Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Gaming / VM rig

Last response: in Systems
Share
January 25, 2011 6:23:25 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: Next 2-3 weeks


Budget Range: 2000-ish


System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Virtualization/Lab, Movies


Parts Not Required: Only building a tower.


Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg, ncix


Country of Origin: Canada


Parts Preferences: i5-2500k, generally ATI/AMD but whatever works best. No point putting fanboy ahead of performance.


Overclocking: Maybe leaning yes, but not hard


SLI or Crossfire: Maybe



Additional Comments:


Hello,

PC I am looking to put together will be used primarily for gaming, and for running virtualized environment as I work in IT and it will be my home lab system (but probably no more than 8 or 10 VMs at a time, and certainly not all under heavy load simultaneously).

I am just starting to look at parts but my initial starting point is:

ECS Black Deluxe P67H2-A2 - $195
Intel Core i5-2500k - $230
SAPPHIRE 100312SR Radeon HD 6950 2GB - $285
16 GB DDR3-1600

I figure the case, powersupply, and cooling solution can be sized to fit the rest of the components. For storage I am looking at getting an SSD w/ two traditional HDD providing bulk storage.

For overclocking, I'm not sure how far I will pursue it, but I don't plan on touching the bclk values - I'm not willing to risk the data corruption/loss.

Basically, the ECS board got chosen from what I saw in the $150-200 P67 review they did recently, as it supports the best feature set, such as RAID even on the eSATA drives, which is important to me. The ability to team my NICs is great as well, as I expect I'll likely have a network storage
solution set up sometime in the intermediate future, and it would help when transferring images of VMs and backups over the network.

The i5-2500K got chosen as it seemed the optimal price-perf point - past there is only the i7-2600k at $100 more / 145% the cost of the 2500k.

The Radeon 6950 is nothing real firm. I generally prefer ATI (now AMD, I guess) cards, and had seen you can BIOS flash them into a 6970, but there seemed to be some confusion as well about whether it was this card or the 6850, or is it both? Not sure whether eventually I'll wind up going with a 2-card setup.

Nothing on this list is set in stone, I only started picking out components a couple days ago as a rough idea.

Oh. I have an existing 5.1 sound system, so I guess I need support for that too.

Thanks for any help and advice on this.

-Mike

More about : gaming rig

January 26, 2011 12:20:46 AM

The cards that can be unlocked to 6970s are the 2gb 6950s. Some of the newer ones cannot be unlocked anymore so you'll need some luck if you plan on getting one of those (best bet would be to grab a reference model).

I'm not too sure what size SSD you want but at the moment sandforce drives are the probably the best performance for the money. OCZ Vertex 2 (best firmware), Corsair Force, G.Skill Phoenix, A-data s599, Mushkin Enhanced Callisto Deluxe, etc etc are all relatively the same (pickup whichever is cheapest at the time of purchase).

Heres a starting point for you I guess.

CPU & Mobo:
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Item...

RAM: x2
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1682...

SSD:
http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=53424&vpn=CS...

HDD: x2
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1682...

GPU:
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

PSU: Get something more powerful if you plan on xfire (like 750 - 850w)
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

Case: (I don't like to buy cases from newegg because the shipping costs is usually too much)
http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=41147&vpn=PC-K62&manu...

or

http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=49224&vpn=RC...

January 26, 2011 1:26:02 AM

i5-2500k is great for gaming. From a VM perspective, I would go i7. Hyperthreading is very well utilized in a virtual environment, and will allow for more simultaneous vm operation.
January 28, 2011 5:14:50 AM

goatsword said:
i5-2500k is great for gaming. From a VM perspective, I would go i7. Hyperthreading is very well utilized in a virtual environment, and will allow for more simultaneous vm operation.


Yeah... I know, its just such a jump for price. Guess I'll have to mull that one over and figure out which way to go.

Quote:
The cards that can be unlocked to 6970s are the 2gb 6950s. Some of the newer ones cannot be unlocked anymore so you'll need some luck if you plan on getting one of those (best bet would be to grab a reference model).


Yeah I'm not settled on the video card yet, seems from the Dec/Jan best-gaming-card-for-money review ATI/AMD was wiping the floor at their various price points.

If anyone has suggestions of a card please post and I can get a head start.
!