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Yes, another feedback on a build request

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June 22, 2012 4:38:05 PM

Howdy all, I'm looking for opinions on a build I threw together at ibuypower (main purpose is gaming). Specs are at bottom of post.

A few notes:

-I chose 4GB of RAM because it was the lowest you could choose and I have 16 here at home ready to go in (Corsair Vengeance Blue 16 GB DDR3 SDRAM Dual Channel Memory Kit CMZ16GX3M4A1600C9B).

-I figure one day I may want to use SLI, so I chose a mobo and PSU with that in mind. Also, I chose a more expensive PSU because I heard that the cheap ones can be problematic.

So anything look wrong about this build? Any suggestions on improvements?

1 x Case ( Corsair Vengeance C70 Gaming Case - Military Green )
1 x Case Lighting ( Cold Cathode Neon Light - Blue )
1 x Processor ( Intel® Core™ i5-3570K Processor (4x 3.40GHz/6MB L3 Cache) - Intel Core i5-3570K )
1 x Processor Cooling ( Corsair Hydro Series H60 Liquid CPU Cooling System - Standard 120mm Fan )
1 x Memory ( 4 GB [2 GB X2] DDR3-1600 Memory Module - Corsair or Major Brand )
1 x Video Card ( NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 - 2GB - Single Card )
1 x Video Card Brand ( Major Brand Powered by AMD or NVIDIA )
1 x Motherboard ( [SLI] Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H )
1 x Power Supply ( 1050 Watt - Thermaltake Toughpower Grand-1050M - Free Upgrade to 1200 Watt Toughpower Grand-1200M ($40 Savings) )
1 x Primary Hard Drive ( 120 GB ADATA S510 SSD - Single Drive )
1 x Data Hard Drive ( 2 TB HARD DRIVE -- 64M Cache, 7200rpm, 6.0Gb/s - Single Drive )
1 x Optical Drive ( [12X Blu-Ray] LG BLU-RAY Reader, DVD±R/±RW Burner Combo Drive - Black )
1 x Flash Media Reader / Writer ( 12-In-1 Internal Flash Media Card Reader/Writer - Black )
0 x Meter Display ( None )
0 x USB Expansion ( None )
1 x Sound Card ( 3D Premium Surround Sound Onboard )
1 x Network Card ( Onboard LAN Network (Gb or 10/100) )
1 x Operating System ( Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium + Office Starter 2010 (Includes basic versions of Word and Excel) - 64-Bit )

More about : feedback build request

June 22, 2012 4:40:54 PM

Sound card??? Why???
Get a i7 3820 if in your budget because that is a great card and you want an exual cpu like the 3820.
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June 22, 2012 4:56:19 PM

I don't want to blow up my budget too much. Most of what I've read says that an i5-3570K is best bang for your buck gaming-wise. Are you saying I should get a dedicated sound card?
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June 22, 2012 5:07:06 PM

@2fast: The "sound card" listed is just the onboard that comes with the motherboard.

@kagoshi: The Corsair C70 is a nice case, but it's loud and warm compared to similarly-priced alternatives, like the Corsair 550D or the Antec 1100.

I'm not so good with SSDs, but I'm just a bit concerned about the reliability of ADATA's drives. They're affordable and quick (courtesy of asynchronous NAND and a SandForce controller, respectively) but I just don't know that I'd trust one with my operating system.

The 1+ KW power supply may be overkill, even for a future SLI build. A 750W power supply should be able to work with 2 GTX670s with gusto.

Also, are you having neon put in the case? That's hilariously cool c:
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June 22, 2012 5:16:11 PM

@mous: Thanks for the response. Yeah, I only chose the case for aesthetics - definitely not set on it so any pointers there are much appreciated.

I was also wondering about the SSD - in fact, I was just looking up reviews for the ADATA drive on newegg. :p  Maybe I should choose the Corsair Force Series GT 120 GB SSD?

Are you sure about the SLI? When I add a second 670 to my build it requests 1000W for my PSU, so I assumed that would be minimum. Then again, that's just what ibuypower's web builder tool says.
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June 22, 2012 5:34:14 PM

As far as cases go, what sort of options do you have? Will they build in any case you ask for, or do they have a shortlist they use?

Again, I don't know so much about SSDs as I do other areas, but I do know that Samsung, Intel, and Crucial are 3 really solid brands - especially Crucial. If the Crucial m4 isn't too much more than the ADATA, I'd go with that.

Am I sure? Well, according to the guys at TechPowerUp two GTX 670s in SLI draws a maximum of 324ish watts, your CPU will be another 70ish watts on that (max), and your other components will draw a little bit each. That'd put you a little above middle of the road on a 750W PSU, so you'd be pretty solid there. Just know that companies 'overestimate' the necessary wattage because of how prevalent bad/inefficient power supplies are - they don't want to risk liability in any way.

Also, another thing I forgot to mention was processor cooling. As far as I can tell from reviews and other threads on TH, you're better off going with air cooling over an H60. Don't let that stop you - I personally don't take issue with getting a closed-loop WC system, but I think the general sentiment here is opposed to it.
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June 22, 2012 6:25:28 PM

They have a decent number of options for cases. You can see the list here:

http://www.ibuypower.com/Store/2012_Paladin_E

For the SSD, they don't offer Crucial, just Corsair, OCZ, Intel, Kingston and ADATA. Intel is the most expensive.

Sadly, they don't even let you choose anything less than a 1000W PSU if you chose two 670s... not sure what's up with that. Though, does it matter that much if I overkill on the PSU? As long as it's a quality PSU, my PC will just draw what it needs, correct?

Interesting about the processor cooling. I always just assumed liquid was hands down better. What is the general reasoning behind air cooling being better?
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Best solution

June 22, 2012 7:32:41 PM

Oh goodness, that's a lot of great cases. If you're looking for a quiet case, the Antec P280 is a brilliant choice that's just a bit cheaper than the C70. The NZXT Phantom (full tower) is another brilliant choice - cool, quiet, and it's designed with water cooling in mind. The Cooler Master HAF 922 and 932 are great cases with high airflow (hence the name, HAF), and the Corsair Obsidian 550D is a well-made case with great cable management (a bit warmer than the other cases, not as bad as the C70).

I think the Corsair Force may be a good choice here - I don't know a lot about Kingston SSDs and I hear a lot about OCZ drives failing often (not to mention the Force GT is synchronous NAND, over OCZ's asynchronous).

There's a bit more to it than that - ignoring quality of PSU and advertised outputs and such, you're not going to get all the power a PSU draws. Always check for 80 Plus ratings - that guarantees you to get a minimum of 80% efficiency; however, most PSUs get peak efficiency at around 50 to 75% load, which is why I'd prefer you to get a 750 - 850W power supply. But it's okay, really; it's not necessary. On the whole, you're pretty much right about it (except in cases of overkill). The 1KW power supply is more than you need, but as long as you get the Corsair 1050W model, you'll be good to go for quite a while.

Liquid cooling isn't hands-down better, unfortunately, especially in the case of closed-loop systems like the Corsair Hydro series. The H60 (quality issues aside) is about as capable - if not less capable - than a Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo (an air cooler). The real difference between basic water cooling and basic air cooling is that liquid applies constant cooling, whereas air adjusts its level of cooling based on current needs (which can be troublesome in certain cases).

Generally speaking, a good air cooler can keep your CPU temps just as low as a liquid cooler like the H60.
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June 22, 2012 8:16:38 PM

Awesome, thanks for all the info!

One last question: if I order this PC (or one like this) with 4GB of ram (2GBx2), would it be just as simple as taking the 4GB out as soon as the PC arrives and snapping in my 16GB of Corsair Vengeance (4GBx4)? The Corsair was bought together as a 16GB set, if you were wondering.
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June 22, 2012 8:25:19 PM

Pretty much, yeah. I do believe Corsair memory comes with an XMP profile (an Intel technology for changing memory clocks), so it should default to its advertised speed and latencies. You are going to want to check that though - when you get the computer, you'll want to either go into the BIOS or load up CPU Z and ensure that your RAM is running at the proper speeds.

Edit: I looked up your memory kit on Newegg, and the reviews say all you'll have to do is go into your BIOS and adjust the memory frequency from 1333MHz to 1600MHz.
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June 22, 2012 10:54:13 PM

Best answer selected by kagoshimaluke.
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