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Building a new gaming desktop (newbie)

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July 18, 2012 3:14:56 AM

Approximate Purchase Date: e.g.: before the end of August

Budget Range: $500~$900 (will go up if it's really worth it)

System Usage from Most to Least Important: gaming, programming applications, web surfing, note-taking

Are you buying a monitor: Yes

Parts to Upgrade: All

Do you need to buy OS: Yes, windows 7

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: I used newegg.com for everything

Location: City, State/Region, Country - we need to know where these parts are being assembled and whether there are good store-only deals available

Parts Preferences: best performance for my money, brands are irrelevant.

Overclocking: I probably won't use it but I won't mind if i have the option

SLI or Crossfire: Whatever performs best

Your Monitor Resolution: Looking at this as an option
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Additional Comments: Looking for a good gaming computer that I can upgrade in the future. It will sit in my dorm and be my gaming hub while i get a cheap laptop or tablet for most of my schoolwork. Games like Skyrim, Maybe Guild Wars 2, League of Legends (though that doesn't take much to run), the capability to run all games on the market on medium-high, while being able to handle lots of multitasking (computer programming, web-surfing, videos playing at the same time)

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: I would like a nice desktop because getting a gaming laptop is too darned expensive.

Okay, i filled that out because I thought I had to, but I'll post each section of the build I found, but it's too expensive for me, I just don't know what the best things to knock off are.

Case:
This case caught my eye, it's a full case so i assume I could keep it for a long time and just put my new parts in there as time goes on. Any suggestions to lower the cost, but keep my flexibility, are welcome.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD:
It might be overkill, but 3TB should keep me set for... life. Again, open to suggestions, but I can always just go down in size on my own accord if the price would benefit greatly.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SSD:
Is an SSD worth getting? I'd probably just put my OS, maybe the things i ALWAYS use, but I want it to last as long as possible (preferably 4 years). Is that possible?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Monitor:
As i already linked, this is the monitor that caught my eye. Full HD and good reviews. Open to suggestions, as long as the monitor is 21"+
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU:
This is where I could really use some help. There are so many manufacturers for GPUs that I just looked for ones with good reviews. I could really use some advice about which desktop GPU would do what I want for less $$$ than this.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Sound Card:
Sound card, not super important to me, but if there's a must get or this is terrible let me know please.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU:
Another area I'm not very educated in. I'm not sure if this is overkill or not enough, but if I can go down in price at all on this please let me know.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Speakers:
Just some speakers, not too picky and I don't want to spend a fortune on nice ones just yet. Again, if you feel the urge I'd love to get a good deal on something.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MOBO:
As long as this is compatible with my CPU and it's not gonna crap out on me, I just want the best thing for my wallet. This had good reviews so i picked it, but any advice is welcome.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM:
I might switch to just one of these for the sake of my price, but is corsair the best?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU:
I don't want to skimp out on a CPU and have to replace it because I can't run stuff, but can i go a little cheaper?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Sorry for my inexperience, but basically I went through newegg and found the stuff that looked good, but ended up with too high of a price. Any solid ideas to bring down the price would be greatly appreciated.

Best solution

July 18, 2012 4:27:06 AM

This is what I would recommend. Keep in mind these are my recommendations and you should get other input before making a final choice to buy.

CPU - i5-2500K = $220
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Motherbaord - ASRock Extreme4 Gen3 - $140
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM - G.Skill Ripjaws X - $46
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU - XFX Pro650 - $100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case - Thermaltake V3 - $50
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU - XFX 6850 - $160
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Primary Drive - Corsair Force Series GT 120GB - $120
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Secondary Drive - HGST Deskstar 2TB - $135
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Speakers - Logitech S-220 - $25
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
(My pick for speakers)
Logitech Z623 - $132
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Monitor - Acer 23" - $140
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
(your pick)
Asus 23" - $160
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Total with Acer monitor and S-220 speakers - $1140
Total with Asus monitor and S-220 speakers - $1160
Total with Acer monitor and Z623 speakers - $1247
Total with Asus monitor and Z623 speakers - $1267

Issue a user experience with the 6850 and Skyrim
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/338417-33-skyrim-rade...

Wait for other people to input on video cards before jumping to buy, I stick with the brands that I have experience with.. I also use the 6870(slight upgrade from the 6850) in X-Fire but used a single GPU for some time and never had issues with the 6870 or 6850. I gave away my old rig to family with the 6850 but enjoyed it while I had it. The 6800 series was a slight upgrade from the 5800 series but not much, to be honest..

This rig will have updatability and be good for some time to come. The i5-2500K is a very good processor, it over clocks very well but I do not recommend doing so with the stock heatsink.

Wait for more input before spending money on this stuff. There are areas where money can be saved, the SSD being one of those areas, again I stuck with a brand that I use in all my computers. Another area to save money is with the PSU, but, again I stuck with a brand(model) that I have use.

This is my input based on my past experience with components. Stick with onboard sound.
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July 18, 2012 5:48:04 AM

MY OFFICIAL BUILD, WILL BE EDITED SO CHECK THIS FIRST
Okay, thanks for the feedback. I reconfigured a few things, sacrificing some stuff for cost and such. This is what I'm thinking now.

DVD: Samsung DVD
Originally forgot DVD player, but it's cheap and here it is
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case: Thermaltake V3
I agree with your case choice mopman, good vents and access.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD: Seagate Barracuda 3TB 7200RPM
For a small price difference i get 1 TB more so I'll keep my seagate
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SSD: Crucial M4 128GB
Did a little research and found that crucial has the lowest fail rates
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Monitor: Acer G235HAbd 23" (subject to change last minute)
$20 less for the basically the same thing is good, though I'll probably look for a deal on a monitor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU: Radeon HD 7850 2GB
Can't help but get a newish GPU, even if it ups the price
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: XFX 650Watt
Just to make sure, this has enough watts to run this configuration right?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Speakers: Logitech S-220
For now cheap speakers are all I need
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU: Intel i5-3570k 3.4GHz
Changed to Ivy Bridge for $10 more
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM: 2X 4GB sniper
Once again, cheaper option by far. This is easy to upgrade whenever though.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MOBO: ASRock H77 Pro4/MVP (intel)
As long as this is compatible, it's the best deal I've found.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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July 18, 2012 5:58:05 AM

you will like ssd, get it. a lot of people shy away from ocz though they got some rep for reliability issues.

Ram, you don't need expensive ram. that doesn't matter anymore, just get the right amount at the right frequency. If it's for games, you spend your extra budget on video card.

cpu/mobo
why are you getting a sandy bridge and not an ivy bridge setup? It's the newest and has more board features.

and for the naysayers, again, if it's for games, cpu doesn't matter, it's all video card.
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July 18, 2012 6:08:16 AM

Haha, was just changing as I saw the price on newegg, if you read it now it's got ivy bridge and a 2GB GPU cause i really want a decent GPU that will last a while

According to my cart at newegg, it's $1200 for all of the parts listed. Please tell me if you know of compatibility issues, problems with any parts listed, or any better deals you know of. Thanks for the help thus far :) 

Also, do I need any more fans/heatsinks to keep this running well?

Edit: changed SSD to crucial as they have the lowest failure rates
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July 18, 2012 6:18:58 AM

looks good, but i would change the ssd to a differnt one.

crucial m4 128 gets you 8more gb, and is better regarded for reliability.

you do not need to squeeze out the last bit of speed in your ssd. especially for personal use it's mainly just being used for reading and not massive data manipulation. You want reliability.

That being said, the m4 is still 2tiers about the vertex3 you picked.

IF you do want OCZ, why not get the vertex4 offering? That being said, there is some fluctuation in the vertex4 firmware, so they are improving it. But improvements also indicate that it is not yet "mature" and stablized.
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July 18, 2012 6:23:17 AM

raytseng said:
looks good, but i would change the ssd to a differnt one.

crucial m4 128 gets you 8more gb, and is better regarded for reliability.

you do not need to squeeze out the last bit of speed in your ssd. especially for personal use it's mainly just being used for reading and not massive data manipulation. You want reliability.

That being said, the m4 is still 2tiers about the vertex3 you picked.

IF you do want OCZ, why not get the vertex4 offering? That being said, there is some fluctuation in the vertex4 firmware, so they are improving it. But improvements also indicate that it is not yet "mature" and stablized.



Yeah, changed to crucial m4 via edits. Is the M4 or Vertex 4 better though? I care about reliability more than speed as I'm still skeptical about SSDs though
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July 18, 2012 6:27:38 AM

if you are running stock, should be fine with just the included case fan, and the default cpu cooler.

Add more later.

If you want a neater cpu cooler to overclock, the value choice is the coolermaster 212. The Plus version is older and $10 cheaper than the Evo.
Newegg has video showing the difference. In practice there is little difference, perhaps the most noticeable is lower noise at idle
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July 18, 2012 6:27:40 AM

this is the compatible memory list of your selected motherboard:
http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/H77%20Pro4MVP/?cat=Memor...

funny i can't find that ripjaw ram there, the black one with a different latency is listed though. I think that will still work but i am not 100% sure. Snipers are available in newegg though and it is listed. Had memory compatibility issues before, experienced a few memory dumps from time to time. The black snipers should also go well with your black motherboard :D 

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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July 18, 2012 6:30:12 AM

najirion said:
this is the compatible memory list of your selected motherboard:
http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/H77%20Pro4MVP/?cat=Memor...

funny i can't find that ripjaw ram there, the black one with a different latency is listed though. I think that will still work but i am not 100$ sure. Snipers are available in newegg though and it is listed

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



Thanks for the tip, I'll just change my RAM as it's a $5 difference, plus it looks cooler :p 
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July 18, 2012 6:33:04 AM

m4 has been around for a bit, and lots of people are using it. so you are in the same boat as a lot of other people here, and not trailblzing.

ocz v4 is relatively recent, they have had some quality complaints in previous items, but this also means they know the dog that bit them. As mentioned before, they are improving the firmware, but that also means things are in flux.
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July 19, 2012 2:54:21 AM

Best answer selected by kamekpwns.
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