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New i7 build, couple of toss-ups?

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November 17, 2011 1:21:24 PM

Hey, thanks in advance for any input, tips or ideas. Much appreciated.
Buying within a month, sooner if I can decide, with a budget of $1500. Going to be used for mostly gaming with high/ultra graphics. Have all peripherals and software necessary. Live in Australia. No overclocking. Resolution 1920x1080. But considering going higher when I eventually get a 50 inch tv to use as a monitor, within next 6 months. Unsure of the resolution that would be best for that but probably bigger than 1920x1080? Also already have harddrive.

CPU - Intel S1366 Core i7 960 3.2GHz Quad Core CPU
Motherboard - Gigabyte S1366 GA-X58A-UD3R Motherboard
RAM - Corsair CMX8GX3M4A1600C9 8GB (4x XMS3 2GB) PC-12800 (1600MHz) XMS KIT - 8GB (4x2gb) 1600mhz.
Video Card - Gigabyte GTX580 1536Mb PCI Express
CD Drive - LiteON IHAS324 SATA DVD-RW 24X Black Retail (cheapy)
Case - Sharkoon T9 Value ATX Midi Tower Red(9Bay,USB3,USB2)
PSU - Antec HCG-900 900W High Current Gamer 80PLUS Bronze 135mmfan
Total - All up comes to $1400

Now what I am unsure of or wondering about..
RAM - is it worth going for 2000mhz?
Video Card - is it worth going to the 3gb model of card? NVIDIA GTX580 3072MB MSI Lightning Xtreme PCIe Video Card
As for the PSU, is it necessary for 900w? Or is something less more than enough?

Thanks again for any help!

More about : build couple toss ups

November 17, 2011 1:40:17 PM

If you can you should go with a socket 1155 build as it should be cheaper, it will perform the same or better (mostly better), it will run cooler and it will consume less power.
No it is not worth going for 2000MHz RAM unless you have money to waste.
More VRAM becomes necessary when running very large resolutions.
900W would be called for if you ever wanted the option to add another GTX 580. If you don't necessarily want that option then if I was you I'd get a higher quality 650/750W unit for a similar price as that HCG-900.
November 17, 2011 2:12:29 PM

Silvune said:
If you can you should go with a socket 1155 build as it should be cheaper, it will perform the same or better (mostly better), it will run cooler and it will consume less power.
No it is not worth going for 2000MHz RAM unless you have money to waste.
More VRAM becomes necessary when running very large resolutions.
900W would be called for if you ever wanted the option to add another GTX 580. If you don't necessarily want that option then if I was you I'd get a higher quality 650/750W unit for a similar price as that HCG-900.



Thanks for the reply,

Doesn't this CPU require a LGA1366 motherboard?
- Intel S1366 Core i7 960 3.2GHz Quad Core CPU
3.2GHz Quad Core, 8MB L3 Cache, Integrated memory controller, Triple Channel DDR3, LGA1366

Thanks for the info in RAM, I doubt I will be getting the 2000MHZ sort
As for the video card, I can (if i ever get it) run a 50 inch monitor in 1920x1080 so a larger resolution is doubtful, my eyesight is bad enough haha, 1.5GB model 580 should be enough then eh? The benchmarking i've seen shows little difference at 1920x1080 (the resolution I use)
As for PSU, I do doubt I would be going SLI, I would rather just replace the whole system when it comes time for that. Any tips or point me in the right direction on how to decide what is a good quality PSU? I tried some of the guides in the sticky in this section but some of it is outdated, not working or confusing. I thought that what I had was a pretty decent PSU?
Related resources
November 17, 2011 3:56:41 PM

1- Go for the i5-2500k, get too a LGA 1155 motherboard.
It you give you better performance AND lower cost -> can't be better than this.

2- In this plataform you will hardly get ANY REAL GAINS (synthetic benchmarks show better number through) going any higher than DDR3-1333, but for the price doesn't hurt get a DDR3-1600 for peace of mind.

3- In this resolution, without multimonitor or 3D gaming, get the GTX 580 1,5GB , 3GB won't cut it.

4- PSU analyzes:
- As per many GTX 580 websites review, a OClocked system uses maximum 500W peak, considering ALL this is draw from 12V (for safety measures) this gives you roughly 42A in 12V rail
- As per nvidia website, it requires a 600W PSU (244W for VGA only)

Getting the highest recommendation (NVidia website), choose a high quality PSU in 600W range with more than 42A in 12V rails.
Option: XFX Core Edition PRO650W
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Choose
November 17, 2011 4:30:40 PM

I think you should definitely go with LGA 1155. Socket LGA 1366 is dead. And yes, that means you would need a different processor. The i5-2500K is around $200 and the i7-2600K is around $300. If your main interest is gaming then the extra $80 is a waste of money as the biggest difference is hyperthreading which does not affect gaming. My recommendations are below. I don't know much about where to go for parts in Australia but I know that AUD is pretty close to USD, so my links are to newegg.com

i5-2500K ($220)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
ASRock Extreme7 Gen3 ($270) - there are other competitive choices
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
8GB Memory at 1600mhz, 1.5V, and CAS Latency 9 ($45) Go for 2x4GB instead of 4x2GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Any CD/DVD drive ($20)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
A case for maybe $150 with good airflow - there are several good choices here
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This leaves about $800 for PSU and Graphics. It's still not quite enough for a high end crossfire/sli, so I would still recommend the GTX 580 which will be around $500. A 900W PSU will be good in case you want to add a second 580 later. You want to pick a reliable brand at a wattage that high and I would say Antec, Corsair, Seasonic, or PC Power & Cooling. Here are a couple:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That puts you around $1300. If you want to fill out your budget you can add an SSD or upgrade to the i7-2600K
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
November 17, 2011 8:48:34 PM

welshmin said:
Thanks for the reply,

Doesn't this CPU require a LGA1366 motherboard?
- Intel S1366 Core i7 960 3.2GHz Quad Core CPU
3.2GHz Quad Core, 8MB L3 Cache, Integrated memory controller, Triple Channel DDR3, LGA1366

Thanks for the info in RAM, I doubt I will be getting the 2000MHZ sort
As for the video card, I can (if i ever get it) run a 50 inch monitor in 1920x1080 so a larger resolution is doubtful, my eyesight is bad enough haha, 1.5GB model 580 should be enough then eh? The benchmarking i've seen shows little difference at 1920x1080 (the resolution I use)
As for PSU, I do doubt I would be going SLI, I would rather just replace the whole system when it comes time for that. Any tips or point me in the right direction on how to decide what is a good quality PSU? I tried some of the guides in the sticky in this section but some of it is outdated, not working or confusing. I thought that what I had was a pretty decent PSU?

As explained by others, you would need to change CPU and motherboard to go with a socket 1155 build.
Sandy Bridge CPUs also prefer RAM with voltage below 1.6V.

I agree that 3GB probably isn't necessary.

If I knew where you were buying your parts then I could make a specific recommendation for PSU.
The Antec HCG-900 is a fairly high quality unit. However it has a fairly low operating temp of 35C, thus it failed HardOCP testing. Plus for the same price as the HCG-900 you can get ~650W PSUs which are modular and more efficient.
November 17, 2011 8:55:09 PM

I missed some information before my last post. I agree with others that 3gb is too much for a single monitor. If you were gaming on multiple monitors you'd get an advantage out of 3gb, but for one monitor 1.5gb is plenty. Also, as others have mentioned if you're not going to run multiple cards then 650W-750W is a good size for a PSU
November 18, 2011 12:34:20 AM

danraies said:
I think you should definitely go with LGA 1155. Socket LGA 1366 is dead. And yes, that means you would need a different processor. The i5-2500K is around $200 and the i7-2600K is around $300. If your main interest is gaming then the extra $80 is a waste of money as the biggest difference is hyperthreading which does not affect gaming. My recommendations are below. I don't know much about where to go for parts in Australia but I know that AUD is pretty close to USD, so my links are to newegg.com

i5-2500K ($220)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
ASRock Extreme7 Gen3 ($270) - there are other competitive choices
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
8GB Memory at 1600mhz, 1.5V, and CAS Latency 9 ($45) Go for 2x4GB instead of 4x2GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Any CD/DVD drive ($20)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
A case for maybe $150 with good airflow - there are several good choices here
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This leaves about $800 for PSU and Graphics. It's still not quite enough for a high end crossfire/sli, so I would still recommend the GTX 580 which will be around $500. A 900W PSU will be good in case you want to add a second 580 later. You want to pick a reliable brand at a wattage that high and I would say Antec, Corsair, Seasonic, or PC Power & Cooling. Here are a couple:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That puts you around $1300. If you want to fill out your budget you can add an SSD or upgrade to the i7-2600K
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



Thanks all for the replies, especially this post in particular.
New build is as follows -

CPU - i5-2500k - $228

Mobo - ASRock Z68 Extreme4-Gen3 Z68 4xDDR3 3*PCIex16 GBL RAID DVI HDMI DS - $179

CD Drive - Standard cheapy liteon - $30

RAM - G Skill 8G(2x4G) DDR3 1600Mhz PC12800 RL 9-9-9-24(CL9D-8GBRL)
Internet Price: $68.00

Video Card - Gigabyte GTX580 Super Overclock
Internet Price: $590.00

Case - Sharkoon T9 Value ATX Midi Tower Red(9Bay,USB3,USB2) - $99

PSU - Antec HCG-900 900W High Current Gamer 80PLUS Bronze 135mmfan
Internet Price: $157.00

Total - $1351

The prices I am looking at are the best I can find in australia from Umart and computer alliance - Building it at home.
Still tossing up whether to go for the i7 despite what Danraies said as it may be worth the extra bit for a bit of future-proofing might it not? I am $150 under my budget anyways. And I intend to get 2 "ultra" years out of this.
Thanks again for any input.
November 18, 2011 2:31:02 AM

I think if you want to be at ultra settings for two years, I think you should go with the build you mentioned but replace the GTX580 with two GTX570 which will cost you a little under $750 and put you around $1500 total depending on the model you pick. I think the graphics bump will give more gaming longevity to your system than the cpu bump. Some people are uncomfortable with SLI. A GTX590 will also be around $750 (if you can find one), but will give worse graphics performance than two GTX570.

Either a single GTX590 or two GTX570 will handle anything in the world right now at 1080 resolution and will be extremely competitive for two years. Be aware that either configuration is going to put out a lot of heat. I've never heard of the case you mention, but from a quick glance I think it should handle the heat just fine.
November 18, 2011 3:06:57 AM

danraies said:
I think if you want to be at ultra settings for two years, I think you should go with the build you mentioned but replace the GTX580 with two GTX570 which will cost you a little under $750 and put you around $1500 total depending on the model you pick. I think the graphics bump will give more gaming longevity to your system than the cpu bump. Some people are uncomfortable with SLI. A GTX590 will also be around $750 (if you can find one), but will give worse graphics performance than two GTX570.

Either a single GTX590 or two GTX570 will handle anything in the world right now at 1080 resolution and will be extremely competitive for two years. Be aware that either configuration is going to put out a lot of heat. I've never heard of the case you mention, but from a quick glance I think it should handle the heat just fine.


I had not considered SLI 570
Gigabyte GF GTX 570 OC PCI-E 2.0 1280MB DDR5 2x Dual-Link DVI 1x mini HDMI Fan
x2 = $750

bringing me up to $1512.

Not a bad idea, looks quite good according to the benchmarks too.
!