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Budget build for multi-tasker, non-gamer

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April 30, 2012 12:47:37 AM

Hello,

I'm actually looking to build my first computer, but know very little about hardware at all. I don't game, but I do a lot of multi-tasking on the computer, as I am a student that does a ton of research-based work. On a typical basis, I'll have a lot of webpages open, as well as PDF's, Word, and Excel documents, and some video. My main concern is reliability, quick multitasking, and something that can last me a while. And of course, being a student, price. ;) 

Approximate Purchase Date: ASAP

Budget Range: up to $700 - $800. Although if this is not necessary, I prefer spending less =)

System Usage from Most to Least Important: See above

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, mouse, monitor

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Doesn't matter, I guess amazon and newegg.

Country: U.S.

Parts Preferences: Found this processor on sale, which looked like a good start: http://slickdeals.net/f/4300162-Intel-Core-i5-3570K-Ivy...


Overclocking: Probably not, unless it's easy


Monitor Resolution: 1920x1200
Additional Comments: I would like a quiet PC if possible

April 30, 2012 1:59:39 AM

jwhsieh007 said:
Hello,

I'm actually looking to build my first computer, but know very little about hardware at all. I don't game, but I do a lot of multi-tasking on the computer, as I am a student that does a ton of research-based work. On a typical basis, I'll have a lot of webpages open, as well as PDF's, Word, and Excel documents, and some video. My main concern is reliability, quick multitasking, and something that can last me a while. And of course, being a student, price. ;) 

Additional Comments: I would like a quiet PC if possible
For your budget I think the 3750k is out the question (and your budget range...and somewhat unnecessary). For your demands, I think a standard i5 2300 and 8GB of fast RAM will suit all of your performance demands. Since this will be your first build, then you should be sure to remember to purchase additional items such as extra case fans (if you want) and an AC power cable. Since you a research rat (i kid :pt1cable:  ...mmm...college..), it shouldn't be too hard for you to find a good reliable build guide. That being said, Tom's has a guide...somewhere. Just google it.

$630 at Newegg

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-2300 2.8GHz Quad-Core Processor ($174.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H77M-D3H Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($89.99 @ NCIX US)
Memory: Mushkin Blackline 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($42.99 @ NCIX US)
Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($89.99 @ NCIX US)
Case: NZXT Source 210 (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($39.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair 500W ATX12V Power Supply ($37.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: LG GH22NS90B DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $592.92
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-04-29 21:55 EDT-0400)
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April 30, 2012 2:08:00 AM

Forgive my ignorance, but would the i5-3570k ivy bridge I posted require a different motherboard than your configuration? I ask b/c it's only $15 more ($189.99) after rebate.
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April 30, 2012 2:10:45 AM

lol, I wish college - it's a post-grad healthcare degree, so building things is definitely not my forte. ;) 
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Best solution

April 30, 2012 2:35:32 AM

jwhsieh007 said:
Forgive my ignorance, but would the i5-3570k ivy bridge I posted require a different motherboard than your configuration? I ask b/c it's only $15 more ($189.99) after rebate.
the 3750k would require an aftermarket heatsink fan if you plan overclocking. If not, then it still would be faster than the 2300. It also would require a Z77 motherboard to fully utilize the OC capability, which would be $20 extra. That being said, here's a build:

$470 at Newegg w/ mail in rebates + $190 for the CPU w/ mail in rebate = $660

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77M-D3H Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($109.99 @ NCIX US)
Memory: Mushkin Blackline 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($42.99 @ NCIX US)
Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($89.99 @ NCIX US)
Case: NZXT Source 210 (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($39.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair 500W ATX12V Power Supply ($37.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: LG GH22NS90B DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $437.93
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-04-29 22:34 EDT-0400)

An additional heatsink fan would be $35 (Hyper 212 Plus EVO).

If you don't plan on OC, then the stock (provided) heatsink fan should suffice.
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April 30, 2012 2:43:11 AM

probably a stupid question ;)  but you mean 3570k right? not 3750k?
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April 30, 2012 2:51:20 AM

jwhsieh007 said:
probably a stupid question ;)  but you mean 3570k right? not 3750k?
Yes...yes. I meant the 3570K
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April 30, 2012 4:13:30 AM

Best answer selected by jwhsieh007.
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April 30, 2012 4:33:57 AM

I'm not sure if this is the wrong thread to ask this, but are there good and easy to use open-source OS's that I could use to save money on the configuration? Or at least until Windows 8 comes out (whenever that is)?
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April 30, 2012 4:39:04 AM

jwhsieh007 said:
I'm not sure if this is the wrong thread to ask this, but are there good and easy to use open-source OS's that I could use to save money on the configuration? Or at least until Windows 8 comes out (whenever that is)?
Wow..uh...take your pick: Ubuntu, Mint OS, PuppyLinux, Fedora. I personally like Ubuntu: very popular and extensive knowledge base.
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April 30, 2012 4:03:44 PM

any prettier looking cases out there that you'd recommend? =) Also, what about the asrock extreme3 h77 motherboard vs. this one? Do you think it's worth the extra cost?
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April 30, 2012 10:42:48 PM

jwhsieh007 said:
any prettier looking cases out there that you'd recommend? =) Also, what about the asrock extreme3 h77 motherboard vs. this one? Do you think it's worth the extra cost?
I don't think its worth the extra cost for the sole reason that the H77 chipset isn't capable of overclocking, which would make buying a i5 3750K, an overclocking cpu, pointless. On the case...that's a judgement call and I'm use to buying cases solely on functionally, so aesthetics may not be my strong suit. The RAIDMAX and Apevia are known for making aesthetically pleasing cases. Here are some:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...




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May 2, 2012 12:12:43 AM

Dang, the mobo is out of stock. Oh well

probably another stupid question but what about wifi connection? Do I need a separate wifi card?
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May 2, 2012 12:43:40 AM

jwhsieh007 said:
Dang, the mobo is out of stock. Oh well

probably another stupid question but what about wifi connection? Do I need a separate wifi card?
This particular motherboard doesn't feature wifi on the motherboard. Quality wifi cards can be purchased at Newegg for under $30-40. http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=P...
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May 2, 2012 6:06:56 AM

so pretty much the cheapest one there would work, right? Also, are there other mobo's besides the ASRock Extreme4 that I should consider since it's out of stock, or should I just go ahead and purchase the Gigabyte Z77 micro ATX board?
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May 2, 2012 6:24:02 PM

jwhsieh007 said:
so pretty much the cheapest one there would work, right? Also, are there other mobo's besides the ASRock Extreme4 that I should consider since it's out of stock, or should I just go ahead and purchase the Gigabyte Z77 micro ATX board?
I definitely wait for the Extreme4 to go back in stock. Its a full ATX motherboard that has more expandibility options than the Gigabyte Z77 mATX board. On the wi fi card, i've personally had favorable experiences with the Asus pcie card (link added below). Its not exactly the cheapest ($30), but I would recommend it. If you do however want to go with the cheapest card, then go ahead and grab one.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=33-320-...
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