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$1500 Build, need help

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March 24, 2010 2:59:56 AM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: In two weeks.

BUDGET RANGE: $1500 After Rebates.

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: RTS, RPG, and TBS Games, Movies, Webserfing and Email, and way down some light Photoshop and SPSS (stats program). Also keep in mind, that though I need good gaming, I am in Medical School and tend to game <10hrs. per week.

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Keyboard, Mouse, Speakers, OS, HDD.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Prefer Newegg, but willing to go where the deals are, like microcenter for CPU.

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: US.

PARTS PREFERENCES: I would like to use an Intel CPU & ATI 5850 or 5870.

OVERCLOCKING: Yes, big time, shooting for ~3.8-4.0 on air.

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: No, I'd rather buy a high-end, newer card in 2-3 years than crossfire now.

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1080.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Looking for somewhat of an upgrade path so I can make a boost if needed to CPU and Graphics in 2 years, but essentailly want this to last me 4 years like my last (current rig). Highly prefer modular high efficency power supplies. Don't suggest I get a different or cheaper case, that's the one I want, and it is non-negotiable. Also looking for "pretty parts", no black and red theme stuff and limited/no leds.

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Must have:
Silverstone FT02-B - $229.99


Now here is where stuff get's confusing. I was thinking of picking up an i7 930 from Microcenter for $199. So that build would look like this:

Core i7 930 - $199.99

GIGABYTE GA-X58A-UD3R LGA 1366 Motherboard - $209.99


OCZ 6GB (3 x 2GB) DDR3 1600 RAM - $140.99 after rebate ($170.99 before)

Also I am debating on what monitor to get, I have it narrowed down to:

Samsung SyncMaster P2370 - $249

or


Acer GD245HQ: 120 Hz and FullHD - $359

The later of these I feel will last longer and has the ability to upgrade to 3D in a coupkle of years. What I buy now will not get replaced for 4 years so keep that in mind. I am strongly leaning to the Acer model here.

Then here is what else I plan. I am really hoping to see a price drop of the 5850 shortly after Fermi launch on the 26th. Don't know much on Power supplies so feel free to advise away on that, but I highly prefer modular high efficency power supplies. Here's what rounds our the rest of the build:

SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 5850 - $329

SILVERSTONE 750W Power Supply - $129.99

Thermalright CoGage True Spirit CPU Cooler -$39

In advance, thanks a ton.

More about : 1500 build

March 24, 2010 3:56:14 AM

Well you do have some valid reasons for the components that you are non-negotiable about...If I had the money, then even I would go for that case :p 

Some suggestions...
1. Looking to hit 3.8-4GHz, then why not invest more on the CPU cooler ? I know that the Cogage is a real value for money cooler, but I feel you should get a beefier one that would keep the CPU even more cool and not just about cool...
Some options -
Noctua NH-D14
http://www.frozencpu.com/products/9945/cpu-noc-16/Noctu...
Reviews - http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/coolers/display/noctua...
http://www.overclockersclub.com/reviews/noctua_nhd14/
http://www.guru3d.com/article/noctua-nh-d14-review/1

Thermalright Venomous-X - But you would need to buy 2 120MM fans though...
http://www.frozencpu.com/products/10087/cpu-tri-71/Ther...

Or the standard Noctua NH-U12P SE2
http://www.frozencpu.com/products/9624/cpu-noc-15/Noctu...

2. PSU - Yes you wont need 750W for a single HD 5870/ HD 5850...
Get a 550W+ PSU for that setup and save money that you can spend on the above coolers...
XFX 650W 80+ Silver
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
COOLER MASTER Silent Pro 600
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

3. CPU from Microcenter
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

4. Graphics card - Why not wait for the Fermi ? I know it is not sure if they would offer good performance for money, but I feel that if you are going for 3D, then for now Nvidia is the way to go...Maybe the GTX 470 would be a good choice as that would be cheaper than the HD 5870...So check out the reviews of these cards and then go ahead with the purchase...
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March 24, 2010 6:11:44 AM

HAF 922
Asus P6X58D Premium
Hyper 212+
Corsair 750TX or 650TX, whichever is cheaper at the moment
HD 5870
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March 24, 2010 10:48:59 AM

gkay09 said:
Well you do have some valid reasons for the components that you are non-negotiable about...If I had the money, then even I would go for that case :p 

Some suggestions...
1. Looking to hit 3.8-4GHz, then why not invest more on the CPU cooler ? I know that the Cogage is a real value for money cooler, but I feel you should get a beefier one that would keep the CPU even more cool and not just about cool...
Some options -
Noctua NH-D14
http://www.frozencpu.com/products/9945/cpu-noc-16/Noctu...
Reviews - http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/coolers/display/noctua...
http://www.overclockersclub.com/reviews/noctua_nhd14/
http://www.guru3d.com/article/noctua-nh-d14-review/1

Thermalright Venomous-X - But you would need to buy 2 120MM fans though...
http://www.frozencpu.com/products/10087/cpu-tri-71/Ther...

Or the standard Noctua NH-U12P SE2
http://www.frozencpu.com/products/9624/cpu-noc-15/Noctu...

2. PSU - Yes you wont need 750W for a single HD 5870/ HD 5850...
Get a 550W+ PSU for that setup and save money that you can spend on the above coolers...
XFX 650W 80+ Silver
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
COOLER MASTER Silent Pro 600
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

3. CPU from Microcenter
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

4. Graphics card - Why not wait for the Fermi ? I know it is not sure if they would offer good performance for money, but I feel that if you are going for 3D, then for now Nvidia is the way to go...Maybe the GTX 470 would be a good choice as that would be cheaper than the HD 5870...So check out the reviews of these cards and then go ahead with the purchase...


Thanks for the reply.

I was debating the CPU heatsink big time. I looked at a tone of reviews. Looks like the Noctua only gets you 8 degrees with non standard fans. If I get a different one I was definately considering the Venomous-X.

I much prefer ATI to NVIDIA, although I do like the 3d glasses for NVIDIA.


As to PSU, I was debating between the above one and the Corsair HX650. I went with silverstone for bigger fan (135mm vs 120mm) and 80+silver vs bronze rating.
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March 24, 2010 10:53:35 AM

babachoo said:
HAF 922
Asus P6X58D Premium
Hyper 212+
Corsair 750TX or 650TX, whichever is cheaper at the moment
HD 5870


My biggest requirement is no change to case, seriosly noto the HAF922. I want something slick, adult, and not loaded with led crap. Plus I have a major mod in mind for the ft02.

The motherboard is $80 bucks more. Any reviews or reasoning as to what makes it really worth it???

As to PSU, see above.

Love anandtech, but other places HSF reviews speak very favorably of this in the value segament.
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Best solution

March 24, 2010 11:08:44 AM

Another PSU option -
Seasonic X650 Gold...Go through its reviews to know more...Arguably the best out there...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

As for the mobo, the main difference would be the power management...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Productcompare.aspx?Submi...

An alternative to P6X58D - Gigabyte X58A-UD5
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March 24, 2010 1:11:15 PM

gkay09 said:
Another PSU option -
Seasonic X650 Gold...Go through its reviews to know more...Arguably the best out there...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

As for the mobo, the main difference would be the power management...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Productcompare.aspx?Submi...

An alternative to P6X58D - Gigabyte X58A-UD5


The comparison link doesn't work. I assume you mean the Asus P6X58D Premium. What do you mean power manangement??? How will I see a difference??? Will this still work with overclock as Speedstep and other features are commonly disabled???

Are either of the mobo upgrades worth the extra $$?
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March 24, 2010 1:51:50 PM

hello, just wanted to let you know im got a good setup under 1400 with a 5870 and i7 930, i would go ahead and submit it but my schoool computers block newegg, and i have tried all the tricks to get around it :(  anyways il post the specs later
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March 25, 2010 1:51:03 AM

bump, see my post up 2.
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March 25, 2010 3:15:04 AM

^ The link seems to be working... and better power managament means more power to the CPU for higher overclock...
But even that UD3R can handle upto 4GHz without any issues...So just check out those mobos and see if there are any additnal features like Dual LAN, that you are interested in...If yes, then only get those boards...else I dont see any issues going with the UD3R...
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March 25, 2010 3:19:06 AM

My mobo lan actually failed on my current motherboard so I have a PCIe Intel LAN card that costs like $50. I'll probably use that over the on board stuff, as I assume it is much better.
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March 30, 2010 2:34:34 AM

dominnater said:
hello, just wanted to let you know im got a good setup under 1400 with a 5870 and i7 930, i would go ahead and submit it but my schoool computers block newegg, and i have tried all the tricks to get around it :(  anyways il post the specs later


Where is your post???

Anyone else have any ideas or suggestions???
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April 9, 2010 12:01:04 AM

Best answer selected by johnjk.
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