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Need Help on New PC Build ($1200 - $2000)

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April 30, 2012 1:59:18 PM

Hello all,

I am looking to build another PC for my home. I will use the Tomshardware form, but I thought I would provide some context first. This PC is going to be my family's primary PC meaning that my wife, kids and I will all be using it. My wife typically surfs the Internet (with a ton of windows open at one time) and uses MS Word. My kids use it for Internet. I use the PC primarily for gaming. Therefore, I am looking for a great gaming build that will also minimize my wife's complaints that the PC is slowing down when she has multiple windows open.

Approximate Purchase Date: May 4, 2012

Budget Range: $1,200 - $2,000 (I am looking for the best bang for the buck. I typically build a new computer every three years with minimal upgrading, if any, after the initial build. Therefore, I want something pretty powerful, but not excessively pricey.)

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Internet, MS Word

Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg or Micro Center

Country: United States

Parts Preferences: Intel CPU, Nvidia GPU

Overclocking: Yes (Although, I have never done this before)

SLI or Crossfire: Not for now

Monitor Resolution: 1680x1050 (I think. Would you please explain how I can tell and why this matters?)

Additional Comments: None for right now

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List of components I am considering.

1. i5 2500k CPU - I hear this is the best Sandy Bridge CPU for gaming. Should I buy an Ivy Bridge CPU? Should I buy an i7 because my wife opens a lot of windows at one time?

2. Motherboard - I hear that ASUS or GIGABYTE are the best. What features should I be looking for in a motherboard?

3. GPU - I think I want an EVGA 680

4. Memory - I think I want 16 GBs, but 8 GBs might be sufficient. What do you think?

5. SSD - I want an SSD drive. I am thinking about either Samsung 830 or Crucial M4

6. HDD - I want a 1 TB HDD as a secondary drive.

Thanks for your help.

-Fred

More about : build 1200 2000

April 30, 2012 6:37:12 PM

For a MOBO, look at number of PCIe x16/x8 slots if you're SLI/CFing (even if you're considering it), number of SATA III or II ports you will need (most need 1 SATA III and 2 SATA II), brand reputation, and BIOS features. I recommend Z77 as it is the latest and greatest and has many good features.

For gaming, 16GB is overkill. Games don't use more than 4-6GB of RAM.
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April 30, 2012 6:51:09 PM

azeem40 said:
For a MOBO, look at number of PCIe x16/x8 slots if you're SLI/CFing (even if you're considering it), number of SATA III or II ports you will need (most need 1 SATA III and 2 SATA II), brand reputation, and BIOS features. I recommend Z77 as it is the latest and greatest and has many good features.

For gaming, 16GB is overkill. Games don't use more than 4-6GB of RAM.


Thanks Azeem40. I have heard that games don't use a lot of RAM, but won't the extra RAM help with the multiple windows being open?


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April 30, 2012 6:52:11 PM

8GB is plenty for both gaming and opening multiple windows. :) 
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May 1, 2012 11:53:34 AM

Okay,

Here is what I have so far. I would love to hear your thoughts about these components and recommendations for my missing components.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor ($169.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H-WB ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($217.52 @ Mwave)
Memory: Corsair XMS3 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($133.49 @ B&H)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 680 2GB Video Card ($507.55 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair 500R Black ATX Mid Tower Case ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Professional Full (32/64-bit) ($239.95 @ Adorama)
Total: $1628.47
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-05-01 07:51 EDT-0400)
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May 1, 2012 12:18:12 PM

I would use a Samsung SSD, an Ivy Bridge CPU (i5 3570k), and Asus Motherboard (Maximus IV Extreme) and ether a Corsair 650D or a Corsair 600T Graphite.
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May 1, 2012 8:33:07 PM

That Ivy Bridge cpu down below linked to newegg will be on amazon for the same price in a week or so. Also anything past 4.4 - 4.5Ghz nets about zero to none in regards to more FPS with a Sandy Bridge cpu and I'm sure it will be the same for Ivy Bridge. Anything past that is nothing more than bragging rights while throwing more volts at your cpu and shortening it's life span.

http://www.amazon.com/Corsair-Carbide-Series-Gaming-CC-... $114.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Corsair Carbide Series 500R Mid Tower Gaming Case CC-9011012-WW

http://www.corsair.com/pc-cases/carbide-series-pc-case/... <---- another look at that case

http://www.amazon.com/XFX-ATX-850-Power-Supply/dp/B0050... $122.75 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
XFX PRO850W XXX Edition Semi-Modular 80 Plus Silver Certified 850 Watt Active PFC Power Supply

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... $404.98
Intel Core i5-3570K Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4000 BX806237I53570K
ASRock Z77 Extreme6 LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

http://www.asrock.com/mb/overview.asp?Model=Z77%20Extre... <----- another look at that board

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $69.99
Cooler Master TPC 812 RR-T812-24PK-R1 120mm Sleeve with Dual Vertical Vapor Chamber TPC 812 CPU Cooler Compatible with latest Intel 2011/1366/1155 and AMD FM1/AM3+

Add this fan down below to that CM cpu cooler up above for a "push - pull" effect to help bring cpu temps down even more.

http://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-BladeMaster-Silent-... $11.06 & eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25
Cooler Master BladeMaster 120mm PWM High Air Flow Silent Case Fan R4-BMBS-20PK-R0

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $59.99 FREE SHIPPING
G.SKILL Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1866 (PC3 14900) Desktop Memory Model F3-1866C9D-8GAB

http://www.amazon.com/Sony-AD-7280S-0B-Internal-Drive-B... $17.99 & eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25
Sony AD-7280S-0B 24x SATA Internal DVD+/-RW Drive (Black)

http://www.amazon.com/Seagate-Barracuda-3-5-Inch-Intern... $99.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Seagate Barracuda 7200 1 TB 7200RPM SATA 6 Gb/s NCQ 64MB Cache 3.5-Inch Internal Bare Drive ST1000DM003

http://www.amazon.com/Kingston-SSDNow-120GB-Solid-KW-S2... $129.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Kingston SSDNow V+200 120GB SATA III 6Gb/s 2.5 Inch Solid State Drive KW-S2120-4B

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $524.99
GIGABYTE GV-N680OC-2GD GeForce GTX 680 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

http://www.amazon.com/Windows-Premium-64bit-System-Buil... $99.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64bit (Full) System Builder DVD 1 Pack

Total: $1,656.62


http://www.amazon.com/ML228H-22-Inch-Ultra-Slim-Widescr... $149.00 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Asus ML228H 21.5" 1920X1080 2ms Full HD LED BackLight LED Monitor Slim Design 250 cd/m2 10,000,000 :1 (ASCR)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... <----- that same monitor @ newegg
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May 17, 2012 11:16:52 AM

Best answer selected by epsilon97.
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