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I7-930 First Time Build(er) Comments/Suggestions?

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July 14, 2010 4:43:39 AM

What's up, folks?

So after years of saying "I'll wait a little longer" I have finally decided to JUST DO IT!

I purchased the Cooler Master HAF 932 Full Tower (it was the same price as the Mid-Tower) and now I'm ready to go. Here is my proposed build (parts will be purchased throughout the next 2 months.

CASE: Cooler Master HAF 932 Full Tower
MoBo: Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R
CPU: Intel Core i7-930
OS: Windows 7 Ultimate 64

Now here is where I am assuming more than anything else...

RAM: OCZ PC12800 1600MHz 6GB DDR3 Obsidian Triple Channel Memory
(I chose the cheapest pack of 3x2gb I could find, as I have no idea what I should look for and what I should be spending on RAM)

PSU: Ultra X4 750-Watt
(I was thinking of getting a 1000 Watt, but I feel like I would never need so much, but I DO plan on one day utilizing SLI or Crossfire)

HDD: Seagate 7200.11 Barracuda 1.5TB, 7200RPM, 32MB Cache, SATA-3G (OEM)
(I believe 7200 rpm is ideal, but I don't know if 32mb cache is good or if SATA-3g is ideal as well?)

GPU: This is where I have no idea where to start. I want to play graphics intensive games on ULTRA settings and have them run perfectly. I really don't want to spend more than $400 on the card, but am open to suggestions.)

Folks, I SINCERELY appreciate any help/comments/suggestions/criticisms of my "build." I have experience with swapping PC cases and upgrading everything but the MoBo/CPU, but in terms of starting from scratch, this is my first time.

Thanks again, folks!


July 14, 2010 5:15:47 AM

Dont get an .11 series seagate drive, they had issues. Where do you plan to buy from so i know where to price things from? If newegg, look for combos.

For the PSU a good 750W unit from Antec, Corsair, XFX, or Seasonic will power your system fine, newegg has the XFX 750W unit for $120 which puts it much closer to the nonmodular 750W units.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I would swap the HDD for the 1TB Samsung F3, its a large fast drive that doesnt cost a ton.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

For the GPU consider something like a 5870, it wont max out crysis but it will let you play most things at high or very high on high resolution.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
July 14, 2010 5:28:07 AM

Nice, I appreciate it, Hunter!

Sorry I didn't include the preferred retailer info :( 

I actually both a Compusa and Microcenter right by my house, but I would be fine with ordering from Newegg as well!

Ok, so a quick question- If I found a GTX 470 for the same price as the 5870, which should I go for? They seem to each have an advantage over the other?

Once again, thanks, bro!



Related resources
July 14, 2010 6:14:50 AM

SimonDIvanoff said:
Nice, I appreciate it, Hunter!

Sorry I didn't include the preferred retailer info :( 

I actually both a Compusa and Microcenter right by my house, but I would be fine with ordering from Newegg as well!

Ok, so a quick question- If I found a GTX 470 for the same price as the 5870, which should I go for? They seem to each have an advantage over the other?

Once again, thanks, bro!


The 5870 is a better card than the 470 generally. Nvidia and ATI are staggering their products... 5850 - 470 - 5870 - 480, etc
470's are selling for as little as $279 (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...)
5870's are selling for as little as $389.
For a $100 difference, I'd rather have a 470.

What resolution do you play with?

I'm not sure what I would buy in that region anymore... the 460's are screwing everything up. (In a really good way)

Have you bought the i7 already?

BTW, I think it's wise to buy cheap(er) RAM... "performance" memory will give you a very small gain despite what they'd like you to think.
July 14, 2010 7:01:52 AM

Microcenter STILL has the i7 930 for $199
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

So that's your obvious CPU choice.

RAM - you'll want CAS 7 @ 1600 like this:
G.SKILL PI Series 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 - $169.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Your choice of Mobo has some PSU compability issues, so check this list for the PSU to get that will work:
http://hardforum.com/showpost.php?p=1035302454&postcoun...

Otherwise, go with P6X58D-E, which is the board I went with over the UD3R
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD - Samsung F3
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU - Go with a 1GB 5870 - the GTX 470 runs really HOT

Cooler - Scythe SCMG-2100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
July 14, 2010 7:29:56 AM

Thanks for the additional advice, guys.

RedEchelon- I currently am at 1920x 1080, and am pretty happy with this size as well (as I may buy another unit of the same monitor for dual monitor action)

Also, I have not yet bought the i7, but I just may within the week, as the $200 price for it is AMAZING.

kg2010- Microcenter is indeed where I will go pick up the 930! :)  Also, I think you have sold me on the P6X58D-E. It has everything I wanted in the Gigabyte and a little more! Plus, confirmed support for the future 6-core is nice as well.

One quick quesion, kg; what do you mean by "you'll want CAS 7 @1600" for the RAM? That's probably a very naive question, but I honestly know very little about RAM to know how that is an advantage. Thanks, man!

Guys, I think I will definitely do the 5870 then.
July 14, 2010 7:50:49 AM

SimonDIvanoff said:
Thanks for the additional advice, guys.

RedEchelon- I currently am at 1920x 1080, and am pretty happy with this size as well (as I may buy another unit of the same monitor for dual monitor action)

Alright, just making sure the cards weren't overkill. I'm in the same boat as you... I have one as well and I'm very tempted to buy a 1920x1080 3D-ready monitor in addition.. trying to hold back, I haven't even tried it yet.

Also, I have not yet bought the i7, but I just may within the week, as the $200 price for it is AMAZING.

Yeah, that's all I was going to say :)  ... I wonder how/why they sell them for SO cheap, what a steal. It's been going on forever.

kg2010- Microcenter is indeed where I will go pick up the 930! :)  Also, I think you have sold me on the P6X58D-E. It has everything I wanted in the Gigabyte and a little more! Plus, confirmed support for the future 6-core is nice as well.

One quick quesion, kg; what do you mean by "you'll want CAS 7 @1600" for the RAM? That's probably a very naive question, but I honestly know very little about RAM to know how that is an advantage. Thanks, man!

Guys, I think I will definitely do the 5870 then.
July 14, 2010 4:33:18 PM

mainboard and cpu are great same combo I run. I got this ram and I am very impressed. It's 50 bucks more than Gskill cas 9 but worth it with cas 6 IMO. some may disagree with me.. it is a matter of opinion.


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

as for Gcard, I use the 5870 and I could not be happier. I play at 1680x1050 and I can max everythign in crysis and every other game incl BC2. ymmv depending on resolution
July 14, 2010 5:12:34 PM

SimonDIvanoff said:


One quick quesion, kg; what do you mean by "you'll want CAS 7 @1600" for the RAM? That's probably a very naive question, but I honestly know very little about RAM to know how that is an advantage. Thanks, man!

Guys, I think I will definitely do the 5870 then.


Cas 7 basically means the timings for the RAM, @ 1600 means the speed of the RAM ( 1600 MHZ )

The lower timings for the RAM the better. The RAM I recommended has 7-8-7-24-2N timings, which will improve performance and also overclock better if need be. At that speed and timings, you should be set to go as is without the need to overclock.

One of the reasons they sell the i7-930 so cheap at Microcenter is to bring you in the store, in hopes that you will buy something else while you're there for your build. Don't be tempted, unless the prices are the same on the other parts you're planning to buy anyway, then I say fully support them for saving you $100!

Otherwise, pick up your i7-930, walk away, and order the rest from Newegg ;) 

Also, since you know your other parts for your build, try to find combos to save you even more, there are almost always combos to play with.
July 14, 2010 5:35:54 PM

sorry kg, didn't notice the timings in your recommendation.. didn't mean to step on toes.. but 2T? are you sure? the reason I ask, is the ram i use and recommend, is 1600 @ 6-8-6-24 1T albeit is more expensive
July 14, 2010 5:52:52 PM

Yea, I was trying to say within his budget, since he said he went for the cheapest. Though we're not really sure what his budget is.

That RAM you recommended has some really nice timings as well, just not sure how much the OP is willing to spend.
July 14, 2010 6:18:25 PM

Thanks Hardline & Kg, and once again I apologize for not reading the "How to ask for new build advice" thread and including the most vital info on my build :( 

Anyways, my budget for the whole thing isn't too important, I simply want to spend- for each component- a reasonable amount that isn't overkill, you know? Obviously, as a guy that won't be overclocking or doing any major tweaks to the PC, there are come features in more expensive pieces of hardware that I probably won't ever need, so the goal is to spend whatever is needed to get the best NECESSARY product.

So that leads me to one more question; With HDDs, you want to have at least one TB, with CPUs, you probably want at least a Quad-Core, with GPUs, you probably want at least a Direct X11 supporting unit.....but with RAM, and with the timings you guys mentioned, what is the "minimum standard" for what current/next gen RAM should have?

KG, the 7-8-7-24-2N according to your post is great, and Hardline, 6-8-6-24 1T is a little better for a few more bucks. But my question is- are these timings below average/average/above/or way above average timings for RAM nowadays?

I only ask because I never knew to look at timings and what not.

But yeah, my budget for RAM hovers around $175-$225 for 6gbs.

Thanks again, guys, this seriously helps me so much!
July 14, 2010 7:23:43 PM

Cas Latency: 6 is the lowest you can get.

With RAM, lower tighter timings = better, and the faster they run - which will give you a better overal system performance ;) 

You want at least Cas Latency 7 for the better timings right off the bat.

Some of the Best RAM you can get is:
CORSAIR DOMINATOR-GT 6GB (3 x 2GB) ( 7-7-7-20 )
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Here's another nice set of RAM: ( $174.99 + $20 Rebate )
CORSAIR XMS3 6GB (3 x 2GB) ( 7-8-7-20 )
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Just make sure you get Cas Latency: 7 or I'd go with the Munshkin with 6-8-6-24 1T since this is great RAM for the price - they're normally $225 - if you plan to overclock, you can get this set to 2000 MHZ with some tweaking. At stock settings though, they're already great!
July 14, 2010 7:26:04 PM

the cas 6 modules are above avg and will increase system responsiveness. also the 1T will further that statement. for that amt of your budget, I would go for the Mushkin redline Enhanced with the cas 6 and 1T timings. esp as it will give you real good performance without having to overclock. right now those modules are 199 at the egg and as such fits right in your build. to give some history, I built a machine with G skill eco 7-8-7-24 with an i5 750, and my i7 930 with the above mushkin.. and there is a very notable difference in system responsiveness.

and with hd you don't always want the biggest.. I would look at what ppl get for transfer speeds on the model you are looking at and compare with other competing drives. if you go 1TB I would go with samsung F3. I have 2 samsung F3 500GB drives in raid 0. by doing this, I kept the access time to 13.5ms, but increased throughput ( transfer rates) to min 170, max 270 avg 240 whereas a single drive same access time but has a min of 73MB/s max 145 abd avg 116 also burst rate on single drive is 185 and my tested raid set at 3500.... ( may be an anomoly as it seems real high lol)

and as always I welcome other ppls input
July 14, 2010 8:04:36 PM

I know everyone is entitled to their opinion on RAM, I'd just like to add mine =].

Whether you have the bottom of the barrel RAM or the top of the line RAM, you're not even going to see a difference. Benchmarks reveal a very very small difference in performance.

Here are a few articles about timings, frequencies, and their correlation to performance. Some of them are old, but you get the idea:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/ram-speed-tests,180...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/tight-timings-high-...
http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/26
http://www.thetechrepository.com/showthread.php?t=160

"The results must look disappointing for the memory vendors, as the largest performance differences we found amount to 7-8% with DivX and WinRAR, while almost all other benchmarks and applications perform alike: a 1-3% performance delta cannot be noticed at all. Some games showed several per cent performance difference between low-latency high-speed memory and conventional high-latency average speed DIMMs. The synthetic benchmarks on the memory revealed even more differences, but these clearly aren’t very relevant in everyday life."

So... In my opinion, you're better off either spending extra money on something that WILL give you noticeable differences, or pocket the extra cash. I would buy a good cheap (maybe quality BUILT, so you dont have to RMA them) 6GB 1600MHz kit and call it a day. (Actually I have the RAM you initially posted, OCZ Obsidian. It is running at 1530MHz @ 8-8-8-21)
July 14, 2010 8:41:56 PM

Agree with most of what others posted:
* Buy the 930 at Microcenter - My understanding is that they have a big volume deal with Intel that can't be beat.
* I also have the Samsung SpinPoint F3 1TB. Happy with it. Think I bought it soon after it came out from Newegg for $79.
* I didn't know much about memory when I built my machine a year ago, so just bought the 6GB OCZ Gold kit for $79 from Microcenter (with rebates). Have it running at spec at 8-8-8-24 1600 MHz. It's plenty fast. But honestly, when running at default 1066 MHz, didn't notice memory speed difference.

Really, the only thing I have to add is that Microcenter will match competitive prices, including Newegg. They can't match Newegg exclusive rebates, of course. You'll have to pay sales tax, but sometimes it's worth it for local returns/exchanges. I've had them come down $50 on a power supply, $30 on a graphics card, and $20 on a CPU cooler, plus a few $ here or there for anything from DVD media to cables and connectors.

-Z
July 14, 2010 9:13:34 PM

KG, Hardline, Eschelon, Zinzan, thank you guys for the RAM responses. I have a great idea now of what to look for when shopping for it. I am liking the Muskin set, but I'll see what deals are available after picking up the Mobo/Cpu. Thanks VERY MUCH for that, guys.

Now folks, here's a MoBo question that just came up;
I am sold on the ASUS P6X58D-E, but have just noticed that there is the ASUS P6X58D PREMIUM that's $60 more. Now, I like the $200 price point for the motherboard, but $240 for the P6X58D-E was tolerable. I don't want to pay another $60 for the PREMIUM, but I really want a board that will support at least one more generation of CPUS (6 Core)

What do you guys think? Should I just stick with the deluxe?
DELUXE: http://www.compusa.com/applications/SearchTools/item-de...
PREMIUM: http://www.compusa.com/applications/SearchTools/item-de...
July 14, 2010 9:42:40 PM

Here's a thread I found:

"Originally Posted by Kitarist View Post
These are the differences i've found between the: P6X58D Premium and P6X58D-E

P6X58D-E has Marvell® 9128 While P6X58D Premium has Marvell® 9123 Controller. (It means the E version has a better controller and supports RAID better)

P6X58D-E also has better VIA® VT6308P controller while the P6X58D Premium has VIA® VT6308 (IEEE 1394)

P6X58D-E Only has 1 Gigabit LAN controller Marvell 88E8056® While P6X58D Premium has 2. --Who uses 2 anyway?

P6X58D-E doesnt have the RESET button on the motherboard while the P6X58D Premium has, but both have the POWER and MEMOK buttons.

P6X58D-E also doesnt come with 1 x Optional Fan for water-cooling or passive-cooling while P6X58D Premium does. -- kinda meh imo

P6X58D-E might be better at overclocking -- maybe due to a newer revision of the mobo?

I hope this will answer some questions to some people who want to know what are the differences between those two motherboards.

Thats it!!!"

Pretty helpful, sounds like the E is still the winner to me.
Here's a thread dedicated to this question: http://www.overclock.net/intel-motherboards/662236-asus...

@ ZINZAN, that's very helpful... I only bought my 930 at Micro Center, and the rest on Newegg... in the future, I might shop around even more and get some price matches, pretty cool. I really like Micro Center for the fact it's almost PURELY PC's. A walk into Best Buy for example is laughable, especially if you talk to the employees of both stores.
July 14, 2010 9:50:40 PM

THANKS, Echelon! That answers that question! :) 

Ok dudes, so like I said, I am 99.9% going with the P6X58D-E. Just to verify though, there is no reason to consider the Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R over the Asus, correct? The only reason I bring that MoBo back up is because I still see it pop up all over these forums.

Once again, I appreciate the time, everybody. I am learning an insane amount just from this thread :) 
July 14, 2010 10:09:05 PM

SimonDIvanoff said:
THANKS, Echelon! That answers that question! :) 

Ok dudes, so like I said, I am 99.9% going with the P6X58D-E. Just to verify though, there is no reason to consider the Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R over the Asus, correct? The only reason I bring that MoBo back up is because I still see it pop up all over these forums.

Once again, I appreciate the time, everybody. I am learning an insane amount just from this thread :) 


I was in your predicament 2 weeks ago - choosing between the UD3R and P6X58D-E, and this is why I chose the Asus.

Go to Google and type the following:

ga-x58a-ud3r issues
ga-x58a-ud3r hissing sound

Look at the top 20 results for each of those searches, and then make a decision. ;) 

Yes, the UD3R was given the recommended best buy due its price and overall performance. I really wanted to like it, I really did, but didn't feel like putting up with the potential "baggage" that it comes with.

If you still want to get it though, just make sure you get one of the PSU's from this list
http://hardforum.com/showpost.php?p=1035302454&postcoun...

It seems like with the right PSU those issues aren't around.

------------

Reported whine noise around CPU
Seasonic S12-600HT - Dansolo - Rev 1.0
Antec Earthwatts EA430 - Dansolo - Rev 1.0
Corsair 750TX - SlithereenSlardar - Rev 2.0
Corsair HX750 - SlithereenSlardar - Rev 2.0 (goes away with C1E, C3/C6/C7 disabled)
Antec Truepower New 550W - ToddW2 - Rev 1.0
Antec Truepower New 650W - sephiroth99 - Rev 1.0
Seasonic X650 - 4x4not - Rev 1.0
Corsair 850TX - Sparktz - Rev 1.0
? - Primus - Rev 1.0
Seasonic S12+ 650W - madmax187 - Rev 2.0
Corsair HX1000 - Frenchc - Rev 1.0
PCP&C Silencer 750 - E4g1e - Rev 1.0
Corsair 750TX - dizolit - Rev 1.0 (goes away with C1E disabled)
Corsair TX750W - kobabuta - Rev 1.0
Corsair TX750W - kobabuta - Rev 2.0
Corsair 750TX(?) - Cancerkiller - Rev 1.0
Corsair HX620 - chiggah - Rev 2.0 (goes away with C1E disabled)

Reported fine
OCZ Z550 - Dansolo - Rev 1.0
Thermaltake Toughpower Modular 850W - EliteComputerBuilds - Rev 1.0
Thermaltake Toughpower Modular 1000W - EliteComputerBuilds - Rev 1.0
Antec CP-850 - ToddW2 - Rev 1.0 & 2.0
Antec Truepower Blue 750W - craziplaya21 - Rev 1.0
Silverstone ST75F-P - depraved (C1E disabled, untested enabled) - Rev 1.0
Corsair HX750 - Soujiro - Rev 1.0
Seasonic X650 - rogercomley - Rev 1.0
PC Power & Cooling 510w SLI - kortik - Rev 1.0
Corsair 620W (model?) - Milehigh - Rev 1.0
Antec CP-850 - GetFunk01 - Rev 1.0
PCP&C Silencer 750 Quad (Seasonic) - shansoft - Rev 1.0
July 14, 2010 10:21:53 PM

well the UD3R is tomshardware's recommended buy. I have it and I actually love it.. plenty of options for overclocking borders on too many..lol got my 930 to 4.0 on stock volts.. not to mention alot of ppl are building with it so there is a huge community that can help you in the future.. and Of course questions about the board or problems, I am quite knowledgable on it now lol so I can of course help you. ummmm ultimately consider the options and features both boards have and go with what you feel you would benefit most on and of course what your heart says.. noone can tell you what to buy, they can only tell you what they would buy.. would I buy the UD3R? yes i would.... 100x over..lol You can also add the OCZ 700W stealth Xtreme to that list.. it is powering my system with no hissing that a few ppl have had
July 14, 2010 11:58:11 PM

Ok, after spending another 4 hours looking at Tom's and other places, I think that I will, indeed go with the Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R.

In the compatibility list, it shows that the Corsair HX 750W is reported to work fine with the MoBo.

Upon further research, I want a Modular PSU, so would you guys say that this specific PSU is not only good for this setup, but good as a stand-alone product?

Thanks, dudes :) 
July 15, 2010 12:26:12 AM

I love MicroCenter - bought most of the parts there for my i7-920 machine back in February. If you get to know the most qualified salesman, he can help you a lot.

They have a HDD Samsung F3 1TB on sale for $65 - probalby should pick it up now, since I would expect that price to go back up.

Micro Center has had the i7-930 CPU on sale for $199 for several months, which seems to be their standard price for that chip.

I bought the OCZ Obsidian memory for my machine, and have to admit it was a disappointment because it does not overclock well. I did not know that I would get into tweaking my configuration so much at purchase time, but in retrospect, I wish I would have spent a few more dollars to get performance memory.


The UD3R is on sale right now for $200, but that price is common. The Asus board on sale is the premium one for $300, so wait if you really want Asus. I bought the EVGA x58 SLI LE for the same price as the UD3R, and have been very satisfied with it.

Good luck, and have fun. You are getting a really great rig!
July 15, 2010 12:48:33 AM

Corsair is usually the number 1 choice these days most veterans will tell you similar.however seasonic and PCP&C are awesome brands as well
July 15, 2010 3:02:14 PM

>Upon further research, I want a Modular PSU, so would you guys say that this specific PSU is not only good for this setup, but good as a stand-alone product?

I've got the Corsair HX750W and absolutely love it. Had the PCP&C 750 Quad Red Silencer before, and that was fine, too--but swapped it out for the modular Corsair and sold the PCP&C on eBay.

Sounds like you're on your way to a great rig.

@eloric, wow, $65 for the F3 1TB at MC? I might want to pick up another

-Z

July 15, 2010 3:57:26 PM

Thanks for the additional advice, eloric, hardline & zinzan!

Also, today I'm driving over to MC to pick up the 930, as that sale cannot be beat, and I just may pick up that F3 as well!

So guys, you've pretty much helped me through every step of this process, and I greatly appreciate it, but I have two tiny questions left :) 

1. I have seen that the i7-930 CPU fan already has thermal paste on it, so do I still put some on the CPU itself (once again, first time builder ;)  )

2. Although I had no interest at first, the more I read, the more I see that overclocking the 930 can yield great results...should I overclock after all? If so, then is my build sufficiently put together to do so?

Thanks again, dudes, you're making this intimidating and confusing journey fun and intuitive :) 
July 15, 2010 4:19:05 PM

first, you do not have to put thermal paste on the stock heatsink..... however, if you are considering overclocking, you def want an aftermarket cooler.. there are alot of choices. some ppl swear by the H50, I swear by the Noctua D-14, some by the hyper 212+, and there are more. It really depends on your budget and how much you are willing to spend for the extra performance
July 15, 2010 4:30:37 PM

An aftermarket cooler can help keep the CPU a little cooler even if you don't overclock, so it could theoretically have a longer life. But the included cooler is sufficient, even with a small overclock.

When I first bought a 920 (C0) last year, I couldn't help but test overclocking, and I had already bought a decent cooler (Cooler Master N520, not the best, but decent value at the time at $34, and I didn't want a huge, heavy cooler). I easily overclocked to 3.4, and then tweaked it up to 3.6 or 3.8. But I ended up returning it to stock, which was plenty fast enough for my needs. It was never a bottleneck for me, and I do play the occasional demanding 3D game (Crysis, Batman Arkham Asylum, Resident Evil 5). I figured I would overclock in a year or two as a cheap upgrade.

But when the 930 came out, I couldn't resist, as I was able to sell the 920 on eBay for $209 and then buy the 930 at MC for $199 (lucky for me, not everyone has a Microcenter nearby). So, with tax and shipping, the upgrade from the 2.66 GHz 920 (C0) to the 2.8 GHz 930 (D0) was about $24. Not bad. Not really necessary, but again, like you, I want the overclocking headroom for the future, just in case. For now, I keep it at stock speed.

-Z
July 15, 2010 4:40:21 PM

I 2nd that - if you plan on overclocking at all - the stock cooler is not even an option.

I just finally got my rig built last night - and my cooler is the NH-D14.

Looking at the NH-D14 beside the stock cooler, is like looking at a Bentley parked beside 1991 winter beater.

There's just no comparison.

I still stand by my recommendation for your cooler, that is if you don't want to spend too much on a cooler: Scythe SCMG-2100

Why?

Because this came a VERY close 2nd in benchmarks to the NH-D14 in both cooling efficiency and noise levels, this is literally the next best option after the NH-D14, it's a $50 difference between the 2.

If you want the best, the NH-D14 is the best Air Cooler on the planet, and after installing it recently, I can certainly see why. The 2 fans that come with it alone are a $50 value

This is also supposed to be a great inexpensive water cooling solution:

CoolIT SYSTEMS ECO-R120 Advanced Liquid Cooling (ALC)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

In Benchmarks though, the NH-D14 still outperformed it.
July 15, 2010 4:59:02 PM

nice to see someone else with the D-14 I am nothing short of amazed by it. I installed it on this board and compared to my old e7200 with freezer 7 pro.. and it's easily 3x larger.. almost as long as my 5870 rofl ( also weighs in at 1.9 lbs)
July 15, 2010 5:01:01 PM

The NH-D14 is one big-ass cooler. I wouldn't recommend it unless someone really wants to attempt extreme overclocking. It's huge and heavy, and some may say it's kinda ugly. And as you mention, it's expensive.

-Z
July 15, 2010 6:01:11 PM

I would like black fans, but it seems that noctua wants ppl to know who made them based on the ugly beige lol i am at 4.0 with it.. and 72C under prime/Linx so it can also be used for something less noisy at lower clocks... I just bought the best because it was in my budget. and didn't feel like dealing with a WC loop
July 15, 2010 6:18:30 PM

@Hard Line: Yo, man. Don't get me wrong--4.0 on air is awesome, and the NH-D14 is a great cooler. Sounds like a great choice for your system, as you want maximum performance out of your system--overclocked CPU, overclocked RAM, Raid 0... overclocked GPU?

Questions about Raid 0:
What kind of speed diff are you seeing now? Did you get a bump in your Windows Experience Index? How easy is it to go from a non-Raid to a Raid 0 configuration--do you have to reinstall your OS and start from scratch, or can you just add the new drive and configure via BIOS or something?

-Z

July 15, 2010 7:24:13 PM

i am plannign to hit 4.2 -4.4 ( i think i can do it with my nice temps) I really can't complain about my system. gpu I have not. most of the benchies I have seen comparing oc to stock clcoks show only 3-8FPS dif which makes no sense when I am gettign over 80-120 in every game ( except crysis ) lol

as for raid 0, I am impressed 2 sammy F3 500GB gives me about 170 min read and 250 ish max read and an avg of 230MB/s windows loads in about 30-40 seconds with 130 processes running. WEI maxes traditional HD at 5.9 :(  my total score is 5.9 ( the lowest score )CPU 7.7 ram 7.9 graphics 7.8 for both and hd 5.9 :( 
July 15, 2010 7:39:50 PM

zinzan said:
Questions about Raid 0:
What kind of speed diff are you seeing now? Did you get a bump in your Windows Experience Index? How easy is it to go from a non-Raid to a Raid 0 configuration--do you have to reinstall your OS and start from scratch, or can you just add the new drive and configure via BIOS or something?


You will have to reinstall from scratch if you want to move from a single disk to a RAID 0 setup. Creating a hardware/firmware RAID container is always destructive.
July 15, 2010 7:49:18 PM

SimonDIvanoff said:
Thanks for the additional advice, eloric, hardline & zinzan!

Also, today I'm driving over to MC to pick up the 930, as that sale cannot be beat, and I just may pick up that F3 as well!

So guys, you've pretty much helped me through every step of this process, and I greatly appreciate it, but I have two tiny questions left :) 

1. I have seen that the i7-930 CPU fan already has thermal paste on it, so do I still put some on the CPU itself (once again, first time builder ;)  )

2. Although I had no interest at first, the more I read, the more I see that overclocking the 930 can yield great results...should I overclock after all? If so, then is my build sufficiently put together to do so?

Thanks again, dudes, you're making this intimidating and confusing journey fun and intuitive :) 


1. If you plan on using the stock HSF, you can either just use what they have applied, or clean it off and apply your own, you may see a few degree change, but it's no big deal.

2. To me, getting the 930 and leaving it stock is a crime... but I understand the worries people have. Overclocking is getting more and more mainstream, manufacturers are encouraging it, and it's much easier than it sounds. As you know, the chip comes at 2.8GHz and EASILY handles 4.0GHz for almost everyone. I'd recommend getting a Hyper 212+ like Hard Line mentioned if you want bang for your buck and aren't looking to hit 4.0 (They were $19.99 at MC, but I'm not sure they still have the deal, so make sure to check if you haven't already gone there), maybe something more conservative like 3.6GHz. There are TONS of guides and people that love to help others achieve overclocks, so that wouldn't be an issue. =]

If you DO want to hit 4.0GHz, something like a Megahalems is a common choice, it's about $65. My more budget oriented recommendation would be a Core Contact Freezer 120mm, it does really well for $40, but you need a $5 bracket for socket 1366.

An aftermarket cooler isn't necessary, but like others have said... Personally, I'd consider a cheap one ($20) for a CPU even if I wasn't planning on overclocking it.

BTW, bored at work, I checked out your Gamer Clash link and that arcade game is hilarious. :lol: 
July 16, 2010 12:02:08 AM

I do not recommend the Cooler Master Hyper 212+ for an overclocked i7 CPU. I own one and it is sitting on my shelf. It will work, but in my experience it runs 5 to 9 degrees hotter than my old ThermalRight Ultra 120 Extreme, which is not even ranked anymore.

Simon, you have a High Air Flow Full Tower Cooler Master case, right? (That is an awesome huge box) You can get a monster heat sink to fit in there. The NH-D14 is expensive, a whopper and ugly, but one of the best.

The Scythe SCMG-2100 looks like a great compromise at $34. It will not fit in every case, but should work for you in the HAF 932.

You are going to have an incredible system when this is done.
July 16, 2010 12:18:30 AM

Hardline, Kg, Eloric, Echelon, Coldsleep, I appreciate the help, dudes.

After I get the PC up and running, I will see if there is any performance left to be desired and if so, overclocking will happen! :) 

Thanks for the kind words, guys, I couldn't have assembled such parts without you all!


Echelon, I appreciate you checking out the site/game, bro! :)  We go live tonight, but I won't spam that info here :) 


///// UPDATE \\\\\
Also guys, I finally went and bought the i7-930! $200 is an insane price, man!

July 16, 2010 12:27:33 AM

zinzan said:
The NH-D14 is one big-ass cooler. I wouldn't recommend it unless someone really wants to attempt extreme overclocking. It's huge and heavy, and some may say it's kinda ugly. And as you mention, it's expensive.

-Z


Ugly? :non: 

The cooler is beautiful and sexy, while being lean and mean. :sol: 

Seriously though, it's all a matter of preference and budget. The Scythe cooler is huge as well, and also gets the job done comparable to the Noctua.

There isn't many reviews that don't have the NH-D14 as the #1 air cooling solution, since it's very well made, and gets the job done quietly, plus with $50 worth of fans, it's actually a bargain. :) 

First pics of my build:



I still have to fix some cables in the back, and add the bottom intake fan, plus get the GTX 460 in there as well. ;) 

This is a video editing rig, not a gaming rig. My 1st build in 7 years, and WOW it FLIES.

Windows loads in 11 seconds, and the computer shuts down in 3.

Not sure if anyone has recommended an SSD to you yet, if it's within your budget, you should look at the x25M 80GB as your boot drive, what a noticeable that speedy performance makes!
July 16, 2010 12:34:42 AM

exactly kg2000..... as a matter of fact, I just got to 4.2 21x200 with 1.264v and still only hit 72C! I do like it not sure about the beige though lol
July 16, 2010 12:43:40 AM

kg2010 said:
There isn't 1 review that doesn't have the NH-D14 as the #1 air cooling solution, since it's very well made, and gets the job done, plus with $50 worth of fans, it's actually a bargain. ( In my world it is ;)  )


Technically, it's #3 on Frostytech. :)  But it's still a fine cooler.
July 16, 2010 1:53:30 AM

BTW Coldsleep - thanks for your help with my rig - it's finally built now. :) 

Not like it matters or anything, but check this out:

TweakTown uses a different method for testing CPU heatsinks which allows for an even playing field across all product tests. We feel that by using the same ambient temperature and strict lab-like testing procedures we are able to accurately compare one product to another. More information on our testing procedure can be found in the T.E.C.C. article.

http://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/3045/noctua_nh_d14_140...



I was really surprised that the Noctua could keep such a low ambient temperature, but I ran the test three times and reapplied TIM every time looking for what I did wrong, but I couldn’t find anything odd. As for the load temperatures, all I can say is I have a huge smile on my face still. Within a degree of a three fin setup that uses a TEC, what more could a buyer ask for? That’s right, how about no noise?



Final thoughts - figure out what your budget is for a cooler, since the
NH-D14 does have a price premium of $89.99.

It's powerful, keeps the CPU cool, it's one of the quietest, and price? Well, we can't have it all can we?
!