Red and Black Gaming Build

Approximate Purchase Date: April 2011

Budget: $1250-$1750

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, software development, media center

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS, cd/dvd drive, sound card, hdd, case

Existing Components:

Keyboard: Logitech G15
Mouse: Logitech G5
Monitor: Samsung SynchMaster P2350
Speakers: Logitech Z5300
OS: Windows 7
HDD: Old 250 GB HDD (plan to upgrade to SSD when prices go down)
Sound Card: Creative X-Fi Titanium Fatality Professional
Case: Antec DF-85

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: NCIX. However I will not necessarily get NCIX's prices. I have to purchase this computer from a retailer in my province ( but they order all their stuff from NCIX.

Country of Origin: Canada

Parts Preferences: Antec PSU, nVidia Video Cards, ASUS motherboard

Overclocking: No (never will)

SLI or Crossfire: Not right away, but want to leave SLI as an option in the future

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

Additional Comments: A priority is for it to be quiet. Something else I'd like to do (since I noticed most of the parts I wanted fall in this category) is for the parts to be Red and Black or All Black to match the case. I am willing to pay extra and to lose performance if the components all match.

Components to Purchase:

Video Card: ASUS GeForce GTX 560 Ti DirectCU II Fermi 830MHZ 1GB GDDR5

I like this card because it is an nVidia, ASUS to go with the mobo, is supposed to be very quiet and is black and red.
My only concern with this card is if two of them will fit in my motherboard/case because the card takes up two back panel slots (for extra cooling). Not sure if many will agree on the selection of this card so I am open to suggestion (EVGA has some nice black and red cards).

PSU: Antec High Current Gamer 900W

I think 900W should be enough for a Dual-SLI build.
I'd prefer to stick with an Antec PS so it matches the case.
This product is black and red and would look fantastic with the DF-85.

Motherboard: ASUS Rampage III Formula Rog X58 DDR3 ATX LGA1366 3PCI-E16 Motherboard

I for sure wanted an ASUS motherboard with SLI capability, SATA 6 GB/s and USB 3.0.
I wasn't necessarily dead set on an Intel processor or the LGA 1366 chip.
But this one is black and red and closely matches what I'm looking for.

CPU: Intel Core i7 950 Quad Core Processor LGA1366 3.06GHZ Bloomfield 8MB 4.8GT/S

I know that the i5's are cheaper and just as good for gaming and that AMD's are better value.
But given my motherboard I don't have much of a choice.
I really want to stick with nVidia for my graphics card and haven't been able to find an ATX motherboard that supports SLI and AMD processors, not to mention one that is ASUS and black and red.
This is the one component I haven't been able to find in black and red / all black, so hopefully the colours (mostly the fan) would not look too out of place.

RAM: Corsair XMS3 DOMINATOR-GT 3X2GB DDR3-2000 CL8-9-8-24 Core i7 Triple Channel Memory Kit W/ Fan

I think 6 GB of RAM is more than enough for anything I'll be doing in the recent future.
Plus, they are black and red and matches the i7 processor.
The fan is a nice touch although I'm not sure if it would make a real difference or just make more noise.
I have heard that Corsair makes good RAM but am open to another brand if it is better and comes in red and black. I am not sold on GSKILL.

I would appreciate any comments/suggestions. Thanks!
5 answers Last reply
More about black gaming build
  1. Do you really need triple channel memory? If not I would suggest the Maximus IV Extreme with a 2500k (or 2600k if you want HT and 2 extra mb of l3 cache). It's red and black like you want and SB is a better performer than bloomfield. I have an EVGA GTX 560Ti BTW and it is awesome!
  2. First off the case.... $179.99 CAD After Mail In Rebate: $155.12* CAD
    Antec Dark Fleet DF-85 Full Tower Gaming Case ATX 12 Drive Bay No PS Top USB3.0 USB Audio

    or... $129.99 CAD
    Coolermaster Haf 922 Mid Tower ATX Case Black 5X5.25 5X3.5INT Front Audio USB eSATA No PSU

    or $90.98 CAD
    Coolermaster Storm Scout Black ATX Tower Case 5X5.25 5X3.5INT 120MM & 140MM Red LED Fan No PSU

    Now for the ftw :sol: $199.99 CAD
    Gigabyte P67A-UD4-B3 ATX LGA1155 P67 DDR3 2PCI-E16 2PCI-E1 2PCI SLI SATA3 USB3.0 Motherboard

    or.. $228.00 CAD
    ASUS Sabertooth P67 P67 LGA1155 DDR3 2PCI-E16 3PCI-E1 1PCI Sandy Bridge B3 Motherboard

    Red RAM h/s of course... $127.01 CAD
    G.SKILL Ripjaws X F3-14900CL9D-8GBXL 8GB 2X4GB DDR3-1866 CL9-10-9-28 Memory

    or... $97.19 CAD
    G.SKILL Ripjaws X F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL 8GB 2X4GB DDR3-1600 CL9-9-9-24 Memory

    or.. $96.97 CAD
    G.SKILL F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL Ripjaws 8GB 2X4GB DDR3-1600 CL9-9-9-24 240PIN DIMM Memory

    Now a Red LED cpu h/s...any Zalman red LED h/s will do...this one down below is an example...and it's a top rated h/s btw.. $59.99 CAD
    Zalman CNPS9900MAX-R Nickel Plated Copper Headsink Red LED 135mm LGA1156 1155 1366 775 AM3 AM2

    PSU...for pushing dual 560's in SLI and o/c, a 750w will do the job and leave plenty of juice to spare... $124.99 CAD
    Antec High Current Gamer 750W 24PIN ATX12V V2.3 Active PFC 80 Plus Bronze SLI Power Supply 135mm Fan

    Now for the cpu... either a 1155 2600K or 1155 2500K. <----- i7 950 vs i7 2600K <----- i7 950 vs i5 2500K
  3. The DF-85 case is one of four made which can accommodate CPX form factor PSU's which, all things being equal, are inherently quieter, cooler and better performing than their ATX counterparts.

    It is completely unmatched by any ATX unit on the market I can think of. You'd have to spend twice as much as this thing costs to find the next best thing, performance wise.

    For the quiet-seeking computer gaming enthusiast, the CP-850 (along with any of the three compatible cases) is something of a godsend. Fantastically stable power, super low noise at any power load, long expected reliability due to excellent cooling, modular cabling, and all at a price that's no higher than many high end 6~700W models.


    I have the DF-85 / CP-850 sitting on the dining room table as I type this, it's the 4th build I have been asked to do with this combo since XMas . The other full tower build was an HAF-X w/ XFX Black Edition 850. Both are impressive combos but both from the build and use standpoint, I much prefer the Antec combo.

    The Asus GFX card is a sound choice. The build upstairs has two of them going in it, which was a last minute change from the 570. Beefier voltage / power controls and performance little better than the 6970 and just below the 570 (at 1920 x 1200). In addition to your color scheme, also keep in mind that ya walk away with a bit f a tech support advantage. If ya have a problem, the MoBo guy's first answer is "It must be ya video card" ..... GFX card guy says "It must be your MoBo". ....when both the same, they can't get away w/ that. As for EVGA, I can tell you from personal experience that EVGA will not honor their warranty if their "factory overclocked" card can not actually run at the factory overclock.

    The Rampage is a wonderful board to work with....but for a gaming machine, the 1366 platform is eclipsed by 1155. The equivalent 1155 board to the R3E is the Maximus IV Extreme .... and yes, it's black and red. It not only can do SLI but can do it at x16 x16 as well as and additional x8 should you decide to add a dedicated PhysX card

    Another outstanding card, built with militarized components is the Sabertooth. It does SLI but only at x8 x8

    I'd put in a 2600k if budget allows, if not a 2500k

    That's a lot of money for CAS 9 RAM. Sticking with your red / black theme, I'd suggest these Redlines:

    Not cause their red, but because at CAS 7, that's one rockin set of RAM. The fan and tall heat sinks are something that should definitely be avoided as it's a sure bet to hit any decent CPU cooler. I agree w/ you about the Ripjaws .... I put them in builds when they were the cheapest but if I can get Corsair or Mushkin for the same price, my experience has been much better there.

    When ya add 2nd card in SLI, pick up one of these:
  4. Will the Maximus IV Extreme fit in the Antec DF-85?
  5. It seems like the Antec DF-85 should have plenty of room but I read somewhere that it does not support EATX motherboards (including the Maximums IV Extreme). Does anyone know for sure if this would fit? If not, would the ASUS P67 Sabretooth (all black) with a 2600K still be better than the Rampage III Formula with an i7 950?
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