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New buid < $1000

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October 16, 2011 11:35:49 PM

Hey guys,

Getting ready to build new system, looking for opinions. Been watching these forums for a bit, figured I'd jump in finally. Thanks for taking the time to look.

Approximate Purchase Date: within a week


Budget Range: trying to stay around $900 (before rebates)


System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, School (programming and animation-Maya), web browsing


Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS (Windows 7 Pro 64bit)


Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com, tigerdirect.com


Country of Origin: USA


Parts Preferences: sandy bridge, micro ATX (I prefer the smaller footprint)


Overclocking: Yes


SLI or Crossfire: future


Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080 (27inch) single monitor for gaming


Additional Comments: current system, intel e7200 cpu, evga 780 sli mb, 4gb ram, hd 5550


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What I'm thinking:

CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$205 ($15 off promo)

Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-Z68MA-D2H-B3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$115

Memory: G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL8D-8GBXM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$70

Video: SAPPHIRE 100314-3L Radeon HD 6870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$169 ($10 off promo)

Boot: Patriot Pyro PP60GS25SSDR 2.5" 60GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$110

Storage: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$60

Power: SILVERSTONE Strider Essential series ST60F-ES 600W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$70

Case: IN WIN BR665 Black SECC steel MicroATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$70

Optical: ASUS 24X DVD Burner
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$19

Cooler: COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus RR-B10-212P-G1
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$26

Total: $940


I'm a hair over, but think that is about best I can do to get the SSD squeezed in. Let me know what you all think. Appreciate advice and/or opinions. Thanks again.

More about : buid 1000

October 16, 2011 11:46:01 PM

Some of the reviews on the motherboard talk about SLI/CrossFire set-ups blocking access to the SATA ports. Just for reference if you ever decide to go for a Crossfire set-up.
October 16, 2011 11:47:42 PM

Looks good, 500W would be plenty of power though. I would take a look at Crucial SSD's too, they are apparently very reliable.
Related resources
October 16, 2011 11:48:21 PM

MrQZETOL said:
Some of the reviews on the motherboard talk about SLI/CrossFire set-ups blocking access to the SATA ports. Just for reference if you ever decide to go for a Crossfire set-up.


I don't think Crossfire would be recommended on a mATX board generally to be honest.
October 16, 2011 11:59:27 PM

Can save yourself $20 on memory by using one of these kits. Latency has minor impact on sandy bridge, the ones you have stated are 40% more expensive for very minimal real world return.

low voltage sniper - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

reg 1.5v sniper - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

1.5v ripjaws - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

EDIT:

Could also go with this PSU to save another $20, it's an antec but made by SeaSonic so you know it's of quality.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
October 17, 2011 12:02:02 AM

jmsellars1 said:
I don't think Crossfire would be recommended on a mATX board generally to be honest.

+1

mATX boards weren't made for dual vid cards. The may offer it, but they aren't cut out for it.
October 17, 2011 5:23:40 AM

Thanks guys for the input!

Picked that SSD as the price was close to the Crucial, but Tom's hierarchy chart placed the Patriot higher. If the Crucial's have a better track record, then that works for me.

I'll look into the ram and PSU. The PSU was with Crossfire in mind, down the road. (had the extra plugs for pci-e and power)

Good point on SATA connections. Picked that board since specs show it when pci-e x2 at 8 x 8. Actually, now that I think about it, that might not actually be a good thing? I'm assuming better boards run 16 x 8 when two cards are in? Or do they all drop to 8 x 8? Looked at so many specs and reviews.... losing track. If the mATX board won't run it, then I guess that I might not worry about the Crossfire. Still debating whether or not I really need it. Like I said, only run one monitor for games, and the one GPU should be able to handle that resolution (1920 x 1200). The Crossfire is the one thing I kind of go back and forth on. LOL

Feels like I could just go on forever picking this, switching that..... how do you guys finally say "That's it!"? Guess you have to draw the line somewhere.

I'm assuming everything thing else looked OK?

Thanks again guys!
October 17, 2011 5:38:25 AM

jmsellars1 said:
Looks good, 500W would be plenty of power though. I would take a look at Crucial SSD's too, they are apparently very reliable.


I have a 64GB Crucial SSD - it is very excellent.
October 17, 2011 7:57:52 AM

Hey guys!

Taking everyone's advice so far, I changed:

RAM:
G.SKILL Sniper Low Voltage Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBSR2
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$50

PSU:
Antec NEO ECO 520C 520W Continuous Power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$50

Didn't swap out the Patriot Pyro SSD for the Crucial M4 SSD, as Newegg is showing out of stock on the M4.

New system price: $890 (before rebates)

I'm pretty excited about this set-up and cost. Think I will just not worry about Crossfire. Overall I think it should be a pretty good system for what I want to do.

Would still like to hear some more opinions or validation, as I probably won't be ordering for another day or two.

Thanks again for the input.
October 17, 2011 8:05:33 AM

Oh, one more thing. Since I most likely won't be going Crossfire, should I look at a different motherboard? Would still need to be a mATX Z68. I like the added features, and not a lot to choose from mATX wise with the p67.

Thanks again!
October 17, 2011 8:13:17 AM

Everything looks pretty solid if you plan to stay single GPU and let's face it if you aren't planning to go crossfire/sli off the bat the odds of you adding another down the road are probably actually pretty slim. By the time a 6870 can no longer run things well at your resolution getting your hands on another 6870 to match it with could be difficult or no longer cost effective as it would be well outdated by then, so you'd most likely end up getting another nice single card replacement anyway. Not to mention in order to future proof yourself for dual GPU you'd need to go 700W-750W now to run two 6870s which would put you back above your $900 goal.

It should be a pretty slick system for the budget, enjoy!
October 17, 2011 8:46:14 PM

I would try to save a bit of cash on the motherboard and hold off on the CPU cooler until you need to overclock in favour of a better graphics card if you can actually, mostly because it should give more of a noticeable performance increase in games than an overclocked CPU. I'd shoot for a HD 6950 1GB, don't worry if you can't though the HD 6870 is good.
October 18, 2011 4:25:35 AM

jmsellars1 said:
I would try to save a bit of cash on the motherboard and hold off on the CPU cooler until you need to overclock in favour of a better graphics card if you can actually, mostly because it should give more of a noticeable performance increase in games than an overclocked CPU. I'd shoot for a HD 6950 1GB, don't worry if you can't though the HD 6870 is good.


Thanks for advice, and I agree. Switched to 6950 and changed motherboard. Went ahead and ordered system. So excited!

Final total with promos and shipping: $920 :) 

Not too shabby. Now just waiting on the magic brown truck.

Thanks again for all the help!
!