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$2000 Gaming Build, Advice!

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October 12, 2011 5:46:19 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: within 2 weeks
Budget Range: $2000
System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming 1080p, video editing, basic computer stuff
Parts Not Required: Keyboard, Mouse, Monitor, HD (secondary)
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: cheapest
Country of Origin: Kingston, MA USA
Parts Preferences: None
Overclocking: Maybe
SLI or Crossfire: Crossfire
Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

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Case: LIAN LI PC-9F
Motherboard: ASRock Z68 Extreme4 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX
GPU: EVGA SuperClocked 015-P3-1582-AR GeForce GTX 580 (Fermi) 1536MB 384-bit GDDR5
PSU: SeaSonic X Series X-850 (SS-850KM Active PFC F3) 850W ATX12V v2.3 / EPS 12V v2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS GOLD Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
CPU: Intel Core i7-2600K Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo Boost)
SSD: Crucial M4 CT128M4SSD2 2.5" 128GB SATA III MLC
RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800)
Heatsink: XIGMATEK Gaia SD1283 120mm Long Life Bearing CPU Cooler
Burner: LG Black 12X BD-R 2X BD-RE 16X DVD+R 12X DVD-RAM 10X BD-ROM 4MB Cache SATA Super Multi
Card Reader: AFT PRO-35U All-in-one USB 2.0 Card Reader
Thermal Grease: Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound

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Couple Questions:

1. Does any of the above parts not work out with one another?
2. I am basically modifying the overclocked $2000 June build on Tom's Hardware, will any of my parts have issues being overclocked?
3. I want 2 ATI cards, any specific company anyone would recommend, or does Sapphire do the job well? Any different recommendations? Can these be overclocked as easily as the MSI ones from the June $2000 build on TH?
4. If I decide NOT to overclock, does anyone see any issues running anything out now or in the next year or so not being able to run on this machine at 1080p, possibly with 2 monitors in the future.
5. Basically, I am set on what I want for the most part, just looking for small tweaks or recommendations. I do a lot of video work, so I an set on the i7 as well.
October 12, 2011 6:01:59 PM

Looks good! I personally would stick with 8GB of ram and get a better cooler.

1. Nope, they all look fine.
2. All good. GPU's might get a little toasty though.
3. Eh, Sapphire is alright. Especially for the price. If you don't care about rebates, these might be a good substitute: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
4. Always hard to say. On a single 1080p monitor, this rig is WAY overkill IMO. Should be just peachy for at least a year or two.
5. The only big tweaks I would make is get a modular PSU (asthetics) and drop to 8GB ram. Also might grab a Patriot Pyro 120GB SSD for raw speed. You call.

Btw, where's your HDD's? Gotta store that uncompressed video somewhere, and it's not gonna be on the SSD :p 
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October 12, 2011 6:14:01 PM

If you don't have a specific use for the 2600K other than the video work then you would save $100 with the 2500k. I know you said you were set on the selections you made but the 2600k would only benefit you in situations that will take advantage of hyperthreading and all the logical cores , wouldn't the video work benefit from higher power cards and ram.
With uncertianty about what you will do in the future you could increase the power supply to make sure you have enough in the event you add one or two video cards , do overclocking , add fans , liquid cooling. There are a number of things that could factor in the demand for more watts.
Don't get me wrong , what you have selected is good and would serve you well as they are high quality parts. I have never used anything but Nvidia video cards so I can't say that ATI would be a bad selection , but Evga just released a new GTX 580 and it is specificaly made for overclocking in mind , could be worth checking out.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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October 12, 2011 6:14:38 PM

striker410 said:
Looks good! I personally would stick with 8GB of ram and get a better cooler.

1. Nope, they all look fine.
2. All good. GPU's might get a little toasty though.
3. Eh, Sapphire is alright. Especially for the price. If you don't care about rebates, these might be a good substitute: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
4. Always hard to say. On a single 1080p monitor, this rig is WAY overkill IMO. Should be just peachy for at least a year or two.
5. The only big tweaks I would make is get a modular PSU (asthetics) and drop to 8GB ram. Also might grab a Patriot Pyro 120GB SSD for raw speed. You call.

Btw, where's your HDD's? Gotta store that uncompressed video somewhere, and it's not gonna be on the SSD :p 


I have 6 2TB Cavier Blacks at in my current system, planned to transfer some over.

I can upgrade the cooler no problem, any reason you would recommend 8 vs 16GB of ram? Price isn't an issue on the RAM, its only $20 more for me.
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October 12, 2011 6:17:17 PM

You may want to consider the 2500k instead of the 2600k as well, overclock down the road when you need to. Even though you do alot of video, I think you'll be just as happy with the 2500k, especially after you overclock if you choose to. With single monitor 1080p, I suggest getting just one 6970, and go crossfire when you're ready for 3d gaming or eyefinity, or if you need more performance you can get the second card after you try out just a single card. Easy to add, hard to subtract...
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October 12, 2011 6:25:46 PM

thrashmagazine said:
I have 6 2TB Cavier Blacks at in my current system, planned to transfer some over.

I can upgrade the cooler no problem, any reason you would recommend 8 vs 16GB of ram? Price isn't an issue on the RAM, its only $20 more for me.

My main reasoning is you won't be using the 16GB :p  I can't say that with certainty, but it takes a LARGE file to actually use all that ram. How are you getting such good savings? Most sets of 8GB 1600MHz are $50 or so.
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October 12, 2011 7:06:20 PM

striker410 said:
My main reasoning is you won't be using the 16GB :p  I can't say that with certainty, but it takes a LARGE file to actually use all that ram. How are you getting such good savings? Most sets of 8GB 1600MHz are $50 or so.


I know a guy who knows a guy :)  Basically, its not really a savings its just that if I buy the 8GB I have to buy it online, if I get the 16GB I can get my friends store discount which will cost me $80 (the 8GB is $65 after rebate).

That being said, I have another general question...

Is there any benefit for me to buy 2 Graphic cards at the moment for gaming/video editing at 1080p on a single/dual monitor setup? Or does it make more sense for me to get a single card (GTX 580 or 590) and get a second one once those cards are down to $150-250 in a year or so. In other words, I have never dealt with 2 GPU's before, so I am really just making sure I wont hinder any gaming/compromise any graphics because I opt to save some money and get 1 GPU.
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October 12, 2011 7:21:36 PM

GET IT. Can't go wrong with that price :D 

Ahh, the age old question. single GPU or multi GPU?
Well, here's the deal. I'll list the pros and cons of each.

MULTI GPU:
+ MUCH cheaper
+You have a killer system right away
-More power consumed
-more difficult to set up
-no upgrade path

SINGLE GPU
+Simple
+Upgradeable
-Expensive
-you don't get the power immediately

Basically, it's all what you wanna do. You may say (oh, I'll just buy another in a few years!) and then never do it. The price also may never come down.

In 2 years, any GPU you buy now will probably be heavily outclassed. IMO, get what you can now, and don't kick yourself when something better comes out. I personally would go dual card, but I'm a techy who wants every bit of juice I can get :p 
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October 12, 2011 8:58:50 PM

I updated the original post to a single EVGA SuperClocked 015-P3-1582-AR GeForce GTX 580 (Fermi) 1536MB 384-bit GDDR5 GPU. Now my few questions are:

1. I assume a single 580 should be good for most/all gaming on a single monitor at 1080p. If not let me know, this would be a deal breaker.
2. I would plan to (in a few months time) buy a second 580 to put in SLI, so would the following still be ok:
- My motherboard (it supports it, just making sure this card isn't excessively large or anything
- Do I want a bigger powersupply or would an 850 be ok (I will have probably 2 Cavier Black 2TB drives in it as well, other than that the above is all that will be in this.
3. By dropping the second graphics card, would anyone recommend a different/better mobo, SSD, heatsink or power supply?
4. Would the case I plan to get handle the heat from 2 580's or would I need to put in liquid cooling or anything like that? If not any clean looking cases out there I would be ok with?
5. I haven't built a PC for awhile, what parts am I missing (the simple little details like thermal grease or stuff like that).
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October 12, 2011 9:27:18 PM

1. Eh, a GTX 580 can handle most games out right now. It can't max BF3 or other top tier games, but it can take down pretty much anything else.
2. Yup, mobo and case are compatible.
An 850w should be able to handle a pair of GTX 580's quite nicely.
3. Not really. Everything is pretty sweet as it is IMO
4. Hard to say. I think that the Lian Li should be able to tackle it quite nicely. If you'd like a cheaper solution, check out some of the cases by Fractal Design, especially the Define R3.
5. Looks good!
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October 13, 2011 2:16:34 AM

Thanks all, I got 2 more quick questions, hoping someone here knows.

1. Will this case LIAN LI PC-9F support not just one but 2 EVGA SuperClocked 015-P3-1582-AR GeForce GTX 580 (Fermi) 1536MB 384-bit GDDR5? I couldn't find size requirements on new egg for the GPU.

2. Crucial M4 CT128M4SSD2 2.5" 128GB SATA III MLC, do I need to by a conversion kit or does this come with one?

I also changed out the power supply, any thoughts on the new one? I plan to order probably tomorrow now, so any last words would be GREATLY appreciated.
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October 13, 2011 2:32:56 AM

1. Yup! The GPU is about ~260mm, while the case takes up to 285mm GPU's.
2. Not sure what you mean, conversion kit. Do you mean mounting? Like, 2.5 to 3.5 mounting kit?

That PSU is kinda pricey. It's seasonic so it's top notch, but still really expensive. Try one like this instead: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... Crazy good deal. Made by Enermax, a widely respected PSU company. http://www.hardocp.com/article/2011/06/20/lepa_b_series...

If you need to have that gold rating, try this Silverstone Strider: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Cheers!
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October 13, 2011 2:41:26 AM

striker410 said:
1. Yup! The GPU is about ~260mm, while the case takes up to 285mm GPU's.
2. Not sure what you mean, conversion kit. Do you mean mounting? Like, 2.5 to 3.5 mounting kit?

That PSU is kinda pricey. It's seasonic so it's top notch, but still really expensive. Try one like this instead: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... Crazy good deal. Made by Enermax, a widely respected PSU company. http://www.hardocp.com/article/2011/06/20/lepa_b_series...

If you need to have that gold rating, try this Silverstone Strider: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Cheers!


Thanks striker, the help means a lot. One more question....

Is is worth switching to this card for $70 more or is it not worth it?

EVGA 03G-P3-1584-AR GeForce GTX 580 (Fermi) 3072MB 384-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

Amazon has it for $570.

Or not worth the $70 from the current EVGA SuperClocked 015-P3-1582-AR GeForce GTX 580 (Fermi) 1536MB 384-bit GDDR5

Oh ya and I meant mounting kit sorry. Ya, do I need to get a mounting kit to fit in a 3.5 bay, I know some SSD come with them.
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