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New gaming build - ~$1000-$1200 (CAN)

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November 21, 2009 5:18:29 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Sometime in the next 2 weeks
BUDGET RANGE: $1000-$1200(CAN) after rebates
SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: gaming (StarCraft II, CoD:MW2, Dragon's Age Origins, Crysis), number crunching (machine learning algorithms)
PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Monitor, mouse, keyboard
PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: ncix.com and/or directcanada.com
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: Canada
PARTS PREFERENCES: none really. Thinking Intel but I could be swayed to AMD
OVERCLOCKING: Maybe eventually
SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Probably unless someone suggests something better than 2 x 4850s
MONITOR RESOLUTION: 23’’ 1920x1080
ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Case can’t be higher than 19” (will be in a cabinet). I’d like to have a quiet PC but I don’t want to get into water cooling at this time.
I’ve been away from building for a long time (i.e. my last build was a Athlon 900MHz ). I’ve been reading these forums for the last month or so to try to get up to speed. Thanks a bunch to everyone... you have no idea how much you help those that have been away from this for a while! I was planning on getting a Dell until I started reading this site :whistle: . In the end I’ve decided to try my luck at building my own.

I’ve been struggling the most on whether or not to go with the i5.
  • Pros: Not too expensive with good speed
  • Cons: No upgrade path and the flaw identified with P55 boards (not sure if I have to worry about this if I’m not planning on overclocking)
    I’d like to go with an x58 but I'm afraid it would blow my budget and based on comments on this forum, I think it may be overkill for my needs.

    Here’s what I have so far. Be gentle :) 

    Priced on NCIX.COM
    Processor and MB - NCIX P55 Bundle Deal Core I5 750 2.66GHZ Quad Core CPU & ASUS P7P55D P55 DDR3 Motherboard – $386.86 Is this MB overkill?
    http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=43245&vpn=750-P7P55D&...
    RAM - Corsair XMS3 CMX4GX3M2A1600C8 4GB DDR3 2X2GB DDR3-1600 CL 8-8-8-24 Core I5 Dual Channel Memory Kit - $128.78 (deal when ordering i5)
    http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=42529
    GPU – 2 x XFX Radeon HD 4850 625MHZ 512MB 1.99GHZ DDR3 PCI-E Dual DVI-I HDCP HDTV Out Video Card - $249.98 Chose this based on the Nov '09 GPU guide.
    http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=35758&vpn=HD485XYDFC&...
    HD - Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 500GB SATA2 3.5IN 8.5MS 7200RPM 16MB Hard Drive OEM *3YR MFR Warranty* - $53.99
    http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=36050&vpn=ST...
    Case - Antec Three Hundred Mini Tower Gaming Case 300 ATX 3X5.25 6X3.5INT No PS Front USB & Audio - $53.99 Is this case big enough to handle 2 GPUs?
    http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=29812
    NOTE: case can’t be more than 19’’ tall (and preferably not more than 18 ‘’ or so deep)
    PSU - Corsair TX750W 750W ATX 12V 60A 24PIN ATX Power Supply Active PFC 140MM Fan - : $116.99 Not sure if this is too much power for this build, it was on sale and is a good brand from what I've read.
    http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=26415&vpn=CM...
    OS - Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium Edition 64BIT DVD OEM - $128.93
    http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=45271&vpn=GF...

    Should I buy aftermarket thermal paste and/or fans? I’m willing to replace stock fans on either the case or CPU for a more quiet PC.

    The computer will be in a cabinet with a back on it. It’s one of those cabinets with two large doors on the front. There is already a hole cut into the back and I don’t think that my wife would take too kindly to me cutting it open further (I’m having a hard time just getting the computer). Another consideration is that there is a baseboard heater just behind the cabinet.

    Check Out Summary from NCIX
    Shipping & Handling: $23.00 Shipping Insurance: $33.62 Subtotal: $1,177.25 No PST - Outside BC residents: $0.00 HST(13%): $153.04 YOUR TOTAL: $1,330.29 CAD

    The build below comes in just over budget which I can probably manage.

    Have I made any obvious mistakes? I'm open to any feedback. Thanks!!!
  • More about : gaming build 1000 1200

    Best solution

    November 21, 2009 10:05:12 PM

    Don't worry abot the 1156 socket problems if you aren't going to overclock. Drop down to a 650w Corsair unless the 750 is on sale enough. Get Spinpoint f3 HDD, that barracuda has firmware problems and the Spinpoint is faster. For a quieter PC a stock cooler wouldn't be a bad idea.
    The case should be fine, it is a Mid tower.
    You might want to look at the 5770 instead of 2 4850s.
    Share
    November 21, 2009 11:05:04 PM

    MoreCowbell said:

    I’ve been struggling the most on whether or not to go with the i5.
  • Pros: Not too expensive with good speed
  • Cons: No upgrade path and the flaw identified with P55 boards (not sure if I have to worry about this if I’m not planning on overclocking)
    I’d like to go with an x58 but I'm afraid it would blow my budget and based on comments on this forum, I think it may be overkill for my needs.


  • This review may help alleviate some of your concerns about the performance of the i5-750 as compared against the i7-920.

    http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/showdoc.aspx?i=364...

    The i5 is a great performer for the price.
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    November 21, 2009 11:41:42 PM

    I think you build is excellent. I agree with Sonic about going for one faster card now - it will leave you the option to increase video processing power by simply adding a faster card later.

    Relative to whether you go with an AMD or nVidia card, is any the the number crunching you are doing performed by applications that can take advantage of the nVidia CUDA process to offload some some parallel processing to the graphics card? I currently favor nVidia cards because of this function - not a lot of applications use it today but more are starting to take advantage of it.

    However, I disagree with him about hard drives and would keep the Seagate. A similar comment by him and response by me started a mini-discussion about Seagate issues or non-issues in another thread to which I will refer you:

    http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/275051-31-looking-adv...
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    November 22, 2009 12:27:15 AM

    Sonic-Boom:
    HD - I haven't been able to find any Spinpoints consistently in stock at a Canadian vendor. I will shop around at local shops this week to see if I can get one.
    GPU - According to the benchmarks, the 4870 is faster than the 5770 and cheaper. Any reason why I should choose the 5770? Is it because it has directX 11?

    rockyjohn:
    GPU - I don't use any applications to run the simulations for machine learning as of yet. I've been mostly coding the algorithms in Perl and/or C++ and I haven't gotten into any forking or anything like that. I doubt that I would have the willpower or the know-how to take advantage of CUDA :) .


    Regarding an aftermarket fan (more to reduce noise than because of OC'ing) - do you have any suggestions that would:
  • Fit in my case and is compatible with the 1156
  • Be reasonably priced
  • Be as quiet as possible


    Thanks!!
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    November 22, 2009 12:46:50 AM

    The 5770 because Dx11, less power, cooler and quieter.
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