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New Machine 2012

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February 15, 2012 5:25:15 PM

Greetings Community!

A while back I posted a discussion about getting a new Gaming machine, well, time and money ended up falling short for me at the time so I had to let it fall by the wayside. With 2012 well upon us now, I've decided to just go ahead and build the thing now before I talk myself out of it again.

So, I turn to my peers for advice/suggestions.

When: March 2012
Budget: $2000; I'd like to keep it under, if possible, without selling myself too short on performance.
Usage: Gaming, 3D Rendering, Design; see note below.
Not needed: Monitor, Keyboard, Mouse, Speakers
Sites: Any, prefer TigerDirect, Newegg, or Amazon
Preferences: I would prefer to stick to Intel CPUs and nVidia Graphics Cards, beyond that I have no real preferences.
Overclocking: Not necessary
Note: For applications I use Adobe CS5.5 Master Collection (emphasis on Photoshop and Illustrator), Daz3d Studio 4 Pro, Poser, 3ds Max 2012 primarily; and from a games standpoint I play World of Warcraft and Rift mostly with a few others thrown in here and there. I have a SyncMaster PX2370 running at 1920x1080 resolution and a Wacom Cintiq 12WX drawing tablet.

Here is what I am looking at so far, any suggestions and/or criticisms are welcome:

Case
Cooler Master HAF X Full Tower
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

PSU
Corsair CMPSU-850AX AX850
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

MoBo
ASUS P8Z68-V PRO
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

CPU
Intel Core i7 2600k
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

Memory
Corsair CMZ16GX3M4A1600C9 Vengeance 16GB
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

Video Card
Galaxy 58NLH5HS3PXZ GeForce GTX 580 Video Card
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

SSD
OCZ VTX3-25SAT3-120G Vertex 3 Solid State Drive - 120GB
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

HDD
Western Digital WD15EARS 1.5GB Hard Drive
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

Optical
Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Internal 12x Blu-Ray Burner
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...


I appreciate your opinions, thank you in advance.

More about : machine 2012

February 15, 2012 5:35:00 PM

overall, that looks like decent system.

However, the Ivy bridge processors are due out in late March. Might be worth it to see how they compare with Sandy Bridge.
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February 15, 2012 5:52:35 PM

I was kind of wondering about that myself, but, I am afraid that if I hold out any longer I will talk myself out of it again. I currently have a 2 year old Alienware M15X that is on its last legs (I think the video card might be dead, I've rebuilt the hard drive a few times and its overall video performance is still steadily declining).

My main concern with the parts that I have listed is that I may be overpaying for features I don't need, or paying for a name when there is a cheaper equivilent out there. Essentially I want the most performance for my money.
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February 15, 2012 5:55:23 PM

ScrewySqrl said:
overall, that looks like decent system.

However, the Ivy bridge processors are due out in late March. Might be worth it to see how they compare with Sandy Bridge.


I hate to sound overtly pessimistic, but after the FX debacle I'm taking a wait and see attitude toward any new CPUs, especially Ivy.

These would be my suggestions. For video card - Galaxy is OK, EVGA would be better. But what would be better than both of those is the Radeon 7950.

Then don't get the Vertex 3 - OCZ isn't the most reliable vendor out there and there seem to be a lot of problems with them.

If you're going to spend $2K on a build with editing in mind, gaming second, you should really take a look at Intel's X79.

If you want the most performance for your money, try this for a setup:

Case: Corsair Carbide 500R - $139.99
PSU: Antec Current High Gamer Series 750W - $99.99
Motherboard: Asrock X79 Extreme 6 - $259.99
CPU: 3.2GHz Intel Core i7-3930K - $599.99
Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo - $34.99
Mounting Kit: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo LGA 2011 Retention Bracket - $4.99
RAM: Mushkin Enhanced Redline 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) - $159.99
SSD: 64GB Samsung 830 - $119.99
HD: Seagate Barracuda Green 1.5TB - $139.99
Optical: LG BD-R Burner - $79.99
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 - $449.99 - *OR* - EVGA Geforce GTX 580 - $499.99

Total: $2,058.99 (w/ Radeon 7950), $2,098.99 (w/ EVGA 580)
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February 16, 2012 12:27:41 PM

I probably should have noted that my 3D Rendering / Multimedia is done as a hobbyist only, I do not do it professionally so X79 feels to be a bit of overkill for what I am doing on the machine. I meant to say that is is just the most intensive process I run on my machine and I want something that will run it smoothly (what I have not is choppy at best and steadily going downhill).

I see where you are coming from, but honestly I think that the increased cost of the X79 (increasing cost of CPU and moving to Quad Channel RAM) would not be worth it, for a technology that I won't come close to utilizing at its full potential.

On the note of OCZ, I have heard that on multiple occasions and am leaning away from them at this point. Do you know anything about Corsair SSDs? I have always had good luck with Corsair RAM and PSUs but haven't ever tried one of their SSDs. The only real requirement I have on that front is SATA III 6Gb/s and 80+GB capacity.

On the Vid Card, I liked the fan setup on the Galaxy (reviews were decent enough) as I have heard that the GTX 580 is a beast on fire. I've always gone EVGA or PNY but was not thrilled with the fans on those I found. Now, I did do some looking into Radeon v. geForce, specifically here, and was thinking about going with the 7950 but I've tentative about it. I have had issues in the past with overheating cards, DOA, and poor customer support from ATI which I know holds no bearing on the product itself but it still makes me itchy.
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February 17, 2012 11:51:02 AM

After review, I am a little concerned about the ASUS MoBo I listed. I have read many reviews on the product and of those about 55% of them have complaints about POST problems and DOA units. About 80% complain about ASUS customer service (even those with good boards).

I know that this is something you'll deal with in anything you buy, but, the number of complaints seems very high. On the flipside to that, the good reviews are sterling on the operation of the device.

Are there any suggestions on a different LGA1155 (since I intend to use the i7-2600k) board or should I take my chances on this one?
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February 17, 2012 3:21:31 PM

I've done some more comparisons, looked at some "bang for your buck" builds, and have modified my build somewhat. Have a look and see what you think:

Case: Cooler Master HAF X Full Tower
I am not set on this case and am open to alternatives.

PSU: Corsair CMPSU-750TXV2
I went down from the 850w 80+Gold to this reviews were good but am I losing a lot by doing this?

MoBo: ASUS P8Z68-V/GEN3
A few extra SATA 6gb/s headers weren't worth the price difference, considering I won't be using them.

CPU: Intel Core i7 2600k

Memory: Corsair CMZ16GX3M4A1600C9 Vengeance 16GB

Video Card: EVGA 015-P3-1580-AR GeForce GTX 580
I went ahead with the EVGA version since popular verdict supports EVGA as a better product. I'd really like some more convincing before I go from nVidia to the Radeon 7950.

SSD: Corsair Force Series 3 CSSD-F90GB
Reviews are good on this, I like Corsair so I will try it out given all the bad things I hear about OCZ.

HDD: Western Digital WD15EARS 1.5GB Hard Drive

Optical: Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Internal 12x Blu-Ray Burner

Total Price: About $1,700.00 USD


Edit: The one thing I didn't think about while build was a CPU Fan. I had planned on using the fan that comes with the processor, assuming it would be enough since I am not overclocking it. Thoughts?
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Best solution

February 17, 2012 3:27:59 PM

Quote:
After review, I am a little concerned about the ASUS MoBo I listed. I have read many reviews on the product and of those about 55% of them have complaints about POST problems and DOA units. About 80% complain about ASUS customer service (even those with good boards).


I generally don't trust all reviews on Newegg for that reason - if people can find something to complain about, they'll complain about it. When I upgraded my workstation to the i3-2120 and I bought a Gigabyte board that I was skeptical about due to complaints about a boot loop issue but after I took the time to install it, I have not found anything wrong with it.

Quote:
On the note of OCZ, I have heard that on multiple occasions and am leaning away from them at this point. Do you know anything about Corsair SSDs? I have always had good luck with Corsair RAM and PSUs but haven't ever tried one of their SSDs. The only real requirement I have on that front is SATA III 6Gb/s and 80+GB capacity.


OCZ would not be the best choice. Corsair SSDs are kind of a mixed bag - the Force 3 has some positive reviews but most are negative. If you get an SSD it's best to stick with one of the safer bets - Crucial, Intel, Samsung, Mushkin, Plextor, or Kingston Hyper X.

Quote:
Are there any suggestions on a different LGA1155 (since I intend to use the i7-2600k) board or should I take my chances on this one?


I could always recommend the one I use and it's worked perfectly so far with no issues:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Quote:
I see where you are coming from, but honestly I think that the increased cost of the X79 (increasing cost of CPU and moving to Quad Channel RAM) would not be worth it, for a technology that I won't come close to utilizing at its full potential.


I look at it this way - X79 is going to be far more future proof than Z68 will be. Once Ivy is out, Z68 will be a dead end for the 25xx / 35xx CPUs. Intel's pretty committed to the X79 platform and while the two CPUs that are out now are outrageously expensive, the less expensive i7-3820K is supposed to be due any day now and will cost about 1/2 the cost of the current i7-3930K is and 1/3 of what the i7-3960K is running. If you're worried about the cost of dedicated quad channel RAM, expect that to drop soon.

Quote:
On the Vid Card, I liked the fan setup on the Galaxy (reviews were decent enough) as I have heard that the GTX 580 is a beast on fire. I've always gone EVGA or PNY but was not thrilled with the fans on those I found. Now, I did do some looking into Radeon v. geForce, specifically here, and was thinking about going with the 7950 but I've tentative about it. I have had issues in the past with overheating cards, DOA, and poor customer support from ATI which I know holds no bearing on the product itself but it still makes me itchy.


ATI doesn't exist anymore now that the AMD merger is complete. I really like Sapphire for Radeon cards - they're really solid and last forever (I'm still using a Radeon 5830 that's still going strong, I have an old 4650 that still works fine). EVGA makes excellent products as well - if you're concerned about the fans, the fans on video cards are pretty much a moot point if you set up the air cooling in your system properly. The way I setup my system is I use the Cooler Master HAF 912 as the case, and I installed a Hyper 212 as the CPU cooler, I have one x 120mm fan attached to the side door, 1 x 200mm fan attached to the top - and my system temps are currently running at 26'C on idle, 33 - 35'C on full use. If you setup your system cooling properly, you won't have to worry about your video card overheating.

As far as the video card itself goes - EVGA is one of the best on the market. They do have questionable fans but that should be an after thought. Their 580 has won numerous awards and is widely considered to be one of the best around.
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February 27, 2012 12:28:17 PM

Best answer selected by Knghtmare.
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