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My first desktop build, need advice!

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August 15, 2012 1:31:28 AM

Hey folks, hang tight while I give a quick overview. Also, if this question is in the wrong location, please migrate it to the appropriate site.

I've always been a software guy, but never took the time to dive into hardware and really learn the details until now. A few weeks back I started researching what it would take to build a high-performance machine for two main purposes: gaming and graphic editing (I use Adobe software 8+ hours a day). Now, I want to keep the price low, but without sacrificing quality and performance...but without spending too much...if that makes any sense.

In essence: I don't want to the 10-star parts, I want the 7 or 8-star parts.

You can check out what I have so far here: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/eEsK

I tried as hard as I could to get quality and performance, while staying future-proof and on a budget of about $1500 (with monitors). For example, I'm only filling two RAM slots with 8GB sticks so that I can fill in two more when needed. I'm getting a mid-range video card because I'm not that big into PC gaming, but would like the option.

This is just my logic and I would LOVE it if ya'll poked holes in it! Feedback, advice, and tips are all greatly appreciated! Thanks!

More about : desktop build advice

August 15, 2012 2:02:08 AM

Dont get the 3770k and get the 3570k. You save 100 bucks or so and you dont lose any noticeable performance--especially for gaming.

Get the 7850 over the 560ti. better cooling, power consumption, better overclocking and much superior performance and for around the same price.

Youd maybe wanna look into IPS monitors. You can get the cheap ones from LG and AOC, but try and stretch your budget for the those Dell Ultrasharp ones.

Everything else looks fine

Regards
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August 15, 2012 2:37:11 AM

I've read all over the place that i7 is better for graphic editing - which i will be doing WAY more than I will be gaming.

As far as your video card recommendation - would you still suggest the same if i don't plan to do any overclocking? I'm not saying that I absolutely won't, I'm just saying that I have no immediate plans to do so.

I actually already have the two monitors I have selected. I was able to purchase them through a friend at a parts store for a special discount - wewt!
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August 15, 2012 2:37:41 AM

Actually, do get the 3770k. It performs better in Adobe software. I imagine you'll want that extra performance if you're working in those sort of programs for 8 hours a day.

Try this...

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($324.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($134.99 @ Microcenter)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($104.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($77.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 7850 1GB Video Card ($217.55 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF XM (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($109.06 @ Microcenter)
Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling 600W ATX12V Power Supply ($66.79 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($19.98 @ Outlet PC)
Monitor: Asus VS247H-P 23.6" Monitor ($179.14 @ B&H)
Monitor: Asus VS247H-P 23.6" Monitor ($179.14 @ B&H)
Total: $1534.60
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-08-14 22:38 EDT-0400)

You'd get better performance out of the hd 7850 vs the 560ti.

If you have anymore questions, feel free to ask.
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August 15, 2012 2:40:50 AM

cmegown said:
I've read all over the place that i7 is better for graphic editing - which i will be doing WAY more than I will be gaming.

As far as your video card recommendation - would you still suggest the same if i don't plan to do any overclocking? I'm not saying that I absolutely won't, I'm just saying that I have no immediate plans to do so.

I actually already have the two monitors I have selected. I was able to purchase them through a friend at a parts store for a special discount - wewt!


If you already have the monitors, I recommend this build instead...

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($324.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($134.99 @ Microcenter)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($104.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($77.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card ($329.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF XM (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($109.06 @ Microcenter)
Power Supply: Corsair 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($104.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($19.98 @ Outlet PC)
Total: $1326.96
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-08-14 22:41 EDT-0400)

If you can wait a couple more days, the gtx 660ti comes out on the 16th. It may prove to be a better card for your needs than the hd 7950.
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August 15, 2012 2:42:02 AM

The 3770 will be better in graphics work so if you can afford it you might as well have it

RAM should be 1.5 volt or less or you void your processor warranty

The 7850 rather than the 560 ti

a 500 watt power supply

the scorpio hard drive is a smaller 2.5 inch notebook hard drive .

Use a 3.5 inch desk top unit . It will be faster . Ideally the Hitachi deskstar or samsung F3
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August 15, 2012 2:34:20 PM

@DeusAres you rock my world. Thanks for your advice and even taking the time to put together a parts list! I weighed my options and ended up swapping out my old RAM for your G.Skill Ripjaws RAM (better in every way), and revisiting some of my storage choices which resulted in a similar 1TB HDD for about $5 more from a company I've had great experience with before.

I've been trying to learn as much as I can about video cards so that I can make an informed decision, but holy crap there's a lot to take into account! After some research into the GTX 660 ti I see that it will most likely be priced around $299 with 1,344 CUDA cores and 915MHz base clock - which is all very nice. The one thing I noticed that kind of turned me off from it is it's 192-bit memory interface, which seems a bit low to my statistics-soaked brain. My buddy keeps telling me that his 320-bit card is the only way to go, but people seem to be raving about this upcoming 660ti card. Thoughts and opinions?
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August 15, 2012 6:53:07 PM

What is your friend's card?
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August 15, 2012 9:08:05 PM

Even though the 660Ti won't perform as well as the 670/680, it'll still be one very good card.
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