Approximate Purchase Date: ASAP...Black Friday at the latest
Budget Range: $1500 - kind of flexible if need be. The lower the better of course.
System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Poker, Movies, light photoshop
Parts Not Required: Need Everything
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg
Country of Origin: US
Parts Preferences: I would like an intel i5 or i7 and nVidia graphics for 3d vision
SLI or Crossfire: Maybe
Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080
Additional Comments: Ok guys here goes i would like to build a computer capable of running some 3d games (WoW) and a couple others. I also play multiple poker tables and plan to watch movies possibly in 3d as well on this. I am a not totally computer illiterate but I definitely require help. I have only owned 2 computers and they both have been Wal-Mart black friday specials that I have actually used for gaming for around 10 years...slam me all you want to they have somehow worked for me. This is my first build and I want to do it right (for me). I just get lost looking at all the nuances in computer hardware.
Here is a couple things I was looking at.
Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders
For the GPU i was wondering if I should get just one GeForce GTX 460, dual 460's in SLI, or just a different single card? No ATI please since I will be getting the 3d vision.
I would like an SSD if possible but not necessary if way over-budget. Only to use for the OS and a couple games.
I would like to stick with a mid-tower case if it will not hamper anything. I am not a fan of huge cases. One pet peeve I have is that I do not like the color red whatsoever, so no red lights. Black or dark colored case with blue or no lights would be optimal.
As for the motherboard, psu, extra cooling, mouse, keyboard, speakers etc... I am kind of lost. I do not want to buy anything that will not fit together.Also it would help if anyone could send me a link with the first things I need to do with my computer after its built and ready to go. I have bookmarked the Step-by-step guide to building a PC and will follow everything including tests I just want to make sure I am not missing anything as I am pretty much alone in doing this so I feel a little overwhelmed to be honest. I have been immersing myself into Toms Hardware for the last week or so and it has been wonderfully helpful. Thanks for any builds and tips from everyone.
Before helping you with your build as you asked, I need to tell you that Intel's Sandy Bridge CPUs are due to be announced very early 1Q '11. Preliminary tests on crippled chips show 15%-25% improved performance. Most of us who do not have to build immediately are waiting. And we normally do not wait lol.
Anyhow . . .
Gaming at 1920x1080 is your determining application. You have the correct processor options . . . either a 760 or a 950 is recommended. Normally we recommend the 760 for gamers as the 950s multi-thread capability is often overtaken by the 760's more aggressive Turbo mode. IOW, if you aren't heavy into multi-threading - or very high resolution gaming (2560), the 760 just makes more sense. Its often faster, and is less expensive, generating less heat, using less power.
The GTX 460 is the right card for gaming at 1920. There are a few games that will require reducing the eye candy a bit . . . just as there are some games/resolutions that can at times need more cpu than anything currently available lol. If that becomes a problem for you in practice, installing a second 460 produces excellent scaling (ie, ~75% increase in frame rates). The other options would be a 470 (lessens the likelihood of needing a second card but generates more heat than 460), or 580 (fastest single vid card chip available).
Let's start with a single 460 for now, and talk more later.
You need a motherboard that can handle 2xnVidia cards, like this one:
HD: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB is very fast and is the correct mechanical "C" drive for this rig. An SSD is nice for WoW, but you need a 120GB version to fit the OS, Swap file, WoW, and other miscellaneous items - 64GB won't work well. So it gets expensive.
WoW (and other MMOs) generally require more cpu power than typical games. So they become more vulnerable to lower frame rates limited by the cpu. That makes it slightly more preferable to use a faster vid card, like a 470, and avoid SLI which requires more cpu.
Making the commitment to a single vid card allows us to bring the psu down to 5xxW and purchase a less expensive mobo. OTOH, that would preclude going 2x470 in the future . . . which should work out fine . . . but one never knows.
A single 460 is quite enough to deal with everything except Dalaran at times and 25-man raids with all the eye candy turned up. As a melee, I need to turn down particle effects in order to see in raids at all . . . and that pretty much solves the frame rate issue if any . . . the burden goes back to the cpu to handle the physics of all those toons.
SSDs can provide a bit more benefit to WoW than for some other games. Load times are very good, so if you die a lot . . . well, you get the picture. But maybe more useful is this:
I do not have any problem waiting for Sandy Bridge if it going to be available early January. If its not til late February or March them I will probably build now. The main reason that I wanted to build asap was to take advantage of any Black Friday deals going on. So this leads me to a couple of questions...
Will Sandy Bridge change my budget much?
Which version do i need to keep my eyes open for?
Are there any pieces that I could buy now or cant miss deals to get keep until I can get the CPU? Or just wait entirely?
Will most of the components still be viable then or is everything going to need to be altered for the Sandy Bridge build?
Thanks again for all the help.
Oh and i do like that 2nd case you listed....nice.
- Glad you like the case. Wasn't sure if you liked lights, but they had to be blue . . . or if you didn't like lights but could tolerate blue. Anyhow, while you're waiting also take a look at the NZXT Vulcan.
Google up some reviews. Its small, pretty cool, can fit big vid card, dunno if I'd use it for 2xVidcard tho. I'd prefer a much larger case, the Silverstone Raven II just for the air flow.
- All the components except cpu & mobo (socket change) will be perfectly viable . . . unless someone else announces something in the interim.
- Yes, you could buy parts now. The only decision you want to make is whether to "lock" yourself into a single vid card system (550W psu, small case) or stay open to future SLI (750-850W psu, case with good airflow.
- Which Sandy Bridge? Heh heh, see that depends on pricing . . . and on the performance of the final "uncrippled" chips. Watch for the announcement and come back here. The day after the announcement the reviews will be in and we will have some recommendations.
Beyond that, an i5 750/760 is the sweet spot for 1920 gaming today . . . so whatever chip price/performs better is the starting point. I'll personally be looking at an unlocked chip, but for this my budget isn't a constraint.
- Will it change your budget? Current thinking is the cpus will give more performance for the same dollars. HOWEVER, the mobos will probably cost more at launch, and you might be tempted to grab a cpu at a higher price point just because it seems to make sense. Or, you might be able to go lower.
the i5 2500k unlocked mutli replacing the i5 760 is supposed to cost $209-218.
out performs the i7 980x in lower thread applications. HT puts in very close in things like video encoding etc..
Mobos: I can't seem to find prices on lga 1155 mobo's anywhere besides one site said that theirs a gigabyte one they are expecting to be $300?
Theres no way everything listed is only $1500 esp if you get a SSD.
Heres my planned 3D gaming build thats around $1700 without a SSD use it to compare or for ideas. ( Ill be replacing cpu and mobo with SB tho)