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Building new pc, help

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May 24, 2011 9:33:56 AM

I have some questions on choosing the parts for my new PC. The new system will be used mainly for games and perhaps some light video editing but nothing too serious.

1) CPU
Originally, I wanted to get an i7 960, but from what I have read on different forums, it seems that the LGA 1366 is considered to be "old" technology for a new system.
Sandy bridge LGA 1155 appears to be the way to go and the benchmarks do confirm it. The question is which one?
I have my eyes set on the Intel Core i7-2600K Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo Boost) however, a lot of people say that the i5 2500k is more than enough for gaming, but down the line will it not be better go with the more powerful chip?

Another point is regarding the 2600 vs 2600K. I have never done overclocking and I'm not even sure how to go about doing it. If it's an easy-to-do thing, maybe one day......but it's not something that I'll do the moment I get my hands on the new PC. I know that the price difference is quite small but would keeping the 2600K at stock be considered a waste of potential?

Some people say that "the 2600 is better than the 2600k, because they want vt-d virtualization, which the 2600k does not support, (only supports vt-x hardware virtualization)."
To tell you the truth I don't really understand what that is, or how useful it would be to me!

Becuse i will buy a VGA card, should I get the 2600k with the HD2000 instead of the HD3000 to save money, does it have any performance difference?

Lastly, what about the difference between the P67 and Z68?

2) MOTHERBOARD
I will only get a single VGA card, therefore I'm not interested in crossfire/sli. A P67 MOBO is what I want, but not quite sure which one. In the past I've always used Asus and would like to continue, also their mobo have the new ASUS EFI BIOS and TPU/EPU. But their P67 mobo are not cheap. Maybe the only Asus model for me would be the P8P67 LE, the PRO model looks good but it's too expensive. Can you suggest any good P67 motherboards which don't cost an arm and a leg. I'm looking for a good and stable MB without too many frills, not a budget model but good.

3) VGA CARD
I've decided to go with the GTX570

4) OS
Win XP has been very good to me over the years but it looks like win7 is here to stay, I don't really like to change but I will get WIN7 Professional 64 bit. By the way, will the 64 bit be compatible with older softwares and games? Should I get the 32bit?

5) MEMORY
4GB DDR3 RAM. I know it's not much but I'm trying to save a little money. Memory can always be added later on.

My question is: Should I get the DDR3 1333 or the 1600? I heard that If you are not going to be overclocking, get 1333 speed 1.5 volt ram. Why?

I know there is ram especially for sandy bridge and P67 MOBOs. Are these the ones I should buy, will others not work as well? I was considering this:

G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL7D-4GBXM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I don't know how to choose, any suggestion would be appreciated.

6) POWER
Considering the above system will a 750W be sufficient or should I go with a 850W?

7) Cooler
I'd like to know how good is the 2600k/2500k stock cooler. If I decide to overclock will it be strong enough, or do you suggest to change it?

8) PC CASE
I think a Mid-Tower should be big enough. There is something I'd like to know: why do newer cases have the PSU placed at the bottom? Is it safe with only 1-2cm of space for ventilation, it does't seem like a good idea to me.
Anyway, again here I'm not sure, except that I don't want to spend more than 80/85$.

9) HD
I heard that the Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive, is quite good.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This will be my primary and only HD.

Well, this is it, sorry for the long and "demanding" post but as you can see I'm not a computer expert. You can only go so far on your own reading forums and articles, eventually questions pile up and you need to ask.

Thank you for any advice.

More about : building

May 24, 2011 9:45:10 AM

What's the budget? What resolution you'll play? You will buy from Newegg, right?
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May 24, 2011 10:43:35 AM

Top budget is 1300$

No I'll not buy from newegg, I'm only using it as a reference.

At the moment I have an old 17" monitor with a max res of 1280x1024, but i'll change it in about a year with a 22/23"
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Related resources
May 24, 2011 11:55:45 AM

I made you a build with a new screen too!

Antec One Hundred Black ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CORSAIR Enthusiast Series TX650 V2 650W ATX12V v2.31/ EPS12V v2.92 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC High Performance Power Supply

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52500K
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GIGABYTE GA-Z68X-UD3P-B3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ8GX3M2A1600C9
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

XFX HD-695X-CNFC Radeon HD 6950 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

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...

Intel 320 Series SSDSA2CW080G310 2.5" 80GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS ML239H Black 23" 5ms IPS Panel Full HD HDMI LED BackLight LCD Monitor 250 cd/m2 ASCR 50,000,000:1 (3,000:1)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

With Newegg Prices and MIR 1257$..Give me links from the shop you want to buy to see if that build is possible!
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May 24, 2011 2:10:05 PM

Quote:
1) CPU
Originally, I wanted to get an i7 960, but from what I have read on different forums, it seems that the LGA 1366 is considered to be "old" technology for a new system.
Sandy bridge LGA 1155 appears to be the way to go and the benchmarks do confirm it. The question is which one?
I have my eyes set on the Intel Core i7-2600K Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo Boost) however, a lot of people say that the i5 2500k is more than enough for gaming, but down the line will it not be better go with the more powerful chip?

For gaming, it's i5-2500K all the way. The i7 provides more features that are necessary for people who do a lot of heavy video/photo editing and design (AutoCAD, etc.), which don't benefit games at all. Unless you see these programs in your near future, don't bother with the i7; it'll be a waste of $100 and can be better spent in your budget

Quote:
Another point is regarding the 2600 vs 2600K. I have never done overclocking and I'm not even sure how to go about doing it. If it's an easy-to-do thing, maybe one day......but it's not something that I'll do the moment I get my hands on the new PC. I know that the price difference is quite small but would keeping the 2600K at stock be considered a waste of potential?

Overclocking these CPUs is relatively easy due to the unlocked multiplier (denoted by the 'K'). I'd recommend the K because at the least you'll have more gaming potential 3-4 years down the road. A lot of people are still gaming on Core 2 Quads that they simply just OCed.

Quote:
Some people say that "the 2600 is better than the 2600k, because they want vt-d virtualization, which the 2600k does not support, (only supports vt-x hardware virtualization)."
To tell you the truth I don't really understand what that is, or how useful it would be to me!

If it's not useful, you don't need it, and therefore shouldn't spend the extra money to get it ;) 

Quote:
Lastly, what about the difference between the P67 and Z68?

P67 is the standard performance chipset for 1155 CPUs. Z68 adds some features for video transcoding and what not, but they'll only be useful for heavy users. For gaming, the P67 will be what you want and you won't be missing out.

Quote:
2) MOTHERBOARD
I will only get a single VGA card, therefore I'm not interested in crossfire/sli. A P67 MOBO is what I want, but not quite sure which one. In the past I've always used Asus and would like to continue, also their mobo have the new ASUS EFI BIOS and TPU/EPU. But their P67 mobo are not cheap. Maybe the only Asus model for me would be the P8P67 LE, the PRO model looks good but it's too expensive. Can you suggest any good P67 motherboards which don't cost an arm and a leg. I'm looking for a good and stable MB without too many frills, not a budget model but good.

SLI/Crossfire is something you can add on later. Why not keep the option open to expand? Plus, a good SLI/CF-capable board can be had for a good price (see below).

Asus' stuff is always pricey, due to the brand (like EVGA's boards and GPUs), but it's not always the best buy. $150 is about the average price of a good P67 board.
The ASRock Extreme4 is only $160 ($15 more) but can handle SLI, unlike the P8P67 LE (both can handle CF)


Quote:
3) VGA CARD
I've decided to go with the GTX570

What is the basis for this decision? What resolution are you running at? For 1920x1080, the AMD 6950 will be an awesome card (personal experience), and the 6970 (same price range as 570) will outperform a 570.

Quote:
4) OS
Win XP has been very good to me over the years but it looks like win7 is here to stay, I don't really like to change but I will get WIN7 Professional 64 bit. By the way, will the 64 bit be compatible with older softwares and games? Should I get the 32bit?

64-bit, 64-bit, 64-bit. You'll only be able to support 4 GB RAM max (including VRAM), and all of your programs will work (compatibility modes :) ). W7 is worth every penny.

Quote:
5) MEMORY
4GB DDR3 RAM. I know it's not much but I'm trying to save a little money. Memory can always be added later on.

My question is: Should I get the DDR3 1333 or the 1600? I heard that If you are not going to be overclocking, get 1333 speed 1.5 volt ram. Why?

I know there is ram especially for sandy bridge and P67 MOBOs. Are these the ones I should buy, will others not work as well? I was considering this:

G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL7D-4GBXM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I don't know how to choose, any suggestion would be appreciated.

Go for a 1333/1600 MHz kit with a Cas Latency of 9. Though a lower latency is preferred, you won't see a difference unless all you do is benchmark. If you're patient, newegg usually has sales on their G.Skill RAM (daily deal TODAY is a great 8GB kit for $80).

Quote:
6) POWER
Considering the above system will a 750W be sufficient or should I go with a 850W?

For one GPU, 750W would be ideal. A good 850W (Corsair, XFX) will run two 570s.

Quote:
7) Cooler
I'd like to know how good is the 2600k/2500k stock cooler. If I decide to overclock will it be strong enough, or do you suggest to change it?

The stock cooler is designed to work in almost any normal scenario. OCing may not require a new cooler (new CPUs run cool), but your performance would be enhanced by one. The Cooler Master Hyper 212+ is an awesome cooler (can get over 4.5GHz) and is only about $30.

Quote:
8) PC CASE
I think a Mid-Tower should be big enough. There is something I'd like to know: why do newer cases have the PSU placed at the bottom? Is it safe with only 1-2cm of space for ventilation, it does't seem like a good idea to me.
Anyway, again here I'm not sure, except that I don't want to spend more than 80/85$.

The bottom mounted PSUs are more stable (lower center of gravity), and ventilate fine. They are mounted upside down so that the fan intakes through the bottom of the case and outtakes through the rear of the case.

I'd look at the Antec 300 and the Cooler Master HAF 912/922. The HAFs are very spacious mid towers and are really well designed.


Quote:
9) HD
I heard that the Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive, is quite good.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This will be my primary and only HD.

It's very overpriced. For $55-65, you can get the Samsung F3 1TB, which is faster than the WD Black and just as or more reliable. There's no reason not to get it.
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May 25, 2011 8:41:56 AM

First of all I really appreciate all the help from everyone.
I still have a few points to clear up

Many people suggested me to with a Z68 MOBO over the P67, one of the reasons is this:
Quote:

"Well the goto sleep and wake up problem stems from the fact that CPU PLL Overvoltage doesn't do well with S3 sleep, its a known intel issue, and that is why many companies were very slow to adopt it, because when you OC with CPu PLL Overvoltage and come back from S3 sleep the OC fails.

IDK how intel will deal with it for Z68, but that is just a problem we have to live with for P67."


Is this really an issue?


I seem to be steering towards the 2500K but...
this also came up:

Quote:
"If you have some older XP games and you buy the pro version of windows 7, you will be able to download a free version of a virtual copy of XP (XP Mode)to run those, so a 2600K is what you want."


I'm interested in virtual xp, but does this mean that only a 2600k will run it? I don't understand.
I also thought tha win7 pro already had xp virtual inside, am I wrong?


The one real issue left is the MOBO. Many suggested the fololowing P67 boards:

GIGABYTE GA-P67A-UD4-B3 LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASRock P67 EXTREME4 (B3) LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


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...


A last thing:
I heard that using 2 memory slots is always better than using the whole 4. Is there any truth in that?
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May 25, 2011 2:26:57 PM

Quote:

"Well the goto sleep and wake up problem stems from the fact that CPU PLL Overvoltage doesn't do well with S3 sleep, its a known intel issue, and that is why many companies were very slow to adopt it, because when you OC with CPu PLL Overvoltage and come back from S3 sleep the OC fails.

IDK how intel will deal with it for Z68, but that is just a problem we have to live with for P67."


I'm not sure what the PLL Overvoltage does; if they haven't fixed it for Z68, then it's a non-issue because you'll have to deal with it anyway.
I experienced some freezing in W7 when I put my computer to sleep, but my SSD boots almost as quickly so I just shutdown every time :D 

Quote:
"If you have some older XP games and you buy the pro version of windows 7, you will be able to download a free version of a virtual copy of XP (XP Mode)to run those, so a 2600K is what you want."

I'm interested in virtual xp, but does this mean that only a 2600k will run it? I don't understand.
I also thought tha win7 pro already had xp virtual inside, am I wrong?


W7 Home Premium doesn't support the virtualization, but Pro does. I believe you still need the OS in order to do it though; may want to confirm that on Microsoft's site.

The virtualization benefits from the hyperthreading capabilities of the i7, but the i5 will still run it. IMO I don't think that virtualizing an OS will be any good for games if that's your intent.

Quote:
The one real issue left is the MOBO. Many suggested the fololowing P67 boards:

GIGABYTE GA-P67A-UD4-B3 LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASRock P67 EXTREME4 (B3) LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


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...


I was considering the ASRock Extreme4 because it has a lot of good features for the price (namely 2 PCI-E slots that can support SLI). I got the UD4 for only $140 on a forum, and it's a great board. The expansion slots are in the right places; I have 2 PCI-E x1 and 1 PCI card in addition to my GPU. I haven't seen a lot of boards that have the design to support that. Supposedly the UD4 is also a good OCer (like the Extreme4), but I have yet to try that out.

Quote:
A last thing:
I heard that using 2 memory slots is always better than using the whole 4. Is there any truth in that?


Technically, two sticks will run faster than four (e.g. 2x4GB vs. 4x2GB in an 8GB kit), but there isn't a noticeable difference. However, your upgrade options are affected. If you want to upgrade to 12GB or 16GB, you'd have to replace all four 2GB sticks as opposed to dropping in a new 2x4GB kit. Brand doesn't matter, but the timings and speeds need to be the same.
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May 25, 2011 2:56:38 PM

I received this long comment and I want to know what you think.


Quote:
look m8, i know i sound like i'm telling you what to buy, but having obsessed over the hardware during the last six months, i more or less know *exactly* what to get - of course some people would be better off with a diffrent choice of hardware, but those come from rather unique situations.. on good example is the HT function on the 2600k, it slows down the CPU and really works only for applications which require multiple cores.. and by that i mean *more than 4 cores*, so unless you are running a weather simulation software, or other math-intensive application, it's better to have it off. mobos for example , a P67 is about $15-$50 cheaper than a Z68 at most, but the Z68 is worth it, always. P67 will OC better than Z68, but *only* because the BIOS (hermm.. UEFI) steppings are relatively new, later BIOS releases will perform better, and even now we are looking at 100Mhz difference tops.

here is a lovely OC guide http://www.overclock.net/intel-general/ ... -p67a.html - note how simple and easy it is.. and your CPU will most likely give you 4.4Ghz .. minimum.
seriously, press delete, change 3 settings in your UEFI, and you got a 4.4 processor.. that on stock speed, performs better than any Conroe ever has - you are looking at what, 3 times the computing power of a Netburst PER HERTZ.

if you feel you are a n00b, here is a protip : buy a CPU cooler with preattached thermal paste - not only you save another $20 from buying the TIM and cleaners, but you avoid the one step which has given me the most hardships.

PC cases (this is one instance where you get *what you want* instead of *what you need*) : go to your local retailer (not etailer) and look at them - you don't have to buy it from them, just play with it a bit, i'm 100% sure you'll know what you want if you do that.

video card ... this is a painful subject.

generally speaking, (since VGA cards cost money) you want something that plays every game out there for the smallest money; VGAs depreciate both in actual value and in computing power too, so double depreciation - a XT1900 isn't just old, it also lacks SM3.0, DX10, etc.. example.
if (and i stress *if*) you were to buy a 5770, *for example*, ($99) instead of a 570 ($350), you would have enough graphics power to play 1)everything at 1680x1050 high - fro the next 2 years, 2)most titles 1680x1050 ultra high - for the next 2 years, and 3) a few games on high after the 2 years. two years from now you will still be able to play most new games on decent settings, and you could stretch that card's life by up to another 2 years. example, is someone today owns a 8800GTS, they would still be able to play Brink on medium, which looks practically identical to ultra-super-high, less a few2 minor details .. nothing that will make you spit at the screen.
AND all this still leaves you with more than enough money to actually just throw away that 5770 whenever you feel like it and buy THE SAME CARD AT PRICE POINT, BUT TWO YEARS LATER.

if you instead go with a £350 card, that card will also stretch maybe 4 years, but not really any more than that. then you have to spend another $350.

in the end, it's the same as if someone had a 8800GTX and used it until now, and instead someone who bought a 8800GTS (half the price), and then a 370GTX. they are actually better off in the second "two year" section, and they never, ever have any problem getting their games to work flawlessly. the only difference is that having a more expensive video card "actually makes our dick bigger";

smaller VGAs also draw less power .. save anotrher $50 every year.. it all adds up.

and think of the satisfaction of never having to "save for a week" to buy a new piece..

i'm at a loss at finding an adequate comparison, but try to think of it as hunting small game, and wanting a huge caliber gun just for the sake of things.. as long as the bullets are big enough to kill the thing, you can only do worse by getting a "bigger gun".


you might have an argument for buying a large power supply, although i have found in real life experience that PCs never really need more than 500W, and also nowadays power consumptions are going down, instead of up. However, multiple VGA setups will, and since Xfire/SLI scaling is something serious these days (not liek a few years back) then sure, if you want to, go ahead. after all, next year you will be able to buy a 5770 from eBay for like, $40; nice way to double your GPU power. larger power supplies though cost a stupid amount of cash, and they only do so because the market is all "enthusiasts", which reads "morons" in any other language; you can read, for example, this : http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/power-sup ... 32187.html which will tell you that power supplies are actually all made by the same bunch of companies, and what you are paying for is really just branding, so, while it's entirely possible to buy a total piece of *** (beware, don't buy a cheap PSU), it's also possible by careful examination, to buy a high quality PSU unbranded, ending up with the same stuff you get in a Odin 1100W but paying a fraction of the cost for it.


now.. for the bit where we shout and insult each other ...

don't buy a SSD;

if all, wait until the hybrid HDD come out, even though they are just an idea now, i reckon this will be the future of storage .. basically, what you will get is a normal HD, where instead of say, 64MB of cache, you will have 16Gb of cache. yes, they will still have moving parts, and yes, their performance will not be as awesome as a pure SSD, but they will be cheap, and seriously, when was ever a HD the bottleneck in a computer ?? even the shittiest HD can read 80MB/s, and that's a lot of data for a CPU to crunch.
ok so, Windows, where you have to read a gazzillion microscopic files.. hmm, so, if you buy a SSD, you boot up in 10 seconds instead of 25. wow. and you pay $500 for the privilege, when my PC gets rebooted maybe once a week, no tnx, i'm ok with my normal HDDs.

PC case ..
let me say this again, cases, buy the nicest case you can find - you'll have to live with it, so make sure you love it.
cable management is something i overlooked early on and now i regret it, the insides of my PC are a mess, while a nice, clean looking PC is a beauty to look at.
removable motherboard tray is also something you really, really want, even though you'll maybe use it five times in the life of a PC, when you do, you will be glad you forked out that extra $10.

tell ya, if i were to choose today, i'd get the 600T, and f**k the temps. love it. and maybe get it to the paint shop and have it aerographed with a mean ass stormtrooper. or a rising sun.

thats it, i guess i covered everything a coputer has inside it, so good luck and happy overclocking.

oh yeah one last thing -don't buy a CPU cooler where the fan is held in place by those horrid flimsy metal brackets .. buy one where the fan locks solidly in place to the heatsink; and go 100% with a cooler that has a backplate, they are sooo much better.



and this:

Quote:
I don't mean to confuse you even more, and I offer this strictly as my opinion because I admittedly haven't researched it fully and many will disagree with me, but if I were building right now I would go with s1366 x58 i7. Even Intel themselves say that x58 is still the choice for enthusiasts. Sandy Bridge was never meant to replace x58 as the enthusiast platform, but rather a step below x58. That is not to say there is anything wrong with SB and it is a great choice for the budget minded, but I still like x58 for high end performance for several reasons. One, it supports triple channel ram. Two, it is tried and true where SB boards still seems to have certain issues including the confusion about certain features being available or not, like VT-d, with certain CPU/board combinations. Three, although the benchmarks show SB beating out x58 for the majority of uses it is only by the smallest margins and for some reason I just don't trust those benchmarks to be absolutely correct in real life situations. Four, I haven't looked thoroughly but it seems SB boards do not support dual x16 PCIe slots, but run in x8 mode with multiple GPU's. Many X58 boards support dual x16 mode. Again, this is my opinion and a bit of a gut feeling.

If I were to go SB I would go Z68. From what I have read about it it so far is supposed to combine the features of H67 and P67 as well as some additional features.

I highly recommend a full tower case. You just can't get the same airflow in a mid tower. And cable management is so much easier in a full tower, which also leads to better airflow. But look to spend at least $100 on a good full tower.


Comments?
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May 25, 2011 3:40:19 PM

I agree with the first few comments about hyperthreading; it is highly unnecessary for what you want. I don't agree with the statements about X58. X58 was the performance line, not the mainstream line like P67 and SB. Gaming falls under the mainstream category, and my god did Intel design the perfect chips for mainstream use.
Some of the points about X58 being "tried and true" are valid, but the benefits of P67 far outweigh the cons IMO.

Cases really need good airflow, or else you may as well put your components in a cardboard box. However, there are enough options to find something that you like and fits your needs and tastes. Going to an actual store helped (Fry's), but you have to be near one of the dedicated computer stores to get a good sample.

Getting the right video is important, and that's why we ask for monitor resolution. For example, the 560Ti beats the 6950 below 1920x1080, but the 6950 takes the lead beyond that resolution. It's not as hard as that guy makes it; it just requires some self-discipline to A) get only what you *need*, and B) follow through with whatever upgrade strategy you had planned (i.e. don't buy a 6870 and upgrade to a 2650x1600 (I believe that's the resolution) monitor, etc.).

For power supplies, use a good calculator like this one: http://extreme.outervision.com/psucalculatorlite.jsp
I used it for my X58 setup, and I was able to get a 650W for an i7-930 and 2x470s.

Hybrid SSDs are still a long ways away, since our hard drive platter technology still needs some work. A SSD will greatly improve the feel of your system, but it won't load games that much faster. I'd stick with a small one for a boot drive if you get one, or go all out and get a PCI-Express SSD ($$$$).

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May 26, 2011 11:41:39 AM

Well....

I think that I am 80-90% sure on what I want to get but there's still a nagging thought about the whole sandy bridge - P67 -Z68 system that bothers me.

First of all early this year Intel recalled a large number of "faulty" SB CPUs, are the new ones ok? Are some of the faulty batch still around?

Second, Regarding the asus p67 boards P8P67 - P8P68 LE/PRO. From what I heard Asus were still dealing with a few bugs early this year, have they been resolved, are their P67 MOBOs alright now. Maybe a Gigabyte MB would be better.

On the whole S3 issue and restart issue, which some people have with their p67/z68 MB. Is this a win7 problem or a P67 mobo problem, I remember reading is some forum that after OC the SB on P67 if the cpu temp went below a certain number it would freeze.

Are Z68 mobo better/more reliable/bug free/work better than the P67?

What I am really asking is if this whole Sandy Bridge P67 technology is actually ready yet or still in the "experimental" mode.
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May 26, 2011 11:51:01 AM

P67 was released last year (I believe around this time or so), and had issues with the chipsets. I never heard anything about faulty CPUs; not saying it didn't happen, but the key point was that the SATA II controller was degrading extremely quickly (weeks to months).

Every manufacturer has to deal with bugs; even if you code everything perfectly, something still goes wrong ;)  The manufacturers issue BIOS patches for that reason. I don't own an ASUS board, so I can't tell you from experience, but it seems like they've fixed a lot of them because I've heard less and less about the problems.

Not sure about the S3 issue since I haven't looked into OCing.

Z68 is newer than P67, and probability-wise should have a decent number of bugs. P67 has been ready since the end of last year/beginning of this year. We wouldn't be recommending it if it didn't work ;) 
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May 27, 2011 7:04:22 PM

Thank you for the help, now I understand and have decided what to get. I'm just in the process of choosing a Mobo which fits my budget.

By the way, is it necessary to have the sp1 version of win7 pro?

Thank a lot guys :D 
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May 27, 2011 8:46:55 PM

It's not really necessary, but it doesn't affect anything you have on your computer. For users like me who owned W7 prior to SP1's release, it installed as an upgrade in the Windows Upgrade manager. I haven't noticed any problems so far.
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May 29, 2011 10:55:29 AM

This is what I have on my list so far:

Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52500K
6700nt$ =232$

CORSAIR Vengeance x2 2GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ4GX3M1A1600C9B
(but even a 1333 will do just as well) 2000nt =69$ (more or less)

ENGTX570/2DI/1280MD5 GeForce (Fermi) 1280MB 320-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support
(if I go over my budget I could swap it for the Palit GeForce GTX 560 Ti Sonic OC) The performance seems impressive for its price, about 100$ less than the 570
http://www.guru3d.com/article/palit-gef ... c-review/1
GTX570 12590nt = 436$ GTX560 costs around 9000nt = 312$

Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
(I'm not interested in SSD for now)
2450nt = 85$

Sony CD/DVD Burner +R - SATA (they are so cheap either one will do)
850nt = 29$

750W Corsair TX 80% plus ( again, if necessary I can get the 700W)
4500/5000nt = 156/173$

Cooler Master 690 II Advanced (but I'm still considering other options as well....again, budget)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hGvBjEmXJnI
3000nt = 104$

Win7 PRO 64Bit

You may have noticed that I've left the Mobo for last, that's because I'm still deciding, my options are:

Asus P8P67 6000nt = 210

Asrock P67 Extreme4 6190nt = 214$

Gigabyte P67A UD3P 6400nt = 220$

They all are at the limit of my budget, I can't afford anything better. I was also considering the MSI C43-C45-GD55-GD65 but the other three seem to be better (I think).
The only thing that worries me is getting a buggy mobo, to me stability is more important than anything else, unfortunately every motherboard comes with its horror story which makes choosing difficult.

As stated before my overall budget is around 1350$ but that's not really in US$. I forgot to mention that I'm English but have been living in Taiwan for the past 5 years. Here hardware costs around 15-20% more than in the states.
Even Asus, which is in Taiwan, costs more.
For example the asus P8P67 LE which you can get for 135-145$ here costs 5590nt$ = 194$
The P8P67 model US 160$, here 211$.
So when I say 1350$ I mean 1150$, that's why I don't really care about prices on newegg or other sites, those are not my prices.
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May 29, 2011 2:19:29 PM

If you could, could you post prices of the components, so we know what kind of "markup" we're dealing with?

Can you get your hands on a Samsung F3 1TB? They're cheaper in the US by $20-30 than the WD Blacks, and are faster.

I still don't know what resolution you're playing at. If it's anything below 1920x1200 then I would suggest getting the 6950 so you can actually afford to buy your motherboard ;) 
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May 29, 2011 6:18:28 PM

I have added my prices on the previous post.

At the moment I'm still using my old 17" monitor, but I intend to change it sometime next year with a 22" or 23".

I'm not quite sure on the samsung, I'll have to look some more for it.
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