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I threw this together, and was wondering what you think of it in terms of a gaming PC with future upgradeability?

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Last response: in Systems
June 17, 2014 4:19:25 PM

Hello, and thank you for stopping by.

This is the PC build I put together just now on Pcpartpicker.ca:

http://ca.pcpartpicker.com/p/ydpNgs

I'm sort of on a budget. My needs aren't high for the games I want to play, but I want a high quality motherboard for future upgradeability and a good PSU that is of high quality, and good for future upgrades. I'm very afraid of it breaking and damaging my entire system. I'm not going for very high end parts like RAM, CPU, GPU, because my needs aren't very high I don't think, but I'll definitely want to upgrade in the future. The build will be pretty 100% for gaming, mostly strategy games, and maybe some FPS games like Planetside 2, and some indie games Astronaut.

Everything below is my rationale/explanation for choosing the parts I chose, and why I think they're best for me.

I'm up for any and all recommendations, I'd like to stick to Intel CPUs but am down to try out AMD GPUs.

I know the motherboard is intended for Z series boards, basically, I want a high quality motherboard that will be able to upgrade to other GPUs and CPUs (namely, Broadwell), down the road and one that will perform well and be reliable. I'm finding it hard to find a good H97 that is a low enough price to justify changing from the Z97. I don't know about Mobos to make those judgement calls though, I guess.

The CPU seems good, and has a nice price, I think it'll do exactly what i need it to do, which is game, predominantly strategy games.

I went with the relatively cheap GTX 750ti because I'll be gaming at 720p, and if I understand correctly, the 750ti is easily enough for 720p.

The RAM is simple, I know, but I don't think I need much more and Corsair seems like a good brand.

I went with a SeaSonic PSU because of its name is highly regarded, but I don't know if I want to spend that kind of money. I want high quality, but 850w is way way more than I need. I think 650w-750w should be more than enough. I'd like at least 80+ Bronze but prefer 80+ Gold for its heat reduction.

The EVO 212 fan is highly recommended, cheap and the only gripe is its size.

The case I just threw in because I'll need one, I'd like to keep the price below $100 but I'm really not sure which one I should choose.

The monitor is a simple 720p monitor, that's all I need. All I care about is performance, aesthetics don't matter much to me, so an ugly looking PC is fine by me.

I threw in the DVD drive for its convenience, not sure I really need it.

I'm torn between Windows 7 and Windows 8.1, both have may advocates promoting them.

I threw in a cheap "gaming" keyboard, as I don't have one. I'll likely need a mouse, I have a very cheap, simple Logitech one priced at $12 CAD.

The HDD is dirt cheap, 7200 RPM seems to be good enough for me, I doubt I'll use more than 500Gbs. An SSD would be nice but the cost is too high for me, I can handle slower load times I think.

Thank you for your time and your input. It's very, very much appreciated.

More about : threw wondering terms gaming future upgradeability

a b 4 Gaming
June 17, 2014 4:25:48 PM

if you don't need the thermal paste and you didn't need the after market cooler....or a "gaming" keyboard........ would that get you a bigger monitor?
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a b 4 Gaming
June 17, 2014 4:28:27 PM

850 is way too much, 750 is overkill, 650 is going a little overboard. That machine would probably run on a 350... a 500 or 550 is more than reasonable for a single GPU machine, even if you are going to be throwing something like a 780 in there eventually.

Save the money on the PSU, get the K series of the 4690. Get a better video card. The rest seems pretty reasonable except for the monitor, you've obviously thought it over quite a bit. Why spend all that money on a machine obviously good enough for 1080p gaming and then display it on that piece of junk? Its' like having a twin turbo v6 in a yugo... it just doesn't make sense.


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June 17, 2014 4:39:08 PM

swifty_morgan said:
if you don't need the thermal paste and you didn't need the after market cooler....or a "gaming" keyboard........ would that get you a bigger monitor?


Too be honest, I doubt it. I'd either save the money or put it into a better GPU or CPU. I guess my biggest concern with the PC is processing power. You know those AI turns in games like Civ 5.... So tired of them taking 3 minutes on my old Phenom A2600k or whatever it is on my laptop. I think the i5 4670 is something like 200% better or so.
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June 17, 2014 4:42:37 PM

Traciatim said:
850 is way too much, 750 is overkill, 650 is going a little overboard. That machine would probably run on a 350... a 500 or 550 is more than reasonable for a single GPU machine, even if you are going to be throwing something like a 780 in there eventually.

Save the money on the PSU, get the K series of the 4690. Get a better video card. The rest seems pretty reasonable except for the monitor, you've obviously thought it over quite a bit. Why spend all that money on a machine obviously good enough for 1080p gaming and then display it on that piece of junk? Its' like having a twin turbo v6 in a yugo... it just doesn't make sense.




Ok, for the PSU I will look for 500-550w then. Still, high quality is key for me to "alleviate" my fears lmao. I don't know how to overclock or if I will, so that is why I'm not sure about K series CPUs or Z series motherboards. I know the monitor is crap, my main concerns are smooth gameplay and decent graphics. As long as the monitor works, I think I'll be ok. That being said, someday I'd upgrade it. The 750ti is still overkill for 720p?

I totally understand what you're saying about it being idiotic to go with the crappy monitor, but if I'm deadset on 720p, at least for now, what should I do?
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a b 4 Gaming
June 17, 2014 4:57:33 PM

no, overkill for 720p. that's okay though.

windows 8.1 is supposed to put out more frames in games than windows7. i still haven't purchased a copy of that. I like 7. it's kinda old school........ grew up on xp.

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Best solution

a b 4 Gaming
June 17, 2014 5:31:30 PM

This is what I would do with your budget:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: Intel Xeon E3-1230 V3 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor ($284.98 @ Newegg Canada)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H97-D3H ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($104.99 @ NCIX)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($89.98 @ Newegg Canada)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($64.99 @ NCIX)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 760 2GB ACX Video Card ($269.04 @ Amazon Canada)
Case: Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case ($64.98 @ Newegg Canada)
Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 750W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($104.99 @ NCIX)
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-224DB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer ($21.98 @ Newegg Canada)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($99.99 @ NCIX)
Monitor: BenQ GW2255 60Hz 21.5" Monitor ($119.99 @ NCIX)
Keyboard: Perixx PX-1000 Wired Gaming Keyboard ($29.90 @ Amazon Canada)
Total: $1255.81
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-06-17 20:28 EDT-0400

For the CPU I would go with this one: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
It is from the newer set of CPUs but isnt on pcpartpicker yet. The Xeon processors are quad cores like the i5s but are hyperthreaded like the i7 processors.

The build is for no overclocking, but honestly you do not need to overclock the intel cpus.

For the power supply, XFX uses Seasonic as its OEM and the 750w Pro version is on sale. Otherwise a 550w or 650w would be sufficient for this build. 650w gives more upgrade options, 750w is a bit overkill but you get a gold rated psu which will save you some money in the long run (on power bills).
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a b 4 Gaming
June 17, 2014 7:09:41 PM

MrCanEHdian said:
Traciatim said:
850 is way too much, 750 is overkill, 650 is going a little overboard. That machine would probably run on a 350... a 500 or 550 is more than reasonable for a single GPU machine, even if you are going to be throwing something like a 780 in there eventually.

Save the money on the PSU, get the K series of the 4690. Get a better video card. The rest seems pretty reasonable except for the monitor, you've obviously thought it over quite a bit. Why spend all that money on a machine obviously good enough for 1080p gaming and then display it on that piece of junk? Its' like having a twin turbo v6 in a yugo... it just doesn't make sense.




Ok, for the PSU I will look for 500-550w then. Still, high quality is key for me to "alleviate" my fears lmao. I don't know how to overclock or if I will, so that is why I'm not sure about K series CPUs or Z series motherboards. I know the monitor is crap, my main concerns are smooth gameplay and decent graphics. As long as the monitor works, I think I'll be ok. That being said, someday I'd upgrade it. The 750ti is still overkill for 720p?

I totally understand what you're saying about it being idiotic to go with the crappy monitor, but if I'm deadset on 720p, at least for now, what should I do?


You do know that for one that's not an actual 720 p monitor since it's not 1280x720, and also that you can run a game at 1280x720 on a 1920x1080 screen, but then you also have a nice desktop resolution so things can actually fit on it.

Numantor made a pretty nice machine, personally I would go for a Z97 and a 4670k/4690k though, you don't have to overclock it to be a great processor and it keeps the options open. Maybe you even want to repurpose the rig as a home theater box in a few years when you replace it... unlocked multipliers go both ways, so you can undervolt it and slow it down to save power and make it a movie watching rig plugged in to a TV.

Having the K series gives you options that you just don't have with other processors.

The monitor he selected is pretty nice too, not a fantastic gaming monitor, but I have one on my kids machine. It's got really great colours and a fantastic contrast for watching movies on. I haven't really noticed because I don't use it all that much and none of my family complain but some people complain of input lag on those panels... but if you aren't in to serious gaming I doubt you would notice.

I think you would be far happier with his build overall and it's only a smidgen more expensive.
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June 17, 2014 7:47:39 PM

Traciatim said:
850 is way too much, 750 is overkill, 650 is going a little overboard. That machine would probably run on a 350... a 500 or 550 is more than reasonable for a single GPU machine, even if you are going to be throwing something like a 780 in there eventually.

Save the money on the PSU, get the K series of the 4690. Get a better video card. The rest seems pretty reasonable except for the monitor, you've obviously thought it over quite a bit. Why spend all that money on a machine obviously good enough for 1080p gaming and then display it on that piece of junk? Its' like having a twin turbo v6 in a yugo... it just doesn't make sense.




swifty_morgan said:
no, overkill for 720p. that's okay though.

windows 8.1 is supposed to put out more frames in games than windows7. i still haven't purchased a copy of that. I like 7. it's kinda old school........ grew up on xp.



I guess overkill is fine, but saving money or getting something better is better lmao. I see, more frames are good, but I know what you mean, I grew up on xp too. So Windows 8.1 is basically an overhaul of the old ways so to speak.
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June 17, 2014 7:54:32 PM

numanator said:
This is what I would do with your budget:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: Intel Xeon E3-1230 V3 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor ($284.98 @ Newegg Canada)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H97-D3H ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($104.99 @ NCIX)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($89.98 @ Newegg Canada)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($64.99 @ NCIX)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 760 2GB ACX Video Card ($269.04 @ Amazon Canada)
Case: Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case ($64.98 @ Newegg Canada)
Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 750W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($104.99 @ NCIX)
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-224DB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer ($21.98 @ Newegg Canada)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($99.99 @ NCIX)
Monitor: BenQ GW2255 60Hz 21.5" Monitor ($119.99 @ NCIX)
Keyboard: Perixx PX-1000 Wired Gaming Keyboard ($29.90 @ Amazon Canada)
Total: $1255.81
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-06-17 20:28 EDT-0400

For the CPU I would go with this one: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
It is from the newer set of CPUs but isnt on pcpartpicker yet. The Xeon processors are quad cores like the i5s but are hyperthreaded like the i7 processors.

The build is for no overclocking, but honestly you do not need to overclock the intel cpus.

For the power supply, XFX uses Seasonic as its OEM and the 750w Pro version is on sale. Otherwise a 550w or 650w would be sufficient for this build. 650w gives more upgrade options, 750w is a bit overkill but you get a gold rated psu which will save you some money in the long run (on power bills).


The reason I didn't choose the Xeon in there is only because it's like $80 more than the i5 4590, but I'm definitely considering it. I did not, however, know about the newer version. Is it considerably better? So I should look for 650w or so, and gold rated? Also, XFX is basically the same as SeaSonic more or less then?
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June 17, 2014 8:12:22 PM

Traciatim said:
MrCanEHdian said:
Traciatim said:
850 is way too much, 750 is overkill, 650 is going a little overboard. That machine would probably run on a 350... a 500 or 550 is more than reasonable for a single GPU machine, even if you are going to be throwing something like a 780 in there eventually.

Save the money on the PSU, get the K series of the 4690. Get a better video card. The rest seems pretty reasonable except for the monitor, you've obviously thought it over quite a bit. Why spend all that money on a machine obviously good enough for 1080p gaming and then display it on that piece of junk? Its' like having a twin turbo v6 in a yugo... it just doesn't make sense.




Ok, for the PSU I will look for 500-550w then. Still, high quality is key for me to "alleviate" my fears lmao. I don't know how to overclock or if I will, so that is why I'm not sure about K series CPUs or Z series motherboards. I know the monitor is crap, my main concerns are smooth gameplay and decent graphics. As long as the monitor works, I think I'll be ok. That being said, someday I'd upgrade it. The 750ti is still overkill for 720p?

I totally understand what you're saying about it being idiotic to go with the crappy monitor, but if I'm deadset on 720p, at least for now, what should I do?


You do know that for one that's not an actual 720 p monitor since it's not 1280x720, and also that you can run a game at 1280x720 on a 1920x1080 screen, but then you also have a nice desktop resolution so things can actually fit on it.

Numantor made a pretty nice machine, personally I would go for a Z97 and a 4670k/4690k though, you don't have to overclock it to be a great processor and it keeps the options open. Maybe you even want to repurpose the rig as a home theater box in a few years when you replace it... unlocked multipliers go both ways, so you can undervolt it and slow it down to save power and make it a movie watching rig plugged in to a TV.

Having the K series gives you options that you just don't have with other processors.

The monitor he selected is pretty nice too, not a fantastic gaming monitor, but I have one on my kids machine. It's got really great colours and a fantastic contrast for watching movies on. I haven't really noticed because I don't use it all that much and none of my family complain but some people complain of input lag on those panels... but if you aren't in to serious gaming I doubt you would notice.

I think you would be far happier with his build overall and it's only a smidgen more expensive.


Too be honest, I didn't even look at the resolution xD. It was cheap so I chose it lmao. I did not know you could scale down from 1080p though.... In that case, there's no reason not to go 1080p.

But if I don't plan on overclocking, why go for a Z model?

I love gaming, gaming will be the main use for the PC. I will look at the components he suggested and read about them, a good screen would be nice. Good response time is nice, but for strategy games, I can live without it. It would matter more for Planetside 2 and what not.
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a b 4 Gaming
June 18, 2014 8:18:52 AM

I could have sworn I made the build $3 cheaper than his original :) 

The new Xeon processor is clocked the same as the one in the build for $20 less. If you were looking to save a bit more you could grab a i5 4690 which would be clocked higher but not have the hyper threading. The reason I put a gtx 760 into the build is that the performance difference between it and the gtx 750 ti is pretty big and it should last you a bit longer. I personally have a gtx 760 and highly recommend it.

For the power supplies, I always look at Antec, Seasonic, and XFX. 650w is a good spot for this build but having more does not hurt anything at all. The xfx 750w gold psu I posted in the build is a good deal (and cheaper than many 650w models) but I wouldn't go out of my way to get a gold rated psu since they tend to be quite a bit more expensive (unless they are on sale).

No point in getting a Z97 mobo if you don't plan to overclock and know you never will.
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June 18, 2014 1:22:59 PM

numanator said:
I could have sworn I made the build $3 cheaper than his original :) 

The new Xeon processor is clocked the same as the one in the build for $20 less. If you were looking to save a bit more you could grab a i5 4690 which would be clocked higher but not have the hyper threading. The reason I put a gtx 760 into the build is that the performance difference between it and the gtx 750 ti is pretty big and it should last you a bit longer. I personally have a gtx 760 and highly recommend it.

For the power supplies, I always look at Antec, Seasonic, and XFX. 650w is a good spot for this build but having more does not hurt anything at all. The xfx 750w gold psu I posted in the build is a good deal (and cheaper than many 650w models) but I wouldn't go out of my way to get a gold rated psu since they tend to be quite a bit more expensive (unless they are on sale).

No point in getting a Z97 mobo if you don't plan to overclock and know you never will.


I'm guessing 100-200 mhz has no real world increase in performance, or no visible increase in performance eh? The hyperthreading could prove to be very useful. The lack of an iGPU kinda sucks a bit, simply because if the dedicated GPU goes, the iGPU can be a sort of back up GPU.

I'm very financially sensitive and take all purchases into great consideration. That being said, I'm selling my 360 for $200 and finished my income taxes. As a student, I'm almost certainly going to get something back, so the 360 money and the tax money make me feel better about the Xeon and the GTX 760. The GTX 760 seems like the true sweet spot for mainstream gaming right now, very good price to performance, which is always good. Technically, my budget is $2,000, but I'm keeping my needs in mind, I don't need anything more than a 760 and i5 or Xeon, so I'd like to save money, as much as possible. I do want a high quality motherboard so I can upgrade down the road though, I'm down to pump big bucks into the motherboard and PSU (big bucks relative to the rest of the build) if it means improved quality, upgradeability, and longevity. I'm not big on the idea of spending big money on the best parts now, and would rather wait for the GTX 780 to come down in price in a few years. Therefore, the core components like the motherboard are a key priority. I need to know which is best, I doubt I'll overclock or SLI, but I know I want to upgrade in the future and I'd like the rig to last 5-7 years. I'm fine with playing on medium settings in 7 years though, and if I'm not fine with it at that time, I'll begin a new build.

I'll look at those companies for the PSU, a lot of people seem to love EVGA and Corsair as well. If 650w is enough for now and the nearish future, then that's good for me. If I can get gold rated for a good price, I will. Heat reduction would be nice, but bronze rated is probably fine too.

I almost certainly will not overclock, because I don't know how to, and if I understand correctly, it puts significant stress on the system as a whole and reduces its longevity. Furthermore, the CPU lottery for a good piece of the silicon wafer is discouraging. Honestly, I bet that vast majority of my gaming will be the Wargame series, Civ 5 and Civ Beyond Earth, Fallen Enchantress: Legendary Heroes, Sins of a Solar Empire: Rebellion, and future strategy games. To a lesser extent, games like Day Z and Planetside 2. The Xeon should be good for those CPU hungry games I would think.

So other than overclocking a CPU and RAM, the Z97 doesn't offer much more to really justify owning one? It's not more "upgradeable" than an H97 and an H97 can last just as long?

Thank you so much for the detailed help!
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a b 4 Gaming
June 18, 2014 1:42:29 PM

The hyperthreading of the xeon won't help much with the games you are playing but it COULD (and probably will) help with games that come out in the future (same thing with the i7s). Very few games are programmed to use more than 4 cores at this time so the hyperthreading would do very little until you have a program or game that can utilize the hyperthreading. That said, i think i read that BF4 and maybe civ 5 benefit from the HT and it is getting very likely to see games that use 4+ in the next few years (hopefully).

For the Mobos, the H97 and Z97 will both support the broadwell cpus that are supposed to come out (currently on haswell cpus), probably will only need a bios update.

For the GPU, I have a gtx 760 and it is great. A gtx 770 would be nice too but I am totally fine with the price/performance of the gtx 760.

FOr PSUs, I always trust XFX or Seasonic (XFX is basically a rebranded seasonic). If you are looking at a 700+w gold rated PSU, the EVGA G2 750w is a great PSU (the G1 had some problems that were fixed) that usually sells for around $130. Corsair is a mixed bag right now, some of their units are good some are mediocre with budget parts. I usually don't prefer the lower end EVGA units either.
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June 18, 2014 4:00:18 PM

numanator said:
The hyperthreading of the xeon won't help much with the games you are playing but it COULD (and probably will) help with games that come out in the future (same thing with the i7s). Very few games are programmed to use more than 4 cores at this time so the hyperthreading would do very little until you have a program or game that can utilize the hyperthreading. That said, i think i read that BF4 and maybe civ 5 benefit from the HT and it is getting very likely to see games that use 4+ in the next few years (hopefully).

For the Mobos, the H97 and Z97 will both support the broadwell cpus that are supposed to come out (currently on haswell cpus), probably will only need a bios update.

For the GPU, I have a gtx 760 and it is great. A gtx 770 would be nice too but I am totally fine with the price/performance of the gtx 760.

FOr PSUs, I always trust XFX or Seasonic (XFX is basically a rebranded seasonic). If you are looking at a 700+w gold rated PSU, the EVGA G2 750w is a great PSU (the G1 had some problems that were fixed) that usually sells for around $130. Corsair is a mixed bag right now, some of their units are good some are mediocre with budget parts. I usually don't prefer the lower end EVGA units either.


But don't the i7s have poorer single core processing capability when compared to the i5s? If that is the case, won't the Xeons suffer from the same poor single core capability? Ya, the future is pretty key lmao. The future is looking very bright, both for consoles and PCs. I know BF4 is supposed but I'm not sure about Civ 5, I hope so, but I know it's been poorly optimized.

No reason not to go with H97 then, I'm fine with cheaper 1600mhz RAM, probably won't overclock at all if I go with Z97, and likely won't SLI, although the options for those things are nice. Not nice enough to spend extra money though lmao.

The 760 really seems like the sweet spot, I was gung ho on the 770, but I'm beginning to see less and less value for the money at the moment. Ok, so XFX, SeaSonic, and maybe EVGA if I can find a good quality machine with a good price, I may go EVGA. Quality and reliability is the most important aspect other than the actual capability, but I also value good customer relations and support. Looks like you can't go wrong with XFX, SeaSonic, or Antec, everyone suggests them.
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a b 4 Gaming
June 18, 2014 5:03:58 PM

MrCanEHdian said:
But don't the i7s have poorer single core processing capability when compared to the i5s? If that is the case, won't the Xeons suffer from the same poor single core capability?


Numanator is correct, it essentially goes like this:

i5 = Quad Core with integrated video
i7 = Quad Core with integrated video and hyperthreading (which essentially shares the 4 cores between threads when they are waiting on data and things
Xeon = Quad Core with Hyperthreading, no integrated video

If they were all limited to the same clock speed and 1 core then they would perform essentially the same.


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June 19, 2014 1:47:10 PM

numanator said:
The i7s and Xeons have the same exact cores as the i5s just they are hyperthreaded and the Xeon doesn't have the integrated gpu. If you are interested in the EVGA G2, this is a reliable review for the power supply: http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=...

For the price the EVGA G2s are going for it is hard to find competition.
Power Supply: EVGA 750W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($94.99 @ NCIX US)


I'm pretty sure I'm going to go with your build, everything seems perfect. I was going to wait until the end of the summer to order and build, but this amazing price on Newegg.ca for the EVGA G2 you recommended is hard to turn down. It's normally selling for $129.99, down to $114 and has a $20 rebate, bringing it down into the $90s, I mean that's crazy good.

My one concern now is the motherboard, the low cost H97 Gigabyte mobo you recommended has no reviews, is it unwise to purchase a product with no reviews, good or bad?

The Xeon seems like an amazing deal, minus the iGPU which I'd only use in an emergency anyway. The GTX 760 seems like the true gaming sweet spot and that monitor is priced very nicely for 1080p.

The EVGA G2 review on that site was amazing, the reviewer seemed to be in love with it. An XFX alternative was mentioned, but the reviews on Newegg consistently bring up the god awful customer support, which is scary. I don't understand why the G2 is so cheap, even for full price at $129.99, that price is much lower than many alternatives. What sacrifices does it make to meet that price?
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June 19, 2014 1:59:29 PM

Traciatim said:
MrCanEHdian said:
But don't the i7s have poorer single core processing capability when compared to the i5s? If that is the case, won't the Xeons suffer from the same poor single core capability?


Numanator is correct, it essentially goes like this:

i5 = Quad Core with integrated video
i7 = Quad Core with integrated video and hyperthreading (which essentially shares the 4 cores between threads when they are waiting on data and things
Xeon = Quad Core with Hyperthreading, no integrated video

If they were all limited to the same clock speed and 1 core then they would perform essentially the same.




So the Xeon is an example of real value, something I imagine a lot of people pass up because it's labeled as a "server" CPU.
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a b 4 Gaming
June 19, 2014 2:10:04 PM

The H97 and Z97 motherboards are all very new so there are very few reliable reviews for any of them. Because of this I based the decision to go with Gigabyte H97 based on the company's reputation. Another option would be one of the Asus H97 motherboards but that one was about $10 more I believe, some people swear by the Asus mobos and only go Asus so that is another option.

I am not too sure why the EVGA G2 is so cheap. The previous model EVGA seemed to be aimed at a $120 price point but was disappointing in a few aspects which they changed in the G2 and probably did not want to increase to sale price too much. Between $100-140 I think you would be hard pressed to find a better power supply. You would need to start looking at the platinum Seasonic X series or similar to get a significantly better power supply. The EVGA G2 also has a 10 year warranty (have to register online for this).

Probably EVGA is trying to build up their reputation with a few years of good power supplies at low cost as a long term business strategy?
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a b 4 Gaming
June 19, 2014 2:18:39 PM

MrCanEHdian said:
Traciatim said:
MrCanEHdian said:
But don't the i7s have poorer single core processing capability when compared to the i5s? If that is the case, won't the Xeons suffer from the same poor single core capability?


Numanator is correct, it essentially goes like this:

i5 = Quad Core with integrated video
i7 = Quad Core with integrated video and hyperthreading (which essentially shares the 4 cores between threads when they are waiting on data and things
Xeon = Quad Core with Hyperthreading, no integrated video

If they were all limited to the same clock speed and 1 core then they would perform essentially the same.




So the Xeon is an example of real value, something I imagine a lot of people pass up because it's labeled as a "server" CPU.


This also has to do with Intel's marketing of the product, you won't see home prebuilt pcs with xeons and intel does not market it to home PCs. Many gamers skip over it as well since the xeon cannot be overclocked.
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June 19, 2014 2:43:08 PM

numanator said:
The H97 and Z97 motherboards are all very new so there are very few reliable reviews for any of them. Because of this I based the decision to go with Gigabyte H97 based on the company's reputation. Another option would be one of the Asus H97 motherboards but that one was about $10 more I believe, some people swear by the Asus mobos and only go Asus so that is another option.

I am not too sure why the EVGA G2 is so cheap. The previous model EVGA seemed to be aimed at a $120 price point but was disappointing in a few aspects which they changed in the G2 and probably did not want to increase to sale price too much. Between $100-140 I think you would be hard pressed to find a better power supply. You would need to start looking at the platinum Seasonic X series or similar to get a significantly better power supply. The EVGA G2 also has a 10 year warranty (have to register online for this).

Probably EVGA is trying to build up their reputation with a few years of good power supplies at low cost as a long term business strategy?


So Gigabyte is reliable and has good customer service? I mean, $10 more isn't much if Asus is a good, respectable company, but if Gigabyte is good and has good customer support, then no reason not to go with them.

A 10 year warranty is actually insanely good, they must have a lot of confidence in their product if they are willing to back it up for so long. Wow, it seems almost too good to be true. Yes, that makes sense. It makes a lot of sense actually, pick up a fan base who look for quality but low cost products, and show people what they are capable of. A sort of "undercut the competition" strategy.

I think I'm ready to build, Newegg ships their products pretty quickly right? No need to worry about waiting 1-2 months for a component?
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June 19, 2014 2:46:32 PM

numanator said:
MrCanEHdian said:
Traciatim said:
MrCanEHdian said:
But don't the i7s have poorer single core processing capability when compared to the i5s? If that is the case, won't the Xeons suffer from the same poor single core capability?


Numanator is correct, it essentially goes like this:

i5 = Quad Core with integrated video
i7 = Quad Core with integrated video and hyperthreading (which essentially shares the 4 cores between threads when they are waiting on data and things
Xeon = Quad Core with Hyperthreading, no integrated video

If they were all limited to the same clock speed and 1 core then they would perform essentially the same.




So the Xeon is an example of real value, something I imagine a lot of people pass up because it's labeled as a "server" CPU.


This also has to do with Intel's marketing of the product, you won't see home prebuilt pcs with xeons and intel does not market it to home PCs. Many gamers skip over it as well since the xeon cannot be overclocked.


Someone on Youtube was encouraging me to look at Digital Storm's Vanquish gaming PC. They want it badly, so I took a look, and it's nice except that you're stuck with an old, crappy H81 motherboard. It had something else that bugged me, I think it was the cooling that was very poor and unimpressive. All you get is the stock cooler I think was my other issue. Anyways, those two cons are significant to me and I'm pretty sure prebuilt is not for me. I bought an expensive "gaming" laptop from Dell when I was a kid, wow was that machine a joke or what.

People have it in their mind that overclocking is super important then, eh? I mean, most CPUs, if not all, have a non-k model. Do you overclock? Are you a gamer?
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a b 4 Gaming
June 19, 2014 2:48:33 PM

Yeah, Newegg and Amazon are my favorites for speed and customer service. I have heard good things about NCIX but have yet to use them personally. Microcenter is great for their in-store pickup deals if you have one nearby though.

For the mobos, I would probably rank Asus as #1 and Gigabyte as #2, MSI makes good high end mobos but I avoid their budget ones. Asrock has been putting out some good quality mobos the past few years also. Those are pretty much the only 4 brands I look at for mobos. Though all companies will have some bad customer support at times I would feel safe with either Gigabyte or Asus though I plan on putting an Asus board in a new build later this year.
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June 19, 2014 3:04:40 PM

numanator said:
Yeah, Newegg and Amazon are my favorites for speed and customer service. I have heard good things about NCIX but have yet to use them personally. Microcenter is great for their in-store pickup deals if you have one nearby though.

For the mobos, I would probably rank Asus as #1 and Gigabyte as #2, MSI makes good high end mobos but I avoid their budget ones. Asrock has been putting out some good quality mobos the past few years also. Those are pretty much the only 4 brands I look at for mobos. Though all companies will have some bad customer support at times I would feel safe with either Gigabyte or Asus though I plan on putting an Asus board in a new build later this year.


Good, I'll stick with them. I've been using Newegg for reviews and for price references, it would only make sense to go with them since my build price is based on their prices mostly. I don't have a Microcenter nearby, I think there are only two in Canada.

I'll look at both of their boards then, I'm glad they're both excellent with their customers though. Will your motherboard be an H97 series?
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a b 4 Gaming
June 19, 2014 3:10:13 PM

MrCanEHdian said:
Someone on Youtube was encouraging me to look at Digital Storm's Vanquish gaming PC. They want it badly, so I took a look, and it's nice except that you're stuck with an old, crappy H81 motherboard. It had something else that bugged me, I think it was the cooling that was very poor and unimpressive. All you get is the stock cooler I think was my other issue. Anyways, those two cons are significant to me and I'm pretty sure prebuilt is not for me. I bought an expensive "gaming" laptop from Dell when I was a kid, wow was that machine a joke or what.

People have it in their mind that overclocking is super important then, eh? I mean, most CPUs, if not all, have a non-k model. Do you overclock? Are you a gamer?


I checked out their website (Digital Storm) and one thing I will say is that they seem to balance their machines well and don't seem to cut corners on things like power supplies just to get cheap computers out. When you go to somewhere like Dell and you look at their gaming machines you end up with an i7 and a weak video card because Intel has told the masses that i7 = good computer but what you really end up with is a slow gaming rig that can encode video really fast. It seems like the DS guys do actually know how to build machines to play some games on in each price range.

Games generally perform well with single threaded performance. That's why for a general purpose gaming rig the go to processor of choice is the currently overclock-able i5 since it's usually not too crazy expensive and that lets you sink money in to as much video card as you can. That's really all there is to making a 'gaming' machine, most of the rest of the machine doesn't really matter all that much in the grand scheme and is a huge amount of personal preference.
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a b 4 Gaming
June 19, 2014 3:11:44 PM

I will be getting a Z97 with an i7 4790k. I do some CAD work that utilizes the i7 and want to overclock for the sake of tinkering more than performance boosting. The current intel cpus are powerful enough that the benefits of overclocking are pretty minor IMO but I just find it fun to pop the hood and tinker a bit every once and a while :) .
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a b 4 Gaming
June 19, 2014 3:12:51 PM

MrCanEHdian said:
Good, I'll stick with them. I've been using Newegg for reviews and for price references, it would only make sense to go with them since my build price is based on their prices mostly. I don't have a Microcenter nearby, I think there are only two in Canada.

I'll look at both of their boards then, I'm glad they're both excellent with their customers though. Will your motherboard be an H97 series?


Canada, then NCIX is probably the place to go. I've built many-a machine with them over the years and they've always been good when problems arise. They even have a thing for 50 bucks to pre-build your machine for you if you don't want to so you can buy a cutom box and it comes like a pre-build.

I've ordered things from Canada Computers, Tiger Direct, Direct Canada... all seem fine but I don't have too much experiencee with RMA's and things along that line since my go to shop for big purchases is usually NCIX.
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June 20, 2014 4:26:52 PM

Traciatim said:
MrCanEHdian said:
Someone on Youtube was encouraging me to look at Digital Storm's Vanquish gaming PC. They want it badly, so I took a look, and it's nice except that you're stuck with an old, crappy H81 motherboard. It had something else that bugged me, I think it was the cooling that was very poor and unimpressive. All you get is the stock cooler I think was my other issue. Anyways, those two cons are significant to me and I'm pretty sure prebuilt is not for me. I bought an expensive "gaming" laptop from Dell when I was a kid, wow was that machine a joke or what.

People have it in their mind that overclocking is super important then, eh? I mean, most CPUs, if not all, have a non-k model. Do you overclock? Are you a gamer?


I checked out their website (Digital Storm) and one thing I will say is that they seem to balance their machines well and don't seem to cut corners on things like power supplies just to get cheap computers out. When you go to somewhere like Dell and you look at their gaming machines you end up with an i7 and a weak video card because Intel has told the masses that i7 = good computer but what you really end up with is a slow gaming rig that can encode video really fast. It seems like the DS guys do actually know how to build machines to play some games on in each price range.

Games generally perform well with single threaded performance. That's why for a general purpose gaming rig the go to processor of choice is the currently overclock-able i5 since it's usually not too crazy expensive and that lets you sink money in to as much video card as you can. That's really all there is to making a 'gaming' machine, most of the rest of the machine doesn't really matter all that much in the grand scheme and is a huge amount of personal preference.


So the DS PC wouldn't be a bad call, even with the H81 motherboard? Also, the Xeon would not be something you'd recommend for gaming? I'm pretty set on it at the moment, but a locked i5 4690 is definitely in my zone of interest too.
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June 20, 2014 4:31:45 PM

numanator said:
I will be getting a Z97 with an i7 4790k. I do some CAD work that utilizes the i7 and want to overclock for the sake of tinkering more than performance boosting. The current intel cpus are powerful enough that the benefits of overclocking are pretty minor IMO but I just find it fun to pop the hood and tinker a bit every once and a while :) .


Dang, that's a pricey CPU, but you use your PC as a workstation and to play games I take it? Yes, tinkering and learning is fun, if this build goes well and I build again, I will likely try overclocking the next time. The build you provided me is superb, I'm on the brink of ordering it now, all from Newegg.ca. They have fantastic sales going on right now for basically everything. I will probably order it Sunday or so, I'm pretty excited, thank you so much for all the help! The only thing that is different is the RAM is black, not sure if it's different in any other way, and I went with that EVGA gold plus power supply you recommended.

Do you game? Or do anything that would benefit from your overclock tinkering?
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a b 4 Gaming
June 23, 2014 9:19:34 AM

The i7 I plan to get is for my home PC, will be mostly gaming and only using it for work when things get really busy. That said, I can't see my overclocking showing any substantial FSP difference in gaming for the next few years (until the stock cpu begins to bottleneck the GPU performance- when I upgrade the GPU)
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June 23, 2014 2:24:10 PM

numanator said:
The i7 I plan to get is for my home PC, will be mostly gaming and only using it for work when things get really busy. That said, I can't see my overclocking showing any substantial FSP difference in gaming for the next few years (until the stock cpu begins to bottleneck the GPU performance- when I upgrade the GPU)


So overclocking is more for fun and experimenting than for significant real world results? Some people have stated that to me before, but 4.4Ghz overclocked seems like a hell of a lot more than 3.4Ghz. Do you like demanding games?
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a c 252 4 Gaming
June 23, 2014 2:44:56 PM

MrCanEHdian said:
numanator said:
The i7 I plan to get is for my home PC, will be mostly gaming and only using it for work when things get really busy. That said, I can't see my overclocking showing any substantial FSP difference in gaming for the next few years (until the stock cpu begins to bottleneck the GPU performance- when I upgrade the GPU)


So overclocking is more for fun and experimenting than for significant real world results? Some people have stated that to me before, but 4.4Ghz overclocked seems like a hell of a lot more than 3.4Ghz. Do you like demanding games?


why dont you go for a better GPU like gtx 760 amp edition or r9 280x if you are spending so much money for other components and you are planning for a gaming pc its better to make your GPU stronger.... its my personal opinion though..
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a b 4 Gaming
June 23, 2014 2:55:38 PM

I play a lot of the new stuff but usually about 3-6 months after they come out (save some money) unless it is a game that I must have for playing with friends or something. I don't really play battlefield but played Bioshock Infinite, The witcher 1 &2, Borderlands 1&2, and tons of skyrim (with mods galore), Civ 5. I have quite a backlog of games to go through (I have 100+ steam games lol, damn you steam sales) so I am usually not in a rush to buy them new haha.

For overclocking benefits, it depends on how the games you are playing are programmed. Some will show the OC others won't. Personally I feel you will notice the hyperthreading benefits more than the overclocking benefits in the near future but it really all comes down to what you want. I have a locked i5 from 3 years ago right now and have not noticed my CPU holding me back on any of the games I have played (with my gtx 760).
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