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$1000 2500K Office PC (quiet)

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January 28, 2011 8:57:19 PM

  • Approximate Purchase Date: Within a week
  • Budget Range: ~$1,000 before rebates
  • System Usage from Most to Least Important: internet, MS Office, Photoshop, light gaming (mostly flash)
  • Parts Not Required: I already have a monitor (24" Dell), keyboard, mouse, speakers, OS (Win7 x64), all other sw.
  • Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com
  • Country of Origin: USA
  • Parts Preferences: i5-2500K, mini tower
  • Overclocking: Maybe in a few years as things slow down
  • SLI or Crossfire: No
  • Monitor Resolution: 1920x1200
  • Additional Comments: Library quiet or better (doesn't have to be silent)

    Hi everyone,

    First of all, thank you for a great site and community! What a resource!

    This is my 4th build (yeah, old geezer). I try to make my kits last 6 to 8 years with minimal upgrades, save for some RAM or new technology (USB, optical, etc. in the past).

    It's been a while since I've done this, and how things have changed! My thoughts:

  • I'm most concerned about my choice of PSU. Is it enough? Is it good?
  • I'm going with a mATX because I don't need a big tower. I'm not thrilled with the case, but it seems to be the best value.
  • I plan on SSD for the OS and HDD RAID 1 (mirror) for storage.
  • Budget is not a concern, but I think I can build something really good for around a grand that will last me through my next divorce. :hello: 

    Here's what I've been able to piece together:

  • CPU - Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52500K
  • MB - ASUS P8P67-M PRO LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard
  • GPU - ASUS ENGT430/DI/1GD3(LP) GeForce GT 430 (Fermi) 1GB 128-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready Low Profile Ready Video Card
  • RAM - G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL
  • SDD - Corsair Performance 3 Series CSSD-P364GB2-BRKT 2.5" 64GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
  • HDD - (2) Western Digital Caviar Black WD5002AALX 500GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
  • OPT - HP Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM SATA 24X Multiformat DVD Writer
  • Case - HEC 6K28BB8F Black 0.8mm SECC Steel MicroATX Mini Tower Computer Case
  • PSU - APEX AL-D500EXP 500W ATX12V Power Supply

    Total cost right now is around $950.

    Looking forward to your thoughts, and thank you!

    Pete
    January 28, 2011 9:24:34 PM

    I don't believe APEX is a very reputable brand, I've never heard of them other than on Need for Speed but then again. I don't live in the USA.
    Yes, it's powerful enough.

    Good build, GT430 isn't very good but as you said; Office PC.
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    Best solution

    January 29, 2011 11:11:10 AM

    There are three things in that build which I would not want if I wanted a quiet computer. The first is a graphics card (at least if it has a fan - any fan), which I also think is unnecessary for your build, you would be better off using the processor graphics on the i5-2500K, altho you would have to get a H67 motherboard thereby reliquishing the possibility of overclocking.

    The second is a Caviar Black, which being 7200RPM for a storage drive is not a good idea imo, especially if the rest of the build is going to be very quiet. So unless the case has good HDD vibration dampening etc I would think that a 5400RPM drive would be the better option and more suited to what you are doing and be fast enough? Also SATA 6.0Gbps is pretty much wasted on mechanical drives.
    WD Caviar Green WD5000AADS $50
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
    Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 500GB $50
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
    WD Caviar Green WD6400AARS $55
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

    The third is having a power supply which has not been shown to be quiet. And that's before you consider whether it's any good or safe to use, considering that I know nothing about it I can't recommend it. Here's two better options, as they have known efficiency and have been tested and shown to be high quality:
    OCZ StealthXStream II 500W 80Plus $50 ($15 rebate)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
    Antec Earthwatts Green EA-380D 80Plus Bronze ($40)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
    You will need to already have or buy a power cord for this unit. The Anandtech review showed that it was quite good at being quiet, even at full load despite using an 80mm fan. http://www.anandtech.com/show/3902/antec-earthwatts-ea-...
    This gets bundled with the Antec 4482, which might be a case that you would be interested in.

    I also think you might be missing an aftermarket heatsink, a good one will be much quieter than the stock Intel one, you can of course build it with the Intel stock to see if the noise level is acceptable to you.
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    February 7, 2011 1:20:46 PM

    Best answer selected by petesv650.
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    February 7, 2011 1:23:10 PM

    Thanks for the feedback, guys. I ended up going with an i5. I got lucky...I was literally about to place my order when the SB news broke.

    Anyway, I'm happy with my new system. It's fast, albeit a little louder than I wanted. I'll swap a few fans out and I should be good.
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