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Please review my build before I start ordering items.

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August 8, 2012 1:52:17 AM

Hi, I am planning on building a PC at the begining of next month for playing Battlefield 3 on 1080P Ultra setting(turning off AA and other high GPU load low visual return effects) with good FPS(60+) around a $2K budget(- $100 for Windows 7HP 64bit & Keyboard, -$100 for shipping/potential taxes)->$1800 budget.

The model for my build is the latest TR Editor's choice http://techreport.com/articles.x/23204/6, I did consider Tom's June 2K Performance PC however I think i7-3770K doesn't justify the +$80-120 price over i5-350K, the same applies to GTX680, the upgrade is too marginal for the extra $100 from my limited budget.

Update: upgraded from Asus V-LK to ASRock Extreme 4 for size & SATA III ports
Update: Re-run the budget after 2 purchases and found I underestimated previously, now have funds to afford a 27" 120Hz after dropping the HDD(not needed short term).

Component Item Price (from newegg.com/amazon.com)

Category Item Price
Processor Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz $229.99
Motherboard ASRock Z77 Extreme 4 $134.99
Memory G.Skill Ares F3-1600C8D-8GAB(2X4) 8G $54.99
Graphics EVGA GeForce GTX 670 FTW $407.99
Storage Samsung 830 256G $219.95
Enclosure NTZX Phantom 410 $99.99
CPUFan COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO $34.99
Monitor ASUS VG278H 27” 120Hz $599.99
Total: $1783

Under Budget by: $100 reserved for Thermal Paste/Price changes/Any hardware changes.

Already purchased
Optical Drive LG Black SATA 24X DVD Burner $14.39 (Purchased)
Power supply Seasonic X650 Gold $118.99 (Purchased)
$ 133.38


So Please review my build and if there is anything wrong/need fix/should upgrade please let me know.
August 8, 2012 2:01:28 AM

If you aren't going to OC there is no reason to get an aftermarket fan. You could probably do minor OCing with that CPU with a stock cooler. Also I don't see much of a point of get the sound card. you will get hardly any better performance.
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August 8, 2012 2:09:44 AM

lt_dan_zsu said:
If you aren't going to OC there is no reason to get an aftermarket fan. You could probably do minor OCing with that CPU with a stock cooler. Also I don't see much of a point of get the sound card. you will get hardly any better performance.


I agree on the sound card, that's a optional upgrade I will probably skip. Right now I am thinking about getting a Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo($30) just to be safe but I might skip it entirely and spend that money on a GTX 670FTW over the EVGA(+20).
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August 8, 2012 2:52:13 AM

if you are getting that cpu, you might as well get your cooler now. 212evo is fine.
It is more so that you don't have to redo a cooler installation, over anything else.
Overclock maybe +6bins and then have fun until you hit a task where you need moar CPU.



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August 8, 2012 3:07:43 AM

Alright,I asked around on TheTechReport forum about my Motherboard and SSD and they see no problem with either, if you think differently please let me knwo. I did a search on newegg for where I am at budget wise so far
Total Budget: 2K
Reserved for Windows 7 64bit +Keyboard+ Shipping/Tax-> $200
Main Budget 1.8K

Component Item Price
Processor Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz $229.99
Motherboard Asus P8Z77-V LK $144.99
Memory Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 $53.99
Graphics EVGA GeForce GTX 670 FTW $407.99
Storage Corsair Force Series 3 240GB $179.99
LITE-ON DVD Burner - Bulk Black SATA Model $17.99
Enclosure NTZX Phantom 410 $100.00
Power supply Corsair HX650W $114.99
CPUFan COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO $34.99
Total: $1284.92
Cap Room($1800-$1284.92) $515
Reserved Budget:$200 for Windows 7HP+Keyboard+Shipping, only a few 4.99 shipping and 1 9.99, seems like I have some extra to spend on Keyboard or spill into the 1.8K main budget.

$515 left, any recommendations for a 24" 120HZ 2ms HDMI Monitor? Should I go 27"? or spend it on Intel 520/HDD/Blueray burner.

p.s Is 650W PSU too much of a overkill and should I look for a 450-600W PSU, right now I am fine with overkilling Power wise and leaving enough room for future expansion.
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August 8, 2012 3:14:06 AM

http://www.flatpanelshd.com/focus.php?subaction=showful...

here are some monitor recomendations. Some maybe dated, so look if there are newer models available for any of the recommendations.

perhaps... benq xl2420T? (xl2410t is on the list, the new one is in testing)

if you feel you want the bluray burner even if it is just to be "cool" and you have the budget, might as well get it now, difference is only maybe $50. Heck realize you are spending $400 on a video card...
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August 8, 2012 3:34:55 AM

On the monitor front I found 2 on newegg:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&N=100006519%204019&IsNodeId=1&Description=24%22%20120HZ%20Monitor&name=%24300%20-%20%24400&Order=BESTMATCH


Asus VG236H 23" 2ms(GTG) 1920x1080 Full HD HDMI LCD 120Hz 3D $329.99 counting rebate

BenQ XL2420T Black-Red 24" 5ms (2ms GTG) HDMI 120Hz 3D-Ready LCD Monitor $391

Seem kind of high pricewise compared to what I found on Ebay but I have room to accommodate, could someone explain to me what is "GTG"?
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August 8, 2012 2:02:53 PM

I consulted a few PC Gamers at symthic.com and they say for me to play on 64 player maps with high or above setting on a 120Hz monitor will need significant Overclocking(say 4.2 GHz and higher). I think the CoolMaster Evo212 might not be good enough for what I will need in that case.

Should I get a liquid cooler like Corsair H80 or a air cooler like Zalman CNPS12X, both in the $100 range?

They also mentioned i5 2500K(SB) is superior in OC to I5 3570K(IB), is that true and is it significantly different? I'd love to save the 18W with IB and I heard IB manage Ram better somewhere but if 2500K is significantly better in OC I might switch to that.
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August 8, 2012 6:35:27 PM

GTG means Grey to Grey, meaning, the time it takes a pixel to turn grey (obviously :p ). Take those response times with a grain of salt. Manufactures don't intensively test them and most of the time, the listed response time is wrong.
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August 8, 2012 6:53:24 PM

azeem40 said:
GTG means Grey to Grey, meaning, the time it takes a pixel to turn grey (obviously :p ). Take those response times with a grain of salt. Manufactures don't intensively test them and most of the time, the listed response time is wrong.



Thanks for the response, in the mean time I decided to go ISP instead of 120Hz(need too much OC for my comfortable level), get Samsung 830 for the reliablity and extra 16G and here is the latest item list:

Update:
Component Item Price (from newegg.com)
Processor Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz $229.99
Motherboard Asus P8Z77-V LK $144.99
Memory Corsair Vengeance (2 x 4GB) $53.99
Graphics EVGA GeForce GTX 670 FTW $407.99
Storage Samsung 830 256G $229.99
LITE-ON DVD Burner - Bulk Black SATA Model $17.99
Enclosure NTZX Phantom 410 $100.00
Power supply Corsair HX650W $114.99
CPUFan COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO $34.99
Monitor Dell Ultrasharp 24" 8ms LED $319.99
Total: $1654
Cap Room($1800-$1674) $146
Reserved Budget:$200 for Windows 7HP+Keyboard+Shipping, only a few 4.99 shipping and 1 9.99, seems like I have some extra to spend on Keyboard or spill into the 1.8K main budget.

All that's left is whether I should get a lower Wattage PSU (650W might be overkill and I am not SLIing in the future), a HDD(this imo can wait), a BRay Burner(ditto), a gaming mouse+pad and maybe a few 120mm fans for my extra fan mounts on the NZXT Phantom 410(I heard those are cheap) for the $146 I have left and probably another 50 extra in the reserve budget?
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August 8, 2012 6:56:45 PM

Yeah, stick to a 550W. Also, get a board that doesn't CF/SLI since you won't be, like the Z77 Pro3.
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August 8, 2012 10:25:52 PM

After thinking more about it I decide to keep 650W and the Mobo, sure they offer feature I don't need right now but just in case in a few years I changed my mind and needed SLI or other power/slot heavy upgrades I don't need to get a new PSU or Mobo.

I got student discount for Win7 so that's taken care of, my current budget situation:

Component Item Price (from newegg.com)
Processor Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz $229.99
Motherboard Asus P8Z77-V LK $129.99
Memory Corsair Vengeance (2 x 4GB) $53.99
Graphics EVGA GeForce GTX 670 FTW $407.99
Storage Samsung 830 256G $229.99
LITE-ON DVD Burner - Bulk Black SATA Model $20.99
Enclosure NTZX Phantom 410 $99.99
Power supply Corsair HX650W $114.99
CPUFan COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO $34.99
Monitor Dell Ultrasharp 24" 8ms LED $319.99
Total: $1637
Cap Room($1800-$167) $163
Reserved Budget:$130 for Keyboard+Shipping/Taxes, only a few 4.99 shipping and 1 9.99, seems like I have some extra to spend on Keyboard or spill into the 1.8K main budget.

Shipping: CPU(free)+Mobo(7.49)+Ram(Free)+Graphic(Free)+SSD(Free)+DVD Burner(4.99)+Enclosure(9.99)+CPUFan(Free)+Monitor(Free)=22.5, $10-$20(shipping included) keyboard is all the rage on ebay so I will just reserve $20 for it, this leaves me with an extra 87.5 spilling into the main budget:

New Total free money: 250.5

Hmm, That's plenty for me to get Mouse, BR burner and a decent HDD with leftover I could either get a fancier keyboard or save.
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Best solution

August 9, 2012 12:12:17 AM

you are looking good!


If you must spend the money, here's what I'd consider in order.
-data HDD
-Accessories like kb/mouse or speakers/headset/webcam if you have people to skype with.
-blueray
-just fill out your ram now to get a matched set to get 2x4gb more
-maybe there is another case that you may like even more.

none of these are essential. Have fun with your build!
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August 10, 2012 1:50:42 AM

With my current CPU(i5 Ivy)/GPU(GTX670FTW) set up can I support a 120HZ monitor up to its full potential? or is it better I stick with a $300ish 24" IPS monitor?
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August 10, 2012 4:07:05 AM

I am building a gaming pc for about the same price, some wonderful people helped me out on a different thread and here is what I came to(haven't had an overall evaluation just what I am thinking about) prices are from newegg canada

Intel Core i5-3570K Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4000 BX80637I53570K
324.99

ASUS SABERTOOTH Z77 LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
240.99

CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ8GX3M2A1600C9
51.99

GIGABYTE GV-N670OC-2GD GeForce GTX 670 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
419.99

Western Digital Caviar Green WD20EARX 2TB SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
119.99

OCZ Vertex 4 VTX4-25SAT3-128G 2.5" 128GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
139.99

LG 22X Super-Multi DVD Burner Black SATA Model GH22NS90B - Retail - OEM
19.99

AZZA Hurrican 2000R SAZ-2000R Black (exterior)/Red (interior) SECC Japanese Steel ATX Full Tower Computer Case
149.99

CORSAIR Enthusiast Series TX750M 750W ATX12V v2.31 / EPS12V v2.92 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Semi Modular High Performance
129.99

COOLER MASTER V6 GT RR-V6GT-22PK-R1 120mm DynaLoop CPU Cooler w/ Universal bracket & Dual Fan
69.99

Rosewill RNX-N300X PCI Wireless Adapter
29.99

RAZER Arctosa Silver USB Wired Standard Gaming Keyboard
42.99

RAZER Black 1 x Wheel USB Optical/Laser Imperator 2012 Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse
65.99


this totals 1716.87 before taxes and shipping but I also have some things that you might not need or a higher version. I did not include a monitor either. If you go to a store you can probably price match to lower prices/possibly get a good deal for buying all the parts at the same place
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August 10, 2012 5:34:11 AM

sherlockwing said:
Hi, I am planning on building a PC at the begining of next month for playing Battlefield 3 on 1080P Ultra setting(turning off AA and other high GPU load low visual return effects) with good FPS(60+) around a $2K budget(- $100 for Windows 7HP 64bit & Keyboard, -$100 for shipping/potential taxes)->$1800 budget.

The model for my build is the latest TR Editor's choice http://techreport.com/articles.x/23204/6, I did consider Tom's June 2K Performance PC however I think i7-3770K doesn't justify the +$80-120 price over i5-350K, the same applies to GTX680, the upgrade is too marginal for the extra $100 from my limited budget.

Component Item Price
Processor Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz $229.99
Motherboard Asus P8Z77-V LK $149.99
Memory Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 $53.99
Graphics EVGA GeForce GTX 670 $399.99
Storage Corsair Force Series 3 240GB $199.99
Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB $94.99
LG WH14NS40 Blu-ray burner $79.99
Audio Asus Xonar DX $71.99
Enclosure Corsair Obsidian Series 650D $179.99
Power supply Corsair HX650W $129.99
Total $1,590.90

My Plan: Start without the HDD + Audio card and downgrade the optical down to a DVD RW (save about $60) so that I can budget a 24" 120Hz Monitor.
HDD will be added 1-2 month later, Blueray & Audio card added 2 month later(Thanksgiving) depend on Holiday season discounts.
No current plan of oveclocking but might do some low level OC in the future.
No Plan of SLI/CLX, if I upgrade GPU I will just buy a new one and sell the old one.
Ram upgrade only when necessary, which I guess will be like 5 year in the future.
This is my first time building my own PC so the case/motherboard should be easy to work on/come with a good user manual.

Right now I am considering the Enclosure & whether I need a CPU fan:
Enclosure: Newegg is sold out of Corsair 650D and 600(the TR alternative), I haven't serached other websites but I rather not spend $180 on a case when I can just as well with $100. Because of that reason I am considering a $100 NZXT Phantom 410 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811146087 which looks pretty good to me in price, easy HDD replacement and cable management. Please tell me if I am wrong about this case and why? If you think the Phantom 410 don't cut it let me know what case in the $80-$120(prefer the cheaper end) range would be the best for my set up.

I looked at the Tomhardware.com June 2K Performance PC http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/core-i7-3770k-overclock-geforce-gtx-680,3212.html before I visited TR and it included a $100 Zalman CNPS12X CPU fan for its i7-3770K, the TR Editor choice features i5-3570K and no CPU fan, does that mean I don't need a dedicated CPU fan for I5-3570K? or is it because TR used a $180 Corsair 650T Enclosure(I assume more fans) Instead of Tom's $100 Antec900? Do I need a CPU fan if I will never overclock my CPU beyond say 3.8 GHZ? or should I get one right now just to be safe? If so which one? I heard Corsair H80 is pretty good in both performance and noise level.

Please help me pick a good Enclosure(preferably $80-$120) and help me decide if I need a CPU fan. If you have any comment regarding my general build please post them too. Thanks. I will come up with questions regarding Motherboard & SSD once I get Enclosure and CPU fan sorted out.

Good build man. I don't see anything you need to change.
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August 10, 2012 5:35:36 PM

Update: I picked 3TB Segate Baracuda 7.2rpm for my HDD, at 149.99 it have the best GB/$ and I haven't seen much in term of compliants about this drive.


Component Item Price (from newegg.com)
Processor Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz $229.99
Motherboard Asus P8Z77-V LK $119.99
Memory G.Skill Ares F3-1600C8D-8GAB(2X4) 8G $54.99
Graphics EVGA GeForce GTX 670 FTW $407.99
Storage Samsung 830 256G $229.99
Seagate Baracuda 3TB $149.99
ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS Black SATA 24X DVD Burner $18.99
Enclosure NTZX Phantom 410 $99.99
Power supply Corsair HX650W $114.99
CPUFan COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO $34.99
Monitor ASUS VG236H 23” 120Hz 329.99
Total: $1792
Cap Room($1800-$1792) $8
Reserved Budget:$130.5 for Keyboard+Shipping

Shipping: Free 2 Shipping offered by Amazon/newegg as a free 30 day trial=0, -20 for keyboard as there are legions of em on ebay->110.5 leftover budget

New Total free money: $118.5

Now I found money outside of the budget for my Gaming Mouse & Pad, I am wondering what do I do with that 118.5 extra:

1. Get the BenQ 2420T for the extra 1" at $61, don't seem to worth it
2. Get ASRock Extreme 4(+$15) or ASRock Extreme6(+60) Mobo instead of my ASUS LV-K, both ASRock offer 4 STATIII instead of 2 and Extreme 6 is wider with more onboard USB3.0
3. Get ASUS DC2T(sold out everywhere)/MSI N670 PE/another 670 factory OC build, not enough to get a 680 plus I doubt it will be worth it in term of performance/dollar.
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August 10, 2012 5:38:53 PM

buy games with your extra $118
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August 10, 2012 5:46:07 PM

^ I second that.
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August 10, 2012 5:46:16 PM

Not any I see as must get for now, I already have enough for BF3 premium outside the budget and have 10+ game on origin and another 5 on steam. Plus I won't play any game beside BF3 for the first month anyway. Those could eaisly be written into by October budget.
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August 10, 2012 6:05:19 PM

well, if you feel you must spend it. as mentioned above, I would blow it on doubling up your RAM, or updating to bluray.
If you're calculating to the penny, $5 for new tube of your favorite thermal grease.

If really those items have not enough value to you. then you are done!
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August 10, 2012 6:16:07 PM

raytseng said:
well, if you feel you must spend it. as mentioned above, I would blow it on doubling up your RAM, or updating to bluray.
If you're calculating to the penny, $5 for new tube of your favorite thermal grease.

If really those items have not enough value to you. then you are done!


Update: upgraded from Asus V-LK to ASRock Extreme 4 for size & SATA III ports
Component Item Price (from newegg.com)

Category Item Price
Processor Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz $229.99
Motherboard ASRock Z77 Extreme 4 $179.99
Memory G.Skill Ares F3-1600C8D-8GAB(2X4) 8G $54.99
Graphics EVGA GeForce GTX 670 FTW $407.99
Storage Samsung 830 256G $229.99
Seagate Baracuda 3TB $149.99
Optical Drive LG Black SATA 24X DVD Burner $14.39
Enclosure NTZX Phantom 410 $99.99
Power supply Corsair HX650W $118.99
CPUFan COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO $34.99
Monitor ASUS VG236H 23” 120Hz $329.99
Total: $1,805

Reserve: $105.5 left in my budget for Thermal Paste/Price changes/Any hardware changes.

So Please review my build and if there is anything wrong/need fix/should upgrade please let me know.

I guess +60 for Extreme 6 is overkill, I can downgrade to Extreme 4(-45) without losing much beside 1" in width.
Plus someone on another forum recommended this http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... to me over my HX650, seems like a upgrade in noise level and with their 15% coupon it is only 118(+4 from HX650), should I jump on this?
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August 11, 2012 5:44:43 PM

Update, 2 item already purchased:

Seasonic X650 Gold PSU (replaced the original planned HX650 b/c higher efficency/lower noise)118.99

LG 24X DVD Burner(Shellshocker deal today) $14.39

Any recommendation for 120mm case fans? I have heard about those sell in cheap 4 packs for about 12-15 but couldn't find those deal s anywhere.
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August 11, 2012 9:37:02 PM

Don't buy any extra case fans until you build your computer and are overheating and need them. just start with the stock case.
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August 11, 2012 10:28:59 PM

raytseng said:
Don't buy any extra case fans until you build your computer and are overheating and need them. just start with the stock case.


Hmm, I did find the value pack I was seraching for, might buy these just in case http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168.... The Phantom 410 case allows me to put one fan directly infront of the intake of EVGA GTX670FTW and blow into it, that might be worth it.
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August 13, 2012 2:11:26 AM

Update: Re-run the budget after 2 purchases and found I underestimated previously, now have funds to afford a 27" 120Hz after dropping the HDD(not needed short term).

Component Item Price (from newegg.com/amazon.com)

Category Item Price
Processor Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz $229.99
Motherboard ASRock Z77 Extreme 4 $134.99
Memory G.Skill Ares F3-1600C8D-8GAB(2X4) 8G $54.99
Graphics EVGA GeForce GTX 670 FTW $407.99
Storage Samsung 830 256G $219.95
Enclosure NTZX Phantom 410 $99.99
CPUFan COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO $34.99
Monitor ASUS VG278H 27” 120Hz $599.99
Total: $1783

Under Budget by: $100 reserved for Thermal Paste/Price changes/Any hardware changes.

Already purchased
Optical Drive LG Black SATA 24X DVD Burner $14.39 (Purchased)
Power supply Seasonic X650 Gold $118.99 (Purchased)
$ 133.38


So Please review my build and if there is anything wrong/need fix/should upgrade please let me know.
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August 13, 2012 2:12:45 AM

the pricing on the monitor you picked seems high. doublecheck you have the right item selected or are at least getting value for your money.
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August 13, 2012 2:25:11 AM

raytseng said:
the pricing on the monitor you picked seems high. doublecheck you have the right item selected or are at least getting value for your money.


http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... this is one that came up when I serached 27" 120Hz on Newegg along with an Acer 27" which is $20 cheaper, the price does seem a bit high but I will look around on amazon and ebay when I buy for the best price/quality/customer service.
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August 20, 2012 12:09:10 AM

Best answer selected by sherlockwing.
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