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1st time build. General use/Gaming/Photoshop

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February 24, 2010 12:45:09 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Within three weeks

BUDGET RANGE: $1300 limit

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Keyboard, Mouse, Speakers

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Photoshop CS4/Gaming (roughly equal use), everyday use

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg
COUNTRY OF ORIGON: USA

PARTS PREFERENCES: Intel i5-750 processor, or other intel processer. I dont know anything about AMD

OVERCLOCKING: Nope
SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Not likely

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1080, between 21-24 inches

I'm looking for a better quality mid-range desktop that will allow me to get good use out of CS4 and play current games. Ideally the parts selected should be good for 1-2 years before I really need to start upgrading. I am willing to wait a little longer if it also means spending a bit more to get better quality parts. This will be my first time building a desktop and with some suggestions from members here I've selected this as my initial build.
In photoshop I do primarily digital painting but work at larger file sizes (ie. 5000x3000, 300dpi) and so would like a system that can handle that.

Case - $69.99 : RAIDMAX Skyline ATX-948WS Black SECC ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail I picked this one more for looks, but also interested in perhaps an Antec case

Motherboard - 139.99: ASRock P55 Extreme LGA 1156 Intel P55 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail

CPU - 194.99: Intel Core i5-750 Lynnfield 2.66GHz LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80605I5750 - Retail

Memory - 104.99: G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBNQ - Retail

Power Supply - 74.99: Antec EarthWatts EA650 650W Continuous Power ATX12V Ver.2.2 / EPS12V version 2.91 SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified ... - Retail

Video Card - 172.99: SAPPHIRE 100283-3L Radeon HD 5770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card - Retail I'm torn between this and a 5850, mainly because of things like Power-use and need. I'm still open to a 5850 if it turns out it will be a better long term value.

HDD - 55.99: Western Digital Caviar Blue WD5000AAKS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

Optical Drive - 23.99: Sony Optiarc 24X DVD/CD Rewritable Drive Black SATA Model AD-7240S-0B - OEM

Total Cost + Windows 7 and Monitor = $1136

The Monitor will be purchased locally but as a point of reference i've included a link to something I might be looking at. ASUS VH235T-P Black 23" 5ms Widescreen Full HD 1080p LCD Monitor 250 cd/m2 50000 :1 (ASCR) Built-in Speakers - Retail

Thank you

More about : 1st time build general gaming photoshop

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February 24, 2010 1:21:58 PM

$1,300 for that? Please tell me you're kidding...

Still working on combos...

CPU: X4 955 $161
Mobo: Gigabyte GA-770TA-UD3 $85 after rebate
RAM: Mushkin Ehanced Blackline 2x2 GB 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7 $105 after rebate
HDD: Seagate 7200.12 500 GB $55 (or wait the Samsung Spinpoint F3 to be in stock)
GPU/PSU: HD 5870 and Antec Earthwatts 750W $463 after rebate
Case: HAF 922 $90 after rebate
HSF/Optical: Coolermaster Hyper 212 Plus and cheap SATA DVD burner $40
OS: Windows 7 $105
Monitor: Asus 21.5" 1080p $160 after rebate

Total: $1,264.

OR

CPU: i5-750 $195
Mobo: GIGABYTE GA-P55A-UD3 $135
GPU/PSU: HD 5850 and same PSU $370 after rebate
Rest is the same

Total: $1,255.

Neither of these will allow for Crossfire. The AMD build will be better for gaming, as in able to play EVERYTHING that's out right now on max details at 1900x.
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February 24, 2010 2:35:29 PM

i would recommend you to go with

the specs what MadAd told

CPU: X4 955 $161
Mobo: Gigabyte GA-770TA-UD3 $85 after rebate
RAM: Mushkin Ehanced Blackline 2x2 GB 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7 $105 after rebate
HDD: Seagate 7200.12 500 GB $55 (or wait the Samsung Spinpoint F3 to be in stock)
GPU/PSU: HD 5870 and Antec Earthwatts 750W $463 after rebate
Case: HAF 922 $90 after rebate
HSF/Optical: Coolermaster Hyper 212 Plus and cheap SATA DVD burner $40
OS: Windows 7 $105
Monitor: Asus 21.5" 1080p $160 after rebate

Total: $1,264.
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February 24, 2010 5:01:38 PM

Thanks for the newer recommendations.

Im still learning about what sort of things I should be looking for, and I'd like to be able to understand what im looking at. Perhaps you could explain some of the changes? Such as the motherboards?

I see the intel/mobo selection you showed me is a little cheaper, but is there a significant decrease from the AMD/mobo selection?

I'm curious about the GPU/PSU as well. Would upgrading to a 5870/5850 and a 750w psu make a big difference when it comes to power usage as well? This is all assuming I run games at max settings at 1900x.

With the case would I be correct in assuming that the benefit is in the two 200mm fans? It's also a little larger than the one I selected but that should really just allow more room for expansion right?



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February 24, 2010 5:16:22 PM

Mobo: ASRock isn't known for quality. The two boards both have a high quality board and USB 3/SATA III support. Neither supports Crossfire, which decreases the price a lot. The AMD and Intel boards are roughly similar, just one is for AM3 CPUs and the other for LGA1156 CPUs. If you'd like the potential to Crossfire, the Gigabyte GA-790XTA-UD4 (AMD) or Asus P7P55D-E Pro are good choices for $55 more.

GPU: Upgrading the GPU makes a HUGE gaming difference. The difference bewteen the 5770 and 5850 is being able to play at least some games at 1900x and not being able to play games at 1900x. The difference between the 5850 and the 5870 is being able to play Crysis on max details at 1900x and not. In addtion, the 5870 will continue to be a top performer for a while. The 5850 will likely fall of once DirectX 11 comes into standard use.

PSU: This makes no difference. A 650W would be better for a non-Crossfire build, but with the combo, the 750 is cheaper than a 650 outside of the combo. The 750W will likely be more efficient as well.

Case: That and the fact that the HAF 922 is arguably the best case out right now. Also, it's huge. The smaller cases would have trouble fitting the HD 5870.
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February 24, 2010 5:38:01 PM

Ok things are more clear now thank you.

I guess two other things im wondering are about the CPU and the HSF.

I dont know anything about how to overclock and so im making my purchase with the impression that I wont be doing it. Is there one processor more beneficial than the other as is?

I've also heard that if you're not overclocking then it isn't really necessary to purchase a separate HSF. Did you select that because it come's as a combo deal?
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February 24, 2010 5:43:43 PM

The i5-750 is better as is. In fact, it's better when you overclock as well. However, you probably won't notice the difference.

That is true on the HSF. To be honest, I just copied the links from another build I put together for a different thread. If you only want the optical, it will decrease the price by $15.
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February 24, 2010 6:18:59 PM

You mean I'm just getting the sloppy seconds of someone else?! Hurtful

But in truth you've been most helpful! I'm going back and looking over things and then come back with a changed build. Instead of their not being enough information there's almost too much!
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February 25, 2010 12:30:30 AM

With recommendations from here this is currently the build im looking at.

Case: Cooler Master Haf-922
- Im just curious if there is a cheaper case similar to this one that anyone knows about, or just an alternative in general. I like this one but I'd be interested in options for the sake of comparison.
Mobo: Gigabyte GA-P55A-UD3
CPU: i5-750
RAM: G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Dual Channel
- If I make my purchase after the Mushkin RAM that MadAdmiral suggested I'll take that over this
Video Card/PSU: Gigabyte HD 5850 + Antec EarthWatts 750w
- Still leaving open the option to get a 5870, just pricing for a 5850 for now
Optical: 24x SATA DVD/Burner
HDD: Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500418AS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
OS: Windows 7

Price without a monitor is $1114 after rebates.

Any alternatives on might suggest or does it look good?
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February 25, 2010 12:34:44 AM

The HAF is literally the best case out there. There isn't a better one that's cheaper or more expensive. The next most suggested one in that price range is the Coolermaster 690 II or Antec 900. Both of these will be tight for the HD 5870.

I really suggest getting at least CL 7 RAM. There are some G.Skill Ripjaws for $115, if you don't want to mess with the rebate.

Don't forget to pick up the CM Hyper 212 in that combo if you want to overclock...
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February 25, 2010 12:46:20 AM

I'll for sure go with the HAF. Im reading up on overclocking now, in which case I will certainly get the CM Hyper. You've been a big help, thank you.
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March 7, 2010 2:49:24 AM

Best answer selected by chromedbustop.
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