First Build

Hi everyone, this is first time building a computer (outside of "IT school" which was years ago)!
I am aware space maybe a concern, let me know if you think there will be any issues.
I've tried to my part by finding compatible parts, if there is anything I'm missing, I do apologize.

Thanks for your valuable time, and any advice would be great!


Approximate Purchase Date: Within a few weeks, depends on the feedback I get (not just from here of course :) )

Budget Range: Grand total < $1500 prefer $1400ish

System Usage from Most to Least Important:
Primary focus on gaming, not looking for an "ultimate build" but something decently powerful

Are you buying a monitor: No
I'm using a tried and true display, it has a DVI, and has almost no glare

On the wishlist below

Do you need to buy OS: No (transferring a non-OEM, buying if necessary)

Preferred Website(s) for Parts:, taking suggestions

Location: City, State/Region, Country
United States, Michigan around South-West lower peninsular

Parts Preferences: (listed below)

Overclocking: Yes please!

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe

Your Monitor Resolution: 1440x900

Additional Comments:
Here's my wishlist in detail
linky to wishlist
20 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about first build
  1. dude, you need a new monitor. 1440x900 is a bottleneck for a 1500 rig

    here you go
  2. Drop back down to the LGA1155 socket, 2011 is just wasted money if all your doing is gaming.

    Agree with BigTroll, that monitor has a piddly resolution and will degrade the visuals that your beast of a machine will produce.
    The build he has made is pretty good, only thing I would contest is the case choice (I prefer aggressive looking cases, not subtle aesthetics. But thats just my opinion, you may want that look).
  3. Thanks for the reply.

    I've added the monitor to the wishlist.
    Is the list you posted a build your recommending, or just a link to the monitor?

    Sorry if I'm coming across as think, just want to be sure.
  4. Whole build.
    I can explain the reasoning behind the various components if you want, since it seems BigTrolls gone.
  5. Quote:

    Whole build.
    I can explain the reasoning behind the various components if you want, since it seems BigTrolls gone.

    Sure, it would be good for my benefit.

    I've updated my wishlist, does this look like a decent build for gaming? As far as case appearance is concerned, it is something I would like (just a preference/personal taste)
  6. Its better, but still just a bit off.

    CPU: For gaming, an i7 is just unneeded. The advantage i7's have over i5's is that they have hyperthreading, which makes another 4 threads (total of 8) for the OS to use. Games rarely use four, and those that do rely on the first and second more than the others. So an i5 (4 threads) is all that is needed for gaming.
    Also, that 2700k is Sandy Bridge, theres an upgrade to the Sandy architecture called Ivy Bridge out that performs a bit better and uses less power.
    The gaming CPU to get right now is the i5-3570k. $230

    Mobo: Z77 instead of Z68, more features like USB3 and PCI-Gen3.
    Also, any reason for the M-ATX board and case? It limits your upgradability and cooling potential, and costs more for better parts.

    RAM: only needs to be 8GB, 16GB is overkill for a gaming rig. Also you are better off with a 2x4GB kit, a 1x8GB stick is more expensive.
    G.Skill Ares 8GB (2x4GB) 1600Mhz Cl9 1.5v. $40

    That PSU is fairly utilitarian, only 80+ certified and non-modular. You want something a bit better than that. 650W is good for a single card rig, 750W for dual (but you will have to get a bigger case/mobo if you want to do that).
    Corsair Enthusiast 650W. $90

    The GPU you have specified is fairly old now, and there are better options at its $200 price point, the HD7850 is a better bet.
    But given that you get an i5, that is a significant savings there, and the money can be spent here. A GTX670 will max out any game at 1080p (except Witcher 2's Ubersampling).
    Gigabyte GTX670. $400

    No HDD? OS?
  7. There is an HDD (the Samsung 128GB SSD).
    As far the OS is concerned I already have copy ready (MSDNAA)

    With upgrading I'm OK with higher limits (though having an open door would be nice), but cooling does concern me. Is this a big issue heat and cost wise, or is the does the penalty not a cause of a major problem?

    I'll update the list a little later, depending if you find the Micro-ATX mobo and case to be problem.

    Thanks for your support.
  8. 128GB wont go far in a gaming rig, and using an SSD as your only storage isn't a great idea. You would end up filling it with files that dont benefit from its speed, and SSD performance does degrade the fuller it gets. You still need a mechanical Hard Drive if you want to store any real amount of stuff.
    Seagate Barracuda 1TB 7200RPM. $90

    Unless you need the compactness of a M-ATX case and mobo, there's no real reason for it. Getting a standard ATX components will give you a better upgrade path and more features at less of a cost. Micro-ATX cases are fairly small, so you cant fit large heatsinks inside, and the cases themselves will only have a few small fans for airflow.
  9. Updated the wishlist.
    It's also cheaper too. I also had a "box" case in mind but the one I found doesn't seem to fit the bill to well.

    Let me know what you think, and thanks again. :)
  10. Again, unless you are video editing or dooing intensive number crunching tasks, an i7 is overkill. An i5 will perform the same in games.
    Also Ivy over Sandy Bridge.
    Intel i5-3570k. $230

    Mobo is quite expensive, there are cheaper options that will perform about the same.

    That heatsink is designed for HTPC cases, you want to get a proper heatsink.
    Noctua NH-D14. $90
    Or if you dont want the ugly as Noctua fan and heatsink, swap over to water-cooling.
    Corsair H100. $115

    Never seen that case before, make sure to read some reviews on it first (proper review sites, not Newegg comments). Also that case wont be able to support the Water cooler I listed above.
    A good mid-tower case to get is the HAF-XM, it isnt all that subtle, but its one of the best mid-towers on the market. Will support that watercooler.
    Coolermaster HAF-XM. $130
  11. Whoops.... sorry that CPU is still there by mistake
  12. Alright made the adjustments to the wishlist. Pretty darn cheap for such a power house :)
    Looks a lot like the setup you got in your signature.

    Is there a smaller case that will do the trick? Sorry to seem picky, but it is a big purchase.

    Thanks for the feedback
  13. for your wishlist, id get the following instead

    1:i swear i can find the ud3h for 129.99. more features and 30 dollars less
    2:wheres your GPU? i suggested the msi pe 670. pretty much the best 670 out there
    3:go ahead with the haf xm. the R4 is my personal favourite
    4:go ahead with the ram. i suggested the blue one since it matches the colour scheme.
    5:if you are to do SLI, get the power supply i suggested. its 80+ silver, modular, and isnt too expensive. if you are going to get a tx750w v2, get the regular non-modular unit from xfx since they are the same units but under different brands.
    6: the hard drive really doesnt matter much to me
    7: the rest is kinda explained by manofchalk (cooler). the d14 is 75 dollars elsewhere
    8: if i were you, id invest in a mechanical keyboard. then again they cost 70-100 dollars

    as for the stores, why get them all under newegg? they dont offer the best prices.
  14. Ok, I have a confession to make... I'm not a hardcore gamer, I just have new games that my old little laptop can't handle. I may get some new ones in the future that I'd like to be able to run well.

    I'm looking for something not too big that I can put into a cube case (without letting the smoke out), a "game-cube" lol? I'm also not looking for super a high-end machine either. I would like to OC the cpu to at least 4Ghz. As far as the GPU is concerned, decent will do.
    I'm just using newegg for a list (not getting everything from there)

    If you guys are still with me, does this seem possible?

    Thanks for putting up with me.
  15. Best answer
    if you want a matx build (smaller box), here you go. they perform the same. i just had to switch the gpu to a blower design and change the cpu cooler and motherboard
  16. Wow... that looks good to me! :)

    I'll wait and see if anyone else says anything else about it and I'll seek out feedback from the outside also.
  17. one thing to note about the define mini is that dont be fooled by its smaller size. it still weighs 15-18 pounds empty given the sound proofing stuff is super dense
  18. Do you think I can squeeze the hardware into this case without too much heat/noise issues?
    It's 12ish lbs, which doesn't bother me much.
  19. it should stay relatively cool. noise is not a problem

    if you want it to be a bit cooler, you can get the arc mini case. its the same case but without foam. instead you get mesh. is going to be a bit louder
  20. Best answer selected by ManDudeGuy.
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