My First Build

Man, I've been trying to get a new computer for 4 years; every year, i get the money together, and then I have to spend the money on something else.

Things are looking better this year, so here's hoping. In any event, here's what I'm looking at. I've never built a computer from scratch, but I have all the different steps--installed memory, swapped hard drive, replaced mobo, etc. The only thing that would be new would be installing the CPU cooler.

So here's what I've come up with:

Approximate Purchase Date: May/June

Budget Range: Under $1400, after rebates and shipping

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, general use/internet/watching movies

Parts Not Required: display, mouse, keyboard

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newwegg or TigerDirect

Country: USA

Parts Preferences: none, really

Overclocking: Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe

Additional Comments: would prefer a quiet machine. Based on past history, this will have to last me 5-6 years, so I'm deliberately going for more than i really need.

Proposed build:
CASE: Thermaltake Dokker – good reviews, good features. My family often uses me to troubleshoot their PCs, so that docking station will come in handy.

MOBO: ASRock Z77 Extreme 4 – again, good reviews, good features.

CPU: Intel i5 3570K

PSU: CoolerMaster SilentPro 700

CPU fan: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO - If I do overclock, it will not be excessive.

Memory: Still undecided. Leaning towards Corsair Vengeance or G.Skill Ripjaws X 1600, 2x4GB -- how important is the voltage?

Optical drive: Samsung BR reader/DVD burner

Hard drive: Corsair Force Series GT 2.5” 180GB – once standard hard drive prices come down, I’ll add an internal data drive; until then I’ve got a 2GB external.

Video Card: HIS IceQ Radeon HS 7870

OS: Win 7 Pro (64 bit)

Currently, w/ shipping and including mail-in rebates, that’s just a little over $1300 from newegg.

Note: I’m considering not getting the graphics card right away, and just use the Intel 4000 graphics on the CPU until the price on the 7870 comes down a bit. My current computer is a late-generation P4 w. a business graphics card, so I doubt that I will feel deprived. ;)


Any help/suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
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  1. for memory voltage look for 1.5volts
    why are you going with a 2.5"? get a 3.5"

    other than that looks good. 700watts will be good for a beefy graphics card / dual video cards

    have fun with building your beast :)
  2. with you holding off on the video card the new 670 video cards should be out forcing a price war with ati and nvida. with th mb ram intel voltage spec is 1.5 volts. for there memory controler inside the cpu. before you buy your memory take a look on the vendor web page for memory that been tested. some memory will post in new mb but sometime it can hang or bsod randomly.
    a lot of first time and second time builders buy on price first then find out there ram wont work in there new mb then have to rma it back. for a power supply i would spend the 80-100 for a good brand that a little larger then i needed. there a few good how large does my power supply have to be. web pages.
    http://www.extreme.outervision.com/psucalculatorlite.jsp
    the larger fan your case has the slower it has to run..so a case with large 220-300cm fans are going to run a lot slower.
  3. smorizio said:
    with you holding off on the video card the new 670 video cards should be out forcing a price war with ati and nvida. with th mb ram intel voltage spec is 1.5 volts. for there memory controler inside the cpu. before you buy your memory take a look on the vendor web page for memory that been tested. some memory will post in new mb but sometime it can hang or bsod randomly.
    a lot of first time and second time builders buy on price first then find out there ram wont work in there new mb then have to rma it back. for a power supply i would spend the 80-100 for a good brand that a little larger then i needed. there a few good how large does my power supply have to be. web pages.
    http://www.extreme.outervision.com/psucalculatorlite.jsp
    the larger fan your case has the slower it has to run..so a case with large 220-300cm fans are going to run a lot slower.


    I'll be interested to see what the price wars between ATI and NVIDIA bring - if they drop the 7870 down you can bet I'll buy a second.

    I'd definitely switch out the case and the PSU of the original build - Cooler Master has a reputation of being dishonest in their PSU department which is funny considering they make great cases and heat sinks. I'm not the biggest fan of Thermaltake - for that price it'd be better to get something like a Corsair Carbide or Fractal Design Arc MIDI or Antec 1100.
  4. IMO, Thermaltake makes good CPU Coolers.
  5. I'm gonna go with the Corsair 300R for the case. Still going around in circles on the PSU, though. Anyone have any experience with the Corsair AX-650?
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