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Looking for Advice on a $2500 Gaming Build

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  • Build
  • Systems
Last response: in Systems
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January 18, 2014 9:29:06 AM

Hello!

This is my first gaming build. I am just looking for some validation of the choices I made. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Approximate Purchase Date: - Will order the parts over the next two weeks.

Budget Range: $2500 to $3000

System Usage from Most to Least Important: – Game playing, Music listening, Photos tweaking , Movie watching

Parts Not Required: – Keyboard, Mouse, Speakers, 1st Monitor

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: – Amazon, Newegg

Country: – USA

Parts Preferences: – None

Overclocking: - Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: – Maybe in the future

Monitor Resolution: – 1920 x 1080 – looking at 2nd Monitor that is a touch screen for Windows 8.1

Additional Comments: – I have an opportunity to splurge on this build, so I’d like to future-proof as much as possible within the budget constraints. I would like to have a dual monitor set-up and already own the ASUS PB278Q 27-Inch WQHD. Looking to buy a second touch screen monitor, probably a 23- or 24-inch size.

Here is my proposed build – Any advice is welcomed!

hPCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($279.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($33.97 @ OutletPC)
Motherboard: Asus Maximus VI Hero ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($189.99 @ NCIX US)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance LP 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($144.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Black 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($142.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 780 3GB Video Card ($499.99 @ NCIX US)
Case: Fractal Design Define R4 w/Window (Titanium Grey) ATX Mid Tower Case ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: SeaSonic Platinum 860W 80+ Platinum Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($183.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Optical Drive: Asus BW-16D1HT Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 - OEM (64-bit) ($94.98 @ OutletPC)
Total: $1740.86
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-01-18 12:32 EST-0500)

More about : advice 2500 gaming build

a b 4 Gaming
January 18, 2014 9:46:35 AM

Drop down to an i5 and get yourself an SSD. Also, you can get a lot cheaper PSU's than the one you chose. This is what I suggest:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($229.99 @ SuperBiiz)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($34.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: Asus Maximus VI Hero ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($189.99 @ NCIX US)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($174.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 250GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($169.98 @ OutletPC)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Black 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($142.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 780 3GB Video Card ($499.99 @ NCIX US)
Case: Corsair 900D ATX Full Tower Case ($309.99 @ NCIX US)
Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 750W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($101.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($19.98 @ OutletPC)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 - 64-bit - OEM (64-bit) ($99.98 @ OutletPC)
Total: $1967.86
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-01-18 13:02 EST-0500)

Didn't include the monitor, you can do that :) 
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January 18, 2014 9:46:47 AM

You could go with a 780ti for that budget. Go for the ASUS, EVGA, or gigabyte one they are the best and you could get 2 of them if I did my math right.
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January 18, 2014 9:57:37 AM

Why are you using a 830 not a 840 EVO?
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a b 4 Gaming
January 18, 2014 10:01:35 AM

My mistake, edited.
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January 18, 2014 10:18:54 AM

I wouldn't go with the 900D it is so big and expensive
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a b 4 Gaming
January 18, 2014 10:29:21 AM

I thought I would fully utilize the high budget and get something that is future proof and would last for a long time. It's up to Kdays if he wants to change this.
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January 18, 2014 10:58:41 AM

The 750D would also work, a bit more reasonable
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January 18, 2014 1:18:57 PM

Thanks for the feedback! - Keep it coming!

I have made the following adjustments to my build:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($324.98 @ OutletPC)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($33.97 @ OutletPC)
Motherboard: Asus Maximus VI Hero ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($189.99 @ NCIX US)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance LP 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($144.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 250GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($179.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Black 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($142.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 780 3GB Video Card ($499.99 @ NCIX US)
Case: Corsair 750D ATX Full Tower Case ($139.99 @ Microcenter)
Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 750W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($101.99 @ NCIX US)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 - OEM (64-bit) ($94.98 @ OutletPC)
Total: $1853.86
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-01-18 16:10 EST-0500)

More reactions?
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a c 288 4 Gaming
January 18, 2014 4:15:38 PM

rymu2000 said:
You could go with a 780ti for that budget. Go for the ASUS, EVGA, or gigabyte one they are the best and you could get 2 of them if I did my math right.


Since the OP already has monitor, mouse, keyboard, etc, you could actually get two if you play around a bit. The i7, Blu Ray, and 16GB of RAM aren't necessary, use that money instead toward a dual GTX 780TI setup, that's where you will see the most improvement. And there's no need for a $300 case unless you're doing a full custom liquid loop. Do something like this:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($225.99 @ NCIX US)
CPU Cooler: Thermaltake Water 3.0 Extreme 99.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($109.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock Z87 Extreme6 ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($149.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 Memory ($82.05 @ NCIX US)
Storage: OCZ Vector 150 Series 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($120.98 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($87.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3GB Video Card (2-Way SLI) ($699.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3GB Video Card (2-Way SLI) ($699.99 @ NCIX US)
Case: NZXT Phantom 630 (Gunmetal) ATX Full Tower Case ($167.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: NZXT HALE90 V2 850W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($168.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($19.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($86.99 @ NCIX US)
Total: $2620.91
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-01-18 19:15 EST-0500)

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January 18, 2014 4:27:02 PM

Also you could not spend so much on a closed loop system, you could use that for ram. For the cooler use the 212 EVO
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a c 288 4 Gaming
January 18, 2014 4:46:24 PM

rymu2000 said:
Also you could not spend so much on a closed loop system, you could use that for ram. For the cooler use the 212 EVO


Are you sure about some of the advice that you're giving? You do not need more RAM, and on this budget there's no reason to pair a $250 CPU with a $30 cooler, that just doesn't make sense. If you don't want to get a liquid loop, use a Noctua D14.
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a b 4 Gaming
January 19, 2014 2:41:41 AM

Well considering he has got a $3000 budget I think that buying 16GB's of memory wouldn't hurt and would make the computer more future proof. You never know, he may start to look into video editing. Also, what about the Corsair H100?
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January 19, 2014 5:55:42 AM

Love the advice and the discussion folks!

I am thinking that I want to keep the video and picture editing open as an option for the future. This is the reason I went went with the i7 and the 16 GBs. Had a water cooler solution in my last computer. Is it difficult to install. In all of the videos I have watch, I haven't found one that showed how to install the water cooler.

Also, I'd like to add a second monitor for touch screen use. So while I could go up to $3000, it would have to include the price of the other monitor.
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January 19, 2014 6:15:58 AM

Here is the build I have put together:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($329.98 @ SuperBiiz)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-U14S 55.0 CFM CPU Cooler ($73.99 @ Mwave)
Motherboard: Gigabyte G1.Sniper Z87 ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($169.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($144.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.95 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 3TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($99.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3GB Video Card (2-Way SLI) ($699.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3GB Video Card (2-Way SLI) ($699.99 @ Newegg)
Case: NZXT Phantom 530 Red ATX Full Tower Case ($121.49 @ NCIX US)
Power Supply: Corsair Enthusiast 850W 80+ Bronze Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-118BB DVD/CD Drive ($13.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 - OEM (64-bit) ($94.98 @ OutletPC)
Other: Touchscreen Monitor ($400.00)
Total: $3054.32
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-01-19 09:13 EST-0500)

I have no idea about touchscreen monitor, I have just reserved 400$ for it.

I have managed to squeeze dual 780Tis (Direct CU2), i7 4770K and 16GBs of RAM.
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January 19, 2014 6:24:37 AM

That's a good build although mabye I would have a different mobo, but that is personal preferacne.
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a c 288 4 Gaming
January 19, 2014 4:02:16 PM

Computer__GUY said:
Well considering he has got a $3000 budget I think that buying 16GB's of memory wouldn't hurt and would make the computer more future proof. You never know, he may start to look into video editing. Also, what about the Corsair H100?


There's no such thing as being completely future proof. The extra RAM isn't necessary unless you're doing something else with it, like video editing or rendering. The Corsair H100i is overrated, the Thermaltake Water 3.0 Extreme and NZXT Kraken X60 are much better closed loop coolers. Corsair has notoriety for including shoddy fans with its' products.
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Best solution

January 19, 2014 8:44:26 PM

guru3d article saying dual gtx 780 ti for one monitor is a waste
This is assuming that your second monitor is just going to be for simple multitasking.

That said...Here is my suggestion.

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($324.98 @ OutletPC)
Motherboard: Asus Maximus VI Hero ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($189.99 @ NCIX US)
Memory: G.Skill Trident X Series 32GB (4 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($319.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: OCZ Vector Series 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($301.44 @ Amazon)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Black 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($142.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3GB Video Card ($699.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF 932 Advanced ATX Full Tower Case ($182.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 850W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($124.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Asus BW-16D1HT Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 - OEM (64-bit) ($94.98 @ OutletPC)
Monitor: ViewSonic TD2220 22.0" Monitor ($293.90 @ Amazon)
Total: $2756.22
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-01-19 23:43 EST-0500)

I didn't add a CPU cooler because I don't have an upgraded one and so far, 6 months in, my stock cooler is still holding up with my OCed 4770k at 4.3 without so much as a squeek and never going above 50 degrees in full gaming. Should you ever need to upgrade the cooler, a simple 4 pin removal would take all of 25 minutes of your time. I changed the ram because I like G.skill a lot more than Corsair. I removed the second 780 ti because it is not needed for single monitor gaming. I kept your original mobo choice since I enjoy all the bells and whistles that I wish my z-87 had. I chose the XFX 850 because it should handle everything you're going to do and then some for future upgrades. I left your bluray player since I figure you had it for a reason (maybe to play bluerays, no idea :p ). I also added a touch screen monitor that I found quite a few good reviews on. On top of all that, you're still under 3k.

As a secondary note, the water 3.0 cooler is actually not as good as their older 2.0 version. As for all of those prebuilt coolers, they're not much better than the noctua d14, and the d-14 is barely better than the 212 EVO.

closed loop coolers vs d14
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January 20, 2014 6:22:12 AM

Then couldn't you get like a windforce 780ti or a dual ACX one?
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