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I finished building my first gaming PC. I have some questions.

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September 12, 2011 11:57:36 AM

Hi,

I just finished building my first ever gaming PC! Below are the specifications:

Case: Antec 902 v3
PSU: Antec TruePower New 650w
CPU: intel CORE i5-2500k
CPU Cooler: Stock Cooler with pre-applied thermal paste
RAM: G.Skill 2x4GB DDR3 (1600mhz) CL9
MoBo: Gigabyte GA-Z68A-D3-B3
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 6870 1GB OC Edition
HDD: 1TB Samsung Spinpoint F3 SATA II
Optical: LG DVD-RW SATA I/II

I have installed all of the drivers, checked that all my case fans are working properly and checked my CPU and GPU temps. When browsing the web, all four cores of my CPU are at around 29 degrees celsius apart from the fourth core (c3) which runs at 38 degrees celsius. My GPU runs at 35 degrees celsius (IDLE). Temps are according to coretemp and GPU-Z. I found it difficult with a modular PSU to flex and bend cables (especially the massive 24-pin ATX connector) so I couldn't route some of the large cables through the cable management holes in my case. So my cable management isn't amazing but it's okay.

Before I install some basic PC Games to play (Far Cry 2 and Splinter Cell: Conviction) will these temperatures be okay? Especially when I put my PC under load when playing games. I don't want the CPU to exceed 72 degress celsius as I believe this is the max temperature.

Also, I believe I only have DirectX 9 and OpenGL 4.1 installed on my system. I installed all drivers that came with my graphics card and motherboard. How can I update these to DirectX 11 and OpenGL 4.1?

Any other advice or suggestions on things I should install or check?

Thanks in advance.
September 12, 2011 12:20:33 PM

you can update directx here--it will install then download the components you need

http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=35

i would upgrade the stock cooler as the 2500k is a great overclocker so why not use it to its full potential--the hyper 212 plus seems to be a popular choice

the temperatures seem fine
a b B Homebuilt system
September 12, 2011 12:26:56 PM

Its not unusual for different cores to display different temps, however 10 degrees is a fairly big gap, usually 2-4 degrees is about normal. Id recommend downloading HWMonitor, just as a second opinion to see what temp readings that gives.

35degrees is really low, thats a nice temp to run at for your GPU.

Your CPU, unless overclocked, should game at around 60 degrees which is perfectly fine as well. Anything under 70 is "ideal".

As for DX11 and OpenGL 4.1, your card is certainly DX11 ready so you should just be able to download the drivers. Some older games (not sure specifically about FC2 and Splinter Cell) but they aren't supported by DX11 which is possibly why your seeing only DX9 (they might only be DX9 games - ill look into this though).

Update:
FC2 - The engine takes advantage of multi-core processors as well as multiple processors and supports DirectX 9 as well as DirectX 10
Splinter Cell - Should also run at DX10.

Related resources
September 12, 2011 12:48:52 PM

It's fine... Dont use and/or install Windows Update after you Installed Windows... Download the latest GPU Driver and your set... If you want to make sure if everything is installed, go into device manager...

Your temps are in good shape... You can even OC the CPU to 4GHz on stock cooler but if not, probably 3.8GHz and also if you dont want 72*C, than buy a freaken aftermarket cooler like Venomous X or something better, here's some i recommend:

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

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

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

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

NOTE: When you look for a heatsink, Try to fine the one with more weight/gram and it's why the noctua( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ) heatsink is better because it's at 1200g, Also buy this thermal paste and put it on your GPU and other stuff as well!

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
September 12, 2011 1:15:09 PM

AdrianPerry said:
Its not unusual for different cores to display different temps, however 10 degrees is a fairly big gap, usually 2-4 degrees is about normal. Id recommend downloading HWMonitor, just as a second opinion to see what temp readings that gives.

35degrees is really low, thats a nice temp to run at for your GPU.

Your CPU, unless overclocked, should game at around 60 degrees which is perfectly fine as well. Anything under 70 is "ideal".

As for DX11 and OpenGL 4.1, your card is certainly DX11 ready so you should just be able to download the drivers. Some older games (not sure specifically about FC2 and Splinter Cell) but they aren't supported by DX11 which is possibly why your seeing only DX9 (they might only be DX9 games - ill look into this though).

Update:
FC2 - The engine takes advantage of multi-core processors as well as multiple processors and supports DirectX 9 as well as DirectX 10
Splinter Cell - Should also run at DX10.


Thanks for the response. In dxdiag my version shows up as DirectX 11 now so it's all good and no problems found. If I have DX11, I just assume a DX10 game will still be compatible with DX11 but it won't take advantage of it's extra features, correct? I have yet another question, How can I check what version my AMD Catalyst software is? The latest version is 11.8 and I would like to upgrade it although I am not entirely sure what AMD Catalyst is so I would love to hear a brief explanation and whether any previous versions are better than the latest.
a b B Homebuilt system
September 12, 2011 1:17:31 PM

What OS are you using? :) 
Open CCC , goto Information ---> Software....
It'll show you all the software versions installed on the rig for ATI

And CCC is a program like Nvidia Control Panel. Just a Nice GUI especially made for ATI Products thru which you can manipulate every aspect of the GPU pretty simply.
a b B Homebuilt system
September 12, 2011 1:21:21 PM

Unisykolist said:
If I have DX11, I just assume a DX10 game will still be compatible with DX11 but it won't take advantage of it's extra features, correct?


Correct.

Unisykolist said:
I am not entirely sure what AMD Catalyst is


AMD Catalyst is similar to Nvidia's Control Panel, it just holds the settings for your graphics card, makes sure the latest drivers and firmware is installed ect. Its a good idea to keep it up to date.
September 12, 2011 2:05:05 PM

alyoshka said:
What OS are you using? :) 
Open CCC , goto Information ---> Software....
It'll show you all the software versions installed on the rig for ATI

And CCC is a program like Nvidia Control Panel. Just a Nice GUI especially made for ATI Products thru which you can manipulate every aspect of the GPU pretty simply.


Thanks. I have version 11.10 so it looks like I should upgrade to 11.8 I guess :) 

I also played my first game, Far Cry 2. During gameplay, the temps I got were ~49-53 degrees C for my GPU and most of the cores running at ~49 degree C. They seem pretty cooool to me ;)  Saying that, I didn't even have AA on in the in-game settings and most of them were set to medium.
a b B Homebuilt system
September 12, 2011 2:08:40 PM

Temps all look good :)  My Overclocked i5 runs at about 60 degrees during gaming and thats with aftermarket cooling. Even with a stock cooler, you should be able to clock your i5 to around 4GHz if you wanted to. Just keep an eye on temps and aim to stay under 70 degrees :)  As for the GPU, i think they're good until about 105 degree's, ideally under 80 is good, but no real concern until your closer to 90. Gaming on my overclocked 560Ti only reaches about 70 degree's and that's with 1GHz on the core.
September 12, 2011 2:10:41 PM

You hosuld be ok on stock (not overclock) for those games and, probably in fact most on high details 2xAA or 4xAA.

I belive temps will hold, the only problem could be noise.

a b B Homebuilt system
September 12, 2011 2:17:21 PM

cats_Paw said:


I belive temps will hold, the only problem could be noise.


PC noise isn't an issue when your shooting the £&%$ out of "bad-guys" with your speakers/headphones rumbling with bass after each shot :D 
!