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$1100 sandy bridge build can it be done??

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December 22, 2010 8:10:49 AM

hi guys as some of you may know I live in South Africa and I have decided to order my PC from america as we are getting ripped off here.

Im ordering from newegg and getting myUS to ship it here as apparently I cant get amazon to do it I posted something about it in a South African forum http://www.systemshock.co.za/forums/index.php/topic/356...

parts I dont need: mouse, keyboard, case ( I have a coolermaster storm scout)

parts I need: monitor and everything else :) 

I have $1100 to spend just on the PC as I actually have $1467.67 to spend but I have to pay shipping ($242.04 for 25 lbs) and I have to pay South African VAT (14%)

So I have $1100 to spend, Im not worrying about accessories and so on like CPU coolers, ssds and so on I just want a raw good build as I will be slowly upgrading in the future, I dont want two cards straight away I want one good card and il add another down the line

im looking at

i7 2600 (when SB comes out I dont plan on OCing so im not getting a k one)

cheap crossfire/SLI SB motherboard with good features

hd 6950/gtx 570/hd 6970 I WILL BE ADDING A SECOND CARD IN THE FUTURE also bear in mind my case size ( I have a CM storm scout but I will make it work if its just too big)

thanks for all your help
a c 84 B Homebuilt system
December 22, 2010 2:10:47 PM

I think it can be done.
I have been olanning a SB build, and while I have no inside knowledge, I have done a lot of research.
Here are some of my thoughts:

1) I would consider the 2500K. It is unclear if the extra cache on the 2600 will translate into significantly better performance. The hyperthreading capabilities of the 2600 will be useless for gaming; 4 cores is more than enough. The extra 50% you pay for just one extra multiplier does not seem worth it to me. The K processors are designed for overclocking, and the price premium looks to be very small. The $100 or so that you save can to toward a better graphics card that is the key to great gaming.
Budget about $220 for one.

2) Look for a P67 based motherboard. They will support K series overclocking. It is unclear if the H67 motherboards will, or will not.
Budget about $150 for one.

3) A monitor is one component that you will be looking at and keeping for several generations of technology. Get a very good one. I like the 1920 x 1200 monitor shape, but they are more expensive than the 1080P(1920 x 1080) units which are based off of TV's. Look for a 24" size. I think Samsung makes the best, but Asus is supposed to be very good.
Budget about $200 there.

4) I would not plan my build around future multiple graphics cards. You need to pay more up front for a sli capable motherboard, and a stronger psu. When you upgrade in the future, you will have to pay inflated prices for a matching card that will no longer be cost effective. Lastly, sli does not scale well with some games.
My suggestion is to get a single great card up front. Something like a GTX570 or GTX580. That will give you great gaming at 1080P. If, in the future, you might want more, just sell the card, and replace it with a 25nm based successor which might come out a year from now.
Budget $350 for a GTX570, or $525 for a GTX580.

5) Do not skimp on psu quality. A good 650w unit will run any songle graphics card made today.
I like Seasonic, PC P&C, Corsair, XFX, and Antec. Do you use US standard 115v? If so, how about this XFX 650w unit? It is modular also.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Budget about $100.

6) 4gb of ram will cost you about $50, $100 for a 8gb kit of 2 x 4gb. I just got confirmation from Gskil tech support that their 8gb kit will be compatible with sandy bridge. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Ram is cheap these days. Here is a corsair study on the value of 8gb vs. 4gb:
http://www.corsair.com/_appnotes/AN902_8GB_or_More_of_S...
Budget about $100 for 8gb.

Using a GTX570, this totals to $1120.

---good luck---
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December 22, 2010 2:16:47 PM

thanks so much! I have just one thing, I was planning on getting a decent PSU like and xfx 750 watt and SLI/Crossfire capable motherboard and I was planning on getting the 2nd GPU in august next year near my birthday I will also be ordering it from america and I was really looking at the hd 6970 as it scales so well in crossfire etc just worried if it will fit in my case properly
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December 22, 2010 2:25:52 PM

wait.... I guess you are right... I mean my PC will run for a good few years and by the time my PC starts to feel sluggish there will be much better GPUs out at that time, this also means I can go for a cheaper motherboard and PSU, thanks for clearing things up I havent really thought of it that way, so Im thinking gtx 570, I wanted to go for the i7 2600 as I havent ever OCd myself and im not confident to do it also the i5s have 6mb of cache and the i7s have 8mb so I was just thinking of that as well... I need the PC to last me a while as im only 15 but i am into web designing, photoshop, solid works etc. The build is not only for gaming even though I game competitively
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a c 84 B Homebuilt system
December 22, 2010 3:23:34 PM

My GTX580 is 10.5" long, and I think the GTX570 is exactly the same.
Measure your fit in your case. Looking at the storm scout, it looks like a long graphics card can extend into the front bay area, but a second sli card would impact the hard drive cage. If true, all the more reason to plan on a great single card.

You will always need to access the bios, if for nothing else to select the boot order.

An OC with the 2500K will be as simple as changing the multiplier in the bios from the default of 33 to something like 38 or whatever. The OC will be successful as long as your cpu does not reach it's thermal limit. A decent oem air cooler will let you go higher and easier. Do not worry about damaging your cpu if you do not change voltages. The cpu will reduce the multiplier to protect itself. For the small premium, it is a nobrainer to me, just to allow that future capability. Read some of the forthcoming P67 motherboard reviews. They, no doubt, will show how the OC is done. A modest OC should be simple and safe. After all, that is why Intel made the K versions.

When your app is photoshop, that brings up two additional suggestions.

1) Photoshop can make good use of all the ram you care to give it. Get 8gb(2 x 4gb) at a minimum, and even 16gb if you can handle it up front.

2) Some parts of Photoshop can make use of the CUDA capabilities of the Nvidia cards. That is a good argument for the GTX570 vs. the amd competitor.
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December 22, 2010 5:47:51 PM

true but I heard having 4gb modules is bad and I think i will benefit having hyper threading and extra cache
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a c 84 B Homebuilt system
December 22, 2010 6:48:51 PM

exhail said:
true but I heard having 4gb modules is bad and I think i will benefit having hyper threading and extra cache

Extra cache is nothing but good.
Hyperthreading is good if you have an app or game that uses more than 4 cores. There are not many. Each hyperthread is worth about 1/4 of a core.

The only question is if it adds enough value for the 50% increase in price. Can that extra $100 or so be used more effectively elsewhere.
If in doubt, I would get the 2600.

As to the ram, 4gb sticks are good. Actually, there are reports that sandy bridge can use 8gb sticks. Today, there is no price premium for 4gb sticks over 2gb.
If you want 8gb, two sticks of 4gb will run better than 4 @2gb And... it will preserve your option to add 2 more.
I have confirmrf with Gskil that their 8gb kit of DDR31600 1.5v kits are compatible with sandy bridge.
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