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New gaming build (with monitor) advice

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November 17, 2011 11:43:57 PM

Need advice for a home build. I'm looking to build a rig that will handle current games at close to max levels.
I need to purchase the monitor too, which is a huge piece for me. I want something that looks great for both games and movies. I looked at the Samsung 27 inch 950 at the store, and was impressed with the image quality, but turned off by the mirror like gloss on the screen. I was also considering one of the dell ultrasharps, but have read that they have too much of a anti glare coating, and haven't been able to view one anywhere myself.
For the build, it looks like the I5 is my best bet, since I don't do video editing or anything, and apparently 8 gigs of ram is the way to go. I also have a preference for Nvidia graphics due to past experiences, but not sure if I should go single card or two.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I hope my post isn't too vague.
Also, I really don't want to go over 3K for the entire package. Less money would be better.

Approximate Purchase Date: (e.g.: this week (the closer the better))
Looking now, but no hurry if something amazing is coming out soon that is worth waiting for

Budget Range: (e.g.: 600-800) Before / After Rebates
2500 to 3000 including monitor

System Usage from Most to Least Important: (e.g.: Folding@Home, gaming, surfing the internet, watching movies)
Gaming, movies

Parts Not Required: (e.g.: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS) **Include Power Supply Make & Model If Re-using**
Pretty much need it all. Been using a laptop for the last 4 years.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: (e.g.: newegg.com, ncix.com -- to show us selection & pricing)
I like newegg, but anywhere

Country: (e.g.: India) we need to know where these parts are being assembled
USA

Parts Preferences: by brand or type (e.g.: I would like to use an AMD CPU & Biostar mobo with a 24" LCD and full tower case)
Intel CPU (I5-2500K I think)

Overclocking: Yes / No / Maybe
maybe

SLI or Crossfire: Yes / No / Maybe
maybe

Monitor Resolution: (e.g.: 1024x768, 1280x1024, 1440x900, 1600x1200, 1680x1050, 1920x1080, 1920x1200)
Would like a high resolution, but haven't decided on monitor yet.

Additional Comments: (e.g.: Need to have a window and lots of bling, I would like a quiet PC)
November 20, 2011 2:45:14 AM

You can make a great machine for $3K and you can stay well under that if you'd like.

($225) i5-2500K
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($270) ASRock Extreme7 Gen3
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($1000) 2 x EVGA GTX580 1.5GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($45) G.Skill Ripjaw X RAM 2x4GB (Any DDR3 RAM at 1600mhz, 1.5V, and CL9 will do)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($210) Crucial M4 128GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($100) Hitachi 500GB 7200RPM HDD (Get whatever HDD you're willing to pay for. They're really expensive right now)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($150) PC Power & Cooling 950W PSU
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

($220) Corsair HX1050 1050W PSU
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($150) Whatever Case you want with good cooling. I linked the Silverstone Raven
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($35) Coolermaster Hyper 212 Evo
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That's an excellent system for around $2300 with plenty of room for a keyboard, mouse, and nice monitor. This is a top-shelf machine, so if you want to lower your budget, let us know.

EDIT: Didn't realize my first PSU choice was non-modular.
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November 22, 2011 1:09:13 AM

danraies said:
You can make a great machine for $3K and you can stay well under that if you'd like.

($225) i5-2500K
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($270) ASRock Extreme7 Gen3
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($1000) 2 x EVGA GTX580 1.5GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($45) G.Skill Ripjaw X RAM 2x4GB (Any DDR3 RAM at 1600mhz, 1.5V, and CL9 will do)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($210) Crucial M4 128GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($100) Hitachi 500GB 7200RPM HDD (Get whatever HDD you're willing to pay for. They're really expensive right now)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($150) PC Power & Cooling 950W PSU
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

($220) Corsair HX1050 1050W PSU
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($150) Whatever Case you want with good cooling. I linked the Silverstone Raven
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
($35) Coolermaster Hyper 212 Evo
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That's an excellent system for around $2300 with plenty of room for a keyboard, mouse, and nice monitor. This is a top-shelf machine, so if you want to lower your budget, let us know.

EDIT: Didn't realize my first PSU choice was non-modular.


Thanks a lot for the help danraies! This looks great. I have a couple of questions if you don't mind. I'm thinking that I want to spend a little less on the system, as I don't know yet how much I'm going to drop on the monitor (have yet to find one I'm completely sold on, any advice on that front would be welcome as well). If I were to build this system with less than the dual gtx580s, would I be better off getting 1 580, or dual 570s? Also, could I save some money and get a smaller power supply? Something like:
Corsair HX850
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Or would I be better off getting the 1050 to allow for future upgrades?

Thanks again!
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November 22, 2011 1:53:31 AM

Well, two 570's are going to be considerably more powerful than one 580, but the advantage of getting one 580 is that you can add a second one in a year, or whenever you get the money. And two 580's will obviously be more powerful than two 570's. If it were me I would get one 580 and upgrade to two later.

850W is fine for two 570's. 950W is about right for two 580's, but I couldn't find a 950W on newegg that seemed reliable. Total wattage is not the only factor in a PSU, though. First, making a PSU at such a high wattage is very difficult and only the best companies should be trusted. These include Corsair, Seasonic, and Antec. Also, both the CPU and the GPU(s) are powered by the +12V rail(s), so you need to make sure that there's a lot of power (it should be most of the total wattage) on the +12V rail. However if you get a PSU from one of those three brands you should be fine on the +12V rail.

If you get one 580 then you can go with a smaller PSU but if you want to add a second 580 you'd have to replace your PSU.

If you want to save some money but still get the 580 SLI there are a few things you can do. First, you can throw out the SSD if you want. SSD's are great for overall system performance (if you've never used one before, their speed will blow you away), but they make no difference in FPS. Levels will load faster (assuming the game is installed on your SSD), but graphics quality will not change if you don't use an SSD. You can also downgrade your motherboard. The ASRock Extreme4 Gen3 is an excellent motherboard for a little under $200. There are also ~$100 cases that cool well, but with a 580 SLI you're going to want to be careful about heat dispersion.
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November 22, 2011 2:01:42 AM

Thanks again for all your help danraies! Greatly appreciated
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November 22, 2011 2:14:19 AM

Sure, let me know if you need anything else.
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!