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Better Educated

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October 12, 2011 7:28:20 PM

Last month I listed the components for a proposed "New Build", looking for an evaluation from the community. At the time, I listed what sounded or looked good to me with little idea as to what I was doing and would like to apologize for wasting anyones time that did review my list.

Since then, I have spent a bit of time (with the help of some of you) in educating myself in the science and art of computer building, and now again list the components I have chosen. Take a look and please feel free to offer any suggestions or opinions as to whether you believe there might be compatibility issues or if you think there is be a better way to go.

The computer build will be used mostly for everyday routine stuff (i.e. surfing, checking e-mail, etc.) as well as some high-end gaming. NOTE: I have already started to purchase 'low-critical' components such as case, case lights, mouse pad, etc.

CASE: Corsair "Obsidian" Series 650D ATX mid-tower.
PSU: Sparkle 750w ATX 80 Plus Gold Certified modular.
MOTHERBOARD: Gygabyte GA-Z68XP-UD5 ATX.
CPU: Intel Core i5 2500 3.3 Ghz (don't plan to OC).
MEMORY: Corsair "Dominator" Series 4Gb (2 x 2Gb) 1600 Mhz Latency=8.
GPU: EVGA Brand nVidia GeForce GTX 580 3.0Gb 16x.
OPTICAL: Lite-on iHAS 424-98 DVD/CD writer/reader w/lightscribe.
HHD #1: WD "Caviar Blue" 320Gb SATA 6Gbs (for system use).
HHD #2: WD "Caviar Blue" 500Gb SATA 6Gbs (for games, photos, music, etc.).
KEYBOARD: Razer "Black-widow Ultimate".
MOUSE: Razer "Death Adder Black" optical 3500 dpi.
FAN CONTROL: NZXT "Sentry 2".
CASE LIGHTS: 6" blue cold cathode x 2.
OS: Windows 7 Home Premium (64 bit).
SOUND: Still deciding. Probably just stay with integrated since I already have desktop speakers (from a previous desktop).
MONITOR: Still deciding. Probably a 24" Samsung.
MODEM/ROUTER: Will upgrade from current 802.11b/g cable modem w/built in WiFi (Motorola) to a 802.11n cable modem w/WiFi.
NIC: Still deciding.

More about : educated

October 12, 2011 8:31:29 PM

You won't be needing the higher end Z68 board if you're not planning to OC. The HDD choice seems pretty random, just get a single 1 TB / 2 TB one. Integrated audio is great for normal use.
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October 13, 2011 6:09:01 PM

FinneousPJ said:
You won't be needing the higher end Z68 board if you're not planning to OC. The HDD choice seems pretty random, just get a single 1 TB / 2 TB one. Integrated audio is great for normal use.


Thank you finneousPJ for your reply. I may not be planning to OC (at least at this time lol) but I wanted to plan for future possibilities. I would like to know though if you have any recommendations for a motherboard instead of the Z68 (price is not a major consideration, but quality is). Do need HDMI, at least 1 x Fireport, at least 1 x SATA 3, at least 1 x SATA 6, at least 1 x front board power header, and enough fan headers to control at least 3 fans.
October 13, 2011 6:21:13 PM

akopp21 said:
I'd go with either of these hard drives, theres no reason to use two small ones when the 1tb drives are around the same price.

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

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



Thanks for your reply akopp21. I didn't look at any HHD's beyond 750GB believing that I would never have need for data storage that large. With your advice, I will at least do some research into the larger data storage devices. From what I've seen so far, the only difference between the WD "Blue"s and WD "Black"s (aside from price) are length of warranties. In your oppinion does the extra money justify an additional 2 years in warranty length or are WD's built well enough that the extra two years wouldn't really matter?
October 13, 2011 6:22:59 PM

also, i'd suggest getting 8gb of ram instead of just 4, as well an antec, seasonic, or xfx power supply. Also, you may want to consider 560ti sli as they have 40% more performance than a single 580 for a bit less money, but then you need to get entirely new graphics cards for any upgrade.
October 13, 2011 6:43:53 PM

Thanks for posting a reply to my "New Build" list morgoth780. Going with 8Gb of RAM instead of 4 may be a good idea. I've read somewhere that 8Gb's is sort of a minimum amount required for gaming now, so I may take your advice and go with the 8Gb's of RAM. What do you think would work more efficiently, 1 x 8Gb, 2 x 4 Gb, or 4 x 2Gb? I'm not sure yet whether I will need a tower cooler for my CPU (as in maybe low-profile RAM may be needed or only the slots furthest away from the CPU can be used). If I do have to use a CPU cooler it will probably be the Thermaltake FRIO.
October 13, 2011 6:47:04 PM

Montego said:
Thanks for posting a reply to my "New Build" list morgoth780. Going with 8Gb of RAM instead of 4 may be a good idea. I've read somewhere that 8Gb's is sort of a minimum amount required for gaming now, so I may take your advice and go with the 8Gb's of RAM. What do you think would work more efficiently, 1 x 8Gb, 2 x 4 Gb, or 4 x 2Gb? I'm not sure yet whether I will need a tower cooler for my CPU (as in maybe low-profile RAM may be needed or only the slots furthest away from the CPU can be used). If I do have to use a CPU cooler it will probably be the Thermaltake FRIO.

2x4, because it's faster than 1x8, but you can still upgrade ram if you need to. and make sure the ram is 1.5v or lower, so it doesn't damage your i5
October 13, 2011 6:48:19 PM

I agree with FinneousPJ about the MB. If overclocking is out of the question, then might as well save some money and get the lower end model. Something like the UD3 or UD4. More features doesn't really mean better quality. But if you are set on it then go for it. I would get the K processor if you plan to OC (I saw that in one of your replies). The price difference is like $10. I also don't see the point of using 2 hard drives that are virtually the same. Just get 1TB the price is the same (pretty much). Less Hardware = Less Problems wouldn't you agree? Or get an SSD (budget permitting). You probably don't need a sound card. Test out the integrated and decide afterwards.

What is your budget anyway? Everything else looks great! I was in the same situation as you. My initial build idea to my final changed dramatically as well lol :-P

EDIT "Do need HDMI, at least 1 x Fireport, at least 1 x SATA 3, at least 1 x SATA 6, at least 1 x front board power header, and enough fan headers to control at least 3 fans."

Most Z68 motherboards (other than LE or entry versions) have these features. Your GPU has HDMI (off the top of my head) so no need for the requirement on the MB. Like I mentioned before, if budget isn't a concern then stick with what you have. If not, the MBs at a lower price point for all brands offer those features AND SLI. Look at the differences between the models and see if the extras are something you really need.
October 13, 2011 6:53:16 PM

Usually 2x 4GB is best.

H61 is the entry level chipset for people who don't need overclocking and other high end features. Any H61 board from a reputable manufacturer should be fine. Upgradeability is a concern, though.
October 13, 2011 6:56:01 PM

Obviously an inbetween solution is there also. The H61 is very low end, and is kind of a dead end. A cheaper P67/Z68 would be also worthwhile.
October 14, 2011 7:33:23 PM

The 1TB WD Black drive would be about the same price as buying both of those blue drives, and it would be easier to have everything on a single drive than split up.

I can't say that the warranty would make much of a difference to me, I've owned many WD drives and never had one fail on me.
October 15, 2011 12:02:03 AM

are you sure you want to get a gtx 580? cause the price/performance is very low; 570's have so much oc headroom you can sometimes get them to out-perform a stock 580
!