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First build gaming PC for Battlefield 3, going all out...

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July 27, 2011 10:53:26 AM

Hey guys I have been strictly a console gamer, but the mind blowing graphics on BF3 preview made me a PC gamer believer and I am in the process of building my first rig. Here is my planned setup. I have about half of the components so far. How does my setup look to the pros out there? I will be using 1920x1080 display. Will my rig be powerful enough to run triple screen surround vision in 2d/3d at max settings or close to it?(use BFBC2 for example). I know that's asking a lot. Will the i5 2500k stock speeds bottleneck the system? How much performance (FPS benchmark)do you think I will get if OC'ed to 4.8ghz? I started with a budget PC plan, but that went to hell, and figured I want a monster. Thanks guys, can't wait till Oct., here's the list.

-Asus Z68 Pro mobo
-i5 2500k (will OC)
-Thermalright Silver Arrow cooler
-RAM 8gb DDR3 1600 @ 1.5v CL9(looking for good deal) Corsair or Gskill?
-Nvidia GTX 590 (or Kepler card if release in next few months)
-Corsair 1050w professional series (for double or triple SLI future upgrades)
-Samsung Spinoint F4 2tb HDD
-SSD 20-64gb to utilize SRT on z68 mobo(still looking for deal)sugguestion?
-Cooler Master haf x 942
-disc drive(undecided)

Sorry if any errors, still pretty green, but doing my research.
July 27, 2011 11:02:46 AM

you don't need Z68 Pro, it's expensive and uneeded. Just get the Asrock Extreme4 P67 or Z68.
You don't need a 590. Overpriced and not even worth the money with how hot it runs.
Get 2 6950 2GBs or 2 560 Ti's that'll give you equivalent if not better performance for less.

Get the 850w LEPA and save some money.

Drop the F4 2TB and get 2 F3's and run them in RAID 0 it'll be faster and yeah...

SSD caching isn't needed unless the SSD is REALLY SMALL. You have the budget to buy a larger sized SSD which I recommend getting one of these.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/best-ssd-caching,29...
That or any of the SF-2200 SSDs.

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July 27, 2011 12:17:05 PM

First off, if you're building for BF3 in a few months, wait a few months before trying to build. New parts are coming out all the time, and if you build now you could very well be disappointed.

That said...

I'd go with 2x6970s if you can afford it. 2x6950 2GBs will also run really well - my 6950 2GB chugs out games at over 60 FPS on max settings/AA, with the exception of ArmA 2, but that only bottoms out at 43 FPS (respectable, given the massive landscapes and extreme textures).

Like aznshinobi recommended, you'd be well off getting even a good 750W for 2x6950s and 850W for 2x6970s. Your PSU will run a bit healthier if you add 100W to those numbers though, especially with an OC.

+1 to the F3's. You won't be disappointed by their performance.

Just for clarification - an SSD boot drive will outperform an SSD caching drive. Caching improves read speeds from the drive, but doesn't take advantage of the write speeds. A boot drive will use both to their fullest though, so get a boot drive :) 


As for your other parts/questions:

Newegg tends to put their G.Skill kits on sale pretty often, so just keep a look out for 10% memory or G.Skill sales (they happen often). Corsair tends to be a bit overpriced sometimes, depending on the model.
The RAM you're looking at is about $65-75 now though.

The i5-2500K shouldn't bottleneck you much (if at all). Eyefinity/Surround is extremely GPU-heavy (for obvious reasons), but even if your CPU starts to slow you down OCing is pretty easy. I've heard of a lot of people who have gone to 4 GHz without upping the voltage; you just need the right cooling. The Silver Arrow should do a great job.
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July 27, 2011 12:37:24 PM

boiler1990 said:
First off, if you're building for BF3 in a few months, wait a few months before trying to build. New parts are coming out all the time, and if you build now you could very well be disappointed.

That said...

I'd go with 2x6970s if you can afford it. 2x6950 2GBs will also run really well - my 6950 2GB chugs out games at over 60 FPS on max settings/AA, with the exception of ArmA 2, but that only bottoms out at 43 FPS (respectable, given the massive landscapes and extreme textures).

Like aznshinobi recommended, you'd be well off getting even a good 750W for 2x6950s and 850W for 2x6970s. Your PSU will run a bit healthier if you add 100W to those numbers though, especially with an OC.

+1 to the F3's. You won't be disappointed by their performance.

Just for clarification - an SSD boot drive will outperform an SSD caching drive. Caching improves read speeds from the drive, but doesn't take advantage of the write speeds. A boot drive will use both to their fullest though, so get a boot drive :) 


As for your other parts/questions:

Newegg tends to put their G.Skill kits on sale pretty often, so just keep a look out for 10% memory or G.Skill sales (they happen often). Corsair tends to be a bit overpriced sometimes, depending on the model.
The RAM you're looking at is about $65-75 now though.

The i5-2500K shouldn't bottleneck you much (if at all). Eyefinity/Surround is extremely GPU-heavy (for obvious reasons), but even if your CPU starts to slow you down OCing is pretty easy. I've heard of a lot of people who have gone to 4 GHz without upping the voltage; you just need the right cooling. The Silver Arrow should do a great job.


Thanks for the great answers guys. Im trying to build slow to get the best deals on high end components. Waiting on gpu until bf3 release for sure, will use intels igpu until then. I started already b/c i got cpu and mobo a great prices i5 $179, z68 pro $169. How big of a SSD do I need? Just for OS, 64gb? And I've read CrossfireX is the best bang for the buck. I'm trying to build an easily updateable system. If I start off with crossfire or sli then will triple or quad crossfire be that proficient? As compared to one 6990 then adding another down the line. Any thoughts of when new cards are releasing? Thanks again.
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July 27, 2011 1:17:24 PM

^ Sounds good. 64/60gb would be large enough for SSD. Crossfire is actually a really good deal, however tri-CF/SLI and quad-CF isn't as efficient or as effective at scaling. I suggest just waiting a few months like Boiler said.

AMD slates the 7xxx GPUs for december
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July 27, 2011 1:27:45 PM

64GB is plenty for OS. I'd go to 128GB so you can install a couple programs and games onto there as well, then you can use all that HDD space for movies and music.

The problem with the i7 2600k is that it can only run dual PCIe slots at x8 speed. A 6990 will hum along happily in a x16 slot by itself, but when you add another and that slot slows to x8, it might not run so smoothly. Just a caveat, since I have no idea how much PCIe bandwidth a 6990 uses.
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July 27, 2011 2:26:11 PM

Can you get 3 cards to run 3 displays with Eyefinity? I know NVidia Surround will work with one display plugged into each GPU in 3-way SLI (owned 3x470s a while back).

If you get 3 cards that are good at 1920x1080 and meet the requirements to set up Eyefinity/Surround (like the ability to connect a 3-way CF/SLI Bridge), that would work best of all your options. It's much more expensive though.
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July 27, 2011 4:35:25 PM

Guess I'm in for a wait. December is so far away! Hopefully Nvidia or AMD will supprize me with a new card for BF3. Thanks for everyone's advice, very helpful.
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July 28, 2011 2:30:08 PM

Best answer selected by Swolern.
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