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Advice on Intel i5 2500k system - $1500 (my first build!)

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January 4, 2012 4:16:39 PM

Hello! I want to do my very first PC build and am looking for advice, suggestions, corrections, thoughts, any knowledge.

I have decided to go with the i5 2500k as according to the benchmarks it seems it will work best for my use case. I filled out the form in the sticky below.

Here are my parts:
http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx?WishListNumber=22896647

Approximate Purchase Date: ASAP

Budget Range: $1500

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash (all CS4), Sony Vegas (minimal use), DVD ripping, video converting, MKV playback, HD video streaming/playback, and some gaming (I don't care if it runs demanding games crazy good, just needs to run all games good.)

Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, speakers, OS (Win 7 Pro, 64-bit)

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com

Country: I'm in the USA

Parts Preferences: Just want to use the Intel i5 2500k. Flexible on the rest.

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe in the future, but I'm most concerned with video and graphics editing performance, rather than games

Monitor Resolution: will be buying a monitor, probably 20" or so at 1920x1080

Additional Comments:
I am aiming for a system that meets my current needs and is as much future-proof as I can get for $1500. I certainly wouldn't mind saving money if you noticed somewhere I could cut back.

I wanted a mobo that supports 32GB RAM even though I can't afford it 4x8GB sticks right now. Maybe I am wrong on this, but I think that is a good idea?

I am going to use the SSD for OS (Win 7 Pro) and apps install. I just did a fresh, bare-bones install of my current system with all apps and it's at 45GB. I looked at 60gb SSDs, but I am worried that is not enough cushion both now and going forward with more and bigger apps or future OSes.

I would have the 2 mechanical HDDs set to RAID 1.

Really appreciate any feedback. I have never built from scratch before and this will be my most expensive PC ever, so I want to do it right! Thanks!
January 4, 2012 9:53:05 PM

CS4 is only a 32 bit program from memory so you are unlikely to see much benefit from more than about 8 gig of RAM till you upgrade to 5 or 5.5 .

2500k
Z68 mb
2 x4 gig of 1600 MHz RAM running at 1.5 volt or less
400 watt psu

Use the onboard video , or buy a budget level nVidia and used the lucidlogix drivers
http://www.lucidlogix.com/product-virtu.html
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January 4, 2012 10:41:40 PM

if you use alot of Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash i would spend money on your monitor. get a ips-pannel better Color Accuracy And Gamut. i realy like the Dell UltraSharp U2412M http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... it is only a e-ips pannel.
if you have time to read this 24" LCD Round-Up: Acer S242HL, Dell U2412M, And Samsung T24A550 http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/s242hl-bid-u2412m-t...
this is way more the you would need but under budget
COOLER MASTER HAF Mid Tower $59.99

ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA1155 $124.99

XIGMATEK Gaia cpu cooler $29.99 probably do not need this

GIGABYTE Radeon HD 6950 1GB $239.99

XFX Core Edition PRO850W $119.99 if you want to crossfire later other wise get a 600w

Intel Core i5-2500 $219.99

Crucial M4 CT064M4SSD2 2.5" 64GB SATA III 109.99

G.SKILL Ripjaws X 8GB DDR31600 $43.99

Seagate Barracuda ST31000524AS 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive 124.99

Dell UltraSharp U2412M 359.99 you can get is cheaper from dell i think
prices off newegg.com

i do not know about optical drives that much so i did not put one on the build sorry
i think a good ips-pannel would make you more happy then a fast rig but you can have both for 1500$
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January 4, 2012 10:48:26 PM

nodeals said:
if you use alot of Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash i would spend money on your monitor. get a ips-pannel better Color Accuracy And Gamut. i realy like the Dell UltraSharp U2412M http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... it is only a e-ips pannel.
if you have time to read this 24" LCD Round-Up: Acer S242HL, Dell U2412M, And Samsung T24A550 http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/s242hl-bid-u2412m-t...
this is way more the you would need but under budget
COOLER MASTER HAF Mid Tower $59.99

ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA1155 $124.99

XIGMATEK Gaia cpu cooler $29.99 probably do not need this

GIGABYTE Radeon HD 6950 1GB $239.99

XFX Core Edition PRO850W $119.99 if you want to crossfire later other wise get a 600w

Intel Core i5-2500 $219.99

Crucial M4 CT064M4SSD2 2.5" 64GB SATA III 109.99

G.SKILL Ripjaws X 8GB DDR31600 $43.99

Seagate Barracuda ST31000524AS 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive 124.99

Dell UltraSharp U2412M 349.99
prices off newegg

i think a good ips-pannel would make you more happy then a fast rig but you can have both for 1500$


The IPS panel LCD is an excellent idea .
But after that your suggestions are bad

A $240 GAMING graphics card to edit video and photoshop is nuts . An 850 watt psu could run TWO of the unneeded graphics card let alone the one he does not have any use for .

The HAF is a nice case but not appropriate to quiet office use
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January 4, 2012 11:00:52 PM

like i said way more then you will need it was easy to cut and pasta my wish list from newegg yes much more of a gaming rig then he will need. it did not seem like a workstation i would never spend 1500$ on a work comp. on-board video probably be best for a workstation even though i have had bad luck with on board video
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January 5, 2012 12:47:08 PM

Thanks for all the info and opinions!

I cut back on the hard drives and went with 4x4GB RAM and saved some cash for now. Really wish I would have had the foresight to buy hard drives 3 months ago when they were 1/3 of the price! :??: 

Although I'm concerned right now with graphics and video work, I was trying to future proof as much as I could. I still went with the fancy $200 mobo because of the potential of dual video cards.

Basically, I want this machine to last me at least 7 years. Then I figure I can recycle some parts into more basic builds--maybe a HTPC or fileserver or something.

I appreciate the links to read up on the monitors. Never heard anything IPS panels before. A monitor is my next big purchase (in a few months), so I am going to begin my research for that now.

Thank you again for all the help!
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