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Grade This Build? Looking for Affordable, Future-Proof, Gaming Rig

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November 13, 2013 12:52:36 AM

My goal for my gaming PC is to be the best possible value over the next ~7 years or so. In more practical terms, I want the cheapest PC that will be able to run most any game released in the next 7 years (at decent settings, without serious hiccups). Basically, my number one priority is future proofing, I don't care about getting the best possible rig in the short term.

So I asked around and I was told that it was more economical to put all of my money into the best rig I could afford, rather than buying a cheaper PC and upgrading as necessary. With that in mind, I did a search and found this suggested build (thanks to realchoas):

CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($239.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.98 @ OutletPC)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z87X-UD3H ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($159.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Crucial Ballistix Sport 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($66.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($59.94 @ OutletPC)
Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3GB Video Card ($705.91 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair 500R Black ATX Mid Tower Case ($69.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: SeaSonic Platinum 860W 80 PLUS Platinum Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: LG GH24NS95 DVD/CD Writer ($15.00 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 - OEM (64-bit) ($98.98 @ OutletPC)
Total: $1551.76

Considering my maximum budget is ~$1500, does this build suit my needs? The VC seems like the part most important to future proof, so it seems like the logical part to sink my money into.

Also, as a casual gamer I know very little about overclocking, but from what I've heard it I may be able to lengthen my PC's gaming lifespan. Is this build capable of overclocking (sufficient cooling, unlocked multipliers, etc)? Are the risks even worth it for a casual gamer like myself, given my future proofing needs?

Thanks in advance to anyone willing to offer advice or recommendations.

More about : grade build affordable future proof gaming rig

a b 4 Gaming
November 13, 2013 1:20:56 AM

7 years is pretty optimistic. You'd probably need an upgrade after 4-5 years. And at that time, you can get much better performance for less money than today.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 13, 2013 1:46:15 AM

considering most games these days have a minimum requirement of a core 2 duo cpu and an 8800GT graphics card that rig should play everything for the next 10 years if not more.

The new generation of consoles are not even half as powerful as that rig you have there and all the multiplatform games will need to be able to run on them. So if it can run on a console it can run on your PC.

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a b 4 Gaming
November 13, 2013 1:54:12 AM

Both Sakkura and ronald are right. Technological advancements make it almost impossible to predict what's upcoming and how demanding games will be. 4 years would be an apt lifecycle. That's not implying that your computer now will become obsolete right after 4 years. That depends on YOUR tolerance on how the machine performs at the time as opposed to the tech of the day.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 13, 2013 1:56:46 AM

Ronaldspiers said:
considering most games these days have a minimum requirement of a core 2 duo cpu and an 8800GT graphics card that rig should play everything for the next 10 years if not more.

The new generation of consoles are not even half as powerful as that rig you have there and all the multiplatform games will need to be able to run on them. So if it can run on a console it can run on your PC.


Then you're playing at the most crummy settings and still getting poor performance. Why spend thousands of dollars on a PC and settle for that? Better to save $300-500 now and then upgrade in a few years, putting you ahead of anything that can be bought for reasonable money today.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 13, 2013 2:24:08 AM

Sakkura said:
Ronaldspiers said:
considering most games these days have a minimum requirement of a core 2 duo cpu and an 8800GT graphics card that rig should play everything for the next 10 years if not more.

The new generation of consoles are not even half as powerful as that rig you have there and all the multiplatform games will need to be able to run on them. So if it can run on a console it can run on your PC.


Then you're playing at the most crummy settings and still getting poor performance. Why spend thousands of dollars on a PC and settle for that? Better to save $300-500 now and then upgrade in a few years, putting you ahead of anything that can be bought for reasonable money today.


I agree with you. That would be the best option for the OP :>

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November 13, 2013 3:21:26 AM

Sakkura said:
Ronaldspiers said:
considering most games these days have a minimum requirement of a core 2 duo cpu and an 8800GT graphics card that rig should play everything for the next 10 years if not more.

The new generation of consoles are not even half as powerful as that rig you have there and all the multiplatform games will need to be able to run on them. So if it can run on a console it can run on your PC.


Then you're playing at the most crummy settings and still getting poor performance. Why spend thousands of dollars on a PC and settle for that? Better to save $300-500 now and then upgrade in a few years, putting you ahead of anything that can be bought for reasonable money today.


This was part of my confusion. Is it more economical to buy a cheaper PC now, and occasionally upgrade, or buy the best PC within my budget? I'm just looking for the best value possible, not for the best possible specs. My ultimate goal is to get as many years of good performance as possible. As a casual gamer, I simply don't need a top-end gaming rig.

So should I purchase a cheaper computer that can still run all of today's games well (if not perfectly) and upgrade in a couple years as the specs become cheaper, or is that not as efficient? Any advice on what price range and parts are the most economical, or on the most cost effective ways to future proof a gaming PC?
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a b 4 Gaming
November 13, 2013 8:38:15 AM

My opinion is that it's not worth it to go beyond $1000-1200 if you're after future-proofing, the money's better spent on upgrades later on. So basically just a cheaper graphics card, maybe with a cheaper power supply as well (but on the other hand, getting a "future-proof" PSU is not a bad investment, because PSU developments are slower than for other hardware).
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November 13, 2013 8:55:21 AM

Sakkura said:
My opinion is that it's not worth it to go beyond $1000-1200 if you're after future-proofing, the money's better spent on upgrades later on. So basically just a cheaper graphics card, maybe with a cheaper power supply as well (but on the other hand, getting a "future-proof" PSU is not a bad investment, because PSU developments are slower than for other hardware).


So in order to future-proof I should get a top end PSU, or a more cost effective PSU? I guess if the improvements come more slowly, it might be in my best interest to just buy a top end PSU and hopefully it'll last for the next 7-8 years.

My concern is that it wouldn't be cost effective. After all, shouldn't I just need a PSU with a decent lifespan that can cover my power needs with a little headroom? Don't most PSUs last a ridiculously long time anyway? What are the advantages to better PSUs besides less noise and longer lifespan?

I plan on requesting a new build with this new information, so any general recommendations on future proofing, specifically on the VC and CPU, would be really helpful. But thanks for all your help, some of the best information I've received on the site thus far.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 13, 2013 9:07:45 AM

I'd go for a very good PSU, but not a top of the line model. Because, yeah, they can last a long time. The more budget-oriented PSUs might not be a good idea for a 7 year life cycle, but you shouldn't need to get the best of the best either. So something like a Corsair HX750 perhaps.
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