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New Builder Seeking Help: $1300-$1500 Gaming PC

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April 28, 2012 4:42:37 AM

I'm a college bound student and I have been wanting to build my own PC for quite some time now. I know the type of CPU and GPU that I want, but I don't know too much about MoBos, SSDs, Cooling(Preferably Fans because I don't know much about liquid cooling but some info will help.), PSU(how many watts I would need) so some feedback will be hugely appreciated. Substitute any other parts that are better or more cost-efficient for the ones I have already chosen, but I'm for sure I want a GTX 680 and an i7 2600k or 2700k.

Approximate Purchase Date: Within a month or two, waiting on whether Sandy Bridge CPU's will go down and need to make money over the summer.

Budget Range: $1300-$1500(will go over a bit if I truly need the parts) but don't factor in the Monitor.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Surfing the net, Watching Movies, A little Photoshop

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, Mouse, Operating system is not part of the budget.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg.com , Microcenter, Tiger Direct, NCIX.com

Country: U.S.

Parts Preferences: Intel CPU, nVidia (eVGA) GPU, Asus/eVGA MoBo, G skill or Corsair RAM

Overclocking: I would like to overclock in the near future once I become more knowledgeable so I'd say yes.

SLI or Crossfire: I'm only gonna buy 1 GPU for now but, I want one that can support 3-way SLI.

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080, 5760x1080 (For Surround when I can afford three monitors)

Additional Comments: I want a nice looking case, but not too expensive. I also want a build this build to support games for at least 5 years.

Parts Chosen So Far:
CPU: Intel Core i7-2700k (Is 2700k worth an upgrade over 2600K) If SB CPU prices don't drop too much I'll potentially get an Ivy Bridge Intel Core i7-3770k if it's worth it performance and budget wise.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU: eVGA GTX 680 (Should i get an OC version or just a regular one)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (Is 16 GB overkill? or is it worth since they're memory doesn't cost too much anyways.)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD:SAMSUNG EcoGreen F4 HD204UI 2TB 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Monitor(not part of the $1000-$1500 budget): I haven't gotten a monitor yet, but what would be the best for a triple monitor setup (only getting one for now and I prefer an ASUS monitor.

MoBo: I would pick a motherboard, but I need some input because I'm clueless about north bridge stuff. I do know what socket to pick, but some help picking one could be useful.
a b B Homebuilt system
April 28, 2012 11:54:49 AM

i7 is too much. i5 2500k should be good for gaming purposes. Also, you free up 100 bucks for everything else.

16 Gb is indeed overkill. Get a good 8Gb DDR3 1600 Cl9 (Cl8 or lower if you could afford it) 1.5 V RAM. It should perform equally as good.

Get a good SSD as a boot drive + games you play or programs you use all the time. Crucial m4 128 Gb.

For Motherboard, you need one with the LGA 1155 socket. I'm not sure about MoBo's that support 2 way SLI so someone else will have to help you with that.

Other things you need include a PSU and a CPU cooler. For the PSU, get somewhere around 700 W. Make sure it is from a good brand (i.e. Corsair, Seasonic), and it is rated (i.e. bronze rated or higher). For CPU cooler, the most popular and probably best bang for your buck cooler is the Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo.
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April 28, 2012 4:08:43 PM

Is there a reason why the 2500k is better? because I read that most games don't have a huge fps increase with hyperthreading and that extra $100 can be spent somewhere else? If so, will buying a i7 over an i5 make it so I don't have to upgrade my build for quite some time.

For memory what is the difference between Cl8 and Cl9?

Also I didn't mention the other parts because I didn't know how to pick them.

One more thing, what about if I get a Ivy Bridge Intel Core i5-3570k. Will that be better for gaming than the i7s?

Anyways thanks for the input.
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a b B Homebuilt system
April 28, 2012 7:33:31 PM

Games, in general, are more GPU intensive. Also, there isn't a game that can use hyperthreading. That's why people here typically recommend the i5 over the i7. You can only make full use of the i7 when rendering videos, or developing software, etc.

Cl = Cas Latency. I don't really know what it means but lower = faster = better.

At stock speeds, the i5-3570k will have a slightly better performance than the i5-2500k. However, since it will be your first time overclocking, I would not suggest that you get them. Ivy Bridge CPU's are known to have heat issues. You can easily fry your CPU if you make a mistake. Sandy Bridge will make your life easier in terms of overclocking. Just don't forget to buy an aftermarket cooler. With the extra heat, the stock heat sink will not be able to handle them. Just get the one I recommended earlier: CM Hyper 212 EVO.

For a MoBo, I don't know which one will be good to make a 3-way SLI configuration. Know, however, that most people here will recommend that you get a single, powerful GPU. Then, when you see that you're games are lagging a little bit, buy another single, most powerful GPU. Technology is changing so fast that when one is phased out the newer one almost always is more powerful.

Anyway, back to your MoBo. You can start by looking at the higher end Asus models (the ones that cost 200 bucks ++). If you only want to only do a 2-way SLI, Gigabyte z77-Ud3h or Asrock z77 Extreme 4 will be able to do that just fine.

For PSU, you probably need somewhere around 900W to run the 3-way SLI rig. For 2-way SLI, 650W-750W should do you good. For a single card setup, 500W will be enough. Again, reputable brands will be your friend and make sure that they are rated (bronze rated or higher). Also, note that a simple 80+ efficiency is not good enough. You have to have the rating (i.e. bronze, silver, gold, platinum).
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April 28, 2012 7:51:56 PM

Ok i'll just get a 2nd gen i5, but should i get 2500k or 2550k? and I am gonna buy just one strong GPU(gtx 680), but I plan to add more of the same GPU as the prices go down.
BTW any cases you can recommend?
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a b B Homebuilt system
April 28, 2012 7:59:00 PM

There's not much difference between the two (though I'm not exactly sure what). Just get the 2500k and save yourself a few bucks.

For cases, I like the corsair one's. Corsair 400r or 500r (The white 400r is really nice I think). A general rule in choosing is that it has to have good space inside for airflow and have good cable management options. People here also suggests Cooler Master Haf 512 or 532. Honestly there's too many around to keep up on all of them. :p 
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April 28, 2012 8:01:03 PM

l0v3rboi said:
There's not much difference between the two (though I'm not exactly sure what). Just get the 2500k and save yourself a few bucks.

For cases, I like the corsair one's. Corsair 400r or 500r (The white 400r is really nice I think). A general rule in choosing is that it has to have good space inside for airflow and have good cable management options. People here also suggests Cooler Master Haf 512 or 532. Honestly there's too many around to keep up on all of them. :p 


Ok thanks, I'll have a post of my updated build shortly.
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April 28, 2012 8:48:59 PM

Updated Build as of 4/28/12

CPU:Intel Core i5-2500k - $219.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MoBo:Still no clue what to choose.

GPU:eVGA 02G-P4-2683-KR GeForce GTX 680 Superclocked, Signature 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card - $539.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD:SAMSUNG EcoGreen F4 HD204UI 2TB 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive - 129.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SSD:Crucial M4 CT128M4SSD2 2.5" 128GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) - $124.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM:CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ8GX3M2X1600C7R - $71.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU:COOLER MASTER Silent Pro RSA00-AMBAJ3-US 1000W ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V v2.92 SLI Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply - $174.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case:Corsair Obsidian Series 650D (CC650DW-1) Black Steel structure with black brushed aluminum faceplate ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - $179.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Burner/Player:LITE-ON DVD Burner - Bulk 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM Black SATA Model iHAS124-04 - OEM - $16.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Roughly Costs $1660 before shipping and tax with $200 factored in for MoBo(Where can I decrease the price so that I don't lose too much performance). I'm keeping the an eVGA GeForce GTX 680 no matter what though. And how can I keep the price below $1000 including everything but the GPU.

Also am I missing Anything?





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April 28, 2012 8:54:19 PM

Seems like I got too pricy because getting $100 from getting an i5 or i7 encouraged me to get costlier parts. lol
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Best solution

a b B Homebuilt system
April 28, 2012 10:40:21 PM

Haha.. understandable dude. You think you have more money to spend but before you know it, it's gone. Yeah the GTX 680 is the best in terms of price and performance at the moment. I would encourage you to keep it. Try this:

i5 2500 k: 220 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Asrock z77 extreme 4: 135 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
G-skill Ripjaws 8 Gb: 47 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Samsung Ecogreen f4 2Tb: 130 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
PC&P Silencer MkII 950W: 150 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Mushkin Enhanced Chronos Deluxe 120 Gb: 140 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Corsair 500r White: 140 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

962 before the GPU

EVGA Superclocked gtx 680: 520 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

1482 with GPU. That's before taxes and shipping and everything. ;)  You can choose the pricier versions if you want. Past the superclock though I don't know what they mean so I can't tell you if they're worth it. LOL
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April 28, 2012 11:47:00 PM

l0v3rboi said:
Haha.. understandable dude. You think you have more money to spend but before you know it, it's gone. Yeah the GTX 680 is the best in terms of price and performance at the moment. I would encourage you to keep it. Try this:

i5 2500 k: 220 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Asrock z77 extreme 4: 135 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
G-skill Ripjaws 8 Gb: 47 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Samsung Ecogreen f4 2Tb: 130 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
PC&P Silencer MkII 950W: 150 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Mushkin Enhanced Chronos Deluxe 120 Gb: 140 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Corsair 500r White: 140 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

962 before the GPU

EVGA Superclocked gtx 680: 520 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

1482 with GPU. That's before taxes and shipping and everything. ;)  You can choose the pricier versions if you want. Past the superclock though I don't know what they mean so I can't tell you if they're worth it. LOL


So is the asrock good for OC? if not I can go a little higher for a quality MoBo
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April 28, 2012 11:50:27 PM

So Are these links legit? because it keeps leading me to a site that says it's full viruses.
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April 29, 2012 12:04:55 AM

lol maybe its just the antivirus coz this aint even my pc
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a b B Homebuilt system
April 29, 2012 7:53:57 AM

Yes, that Asrock is good for overclocking. Lol. All the links I gave you is for newegg.com. It is a very legitimate site. :D 
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April 30, 2012 4:50:37 AM

Ok thank you soo much I have a general idea of what my build will be. now to get $2000 this summer i also need it for software, monitor, and a razer blackwidow ultimate keyboard. lol
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April 30, 2012 4:50:50 AM

Best answer selected by FilipinoThunda.
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