$1500 Software Dev Sandbox and Gaming PC

Request for feedback:


BUDGET RANGE: $1000-$1500 including shipping and applicable taxes.

1. Software development: Visual Studio, SQL Server
2. Web server: SVN and Trac on Apache, IIS, SQL Server Reporting
3. 3D gaming
4. Blu-ray DVD watching - I don't own a television, this is my entertainment center.

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Monitor (I have a nice 24" LCD), speakers (I have a nice Logitech 5.1 set)

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA, shipping zip 98102




ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: No cases with a window, no avoidable external lights (blue fans, blinking ***, etc). I require quiet, but it doesn't need to be totally silent. I can't use wireless mice or keyboards. No media keys should be present on my keyboard.

Here's what I had in mind (all parts from newegg):
CPU: Intel Core i7-860 Lynnfield $280
Motherboard: ASRock P55 Extreme $140
Heatsink: Scythe MUGEN-2 Rev. B $36
RAM: CORSAIR XMS3 3x2GB DDR3 1600 $170
Video Card: XFX HD-577X-ZNFC Radeon HD 5770 1GB $165x2=$330
Hard Drive: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F1 HD103UJ 1TB $85
Power Supply: Antec EarthWatts EA750 750W $115 (includes shipping)
Case: GIGABYTE Triton 180 $81 (includes shipping)
Optical Drive: LITE-ON 4X Blu-ray iHOS104-08 $70
Mouse: Logitech G500 $57
Keyboard: KeyTronic E03600U2 $32 (includes shipping)
total: $1396

Basically I'm looking for any obvious bottlenecks and suggestions on component quality, brand, quantity (RAM) and overall impressions.

This is not my first PC build, but I'm not current on PC hardware anymore.

Some starter questions:
1. Is 6gb enough to run modern games without having to shut down my web server/SQL server?
2. Do I need a 750W power supply or can I get away with less? Should I buy a cheaper brand PSU?
3. Is it worth buying a core i7 over an i5 when I'll just be OCing it anyway?

9 answers Last reply
More about 1500 software sandbox gaming
  1. I would probably stick with 750w since you are xfiring right off, although personally I'd go with a Corsair or Seasonic. I don't know how threaded all your apps are, but really hyperthreading is about all you'll gain.[Edit]*with an i5 vs i7


    Also, don't get the Spinpoint F1-get the Spinpoint F3. Its $5 or so more and has two much-denser platters.

    SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5"

    I have the Scythe Mugen and its a good cooler, but I have seen the hyper 212 recommended a lot lately, its a little cheaper for around the same temps.

    COOLER MASTER Hyper 212
  2. I read that crossfire on LGA1156 is a performance loss. Should I go with an i7 920 and a LGA1366 mobo?
  3. It's a very slight, if at all, performance loss in todays GPU's.

    Have a gander at this:
    PCI Express And CrossFire Scaling: Is P55 Good Enough?
  4. Thanks Zach. What do you know about higher RAM clock speeds? Should I even consider going higher than 1600 or would I be better off investing in lower CAS latency?
  5. Its a give and take. If you plan on a monumental overclock, looser timings, higher clocks. If you are going with a mild(3.2-3.6ish) overclock 1600 with tighter timings is better. As you can see in my sig, I have OCZ gold ram rated for 1600, I had to loosen the timings a lot to get to 4.2.
  6. Just wanted to post a link for another case for you to consider at around the same price point.

  7. you dont want trichannel memory on a p55 board it only support dual channel memory you lose efficiency with that ram i believe
  8. +1 cfan, good catch
  9. Thanks for the feedback. I've updated this build to use an X58 LG1366 motherboard, Core i7 920 CPU, and the Corsair PSU and Spinpoint F3 HD that Zach recommended.

    I'm going to stick with the Gigabyte case and Scythe MUGEN-2 Rev. B HSF.

    I have made a public wishlist on Newegg, take a look @ http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx?WishListNumber=13714546
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