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Gaming rig, any improvements before I buy?

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July 23, 2010 6:55:15 AM

I'd like to keep my total purchase under $2,500.00. If you can see any things I can improve my bang for the buck, let me know. Or if I am making any glaring errors of incompatibility, let me know!

I have built a few computers before but its been about 3 years ago.

Thanks!



LITE-ON 24X DVD Writer Black SATA Model iHAS424-98 LightScribe Support
Item #: N82E16827106335

$25.99

COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Steel + Plastic and Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
Item #: N82E16811119197

$89.98

Western Digital Caviar Black WD1001FALS 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Item #: N82E16822136284
$89.99

SAMSUNG P2570HD Black 24.6" 4ms HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor
Item #: N82E16824001335
$299.99


CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power ...
Item #: N82E16817139006

$109.99


Logitech G15 2-Tone USB Wired Standard Gaming Keyboard
Item #: N82E16823126034

$79.99


Logitech MX 518 8 Buttons 1 x Wheel USB Wired Optical Gaming Mouse
Item #: N82E16826104178
$42.99

OCZ Gold 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 2000 (PC3 16000) Low Voltage Desktop Memory Model OCZ3G2000LV6GK
Item #: N82E16820227424

$174.99

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - OEM
Item #: N82E16832116754
$99.99

EVGA 01G-P3-1465-AR GeForce GTX 465 (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
Item #: N82E16814130555
Return Policy: VGA Replacement Only Return Policy

OCZ Gold 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 2000 (PC3 16000) Low Voltage Desktop Memory Model OCZ3G2000LV6GK
Item #: N82E16820227424

$399.98 (Video / Memory Combo)


Intel Core i7-930 Bloomfield 2.8GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80601930
Item #: N82E16819115225


GIGABYTE GA-X58A-UD3R LGA 1366 Intel X58 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
Item #: N82E16813128423

$483.99 (Mobo / Processor Combo)


Logitech Z-2300 200 watts RMS 2.1 Speaker System
Item #: N82E16836121122
Return Policy: Limited Replacement Only Return Policy

$139.99

Grand Total: $2,083.21
a b B Homebuilt system
July 23, 2010 7:12:13 AM

Firstly... You do not want a gtx465. The new gtx460's are out and they literally dominate the 465! On top of that, they're cheaper, run cooler, and consume less power!

Secondly, you don't need that big of a Power supply for this system if you're just running one GTX460 or 465... a name brand 600watt will be fine (save some money)
-Although the best thing to do would be two GTX460's in an SLI setup - they actually beat a single GTX480 in performance pretty handily wiht two of them.
Since your mobo and Power suply both will support two of them, I think you should do it!

You also can save money by going with a cheaper 6gb RAM kit. You dont need DDR3 2000 or low voltage, neither are going to make a difference unless you're superclockin the entire computer (seems like you jsut want to put together some top notch components and play games on ultra settings for the next few years)

Again, you could save money on the monitor - Check logicbuy.com, I've seen those monitors for around $220 with big rebates/discount coupons on there before.
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July 23, 2010 7:16:16 AM

Thanks for the tips! You are correct in your assessment that I'm not going to superclock the entire PC and just want some good components that will last me a couple of years.

Which GTX460s and RAM kit would you recommend?

I don't have a problem with the SLI option. Do you think the selected PSU is good enough for them on SLI?
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a b B Homebuilt system
July 23, 2010 7:39:53 AM

Yes... I read an article last week that two GTX460's on an i7 rig had a peak of around 500watts under full load. So to be safe, stick with that power supply that has some headroom and is SLI certified if you do decide to get two.

I have this kit - the price is amazing... and they're designed for i7, so you shouldnt have to adjust any timings or voltage, it will auto config and be good to go from teh start (I also have the same motherboard you selected, and have nothing but good things to say!)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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a b B Homebuilt system
July 23, 2010 7:45:58 AM

As far as the 460's, you'd be fine with any brand. I'd personally reccomend the EVGA superclocked version at $210 on newegg. It comes overclocked about 20% and only costs $10 more... so if you're going the SLI route, two of those is your best bet!

If you decide to go with just one card, go for the palit Sonic Platinum 1gb at $250. I literally just ordered one of those 2 days ago, should be here tomorw. It's the single best 460 out there... clocked through the roof and they use their own custom board/cooling. I'm hoping to order a second one within the next few weeks... although newegg sold out almost as soon as they got them.
*anyway, to sum it up, you're best bet is two of the $210 evga's in SLI. Below is the review... you can read just how amazing two superclocked 460's did!

http://www.fudzilla.com/reviews/reviews/reviews/evga-gt...
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July 23, 2010 8:54:45 AM

You'll see a significant performance boost on loads, boot, and overall peppiness of your system if you add a SSD and use it as the system disk. That would cost $150-220 for a good sized one depending on manufacturer and size.

You might up the speakers to the Z-5500 for improved sound. $350 at newegg

Extra cost: 360-430 (edit) to get to around $2500
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a b B Homebuilt system
July 23, 2010 2:32:41 PM

^^ SSD is waste of money. $350 dollar speakers=waste of money - nobody is going to hear the difference unless you're crankin that *** to 11 so the neighbors can hear it^^
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July 23, 2010 3:15:27 PM

I don't game but I do use computers...a lot. The SSDs in the computers that have them have been one of the best upgrades I've ever put in. They're well worth the $150-220 and I can recommend the Intel X25-M 80GB.

I have heard, however, that some gamers find they get advantages over non-SSD gamers in circumstances when they're starting a game, or switching a level or some such maneuver that requires loading from disk. I understand that most modern (and, one would think, all well-architected) games would load everything into RAM to maximize access speed, so during normal play one wouldn't expect a difference.

I agree that the extra $$$ for the speaker system are a splurge, but at $2500 we're talking about a premium system. Where else could those $$$ be spent?

Well at 2080 you've got $420 left in your budget. If we add two x25-M SSDs at $189 and put them in RAID0, coupled with a $60 CPU heatsink/fan so you can overclock the bejeezus out of that lovely i7-930, you'll put a lot more ooomph in the system. As far as gaming goes, there will be benefits seen in load times from the SSD RAID and some of the speed boost from overclocking the CPU should help in game play somewhat, especially given how overclockable that chip is - you can probably count on getting a 25% boost and possibly as much as 50%! To give a comparison basis, I'm overclocking my 920 to 3.44GHz from 2.66GHz, a 29% boost, and I'm using the stock fan that comes with the CPU! So getting a 25% with an 'aftermarket HSF' should be a no-brainer.

What people said above about the GTX460 vs GTX465 is true - the 460 is getting better reviews and is cheaper. Get the 1GB model, and you should be able to overclock it as well. You're creating an expansion-friendly system as your MB will allow a second PCIe graphics card at x16 speed; some, like the one I have (Asus P6T Deluxe) only have one that can operate at that speed. Down the road you therefore open the possibility of adding a second GTX460 and having a massively powerful graphics engine. There's the added benefit of being able, down the road, to leverage the power of your GPU more fully when doing non-graphics work as CUDA, a framework for distributing work off to Nvidia GPUs, becomes more fully exploited by software developers.

Enjoy your rig!
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a b B Homebuilt system
July 23, 2010 4:09:16 PM

Could add an SSD or two... ive never been one to spend money just for the sake of spending it. Id take that money and buy a second monitor... b/c using a computer with just one monitor is torture
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July 23, 2010 4:12:23 PM

Thanks for the help guys. I like the idea of a SSD but I'll probably hold off on it for a while.

I tweaked a few things and ended up with this as my final build. I ended up going with the dual 460 GTX Fermi Superclocked for SLI, and I upgraded the power supply to 850W incase I ever need more juice.

The highlights, for me, are the i7 930, the SLI 460 GTX cards, and 12GB of memory.

Going to put my old computer to shame.




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

$89.98


1 GIGABYTE GA-X58A-UD3R LGA 1366 Intel X58 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

$209.99


2x EVGA 768-P3-1362-TR GeForce GTX 460 (Fermi) Superclocked 768MB 192-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI

$419.98
($209.99 ea)


1 CORSAIR CMPSU-850TX 850W ATX12V 2.2 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply

$129.99


1 Intel Core i7-930 Bloomfield 2.8GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80601930

$289.99


2x OCZ Gold 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Voltage Desktop Memory Model

$299.98
($149.99 ea)


1 Western Digital Caviar Black WD1001FALS 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
$89.99


1 Logitech G15 2-Tone USB Wired Standard Gaming Keyboard

$79.99


1 ASUS VH242H Black 23.6" 5ms HDMI Full 1080P Widescreen LCD Monitor
$189.99


1 Logitech MX 518 8 Buttons 1 x Wheel USB Wired Optical Gaming Mouse
$42.99


1 LITE-ON 24X DVD Writer Black SATA Model iHAS-324-98
$29.99


1 ASUS Xonar DS 7.1 Channels PCI Interface Audio Card
$49.99


1 Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - OEM
$99.99


1 Logitech Z-2300 200 watts RMS 2.1 Speaker System

$139.99



Combined Grand Total $2,194.92
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July 23, 2010 4:31:35 PM

I really would suggest going ahead and getting an SSD, i recently upgraded to the intel X25-M and the performance boost is substantial. If you have the money it would be a shame not to with the quality of the rest of your build.
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a b B Homebuilt system
July 23, 2010 5:25:13 PM

NICE! the 850watt is only $20 more, so it seems like a good deal to just go ahead and get it.

12gb is more than you'd ever even come close to using... especially with just one monitor... i've never seen anyone actually utilize 6gb even on dual monitors with heavy apps runnign... but hey, if you can afford it... it's certainly not going to hurt :0

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July 23, 2010 5:38:59 PM

The main reason I got the 12GB is simply for longevity. Who knows what things are going to require in 3 or 4 years. I'm hoping that this system will be a good main system for at least 3 years, and then a secondary system for some time after that.
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a b B Homebuilt system
July 23, 2010 5:42:59 PM

I'd say it will easily be cruising for 3 years+ processors and computer components arent expanding at the crazy rate they were in the early/mid 2000's.

Core 2 duo was top tier processor 3 years ago, and its still in tons of brand new mid level computers
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July 23, 2010 6:54:10 PM

The problem with getting 12GB now if you don't need it at the moment (which I did for my pc) is that the upgrade path is blocked; in order to move up further to 24GB (which I could conceivably want to do in a couple of years) you have to ditch all the memory in there in 2GB cards and replace it with 4GB cards. You might be able to sell some of the 2GB cards but you probably won't get a tenth of what you paid for it by then.

I'm running the OCZ Gold and am satisfied so far; due to the peculiarities of the 1366 and i7 I'm actually underclocking it to 1440MHz while overclocking the cpu. It works fine at that rate!
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