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First time build, List made, need advice, Budget $1600-2000

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January 12, 2012 12:04:54 AM

Hello,
I did some research this week and compiled this list of components to go into my first ever pc to be built.

Parts that I may or may not need:
-Sound Card (not sure if the in-built one in mobo is good enough, HD 8-channel doesn't really mean much to me and google didn't quite answer it for me)
-Extra cooling fans (not sure if I have enough)
-Gaming Keyboard (not too important)
-DVD drive (a cheap but usable one will do, mainly for installing games and drivers, burning is a plus but I could use my laptop for that)

Purchase Date - Jan/Feb 2012, depending on the comments I get here.

Budget - My current list adds to £1090 (roughly $1600) Wouldn't mind spending upto $2000 as long as it is worth the money.

System Usage - Gaming, Recording screen, Converting videos, maybe video editting

Preferred websites - amazon.com, ebuyer.co.uk

Country - United Kingdom (UK)

Parts Preference - Too new to have a preference, advices would be helpful.

Overclocking - maybe in a few years time

SLI/Crossfire - maybe when I upgrade in a few years time

Monitor Resolution - Currently thinking of 1920x1080, may invest in a larger monitor depending on budget.

Additional Comments ..
-Preferably a quiet computer
-Prefer it not to use too much power (700W max hopefully)
-Able to run modern games competitively (e.g Battlefield 3, does not need to have ridiculous fps like 100fps on ultra setting, a reasonable 45-60fps on high/ultra will be just fine, but the higher the better ;) 

EVGA Nvidia GTX570 HD SuperClocked 1280MB 320-Bit DDR5 Graphics Card

ASUS 1155 P8Z68-V PRO

Corsair 8GB 1600MHz CL9 DDR3 Vengeance Memory Two Module Kit (x2 for 16GB)

Intel Sandybridge i7-2600k unlocked Quad-Core, 3.4GHz, 8MB Cache, Socket 1155

OCZ 2.5" 60GB Vertex 3 SSD (primary drive, for fast booting and frequently used programs games)
Looking for a secondary hdd for storing music/ films, and install "rarely used" programs (such as converters) if that is possible. Found 2 such hdd's here but other recommendations are greatly appreciated too.
[Option 1] Samsung 2TB SATA 5400rpm 32MB Cache
[Option 2] Western Digital Cavier Green SATA-3 2TB 6GB/s

Arctic Freezer 7 Pro (does this fit into LGA1155? in descriptions it says it is compatible with LGA1156)

Coolermaster Storm Scout Coolermaster Silent Pro 700W Modular PSU (bundle)




Additional questions:
1) What OS would work with this the best? I'm used to Windows 7 Home Premium on my laptop but I wouldn't mind spending some extras to get the Ultimate edition.
2) This build is supposed to last me for maybe 3 or so years before an upgrade, is the MoBo good enough to last that long in terms of upgradability? I'm really new to this but as far as I know from the research I have done - MoBo's are very limited to the processors produced around the time of the MoBo's release date? Correct me if I'm wrong.
a c 92 B Homebuilt system
January 12, 2012 12:37:47 AM

Quote:
-Sound Card (not sure if the in-built one in mobo is good enough, HD 8-channel doesn't really mean much to me and google didn't quite answer it for me)


You don't need a soundcard anymore - they're pretty worthless.

Quote:
1) What OS would work with this the best? I'm used to Windows 7 Home Premium on my laptop but I wouldn't mind spending some extras to get the Ultimate edition.


You don't need Ultimate unless you're using the language packs, and you only need Pro if you're using XP legacy programs or anything over 16GB of RAM, but even then yuo don't really need that.

Quote:
2) This build is supposed to last me for maybe 3 or so years before an upgrade, is the MoBo good enough to last that long in terms of upgradability? I'm really new to this but as far as I know from the research I have done - MoBo's are very limited to the processors produced around the time of the MoBo's release date? Correct me if I'm wrong.


No - your motherboard will be able to handle CPUs after it's manufacturing date as long as it fits the socket. Depending on when the manufacturer updates the BIOS accordingly, upgrades should be no sweat.

Quote:
Arctic Freezer 7 Pro (does this fit into LGA1155? in descriptions it says it is compatible with LGA1156)


1155 is a variant of 1156, it shouldn't be too much different.

Quote:

Intel Sandybridge i7-2600k unlocked Quad-Core, 3.4GHz, 8MB Cache, Socket 1155


You don't need the i7 for a gaming machine - you can get by with the i5-2500K perfectly fine. Invest the difference in upgrading to the Sapphire 7970. You also don't need 16GB either - 8GB is perfectly fine.

Quote:
Coolermaster Storm Scout Coolermaster Silent Pro 700W Modular PSU (bundle)


Don't get a Silent Pro - those PSUs are bad news, the OEM uses fake wattage ratings and I think a fake certification.

Quote:

OCZ 2.5" 60GB Vertex 3 SSD (primary drive, for fast booting and frequently used programs games)
Looking for a secondary hdd for storing music/ films, and install "rarely used" programs (such as converters) if that is possible. Found 2 such hdd's here but other recommendations are greatly appreciated too.
[Option 1] Samsung 2TB SATA 5400rpm 32MB Cache
[Option 2] Western Digital Cavier Green SATA-3 2TB 6GB/s


A couple of things - Vertex 3's are absolutely awful, and OCZ isn't the most reliable manufacturer out there. Go with Crucial, Plextor, Samsung, anything else. And second, do you really need that much storage? HD prices are through the roof right now, and 2TB hard drives aren't cheap. That will eat a significant chunk out of your budget. You should really invest the most in your graphics card and get the 7970, and then motherboard and CPU, storage, everything else.
January 12, 2012 1:19:26 AM

@g-unit Thanks for the input, much appreciated.

Quote:
No - your motherboard will be able to handle CPUs after it's manufacturing date as long as it fits the socket. Depending on when the manufacturer updates the BIOS accordingly, upgrades should be no sweat.

I kind of understand this, but also unsure at the same time.
Say, for example, they release Intel i9 in 2 years time and let's say the standard socket is LGA2014, would they also be releasing a LGA1155 variant which fits the mobo I'm looking at right now?

Quote:
You don't need the i7 for a gaming machine - you can get by with the i5-2500K perfectly fine. Invest the difference in upgrading to the Sapphire 7970. You also don't need 16GB either - 8GB is perfectly fine.

Thanks, I'll definitely consider the 7970 gfx. And I were to run multiple things whilst gaming (such as fraps/camtasia, skype, media playing program and maybe some other little things) would the i7 of help or would the i5 still cope perfectly fine with it? Same question goes to RAM, as my friend told me RAM is dirt cheap nowadays and it wouldn't hurt to spend a little more for double the memory.

Quote:
Don't get a Silent Pro - those PSUs are bad news, the OEM uses fake wattage ratings and I think a fake certification.

Ahh, I see. Any recommendations? I was also looking at Corsair 750HX PSU before I picked the bundle to save some money. But this means I'd have to spend a bit more for the case as well.

Quote:
A couple of things - Vertex 3's are absolutely awful, and OCZ isn't the most reliable manufacturer out there. Go with Crucial, Plextor, Samsung, anything else. And second, do you really need that much storage? HD prices are through the roof right now, and 2TB hard drives aren't cheap. That will eat a significant chunk out of your budget. You should really invest the most in your graphics card and get the 7970, and then motherboard and CPU, storage, everything else.

I read a couple of reviews and Vertex 3 won most of the editors' top picks, I'll have a deeper look into the SSDs just to be safe. And you're right, maybe I don't need that much storage, only chose a 2TB one to save me from worrying about upgrades in the near future.
Related resources
a c 92 B Homebuilt system
January 13, 2012 3:10:13 PM

Quote:
Thanks, I'll definitely consider the 7970 gfx. And I were to run multiple things whilst gaming (such as fraps/camtasia, skype, media playing program and maybe some other little things) would the i7 of help or would the i5 still cope perfectly fine with it? Same question goes to RAM, as my friend told me RAM is dirt cheap nowadays and it wouldn't hurt to spend a little more for double the memory.


Having extra RAM isn't necessarily going to do anything. You really only need extra RAM if you're working with huge files like CS5 or something similar. The i5 will be able to put through multi-tasking chores without a sweat. Actually my i3-2120 will be able to handle multi-tasking without breaking a sweat.

Quote:
Ahh, I see. Any recommendations? I was also looking at Corsair 750HX PSU before I picked the bundle to save some money. But this means I'd have to spend a bit more for the case as well.


That's an excellent choice for sure. You also can't go wrong with high-end Antec or Seasonic PSUs. You don't necessarily have to spend more for the case, however having one with good cable management will definitely help.

Quote:
I read a couple of reviews and Vertex 3 won most of the editors' top picks, I'll have a deeper look into the SSDs just to be safe. And you're right, maybe I don't need that much storage, only chose a 2TB one to save me from worrying about upgrades in the near future.


Maybe it was the Agility 3 or the Solid 3 - but OCZ is a very hit-or-miss SSD manufacturer. Some are great, others are just absolute crap. And with data and especially your boot drive you don't want to take any chances.

As far as the 2TB hard drive goes I'd normally recommend them in half a second - the problem there is that the prices are so insanely high right now because of the flooding in Southern Thailand that they're going to be insanely expensive for at least the next year.

Quote:
Say, for example, they release Intel i9 in 2 years time and let's say the standard socket is LGA2014, would they also be releasing a LGA1155 variant which fits the mobo I'm looking at right now?


Two things - I highly doubt we'll see an i9 (Intel seems stuck on the i3/i5/i7 format) but by the time that happens 1155 will probably be long gone with the way Intel updates their CPUs. LGA775 is long gone, as is X58 and now P55. Ivy Bridge will continue the 1155 format but I'm really surprised that they are keeping the same format.
January 14, 2012 12:02:44 AM

Ahh, I've already ordered the components before I saw your reply.
But good to hear that I did several things right.

In the end, I went with the following:

ASUS P8Z68-V PRO (G3) <--- compared a few boards such as the P67s, this one stood out the most to me
i7-2600k unlocked <-- sorry, couldn't resist lol, may touch on video editting so it may help
Corsair Vengeance 16GB <-- again, couldn't resist the temptation
Crucial M4 64GB (saw many good reviews about it and seems quite popular)
WD 1.5TB 7200rpm (dropped a bit from the original 2TB, hopefully it can last until the flood has gone.)
Sapphire Radeon 7970 <-- gave me a headache, not many reviews/benchmarks due to being released not so long again and also the costliest piece to this project. I'm sure it's worth the money and trouble though ;) 
CM HAF 932 Advanced casing <-- probably the next best choice after having to drop the Storm Scout bundle
Corsair 750AX <-- Thank god to hear that it's a good choice!
Sony DVD Drive <-- just a cheap one for installing drivers and stuff etc.
Logitech G110 <-- looked nice and seems good enough for my gaming needs.

Total: £1447.47 (~$2,216.87)

Slightly over budget, but I'm sure this will keep me content for at least 3 years.
I might upgrade to the IvyBridge if it seems decent and relatively low in price after then, but .. we shall see.

Final comments before ending thread:
This has been a good experience for me, I have learnt much more about the computer hardware in these 2 weeks than the past 2 years doing a CompSci w/ maths course. I wish to improve my knowledge in this subject by reading more about the latest techs.
I hope the future readers who somehow stumble(most likely by googling) upon this thread will pick up something useful.

P.S. I have tried editting the title several times but it did not give me permission to do so. I believe the restriction is due to my relatively new account status, and so, may I ask the future readers to not 'bump' up this thread unless there are more relevant details to add to the topic.
Special thanks to g-unit1111 for the advices.

[SOLVED]~
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