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Help A Girl Out New Gaming/General Purpose System

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July 12, 2012 12:44:27 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: e.g.: this week (the closer the better)

Hello all,

I am helping a 15 year old with his first build and not having built a system in 3 years, I find myself a bit rusty. The kid has been researching a bit but is mainly focused on "screaming" video cards. Since this will be a general purpose build as well, I am trying to help him refine his choices and go for the most bang for the buck with quality parts and longevity in mind. This system will be used for gaming, school work on Microsoft office and some work with a high school level programming class This will be an entirely new system including a monitor, gaming keyboard and mouse and speakers. He likes the idea of utilizing an SSD for the OS and possibly a few games and a larger capacity, traditional drive for everything else. He will try to take advantage of sales at Best Buy for the monitor and possibly the copy of Windows 7 64 bit so I have not included them in this list but suggestions are appreciated. Since he is a student and his mom is taking university classes, he might be able to take advantage of student pricing on Windows and a suggestion for which version would be best would also be appreciated.

Here is what he has come up with so far



Budget Range: (not including monitor) $1500.00

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, school work, programming in Microsoft. NET environment, possible video editing


Are you buying a monitor: Yes but probably from Best Buy with gift cards :) 


Do you need to buy OS: Yes. not sure which version of Windows 7 64 bit would be best?

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg , Best Buy for monitor and whatever else

Location: Florida

Parts Preferences: Prefer better quality parts with proven track record such as Gigabyte or Asus motherboards but will take suggestions

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: No

Your Monitor Resolution: I assume a 24" LCD with full HD so 1920-1080?

Additional Comments: I have let some areas blank as I really am not sure what would work best . Iwould like the system to be upgradeable so maybe a Z77 rather than a Z68 board??

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: Kid only has an old laptop. Needs a new machine!

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
cooler master storm enforcer and power supply

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Powercolor pcs + radion 7950 hd

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
cpu and processor


http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
ram

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=23-114-...
keyboard

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
mouse

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
cpu cooler

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
dvd reader/burner



THANK YOU!!!!!
a b 4 Gaming
July 12, 2012 12:52:09 PM

honestly, spending 1500 dollars is a lot for a non-overclocking system

the system i put together is overkill for 1080p gaming, but adds future usability

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/bTCP
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a b 4 Gaming
July 12, 2012 12:52:23 PM

1000w is extreme overkill btw
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Related resources
July 12, 2012 12:53:22 PM

LOL "Help A Girl Out"... you played that card very nicely.... well done
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July 12, 2012 12:57:54 PM

LOL! Yes, I understand the 1000 PSU is overkill! The kid was so excited about Combo deals and I think he wasn't really looking at individual components. I originally had him with a 650 PSU, an HD 7850 and a better quality Mobo and CPU but I posted because I need your opinions and the "Help a Girl out" is exactly what I used 3 years ago when I built our 2 systems and I got AMAZING advice!
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July 12, 2012 3:41:27 PM

So can anyone help me get this into a better perspective? It seems I may need to start from the beginning and just retain the Cooler Master case ( the kid loves it) and the video card and build the system from that while trying to keep it under a revised budget of ~ $1200.00? Still want to go with a SSD and quality parts, though.

Anyone??
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a b 4 Gaming
July 12, 2012 3:51:42 PM

lol. combo deals dont always work out. 550w is more than enough for a single gpu and no SLI and overclocking.

check out the build i have. if you want to lower the price by around 150 dollars, you can drop the video cards down to a asus 7850.

heres is a link to the 7850 i mentioned. selling at amazon for 249.99 with free shipping
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007JLFV7U/?tag=pcpapi-20

your kid is 15? im 14
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July 12, 2012 4:16:37 PM

TheBigTroll said:
if he likes the case, ill rebuild the system accordingly

this shouldnt hinder too much performance decrease

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/bUj2



That looks good but he really wants the Powercolor card. He has very little PC build ( if any) experience. My daughter , on the other hand, built her first system at age 12. I would bother her with this but she is taking online Python and JAVA and needs to finish her class quickly so I thought I would reach out to the Tom's crowd.

Congrats for your knowledge! Thanks!
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July 12, 2012 4:55:07 PM

Here's my build from December - all you have to do is remove some drives and change the video card. The motherboard is solid and helps the SSD
http://pcpartpicker.com/p/bUwf

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a b 4 Gaming
July 12, 2012 6:02:16 PM

asus is a much better brand. plus it has a much better aftermarket cooler and internal components.lets you do more overclocking and the board will have a much longer lifetime
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July 12, 2012 6:22:28 PM

Which Asus model are you referring to? I am going to use PCparts picker to try to reconfigure this system based partially on what you suggested.
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July 12, 2012 6:23:26 PM

Duh, I just realized you meant the one you have on your selection. Got it.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 12, 2012 8:18:14 PM

no problem
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a c 271 4 Gaming
July 12, 2012 8:49:55 PM

TheBigTroll said:
honestly, spending 1500 dollars is a lot for a non-overclocking system

the system i put together is overkill for 1080p gaming, but adds future usability

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/bTCP


Not to mention there's a lot being spent on peripherals when there shouldn't be - you can always get those later.

Try this:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($229.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-U9B SE2 37.9 CFM CPU Cooler ($62.98 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-D3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($152.86 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (1 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($59.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F4 2TB 3.5" 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($134.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($417.55 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair 400R ATX Mid Tower Case ($109.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On IHBS112-04 Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($64.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1443.31
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
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a b 4 Gaming
July 12, 2012 9:02:53 PM

not again g-unit1111. you gave her a single 8gb dimm

oh and btw, the z77x-ud3h is cheaper i believe at ncix for 145.98

this is g-unit1111's build editied
http://pcpartpicker.com/p/bVzv
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July 12, 2012 9:16:35 PM

No need to blow any money on a CPU cooler, stock should be fine if your not overclocking...
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a b 4 Gaming
July 12, 2012 9:20:11 PM

aftermarket coolers help reduce the temps quite a bit and can make your CPU last a bit longer
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a c 271 4 Gaming
July 12, 2012 9:24:11 PM

TheBigTroll said:
not again g-unit1111. you gave her a single 8gb dimm

oh and btw, the z77x-ud3h is cheaper i believe at ncix for 145.98

this is g-unit1111's build editied
http://pcpartpicker.com/p/bVzv


Argh, I should really stop using PC Part Picker to find RAM.

I fixed it:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-U9B SE2 37.9 CFM CPU Cooler ($59.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-D3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($144.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($45.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F4 2TB 3.5" 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($123.99 @ Adorama)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($417.49 @ CompUSA)
Case: Corsair 400R ATX Mid Tower Case ($89.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On IHBS112-04 Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($64.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1347.40
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
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a b 4 Gaming
July 12, 2012 9:36:44 PM

the ud3h is a dollar more

you also have to click every single spec for the memory. just scroll down the list.
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a c 271 4 Gaming
July 12, 2012 10:08:08 PM

TheBigTroll said:
the ud3h is a dollar more

you also have to click every single spec for the memory. just scroll down the list.


I picked the D3H because it has more SATA ports.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 12, 2012 10:12:09 PM

like she would use more than 6 drives
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July 12, 2012 10:40:22 PM

TheBigTroll said:
aftermarket coolers help reduce the temps quite a bit and can make your CPU last a bit longer



To be honest I've never seen a computer die due to a CPU problem. The stock cooler is designed to cool the CPU adequately. Aftermarket coolers tend to be quieter which is a bonus. Personally I've never bought an aftermarket cooler for any PC that I've ever built, and I've never once had a problem out of about 30 computers that I've built.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 12:27:00 AM

the heatsink cools better so that the cpu doesnt take as much stress as it is intended for. meaning that it will have a longer lifespan
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a c 271 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 1:00:44 AM

TheBigTroll said:
like she would use more than 6 drives


True but if you wind up using like CS5 or something like that it never hurts to be prepared.
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July 13, 2012 1:27:04 AM

TheBigTroll said:
the heatsink cools better so that the cpu doesnt take as much stress as it is intended for. meaning that it will have a longer lifespan


How much longer? lol now I'm curious. I would expect any CPU with stock cooling (with no overclocking) to last at least 10 years. Do you have any documentation to support this theory? (Not trying to flame, I'm generally curious)
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July 13, 2012 2:05:27 AM

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3450 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor ($199.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 76.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($19.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Asus SABERTOOTH Z77 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($239.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($59.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: PowerColor Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card ($339.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master Storm Enforcer ATX Mid Tower Case ($74.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Cooler Master 850W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($154.98 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 (64-bit) ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Keyboard: Razer Anansi Wired Gaming Keyboard ($74.99 @ Newegg)
Mouse: Razer RZ01-00280500-R3M1 Wired Laser Mouse ($75.97 @ Newegg)
Total: $1647.83
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)


This is what the kid came back with today and he is already over budget. He wants the gaming keyboard and mouse and he wanted to go up to the HD 7950 so the price went up significantly. If anyone can point out problem area here, I'd appreciate it. The case and PSU are a combo deal so it ends up a little cheaper. This is also all through Newegg and I know I get get some of the components cheaper and still get free shipping.
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July 13, 2012 2:14:39 AM

Change the PSU, don't get coolermaster and you don't need 850 watts.

With no SLI/Crossfire 600 watts should be enough.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 11:35:52 AM

Elizabeth_B said:
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3450 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor ($199.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 76.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($19.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Asus SABERTOOTH Z77 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($239.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($59.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: PowerColor Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card ($339.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master Storm Enforcer ATX Mid Tower Case ($74.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Cooler Master 850W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($154.98 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 (64-bit) ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Keyboard: Razer Anansi Wired Gaming Keyboard ($74.99 @ Newegg)
Mouse: Razer RZ01-00280500-R3M1 Wired Laser Mouse ($75.97 @ Newegg)
Total: $1647.83
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)


This is what the kid came back with today and he is already over budget. He wants the gaming keyboard and mouse and he wanted to go up to the HD 7950 so the price went up significantly. If anyone can point out problem area here, I'd appreciate it. The case and PSU are a combo deal so it ends up a little cheaper. This is also all through Newegg and I know I get get some of the components cheaper and still get free shipping.



1: vengeance ram doesnt fit under the hyper 212 plus/evo
2:sabertooth is near useless other than for the looks. a h77-v motherboard has about as many features other than overclocking (which you cant with the i5 3570k anyways)
3: if you sacrifice a year or 2 of warranty, you can pick up a seagate 1tb for 30 dollars cheaper and get the same speeds
4:i swear there are many crucial m4 models out there. the OEM one is 10 dollars cheaper
5:7850 is more than enough for him. if you want to, you can spend even more for a evga ftw gtx 670, but you do have a budget so i suggest not going there. with a 7850 as i said before can play all his games at near max with 50+ fps. tell him that
6:a xfx 650w is more than enough for crossfire 7850s. if you dont want to crossfire in the future, get a 550w, if you want to get a 670 and SLI later on, get a 750w
7:windows 7 pro is useless to him. he wont be using more than 16gb of ram
8: i dont know too much about that particular model. at that kind of price point, i can pick up a nice mechanical keyboard which is so much better than regular membrane switches. a nice cheap one would be the rosewell rx9000 series. pcik the switch he would like to use. they are all geared to different users.
9:o verspending on the mouse. get something like a razer deathadder black edition. very good mouse and kind of reasonable
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a b 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 11:40:43 AM

aaab said:
How much longer? lol now I'm curious. I would expect any CPU with stock cooling (with no overclocking) to last at least 10 years. Do you have any documentation to support this theory? (Not trying to flame, I'm generally curious)



its just general logics. if the cpu has to take stress from all those heat and cooling cycles, then it makes the chip not last as long as with chips that dont experience as many of those heat cycles. i dont know how long since most of my computers are laptops and they get 90c when i start gaming which is pretty extreme
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July 13, 2012 2:39:39 PM

Hello again!

Thanks so much for all your suggestions. We are working on a solution and taking your great suggestions( PSU, hard drive, Vid card, OS) under advisement but the same concern keeps coming up whenever I search for memory ( on Newegg) to replace the original choice: Many reviewers are having to adjust the settings to get the memory correct after they have tested it. ( Memtest?)

I want to know the memory will work with the motherboard without a great deal of tweaking. In other words, the correct voltage and timing and speed for what it is listed for. I really don't want to have to get into the BIOS to change settings but if necessary, I will. I assume I should run memtest then determine if the memory is being read properly? Sorry, I don't know a lot about that so I need help! On our last build ( 3 years ago) we just chose memory based on what was listed as supported on the Gigabyte web site.


Thanks again!
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a b 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 3:37:55 PM

board maufacturers dont have all the memory listed. check the memory manufacturer instead
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a c 271 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 4:29:11 PM

Elizabeth_B said:
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3450 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor ($199.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 76.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($19.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Asus SABERTOOTH Z77 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($239.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($59.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: PowerColor Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card ($339.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master Storm Enforcer ATX Mid Tower Case ($74.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Cooler Master 850W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($154.98 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 (64-bit) ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Keyboard: Razer Anansi Wired Gaming Keyboard ($74.99 @ Newegg)
Mouse: Razer RZ01-00280500-R3M1 Wired Laser Mouse ($75.97 @ Newegg)
Total: $1647.83
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)


This is what the kid came back with today and he is already over budget. He wants the gaming keyboard and mouse and he wanted to go up to the HD 7950 so the price went up significantly. If anyone can point out problem area here, I'd appreciate it. The case and PSU are a combo deal so it ends up a little cheaper. This is also all through Newegg and I know I get get some of the components cheaper and still get free shipping.



My changes would be to not get a motherboard that expensive if you're not going to overclock, and putting $150 in peripherals is kind of ridiculous, IMO. You can get the Gigabyte UD3H for $100 cheaper and then upgrade your CPU to the 3570K and your GPU to the GTX 670. Also keep in mind that Cooler Master has an absolutely horrendous reputation when it comes to power supplies.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 4:38:10 PM

nah. cooler master has been getting better slowly. just that we dont recommend it until they get good like superflower or seasonic
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July 13, 2012 5:04:08 PM

O.K. So I looked at the Gigabyte boards and that line looks promising. He wants to stay with an ATI card rather than Nvidia because he heard Nvidia had driver issues?. Did not know that about the Coolermaster PSU. I have one in my daughter's build and it seems fine for three years now. So the brands with the best rep are Seasonic, Corsair, PC Power and Cooling any others???
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a b 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 5:08:52 PM

its the opposite. Nvidia has much better drivers. (in my experience compared to the catalyst control center). nvidia often has many more options in terms of AA modes

XFX makes good PSUs as well since they are just rebrands of seasonic PSUs. only that they look much better
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a c 271 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 5:29:19 PM

Elizabeth_B said:
O.K. So I looked at the Gigabyte boards and that line looks promising. He wants to stay with an ATI card rather than Nvidia because he heard Nvidia had driver issues?. Did not know that about the Coolermaster PSU. I have one in my daughter's build and it seems fine for three years now. So the brands with the best rep are Seasonic, Corsair, PC Power and Cooling any others???


Yeah it's opposite - NVIDIA has better drives, but AMD is getting better. Catalyst 12.7 is supposed to correct a lot of the issues with the 78XX and 79XX cards, and the 7970 with the new firmware update is supposed to be as good as the 680.

Quote:
What about this one? IT claims it is semi modular.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6817207016


That's a good choice. XFX rebrands a lot of Seasonic PSUs.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 5:32:25 PM

yes i told you before. xfx is a good choice :D 
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July 13, 2012 6:20:37 PM




Well, here it goes! He does not want to change the video card and the gaming mouse is for fun as he already has another mouse and I took your suggestions ( kinda ). My main concerns are the motherboard and memory compatibility and whether or not this memory will be too high profile for the cooler. He would also save some $ by using different merchants but that is not a major point of contention.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3450 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor ($199.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 76.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($19.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($149.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($46.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: PowerColor Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card ($339.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master Storm Enforcer ATX Mid Tower Case ($74.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: XFX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($133.98 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($25.97 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Keyboard: Razer Anansi Wired Gaming Keyboard ($74.99 @ Newegg)
Mouse: Razer RZ01-00280500-R3M1 Wired Laser Mouse ($75.97 @ Newegg)
Total: $1372.82
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
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a b 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 6:43:16 PM

tell him that for 80 dollars more, he can play all his games at max settings fr the next year or 2.

also tell him that for 80 dollars less, the 7850 has the same abilities as a 7950 but you only lose 10-20fps which is near nothing as your eyes cant see that many frames

ripjaws fit under the heatsink nevertheless.


one more thing. if he is to get a 7950, he should get the xfx double dissipation 7950 as it has much better cooling
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a c 271 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 7:09:47 PM

Elizabeth_B said:
Well, here it goes! He does not want to change the video card and the gaming mouse is for fun as he already has another mouse and I took your suggestions ( kinda ). My main concerns are the motherboard and memory compatibility and whether or not this memory will be too high profile for the cooler. He would also save some $ by using different merchants but that is not a major point of contention.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3450 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor ($199.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 76.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($19.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($149.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($46.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: PowerColor Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card ($339.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master Storm Enforcer ATX Mid Tower Case ($74.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: XFX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($133.98 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($25.97 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Keyboard: Razer Anansi Wired Gaming Keyboard ($74.99 @ Newegg)
Mouse: Razer RZ01-00280500-R3M1 Wired Laser Mouse ($75.97 @ Newegg)
Total: $1372.82
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)


$150 on peripherals on that kind of build is still a waste, IMO. I'd personally put the money you'd be paying for the keyboard and mouse back into the GPU and get a superclocked GTX 670. You can always get the good peripherals later. You don't have to get those initially.

Also I prefer Sapphire over Power Color for Radeon cards. They give you a lot of nice extras with their cards.
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July 13, 2012 7:56:47 PM

That motherboard will accommodate another SSD if he wanted to add a higher capacity one later, correct? He would just need an additional 3.5 to 2.5 adapter for the case, right?
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July 13, 2012 9:41:20 PM

O.K. name a good quality GTX 670 from any retailer and we may order tonight or tomorrow and get the rest of the stuff from Newegg.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 11:40:03 PM

asus directcu2 TOP gtx670 is pretty much the best one you can get right now. the chip is specially binned for overclocking

EVGA FTW GTX 670. the cheapest good 670. has a 680 cooler and PCB for the chip. evga has the best customer service

MSI GTX 670 power edition. another great choice

gigabyte gtx 670. weird warranty but a cheap 670 that is pretty good
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a b 4 Gaming
July 13, 2012 11:45:46 PM

there wont be too much difference between all of them unless you go extreme OC. just pick the one that looks the best

btw, if your son would like the 670 from evga, he can buy a 680 backplate for that particular card since it uses a 680 PCB. the backplate is for asthetics
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July 15, 2012 3:02:18 AM

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3450 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor ($149.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 76.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($19.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($145.98 @ NCIX US)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($46.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($114.99 @ Amazon)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($399.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master Storm Enforcer ATX Mid Tower Case ($74.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: XFX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($109.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($24.98 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($98.98 @ Outlet PC)
Keyboard: Razer Anansi Wired Gaming Keyboard ($74.99 @ Newegg)
Mouse: Razer RZ01-00280500-R3M1 Wired Laser Mouse ($75.97 @ Newegg)
Total: $1337.82
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)

This is the final build and I cannot thank you all enough! @ The Big Troll- you were so helpful and this kid will really be happy to get this computer. :bounce: 
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July 15, 2012 3:05:08 AM

When it comes time to assemble it, I may be back especially when it comes to the correct order of assembly. As you notice, he went with that gaming keyboard and mouse but it was his $$$ not mine.
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