I'm currently in Afghanistan and have very limited computer access here. I have been trying to piece together the best gaming system I can for about $3000. Without the time to keep comparing everything I thought I'd ask the forum for some help. Last bad ass machine I build was in 09' and I gave that to my son to play SWTOR. So I will be starting fresh. Like I said, the budget is about $3k, want to stay Intel based and Nvidia GPU. I will also by ordering everything from Newegg.
Basically Im asking if you had $3000 what would be the dream rig? Price isnt everything, if that was the case I'd just go to Newegg and sort by highest price and add to cart. I know there is a $1000 intel processor, but Id just assume get the 2500 due to the cost to benefit ratio.
I was looking at COOLER MASTER Silent Pro Gold Series RSC00-80GAD3-US 1200W ATX 12V v2.3 / EPS 12V v2.92 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS ...
Also, Im a little behind the curve on SSD vs Platter. My last build had dual 10k RPM Raptors 250G, I bought them the day they were release and loved them. Now I see they have 1TB WD Raptors. Is SSD the way to good or should I stick with the Raptor drives?
Ok, first of all, CoolerMaster isnt well known for their PSUs. They make great cases although. Next, the SSD IS MUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCH more faster. It makes boot times ridiculously FAST. A combination of SSD/HDD is the way to go these days.
Have the SSD contain the OS, some important programs and you can even squeeze some games in there.
I really wouldnt go with that PSU, as its from CM, who arent known for great PSUs. Id go with seasonic, corsair, xfx and the like. Your spending alot on that mobo, just get a cheaper one, although it has awesome features, you can get for less. If you are gonna OC, then get the cooler, an awesome cooler for a bit cheaper is the CM Hyper 212 Plus. If you really want 16GBs of RAM, then go for dual channel 2x8GB since it would provide more room for upgrades in the future.
SSD: great pick - the Samsung 830 series and the Intel 520 series are the premium fast and reliable drives at the moment. I have used both and have had no compatibility issues, but I would lean toward Intel though they are mildly more expensive. In the end, it would come down to which was the better bargain when you pull the trigger. The Intel 520 180 GB or 240GB would probably be more than sufficient for your system files and game files, use a large platter drive as a slave for all your media.
Video: Since you have a great project budget and you have the wiggle room, I would go all in with a 680. I personally love ASUS - quality builds and lots of fans to minimize wear. Unfortunately, they don't have a 4 GB version of the 680 but in all sincerity I don't think there is a need for that much VRAM unless you're running a lot of mods in Skyrim. Here's what I would get - run one individual card now and SLI down the road if you feel you are lacking performance on a next-gen game (SPOILER ALERT - it's frickin HUGE):http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
If you really want the additional video memory, here's EVGA's best option: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
2) Games rarely use more than two or three cores, so the extra hyperthreads of the 2700K are largely not worth the extra $100 over a 3570K. The 3570K is as good as it gets for gaming.
3) The Samsung 830 SSD is as good as it gets. 50x a raptor in random i/o and 3x faster in sequential. 256gb is plenty for the os and quite a number of games.
If you ever need to store large files, like video's, then add a hard drive for storage.
4) Newer 28nm based cards use much less power. The GTX680 needs only a 550w psu. Even the dual gpu ($1000) version needs only a 650w psu. You will never recover the price premium of a gold rated psu in electricity costs. Still, the efficiency will result in lower psu fan noise. Something like this would be fine: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
5) The Zalman cooler is pretty, but I don't like the proprietary fan. If you want the best air cooler, look at the noctua NH-D14.
Actually, a simple cooler like the $30 cm hyper212 will do almost as well.
6) The asus motherboard is nice, but not necessary. The z68 chipset is older, and not quite as good. Almost any Z77 based motherboard will do the job for half the price. The enthusiast class motherboards are intended for overclockers, seeking record level overclocks and for quad sli gaming setups.
Also having trouble finding the best mobo and PSU for this set up.
Will be pulling the trigger in about 3 weeks when I hit the states.
Thanks again guys!!
Very few games can use more than 2 or 3 cores. That makes the hyperthreads of the 3770K of not much use.
As far as an Overclock is concerned, each can reach about the same upper limit. So the extra $100 saved will be more useful spent elsewhere.
Just about any Z77 motherboard will do. Pick your favorite brand. There is no real need to spend a lot on enthusiast class motherboards which have some better voltage regulation to enable record seeking overclocks.
As to the psu, buy a quality brand. My short list would include Seasonic, Corsair, Antec, PC P&C, and XFX.
For a single GTX680, 650w is good. If you buy a GTX690, then 750w is right.
If you are preparing for sli GTX680, then 850w + would be right.
Modular, or gold/silver rating is a plus, but not necessary. I would not spend extra there.
This seasonic 620w unit would be good for a single GTX680: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...