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Need help in finalizing system build

Last response: in Systems
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May 9, 2011 10:35:31 AM

Proposed system specs:

Intel Core i7 2600K 3.4GHz
Gigabyte P67A-UD3R-B3
Kingston DDR3 1333 CL 9 KVR1333D3N9/4G (8GB) 4GB x 2
Intel 320 Series 120GB
Samsung F3 1TB
Coolermaster Hyper 212+ or 3R System IceAge Prima Boss II
Asus HD6970 2GB EAH6970 DCII
Coolermaster CM690 II Advanced
Seasonic X-660 660W
Asustek Xonar Essence STX

Currently no plans for overclocking!

The main components I have issue with right now are the RAM, PC case, and CPU cooler. I plan to do some extensive multi-tasking ie. running multiple tabs in my browser, streaming video/music, torrenting stuff, with a few MS office documents open. Will my RAM set up be sufficient for this? I want it to be absolutely lag free. Of course I'm also going to be doing some gaming, mostly MMO first person shooters that aren't too graphically intensive, and also games like Portal 2, Assassin's Creed II, Dawn of War II.

I'm open to more suggestions for good and reliable CPU coolers also. My first choice was the noctua NH-D14 but since I won't be overclocking I've decided to go for a more affordable cooling solution.

And finally, with regards to the casing. I'm looking for alternatives with good build quality and cooling. I have heard that the panels of the K62 don't fit that nicely together and I don't really like the idea of that. The front panel USB and headphone jacks are also not located on the front at all but rather on the top, making them a potential sink hole for dust. I'd prefer a case that has these on the front panel itself.

All input is welcome! Thanks.

Edit: Updated case choice
May 9, 2011 12:31:57 PM

Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus CPU Cooler! rather you OC or not it's the best air cooler for under 30 bucks (imo)
switching to Vertex 3 will add 6gps capability. Vertex 2 is 3gbps
Go with the reference 6950 (one with dual bios switch) and just flash it to 6970.
try to find some 1600 ram, if your mobo supports it (which it does) mind as well utilize the benefits of it.
As far as cases, i usually don't comment on them. Just too many to choose from. Lian-Li is a reputable company, probably the most respected. Just look around for one that fits your personal size/feature list. $100 budget for one is good.
any particular reason you chose to go with the Asustek Xonar Essence STX vs onboard? MMO's usually are not audiophile friendly. I have never used anything but onboard and have had great quality audio, then again I'm not an audiophile either.
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May 9, 2011 1:43:35 PM

If you're not going to overclock, just use the stock cooler. I would recommend going with the CM Hyper 212+ though as overclocking is very easy and you might change your mind down the road. It's easier to install this when you first build your rig.

8GB of memory is plenty. If you find yourself lacking, then add 8GB more later. 1333MHz is fine. You won't notice any difference other than in your bank account. Just get 1.5v sticks.

I would recommend Intel over OCZ for an SSD. OCZ seems to have some reliability issues, more so than the class average.

You can't go wrong with a Cooler Master case. The HAF 922 is $100 and a good bet.

Onboard audio has vastly improved, it'll be sufficient.

I would suggest a 750w PSU in case you decide you want to put a second GPU in your rig later on. Seasonic is a great PSU manufacturer, although they make Corsair and XFX PSUs also (they're rebranded and they cost less).
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May 9, 2011 3:07:07 PM

I agree with statements above,
But I'm going to suggest the obvious and say go i5-2500k. the 2600k and 2500k are almost exactly the same, except the 2600k has hyper threading. Hyper threading is only utilized in VERY processor intensive tasks, such as high level/professional video rendering or CAD. You can save $100 by switching to the 2500k.
Also, do you know the benefits of an SSD? it only improves boot times/startup times. I also suggest switching to the samsung Spinpoint f3, it's a fast and cheap drive.
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May 9, 2011 4:19:41 PM

^ Good point about the 2500k. I didn't mention it because of the 'extensive multitasking' and 'absolutely lag free' comments the OP mentioned. :sarcastic: 
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May 9, 2011 4:41:15 PM

striker410 said:
I agree with statements above,
But I'm going to suggest the obvious and say go i5-2500k. the 2600k and 2500k are almost exactly the same, except the 2600k has hyper threading. Hyper threading is only utilized in VERY processor intensive tasks, such as high level/professional video rendering or CAD. You can save $100 by switching to the 2500k.
Also, do you know the benefits of an SSD? it only improves boot times/startup times. I also suggest switching to the samsung Spinpoint f3, it's a fast and cheap drive.


Yep the SSD is there precisely to boost start up times. Hee. And wait, correct me if I'm wrong, I was under the impression that if I installed select programmes/ games on it, they would load faster as well?

And well, the i7 is basically a frivolous want. I'm just indulging myself here a little. Whoops.
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May 9, 2011 4:54:02 PM

Yes SSD will load game levels faster if games are installed onto it. Also allows simultaneous opening of multiple apps with no impact on speed.

That's one thing people tend to forget for heavy multitaskers. On my office PC I have half of MS Office, Premier, Illustrator, photoshop as well as browser all load on startup. Takes no more time than if I had premier alone booting, and takes less time than clicking on each of the above to launch them all separately. On a mechanical HD, all this would increase boot time by minutes.

If you don't plan on overclocking why are you grabbing a P67 board and a k processor then? You can save money by going H67 and non k. OC is very easy on SB though and does offer a significant performance increase.

Also, Z68 is coming out very soon. In fact, you can already buy the mobo's some places online.
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May 10, 2011 4:45:57 AM

Excuse me for the duplicate threads floating around.. I'd attempted to post it a few times but I kept getting error messages so I thought it wasn't going up.. apparently it was. Sorry!

Device Unknown said:
Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus CPU Cooler! rather you OC or not it's the best air cooler for under 30 bucks (imo)
switching to Vertex 3 will add 6gps capability. Vertex 2 is 3gbps
Go with the reference 6950 (one with dual bios switch) and just flash it to 6970.
try to find some 1600 ram, if your mobo supports it (which it does) mind as well utilize the benefits of it.
As far as cases, i usually don't comment on them. Just too many to choose from. Lian-Li is a reputable company, probably the most respected. Just look around for one that fits your personal size/feature list. $100 budget for one is good.
any particular reason you chose to go with the Asustek Xonar Essence STX vs onboard? MMO's usually are not audiophile friendly. I have never used anything but onboard and have had great quality audio, then again I'm not an audiophile either.


Well not so much to quality, I was looking rather to get accurate 3D positional audio and the STX came to strongly recommended on forums and such so I thought I'd go with that.

nd_hunter said:


I would recommend Intel over OCZ for an SSD. OCZ seems to have some reliability issues, more so than the class average.



Seriously? Care to elaborate?

banthracis said:
Yes SSD will load game levels faster if games are installed onto it. Also allows simultaneous opening of multiple apps with no impact on speed.

That's one thing people tend to forget for heavy multitaskers. On my office PC I have half of MS Office, Premier, Illustrator, photoshop as well as browser all load on startup. Takes no more time than if I had premier alone booting, and takes less time than clicking on each of the above to launch them all separately. On a mechanical HD, all this would increase boot time by minutes.

If you don't plan on overclocking why are you grabbing a P67 board and a k processor then? You can save money by going H67 and non k. OC is very easy on SB though and does offer a significant performance increase.

Also, Z68 is coming out very soon. In fact, you can already buy the mobo's some places online.


I might wait for the Z68.. not that I need it exactly but since it's coming out so soon why not? :bounce: 
Got the P67 boards because in my research they came up more often than the H67 so I'm kinda more familiar with them. Also more people had them so it was easier to gauge performance and reliability and such. I was told that the 2600K is in fact faster than 2600? I've also seen benchmarks online that place the K version slightly above the non-K. can anyone verify this? personally I don't see why it would be faster, actually am just grabbing one for the heck of it. if not, then I'll probably switch back to non-K.
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May 10, 2011 4:49:06 AM

The K refers to an unlocked multiplier, meaning super easy to overclock to high levels. Also, the p67 allows overclocking, so a K series chip and p67 is the current killer combo.
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May 10, 2011 5:02:24 AM

striker410 said:
The K refers to an unlocked multiplier, meaning super easy to overclock to high levels. Also, the p67 allows overclocking, so a K series chip and p67 is the current killer combo.


Yeah. But if you're not overclocking, it's been floated to me that the K version is still faster than the non-K. I'm wondering how true this is with both at stock clock speeds?
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May 10, 2011 5:37:12 AM

The K is only 15 bucks more. So why the heck not?
The non K versions are aimed at OEMs like DELL, HP etc.
A custom builder should never go for anything but a K. Especially since the price premium is so low.

GPU
The 6970s price premium isn't worth it above the 6950 2GB.
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May 10, 2011 5:51:15 AM

gametstr said:
The K is only 15 bucks more. So why the heck not?
The non K versions are aimed at OEMs like DELL, HP etc.
A custom builder should never go for anything but a K. Especially since the price premium is so low.

GPU
The 6970s price premium isn't worth it above the 6950 2GB.


Would I do better with a GTX 570 then? Or should I save on the sound card and get a GTX580? Lol tempting.
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May 10, 2011 6:13:25 AM

Well its really up to u.
the 6970 is about on par with the 570 at a much lower price.

If u can find a 6950 2GB reference design (with a BIOS switch) model that would be the ideal choice. should come for about 240$ after rebates?
while the 570 costs above 300$.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/best-graphics-card-...
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May 10, 2011 6:21:31 AM

gametstr said:
Well its really up to u.
the 6970 is about on par with the 570 at a much lower price.

If u can find a 6950 2GB reference design (with a BIOS switch) model that would be the ideal choice. should come for about 240$ after rebates?
while the 570 costs above 300$.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/best-graphics-card-...


Well I live in Singapore and the 570 actually retails for slightly cheaper than the 6970. I heard that the current batches of 6950s can't be flashed to 6970. Hmmm.
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May 10, 2011 6:30:19 AM

really? 570 cheaper than 6970? But what 6970 are u looking at exactly is it a factory overclocked non reference design model?
Anyway either one is a good choice.
I believe the 6950s can be flashed but its a tad bit trickier than before.
Good luck.
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May 10, 2011 12:20:46 PM

gametstr said:
really? 570 cheaper than 6970? But what 6970 are u looking at exactly is it a factory overclocked non reference design model?
Anyway either one is a good choice.
I believe the 6950s can be flashed but its a tad bit trickier than before.
Good luck.


Yep 570 is still slightly cheaper than the 6970 here.

the 6970 I'm looking at is the Asus Direct CU II one with a slight factory overclock over the reference card.
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May 10, 2011 12:37:16 PM

Okay I have to ask.. I'm currently looking at the G.Skill Ripjaw 1600 CL7 8GB kit. thinking of doing away with my sound card and bumping up the RAM instead.

Would this be an overkill or will I see performance improvements while multi-tasking and such? I probably won't be doing any overclocking.
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May 10, 2011 3:21:54 PM

You really only need 4GB, as unless you are doing rendering or something you won't use all of that 4GB most likely. It seems however, that most people are getting 8GB just so they won't run out of ram in the years to come.
I would also just get CL 9 ram, as CL 7 is too expensive.
And yes, drop the soundcard. Most motherboards have 7.1 audio, so it's very good.
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May 10, 2011 6:37:13 PM

More memory is more of a benefit than faster memory. Just get 1333 CL9 and save some money. You won't notice the difference...we're talking like 1-2% here.
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May 10, 2011 7:12:48 PM

freakzoid said:

nd_hunter wrote :



I would recommend Intel over OCZ for an SSD. OCZ seems to have some reliability issues, more so than the class average.



Seriously? Care to elaborate?


Take a look at some of the Feedback here Home > Computer Hardware > Hard Drives > SSD (x) > OCZ Technology (x) > Interface Type : SATA II (x)

I don't have the drives, but from what I have seen its mostly complaints about the SATA II 25nm Nand refresh not performing as well as the 32nm Nand that was used when the drives got great reviews, DOA or short lifespans, or no problems at all (with higher% of the first two lately.)

Here's an article from Feb OCZ’s 25nm Vertex 2 Performance Issues
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May 10, 2011 7:34:27 PM

spas707 said:
Take a look at some of the Feedback here Home > Computer Hardware > Hard Drives > SSD (x) > OCZ Technology (x) > Interface Type : SATA II (x)

I don't have the drives, but from what I have seen its mostly complaints about the SATA II 25nm Nand refresh not performing as well as the 32nm Nand that was used when the drives got great reviews, DOA or short lifespans, or no problems at all (with higher% of the first two lately.)

Here's an article from Feb OCZ’s 25nm Vertex 2 Performance Issues


I believe Intel is still using 32nm tech. When I was researching an SSD, I was planning on a Vertex 2 and went into OCZ's forum to see what was being said and how to best configure my system for it. I was surprised at all the negative feedback that was present. DOA units and short lifespans (2-3 months if memory serves) seemed pretty common.
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