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March 14, 2012 2:41:37 PM

My current computer is about 5 or more years old and I think the video card is about ready to crap out so it's time to bite the bullet and get a new one. I've spent the past 2 weeks researching, including expert and user reviews, and have gained a little knowledge, but a little knowledge can be dangerous, right? So here I am looking for opinions. Please let me know if this is something good or will it explode when I plug it in.

Approximate Purchase Date: Sometime this month

Budget Range: $1,500 give or take a couple hundred

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Video encoding/editing, internet, general (spreadsheets, word, etc.), a couple of games like Jewel Quest and Hoyle Casino.

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, Windows 7.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Micro Center - they seems to have the best prices, 2600K is around $50 less than Newegg for example.

Country: USA (California)

Overclocking: Yes, I'll want to experiment with this.

SLI or Crossfire: No

Monitor Resolution: 1280x1024

Additional Comments: I'm confused about the RAM - supposedly the 2600K only supports up to DDR3-1333 yet I've seen a lot of suggestions to use the DDR3-1600 with it. The warranty on the processor is void is you use anything faster than 1333? 16MB is probably more than I need but what the heck, it's cheap and the extra could come in handy sometime down the road.

MOBO: I'd like a Z68 version because with my use I don't think I'll need a video card and I'd like to have the ability to try overclocking. Please let me know if I'm wrong about this. If I don't like what the integrated graphics looks like or its performance I can always add a video card in the future.

SSD/HDD: I plan to use the SSD for the OS and other applications and the HDD for storage of large files. Is this workable?

CASE: I picked this one for serveral reasons: It is supposedly quiet; it has 2 3.0 and 2 2.0 USB ports whereas a lot of others only have a total of 2; it is more conventional-looking to me vs gaming styles.

PSU: Probably bigger than this system requires but gives me room to upgrade or add components in the future.

Thanks for any suggestions or comments. Please let me know if there are any components that have slipped my mind.


Intel Core i7 2600K LGA 1155 Boxed Processor $279.99
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

ASUS P8Z68-V/GEN3 LGA 1155 Z68 ATX Intel Motherboard $179.99
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

(2) Kingston HyperX blu 8GB DDR3-1333 (PC3-10600) CL9 Dual Channel Desktop Memory Kit (Two 4GB Memory Modules) $29.99
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
--or--
Kingston HyperX 16GB DDR3-1600 (PC3-12800) CL9 Dual Channel Desktop Memory Kit (Four 4GB Memory Modules) $89.99
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

Intel 520 Series 120GB SATA 6.0Gb/s 2.5" Internal Solid State Drive $199.99
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

Western Digital Caviar Green 2TB IntelliPower SATA 6Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive WD20EARX - OEM $129.99
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

Corsair Professional Series AX650 650 Watt Modular ATX Power Supply $149.99
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
--or--
FSP Group AURUM Series Gold 600 Watt ATX Power Supply $99.99 after $10 rebate
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

Antec SOLO II Mid Tower ATX Computer Case $114.99
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO Universal CPU Cooler $36.99
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

Asus 24x Internal DVD±RW SATA Writer $29.99
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

More about : system

March 14, 2012 2:52:29 PM

MB - ASUS P8Z68-V PRO/GEN3 - $210
CPU - Look more toward an i5-2500k. The hyperthreading on the 2600k is overkill... - i5-2500k - $180
CPU COOLER - Hyper 212 EVO - $37
CPU COOLER 2ND FAN - Blade Master 120mm PWM - $15]
MEM - 16GB is overkill. The important part here is 1.5v modules. Corsair XMS 8GB DDR3-1333 CL9 1.5v - $25 after MIR
GPU - MSI GTX 560 ti - $215 after MIR
SSD - The Crucial M4 or Samsung 830 will give you better performance for less cost. Crucial M4 128GB - $150
HD - Seagate Green 2TB - $135
OPTICAL - LG 12x BD-RW - $80
PSU - Stick with Antec, Corsair, XFX or Seasonic. Seasonic X-Series 760w - $150 after MIR
CASE - Swap this out as you see fit... HAF 912 - $45 after MIR
CASE FANS - 4 x 120mm 40CFM @ 19dBA - $4 / $16

$1258
March 14, 2012 3:00:31 PM

sadams04 makes some good points your going to want a graphics card regardless of whether or not you are going to be doing intense gaming or not it helps with movies and such as well. Secondly depending on how far you plan on overclocking (anything past 4.5 for an i5 2500k is showing off.) you most likely will only need the hyper evo 212
Related resources
March 14, 2012 3:12:23 PM

case:
cooler master haf x
(if you want a full tower)
corsair 600t
(if you want a mid tower)
note:
i think the haf x is better

mobo:
asrock z68 extreme3
(for dual gpus and two drives)
asrock z68 extreme4
(for quad gpus and two drives)
asrock z68 extreme7
(for quad gpus and 4 drives)
note:
in your case id get the extreme3

cpu:
intel i5 2500k
note:
best value cpu there is, good for oc'ing,
and btw the i7 2600k has NO advantage
over this in gaming

cpu cooler:
cooler master hyper 212 evo
great cooler and good for 2500k overclocking

video card:
unknown
note:
wait until kepler comes out and get either the
7970 of the 680 depends on which one offers
the best price to performance ratio. you may
want to start a new thread asking which one
you should get, but there will probly be lots of
those when kepler comes out

ram:
g.skill ripjaws x series 8gb ddr3-1600 mhz
note:
the cpu does not control how many mhz you can
have on your ram it just says it for some wierd reason.
also its not mb its gb, and your pc (for gaming) wont
even use ALL of 8gb in ram most of the time so you
really should get 8gb

hhd:
western digital caviar black 500gb
note: you can also get 1tb, 1.5tb, or 2tb depending
on how much space you need

ssd:
crucial m4 64gb
note: this is a really fast, pretty cheap, and reliable
ssd. also i dont see why you would need more than
60gb (or 64gb for crucial) of space on an ssd if your
only putting your os on it

psu:
corsair ax850
note:
yes this is alot of headroom, its for when games get
too advanced for a 680 /7970 (depending on which
one you end up getting) and you need to cf/sli it with
another one

optical drive:
lg black 12x bd-rom
(if you want blu-ray)
sony 24x multi
(if you dont want blu-ray)
note:
they are both optical drives.
ooooooooooooooooooooo
aaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhh


March 14, 2012 3:21:26 PM

sadams04 said:
MB - ASUS P8Z68-V PRO/GEN3 - $210
CPU - Look more toward an i5-2500k. The hyperthreading on the 2600k is overkill... - i5-2500k - $180
CPU COOLER - Hyper 212 EVO - $37
CPU COOLER 2ND FAN - Blade Master 120mm PWM - $15]
MEM - 16GB is overkill. The important part here is 1.5v modules. Corsair XMS 8GB DDR3-1333 CL9 1.5v - $25 after MIR
GPU - MSI GTX 560 ti - $215 after MIR
SSD - The Crucial M4 or Samsung 830 will give you better performance for less cost. Crucial M4 128GB - $150
HD - Seagate Green 2TB - $135
OPTICAL - LG 12x BD-RW - $80
PSU - Stick with Antec, Corsair, XFX or Seasonic. Seasonic X-Series 760w - $150 after MIR
CASE - Swap this out as you see fit... HAF 912 - $45 after MIR
CASE FANS - 4 x 120mm 40CFM @ 19dBA - $4 / $16

$1258


I disagree on the 2600K being overkill. For gaming, overkill, but for Video encoding, I think the OP would be able to take advantage of the Hyper-threading.

While I am not a big proponent of integrated graphics, I think that a 560TI would be overkill for watching movies & general internet surfing. I DO think that an Nvidia card would work nicely particularly if the Video software can take advantage of the CUDA cores.
March 24, 2012 7:38:23 AM

Thanks for the responses....I see I forgot the case fans and will need to include those. Also need the Blu-ray. I will upgrade to the ASUS P8Z68-V PRO/GEN3 and downsize the memory to 8GB of G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL8D-8GBXM. I will stay with the 2600K. Still up in the air about Intel 520 vs Crucial M4. Probably stick with Intel.
March 24, 2012 9:26:47 AM

nodellsplease said:
Thanks for the responses....I see I forgot the case fans and will need to include those. Also need the Blu-ray. I will upgrade to the ASUS P8Z68-V PRO/GEN3 and downsize the memory to 8GB of G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL8D-8GBXM. I will stay with the 2600K. Still up in the air about Intel 520 vs Crucial M4. Probably stick with Intel.

Look at the Samsung SSDs. they are also pretty highly rated.
March 24, 2012 11:54:16 AM

I say go with i7 2600K looking at your priority this is the way to go and it's cheaper at microcenter.

go for SSD Samsung is a great choice sadly it's not available to where I'm at.

8gb ram from gskill is a solidchoice too.

a gtx560ti from msi is a great choice but overkill to what you do. you can always opt for a gtx550ti or some lesser radeon cards or go with a sapphire radeon 6850 (just close to the level of 560ti) but for around 130$ after rebate at newegg and you might get one cheaper at microcenter.

CPU Cooler go with cm hyper 212evo it's all you need, but if by chance you use a i7 2600k and want to overclock above 4.5Ghz go with a noctua nh-d14 or the more expensive corsair h100.

for HDD go with seagate 500gb/1tb 7200rpm they are a solid choice.

for case the corsair 600T is a win-win situation. you can also go with haf X also a win-win situation
March 25, 2012 3:08:01 PM

Thanks for additional feedback. Seagate is another option; they seem to be priced about the same as Western Digital, but it seems like for all the HDDs how it is packaged/shipped is very important. Amazon and some other sites feedback blamed poor packing on DOA/defective drives. It makes sense that if it's rattling around in a box or in an evelope being tossed around like a frisbee that it wouldn't be in good shape when you get it. This would be true for a lot of the components though. Are there any resellers (Newegg, etc.) that carefully pack the products?

I'm also now thinking about getting the Antec Kuhler 620 instead of the Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO. It costs a little more but that 212 is HUGE. A quote from Antec_Jessie in another thread:
"If you all have any direct questions for us at Antec, I'd be more than happy to help...It's meant be an alternative to cooling solutions that may take up more space than many people have in their chassis while offering comparable performance...the reason why our cooler performs better than some of the others is the cold plate. This is a third generation cold plate from Asetek which gives us the performance delta that you're seeing in reviews."
I thought that was interesting.

I read a review tonight specifically about Intel 520 vs Samsung 830: "...it's the king of performance (due to the SF compression magic) being sold by the master of reliability (Intel spent 12 months before shipping this SSD compared to the other drives based on this controller to try and get it working right and make sure it was reliable). At 120GB, where price isn't a factor between them, I'd buy Intel and feel very confident in my choice. The Samsung drive is great, but the Intel drive will be even better in almost all situations." I do appreciate the input but think I will stick with the Intel.
March 25, 2012 3:59:25 PM

You are getting a lot of bad information because people aren't reading your first post.

Asus P8Z68-V- http://www.amazon.com/ASUS-LGA-1155-Motherboards-P8Z68-... 180$ Amazon is not collecting sales tax from california yet so it should save you quite a bit of money.

i7 2600k: http- //www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-detai... 305$ Microcenter does collect sales so check the rate of the city that the store you will be driving to to pick up the 2600k and see if it matches the total price of the 2600k from tigerdirect

Kingston 16gb 1600mhz- http://www.amazon.com/Kingston-Technology-Modules-KHX16... 88$ you will benefit from 16gb of ram.

Intel 520 120gb- http://www.amazon.com/Intel-Series-2-5-Inch-Solid-State... 185$

WD Green 2tb hdd- http://www.amazon.com/Western-Digital-Caviar-Desktop-WD... 130$

Antec EA-650 650w platinum psu- http://www.amazon.com/Antec-EA-650-Platinum-Power-Suppl... 95$ more efficient and cheaper than the 2 psu's you picked.

Antec Eleven Hundred- http://www.amazon.com/Antec-Eleven-Hundred-Black-Comput... 95$

Cooler Master 120mm fan (for the 2 intake fans on the case)- http://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-120mm-Case-R4-C2R-2... x2=17$

Lite-On DVD Burner- http://www.amazon.com/Lite-On-LightScribe-Layer-Drive-I... 26$

So what are you thinking for the cpu cooler? and how high will you overclock the 2600k to?

For the gpu i would wait to see the rest of the 600 series from nvidia.

March 29, 2012 10:33:50 AM

mjmjpfaff said:
You are getting a lot of bad information because people aren't reading your first post.

Asus P8Z68-V- http://www.amazon.com/ASUS-LGA-1155-Motherboards-P8Z68-... 180$ Amazon is not collecting sales tax from california yet so it should save you quite a bit of money.

i7 2600k: http- //www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-detai... 305$ Microcenter does collect sales so check the rate of the city that the store you will be driving to to pick up the 2600k and see if it matches the total price of the 2600k from tigerdirect

Kingston 16gb 1600mhz- http://www.amazon.com/Kingston-Technology-Modules-KHX16... 88$ you will benefit from 16gb of ram.

Intel 520 120gb- http://www.amazon.com/Intel-Series-2-5-Inch-Solid-State... 185$

WD Green 2tb hdd- http://www.amazon.com/Western-Digital-Caviar-Desktop-WD... 130$

Antec EA-650 650w platinum psu- http://www.amazon.com/Antec-EA-650-Platinum-Power-Suppl... 95$ more efficient and cheaper than the 2 psu's you picked.

Antec Eleven Hundred- http://www.amazon.com/Antec-Eleven-Hundred-Black-Comput... 95$

Cooler Master 120mm fan (for the 2 intake fans on the case)- http://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-120mm-Case-R4-C2R-2... x2=17$

Lite-On DVD Burner- http://www.amazon.com/Lite-On-LightScribe-Layer-Drive-I... 26$

So what are you thinking for the cpu cooler? and how high will you overclock the 2600k to?

For the gpu i would wait to see the rest of the 600 series from nvidia.


Thanks for great feedback! Sorry for delay in responding, 12-hour shifts don't leave much free time when I'm working. Honestly, I was going to have Microcenter build it for me but I watched the "how to build your own computer" videos on Newegg and don't see any reason why I can't do it myself. DIY will save me the ~$125 charge for Microcenter to build it. Using Amazon is a great idea; will save me another $100+ in sales tax.

In my browsing I stumbled upon the Antec P280. Love at first sight. I will definitely get that unless I hear a good reason not to.

I plan on getting the XIGMATEK Gaia SD1283 and some Artic Silver 5. I've never done overclocking but will undoubtebly try it and this should be fine for my purposes - doubtful I would shoot for any crazy high speeds.

I've decided to use the 1tb caviar black; more speed and 1tb should be plenty.

Great suggestion for the PSU. Drawback is it's not modular, but for $50 less and platinum rating instead of gold, I don't care if it's not modular.
March 30, 2012 12:26:07 AM

the p280 is a great case. but you still need to get 2 intake fans. it also has great cable management features making a non modular psu eeasy to work with

the gaia is fine for overclocking around 4.5ghz.

the samsung spinpoint f3 1tb is cheaper and slightly faster overall than the wd 1tb black.

!