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Going for my first build, anything I'm missing?

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May 7, 2011 4:13:45 PM

So, I've always wanted to do a custom build, and doing some research have a preliminary design. I'm sure I didn't research something properly though so would love some feeeback!

Case: ZALMAN Z9 Plus
CPU: i5-2500K
CPU Cooler: COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus
Power Supply: Sunbeam PSU-ECO750-US-BL 750W
Motherboard: ASUS P8P67 EVO
Memory: 8 GB (2 Team Elite 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333)
Optical Drive: LG WH12LS30 LightScribe Support - OEM
Hard Drive: HITACHI Deskstar 7K3000 HDS723020BLA642 (0f12115) 2TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s

Total price is around $825, so not bad assuming I'm not missing anything big. Which leads to my next question.

Now the one thing missing is the graphics card. I'm really confused by this as the CPU boasts integrated graphics, but apparently I couldn't google well enough to find any discussions about just that feature. Also, the a GPU will include the port to connect your monitor to, which obviously the intel chip does not have. Can anyone point me in a direction that explains this? I don't expect to be doing heavy gaming with this computer, so an advanced graphics card isn't necessary, and if possible would like to try out intel's integrated graphics if possible to start (assuming I'm understanding that correctly).

Secondly, aside from the above question, how does everything else look? Is the memory I selected good enough?

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a b B Homebuilt system
May 7, 2011 11:34:35 PM

Welcome newcomer!

You caught on to the screwy stuff going on with Sandybridge integrated graphics. Here is some discussion of the topic: Review sandy-bridge core-i7-2600k core-i5-2500k

The good news is that you do not need as expensive a board to utilize the graphics on the CPU. You need an H67 Northbridge chipset, and these motherboards run a third to half less than their P67 cousins: ASUS P8H67-M LE for $113. This board has HDMI, DVI and VGA ports for your graphics. You can go less expensive still if you do not need the HDMI.

The bad news is, there is very limited overclocking with these boards, so you will not really need your heat sink.

Other than that, your power supply is way over capacity. Also, Sunbeam is not a recommended manufacturer. Your system will only draw 250 watts at most. Here is an alternative: CORSAIR Builder Series CX430 for $30 after rebate

Do you need some RAM with that? You might also want to consider an SSD.


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May 9, 2011 12:16:27 PM

Awesome, and thanks for the answer eloric!

I will take your advice and downgrade the power supply (saving $20). Also, thank you for the pointer on the link. I now understand the chipsets (can't believe more people aren't frustrated by that!). It sounds like I will need a graphics card if I want more than 1680x resolution, but it's still best to get the z68 chipset, which is only a couple of days away. I'll update this thread as soon as those come out.

Regarding SSD, I probably will buy a SSD drive thinking about it some more. Having a super fast boot up, and application startup time would be awesome. I'm going to be running Ubuntu Linux, so will probably put the SSD as / and then put /home, /var, and /tmp onto the SATA drive. I was looking at: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168.... What do you think?

Also, I mentioned this for memory: 8 GB (2 Team Elite 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333). You think that's good enough?
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a b B Homebuilt system
May 9, 2011 7:27:56 PM

Ah, the SATA drive link says it is deactivated - maybe my machine here at work is the problem. Will try again at home this evening. The magic numbers for SSDs are <$2 per GB, around 280 MB/s read, 270 MB/s write.

The memory is fine, sorry I missed it the first time.

Edit: Nope, SSD link is busted.
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May 17, 2011 5:54:46 PM

So, I waited for the Z68 motherboard. Also, Fry's had the screaming deal on the 2600k (only $25 more than the 2500k).

I was going to get the power supply you recommended, but they discontinued them on newegg as well.

Here's what I ended up with:


* I7 2600k
* ZALMAN Z9 Plus Black Steel / Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
* ASRock Z68 Extreme4 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
* OCZ Fatal1ty OCZ550FTY 550W ATX12V v2.2 / EPS12V SLI Ready 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
* Optical Quantum 25GB 4X BD-R 5 Packs Disc Model OBBDR04LT-05
* 2 Kingston HyperX 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 Desktop Memory Model KHX1333C7AD3/4G
* OCZ Agility 3 AGT3-25SAT3-120G 2.5" 120GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
* HITACHI Deskstar 7K3000 HDS723020BLA642 (0f12115) 2TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
* LG Black Super Multi SATA WH12LS30 LightScribe Support - OEM
* COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus RR-B10-212P-G1 "Heatpipe Direct Contact" Long Life Sleeve 120mm CPU Cooler Compatible Intel ..

Pretty sure this will be screaming. Ended up right at $1,200. I wanted to be under $1k, the SSD Drive is what put me over the top, but from what I've heard (10 second boot times, almost instant application load times), it will be worth it!

I'll probably end up on windows as well, as a lot of the HW is new, and I'm not sure how well it will work on Ubuntu Linux.
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a b B Homebuilt system
May 18, 2011 1:44:08 AM

Ubuntu ought to work fine. I dual boot with both OSs on my 80 GB SSD. 10 seconds is for the Windows boot. Ubuntu is faster.
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May 19, 2011 12:25:48 AM

Best answer selected by kwilliams0.
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