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Building my first computer! Would like advice b4 spending summer cash

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August 23, 2012 8:51:29 PM

I have been working quite a few hours this summer in order to get enough cash to blow on a computer that will serve me well through my senior year and college. Before making this purchase I figured it would be prudent to ask the opinions of people more knowledgeable :)  Any advice anyone is willing to give would be extremely appreciated!

Case: Corsair Obsidian Series 800D CC800DW Black Aluminum/Steel ATX Full Tower Computer Case $274.99

HDD: Western Digital Caviar Blue WD5000AAKX 500GB 7200 RPM $69.99

SSD: OCZ Vertex 3 VTX3-25SAT3-120G 2.5" 120GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive $94.99

Monitor: ASUS VE248H Black 24" Full HD HDMI LED Backlight LCD Monitor w/Speakers $ 179.99

Wireless Adapter: ASUS PCE-N15 PCI Express 300/300Mbps Transfer/Receive Rate $ 29.99

Video Card: GIGABYTE GV-N680OC-2GD GeForce GTX 680 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support $ 524.99

DVD-ROM: Sony Black SATA Model DDU1681S-0B - OEM $18.99

Power Supply: XION AXP-1000K14XE 1000W ATX SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80+ Bronze $129.99

Keyboard: Logitech G110 Black USB Wired LED Backlighting Gaming Keyboard $54.99

Mouse: Microsoft 6000 Mouse $20.99

Thermal Compound: Arctic Silver 5 High-Density Polysynthetic Silver Thermal Compund AS5-3.5G - OEM $9.99

Memory: Patriot Intel Extreme Master, Limited Edition 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 2133 (PC3 17000) $124.99

Mouse Pad: Allsop 29878 Nature Smart Earth Mouse Pad $4.99

OS: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM $99.99

CPU Fan/Heatsink: Arctic Cooling ACFZI30 120mm Fluid Dynamic Freezer i30 Intel CPU Cooler for Enthusiasts $49.99

CPU: Intel Core i7-3930K Sandy Bridge-E 3.2GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 2011 130W Six-Core Desktop Processor BX80619i73930k $904.98combo w/mobo

Motherboard: ASUS P9X79 DELUXE LGA 2011 Intel X79 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS $904.98combo w/CPU

Ordering from Newegg and shipping is $13.16 for a total of $2607.99
August 23, 2012 9:29:14 PM

You would get a faster gaming machine for a lot less money if you used a much cheaper s1155 platform with a higher clock speed.

I agree, fill out the form.
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August 23, 2012 9:56:16 PM

^+1

You could save so much money for better performance.

1Kw PSUs are excessive now just to remind you with current 22/28/32nm fabs, it's not really power demanding for high end GPUs anymore.

Check out my $1100 build here:
http://www.squidoo.com/electronicandmore
Just get the 680 if you want but the GTX 670 is a cheaper route that gives you just as much performance.

Best solution

August 23, 2012 11:07:03 PM
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Some thoughts for you:

With your budget, I have no problem with a GTX680. It is the fastest single gpu card out there.
Some will say that a GTX670 with a factory overclock w@$100 less will perform nearly as well. They are probably right.

Where I think you are off focus is the cpu. Few games use more than 2 or 3 cores, so a 6 core cpu is not much help. The 3570K will perform just as well, at a much lower cost.

Most any Z77 based motherboard will do the job. Pick your favorite brand, they are all good. No need for more expensive sli capable motherboards.
If you ever need something stronger than a GTX680(doubtful for a single monitor) there will be a kepler follow on.

Ram is cheap, I have no problem with 16gb, but a 2 x 8gb kit is easier for a motherboard to manage if you Overclock.
If you will only play games, 8gb(2 x 4gb) is fine. No game by itself uses more than 2-3gb.
And...
The current Intel cpu's have an excellent integrated ram controller. It is able to keep the cpu fed with data from any speed ram.

The difference in real application performance or FPS between the fastest and slowest ram is on the order of 1-3%.

Synthetic benchmark differences will be impressive, but are largely irrelevant in the real world.

Fancy heat spreaders are mostly marketing too.

In fact tall heat spreaders are a negative because they can impact some cpu coolers.
Only if you are seeking record level overclocks should you consider faster ram or better latencies.

Read this Anandtech article on memory scaling:
http://www.anandtech.com/show/4503/sandy-bridge-memory-...
---------------bottom line------------

DDR3 1600 is the sweet spot considering the marginal cost delta over 1333.

A GTX680 only needs a 550w psu. A stronger psu will only use the wattage that is demanded of it, so something more like a 650w unit would be appropriate.
As far as I can tell, XION looks like a tier 4/5 unit on this list:
http://www.eggxpert.com/forums/thread/323050.aspx
I would stick with known good quality brands like Seasonic, Antec, Corsair, PC P&C, or XFX.

On the SSD, I would stick with intel 330/520 units, or Samsung830. Yes, they cost a bit more, but they seem to be the most trouble free. Consider deferring the Hard drive and buying a 180 or 240gb ssd up front. Larger ssd's perform better.

If you love the case buy it. You will be looking at it for a long time.
If that is not the situation, there are many good cases that will do the job at half the price.
August 24, 2012 3:08:44 AM

Best answer selected by battlewalrus.
August 24, 2012 1:05:42 PM

Again - fill out the form. Selecting a best answer before even providing us with any details at all is not the way to go.
!