Need advice! budget 2000-2500, gaming rig

Hey everyone! I am looking into building a new rig and need any advice I can get. This will be my first custom built computer and kind of getting cold feet. I guess what I'm asking for is anything you might see in my list that is a big "NONO" or if there are better alternatives I can choose from. This list is similar to what's on tecmos extreme enthusiast build with few parts changed here and there. I chose this build because I want something that will last me for a while and where I can upgrade pieces here and there down the road instead of starting over again and spending more $$$ on a new rig.

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: within the next 2 weeks

BUDGET RANGE: 2000-2500

Gaming/ designing/ some video editing/streaming video/websurfing etc.

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: : keyboard, mouse, speakers

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: newegg and amazon but open to anywhere with good deals and trusted sites

PARTS PREFERENCES: Open to anything



here is my current new egg wishlist

ASUS VW246H Glossy Black 24" 2ms(GTG) HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor - Retail

Antec Twelve Hundred Black Steel ATX Full Tower Computer Case - Retail

ASUS P6X58D Premium LGA 1366 Intel X58 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail

XFX HD-587A-ZNF9 Radeon HD 5870 (Cypress XT) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready

Antec CP-1000 1000W Continuous ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V v2.91 SLI Ready 80 PLUS Certified Modular

Intel Core i7-920 Bloomfield 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80601920 - Retail

OCZ Gold 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Voltage Desktop Memory

Corsair P128 CMFSSD-128GBG2D 2.5" 128GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) - Retail

SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

XIGMATEK Intel Core i7 compatible Dark Knight-S1283V 120mm Long Life Bearing CPU Cooler

Sony Optiarc 24X DVD/CD Rewritable Drive Black SATA Model AD-7240S-0B - OEM

Noob Questions:
1)The psu listed doesnt say its crossfire ready but is sli ready, does that mean i can't run crossfire? I chose the 1000 watt cause im guessing that i will need it if decide to add another graphics card later on or is 850 wat sufficent? Here is the one that tecmo posted for the 850 watt psu.

2) for the SSD card i chose the corsaid 128 gigs and just want to know if anyone has had any experience or opinion about those opposed to the Intel X25-M Mainstream SSDSA2M080G2XXX 2.5" 80GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive.

Sorry again if my questions are really dumb. im not really tech saavy but trying to be one day (crosses fingers) :D
31 answers Last reply Best Answer
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  1. Best answer
    ^ You have come up with a good build...And you must have checked out the combos too right ?
    Antec 1200 + CP 1000

    And I would suggest this RAM instead of the has XMP and will be more stable...
    XFX HD 5870 + OCZ XMP 1600MHz

    As for your questions...
    1. 850W would easily suffice for the build...but the 1000W with that case combo is surely a very good deal...And for it to run the cards in SLI/ Crossfire, there is no need for it to have certification...more important is the power and the ampherage on the 12V rails, which the CP has enough power even to run 3 cards in Tri-Crossfire...And also is modular...
    If you want to stick with lower power, then get the CP 850

    2. As for the SSD, that 128GB is a good one...but still the Intel is faster...
    You cna get the Intel cheaper here...
    In Stock here
  2. Cool, thanks Gkay. I didn't even notice the combo deal.. I'm going for that ram and ssd you suggested.
  3. Not sure how much that build there adds up to, but for $2k you should be able to make a system with a 5970 and X25-M 80 gb.

    Lemme know if you want a build.
  4. I haven't heard alot of great things about the 5970. Heating and major stability issues.
  5. Only an issue when overclocking to 5870 speeds, at stock it's fine.

    Then again, paying $650 for something that potentially performs as well as $800 worth of 5870's is a great deal.
  6. Monitor wise

    24" 2ms Hanns G 1920 x 1080 $199.99
  7. banthracis said:
    Not sure how much that build there adds up to, but for $2k you should be able to make a system with a 5970 and X25-M 80 gb.

    Lemme know if you want a build.

    The builld comes out to about 2400 dollars which includes the monitor, OS and other small parts like ssd docking, 8 pin extension etc. I've been contemplating for going for the 5970's but trying to stay below 2500 dollars tho. I know this sounds backwards but should drop the psu down to the 850 from antec and get the 5970's? and yes i would love to see a build from you!

    Drop keyboard and mouse

    add in win 7 OEM for $99 w/ $10 MIR

    comes out to less than $2200 after shipping.

    Don't need anything else. Retail SSD comes iwth a 3.5" to 2.5" bay converter. PSU has all the cables you'll need.
  9. banthracis said:

    Drop keyboard and mouse

    add in win 7 OEM for $99 w/ $10 MIR

    comes out to less than $2200 after shipping.

    Don't need anything else. Retail SSD comes iwth a 3.5" to 2.5" bay converter. PSU has all the cables you'll need.

    Hey Banthracis
    the wish list is showing me that its empty?
  10. ASUS VW246H The step up to the 1920 x 1200 is well worth it

    Antec Twelve Hundred - Great Case, better than the 922.....comparable to the 932

    ASUS P6X58D Premium - Good Choice

    5870 / 5970 - Both honorable emntions in the THG GFX card roundup

    Antec CP-1000 - No need for the 1000 watter, the CP-850 is a better PSU than the 1000 ..... moving from a CP-850(10.0 rating) to a TX from Corsair (8.5 rating) would be a huge step down in both noise and performance.

    Intel Core i7-920 - With the 5870 and up, IMOthe uncompromised bandwidth of the 1366 socket makes the price premium worth it over the 1156....assuming of course that multiple GPU's may someday be resident in the box.

    OCZ Gold 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 - If budget won't allow CAS 6 or 7 ($179) CAS 8 is the next best thing.

    SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD - Check out the performance charts and pick whatever 500 GB per platter drive performs best under your usage patterns. The WD Black 2 TB is a good choice but at smaller capacities, you are limited to the Seagate 7200.12 or the Spinpoint F3. The 7200.12 excels in gaming, multimedia and pictures whereas the F3 wins at music and movie maker. See the comparisons here (copy past link in manually, link won't work in forum):

  11. The current dominant wide screen ratio is 16:9 (1920 x1080) not 16:10 (1920x1200).
    16:9 is also the international standard ratio for HD TV.

    $100 more for a less common ratio isn't worth it in my book, but up to you if you wanna go for it.

    Antec 1200 is a great case but a $50 price jump. A 922 IS a 932 that's slightly smaller (still larger than the 1200 though) and missing a side fan.

    The CP-850 is actually cheaper atm, so yea swap that in. Both were recommended on Jonnyguru, 9.5 vs 9 so I usually just go for the cheaper one.

    The x58 vs P55 PCIE bandwidth difference has been shown several times to be 4% max, and really only an issue at 2560x1600 resolution.,2379-12.html,2517-11.html

    This difference is negated if you use a NF200 MOBO in xfire.,2537-11.html

    Either way, with a 5970, since you're using only 1 card, it makes no difference.

    The PCIE debate has been beaten to death already on both toms and anandtech. Is there a small difference? Yes. Is it noticeable outside benchmarks? No. Is it actually an important consideration for a gaming rig? No.
  12. wow, this can get pretty detailed. I'm glad i came to this community for help. loving all the feedback and information I'm getting so far!
  13. I have the same opinion extole. When I found this site 1 year ago I was blown away with the level of intelligence of everyone here. Just not happy it has taken me this long to finally get to make my build.
  14. @Extole banthracis's build is pretty good...but IMO the X58 is still the better option for such a high budget build...
    I would still suggest the 920 with a good X58 mobo over the 860 and P55 boards...
  15. ^ Though like those article point out that there is only minimal difference with a P55 and the X58, but the future upgrade possiblities should also be taken into account when investing so much money in a build...And the X58 is clearly the best option...,2520-6.html

    So looking to save about $100 when you are investing about ~$2500...doesnt make sense...
  16. gkay, the article you linked says

    With rapidly-increasing prices over $200 offering smaller and smaller performance boosts in games, we have a hard time recommending anything more expensive than the Core i5-750.

    Perhaps the only performance-based justification we can think of for moving up from a Core i5-750 is that LGA 1156 processors have an inherent limit of 16 PCIe lanes for graphics use. This is an architectural detail that the LGA 1156-based Core i5 and Core i7 processors share, so if a gamer plans to use more than two graphics cards in CrossFire or SLI, the LGA 1366 Core i7-900-series processors are the way to go.

    These guys aren't even using 2 GPU's, just 1 ^^

    I agree x58 has an upgrade path to the i9 later this year, but who buys a $290 CPU to replace it with a $600-$1k CPU in less than a year?

    Longer than that and 22nm sockets are out so both x58 and p55 will be obsolete.
  17. ^ If you carefully look at the Intel's road-map, they wont jump onto the 22NM as such...first they would launch their newer archietecture to a mature fab archietecture - that would be 32NM and then make a transition to the 22NM...
    So I would say the X58 will still have support for the 32NM Nehalams as well as the newer architecture that will be coming "Sandybridge"...So that is ~2 years of current gen-CPU support life for that socket and will be more as we have seen with the other sockets...

    And as for you saying that "but who buys a $290 CPU to replace it with a $600-$1k CPU in less than a year?"
    People still use the LGA 775 socket and still have good upgrade path - check out the newer LGA 775 CPUs - C2Q 9550 and also most of the LGA 775 boards that supported the 1st gen C2D and C2Q also supports the 2nd Gen 45NM...and they did have good upgrade parts too...And this will also apply for the X58...

    So I would still opt for the X58 especially at that budget...Frankly no one would go with the LGA 1156 socket at this budget range...
  18. I agree with gkay, the x58 is the better platform. Socket 1156 is for the mainstream socket 1366 is the upper end. The benckmarks show a small diffrence, but I don't think intel will drop the x58 anytime soon, it's their flagship socket for now and the next 2 years as gkay has made clear.
    Also if you do decide to buy the 5970, the socket 1156 won't give you the chance to buy a second one in 2 years (when they are cheaper or second hand)
  19. Well you guys are assuming that intel won't support 1156. That is not true, per Intel's own roadmap 1156 will be supported.

    You guys seem to be confusing i9, and Sandy Bridge.

    Sandy bridge is an architecture type. All core 2 duo's and quads were "Core" architecture.

    All i7/i5/i3 are Nehalem Architecture.

    Sandy bridge is the next architecture and there WILL be CPU's for all price ranges based on that architecture.

    i9 will be a processor line that includes 6 core 12 threaded CPU's. Whether this will be limited to x58 is not known.

    The upcoming 6 core CPU's will NOT be Sandy Bridge architecture btw. It will first be a line of nehalem based 6 cores, then Sandy bridge 6 core towards the end of the year.

    However, what is known is that Sandy bridge CPU's will be available for 1156, the only question is if they are hexacore or not.

    My point has always been that for gaming, getting a higher end with more threads doesn't give you better performance. Anything greater than 3 threads doesn't give you a performance boost in gaming.

    The reason is that until next gen consoles come out, and if they support multi threading, gaming companies have will not use multi threading or even 3d/eyefinity as more than a gimmick.

    The reason being that the audience is too small to be worth the time and effort. Unfortunately, both sony and MS say it's 2014 at the earliest for next gen consoles.,2280-11.html
  20. As I've linked several times on this board, gaming is CPU bound, not GPU. An i7-920 does not beat even a 1/2 priced Phenom 2 x4 in gaming, even with a 5970.

    The i7-920 also suffers from a minimum framerate issue. In some games, the p55 CPU's beat x58 by as much as 37% in terms of minimum frame rate.

    On the flip side, in games where x58 beats p55 minimum framerates, the highest is 13.6%.

    You guys are making a huge deal of the 4%, FPS difference btween xfire w/ x58 and p55, but THIS minimum frame rate issue is a 24% difference, much more significant, and unlike a 4% difference, clearly noticeable.

    For gaming at least, this is a serious issues for the i7-920.

    At the end of the day in respect to gaming, w/ a 5970, outside benchmarks no one would be able to tell the difference between a system that has an i7-920 or Phenom II x4.

    My philosophy has always been to get the best performance for my dollar. Build a system that'll last for 3 years and leave it be. It's what I advise clients when I build Comps for them.

    It would be perfectly fine to build a $3000 12 threaded, xfire 5970 system for gaming at 1920 x 1080, but if you can't tell the difference between that and a $1500 Phenom II x4 system with 1 5970, I don't consider it worth my, or a clients, money.
    Both these systems while bench > 60 fps in all games at 1920x1080 and anything above that is not displayable on a 60hz monitor.

    TV runs at 24 FPS, HDTV 30 FPS, and as long as minimum frame rates don't go below those two points, nobody is really gonna notice or complain. Exception being some graphics/gaming professionals of course.

    Both systems should be perfectly capable of playing any game until 2014 when next gen consoles come out (we'll be well into 15nm CPU's by then).

    Other have a different philosophy towards their build, which is to spend as much money as makes sense towards future proofing. I agree this makes a lot of sense if you want to constantly updating your system to stay on top of the curve. If this is how you think, then yes, go x58, just be aware of the min frame rate issue.

    My own practice is to build a brand new comp every year(more like 10 months at this points) using top of the line parts, selling my old rig. I usually end up only spending ~$400 every year and always have the best. But, for people who don't enjoy/do lots of builds this probably wouldn't work.
  21. Can someone enlighten me a little more in regards to 1156 and 1366 sockets. if Intel does have a roadmap to having 1156 support 1366, what type of conversion/upgrade are we talking about to have it do so?
  22. 1366 > 1156

    That is all.
  23. The Facts

    Intel has confirmed they are releasing 6 core CPU's based on Nehalem in the next few months.

    Intel has confirmed they will release 6 core Sandy Bridge CPU's later this year.

    The expected first Sandy Bridge chip will be a 6 core, 12 thread i9. This is NOT officially confirmed, but generally assumed to be true.

    Intel has confirmed they will release Sandy Bridge CPU's for x58 and P55, as well as their mobile platforms.

    Intel has confirmed they plan on releasing 22 nm Sandy bridge CPU's on a new socket type during the second half of 2011.

    Anything else beyond this is speculation.
  24. ^ Your info is correct...But you dint mention that the 6 core CPUs will only be introduced to LGA 1366 platform...
    I still dont understand why you are so much so attached to the LGA 1156...Even I would suggest the i5/ i7 8xx to anyone but mainly based on their budget and their requirements...
  25. Intel is launching the first 6 cores under the I-7 Platform and It will be in the I-7 Family. Can't find the article on Here about it but it was just on here a day or two ago.
  26. That is correct. It's just a 6 ore 32 NM Nahelem, basically a smaller i7-920 with 2 more cores.

    Gaming wise it won't perform any better than an i7-920 since games won't utilize the extra threads.

    The Sandy Bridge CPU's are what have the potential to bring a boost to FPS, but it still won't be took big since we're GPU capped anyway.

    the 6 core Nahalems will be x58 only. The 6 core sandy bridge, no one knows yet.
  27. My ultimate opinion on the 6 Cores NOW is that we don't need them for gaming machines...they would be great for people who do great amounts of multitasking or graphic rendering/encoding while they game and such and also for large server use...especially server use.
  28. ^ with the guy above me. Yeah these 6 core chips will be used in rendering farms to bring animated movies to life for cheaper and faster. I don't think we are GPU capped or CPU capped like everyone else thinks. I think we are SCREEN capped. Our 60hz monitors can't display more than 60fps? Does that mean our 120hz HDTV can display 120fps?
  29. Best answer selected by Extole.
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