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$1300 Gaming PC build advice

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July 2, 2012 10:51:09 PM


Approximate Purchase Date: 8/16/12
Budget Range: $1200-1400
System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, App Dev
Parts Not Required: Monitor, keyboard,mouse,sound system
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg, Microcenter
Country:USA
Parts Preferences:Intel
Overclocking:Maybe
SLI or Crossfire:yes, down the line
Monitor Resolution:1920 x 1200
Additional Comments: This is my 2nd PC build, upgrading from a P4 3.2, ATI X800 PRO, 4GB Kingston Hyper X DDR...Looking to run games in very high to ultra setting


This is what I've came up with after a few days of getting backing into hardware research:

NZXT Phantom PHAN-001BK
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS P8Z77-V PRO
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

EVGA 025-P3-1579-AR GeForce GTX 570 (Fermi) HD 2560MB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OCZ Fatal1ty 750W Modular Gaming 80Plus Bronze Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Intel Core i7-2700K Sandy Bridge 3.5GHz
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OCZ Vertex 3 VTX3-25SAT3-90G 2.5" 90GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB DDR3 1600
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Seagate Barracuda 1TB 7200 RPM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Thanks for the input.
July 2, 2012 11:07:06 PM

I'd suggest the LK version vs the PRO version - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... Will save you 80$ and you won't see any performance difference. All of the Z77 motherboards have the same features. The extra 80$ goes to extra expansion slots you'll never use. The LK is SLI/crossfire ready and has extra slots to expand.
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a c 271 4 Gaming
July 2, 2012 11:21:26 PM

For $1300 I'd put a bit more into the GPU. I'd also ditch the SSD, RAM, and PSU choices. Watch the RAM with the tall heat sinks if you plan on using a cooler.

Try something like this:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($34.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($179.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Crucial Ballistix sport 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($45.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($118.99 @ eCost)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($399.00 @ NCIX US)
Case: NZXT Phantom (White) ATX Full Tower Case ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($17.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1296.91
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
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a b 4 Gaming
July 2, 2012 11:32:48 PM

Get the ASRock Extreme 4 mobo instead. A bit less, but great for OC'ing and a great overall board.
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a c 271 4 Gaming
July 2, 2012 11:37:23 PM

obsama1 said:
Get the ASRock Extreme 4 mobo instead. A bit less, but great for OC'ing and a great overall board.


I really like the visual BIOS on the Gigabyte motherboard - it's the easiest to work with that I've ever used.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 2, 2012 11:40:59 PM

Well, it's up to the OP to decide if that's worth it. Also, Gigabyte for the longest time stuck with the traditional text BIOS, and now they have such a great BIOS. Especially the 3D flyby of the mobo.
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a c 271 4 Gaming
July 2, 2012 11:45:41 PM

obsama1 said:
Well, it's up to the OP to decide if that's worth it. Also, Gigabyte for the longest time stuck with the traditional text BIOS, and now they have such a great BIOS. Especially the 3D flyby of the mobo.


Yeah my last two Gigabyte boards - the AMD one had the text BIOS, the Z68 board I use in my work PC has a combo Windows BIOS / text BIOS, but the visual BIOS is the best I've ever used - and you can use a mouse with it, which makes things even easier.
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July 2, 2012 11:58:47 PM

g-unit1111 said:
For $1300 I'd put a bit more into the GPU. I'd also ditch the SSD, RAM, and PSU choices. Watch the RAM with the tall heat sinks if you plan on using a cooler.

Try something like this:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($34.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($179.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Crucial Ballistix sport 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($45.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($118.99 @ eCost)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($399.00 @ NCIX US)
Case: NZXT Phantom (White) ATX Full Tower Case ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($17.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1296.91
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)

I would say +1 to this list, but with 2 swaps. I agree with obsama's recommendation of the ASRock Z77 Extreme4 MB as I think you can still combo-deal it with the Core i5-3570K processor to get a major discount. If I remember the prices correctly, that should save you $90-100 off the MB g-unit recommended. I would then recommend you take the money saved there and put it into a bigger, better SSD, specifically the 240GB Mushkin MKNSSDCR240GB-DX. A week ago it was selling for $200 on both Amazon and Newegg. If you can still find it at that price then you are golden.
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a c 271 4 Gaming
July 3, 2012 12:02:50 AM

Isaiah4110 said:
I would say +1 to this list, but with 2 swaps. I agree with obsama's recommendation of the ASRock Z77 Extreme4 MB as I think you can still combo-deal it with the Core i5-3570K processor to get a major discount. If I remember the prices correctly, that should save you $90-100 off the MB g-unit recommended. I would then recommend you take the money saved there and put it into a bigger, better SSD, specifically the 240GB Mushkin MKNSSDCR240GB-DX. A week ago it was selling for $200 on both Amazon and Newegg. If you can still find it at that price then you are golden.


I hate Sandforce drives though which is why I don't recommend them. My Intel drive is Sandforce based - I have had nothing but problems with it. My work PC runs an M4 - been problem free since I got it.
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July 3, 2012 12:03:19 AM

g-unit1111 said:
For $1300 I'd put a bit more into the GPU. I'd also ditch the SSD, RAM, and PSU choices. Watch the RAM with the tall heat sinks if you plan on using a cooler.

Try something like this:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($34.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($179.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Crucial Ballistix sport 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($45.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($118.99 @ eCost)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($399.00 @ NCIX US)
Case: NZXT Phantom (White) ATX Full Tower Case ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($17.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1296.91
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)


CPU - I suggest Sandy Bridge. There are really no reasons to go Ivy Bridge if you are building a Gaming PC. It doesn't overclock as well as Sandy and the new process only really helps when dealing with stock CPU clocks, basically anything under 4.5GHz. After that, Ivy Bridge completely crumbles. If you're not going to OC, then go Ivy, but if you plan to in the future, Go Sandy.

Cooler - Great

Mobo - Good

Memory - Good

HDD - Good, I'm guessing Spin point somehow outperforms WD Caviar Black??

SSD - SSD's for games are really an iffy thing. You will simply not see substantial improvements in games other than BF3 that justify the money they cost. But if you wan't to speed through non-gaming APPS, SSDs are almost essential.

GPU - Phenomonal

Case - Good

PSU - Provides a good ceiling. But then again, the 750w suggests that you might want to run a multi-gpu setup at somepoint in the future, which, brings us back to OC'ing your CPU.

Optical Drive - nothing needs to be said lol

Conclusion, I'd say go Sandy for the CPU, Cooler Master is good enough to keep Sandy CPU's at good temps and if you ever want to OC, you have much more head room with Sandy. Ivy is good for video rendering and IGPU gaming. But Ivy simply cant OC like Sandy, and for gamers, that ability is critical to future-proofing.

BTW - Thanks G-Unit, you always provide a very good base set-up which makes it easy for people to swap-in and swap-out, if needed, very helpful !
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July 3, 2012 12:37:34 AM

Thanks for all the help....looking over all the info now! :hello: 
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July 3, 2012 1:11:50 AM

You don't need an i7 for gaming the i5-3570k will beat that CPu for gaming.

use a bether GPU then that one on a 1300$ budget. Either 670gtx or 680gtx (the new hd7970 if you prefer AMD) but the 670gtx for only 400-420$ is a real deal.

You don't need a 210$ mobo for gaming either I,d get a cheaper one personaly (130-140$) and get a SSD with more capacity. 8g is more then enough for gaming too, save another 50$ and spend it on the SSD.
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July 3, 2012 1:16:10 AM

bctande1 said:
CPU - I suggest Sandy Bridge. There are really no reasons to go Ivy Bridge if you are building a Gaming PC. It doesn't overclock as well as Sandy and the new process only really helps when dealing with stock CPU clocks, basically anything under 4.5GHz. After that, Ivy Bridge completely crumbles. If you're not going to OC, then go Ivy, but if you plan to in the future, Go Sandy.



Get your fact up to date, even if the ivy-bridge overclock to slower speed then a sandy bridge (assuming the same cooling tools) the ivy-bridge still out perform the sandy bridge.

clock speed isn't everything and tomshardware even ran test about it clearly showing how ivy-bridge beat sandy bridge despite the overclocking running slower.

I suggest sandy-bridge on budget PC not for 1300$ gaming tower.

i5-3570k FTW.
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July 3, 2012 1:25:09 AM

Best answer selected by Steverl22.
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July 3, 2012 1:25:09 AM

It's not just clocks, you need to consider temps and voltages.The source of these errors has not yet been specified but here, read up:

http://www.guru3d.com/news/ivy-bridgefs-heat-problem-is...

http://www.fudzilla.com/home/item/26957-possible-reason...

http://www.tweaktown.com/news/23815/ivy_bridge_s_heat_p...

http://www.anandtech.com/show/5763/undervolting-and-ove...

This isn't simply a clock speed, there are manufacturing reasons for Ivy Bridge's heat issues, -- possibly the materials Intel used. What has resulted is some massive voltage and temperature spikes when they are pushed after the 4.5GHz-ish and 1.25V-ish spots....

Other than that, the performance differences between the two for gaming are so negligible, with the exception of like 3 games, Shogun 2 being the most prominent for its excessive use of CPU power.

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July 3, 2012 1:31:06 AM

bctande1 said:
It's not just clocks, you need to consider temps and voltages.The source of these errors has not yet been specified but here, read up:

http://www.guru3d.com/news/ivy-bridgefs-heat-problem-is...

http://www.fudzilla.com/home/item/26957-possible-reason...

http://www.tweaktown.com/news/23815/ivy_bridge_s_heat_p...

http://www.anandtech.com/show/5763/undervolting-and-ove...

This isn't simply a clock speed, there are manufacturing reasons for Ivy Bridge's heat issues, -- possibly the materials Intel used. What has resulted is some massive voltage and temperature spikes when they are pushed after the 4.5GHz-ish and 1.25V-ish spots....

Other than that, the performance differences between the two for gaming are so negligible, with the exception of like 3 games, Shogun 2 being the most prominent for its excessive use of CPU power.


I know all of that, And the reason is the past they've used instead of soldering the piece with the fact of the shorter die (some geek korean tested that), But still despite all of that, the OC ivy-bridge still out perform the OC sandy-bridge. Due to the heat you'll push the overclock on IB lower then what you can do with a SB CPU but the ivy-bridge still win every benchmark.

The i5-2500k remain a great CPU, but saving 10$-15$ over an i5-3570k on a 1300$ budget do not seems like a wise move to me. Especialy since the OP said he would "maybe" overclock. At stock core the iby-bridge still provide +10% performance for so little more.
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July 3, 2012 1:41:12 AM

venur said:
I know all of that, And the reason si the past they've used instead of soldering the piece (some geek korean tested that), But still despite all of that the OC ivy-bridge still out perform the OC sandy-bridge. Due tot he heat you'll push the overclock on IB lower then what you can do with a SB CPU but the ivy-bridge still win every benchmark.


I've seen Ivy Bridge beating Sandy Bridge for non-gaming CPU-Intensive Applications - but that is not what the buyer wants to use his PC for.

as for gaming, If he wants to throw in 10$ bucks for like a 3% increase in a handful of un-optimized games, sure. The increase won't even be prevalent in most games like Battlefield 3, where a 3770k performs exactly like a 3570k and a 2500k, then sure, I guess.
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July 3, 2012 1:42:14 AM

Edit: And I already mentioned that at stock clocks, Ivy is the way to go. And I'd like to see the benchmarks you are referring to.
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October 4, 2013 8:34:49 PM

g-unit1111 said:
For $1300 I'd put a bit more into the GPU. I'd also ditch the SSD, RAM, and PSU choices. Watch the RAM with the tall heat sinks if you plan on using a cooler.

Try something like this:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($34.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($179.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Crucial Ballistix sport 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($45.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($118.99 @ eCost)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($399.00 @ NCIX US)
Case: NZXT Phantom (White) ATX Full Tower Case ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($17.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1296.91
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)


Is it good hamming PC $1300 to $1400
(Don't worry about hard disk)

I5 4670 3.4ghz
8 GB 4x2gb ram corsair
Evga gtx 780 3gb acx
Asus z87 k
Corsair cx750w
Cooler masyter hyper 212 plus
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