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~$1000 Sandy Bridge Build for everyday use

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August 26, 2011 3:30:23 AM

Alright forum geniuses, i need your help and expertise here. I've done some research on the Sandy Bridge platform.... and well, got roughly NOWHERE.

We all like shiny, expensive toys. The problem with that is that they cost an arm and a leg, (especially for a soon-to-be college graduate) and from

what I can tell there's several components where a performance increase doesn't merit the accompanying cost. Because of this, I turn to all of you to

help me out. Let me know what to do!

Approximate Purchase Date: As soon as humanly possible.

Budget Range: ~$1000 USD Before / After Rebates. Separate budget for Monitor/TV.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: This computer will be essentially used for everything that I do. It will be used for general word

processing, Internet, and Gaming on games like Guild Wars 2, Starcraft 2, Battlefield 3 with the highest settings possible for my budget. I also record

music with Tracktion and Cubase, and would like (but not entirely necessary) to integrate this computer into an entertainment solution (i.e. using it as

a DVR/cable box). Lastly, I may need it to run any of an array of engineering programs in the future, so I'd like at least the ability to remedy any

shortcomings with a simple upgrade.

Parts Not Required: I have speakers and an ancient wireless mouse/keyboard combo.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg

Country of Origin: United States

Parts Preferences: Intel. All other brands up for discussion.

Overclocking: Not sure. Would like the thrill of having a 'juiced' computer, but don't want to risk failure.

SLI or Crossfire: Yes

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080?

Additional Comments: I'm a sucker for Cooler Master cases, side windows, and LED lighting schemes :D  I'm looking for balance answers, and

opinions from others to help clear some confusion and aid in my component choices.
August 26, 2011 3:46:44 AM

Also, I'm going to have to factor in a 64-bit install of Win7 in the budget, because i don't have an OS to install in this build.
August 26, 2011 4:34:32 AM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $79.99 FREE SHIPPING
COOLER MASTER Storm Enforcer SGC-1000-KWN1 Black SECC / ABS Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case ATX PS2 / EPS 12V (optional ) Power Supply

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $94.99 - $69.99 after mail-in rebate FREE SHIPPING
Antec High Current Gamer Series HCG-750 750W ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V v2.91 SLI Certified CrossFire Certified 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $129.99 + $7.87 Shipping
ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... $264.98 FREE SHIPPING
Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52500K
CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Profile Desktop Memory Model CML8GX3M2A1600C9

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $27.99 FREE SHIPPING
COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus RR-B10-212P-G1 "Heatpipe Direct Contact" Long Life Sleeve 120mm CPU Cooler Compatible Intel Core i5 & Intel Core i7

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... $72.48
Sony Optiarc CD/DVD Burner Black SATA Model AD-7260S-0B - OEM
Seagate Barracuda ST31000524AS 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $239.99 - $219.99 after mail-in rebate card FREE SHIPPING
MSI N560GTX-Ti Twin Frozr II GeForce GTX 560 Ti (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $99.99 FREE SHIPPING
Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM

Total: $1,010.40 *not including shipping and rebates

http://www.asrock.com/mb/overview.asp?Model=Z68%20Extre... <----- A better look at that Asrock board
Related resources
August 26, 2011 4:35:45 AM

I don't know anything about how you would integrate a PC with Tracktion and Cubase as I haven't used those computers before but here's at least an idea for you to start from.

$220
Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge-based 3.3 GHz CPU
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

$129
Gigabyte GA-Z68A-D3H-B3 LGA 1155 Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

$290 ($260 after rebate)
MSI R6950 Twin Frozr II OC Radeon HD 6950 2GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

$55
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

$60
Seagate Barracuda ST31000524AS 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

$60
COOLER MASTER HAF 912 RC-912-KKN1 Black SECC/ ABS Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

$110 ($100 with rebate)
CORSAIR Enthusiast Series TX750 V2 750W ATX12V
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

$19
AMSUNG CD/DVD Burner 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 24X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM Black SATA Model
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

$140
Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 64-bit - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Total $1023 ($983 after rebates)

Another option would be to go with the EVGA 560 ti for a video card. Its slightly less powerful than the 6950 but its also cheaper. I personally prefer nvidia's drivers more than ATI's but thats really just an opinion.
$255 ($230 after rebate)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



August 26, 2011 2:25:34 PM

Why_Me:
I absolutely love that MoBo, it sounds amazing.

I do want to know though, benches on the 560Ti vs. 6950? what are we talking as far as 1920x1080 graphics settings in DX11 and minimum framerates? Other than that you guys pretty much hit the nail on the head. Must be an easy build.
August 27, 2011 5:19:51 AM

bassmanj said:
Why_Me:
I absolutely love that MoBo, it sounds amazing.

I do want to know though, benches on the 560Ti vs. 6950? what are we talking as far as 1920x1080 graphics settings in DX11 and minimum framerates? Other than that you guys pretty much hit the nail on the head. Must be an easy build.

1920 x 1080 (standard) is the benches you want to go by. Not 1920 x 1200, or any other resolutions.
August 28, 2011 5:16:55 PM

I found an OCZ 700W ModStream PSU at newegg for 89.99, and 30 dollar rebate card.

OCZ ModXStream Pro 700W Modular High Performance Power Supply compatible with Intel Sandybridge Core i3 i5 i7 and AMD Phenom
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

My question here is that since my plan is to go with this card:

MSI N560GTX-Ti Hawk GeForce GTX 560 Ti (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Do you think that a 700W/750W or even (in particular, the shell shocker deal thats coming up today at 4pm PT) the seasonic 650W will support an SLI of two of these cards, assuming everything else is the same as what has been already posted? It just seems that from what i've recently read about PSU's modular is the way to go. Thoughts? Answers? any help would be appreciated.
!