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questions about a new gaming pc build from a first time builder

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April 15, 2014 8:20:54 AM

HI i am building a gaming computer (It will also be used for recording gameplay) for the first time and i have a few quesions.

These are the parts i was thinking of buying
cpu:AMD fx 6300 (3.5/4.1GHz)
gpu:MSI R9 270x 4gb
RAM:corsair vengence 1600 MHz 8 gb (2x4gb)
motherboard: Asus m5a97 r2.0
HDD:seagate barracuda 1 tb
Heatsink:Akasa nero or coolermaster 212 evo
psu:corsair cs 550m 80+ gold certified
opticaldrive: lg 24x dvd
Total cost : £537.13

1) Are all the parts compatible and will work together and fit on the motherboard
2)Has my psu got enough wattage anf is it good quality
3)Has any one got and suggestions for a cas ( I would prefer if it had a bit of red on it but its not essential) my budget is abot £600 so the case needs to be about £50 so i can buy a mouse and keyboard
4)which heatsink should i get ( Im planning to overclock to 4.3 GHz0
5)Is this the best performance im going to get for my budget or could i change a few thinf to make it better

Thanks for the help and info , feel free to ask questions about the parts


Best solution

April 15, 2014 8:27:36 AM

1) Yes they are compatible and would work fine.
2) Plenty of wattage, but the CS isn't a very good model.
3) See list below
4) At that overclock, any basic will do just fine
5) Definitely can get a TON more performance, see below:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: AMD FX-6300 3.5GHz 6-Core Processor (£76.79 @ Aria PC)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper TX3 Evo 43.1 CFM CPU Cooler (£16.00 @ Amazon UK)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-970A-DS3P ATX AM3+ Motherboard (£48.96 @ Amazon UK)
Memory: Kingston Beast 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-2400 Memory (£45.95 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£42.73 @ Aria PC)
Video Card: XFX Radeon R9 280X 3GB Video Card (£219.99 @ Ebuyer)
Case: Cooler Master Force 500 ATX Mid Tower Case (£32.99 @ Aria PC)
Power Supply: XFX 550W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply (£46.98 @ Aria PC)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHDS118-04 DVD/CD Drive (£10.78 @ Scan.co.uk)
Keyboard: Logitech MK320 Wireless Standard Keyboard w/Optical Mouse (£49.99 @ Amazon UK)
Total: £591.16
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-04-15 16:25 BST+0100)
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April 15, 2014 8:46:52 AM

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: AMD FX-8120 3.1GHz 8-Core Processor (£91.99 @ Maplin Electronics)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler (£25.20 @ Aria PC)
Motherboard: Asus M5A97 EVO R2.0 ATX AM3+ Motherboard (£68.62 @ Amazon UK)
Memory: Corsair 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory (£57.36 @ Scan.co.uk)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda ES.2 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£48.99 @ Amazon UK)
Video Card: MSI Radeon R9 270X 2GB Video Card (£164.99 @ Aria PC)
Case: Thermaltake Commander MS-I ID ATX Mid Tower Case (£32.72 @ CCL Computers)
Power Supply: Corsair CX 600W 80+ Bronze Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply (£52.96 @ Amazon UK)
Total: £542.83
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-04-15 16:46 BST+0100)
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April 15, 2014 8:49:35 AM

The 8120 is based on the Bulldozer chip, and is crappy for gaming, and the CX series uses inferior capacitors, and isn't recommended.
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April 16, 2014 4:51:19 AM

13102478,0,1501796 said:
1) Yes they are compatible and would work fine.
2) Plenty of wattage, but the CS isn't a very good model.
3) See list below
4) At that overclock, any basic will do just fine
5) Definitely can get a TON more performance, see below:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: AMD FX-6300 3.5GHz 6-Core Processor (£76.79 @ Aria PC)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper TX3 Evo 43.1 CFM CPU Cooler (£16.00 @ Amazon UK)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-970A-DS3P ATX AM3+ Motherboard (£48.96 @ Amazon UK)
Memory: Kingston Beast 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-2400 Memory (£45.95 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£42.73 @ Aria PC)
Video Card: XFX Radeon R9 280X 3GB Video Card (£219.99 @ Ebuyer)
Case: Cooler Master Force 500 ATX Mid Tower Case (£32.99 @ Aria PC)
Power Supply: XFX 550W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply (£46.98 @ Aria PC)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHDS118-04 DVD/CD Drive (£10.78 @ Scan.co.uk)
Keyboard: Logitech MK320 Wireless Standard Keyboard w/Optical Mouse (£49.99 @ Amazon UK)
Total: £591.16
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-04-15 16:25 BST+0100)[/quotemsg

Thanks for the help but i have a few questions about your choice of parts

1)Even though the kingston beast's memory speed is faster, the timings are slower so doesn't tha mean the ram is slower than the corsair vengence
2)The WD caviar blue is for normal computing and isnt it slower than the seagate barracuda
3) Is xfx a good brand because haven't heard anything about there PSU and GPU, i was going to get the R9 card by MSI because they make them to millitary standards
4)What do you think of the AvP Defender 400 k2 , k3 gaming case and the CIT vantage
5) will that heatsink ensure low temps
Thanks for the help and sorry if any of the questions are dumb

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April 16, 2014 7:39:28 AM

The Kingston Hyper Beast 2400MHz RAM (4x2GB) is not compatible with that motherboard. In fact, most of the AM3+ socket motherboards do not support that memory speed even at overclocked speeds. I had the same issue and was told that I had to go with 1866 sticks?
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April 16, 2014 9:09:21 AM

Ben stead said:

Thanks for the help but i have a few questions about your choice of parts

1)Even though the kingston beast's memory speed is faster, the timings are slower so doesn't tha mean the ram is slower than the corsair vengence
2)The WD caviar blue is for normal computing and isnt it slower than the seagate barracuda
3) Is xfx a good brand because haven't heard anything about there PSU and GPU, i was going to get the R9 card by MSI because they make them to millitary standards
4)What do you think of the AvP Defender 400 k2 , k3 gaming case and the CIT vantage
5) will that heatsink ensure low temps
Thanks for the help and sorry if any of the questions are dumb


No dumb questions :) 
1)Yeah, it will perform about the same speed, but it was the cheapest, so no worries there. See response below about RAM speed.
2)The Seagate Barracuda is the exact same speed as the Caviar Blue, but Seagate has a substantially higher failure rate than WD does, so I would avoid them.
3)XFX PSUs are built by SeaSonic, and are top-quality power supplies. Their graphics cards are decent, too. MSI's 'military-grade' marketing is just a tagline, their parts are about the same as any other's.
4)For a build with an aftermarket CPU cooler and single GPU, it really doesn't matter what case you go with. Just get one that you like the best :) 
5)The TX3 is an entry-level CPU cooler. It will keep the CPU cooler and a lot quieter than the stock one that comes with the CPU. It won't allow much overclocking, but overclocking really won't do anything for gaming, so that shouldn't be a problem.

tamethegamer said:
The Kingston Hyper Beast 2400MHz RAM (4x2GB) is not compatible with that motherboard. In fact, most of the AM3+ socket motherboards do not support that memory speed even at overclocked speeds. I had the same issue and was told that I had to go with 1866 sticks?


The Gigabyte 970A supports up to 2000MHz overclocked. This means the 2400MHz RAM will be downclocked to 2000, but you should see timings decrease a little bit too (if not you may be able to manually decrease the timings)
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April 16, 2014 9:24:41 AM

Just had another look at my board and it is the same- better check back with my 2400MHz Kingstons again. Thanks!
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April 16, 2014 9:33:57 AM

You may have to manually adjust the speed/timings of the RAM to get you to 2000, I'm not sure; never messed with that board before. But if the RAM is rated to 2400 and the board is rated up to 2000, and you can't get it that fast, either Gigabyte or Kingston has some 'splainin to do lol
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April 17, 2014 1:49:53 PM

HiTechObsessed said:
Ben stead said:

Thanks for the help but i have a few questions about your choice of parts

1)Even though the kingston beast's memory speed is faster, the timings are slower so doesn't tha mean the ram is slower than the corsair vengence
2)The WD caviar blue is for normal computing and isnt it slower than the seagate barracuda
3) Is xfx a good brand because haven't heard anything about there PSU and GPU, i was going to get the R9 card by MSI because they make them to millitary standards
4)What do you think of the AvP Defender 400 k2 , k3 gaming case and the CIT vantage
5) will that heatsink ensure low temps
Thanks for the help and sorry if any of the questions are dumb


No dumb questions :) 
1)Yeah, it will perform about the same speed, but it was the cheapest, so no worries there. See response below about RAM speed.
2)The Seagate Barracuda is the exact same speed as the Caviar Blue, but Seagate has a substantially higher failure rate than WD does, so I would avoid them.
3)XFX PSUs are built by SeaSonic, and are top-quality power supplies. Their graphics cards are decent, too. MSI's 'military-grade' marketing is just a tagline, their parts are about the same as any other's.
4)For a build with an aftermarket CPU cooler and single GPU, it really doesn't matter what case you go with. Just get one that you like the best :) 
5)The TX3 is an entry-level CPU cooler. It will keep the CPU cooler and a lot quieter than the stock one that comes with the CPU. It won't allow much overclocking, but overclocking really won't do anything for gaming, so that shouldn't be a problem.

tamethegamer said:
The Kingston Hyper Beast 2400MHz RAM (4x2GB) is not compatible with that motherboard. In fact, most of the AM3+ socket motherboards do not support that memory speed even at overclocked speeds. I had the same issue and was told that I had to go with 1866 sticks?


The Gigabyte 970A supports up to 2000MHz overclocked. This means the 2400MHz RAM will be downclocked to 2000, but you should see timings decrease a little bit too (if not you may be able to manually decrease the timings)


Thanks again for the help i just have a few final questions
1)What do you think about changing your motherboard back to the asus m5a97 because i have read that it is stabler for overclocking (im overclocking to 4.3 GHz) and i know how to overclock on that board plus there are alot more good reviews about the asus than the gigabyte
2)Also what do you think about changing the case to a sharkoon t9 / t28 or a zalman z11 just purley because i like the cases and they have usb 3.0 and some more LED fans im thinking about changing the mouse and keyboard to a zalman set on ebay (£26.95) to accomidate for the changes i mad
3)sorry for asking again but the cpu cooler you choose will be perfectly fine for the overclock i am going to perform right (4.3GHz)? and do you know what temps it will keep the cpu after overclocking and does the cpu cooler come with pre-aplied thermal compund or will i have to buy some and apply my self?
4)will i have to adjust the RAM setting/ down clock it to get it to work because if you do i dont know how you do it
Total cost of pc with my changes:£605 its a little bit over budget but it doesnt matter

Thanks for answering my questions again , i would rather ask them to a expert like you than guess on my own.
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April 21, 2014 8:02:53 AM

1) The ASUS board is a great board, that would be just fine :) 
2) The Sharkoon cases are fine, with this kind of setup, airflow isn't too much of a concern, so pick whatever you think you'll like best
3) The TX3 would be cutting it close for 4.3, but it depends on your chip. You could get the Hyper 212 EVO for just a few quid more and get 4.3 :) 
4) Both the Gigabyte and ASUS boards should set the RAM speed to whatever they need to get it working. If for whatever reason they don't, you can easily change this in the BIOS by selecting a lower RAM speed. I've not used ASUS' BIOS, but Gigabyte's is simply a drop-down list you can choose from. If you're worried about this, you can get different RAM. Anything at 1.5v CAS9 @ 1600 or 1866 would be perfect. I just go with the cheapest RAM at good voltages because RAM is RAM, and there's really no point for 99.9% of people to pay extra for RAM.
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April 21, 2014 1:55:56 PM

Hi thanks again for answering my questions
I have found some kingston hyper x genesis 8gb (2x4gb) 1600mz 9-9-9-27 ram for £54 £10 more than the beast
Do you think it is better to get this one , will it give me any more performance or should i just go with the kingston beast?
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April 21, 2014 2:01:37 PM

It wouldn't be more performance, but it wouldn't be much less. I wouldn't personally spend the extra money, I would just get the Beast.
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April 22, 2014 7:03:56 AM

will the beast fit next to the coolermaster hyper 212 evo ? , i have heard some ram is to big to fit with the cpu cooler
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April 22, 2014 8:02:06 AM

I'm not exactly sure with Beast, but you can easily just put the fan on the other side of the Evo to get it out of the way.
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April 22, 2014 9:45:31 AM

But if you do that isnt the fan going to be trying to pull hor air in aginst the force of the exaust fan ?
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April 22, 2014 9:53:02 AM

Just flip the fan around. It's screwed into 2 brackets that attach just like normal.
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April 22, 2014 10:08:34 AM

I know but then the fan will be pulling air in from the back of the case where the exaust fan of the case will be trying to pull air out of the case so the cpu cooler and case fan will be fighting against each other, cant i move the fan up a bit ( will this affect performance/ cooling power) or could i put the ram in the 2nd and 4th slot instead of the 1st and 3rd (will this affect performance)
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April 22, 2014 11:04:36 AM

No, you just flip the fan around and then put it on the other side. You just screw the brackets into the other side of the fan to make it push air towards the exhaust fan.
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April 22, 2014 11:42:28 AM

I think im just going to get the kingston hyper x genesis that i found , because its a bit better and will fit under the cpu cooler with out any fiddling also its only £10 more i dont mind paying a bit more to make it easier since i am a first time builder
Thanks for all the help with the question i think i am ready to build now , hope you dont mind if i ask a few more questions if i run into any problems.
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April 22, 2014 11:47:40 AM

That works too lol and no, I definitely don't mind :)  good luck with the build!
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!