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Building new system for the first time, seeking GPU and Mobo advice

Last response: in Systems
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December 26, 2011 3:39:09 PM

Hey there. So I'm building a system for the first time. I am planning on spending between $600 and $800.

The only thing I've decided for sure is that I'm going with the i5 2500k processor. I'm looking for motherboard and video card advice.

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Immediately

USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: gaming (for now, just SWTOR, D3 when it comes out, but I also anticipate that I'll start playing more graphically intensive games once I get this thing built, so I want to plan for this

CURRENT GPU AND POWER SUPPLY: None yet

OTHER RELEVANT SYSTEM SPECS: Only thing set is the i5 2500k processor

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: microcenter

PARTS PREFERENCES: none really- i've always heard Nvidia is the way to go, but I have no brand loyalty

OVERCLOCKING: Maybe, SLI OR CROSSFIRE: No

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1080


As for the motherboard, microcenter has a deal for bundles with the 2500k. They offer the z68AP for $50 and the z68x for $100 if i purchase the 2500k with it. I don't know much about motherboards, but from what i've gathered, the upgrade is only really worth it if I'm planning on overclocking (which I don't think I am). Are there any other advantages tot he z68x over the z68AP? Is it worth the $50 for my purposes?

My second question is about the videocard. I want to spend between $180 and $250. I think I want to go with the gtx 560. Not sure about ti or not. Also not sure about the 480 core. Further, within the 560 ti's listed on Microcenter, there are like 5 different ones. It's a little overwhelming and I can't really figure out the differences. What is your opinion on the best bang for the buck? I've sort of narrowed it down to these three:

http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

I really appreaciate any help. I'm sure I left out some information that is essential to receiving advice, so please let me know and I can clarify anything.

December 27, 2011 1:47:59 AM

Thanks! I appreciate the reply.
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