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Upgrading Questions

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May 19, 2011 8:21:03 PM

I have a GTX 275 card, 8gbs of ram and an E6600 2.4 OC'd to 3.0 CPU. Some pretty old ***. I can play Wticher 2 with 1920x1080 resolution on mostly medium - some high settings and it's pretty nice, but when I tried out Ultra and High settings...it just looked soooo beautiful - the only problem was my incredible lag on those settings.

I was wondering if I simply upgrade the graphic card, will it actually be able to preform well? I'm thinking my CPU will bottleneck the effect of the new graphic card and I'll pretty much have to upgrade my entire system - motherboard/cpu... if not, what graphic card do you suggest to fully max out this game with amazing smooth graphics? Because I just hate any sort of slight lag.


Also, I've been debating upgrading my system for half a year now... kinda just waiting on Intel to surprise with those rumored versions of 12-core Sandy Bridges (or was it Ivy Bridge?)... so I really don't want to upgrade my system yet, but what do you guys suggest? Wait for AMD Bulldozer 12core or 12core Intel or just go ahead and upgrade to current Sandy Bridges with the 3.7ghz turboboost processors? Would it really be worth it.. or just wait and wait for which?

More about : upgrading questions

a c 153 U Graphics card
May 19, 2011 8:25:54 PM

12 core Sandy Bridges? That will never happen, I think you're thinking of 8 core Sandy Bridge-E chips. And even then those are going to be an enthuisiast socket and probably very costly, just like Socket B was.

In my opinion the 2500K is a great deal for the price, I recommend that beast all day long. It's going to last you way past Sandy-Bridge E, and do you really want to wait that long for Ivy Bridge? I bet a 2500K can last someone who only games till the DDR4 (2014~) era easily, which will be the next time to upgrade.

While I'm not keen on CPU bottlenecks, I know a total upgrade would help, especially if you want one regardless. My friend had a slightly better CPU than you (but wasn't overclocked) and his GTX 280 SLI were bottlenecked by it, becuase when he switched to a 2500K his GPU scored were increasing in benchmarks.

There is never a point in waiting if you aren't getting the performance you want. If you wait till Sandy-Bridge E, whats to stop you from waiting for Ivy Bridge (which won't be as good, just less costly), and if you wait for that might as well wait for Haswell, and then Broadwell, and then Skylake, etc etc.

I guess if you wanted to wait for Bulldozer to see what happens, then thats acceptible, since its litterally going to be out very shortly. I wouldn't do it though.
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May 19, 2011 8:36:52 PM

Yeah good points... I don't know where I heard 12 core Sandy Bridge it was back in 2010 lol.

I was actually thinking of the 2600k processor. Would you be able to overclock that with normal stock fans? I have my E6600 OC'd to 3.0 for maybe 2 years now and I haven't tocuhed anything, but I only knew how to do that because I read a guide, I think on this website, which was just a step-by-step exactly telling me what to do. So I'm really not experienced with overclocking.

I just thought there was going to be 12 core coming out this year... that's why I really wanted to wait. But if you're saying even the Ivy Bridge isn't going to be as good - just cheaper... then yeah no way I want to wait.

Would you mind helping me out with some other questions? Like ram, graphic card and motherboard selections?
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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 19, 2011 8:43:53 PM

Don't get a 2600k, if you are a gamer there is no point what so ever. Its way overkill, and you aren't going to see the benefit at all. Plus if you want to overclock the 2600K really high for gaming purposes I would turn off Hyper Threading which is one of the only benefits of the 2600K over the 2500K. Trust me, for gaming, the 2500K is the sweet spot. Unless you have really deep pockets, and don't care about price at all.

Screw stock fans, if you get a new set up, spend 60 bucks and get a good CPU cooler, Antec 620 or Frio are both very good and not very expensive at all.

Overclocking with Sandy Bridge is a joke... like seriously. My friend didn't read any guides, doesn't have any experience what so ever, and the new BIOS make it rediculously easy. I actually think MSIs new overclocking slogan in their instruction manual is "so easy your grandmother can do it".

If there IS a 12 core coming out this year (and I highly doubt that) it will be a Sandy Bridge-E processor, more than likely the flagship processor for Sandy Bridge-E will be an 8 core processor.

Regardless if you just game why do you need an 12 core, or even 8 core processor? 4 cores is plently, not even all games are being optimizes for four cores yet. We are a long way away before you need that much CPU power for gaming right now. Its more about the speed than the core count right now.

And no Ivy Bridge will not be as good as Sandy-Bridge E, they are coming out basically along side each other, and Sandy-Bridge E is going to be the expensive enthuisiast socket, they would kil their own sales if they some how made Ivy Bridge more powerful.

And you mean for a new build? What are you looking to pay? Honestly, I would keep your GTX 295, upgrade your CPU, Ram, and Motherboard (what kind of hard drive are you using?), get it all together and see how it fairs with your GTX 295, if you need a GPU upgrade after that, then be my guest.

As I said my friend just upgraded from a very similar build of your own, except he had SLI GTX 280, and spent 396 dollars after rebate on a new CPU, Motherboard, and Ram, and he is tearing apart benchmarks and games he used to fail in.
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a c 259 U Graphics card
a c 309 à CPUs
May 19, 2011 8:50:27 PM

For gaming, there is little value past 3 cores. Fast cores are better and there is nothing faster per clock than sandy bridge today.
The 2500K costs $100 less, but will OC to the same levels as a 2600K. No hyperthreading, but the extra mini cores are not very useful to the gamer.

Most likely, a graphics upgrade will do you the most good, particularly if you like eye candy. But I am just guessing.

To help clarify your options, run these two tests:

1) Run your games, but lower your resolution and eye candy.
If your FPS increases, it indicates that your cpu is strong enough to drive a better graphics configuration.

2) Limit your cpu, either by reducing the OC, or, in windows power management, limit the maximum cpu% to something like 70%.
If your FPS drops significantly, it is an indicator that your cpu is the limiting factor, and a cpu upgrade is in order.

It is possible that both tests are positive, indicating that you have a well balanced system, and both cpu and gpu need to be upgraded to get better gaming FPS.


Ivy bridge will be better, at the same price point, and will top out better.
But, that is almost a year away. If you wait for the next best thing, you will wait forever.

A 4 core sandy clocked at 4.0 will drive any graphics configutation you might want today.

You will want a P67 or Z68 based motherboard. Z68 seems to me like a no brainer today.

Ram is cheap, get the cheapest 8gb kit of 2 x 4gb that is supported by your motherboard.
SB has a very effective ram controller, able to keep the cpu fed with data from any speed ram. Do not pay much extra for faster speeds or better latencies. They might amount to 1-2FPS benefit. No need for fancy heat spreaders either. They are not needed and are mostly marketing. Only if you are a record seeking overclocker should you get the most expensive ram.

As to the prospects for a bulldozer blockbuster, I am skeptical. By now we should have had leaks of outstanding benchmarks if they exist. I think Bulldozer will fill the marketplace for a cheap many core cpu, not a high performing cpu for the gamer.
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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 19, 2011 8:54:40 PM

In this thread... hivemind! :D  Well said Geofelt.
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May 19, 2011 9:01:10 PM

quick edit: I actually have the 275 GTX... I wish 295 :p 

Well, I have about 1000 in cash... but I really don't want to spend it all, unless it's worth it. And since you made a great point with 2500 and 2600k... I'm thinking I'm way overspending. I went on newegg and checked out some stuff here were my selections:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
This is the Lanbox Case. I saw this about a year ago and have wanted it really really bad lol. I love the small design and the look.
I currently have a TR2 RX 850w ThermalTake PSU. I'm pretty sure I did some research earlier and found out it would fit in to the box - so that's a good $200~ saved right there.

My hard drives are just a big mess. I have been thinking of getting a normal optic, not solid state because I hear they aren't that great for gaming. But I really want to get a 2TB hard drive. Right now I have 2 internal ones and 2 external ones almost all full of junk and maybe around 1TB in total data. I just have no idea about hard drives... I want a faster RPM so I can access and load games faster and saw some amazing 10k rpm and even 15k, but they were very high in price...
So I was thinking maybe get 1TB hard drive for Data, and then a smaller 100gb or 200gb Hard drive for extreme gaming - but at a decent price. What do you recommend?

For motherboard I chose
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Mainly because of reviews and price... but again I really have no idea. But it does have to be MicroATX because the Lanbox only takes that size I think. But all I really need is to have some amazing ram + 1 pci slot. I used to have dual 8800 gfx cards but I really don't want to do SLI anymore because it seems like such a waste.

For ram I chose..
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Mainly because of the timing and latency - they were the lowest ones I could find. The 1333 I have no idea what that is either... I just want some really powerful RAM, CPU, and GFX card so I don't have to upgrade the computer for a few years. When I first built my current computer that's what I had in mind - and it's been maybe 2 years at least and I still get great results - but I just want to run everything in super high settings again :p 

As for the graphic card, I really don't know because I haven't kept up with nVidia at all... but I would prefer to have that brand instead of ATI.

Maybe might want to get a blueray burner.. but I don't think it will be much use to me, just want some faster speeds for burning. Most of my entertainment comes from downloads.

Other than that I don't think there are any other things to upgrade... let me know if I missed anything.


EDIT: Also I really wanted more cores because I just want to get a BEAST computer so I don't have to upgrade for a few years.. same kind of thing I did with my current computer maybe at least 2 years ago and it's still great - but I just want to get that SUPER performance max out everything with amazing FPS kinda thing. But yeah - I am a big PC gamer and that's what it's all for.

EDIT2: Wow, great information - thank you both! I am reading all of it right now... I posted this before even seeing further posts.. hehe sorry
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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 19, 2011 9:10:34 PM

Oh wow, that was my bad for misreading that. You even said 275 in your main post.

Well that changed it up a bit then. Maybe you don't need to upgrade your whole system, but it would be worth it, especially if you sell your old one.

While that is a neat case, its not going to be good for high end video cards, overclocking, and won't really fit cpu coolers at all, that more for having a portable rig than a badass gaming one.

SSDs are good for gaming, but still a little expensive. Judging by yourset up I think a nice 1.5 to 2tb Samsung or WD hardrive would be great for you, and they are cheap now. You don't need 10krpm (trust me I have a velociprator) just get a 7200 drive. If you were too get a smaller drive for gaming, make it an SSD, not a "fast" hard drive.

There are better motherboards to choose from, I'll for you. You want a P67 motherboard so you can overclock your CPU. Or even a Z68, but its not necessary.

Decent choice on the RAM, but its overpriced for the performance you'll be getting.

Let me see if the combo deal is still up my friend got with his motherboard and ram combo, he got a really good motherboard and basically free patriot 1600 8gb ram.

If you get a 2500K and overclock it to 4.5Ghz you won't be needing to upgrade till DDR4 is out, don't worry :) .

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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 19, 2011 9:24:07 PM

Here is a good Mobo and CPU combo.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

or this if you want Z68

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Either of these Ram kits would be good... depends on what color scheme you want. I'd go for the blue and black to fit the board, but thats just me.

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

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

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May 19, 2011 10:12:48 PM

Ah, great information! Thank you so much for the help.

I don't think I'll be selling the system. I tried a few months back and the best offer I could get was 200 bucks, lol. And plus, I'm thinking of keeping the PSU, CD/DVD drives and now, possibly the case. After realizing the CPU cooler wasn't going to fit and that no store carries them - I think I'll just stick to my current case, I'll just have to clean it out a bit. But the Lanbox does fit up to 11' graphic card length, believe it or not :p 

So for hard drives, I thought I read somewhere that SSDs aren't that good for gamers... must have been a bad review. Do you know any good brands for them?

For the motherboards - what exactly do these two boards have? I just want to know why you need these two to overclock the CPU.
But I think I'll go with the P67.

So for the RAM, the 1333 is fine... thanks to Geo for clearing things up. I always thought lower latency and timing was better... but if it's only going to be 1-2FPS increase for that much cash, then it's obviously not even close to being worth it.
But what about the amount? I currently have 8gb, so that's why I chose 8 again... but do I even need that much? What if I was to buy 4gb but better quality... would that also be dumb because of the 1-2FPS gain only? What about more than 8? Is that even needed?

And I checked out my local Frys because I am way too impatient.. what do you think of this:
Motherboard - http://www.frys.com/product/6569663
CPU - http://www.frys.com/product/6487382 (how much could I overclock it to for max performance but a safe point so it lasts at least a few years? like 4.0 5.0ghz etc)
CPU Cooler - http://www.frys.com/product/6393391 (I don't want liquid cooling, seems like a bit too much of a hassle)
RAM - http://www.frys.com/product/6522023 (They didn't have the other ones)
Hard drive -http://www.frys.com/product/6192549 (The only problem I have is the Cache, I don't understand that. For 20$ more I can get a 32MB, but only 5400RPM, for about 40$ more I can get a 64mb and 7200, but what do those mean?)
SSD - Wow I just checked these out and they are way more than I thought... I thought I saw these for around 100$ and 100gb, but aparently you can't even get 64gb ones for less than $120... I'm not sure if it would really be worth it, can you tell me a bit more information on the solid state drives and what to get? I really want something around 100gb, but don't want to pay $220, lol.

And then the graphic card - it's $530, tax excluded =(, for the stuff up there, and that's really good. But I know graphic cards can easily be 300-400 for good ones... what do you suggest? I haven't been keeping up with nvidia at all and I have no idea if the 500 series are good or not or even worth the hefty amount of money... but I also don't want to skimp out and get a cheap graphic card only to have to upgrade it very soon. So my question is, what should I get to make this computer really good and last a few years before needing to upgrade again? And, does the stuff I picked out do the same?

Last little thing is a DVD burner... would this be any good: http://www.frys.com/product/5996824
Or should I spend 20$ more and get something like this: http://www.frys.com/product/5827353

EDIT: What really confuses me about graphic cards is that a 560 could be 300+ but then a 550 can be as low as 140! Or how the 460 or 470 are still around 200-300 while the 550 is 140... I just really have no idea what the difference is with most of them as well.. cept the brand of course, one is BFG, one is EVGA, PNY, ASUS, Zotac... etc.

Also, how is this case: http://www.apevia.com/ProductsInfo.asp?KEY=X-Dreamer3-R...

I'm thinking of getting a weaker PSU and putting it into my current setup so I can give it to my mom. What would the bare minimum PSU be for a GTX 275? I just want something around maybe 50 bucks or cheaper if possible.. she only uses her computer for Facebook and Youtube but it's super old and slow... but I don't have another graphic card so I'd have to keep the 275 in there.
Maybe this? - http://www.frys.com/product/5596860
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a c 259 U Graphics card
a c 309 à CPUs
May 19, 2011 11:16:14 PM

The case you picked is a m-atx case that requires a smaller motherboard. You need a M-atx sized motherboard.

1) You want a P67 or Z68 based motherboard if you ever want to OC that 2500K A H67 chipset will not OC.
There is only one P67 M-atx that supports sli, the Asus P8P67-M PRO. I know, I researched that, and that is what I got.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

However, I think a Z68 based motherboard will be better, and there are several of those, something like this:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

The interesting thing about a Z68 is that you can use a smaller SSD, 20-60gb, or part of one to act as a cache to your large hard drive.
Net performance is between using only a SSD, and only a hard drive.

2) Forget about the 10k and 15k drives. They are enterprise drives tuned to high iops and random access. They do not load games faster, and are much slower than a SSD. With your budget, I suggest an Intel 320 series, 120gb or 160gb drive for the OS and current games. Use the 1-2tb hard drive for overflow and storage. You will be pleased with how quick everything feels.
Cache on a hard drive is appropriate to the drive, and is not really relevant. A 5400rpm drive will be slower than a 7200 rpm drive . Larger drives will be faster than smaller ones. For speed, thugh, the SSD is vastly faster than any hard drive. Expect to pay $2 per gb for one.
3) On the ram, the 1333 is the speed. This ram will do as well, and is much cheaper: The more ram the better, more so than speed.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

4) For a graphics card, read this article:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/best-graphics-card-...
Get the best single graphics card you feel comfortable paying for.
Look at the heirarchy chart at the end to get an idea of how other cards compare. If you want an upgrade to a GTX275, make it a biggish jump, or you will risk being disappointed. Perhaps a GTX570 or 6970.

5) for a small aluminum m-atx gaming case, look at the lian li V354. Comes in black, red, and silver:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That apevia case looks like it has poor cooling. Not good for a gaming pc.
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May 19, 2011 11:59:04 PM

Dang.. I've been trying to get the price to reach under 1000... but just can't figure out a way.
Doesn't look like I can get the SDD at all... they are all just so expensive and make it 11-1200 easy.
I don't think I can make my current computer work for my mom either, I'll have to take the DVD-RW and Power supply out and just can't afford to replace them at this point.
The big thing is the GTX 570.. it's a whopping 330... pretty much half the core cost -CPU/MB.

After all those cuts, I still can't get the total to get under 960, and that's without a case... might have to reconsider upgrading for now damn.

Could you recommend a couple of good gaming cases? I like it to be a black Mid-Tower size or something sort of small and compact but have a side window to look through. I also love red color LED, blue is okay too. This is what I currently have:
http://www.apevia.com/ProductsInfo.asp?KEY=X-Telstar-AL

That is a lot of useful information though... thank you. I would really love to get that SSD and Z68 to get that cache bonus, that sounds great. As far as the Lanbox - I've already changed my mind... just the fact that I'd have to get rid of the HD box to get in the graphic card and that the CPU cooler doesn't work at all just turned me off. Plus I can't get it in stores near me - online only.

How much better is a SSD compared to normal drives for gaming? Like some kind of statistics.. maybe like 50% faster or something? I really want to get one in the future for sure.

EDIT: Also, what's a good standard size ATX mb for the Z68? I only see some MicroATX links, thanks.
And are you sure the Apevia case isn't good? It has 3x 120mm fans, the smaller case you linked me only has 2x 120mm fans? What should I exactly be looking for that indicates a good gaming case?

I want to say this is good and has a little bigger space than the Lanbox: http://www.frys.com/product/6513733
but it just looks like... well it looks pretty strange lol


EDIT2: I was reading on the steam forums and apparently someone has a core2duo 3.2 ghz and just got a 570 GTX just for Witcher 2 and is testing it out right now. He thinks that his 4gb of ram and core2duo won't bottleneck the 570...
Quote:
E8500 wont bottleneck anything it has a 1333Mhz FSB dual core 3.2GHZ - most games dont even use multi-threading to use multiple cores. FSB/memory speed can bottleneck the GPU not usually the CPU speed as thats why its a GPU. From benchmarks the 570 seems to be about 2x more powerfull then the 280 and the OCd 570 about 2.5x or so.

that's very interesting. I was just wondering and taking a shot in the dark.. but what if I spent 800 bucks on the 590? I mean would that just be the biggest waste of money ever? How exactly does the CPU bottleneck gfx cards, not really understanding much of this.

Holy crap.. just checked some receipts - I made this computer back in April of 07... wow 4 years and this thing is still doing amazing.. just not fully max.. haha damn!
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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 20, 2011 1:10:45 AM

I can look for a case for you, now that I know your tastes.

Don't worry about the SSD now, just stick with a normal hard drive, and maybe in the future you can get one. :) 

The 590 is a big waste of money even if it DID compliment your system well. :p 

EDIT Scratch that last case. Here ya go.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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May 20, 2011 7:34:35 AM

Awesome man, that case is dope! My friend actually got a coolermaster case last year and I was there helping put it together... looked dope but it was full black with no window or anything... but this one looks amazing, I like the two handles at the top too!
I was wondering what this case is right here:
http://img708.imageshack.us/img708/3329/unledyqg.png
It's an advertisement on this website and I went to their site, but don't see that case in their setups. I don't think I would get it because it looks pretty large, but I'm interested in seeing that case close up.

So here are my parts:
CPU: http://www.frys.com/product/6487382
CPU Cooler: http://www.frys.com/product/6393391
MB: http://www.frys.com/product/6569663
RAM: http://www.frys.com/product/6522023
HD: http://www.frys.com/product/6559423
CASE: http://www.frys.com/product/5901194
GFX Card: http://www.frys.com/product/6480902
Total w/tax: $1100
I could possibly spend 1300.

I've been reviewing GFX cards for a while now... I'm stuck between a 580 and dual 560s -or- simply a 570. What I have gained from the article Geo posted, the 570 is "Excellent performance" at 1920x1200. And the dual 560s would beat a 580's performance for about 10$ more. But I don't know what resolution they are best for. I think the 580 is rated "Great performance" at 2560x1600 resolution.
So here is the 580 SC: http://www.frys.com/product/6465032 @ $500
vs the 580 @ 3gb: http://www.frys.com/product/6619074 @ $540

Then there are the 560 SC: http://www.frys.com/product/6514883 @ $260 each = $520 in SLI

And then of course the PNY 570: http://www.frys.com/product/6486272 @ $330
vs the EVGA 570 SC: http://www.frys.com/product/6480902 @ 360

I'm thinking the 570 SC will be the best bet for me because I can't even get more than 1920x1200 and play on 1920x1080. I chose the SC because it's only $30 more and I prefer EVGA over PNY.
I would go with the other 2 for the higher costs because if they REALLY make a difference, I would pay the extra cash - but would it be worth it for my uses (my resolution of 1920x1080)? To me - it would be worth it if those cards would support games at max settings for a longer time. As in, I wouldn't have to upgrade them for a longer time vs the 570.
What do you think and could you explain the options a bit?
-I was thinking if the 570 option is the best way to go, maybe I could get an 80gb SSD... hmm.

As for the Motherboard, I was wondering if the Z68's are released in stores yet. I can't find a single motherboard that's Z68 in Best Buy or Frys, the only two computer stores within 20 miles... not really sure where else to check - but I want to get this all tomorrow, but I also really want the Z68 lol. Mainly for the SSD option, kind of want that option there once I actually get one.
-Another thing for the motherboard is the DVI-to-HDMI option. I have my TV connected via a DVI (computer) to HDMI (my tv) and I had to order a wire to connect from my video card to my motherboard so I could use the Digital Sound option so I could carry over the sound, but I remember that it was an instructional thing for nvidia motherboards only... is there any way to carry over sound with the new motherboards - Z68 and P67s and the GTX 570/580/or dual 560s?

Also.. what do you know about 3D gaming? I found this setup: http://www.frys.com/product/6364671
and it seems like an okay price if I ever wanted to upgrade my current Samsung 245BW 24' monitor... but is 3D gaming at a stage where it's actually worth it? I remember trying out my dad's 3DTV that he just got, didn't really seem like it was that amazing.
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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 20, 2011 7:54:52 AM

As for your first question, that would be the famous Haf-X, one of the best strictly air cooling cases on the market, and yes it's a beast in size.

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

As for your graphics card question. In my opinion, you always go single setup at first, and then in the future if you need more oomph you get a second card when the price of it is down. personally I would get the GTX 570 if you had to get Nvidia, I find the GTX 580 slightly over priced, and GTX 570 SLI (talking about the future here), will stomp on GTX 560 SLI. Of course the GTX 580 would be an amazing card.

So let me look at what you got...
Good CPU. Frio is nice, I forgot you liked that red and black look, so I don't think it gets much better than that. The Frio is an amazing cooler. Good motherboard, it will allow SLI at 16x 8x bandwith. As long as if you don't mind the blue and black scheme it has it will be fine. RAM is fine. Get a different hard drive in my opinion, all of my seagate drives I've owned died prematurely. Could just be bad luck on my part, but yeah. Western Digital Black/Blue Caviar series, or Samsung Spinpoint F3 are what I'd go with.

I would get this GPU

http://www.frys.com/product/6540583#detailed

Not only is it cheaper, but I'm almost 100 percent sure the HD version of the 570 is better than the normal version. You might want to double check that, but pretty sure there.

Z68 series chipsets ARE in stars. Don't ever shop at Best Buy, Fry's just might not have them yet. Speaking of that, I would honestly just order them on Newegg, I have purchased well over 10,000 dollars in computer on there (not all for me, for friends and family as well :p ), and I have never once been screwed over by them, top that on with that fact they have amazing deals and prices, its hard to pass them up.

I can't help you with your HDMI thing, I don't know anything about making the sound work on your TV.

In my opinion 3D gaming is awesome, but you need to have a lot more GPU power to power it. Personally I really enjoy it (my own set up cannot do it, but I've played on it before). I think its great, but its all preference.

Oh and for pureley astehtics, it would cost you 10 dollar more, but I think these ram looks so much better.

http://www.frys.com/product/6408922?site=sr:SEARCH:MAIN...


EDIT - For giggles, I went ahead and build a Z68 Platform for you on Newegg. You save a lot of money, actually you almost have enough money left over for a second GTX 570, if you wanted to go that route.


Click the above image to see an enlarged picture.

Comes out to 1008 dollars after rebates.
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May 20, 2011 8:18:02 AM

Dayum.. okay I might get that now... that is the exact one of my friend got.. but I thought his had no window - maybe I was wrong - but everything else looks exactly like that! The price is pretty steep... but after taking a closer look at that... wow that thing is beastly...

Hm so would you recommend the 580 over the 570? Would the price justify the performance and would it last significantly longer? It would be $140 more for the 1.5gb SC version I linked earlier.. but I don't think it is HD version. And it would put me at around 1350... so it's a bit pushing it if it's not that significantly better.

For hard drive, I found: http://www.frys.com/product/6298800 and http://www.frys.com/product/6568303 The 2nd one is 10$ more, but I can't found out what RPM it is, seems a little fishy, maybe they are giving you 64mb buffer - but taking away RPM?

As for the Best Buy thing - forsure. I only want that option because I could put the purchase on the Best Buy credit and in-store cards, but they are definitely overpriced. As for newegg, I actually added the same exact equipment from frys, but believe it or not... new egg was a bit more expensive... and I think that was WITHOUT shipping! They had some items marked 4-5$ cheaper, but then other items were 5-10$ more expensive... weird! Frys is really good at cheap prices I guess hahah - Plus a lot of stuff on frys had rebate options... so I could possibly get a few bucks back later.
I'm planning on visiting and asking them in store if they have any of the Z68s - maybe they aren't listed on their website. What brand is good? Does MSI make them? Maybe just get the Military model if they have that in Z68 or something?

That's okay, it's not a big issue.. I'll figure out the sound thing, thanks!

Yeah I'll definitely have to check it out in store demos some time... thanks for all the information man!

EDIT: just saw that red ram... definitely get those!!! hahah thank you!
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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 20, 2011 8:37:08 AM

MSI does have Z68s, I'll link one in a second. You should also take a look at my previous post (I edited it), I built you what is in my opinion a better build than what you have from Fry's and it is cheaper, both before and after rebates.

However the only one that has x16 x8 is expennnnsive.

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

There is another on there that is affordable, but its x16, x4, so yeah...

When it comes to motherboards, I'm partial to ASUS myself. I've used MSI for friends and family and they do a wonderful job in my opinion. ASRock is also pretty promising. Gigabyte makes good boards as well. One thing that should be noted about Gigabyte however is thier lack of UEFI BIOS. Now for me this wouldn't be a big deal, I've lived with normal BIOS for years, but it might matter to you.
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May 20, 2011 8:44:42 AM

Hm, I think the one you just created has some older/newer parts so maybe that's where the price came in... here is what I got:

http://img832.imageshack.us/img832/2214/eggq.png
http://img31.imageshack.us/img31/3804/frys.png

Exact same products maybe 5$ difference, kept the barracuda hard drive so I could compare for now. And I don't think the Newegg one has shipping costs included :p 
I'm having a bit of a hard time finding a good hard drive. I keep looking through all the WD ones and they are 1.5 and 1tb, but almost all of them don't list the RPM. Then I google the models... they are 5400rpm... argh.

I checked my best buy card and if the total is going to be 1370 w/ tax (the pictures I posted above) I'm going to have to buy at least 1 thing from best buy because I only got 1300 to spend. I got 170 on my best buy store card... but I'm just starting to look through best buy's Hard drives right now, would you mind helping me find a good one?

As for the motherboard... I'm really not sure what to do at this point. Still debating if I actually want the Smart SSD feature, do you have any information on that? And for the brand... I've stuck to nvidia and used to have ASUS before. I believe nForce 680i SLI and currently 780i SLI. I like the "military" stamp on the MSI lol

EDIT: how about this: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Western+Digital+-+Caviar+Bl...
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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 20, 2011 9:00:02 AM

Well, my build is Z68 :) 

Don't get a SC 580, you can get any normal 580 and overclock it yourself to SC speeds. Like, gaurenteed.

Here is a Z68 build about the price of your Fry build.




*Honestly I have no problem with Fry's, I'm just trying to help you get a build down and I their site is a hassle for me. :p *

EDIT - It should be worth noting I personally feel P67 is good enough, espcially since you won't be using the SSD Caching and it is much cheaper. Plus you can get a board with UEFI BIOS.

Here is a P67 build, everything has free shipping.

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May 20, 2011 9:25:32 AM

So many possibilities.. damn!
How much do you think shipping would be on that newegg order?

Good call with the SC version... I'll def just OC it myself then.
-But what about the value I was talking about? Is the extra ~150 for the 580 make it that much better and last longer than the 570 would?
-What about the amount of memory on the card? For $50 more I can get the 580 3GB edition: http://www.frys.com/product/6619074
--My main thing is... is the 580 just overkill? Is the 3GB overkill? Or will it actually make the card last - as in support games to the max - for a longer period of time by upgrading it so much? Like will the 150-200 I spend now be worth it?

For the motherboard - Z68... could you explain the Smart SSD function to me? Just a basic little thing is enough.
Oh and of course, I know you are trying to help, thank you so much. The major thing is... I am super impatient. If I'm going to pay 1300 bucks I want it now :p  hahhaha so I'm just trying to see if waiting for the z68 is going to be something I can do hahah

Right now, this is what I'm looking at: http://img560.imageshack.us/img560/3804/frys.png
With tax, 1340.
Then the Hard Drive here: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Western+Digital+-+Caviar+Bl...
That leaves me $75 bucks on my best buy store card... I've been trying to figure out a way to squeeze in a solid state... but the best I could do is maybe a 30gb one.. and seeing as Windows 7 is 20gb.. there's just no way hahah.
Possibly if the 3GB on the 580 isn't worth the extra 50$ vs the 1.5 580 - then I could get a 64gb SSD... but again not really trying to get the SSD over the GFX if the 3gb is actually something good that would make the card last longer. I was just reading some reviews of people installing windows on SSDs in 15 minutes and that just got me blowing up inside.

What it comes down to I think is the overkill of the GFX card vs the Smart SSD feature and of course my impatient behavior, lol.
I just don't really know enough about the smart feature, I'm actually going to start googling that right now... not sure why I didn't before =\

EDIT: Okay so far what I have read here: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/intel-z68-express-s...
Quote:
Let's say you've made the decision to jump into Sandy Bridge with an Z68-based platform and want to use Smart Response Technology to help improve storage performance without sinking a ton of money into a large SSD.

It seems to me that it's better for speeding up storage performance. Which I really don't think applies to gamers... and my needs. I think?
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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 20, 2011 9:48:19 AM

Haha, well if you look at my edited post you will see the shipping on the P67 build I made was free ;) 

I'm not very keen on Z68, it just came out. I've never used it thats for sure.

This is basically everything you need to know.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/z68-express-lucidlo...

Well, the 3GB version is going to help you if you are using large resolutions, like 2560x1600. At 1080p 1.5GB is more than enough. Personally I feel the GTX 580 is overkill, I max out everything I want to play with SLI GTX 260s, which is about equal to a GTX 470 in performance. Now I am planning on getting The Witcher 2, and I hear thats hell on GPUs, well see how I fair tomorrow. Maybe I'll be getting myself a GTX 580 XD.

And, damn I missed the fact you had a GIFT CARD to best buy. Yeah forget that HDD in my P67 build (you should take a look at that build though...), and get that 1tb Caviar black from Best Buy.

I wouldn't worry about the SSD right now, just get one further down the road when you have the cash for it. If you did my build, with the MSI GTX 570 instead of a GTX 580, you could get a 120gb SSD for the build, however.

Try not to be impatient, and try not to put all your eggs in one basket. Remember why you posted the thread? If you plan on getting a GTX 580 or GTX 570 regarldess, why don't you just get one? And get ONLY that. See how that fairs with your CPU, (heck take it home, you can decide in 20 minutes if you need the CPU upgrade or not), and then go and get the "big build" if you still aren't happy with your performance.

EDIT - It should also be noted, if you want a Z68 for Caching, a 30GB SSD IS all you need.
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May 20, 2011 10:04:51 AM

Oh okay, just saw that 2nd build. I would save about 35$ when I remove the HD from the Newegg one because the Frys version is about 30$ cheaper already. Honestly... I just don't see waiting a few weeks to save 35 bucks... thanks though.

Yeah honestly... I think I'm going to stick to the P67 mainly because I think the Smart SSD is only going to boost storage performance, if I understood those 2 articles correctly...

Okay so the 3gb is def overkill for my needs, never going to use that resolution.
How about the 580 vs 570 in life span though? It's $140 difference - is that significant enough to spend that it will outlive the 570? I understand that both cards can max out anything currently - but what I am looking for is life span. I built this computer 4 years ago and spent a lot of money, and it lasted me for 4 years! That's great and that's what I'm trying to build again... a computer that will last me really long again.. but the only problem is I remember I had dual 8800s when I first built my current computer and I had to upgrade to this GTX 275 maybe 2 years ago. Basically, if I get the 580 will I have to replace it within the same time period as if I got the 570 or would it last maybe a year, possibly more, longer? Would the $140 extra I spend right now make it live longer? I'm so sorry I'm writing so much and making you read all this... lol!

Yeah... what blows is that I just figured out all those SSD's on BestBuy's website are online only... none in store =(


Actually for Witcher 2 I've been reading the Ubersampling requires SLI cards to actually play well, so you might be in luck! I hear people with 580s are having a hard time getting past 10-20fps with Ubersampling on, lol. But then again, the game just came out and people with lower end graphic cards and processors seem to sometimes be outperforming people with very high-end and recent gear... so the drivers have to be optimized before truly making any real conclusions.

EDIT: Just read your edit... you are absolutely right. If I do go with the 1300 one.. I'll be sure to buy the GFX card alone FIRST... then if the performance is really getting bottle necked.. then go and get everything else.. I have enough patience for that... just hate waiting days/weeks for stuff to come in the mail.
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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 20, 2011 10:13:03 AM

A few weeks? I've never had newegg take more than 4 days to get to my house. If you order today, you will have everything by Thursday. Gaurenteed.

Well let me put it this way, a GTX 570 a GTX 580 performance difference is ten percent. That is not worth 140 dollars in my opinion not at all. In two years if you need an upgrade, get another GTX 570 for like 200 dollars or what ever it is then, and then that will last you another 2 years!

The more I write this, the more I feel you should just go to Fry's, get that 309 dollar GTX 570, take it home mess with it. Actually... go ahead and get that HDD from best buy as well. Get rid of that clutter of HDDs you have and install Windows on the new HDD, it should help performance as well having a clean install, and only one fast HDD.

See how your performance fairs after that. If you still arn't happy I would get the same order I have made on Newegg, minus the HDD and GPU obviously.


EDIT - Do you know if they have Cold Cathod lights at best buy? Those would be a nice addition to your build. How about CPU coolers? They might not have the frio but I think they have the Antec Kuhler 620. I can't remember...

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May 20, 2011 10:30:18 AM

Okay that makes it perfectly clear. Definitely not worth the 140 at all. It would just be easier getting another 570 in a few years.

But you made a very good suggestions man... I have just been wasting my day worrying and stressing over nothing... should have just gone and got the card and tried it out, lol!

I checked out Newegg - the cheapest 570 they got is 315 vs Frys at 330. You can read me like a book man... don't think I'll be ordering it online, hahahhaha.

Actually, what I meant by store card was the Best Buy *Credit* card that applies only to items in-store. They call it the Best Buy Store card, I think at least. I have a credit card and store *credit* card there because it was the only place that would give me one - I'm only 20 with no prior credit.

The first thing I looked for was the Frio, they don't have anything man... not even the RAM. Can't believe how bad they have become (not that they were ever any good, rofl) - or maybe they just don't update their website... but damn pretty sad lol. But with the savings on the GFX card I can definitely buy more stuff from Frys with straight up cash... I'll try to look around a bit and update some plans - but I'm def gonna get the card tomorrow first and move on from there.
-Oh and yeah, at least they got Hard drives... phew. I'll be getting the 1tb one for sure.


EDIT: Just found a thermal take cooler...
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Thermaltake+-+Spin-Q+Univer...
Does it look any good?
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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 20, 2011 10:40:51 AM

Yeah they don't have much for coolers, or ram. They have some over priced GPUS, some over priced Cases, and some bad quality PSUs, thats about it. And yeah, they got hard drives.

So, go get a 1TB Western Digital Black at Best Buy.

Get this GPU at Fry's. (Which yeah you are right about the GTX 570, I had to double look, I tired to edit before you read that, :p  damnit!).

http://www.frys.com/product/6540583?site=sr:SEARCH:MAIN...

Its only 309 dollars. But if you want to go with a non-HD version, be my guest.

After you get both of those in, install a fresh copy of Windows do the new hard drive. Install the drivers for your chipset, and the latest drivers from Nvidia (I heard the latest Beta drivers are very good), and see what kind of performance you get.

You might be bottlenecked by your CPU, and the performance is still acceptable. You might not be bottlenecked by your CPU at all. You might be bottlenekced by your CPU and not be happy.

If its the last of the options go ahead and look into getting that whole system. :) 


Here is some info about the HD version of the GTX 570.

http://www.rage3d.com/board/showthread.php?t=33974528

The perk is the display port conenction, which you won't be using. But it also is shorter... which you won't really care about either becuase you have a freaking HUGE case.

It runs a little hotter than the GTX 570, but that isn't a problem with your case. It is completely able to be SLIed with a normal GTX 570 (for the future). So its main perk is that its cheaper.


EDIT - That cooler you edited in your last post is ok, but its not really worth the price. For 60 dollars there is much better you can get.





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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 20, 2011 10:50:10 AM

Oh you know what, I totally forgot best buy DOES have a good CPU cooler, but its not available for pickup in store, its the Cooler Master Hyper 212+. Its good, but its not very pretty, and its sold out online.

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Cooler+Master+-+V6GT+120mm+...

This is a good cooler, but its a little over priced when the Frio is on par with it/might be a bit better.

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Corsair+-+Hydro+Series+H50+...

This is also good, but I'd only pay 50 dollars for it, totally overpriced.

If you HAD to get a CPU Cooler from Best Buy I'd get the V6 Cooler Master, but I'd rather have the Frio, plus its cheaper... So yeah.

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/CoolerMaster/V6GT/5....

http://www.guru3d.com/article/cooler-master-v6-gt-revie...

Actually the V6GT isn't half bad. acording to those two reviews... I'd still rather have the Frio. Apparently it's a bit loud, but so is the Frio. But it does fit your built look. :) , well they both do. Make sure the V6Gt comes with 1556 fittings (1556 and 1555 have the same fittings.)
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May 20, 2011 11:04:24 AM

Oh damn.. I can't get the V6 alongside the Hard drive, the card only has $170 and with tax, the HD and Q-Spin would be $163.

Hmm... how much does the Frio outperform the Q-spin by?
I'm thinking if I save $60 -instead of buying the frio- maybe I could use it to get a SSD?

But I would have to agree the Frio looks much better in the case... hahah.
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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 20, 2011 11:08:00 AM

Can't you get the V6 and the HDD and just spend a couple bucks? You'd be saving money in the long run right? (I'm not quite sure how this "card" thing works).

But yeah, that Q-Spin. Isn't that great, especially for the price. Plus it doesn't look that good, at least for what you want it for. I wouldn't recommend it.

Oh yeah just looked up the Q-Spin, don't get it. You'll regret it. Its not even good. The Frio is over TEN degrees cooler.

This combo is pretty interesting.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
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May 20, 2011 11:13:36 AM

Hahah yeah screw it, I'll get the Frio then.
Actually, you're right - I could just pay the extra cash, but I just took another look at that v6... kinda looks like a big chunk of weirdness. I'd rather the Frio.. but I'll think about it - it might be the difference between getting the SSD or not.

I just realized that the Q-spin only supports:
Compatible with Sockets: 754/939/940/AM2, LGA775


EDIT: oh yeah, I just figured that out about the HD model of the 570 too, forgot to mention it. Apparently there is no vapor cooling in the HD, it uses some other method and actually draws air in, where the other model only blows air out... and the HD is quieter too. Pretty interesting.
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May 20, 2011 11:30:36 AM

Lol last picture is stolen! hahah, but wow... okay that looks completely different than the picture on best buy... that thing looks huge, but the red lights are amazing.

Yeah actually, that sounds great. I'm going to get that coolermaster from best buy - have it shipped to store and keep the CPU @ stock settings, if I actually end up getting it.

That will be perfect, I was checking this SSD out:
http://www.frys.com/product/6064158
I wish they would just remove that game and make it cheaper... but is that brand any good? That's the cheapest 128gb I could find... and with 128gb I won't even need the cache feature.

If that brand is just total ***, how about this corsair for 230:
http://www.frys.com/product/6196229

And if that is still bad... I don't really want to push it this high, but if the quality is better what about this samsung:
http://www.frys.com/product/6553603
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a c 153 U Graphics card
May 20, 2011 11:34:50 AM

Well OCZ and Intel make the best SSDs in my opinion.

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

Would be a good choice.

If you want to learn about SSDs fast, take a look here.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/best-ssd-price-per-...

But yeah, you aren't going to do much better than that Intel 320 at 220 dollars.

The good thing about SSDs (well you'll have to reinstall your OS and stuff), but you can get a second one in the future to increase your performance and capacity in the future by installing them in Raid 0. So if you got one of those now, you can get a second in a year or so if you need more room.
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May 20, 2011 11:40:33 AM

Yup, great choice - recommended in that same article too.
It's 10 bucks more in frys... lol you knew that was coming!
http://www.frys.com/product/6585633

Alright man, thank you so much for all this help. I'll update this tomorrow once I get the GFX card and maybe the SSD.

EDIT: Just read the edit, I never really knew much about RAID. I just heard it was a little bit more risky as you can lose all your data or something... So what kind of performance do you get from running them in RAID? I don't think I'll need much more than 100gb for my windows installation and games - other stuff like data/music/etc I'll just keep on my 1TB hd.
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Best solution

a c 153 U Graphics card
May 20, 2011 11:47:02 AM

RAID comes in all sorts of varieties. The two most used to common people are raid 1 and raid 0. Raid 0 will strip your data on to two drives, so its going to increase the speeds becuase you are working two HDDs at one. Raid 1 is mirroring, what this is basically everything on one drive is copied on the other, Raid 1 is for security, you lose one drive, you still have ALL your data. This is complete contrast to Raid 0 were if you lose one drive you lose all your data.

Of course this won't be a big problem if you only have Windows and programs on the drive. All of your documents, and what not will be on the normal HDD.

It should also be noted that SSDs don't die like HDDs do, their life expentancy is MUCH MUCH better, so you are pretty safe even in Raid 0.

There are other Raid levels, but you don't really need to know about them. You can google them if you wish to learn more though.

I'm going to send you a PM, check for it in a few minutes.
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May 27, 2011 3:19:27 AM

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