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Semi-Pro gaming build - 3570k / z77 / GTX 670

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July 19, 2012 11:39:37 PM

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am seeking advice on a semi-pro gaming pc build. I have been a pc gamer since 1997. My last build was a great machine with q6600 and 8800gt guts. My main interests are CS:S, TF2, Eve Online, GuildWars 2 (eventually), StarCraft 2, Elder Scrolls games, Mass Effect games, Dragon Age games, Borderlands games, with some BF3 and Crysis 2 thrown in for good measure. Of all of these, BF3 should be the most demanding. However, I would like this build to be pretty future-proof also.

Approximate purchase date: within a month of today
Budget range: $1600 - $2000 USD
System usage: Gaming (FPS, RTS, RPG, MMO)
Buying a monitor: yes
Preferred websites to purchase from: Newegg, NCIX, Amazon, etc. (any that are legit)
Location: USA
Preferred Manufacturers: Intel, ASUS, MSI, Crucial, Corsair, SeaSonic, Samsung, Benq, ASrock, Steel Series, Razer, Sennheiser, G.Skill, EVGA, Gigabyte, Seagate, Western Digital
Overclocking: yes, mild - nothing super crazy as i'll be using air cooling
SLI/Crossfire: nope single card only
Monitor Resolution: 1920 x 1080 or 1920 x 1200 (120hz)

So here is what I initially have in mind:

CPU: Intel Core i5 3570k
MOBO: ASUS Sabertooth z77, or ASrock z77 extreme6
GPU: Nvidia GTX 670 (EVGA, MSI, or ASUS)
RAM: 16GB of Ripjaws
HDD1: Samsung 830 series 128GB SSD (Sata III) boot / gaming drive
HDD2: Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB drive 7200rpm, 64MB cache / media drive
PSU: SeaSonic X650 Gold
Case: Cooler Master HAF 932 or Storm Sniper
Monitor: BenQ XL2420T 24inch, 120hz (1920 x 1080) 2ms GTG
Keyboard: Deck Legend or Ducky Shine - mechanical, backlit
Mouse: Logitec G9

Which of these or any other parts out there will be my best bet?

I'm sold on the 3570k. Everything else is subject to change and I'm hoping for your help to steer me in the right direction if a better part is out there!

Thanks in advance.

Edits to build based on personal research and member feedback so far:
CPU: Intel Core i5 3570k
CPU Cooler: Noctua D14 - (credit g-unit1111)
MOBO: Gigabyte GA-Z77x-UD5H - (credit g-unit1111)
GPU: Gigabyte GTX 670 OC 2
RAM: 16 GB G.Skill Ripjaws Z - DDR 2133 (PC 17000)
HDD1: Plextor M3 128GB SSD (6GB/s sata III) boot / gaming drive - (credit g-unit1111)
HDD2: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 7200rpm mechanical media drive
Optical Drive: LiteOn IHBS112-04 Blu-Ray burner - (credit g-unit1111)
PSU: SeaSonic Platinum 860W (92% efficiency - platinum 80 plus)
Case: Silverstone Fortress FT02
Monitor: BenQ XL2420T 24inch, 120hz (1920 x 1080) 2ms GTG
Keyboard: Deck Legend - Mechanical, Backlit
Mouse: Logitec G9x -5700dpi laser

Price: $2116; Currently $116 over budget, have some flexibility so not worried

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-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler ($75.98 @ Outlet PC)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($170.98 @ NCIX US)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Z Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 Memory ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($88.86 @ Outlet PC)
Hard Drive: Plextor PX-M3S Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($399.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Silverstone FT02B-W ATX Mid Tower Case ($239.00 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: SeaSonic 860W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($170.00 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On ihes112-04 Blu-Ray Reader, DVD/CD Writer ($52.98 @ Newegg)
Monitor: BenQ XL2420T 120Hz 24.0" Monitor ($391.00 @ Amazon)
Mouse: Logitech G9x Wired Laser Mouse ($67.50 @ B&H)
Other: Deck Legend / Backlit, Mechanical keyboard
Total: $2116.26
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-07-21 13:50 EDT-0400)

Best solution

a c 276 4 Gaming
July 19, 2012 11:47:11 PM

16GB of RAM won't be used on a gaming rig and sometimes can actually slow it down.

Try something like 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-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler ($84.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($188.49 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($44.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F4 2TB 3.5" 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Plextor PX-M3S Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($417.55 @ Newegg)
Case: NZXT Switch 810 (White) ATX Full Tower Case ($189.98 @ 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 ($76.98 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1672.93
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-07-19 19:48 EDT-0400)

The NZXT Switch 810 will allow you to install a nice liquid radiator should you decide to go the liquid cooling route. The PC Power & Cooling PSU is actually a rebranded Seasonic, and 750W will give you a bit more room to add an SLI setup. The Plextor M3 uses Toggle NAND - same as the Samsung, and is based on the excellent Marvell controller. You can add that monitor and still come in under $2K. I don't really recommend spending that much money on peripherals because you can always get those things after you get your build up and running.
Share
July 20, 2012 12:05:27 AM

Quote:
The NZXT Switch 810 will allow you to install a nice liquid radiator should you decide to go the liquid cooling route. The PC Power & Cooling PSU is actually a rebranded Seasonic, and 750W will give you a bit more room to add an SLI setup. The Plextor M3 uses Toggle NAND - same as the Samsung, and is based on the excellent Marvell controller. You can add that monitor and still come in under $2K. I don't really recommend spending that much money on peripherals because you can always get those things after you get your build up and running.


Thanks for the quick reply g-unit1111.

I like the idea of the Plextor M3 SSD, and the PC Power and Cooling SeaSonic rebrand - great advice! Also, as you recommended, the Noctua cooler looks fantastic.

NZXT Switch looks pretty good.

The Gigabyte mobo, is that going to offer me a better value over the ASrock or ASUS?

Thanks again!
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Related resources
a c 276 4 Gaming
July 20, 2012 12:09:25 AM

Alekhine said:
Quote:
The NZXT Switch 810 will allow you to install a nice liquid radiator should you decide to go the liquid cooling route. The PC Power & Cooling PSU is actually a rebranded Seasonic, and 750W will give you a bit more room to add an SLI setup. The Plextor M3 uses Toggle NAND - same as the Samsung, and is based on the excellent Marvell controller. You can add that monitor and still come in under $2K. I don't really recommend spending that much money on peripherals because you can always get those things after you get your build up and running.


Thanks for the quick reply g-unit1111.

I like the idea of the Plextor M3 SSD, and the PC Power and Cooling SeaSonic rebrand - great advice! Also, as you recommended, the Noctua cooler looks fantastic.

NZXT Switch looks pretty good.

The Gigabyte mobo, is that going to offer me a better value over the ASrock or ASUS?

Thanks again!


It'll certainly be a better value than the Asus Sabertooth and has some really nice features that the Sabertooth doesn't have like dual LAN.

I really like the NZXT Switch 810 - if that had been around when I got my Graphite 600T, I would have the Switch 810 instead. I'm planning to get an M3 for my system as well. It was originally going to be the OCZ Vertex 4 but I have yet to see a positive review on any of the recent firmware updates.
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July 20, 2012 12:36:03 AM

g-unit1111 said:

The NZXT Switch 810 will allow you to install a nice liquid radiator should you decide to go the liquid cooling route. The PC Power & Cooling PSU is actually a rebranded Seasonic, and 750W will give you a bit more room to add an SLI setup. The Plextor M3 uses Toggle NAND - same as the Samsung, and is based on the excellent Marvell controller. You can add that monitor and still come in under $2K. I don't really recommend spending that much money on peripherals because you can always get those things after you get your build up and running.


switch has just *average* air cooling potential, if OP is not going to install a custom loop,then phantom with n extra 200mm fan would be a better choice..the power supply you suggested is good but never heard that it's made sesonic,i think it's a rebranded sirtec(sorry if am wrong).
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July 20, 2012 12:48:45 AM

Quote:
switch has just *average* air cooling potential, if OP is not going to install a custom loop,then phantom with n extra 200mm fan would be a better choice..


Thanks for the input hellfire24.

I am looking to go full air cooling, as I have had great success with air in the past, and don't care for the added complexity, and potential liability of liquid. Plus i'm ignorant of liquid cooling, and frankly don't want to mess with it on this build.

For an air cooling solution, which case will offer the best possible air cooling ability? I know theres more to it than just bolting on as many fans as possible (intake and exhaust) and hoping for the best.

The phantom looks as though it can be a decent air cooling case, but i'm not sure about the looks, personally, but I'll rethink that if it offers supreme air circulation.

Thanks again!
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a c 276 4 Gaming
July 20, 2012 12:51:54 AM

Alekhine said:
Quote:
switch has just *average* air cooling potential, if OP is not going to install a custom loop,then phantom with n extra 200mm fan would be a better choice..


Thanks for the input hellfire24.

I am looking to go full air cooling, as I have had great success with air in the past, and don't care for the added complexity, and potential liability of liquid. Plus i'm ignorant of liquid cooling, and frankly don't want to mess with it on this build.

For an air cooling solution, which case will offer the best possible air cooling ability? I know theres more to it than just bolting on as many fans as possible (intake and exhaust) and hoping for the best.

The phantom looks as though it can be a decent air cooling case, but i'm not sure about the looks, personally, but I'll rethink that if it offers supreme air circulation.

Thanks again!


I always point people to this article as it's extremely helpful before they go splurging on fans: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/cooling-airflow-hea...
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July 20, 2012 12:57:53 AM

Alekhine said:
Quote:
switch has just *average* air cooling potential, if OP is not going to install a custom loop,then phantom with n extra 200mm fan would be a better choice..


Thanks for the input hellfire24.

I am looking to go full air cooling, as I have had great success with air in the past, and don't care for the added complexity, and potential liability of liquid. Plus i'm ignorant of liquid cooling, and frankly don't want to mess with it on this build.

For an air cooling solution, which case will offer the best possible air cooling ability? I know theres more to it than just bolting on as many fans as possible (intake and exhaust) and hoping for the best.

The phantom looks as though it can be a decent air cooling case, but i'm not sure about the looks, personally, but I'll rethink that if it offers supreme air circulation.

Thanks again!


500r or phantom,both are great cases for their price tag.
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July 20, 2012 1:25:18 AM

Thanks for the article link g-unit1111.

That was a great info, and I like the fact that the case you used in your system is the one they say is nearly perfect for air cooling. My last case was an antec 900, which worked great, however, I did not have the luxury of air filters. Six months, and the interior had dust everywhere. I am interested in a case with maximum air circulation efficiency with filters on the intakes.

Prices for the case can be anywhere from $100 - $200. Also, as a secondary objective, (air circulation being top priority) I would like decent cable management. Being quiet and good looking also get points! So far the Corsair Graphite 600T looks to be the best to fit this description.

Any idea how the Silver Stone Raven RV-02 stacks up? http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811163154

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July 20, 2012 1:28:51 AM

looks good, i also wouldn't worry about 16gb slowing you "down".

Sure, to address 4sticks perhaps you cannot overclock as high as if you only had to do 2sticks; or perhaps the timings will go slower; but it's not going to be a big difference. The benchmark article show you really don't lose much by buying ram for faster timings, so that works both ways, so slower timings aren't holding you back that much either.

As you know, everything is video card bound for games. So don't sweat over optimizing that last 2% when there are bigger knobs that will double or halve your performance.
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July 20, 2012 1:36:11 AM

g-unit1111 said:
It'll certainly be a better value than the Asus Sabertooth and has some really nice features that the Sabertooth doesn't have like dual LAN.

I really like the NZXT Switch 810 - if that had been around when I got my Graphite 600T, I would have the Switch 810 instead. I'm planning to get an M3 for my system as well. It was originally going to be the OCZ Vertex 4 but I have yet to see a positive review on any of the recent firmware updates.



Thanks g-unit.. u give me alot knowledge.. damn good explaination and good list of hardware..
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July 20, 2012 1:40:52 AM

Quote:
looks good, i also wouldn't worry about 16gb slowing you "down".


Quote:
As you know, everything is video card bound for games. So don't sweat over optimizing that last 2% when there are bigger knobs that will double or halve your performance.


Thanks for your response raytseng.

I have read conflicting information on the 8GB vs 16GB ram issue. I have also read that some games like BF3 use a ton of ram. What is the slowdown of going from 8GB to 16GB - are we talking a couple frames per second with everything turned to ultra?

Also at 1920 x 1080 (or 1920 x 1200) is the single GTX 670 with a mild overclock going to serve me well, assuming max settings in all current gen games? I am shying away from sli/crossfire due to the perceived micro stuttering.

Thanks!
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July 20, 2012 1:47:35 AM

g-unit1111 said:
16GB of RAM won't be used on a gaming rig and sometimes can actually slow it down.

Try something like 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-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler ($84.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($188.49 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($44.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F4 2TB 3.5" 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Plextor PX-M3S Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($417.55 @ Newegg)
Case: NZXT Switch 810 (White) ATX Full Tower Case ($189.98 @ 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 ($76.98 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1672.93
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-07-19 19:48 EDT-0400)

The NZXT Switch 810 will allow you to install a nice liquid radiator should you decide to go the liquid cooling route. The PC Power & Cooling PSU is actually a rebranded Seasonic, and 750W will give you a bit more room to add an SLI setup. The Plextor M3 uses Toggle NAND - same as the Samsung, and is based on the excellent Marvell controller. You can add that monitor and still come in under $2K. I don't really recommend spending that much money on peripherals because you can always get those things after you get your build up and running.


Thank you for providing this build - I really enjoy it and I might purchase this exact setup. Do you think this will help me achieve my goal to play BF3 at a consistent 60+ FPS during online multiplayer matches? If not, what changes would you make? Is the upgrade to GTX 680 worth it?
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a c 276 4 Gaming
July 20, 2012 4:02:09 AM

epoon317 said:
Thank you for providing this build - I really enjoy it and I might purchase this exact setup. Do you think this will help me achieve my goal to play BF3 at a consistent 60+ FPS during online multiplayer matches? If not, what changes would you make? Is the upgrade to GTX 680 worth it?


670 and 680 are essentially the same GPU but the main difference (I think) is the higher clock ratios and VRAM speeds. But that build will max out anything you can throw at it for the next couple of years.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 20, 2012 4:17:42 AM

Such an expensive mobo isn't needed when the OP isn't interested in SLI'ing.
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July 20, 2012 9:23:55 AM

@g-unit-

switch has just *average* air cooling potential, if OP is not going to install a custom loop,then phantom with n extra 200mm fan would be a better choice..the power supply you suggested is good but never heard that it's made sesonic,i think it's a rebranded sirtec(sorry if am wrong).
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July 20, 2012 4:18:00 PM

g-unit1111 said:
670 and 680 are essentially the same GPU but the main difference (I think) is the higher clock ratios and VRAM speeds. But that build will max out anything you can throw at it for the next couple of years.


I enjoyed reading the statement, "that build will max out anything you can throw at it for the next couple of years."

Please share your thoughts on the build below. It is significantly cheaper, but does this mean that it will performance less. Will the above statement hold true for this setup? I really hope that the build below will allow me to play BF3 at max settings with a minimum 60+ FPS... Thank you for your time.

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/czz5
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/czz5/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/czz5/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 ($30.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-D3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($141.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($45.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($88.86 @ Outlet PC)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($409.99 @ NCIX US)
Case: Rosewill CHALLENGER ATX Mid Tower Case ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: XFX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($74.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($17.99 @ Newegg)
Monitor: Asus VW224U 22.0" Monitor ($144.99 @ NCIX US)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($90.65 @ Amazon)
Total: $1386.41

(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-07-19 21:27 EDT-0400)
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July 20, 2012 4:21:00 PM

^everything is cool but-
board does not supports SLi
get a better monitor.
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a c 276 4 Gaming
July 20, 2012 4:27:40 PM

Alekhine said:
Thanks for the article link g-unit1111.

That was a great info, and I like the fact that the case you used in your system is the one they say is nearly perfect for air cooling. My last case was an antec 900, which worked great, however, I did not have the luxury of air filters. Six months, and the interior had dust everywhere. I am interested in a case with maximum air circulation efficiency with filters on the intakes.

Prices for the case can be anywhere from $100 - $200. Also, as a secondary objective, (air circulation being top priority) I would like decent cable management. Being quiet and good looking also get points! So far the Corsair Graphite 600T looks to be the best to fit this description.

Any idea how the Silver Stone Raven RV-02 stacks up? http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811163154


Silverstone makes some pretty quality products - the Raven looks like a really nice case.

epoon317 said:
I enjoyed reading the statement, "that build will max out anything you can throw at it for the next couple of years."

Please share your thoughts on the build below. It is significantly cheaper, but does this mean that it will performance less. Will the above statement hold true for this setup? I really hope that the build below will allow me to play BF3 at max settings with a minimum 60+ FPS... Thank you for your time.

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/czz5
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/czz5/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/czz5/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 ($30.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-D3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($141.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($45.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($88.86 @ Outlet PC)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($409.99 @ NCIX US)
Case: Rosewill CHALLENGER ATX Mid Tower Case ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: XFX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($74.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($17.99 @ Newegg)
Monitor: Asus VW224U 22.0" Monitor ($144.99 @ NCIX US)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($90.65 @ Amazon)
Total: $1386.41

(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-07-19 21:27 EDT-0400)


That looks really good as well - I would personally put a bit more into the case on a $1400+ build - if you want to get something around the $100 mark go for the Corsair 400R or NZXT Phantom 410. Also get the Ares low profile RAM - the Ripjaw's heat sinks will make installing coolers difficult.
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July 20, 2012 4:47:08 PM

hellfire24 said:
^everything is cool but-
board does not supports SLi
get a better monitor.


Thanks - I value your input. Should I switch the MB to the ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($114.99 @ Newegg)?

Please recommend me a monitor in the same price range! :D 
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July 20, 2012 5:58:19 PM

FinneousPJ said:
Such an expensive mobo isn't needed when the OP isn't interested in SLI'ing.


well if you're going to pick up on that, you should also pick up that you don't need to spend $85 on a cpu cooler either (1/3rd the price of the cpu).

i would've saved $50 and go for the 212 evo, but that's my 2cents. 212+ if you want to save another $10

Since OP is already spending the money, assume there's going to be at least some overclock.
If's spending that much for the d14 and the mobo, he better be overclocking otherwise that's money wasted just to show off benchmark numbers.
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July 20, 2012 7:08:56 PM

raytseng said:
well if you're going to pick up on that, you should also pick up that you don't need to spend $85 on a cpu cooler either (1/3rd the price of the cpu).

i would've saved $50 and go for the 212 evo, but that's my 2cents. 212+ if you want to save another $10

Since OP is already spending the money, assume there's going to be at least some overclock.
If's spending that much for the d14 and the mobo, he better be overclocking otherwise that's money wasted just to show off benchmark numbers.


There are some good observations going on here, and I thank you for that.

The idea of the Noctua d14 is maxing out the air cooling ability. The cooler the better - even with a mild 4.1 ghz overclock. I've spent more on Zalman CPNS copper coolers in the past so $85 isn't an astronomical number to me. The surface area of the Noctua is quite large, and based on a few reviews it offers both near silent operation, and massive heat dissipation.

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Noctua/NH-D14/6.html

I want to stay open for SLI capability, even though the build calls for a single gfx card. I guess I should have stressed this more in the initial post - quality and performance matter to me, which is why I was initially thinking ASUS Sabertooth z77. There will be cheaper ways to go about doing a 3570k/z77/GTX670 build, such as the $1300 build posted above. That's not the same objective here. I like quality cases, heat sink fans, motherboards, video cards, etc. So for me cheaper doesn't equate to better, and I have some budgetary flexibility.

Thanks everyone for the input, lets keep it coming!

2 unresolved issues are which GTX 670 to buy specifically, and the whole 16GB vs 8GB issue. Any advice would be helpful. Also anyone have experience gaming with 120hz monitor?
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a c 276 4 Gaming
July 20, 2012 7:40:32 PM

Quote:
I want to stay open for SLI capability, even though the build calls for a single gfx card. I guess I should have stressed this more in the initial post - quality and performance matter to me, which is why I was initially thinking ASUS Sabertooth z77. There will be cheaper ways to go about doing a 3570k/z77/GTX670 build, such as the $1300 build posted above. That's not the same objective here. I like quality cases, heat sink fans, motherboards, video cards, etc. So for me cheaper doesn't equate to better, and I have some budgetary flexibility.


The Gigabyte UD5H and Asus P8Z77-V LX will both give you the same options as the Sabertooth for like $50 less and you won't sacrifice quality. Trust me I know what it's like to be burned by bad computer hardware and as a result I don't buy or recommend crappy components.
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July 20, 2012 8:02:45 PM

I get your mindset for quality and not being particularly budget-constrained.

Given that, I think you'd be happier to just get the extra ram now and populate those slots.

This is something that you actually see showing up in windows and potentially you may use. At least logically more so than the decisions you made to spend for quality cooling/mobo features that are not even getting used until unforeseen future.

you also seem like the type of guy who wouldn't want to hassle with risking not being able to find a matched set in the future when you decide to "upgrade". remember all this is to save $45.

my opinion only. g-unit disagrees, but I put it this way, if the memory was $0, would you get it? how about $1? that should answer your question.
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a c 276 4 Gaming
July 20, 2012 9:21:58 PM

raytseng said:
I get your mindset for quality and not being particularly budget-constrained.

Given that, I think you'd be happier to just get the extra ram now and populate those slots.

This is something that you actually see showing up in windows and potentially you may use. At least logically more so than the decisions you made to spend for quality cooling/mobo features that are not even getting used until unforeseen future.

you also seem like the type of guy who wouldn't want to hassle with risking not being able to find a matched set in the future when you decide to "upgrade". remember all this is to save $45.

my opinion only. g-unit disagrees, but I put it this way, if the memory was $0, would you get it? how about $1? that should answer your question.


I know this argument is a circular firing squad at this point, but unless you're running heavy duty Photoshop, CS5/6, or rendering applications you don't need the extra RAM and you'll never really use it.
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July 20, 2012 9:32:05 PM

g-unit1111 said:
I know this argument is a circular firing squad at this point, but unless you're running heavy duty Photoshop, CS5/6, or rendering applications you don't need the extra RAM and you'll never really use it.

:) 

I like your builds and advice. I think op sees both our perspectives and can make his informed decision
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July 20, 2012 11:44:12 PM

raytseng said:
:) 

I like your builds and advice. I think op sees both our perspectives and can make his informed decision



Thanks raytseng and g-unit1111 for the perspectives.

I agree with both ideas, and 16GB is overkill, but I'm liking the 16GB option better. Thanks for beating on that dead horse for me - raytseng you read my mind.

So 16GB it is, now I am wondering if there is any reason not to go with a 120hz monitor. Anybody use 120hz for gaming? Likes? Dislikes?

Also looking at the Gigabyte GTX 670 with three fans on the heatsink.

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Gigabyte/GeForce_GTX_670_Windforce/33.html

Also which 4 x 4GB ram would you use, and why? Timings, heatsinks, PC3 12800, PC3 17000, etc?

Thanks guys!
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July 20, 2012 11:51:56 PM

don't worry about the timings. frequency is important to the degree that getting 16000 is good, but anything more is a big price jump up for not much realworld improvement.

You do maybe need to worry about the size, to make sure it fits under your heatsink.

I suspect just go with whatever gunit said...and double it. Read reviews on newegg if there are any fitment issues with your mobo and heatsink.
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July 21, 2012 12:40:43 AM

This is what this build is shaping up to be in the mean time. It may be one of the more expensive 3570k / GTX 670 builds out there, but it includes a $391 monitor. Plus I am right at the top end of my budget. Anything to change?



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-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler ($75.98 @ Outlet PC)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($170.98 @ NCIX US)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Z Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 Memory ($118.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($88.86 @ Outlet PC)
Hard Drive: Plextor PX-M3S Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($399.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair 600T White Graphite ATX Mid Tower Case ($166.55 @ Mac Connection)
Power Supply: SeaSonic 860W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($199.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On ihes112-04 Blu-Ray Reader, DVD/CD Writer ($48.98 @ Newegg)
Monitor: BenQ XL2420T 120Hz 24.0" Monitor ($391.00 @ Amazon)
Total: $1981.30
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-07-20 20:36 EDT-0400)

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July 21, 2012 12:42:00 AM

epoon317 said:
Thanks - I value your input. Should I switch the MB to the ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($114.99 @ Newegg)?

Please recommend me a monitor in the same price range! :D 


mmmmm for $114??, hell yeah!!!!
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July 21, 2012 12:54:13 AM

Alekhine said:
This is what this build is shaping up to be in the mean time. It may be one of the more expensive 3570k / GTX 670 builds out there, but it includes a $391 monitor. Plus I am right at the top end of my budget. Anything to change?



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-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler ($75.98 @ Outlet PC)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($170.98 @ NCIX US)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Z Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 Memory ($118.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($88.86 @ Outlet PC)
Hard Drive: Plextor PX-M3S Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($399.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair 600T White Graphite ATX Mid Tower Case ($166.55 @ Mac Connection)
Power Supply: SeaSonic 860W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($199.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On ihes112-04 Blu-Ray Reader, DVD/CD Writer ($48.98 @ Newegg)
Monitor: BenQ XL2420T 120Hz 24.0" Monitor ($391.00 @ Amazon)
Total: $1981.30
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-07-20 20:36 EDT-0400)


you are spending too much on case and power supply.as i mentioned earlier,nzxt phantom is the best buy IMHO for it's price-
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...]
here are some pictures to assist your decision-
clean looks and good cable management-


enough space for modding and stuff-


and that's all for $100,i think it's a great deal.
for power supply,you don't need anything above 750w(including SLi 670 and overclocking),i would suggest this one-
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
solid review-
http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=...
extra info-
a buddy of mine runs a hd 7950 CF and 2500k setup with the non modular version and i never heard any complaints.
EDIT: monitor is too sexy bro ;) 
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July 21, 2012 2:42:58 AM

Thanks for the input on some lower cost options hellfire24.

The SeaSonice Platinum 860 is total overkill. And at $200, you'd almost have to be looney toon to buy it. I may be half crazy myself, but the 860 is sexy, modular, sleeved, 92% efficient (platinum 80 plus), and comes with a 7 year warranty. It nearly makes the price for admission passable. Plus AnandTech called it pretty much the best PSU on the planet.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/5464/seasonic-platinum-series-860w/6

The thing that is hanging me up on the Phantom is the looks (love it or hate it) and the lack of filters. In fact I am having second thoughts that maybe the NZXT Switch 810 has better air cooling potential than the mighty Phantom. Maybe (10 fan potential on the Switch), and I fail to see any hardcore air cooling review on it. I think out of all the component choices the case is one of the most important - cosmetics and cooling performance. And Filters.

So its between the SilverStone Raven RV-02 or Corsair 600T White Graphite because the CM HAF and Antec cases look pretty dated to me.





decisions ... decisions ...
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July 21, 2012 9:19:13 AM

sexy and sleeved has nothing to do with real world performance,platinum certification has nothing to do with performance either and i hardly doubt that you want to run a power supply for 7 years.there is nothing like best in computers,everything has competition.so,capstone 750w is a wiser choice IMO.
more fans don't mean better airflow,phantom supports 7 but that does not mean that you have to fill every fan spot for a good airflow.in terms of aircooling,phantom>switch-
http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...
http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...
if still you don't want phantom than my vote goes to rv-02!
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July 21, 2012 5:38:45 PM

Updated initial post with current build ideas.

Looking at getting a Silverstone Fortress FT02 case. BitTech, Anandtech and pretty much everyone else have recorded record low air cooling temps with this case. Also the Noctua D14 fits inside and works great. Therefore, I consider this case to be my top air cooling case, until research points to a better one.



http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/cases/2010/08/12/silverstone-ft02r-w-review/2

http://www.anandtech.com/show/4620/silverstone-fortress-ft02-true-classics-never-go-out-of-style

Silverstone claims that positive air pressure and physics help this case achieve such low temps. The motherboard is rotated 90 degrees, and the filtered intake ports are 3 x 180mm inlets on the bottom of the case. Very interesting.

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July 21, 2012 5:47:22 PM

raven has same internal cooling design for less $$
fortress is basically a *softer* version of raven-

fortress-
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a c 276 4 Gaming
July 21, 2012 5:49:25 PM

hellfire24 said:
you are spending too much on case and power supply.as i mentioned earlier,nzxt phantom is the best buy IMHO for it's price-
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...]
here are some pictures to assist your decision-
clean looks and good cable management-
http://images.bit-tech.net/content_images/2010/08/nzxt-phantom-case-review/NZXT-Phantom-2L.jpg
http://www.neowin.net/forum/uploads/monthly_01_2012/post-127814-0-05541900-1327188071.jpg
enough space for modding and stuff-
http://cdn.overclock.net/9/98/982927d9_VenomBuildLog033.jpeg
http://www.mnpctech.3dpixelnet.com/picture_library/1_nzxt_phantom_water_cool_gaming_pc_case_mod1.jpg
and that's all for $100,i think it's a great deal.
for power supply,you don't need anything above 750w(including SLi 670 and overclocking),i would suggest this one-
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
solid review-
http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=...
extra info-
a buddy of mine runs a hd 7950 CF and 2500k setup with the non modular version and i never heard any complaints.
EDIT: monitor is too sexy bro ;) 


That yellow Phantom looks amazing! I was thinking of having my Graphite modified with a yellow / black theme - where do you get something like that done?
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July 21, 2012 5:54:29 PM

g-unit1111 said:
That yellow Phantom looks amazing! I was thinking of having my Graphite modified with a yellow / black theme - where do you get something like that done?


that's an amazing idea as 600t looks better than phantom(at least to me lol),BTW it's not mine.i saw it on overclock.net.here is the link to the complete build log and other details.
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August 9, 2012 1:49:41 AM

Best answer selected by Alekhine.
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!