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Project Dark Knight - DONE! PICTURES UPLOADED!

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July 26, 2009 9:46:09 PM

Hello all,
It is time for a project build that I have been wanting to do. The theme is to try and make a sophisticated, stealthy build that is all blacked out. My budget is around $1750 for everything. That includes the monitor, keyboard, and mouse. I already have speakers. I will be using Windows 7 RC for a while until I decide to splurge on a new OS. (Windows 7). Remember I am trying to make this build look stealthy and sophisticated.

Parts:

CPU: i7 920
$200 at local microcenter

MOBO: EVGA $328 COMBO w/ RAM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM: OCZ Platinum CAS 7 - COMBO
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU: EVGA GTX 275 - $240
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: Corsair 750hx - $165
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CASE: Silverstone FT-01 BW - $230
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD: WD Caviar Black 640GB - $75
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

DVD: Samsung 22x SATA Burner - $27
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HSF: Xigmatek Dark Knight - $45
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Monitor: Samsung T240HD 24" monitor - $298
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I already have some thermal compound. The monitor is perfect because I would like to use it as a TV as well. It will not be for twitch gaming, but will still be used for gaming. The PSU is one of the best so I would like to stick with it. Remember this is an all blacked out theme. I will be putting some cold cathodes in the case to make it look even better. The total comes to about $1600 so it is under budget. I would like to keep it this way because I still need to get a keyboard, which is going to be the apple keyboard. I like the feel of the keys.
July 27, 2009 12:40:09 AM

just a quick bump
July 27, 2009 3:27:58 AM

Okay... Only thing I could truly see is switch the monitor to this... Hanns-G 27.5" Monitor for a dollar more.

The Silverstone case is nice but is it worth the price? I would think going with either the Antec 902 or Antec 1200 would give similar looks and performance... IMO :D 
Related resources
July 27, 2009 5:46:58 AM

Okay guys, I have decided on a few things. The main thing is that I am in no rush to get all of the parts at once. I will start getting the parts slowly until around my birthday October 15th.

So what I am thinking of doing is getting the $200 i7 920 from microcenter first. The next thing will be the case, psu, dvd drive, and hdd. The next purchase will be the heatsink, mobo and ram. The final purchase prolly around my bday will be a 5870 when they are released.

Again I am in no hurry to build this. I am thinking 2 months is a great time frame for when I start the build and when it is finished. How does that sound to you guys?
July 27, 2009 6:01:52 AM

Till October - I would give a second thought about the CPU...But who knows how would they match up against the 920...
http://www.slashgear.com/intel-core-i5-750-i7-860-and-i...

Looking at the numbering scheme, 8XX vs the 9XX(920) series, am not sure what to expect...Maybe if anyone has more info, they could shed some light on this...

But the case, PSU are standard components that wont change much at all over that time duration...
July 27, 2009 6:02:11 AM

thanks gkay09...i am in love with that case it is simply the one that i have been looking for all this time! Haha.

edit: Thanks for the advice. Considering the link you posted I will hold off on the cpu, mobo, ram, and gpu as long as possible and see what unfolds. But as you said the case, psu, hdd, and dvd drive should be fine to get now! As well as the keyboard and mouse. The monitor will prolly be purchased towards the end too.
July 27, 2009 6:24:29 AM

^ True that case really looks very good and stealthy as you wanted...And has some very good features too...

It is good that you have put on hold even the mobo (Obviously you wouldnt have bought it without buying the CPU), because I had seen on the net about newer better revisions of the X58 mobos are set to launch anytime soon from both Gigabyte and ASUS...So you can expect very good, stable and better optimized mobos too...
July 27, 2009 6:33:11 AM

Awesome thats good to hear. Thanks. I will keep this thread up to date on the progress and post pics of course. Should be a fun late summer- early fall build!

Oh and I forgot to mention that I sold my other rig for $1200 thats in my sig. I need to erase those specs when I get a chance.
July 27, 2009 6:41:16 AM

update: That case is in very limited production and costs around $300 on coolermasters site. I was looking a little further into cases and I found the ATCS 840. Kinda similar and I think it is a very sweet case.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
And to make it an even deeper project I could add a side window and paint the interior of the 840 all flat black.

edit: So these will be my first purchases:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
July 27, 2009 1:31:49 PM

i am also building a system on a coolermaster 840, and i agree, its an awesome case. check out the 3Dgamermans review of it on youtube for some good insight to the features of the case. it is HUGE, but too good to pass up! and classy looking to-boot
July 29, 2009 6:39:14 AM

hey guys sorry for the late response and thanks for the replies!
the case is not too much of a problem for me, all the cases you guys posted are pretty sweet but that ft-01 is one of my favs.

I have decided to go the i7 route but will wait and buy those component last. I have a new requirement though that I would like to get some advice on. I am going to be getting a ibanez electric guitar for my bday in october and I would like to do some recording and editing on the computer. What would I need to do this though, if anyone knows? I am thinking just a nice soundcard would most likely allow me to do this, but I could be wrong!

Thanks again guys
August 23, 2009 8:34:26 AM

Update! I have ordered a few parts!

I have the i7 920 D0 stepping. I got it for $200 at microcenter.
I have the corsair 750hx modular psu.
I have a Samsung 22x sata dvd burner.
I have the Dark Knight cpu cooler.

Parts I still need: MOBO, RAM, HDD, GPU, CASE
I should be getting those by the end of the week.

Here is what I was thinking for those. I have built 2 i7 builds for clients and have used the Gigabyte UD4P for both. They both were also from microcenter. They had no problems whatsoever and they were also only $230 in store both times vs. $270 on newegg. So I am going to go with that board.

I am going to be getting a black magic intensity pro hd capture card for my bday. Should I go with a raid setup of WD Caviar Black 640GB's?

As for actual gaming I can hold off until the 5870's and dx11 cards come out. So for now I am just going to go with a 4850 since they are such a great price.

RAM will be the OCZ Platinum but I am waiting for the price to go back down and I will get them in a combo with a Caviar Black 640gb.

Case is still the FT-01. As well as the Vista 64-bit with an upgrade to 7.

So basically heres what I still need:
Silverstone FT01-BW
Gigabyte UD4P
OCZ Platinum 1600 6GB
HD4850 1GB
2x WD Caviar Black 640GB
Black Magic Intensity Pro
OS

Oh and wow I completely forgot about the monitor!
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
A very sweet monitor that will compliment my case extremely well. Not to mention it is 1080p 16x9 which is also perfect to hook my xbox 360 up to!!

As well as z5500's but at this rate that is sounding much better as an xmas present.
August 24, 2009 12:41:18 AM

hey guys I have two quick questions now:
Since the OCZ Platinum has gone up in price to around $145 I was looking at other sets of ram. I came across these mushkin with the 7 cas and timings of 7-8-7-20. Is this a good choice since they are the same price as the platinums would be?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Also I have changed my mind on the case and was actually leaning towards the SilverStone TJ09-SW now. Any thoughts or input on this? The cheapest I can find it is $279.99
August 24, 2009 3:37:27 AM

bump...



This is definitely the case I am getting 100%.
August 24, 2009 4:38:01 AM

Okay well since I can't really seem to get a response from anyone here is the final list:

CPU: i7 920 - microcenter $200 Bought!
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

MOBO: Gigabyte UD4P - microcenter $230
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

RAM: Mushkin 1600 6GB DDR3 - $150
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD1: Samsung Spinpoint F3 500GB - $55
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: Corsair 750hx - $165 Bought!
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HSF: Xigmatek Dark Knight - $45 Bought!
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

DVD: Samsung SATA 22x DVD - $27 Bought!
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OS: Windows Vista 64-bit w/ free upgrade to 7
HDD2: Samsung Spinpoint F3 500GB combo
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

CASE: Silverstone TJ09-BW - $270 newegg or microcenter
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CAP CARD: Black Magic Intensity Pro - $190
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001CN9GEA/ref=s9_simz...

GPU: HD4850 512MB - $110
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MONITOR: Samsung 24.6" 2MS 1080P - $330
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MOUSE/KB: Logitech G5 and Mac keyboard - $100 Bought!
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://store.apple.com/us/product/MB869LL/A

SPEAKERS: Logitech z5500 - $350
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

It is just about $1600 total for the computer without the Monitor and z5500. They will be bday and xmas presents when the time comes.
Let me know what you guys think!
August 24, 2009 5:58:47 AM

last bump i swear!
August 24, 2009 6:24:28 AM

Dude, you're wasting a whole lot of money on a case that performs worst than an antec 900. Are you just going for the stealthy look and don't care about price? If you are rich then go get some Lian li. Also there's no point getting the parts now, when the i5 is about come to out, and prices will drop. Unless you don't care about money.
August 24, 2009 6:25:56 AM

@overshocks I dont think the release of the i5 is going to lower the i7 prices...Actually it might be the other way around as we can see from the price of 6GB kits that are moving north...

And as for the CASE, does it really perform that bad?? Could you justify your claims ???

@waynec Hmm cool ...your project is taking its shape ;) 

Did you check Amazon for the memory ???

http://www.amazon.com/OCZ-OCZ3P1600LV6GK-PC3-12800-1600...
http://www.amazon.com/Corsair-TR3X6G1600C7-PC3-12800-16...
This would be my favourite - Black heat spreader with fancy lighting :p  But is currently out of stock though...
http://www.amazon.com/Technology-BL3CP25664BN1608-Balli...

And that Samsung monitor does look really good...
You can check out these too...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Productcompare.aspx?Submi...

Rest looks good...
August 24, 2009 7:10:37 AM

@Overshocks
I realize this but this is a project build and I am willing to spend the extra cash to make my dream pc. It also just isn't a case it is a centerpiece in my room pretty much.

@gkay09
Thanks for the recommendations on the ram. I may stick with that mushkin ram or go with one of your links. That last ram you linked is pretty awesome though!
I also may wait for this ram to come back in stock:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
For $130, 7-7-7-20 timings, 1333, and it being mushkin is great IMO.
I don't really need 1600mhz ram, do I? 1333 vs. 1600?
August 24, 2009 7:33:54 AM

^ Well apart from the bechmarks, the RAM speeds over DDR3 1333MHz doesnt really affect real world performance much...
Always go for lower CAS than speed...
And that Mushkin just fits the bill...

Do keep an eye on this RAM too...Cost about $154 but sure is worth it...
mushkin 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 CAS 6
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
August 24, 2009 7:49:04 AM

I will keep an eye on both of them, thanks gkay09.

I am so excited to build this computer! haha
August 24, 2009 6:43:11 PM

Wow, I've lived between Rockville and Gaithersburg for over a year now and didn't realize there was a microcenter so close. I fail.


Good looking build man!
August 24, 2009 7:13:20 PM

I wonder how many threads get ignored because flags disappear?
I clicked on this thread randomly and discovered I had already posted on it.
August 24, 2009 7:20:23 PM

Wayne, I own that case and I encourage you to consider that decision carefully. It's a good water cooling case but a mediocre air cooled case.

Three of the fans are grouped tightly together on the top and rear. You pretty much have to run those all in the same direction... as exhaust fans.

That leaves ONE fan as an intake. That one intake fan is HELL to replace and the housing will only fit standard sized fans. I tried to put a Scythe Ultra Kaze in there to improve air flow and it did not work out.

If you still get that case, be sure to add the HD fan.


.... but yeah, it's a beautiful, classy looking case. Just not the best design for air.
August 24, 2009 10:05:05 PM

Proximon said:
Wayne, I own that case and I encourage you to consider that decision carefully. It's a good water cooling case but a mediocre air cooled case.

Three of the fans are grouped tightly together on the top and rear. You pretty much have to run those all in the same direction... as exhaust fans.

That leaves ONE fan as an intake. That one intake fan is HELL to replace and the housing will only fit standard sized fans. I tried to put a Scythe Ultra Kaze in there to improve air flow and it did not work out.

If you still get that case, be sure to add the HD fan.


.... but yeah, it's a beautiful, classy looking case. Just not the best design for air.


Thanks for the advice. I might just go for the Antec 1200 because of that. The antec 1200 is a safe bet or I may go with a solid Coolermaster case. I have a few days to decide before I get my next paycheck, so I will update once I decide. It is seriously always the case that gives me a problem since I already know what components make a solid i7 build. Hmmm...haha

Thanks guys
August 25, 2009 12:29:22 AM

astrodudepsu said:
Wow, I've lived between Rockville and Gaithersburg for over a year now and didn't realize there was a microcenter so close. I fail.


Good looking build man!


Nice dude! I live real close to you then, probably like 5 or 10 minutes away at most.

@ niklas_13
Yea I was sticking with a cheap card because I am getting a 5870 or the GTX300 when they go on the market and I am going to sell the other card. Gaming is not really a top priority at the moment, it is more for video editing and capturing gameplay from my 360.
August 25, 2009 1:35:32 AM

Proximon said:
Wayne, I own that case and I encourage you to consider that decision carefully. It's a good water cooling case but a mediocre air cooled case.

Three of the fans are grouped tightly together on the top and rear. You pretty much have to run those all in the same direction... as exhaust fans.

That leaves ONE fan as an intake. That one intake fan is HELL to replace and the housing will only fit standard sized fans. I tried to put a Scythe Ultra Kaze in there to improve air flow and it did not work out.

If you still get that case, be sure to add the HD fan.


.... but yeah, it's a beautiful, classy looking case. Just not the best design for air.


This is out of pure curiosity but how much would a nice watercooling setup cost me? And also is it even worth doing?
August 25, 2009 2:57:26 AM

I see :)  thanks. I like the look of it so far very nice!!!
August 25, 2009 7:32:01 AM

Thanks Proximon. That is sounding like a great xmas project possibly. We will have to see though. I have also changed my mind am going with the FT01-BW again. Air cooling should serve my needs fine for now.

CPU: i7 920 - microcenter $200 Bought!
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

MOBO: Gigabyte UD4P - microcenter $230
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

RAM: Mushkin 1333 6GB DDR3 CAS 6-6-6-18 - $155
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD1: Samsung Spinpoint F3 500GB - $55
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: Corsair 750hx - $165 Bought!
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HSF: Xigmatek Dark Knight - $45 Bought!
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

DVD: Samsung SATA 22x DVD - $27 Bought!
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OS: Windows Vista 64-bit w/ free upgrade to 7
HDD2: Samsung Spinpoint F3 500GB combo - $150
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

CASE: Silverstone FT01-BW - $215
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CAP CARD: Black Magic Intensity Pro - $190
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001CN9GEA/ref=s9_simz...

GPU: HD4850 512MB - $110
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

So again that is about $1550 for everything, and I still need to spend around $1100 to get the rest of the components. That purchase will be made in the next few days!

Also for later on projects:

BDAY OCT. 15 Present: Samsung 24.6"
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

XMAS: z5500, Swiftech water kit???, DX11 GPU

Thanks guys!
August 25, 2009 6:54:56 PM

Seems good.
August 25, 2009 7:42:48 PM

I could be too late to add my 2 cents, but here goes:

As I was reading through this thread, one thing seemed to stick out like a sore thumb... your motherboard choice. Not that the UD4P is a bad choice by any means, but it seems like it would be really out-of-place in this really black and dark build with it's light blues and "happy" colors.

I would suggest getting something darker to fit your theme like this board:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813188049

I'm not going to lie, I don't know much about that board other than that it fits your theme.

You also seem to have changed your HDD choice at some point. The WD Caviar Black is one of the best performing HDD's available, and that Samsung you are going with will probably be noticably slower. I'd switch back to the WD 640.

EDIT: I just realized that you changed your mobo choice at some point too. I didn't know that was the one you originally had in mind. lol.
August 25, 2009 9:12:02 PM

Thanks for the response kufan64. My room is going to be blue, since I am moving into my sisters old room. We are redoing it right now, so I am actually trying to match my room a little bit now. That might sound pretty sad haha but it is true and the UD4P is a great motherboard that fits my needs.

Thanks for the advice on the WD Caviar Black. I will switch back to getting 2x 640GBs in RAID 0. That should be a nice setup.

A little update about the case as well. I have been killing myself with deciding on the case. I will definitely go with a TJ09-BW or FT01-BW.

Could someone give me some more info on watercooling? Will my 750w PSU be good enough because if it isn't I will definitely have to skip water. If I do not do water I will be going with the FT01-BW.
September 5, 2009 8:12:27 PM

Update: Just ordered the Silverstone FT01-BW, Black Magic Intensity Pro capture card. The list is getting smaller and smaller! All I need now is the MOBO, RAM, GPU, and HDDs. Will update once they are ordered.
September 10, 2009 6:16:29 AM

Update: I am thinking of selling the i7 on ebay and getting a little extra cash for it. ($250) Then I am thinking of saving some cash and going for the i5 750 route. I am going to get a 5870 when they come out so I doubt I even need to go CF anytime soon. Anyways here is what I was thinking of getting/are the last items I need:

This mobo w/ a i5 750 combo/coupon for $360: http://www.ewiz.com/detail.php?name=MB-P7P55-E

Mushkin 7-7-7-20 1600 for $97 : http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Samsung Spinpoint F3 500GB for $50 newegg

Vista w. free upgrade to 7 for $109

DX11 5870 ~ $250 hopefully
September 10, 2009 2:15:55 PM

Since you already have the i7, I probably wouldn't try to eBay it. The chances are good that you won't get any more than you payed for it, and probably less. You'll turn around and spend $200 on the 750 anyway. You could save money on a cheaper motherboard for the i5, but your CPU cooler will also probably need to be replaced. (can anyone confirm?)
September 10, 2009 5:47:20 PM

Yea I was thinking about that after I posted. Sounds kind of like I should still stick with the i7 route!
September 24, 2009 6:25:55 AM

Hey guys, well I waited it out for the DX11 cards. I am thinking of going with a 5850 since they are not too terribly expensive. I am going to wait until Sapphire releases a TOXIC edition of it. Does anybody know when the DX11 5850's come out for sale because alls I see are 5870s?
October 26, 2009 6:25:03 AM

Long time no update guys:
Well its the end of october and this is when the build was scheduled to finish for me pretty much with the release of windows 7 and dx11. I have about $800 to spend on a mobo, cpu, ram, hdd, and gpu. I sold the i7 920 for $250 about 2 weeks ago because I thought I'd just buy another for $200, or the i5.

So two givens in the budget:
Samsung Spinpoint F3 - $54.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Windows 7 OEM - $109.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

So thats $160 of the budget. Leaves $640 for the cpu/mobo/ram/gpu
I definitely want to get a 5850 1gb - So thats about $260-70

Now thats around $380 for cpu/mobo/ram
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
The EVGA mobo for $140 and the i5 750 from microcenter for $150. That leaves just the ram. I was thinking of getting this:
Patriot Sector 5 - $90
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This will make this a complete rig. Plan to purchase these on Tuesday!
October 29, 2009 3:46:23 AM

@awesome_name That is a solid build but not so solid PSU...
Rosewill for such a build is a bad option...
Even the Corsair 750TX would have been such a good option...
!