Case: Cooler Master HAF 932 Blue ATX Full Tower Case ($117.00 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair Enthusiast 850W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($94.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: LG GH24NS95 DVD/CD Writer ($15.99 @ Microcenter)
Total: $1245.60
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-10-05 12:13 EDT-0400)
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a b 4 Gaming
October 5, 2013 9:30:09 AM

I'd swap to an Asus motherboard simply because I think they are easier to use. I use the P8Z77- LK and it has plenty of overclocking options and is stable. It is also black/blue to match the build(cheaper too). Drop in the Ram i listed. It's cheaper, and faster, and still blue. Upgrade to the 840 Evo. For not a lot more, you get a faster, newer SSD. I wouldn't spend more for that 7970, but I don't know why you chose it, so I'll leave that up to you.
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