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New Gaming PC, $2000 base

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August 19, 2012 8:29:18 PM

I'd like to build a new gaming PC. I'm primarily interested in games like Skyrim, Borderlands 2, Far Cry 3, and similar. I run 1920x1200 on a Dell 24" which I will be re-using for the new PC.

I started out on the recommended builds by price section... I apologize if the build is not "unique" in that sense. Most of the items remained, although I've modified a couple items. I bolded the sections below where I modified the build.

I've listed a couple direct questions at the bottom of the post, although I'm interested in any positive/negative feedback anyone has. On to the build:

EDIT: I should mention I'd like to make this purchase in the next couple weeks.


CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K Ivy Bridge 3.5GHz (3.9GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Quad-Core Desktop Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MOBO: GIGABYTE G1.Sniper 3 LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Extended ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: SILVERSTONE Strider Gold ST85F-G 850W ATX 12V v2.3 / EPS 12V 80 PLUS GOLD Certified 100% Modular, Active PFC Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory x 2 (16gb total)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD: Western Digital Caviar Green WD10EARX 1TB IntelliPower 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SSD: OCZ Vertex 4 VTX4-25SAT3-128G 2.5" 128GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU: EVGA 04G-P4-2673-KR GeForce GTX 670 Superclocked+ w/Backplate 4GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card x 2 (SLI Configured)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU COOLER: COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO RR-212E-20PK-R2 Continuous Direct Contact 120mm Sleeve CPU Cooler Compatible with latest Intel 2011/1366/1155
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CASE: Corsair Vengeance Series C70 Gunmetal Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

EXTRA CASE FAN: COUGAR CF-V12HP Vortex Hydro-Dynamic-Bearing (Fluid) 300,000 Hours 12CM Silent Cooling Fan with Pulse Width Modulation
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OS: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Now for my direct questions... I built my last PC in December 2006 using advice from this website, and am still using it today. Intel Core 2 Duo, WinXP Pro, Twin BFG GeForce 8800 GTX's in SLI... its quite old. I haven't kept up with some of the latest performance marks, so please bear with me if these questions seem basic.


1. I've never run Windows 7. Is there a specific reason I should be looking at the Pro edition instead of the Home edition for a gaming/internet PC?

2. RAM - I wanted to take the build up to 16gb from 8gb. I simply doubled the order to 4x 4gb Ripjaw-X's... would I be better off with 2x 8gb?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
The price difference is negligible, but the timing is shown as being different and I wasn't sure how this might affect it.

3. GPU - Based upon my gaming needs listed above, am I going overboard with the SLI configuration? Might I be better off with a single, higher powered GPU (suggestions more than welcome for which single GPU to look at).

And lastly.... I'd like to bring the price point down a bit. I'd be happier at the $1500-$1800 range. Going to a single GPU would help with that, but I just don't understand what level of performance difference to expect, and I don't want to unnecessarily gimp myself over only a few hundred bucks. Also, am I going overboard with the CPU/MOBO combo? Would I be better off going with an i5 Sandy Bridge? Again, I really don't know how to quantify the difference in performance.

And lastly... am I being narrow minded in overlooking the new LGA 2011 socket style CPU and MOBO's? They seem to be a bit higher in price, but is there a performance difference that makes it worth it, perhaps paired with a single good GPU (for now)?

All suggestions are welcome. I appreciate your time and thought. Thanks

More about : gaming 2000 base

August 19, 2012 8:54:27 PM

I'd suggest getting two cougars for your EVO, pro allows for more than 16gb of ram, the 670s in SLI should last you a long time, and they're ~5% worse than a 680. I'm not sure about the SLI scaling though.You could get by with a 3570k, i7's don't really give you more performance for gaming. A 2011 mobo/cpu will raise the price by a lot, honestly not worth the money unless you can get the CPU cheap (This is coming from somebody who is actually on 2011).
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August 20, 2012 1:38:43 AM

farsuka said:
I'd suggest getting two cougars for your EVO, pro allows for more than 16gb of ram, the 670s in SLI should last you a long time, and they're ~5% worse than a 680. I'm not sure about the SLI scaling though.You could get by with a 3570k, i7's don't really give you more performance for gaming. A 2011 mobo/cpu will raise the price by a lot, honestly not worth the money unless you can get the CPU cheap (This is coming from somebody who is actually on 2011).


Intel Core i5-3570K Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4000
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That looks like a decent processor. I may decide to go with that and save the $120. What about the MOBO, any recommendations with that? It seems to be a rather highly priced Z77 compared to some of the others I'm seeing, and I am not quite sure why. It doesn't even support 1866 RAM speed.

I guess if I save a few hundred dollars on the CPU and MOBO, I can jump into that second SLI GPU without too much hesitation. IIRC, this is really the way to get the best bang for the gaming buck... but it has been a LONG time since I could say that with any confidence.

On that note I've also been looking at this instead of the EVO fan. Might work better for the hotter CPU:
ZALMAN CNPS20LQ Ultimate Liquid CPU Cooler
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Any other feedback?
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August 20, 2012 5:31:55 AM

farsuka said:
I'd suggest getting two cougars for your EVO, pro allows for more than 16gb of ram, the 670s in SLI should last you a long time, and they're ~5% worse than a 680. I'm not sure about the SLI scaling though.You could get by with a 3570k, i7's don't really give you more performance for gaming. A 2011 mobo/cpu will raise the price by a lot, honestly not worth the money unless you can get the CPU cheap (This is coming from somebody who is actually on 2011).


Why? Why pay the extra money for those fans? They are not going to offer anything different than what's included - and the noise factor is a huge moot point. Why not just take the difference and invest in something like a Noctua D14? It's also incredibly pointless to use LGA 2011 on a gaming system - you're overpaying for no performance gain. Even the 3770K won't be fully utilized in a gaming system.

Quote:
1. I've never run Windows 7. Is there a specific reason I should be looking at the Pro edition instead of the Home edition for a gaming/internet PC?


The only reason you'd need Pro is if you need VM, remote desktop, or running more than 16GB RAM. For a gaming system more than 16GB won't be utilized.

Quote:

2. RAM - I wanted to take the build up to 16gb from 8gb. I simply doubled the order to 4x 4gb Ripjaw-X's... would I be better off with 2x 8gb?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6820231568
The price difference is negligible, but the timing is shown as being different and I wasn't sure how this might affect it.


Don't waste money on 16GB RAM - that won't be fully utilized on a gaming build.

Quote:
3. GPU - Based upon my gaming needs listed above, am I going overboard with the SLI configuration? Might I be better off with a single, higher powered GPU (suggestions more than welcome for which single GPU to look at).


Actually yes - a single 670 will max out everything for the next several years.

Quote:
And lastly... am I being narrow minded in overlooking the new LGA 2011 socket style CPU and MOBO's? They seem to be a bit higher in price, but is there a performance difference that makes it worth it, perhaps paired with a single good GPU (for now)?


You're actually using socket 1155 - the 3770K won't be needed. The 3570K will save you $100 and X79 won't be fully utilized on a gaming system. If you want I'd suggest a build like this:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($229.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-U9B SE2 37.9 CFM CPU Cooler ($62.98 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($149.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($43.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung Spinpoint F4 2TB 3.5" 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung 830 Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($118.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($407.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Antec Eleven Hundred ATX Full Tower Case ($109.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On DS-8A8SH DVD/CD Writer ($30.98 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1474.86
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-08-19 22:58 EDT-0400)
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August 20, 2012 6:03:30 AM

g-unit1111 said:
Why? Why pay the extra money for those fans? They are not going to offer anything different than what's included - and the noise factor is a huge moot point. Why not just take the difference and invest in something like a Noctua D14? It's also incredibly pointless to use LGA 2011 on a gaming system - you're overpaying for no performance gain. Even the 3770K won't be fully utilized in a gaming system.

Quote:
1. I've never run Windows 7. Is there a specific reason I should be looking at the Pro edition instead of the Home edition for a gaming/internet PC?


The only reason you'd need Pro is if you need VM, remote desktop, or running more than 16GB RAM. For a gaming system more than 16GB won't be utilized.

Quote:

2. RAM - I wanted to take the build up to 16gb from 8gb. I simply doubled the order to 4x 4gb Ripjaw-X's... would I be better off with 2x 8gb?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6820231568
The price difference is negligible, but the timing is shown as being different and I wasn't sure how this might affect it.


Don't waste money on 16GB RAM - that won't be fully utilized on a gaming build.

Quote:
3. GPU - Based upon my gaming needs listed above, am I going overboard with the SLI configuration? Might I be better off with a single, higher powered GPU (suggestions more than welcome for which single GPU to look at).


Actually yes - a single 670 will max out everything for the next several years.

Quote:
And lastly... am I being narrow minded in overlooking the new LGA 2011 socket style CPU and MOBO's? They seem to be a bit higher in price, but is there a performance difference that makes it worth it, perhaps paired with a single good GPU (for now)?


You're actually using socket 1155 - the 3770K won't be needed. The 3570K will save you $100 and X79 won't be fully utilized on a gaming system. If you want I'd suggest a build like this:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($229.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-U9B SE2 37.9 CFM CPU Cooler ($62.98 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($149.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($43.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung Spinpoint F4 2TB 3.5" 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung 830 Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($118.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($407.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Antec Eleven Hundred ATX Full Tower Case ($109.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On DS-8A8SH DVD/CD Writer ($30.98 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1474.86
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-08-19 22:58 EDT-0400)

750 watts is WAY overboard for the parts you picked out. Another 30 dollars in after market fans that push a lot more air and are quieter than the default ones seem like a good trade off to me. Making the jump from 30 dollars in more fans to a 90 dollar heatsink is a bit of a stretch, and there was a reason I told him not to go to 2011. (Read: Don't get it unless you're getting it cheap). I sincerely doubt that a single 670 is going to be able to max out games for more than a year, two max. And seriously? A 5400 RPM Harddrive? It's not 1999 anymore. Get a spinpoint f3 or a 1002FAEX
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