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Looking for thoughts and comments on a first build, long read inside.

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January 19, 2014 5:34:26 PM

My old pc had a good run but its time to upgrade so my friend and i we decided to each get a new gaming pc.The idea is we would both get similar systems where one would be capable of sli and the other would not, come time to upgrade one would go sli and the other would get a new card. Is this something that is done often or would it not be a good choice for whatever reason?
I am from Slovenia where i still have a decent selection but no one site like newegg so i willl be posting some links to where i am getting the parts from so you can all see the prices and maybe understand my reasoning a bit better.

SLI system
CPU: Intel 4670k
Motherboard: ASUS Z87-A
RAM: Crucial 1600 cl=8 or Kingston 1600 cl=9 or Crucial 1866 cl=9
HDD: Seagate 1tb or WD 1tb blue
Graphics card: ASUS gtx770 or Palit gtx770
Optical drive: Asus dvd-rw
PSU: Aerocool 800W 80+ silver or Chieftec 850W 80+ bronze
Case: Aerocool or Cooler Master
Fans: 3x Cooler Master 120mm
Total of just under 1000€ or 1300$

Non SLI would differ in:
Motherboard: ASUS Z87-K
PSU:Corsair CX-series 600w or Cooler Master 650w GM-series

Where there is more choices the first one would be my first pick but like i said i am hoping for some thoughts and comments and in general a confirmation if this type of system would work well.
For a while i could not decide between gtx770 and 280x though both my friend and i will probably stick to 1080p max so i think i will go with gtx770.

My main concerns:
RAM - not sure on compatibility
PSU - some sites say 750W is enough while others recommend 850W. Would 800W work with medium overclocking? Also i am not sure how many connectors i will need (both PSU's linked are supposed to be SLI certified)

Again this is my first build and though i have done a lot of reading and watched plenty of tutorial style videos i would still like some opinions from those smarter than myself. There is so much to consider it seems it would be incredibly easy to miss something important.
I think that is it, i would be very thankful and appreciative of any comments and suggestions.
a b 4 Gaming
January 19, 2014 5:40:22 PM

stick with the 770. top end GPUs from AMD are overpriced due to bitcoin/litecoin mining.

my view on SLI is that if you don't do it within 6 months of purchase, you never will. Often just replacing with the next generation card is cheaper than SLIing old cards
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January 19, 2014 5:51:52 PM

ScrewySqrl said:
stick with the 770. top end GPUs from AMD are overpriced due to bitcoin/litecoin mining.

my view on SLI is that if you don't do it within 6 months of purchase, you never will. Often just replacing with the next generation card is cheaper than SLIing old cards


Thank you for your reply.
Yes i am definitely going with a 770 though a 280x would not seem to be a bad choice either considering it costs the same where i live and a cf board is cheaper than an sli one. But like i said i am staying in 1080p where the 770 is a better card.
If both me and my friend go non-sli then we both end up getting new cards with two old cards between us and selling those is somewhat of a pain. Do you think upgrading to 2x 770 would not be worth it in 2-3 years considering i would not be buying a new card?
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a b 4 Gaming
January 19, 2014 5:54:35 PM

Here is my canned rant on planning for dual cards:
-----------------------------Start of rant----------------------------------------------------
Dual graphics cards vs. a good single card.

a) How good do you really need to be?
A single GTX650/ti or 7770 can give you good performance at 1920 x 1200 in most games.

A single GTX660 or 7850 will give you excellent performance at 1920 x 1200 in most games.
Even 2560 x 1600 will be good with lowered detail.
A single gtx690,7990, GTX780ti or R9-290X is about as good as it gets for a single card.

Only if you are looking at triple monitor gaming, or a 4k monitor, might sli/cf will be needed.
Even that is now changing with triple monitor support on top end cards and stronger single card solutions.

b) The costs for a single card are lower.
You require a less expensive motherboard; no need for sli/cf or multiple pci-e slots.
Even a ITX motherboard will do.

Your psu costs are less.
A GTX660 needs a 430w psu, even a GTX780 only needs a 575w psu.
When you add another card to the mix, plan on adding 200w to your psu requirements.

Even the most power hungry GTX690 only needs 620w, or a 7990 needs 700w.

Case cooling becomes more of an issue with dual cards.
That means a more expensive case with more and stronger fans.
You will also look at more noise.

c) Dual gpu's do not always render their half of the display in sync, causing microstuttering. It is an annoying effect.
The benefit of higher benchmark fps can be offset, particularly with lower tier cards.
Read this: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-geforce-stut...

d) dual gpu support is dependent on the driver. Not all games can benefit from dual cards.

e) dual cards up front reduces your option to get another card for an upgrade. Not that I suggest you plan for that.
It will often be the case that replacing your current card with a newer gen card will offer a better upgrade path.
The Maxwell and amd 8000 or 9000 series are due next year.
-------------------------------End of rant-----------------------------------------------------------

A GTX770 would need a 575w psu.

The PSU's you listed are not good quality units.
See if you can't do better from this list:
http://www.eggxpert.com/forums/thread/323050.aspx

On ram,
You want documented ram compatibility. If you should ever have a problem, you want supported ram.
Otherwise, you risk a finger pointing battle between the ram and motherboard support sites, claiming "not my problem".
One place to check is your motherboards web site.
Look for the ram QVL list. It lists all of the ram kits that have been tested with that particular motherboard.
Sometimes the QVL list is not updated after the motherboard is released.
For more current info, go to a ram vendor's web site and access their ram selection configurator.
Enter your motherboard, and you will get a list of compatible ram kits.
While today's motherboards are more tolerant of different ram, it makes sense to buy ram that is known to work and is supported.
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January 19, 2014 6:13:35 PM

geofelt said:


A GTX770 would need a 575w psu.

The PSU's you listed are not good quality units.
See if you can't do better from this list:
http://www.eggxpert.com/forums/thread/323050.aspx

On ram,
You want documented ram compatibility. If you should ever have a problem, you want supported ram.
Otherwise, you risk a finger pointing battle between the ram and motherboard support sites, claiming "not my problem".
One place to check is your motherboards web site.
Look for the ram QVL list. It lists all of the ram kits that have been tested with that particular motherboard.
Sometimes the QVL list is not updated after the motherboard is released.
For more current info, go to a ram vendor's web site and access their ram selection configurator.
Enter your motherboard, and you will get a list of compatible ram kits.
While today's motherboards are more tolerant of different ram, it makes sense to buy ram that is known to work and is supported.

Please confirm you read and understand why i consider going SLI. Getting an SLI capable system would cost me around 50€ more but that gives me the option to use my friends card to upgrade without having to buy a completely new card. Would not be as good as next gen i agree but it saves me money and hassle of selling two older cards (which i can still do). That in mind would you still recommend going with two non SLI systems from the start for my friend and myself?
Thank you for your input on RAM compatibility i will definitely do that.
PSU wise do you think a Seasonic M12 would be worth paying 30€ more for? Maybe Chieftec 850W ATX gold
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a b 4 Gaming
January 19, 2014 6:29:23 PM

easy things first:
Seasonic is as good as it gets. Chieftec is poor. Buy Seasonic.

My advice is to use a single strong card whenever it will do the job.
You plan has some merit. Have you decided who would keep the old system and use sli?
I hope you are good friends.
I have sold last gen graphics cards on ebay. I agree that it is a pain so I have sympathy with avoiding that issue.


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January 19, 2014 6:53:45 PM

geofelt said:
easy things first:
Seasonic is as good as it gets. Chieftec is poor. Buy Seasonic.

My advice is to use a single strong card whenever it will do the job.
You plan has some merit. Have you decided who would keep the old system and use sli?
I hope you are good friends.
I have sold last gen graphics cards on ebay. I agree that it is a pain so I have sympathy with avoiding that issue.



Yeah i see Seasonic is better quality from other reviews. The question is, is it worth paying 30% more for?
We are good friends and even if the plan fails worst case scenario we both end up getting new cards. My friend is the first one to buy the PC and i should follow in 2-3 months. I would be the one buying the SLI system.
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a b 4 Gaming
January 19, 2014 8:07:29 PM

yes, it is.

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