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$3000 FFXIV gaming computer build

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August 21, 2010 6:16:59 AM

Hello,

I have been doing some research on building a new computer and I have selected a few parts and would like some input/complete the rig:

Budget: $3000
Case: Cooler Master HAF-X
CPU: (?) i7 930 vs 980x
GPU: (?) x2 GTX 480 vs x2 5870 vs x1 5970 and add a 6000 series later
Mobo:( ?) ASUS Rampage III vs
P6X58D
RAM: (?) Not sure
PSU: Corsair 850HX
Cooling: (?) Not sure
SSD: OCZ Vertex 2 120GB
Hard Drive: (?) Not sure, but I don't really need 1TB drive as I don't keep much media on my computer.

This computer will be primarily used for FFXIV and web browsing. I have 0 experience with overclocking as well as building computers.

I can't decide between the i7 930 and 980x. I would like my PC to run FFXIV at maximum settings and be able to last for a while.

I currently have a 46" LCD HDTV that I don't use and I was thinking to use that for this computer. Is that possible? If not, I would like to go for an Eyefinity setup, so what are my options regarding monitors?

Thank you! :) 
August 21, 2010 10:23:10 AM

actually not much to mention here it all looks very good.

I'd change a few parts though.

I'd get the ga-x58a-u7 as a motherboard. I'd get a crucial c300 256gb SSD and that should serve your storage needs shouldn't it? 2X a 128gb c300 would be faster but harder to set up.

I'd get a 930 as CPU because a 980 is overkill and you can still get one when the price drops.

ram: we can talk about that later.

case: I hate that case. It just looks horrible and seems so cheap. this case http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... looks better IMO has the best cooling of any case I know beating the haf x by quite few degrees. It has the legendary silverstone build quality and it isn't as exessivly large as the haf X.

As for the GPU. In this price range ati doesn't really bring anything convincing to the table. I'd get either 2X480 or 3X460.

You should be able to connect the pc to your TV, but the quality isn't that good on such a screen and an eyefinity setup would be a better option.
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August 21, 2010 11:57:22 AM


That looks to be one killer PC, however also one that is completely overkill, an i5 760 should be more than enough, but if you have the money, I say going with an i7 930 would be a good choice.

As to video cards, the GTX 460 is SLI only, not tri SLI.

Currently, like back when XI was released in NA, Radeons performs better than Nvidia's cards in the game. That being said, I would most likely go with a GTX 460 SLI setup as that should be sufficient for the majority of games currently and in the near future, and if you are ready to spend $3000 for a PC now, going with a i7 930 and a dual GTX 460 setup, should leave you plenty to upgrade in a years time (or more) should you get a game that is that much more graphically intensive.
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August 21, 2010 2:27:59 PM

Well an i7 930 gives a great performance boost to something like 480sli. But yeah an i5 would technically do the trick.

And as for tri-sli. It's kind of confusing as all the info on the nvidia website contradicts each other. But my guess is it does support tri-sli but not wonderfully and so after a bit of tweaking they'll say it supports it.

And radeon cards better than nvidia? wait wait... what?
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August 21, 2010 3:04:14 PM

LOL what do ya mean the HAF X looks bad and cheap? have you seen it in person! its awesome and worth it ;) 

go with a 5970 in October/November when the price drops
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August 21, 2010 3:21:03 PM

Well I just don't like the looks of the haf series. I haven't seen the haf x but I've seen the other ones and I find them to plasticy and thus cheap but that's just an opinion they are are pretty good cases technically, but IMO the aesthetics need an overhaul. What happened to real beautiful CM cases like the stacker?

I doubt the 5970 will drop in price a lot in october/november seeing as the 6000 series are posponed to next year.

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August 21, 2010 4:12:42 PM

Somebody_007 said:
Well an i7 930 gives a great performance boost to something like 480sli. But yeah an i5 would technically do the trick.

And as for tri-sli. It's kind of confusing as all the info on the nvidia website contradicts each other. But my guess is it does support tri-sli but not wonderfully and so after a bit of tweaking they'll say it supports it.


It is not that confusing, most reviews mentions this, and also, if you take a look at Nvidia's site, on the page for GTX 460 under specifications they list "Feature Support: NVIDIA SLI®-ready* 2-Way"

Somebody_007 said:

And radeon cards better than nvidia? wait wait... what?


The OP mentiones this PC is built mainly for FF XIV, and as I made clear, or I thought I did, in my post, currently Radeons outperform Nvidia cards, though the latest Nvidia driver gave approximately a 7% boost, they are still trailing the Radeon cards when it comes to FF XIV.
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August 21, 2010 4:45:43 PM

http://www.nvidia.com/object/win7-winvista-64bit-258.96... as you can see there they say those drivers support quad sli. And here on a very respected website http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/buyers-guide/2010/08/0... they reccomend 4 460s and I'm sure if it weren'r possible they would have mentioned it.

As for the nvidia vs ati. I didn't know you were talking about FF XIV I thought you meant in general. But nevertheless seeing Nvidia's reputation they'll likely improve drivers and beat ati like they do in most other games.
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August 21, 2010 5:04:19 PM

Somebody_007 said:
http://www.nvidia.com/object/win7-winvista-64bit-258.96... as you can see there they say those drivers support quad sli. And here on a very respected website http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/buyers-guide/2010/08/0... they reccomend 4 460s and I'm sure if it weren'r possible they would have mentioned it.

As for the nvidia vs ati. I didn't know you were talking about FF XIV I thought you meant in general. But nevertheless seeing Nvidia's reputation they'll likely improve drivers and beat ati like they do in most other games.


I really do not wish to turn this into an AMD vs Nvidia, as a matter of fact, I do prefer Nvidia myself due to drivers.

As to the first link, yes, the DRIVER supports quad SLI, the GTX 460 VIDEO CARD do not.

And as to the folding setup, that is 4 cards running "single" not using SLI, as they can not, as already said.
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August 21, 2010 5:17:51 PM


Take a look at the PCB shot in this link of the GTX 460 and you will see only 1 SLI connection, meaning you can run it in SLI only.

Compare that to this link of the GTX 470 (again chose the shot of the PCB) and see that it has 2 SLI connections, meaning tri or quad support is possible.
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August 21, 2010 5:29:25 PM

intresting. So I was wrong. Well always glad to learn something new ^^.
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August 21, 2010 11:26:00 PM

Thanks for the replies.

I am looking to max FFXIV performance and still be able to multitask, so would a dual 480gtx be sufficient? or should I go for a tri 470?

Also, I need help choosing a RAM and watercooling! :) 

And what are the best monitors for value right now? I'm looking to set up 3 monitors w/ Eyefinity.
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August 22, 2010 12:56:54 AM

Just for fun, I put together a $2907.89 i-980X system. by skipping the Blu-Ray and getting a somewhat less expensive case (something around $160), you could afford a 128 GB SSD instead. Some searching could also find a cheaper motherboard as well, I assume I tend to stick to the sub-$1000 builds :) 

Shopping Cart
Qty. Product Description Savings Total Price
1 Antec Twelve Hundred 750 Blue Black Steel ATX Full Tower Computer Case 750W Power Supply
Item #: N82E16811129063
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy

$30.00 Mail-in Rebate

$229.99

1 Rosewill RTK-002 Anti-Static Wrist Strap
Item #: N82E16899261005
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy

$0.00

1 Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Item #: N82E16822136533

$89.99

2 XFX HD-587X-ZNFV Radeon HD 5870 (Cypress XT) 1GB 256-bit DDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
Item #: N82E16814150490

$739.98
($369.99 each)

1 LITE-ON Black IDE DVD-ROM Drive Model iHDP118-08
Item #: N82E16827106275

$18.99

1 Mushkin Enhanced Blackline 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model 998832
Item #: N82E16820226130

$147.99

1 Rosewill RFA-120-BL 120mm 4 Blue LEDs LED Case Fan
Item #: N82E16835200049

$5.99

1 LITE-ON Black 4X Blu-ray Reader SATA Model iHOS104-06 - OEM
Item #: N82E16827106325

$59.99

1 Crucial RealSSD C300 CTFDDAA064MAG-1G1 1.8" 64GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
Item #: N82E16820148358

$145.00

1 Intel Core i7-980X Extreme Edition Gulftown 3.33GHz LGA 1366 130W Six-Core Desktop Processor BX80613I7980X
Item #: N82E16819115223

GIGABYTE GA-X58A-UD9 LGA 1366 Intel X58 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 XL ATX Intel Motherboard
Item #: N82E16813128446
Combo

$1,469.99

1 Sega Napoleon Total War – PC Digital Download, Gift with Intel Purchase
Item #: N82E16800992043

$0.00
Subtotal: $2,907.91
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August 22, 2010 2:56:57 AM

Corsair and G-Skill Ripjaws seem popular for Intel builds. My brother likes Kingston RAM and I am currently running Patriot but our machines are both AMD so you might want someone else to narrow down the field for you a little. :p 

If you are doing an i7 build on a 1366 motherboard you are going to be working with triple channel ram, so you will want at least 6gb (you don't want 3). I am also going to guess you'd be aiming for 1600 ram rather then the 1333 that I generally suggest to most AMD builds but hopefully someone with a bit more knowledge on this end can confirm that.

As for your video cards it really depends on how you want to allot your budget. Think of building a PC as if the PC were a pizza and each piece is a slice of a varying size. How much of your pizza is devoted to graphics cards? The people telling you that an i5 760 running 460 SLI should do great are right from the research I have done. However, the question remains: how much and how often do you want to update your PC? How much of your budget do you actually want to spend? Another consideration is the lifecycle of graphics cards v.s. how long between series of cards v.s. how long cards in one series survive subsequent series. I would not want to spend $1000 on dual 480s if I found out they would only serve my purposes for two years, for example.

Please note that the above statement is 100% hypothetical.

480s are going to demand more power then 460s and they are going to run hotter. If you are going to use them then make sure that your PC is ready to acomidate them. I'm not the one to ask about whether this would need air or water cooling but I would strongly advise that you look into this *very seriously* before buying these cards. A fried graphics card is not a fun experience. I also suggest that you check the varying brands that make the nVidia cards. For example EVGA offers a lifetime warranty on theirs if you register them, last I checked.

Hopefully this is of assistance. Yet again, I normally help people building AMD systems so I'm not the one to ask about your motherboard, for example. :p  I wish you the best of luck with your new build.
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August 22, 2010 9:55:20 AM

Well given the choice between 2X 480 or 3X 470 I'd get the 470s. Because they use are not as expensive and probably perform better.

as ram I'd get corsair dominators. People say they are overpriced, but they perform very well and have alifetime warrenty so IMO they are a very good kit a t a reasonable price.

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

http://www.bjorn3d.com/read.php?cID=1432&pageID=5949

Do you want a full custom water cooling setup? If so be prepared to shell out 600-700. But in terms of cooling performance it'll be very very good.
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August 26, 2010 6:18:28 AM

Thanks for the replies everyone. I bought all the parts and I'm going to build it sometime next week. I have one more question though. Is it alright to put the computer under the desk on the carpet? I'm concerned about airflow as well as the static charge build up. Also, it might be easier for dust get into the case.

I thought about either putting a cardboard under it, or put it up on a nightstand right next to my desk.

Here is the build if anyones interested:

Case: HAF X

CPU: i7 930

GPU: x2 480 GTX w/ backplate

mobo: EVGA X58 FTW3

RAM: 6GB Corsair Dominator TR3X6G1600C8D

CPU Cooler: Corsair H70

PSU: Thermaltake TR2 1200W ATX 80 PLUS

SSD: OCZ Vertex 2 120GB

HD: Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB

Monitors: x3 Samsung PX2370 23" LED

Keyboard & Mouse: Logitech MK 5500

Headset: Logitech G930

Total: $4150 ;_; I wish it wasn't this expensive to buy the best parts but oh well, FFXIV here I come =p
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August 26, 2010 8:52:04 AM

putting a computer on a carpet isn't the best idea but cardboard under it should solve the problem.

And yeah it will collect a lot of dust but that isn't such an issue.

good luck :D 
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