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First Time Computer Builder

I was planning on building a computer for the first time, but I am not sure what parts to get (Assume that I am a complete noob at this because I am). I wanted to build a gaming PC. I will probably be playing games like Skyrim, Battlefield 3, Fallout 3, and Team Fortress. I was looking at another thread and I got a list of possible parts I could get. My range is around $1000, but I can go a little higher. Here's the list:

CPU and Fan Combo - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Comb [...] mbo.783352 $243.98 FREE SHIPPING
Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623I52500K
COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO RR-212E-20PK-R1 Continuous Direct Contact 120mm Sleeve CPU Cooler Compatible with latest Intel 1366/1155 and AMD FM1/AM3+

Mobo - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6813157271 $124.99 - $114.99 after mail-in rebate FREE SHIPPING
ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

Case - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6811129066 $49.99 - $39.99 after mail-in rebate FREE SHIPPING
Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

GPU - EVGA 012-P3-2068-KR GeForce GTX 560 Ti (Fermi) 448 Cores Classified 1280MB: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6814130739 - $289

RAM - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6820231428 $29.99 FREE SHIPPING
G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL

PSU: OCZ ZT Series 750W Fully-Modular 80PLUS Bronze High Performance Power Supply - $99.99 After Rebate
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6817341052

HDD: HITACHI HDS721050CLA362 (0F10381) 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" - $86.28
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6822145299

DVD: ASUS DRW-24B1ST SATA 24x DVD Burner - $18.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6827135204

OS: Windows 7 Home Edition 64-bit - $99.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6832116986

Total: $1,047.90


I have never built one so I also do not know exactly how to put it together. What would be the best way to learn?
Also, I already have a monitor. Samsung SyncMaster B2330 HD 23-inch, 1920 x 1080.

Thanks for all of your help.

P.S. Here is the other thread I was looking at:

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/329214-31-first-time-builder-gaming-1000-1200-budget

I was just wondering how other people thought of this build and whether they would recommend other things.
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  1. lol, looks like you stole my build

    I would go with the 570 instead of the 560ti 448core. The price is just a little more ($20-30 after rebates), while providing consistantly better performance. Though the 448 core looks like it will do the trick on most things if the money isnt in the budget for the 570. Plus, when it comes time to SLi later it may be easier to find a 570 or normal 560ti than a 560ti 448core.

    Only other change would be to get an SSD. That is my one regret with my build. My wife's C2D is faster than my i7 in day-in day-out use, and it is all due to having an SSD compared to a HDD. Granted for work and play my computer is WAY faster than hers, but for web browsing, e-mail, and other simple tasks I can turn her computer on, do what I need to do, and get off, in the time it takes to turn my system on and load a few programs. You can get larger storage drives later in the summer/fall when prices go back down.

    Other than that, great build for a first timer. You could build as-is with no problems.
  2. A very good list of parts. You have done some homework.

    Your links do not work for me.

    Here are some thoughts:

    1) OCZ is not a bad brand, but I think Seasonic, PC P&C, Corsair, XFX and Antec are higher quality. Just my opinion.
    They will cost the same as OCZ.

    2) If you will be using a single GTX560ti, then a good 500w psu would do.
    Assuming the 750w is in anticipation of an upgrade to sli, then 750w is ok.
    My upgrade plan would be to sell the GTX560ti and replace it with a GTX580 or a stronger 28nm kepler next year or later. 600w would be ok for that.

    3) Hard drive prices are crazy today. I suggest you get a 80-120gb SSD now, and plan on adding a hard drive later for expansion later when prices get back to normal.
    80gb should be fine for the OS and a handful of games. Your pc would feel so much more responsive.
    I have a 120gb ssd, and I am only using 85gb total including about 6-8 games.

    4) Use google to search for video's on assembling a pc.

    5) Take the time now to download and read both the motherboard and case manuals. Cover to cover. Many questions will be answered.
  3. Thanks for your responses!

    So would this be better for $40 more?

    EVGA 012-P3-1570-AR GeForce GTX 570 (Fermi) 1280MB 320-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130593


    And this for the power supply?

    CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V v2.2 SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139006

    or should i go with the 650 Watt?

    CORSAIR Enthusiast Series CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139005


    And is it just me or have the prices of HDD skyrocketed the last few months? I remember seeing a 2tb HDD a few months ago for around $100. Also, if you could link me an SSD that you would recommend, that would be great.
    Thanks!
  4. Are you planning SLI? You should decide now. If you're not, a good 500W PSU would do, but if you are, go with the 750W.
    HDD prices have gone through the roof due to floods in Thailand that have put some crucial production facilities out of commision.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/07/business/global/07iht-floods07.html?scp=1&sq=thailand%20flooding%20cripples&st=Search
    They should subside over the next year.
    120- or 128gb would probably be a good SSD size. This'll get you the OS and plenty of apps/games. Many people like the Crucial M4 (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148442), but basically go with the cheapest thing you can find that has decent Newegg reviews.
    Also, and I'm going to be appending this to every build thread, GET A BACKUP DRIVE IF YOU DON'T HAVE ONE. Data recovery is prohibitively expensive, and losing all your files sucks. It's worth the high HDD price.
  5. Flooding in thailand where like every hdd is made have caused them to skyrocket in price.

    In my 800$ build I am just using my 400GB HDD that I already have till the prices drop back down, grab a 1TB and use that as my storage drive with my 400GB as my OS and documents and such. So if you can use an older HDD, just reformat that and use that if you don't want to pay through the nose.

    Ofcourse if you want to spend the cash, grab a small SSD now and later grab a storage HDD.
  6. The XFX Core Edition 850 is cheaper than any of the PSU's listed and it gets a 9.5 performance rating from jonnyguru.....the 750 is a bit small for twin 570's

    The Illusion is a great case and at $40 this week, it's a steal....however, it's a bit small for two 570's and I'd want something with more cooling power and front USB 3 ports.

    $25 below normal $115 price atm
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129097

    An extra $16 will get ya the 212's big bruddah .... Hyper 612 PWM which is an outstanding performer.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835103103
    http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=797&Itemid=62&limit=1&limitstart=4

    GFX - I'd be hesitant to grab the limited release 56-448 as it's a short life product .... might not be able to get a 2nd one when Y wanna SLI
  7. Isn't the Mugen 3 better at the same price, though?
  8. I do not think I will see myself spending another $300 on another GPU in the future. I think one will be sufficient enough. I do not think I will be using eyefinity either.
  9. I just found a SSD 120GB for $170. Should I go with this one?

    OCZ Agility 3 AGT3-25SAT3-120G 2.5" 120GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227726&cm_sp=Cat_SSD-_-Spotlight-_-20-227-726
  10. I particularly like the cooling design of the EVGA GTX570 you linked to. It gets the heat out of the case quickly.

    I would suggest a 80-120gb Intel 320 SSD.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820167050

    Intel has recently had some good rebates on these, keep on the lookout for one.
    I think they are clearing out inventory in anticipation of the 520 replacement series launch.
    I think the new series will look better in benchmarks, but not be significantly better in actual usage.
  11. Ok so following everyone's advice, I came up with this new list. However, the total has gone up $300 somehow. Any suggestions to lower it again?

    Here's the list:


    CPU and Fan Combo - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Comb [...] mbo.783352 $243.98 FREE SHIPPING
    Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623I52500K
    COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO RR-212E-20PK-R1 Continuous Direct Contact 120mm Sleeve CPU Cooler Compatible with latest Intel 1366/1155 and AMD FM1/AM3+

    Mobo - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6813157271 $124.99 - $114.99 after mail-in rebate FREE SHIPPING
    ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

    RAM - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6820231428 $29.99 FREE SHIPPING
    G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL

    DVD: ASUS DRW-24B1ST SATA 24x DVD Burner - $18.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6827135204

    OS: Windows 7 Home Edition 64-bit - $99.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6832116986

    EVGA 012-P3-1570-AR GeForce GTX 570 (Fermi) 1280MB 320-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6814130593

    CORSAIR Enthusiast Series CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6817139005

    SSD: 80-120 gb Intel 320 SSD.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6820167050

    Thermal Paste: Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound - OEM
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835100007

    Antec Nine Hundred Two V3 Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Gaming Case
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129097

    Total: $1,386.73

    Thanks for everybody's help but $1,386 is a bit too high.
  12. i cannot open the ssd link... so i don't know if your ssd is 80gb or 120gb... assume that if you use intel 120gb... here's alternative...

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227726

    this case is great as well... although its design looks like a cm690 ii....

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811124145
  13. You had a 560 Ti 448, no AS5 and no SSD on your original build. Scrap the AS5 immediately and then decide what you want to do about the other two.
  14. most of the things that you listed are quite reasonable in price... if you want to lower i can only see you take gtx 560 ti or drop out graphics card altogether to save some money for new releases next year... or you drop out ssd for the time being...
  15. Thanks for the advice. I think am going to keep the GPU as is (I dont mind spending $40 more if it is better than the gtx 560 ti). I think what has brought it up so much is the SSD and the case. I think it is probably best if I get an SSD now and an HDD later when the prices get back to normal so I guess this build would be what I will go for. I will change the SSD to:

    OCZ Agility 3 AGT3-25SAT3-120G 2.5" 120GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227726

    to save $30-$40.

    Thanks!
  16. Do you have data that you're going to transfer over? If you have a bunch of media, you may run into your SSD's limit. Proceed with care.
    I'd go with the ADATA S510 120gb at $175. The Agility has FORTY-TWO one-star reviews (DOA/not working at all). The ADATA has no twos OR ones. Don't you think it's worth the extra $25 to avoid going through an RMA and having no computer for weeks?
  17. I would not want to compromise much on your picks, which are excellent.

    1) Are you near a microcenter? If so, they will sell a 2500K for $180 to walk in's.

    2) The Antec 902 is a nice case, but it will not perform any better than the Antec 300 illusion model. $40 after rebate including free shipping.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129066
  18. Ok thanks for the advice but I like the 902 so I think ill just stick with that. The closest microcenter is about 2-3 hours away so I am not sure if it is worth it to go down there. Here's the updated list:


    CPU and Fan Combo - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Comb [...] mbo.783352 $243.98 FREE SHIPPING
    Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623I52500K
    COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO RR-212E-20PK-R1 Continuous Direct Contact 120mm Sleeve CPU Cooler Compatible with latest Intel 1366/1155 and AMD FM1/AM3+

    Mobo - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6813157271 $124.99 - $114.99 after mail-in rebate FREE SHIPPING
    ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

    RAM - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6820231428 $29.99 FREE SHIPPING
    G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL

    DVD: ASUS DRW-24B1ST SATA 24x DVD Burner - $18.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6827135204

    OS: Windows 7 Home Edition 64-bit - $99.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6832116986

    EVGA 012-P3-1570-AR GeForce GTX 570 (Fermi) 1280MB 320-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6814130593

    CORSAIR Enthusiast Series CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6817139005

    ADATA S510 Series AS510S3-120GM-C 2.5" 120GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820211569

    Thermal Paste: Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound - OEM
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835100007

    Antec Nine Hundred Two V3 Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Gaming Case
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129097

    Total: $1,359.92

    I changed the SSD to the ADATA one cause knowing my luck, I will get an OCZ that doesn't work.

    Thanks!
  19. You really don't need the Arctic Silver, but if it makes you feel comfortable :P
    You've pasted these links from a forum post, haven't you? They don't work. Just BTW.
    I'll say again, you don't need that PSU. It's overkill for one card and not really enough for two. This one's $60 and 600W: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139028
    You'd be fine on 500W, but a good 600'll last longer, I think.
    Looks good otherwise.
  20. Ok so I changed the PSU and removed the AS5. I was under the impression that you needed thermal paste. I have all of the links on notepad and I copy and paste them on to the thread which may be why it isn't working. Here's the updated list:


    CD burner - ASUS 24X DVD Burner - Bulk 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM Black SATA Model DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS - OEM
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827135204

    Case - Antec Nine Hundred Two V3 Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Gaming Case
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129097

    GPU - EVGA 012-P3-1570-AR GeForce GTX 570 (Fermi) 1280MB 320-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130593

    PSU - CORSAIR Builder Series CX600 V2 600W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139028

    RAM - G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231428

    Mobo - ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157271

    OS - Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116986

    SSD - ADATA S510 Series AS510S3-120GM-C 2.5" 120GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820211569

    CPU and Fan - Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623I52500K
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.783352


    Thanks for the advice about the PSU and thermal paste. This was the kind of advice I was looking for. If anyone else has anymore advice, I am listening =). Also, is it possible to install that version of windows on more than one computer?

    Thanks!
  21. No, it'll probably only install on one.
    The EVO will come with TIM that's good enough, and on that note http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=170&Itemid=1&limit=1&limitstart=5
    Again, BACK UP. If you don't have a backup drive, buy one.
  22. Okay thanks for your help! What should I get for a backup?
  23. Best answer
    That Hitachi 500gb you were going to get in the first place would probably be a good choice :P
    Yeah, it'll push the budget up, but it's absolutely worth it.
  24. Best answer selected by jcarbelbide.
  25. Thanks!
  26. You know it.
  27. Oem is good for one PC, and, is limited to that pc as defined by the motherboard. If you have a need for a second copy of windows 7, there is a family pack which gives you three upgrade licenses for about $135
    http://www.amazon.com/Microsoft-Windows-Premium-Upgrade-Family/dp/B002MV2MG0/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1323639382&sr=8-1

    There are three advantages to the upgrade version vs. oem.
    1) It is considered retail which gives you ms support.
    2) Because it is retail, you can later transfer it to a different pc.
    3) You get both 32 and 64 bit dvd's.

    Upgrade does not require you to have a previous copy of windows installed, just to be replacing one.

    Normally, I would recommend a hard drive and an external enclosure. Considering the current cost of hard drives, see if you can't hold off for a bit.
    If you don't have too much critical data, could you use dvd for a while? Or, rent some offline storage? At least until hard drive preces get lower in, perhaps, 6 months.
  28. I think I will go to Costco to get Windows 7 haha because I saw that they had a 3 pack for $100. And yes I was thinking of waiting until the prices of hard drives go back to normal. I dont have anything that I cannot store on a 2 GB hard drive on my current computer so I dont think I need an HDD right away.
  29. 2 GB? That must be a typo.
  30. Woops I meant flash drive. lol
  31. ...all of your system files fit on 2GB? I think not.
  32. I meant my homework. System files i might just take out the drive from my older computer and transfer it to the SSD. I doubt I will be using much from the old drive though.
  33. Sounds good.
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