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1st Build-Two Questions

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March 11, 2012 12:19:09 PM

I have almost no experience in doing any of this, besides changing out a hard drive, Ram, and OS, in my 9yr old pre-made Dell. I recently had a issue when I experienced a power outage and had to buy a new Hard Drive and recover the old one. That's when I got this strange idea that I could build my own PC.

So I guess my question is two fold. Do I need a video card if I'm not a gamer, and don't plan to ever play video games? I do plan to connect my HDTV to my PC and run shows/movies. As in, I'll be using two displays sometimes (my 60" tv and 23" monitor). My second question is, I've read a lot about about assembly and talked to a co-worker, and they all seem to have differing opinions on how to start a build. Would it be best to place the PSU in first or the Mobo?

I would like to conclude buying all my materials soon, in order to assemble and test for issues with the hardware. BTW, I do plan to Overclock, but after the build is complete and it's in working order. Thanks

Purchased so Far:
Intel Core i5-2500K $210
CORSAIR Professional Series HX750 $117.50
G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3 1866 $104
XIGMATEK Gaia SD1283 120mm $30
SAMSUNG 830 64GB SATA III $99 (Using for bootup and a couple of light programs)
Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit $80

Update, Just purchased, thanks for the help!
ASUS P8Z68-V PRO/GEN3 $199
Corsair Carbide 400R Case $99-$10MIR
Arctic Silver 5 Compound $6
Internal Mobo Speaker $6 (shipping kills-no Frys around)

Total: $940.50

Yet to Purchase:
ASUS VS238H-P 23" LED Monitor (Using older 17" Dell LCD in the meantime).

Already Have:
Western Digital 750 GB Caviar Blue (Planning to buy 1 or 2 TB more, when prices go down)
DVD RW (Planning to buy Blu Ray burner later)
Mouse/Keyboard (USB connected)

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March 11, 2012 1:58:42 PM

1) No you don't need a video card. And with the CPU and mobo you bought, you can already enjoy some pretty nice Intel integrated HD3000 graphics. It's even enough to play some games on medium settings. I played SWTOR on high settings with no shadows on my 760p HDTV and got 20 fps.

2) Here is a link showing you the order to do things in. http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/how-to-build-a-pc-p...

Looks like you've done your research and have some pretty nice components. Have fun!

Edit:
I would recommend a couple of other things that I learned with my first build.

1) Get a $7 mobo speaker so you can hear POST beeps. http://www.frys.com/product/6488702?source=googleps
2) Do an external build first. Hook up the 2 power connections to the mobo, put in your memory, install your CPU and CPU heatsink, connect your keyboard and monitor and fire it up. Your CPU fan should spin and I believe on that mobo you will have some LEDs that light up and then they should go off, except for the boot LED, that will stay on until you boot.
3) If you've got an old timey keyboard and mouse, that mobo doesn't have PS2 connections, only USB. I found that out the hard way when mine came :) .
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March 11, 2012 2:03:39 PM

catatafish said:
1) No you don't need a video card. And with the CPU and mobo you bought, you can already enjoy some pretty nice Intel integrated HD3000 graphics. It's even enough to play some games on medium settings. I played SWTOR on high settings with no shadows on my 760p HDTV and got 20 fps.

2) Here is a link showing you the order to do things in. http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/how-to-build-a-pc-p...

Looks like you've done your research and have some pretty nice components. Have fun!


Thanks for the reply. I can't wait to see this all together and actually working. I'm not a computer enthusiast or tech, but I have worked in the electronics field for 12+ yrs, so I think I can figure it out or give it to a subordinate to figure it out, once I screw it up. LoL.

I know I probably went a little overboard for day to day use, Lightroom photo editing, streaming show and movies, and paying bills, but hey what the heck.

Awesome. Thanks for the tips. I'll test it first like you said and get a mobo speaker. Shouldn't the mobo or case come with one?

I have a USB Mouse and Keyboard, so I'm good there.
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March 11, 2012 2:13:47 PM

I change oil on my car, and hang pictures on my wall......I did it, with some apprehension, and now I'm embarrassed about how easy it was. If you do a lot of reading, and follow the instructions, and measure twice cut once, you'll have a blast!

You went a little overboard on the PSU and mobo, but you will be happy later if you ever decide to add a video card. And that mobo will give you lots of room for growth with the PCIE 3 capabilities, plenty of USB 3 support, the integrated graphics, and the SATAIII connections.

Make sure you study up a little on the build differences when using a SSD. It adds a few odd steps when installing the OS on the SSD, then using the HDD for storage. By the way, don't bother with the Intel Rapid Storage Technology. I did it and I'm very underwhelmed. If I had to do it over, I would have just installed the OS directly on the SSD.

Double check on that mobo. I have almost the same mobo, just a few less features and mine did not come with a speaker. It seems like the nicer ones don't have them and the mass produced for the big box stores do have them. Most of the build guides I read recommended having one around. I guess they assume you'll be connecting it to your case supplied audio connections. Your case will have connections to audio but if you're going to just do an external build first, you won't have those hooked up yet.

When you get it all put together, check back in and let us know how you did.
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March 11, 2012 2:20:10 PM

catatafish said:
I change oil on my car, and hang pictures on my wall......I did it, with some apprehension, and now I'm embarrassed about how easy it was. If you do a lot of reading, and follow the instructions, and measure twice cut once, you'll have a blast!

You went a little overboard on the PSU and mobo, but you will be happy later if you ever decide to add a video card. And that mobo will give you lots of room for growth with the PCIE 3 capabilities, plenty of USB 3 support, the integrated graphics, and the SATAIII connections.

Make sure you study up a little on the build differences when using a SSD. It adds a few odd steps when installing the OS on the SSD, then using the HDD for storage. By the way, don't bother with the Intel Rapid Storage Technology. I did it and I'm very underwhelmed. If I had to do it over, I would have just installed the OS directly on the SSD.



I'm planning to just install the SSD first and load the OS through it. I'm sure I'll have to change my bios for the SSD (AHCI). I've read older guides on hacking your computer, to configure SSD for bootup and some programs and rerouting HDD for storage, but I'm not sure if that's truly necessary. The SSD I'm getting comes with a kit and disk, so hopefully it will be easier than hacking the registry and praying.

I just looked into my mobo and case, and I see no info on a speaker included. I'll add that to my list.

I found this really good video from Newegg on multiple config and an external build. It actually makes me less nervous and a bit more confident that I can do this.

Update: I just ordered the last items for my build. Hopefully, sometime next weekend, I'll have a new PC.
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March 18, 2012 12:27:39 AM

Best answer selected by steph-.
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