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$1200 - 1400 Sandy Bridge i5 2500k Build

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January 6, 2011 11:29:04 PM

Will be building a new PC over the next few weeks, and I hope to get some good feedback and advice through this thread. I have some questions in regard to certain parts, and hope to get these figured out.

Thank you in advance.


Approximate Purchase Date: Next 2 weeks or so

Budget Range: Roughly $1200-1400 USD. I am flexible, however

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming (primarily WoW, though will play other games as well) Multitasking, Movies, Internet, etc.

Parts Not Required: Just considering the tower, no peripherals etc.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Any

Country of Origin: USA

Parts Preferences: by brand or type: Possibly prefer Nvidia for the GPU, Nvidia cards seem to perform better in WoW:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/world-of-warcraft-c...
vs
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/world-of-warcraft-c...

Overclocking: Most definitely

SLI or Crossfire: I would prefer a single card for now, though I am open to suggestions.

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080 or 1920x1200

Additional Comments: Cool and quiet are the most important factors. I do not care about LED lights, windows, etc.



Parts:

CPU: Intel i5 2500k $190 USD at Microcenter

Motherboard: Obviously looking for a P67 board. I have no brand affiliations, just looking for good overclocking potential and other features without an exorbitant pricetag.

RAM: This is one item that has really had me thinking. I want to get 2 x 4GB DDR3 1600 mhz, but am not sure how worthwhile it will be to shoot for better CAS latencies. Should I settle for cas 9, or pay a premium for cas 7? What sort of differences would I see between the two?

GPU: As I mentioned above, I would probably prefer a single Nvidia card, though I keep an open mind.

HDD: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - ~$50
An SSD would be nice if price permits, though it id not a priority

CPU Cooler: Temperature is very important to me, and I most definitely want a strong heatsink and fan. I don't want to spend a huge amount here, though.

PSU: I want to be reasonable with the wattage, having a PSU that does not provide a large amount more power than I need. With that said, however, having a little headroom for the future is important as well. Also, is PSU efficiency very useful outside of saving energy costs?

Optical Drive: Asus standard drive - $18

Case: I have no preferences here, and the variety of cases out there is overwhelming. Ideally looking for either a mid- or full-size case that is well-designed but not overboard or 'l337'-style. Cooling and utility are important.

OS: Windows 7, not sure about which version. I do have a .edu email address, if there are any discounts out there...
January 6, 2011 11:54:53 PM

FOr DDR3, I would opt for the lower latencies/quicker timings CAS7 if possible, unsure of the pricing premium over CAS8/9, etc....

The GTX570 is a *very* solid high performing card for the money!!!

There have been no SLI benchmarks with P67 boards yet, I am eager to see what impact if any the 2x PCI-e w/8 lanes of operation has compared to x58 boards (w/2x 16) at assorted resolutions/quality settings....

Is quite possible the X58 might still be the premium SLI board due to it's higher PCI-e bandwidth, but, will have to see how much framerates are affected...
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January 7, 2011 12:08:59 AM

mdd1963 said:
FOr DDR3, I would opt for the lower latencies/quicker timings CAS7 if possible, unsure of the pricing premium over CAS8/9, etc....

The GTX570 is a *very* solid high performing card for the money!!!

There have been no SLI benchmarks with P67 boards yet, I am eager to see what impact if any the 2x PCI-e w/8 lanes of operation has compared to x58 boards (w/2x 16) at assorted resolutions/quality settings....

Is quite possible the X58 might still be the premium SLI board due to it's higher PCI-e bandwidth, but, will have to see how much framerates are affected...


What about say cas7 1333mhz vs cas9 1600mhz in that case? Could you give me an idea of what the disparity would be?


Yeah, thanks for the recommendation on the gtx 570. The main reasons I prefer to stick to a single gfx card include that exact question of the pci-e lanes bandwidth on the p67 boards, as well as the premium for an mb with 16x/16x. Also, WoW generally doesn't like dual-gpu setups...
I may be giving WoW a bit too much deference here, but if it is going to be one of my primary uses for the PC, might as well, I suppose

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January 7, 2011 12:45:12 AM

Basically CAS is the amount of time it takes the ram to respond to commands. The MHZ directly relates to how fast the RAM executes the commands. In general consensus MHZ > CAS. Having higher speed trumps lower CAS in real world experience, the realistic advantage to lower CAS mainly pertains to benchmarking. It really matters to overclocking on older chips where people are trying to push 1600+ AND low CAS settings.

So in short, you have no logical reason to buy ram with timings lower then 8-8-8-24, personally, I'd buy a nice cheap set of 1600's that are known to be reliable and be done, don't worry about the CAS as if you could tell the difference you're a golden god of eye reflexes.

WoW not liking dual-gpu's is from my understanding a dying stigma, still somewhat true, but otherwise. I almost always feel like buying the best ONE card you can justify is always the best option, then leave SLI as an upgrade path.

Videocard, I keep getting the GTX 570 suggested to me as well, but at 350$ I keep looking at the HD 6950 for 300$ and thinking that it can't possibly be 50$ well spent, just look at the charts. Especially if you can flash a 6950 into a 6970, it's pure win. The biggest reason to go Nvidia would clearly be folding@home. I'd say get a 6950 for 50$ less (my personal choice after much deliberation) and spend that extra $ on an SSD which will cause a MUCH more significant performance increase in all your computing.

E.g. save 50$ on 6950$, save another 20-30$ on cheaper ram, buy yourself a very respectable Cooler Master 690 II (692 by some), and spring for the Crucial C300 64gig SSD for 122$.
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January 7, 2011 12:47:22 AM

May I ask how you have that 190$ price from Microcenter? And I forgot to mention, unless you're like me and obsessed with aesthetics, get yourself a Hyper 212+ (Or 8 for all future builds lol.) and call it a day.

Oh, and if I were you, you could build an absolutely screaming machine for around 1100$ (ssd included) minus the case, spend that extra 300$ on a NICE, NICE case and some really good CFM fans for it. If you want to take a shot in the dark, I've fallen in love with the case from Fractal Design. It doesn't sell in the US that I know of, so you have to take a huge shipping fee but, just look at it:
ncix.com/search/?categoryid=0&q=Fractal+Design+R3
It's not exactly the coldest case but an I5-2500k build with a 6950, the Hyper 212$ and some good noctua fans = Who cares?

Why can't I get links to work ?
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January 7, 2011 1:27:34 AM

Im glad to hear that about the RAM. I was coming to this same conclusion but still very unsure. If the lower cas will really have unnoticeable benefit, then I won't bother.

The 6950 has been a major consideration for me, but the lower performance of AMD cards in WoW dissuaded me a bit. The lower pricetag and ability to flash to a 6970 is damn enticing, though... I'll have to look into it more.


epdark said:
May I ask how you have that 190$ price from Microcenter? And I forgot to mention, unless you're like me and obsessed with aesthetics, get yourself a Hyper 212+ (Or 8 for all future builds lol.) and call it a day.

Oh, and if I were you, you could build an absolutely screaming machine for around 1100$ (ssd included) minus the case, spend that extra 300$ on a NICE, NICE case and some really good CFM fans for it. If you want to take a shot in the dark, I've fallen in love with the case from Fractal Design. It doesn't sell in the US that I know of, so you have to take a huge shipping fee but, just look at it:
ncix.com/search/?categoryid=0&q=Fractal+Design+R3
It's not exactly the coldest case but an I5-2500k build with a 6950, the Hyper 212$ and some good noctua fans = Who cares?

Why can't I get links to work ?


The $190 from Microcenter is basically the $180 price they will be charging for the 15-2500k + tax in my state. They are selling it (as well as the i7) for cheap on January 9, in store only. Definitely a deal worth taking advantage of.

The promotion was taken off their website, but here it is cached:
http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:RD...



As far as the case advice, $300 would probably be more than I could take advantage of, but ill take a look
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January 8, 2011 8:47:23 PM

Any advice on choosing a P67 motherboard?
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January 10, 2011 12:02:37 AM

I ordered the Asrock P67 Extreme 4. It seems like a great deal and I've always had luck with them on amd builds
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January 10, 2011 12:26:09 AM

epdark said:
I ordered the Asrock P67 Extreme 4. It seems like a great deal and I've always had luck with them on amd builds


Thanks for keeping me in mind.
I ended up purchasing the ASUS P8P67 Pro. It has the features I need, and Microcenter has a good bundle discount for that and the 2500k.



Looking into cases now... the HAF 922 looks like one of the best options, but I know there are some other good ones out there...
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January 10, 2011 12:35:05 AM

I think cases are so personal in what you like. I have a Lian Li lancool k-62 coming and I just can't wait. It was basically between this and the storm scout.
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January 12, 2011 3:00:26 AM

I just finished a similar build:

Case: Rosewill Challenger [clean, easy to install, decent cable routing, roomy enough]

PSU: Seasonic X-650W [80 + Gold, full modular, nice packaging]

CPU: i5-2500K [EASILY oc'ed to 4gHz on air without adjusting anything]

Heatsink: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus [just plain awesome for $30]

Mobo: Gigabyte P67 UD3 [cheapest i could find, has sata3 and usb3, no UEFI, 2nd PCIe is only x4]

Graphics card: Radeon HD 6850 [have yet to really test it... obviously a cheap choice]

RAM: 2x4GB DDR3-1333 with CAS9 [again, went cheap here]

SSD: OCZ Vertex 2 120GB [rebate brought it down to $200 and i couldnt resist]

Optical: Lite-On BD/DVDRW

and Windows 7 Home Premium.



Grand total on Newegg (ordered all at once): $1211, minus $30 I'll be getting back in rebates. You could add a 24" 1080p monitor for another 140-160 on sale.
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January 12, 2011 4:14:19 AM

Im getting all my stuff delivered tomorrow :D 
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January 12, 2011 4:44:45 AM

Here is a decent single card (NVIDIA / ASUS gtx 580) build.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0026FCI2U/ref=s9_simh... $99.98 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Cooler Master RC-922M-KKN1-GP HAF 922M ATX Mid Tower Case (Black)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $89.99
Antec TruePower New TP-650 650W

http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml... $179.99
Core i5 2500K LGA 1155 Boxed Processor

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $39.99
Scythe SCMG-2100 Sleeve CPU Cooler

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $6.99 FREE SHIPPING
Tuniq TX-2 Cooling Thermal Compound

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $139.99
MSI P67A-C45 LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $94.99
CORSAIR XMS3 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 Desktop Memory Model CMX8GX3M2A1333C9

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001U3S5S0/ref=s9_simh... $59.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Samsung 1 TB Spinpoint 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.5 inch Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive HD103SJ

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $19.99
ASUS Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 24X DVD Burner - Bulk - OEM

http://www.buy.com/prod/asus-engtx580-2di-1536md5-gefor... $499.99 Free Shipping
ASUS ENGTX580/2DI/1536MD5 GeForce GTX 580 Graphics Card - PCI Express 2.0 - 1.50 GB GDDR5 SDRAM

Total: $1,231.89 *not including rebates, shipping, etc..
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