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Refining gamer build, budget of ~$2000

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November 2, 2011 1:47:12 AM

Lots of info here, questions all the way at the bottom

All,
I've been going through an iterative process through these forums to refine a build for a computer I will outsource the production of to a custom PC place (don't have the time to develop a new skill set). Also, I know virtually nothing about computers.

Here's where I am now:

Budget Range: $2000 all in, including monitor, speaker, keyboard, mouse, looking to by around Christmas time

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Games - Starcraft 2, Diablo III, Skyrim, Bioshock Infinite, and other games for the next few years, I want outstanding graphics for the near and medium term

Parts Not Required: none

Preferred Website(s) for Parts doing the work for me: cyberpowerpc.com

Country of Origin: USA

Parts Preferences: by brand or type: Intel chip, no preference on graphics card

Overclocking: Yes (done by someone else of course), as long it doesn't risk damaging the computer

SLI or Crossfire: Don't know

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

Additional Comments: You all rock for giving free advice

Here's the current build:

- Cost $1737

Case: Corsair Carbide Series 400R Mid-Tower Gaming Case
Extra Case Fan Upgrade: Default case fans
CPU: Intel® Core™ i5-2500K 3.30 GHz 6M Intel Smart Cache LGA1155 (All Venom OC Certified)
Venom Boost Fast And Efficient Factory Overclocking: Pro OC (Performance Overclock 10% or more) [+19]
Cooling Fan: Asetek 510LC Liquid Cooling System 120MM Radiator & Fan (Enhanced Cooling Performance + Extreme Silent at 20dBA) (Single Standard 120MM Fan)
Motherboard: [CrossFireX/SLI] ASRock Z68 Extreme4 Gen3 Intel Z68 ATX Mainboard w/ Lucid Virtu, Intel SRT, UEFI & 7.1 THX TruStudio Audio, GbLAN, HDMI, USB3.0, SATA-III RAID, 3 Gen3 PCIe X16, 2 PCIe X1 & 2 PCI [+68]
Memory: 8GB (4GBx2) DDR3/1600MHz Dual Channel Memory Module [+20] (Kingston HyperX [+13])
Video Card: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 1.5GB 16X PCIe Video Card [+460] (EVGA Superclocked [+9])
Power Supply Upgrade: * 850 Watts - Corsair CMPSU-850TXV2 80 Plus Power Supply - Quad SLI Ready [+97]
Hard Drive: 120 GB ADATA S510 SATA III 6.0Gb/s SSD – 550MB/s Read & 510MB/s Write [+61] (Single Hard Drive)
Data Hard Drive: 1TB SATA-II 3.0Gb/s 16MB Cache 7200RPM HDD [+110] (Single Hard Drive)
Optical Drive: LG UH12LS28K 12X Blu-Ray Player & DVDRW Combo Drive [+41] (BLACK COLOR)
Sound: HIGH DEFINITION ON-BOARD 7.1 AUDIO
Network: Onboard Gigabit LAN Network
Keyboard: Xtreme Gear (Black Color) Multimedia/Internet USB Keyboard
Mouse: XtremeGear Optical USB 3 Buttons Gaming Mouse
Wireless 802.11 B/G/N Access Point: None
Flash Media Reader/Writer: INTERNAL 12in1 Flash Media Reader/Writer (BLACK COLOR)
Internal USB Port: Built-in USB 2.0 Ports
Operating System: Microsoft® Windows 7 Home Premium [+104] (64-bit Edition)
Service: STANDARD WARRANTY: 3-YEAR LIMITED WARRANTY PLUS LIFE-TIME TECHNICAL SUPPORT

Monitor (buying separately): ASUS VW246H Glossy Black 24" 2ms(GTG) HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor - $199
Speakers: Something for ~$75

Total cost: ~$2012

Here are my questions:

1) The website offers the option of getting extra case fans for $9-29. Would that benefit this build at all in terms of cooling? Is it worth it?

2) This supplier offers overclocking at 10%, 20%, and 30% for $19, $49, and $99 respectively. It increases the estimated FPS for the build significantly. Is this worth it? Would this extend the useful life of the build significantly? Does this pose any increased risks to the build's stability?

3) So many liquid cooling kit options, should I just pick the cheapest, or is there one option in particular that you think is worth paying more to ensure better cooling?

4) Same question as immediately above for all of the motherboard options the vendor offers.

5) I've currently chosen the 850 Watts - Corsair CMPSU-850TXV2 80 Plus Power Supply, there are other power supplies that are cheaper with a higher wattage (XtremeGear Gaming Power Supply, Azza Titan 80 Plus Bronze Power Supply, Raidmax RX-1000AE 80 Plus Gold Power Supply). One thing I was told was nice about this build is that I can simply add another 580 at a later date to increase the performance - but this would require at least 900W of power. Should I get one of these other power supplies so I don't have to replace the power supply as well when I add another 580 or are they inferior quality brands not worth buying?

6) Should I pay $9, to get a EVGA superclocked 580? Does this add to performance in any significant way?

7) Is brand important for ones SSD hard drive (OCZ, ADATA, Corsair), or should I just go for the cheapest at a given size level?

8) The monitor I'm purchasing - ASUS VW246H Glossy Black 24" 2ms(GTG) HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor. Its on the low end in terms of price, will using this rather than a more expensive monitor lessen my ability to enjoy the graphics power of this build? If so, what would you choose?

Thank you, thank you, thank you in advance for all your help for this newbie!
November 2, 2011 2:28:06 AM

Awesome looking build

1) Yes IMO. Better airflow, but make sure you get the quiet ones.

2) Do not buy those OCing options. You can do that yourself and it's very easy.

3) Do not choose the cheapest. the Corsair Hydro H60 performs well.

4) Great MoBo. Keep it as it is.

5) I highly recommend at least a 900W. With SLI 580s, and a high overclock, you system will be pulling on a lot of power, and won't have enough headroom. Sure, it'll work, but you'll be stressing it out too far and shortening it's lifespan. However, get a brand name PSUs. Those PSUs tend to be junk. Corsair and Silverstone make quality PSUs.

6) No.

7) Yes. SSDs use different controllers and have different speeds. I would honestly leave that out and buy a Crucial M4. The SandForce controllers have issues (or at least the 1st generation), so to be on the safe side, buy a separate one.

8) No. That is a nice monitor and should be fine for you.

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Best solution

November 2, 2011 2:38:16 AM

1. If you stay with the Asetek 510LC Liquid Cooling System then you don't need the extra fans. How many come with the deal now.
2. I would go with the 20% overclock. It won't hurt the cpu and it will give a nice mild overclock and who knows you may find that you can overclock yourself and later on you can add to the overclock.
3. You get what you pay for so going with the cheapest is not usually a good idea.
4. Same answer
5. I would try to get a 1000w psu and if not at least a 900w , Antec , Thermaltake , Corsair in that order the ones you mentioned other than the Corsair are not recomended.
6. I would go with the superclock and it may or maynot be a significant improvement but it's better than not having the superclock.
7. Corsair , OCZ , Adata in that order.
8. If one of the monitor choices is a LG or Samsung those are my choices.
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November 2, 2011 2:46:16 AM

AbdullahG said:
Awesome looking build

1) Yes IMO. Better airflow, but make sure you get the quiet ones.

2) Do not buy those OCing options. You can do that yourself and it's very easy.

3) Do not choose the cheapest. the Corsair Hydro H60 performs well.

4) Great MoBo. Keep it as it is.

5) I highly recommend at least a 900W. With SLI 580s, and a high overclock, you system will be pulling on a lot of power, and won't have enough headroom. Sure, it'll work, but you'll be stressing it out too far and shortening it's lifespan. However, get a brand name PSUs. Those PSUs tend to be junk. Corsair and Silverstone make quality PSUs.

6) No.

7) Yes. SSDs use different controllers and have different speeds. I would honestly leave that out and buy a Crucial M4. The SandForce controllers have issues (or at least the 1st generation), so to be on the safe side, buy a separate one.

8) No. That is a nice monitor and should be fine for you.


+1

The mobo is fine, the OC is worthless, more fans are always a bonus not just for CPU but for GPU which runs hotter anyway, but you can add those later if you want, a couple of screws and done.
Skip the SSD for now, pick one up later for cheaper if you decide you really want it.
The superclock EVGA has no noticeable difference if you install the software that comes with the GPUs that allow an overclock anyway.
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November 2, 2011 3:19:39 PM

Buy the Mushkin Chronos Delux 60gb ssd, activate the SRT, you are good to go! CrystalDiskMark 3.0.1 x64 (C) 2007-2010 hiyohiyo

Crystal Dew World : http://crystalmark.info/

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

* MB/s = 1,000,000 byte/s [SATA/300 = 300,000,000 byte/s]

Sequential Read : 374.525 MB/s

Sequential Write : 114.383 MB/s

Random Read 512KB : 351.614 MB/s

Random Write 512KB : 114.315 MB/s

Random Read 4KB (QD=1) : 17.912 MB/s [ 4373.0 IOPS]

Random Write 4KB (QD=1) : 53.859 MB/s [ 13149.2 IOPS]

Random Read 4KB (QD=32) : 81.831 MB/s [ 19978.2 IOPS]

Random Write 4KB (QD=32) : 105.460 MB/s [ 25747.0 IOPS]

Test : 4000 MB [C: 75.0% (349.4/465.7 GB)] (x5)

Date : 2011/11/01 12:17:04

OS : Windows 7 Home Premium Edition SP1 [6.1 Build 7601] (x64)

on my first run! ATTO: read 472669- write 435974, also first run, Peace![hard drive is a WD 500gb BEVT!
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November 2, 2011 7:33:22 PM

inzone said:
1. If you stay with the Asetek 510LC Liquid Cooling System then you don't need the extra fans. How many come with the deal now.
2. I would go with the 20% overclock. It won't hurt the cpu and it will give a nice mild overclock and who knows you may find that you can overclock yourself and later on you can add to the overclock.
3. You get what you pay for so going with the cheapest is not usually a good idea.
4. Same answer
5. I would try to get a 1000w psu and if not at least a 900w , Antec , Thermaltake , Corsair in that order the ones you mentioned other than the Corsair are not recomended.
6. I would go with the superclock and it may or maynot be a significant improvement but it's better than not having the superclock.
7. Corsair , OCZ , Adata in that order.
8. If one of the monitor choices is a LG or Samsung those are my choices.



Looks like there is agreement that I need a higher power supply. Here's the options through cyberpower that are brands you all said were quality and the additional cost to me to get those options:

1,000 Watts - SilverStone ST1000 1000W ATX 80 Plus Active PFC Power Supply [+70]
1,000 Watts - Thermaltake TP-1000M ToughPower Modular, 80 Plus Silver Certified, Quad SLI Ready, CrossfireX Ready & Active PFC Power Supply [+125]
1,000 Watts - Thermaltake TR2 RX Modular 80 Plus PSU - PN: TRX-1000M [+50]
1,050 Watts - Corsair HX1050W 80 Plus Power Supply - Quad SLI Ready [+110]

Is is important that my power supply be Quad SLI Ready or CrossfireX Ready or both? If not, would you choose the SilverStone ST1000 or the Thermaltake TRX-1000M?
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November 9, 2011 12:41:47 AM

Best answer selected by michilius.
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