Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Mid range gaming build

Last response: in Systems
Share
February 21, 2012 3:35:26 AM

I already have the hard drives, a 650 watt corsair PSU, and a Geforce 460GTX. I also have three 22" monitors.

I would like to do a gaming build. My price range is about $500 before shipping. Basically just need mobo, proc, ram, and possibly a new case. (Current case is sorta cramped.)

With my old mobo, I ran raid 1 until the array failed and couldn't recover anything!! Both drives are fine, it was the card or something that failed. People have told me that the issue was the my mobo was using fake raid. That...really pisses me off because I have had sooo many issues in the past with failing hard drives, I figured RAID 1 was the answer to my problems. Do I need a sweet $400 3ware raid card in order to actually have raid, or is there a mobo that actually does it right? If a raid 1 fails, and the mobo fails, do I need that exact same RAID chip in order to recover? Since RAID 1 is just a mirror, should I be able to pull one of the drives and get all my data from ANY other machine, same as moving ANY other hd? Since the drives are sata, can I hot swap them to test the raid?

Here is what I was thinking:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ...$200
processor .....$150
ram....$100 for 16 gigs, upgrade to 32 gigs later.
case....$50

What ram, processor, and case? My current case is too cramped, trying to pull the hard drives out has them banging into the back of the video card. (Probably need a case with more depth)

Is that mobo any good? Too high end for my needs? Not sure I really need 6 gbps sata or usb 3.0. But raid is pretty key for me.

I would also like to go with vendors that support Linux and FOSS. What are the best companies for this?

I don't like putting dual boot info into the bootloader, and two OSs on one drive, I perfer to use the BIOS to select between OSes, so I would probably have two RAID 1 arrays, one windoze and one loonix.

I would also like to get a second 460GTX and play games on all three monitors. Is this even possible yet? Windows and Linux? For old games like Unreal?

Games I would like to run: Half Life 2+similar, Crysis, Bioshock and tons of old games. Maybe Diablo III.

Thanks!!

More about : mid range gaming build

February 21, 2012 3:47:44 AM

mobo: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... 129.99

cpu: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... 229.99

ram: 16gb is a lot and id recommend if only your really video editing or so even then its a little too much

8gb is enough : http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... 46.99 and upgrade to a 2nd batch if youd like.

for 16gb http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... 139.99, but id like to point out if you do buy this instead itd put you at exactly 499.97 w.o a case. so id go with the 8gb.

Case: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... 59.99

if you dont like the silver interior,

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... 54.99




m
0
l
Related resources
February 21, 2012 3:51:07 AM

Quote:
What ram, processor, and case? My current case is too cramped, trying to pull the hard drives out has them banging into the back of the video card. (Probably need a case with more depth)


That depends on how much you want to spend. I see no reason for 16GB of RAM, let alone 32 - unless you're working with hardcore video editing programs like CS5, you will never use all of that. Drop that plan for now and invest that money instead in a better case. Try one of these:

- Fractal Design Arc MIDI: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
- Corsair Carbide 400R: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
- Cooler Master HAF 912: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
- Rosewill Challenger: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

For CPU - it's this easily:
- Intel Core i5-2500K: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

But if you don't plan to overclock get the Core i5-2400: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

And if you do plan to overclock, add an aftermarket fan, something like this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

For RAM - get this - they're not as recommended as G.Skill or Corsair, but Crucial has been around forever, makes some of the best SSDs on the market, and has one of the lowest RAM failure rates in the industry: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Quote:
Is that mobo any good? Too high end for my needs? Not sure I really need 6 gbps sata or usb 3.0. But raid is pretty key for me.


There's pluses and minuses to going with an Intel board. The biggest plus is that they last forever - I have a six year old D975XBX that I converted into an HTPC and it's still running strong. The minuses are the bland feature sets - they don't support fast memory (but there is reason for that), they lack things like UEFI, advanced overclocking features, you name it.

This would be a better board for the same price: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Quote:

I would also like to go with vendors that support Linux and FOSS. What are the best companies for this?

I don't like putting dual boot info into the bootloader, and two OSs on one drive, I perfer to use the BIOS to select between OSes, so I would probably have two RAID 1 arrays, one windoze and one loonix.


That's going way over my area of expertise. I think someone else will have to help you there. I've tried dual-booting Ubuntu and Windows 7 but never with much success.

Quote:
I would also like to get a second 460GTX and play games on all three monitors. Is this even possible yet? Windows and Linux? For old games like Unreal?


You can now - but the question of whether or not the 460 will still be around a month from now with Keppler being released soon, availability is a question. For old games maybe a low-end Eyefinity setup would work, check out this card: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
m
0
l
February 21, 2012 4:00:17 AM

Quote:
You can now - but the question of whether or not the 460 will still be around a month from now with Keppler being released soon, availability is a question. For old games maybe a low-end Eyefinity setup would work, check out this card: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6814102967


for the same price he can pick up a 6850 or 6870 which would be much better choices. the benchmarks from the 7770 dont compare that well to the 6770 or 6790 :( 
m
0
l
February 21, 2012 4:02:59 AM

I agree on the 8gb ram for gaming only. 16gb is overkill unless you are running other apps that can take advantage.

This motherboard is of excellent quality, plays well with Linux, will run dual cards like a champ, even the newest ones, and works well in tight cases as it is uATX. It does only have 2 SATA 6gb/s ports as well a 4 SATA 3gb/s. Depending on your drives, this may or may not be enough. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I don't do raid myself, preferring to do periodic backups to an external, but the controllers on ASUS boards are top notch. And BTW, you can run SATA 3gb/s drives on SATA 6gb/s ports.

For what you are doing, you might stretch the CPU budget just a bit and get a i5-2400. Plenty fast for most things. Not overclockable, but only 10% slower at stock speed than the ever popular i5-2500k.
m
0
l
February 21, 2012 4:25:43 AM

Quote:
This motherboard is of excellent quality, plays well with Linux, will run dual cards like a champ, even the newest ones, and works well in tight cases as it is uATX. It does only have 2 SATA 6gb/s ports as well a 4 SATA 3gb/s. Depending on your drives, this may or may not be enough. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6813131806


I don't like uATX just because of the limited expansion options - if you go SLI, there go all your slots. If you need something like a PCI wifi adapter you won't be able to run one. The limited number of drive ports will be frustrating as well. I pick my motherboards with future expansion in mind, if I was doing something short-term, I would go uATX, but I generally don't like it for a lot of reasons.

Quote:
for the same price he can pick up a 6850 or 6870 which would be much better choices. the benchmarks from the 7770 dont compare that well to the 6770 or 6790 :( 


Yeah it does suck but you can't find a 6790 anymore and 6770s are becoming rare. Soon the 6850 and 6870 will join them. It kind of sucks but hopefully the performance will be improved with the next set of Catalyst drivers.
m
0
l
February 22, 2012 6:48:23 PM

I would like to have a few extra PCI slots. Probably a video capture card, pci wifi card, raid card? And I will definitely be running 2x PCI express video cards. So perhaps a full size ATX mobo?

What?? I just bought the freakin 460, which is good enough for half life 2 (it better be!!) So I would rather just purchase an additional 460 vs two new video cards!!! (lol) And it IS possible to play half life 2 on three monitors with nvidia cards? What is the technology called? Is there a way to adjust the camera angles based on the angles on my side monitors? This would be so cool haha.

I would like to start with 16 gigs of ram, I'm usually running several instances of inkscape, gimp, firefox with 100+ tabs, gschem, pcb, libreoffice, audacity, tuxguitar (thanks java for taking up a gig or two of memory for no reason haha), lmms, etc etc etc. From my experience, memory usage will just get worse and worse over the years, despite programs doing the exact same things they have always been doing lol. Latest Firefox takes up a gig of memory sometimes even with all add ons disabled and only one tab (google) open.

But, maybe 8 gigs would be enough to start with, I dunno. I honestly know nothing about memory timings, can anyone shed some light there? Should I just get less RAM, but faster RAM? I am always out of RAM on every machine I have ever had, and I would like to avoid that from now on though.

Also, I am getting into higher quality audio (entry level for sure though) and would like to be able to listen to mixes and such, and I know the quality of the amp matters, as well as the quality of the DACs. Is there a motherboard that has higher quality DACs already which I can run into an external high quality amp, then into some studio monitors? Or should I just get a better sound card?

Thanks so much everyone!
m
0
l
February 22, 2012 8:02:03 PM

Also, what would be a good cool looking gaming case with enough depth to it so that the hard drives aren't banging into the video card when I need to pull them? Newegg has some pretty sweet cases but they are all like ~$100 so something around $50 would be better, not necessarily from newegg.

Thanks!
m
0
l
February 22, 2012 8:11:48 PM

The tech for nvidia is called surround. A good case is three haf 912.
m
0
l
February 22, 2012 8:28:36 PM

Quote:
I would like to have a few extra PCI slots. Probably a video capture card, pci wifi card, raid card? And I will definitely be running 2x PCI express video cards. So perhaps a full size ATX mobo?


Yes - on a full size build you absolutely want a full size ATX board. Very rarely do I recommend uATX except on HTPCs or a custom build like that one that was posted on the main page a few months ago.

Quote:
I would like to start with 16 gigs of ram, I'm usually running several instances of inkscape, gimp, firefox with 100+ tabs, gschem, pcb, libreoffice, audacity, tuxguitar (thanks java for taking up a gig or two of memory for no reason haha), lmms, etc etc etc. From my experience, memory usage will just get worse and worse over the years, despite programs doing the exact same things they have always been doing lol. Latest Firefox takes up a gig of memory sometimes even with all add ons disabled and only one tab (google) open.


100 tabs???? I thought having 20 open at a time was a lot. :lol: 

I've never experienced that problem with RAM - and I've been doing builds for a long time.

Quote:
But, maybe 8 gigs would be enough to start with, I dunno. I honestly know nothing about memory timings, can anyone shed some light there? Should I just get less RAM, but faster RAM? I am always out of RAM on every machine I have ever had, and I would like to avoid that from now on though.


The timings are essentially how fast the RAM moves data from one channel to the next - but that's about the most basic explanation I can give.

As far as speeds go - 1600 is the maximum for most motherboards - they will have problems if you use anything beyond that. RAM is fairly tricky though as by default your motherboard will utilize RAM at the lowest speeds and timings it can handle. If you run above stock speed, that can cause problems. If you switch your timings to something that it can't handle, that will cause problems.

Quote:
Also, I am getting into higher quality audio (entry level for sure though) and would like to be able to listen to mixes and such, and I know the quality of the amp matters, as well as the quality of the DACs. Is there a motherboard that has higher quality DACs already which I can run into an external high quality amp, then into some studio monitors? Or should I just get a better sound card?


That is actually where you'd need a sound card. The onboard audio can only handle basic stuff - usually only up to a dual channel audio system or a 5.1 surround system at the most. A sound card like the Asus Xonar or the Creative SB Extreme will allow you to reach the higher quality DACs. Speaker setup is just as important but that is a whole other deal.

Quote:
The tech for nvidia is called surround. A good case is the haf 912.


I'll second this choice as I have this case - the HAF 912 is a steal for the features it offers, the ventilation and cable management even the Antec 300 can't touch for the price.
m
0
l
February 22, 2012 9:01:12 PM

Haha yeah I do a bit of multitasking. And I prefer to leave firefox open for as long as I can (usually until I run out of memory and I have to kill it haha)

I just realized that I would like to get a nice gaming mouse too. I would prefer wireless, as the cord getting caught is annoying, but I have heard that wired provides lower latency. What sort of latency differences are we talking about here? Something usable, but with lots and lots of buttons that I can bind to scripts (such as "killall -9 firefox" lol)

Possibly stupid question:
Is it possible to get a motherboard with three PCI express slots, three video cards, and run six monitors? (three at eye level and three above) Screen real estate is a high priority for me.
Also, running half life 2 or portal with six monitors would just be....incredible. Imagine getting something like that going with head tracking also, (calibrated properly) haha.


m
0
l
March 1, 2012 5:11:11 PM

What's a mobo vendor that is FOSS friendly?
m
0
l
July 11, 2012 7:18:41 PM

So I was thinking about getting:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Do you know if this mobo supports Linux?

Looks like there might be some bluray playback issues:
*Due to chipset limitation, the Blu-ray playback of Intel® HD Graphics is only supported under Windows® Vista™ and Windows® 7.

Any ideas there?
m
0
l
!