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First build, I5 2500k, ~$700

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April 18, 2012 9:39:37 PM

Hello,
So, microcenter has the i5-2500k for 180, and 50 more dollars off a mobo if you buy it:

http://viewer.zmags.com/publication/bd4b92bc#/bd4b92bc/...

so I'm trying to build a reasonably inexpensive computer for basic gaming/dolphin emulation with it, since my current computer I've been using to play games on is pretty darn old (Q6600, 8800GT in sli).

Wishlist of what I have so far:

http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx...

With actual prices I would be paying:
MOBO- GA-Z68AP-D3, $55, -$15 rebate
CPU- i5 2500k, $180
GPU- HIS HD 6870, $150, -$10 rebate
PSU- OCZ ModXStream 600W, $80, -$25 rebate
RAM- 8G 1600, $40
HDD- 2TB samsung, $130
CASE- Haf912, $50
FAN- COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus, $30, -$10 rebate
OPTICAL- LG 22X DVD burner, $18
MONITOR- Acer S220HQLAbd, $120

Total: ~850, ~790 after rebates, ~740 after rebates if I get a 500MB HDD.

I have a couple questions-
1) Do I have any glaring inconsistencies that totally won't work or anything that's a bottleneck/waste of money? This is my first time building.
2) I noticed that 2TB drives start at only 120 or so, when 500MB start at around 80. Is this normal/temporary, or has it been like this for a while? While I want to save cost, this pricing scheme makes me want to go towards the higher capacities.
3) I noticed that for the DVD burner one of the comments said to get a SATA cable, since it doesn't come with one. Are there any parts that I may need that won't come included in what I am ordering?

And most importantly, any suggestions to make it more cost efficient?

Thank you so much for your help! I'll fill out the suggested questions, too!


Approximate Purchase Date: this week
Budget Range: small as possible that is well balanced with i5-2500k
Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, speakers, OS
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: microcenter, newegg
Country: US
Overclocking: Yes
SLI or Crossfire: Not planning on it, but sure if it makes sense, sure.
Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080 (I have a 30 inch monitor as well- dell3007wfp- which I may swap to this machine and give the new screen to my old computer)

More about : build 2500k 700

April 19, 2012 1:01:20 AM

1. There are no incompatibilities that I see here. The bottleneck is usually at the GPU, but with a 2500k and a 6870, thats pretty much always the case (or at least for your price range)

2. Personally, I wouldn't go any higher that 1TB (personally). And I also wouldn't use ANY "green" drive as a primary OS disk. I think you should stick to storage thats more reliable, even if there's less capacity and a higher PPG (price per gigabyte), or at least for a primary OS disk. I think you get a good low-midrange capacity drive for your OS and leave high capacity storage as secondary disks.

3. Some DVD writers, most OEM, don't come with sata cables. At newegg, they only cost like 3 or 4 bucks.

3a. You've listed your motherboard as "$55, -15". If this is an "open box" motherboard, then yes it may be missing some parts such as manuals, driver disks, crossfire cable, I/O backplate , sata cables, pin headers/connectors etc.

As cost effieciency goes, you pretty much got an OC 2500k PC as budget as possible. Others may disagree. You can of course take any, or none of this advice. These are just some thoughts.
April 19, 2012 1:14:36 AM

James McKeane said:
1. There are no incompatibilities that I see here. The bottleneck is usually at the GPU, but with a 2500k and a 6870, thats pretty much always the case (or at least for your price range)


I second that. A 2500k is tons more processor than the graphics card can use. On top of that, a 6870 doesn't perform that much better than a pair of 8800 GT's, assuming you're using the 512mb versions.

If you're concerned about gaming performance, I'd suggest dropping the CPU to an i3-2120, or even a G860 and spending the money on a better card.

If not, I'd suggest just sticking the 8800's in the new machine with the 2500k. A 6870 isn't much of an upgrade for you.
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April 19, 2012 1:19:33 AM

Quote:
1. There are no incompatibilities that I see here. The bottleneck is usually at the GPU, but with a 2500k and a 6870, thats pretty much always the case (or at least for your price range)


Actually no - the biggest bottleneck on any build is the primary storage device, you don't want to use a 5900RPM as your primary HD unless you're using an SSD or SSD cache. It's true that you'll see no benefit in using a 10K RPM HD vs. a 7200RPM but you will see a difference in a 5900RPM vs. a 7200 RPM. The 6850 - despite being a generation old now - is actually a stronger GPU than its' newer 7XXX series equivalent is.

Quote:
3. Some DVD writers, most OEM, don't come with sata cables. At newegg, they only cost like 3 or 4 bucks.


Yeah but your motherboard should come with plenty to start with.

Quote:
3a. You've listed your motherboard as "$55, -15". If this is an "open box" motherboard, then yes it may be missing some parts such as manuals, driver disks, crossfire cable, I/O backplate , sata cables, pin headers/connectors etc.


Open box is *NEVER* a good idea under any circumstances - stores like Fry's are notorious for selling open box items as they're usually returns that are restocked for no reason.

Try this setup:

Try this build:

Case: Cooler Master HAF 912 - $59.99 ($10.00 MIR)
PSU: Corsair CX600 - $69.99 ($20.00 MIR)
Motherboard: Asrock Z68 Extreme 3 Gen 3 - $121.99
CPU: 3.1GHz Intel Core i5-2400 - $189.99
RAM: Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 8GB 1333MHz - $42.99
HD: 500GB Western Digital Caviar Blue - $79.99
Optical: Lite On DVD Burner - $17.99
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 6870 - $169.99 ($15.00 MIR)
Monitor: Acer G235HAbd 23'' WideScreen LCD monitor - $139.99

Total: $902.91 - $45.00 MIR = $857.91

A little bit more but the motherboard is way better.
April 19, 2012 1:23:05 AM

g-unit1111 said:
The 6850 - despite being a generation old now - is actually a stronger GPU than its' newer 7XXX series equivalent is.


That's not accurate.

the 7850 performs the same as a 6970; considerably above a 6850.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-car...

Every 7 series designation is stronger than the same-number 6 series, though not always by much.

If you're going by price, then you will get more performance from a 6 series than a 7 series at a given dollar amount.

The biggest benefit of the 7 series is lower power draw.
April 19, 2012 2:22:13 AM

Wow, thank you everyone so much for your help!! No idea how much it means :) 
The mobo was not open box, it's just a combo deal microcenter has where if you get the 2500k you get $50 off almost any 1155 mobo. Fortunately, it worked with the new mobo recommended. I replaced the harddrive as well, making my wishlist look like:

http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx...


MOBO- ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3, $75 (125, 50 instant off)
CPU- i5 2500k, $180
GPU- HIS HD 6870, $150, $10 MIR
PSU- OCZ ModXStream 600W, $80, $25 MIR
RAM- 8G 1600, $40
HDD- 500MB WD cavier blue, $80
CASE- Haf912, $50
FAN- COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus, $30, -$10 rebate
OPTICAL- LG 22X DVD burner, $18
MONITOR- Acer S220HQLAbd, $120

Making it 685 without monitor, 640 after rebates, 760 w/ monitor after rebates.

Stepping up to a 7850 would be another hundred dollars or so, so I think I will stay with the 6870, even if it will bottleneck me. Because of the 50 dollars I get off on the mobo, it seems like it's better to just go with the 2500k rather than save a little dropping down to the i-2400, especially since Dolphin emulation is heavily CPU dependent.

Thank you guys, again! I think it's going to be a lot better with these edits.
April 19, 2012 4:35:33 AM

quilciri said:
That's not accurate.

the 7850 performs the same as a 6970; considerably above a 6850.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-car...

Every 7 series designation is stronger than the same-number 6 series, though not always by much.

If you're going by price, then you will get more performance from a 6 series than a 7 series at a given dollar amount.

The biggest benefit of the 7 series is lower power draw.


I meant to compare the 6870 to the 7770, not the 7850 - that's where it's actually a stronger GPU. The 7770 hasn't fared very well in recent tests but I'm sure that's more to driver issues than with the hardware itself. I'm sure AMD will correct this when Catalyst 13 is released.
April 19, 2012 8:07:07 AM

well, yes, the 6870 is a better card than the 7770, but it's also $20 more expensive by newegg prices.

The 7770 performs the same as a 6850, and they're priced about the same as well.
!