$2000-$2200 build critique

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Fried (another) laptop so ASAP

BUDGET RANGE: $2000-$2200 before shipping and mail in rebates

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: gaming, possibly system testing and online trading (but not if this rig makes gaming too fun!)

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: mouse, headset, gaming pad



PARTS PREFERENCES: more about performance, quality, and price




My first build so concerned about compatibility, survivability (sufficient power, heat regulation, etc.), and (relative) ease of build. I've tried to focus on gaming performance and eliminated components like SSD (although the thought of Windows booting up fast is very appealing!).

Intel Core i7-930


G.SKILL Trident 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 2000

SAPPHIRE 100280SR Radeon HD 5970 (Hemlock) 2GB

SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB



Scythe SCMG-2100 Sleeve CPU Cooler

ASUS VH242H Black 23.6"


Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium Full

1) PSU: sufficient for Crossfire? Says it is on but is this cutting it close?
2) Memory: is G.Skill overkill for this build/useage?
3) GPU: is 5970 overkill for mmorpg and fps? Or should I start with a 5870 and crossfire 'em if I'm feeling cheeky?
4) HD: gaming builds don't seem to have redundant storage, so are people backing up externally?
5) Case: CM HAF 922 seems to be common recommendation with similar build. I've looked at specs (close to full tower). So I can assume this case will give plenty of room for components and room to move during installation?
6) Cooling: does the this build require the additional 200mm case fan for door?
7) Mobo: why UD3R over Asus P6x58D Premium? Gigabyte seems to be well reviewed on Tom's HW, but I'm more familiar/comfortable with Asus brand.
8) CPU Cooling: will Scythe clear the memory?

Thanks in advance!
15 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about 2000 2200 build critique
  1. I like the stuff you got there. but i'm not really sure does the 5970 fit in the mid tower Coolermaster HAF 922?

    Will be awesome to play games on that rig wish i had one like that haha =)
  2. No doubt would be a good gaming machine. The HAF 922 is 22.2" x 10" x 19.7" according to That's very close to its bigger brother the 932. I think the 5970 will fit, although would be nice to hear confirmation.

    I have to say though, I am leaning towards a 5870 and then if I feel the need dropping a second one in.
  3. ya it will fit very well you can stick any gpu in that beast of a case.

    also very solid build the only problem is the scythe won't fit with the tridents bec. it blocks of the first 2 slots.

    and why would you get the retail version when you can get the oem which are the same but does,t come in a fancy plastic case.

    and yes an 850w psu is great for cf 5970's.

    the build does,t need another 200mm fan.

    if u want a build with an ssd take a look at this:

    cpu & mobo: i7 930 & asus p6x58-e (great quality mobo can do 3way sli and quad cfx)

    gpu & os: sapphire hd 5970 & win7 (overkill but very future proof)

    psu: xfx be 850w (top notch quality)

    case: haf 922

    ram: g.skill pi

    ssd: intel x25-m 80gb( top quality ssd and very fast)

    monitor: asus 23" 2ms 1080p hd monitor

    hdd: f3 1tb

    odd: lite on

    Subtotal: $2,167.89 with out rebates

    oh and if u want hsf:
  4. Yes the 5970 will definitely fit in the HAF 922. And the case will have plenty of room to work in, and no you won't need the extra 200 fan on the side.

    1) Yes a 850 PSU would probably be fine for a system with two 5970s.

    2) Yes I would say that 2000Mhz is overkill. You could probably get 1600mhz out of this set easily enough: CORSAIR XMS3 6GB (3 x 2GB) DDR3 1333 TR3X6G1333C7 G (7-7-7-20) 1.5V $190. The lack of heatspreaders will help it keep out of the way of a large heatsink like the Scythe Mugen 2.

    3) A 5970 has a tendancy to be overkill for mmorpgs more than they are for FPS. But a 5870 should be able to deal with most FPS at high settings on a 1080 res screen. So you could go down to one of those and then you'd have no need to rethink PSU choice, unless you wanted to save some money. A good 750W PSU is plenty for a system with two 5870s.

    4) Well I bought another HDD for my build so that I could have somewhere convient to make up my data, altho an external harddrive would probably be safer.

    5&6 covered above.

    7) The UD3R is usually recommended over the Premium because it's very feature rich and quite cheap. If you want a good Asus option that isn't as expensive as the Premium, then have a look at the P6X58D-E, which is the more logical choice out of those two Asus' as the features it doesn't have are ones most people don't need.

    8) I'd think RAM with large heatspreaders would have problems with the Scythe Mugen 2. You'd be much less likely with RAM without obtrusive heatspreaders. However some other options that would have no clearance issues, and would be perfectly adequate for a build with no OCing include: Cogage TRUE Spirit, Gelid Tranquillo.
  5. I reccomend 470 sli strongly over a 5970 on x58 platforms.

    yes the cards are power hungry but the amount that will cost you in the long run isn't enough to close the price gap between 470 sli and a 5970. Thus 470 sli is hotter, cheaper, more upgradeable(with the right mobo), more feauture rich and faster than a 5970. In conclusion unless you plan on heavy OCs I think 470 sli is a no-brainer.
  6. Somebody_007 said:
    I reccomend 470 sli strongly over a 5970 on x58 platforms.

    yes the cards are power hungry but the amount that will cost you in the long run isn't enough to close the price gap between 470 sli and a 5970. Thus 470 sli is hotter, cheaper, more upgradeable(with the right mobo), more feauture rich and faster than a 5970. In conclusion unless you plan on heavy OCs I think 470 sli is a no-brainer.

    na i would go for 460's as they run alot cooler don't consume alot of power and if u oc them they beat the 470 in some benches
  7. also an option I just wouldn't get a 5970.
  8. Great feedback/options. Thank you. Heading out but will do some research this evening and respond. Thanks again!
  9. Best answer
    I just built a new machine this past weekend in the same exact price range. Consider:

    Intel Core i7-930 Processor Boxed

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

    COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Steel + Plastic and Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

    CORSAIR HX Series CMPSU-850HX 850W ATX12V 2.3 / EPS12V 2.91 80 PLUS SILVER Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply

    Mushkin Enhanced Redline 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model 998805

    OCZ Vertex 2 Extended 120GB 2.5IN SATA2 Solid State Disk Flash Drive

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

    XFX Radeon HD 5970 Graphics Card - PCI Express 2.0 x16 - 2 GB GDDR5 SDRAM 2560 x 1600 - CrossFireX

    Prolimatech Megahalems Rev.B CPU Cooler with 2 of these: Scythe S-Flex 120mm Fan, 1900 RPM (SFF21G)

    Cooler Master R4-LUS-07AR-GP MegaFlow 200mm LED Case Fan (Red)

    Cooler Master R4-L2R-20CR-GP 120 mm Red LED Case Fan

    Shin-Etsu G-751 Thermal Compound 1.0 gram

    SAMSUNG 24x DVD Burner - Bulk SATA Model SH-S243N/BEBE - OEM

    Scythe KQ01-BK-3.5 "KAZE Q" Fan Controller

    Total cost: ~$2140 (but I took advantage of a couple of one-time specials but NO mail in rebates) though, admittedly, you could cut the costs on this a lot (i.e. smaller SSD, different ram, p6x58d-e version of mobo, etc)

    Note: many of these links are not newegg, but places where I found deals which were in some cases better than newegg

    edit: just saw that you needed a monitor, so yeah, with the one you've chosen you'd be looking at ~$2300
  10. Scythe Mugen blocks 2 RAM slots on that MOBO. So either no RAM w/ heat spreaders or change the HSF.

    Cm Hyper 212 Plus $30 on amazon is also a HSF option.
    High end, a Megahalem will block 1 RAM slot, so for a gaming rig, it's usable since you don't need 12gb's or RAM.
  11. Been concerned about 4XX heat and power consumption. I've seen 460s are better in those respects. So...

    1) Unfortunately the 460s aren't in the GPU hiearchy chart, but from a quick review dual 460s do not appear to be stronger than the 5970 on performance. Am I wrong or are there other mitigating issues?
    2) If I go with dual 460s would the 850w PSU be sufficient?
    3) Looks like dual 470s would outperform the 5970 but then we're back to the heat and power issues... assume this route would require additional cooling and larger PSU?

    Thanks for the help!
  12. ofcourse it beats the 5970 look here

    and since it's a new card there will still be better drivers for sli which will make it preform better .
    and this is even the 768mb version the 1gb version beats the 465 sli and if oced it beats the 470's

    and here you can see how a single card can do
  13. The 460 1gb is THE bang for buck gaming card on the market. No other card even comes close. 470s not so much but they still beat 5970s.

    And yeah 460 sli isn't as good as a 5970 but considering the price difference 460 sli is a better choice.
  14. @xartion: nice build! will look at some of those compenents tonight.
    @banthracis: thanks for clarification; good points to remember.
    @mrhoshos96: thanks for charts... was looking for that as was referenced in another thread. Will give 'em another look tonight, too.
    @somebody_007: good point re: value. 460s have been in the back of my mind all along.

    So, assuming 850w can handle two 460s given lower power consumption??
  15. Best answer selected by buwish.
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