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Midrange gaming computer, build picked. Thanks!

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May 25, 2012 6:05:37 AM

Hey folks. Building up a computer to replace my 6 year old rig; trying to do a small bit of 'futureproofing', or at least leaving some wiggle room for upgrades 2-4 years down the line. Tried to do my homework on parts; I'm not looking for the cheapest options in each category, picked mainly based on reviews here and at newegg, but I can move a bit up or down on prices if I have a better choice nearby.

Approximate Purchase Date: By end of May/First week of June

Budget Range: $1000-$1500 (rough)

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming (Diablo III and World of Warcraft, for now), Multitasking, Web Browsing

Parts Not Required: Keyboard/Mouse/Monitor(possibly)

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg/Amazon

Country: USA

Parts Preferences: Intel/Nvidia, Cooler Master Case, high-rated for other parts (tentative selections below)

Overclocking: Very Likely

SLI or Crossfire: Not atm, I'd like to keep it a possibility

Monitor Resolution: Current 1440x900 (upgrade in 2-6 months) and 1920x1080 (LG 47LH90 tv). For the moment, I'd like to run the tv as the primary while gaming, using the small monitor for browsing or a backup (when I'm idling or want to watch actual tv.) If these are not possible with this configuration, I'll likely pick up a cheap HD monitor (~22-24in) until I have the budget for a higher res dedicated screen down the road.

Additional Comments: Part choices explained below!


PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($238.00 @ Amazon)
-Preference for this over the i5-2500k. Probably one of the last things I will ever swap or upgrade, right?
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 76.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($19.99 @ Newegg)
-Not comfortable with liquid cooling, from what I've read this is one of the better (best?) air cooling options for the CPU.
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme6 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($183.49 @ Newegg)
-There are a couple features that led me to pick this over the extreme4 version, or other z77 boards. I'll use the PCI-mini for a built in wireless, bios seems to be set for ivy bridge processor without update (not a big deal?). Most reviews seem to be good, aside from some DOA reports on components.
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($54.99 @ Newegg)
-Not married to this choice by any means. I assume with the HAF case I will have plenty of room without going for low profile? If another brand is going to work better with the setup or I should up to 16G, let me know.
Hard Drive: Western Digital RE4 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($96.78 @ Amazon)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 64GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($79.99 @ Newegg)
-Also not married to hard drive choices. I want to try a SSD for the system and main game files; I don't do a -ton- of data storage, but I'm not sure the SSD options in my price range are going to have enough room to fly solo. Picked these brands based on reviews.
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 570 2.5GB Video Card ($329.99 @ Newegg)
-Picked based on price, rating, and lifetime warranty (and it's in stock unlike most of my options, another plus.) I -might- be able to swing a 670 if I'm going to see a muuuuch bigger bang for the buck, but with my current games list and needs, I thought it would be better to go for the vid card upgrade later down the line.
Case: Cooler Master HAF 932 Advanced ATX Full Tower Case ($129.99 @ Amazon)
-I could probably get by with a smaller/cheaper case, but I really like what I've seen and read about this one. Footprint and noise aren't a huge problem for me, I'd much rather have airflow and space for upgrades and ease of build.
Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($89.99 @ Newegg)
-Enough for this build and maybe an SLI in the future? Should I get a modular PSU instead? Also need to know if I should go ahead and buy some cable extensions (and which ones) for the huge case.
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($96.48 @ Amazon)
Total: $1319.69
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-05-25 01:08 EDT-0400)

I'll be using an inexpensive optical drive and wireless adapter.

Think that about covers it! Let me know if I've made any terrible mistakes or have any glaring compatibility issues, if the build looks great, or anywhere in between. Thanks in advance!
May 25, 2012 7:39:34 AM

If you're spending that kind of money on a gaming computer I suggest that you get a new Radeon 7000 or GeForce 600 series video card. Seems kinda silly to get a brand new Ivy Bridge processor but an 18 month old 570

EDIT: If you're a student you may be able to avoid buying Windows 7. Check and see if your institution or school has an MSDNAA subscription. If they do, you may be able to get it for free so long as you're using it for school
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May 25, 2012 8:31:28 AM

Look's great! A GTX 560 or a newer GTX 6** Card would do well. I have a GTX 560 and it runs every game with no lag, and on Extreme or Ultra :) 
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May 25, 2012 8:46:06 AM

Case: Corsair 400R + HDD: Seagate SV35 500GB - $171.98
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

CPU: Intel i5-3570K + MOBO: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 - $364.98
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

PSU: Corsair HX750 + RAM: Corsair Vengeance Low Profile 8GB (2x4GB) - $189.98
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...


Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO - $33.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU: EVGA Geforce GTX 670 - $399.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OS: Windows Home Premium OEM - $99.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

DVD: Asus DVD Burner - $17.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... comes out to about $1,273.40 add ssd if you like if you have any questions just ask bud. ;) 
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May 25, 2012 9:39:17 AM

I have the EVGA GeForce GTX 570 2.5GB Video Card connected to a Samsung 30" IPS panel in 2560x1600, it's a wonderful combination. I can play everything with high settings and without any lag.
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May 25, 2012 10:01:00 AM

I agree with bugcyco and change the GTX 570 with a 670, it runs cooler and has better performance :)  The rest of your build looks fine.
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May 25, 2012 5:23:12 PM

Hey folks, thanks so much for the replies. Made some changes to my build. I think with that upgrade to the 120gb mushkin I can hold off on the extra HD for the moment.

I am not a student, so I'll be paying for windows, unfortunately. ;) 

EVGA GTX 670s are out of stock, but the overclocked model is in for $20 more. Added that one in instead.

I'm tempted by the MB and CPU bundle you posted bigcyco1; Is updating the bios on the motherboard needed for the ivy bridge processors? I'm reading mixed comments on newegg for that (which seems about par for newegg reviews anyway. :sarcastic:  .) If the only thing I'm going to miss from the extreme6 is the mini PCIe I'll go for the bundle and grab something else for the wireless.

Assuming the MB swap, new current build:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($237.89 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($33.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($142.86 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Mushkin Chronos 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($399.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF 932 Advanced ATX Full Tower Case ($129.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Corsair 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($134.99 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($17.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1327.67
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-05-25 12:54 EDT-0400)

Are there any decent sized monitors in the $200 range that will run well at 2560x1600? Anything above that I will probably need to save up for it for a bit. Thanks again!
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May 25, 2012 5:28:00 PM

For $20 less you could get the 500R. Do you really need a full tower for just two-way SLI/CF?
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May 25, 2012 7:05:08 PM

These are pretty much your best options in the $150 to $200 price range your not going to get any better than 24" Widescreen 1920 x 1200 or 1920 x 1080 LED Backlit Monitor unfortunately here are some decent ones you might want to look at to get a idea of what $150-$200 can get 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... http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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May 25, 2012 7:10:54 PM

About the motherboard needing bios update i am not sure i have two buddies who recently bought it i will call them and ask and get back to you on that bud.
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May 25, 2012 7:30:05 PM

azeem40 said:
For $20 less you could get the 500R. Do you really need a full tower for just two-way SLI/CF?

I'm sure I don't -need- a full tower, but I've been a bit stuck on that case since I saw it. If I'm going to have no problems with either case for this build, with overclocking/cooling and the parts I picked (with room for another possible 670 in the future), I could probably go with http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... (what can I say, I'm partial to the imperial stormtrooper color scheme. ;)  )
bigcyco1 said:
These are pretty much your best options in the $150 to $200 price range your not going to get any better than 24" Widescreen 1920 x 1200 or 1920 x 1080 LED Backlit Monitor unfortunately here are some decent ones you might want to look at to get a idea of what $150-$200 can get 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... http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That's what I was pretty much thinking, thanks for the lookup. I may get a cheap 24" from the memorial weekend sale then, until I get enough for a much nicer screen.

bigcyco1 said:
About the motherboard needing bios update i am not sure i have two buddies who recently bought it i will call them and ask and get back to you on that bud.


Sounds good. Thanks again for all the build help. ;) 
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May 26, 2012 2:38:29 AM

bigcyco1 said:
Well turns out you do need to update bios but my buddy said it's so simple and he gave me link to show how it is done these days by ASRock lol pretty awesome i think http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eAx5ifXNjR0&feature=chan...


That works for me then. I could probably manage even if I needed to use a USB stick to update, just wanted to know what I was getting in to before buying.

Going to do a bit more research on the other case, then I should be good to order next week. Will post a final build before I start ordering parts. Thanks again for all the help folks!
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May 26, 2012 4:01:38 AM

Best answer selected by AMadcap.
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May 26, 2012 4:08:27 AM

Final build, if nothing changes this weekend. Buying most of the parts from newegg for combo discounts.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($237.89 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($33.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($142.86 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Mushkin Chronos 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($98.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($399.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair 500R White ATX Mid Tower Case ($94.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($134.99 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($17.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1291.67
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-05-26 00:03 EDT-0400)

Will post if everything goes smoothly or if I have any problems assembling. Thanks to bigcyco1 and everyone else for the advice. :) 
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May 26, 2012 10:40:20 AM

Your welcome bud and take care.
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