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Before I purchase - Input requested on build

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August 19, 2011 4:08:45 PM

It's time for me to put together a new system. It's been a few years so I wanted to make sure I didn't make any glaring mistakes here.

I have not ordered this yet (I am amazed at people who ask for input AFTER they order....) so I will consider your input and make changes accordingly. I know people have brand loyalties, I am not looking for those discussions, but if you think I made a legit mistake on my build please point it out. If you do think a different brand is better, great, but please supply a link to testing that shows that to me.....I need data.

This will be mainly a gaming rig for me but I do also dabble into HD video recording and editing so it will be used for a fair amount of that. This is why I went with 16 GB of RAM, Z68 card, and 2 TB of storage.

Two questions I had: 1) should I upgrade my 850W PS to the 1000W model for another $30?; 2) should I spend the $500 on one graphics card or the two 560 Ti's in SLI as I have it? I have always liked the SLI approach.

Thanks for any input or suggestions.



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

ASUS P8Z68 Deluxe LGA 1155 Intel Z68 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS $249


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

Intel Core i7-2600K Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I72600K $314


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

Kingston HyperX 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model KHX1600C9D3K4/16GX $114


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

ASUS ENGTX560 TI DCII TOP/2DI/1GD5 GeForce GTX 560 Ti (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support ... X 2 in SLI $249 x 2


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

OCZ Vertex 3 VTX3-25SAT3-120G 2.5" 120GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) $219


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

Western Digital Caviar Black WD2002FAEX 2TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive $154


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

LG Black Super Multi SATA WH12LS30 LightScribe Support - OEM $79


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

Scythe SCMG-3000 120mm Heat Pipe CPU Cooler $49


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

OCZ ZX Series 850W Fully-Modular 80PLUS Gold High Performance Power Supply compatible with Intel Sandybridge Core i3 i5 i7 ... $169


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

COOLER MASTER HAF 932 Advanced Blue Edition RC-932-KKN3-GP ATX Full Tower Computer Case with USB 3.0, Black Interior and ... $159


Total = $2,004 (before tax/shipping & MIR)
August 19, 2011 4:48:21 PM

for the PSU question, I advise to not look at the product name and base your decision on how many watts it says there. Look at the output breakdowns paying the closest attention to the 12v rail / rails. For most gamers, having the largest possible single 12v rail is desireable, but a split rail has its advantages as long as the Amperage going to each rail is enough for your selected video card(s). Also pay attention to the efficiency ratings, more wattage tends to be better, but if you buy a 1100 Watt PSU with 80% efficiency and end up only using 40% of the capacity of the PSU, you are wasting a fair bit of power. Your money would have been better spent on a lower rated, more efficient PSU.

As for the GPU selection, I always prefer the best single card solution available, since it is more cost and energy efficient, but if you are bent on going SLI you get more graphics power, but you pay a lot more for it.
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August 19, 2011 4:57:51 PM

I am certainly torn on the GPU question. For roughly the same $500 spent on the 2 cards I could go with something like this......then 12 months from now (or longer) when this card is on clearance for $200 I can add a 2nd one in SLI..........

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

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August 19, 2011 5:39:33 PM

That RAM you have up top is 1.65v RAM...it is not the recommended RAM for these 1155 boards. You want 1.5v RAM. Look at any of these sets down below, or even two sets of 2x4GB RAM, but do not get 1.65v RAM for that board.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E... <----- Any of these sets will work just fine.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E... <--- or two sets of any of these.

With your budget and needs I would look at something like this down below. First off that Asus card is as wide as a house so make sure you can fit two of them on a board.

Here's two other cards worth looking at.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $529.99
MSI N580GTX Lightning GeForce GTX 580 (Fermi) 1536MB 384-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $499.99 - $479.99 after mail-in rebate card
EVGA DS Superclocked 015-P3-1587-AR GeForce GTX 580 (Fermi) 1536MB 384-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

For a psu to power dual 580's...this one down below is manufactured by Enermax for LEPA and it it's a steal atm for that price.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $179.99 - $129.99 after mail-in rebate card
LEPA G900-MA 900W SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS GOLD Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply


Combo that cpu + h/s to save a few bucks...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... $349.98
Intel Core i7-2600K Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I72600K
Scythe SCMG-3000 120mm Heat Pipe CPU Cooler

Now for the board. This board just came out yesterday and it has the NF200 bridge allowing you to run dual vid cards @ x16 or tri cards @ x8. It also has the new PCI-e 3.0 slots.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $289.99
ASRock Z68 Extreme7 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

http://www.asrock.com/mb/overview.asp?Model=Z68%20Extre... <----- Here's another look at that board
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August 19, 2011 8:01:38 PM

Why_Me said:
That RAM you have up top is 1.65v RAM...it is not the recommended RAM for these 1155 boards. You want 1.5v RAM. Look at any of these sets down below, or even two sets of 2x4GB RAM, but do not get 1.65v RAM for that board.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E... <----- Any of these sets will work just fine.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E... <--- or two sets of any of these.

With your budget and needs I would look at something like this down below. First off that Asus card is as wide as a house so make sure you can fit two of them on a board.

Here's two other cards worth looking at.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $529.99
MSI N580GTX Lightning GeForce GTX 580 (Fermi) 1536MB 384-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $499.99 - $479.99 after mail-in rebate card
EVGA DS Superclocked 015-P3-1587-AR GeForce GTX 580 (Fermi) 1536MB 384-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

For a psu to power dual 580's...this one down below is manufactured by Enermax for LEPA and it it's a steal atm for that price.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $179.99 - $129.99 after mail-in rebate card
LEPA G900-MA 900W SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS GOLD Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply


Combo that cpu + h/s to save a few bucks...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... $349.98
Intel Core i7-2600K Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I72600K
Scythe SCMG-3000 120mm Heat Pipe CPU Cooler

Now for the board. This board just came out yesterday and it has the NF200 bridge allowing you to run dual vid cards @ x16 or tri cards @ x8. It also has the new PCI-e 3.0 slots.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $289.99
ASRock Z68 Extreme7 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

http://www.asrock.com/mb/overview.asp?Model=Z68%20Extre... <----- Here's another look at that board


Why_Me, thanks a bunch for pointing some of these issues out. The RAM catch is huge and I have made the changes as you suggest, thanks again.

The combo was a nice catch too, why not save $15 if it's just sitting there for the taking.

The PSU you posted looks like a great deal/price. I decided to move up to the full 1000W OCZ unit. I will be spending a bit more but I like the full modular and the 5 yr warranty.

Lastly, the new ASRock board. I am always cautious on brand new items, although this looks pretty solid. I was originally worried about the NF200 not being on some boards, although since I only plan to do SLI x 2 it doesn't sound like NF200 offers any performance improvement (unless I go to SLI x 3, which won't happen). Here is the article I am referencing on that topic:

http://www.tweaktown.com/articles/4147/nvidia_nf200_x16...

The board is nice for the future with Ivy Bridge, etc... but again I doubt I would ever update this build. Every couple of years as I build a new computer I pass my current unit down to my kids/wife to use, then build from scratch (as I am doing now). Although the Ivy Bridge discussion does raise the question, should I wait a few months and just build a new Ivy Bridge unit instead?

Good discussion and thanks again for the input everyone, much appreciated.
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August 19, 2011 9:00:36 PM

If you wait a few months you might get caught in new platform growing pains. I know the first run of Sandy Bridge hardware had some pretty bad bugs now the platform is very stable and performs extremely well. Ivy Bridge's launch may go more smoothly but you never know.
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August 19, 2011 9:05:25 PM

wathman said:
If you wait a few months you might get caught in new platform growing pains. I know the first run of Sandy Bridge hardware had some pretty bad bugs now the platform is very stable and performs extremely well. Ivy Bridge's launch may go more smoothly but you never know.

??? and what bugs would that be?

The only bug worth mentioning was the Cougar Point silicone fiasco and that was taken care of months ago hence the reason all the H61/H67/P67 boards now say (B3).
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August 19, 2011 9:17:26 PM

yeah, that was it. No longer an issue now and Sandy Bridge is a great platform. When Sandy Bridge first came out and those first boards hit the market, nobody knew about the problems until it hit the blogs. I'm just saying that there's a possibility that there could be some unforeseen issue with a new platform that won't make itself known until the product hits the market. Ivy Bridge is shaping up to be an impressive platform, but nobody has much first hand exposure to it yet.
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August 19, 2011 9:22:08 PM

wathman said:
yeah, that was it. No longer an issue now and Sandy Bridge is a great platform. When Sandy Bridge first came out and those first boards hit the market, nobody knew about the problems until it hit the blogs. I'm just saying that there's a possibility that there could be some unforeseen issue with a new platform that won't make itself known until the product hits the market. Ivy Bridge is shaping up to be an impressive platform, but nobody has much first hand exposure to it yet.

The 1155 boards are set up to run the Ivy Bride cpu's with a simple bios flash. The 1155 boards are the Ivy Bridge boards.
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August 29, 2011 2:54:47 AM

Best answer selected by Big Jeff.
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