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What do you think of a build like this? I need some serious help/input.

So, first off, thank you for taking the time to check my post out, and help out if you can.

Basically, I would like to build my first ever "gaming rig", I've always been a console gamer, but would like to make the shift to PC gaming, as I feel it has more to offer and I love strategy games.

I would be building the computer around late August to early October, somewhere in that time frame. I would likely be closer to August/September though. My budget will be $1,800-$2,000 (preferably below $2,000 however, I'm willing to venture there). Also worth noting, I am a Canadian and will be using Canadian dollars, so prices will be higher for me. I'm thinking I will use Newegg and maybe Amazon for most of my purchasing. I don't know if I will ever try SLI, I may or may not. Aesthetics don't matter to me, performance is the absolute, most important aspect of technology to me.

I will need a monitor (looking at 720p for the first few months, then maybe upgrade to 1080p). I also need an OS (leaning towards Windows 7 64 bit), I need a keyboard, and possibly a mouse (neither the keyboard or mouse need to be fancy).

The PC will be used almost exclusively as a gaming machine, I might also do some homework on it, but will likely leave my laptop for that kind of of work because I already have MS Office purchased and installed on it.
I will be playing strategy games like Civilization 5, Civilization Beyond Earth (when it comes out), Age of Wonders 3, Wargame: Red Dragon, Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion, Fallen Enchantress: Legendary Heroes, Planetside 2, Dayz Standalone, and possibly Watchdogs.
For the non-strategy games, especially Planetside 2, and Dayz, decent to good graphics, to ultra good graphics are reasonably important, however, solid frame-rates are of the utmost importance to me.

As I've never purchased or made a desktop before, I will be starting completely from scratch. If I understand correctly, Intel and Nvidia are more noob friendly, and generally better for gaming, so I am leaning towards those components.

The parts I'm leaning toward are as follows:

- Nvidia GTX 770 or Nvidia GTX 780

- Intel I5 4670k or Intel I7 4770k (leaning more towards the i5)

- MSI Z87-G45 Gaming LGA 1150

- Cooler master EVO 212 aftermarket fan

- (I'm not sure if I need a soundcard, I think the motherboard will handle that).

- I haven't looked much into monitors, but am leaning towards cheaper ones for now, may upgrade later on.

- Windows 7 64 bit

- I don't think I need speakers

- I need a mouse and a keyboard I've seen some for $30-$40 each that looked ok.

- I'm leaning towards Bit Defender antivirus ($49.99).

- I have no idea what kind of case to get.... Something with good airflow I guess, I don't care much for aesthetics, cost and airflow are the only factors I care about.

- The PSU should be 650-750 watts, and be bronze+.

- 2x4 GDDR3 RAM (total 8GB) (been looking at Corsair Vengeance).

- Not sure about storage. I only want to game, and will go with an SSD, so will 128Gb or so be enough? I rarely, if ever, download stuff and won't download much other than games on GOG, Amazon, maybe Origin, and of course, Steam. Otherwise I may go for a 7200rpm HDD with like 500Gb or something.

I'm not sure if I've missed anything, but those are the specs I'm leaning towards right now. I've done some mock building on pcpartpicker, or something like that, and come out around $1700-$1900 CAD, depending on the components.

I want a beefy machine, I don't care a whole lot about ultra settings, but ultra or even very high, would be very nice. I plan on going with a 720p monitor, and likely upgrading to a 1080p monitor sometime down the road. I also have no experience with overclocking, so I would have to learn a lot more about that before attempting it.

I am willing to dabble with AMD, however, I feel it may take me out of my comfort zone. Me being a noob though, means I could have a misconception about AMD. My laptop runs AMD hardware, and does alright(ish) with gaming, the pieces seem to be good quality, and are still running pretty well.

I should also mention, I tend to worry a lot about hardware failures and what not, which is why I always went for consoles, I felt safer. I am a little worried and anxious about going the PC route, but I think it would be the best for my interests. I'm also looking for high quality components, ones that don't have high rates of failure. I'm also afraid of heat issues. I've read about how the Haswell architecture runs a little hot, and that concerns me. Still, everyone recommends the i5 4670k above all else.

If there are any questions or things needing clarification, let me know.

Thank you for your time.
14 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about build input
  1. If you want a good pc i suggest:
    Intel core I7 it has potentials
    NVIDIA 780 and PSU 750watt also 8GB ram is good but if you can find from 1600mh and above will be better do not take 1333mh
    if you do not want ultra graphics i suggest a 720p monitor....sound card is not necessary......(sorry for bad english)
    I Hope i help you..!!!
  2. Best answer
    Here is a good build for you:

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($254.79 @ DirectCanada)
    CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($32.50 @ DirectCanada)
    Motherboard: MSI Z87-G45 Gaming ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($159.98 @ Newegg Canada)
    Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($95.48 @ Newegg Canada)
    Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($96.94 @ DirectCanada)
    Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($64.75 @ Vuugo)
    Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 780 3GB Video Card ($549.99 @ Memory Express)
    Case: NZXT Phantom 410 (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($119.99 @ Memory Express)
    Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 750W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($109.99 @ NCIX)
    Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($19.50 @ Vuugo)
    Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($98.79 @ DirectCanada)
    Monitor: Asus VS238H-P 23.0" Monitor ($159.50 @ Vuugo)
    Total: $1762.20
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-04-16 20:16 EDT-0400)

    -Gtx 780
    -i5 4670k - The i7s don't provide much benefit over the i5s for gaming at this time.
    -XFX 750w Gold PSU, Fully modular - this was cheaper than the bronze due to a sale, XFX & Seasonic are the brands you want to look at for PSUs (both are manufactured by seasonic) or the Corsair AX/HX/TX series are good too (no cx, rm, vs series)
    -120gb SSD - This is for your OS and most commonly used applications/games (internet browser and a few games will fit)
    -1 TB hardrive - for everything you don't put on the HDD
    -1080p Monitor - easily fit into your budget so why not grab it now?

    Edit: posted wrong build, updated now
  3. it is ok.... in my opinion with the same money you can buy a full tower to have larger space because the graphic card it's big...!!! :/
  4. katsman said:
    it is ok.... in my opinion with the same money you can buy a full tower to have larger space because the graphic card it's big...!!! :/


    Definitely true, I just threw a good quality case on there without much thought since case choice is more of a style thing so OP should look at available cases and decide what he likes. Or if he doesn't care what it looks like then we can just pick one that has good airflow/space and call it a day.

    Best case brands to look at are (in my opinion): Corsair, Cooler Master, Fractal Design, NZXT
  5. numanator said:
    katsman said:
    it is ok.... in my opinion with the same money you can buy a full tower to have larger space because the graphic card it's big...!!! :/


    Definitely true, I just threw a good quality case on there without much thought since case choice is more of a style thing so OP should look at available cases and decide what he likes. Or if he doesn't care what it looks like then we can just pick one that has good airflow/space and call it a day.

    Best case brands to look at are (in my opinion): Corsair, Cooler Master, Fractal Design, NZXT


    yeah i agree...!!! these brands are the best especially the first two !!! :D
  6. katsman said:
    it is ok.... in my opinion with the same money you can buy a full tower to have larger space because the graphic card it's big...!!! :/


    numanator said:
    katsman said:
    it is ok.... in my opinion with the same money you can buy a full tower to have larger space because the graphic card it's big...!!! :/


    Definitely true, I just threw a good quality case on there without much thought since case choice is more of a style thing so OP should look at available cases and decide what he likes. Or if he doesn't care what it looks like then we can just pick one that has good airflow/space and call it a day.

    Best case brands to look at are (in my opinion): Corsair, Cooler Master, Fractal Design, NZXT


    What is an example of a good, full tower? I can only seem to find mid sized cases! How do you know if a case has good airflow?
  7. Most don't need a full tower for any reason. The haf 912 is a nice mid tower plus.
  8. numanator said:
    Here is a good build for you:

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($254.79 @ DirectCanada)
    CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($32.50 @ DirectCanada)
    Motherboard: MSI Z87-G45 Gaming ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($159.98 @ Newegg Canada)
    Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($95.48 @ Newegg Canada)
    Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($96.94 @ DirectCanada)
    Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($64.75 @ Vuugo)
    Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 780 3GB Video Card ($549.99 @ Memory Express)
    Case: NZXT Phantom 410 (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($119.99 @ Memory Express)
    Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 750W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($109.99 @ NCIX)
    Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($19.50 @ Vuugo)
    Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($98.79 @ DirectCanada)
    Monitor: Asus VS238H-P 23.0" Monitor ($159.50 @ Vuugo)
    Total: $1762.20
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-04-16 20:16 EDT-0400)

    -Gtx 780
    -i5 4670k - The i7s don't provide much benefit over the i5s for gaming at this time.
    -XFX 750w Gold PSU, Fully modular - this was cheaper than the bronze due to a sale, XFX & Seasonic are the brands you want to look at for PSUs (both are manufactured by seasonic) or the Corsair AX/HX/TX series are good too (no cx, rm, vs series)
    -120gb SSD - This is for your OS and most commonly used applications/games (internet browser and a few games will fit)
    -1 TB hardrive - for everything you don't put on the HDD
    -1080p Monitor - easily fit into your budget so why not grab it now?

    Edit: posted wrong build, updated now


    Wow... Talk about going above and beyond the call of duty. That looks like an awesome build, I will consider going 1080p right off the bad, it would save money in the long run. The SSD is tempting..... I guess the 1080p and SSD will be more if I can afford it when the time comes. I am budgeting like crazy, and looking for a second job for the summer. Everything in that build looks amazing. Thank you soooo much!

    Is the GTX 780 overkill for me? I only care about having one monitor, and will almost certainly never buy a second, third, or fourth monitor.
  9. It is somewhat overkill for 1080p single monitor gaming at this time. But, you knever know what is just around the corner, i expect the witcher 3 to have some pretty heavy requrements for running at ultra settings, it might be a bit more than the gtx 770 can handle. The gtx 770 pretty much handles all games out at max except for crysis 3 right now (60+fps as far as I know) but that will probably not be the case next year.

    Either the gtx 770 or 780 will work great for you, heck I am running a gtx 760 and it is enough for me right now (though I plan to upgrade in 1.5 years).
  10. numanator said:
    Here is a good build for you:

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($254.79 @ DirectCanada)
    CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($32.50 @ DirectCanada)
    Motherboard: MSI Z87-G45 Gaming ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($159.98 @ Newegg Canada)
    Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($95.48 @ Newegg Canada)
    Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($96.94 @ DirectCanada)
    Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($64.75 @ Vuugo)
    Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 780 3GB Video Card ($549.99 @ Memory Express)
    Case: NZXT Phantom 410 (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($119.99 @ Memory Express)
    Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 750W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($109.99 @ NCIX)
    Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($19.50 @ Vuugo)
    Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($98.79 @ DirectCanada)
    Monitor: Asus VS238H-P 23.0" Monitor ($159.50 @ Vuugo)
    Total: $1762.20
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-04-16 20:16 EDT-0400)

    -Gtx 780
    -i5 4670k - The i7s don't provide much benefit over the i5s for gaming at this time.
    -XFX 750w Gold PSU, Fully modular - this was cheaper than the bronze due to a sale, XFX & Seasonic are the brands you want to look at for PSUs (both are manufactured by seasonic) or the Corsair AX/HX/TX series are good too (no cx, rm, vs series)
    -120gb SSD - This is for your OS and most commonly used applications/games (internet browser and a few games will fit)
    -1 TB hardrive - for everything you don't put on the HDD
    -1080p Monitor - easily fit into your budget so why not grab it now?

    Edit: posted wrong build, updated now


    Is that Z87 G45 motherboard a good one? I've been hearing/reading that one should expect to pay $200-$300 for a good motherboard, anything less is not worth the money.
  11. numanator said:
    It is somewhat overkill for 1080p single monitor gaming at this time. But, you knever know what is just around the corner, i expect the witcher 3 to have some pretty heavy requrements for running at ultra settings, it might be a bit more than the gtx 770 can handle. The gtx 770 pretty much handles all games out at max except for crysis 3 right now (60+fps as far as I know) but that will probably not be the case next year.

    Either the gtx 770 or 780 will work great for you, heck I am running a gtx 760 and it is enough for me right now (though I plan to upgrade in 1.5 years).


    Thank you for all the help and excellent replies. I think I will go for the 770, possibly the 760. I've been becoming somewhat greedy, and need to take a step back and reconsider my needs. I originally planned on going with the 760, and may still do that, but kept "upping" my needs. I don't care about ultra settings that much, but having the option is nice. Ultra, very high, high, and medium are all fine for me too. I really want to play and enjoy strategy games without late game lag (although I suspect late game lag and long turn time for Civ 5 is an optimization issue and I can't fix that with parts). I'd also like to play Planetary Annihilation on decent settings, I know it's pretty demanding. But mostly, Planetside 2 at at least medium or high settings, and I will be happy. My laptop runs at an avg of probably 15-20 FPS on lowest settings on Planetside 2 (prior to their optimizing of the game), and like 2 FPS in battles with 20 people or more.... Sad for a game with massive battles being one of the key features.

    The laptop has some sort of Phenom quad core 2.3 GHz and a Radeon HD 7670m GPU with 1GB Vram (not sure about the other specs). If I beat that, I'll be happy haha.
  12. MrCanEHdian said:
    numanator said:
    Here is a good build for you:

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($254.79 @ DirectCanada)
    CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($32.50 @ DirectCanada)
    Motherboard: MSI Z87-G45 Gaming ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($159.98 @ Newegg Canada)
    Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($95.48 @ Newegg Canada)
    Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($96.94 @ DirectCanada)
    Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($64.75 @ Vuugo)
    Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 780 3GB Video Card ($549.99 @ Memory Express)
    Case: NZXT Phantom 410 (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($119.99 @ Memory Express)
    Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 750W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($109.99 @ NCIX)
    Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($19.50 @ Vuugo)
    Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($98.79 @ DirectCanada)
    Monitor: Asus VS238H-P 23.0" Monitor ($159.50 @ Vuugo)
    Total: $1762.20
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-04-16 20:16 EDT-0400)

    -Gtx 780
    -i5 4670k - The i7s don't provide much benefit over the i5s for gaming at this time.
    -XFX 750w Gold PSU, Fully modular - this was cheaper than the bronze due to a sale, XFX & Seasonic are the brands you want to look at for PSUs (both are manufactured by seasonic) or the Corsair AX/HX/TX series are good too (no cx, rm, vs series)
    -120gb SSD - This is for your OS and most commonly used applications/games (internet browser and a few games will fit)
    -1 TB hardrive - for everything you don't put on the HDD
    -1080p Monitor - easily fit into your budget so why not grab it now?

    Edit: posted wrong build, updated now


    Is that Z87 G45 motherboard a good one? I've been hearing/reading that one should expect to pay $200-$300 for a good motherboard, anything less is not worth the money.


    The MSI G45 gaming mobo is one of the few MSI motherboards I am ok with. Otherwise I typically stick with Asus or Gigabyte ( Asrock for budget builds). For a bit more you could get this:

    Motherboard: Asus Z87-Pro ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($169.99 @ NCIX US)
    Total: $169.99
  13. MrCanEHdian said:


    Thank you for all the help and excellent replies. I think I will go for the 770, possibly the 760. I've been becoming somewhat greedy, and need to take a step back and reconsider my needs. I originally planned on going with the 760, and may still do that, but kept "upping" my needs. I don't care about ultra settings that much, but having the option is nice. Ultra, very high, high, and medium are all fine for me too. I really want to play and enjoy strategy games without late game lag (although I suspect late game lag and long turn time for Civ 5 is an optimization issue and I can't fix that with parts). I'd also like to play Planetary Annihilation on decent settings, I know it's pretty demanding. But mostly, Planetside 2 at at least medium or high settings, and I will be happy. My laptop runs at an avg of probably 15-20 FPS on lowest settings on Planetside 2 (prior to their optimizing of the game), and like 2 FPS in battles with 20 people or more.... Sad for a game with massive battles being one of the key features.

    The laptop has some sort of Phenom quad core 2.3 GHz and a Radeon HD 7670m GPU with 1GB Vram (not sure about the other specs). If I beat that, I'll be happy haha.


    You will beat that laptop easy with this haha. Enjoy!
  14. numanator said:
    MrCanEHdian said:
    numanator said:
    Here is a good build for you:

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($254.79 @ DirectCanada)
    CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($32.50 @ DirectCanada)
    Motherboard: MSI Z87-G45 Gaming ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($159.98 @ Newegg Canada)
    Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($95.48 @ Newegg Canada)
    Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($96.94 @ DirectCanada)
    Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($64.75 @ Vuugo)
    Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 780 3GB Video Card ($549.99 @ Memory Express)
    Case: NZXT Phantom 410 (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($119.99 @ Memory Express)
    Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 750W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($109.99 @ NCIX)
    Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($19.50 @ Vuugo)
    Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($98.79 @ DirectCanada)
    Monitor: Asus VS238H-P 23.0" Monitor ($159.50 @ Vuugo)
    Total: $1762.20
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-04-16 20:16 EDT-0400)

    -Gtx 780
    -i5 4670k - The i7s don't provide much benefit over the i5s for gaming at this time.
    -XFX 750w Gold PSU, Fully modular - this was cheaper than the bronze due to a sale, XFX & Seasonic are the brands you want to look at for PSUs (both are manufactured by seasonic) or the Corsair AX/HX/TX series are good too (no cx, rm, vs series)
    -120gb SSD - This is for your OS and most commonly used applications/games (internet browser and a few games will fit)
    -1 TB hardrive - for everything you don't put on the HDD
    -1080p Monitor - easily fit into your budget so why not grab it now?

    Edit: posted wrong build, updated now


    Is that Z87 G45 motherboard a good one? I've been hearing/reading that one should expect to pay $200-$300 for a good motherboard, anything less is not worth the money.


    The MSI G45 gaming mobo is one of the few MSI motherboards I am ok with. Otherwise I typically stick with Asus or Gigabyte ( Asrock for budget builds). For a bit more you could get this:

    Motherboard: Asus Z87-Pro ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($169.99 @ NCIX US)
    Total: $169.99


    I've been looking at that board for a while! I was pretty sure I'd go with it, it seems to have nice audo capability, and seems to be of good quality. I am not familiar with the brands, but for MOBOs, most people seem to say Asus, and for GPUs, most people say Intel (i5 or i7), and for GPUs, most people say Nvidia and EVGA as the seller.

    It will be nice to be able to play strategy games as they were meant to be played. I imagine the i5 will be leagues better than the old Phenom.
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