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So I have my dream PC, Now what?

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February 14, 2011 1:05:50 PM

Hey,

I just want to take a second to say hello to everyone. This is my first post here :) 

I just finished assembling my new PC which I have to say is by far the best one I have had to date. The funny thing is I found the most enjoyable part of assembling a new PC is actually researching and ordering the parts. I am now spending this cold Monday morning perusing the web looking for fun accessories to complement my machine. What are some unique and interesting things some of you have for your computers? It doesn’t necessarily have to useful, I just have some cash left over burning a hole in my pocket :na:  . Any comments and criticisms welcome!

My build: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tvBPwad4inw

i7 950
ASUS Rampage Formula mobo
24 GB Mushkin Enhanced Blackline Frostbyte
120GB SSD
2TB Sata3 Slave
GTX 580x2 Sli
850w psu
HAF X Tower
Win7 Pro 64bit

Cheers!


More about : dream

a c 90 B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 1:24:41 PM

Nice system.
banscare said:
which I have to say is by far the best one I have had to date
If you hadn't been able to say that then you wouldn't have done it right ;) 

Hmmmmmmmm....... how much cash left over? I'm sure we won't mind spending it.

What are you using for a monitor?

Nvidia 3d Vision Surround
a b B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 1:30:11 PM

I have Nvidia 3D Vision and it's pretty cool, but not *entirely* useful. However, it does add an incredible amount of depth to games that enable stereo 3D well (Just Cause 2 looks awesome in 3D at max settings).

You could get some crazy LEDs and LED fans if that's your things.

If you REALLY like researching things and spending money, you could look into watercooling your system. It'll take a couple of months to get all of the required information, but it will be worth it if you're patient and do it properly. Then you could OC those 580s even further.

I could go on forever on how to spend money :D 
Related resources
February 14, 2011 1:41:00 PM

WR2 said:
Nice system. If you hadn't been able to say that then you wouldn't have done it right ;) 

Hmmmmmmmm....... how much cash left over? I'm sure we won't mind spending it.

What are you using for a monitor?
http://www.nvidia.com/docs/IO/89510/multiple_displays.jpg
Nvidia 3d Vision Surround


Yo! I was thinking about this myself. I had the Samsung MD230X3 Eyefinity set up but I ended up bringing it back and went with a single Samsung sync master with 5mil:1 and a 2ms responce time because I found the picture on the Eyefinity was just terrible. I am not entirely familure with the technology but am I able to set up some kind of eyefinity config with a couple more syncmasters? Would I just need a special cord? I have about 1100 bucks to play with.
February 14, 2011 1:46:26 PM

boiler1990 said:
I have Nvidia 3D Vision and it's pretty cool, but not *entirely* useful. However, it does add an incredible amount of depth to games that enable stereo 3D well (Just Cause 2 looks awesome in 3D at max settings).

You could get some crazy LEDs and LED fans if that's your things.

If you REALLY like researching things and spending money, you could look into watercooling your system. It'll take a couple of months to get all of the required information, but it will be worth it if you're patient and do it properly. Then you could OC those 580s even further.

I could go on forever on how to spend money :D 


Yo! I have to pass on 3D, I really don’t have a reason other than I prefer without it. LED's, again are not my thing. BUT water cooling my video cards would be a great option I have never thought about. My gpu temps are steady between 45-50 Celsius, as far as I know that’s pretty respectable. When installing a water block on a gpu is it mounted on the top or front of the card? I ask because if they are mounted on the front wouldn’t that be tricky to fit because the cards are so close together in SLi mode?

Thanks!
a c 90 B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 1:47:39 PM

What model of Samsung did you end up with?
Eyefinty is the AMD/ATI version of Nvidia Surround which is what you want to use.
You can have profiles based on your activities.
3 separate screens for multitasking and a single large 'virtual monitor' for gaming, etc.
a c 90 B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 1:49:41 PM

The water block is mounted right over the GPU chip and video RAM chips.
The blocks themselves are fairly slim, in most cases slimmer than the cooling shroud & fan you'll need to remove.
February 14, 2011 2:18:40 PM

How are you liking the HAF X case? That's on my list for my new build (once the 2600K and motherboards hit the shelves again - Intel is supposed to start shipping the replacement support chips today, so hopefully not too much longer to wait!)

Question - I am also looking at 2 x 580's in SLI, and someone in the forums here mentioned that 850W PSU wasn't enough to drive those cards - what drove your decision to go with the 850, and is there a reason you didn't go bigger on the PSU?

Thanks!
a b B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 2:32:57 PM

banscare said:
Yo! I have to pass on 3D, I really don’t have a reason other than I prefer without it. LED's, again are not my thing. BUT water cooling my video cards would be a great option I have never thought about. My gpu temps are steady between 45-50 Celsius, as far as I know that’s pretty respectable. When installing a water block on a gpu is it mounted on the top or front of the card? I ask because if they are mounted on the front wouldn’t that be tricky to fit because the cards are so close together in SLi mode?

Thanks!


You have to remove the stock cooling assembly to attach the waterblocks. They make all sorts of stuff for GPUs; full blocks (GPU + VRAM chips), GPU-only blocks (need separate heat dissipaters for VRAM chips), and the list goes on. You'll learn about these as you research them.

The HAF X is a reasonably easy case to liquid cool with, since you can handle a big radiator on the top, so you should be able to cool pretty easily.
a b B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 2:36:02 PM

Forget all the doo-dads and whoser-watsits.
None of that stuff will really make much difference. But two things I would advise:
#1) Before you bother messing w/ liquid cooling, move the case so that your desk isn't covering up your side intake fan.
#2) Get a UPS. If your investing that kind of money in a gaming rig you should have had one long ago.

Also, as a side note, you might just want to save that extra money and maybe take your significant other out to a nice dinner.
a c 90 B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 2:38:49 PM

@ major_major
2 x 580s SLI is a good match for most people if you're not going wild with overclocking, case mods, etc.
(and maybe running Furmark & multitasking)
620watts AC drawn from the wall socket with a 85% efficient PSU means the system is drawing about 527watts DC power. And PSUs are rated in DC power.
Even 777w with a 90% efficient PSU would mean right around 700w DC. With a Silver 80Plus 85% PSU that's 660w DC.



February 14, 2011 2:39:21 PM

major_major said:
How are you liking the HAF X case? That's on my list for my new build (once the 2600K and motherboards hit the shelves again - Intel is supposed to start shipping the replacement support chips today, so hopefully not too much longer to wait!)

Question - I am also looking at 2 x 580's in SLI, and someone in the forums here mentioned that 850W PSU wasn't enough to drive those cards - what drove your decision to go with the 850, and is there a reason you didn't go bigger on the PSU?

Thanks!


Hey! As far as I thought 850w was more than enough, if anyone knows otherwise please let me know! I have not had any power consumption issues. I have been running for about 3 weeks. Now that were on the subject, do you know of a program that monitors each devices power consumption?
February 14, 2011 2:42:08 PM

CopaMundial said:
Forget all the doo-dads and whoser-watsits.
None of that stuff will really make much difference. But two things I would advise:
#1) Before you bother messing w/ liquid cooling, move the case so that your desk isn't covering up your side intake fan.
#2) Get a UPS. If your investing that kind of money in a gaming rig you should have had one long ago.

Also, as a side note, you might just want to save that extra money and maybe take your significant other out to a nice dinner.



Hey! Thanks for your input. I have a 1400va smart UPS. Its hidden behind my sub in the video hehe
The case is in a pretty good position but I agree I could move it further from my desk to optimize the 33mil fan intake.
February 14, 2011 2:44:49 PM

boiler1990 said:
You have to remove the stock cooling assembly to attach the waterblocks. They make all sorts of stuff for GPUs; full blocks (GPU + VRAM chips), GPU-only blocks (need separate heat dissipaters for VRAM chips), and the list goes on. You'll learn about these as you research them.

The HAF X is a reasonably easy case to liquid cool with, since you can handle a big radiator on the top, so you should be able to cool pretty easily.


Hey! Yea I really like my water cooler for my cpu so I going to start looking into gpu coolers. I don't think I really need the extra cooling but hell, why not right? It looks like I have to do some reading.
a b B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 2:50:11 PM

If you head over to the LC section and state you're interested in a GPU-only LC loop, they'll get you started. Another good place is the overclockers.com forums (not to advertise another site, but they did help me significantly in my research since a large percentage of Ocers there LC).
February 14, 2011 2:50:28 PM

WR2 said:
What model of Samsung did you end up with?
Eyefinty is the AMD/ATI version of Nvidia Surround which is what you want to use.
You can have profiles based on your activities.
3 separate screens for multitasking and a single large 'virtual monitor' for gaming, etc.


Hey!
I have: Samsung BX2431 24IN Widescreen LED LCD Monitor 1920X1080 2MS 5M:1DC 2HDMI VGA

Two more would be pretty amazing I think. My secondary monitor I have now is pretty basic.
February 14, 2011 2:55:08 PM

Thanks for all the great input everyone
I think the cash is going towards display and watercooling for my gpus :) 
If there is any cash left over I'll take the missis out for a happy meal lol
cheers!
a c 90 B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 2:57:37 PM

Having been a multi-monitor user for many years I'd never be happy again with just a single monitor.

Two more would be well within your budget. You might think about getting one that can pivot into Portrait mode.
More useful for work than play but I'd never give up my 1200x1920 work screen.

February 14, 2011 3:01:48 PM

Hey, WR2 and banscare -

I was going off of JackNaylorPE's reply to my thread at http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/304334-31-help-choose...

He pointed me to Nvidia's site which shows nothing lower than a 900W for dual 580 SLI setup: http://www.slizone.com/object/slizone_build_psu.html

However, I've heard of plenty of people running 2 x 580's with an 850 with no issues...I'm going to have to do some more research for my build and see if I need more power or not. Thanks for the charts and info!

Oh, and just to keep this on topic - if you're a gamer, perhaps a few of these accessories could take care of your excess cash problem :) 

http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/top-5-unusual-pc-gaming-pe...
a c 90 B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 3:13:20 PM

banscare said:
and watercooling for my gpus :) 
How much extra power is the watercooling setup going to draw from your PSU?
a b B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 3:13:47 PM

If you're looking into a good 850W PSU, I would think the Corsair 850HX and 850AX PSU would be able to handle the 580s easily. They supply 850W of continuous power (like my 650W Antec in my sig), which is probably why you can use some 850W PSUs. I know the 850HX can support 3x470s as well (looking into that as an upgrade path).
a b B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 3:15:34 PM

WR2 said:
How much extra power is the watercooling setup going to draw from your PSU?


Good point - the pumps and extra fans may tax it too much. If the PSU can handle it, there's no chance of an OC.
a c 90 B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 3:19:42 PM

major_major said:
He pointed me to Nvidia's site which shows nothing lower than a 900W for dual 580 SLI setup: http://www.slizone.com/object/slizone_build_psu.html
For legal reasons you're probably not going to get any company to tell you the minimum PSU needed to safely run a gaming rig.
As you see above they can never tell what any individual is going to want to do with his system. Extra case lights and fans, powerful TEC cooling systems, volt mods on the GPUs, just all the different sorts of shenanigans an unwise individual might choose to make.

a c 90 B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 3:20:55 PM

I think he could manage a reasonable GPU water cooling system in his power budget but I personally don't see much advantage for him in doing so.
a c 90 B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 3:24:40 PM


a b B Homebuilt system
February 14, 2011 6:53:56 PM



I have actually seen that used - one of my friends had a realistic racing sim and used that with it. It's a little disorienting at first, but once your body gets used to it, it is incredible.
February 15, 2011 11:09:58 AM

boiler1990 said:
Good point - the pumps and extra fans may tax it too much. If the PSU can handle it, there's no chance of an OC.



Do you guys think I should get a better power supply? I should be able to just pay the difference. I did a lot of reading up on water cooling last night and I'm pretty interested. Could it be because of the power supply I can't seem to over clock any higher than 3.5g without it shutting down?
a c 90 B Homebuilt system
February 15, 2011 12:26:33 PM

banscare said:
Could it be because of the power supply I can't seem to over clock any higher than 3.5g without it shutting down?
Highly unlikely.
You're still on the stock cooler, right? What temps are you getting right before the shutdowns/
Find a Core i7 overclock / tweaking guide you like.

Best solution

a c 90 B Homebuilt system
February 15, 2011 12:40:02 PM
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I'm not a fan of the watercooling cost, complexity and maintenance requirements.
You pay a lot for a just a small improvement in cooling performance.
It makes more sense for systems that have challenges in moving air in and out of the case (custom cases, cases stuff in cabinets) but not for a HAF-X. And it some circumstances it helps getting to a quieter system if you pay attention the where the radiator goes and the fans used.

IMO, it looks/sounds better than it really is.
February 15, 2011 12:46:52 PM

WR2 said:
Highly unlikely.
You're still on the stock cooler, right? What temps are you getting right before the shutdowns/
Find a Core i7 overclock / tweaking guide you like.


Hello again!

I have the Corsair Cooling Hydro Series H70. Aperently its integrated pump and reservoir is sealed for zero maintenance and improved leakage protection lol
My core temps range from 35-45 degrees. I think the case has a large part to play in the cooling too. Its always cool to the touch. It also helps that I'm cold blooded and never have the heat on.

a c 90 B Homebuilt system
February 15, 2011 1:10:36 PM

With those CPU temps and that cooler it's not a heat related limitation.

What were your BLCK and QPI clock settings when your OC' attempt failed?
February 15, 2011 1:20:31 PM

WR2 said:
With those CPU temps and that cooler it's not a heat related limitation.

What were your BLCK and QPI clock settings when your OC' attempt failed?



So you don't think it's related to the power supply? I don't know what the settings were because the bios has an "Extreme Tweaker " menu with three presets and I have only tried them without really paying attention to the clock settings.

Default (auto)
3.5
and extreme (3.75)

Right now its set at the medium setting but when I try to bump it up to extreme it just powers down.
a c 90 B Homebuilt system
February 15, 2011 1:41:40 PM

With the video cards using just idle power? Hard to imagine it could be power related.
I don't know enough about the auto-overclocking options to have any suggestions.

But you can reasonably expect to have a safe and stable 4Ghz OC out of your CPU and MB once you learn the arcane secrets of the BLCK, QPI, Uncore & Vcore .
February 15, 2011 1:46:44 PM

WR2 said:
With the video cards using just idle power? Hard to imagine it could be power related.
I don't know enough about the auto-overclocking options to have any suggestions.



Good point.
I will gather more information.

Have a good day!
a b B Homebuilt system
February 15, 2011 3:58:00 PM

WR2 said:
I'm not a fan of the watercooling cost, complexity and maintenance requirements.
You pay a lot for a just a small improvement in cooling performance.
It makes more sense for systems that have challenges in moving air in and out of the case (custom cases, cases stuff in cabinets) but not for a HAF-X. And it some circumstances it helps getting to a quieter system if you pay attention the where the radiator goes and the fans used.

IMO, it looks/sounds better than it really is.


From what I've read, it seems that you get more value out of the LC system if you're overclocking, especially GPUs. I plan to do it to OC my GTX 470s even further than I have now (not a ton). They usually hit 65-70C when running a SLI-enabled game, or ~80C + when running a single GPU game.

You also have to set it up right, use the right fans and radiators, specifically. Cases like the HAF X include easier mountings for radiators than most other cases do.
February 15, 2011 11:08:19 PM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=02D-000...
Heh... that'll take care of your extra cash...

Seriously, though, it's as if nobody cares at all about sound anymore. Even if you don't spend $600, it's no less important than the monitor you choose or the peripherals you buy. Since I'm fairly sure you don't want to spend that much on a headphone setup, here's something a little more realistic:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
...as for headphones, I don't know what to suggest. Maybe you'd rather have a speaker system. Either way, the best thing I can say is to go try some out and pick what you like the best. It's like picking a new mouse. :D 

Just a suggestion. I know that I couldn't live without the best audio I can possibly get.

Sorry for being off-topic, too... I didn't really read the whole part about your watercooling adventures before I said that. :sarcastic: 
a b B Homebuilt system
February 16, 2011 2:07:11 AM

for sound the AKG K701s are great more for classical and jazz, buy from amazon much cheaper
a b B Homebuilt system
February 16, 2011 3:01:48 AM

Yeah, I was gonna say to buy surround sound speakers for the computer.

I don't really get why noone seems to care about sound either. Though I don't have much money to put into it, I bought this yesterday:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I'm going to use the 2.1 setup I have now as my front left and right, use those as center and rears/surrounds. The 2.1 setup I have now are the HP 30-watt ones you can get off of amazon, they're actually quite amazing.

And all these speakers will only be used during decidedly PC games (mouse, etc. needed)

For games to be played with a xbox 360 controller, I just bought a 25 foot HDMI cable that will run to my HDTV, and it's receiver the Onkyo S5300. So now I will have some sort of surround either way. But now I'm tapped out and will have to use onboard mobo sound for PC games and onboard graphics card sound for TV games (not that I can think of a way for a discrete soundcard to be used with HDMI anyway). Though I don't really have a problem with that, and it still sounds better than it did before.
a b B Homebuilt system
February 16, 2011 3:12:38 AM

I spent literally $10 on my speakers (lowest end creatives) they're just placeholders though once I manage to get $100 I'll buy klipsch promedia 2.1s (off eBay)
February 16, 2011 10:43:09 AM

Hey,

Now that we are on the subject I have a couple questions about speakers. I will be the first to admit I don't really have an ear for quality. I heard somewhere that a good 2.1 set up is better than a so/so 7.1 set up? Whats the best name in computer speakers? Is there a Cadillac of speakers?
a b B Homebuilt system
February 16, 2011 2:09:36 PM

If you don't have the best ears I recommend the klipsch promedia 2.1s, for audio in speakers klipsch, logitech, polk, some altec lansing all are good brands
a b B Homebuilt system
February 16, 2011 8:10:00 PM

how come you like those promedias that much? I looked them up on amazon, and it looks like it's out of production and has been for years.
a b B Homebuilt system
February 16, 2011 10:09:42 PM

read a couple good reviews, there was one on tom's a bit back (a month or so)
February 28, 2011 10:37:10 AM

Best answer selected by Banscare.
!