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Gaming PC $3000 Build - Need Advice!

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July 29, 2010 1:32:28 PM

Hi All,

I'm looking at building this new gaming rig for myself but wanted some advice from you guys first before I purchase anything. I just basically want to know if what I have is a good mix and match and if there is better I can get etc.

Thanks in advance

CPU: Intel Core i7 930
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD7
Video Card: Gigabyte ATI Radeon HD 5970 2GB
Memory: G.Skill F3-16000CL9T-6GBTD (3x2GB) DDR3
Hard Drive 1 (System Drive – Raid 0): 2x OCZ Vertex 2 60GB SSD
Hard Drive 2 (Storage): Saumsung Spinpoint F3 1TB
Power Supply: Enermax Revolution85+ SLI 1050W
Case: Lian Li PC-60FNWX with window (USB3.0)
Cooling: Noctua NH-D14 CPU Cooler
July 29, 2010 1:59:25 PM

dont get the cl9... get the cl7, dont get ocz ssd get kingston and get a 850w psu like corsair xfx antec or seasonic
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July 29, 2010 2:06:34 PM

Can I ask why you recommend those changes? Also am I better off getting 2x GTX460's in SLI or the 5970?

Looks like the 460's in SLI are the bang for buck cards atm.
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July 29, 2010 2:13:09 PM

... the cl7 is better than the cl9 cause it has lower latency.. kingstons are better and cheaper and the psu is overkilling... and i prefer to go for a 5970 its better and it is future proof... and if it apear some game that u cant play at max settings u buy another one and u got a lot of time to play again
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July 29, 2010 2:48:40 PM

Thanks for the reply.

So is this the Ram you'd recommend?

http://www.pccasegear.com/index.php?main_page=product_i...

Or maybe Corsair or OCZ have a better version?

Is the latency the 7-7-7-24 thing? If so the lower the latency the better? So would 7-7-7-20 be better then 7-7-7-24? lol I have no idea about RAM :p 
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July 29, 2010 2:57:00 PM

yes 7-7-7-24 or 7-7-7-20 its okk get one of those... just get a 3x2gb of a good brand cl7 and ddr3
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July 29, 2010 3:14:01 PM

Getting lower CL RAM is a good move. That G.Skill RAM is quite good. If you have the money, CL 6 RAM is slightly faster, but might only be noticeable in benchmarking. Something like this Mushkin 6 GB kit.

Your original selection of the Vertex 2 was a much better idea than the Kingston drives though. The Vertex 2 is the best choice at 60 GB, and if you didn't want to RAID, it's still a good choice at 120 GB.

Some SSD articles for further reading:
Anandtech's SSD Relapse - a good overview of the technology, but a few months old, so the product recommendations are a bit dated.
bit-tech SSD Buyer's Guide - pretty recent, good overview of the various controllers
techreport article on SSD value - recent, includes comparisons vs. traditional HDDs. Suggests Vertex 2 isn't the overall best value, but has very good performance on most metrics. The prices seem to be coming down as well, as that happens, the Vertex 2 becomes more and more attractive.

If you're looking to save some money, the Gigabyte UD7 motherboard is overkill, the UD3 is just fine as well.

Excellent choice on the PSU, that got a 9.7 from jonnyguru.
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July 29, 2010 3:46:08 PM

"Also am I better off getting 2x GTX460's in SLI or the 5970? Looks like the 460's in SLI are the bang for buck cards atm."

I would stick with the 5970. the 460 SLI might be better price/performance, but with your budget the 5970 makes more sense since it leaves more room upgrading later.

Also agree with the UD3 over the UD7
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July 30, 2010 3:46:12 AM

Awsome thanks guys. I originally had the UD3 selected the someone said just get the UD7 it has better features etc etc.

I guess I can save money getting the UD3 insted and add that extra $100 to get better RAM - maybe the Mushkin 6GB Kit coldsleep listed :) 

Althought I've never herad of the brand but I assume brands don't metter much these days?
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July 30, 2010 2:31:35 PM

I have Mushkin Blackline in my own box. Currently running 8 GB at 1600 MHz CL6. :)  Have not yet tried overclocking them past rated specs.

Mushkin is a newer (1994) US-based company. I had a problem with my first kit, but RMAed it, and both of the kits I have now are running excellently. http://www.mushkin.com/About-Us.aspx
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August 1, 2010 6:51:48 AM

Cool so I guess I'll change the RAM to that and the motherboard to the UD3 :D 

One more question. If I were to ever upgrade to 2x 5970's would the 1050W PSU be enough power or should I upgrade? Reason I ask is because for an extra $10 I can get the 1250W PSU over the 1050W

Thanks for the help guys.
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August 1, 2010 6:53:59 AM

yes :p  u can crossfire a 5970 with a 850w psu.. so if u can better get a 850w
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August 1, 2010 9:00:34 AM

just a quick question.. new at this but is a SSD harddrive necessary for a comp?? its a bit pricy...
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August 1, 2010 9:30:37 AM

it isnt necesary :p  and it isnt a harddrive... its the replacement of it its a lot faster but i wont buy it now cause they have low capacity and they are very ecxpensive.. i wold like to w8 a lit more
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August 2, 2010 3:07:20 AM

As juanchioo states, SSDs are not necessary. At certain budgets, when there's really nothing else to spend money on, then they make sense, but they're still not really mainstream. However, I tend to think that once you reach $2500, that's the point at which you have reached diminishing returns with everything else, you you really might as well buy an SSD. Going RAID 0 isn't a terrible idea with SSDs, but it might be more complicated than it needs to be.

If you were to post in the format in How to Ask for New Build Advice, it might help people make more tailored recommendations to your situation.

I'll reiterate, though, your original build was pretty good. Other than a couple of minor tweaks, I don't see a lot of need to change it, unless you wanted to add another 5970 or put in two nVidia 480s instead of the single 5970 you already have.
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August 2, 2010 3:29:17 AM

Ok so it looks like PC Case Gear have stopped selling the Muskin 6GB Triple Channel DDR3 Kits CL6.

Is this a good alternative? http://www.pccasegear.com/index.php?main_page=product_i...

I only chose that because I see it hit the top of the charts in this thread
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/triple-channel-ddr3...

Then again I think they are all over clocked anyway, am I right? Maybe I'll stick to the G Skill RAM or something.

http://www.pccasegear.com/index.php?main_page=product_i...
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August 2, 2010 3:46:21 AM

yes that ram is very good go for it
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August 3, 2010 1:54:07 AM

So I've decided to take the build a little further an add an extra video card now seeying as I am saving some money on other parts. Out of the following options which would you chose and why? Or alteratively, is there something else youd recommend that I haven't listed?

1) 2x GTX460 pre overclocked edition SLI
2) 2x Radeon HD 5870 Cross Fire
3) 1x Radeon HD 5970 2GB DDR5
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August 3, 2010 5:53:29 PM

5970 cause its the fastest gpu and u have space to put another 5970 in the future
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August 3, 2010 6:52:56 PM

2x 5870 is going to be the best performance, but obviously the most expensive. The 5970 would leave an upgrade option open (another 5970). Of the choices presented, I think SLI-ed 460s would be the worst choice. The other two are close to equal, I'd probably go with the 5970, as it will cost a little less.
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August 4, 2010 6:30:48 AM

Thanks!
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!