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New Sandy Bridge PC, need help deciding on parts.

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May 18, 2011 12:54:49 AM

Okay, So I play higher end games and I have a 2000$ budget at MAX for parts. Games I play include "All source games, Call of Duty, Crysis, Just Cause 2, Red Faction Guerilla, Left 4 Dead 2, Medal of Honor etc" Here is the wishlist I chose so for parts;
http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx...
I'm not sure about the GPU, I was thinking about a 570 or a 560, but I couldn't decide. If you could look at the rest of the parts too to make sure they are okay and no bottleknecks. Thanks-
Caleb :D 

PS, If you need any more infos ask and I will provide.
May 18, 2011 1:50:04 AM

looks good but a few things:
-for gaming 16gb is too much so go with 8gb

-Case is pretty expensive and meant mainly for watercooling, if you are using air cooling one of the HAF series cases will be better http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...


-PSU has an awful lot of DOA and dead reviews lately, go with a solid brand for PSUs like corsair.
1000w is too much for just one gtx 580. to choose a gpu it would help to know what resolution you are running

- if you want to spend a lot of money on a sound card, dont buy that older one. go with an ASUS Xonar or HT Omega. But either way an expensive sound card is not worth it unless you are rocking some serious surround speakers.

-Consider getting an SSD as it would be well worth it if you could fit it in your budget. Also add an aftermarket CPU cooler
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a b B Homebuilt system
May 18, 2011 2:09:40 AM

I would drop your cpu to the 2500k (which offers 99% of the 2600k's framerates), and instead consider a pair of 6950's, which will massively outframe a single GTX580 in all games for about the same cost.....
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a c 84 B Homebuilt system
May 18, 2011 2:39:32 AM

1) For gaming, the graphics card is all important. I like the GTX580. It is a bit expensive, but you can't do better if you game at 1920 x 1200 or less. Even 2560 x 1600 is good.

2) For gaming, the 2600K is not necessary. Few games use more than two or three cores. The hyperthreads on the 2600K are not helpful. You can OC either chip to about the same levels. 4.0 is trivial, and there are very few games that need more. Spend the $100 saved more productively.

3) For a single GTX580, you only need a quality 600w psu with 42a on the 12v rails. A 6 and a 8 pin pcie connector.
Even the GTX590 needs only 700w and 50a.
A good 750w unit from PC P&C is only $95 after rebate:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

4) For gaming, a 8gb kit of 2 x 4gb is typical, and more than you need. Expect to pay $80 to $95. Speed and latency do not matter much with sandy bridge, but there is such a little price premium for DDR3 1600, that I would go with that:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

5) If you love the case get it. But, you do not have much to put into it, so you could do with something much smaller or cheaper.

6) Get a sound card only if you have high end speakers, and you can tell the difference. I suggest you try the motherboard HD sound first. You can always add a sound card later.

7) Motherboard looks reasonable to me. But, with the introduction of the Z68 chipset, consider going that route. In particular for the SSD cacheing option.
I have not researched individual Z68 boards, but there is a Gigabyte example for $120:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

8) Get a SSD into your budget. You will not regret it. Today, I think Intel is the most comfortable way to go. They have had lower return rates.
No need for the high priced 6gb versions. They show well in sequential benchmarks, but that is not what we do. Small random reads and writes at low queue depths is what is important for everyday usage. Look at the Intel 320 80gb or 120gb versions. You will pay about $2 pergb.

If you go the Z68 route, you could use their 40gb version to cache your 1tb drive. Performance will be in between a hard drive and a ssd. Still very good.
You could get

-------good luck------------
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May 18, 2011 11:14:58 AM

Okay, I dropped the CPU and RAM down to the ons you guys advised to. I look for some Corsair Power Supplies and good SSD after I get out of school.
Thanks for the help so far.
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May 18, 2011 3:21:25 PM

I updated the list with new parts that should fit my needs better. I shaved about 500 off and with the SSD i still saved about 200 or so. I game at 1920x1080, and I may do that Nvidia 3 Monitor Vision for shiz and giggles later on. Is a 120 GB SSD be good? Should I go less, more etc?
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May 19, 2011 1:37:55 AM

Any confirmation is appreciated. Merci'
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a c 84 B Homebuilt system
May 19, 2011 1:53:18 AM

killamaker11 said:
Any confirmation is appreciated. Merci'


Perfect, in my opinion.

120gb SSD is a very good size, particularly with a hard drive for overflow and storage. Windows7 will take about 13gb, so there is plenty of room for several games and temporary files.

You might want to experiment with the Z68 cache.
If what you use normally fits on a 120gb ssd, then don't use the cache approach.
If the nature of what you do is a lot of hard drive accesses, then you might experiment with it.
How well you do will be very dependent on your access patterns, so there will be no valid benchmarks to figure it out.
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May 19, 2011 1:55:59 AM

Just a quick question for the SSD. Could I boot windows off of it an use the rest for caching of frequently used files? Or does it have to be empty and such?
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a c 84 B Homebuilt system
May 19, 2011 2:01:34 AM

killamaker11 said:
Just a quick question for the SSD. Could I boot windows off of it an use the rest for caching of frequently used files? Or does it have to be empty and such?


I believe you can partition up to 60gb of it for the cache, and use the rest for whatever. Including the os boot drive.
This is all new, so you will be a bit of a pioneer there.

This article may help:
http://www.anandtech.com/show/4329/intel-z68-chipset-sm...

I suggest you download and read both the motherboard and case manuals cover to cover. Many questions should be answered.
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May 19, 2011 2:16:12 AM

For 3d vision surround, you are going to want to add another gtx 580 later. So bump the PSU up to at least 850w.

For the SSD it depends. Most drives have faster read/write speeds as the capacity increases. A windows 7 install needs ~20gb so it depends how much other stuff you would want to put on it. If you are seeking more extreme performance go with a SATAIII drive because SATAII is limited to about 300mb/s
here is a kick ass SATAIII SSD http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Also you should include an aftermarket cooler such as this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... or http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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a c 84 B Homebuilt system
May 19, 2011 2:59:06 AM

+1 ^ attackllama.
Definitely get an aftermarket cpu cooler. It will keep the cpu cooler and quieter. An OC can go higher and easier.
Two good choices.
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May 19, 2011 11:40:19 AM

Okay, I bumped up the Power Supply and took a look at the SSD. Added to the wishlist. The total cost is around 1900$, so that is a plus. Thanks for all the help with this. I'll take a look at that article once I get to school. Just to be sure, is there anything else I should change or get?
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a c 84 B Homebuilt system
May 19, 2011 2:00:34 PM

1) You have a blu-ray reader only. I suggest a combo drive that will let you also burn. No suggestions on which.
Or, get a second drive that is a dvd burner.
2) Get a tube of thermal grease. Arctic silver 5 has been a long time standard.

3) I think the Intel 510 120gb might be a better SSD for a bit less:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

4) There is a great deal on a PC P&C silencer 950w silver rated for $125 after rebate.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

It is not modular, but with your case, that should not be an issue.

5) Do you have a need for a SD multi reader? They are cheap.
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May 19, 2011 5:51:53 PM

I have an OCD with modular PSU's. It gives me more Peace of mind. And I rarely ever get rebates, so that isn't a factor. This SSD should in my wish list; http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Right? No, I don't think I need a multi-SD reader. Ill add a Bluray, Dvd, CD etc combo drive too. I already have some Thermal Grease leftover(full tube actually).
Okay, I think eveyrhting should be set. Tell me what you guys think.
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May 19, 2011 6:14:58 PM

With a Z68 board with the SSD caching you can get some performance benefits by using a small SSD (maybe 20GB or 40GB) to cache commonly used applications. On the other hand if you use a SSD like the Intel® SSD 320 120GB gives you enough room to store your OS and your commonly used software. The performance on the Intel SSD 320’s is really good for SATA II drive and they are the industry leading drives for reliability. To put our money where our mouth is today we have changed the warranty on all Intel SSD 320’s from 3 years to 5 years.

Christian Wood
Intel Enthusiast Team
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