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SFF Gaming Computer - First Time Build - Advice Requested

Last response: in Systems
November 18, 2011 10:37:18 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: Within the next week
Budget Range: $900-1000 After Rebates
System Usage: primarily gaming (WoW, SWTOR, Skyrim mostly, but
I would like the capability to be able to play more demanding games -
I normally use a Mac so have been shut out of most games for a while),
occasionally work/movies/web-browsing
Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, monitor (24"), OS
Preferred Website(s) for Parts:,
Country: U.S.
Overclocking: No
SLI or Crossfire: No
Monitor Resolution: 24" (1920x1080 or 1920x1200)
Additional Comments: I would like a reasonably quiet and
cool-running computer.

The parts I am thinking of using are listed below. I am not averse to
rethinking any of the components below, and would appreciate any
advice of the community on fine-tuning this build. Thank you in

Fractal Design Arc Mini
$99.99 (+9.99 S/H) at Newegg

Intel Core i5-2400 3.1GHz
$189.99 at Newegg

Gigabyte GA-Z68M-D2H
$104.99 (+7.56 S/H) at Newegg (with $10 MIR)

MSI Twin FrozrII/OC GTX560Ti
$244.99 at Newegg (with $20 MIR)
[Note: I went for the Twin Frozr because I thought the cooling would help in the small case.]

G.Skill Sniper Low-Voltage 8GB DDR3 1600
$44.99 at Newegg

HDD: Seagate
Barracuda Green 1.5TB SATA 6.0GB/s
$149.99 (+7.28) at Newegg

Intel 320 Series SSD 120GB
$169.99 at Newegg
[NOTE: I am wavering on this, but it seems like an exceptionally good price for a 120GB SSD.]

SeaSonic X650 Gold
$99.99 at Newegg
[NOTE: This is a bit of a splurge, but it can be purchased at a huge markdown right now.]

Lite-On iHAS224-06
$18.99 at Newegg

TOTAL W/SSD: $1118.74 after rebates (overbudget :p  )
TOTAL W/O SSD: $958.75 after rebates
November 18, 2011 11:17:35 PM

To start off, there isn't much-if not anything-to change, as most of your parts are great. The cooling isn't going to help in a small case if it [the case] doesn't have good airflow. Half of the heat is dispersed into the case, while the other half through the exhaust. Reference models dump most if not all heat through the exhaust, but they don't run as cool. You shouldn't have much of a problem though, but just wanted to share some info.

Consider the Samsung Spinpoint F3 as your HDD (great performance, but for $10 more). Green HDD are usually more for storage than performance.


Best solution

November 18, 2011 11:32:10 PM

You have an OCable mobo - go for the i5-2500K. As many have suggested in other threads - skip the HDD for now - prices will come back down, and go for a decent SSD.
November 26, 2011 5:16:31 AM

Best answer selected by tokyoadam.