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$1500 Quiet Gaming, & Light Photoshopping Build

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July 25, 2012 4:09:01 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: Next 2-3 months

Budget Range: ~$1500 Before Rebates & Before Shipping & Before Monitor

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Large File Photoshopping - less frequent, Light CADing

Are you buying a monitor: Yes - Looking at getting a 27" Korean IPS multi input



Parts to Upgrade: New build, see below's first attempt

Do you need to buy OS: No

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com, amazon, or the microcenter a block away!

Location: Boston, MA

Parts Preferences: No preference, good price value ratio / or premium for low noise

Overclocking: Yes

SLI or Crossfire: No although would like to keep that option open for couple years down the line

Your Monitor Resolution: Will be upgrading to 2560x1440 multi input monitor

Additional Comments: Willing to pay premium to keep build near silent under light loads (i.e. watching a movie).

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: It's been too long! Many, many, years ago I built a top a top of the line overclocked gaming PC, and it's time to update for new games, as well as the few days I work from home.


-----------------------------------

Hi all, long time reader of Tom's Hardware -and creaper on the new build forums for quite some time, first time poster.


Looking for suggestions or advice, I've done a ton of research, but now it is time to check my work and get some final tweaking!



I already have:
Logitech G700 Mouse
Logitech K800 Keyboard
SteelSeries 9HD Mousepad
Bose Companion 20 Speakers
3tb External
Unlimited access to Windows 7 licenses (thanks work!)
I have an old POS 20" monitor but am looking to upgrade to 27" Korean IPS



Below is my first attempt:

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/cYQD (note the monitor is only a placeholder approx the same price)

i5-3570K
Thermalright Silver Arrow CPU Cooler - for quiet performance (would love to get the Alpenföhn K2 Mount Doom but can't find anywhere in the states to buy it!
ASRock Z77 Extreme4
G.Skill Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB)
Samsung 830 Series 256GB 2.5"
Asus GTX670-DC2T-2GD5 or Gigabyte N670OC-2GD - Suggestions?
Corsair 550D ATX Mid Tower - for quiet focus
SeaSonic X-1050 - I know 1050 is overkill and I'd like to get 750, but the 1050 is silent below 500W because the fan does not spin and "very quiet" under 700W -at least according to SPCR
Cheapo Lite-On DVD Burner


Any feedback positive/negative is always appreciated! :) 
July 25, 2012 4:44:10 PM

My suggestion

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($329.98 @ NCIX US)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($30.98 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($114.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($56.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($119.95 @ B&H)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($399.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($124.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1264.85
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-07-25 12:43 EDT-0400)

That leaves with enough money to get a good case. Here is a list of ATX cases sorted by rating.

My reasoning
An i7 CPU should give you a nice performance boost in programs like photoshop.

The Hyper 212 EVO is among the most popular CPU coolers availabke today, and is, as I can say from experience, very quiet.

The Gigabyte 670 will be both quiet and cool with it's 3 fans. So will any of the two ASUS 670s, so this is your pick.

Even though you have a 3TB external HDD, it's always nice to have an internal one as well, to store games etc on. Imo you don't want to waste money on a SSD for installing things like games on it. Loading times will be fast enough on a HDD as well.

Yes, that 1050W is very overkill. This corsair HX750 should be quiet (as I again can tell from experience), it's modular, it's 750W (enough for 2x 670s ++), and it's Corsair.
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July 25, 2012 5:55:34 PM

thats a very nice build from nafoni, but i would still skip out on the i7, if it is just light photoshop(not being used day after day) i would go for the i5 since it is cost efficient and will do the job for quite a lot of things like PS and games

i would skip out on his RAM also, its only a bit better with timings but i do not think you will be overclocking ram so i would say G.Skill Ares or some other low profile DIMMs

HX750 is a great choice it is made by Seasonic but now that some other companies are using Seasonic as the manufacture, the HX series is getting replace by other and cheaper companies like NZXT Hale82 series

(would go with the HX750 since it is $125 with rebate and has a 15% promo on it)

as for stuff being quiet, get low power adapters for all of your case fans.

for the case i recommend 500R as it is some nice LEDs that have a off/on switch, the airflow is great so if you get low power adapters it wouldn't overheat, and it has a lot of room for cable management.
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July 25, 2012 6:00:58 PM

Quote:
thats a very nice build from nafoni, but i would still skip out on the i7, if it is just light photoshop(not being used day after day) i would go for the i5 since it is cost efficient and will do the job for quite a lot of things like PS and games

I agree. Depends on how much of video editing/heavy photoshopping he is going to do.
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July 25, 2012 6:02:53 PM

Get those Samsung DIMMs. They OC without a voltage spike. For the same price as a lot of RAM, it's a good deal.
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July 25, 2012 6:15:34 PM

This is the build i recommend you.It's amazingly powerfull and silent.Note that it will perform about 20% worse at photoshop than a build with a Core i5/i7 but will vastly outperform them at high resolution gaming thanks to the added graphics power.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: AMD FX-8150 3.6GHz 8-Core Processor ($179.98 @ NCIX US)
CPU Cooler: Zalman CNPS12X Ball Bearing CPU Cooler ($59.98 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: MSI 990FXA-GD80 ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($179.98 @ NCIX US)
Memory: Mushkin Blackline 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 Memory ($59.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($82.49 @ SuperBiiz)
Hard Drive: OCZ Vertex 3 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card (CrossFire) ($309.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card (CrossFire) ($309.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Antec P280 ATX Mid Tower Case ($99.99 @ Microcenter)
Power Supply: OCZ 1000W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($99.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1499.36
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-07-25 14:10 EDT-0400)

Thats pretty much all you asked for right?

There is another CPU cooler i'd like to mention.Its the Tuniq Tower 120 Extreme.It's not a very popular cooler but trust me its awesome.If you really want your PC to be as silent as it can get while working very cool you should definately take a look at it.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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July 25, 2012 6:18:29 PM

Btw, even for 2560x1440, CF isn't needed. One GTX 670 can play on it at max with great fps or on high close to max.
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July 25, 2012 6:35:27 PM

Thanks for the responses so far!

@nafoni & @boulbox, I thought about the i5 vs i7 and think since photo/video editing is just a hobby and side project, I'll stick with the i5.

HX750 sounds like a good choice -that or the seasonic x750?

Ares vs Ripjaw? Seems like they are basically the same, probably go with Ares for more clearance.

@azeem40 Samsung DIMMs are probably a little better if OCing ram and upping voltage, but the second voltage is increased I tend to get a little worried. What about mushkins?

Think I'd still prefer to stick with the 550d case as of now. Although I like the idea of low power adapters as well.

As for the cooler, perhaps I was scarred by a loud Zalman and hot processor in my old build, but with overclocking I think a Noctua or Silver Arrow would be a better choice and worth the money, for lower temp and lower noise.

@kamen_bg thanks for the suggestion, I think I'm going to stick with the i5 as well as a 670, asus or gigabyte haven't figured out which one -probably splitting hairs between the two really.
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July 25, 2012 6:37:43 PM

No, they are not too much better. I wouldn't risk raising the voltage when a 2133 MHz OC is just fine.
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July 25, 2012 8:30:43 PM

Read that 2133 performance boost isn't worth the extra cost of 1600 ram, is that accurate?
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July 25, 2012 9:16:57 PM

Quote:
HX750 sounds like a good choice -that or the seasonic x750?

Seasonic if you can afford it.

Otherwise the HX750 will be more than fine.
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August 7, 2012 3:59:04 AM

Came into a bit of extra money so looking to buy parts this week. Here is the current list of components and couple partsl not finalized:


PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

*PURCHASED* Monitor: Catleap Q270 Multi Input
*FINALIZED* CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Microcenter)
*FINALIZED* CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler ($75.98 @ Outlet PC)
*FINALIZED* Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($134.99 @ Microcenter)
*FINALIZED* Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($44.99 @ Newegg)
*FINALIZED* Storage: Samsung 830 Series 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($234.99 @ Newegg)
*FINALIZED* Case: Corsair 550D ATX Mid Tower Case ($137.98 @ Newegg)

*Need more input* Power Supply: looking to pickup ~750w Seasonic, or Corsair -money not really a factor for quality with emphasis on quiet.

*FINALIZED -although out of stock pretty much everywhere but don't really want to get gigabyte* Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($429.99 @ Amazon)

*Up for debate but probably just 1gig* Storage: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($74.99 @ Newegg)

Total: $1323.90
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Best solution

August 7, 2012 11:31:34 AM

I expect you to do some pretty heavy overclocking on that Noctua NH-D14.
If only light OCing, go for the Hyper 212. I'm getting mine up to 4.1GHz with no heat problems at all, and I am sure I could get it up to 4.5GHz as well.

Power supply: TX750 if you're ok having a non-modular unit. HX750 if not. The AX750 and and Seasonic gold ones are just too good for normal users imo. Links to the two:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Storage: good choice in that Spinpoint F3.

Good choice on the GPU.

Sure you need 256GB SSD?
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August 8, 2012 3:39:45 AM

well a 256 GB SSD will last for quite a while

just saying now in 1-3 months you get 1TB+ since it will drop and will give you that extra flexible space to download more
recommend 1TB Seagate Barracuda since it is only about $75+

as mentioned above Noctua is for some heavy overclocking i advise to switch to a hyper 212 evo and then switch out the case for a Corsair 500R(D series are usually hot boxes so i can understand you getting a Noctua with that sort of case)

R series has more fans, better cooling, and better looks all around

if getting the 500R no need for a modular supply(will only help a little bit more since 500R has great cable management) so get a TX750 V2.

or you can get this one
http://us.ncix.com/products/?sku=59617&vpn=P1750SNLB9&m...

XFX 750 for a nice price at $65 after mail in rebate

if you want modular this NZXT PSU is great
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B006I2H0OS/?tag=pcpapi-20
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August 8, 2012 9:39:49 PM

Newest update! Almost fully decided and purchased!

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

*PURCHASED* Monitor: Catleap Q270 Multi Input
*PURCHASED* CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Microcenter)
*PURCHASED - newegg promo* CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler ($83.74 @ Mwave)
*PURCHASED* Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($134.99 @ Microcenter)
*PURCHASED* Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($44.99 @ Newegg)
*PURCHASED* Storage: Samsung 830 Series 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($232.99 @ Newegg)
*PURCHASED* Case: Corsair 550D ATX Mid Tower Case ($137.98 @ Newegg)
*PURCHASED* Power Supply: Corsair 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($136.98 @ Newegg)
*Sold out everywhere... leaning towards gigabyte* Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($429.99 @ Amazon)
*TBD* Storage: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($88.86 @ Outlet PC)


Total: $1480.51
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August 8, 2012 9:46:36 PM

The Samsung F3 is a good drive, especially for storage. Can be a bit slower than other drives for applications etc, but considering you got a 256GB SSD that should be no problem. Great drive for the price.

Both the ASUS and Gigabyte versions of the 670 are excellent choices. Techpowerup gave the non-top ASUS versions their only 10 out of 10 ever.
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August 8, 2012 9:47:53 PM

Best answer selected by marshes.
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