Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Need advice on $1500-$2000 gaming desktop (USA)

Last response: in Systems
Share
July 8, 2012 6:09:58 PM

Hello all! I am looking to build a new gaming desktop. My price range is between $1500 and $2000, which is a pretty large range but I just want the most bang for my buck. However I do not have any reservations about dishing out $2000, if the power is worth it.

Here's the standard form. I've been browsing the forum for a week or so now but am way too indecisive!
---------------------------------
Approximate Purchase Date: In the next month (from this week to early August)

Budget Range: $1500-$2000

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming is a big one. I want to be able to easily run the latest games on ultra for a few years. I also use photoshop, do some web development, and of course browse the web.

Parts Not Required: OS, monitor, keyboard, mouse. I will however take suggestions for these, but I am not including them in my price

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg or Amazon, but I'm open to suggestions.

Country: USA

Parts Preferences: I prefer Intel CPU's, as does most of this forum it seems, but besides that open for suggestions.

Overclocking: Yes/Maybe (if it's worth it)

SLI or Crossfire: I want the best performance for my money. If that means SLI, then yes. I also do not mind upgrading to SLI in the future.

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080 or higher
--------------------------------

Thanks so much to anyone that give me advice!
a b 4 Gaming
July 8, 2012 6:18:29 PM

An i5-3570k and GTX 680 are what you should get.
m
0
l
a b 4 Gaming
July 8, 2012 7:29:27 PM

I'd do my sig but with a 180GB or bigger SSD and the Gigabyte windforce 670 GTX. That will come in around $1500 and you can overclock and add another 670 as needed.
m
0
l
Related resources
July 9, 2012 1:00:17 PM

Thanks so much for the advice! I've noticed that theres quite a bit of debate about whether to SLI two 670's or get one 680. Can anyone tell me the benefits of one versus the other?

I know there are a bunch of posts like this so I suppose I can search other threads to fill in the rest of the parts I will need, but does anyone have any specific "you must get this part" suggestions? I'm still perfectly OK with a $2000 price tag if the power is worth it.

Finally, is there any reason to wait to build a desktop right now? What I mean by this is, is there any known new tech that will be coming out in the coming month or two that is worth waiting for?

Thanks again!
m
0
l
a b 4 Gaming
July 9, 2012 1:31:13 PM

Rumors of more powerful GPUs are alway circulating but you could wait forever. Haswell is the next architecture coming along that doesn't use the 1155 socket so you can't just upgrade CPUs, will be out next year (Spring?).

You could get an i7-3770K for the off chance that someone figures out how to make hyperthreading work better for games, or have HT available if you take a hobby turn and get into large amounts of encoding.

There's no contest between a 680 and SLI 670s - the SLI wins by a long, long shot. Again tho, at this time for a single monitor I can't see a case for anything more than a single 670. If you go triple monitors then a single 7970 is a win due to the larger memory bandwith and amount of VRAM.

Just pull the trigger and be amazed by your new PC :) 
m
0
l
July 9, 2012 4:00:02 PM

OK, I'm sure on the i5-3570K. That seems like a no brainer. Why do you recommend the Gigabyte windforce 670 GTX? Most posts I've read have said that the EVGA 670 was the best option. Possibly the FTW version, or the 4GB one? I honestly do not know what the differences are so I'm merely questioning for the sake of questioning!

I'm thinking I'll get a 256GB Crucial M4 for a SSD... I have one in my laptop and love it. Any thoughts on that?

Your RAM, the 2 x 4GB 1600MHz Corair Vengeance low pro seems to be the highest rated on Newegg. I'm assuming there's no reason to get any other. I have seen people recommending the G.Skill Ripjaws X Series RAM. Any reason why one is better than the other?

For the PSU I know that 750W should be fine, even if I want to upgrade to SLI, but other than that I don't really know the differences. I know that I like a quiet PC, but the top priority is cooling. I see a different PSU recommended in almost every post.

Motherboard is another part that people seem to recommend different options every post I see. What made you pick the ASRock Extreme4 over say, the Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H, or any other?

For cooling, the 212 Evo is very highly reviewed. However, since I am constantly fretting about my PC's temperature, especially for a powerful gaming computer, is there anything that I might spend a bit more money on that would cool more effectively (or quieter but same effectiveness)? I do not know how they compare but just want to get as much detail as possible before I spend money :) 

I do really like how the Corsair Carbide 500R case looks. Do you like yours J_E_D_70? How does it do on cooling and quietness?

I really appreciate the help, especially from you J_E_D_70 and if anyone else has any opinions please do chime in. I guess my main question right now is: is there anything better that I can be getting for a bit more money (closer to $2000) than what you have in your signature? Or is it not worth it?

Thanks!!!
m
0
l
a b 4 Gaming
July 9, 2012 4:53:17 PM

The only thing that makes a RAM better is the track record.
m
0
l
a b 4 Gaming
July 9, 2012 4:56:41 PM

I like that the windforce was quietest in the roundup I saw and I place that above a couple of FPS. But, if the Direct CU II from Asus is also quiet there's nothing wrong with that. Far as the VRAM, see it said repeatedly on these boards that nVidia's memory bus is "narrower" than AMDs and limits the effectiveness of having 4GB - but, I haven't seen the benches myself.

Crucial M4 is great, so I hear!

My RAM works is all I know. I think as long as it's from a name brand, you should be OK.

Any bronze/silver/gold from Seasonic, Corsair, XFX, PC Power and Cooling should be fine and be quiet as well.

I picked the Extreme4 since it got good reviews even when compared in the same articles with the more expensive boards and it had all the features I needed. I wasn't giong for a record-setting overclock so it was good enough. Plus, it was $90 ($50 off) in a combo with the 3570K at Microcenter!

Will need someone else to chime in on cooling. I've heard that the water coolers usually need quieter fans installed and some people can hear the sound of the pump. No experience here tho. I have the fan on the Evo spun down as low as the mobo controls allow and even then it never spins up to a noticable level on Skyrim or BF3. The only thing I hear is the GPU.

500R is well constructed, seems pretty rugged, cools well with room to grow and is quiet for being so ventilated. I don't see any reason not to put a open-cooler GPU like the windforce or CU II in the 500R. Could add a top-rear fan if you're really concerned. If you want quieter, the Fractal Define R3 was my backup choice but I'd go with a closed-cooler reference GPU to get the hot air out more easily.

Naw, still think the only things I'd do different are a SATA3 SSD (I got the 160GB model on sale at Christmas, then held on to it until the 3570K came out, but then the 180GB SATA3 model came out on sale for about $15 more...sigh) and one of the GPUs you mentioned.

For $100 more you could go with the 3770K in case HT-happy games start coming down the pike. I suppose a lot (sadly) depends on what the next gen consoles have as far as cores go. Could also go with 16GB of RAM just because you can. Or, stick with 8GB of ram but pay more for tighter timings to squeeze another frame or two out. Didn't run the math but could look at what it would cost for a X79 mobo and hexa-core 3930K. Again, maybe someday games will be able to take advantage of all that horsepower. In the meantime, it naturally enhances your e-peen.
m
0
l
July 9, 2012 5:00:00 PM

J_E_D_70 said:
I like that the windforce was quietest in the roundup I saw and I place that above a couple of FPS. But, if the Direct CU II from Asus is also quiet there's nothing wrong with that. Far as the VRAM, see it said repeatedly on these boards that nVidia's memory bus is "narrower" than AMDs and limits the effectiveness of having 4GB - but, I haven't seen the benches myself.

Crucial M4 is great, so I hear!

My RAM works is all I know. I think as long as it's from a name brand, you should be OK.

Any bronze/silver/gold from Seasonic, Corsair, XFX, PC Power and Cooling should be fine and be quiet as well.

I picked the Extreme4 since it got good reviews even when compared in the same articles with the more expensive boards and it had all the features I needed. I wasn't giong for a record-setting overclock so it was good enough. Plus, it was $90 ($50 off) in a combo with the 3570K at Microcenter!

Will need someone else to chime in on cooling. I've heard that the water coolers usually need quieter fans installed and some people can hear the sound of the pump. No experience here tho. I have the fan on the Evo spun down as low as the mobo controls allow and even then it never spins up to a noticable level on Skyrim or BF3. The only thing I hear is the GPU.

500R is well constructed, seems pretty rugged, cools well with room to grow and is quiet for being so ventilated. I don't see any reason not to put a open-cooler GPU like the windforce or CU II in the 500R. Could add a top-rear fan if you're really concerned. If you want quieter, the Fractal Define R3 was my backup choice but I'd go with a closed-cooler reference GPU to get the hot air out more easily.

Naw, still think the only things I'd do different are a SATA3 SSD (I got the 160GB model on sale at Christmas, then held on to it until the 3570K came out, but then the 180GB SATA3 model came out on sale for about $15 more...sigh) and one of the GPUs you mentioned.

For $100 more you could go with the 3770K in case HT-happy games start coming down the pike. I suppose a lot (sadly) depends on what the next gen consoles have as far as cores go. Could also go with 16GB of RAM just because you can. Or, stick with 8GB of ram but pay more for tighter timings to squeeze another frame or two out. Didn't run the math but could look at what it would cost for a X79 mobo and hexa-core 3930K. Again, maybe someday games will be able to take advantage of all that horsepower. In the meantime, it naturally enhances your e-peen.


Agree :D 
m
0
l
July 10, 2012 4:50:38 AM

Thanks so much for the replies once again! Here's where I'm at:

CPU: Intel i5-3570K @ $214.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115233

Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme6 @ $184.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157295

Memory: G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) @ $46.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231428

SSD: Crucial M4 256GB @ $203.84
http://www.amazon.com/Crucial-2-5-Inch-Solid-State-CT256M4SSD2/dp/B004W2JL2A/ref=sr_1_2?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1341862586&sr=1-2&keywords=crucial+m4

HDD: Western Digital Caviar Black 1 TB SATA III 7200 RPM @ $119.21
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0036Q7MV0/?tag=pcpapi-20

GPU: Geforce 670 (Don’t know which!) that I will probably eventually upgrade to SLI.

Optical Drive: ASUS 24X DVD Burner @ $16.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827135204&nm_mc=AFC-C8Junction&cm_mmc=AFC-C8Junction-_-CD/DVD%20Burners%20%28RW%20Drives%29-_-ASUS-_-27135204&AID=10440897&PID=3938566&SID=

Case: Corsair Carbide Series 500R White Mid Tower Gaming Case @ $116.28
http://www.amazon.com/Corsair-Carbide-Series-Gaming-CC-9011013-WW/dp/B005E97ZUU

And I'm considering this for a monitor, though as I stated before this is not included in my budget for the build! I just figured I'd put it here to get opinions :) 

Monitor: ASUS VS248H-P @ $195.99
http://www.amazon.com/Asus-VS248H-P-24-Inch-Full-HD-Monitor/dp/B0058UUR6E/ref=sr_1_5?s=pc&ie=UTF8&qid=1341861631&sr=1-5&keywords=monitor

So that's where I'm at. Still undecided on a cooling system, though I'm probably too nervous to go water cooling. Any recommendations for the very best air cooling there is (quiet is a plus!)? I also need to finalize exactly which version of the 670 I am going to purchase off the bat with the idea to be to upgrade to SLI in a month or two. Finally, a PSU is needed. I feel like the PSU is also a very opinionated part, as almost every build I've seen has different kinds. I know I need at least 750W, though getting 850W could be a decent idea for future-proofing in case of upgrades. Any thoughts? I am liking the looks of the 500r case, and just hope that it will cool as well as its competitors!

I am at just about $900 without a CPU Cooler, GPU, and PSU, so plenty of room to play with within the $1500-$2000 budget! Thanks everyone!
m
0
l
July 10, 2012 10:41:12 PM

I think I am going to go with the Noctua NH-D14. I know that it is a beast of a cooler, but according to their comparability list it SHOULD fit. Any personal experiences with this fan? Am I making a decent choice? I know the 212 Evo is a highly rated and much cheaper fan but from what I've read they don't even really compare, and I want my system running cool.

I also think I may go with the CORSAIR Professional Series HX750. Opinions here? It's a bit pricey but it's highly reviewed on Newegg. Should I go 850W to be safe since theres a good chance I will SLI with a second 670 soon?

And finally, I've really not made any progress on which Geforce 670 version to pick. There doesn't seem to be any clear winner :??: 

Any help is still greatly appreciated, both on my questions and my potential build thus far from last post!
m
0
l
!