Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question
Solved

New Build $1500-$2000 help please

Last response: in Systems
Share
August 8, 2012 7:35:32 PM

Hello,

I am a university student in Canada and I am planning on building my first gaming pc in four months, after a paid co-op position. I plan to use Christmas/Boxing Day/New Years sales to find the best price for each part. Can you help me choose parts? I am going to try to keep it around $17-$1800 CDN after tax(13%) but if the pre-sale price is closer $2000 I can probably find sales/talk stores down to a more reasonable price.

There are a few specs that I would like, but if there is good reasoning behind it, I am fully willing to change anything.

- Case: I would like to use the Antec DF-85 case, I like the way it looks, and comes with seven fans
- RAM: I am undecided on 8GB(2x4GB) or 16GB(not sure if 4x4GB or 2x8GB)
- CPU: From what I have found so far, AMD has the best bang for the buck and was thinking of the FX-8150 or the newest one when I buy this in Dec/Jan
- MB: only preference is color: red/black(matches case, and looks cool to me)
- Closed loop liquid cooling would be nice to have
- HD 2TB and SSD ~100GB, no preference for brand
- Graphics: no real preference, maybe slightly towards Radeon, but don't care if its SLI/Crossfire or not (what are the pros/cons of this)
- PSU: Antec as the CP-1000 which is made for the case, but not much preference here besides having a good 80 plus rating

My current wish list is:
Prices from newegg.ca

Case: Antec DF-85 Black Steel / Plastic ATX Full Tower Computer Case (159.99)
MB: ASRock Fatal1ty 990FX Professional AM3+ AMD 990FX SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard (234.99)
CPU: AMD FX-8150 Zambezi 3.6GHz Socket AM3+ 125W Eight-Core Desktop Processor FD8150FRGUBOX (189.99) (newegg has a combo of MB+CPU for $20 off)
Graphics: ASUS HD7950-DC2-3GD5 Radeon HD 7950 3GB 384-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card (379.99)
RAM: CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1866 Desktop Memory Model CMZ16GX3M2A1866C9 (159.99)
PSU: Antec CP-1000 1000W Continuous ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V v2.91 SLI Ready 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply (159.99)
HD: Western Digital Caviar Green WD20EARX 2TB SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive (119.99)
SSD: G.SKILL Sniper Gaming Series FM-25S2S-120GBSR 2.5" 120GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
Optical Drive: LG 22X Super-Multi DVD Burner Black SATA Model GH22NS90B - Retail - OEM (19.99)
Wifi: Rosewill RNX-N300X PCI Wireless Adapter (29.99)
Cooling: Thermaltake WATER2.0 Performer Closed-Loop All In One Liquid CPU Cooler Dual 120mm PWM Fans 120x25mm (69.99)

Total of $1624.89+13%tax=$1836.13 CDN before combos, the drop in price due to pass of time, and sales

I get Windows 7 for free and Microsoft Office almost free through my university
Any advice on what I have/what I should switch it for would be much appreciated. I have done a lot of reading/taken computer courses and know most terms so feel free to explain in any detail.

Thank you.

More about : build 1500 2000

Best solution

August 8, 2012 7:42:13 PM

For that budget: 3570K and GTX 670.
No reason to go AMD in a gaming build.

PSU is too powerful. 750W if SLIing 2x 670s, 550-650 if not.

SSD: samsung 830 or OCZ vertex 4

16GB ram too much. Go 8GB.
Share
August 8, 2012 7:51:09 PM

As a general design philosophy, you should try to devote as much of your money as possible to video, and after that CPU, and after that everything else. Fancy motherboards, cooling, RAM, etc. are rarely important for actual gaming performance, but it's easy to jack up the price that way. At $2000, you should be aiming to get dual video cards and possibly a 120Hz 1080p or 2560x1440 monitor.

Specifics: Agree that intel > AMD at the moment for gaming. Also agree you've overdone the PSU. I also wouldn't go for water cooling of any kind; air is totally fine for 99.9% of users, and liquid has the possibility of catastrophic failure.

Video: Do you have a monitor, and if so, what resolution is it? For 1080p, I think the 670 is a good choice (though the 7950 is too if you're willing to overclock). If you're going over 1080p, I might consider a 7970 instead. And more to the point, I think if you reevaluate your funding priorities, you should be able to find enough money to get two cards. 2x 7950 is a good option to look at.

edit: also I didn't realize that this is for FOUR MONTHS from now. Hard to give concrete advice about that yet. In particular, you may want to see how the 660 Ti performs; at 1080p, they may be great for SLI. But who knows until they're out!
m
0
l
Related resources
August 8, 2012 7:55:10 PM

nafoni said:
For that budget: 3570K and GTX 670.
No reason to go AMD in a gaming build.


While I agree that you shouldn't go AMD, I think a 3570K is a little overkill for your price point. 2500K is a great proc IMO.

Put the rest in a video card, as motorneuron suggested.

Edit: Didn't realize the 3570K and the 2500K were so close in price. 3570K sounds great!
m
0
l
August 9, 2012 12:50:30 AM

Thanks for the help, I wasn't expecting it so soon,

For my monitor I am going to be using a Sony Bravia 32" TV, 1080p I believe. Got it a year and a half ago.

Why is Intel better than AMD for gaming?
I have been using this site for CPU and video card benchmarks:
http://www.cpubenchmark.net/high_end_cpus.html
is this a creditable site? It places the 3570k under the 8150 and the 3570K is more expensive

For the video cards, what benefits does SLI give?
and for current cards, how does this one look?
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
there are cheaper ones but I try not to get the lowest ones and go for mid range

m
0
l
August 9, 2012 12:56:18 AM

With SLI you'll get a boost in performance, although not a 100% increase, at the cost of microstuttering and potential thermal/heat issues. Nowadays a single card solution is more than enough for 1080p gaming.

Off topic: Which university do you go to? I'm curious cause you said you get the OS for free :o 
m
0
l
August 9, 2012 1:32:24 AM

Synthetic CPU benchmarks are not important; the question is how they'll perform in gaming (your primary use) or other tasks. Comparing the most current models on each side (that is, sandy and ivy bridge against phenom II and FX), intel has a substantial advantage in per-clock performance compared to AMD. Since games typically use no more than two processes/threads, the eight "cores" (a little complicated) in the FX-8150 actually don't offer any substantial advantage in most games over the two cores of a Pentium. That's why the core i3 is such a good performer--it has a relatively high clock on two cores (four threads with hyperthreading, but not generally relevant for gaming), and that's all you need for games. And it's why the core i5-3570k is a beast: it achieves very high per-core clock rates, AND those clocks do more per GHz than a highly-clocked FX or phenom II.

The synthetic bench, by contrast, includes all eight cores, so it scores the FX high. But that won't matter in most scenarios, and especially in games. In fact, Tom's rates the FX-4170 (four cores) higher than the -8150 (eight cores) for gaming on its hierarchy chart. Why? The four-core model can achieve a much higher clock speed per core, and those extra cores don't matter.

On top of all that, FX is not very efficient.

I like AMD, and even people who hate AMD recognize that it's good to have competition. So we're all hoping that Piledriver, AMD's next processor iteration, is a big improvement. (Trinity, the new AMD APU design, gives hope!) But for right now, you're better off with intel.
m
0
l
August 9, 2012 4:34:45 AM

nubsauce101 said:
With SLI you'll get a boost in performance, although not a 100% increase, at the cost of microstuttering and potential thermal/heat issues. Nowadays a single card solution is more than enough for 1080p gaming.

Off topic: Which university do you go to? I'm curious cause you said you get the OS for free :o 


I go to the University of Waterloo in Waterloo, Ontario. I get the OS through our CHIP office which is stands for Computing Help & Information Place. I don't know if all universities get this deal, but you can do a search on your university's homepage for Windows 7 and if it offers the OS for free, it should be one of the first few results.
m
0
l
August 9, 2012 4:47:44 AM

motorneuron said:
Synthetic CPU benchmarks are not important; the question is how they'll perform in gaming (your primary use) or other tasks. Comparing the most current models on each side (that is, sandy and ivy bridge against phenom II and FX), intel has a substantial advantage in per-clock performance compared to AMD. Since games typically use no more than two processes/threads, the eight "cores" (a little complicated) in the FX-8150 actually don't offer any substantial advantage in most games over the two cores of a Pentium. That's why the core i3 is such a good performer--it has a relatively high clock on two cores (four threads with hyperthreading, but not generally relevant for gaming), and that's all you need for games. And it's why the core i5-3570k is a beast: it achieves very high per-core clock rates, AND those clocks do more per GHz than a highly-clocked FX or phenom II.

The synthetic bench, by contrast, includes all eight cores, so it scores the FX high. But that won't matter in most scenarios, and especially in games. In fact, Tom's rates the FX-4170 (four cores) higher than the -8150 (eight cores) for gaming on its hierarchy chart. Why? The four-core model can achieve a much higher clock speed per core, and those extra cores don't matter.

On top of all that, FX is not very efficient.

I like AMD, and even people who hate AMD recognize that it's good to have competition. So we're all hoping that Piledriver, AMD's next processor iteration, is a big improvement. (Trinity, the new AMD APU design, gives hope!) But for right now, you're better off with intel.



Would the 3770K be much of an improvement over the 3570K? I am going to see if I can get my parents and my grandma to pitch in some money to get a better CPU. Are there anything that I NEED on a MB? Will a PCI 3.0 card work on a 2.0 slot without much difference?
m
0
l
August 9, 2012 4:53:00 AM

For gaming 3770k offers no improvement to the i5 one and 3.0 pci would be quicker
m
0
l
August 9, 2012 4:53:58 AM

Since you are using your 1080p TV, there is absolutely no reason to get an SLI setup. One GTX 670 will max almost every game at 60fps (minus Metro).
m
0
l
August 9, 2012 11:35:44 AM

No, as xaninator said, there's no point in getting the 3770k. It's still just four physical cores, but it adds hyperthreading. Games don't use more than four threads; they rarely even use more than two. So there's no point. The 3570k really is pretty much the best gaming processor, period; that's why so many people want to get one. As Tom's has said, even the advantages of the 3930k and 3960X on paper--many more PCIe lanes, quad-channel memory--don't actually boost game performance in a noticeable way in the vast majority of situations.
m
0
l
August 10, 2012 8:25:53 AM

Very nice build.

Just swap the RAM out for the Low profile version (the "normal version" can conflict with your CPU cooler, and I'd say you're good to go.
m
0
l
August 10, 2012 3:34:36 PM

oh, ya, I see what you are saying, the V6GT has a clearance of 1.42 inches to a distance of 2.6 inches from the centre of the cpu. The ram slots on the sabertooth are 2.2 inches from the cpu and the cards are 2.1 inches tall. Which means they interfere with the side of it.

If I were to put them in the 2nd and 4th slots instead, they would be 2.58 inches away from the centre of the cpu, at the edge of the ram slot. which is 0.002 inches from the edge of the V6, which is a bit to close for me, and they might be slightly bigger than the width of the ram slot. Its so close, but I guess I do have to go for the low profile.

I could show you my calculations if you want, I used the manufactures dimensions of the board to calculate the distance of the ram from the centre of the cpu, the standard length of the ram slots to figure out the height and I found the direct measurements of the V6 online
m
0
l
August 10, 2012 3:54:42 PM

Go for the LP anyway. No big difference.
m
0
l
August 10, 2012 8:17:41 PM

Best answer selected by xaninator.
m
0
l
!