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$1200 +/- Power User Build – Please Help, Suggestions Needed

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May 10, 2010 10:22:22 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Very Soon!

BUDGET RANGE: $1200 +/-

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Power User

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Memory (see below), Secondary Hard Drive (see below), Monitor

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: newegg.com, anything with the best prices

PREFERRED B&M FOR PARTS: Micro Center, Fry’s

PARTS PREFERENCES: Intel Core i7, Asus/Gigabyte Mobo, the best parts for the money

OVERCLOCKING: Most Likely

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1080 or 1920x1200

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS:

*NOTE – I had posted this a week ago and put HTPC in the title even though that was not the primary use of this PC. This led to a discussion around an HTPC only and did not get all my questions answered so I am reposting.

I am looking to build a system that is fully capable of handling whatever tasks I throw at it and at the same time future proof. I want the flexibility to upgrade components in the future as needed. For example, turning this into a gaming machine is not a priority today but I will most likely upgrade my Graphics Card down the road.

I put a budget of $1200 on this but that is not set in stone. I don’t need to go all the way up to $1200 if I am not getting any real value out of it but at the same time, if I need to go over then I am ok with that.

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Motherboard:
ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
OR
GIGABYTE GA-X58A-UD5 LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Note – Open to suggestions though I feel that I going with either Asus or Gigabyte is my best bet. USB 3.0 and SATA 6 would be nice but I suppose not necessary. This is one item that I don’t mind splurging on.


CPU: Intel Core i7 930, $200 (Micro Center)
Note – Definite purchase based on the performance I can get for the price.
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...


Memory: Crucial Ballistix 6GB DDR3 1600
Note – Already Purchased (Great Deal)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Graphics: Radeon 5770?
Note – Open to suggestions. A gaming graphics card is not necessary right now but is a definite upgrade down the road. For now, I just need a capable card for use in an HTPC.


Primary HDD: Samsung Spinpoint F3 500GB
Note – Or I could upgrade to an SSD if you think it is worth it.

Storage HDD: WD 1TB Caviar Black
Note – Already Purchased. I might also add a WD 2TB Caviar Green drive.


Optical: Open to suggestions. Just need a good deal on a DVDR


PSU: CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V
Note – Is 650W enough or is it too much? Right now the Corsair 400W is only $30 at newegg AR.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Case: Need suggestions for a good mid-tower ATX case.
Note – Considering COOLER MASTER HAF 922
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


CPU Cooler: COOLER MASTER Hyper 212
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


TV Tuner: Need suggestions

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Additional Items:

Router: Linksys WRT610
NAS: D-Link DNS-321 - Already Purchased
HD Media Player: WD TV Live - Already Purchased
May 10, 2010 10:29:01 PM

Either motherboard would work fine. I generally prefer Gigabyte, but you can't go wrong with either board.

The 5770 will work fine for now until you decide to game with the system.

I would stick with the F3 500GB drive and pass on the SSD for now.

LITE-ON DVD Writer - Bulk - Black SATA Model iHAS224-06 LightScribe Support - OEM $21.99

I wold get this 80+ Bronze certified PSU for essentially the same price once you consider shipping.

Antec TruePower New TP-650 650W 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply $99.99 - $20 MIR

Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-2250 Media Center Kit Dual TV Tuner 1213 PCI-Express x1 Interface $123.99
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May 10, 2010 11:00:43 PM

Awesome suggestions! Thanks. Do you think overall this is a good build or do you think there might be overkill in some areas?
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May 11, 2010 1:06:15 AM

shortstuff_mt said:
The 5770 will work fine for now until you decide to game with the system.
A 5770 will work fine for gaming (at medium to very high settings depending on the game).

You could drop down to a 5670 for HTPC and low/medium res gaming.

Antec and Corsair are both good power supplies. For a 5770 they recommend a 450W, but corsair is underrated so it should be fine if you dont load the system down with tons of other internals and dont do heavy overclocking.
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May 11, 2010 1:27:13 AM

Just be aware if you plan on xfire or a better GPU down the line, you'll probably have to get a new PSU then as well, if you go with a 450 W PSU now. Minimum for a xfire 5850/5870 setup would be a 750tx, simply because anything lower would require buying separate molex to 6 pin converter cables.

However, a 5770 xfire can be run on a 550 TX.
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May 11, 2010 3:07:37 AM

So it sounds like I should just spend the few extra bucks now and get at least a 650W Power Supply.

Any thoughts on a case?
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May 11, 2010 3:13:43 AM

Also, I am going to purchase the Cooler Master Hyper 212. Do I need to buy thermal compound as well? Any suggestions?
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May 11, 2010 2:27:32 PM

kstrait said:
Why do you suggest the Antec over the Corsair? And do you think I could get away with using this 400W PSU for now? It's on sale for $30 AR.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Both PSU's are quality units. I suggested the Antec PSU because it has higher efficiency (80+ Bronze vs. 80+) and is a very high quality unit. I just don't see using an 80+ certified PSU in a new build since there are up to 80+ Gold PSU's available.
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May 11, 2010 2:45:23 PM

banthracis said:
CM Hyper 212 comes with thermal compound that's not bad.

the 922 you have is fine. Though, ATM a better deal is the Antec 902 which has free shipping ($20 savings) and an additional $20 MIR.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



Are either of these cases overkill if gaming is not the top priority right now? I just want something that has good airflow and durability. I like these cases but if you think they are too much for what I need I am open to suggestions.

Good deal on the 902 btw!
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May 11, 2010 2:48:43 PM

shortstuff_mt said:
Both PSU's are quality units. I suggested the Antec PSU because it has higher efficiency (80+ Bronze vs. 80+) and is a very high quality unit. I just don't see using an 80+ certified PSU in a new build since there are up to 80+ Gold PSU's available.


In an effort to learn more I am going to ask a dumb question. What does the higher efficiency ratings really mean? Does a higher rating correlate to how much energy is saved while not under load and to lower heat emissions?
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May 11, 2010 2:53:30 PM

Yes, the higher efficiency rating contributes to energy savings as well as a cooler running PSU since less energy is wasted as heat.
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Best solution

May 11, 2010 3:03:11 PM

Here's another option for an ASUS board that supports SATA 6Gb/s and USB 3.0 for a good price:

ASUS P6X58D-E LGA 1366 Intel X58 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard $239.99
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May 11, 2010 4:02:24 PM

shortstuff_mt said:
Here's a comparison of the boards:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Productcompare.aspx?Submi...|13-131-641^13-131-641-TS%2C13-131-614^13-131-614-TS

You lose very little going with the P6X58D-E.


Very nice! From what I am reading, it appears the P6X58D-E has better components than the Premium. The only thing I seem to be losing out on is a second Gigabit Lan port, which doesn't seem to be that big of a deal.

But now I am reading reviews on the ASUS vs. the various GIGABYTE boards and I am back to being confused.

Out of the ASUS boards, it seems that the P6X58D-E is the best choice out of the P6X58D-E, P6X58D Premium and the ASUS P6T Deluxe V2. Would you agree?

But how does the P6X58D-E compare to GIGABYTE's UD3R, UD5 and UD7? Or maybe the better question is which GIGABYTE mobo would you go with out of those three (best bang for you buck like the P6X58D-E) and then I can do a heads up comparison.

Sorry to keep dwelling on this topic but I really do appreciate all the help!
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May 11, 2010 6:28:52 PM

So I think this is what my build is shaping up to look like. Can you review and rate it?

Motherboard:
ASUS P6X58D-E LGA 1366 Intel X58 Motherboard, $240 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU: Intel Core i7 930, $200
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

Memory: Crucial Ballistix 6GB DDR3 1600, $170 (Already Purchased)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Graphics: XFX HD-577A-ZNFC Radeon HD 5770, $170
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Primary HDD: Samsung Spinpoint F3 500GB, $55
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Storage HDD: WD 1TB Caviar Black, $80 (Already Purchased)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Optical: ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS, $25
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: CORSAIR HX Series CMPSU-650HX 650W, $100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case: Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case, $60
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU Cooler: COOLER MASTER Hyper 212, $25
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

TV Tuner: Hauppauge WinTV-HVR 1850, $100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Total Cost: $1225
Excluding Already Purchased Items: $975


Thanks to everyone for your help.
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May 11, 2010 6:38:47 PM

The build is looking good. You can save $18 on the GPU by going with this one since it's $10 cheaper and has free shipping.

SAPPHIRE 100283-2L Radeon HD 5770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card $159.99

I would spend the money saved on an HVR 2250 instead of the 1850. The 2250 has an internal dual tuner that can be used for either digital or analog content. I believe the 1850 only has one digital and one analog tuner.

Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-2250 Media Center Kit Dual TV Tuner 1213 PCI-Express x1 Interface $123.99
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May 12, 2010 3:18:36 AM

I am in the middle of purchasing everything described in my last post and have been looking for combos on newegg to save a few extra bucks. The only ones that really stand out are these two:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

The first one gives me the Antec 80+ 650W for $60. I think Antec is supposed to make a pretty good PSU. The second combo is for an OCZ PSU, 600W 80+ for essentially $35 AR. I am very tempted by this deal as I would be saving a good bit of money but I am worried about the quality of the OCZ ModXStream Pro OCZ600MXSP 600W PSU.

What are your thoughts on either of those combos? Are they worth it or should I just opt for the Corsair I originally picked out?

Thanks!
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May 12, 2010 3:06:57 PM

The first combo deal is the best IMO. The EA-650 is a good PSU. The ModXStream Pro 600W PSU isn't a bad PSU, but not quite up to the same level as the Antec one. It would power your system just fine. Either PSU would work.
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May 12, 2010 7:06:02 PM

I would be willing to pay a bit more for an antec over an OCZ. I have seen some complaints about OCZ power supplies but just dont see many about Antec and Corsair.
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May 12, 2010 7:23:46 PM

I agree with both of you. There are actually a lot of good reviews out there on the OCZ but its probably worth the few extra bucks to get more of a solid brand, especially when talking about power supplies. Thanks once again for the feedback.
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May 18, 2010 11:58:34 PM

Best answer selected by kstrait.
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