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"Budget" gaming build @ 2560x1600?

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November 2, 2011 1:56:21 AM

Hello, I'm looking to put together a system, while spending the least amount of money possible for gaming reliably @ 2650x1600 resolution for the likes of BF3, Skyrim, etc. I need everything except storage, as I already have a SSD which I plan to use for my primary drive. I've done some research on these hardware sites and this is what I'm led to believe is ideal for value:


COOLER MASTER HAF 912 RC-912-KKN1 Black SECC/ ABS Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

$59.99

COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus RR-B10-212P-G1 "Heatpipe Direct Contact" Long Life Sleeve 120mm CPU Cooler Compatible Intel ...
$25.99

PC Power and Cooling Silencer Mk II 950W High Performance 80PLUS Silver SLI CrossFire ready Power Supply
$149.99

ASRock P67 EXTREME4 GEN3 LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

$154.99

Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52500K
$214.99

G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL

$48.99

SAPPHIRE Toxic 100312TXSR Radeon HD 6950 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
$289.99 (x2) = $579.98


Total: Roughly $1250.00


The intent would be to overclock the processor up to 4.0-4.5Ghz and unlock the extra shaders on the two 6950s. I'm trying to save money on the case, but I'd be filling in all the optional fan slots. Although I'm still concerned if maybe this setup is too much for a mid-size tower on air. Should I go with a full-size HAF tower instead?

Any other suggestions on what to do differently? Thanks.
November 2, 2011 2:25:01 AM

A HAF 922 would work nicely. Slightly larger with more fan slots. Otherwise I think the build looks good for your purposes. Not 100% on that PSU rail size for handling two OC'd 6950s.
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November 2, 2011 3:30:34 AM

If you are going to go for 2 gpu's, upgrade to 16 gb RAM.
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November 2, 2011 12:49:06 PM

Looks pretty good to me, and 8GB should be plenty for memory. Of course it's also dirt cheap at the moment so getting 16GB is not an expensive investment.

Maybe consider the Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo instead, its a few bucks more but comes with a higher cfm fan and the better contact between the HSF and the CPU.

As for the case as long as their is sufficient air circulation and the video cards fit, you will be fine with a mid tower.

The PSU will handle two OC'd 6950 or 6970's just fine.

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November 2, 2011 12:53:12 PM

That PSU is one of the best. 950w is overkill for dual 6950s though.
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November 2, 2011 5:45:37 PM

You can save a bit on the CPU by going with an AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition ($130 or less). BF3 isn't CPU intensive and all benchmarks I've seen don't show an advantage in going with Intel I-5s or I-7s. Higher end mobos for AMD tend to be cheaper, also.

But, Intel is certainly better for some things and may work better for you overall.

I have a similar set-up (2 toxic 6950s in crossfire, etc) and use a COOLER MASTER Silent Pro Gold Series RS800-80GAD3-US 800W PSU - plenty of power.

I agree with 8gb RAM...I actually run with 4 with no problems.

Regarding the case, I'm a big fan og bigger is better....more room for working in, future additions...and if you're sticking with air cooling being able to add lots of fans with room enough to push the air around is a plus.
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November 11, 2011 11:03:59 PM

Best answer selected by gmkos.
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