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Almost ready to buy, first preliminary build, please help

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January 15, 2012 5:18:58 AM

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/3L60

I am very close to buying a build it myself PC so I am trying to get really close on picking each parts. Some parts such as the CPU and case I have researched and am very excited for while others I am not devoted to and am not sure if they are the right choice so I'd appreciate help there.

I am not a PC gamer, so this isn't meant to be used for games, but I do like the idea that I COULD if I wanted to, play a game once in a while. Doesn't have to be pretty. I am going to use this computer for just about everything, programming, HD video editing, Photoshop etc.

I also have a lot of questions, though any advice strictly on the build is much appreciated!

I currently have an older monitor that I want to dual monitor too, is that ok with my build? Is that what eyefinity is for? I also want to run an HDMI cable from the video card to my TV in another bedroom so that when I go to bed or just want to watch something I can stream it from my computer instead of a separate player/hard drive. The TV will likely be the only monitor being used when I'm actually in my bedroom, so I won't be using all 3 monitors at once.

Is there any reason I should wait until Ivy Bridge comes out? Such as extreme price drop or anything? I'm fine getting Sandy Bridge because it has been out a while so there are not many issues, and an onboard graphics improvement won't affect me.

With my laptop I have speedstep which can be annoying sometimes. I guess how it works is say I had a 2000 mhz processor, and I am utilizing something that doesn't need 2000 mhz, it'll go down to 1000 mhz to save power. Is this actually making things slower though?

I do plan on overclocking LATER on in the life of the computer as a cool way to upgrade but not right now. I'll leave it stock/default. Do I need any kind of CPU cooler other than the one it comes with?

Do I need to buy any thermal paste or does it all come with it?

Do I need to buy any cables or should all these parts come with the necessary cables?

The monitor chosen has speakers so that would make it nice as a secondary TV if say a guest stayed over in that room. Is it possible to have a monitor without speakers builtin that can output to speakers? Say I plugged in a DVD player into the monitor for example.

Do I need an adapter to 3.5" for the SSD?

When I am done building it, are there any settings I will need to set/change? Such as for the SSD?

Do all drivers come with the parts? Should everything be compatible?

How is the power supply? I really don't know what to look for here.

How is the ram/memory? Is the latency ok? I see a few choices that are similar so I am not sure how to choose. This is a 4 pack, but should I buy 4 individually? 2 2 packs?

I am very excited about the SSD; it's small but I will upgrade in a couple of years... which leads me to the question about the mechanical hard drive, how do I pick? Some have 4 star ratings but then I look at the reviews and a lot are DOA or "died after 3 weeks"... I don't really care if it's 500gb or 1tb or in between but I'd like reliability.

I read something about standoffs or spacers for the mobo, what are these?

How hard is it to add LEDs to the case?

Thank you! I really appreciate any help.
January 15, 2012 6:34:42 AM

jdx3ds said:
http://pcpartpicker.com/p/3L60

I am very close to buying a build it myself PC so I am trying to get really close on picking each parts. Some parts such as the CPU and case I have researched and am very excited for while others I am not devoted to and am not sure if they are the right choice so I'd appreciate help there.

I am not a PC gamer, so this isn't meant to be used for games, but I do like the idea that I COULD if I wanted to, play a game once in a while. Doesn't have to be pretty. I am going to use this computer for just about everything, programming, HD video editing, Photoshop etc.

I also have a lot of questions, though any advice strictly on the build is much appreciated!

I currently have an older monitor that I want to dual monitor too, is that ok with my build? Is that what eyefinity is for? I also want to run an HDMI cable from the video card to my TV in another bedroom so that when I go to bed or just want to watch something I can stream it from my computer instead of a separate player/hard drive. The TV will likely be the only monitor being used when I'm actually in my bedroom, so I won't be using all 3 monitors at once.


Eyefinity gives you the ability to run 3 monitors from the same card.

jdx3ds said:
Is there any reason I should wait until Ivy Bridge comes out? Such as extreme price drop or anything? I'm fine getting Sandy Bridge because it has been out a while so there are not many issues, and an onboard graphics improvement won't affect me.


The Ivy Bridge platform shouldn't affect many of us by much, for most common uses the i5 2500k is all you need right now, unless you are using some heavily threaded applications. Ivy Bridge is going to include the PCIe 3.0 bus, which wont affect most people, as even the highest quality video cards dont use the full capability of the PCIE 2.0

jdx3ds said:
With my laptop I have speedstep which can be annoying sometimes. I guess how it works is say I had a 2000 mhz processor, and I am utilizing something that doesn't need 2000 mhz, it'll go down to 1000 mhz to save power. Is this actually making things slower though?


This shouldn't make much of a difference, but if it annoys you, you could shut it off in the bios.

jdx3ds said:
I do plan on overclocking LATER on in the life of the computer as a cool way to upgrade but not right now. I'll leave it stock/default. Do I need any kind of CPU cooler other than the one it comes with?


If you are going to overclock, grab a Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO , it's cheap, quiet, and can handle overclocks well over 5.0ghz on a 2500.

jdx3ds said:
Do I need to buy any thermal paste or does it all come with it?


The cooler I just linked comes with thermal paste. Some people prefer arctic silver 5 over it, but it should work for you. If not, grab a tube of AC5

jdx3ds said:
Do I need to buy any cables or should all these parts come with the necessary cables?


The motherboard you've selected comes with 2 Sata cables, you'd need to pick up one more for a total of 3. The ones with the motherboard should be Sata 6g/s capable, so use those on your SSD and HDD, and grab a cheap sata 2 cable for your ODD

jdx3ds said:
The monitor chosen has speakers so that would make it nice as a secondary TV if say a guest stayed over in that room. Is it possible to have a monitor without speakers builtin that can output to speakers? Say I plugged in a DVD player into the monitor for example.


I've not seen any monitors with this capability, though you could look into small lcd tv's to get this if you'd like.

jdx3ds said:
Do I need an adapter to 3.5" for the SSD?


No the case you picked has 2 natively.

jdx3ds said:
When I am done building it, are there any settings I will need to set/change? Such as for the SSD?


This is something I'm not too sure about, as it kind of depends on what settings are default in the motherboard. For SSD boot drive, you want that particular drive to be set in AHCI mode.

jdx3ds said:
Do all drivers come with the parts? Should everything be compatible?


Everything looks compatible, and most parts come with a driver disk, if they do not, it's very easy to go the the manufactures website and download them. I've done this with my android phone when I didn't have another computer around.

jdx3ds said:
How is the power supply? I really don't know what to look for here.


A 620 should be plenty for the build you have posted, and Antec makes decent power supplies

jdx3ds said:
How is the ram/memory? Is the latency ok? I see a few choices that are similar so I am not sure how to choose. This is a 4 pack, but should I buy 4 individually? 2 2 packs?


The ram you have picked looks great, Gskill is a very reputable brand. 2x4 is your best bet, in case you want to upgrade down the road.

jdx3ds said:
I am very excited about the SSD; it's small but I will upgrade in a couple of years... which leads me to the question about the mechanical hard drive, how do I pick? Some have 4 star ratings but then I look at the reviews and a lot are DOA or "died after 3 weeks"... I don't really care if it's 500gb or 1tb or in between but I'd like reliability.


Stick with Western Digital and Seagate for reliability, maybe grab a 500g for now, until the prices go downthis for 85 bucks is a pretty good deal, IMO.(based on current prices)

jdx3ds said:
I read something about standoffs or spacers for the mobo, what are these?


Standoffs elevate your motherboard off of the floor of the case, which keeps it from shorting out.

jdx3ds said:
How hard is it to add LEDs to the case?


With the case you've picked, the only place you'll be able to put visible LED's inside would be the fans inside the front cover. Anything else will be covered by the case itself and not visible

Edited for spelling mistakes
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January 15, 2012 6:41:26 AM

Oh, and you could save yourself a hundred bucks or so going to the i5 2500k, could possibly put that into a higher end video card to add some performance.
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January 15, 2012 7:08:55 AM

Thank you
also how do I know if a motherboard has headers for the case's USB ports?
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January 15, 2012 7:18:16 AM

jdx3ds said:
Thank you
also how do I know if a motherboard has headers for the case's USB ports?


The motherboard has headers for 8 usb ports, and your case has 2 in the front. You should be fine with that. To look it up yourself just look at the details tab on the newegg page, and read the list of onboard i/o connectors.
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January 15, 2012 7:25:26 AM

Drop the 16 GB RAM for 8GB, get a PSU with more wattage and that is 80+ rated and spend the money saved from RAM on a 6850
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January 15, 2012 8:05:12 AM

So will the front USBs be able to plug into the motherboard without sacrificing the USBs on the motherboard?
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January 15, 2012 12:36:56 PM

jdx3ds said:
So will the front USBs be able to plug into the motherboard without sacrificing the USBs on the motherboard?


Yes. The only time this would cause an issue would be with usb 3.0. Some cases with usb 3 on the front cover have a normal usb cable that just loops back through the back of the case to the usb slots on the back of the motherboard instead of an internal header. Since neither your case or board have usb 3, it won't be an issue for you. If you want a case and board with USB 3.0, I would suggest this case and this motherboard. The motherboard is much more expensive than the original one you chose, but asus is a top notch brand, and this board has a lot of the bells and whistles that makes building/overclocking very easy. The case also features a lot of mesh and a side panel window, so the LED lights you were asking about in the original post would work in this one much better.
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