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First build! Opinions welcome!

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June 22, 2012 7:49:12 AM

I'll start by listing off the parts I'm getting. I'm looking to make a rig that will be able to handle (not necessarily well, but to an extent) this generation of games and can cross over into the next.

Here's the parts:
NZXT GAMMA Classic Series GAMA-001BK Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASRock Z77 Extreme4 LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HIS H785F2G2M Radeon HD 7850 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Intel Core i5-3570K Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4000 BX80637I53570K
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO RR-212E-20PK-R2 Continuous Direct Contact 120mm Sleeve CPU Cooler Compatible with latest Intel 2011/1366/1155 and AMD FM1/AM3+
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OCZ Agility 3 AGT3-25SAT3-120G 2.5" 120GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PC Power and Cooling Silencer MK III 500W Modular 80PLUS Bronze Power Supply compatible with Intel Sandy Bridge Core i3 i5 i7 and AMD Phenom
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Rosewill RCA-1204BK 120mm Sleeve Black Case Fan, 4/PK
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I plan to run a Linux OS at first to see how it goes. Will splurge on Windows 7 if comes down to it or I might even wait for Windows 8 which I hear is coming out later this year? I'm a big MMO gamer and I realized just how bad my current system was when I played SWTOR and loaded into zones 3 times slower than the guy who got his computer at Wal Mart. And even more recently when I participated in Guild Wars 2 Beta weekend; I joined a World vs World session and there I couldn't even move. My screen practically froze up when I saw the people attacking a keep. This is all on the lowest settings and I'm having these kinds of issues.

I'm willing to spend a few extra bucks on some suggestions or opinions that you guys have on the parts I listed. Also if anyone would like to do my homework and check to see if everything is compatible, that would be nice. One concern I have is cooling and the other is the PSU. Not sure if it's the right voltage (too strong or too weak?).

Thanks in advance folks! It is my first build for personal use and I want to screw up as little as possible. I went to the best community I've seen online for this stuff and can only hope my questions will be answered as thoroughly as some others I've seen.

Everything put together (some accessories I didn't include like wires and a drive adapter) comes to a total of $937.29 without shipping. I'm willing to go as high as $1100 if I need to, or if anyone has cheaper links or suggestions for similar (if not the same) parts that would also be appreciated.

EDIT: Grammar and typo's. Replaced PSU. Replaced PSU again, Added heatsink, Removed fan controller, Replaced/upgraded RAM. Replaced CPU heatsink.

More about : build opinions

June 22, 2012 8:05:38 AM

Change the SSD to a Crucial M4 and get another brand PSU. Antec, Corsair, Seasonic are all great. 500 watt is all you need unless you plan to upgrade in the future (CF, new GPU).
Also decide on whether you want to overclock. You have a great CPU and mobo for that, but no cooler and slow RAM. Invest in that or save on the CPU and mobo and spend it on other parts.
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June 22, 2012 8:13:41 AM

Thomas_89 said:
Change the SSD to a Crucial M4 ...


Noted. Looks like a much better deal there.

I don't plan to overclock unless the next generation (by that I mean with the new consoles being just around the corner and setting the bar for "good graphics") forces me to do so. I might just upgrade then. Might be easier to do that.

I also replaced the PSU with an Antec 500w. Thanks for the advice!!


Edit: Used a wrong word (changed my comment entirely), Added more info.
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June 22, 2012 9:03:32 AM

A few things I'd like to note:

1) Keep in mind that the Antec Earthwatts you've got picked out doesn't come with a power cable (for the wall; it's got all the cables for your components). If you're willing to spend a bit more and go for a rebate, I really like recommending PC Power and Cooling's Silencer Mk.III. It's a modular PSU (meaning you only use the cables you need), it's based on a Seasonic unit (fantastically reliable), and has a 5 year warranty.

2) You really don't want that RAM kit - you'd be better off with a dual-channel kit like this one from G.SKILL. The LGA1155 platform is a dual-channel platform, so you'll get marginally better performance this way. Edit: Forgot to mention that this RAM is also faster - it's clocked at 1600MHz as opposed to 1333MHz.

3) You're going to want to get a heatsink/fan for your CPU - I noticed you said you'd drop the fan controller in your other thread; you could take the money you've saved on that and drop it into a solid HSF like this Cooler Master V8. If you'd rather have something more affordable, the Hyper 212 Plus and Evo both offer reliable air cooling as well.
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June 22, 2012 9:10:36 AM

mousseng said:
A few things I'd like to note:

1) Keep in mind that the Antec Earthwatts you've got picked out doesn't come with a power cable (for the wall; it's got all the cables for your components). If you're willing to spend a bit more and go for a rebate, I really like recommending PC Power and Cooling's Silencer Mk.III. It's a modular PSU (meaning you only use the cables you need), it's based on a Seasonic unit (fantastically reliable), and has a 5 year warranty.

2) You really don't want that RAM kit - you'd be better off with a dual-channel kit like this one from G.SKILL. The LGA1155 platform is a dual-channel platform, so you'll get marginally better performance this way. Edit: Forgot to mention that this RAM is also faster - it's clocked at 1600MHz as opposed to 1333MHz.

3) You're going to want to get a heatsink/fan for your CPU - I noticed you said you'd drop the fan controller in your other thread; you could take the money you've saved on that and drop it into a solid HSF like this Cooler Master V8. If you'd rather have something more affordable, the Hyper 212 Plus and Evo both offer reliable air cooling as well.


*applause*

Thank you for catching that the PSU didn't come with a cable. I see the one you picked is the same price with mail-in rebate so I'll switch it to that for the time being.

As for the RAM I know next to nothing on how it works so I just went by word-of-mouth advice from some of the people I've talked to (and game with). I'll replace those as well. The ones you posted are both better and cheaper.

I was looking for a heatsink for the CPU as well, once again I know next to nothing on the subject. I'll take your word for it and go with the cooler master v8. The money I saved on dropping the fan controller and replacing the RAM will even out the price...

Wonderful advice and suggestions! Thank you very much!!

P.S. The heatsink says it's i7 compatible. Does that mean exclusive or just like a heads-up for people that were curious?
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June 22, 2012 9:24:04 AM

Xarvik said:
Thank you for catching that the PSU didn't come with a cable. I see the one you picked is the same price with mail-in rebate so I'll switch it to that for the time being.

Yessir. The Silencer Mk.III is quite a nice PSU as well - it's also quiet, as the name implies.

Quote:
P.S. The heatsink says it's i7 compatible. Does that mean exclusive or just like a heads-up for people that were curious?

Nah, that's just a bit of marketing they're doing there. All that means is that it fits on those sockets - but if you check the details, it tells you that it's compatible with basically every modern desktop processor on the market, whether Intel or AMD.

Also, if you ever need to do a quick bit of research on a particular component, a good place to look is Benchmark Reviews. They've got a comfortable level of depth to their reviews and they've got quite a variety of hardware that they review. Some sections are pretty out-of-date (like the cooling section), but for the most part it's good for a quick bit of detail.
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June 22, 2012 9:27:53 AM

mousseng said:

Also, if you ever need to do a quick bit of research on a particular component, a good place to look is Benchmark Reviews. They've got a comfortable level of depth to their reviews and they've got quite a variety of hardware that they review. Some sections are pretty out-of-date (like the cooling section), but for the most part it's good for a quick bit of detail.


Thanks again. Bookmarked and will be checked as soon as I'm not running on fumes. 4:25 am right now and I've been up all night working on a case report. Checking forums in my spare time. Honestly, I'm not sure if people know how relieving it is to see all this advice and feedback. Almost makes me forget the stress and how tired I am. :D 
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June 22, 2012 9:53:54 AM

I actually changed the CPU heatsink to the 212 EVO. The V8 looked like it might not fit, according to the dimensions they gave.
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