Looking into a desktop equivelent.

Hello there.

I currently own a HP DV7tSE laptop
It has:
Intel i7 Quad core Q720 @ 1.60GHz
570 GB hard drive

I live in the US, and I'm looking to build a desktop with roughly the same power because playing any games (mostly from the Steam network) will quickly over-heat, and in many cases, shut down my laptop. (I make sure it gets adequate ventilation)
So I'm looking for something to use daily for internet, Photoshop, Flash, Movies etc. that wont over heat from occasionally playing games for 15 minutes or 3+ hours..
somewhere between $700-950 would be good. I have some components i can take from my mother's old computer like it's CD/DVD burner.

I don't really see need for Overclocking as I'm not a big gamer, and only play on occasions.

Where would be the best place to look for the components?
What kind of motherboard should I be looking into?
are any of the internal cables included with the components?
Does the type of case matter?
Should I look into liquid cooling? any particular types or models?
what would be an adequate power supply?
Anything else I should be looking into?

Thanks for your time and advice. Feel free to ask any questions you may have.
13 answers Last reply
More about looking desktop equivelent
  1. Do you live in the U.S? Will you be overclockinng? Crossfire/SLI?

    MOBO, if it isn't an Open Box, will come with all the cables and the case will come with all the screws.

    Honestly, unless you OC like crazy, you won't need water cooling.
  2. Yes, i do live in the U.S. I don't really see a need for overclocking as I wont be playing too many games all day long, it's mostly for media usage.


  3. Since you aren't OCing, the CPU should be an i5-2400. Since you have the $, get the 6970 AMD GPU as well. I am not so sure on the rest, so I'd wait for someone more experienced to help.
  4. Im assuming you are in the US and you want something that you can upgrade overtime so you dont have to build a new computer if it starts getting a little behind.
    Motherboard: ASRock Z68 PRO3 GEN3 LGA 1155 Intel ~ $110 This is a great motherboard. It has 2 PCIe 3.0 x16 slots for the graphics cards of tomorrow/ USB3.0 and SATA 6GB/sec so that you will be ready for everything coming out for years to come and then after that most devices will probably be backwards compatable... i digress
    Processor: Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge ~ $230 in todays world of processors this is THE gaming CPU. Processors made today can handle speeds much faster than their stock speeds and with plenty of people wanting to get the most out of their parts we have "unlocked" processors that allow one to make their cpu run faster than stock. this generates more heat and energy but the Intel i series is already pretty energy efficient. having this unlocked processor will allow you to increase its speed to its optimal performance which is higher than these chips come.
    Processor cooling: COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus ~ $30 this great little heatsink will allow you too overclock and keep your cpu at a good temperature so it doesnt fry.
    Processor cooling: Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound ~ $13 for mounting the Heatsink
    GPU: MSI N560GTX-M2D1GD5 GeForce GTX 560 (Fermi) 1GB ~ $190
    this card should give you good, smooth performance in most games and GPU intencive games like BF3 and Metro 2033 at slightly lower settings in 1080p or 1920x1200. and in the future you can add a second one to your system to get twice the performance thanks to the motherboard! The heatsink on it looks solid for overclocking too.
    PSU: Thermaltake TR2 RX 750W Bronze ~ $90 This PSU has enough headroom for you to add a second Graphics card down the road and overclock maintaining stability. its also very energy efficient so overtime it will save you money over time!
    RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 ~ $47 After speeds of 1600 you get no benifit from faster ram currently. and almost no programs will utalize more than 6.5G of ram. Its also cheap so why not get some with heatfins so you can play with overclocking ram down the road?
    HDD: i assume you will be using one from your moms system. SSD are nice but a bit pricey right now. also all HDDs are about 2.5-3 times their normal price because of flooding in Thailand.
    Case: Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case ~ $60 This case has GREAT airflow and will make sure all of your parts are running as cool as possible! also i would add another fan to the front just for good measure.

    Total: ~ $770 without shipping (was $10.10 for me)
  5. other good GPUs
    GIGABYTE GV-R695OC-1GD Radeon HD 6950 1GB ~ $240
    HIS H697F2G2M Radeon HD 6970 2GB ~ $325
  6. Roughly the same power? I'm sorry, but for a 900 dollar desktop you're gonna get rouhly five times the power ;)
  7. One 6950 will play every game with max setting 45+frames except for BF3 and metro which are compleatly playable at high settings. Ultra was meant for dual graphics solutions anyways. so when you upgrade to two it should play every game at Max settings with a fps of 60+ constantly in even ultra mode. this can also run 3 moniters at high settings in BF3 and Metro and max on almost everything else if you get a 2gig version of the card. so i say go with the 6950 to save money now and upgrade to dual gpu quicker.
  8. @ FinneousPJ: Well when i say "roughly" i meant more along the lines of having similar components, but after looking at the other i7 and even i5 processors, it seems my i7 is very under-powered, at only 1.6Ghz and all other models running over 3GHz.
    so most anything i create will be stronger.

    @Nagol567 thanks for the list. That will be a great starting point.
    Knowing I don't have to get an i7 to get similar, if not better better, performance will be nice. I don't really think I'll need a special GPU, but I do plan to eventually use 2 screens, much like I currently use with my laptop, which uses a 1G setup, so i think the one you mentioned will be a plenty for what i want to do. And i might be able to use the old AVC heat sink from my mothers PC, it's pretty darn large, and has a similar setup to the one you suggested. it looks like this: http://www.rwlabs.com/images/articles/avc/napoleon/napoleon.jpg but I'd still have to clean off the heatsink base, but it's still cheaper than buying a a new one.. :)
    And I'm currently looking at $640 build. and $8 shipping.

    With already having a heat sink, and DVD/CD burner from an old PC the only thing I can think of looking at now is a Hard drive, mouse and keyboard, but those i think i can find on my own and will probably add another $140 in the end. and then Win7 to top it all off.
  9. if you dont get a GPU you cant game well. the integrated graphics on motherboards and in the i5 chip are way to slow to run any game. if you want to play games and have them look good on a 1920x1200 screen then your need to have a capable graphics card. For the money and performance across all games and knowing the architecture overall i think that a 6950 graphics card will please you the most for your money without going overboard.
  10. looking back i posted the wrong mobo...
    this one has 2 pcixpress 3.0 slots so you can get a second graphics card in the future.
  11. Alright, thanks for the correction, i'll make the adjustment.

    I still plan to get a GPU, However, I just don't think I need one that is around $200-300, since my primary use is for art and animation, not gaming. Is there an acceptable one for about $100? Sure, I could steal the GPU from my mothers PC, but it is old, and as such, under-powered, for this computer. being somewhere around 250-500MB instead of the average 1G, so i won't use that.
  12. Thanks again.

    Here's what I'm currently looking at.

    for $792 (including rebates)
    MB: ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155
    CPU: Intel i5 2500k
    GPU: XFX Double D HD-679X-ZDFC Radeon HD 6790
    PSU: Thermaltake TR2 RX 750W
    RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB)
    HDD: Western Digital Caviar Black WD1001FALS 1TB
    OS: Win7 64-bit

    Or for $882, I can get an i7 2600k, keeping all else the same.
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