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First build ever- $800-$900 Gaming + General Purposes build

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May 17, 2011 10:50:50 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: Within next month or so

Budget Range: Up to around $1000 is pushing it

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, image editing and digital art, internet browsing, watching shows and movies, listening to music, word processing, misc

Parts Not Required: OS, mouse, keyboard, monitors

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Doesn't matter, wherever is good. (but I like Newegg)

Country of Origin: United States

Parts Preferences: Intel

Overclocking: Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe

Monitor Resolution: dual monitors, 1280x1024

Additional Comments: I want this to last for at the least 5 years, preferably longer than that. If it's possible to "future proof" for that long, I'm willing to pay extra now than pay to upgrade or start over later.


====PARTS CHOSEN=====

CASE:
COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Steel + Plastic and Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...




HARD DRIVE:
SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...




POWER SUPPLY:
CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V v2.2 SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



MOBO:
ASUS P8P67 LE (REV 3.0) LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...




CPU+RAM COMBO:
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...




GRAPHICS CARD:
SAPPHIRE 100282XTREME Radeon HD 5850 Xtreme 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity
http://www.amazon.com/Sapphire-Radeon-PCI-Express-Graph...





What am I doing wrong? Is this fine?
Related resources
May 18, 2011 2:30:35 AM

I had to go to the 912 to have a nicer budget but its still a nice big case. This hdd is currently $10 off so its 50, if you still want the spinpoint, its 60 on amazon. http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-Spinpoint-3-5-Inch-Intern... The mobo was only 4x on the second slot, so isn't recommended for cf so I changed to a x8/x8. Changed to the new version of that psu. Ram/cpu same and changed the gpu to a 6950 which still fits in to make a $900 budget. The flash drives are free with the i5/ram and my script is copying everything from the shopping cart. You were missing a cd/dvd drive.

This will allow you to cf the 6950 as well as OC but if you do overclock, you will want a heatsink which is around $30. I'm not exactly sure when you will buy but deals will change pretty much daily so you probably won't get these parts when you purchase.

  • LITE-ON CD/DVD Burner - Bulk Black SATA Model iHAS124-04 - OEM
  • COOLER MASTER HAF 912 RC-912-KKN1 Black SECC/ ABS Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
  • Seagate Barracuda ST31000524AS 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
  • SAPPHIRE 100312-1GSR Radeon HD 6950 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity
  • CORSAIR Enthusiast Series TX750 V2 750W ATX12V v2.31/ EPS12V v2.92 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC High Performance Power ...
  • GIGABYTE GA-Z68A-D3H-B3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
  • Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52500K
  • G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL
  • Patriot X-Porter 2GB Flash Drive (USB2.0 Portable) Model PSF2GUSB
  • Patriot X-Porter 2GB Flash Drive (USB2.0 Portable) Model PSF2GUSB
    TOTAL: $896.55 Shipping Included. Before MIR.
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    May 18, 2011 3:09:12 AM

    Mike3700 said:
    Doesnt look too bad, Video card kinda outdated for about $50 more you can get a 6850 http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...
    I like the ram and cpu choice PLENTY of power GREAT case I have a CoolerMaster full tower and works PERFECT btw what type of games are you talkin?



    I don't have a particular genre(s) that I stick to. I'll probably be playing everything from FPS to strategy to Sims to RPGs. Or if I want to sell my soul, maybe MMOs as well.
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    May 18, 2011 3:35:37 AM

    k1114, great build, you should include the ram, hdd, and psu promo codes.
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    May 18, 2011 4:36:10 AM

    :sweat:  I didn't put in a psu promo, but i found the code. So that makes the total $10 less.
    EMCKEJC29
    EMCKEJG73
    STXBLOWOUT
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    May 18, 2011 4:36:28 AM

    Mike that is false, the 5850>6850 and the scaling is about the same so there would be no justification for paying 50$ more for the same performance.
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    May 18, 2011 5:59:16 AM

    Alright, I updated my build. Instead of copy+pasting links and names, I'm going to just post a screenshot since it's 1 am and I'm feeling lazy.




    @ k1114- I don't plan to crossfire, so I don't think I'll need to change my mobo choice for one with x8/x8 slots.


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    May 18, 2011 6:18:39 AM

    Worth the extra 5$
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
    If you ever plan to Crossfire you'll have the option to do that with 8x/8x instead of 16x/4x. You'll take a small hit with 8x/8x (4%) but with 16x/4x you'll take a 18% hit I believe.
    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/pci-express-scaling...
    It's the 6950 but still...

    If you're NOT CFing then you don't need a 750w for such a low TDP system. You'd need a 550w at most. Not a 750w.
    This instead, save yourself a few bucks.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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    May 18, 2011 6:30:59 AM

    aznshinobi said:
    Worth the extra 5$
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
    If you ever plan to Crossfire you'll have the option to do that with 8x/8x instead of 16x/4x. You'll take a small hit with 8x/8x (4%) but with 16x/4x you'll take a 18% hit I believe.
    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/pci-express-scaling...
    It's the 6950 but still...

    If you're NOT CFing then you don't need a 750w for such a low TDP system. You'd need a 550w at most. Not a 750w.
    This instead, save yourself a few bucks.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...




    You recommended me two motherboards? I think you meant to link me a PSU.
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    May 18, 2011 6:38:44 AM

    Alright, I've been debating whether to crossfire or not in the future and I feel that it's worth it to have space for that possibility. I replaced my motherboard and PSU with the ones that you suggested.

    Is there anything else that I can improve on?
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    May 18, 2011 7:03:27 AM

    Whoa, are these US prices? And what year is it? I must have had amnesia, I spent $280 for a GTX 470 last year and now I see HD 6870s with a powersupply for the same price?

    /wrist

    Tomko, good picks so far.

    AznShinobi, in 5 years I'm guessing he'll upgrade, by then I wonder if they'd sell the same video cards so he can crossfire. Also, at the rate GPUs are advancing, by then I would imagine much better video cards. I thought about this some 5 years ago, if I had gone SLI with 8800 GTX, I don't think two 8800 GTX would outpeform my current GTX 470.
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    May 18, 2011 7:10:16 AM

    You know what, would it be more effective to keep switching out and upgrading single graphics cards or would it be more effective to crossfire in the future with the same graphics cards?
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    May 18, 2011 5:04:36 PM

    I wouldn't get a 1GB model of the 6950. Go for the 2GB model. then u have the option of connecting w/e res monitors plus the potential to perform like a 6970.
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    May 19, 2011 12:24:43 AM

    Well in 5 years, I don't expect them to sell the 6870 at all with the 7xxx coming soon and its practically been a new series every year or every 2. So No I think the 6870 would be not be in retailers anymore, though the 4xxx series are still being sold so it's hard to say.

    As for effective-ness, it's more effective to get a card and CF later than get a card then upgrade the single card. For instance, you could get 2 6850's which would = a 570. The cost is about the same however 2 6850's perform a little better. There is the sacrifice with the dual cards as opposed to a single card since 1 card will perform better in certain games, but dual in others.

    And I disagree gamestr. The 1GB performs pretty much like the 2GB version, the 6950 1GB also has Eyefinity, and the 6950 2GB can only get to the 6970's performance (with unlocking) and even then it only works with reference coolers in which case it does NOT guarantee stability or the card to run cool at all. There is the possibility it'll unlock but be unstable. So in terms of money, the 6950 1GB is defiantly a solid buy.
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    May 19, 2011 3:20:14 AM

    Is it better to upgrade and replace a single graphics card, or to just CF/SLI and add one more card? I've revised my build again based on feedback from other forums. It's coming down to:

    -should I get a 560Ti or a 6950/70?
    -is it more efficient to CF/SLI or just replace the card periodically?
    -is it worth it to go with a Z68 mobo for the SSD caching feature? (I might buy an SSD in the future, who knows?)


    New build:

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    May 19, 2011 4:00:10 AM

    Didn't I just answer that?
    " As for effective-ness, it's more effective to get a card and CF later than get a card then upgrade the single card. For instance, you could get 2 6850's which would = a 570. The cost is about the same however 2 6850's perform a little better. There is the sacrifice with the dual cards as opposed to a single card since 1 card will perform better in certain games, but dual in others. " IMO, better to get another card.

    -Either will work, the 6970 isn't worth it though. It all just depends on your resolution, 1080P I'd go with the 6950 2GB if not, then the 560 Ti, but I personally think that the 6950 2GB is smarter here because you may not overclock and it's better at larger resolutions (dual-monitor) and has Eyefinity.
    -Answered
    -Sure if it is cheap now, why get it later when you can get it now.
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    May 19, 2011 4:20:14 AM

    Okay, what 6950 card would you recommend? I'm having a hard time choosing. I'm *pretty* sure that I'll be using two monitors, so that's why I'm switching from the 560 Ti to a 6950.


    EDIT: Actually, this is running dangerously close to my budget limits.... I think I'll downgrade my chosen card. I feel like my build is starting to be a bit of an overkill.
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    May 19, 2011 4:59:42 AM

    Voltage unlocked, versus not. Or so I think. I know for sure MSI leaves theirs unlocked (MSI Afterburner), Sapphire not so sure, their 5850/5870 models did not have it unlocked so. IDK.

    You'll lose a lot of performance, but if you feel that it is necessary. Then sure.
    6950 2GB vs 6850 1GB
    http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/291?vs=293
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    May 19, 2011 5:09:18 AM

    If I feel that one 6850 card isn't cutting it for me I can always add another, right? The site said that Crossfiring the 6850 will beat the 6950 in performance. (although the unfortunate side effect is increased power usage and more noise)


    Alright, I think this is what I'm going to settle on. And thank you Shinobi for the helpful replies. :D 
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    May 19, 2011 5:44:30 AM

    True.
    If you are going to do that, then defiantly 6850, CF later. Good luck!
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    !