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Happy Birthday to Me

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August 28, 2011 3:15:45 AM

Hi folks,

This will be my 1st build and I am interested in any feedback you may have. It will be a general use computer with an emphasis on gaming - and by that I mean I want it to run current and near-future RTS and FPS games at max or near max settings, and be easily upgradable for many years to come. I don't want to go crazy expense-wise, but at the same time this project is kind of a treat (certain b'day ending in '0') and I don't want to skimp on the important parts.

My present system is a 'gasp' 9-year old P4 2.4. I have done quite a bit of reading to catch up on the current state of things and here is the proposed component list I've come up with. I know I can get all of this for just under $2K (a helpful selling point with the missus).

- Corsair Graphite Series 600T CC600TM Mid-Tower Gaming Case
- mobo: ASUS P8Z68 Deluxe
- psu: COUGAR GX 1050W
- core-i7 2600K
- Nvidia GTX 580 (may SLI it at some future point)
- ram make/model undecided yet, but I figure 2x4Gb is plenty for now.
- SSD: Crucial M4 2.5" 64GB SATA III MLC. May want to ISRT and just use this as a cache drive.
- Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s

I tried to match the components to maximize each's capabilities while leaving plenty of room for future upgrading (perhaps SLI at some point, upgrade cooling, memory, storage, etc) in order to make this system last as long as my current one has, but much more capably. I know that's a crapshoot given the pace at which technology is currently evolving, but what do you think?

All feeback welcome!




More about : happy birthday

August 28, 2011 3:26:00 AM

Sounds ike a great system. I wouldn't change a thing.
August 28, 2011 3:34:02 AM

Welcome!
I have a few comments:
First I wouldn't get less than 8GB ram right now. There really isn't any reason to get less at these prices. 4gb is not as cost effective.
The PSU is overkill, even for sli GTX 580. 850W would be fine.
The SSD is pretty small. I've seen the Crucial m4 drives for ~$150 for 120GB, and they just got some new firmware that boosts performance. Using the drive for a cache is silly, and unnecessary with 8 GB ram.
I got the superior Samsung 1TB for $50 free shipping the other day. I'd go with that.

Other than that it looks pretty good.
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August 28, 2011 3:49:16 AM

abekl, thanks, glad to know all that reading wasn't a waste of time!

buzznut, some food for thought there, thank you very much! Looking into larger SSDs I got the impression that larger = newer = teething problems (as in higher percentage of unhappy customers), not to mention more $ per Gb, but consumer reviews can be misleading (unhappy customers more likely to do a write-up than happy ones, as a means of voicing their dissatisfaction I suppose).

I find it interesting that you don't think much of ISRT. I did figure I'd need to learn some more about it before deciding to go that route. To some of us dinosaurs I guess using SSD as temporary rather than permanent storage just sounds less scary. Not totally sold on the 'permanence' of ssd (but I can probably be convinced ;) 

PS: thanks for the suggestions on the psu and hd as well - will check those out.
August 28, 2011 3:54:50 AM

Here's a few options...like this board that just came out a few days ago with the NF200 Bridge (dual cards @ x16) and that board also has the new PCI-E 3.0 slots for the new generation vid cards due out later on. The 2600K has zero advantage in regards to gaming vs the 2500K, and a larger SSD would allow you to add more proggies / games.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... $354.98 -$30.00 Mail In Rebates 10% off with promo code CORSAIR10AUG, ends 8/31
CORSAIR Professional Series HX1050 1050W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS SILVER Certified Modular Power Supply
Corsair Graphite Series 600T CC600TM Mid-Tower Gaming Case

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.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/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... $189.99 FREE SHIPPING
ADATA S511 Series AS511S3-120GM-C 2.5" 120GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD

Total: $1,172.42 *not including shipping and rebates

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

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $469.99
SAMSUNG S23A750D Black 23" 2ms Full HD 3D LED BackLight LCD Monitor 250 cd/m2 DCR 1,000,000:1 (1,000:1)

http://www.asrock.com/mb/overview.asp?Model=Z68%20Extre... <--- a better look at that Asrock board

http://www.asrock.com/microsite/PCIe3/ <---- link worth checking out in regards to those new PCI-E 3.0 slots. More bandwidth ftw

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-geforce-stut... <----- Recent article done here on Toms in regards to how having dual bridges for SLI (NF200 Bridge board) dual cards @ x16 helps to reduce micro stuttering for dual cards in SLI.
August 28, 2011 4:06:05 AM

G0pher_61 said:
Hi folks,

This will be my 1st build and I am interested in any feedback you may have. It will be a general use computer with an emphasis on gaming - and by that I mean I want it to run current and near-future RTS and FPS games at max or near max settings, and be easily upgradable for many years to come. I don't want to go crazy expense-wise, but at the same time this project is kind of a treat (certain b'day ending in '0') and I don't want to skimp on the important parts.

My present system is a 'gasp' 9-year old P4 2.4. I have done quite a bit of reading to catch up on the current state of things and here is the proposed component list I've come up with. I know I can get all of this for just under $2K (a helpful selling point with the missus).

- Corsair Graphite Series 600T CC600TM Mid-Tower Gaming Case
- mobo: ASUS P8Z68 Deluxe
- psu: COUGAR GX 1050W
- core-i7 2600K
- Nvidia GTX 580 (may SLI it at some future point)
- ram make/model undecided yet, but I figure 2x4Gb is plenty for now.
- SSD: Crucial M4 2.5" 64GB SATA III MLC. May want to ISRT and just use this as a cache drive.
- Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s

I tried to match the components to maximize each's capabilities while leaving plenty of room for future upgrading (perhaps SLI at some point, upgrade cooling, memory, storage, etc) in order to make this system last as long as my current one has, but much more capably. I know that's a crapshoot given the pace at which technology is currently evolving, but what do you think?

All feeback welcome!

for a gaming computer the i5 2500k is the best cpu for your money because it gives the same performance as the i7 2600k gaming wise. that motherboard is really expensive and i think it isnt worth it.

Corsair Carbide 500r- http://www.amazon.com/Corsair-Carbide-Tower-Gaming-CC-9... 126$ the case is coming out soon and it has better airflow than the 600t

i5 2500k & Corsair h60- http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... 277$

aftermarket fans for h60- http://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-120mm-Case-R4-C2R-2... x2=16$ the fan that comes with the h60 is loud

Asrock Extreme3 gen3- http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... 138$ shipped best motherboard for the money

Corsair 8gb 1600mhz- http://www.amazon.com/Corsair-Vengeance-240-Pin-Platfor... 52$

MSI GTX 580- http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... 495$

Crucail m4 128gb- http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... 207$

Samsung F3 1tb- http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... 60$

OCZ ZX 1000w- http://www.amazon.com/OCZ-Fully-Modular-80PLUS-Performa... 200$

ASUS DVD Burner- http://www.amazon.com/Asus-DVD%C2%B1RW-DVD-RAM-Internal... 21$




August 28, 2011 4:11:03 AM

Wow, am I glad I found this place - you folks are a gold mine!
(edit: now I just have to find some of those combos on the Canadian newegg site - wish they'd add a more thorough search feature, incl. by combo #)
August 28, 2011 4:38:32 AM

G0pher_61 said:
Wow, am I glad I found this place - you folks are a gold mine!
(edit: now I just have to find some of those combos on the Canadian newegg site - wish they'd add a more thorough search feature, incl. by combo #)

u should have mentioned you were from canada. yes it makes a difference. why_me can you show him the sites that he should buy from?
August 28, 2011 4:44:12 AM

These two outfits (Direct Canada & Best Direct) are affiliated (both use the same shipping addy out of Richmond, BC), and both offer FREE SHIPPING.

http://www.bestdirect.ca
http://www.bestdirect.ca/contact/

http://www.directcanada.com
http://www.directcanada.com/contact/

Those new Asrock Gen3 boards aren't available in Canada yet other than through newegg.ca but you can get everything else on those two sites. I use both for the fact one might be cheaper in some respects than the other depending on what component it is. Boards are cheaper on Direct Canada, and cases are cheaper on Best Direct. These two sites are not only free shipping, but I would say 90+% of the time they have newegg.ca beat on prices.
August 28, 2011 5:39:27 AM

All this build is needs is a cpu h/s added to it. :) 

http://www.directcanada.com/products/?sku=11180AC2450&v... $150.15
Corsair Graphite Series 600TM Mid-Tower Case ATX 4X5.25 6X3.5INT 4 Channel Fan Ctrl No PS MESH Panel

http://www.directcanada.com/products/?sku=11180AC4446&v... $198.12
Corsair Professional Series HX1050 1050W ATX 12V 87A 24PIN ATX 80PLUS Silver Modular Power Supply

http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681... $339.99 + $13.79 Shipping
ASRock Z68 Extreme7 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

http://www.bestdirect.ca/products/232639/BX80623I52500K... $208.79
Intel Core i5 2500K Quad Core Unlocked Processor LGA1155 3.3GHZ Sandy Bridge 6MB

http://www.directcanada.com/products/?sku=15380BD5211&v... $44.00
G.SKILL Ripjaws X F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL 8GB 2X4GB DDR3-1600 CL9-9-9-24 Memory

http://www.directcanada.com/products/?sku=13410DR1426&v... $197.51
Patriot PP120GS25SSDR Pyro Series 120GB 2.5IN SATA3 SandForce Solid State Disk Flash Drive SSD

http://www.bestdirect.ca/products/233111/ST31000524AS/S... $49.79
Seagate Barracuda ST31000524AS 7200.12 1TB SATA 32MB Cache 3.5IN Internal Hard Drive OEM

http://www.bestdirect.ca/products/225965/DRW-24B1ST%20B... $16.79
ASUS DRW-24B1ST 24X SATA DVD Writer OEM Black

http://www.directcanada.com/products/?sku=11610BD3900&v... $488.70
EVGA GeForce GTX 580 Fermi 772MHZ 1536MB GDDR5 2XDVI Mini-HDMI PCI-E Video Card

Total: $1,707.63 *includes shipping, excludes tax

http://www.bestdirect.ca/products/222137/GFC-00599/MICR... $93.79
Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium Edition 64BIT DVD OEM

http://www.directcanada.com/products/?sku=11180AC0891&v... $59.69
Corsair Gaming Audio Series CA-HS1A Headset 50MM Drivers Circumaural Earcups
August 28, 2011 1:30:45 PM

Ok, when I add on the tax that comes out to around the same price as my original plan (within $1 in fact), however you have tweaked the specs for me in several ways that will really count. (You just reminded me I'd better include a DVD writer as well, my current old drive only writes CDs!)

Awesome! THANK YOU for the insight and suggestions! I just may copy/paste pretty much all of that list right onto orders today :) 

(Edit: will check into the case suggested by mjmjpfaff as well)
August 31, 2011 4:13:50 AM

Looking into the two ASRock cards suggested above, the price difference between the Extreme 3 and Extreme7 is quite significant. The benchmarks on this site suggest very little practical advantage to the NF200 bridge on the Extreme7 other than enabling a 3rd gpu... as the 16x16 and 8x8 benchmark results are all within a hair of each other; I do see myself upgrading to 2 gpu's but I think 3 is unlikely.

Beyond that, the Extreme3 has only 2xUSB 3.0 and 2xSATA3 vs. 6 each on the Extreme7 but I'm wondering whether that will really be a problem for me...

To my untrained eye it appears the Extreme3 is the more sensible choice for me, but I'm curious to know whether there is some really significant angle I'm missing here that will result in me wishing I had sprung for the Extreme 7 (keeping long-term upgradability/system lifespan in mind)... Any thoughts?

Thanks again, you folks are terrific.
!