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2300€ Gaming Rig

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August 5, 2010 3:16:28 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: September-October

BUDGET RANGE: 2300€

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming, surfing the internet, watching movies

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Case, HDD, Optical Drive (I'm using my old Antec Nine Hundred Two case, Samsung Spinpoint F1 320GB HDD and Optical Drive), keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Any (I'll link the parts from Newegg.com, but I'll list the prices from Finnish PC-store where I'm buying them)

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: Finland

PARTS PREFERENCES: Intel i7, Nvidia, Corsair

OVERCLOCKING: Yes

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Yes

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1680x1050 (I'll upgrade to 1920x1080 3D-monitor after a while)


CPU: Intel Core i7 930
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
295€
MOBO: Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
225€
GPU: 2x Gigabyte GeForce GTX 480
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
2x 459€ = 918€
PSU: Corsair 1000HX 1000W
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
239€
RAM: Corsair Dominator 3x2GB, DDR3 1600MHz, CL7
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
212€
SSD: OCZ Vertex 2 100GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
339€
--OR--
Kingston SSDNow V+ 128GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
284€

HSF: Corsair H50
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
82€

Total: 2310.00€

I got a few questions. First of all, are all these parts compatible? They should be, but I just need to be confident as this is my first build. Which SSD should I got with, OCZ Vertex 2 or Kingston SSDNow V+? Kingston SSDNow V+ has 28GB more space and it's 55€ cheaper, but OCZ Vertex 2 has faster read and write -speed. Is 1000W PSU too much or will I do fine with 850W? 2x GTX 480 will eat a lot of power, about 710W, so I think 850W is not enough. Then about temperature.... 2x GTX 480 will heat up a lot. So is Antec Nine Hundred Two's cooling enough if I run all the coolers at maxium settings? (2x 120mm intake in front, Corsair H50 120mm intake at the back, 200mm exhaust at the top and 120mm optional exhaust CoolerMaster SickleFlow at the side) I think those should keep it cool enough, or do they? And the last question is, will all these parts fit in Antec Nine Hundred Two? I think they will.

More about : 2300 gaming rig

August 5, 2010 6:18:09 PM

To answer your questions:
1) Everything seems to be compatible.
2) I'd personally go with the smaller faster one, but those prices seem really high to me... Were you planning on adding a normal HD in there as well? A 1tb one etc?
3) 850w is all you really need, but 1000w will give you some extra headroom. I'd personally just go with an 850.
4) Antec 902 should be just fine for cooling and space. Even on low / medium those fans should be enough...
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August 5, 2010 6:29:36 PM

I'd also recommend the Vertex 2, it's the best choice at 100 GB right now. If you really want 128 GB, look at the Vertex2/Agility2 at that size, or consider the Corsair Nova. I woudln't go with the Kingston SSD.

And I'd suggest getting a traditional hard drive for storage as well, 500 GB or 1 TB drives can be had for not a whole lot.

It's a manufacturer site, so take it with a grain of salt, but based on SLI Zone's recommendations, I'd look at getting 950W or so if you plan on overclocking at all.

The only real concern is whether or not the SLI-ed 480s will fit (lengthwise) in your case. There shouldn't be any issues with anything else. I'd google reviews to see if anyone has reported problems on the length of the 480.

some starter SSD 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.
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August 5, 2010 8:26:58 PM

Thanks for the answers. I'll go with OCZ Vertex 2 SSD and Corsair HX1000 PSU. And as I told in my post, I'm using my old PC's Samsung Spinpoint F1 320GB HDD for storage, that's easily enough space for me. I checked the reviews of Antec 902, they say it fits 10.5" long Video Cards, and GTX 480 is exactly 10.5" so I guess it will fit two of them. Any suggestions on changing other parts?
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August 5, 2010 8:35:22 PM

Sorry, I must have missed the part about the 320 GB drive.

The Corsair Dominators are overpriced compared to other RAM with similar specs, but I know that it can be hard to find alternative brands in Europe. If you found some G.Skill or Mushkin RAM with similar timings, that should bring the cost down without affecting performance.

I'm not a fan of the H50, but I haven't used it myself. I think that if you went with a big air cooler, you'd see equivalent or better performance for the money, and there would be no risk of leaking. I tend to think that cheap liquid cooling is a mistake, and you really shouldn't bother unless you're going to spend a few hundred $ (or euros) on a high-end liquid-cooling setup.

Other than that, the build looks really good. Quality parts, solid choices, no real concerns about it.
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August 5, 2010 10:39:56 PM

No luck with G.Skill or Mushikin RAM. The reason I picked Corsair H50 is that it goes into small space and performs well. Antec 902 is a small case and I'm quite sure that a big air cooler like Noctua NH-D14 won't fit in. Would this Zalman CNPS10X Extreme perform better than H50 (or some other air cooler that fits in easily)?
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August 6, 2010 2:50:02 PM

This tweaktown article seems to suggest that the Zalman would perform better, though that air cooler does appear to be pretty loud.

In general, the reviews of the product were better than I expected them to be. I'd suggest googling reviews of the H50 vs. other products and see what you think. I still wouldn't buy it for my system, but it seems like a decent enough product, enough that I won't actively steer people away from it. :) 
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August 8, 2010 1:28:55 PM

I've read that 2x GTX 480 is overkill on 1680x1050 and even on 1920x1080 resolution. So I've been thinking, if I should go for 2x 460s (or 1x 480, but 2x 460s are performing better than that) and buy 1920x1080 3D-monitor + 3D-glasses with the 500€ I'm saving? Are 2x 460s enough to run games in 3D 1920x1080 resolution with high settings? Any suggestions which 460s and 1920x1080 3D-monitor should I go with? (Been thinking GIGABYTE GV-N460OC-1GI GeForce GTX 460 (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card and Asus VG236H 3D-monitor that comes with 3D-glasses)
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August 9, 2010 7:05:59 PM

tecumseeh said:
I've read that 2x GTX 480 is overkill on 1680x1050 and even on 1920x1080 resolution. So I've been thinking, if I should go for 2x 460s (or 1x 480, but 2x 460s are performing better than that) and buy 1920x1080 3D-monitor + 3D-glasses with the 500€ I'm saving? Are 2x 460s enough to run games in 3D 1920x1080 resolution with high settings? Any suggestions which 460s and 1920x1080 3D-monitor should I go with? (Been thinking GIGABYTE GV-N460OC-1GI GeForce GTX 460 (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card and Asus VG236H 3D-monitor that comes with 3D-glasses)


Bump! :bounce: 
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August 9, 2010 7:13:10 PM

460 SLI is fine, I prefer to get one big card at the start of a build and then SLI later if necessary, but the performance of 2x 460 is quite good. You could also get a smaller PSU if you did that.

Personally, I'm staying away from 3D for another year or two, as there aren't many games that truly support it yet, and I'd like to see ATI's competing offering before jumping in. You might see if you can go to a store (or someone's house) and have them demo it before actually buying yourself. 3D is unlikely to hit mainstream gaming for another year or two, and even then it is likely to be a while before it sees universal adoption.

If you want to get in early, then go for it, but only if you're willing to take the risk that nVidia's 3D doesn't pan out and there might be a new standard in a couple of years. :) 
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