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Current specs for my first build, any advice?

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January 11, 2012 2:42:19 AM

Hey everyone,

This is going to be my first build. I'm trying to stay under $1000, including things like anti-virus software and a monitor. Here's some (updated) specs and questions:


Motherboard - ASRock 970 Extreme3 AM3+ AMD 970 SATA 6Gb/s usb 3.0

CPU - AMD Phenom II x4 925 Deneb 2.8GHz Socket AM3 95W

GPU - SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 6870 1gb 256-bit GDDR5

HDD - Western Digital Caviar Blue 500gb 7200rpm SATA 6Gb/s 3.5"

RAM - G.Skill Value Series 4gb DDR3 1333 (x2 = 8gb)

PSU - Rosewill Hive-550 550w Continuous Modular Signle +12v Rail ATX 12V

Case - Rosewill Blackhawk Gaming ATX Mid Tower


missing a dvd burner and monitor (ive been using a laptop for years, so ill need a monitor unfortunately).

anyway what do you think so far? anyone have a good or bad experience with any of the parts listed?

regarding a dvd burner: this is a newb question im sure, but... when i look at the os compatibility section under the details tab at newegg, some don't show windows 7. Is this just because that page hasn't been updated, or are some dvd burners compatible with xp/vista but not 7?
January 11, 2012 3:49:05 AM

i have an extremely similar build, mine has a 960T and a 6850 but other than that it is the same

just as an fyi i just built my comp today and have had some major trouble with it, the main thing is be careful with your parts, and the mobo can be a bitch, tho is has bitching features :) 

the mobo doesn't have a ide connector so you will also need to order a new dvd or blu ray drive (or i had to)

i don't play wow but from what i hear i don't think you will need to go as powerful as a 6870, but that is your call.

as for the psu, you will want a 600w or higher b/c the 6800 series has a high draw from what i can tell so far, and you will want a roomy case, may i suggest a HAF 912

im assuming your from the us here

or if your from canada here

that is all
January 11, 2012 7:41:50 AM

the gpu may be somewhat excessive for my current purposes, but it seems like it a good buy as it will allow me to expand into more graphically demanding games in the future and still come in under budget for now.

as for the power supply, i typed some specs into the newegg psu calculator and it recommended 517w, so I chose a rosewill hive-550 from the > 517w options. in fact, here are the updated specs (which i'll also edit into my initial post for anyone else)

Motherboard - ASRock 970 Extreme3 AM3+ AMD 970 SATA 6Gb/s usb 3.0

CPU - AMD Phenom II x4 925 Deneb 2.8GHz Socket AM3 95W

GPU - SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 6870 1gb 256-bit GDDR5

HDD - Western Digital Caviar Blue 500gb 7200rpm SATA 6Gb/s 3.5"

RAM - G.Skill Value Series 4gb DDR3 1333 (x2 = 8gb)

PSU - Rosewill Hive-550 550w Continuous Modular Signle +12v Rail ATX 12V

Case - Rosewill Blackhawk Gaming ATX Mid Tower
Related resources
January 11, 2012 12:31:57 PM

Also, if anyone can confirm that a 550w psu is sufficient for the rest of my build that would be great.

I entered the rest o the ahrdware into the newegg power supply calculator and it suggested 517w, so im hoping that 550w will do the trick without needing to go up to 600w.
January 11, 2012 1:17:51 PM

Just my 2 cents but around 3 years ago I built a computer and went with a 480W Thermaltake PSU because I figured thats all I will ever need. Today the PSU is my single limit to upgrading to a better video card. I would suggest that you ask yourself if you will want to upgrade your video card in a couple years (maybe a new WoW comes out) that you pay for it now instead of later on. I don't know exactly what you would need but if it's calling for 517 I would naturally go above that to a 650W.
January 11, 2012 2:53:11 PM

a quality 500W is sufficient i would get a 550w from any trusted brands like seasonic,antec or corsair but this is just me i'm a fan boy Rosewill makes some good PSUs too
January 11, 2012 3:01:32 PM

and that built is not so good at all so how much money do you plan to put on the parts without the monitor and the Antivirus ?
January 11, 2012 3:15:25 PM

Yeah, a quality 500W unit is good for pretty much any single GPU card.
January 11, 2012 3:39:32 PM

Ref: PSU
Quote: from http://www.guru3d.com/article/radeon-hd-6850-6870-revie...
Measured power consumption - 6870

Advertised TDP = 150W
System in IDLE = 173W
System Wattage with GPU in FULL Stress = 295W
Difference (GPU load) = 122 W
Add average IDLE wattage ~ 19W
Subjective measured GPU power consumption = ~ 141 Watts
End quote

My Sytem I5-2500k OC 4.2GHz), W/6870 CPU 350 Watts running Furmark.

The 500->550 Watts would be a great choice, UNLESS you plan on adding a 2nd 6870 for xfire as that would bring you up to about 500 Watts so for xfire w/2 6870's would recommend going w/650 W PSU

Added:
On HDD:
1) If possible reuse a HDD from previouse system if available. Right now and probably for the rest of this year HDD are WAY higher
2) SKIP "Green" and "Blue HDD. if going WD go with Black. My personal preference is the Samsung F3's
3) Do Not pay an extra for a sata III HDD. (A) a waste of a sata III port, and (B) the ONLY gain over a SATA II HDD is in burst speed.
On Software, antivirus: Use a FREE version. If using win 7 then down load microsoft security suite.
January 11, 2012 7:37:58 PM

016ive said:
and that built is not so good at all so how much money do you plan to put on the parts without the monitor and the Antivirus ?


first real quick - not good at all compared to faster/more powerful options? or do you consider any specific part to be particularly poor quality

for everything included i want to stay below $1000. with the parts listed the price is currently at $674. the hdd alone was ~$108, so if i can scavenge a decent hard drive that brings it down to $566.

of course, add the os brings it back up another 100 roughly (or does anyone know where i can get an inexpensive win 7?) . Plus the dvd burner and a monitor, which i havent done any research on yet, but i would imagine adds probably another 100 at least. And i was going to go with what appeared to be a deal on a high end version of norton anti-virus for $40.

So, most expensive it's looking atm (with anti-virus and a new hdd) is maybe around $920.

and if i can use an old hdd, free anti-virus, and a bargain monitor maybe closer to $750.


since this is my first build and i have relatively low performance demands, it doesn't need to conquer all other builds. the parts i chose looked to be sufficient, but if there's anything specific that you know to be junk let me know
January 11, 2012 7:49:59 PM

RetiredChief said:


On Software, antivirus: Use a FREE version. If using win 7 then down load microsoft security suite.



that actually reminds me. i saw a video that recommended downloading any anti-virus software onto a flash drive with a secure computer first, and then using that to provide the new build with anti-virus. seems like a safe option, i'd like to do that.

BUT

i would probably be using a friends mac to download the anti-virus. my build is going to be a pc so i'm wondering if there would be any difficulties in using one operating system (mac) to download onto the flash drive, and then using that with a new os (windows)
January 11, 2012 8:06:05 PM

Just install Windows 7, then go to microsoft an download their security suite - You do NOT need to download the software from a 2nd computer.
!