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1300-1500 Gaming build

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February 1, 2012 11:09:56 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: 1-2 Weeks

Budget Range: Would like to stay at $1300.00 but can spend a little more if necessary.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Mostly just gaming and web browsing.

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, Speakers, Mouse, Monitor, I will be buying second monitor, the monitor price is not included. I've already purchased a Corsair 600T Case, Windows 7.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com is where I buy everything usually.

Country: USA

Parts Preferences: No preference but I've already set my mind on a I5-2500k and a Sapphire 7950 I would like the factory overclocked version if its in stock in the next 2 weeks, but if there is not much of a difference between that and the regular one I can compromise.

Overclocking: Maybe, never overclocked before.

SLI or Crossfire: No

Monitor Resolution: My monitor now is 1680x1050 but I want to purchase a 24inch monitor for gaming and turn my other into a secondary monitor. The 24 I was looking at is 1920*1080.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Additional Comments: Just wanted to say thanks for the help, this is the third build in which l have started the process here. All the others have been great so far. Also curious about whether a corsair water cpu cooler is worth it or whether I should just go with a Zalman or something?

I5-2500K - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Motherboard I'm not sure which one will be best.

Would like this - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
but ill compromise with this - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SSD - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD - Looking for guidance on this one, looking for around 500GB.

Power supply - Again looking for guidance, I've had Xigmatek in my current build for over 2 years that's worked great, I just want something reliable and modular.

Memory was looking at this - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... I know I only need 8gb but figured id just 16gb so I dont have to worry about it in the future.

Heatsink - Was looking at this one - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I think that is everything off the top of my head, I'm sure I forgot something. Thanks for the help, be gentile.


More about : 1300 1500 gaming build

February 1, 2012 11:26:21 PM

Everything looks great so far!
I would recommend this motherboard:
ASRock extreme 3 z68:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
It's a great motherboard and has loads of features such as PCIe 3.0 (2 of them for CF in the future) and is a Z68 chipset. It is also decently priced at only @122
If you don't happen to like ASRock, then you can go with this:
ASUS P8Z68-V
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
It's made by ASUS instead and only has PCIe 2.0 slots, which really don't make a difference, but it is more expensive...it's your choice.

For the HDD, I would go with a cheap one since HDD prices are sky high, something like this will work:
Seagate Barracuda ST500DM002 500GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

As for the power supply, if you want to overclock and CF, then I recommend an 850W PSU, something like this:
Seasonic SS-850HT 850W
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

The memory, as you said, is somewhat overkill...but you might want to consider this as an option:
G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

It is 16GB of memory, but instead of 4 sticks, it's 2 sticks of 8GB each, which will allow you to upgrade to a max of 32GB of RAM in the future...once again, this is your choice, if you want to upgrade later, go with the 2 x 8GB sticks of RAM.

Everything else looks good, just a thought, you can also change the HSF to this:
Spire TherMax Eclipse II
http://www.amazon.com/Spire-TherMax-Eclipse-SP984B1-V2-...
It's cheaper and is rated #1 on frostytech:
http://www.frostytech.com/top5heatsinks.cfm
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February 1, 2012 11:39:43 PM

^+ to almost all above

750W will be plenty for 7950 Xfire. 650W would honestly do it, but anyway, this XFX is great and 80+ Silver: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Ya, skip the Zalman. I've never seen the Thermax before, but it looks great. Go for it. If you want to save $25, a Hyper 212 EVO would be fine.

That RAM is tall and annoying. Those heatsinks don't do anything. I actually support just getting 4x4gb: by the time 16 isn't enough, you'll have done a platform upgrade and DDR4 will probably be popular, or at least DDR3 will have dropped significantly in price.

Incidentally, the 2500K is $180 if you can get to a physical Microcenter.
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February 1, 2012 11:43:05 PM

kajabla said:
^+ to almost all above

750W will be plenty for 7950 Xfire. 650W would honestly do it, but anyway, this XFX is great and 80+ Silver: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Ya, skip the Zalman. I've never seen the Thermax before, but it looks great. Go for it. If you want to save $25, a Hyper 212 EVO would be fine.

That RAM is tall and annoying. Those heatsinks don't do anything. I actually support just getting 4x4gb: by the time 16 isn't enough, you'll have done a platform upgrade and DDR4 will probably be popular, or at least DDR3 will have dropped significantly in price.

Incidentally, the 2500K is $180 if you can get to a physical Microcenter.

+1, you make a very good statement, however, it's better to be safe with a 850W PSU...it's up to OP, but I really won't go with anything lower than 650W. Also, I chose the HSF because of this:
http://www.frostytech.com/top5heatsinks.cfm
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February 1, 2012 11:57:48 PM

Ya, I see. It looks good.

A system with two 7950s will hardly go over 500W in Crossfire. Heavily OCed (assuming that brings consumption up to the 7970 level; it probably won't) puts it barely over 600W. A good 750W PSU will do perfectly well, and that XFX is good. If the OP insists, for some reason: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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February 2, 2012 12:04:33 AM

Well, here is my logic:
I heard somewhere that a radeon 7970 uses around 250W of power...so CF will lead to 500W...then you got your CPU, which is a 95W CPU. Let's say the rest of the components take 50W...total is 645W, which is NOT enough for a 650W psu because the 650W is only the maximum output power. A 80+ Bronze certified PSU should be at least 800W for the system to be happy and safe.
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February 2, 2012 12:07:12 AM

I think you're misinformed on the 80+ efficiency ratings. A 750W PSU (which is what I'm recommending, by the way, not 650W) can provide a full 750W of power to a system (assuming it's rated honestly) regardless of its efficiency rating. A good one will be able to provide significantly more, but that's not relevant. If that 750W PSU is operating at 80% efficiency, then 750W will be 80% of what it draws from the wall (937.5W). You don't need to get an overpowered PSU to be assured of getting the wattage you want; you can just get a good unit with the correct wattage. A good 650W PSU would be easily able to handle a 645W system; it just wouldn't run at its maximum efficiency.

Note: I forgot to provide my source for my previous claim that an Xfire 7950 system will hit 500W, etc. http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-7950-over...
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February 2, 2012 12:21:32 AM

Oh, ok...I was misinformed. Thanks for clearing that up!
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February 2, 2012 9:36:24 AM

Thanks for the help guys, I actually live about an hour from a micro center so I could drive there for a good discount. I'll probably have to wait for the factory overclocked sapphire card to be restocked and the I5-2500k is sold out on newegg but hope fully it will be in stock in the next week.
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February 2, 2012 9:42:39 AM

Why buy the i5 2500k from NewEgg when the MicroCenter carries it? It's also cheaper at the MC, but be aware, calculate the cost of driving there and back and such to make sure the savings are actually worth it (doesn't really matter if you're going to that town anyways though)
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February 2, 2012 10:20:08 PM

kajabla said:
It's $50 cheaper now! That's definitely worth it.

This 7950's quite expensive, but it's got the same factory OC as that Sapphire:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Incidentally, this Shell Shocker'll get you 8gb of decent 1600mhz RAM for $24, today only (order!): http://www.newegg.com/special/shellshocker.aspx?nm_mc=E...

Just know that the RAM is 1.65V rather than 1.5V, it should run fine, but I believe Sandy bridge was optimized for 1.5V
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February 2, 2012 10:34:03 PM

Delta018 said:

Memory was looking at this - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... I know I only need 8gb but figured id just 16gb so I dont have to worry about it in the future.

I think that is everything off the top of my head, I'm sure I forgot something. Thanks for the help, be gentile.


Okay I will be gentle, but this enrages me. For day to day use and Gaming, 4GB of ram is ideal. However, the price of ram has dropped massively over the last year. Therefore 8GB has become very cheap. I would recommend 8GB if you are thinking with the future in mind. The thing about memory is that once you have an ideal amount, adding more will not effect performance much at all.

If you really want 16GB, go ahead. But I think it is a waste of money which could used on other components. Buy 2x4GB Dimms and add two more if the time comes that you really need it.
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February 2, 2012 10:39:50 PM

first: I am mad at whoever messes up between effect and affect...in this case, you should you affect. But other than that, I agree totally! I rarely use more than 3GB of RAM even with like 10 Chrome tabs and BF3 Running. 8GB is more than enough.
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