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First Build for Gaming and Editing

This will be my first system build and I want it to be a good one. I want to stay around $2,500 and I won't be purchasing for a few months (Is anything set to release by January?). I will be editing with the programs Adobe After Effects CS6, Sony Vegas, Cinema 4D, and maybe 3DS Max. I want to game on high/ultra setings at 1080p on the games Battlefield 3, Crysis 2, and Skyrim. I WILL overclock, but I don't know how much. I already have a case (Cooler Master HAF X) and a CPU cooler 9 Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo with two Corsair 120mm SP High Performance fans running in push/pull config).

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770k
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116501

Mobo: ASUS Maximus V FORMULA LGA 1155 Intel Z77
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131854

GPU: XFX Double D Radeon HD 7970
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150596

RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3 1866
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231528

PSU: COOLER MASTER Silent Pro Hybrid 850w
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817171061

HDD: Western Digital Caviar Black 2TB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136792

SSD: Corsair Force Series GT 240GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233208

Speakers: Corsair Gaming Audio Series SP2500 High-power 2.1 PC Speaker System
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16836852001

OS: Windows 7 Professional
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116992

I really need help with the RAM choice. I want to end up with 32gb and I am not sure what RAM is the best or if it will even fit with the Heatsink/fans. I chose the 7970 over the 760/680 because I have been told by many people that the 7970 does much better with editing even though the Nvidia cards have CUDA cores. I put the speakers in because I didn't know if anyone had a better choice. I am using Klispch ProMedia 2.1's right now and they are pretty good, so I didn't know how they compare. I chose Windows 7 Professional so I could use more than 16gb of RAM. I will, in the future, buy a second 7970 and 2 more monitors. Thanks in advance for any help!
23 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about first build gaming editing
  1. The HD7970 wont help in rendering as you do need CUDA cores for that. If you were using something that benefits from OpenCL an AMD card will do better, but Nvidia's CUDA will help in supported programs. If you are gaming on three monitors though, keep the 7970, as then the 3GB of VRAM will be usefull.

    The RAM needs to be low profile if you want the possibility of 32GB and filling all the mobo slots. G.Skill Ares and Corsair Vengeance Low Profile are the brands to get.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231558

    Coolermaster are not a good PSU maker, cases are amazing but power supply's no. Seasonic is at the top of the ladder when it comes to PSU's.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817151102

    That Caviar Black is veeery expensive, the equivalent Seagate is $120. Though I would suggest two HDD's. One for holding raw data and the other for rendered/final products. This is so when rendering, data isnt being read from and written to the same drive, which will slow things down a bit. The SSD holds the programs and OS.
    I suggest two of these drives.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822148840

    SSD is quite large, 128GB is all you should need if you steal a bit of space from the output drive to keep the user files and unimportant programs on.

    The speaker setup is a bit unnecessary, a good set of headphones will be enough. I'v had these ones for the past three years and there still going. There may be better ones out there, but these are very good.
    Razer Carcharias Headset. $80
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16826153043

    You don't need Windows Professional to enjoy all your RAM, just a 64bit operating system. Home Premium 64bit will do just fine and is $40 cheaper.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116986
  2. manofchalk said:


    SSD is quite large, 128GB is all you should need if you steal a bit of space from the output drive to keep the user files and unimportant programs on.

    The speaker setup is a bit unnecessary, a good set of headphones will be enough. I'v had these ones for the past three years and there still going. There may be better ones out there, but these are very good.
    Razer Carcharias Headset. $80
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16826153043

    You don't need Windows Professional to enjoy all your RAM, just a 64bit operating system. Home Premium 64bit will do just fine and is $40 cheaper.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116986


    OK, thank you for your response. The reason I went for the 240gb ssd is because I want to put some programs on it and the operating system and stuff, lol, but if i don't need it to do that then I am all for spending less in that department.

    I have weird ears that stick out a little farther than normal so wearing headsets is very uncomfortable for me. And plus I love my room shaking with bass :D

    Here http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/aa366778%28v=vs.85%29.aspx#physical_memory_limits_windows_7 it shows that Home Premium can only handle 16gb of Ram, so that is why I went with Professional.

    Oh, and for the RAM, do you know of any that would match a red and black and silver color scheme?

    Haha, I want it to look great and run even better!
  3. Huh, I did not actually know that Home Premium only supports 16GB. 64bit OS's should in theory support up to 14Tb of RAM, so I have no idea why they would limit it (marketing scheme probably). Though just remember that an editing rig shouldn't need to go above 16GB, only reason for more is virtual machines, and for that you should be on an LGA2011 machine.

    A good looking machine is essential, I personally wasted a bit of cash on some red LED strips/fans in my build, and it looks awesome.
    Most of G.Skill's RAM is red, while Corsair comes in many colours. Problem is that you will need Low Profile RAM if you want to keep the 32GB option open.

    This is the only Low Profile red kit from Corsair, its 2x4 so may not be ideal. You can get black low profile kits as well.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233240

    This red G.SKill Ares is low profile and comes in 2x8GB, so its ideal. Runs at decent speeds as well. Only problem is its $15 more than the orange kit I showed you before.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231606

    This Mushklin Blackline is black (obviously) and is apparently low profile according to a Newegg reviewer (not a good source on info, but meh). Runs at all the right speeds.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820226191
  4. Buy a heatsink :D. Theres no use in buying a K cpu if not OCing. :)
  5. In the original post he mentions that he has a 212 EVO, heat-sink is covered.

    Just a tip, if you have the Corsair silent fans lying around, they work better on heatsinks. They have a higher static pressure than the performance (which is optimized for CFM), so it can push air through a heatsink better. Not a big issue, but if you have some it might be worth swapping.

    Static pressure is how hard it can push air through something.
    CFM is just how much air it can move.
  6. Oh. My bad, didnt see that D:
  7. manofchalk said:
    The HD7970 wont help in rendering as you do need CUDA cores for that. If you were using something that benefits from OpenCL an AMD card will do better, but Nvidia's CUDA will help in supported programs. If you are gaming on three monitors though, keep the 7970, as then the 3GB of VRAM will be usefull.

    The RAM needs to be low profile if you want the possibility of 32GB and filling all the mobo slots. G.Skill Ares and Corsair Vengeance Low Profile are the brands to get.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231558

    Coolermaster are not a good PSU maker, cases are amazing but power supply's no. Seasonic is at the top of the ladder when it comes to PSU's.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817151102

    That Caviar Black is veeery expensive, the equivalent Seagate is $120. Though I would suggest two HDD's. One for holding raw data and the other for rendered/final products. This is so when rendering, data isnt being read from and written to the same drive, which will slow things down a bit. The SSD holds the programs and OS.
    I suggest two of these drives.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822148840

    SSD is quite large, 128GB is all you should need if you steal a bit of space from the output drive to keep the user files and unimportant programs on.

    The speaker setup is a bit unnecessary, a good set of headphones will be enough. I'v had these ones for the past three years and there still going. There may be better ones out there, but these are very good.
    Razer Carcharias Headset. $80
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16826153043

    You don't need Windows Professional to enjoy all your RAM, just a 64bit operating system. Home Premium 64bit will do just fine and is $40 cheaper.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116986
    if hes going to pay 199.99 for PSU he should get this monster http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817151110 :lol:
  8. There has to be a catch on that PSU... Amps check out better than the 850, fully modular, 80+ Gold, more SATA connectors, more PCI-E conectors... AHA! The sticker is upside down when the PSU draws air from outside of the case!

    The only real thing I can find is its longer than the 850W, which any decent case can deal with.
    Get that one, you will never have to worry about running out of power with it.
  9. manofchalk said:
    There has to be a catch on that PSU... Amps check out better than the 850, fully modular, 80+ Gold, more SATA connectors, more PCI-E conectors... AHA! The sticker is upside down when the PSU draws air from outside of the case!

    The only real thing I can find is its longer than the 850W, which any decent case can deal with.
    Get that one, you will never have to worry about running out of power with it.


    haha, well, I really should not have gone to sleep! :whistle: But let's get started on replying!

    For the fans, would these be good? http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835181027
    On my heatsink of course. They say they are static pressure fans so I hope they work well. :ange:

    I like that g.skill ares ram, but do you know where I should look for reviews of it? Or how well they would overclock?

    For Windows: Yes, i know, it is very stupid that it doesn't support more. But would After Effects not use 32gb? I just know that right now I have 8gb and it gets used up way too easily by my system. (but it was from best buy which was a giant mistake) :fou:

    Do you have any LED strips you could recommend? Plus after a bit I was going to switch out my top and side 200mm fans for this http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835103072 The red one (just saying that in case the blue one pops up)

    And I still didn't know if you had any suggestions for an SSD?
  10. bigcyco1 said:
    if hes going to pay 199.99 for PSU he should get this monster http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817151110 :lol:


    I will, but I still don't like the color... :lol:
  11. Nw333 said:
    Oh. My bad, didnt see that D:


    Haha, it's ok! :sol:
  12. DoubleJukeFTW said:
    I will, but I still don't like the color... :lol:
    :lol: i can understand that
  13. DoubleJukeFTW said:
    haha, well, I really should not have gone to sleep! :whistle: But let's get started on replying!

    For the fans, would these be good? http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835181027
    On my heatsink of course. They say they are static pressure fans so I hope they work well. :ange:

    I like that g.skill ares ram, but do you know where I should look for reviews of it? Or how well they would overclock?

    For Windows: Yes, i know, it is very stupid that it doesn't support more. But would After Effects not use 32gb? I just know that right now I have 8gb and it gets used up way too easily by my system. (but it was from best buy which was a giant mistake) :fou:

    Do you have any LED strips you could recommend? Plus after a bit I was going to switch out my top and side 200mm fans for this http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835103072 The red one (just saying that in case the blue one pops up)

    And I still didn't know if you had any suggestions for an SSD?


    Yep, they should be good.

    Anandtech and Overclockers.uk have some very good reviews. Currently stressed for time so I cant go find any but just type G.Skill Ares review into Google and you'l find something. OC'ing low profile RAM is pretty much impossible without going to 1.65v, which is bad for the CPU.

    After Affects is a hog on RAM, but I doubt you would need 32GB.

    BItfenix Alchemy Connect are the strips I use, their not on Newegg so you'l have to find them somewhere else. Dont know of any other strips you can get. The Megaflow fans are very good,I use them in my system.

    The OCZ Vertex 4 is the one to get for just raw speed, but has unproven reliability (So far its been good) since its new on the market. Crucial M4 if you want to play it safe and get a drive with notorious reliability. I would personally go with the Vertex 4( as you can see in my sig).
  14. manofchalk said:
    Yep, they should be good.

    Anandtech and Overclockers.uk have some very good reviews. Currently stressed for time so I cant go find any but just type G.Skill Ares review into Google and you'l find something. OC'ing low profile RAM is pretty much impossible without going to 1.65v, which is bad for the CPU.

    After Affects is a hog on RAM, but I doubt you would need 32GB.

    BItfenix Alchemy Connect are the strips I use, their not on Newegg so you'l have to find them somewhere else. Dont know of any other strips you can get. The Megaflow fans are very good,I use them in my system.

    The OCZ Vertex 4 is the one to get for just raw speed, but has unproven reliability (So far its been good) since its new on the market. Crucial M4 if you want to play it safe and get a drive with notorious reliability. I would personally go with the Vertex 4( as you can see in my sig).


    Which one of these would you choose? But do you think I will need that much raw speed if I am going from just a mechanical to an ssd, will the more reliable one be good?

    Why is OC'ing it worse than regular? I thought the only difference was that it had a smaller heatsink? I read that g.skill says the ares recommended VCCIO/VCCSA voltage of 1.25v, which can degrade the CPU? Do you know if this is not true or what it even means?

    Would 32gb help if I have a file rendering in After effects, I am running firefox, running itunes, recording gameplay, and maybe playing minecraft at the same time? :whistle:

    And what if i put this http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16812551002 at the bottom of the case and two red fans at the top and the red at the side? haha.
  15. Quote:
    I would also say that you would be better off with a Seasonic PSU or a Corsair, they are both good. You probably won't need 32GB of ram right now. I say buy 16GB and if that isn't enough, buy another kit. I would go with a Crucial M4 also. They may be a tad slower than a Vertex 4 but they are a good deal cheaper and pretty damn fast.

    I am getting seasonic now! and that was my plan with the ram. and ok!
  16. Best answer
    DoubleJukeFTW said:
    Which one of these would you choose? But do you think I will need that much raw speed if I am going from just a mechanical to an ssd, will the more reliable one be good?

    Why is OC'ing it worse than regular? I thought the only difference was that it had a smaller heatsink? I read that g.skill says the ares recommended VCCIO/VCCSA voltage of 1.25v, which can degrade the CPU? Do you know if this is not true or what it even means?

    Would 32gb help if I have a file rendering in After effects, I am running firefox, running itunes, recording gameplay, and maybe playing minecraft at the same time? :whistle:

    And what if i put this http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16812551002 at the bottom of the case and two red fans at the top and the red at the side? haha.


    Going from a HDD to a SSD, it will seem fast regardless of which you get. The Vertex 4 is a bit faster and if OCZ keep pumping out updates, will only get faster. Both drives are reliable, but the Crucial M4 has been out for ages and has the reputation for it. Also the Vertex 4 is $5 cheaper than the Crucial. As I said before, I would pick the Vertex.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227791

    I know that Corsair Low Profile RAM cant be overclocked without raising the voltage, and considering it has the same heatspreader as the Ares, I just assumed. You may be able, dont know.
    1.65V RAM on an Intel CPU can damage the integrated memory controller, since it wasnt designed to handle above 1.5V. If you use RAM above 1.65V, it will void the warranty of the CPU.

    16GB is the normal amount recommended for editing rigs, so I dont imagine it will be all that bad. And just remember if you do run out of RAM, it will spillover into the pagefile (Its a file that acts like RAM), which will be based on an SSD unless you move it. SSD speeds are quite quick, so even if you ran out of RAM (unlikely), performance wouldn't be hindered too much. Or take the obvious solution and stop playing when you should be working.

    Seems to be good, it will make your case glow! I'v got two red strips (30cm/12" each), one at the bottom and other at the rear of the case (HAF-X, same as yours), rear red exhaust, with two red megaflows at the top. So pretty similar to what you are describing of yours. I can send images if you want to get a feeling of how it will look.
  17. manofchalk said:
    Going from a HDD to a SSD, it will seem fast regardless of which you get. The Vertex 4 is a bit faster and if OCZ keep pumping out updates, will only get faster. Both drives are reliable, but the Crucial M4 has been out for ages and has the reputation for it. Also the Vertex 4 is $5 cheaper than the Crucial. As I said before, I would pick the Vertex.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227791

    I know that Corsair Low Profile RAM cant be overclocked without raising the voltage, and considering it has the same heatspreader as the Ares, I just assumed. You may be able, dont know.
    1.65V RAM on an Intel CPU can damage the integrated memory controller, since it wasnt designed to handle above 1.5V. If you use RAM above 1.65V, it will void the warranty of the CPU.

    16GB is the normal amount recommended for editing rigs, so I dont imagine it will be all that bad. And just remember if you do run out of RAM, it will spillover into the pagefile (Its a file that acts like RAM), which will be based on an SSD unless you move it. SSD speeds are quite quick, so even if you ran out of RAM (unlikely), performance wouldn't be hindered too much. Or take the obvious solution and stop playing when you should be working.

    Seems to be good, it will make your case glow! I'v got two red strips (30cm/12" each), one at the bottom and other at the rear of the case (HAF-X, same as yours), rear red exhaust, with two red megaflows at the top. So pretty similar to what you are describing of yours. I can send images if you want to get a feeling of how it will look.

    Ok! thank you so much for your help. I would love to see pictures so I can get excited about my build lol :bounce:
  18. Best answer selected by DoubleJukeFTW.
  19. manofchalk said:
    Going from a HDD to a SSD, it will seem fast regardless of which you get. The Vertex 4 is a bit faster and if OCZ keep pumping out updates, will only get faster. Both drives are reliable, but the Crucial M4 has been out for ages and has the reputation for it. Also the Vertex 4 is $5 cheaper than the Crucial. As I said before, I would pick the Vertex.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227791

    I know that Corsair Low Profile RAM cant be overclocked without raising the voltage, and considering it has the same heatspreader as the Ares, I just assumed. You may be able, dont know.
    1.65V RAM on an Intel CPU can damage the integrated memory controller, since it wasnt designed to handle above 1.5V. If you use RAM above 1.65V, it will void the warranty of the CPU.

    16GB is the normal amount recommended for editing rigs, so I dont imagine it will be all that bad. And just remember if you do run out of RAM, it will spillover into the pagefile (Its a file that acts like RAM), which will be based on an SSD unless you move it. SSD speeds are quite quick, so even if you ran out of RAM (unlikely), performance wouldn't be hindered too much. Or take the obvious solution and stop playing when you should be working.

    Seems to be good, it will make your case glow! I'v got two red strips (30cm/12" each), one at the bottom and other at the rear of the case (HAF-X, same as yours), rear red exhaust, with two red megaflows at the top. So pretty similar to what you are describing of yours. I can send images if you want to get a feeling of how it will look.

    And actually I have one more question that you may be able to help with, lol. Is it worth it to get these speakers http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16836852001 with the 24 dollar shipping. I have these http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16836119008 on the pc i have now and also logitech z313 speakers. Should I just not buy that and use the extra money on making my stuff look cool? lol
  20. Your talking a head-phone enthusiast, when it comes to sound systems I have no idea. All I can see is they both have a bass and two stereo speakers, beyond that I have no clue.

    And promised images.
    http://s1146.photobucket.com/albums/o537/Manofchalk/
    I would have included shots in the dark, but the light appears orange on the camera and way brighter than the actually are. Dont worry, its all a darker red than shown in the pics.
  21. manofchalk said:
    Your talking a head-phone enthusiast, when it comes to sound systems I have no idea. All I can see is they both have a bass and two stereo speakers, beyond that I have no clue.

    And promised images.
    http://s1146.photobucket.com/albums/o537/Manofchalk/
    I would have included shots in the dark, but the light appears orange on the camera and way brighter than the actually are. Dont worry, its all a darker red than shown in the pics.

    So beautiful!! haha
    All I have is the Turtle Beach PX21 with the DSS attachment so idk if it's good, i got it for xbox and ps3 but it works for PC and is supposed to have 7.1 surround sound but idk :lol:

    And also, is the fan controller worth it?
  22. manofchalk said:
    Your talking a head-phone enthusiast, when it comes to sound systems I have no idea. All I can see is they both have a bass and two stereo speakers, beyond that I have no clue.

    And promised images.
    http://s1146.photobucket.com/albums/o537/Manofchalk/
    I would have included shots in the dark, but the light appears orange on the camera and way brighter than the actually are. Dont worry, its all a darker red than shown in the pics.

    Oh, and what 140mm fan is that? Do you have any you would recommend because I heard that all of the case fans included, aside from the front megaflow one, suck.
  23. I got it because the mobo I have doesn't have enough fan headers to support all the fan mounts being full. And its good to be able to adjust them without opening software, so I dont have to Alt-Tab out of a game to adjust it. It is usefull, for instance the rear fan is the noisiest, so when I'm not gaming or anything just turn that one low so I dont hear it. Or if its just idling, turn up the intakes and lower the exhausts so you get a positive case pressure and dust isn't dragged into it.
    It doesnt have an LCD screen and temperature sensors or anything, but I like this simplistic approach and it fits with the rest of the case. Massive LCD screens on the case look horrible as well and are probably much more difficult to operate.

    The fan controller is called the NZXT Sentry Mix. $36 on Newegg (I paid $55 here in Australia! I am so jealous of you Americans)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811992009&Tpk=NZXT%20sentry%20mix

    Edit: Rear fan is a Xigmatek CLF-F1452. But I would advise against getting one as I mentioned before, its the loudest in the rig. The Bitfenix Spectre Pro looks very good and apparently performs well, but is quite expensive (here anyway) considering its a fan. Newegg doesnt seem to have the 140mm red fan, but you can fit a 120mm on the mount.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835345033

    I'm still using the stock 200mm side fan, as far as I can tell its fine.
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