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Working on my 1st build.

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November 11, 2011 2:40:21 PM

Welcome to my thread!

I have been shopping around, looking to construct my first big gaming build. I have looked around, read a few reviews and come to an almost deciding factor on my rig, but would also like to broadcast it to this community in order to get some tips, hints, suggestions as to how I may or may not make it a better rig.

I would also like to get your thoughts on how well or how poorly you think my current rig will handle the current and near future gaming market. Below is what I have in mind for my current build:

Area85 Rig

CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz Quad-Core --- $214.95
Cooler: Corsair H100 92.0 CFM Liquid --- $94.99
Motherboard: ASRock Fatal1ty P67 PRO ATX LGA1155 --- $219.99
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3-1600 --- $39.99
HDD: Seagate Barracuda 3TB 3.5" 64MB 7200RPM --- $261.99
SSD: Crucial M4 128GB --- $214.99
Video Card: MSI Lightning GeForce GTX 580 1.5GB --- $508.49
Case: Antec DF-85 ATX Full Tower --- $111.53
Power Supply: Antec CP-850 CPX PSU --- $100.26
Optical Drive: LG GH22NS70 OEM --- $20.99
Monitor: Samsung P2770HD 27.0" 1920x1080 --- $299.00
Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit) --- $99.00

Total: $2279.42

This build is based off the Antec DF-85 case. Lots of drive bays, plus two supported bays for my SSD and easy access to the insides. Only downfall of the case itself, is it has a lot of plastic versus steel, but I love it nonetheless.

Also, I am kind of worried about my PSU choice. Not so much the brand as I am worried about not having enough power. I was reading the specs on the MSI cards of my choice and it said minimum system requirments were 600W and I believe the card function was set at 242W. Haven't quite figured out how to add that up with the SLI and the other card, so if I don't have enough juice, please, suggest to me something else.

Thanks a bunch!

More about : working 1st build

November 11, 2011 3:47:14 PM

Btw, added prices. Nobody on tonight for suggestions?
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November 11, 2011 4:15:51 PM

The 600W is suggested for the whole system, but then the card only takes 242W. So some simple math of a 600W system (which includes one card) + 242W (for the 2nd card) comes to a grand total of 842W 'suggested' for the rig. Also, this suggested number is inflated over the actuial minimum that will run it so that nobody sues them for false advertising. The real trick is figuring out just how inflated it really is, but 850W will be plenty unless you are doing some crazy RAID setup with a whole mess of HDDs, or you are doing some extreme OCing which would drastically increase your power needs (in which case you would need to water cool your GPUs as well).

Speaking of cooling, the corsair water cooler is neat and all, but not much better than air cooling if you are looking at OCing. They are nice, but it is more of a way to get the computer quiet than it is to OC. Besides, the whole line of SB processors give off very little heat to begin with. If you really want to water cool then consider water cooling your GPUs as it will give you much more overhead, as well as get the things nice and quiet. Plus if you are watercooling your GPUs then you can get cheaper cards with crappy heatsinks to begin with.

3TB seagate for $260? Try $430 unless you know something I dont.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
The cheapest low RPM drives are ~$260 right now

Lastly, on the mobo I would suggest an x68 for such a high end build. Personally I just got the AS Rock extreme3 gen3 for my build, but I am geared more for editing than gaming, and wanted the quick sink trans-coding for video, as well as SSD cashing for the HDD in the future. I suppose that if you dont need either of those features then you will be fine with what you picked. Lastly, you may want to consider something that will take a IB processor and do PCIe3 if you are such an extreme gamer. But then again if you are blowing $3k on just the hardware for video games then I suppose you can do a whole mobo, proc, and GPU upgrade next year.

I like the look of the HAF series better, but you still picked a nice case (though the LEDs in the case get annoying over time if your case is in view)
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November 11, 2011 4:17:11 PM

Area85Gaming said:
Welcome to my thread!

I have been shopping around, looking to construct my first big gaming build. I have looked around, read a few reviews and come to an almost deciding factor on my rig, but would also like to broadcast it to this community in order to get some tips, hints, suggestions as to how I may or may not make it a better rig.

I would also like to get your thoughts on how well or how poorly you think my current rig will handle the current and near future gaming market. Below is what I have in mind for my current build:

Area85 Rig

CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz Quad-Core --- $214.95
Cooler: Corsair H100 92.0 CFM Liquid --- $94.99
Motherboard: Asus P8P67 EVO (Rev 3.0) ATX LGA1155 --- $174.99
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3-1600 --- $39.99
HDD: Seagate Barracuda 3TB 3.5" 64MB 7200RPM --- $261.99
SSD: Crucial M4 128GB --- $214.99
Video Card: 2x MSI Lightning Xtreme GeForce GTX 580 3GB in SLI --- $605.74/each
Case: Antec DF-85 ATX Full Tower --- $111.53
Power Supply: Silverstone 1000W ATX12V/EPS12V --- $176.33
Optical Drive: LG GH22NS70 OEM --- $20.99
Monitor: Samsung P2770HD 27.0" 1920x1080 --- $299.00
Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit) --- $99.00

Total: $3010.43

This build is based off the Antec DF-85 case. Lots of drive bays, plus two supported bays for my SSD and easy access to the insides. Only downfall of the case itself, is it has a lot of plastic versus steel, but I love it nonetheless.

Also, I am kind of worried about my PSU choice. Not so much the brand as I am worried about not having enough power. I was reading the specs on the MSI cards of my choice and it said minimum system requirments were 600W and I believe the card function was set at 242W. Haven't quite figured out how to add that up with the SLI and the other card, so if I don't have enough juice, please, suggest to me something else.

Thanks a bunch!


The power supply will most likely have enough wattage to power the 2 GTX 580s in SLI
Overall the system looks very good and all the parts look very good
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November 11, 2011 4:22:35 PM

Oh, almost forgot!
The extra ram on the GPUs will be completely useless unless you are doing a multi-screen setup in the future, or if you are doing production work (video editing and modeling, in which case you ought to get an i7k instead of the i5k). They are nice cards, but unless you are going to use the features, then it is just wasted money to brag at people who probably wont care in the first place.

And as the owner of a 27" monitor I'll warn you: They are huge and you may be overwhelmed at first, but after 6mo or so you could see getting 2 more to flank it lol.
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November 11, 2011 4:40:31 PM

I think two 580's are going to blow everything away. I mean, if money isn't an option, then whatever, but generally I'd buy just a single 580 and then upgrade to a second down the line when you can actually appreciate the second cards added performance.

I mean, what is the point of running 150FPS on a 60Hz monitor?

EDIT: (as noted by the previous poster, the 3GB of ram is overkill too)
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November 11, 2011 4:44:31 PM

Seagate Barracuda XT
http://www.officedepot.com/a/products/862042/Seagate-Ba...

This is where I got it. Trust me, NewEgg isn't the "best" price for everything, though granted, they have good deals on some items.

I do a little bit of video/graphic editing, but not enough to constitute the use of hyper threading technology in the 2600K. So the extra RAM, at some point will come in handy. That is the only reason why I didn't jump to the i7 series instead, because the main focus of the computer is gaming, which the i5 is best for :D .

Also, if I was going to be doing heavy editing, I would have 16GB RAM instead of just the 8GB :p .

And honestly, I have looked at the X58 chipset MoBos....but most all of them seem overkill for what I want to do. To me they seem more geared towards Nvidia Surround 3-Way SLI builds. While that is great and possibly something I want to do, I can never get a clear answer on whether or not you can do 2-way SLI for 3 screens or not.

To me it makes sense, but then people question the SLI, which bridges 2 cards as 1, which they argue would make the 3rd monitor obsolete. So if I can get some guidance, I still have some time before I can start buying parts and stuff, I may configure up a build.

Do you have any suggestions on a GPU cooler? Cause I do plan to OC, but probably just to i7 speeds. I also like the H100. Reason being is that I'm using RAM cards with large heatsinks and the low profile cooler doesn't interfere with them.

Oh and btw, if you look on NewEgg, the Corsair Vengeance 8GB DDR3-1600 will probably run you $90-100, found mine for $39.00 :) .
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November 11, 2011 4:52:08 PM

nordlead said:
I think two 580's are going to blow everything away. I mean, if money isn't an option, then whatever, but generally I'd buy just a single 580 and then upgrade to a second down the line when you can actually appreciate the second cards added performance.

I mean, what is the point of running 150FPS on a 60Hz monitor?

EDIT: (as noted by the previous poster, the 3GB of ram is overkill too)


Blow everything away? So the SLI is overkill? I thought the SLI was meant for better gaming enhancement/performance? If it's not going to make a difference in my gaming (MW3, BF3, Skyrim, SW:TOR, ME1,2 & 3) on max settings, then off course I don't mind dropping the price $600 haha.

EDIT: I may add a couple more screens in the future if I can figure out what I need. Also, if I drop the second 580, would a 850W PSU be plenty?
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November 11, 2011 5:00:13 PM

Make sure you know how much power you need.
http://educations.newegg.com/tool/psucalc/index.html
estimate of 12V idle power so must add 100W more for your own PSU power.
If estimate come out "633W" then you need 750W at least.
However all of your spec are very nice ~~!!
Good luck~
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November 11, 2011 5:07:44 PM

andywork78 said:
Make sure you know how much power you need.
http://educations.newegg.com/tool/psucalc/index.html
estimate of 12V idle power so must add 100W more for your own PSU power.
If estimate come out "633W" then you need 750W at least.
However all of your spec are very nice ~~!!
Good luck~


Thanks for the calculator! That helps out a ton. Actually, with my current set-up..I'm looking at just over 1000W. But, if I drop one of the 580s off, I'm looking at 691W total according this calculator. So yeah a 750W should be enough, though I may play it safe and get the 850W just in case.
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November 11, 2011 5:11:51 PM

Area85Gaming said:
Blow everything away? So the SLI is overkill? I thought the SLI was meant for better gaming enhancement/performance? If it's not going to make a difference in my gaming (MW3, BF3, Skyrim, SW:TOR, ME1,2 & 3) on max settings, then off course I don't mind dropping the price $600 haha.

EDIT: I may add a couple more screens in the future if I can figure out what I need. Also, if I drop the second 580, would a 850W PSU be plenty?


Skyrim is CPU limited and you can max it out with a 570. 460's in SLI give almost no benefit over a 570.

BF3 gets 70FPS on high and 55 on ultra settings at 1080p. I don't know about the other games, but BF3 is about as demanding as it gets.

So spending $600 is a lot of money for almost no benefit. If you were going mutli-screen or higher resolution then I could see the benefit. Again, you could cut down to a 1.5GB card and save a lot of money.

EDIT: a 850 is more than enough for a single 580, and might be enough to SLI them, but I'm guestimating here. If you think you might upgrade in the future, then it might be worth making sure you can SLI on the PSU you buy. If you plan on multi-screen in the future, then I'd make sure your PSU can handle SLI and stick with the 3GB version. But you can buy the second card when you add the monitors.
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November 11, 2011 5:27:13 PM

Thank you for all your suggestions!

I actually just edited my post and took some of your suggestions to heart. I went ahead and knocked it down to (1) GTX 580 1.5GB as well as added the Antec CP-850 that was suggested, which I found at a cheaper price and knocked nearly $800 off the price.

Now, someone mentioned going for a better MoBo. Any suggestions?

EDIT: Also, you mentioned my CPU Cooler. Any suggestions on something better that isn't bulky and in the way?
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November 11, 2011 6:05:52 PM

Also, would you suggest going Dual 27"?
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November 11, 2011 6:44:43 PM

dual 27" would be nice for production work, but not for gaming (you dont want your crosshairs in the crack). So either 1 monitor or 3, but not 2. And if you are doing 3 then you would want those 3GB cards.

For a CPU cooler look up the hyper 212, it is cheap, quiet, and effective (though not very pretty). I went with a Zalman, which is pretty nice, but knowing what I know now I would go with something different (something with a larger lower RPM fan). And if you are OCing to 3.5GHz, you can do that quite easily with the stock cooler; the custom cooler is for less noise, or for looks.
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November 12, 2011 4:06:37 AM

See, the problem I have is that the Hyper 212, while a great cooler, is bulky. I'm looking for something slim as to avoid complications with my RAM heatsinks.
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November 12, 2011 12:17:13 PM

Alright, I have a serious question.

Is it going to matter if I have the 1.5GB or the 3GB GPU on this single monitor system?
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