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Help Building First Gaming System, Advice/Help Needed

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June 4, 2014 1:06:35 PM

Hello everyone! I would like to ask for some help and advice regarding upgrading my pc!

*Warning a bit of a read (my ramblings)* - Actual Questions at the bottom :D 

I very much like the idea of 60+fps on ultra, all eye candy blazing while playing all my video games, but I'm not anywhere near this and I'd need an upgrade...
For instance, I play Planetside 2 (for anyone who knows it) and I'm getting <30fps in non intensive situations (sitting there doing nothing!) on nearly all Low settings :/  and it's starting to become a pain not being able to play games an have them look lovely at the same time:/

What I would like (and most people would as well) is a pc which can run games on max settings with eye candy, multitask, run quiet, keep it's insides cool so I can try overclocking, be 'future proof', and allow me to expand and experiment! I know this is what everyone wants but I'm not sure if it's possible in a budget, but I've wanted an upgrade for a long time and haven't got around to doing it. I've become more and more engrossed in computers, the hardware, capabilities, etc. and I would like to have a pc that can incorporate new things to experiment (e.g 16gb of ram to try out things like RAM disks!)

Current specs:
CPU: I5 2500k @stock speed
MOBO: Asus P8Z68V-LX
RAM: 4gb Corsair CMX4GX3M1A1600C9
GPU: AMD Radeon 6650
PSU: 650watt (Model: AD-E650AE-A5)
HDD: 1TB
CASE: (unsure) unfiltered 80-ish mm intake, 120mm exhaust
OPTICAL: A blu ray drive
OS: Windows 7 64bit

My plan was to build a completely new system, and I'd still very much like to do that, but I've read that my processor is a very good overclocker, so I could stay with that, but then again, I don't want to miss out on features of new CPUs and MOBOs.

My original plan came out around £1200+ and I needed to cut it down, and this is what I've come up with for now:

[PCPartPicker part list](http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/vMRprH) / [Price breakdown by merchant](http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/vMRprH/by_merchant/) / [Benchmarks](http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/vMRprH/benchmarks/)

Type|Item|Price
:----|:----|:----
**CPU** | [Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor](http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/part/intel-cpu-bx80646i54670...) | £155.99 @ Aria PC
**CPU Cooler** | [Noctua NH-U12S 55.0 CFM CPU Cooler](http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/part/noctua-cpu-cooler-nhu12...) | £49.34 @ Scan.co.uk
**Motherboard** | [MSI Z97-GAMING 5 ATX LGA1150 Motherboard](http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/part/msi-motherboard-z97gami...) | £113.96 @ Scan.co.uk
**Memory** | [Kingston Beast 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory](http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/part/kingston-memory-khx16c9...) | £101.98 @ Dabs
**Storage** | [Crucial M500 240GB 2.5" Solid State Drive](http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/part/crucial-internal-hard-d...) | £78.10 @ Aria PC
**Storage** | [Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive](http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/part/seagate-internal-hard-d...) | £52.79 @ Aria PC
**Video Card** | [Gigabyte GeForce GTX 770 4GB WINDFORCE Video Card](http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/part/gigabyte-video-card-gvn...) | £290.68 @ Amazon UK
**Case** | [Fractal Design Define R4 w/Window (Black Pearl) ATX Mid Tower Case](http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/part/fractal-design-case-fdc...) | £79.99 @ Amazon UK
**Power Supply** | [EVGA 850W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply](http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/part/evga-power-supply-220g2...) | £92.73 @ Amazon UK
**Operating System** | [Microsoft Windows 8.1 (OEM) (64-bit)](http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/part/microsoft-os-wn700615) | £79.99 @ Amazon UK
| | **Total**
| Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available. | £1095.55
| Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-06-04 20:50 BST+0100 |

Why I chose the parts:
•newest processor with the ability to overclock, should last a while
•Slim, with good reviews
•z97 allows for future upgrades and has good overclocking potential, originally suited my red and black colour scheme, and has SLI capability
•good latency, 16gb kit- allows for nearly anything to be done on the system, at the same time :) 
•From my needs, best mix of SSD speed and size, and HDD storage
•Good price to performance ratio that I'm willing to play for, somewhat 'future proof', I want to keep this system for a long time, so 4gb seems like a safe place
•Nice case with good (and filtered) airflow (Move down from the NZXT H440 Black/Red)
•Big enough power supply to be able to handle SLI and overclocking

What I would like in my system
•Gigabyte GTX 770 OC 4GB
•A processor which wouldn't bottleneck with one or two GPUs
•An SSD and HDD Combo
•16gb RAM
•Good filtered case (so cooling components isn't an issue)
•Motherboard with good onboard audio, SLI, and ability to upgrade

Questions
1. What is the cheapest I could build this system for? (general specs)
2. Should I keep my i5 2500k, and just upgrade all the other parts?
3.Is there a better system for cheaper?
4.Are there better cards than the GTX 770, which are roughly the same price or cheaper?
5.Are there any good parts dealers in the UK? Such as Micro Center in the US

Thank you for reading my hopefully coherent post and thank you for any replies in advance!
June 4, 2014 1:13:23 PM

seagate momentus xt hybrid drives in raid striping config for apps 60gb os ssd and 1-2 tb for music photos movies and downloads
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June 4, 2014 1:18:41 PM

Hey, I have the 2500k to, and it's still going strong for me :p 

I would personally keep your original build but fix a few things.
-A ram upgrade to 8gb/16gb would be nice.
-120/256gb SSD
-this is your PSU
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Artic-Power-Supply-Featuring-Fl...
I'd definitely give that an upgrade to a more quality one.

Here is a list of GPUs
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-car...

Try to look one tier above the 770 and find one at the same price.
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Related resources
June 4, 2014 1:20:32 PM

ichigokunbaka said:
seagate momentus xt hybrid drives in raid striping config for apps 60gb os ssd and 1-2 tb for music photos movies and downloads


I would rather have the larger SSD, just so I am not limited to just OS and a couple programs.
Aren't SSHDs only using a small SSD as a cache for the HDD? So loading times ect are the same as a HDD, because it's limited by it's own HDD?
Thanks for the reply, any other help would be greatly appreciated
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June 4, 2014 1:25:58 PM

Only problem with keeping my current build is that the MOBO doesn't support SLI?:/
And the reason I went for the GTX 770, was because te games I play usually have some sort of PhysX, the apparently better driver support, and Shadow play intrigued me a lot.

Thank for the reply! Sorry I cannot quite you as I'm not sure how to as I'm on an iPhone atm.
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June 4, 2014 1:33:28 PM

having different drives ssd or other config can keep system multi tasking better all lanes are separate and moving things to different containers keeps wear and tear lower and decompessing updates from utility drives and archive/ backup virus scans in the background while enjoying music /videos is great for keeping system at a more productive level without grinding to a slow non productive state like a ps3 doing a 5 hr update
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June 4, 2014 1:40:48 PM

TheGreenGiant99 said:
Only problem with keeping my current build is that the MOBO doesn't support SLI?:/
And the reason I went for the GTX 770, was because te games I play usually have some sort of PhysX, the apparently better driver support, and Shadow play intrigued me a lot.

Thank for the reply! Sorry I cannot quite you as I'm not sure how to as I'm on an iPhone atm.


Well, true about your mobo. But if you are upgrading anyways a single card is usually better than SLI. If you have the money for a new build then go for it, but I think you still have a pretty good computer right now.

If you get 16gb of ram, a 256GB SSD, a 750w PSU and a really nice $400 GPU you can always reuse these in a new build in a year or 2 and THEN buy a mobo with the ability to SLI along with a CPU.

2500k vs 4670k
http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id-1693900/2500k-ha...
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June 4, 2014 1:41:21 PM

I not sure about the 16GB really but if you want it it is in the list. Go with GTX 780. A GTX 780 SLI will beat a GTX 770 SLI.

I swapped to Samsung SSD since I prefer it over the Crucial since you actually have 250GB with Samsung (you lose 10% with over provision for the SSD ).
Swapped to the Noctua NH D14 since it is a better cpu cooler and swapped the ram to allow it to fit.
Swapped to Asus-A, I prefer ASUS motherboard over MSI due to their quality materials, new BIOS and the way you can update your BIOS even without a cpu.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor (£155.99 @ Aria PC)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler (£57.89 @ Ebuyer)
Motherboard: Asus Z97-A ATX LGA1150 Motherboard (£113.96 @ Scan.co.uk)
Memory: Kingston 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory (£106.97 @ Dabs)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 250GB 2.5" Solid State Drive (£91.99 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£52.79 @ Aria PC)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 780 3GB WINDFORCE Video Card (£365.99 @ Ebuyer)
Case: Fractal Design Define R4 w/Window (Black Pearl) ATX Mid Tower Case (£79.99 @ Amazon UK)
Power Supply: XFX 850W 80+ Bronze Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply (£86.22 @ Scan.co.uk)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 (OEM) (64-bit) (£79.99 @ Amazon UK)
Total: £1191.78
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-06-04 21:39 BST+0100)
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June 4, 2014 3:13:18 PM

Thank you all for these quick replies! It's been really helpful!

So I think I might keep the MOBO and CPU for now, get a better cooler than the random one I have now and hopefully it will overclock nicely!

That'll mean I'll have to get:
•good CPU cooler
•a better PSU (probably the G2 850watt, I think it's called.)
•and ssd (probably the m500 or the Samsung that was suggested if it's better for the extra money and storage
•new case (probably R4 unless H440 goes down in price)
•High end GPU, probably the gigabyte 770 4gb or possibly a 780! If it can now fit in the budget! Would like a GHZ Edition if that could fit in! By not sure about that:/
•Possibly a fresh 2tb drive

Sorry some more questions:/
1. Is it easy to transfer the OS from my old hard drive to a new SSD?
2.Would it be more beneficial getting a main SSD for games and the like, and a smaller one for JUST the OS?
3.Would this new plan of action be of greater benefit? Upgrade the surrounding system, and then when the time comes only have to upgrade the MOBO and CPU?

Thank you so much guys! I'm trying to research as much as I can but it's still hard picking parts and you guys have helped to no end! Thank you!
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June 4, 2014 3:21:13 PM

If you change your motherboard, you will need a new windows license regardless if you have one from a previous pc.
SSD is beneficial for faster boot times, snappy OS and some games benefit from loading time like BF4.
I prefer Samsung SSD quality over Crucial and their program , Samsung Magician is easy to use and maintain your SSD.
The cpu and motherboard can last very long since there hasn't been a huge development in performance for cpu.
I prefer ASUS quality over MSI but it is you choice.
Any non-reference GTX 780 will do really. GHZ Edition is just the card factory overclocked to 1GHZ for you. It would be cheaper to get a non GHZ Edition and overclock it yourself.
The XFX 850 is already a good quality power supply and is equally good as the EVGA SuperNova G2 850W.
Go for GTX 780 ir 2GB GTX 770. 4 GB model is not worth it and stick to single gpu cards if you play at 1080p single monitor.
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