Making a new build-est2000USD-first timer

Starting to think my old custom build (by a local shop) of 5 years is wearing out it's welcome. I went around (primarily newegg) the net looking for suggestions and for a decent price this is what I came up with, I wondered if anyone had any suggestions on where I might have problems or bottlenecks. Thanks in advance for any help, this would be my first :)
Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-P55-USB3 LGA 1156 Intel P55 USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard 119
CPU: Intel Core i7-870 Lynnfield 2.93GHz 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core 289
Memory: Patriot Viper II Sector 5 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) 159 (buying 2 sets)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 480 (Fermi) 1536MB 384-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP 499.99
Case: Antec DF-85 Black Computer Case 179
CPU Fan: Thermaltake Frio 58
HD for OS: WD VelociRaptor 300GB 1000RPM 359 (2)
HD Storage: Western Digital Caviar Green 1TB Internal Hard Drive, 5400RPM SATA 16 MB 153 (2)
PSU: Antec CP-1000 1000W Continuous ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V v2.91 169
Case fan: Antec 761345-75026-4 120mm Red LED Case Fan (for the window space) 17.99
OS: MS Windows 7 Ultimate Full 298.00
Approx total (no tax included) 2300
7 answers Last reply
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  1. Hi tsuris, firstly, since you've got a custom PC & not a branded one, chances are, you'll be able to upgrade that to fit your needs exactly. So please state your current specs.

    Secondly, please state your usage. In any case, it makes more sense at this budget to go with a 1366 system (i7 9xx+x58)

    Also, at this end of the market, it makes no sense to invest without waiting a few more weeks for the new Intel Sandy Bridge range. So, if you're not in a tearing hurry, do wait a little while longer and check out the Sandy Bridge reviews & benchmarks before putting down 2.5 grands :)
  2. not in a hurry :) thanks for the info, it will be around 3-5 months before the build happens (if it happens) and I know a lot can change, I just wanted to get started. As for my current build, the motherboard is dying (so the guys who built it told me) in addition to the fact it would be mostly useless, I also considered carrying over my current drives to save the extra cash.
    msi k8n neo4platinum sli ready mb
    amd athlon 64x2 3800+ (2.0g) 939
    antec "generic" case
    antec true power trio 550 watt PSU
    the video card just got a $100 upgrade, the old one (which I had put physical pressure on with too many hdd) died on me about a month ago....the old one was evga nvidia 7800gt 256, the new one I didn't look into too much but it is an ati 1gb, would have to check on the rest, on my way to work atm
    2gb super talent ddr1 (ouch) ram
  3. +1 to calhunkguy: Buying an i7-870 doesn't make any sense. If you decide not to wait for Sandy Bridge, go with either an X58 + i7-950 or a P55 +i5-750/760. The X58 will cost about the same as your current mobo/CPU.

    Your usage will determine your RAM usage; 4GB is plenty for even high-end gaming. If you use computational programs a lot, you will want more (Matlab eats up 6GB lol).

    For the same price as that GTX 480, you can get the 580 when the market settles down from the new release (even then, with the 10% discounts it's still about the same). It's just not worth it to get the 480 anymore.

    I've heard that the Dark Force cases just weren't that good. I know it's hard for a case to be "bad," but a lot of people were saying it's less functional than the CM 932 HAF and the like. My Raven 02 is amazing ;)

    If you want a real boot drive, go SSD. They're much faster than the VRaptors. Use the money saved to buy better storage hard drives; the greens are kinda slow.

    For the same price, you can get the Antec TPQ-1000W. I'm not even sure the CP-1000 will work in the DF-85.

    W7 Ultimate doesn't have many necessary features that Pro doesn't. Go with the Pro and save a few bucks there. Also, you could probably get away with using the Upgrade discs; that's how I installed on my new build, and it worked fine hahaha.
  4. For $2300, you can easily do a rockin i7 system. The following is $2243 before shopping for any combo discounts:

    Case - $140 - Antec DF-85 - Incredible case ...... did two full tower builds this month (one HAF-932 and one DF-85). DF-85 wins hands down, HAF-932 is great case....DF-85 just takes it several steps further and the older 932, like the 1200 just can't keep up. The HAF-X is also a very good case w/ many of the same features as DF-85 (both have SATA back planes for example) but the DF's washable air filters, hot swap 2.5" SATA bay and ability to take CP series PSU's just give it advantages the HAF just can't match. Of course, aesthetics is an important feature and with many case designs, ya either like the looks or ya don't.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129087

    Case Fan - $18 - Antec Red 120 mm (blows fresh air between vid cards)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835209013

    PSU - $120 - Antec CP850 has 10.0 performance rating on jonnyguru and silentpcreview.com's Editor's Choice in 850 watt category. And yes I can confirm that it fits in the DF series case.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371024
    No need for 1,000 watter even w/ two over clocked 470's. The CP-1000 has 6 more maps than the CP-850 but the 850 had cleaner power....at least with jonnyguru's samples.

    MoBo - $365 - Asus Rampage 3 Extreme ...
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131642

    CPU - $295 - Intel i7-950
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115211

    Cooler - $62 - Prolimatech Megahalems
    http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=544&Itemid=62&limit=1&limitstart=13
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835242001

    TIM - $5 - Shin Etsu
    http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=150&Itemid=62&limit=1&limitstart=13
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835150080

    CPU Fan (Push) - $11 - Scythe SY1225SL12LM-P (Low noise 1300 rpm fan)
    http://www.frozencpu.com/products/10026/fan-639/Scythe_Slip_Stream_120mm_x_25mm_PWM_Mid_Speed_Fan_-_SY1225SL12LM-P.html?tl=g36c365s936

    CPU Fan (Pull) - $11 - Same

    Fan Cable - $8 - Akasa PWM AK-CB002 (For MoBo control of CPU fan speeds)
    http://www.frozencpu.com/products/10350/cab-183/Akasa_PWM_Splitter_-_Smart_Fan_Cable_AK-CB002.html

    RAM - $170 - 3 x 2GB Mushkin DDR3-1600 CAS 6
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820226121

    GFX - $270 - EVGA GTX 470 SC
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130549

    GFX - $270 - Same in SLI

    HD - $75 - Spinpoint F3 1TB 7200 rpm
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822152185

    SSD - $204 - OCZ Vertex 2 3.5" 120GB
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227590

    DVD Writer - $80 - ASUS BR Model BC-08B1LT (Blue Ray Reader / DVD Writer)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827135220

    OS - $139 - Win 7-64 Pro OEM
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116758

    That's today's build. Come March, the CPU market will shake up and they'll be a new set of MoBos on the market.
  5. When you do buy your OS, see if a system builder (OEM) edition will do instead of retail. Will cost a whole lot less. No difference in functionality. Only, you don't get any phone-in tech support (you can always use the forums for that) and no multiple installations - Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit - OEM - No reduction in functionality whatsoever, just a whole lot cheaper.

    You don’t get the retail packaging when you buy OEM. Instead, you pretty much get an installation disc shrink-wrapped to a piece of cardboard and a product key.

    Quote: "Technically speaking, OEM versions of Windows 7 are available only to those who intend to build PCs to sell to others. Furthermore, online retailers who sell OEM versions of Windows 7 are supposed to verify that you’re a PC builder and/or sell the products with some kind of hardware. For this reason, you’ll sometimes be asked to purchase a hardware tchotsky like a USB cable when you purchase OEM software."
  6. Motherboard-$120-$200 (new lga 1155...will see what is there when) ~$150 ------239
    CPU-i7-2600k $317 ---------329
    Case-Antec DF-85 $159
    CPU fan Thermaltake Frio maybe, maybe not, 'they' say it isn't necessary...
    Ram-Patriot Viper II Sector 5 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3 $74.99 - two sets bought separately (one for initial build one for upgrade when I have more money)
    HD OS-Crucial RealSSD C300 2.5" 128GB SATA III - x2 (one bought at start one later for raid0....I know this means a windows reinstall..) 264x2= $528
    HD Storage-WD Green Caviar 1TB - x2 (backup, speed doesn't matter, bought later for price...and I get 10% off at walmart) 79x2= $158
    PSU-Antec CP-1000 1000W (matches the case and i like antec) $149
    case fan-Antec 120mm Red LED Case Fan - side fan, the case already has the rest $14
    video card-EVGA GeForce GTX 480 (Fermi) - considering upgrade to 580 or downgrading to a 470 (for price, either way will be bought later, my current brand new gpu (radeon HD 4670)will be used until I get the money for a better one) $429, $509, or $264
    os-MS Windows 7 Ultimate Full $259
    also considering Windows 7 Pro oem....don't like the one computer restriction (if I ever upgrade outright I have to buy again, though price IS much better) $139.99


    In short that is:
    MB - 150 +89
    CPU - 317 +12
    Video - Free (to start with old card, gonna buy ASAP to get out of a dying rig)
    Ram - 74 (to start)
    Case - 159
    HDOS - 264
    HDBack - 0 (bought later)
    PSU - 149
    OS - for the sake of argument let say 139
    Fan - 14
    as a starting point then
    HDOS Raid0 - 264
    HDBack - 158
    Video - 509 (when/if I get the money after draining my finances for the above)
    Ram - 74
    $1216(ish) to start then final upgrades when I get money another $1005 (1372.90 after putting in cart with shipping)

    question: what does anyone think about the above, and for the idiots corner, what do you do with those 'backplanes" that come in the case?, is it that you put a sata cable on the one side from motherboard, then plug a sata drive directly in and it acts as a hot swap so no turning the pc off to use them? (cool if that is what that does)

    edit:
    order of secondary purchases (the others will be made all at once)
    Video-osraid-ram-hdback
    edit2
    @ JackNaylorPE I must be behind the times, isn't ram faster when paired (ddr(1/2/3) in dual channel mode)
    I read up a little on that board and it mentioned "triple channel mode" which I hadn't heard of, gonna have to look into a third memory stick now.
    edit3
    any opinions on:
    Mushkin Enhanced Silverline (3 x 4GB) DDR3 1333 9-9-9-24 $139
    Mushkin Enhanced Blackline (3 x 4GB) DDR3 1600 9-9-9-24 $199
    Patriot Viper II Sector 7 Edition (3 x 4GB) DDR3 1600 9-9-9-24 $189

    edit4
    sb no triple, oh well :(
  7. -Bump-
    I've managed to get the money together (with a little leeway) and this is the verdict, again any opinions or advice would be great.
    CPU
    Intel Core i7-2600K Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz $329.99
    MB
    ASUS P8P67 Deluxe $239.99
    Video
    EVGA 015-P3-1580-AR GeForce GTX 580 (Fermi) $509.99
    Ram (2 kits with 2 sticks for 16gb total)
    G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) 7-7-7-21 109.99 x 2 $219.98
    Case
    Antec DF-85 $159.99
    PSU
    Antec CP-1000 1000W $149.99
    OS HD (2 in raid0)
    Crucial RealSSD 128GB SATA III 264.99 x 2 $529.88
    Backup Drives (no raid)
    Western Digital Caviar Green 1TB 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" $74.99 x 2 $149.98
    OS
    Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 64-bit OEM $139.99
    CPU Cooler (any advice on installation, this is a first for me...)
    Thermaltake Frio $57.99
    BD/DVD/CD Read
    SAMSUNG Black 12X BD-ROM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM SATA $74.99
    (second one from old pc hp dvd1270 dvd writer dl/lightscribe)
    Extra Case Fan
    Antec 761345-75026-4 120mm Red LED Case Fan $16.99
    TIM (any advice on installation, this is a first for me...)
    Arctic Silver 5 $9.99
    "Bay" for ssd
    Thermaltake AC0014 3.5" HDD Converter for 2.5" SATA & SSD Hard Drives $6.99
    Filter for case fan
    Metal Filter Dust Guard 12cm $5.94 (with shipping, from ebay, already on its way..)
    Monitor
    Dell U2410 UltraSharp Wide-Screen $540.17 shipped (edit) the dell link doesn't work, it can be found though if you type u2410 into www.dell.com search
    Gotta have the inputs (composite..also has component, it (like my previous) doubles as my multiplayer second screen when playing xbox/ps2/360/ps3...well not ps3, only have ONE of those)

    Estimated final cost (those discounts change so fast...) from newegg...
    $2,634.51 (to be bought in roughly 7 days-which is when the money is ready to roll and so am I :) )
    ebay
    $5.94(purchased)
    dell
    $540.17(purchased)
    added office business 2010 (need outlook)

    Biggest concern I have is the size of the heatsink/2 fans...the image below shows the "ram slots" resized (approximates based on the assumption ram is 13cm and the manufacturer specs) to show approximate space...not sure about the on-board heatsink.


    If anyone does come by to read this later, it is 100% compatible with my motherboard and ram choices (though I wish I had gotten 1600 instead of 1033) it doesn't have a lot of room, but nothing touches and my hand fits through most spaces (basically just not under where the ram is, and only enough to move the fan cable where the onboard heatsinks are.
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