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Planning First Build

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Last response: in Systems
May 25, 2012 5:15:47 PM

My computer died a couple of days ago and I need a new one fairly soon. As stated, this will be my first build.

This is not going to be a gaming system. I do not need a high end graphics card. I will also be running Linux, and it will be very unlikely that I will ever install Windows. Since Intel's support for open source drivers has a good reputation, I am under the impression that the Intel 4000 hd graphics should suit my needs very well. I haven't settled on a monitor yet, but I'll probably go with 1920x1080, and the most graphics intensive things I would do would be full screen video or fancy desktop effects. I'll probably go with a monitor that is around 23 inches.

There will be some serious number crunching, some of it in parallel. There will also be a lot of compiling. It's why I picked a Core i7 over a Core i5.

I tend to leave my computers running 24/7 unless I am going out of town. This, plus having had PSUs fail on me in the past leads me to believe that I want a high quality PSU that is bigger than I really need to simply run the computer. Something reliable and efficient is worth it to me.

The mobo: This is where I am most out of my element. It doesn't need to have anything special, but if I want to add another HD and/or another optical drive later, I want that option. Also, it is subject to the same things as the PSU. I want something reliable that can also handle a fair amount of memory. Also, I want the audio chipset to play nice with Linux, so that is going to likely mean Realtec. If it has features that would lend themselves to gaming, fine, but I really don't want to pay extra for them.

I am not currently planning on OCing, but you know how that kind of thing goes. I may change my mind later. I figure if I do, I'll go for the aftermarket CPU fan then, unless there is a good reason to do otherwise. I don't mind taking things apart, especially when I can put them on a table right in front of me. Having something on the table beats laying on your back all day because you refuse to take your jeep to a mechanic ;) 

Here is what I've selected thus far:

Case - Roswill Ranger Mid ATX Tower Any problems with this case? (Other than it being listed as a "gamer" case when I doubt anything more cutting edge than MUPEN64 or SNES9X will be used for games on the computer.)
Motherboard - ASRock Extreme4 Z77 Again, I'm out of my element on this, but its price is acceptable. Any suggestions that would meet my needs would be most welcome.
PSU - SeaSonic X Seriex X650 Gold
CPU - Core i7 3770 Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz
Memory - GSkill Ripjaws Series, 16GB - 4x4GB
Wireless Adapter - TP-LINK TL-WN781ND PCI Express - It is reported that this one plays well with Linux.

I was planning on going with a 120GB SSD for the boot drive and a 500GB HDD for a secondary data storage drive. I was also going to throw the drive from my old computer in there. I'm also planning on putting an optical drive in there, just a plain DVD burner. I'm going to stay away from blu ray until the support for it gets better on Linux.

And the drives leads to a total newb question: Do SSDs and HDDs typically come with the SATA cables, or is that something that I need to purchase separately? If so, how long would you recommend the cables be? Any other cables I should look at purchasing separately? I would rather know what cables *don't* come with the components before I have the boxes with the components in front of me.

Then, the typical questions: Are these all compatible, and are there any no-goes due to quality and/or use concerns?

More about : planning build

May 25, 2012 5:42:37 PM

No hd's do not come with cables unless you buy the retail box version, even then I'm not sure if they do.

Your motherboard comes with 2 sata cables for the hdd's. If you have more you'll need to purchase sata cables.

You need a K series cpu to overclock if you decide in the future. You cannot overclock a non K cpu. You will need an aftermarket cooler to overclock, I recommend coolermaster hyper 212 EVO.

The rest of the components look really good, although the power supply is major overkill if your not using a powerful gpu. A quality 380w psu like mine would be MORE than enough.
May 25, 2012 6:11:22 PM


Really, with OCing though, if purchasing a non K CPU locks me out, I'm not going to whine too much. The Core i7 will already be a HUGE step up from what I was running before. It'll be like a breath of fresh air. Upgrading in the future will be much easier if I build the thing myself.
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May 25, 2012 8:16:37 PM

This topic has been moved from the section CPU & Components to section Systems by Mousemonkey
May 25, 2012 8:57:35 PM

The K version is only a few dollars more and can give you a huge increase in a few years when you actually need it, instead of having to upgrade again.