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1st time build.

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September 4, 2012 1:52:19 PM

Hey guys,1st time coming here,and i was wondering if it would be possible for me to ask you to look over my build. I need it for general web surfing and gaming,i don't encode videos or anything else like that,plus im a complete novice when it comes to computers in most ways so could we use layman's terms for anything technical.

Intel Core i3 3220 IvyBridge S1155 3.3GHz
2GB MSI R7850 Power Edition 2GD5/OC
8GB (2x4GB) Corsair DDR3 XMS3
550W XFX Pro Series Core Edition
Gigabyte GA-Z77-D3H, Intel Z77, S 1155
Coolermaster Elite 430

Im trying to do this on a budget of £500 or less. Currently i'm at £510,but i guess i can forgive the extra tenner. Is there anything i should change? (i have my hard drive in my current computer which i hope to use,same goes with the optical drive too)

Thanks for any and all replies.

More about : 1st time build

September 4, 2012 1:58:39 PM

Everything there is a reasonable choice on the budget you have.
September 4, 2012 2:09:20 PM

Thank you for the reply. Just another quick question. Will it be as easy as just connecting my old hard drive and booting up? cos i was wondering if im going to have any issues without wiping it and probably having to buy a new OS too.
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September 4, 2012 2:11:38 PM

As you are installing it into new hardware it will need to be formatted and yes, a new OS too i'm afraid.
September 4, 2012 2:19:22 PM

Oh great,i didn't factor that into my budget,i think i may have to leave building this for a while longer until have quite a bit of extra money. :( 
September 4, 2012 2:24:27 PM

Only real question in my mind: Is there some particular reason to pair the i3 processor with a z77 motherboard?

The chipset of the motherboard does not affect the speed of your computer; Rather, it adds features (like overclocking, PCIe3, and such which simply are not supported by your CPU), and you may be better served with your budget looking at something with a B75 or H71 chipset.

Mind you, what you picked will work, it is simply a matter of having features supported by the mobo which will be inaccessible due to your CPU selection.
September 4, 2012 2:24:31 PM

As mentioned above try to look for a less expensive mobo then you can think about the extra cost of a new OS. Unfortunately a cheaper mobo wont cover it but it will get you closer.
September 4, 2012 2:24:57 PM

If you are doing video editing surfing just genreal stuff then son that build is just fine, if your moving over from another pc that you used to edit videos on the difference will be outstanding, but but but, get a i7 with hyperthreading this is the key for video editing, it will blow away the competition, i3 are great i5's are great i7's for video editing are astonishing. Tell you what cheap out on the gfx card, hell i didnt even buy one for my build, with the extra mollah get a 2600k, you wont be dissapointed. eats though rendering like a hungry t-rex.

Editing is a fricking breeze with this, something that would take 35 minutes to render on my old pc now takes 2 minutes seriously its that good... Check out the reviews on the 2600k...
September 4, 2012 2:27:27 PM

CaedenV said:
Only real question in my mind: Is there some particular reason to pair the i3 processor with a z77 motherboard?

The chipset of the motherboard does not affect the speed of your computer; Rather, it adds features (like overclocking, PCIe3, and such which simply are not supported by your CPU), and you may be better served with your budget looking at something with a B75 or H71 chipset.

Mind you, what you picked will work, it is simply a matter of having features supported by the mobo which will be inaccessible due to your CPU selection.


The original reason i chose the mobo i did was for the future of my build. I plan on buying an i3 now,and then it a year or so,upgrading to an ivy bridge i5. Since the ivy bridge i3 has literally just became available,i thought id add that because it was only £7 extra over the 2120.
September 4, 2012 2:28:32 PM

mrwoodys said:
Oh great,i didn't factor that into my budget,i think i may have to leave building this for a while longer until have quite a bit of extra money. :( 

Keep in mind that you can throw windows 8 RTM on your machine and it will be good for 90 days. That would allow you to have your new computer now, and give you 90 days to save up for your OS.
September 4, 2012 2:33:54 PM

Upgrading from SB to IVB is not an upgrade. More like a side-grade.
September 4, 2012 2:37:11 PM

gambin0 said:
If you are doing video editing surfing just genreal stuff then son that build is just fine, if your moving over from another pc that you used to edit videos on the difference will be outstanding, but but but, get a i7 with hyperthreading this is the key for video editing, it will blow away the competition, i3 are great i5's are great i7's for video editing are astonishing. Tell you what cheap out on the gfx card, hell i didnt even buy one for my build, with the extra mollah get a 2600k, you wont be dissapointed. eats though rendering like a hungry t-rex.

Editing is a fricking breeze with this, something that would take 35 minutes to render on my old pc now takes 2 minutes seriously its that good... Check out the reviews on the 2600k...



I think you may have misread my post :o  im not into video editing or anything,and that processor is wayyyy out of my budget.
September 4, 2012 2:38:27 PM

CaedenV said:
Keep in mind that you can throw windows 8 RTM on your machine and it will be good for 90 days. That would allow you to have your new computer now, and give you 90 days to save up for your OS.


Wow,that's very helpful. Where would i find this windows 8 trial? That may makes things much easier for me.
September 4, 2012 2:39:38 PM

azeem40 said:
Upgrading from SB to IVB is not an upgrade. More like a side-grade.


Im really conscious about power consumption and the like. I know the i3 is very frugal when it comes to its power consumption,and i just assumed the new ivy bridge ones will have improved along those lines.
September 4, 2012 2:40:33 PM

Power consumption is not enough to warrant buying the same parts twice.
September 4, 2012 2:41:52 PM

You'd probably pay more for the IB than you'd save from having it.
September 4, 2012 2:45:11 PM

azeem40 said:
Power consumption is not enough to warrant buying the same parts twice.


Im a bit confused right now. I was going to buy the 2120,but i have decided to go with the 3220 instead. And then i'd upgrade to i5 ivy bridge processor 9+ months later. Plus the price difference is only £7.
September 4, 2012 2:48:21 PM

I was confused. I thought you were saying you'd buy the i3-2120 now and then the 3220 later. However, in 9+ months, a new socket will come out, so buy the new socket CPU and Motherboard then.
September 4, 2012 2:53:32 PM

azeem40 said:
I was confused. I thought you were saying you'd buy the i3-2120 now and then the 3220 later. However, in 9+ months, a new socket will come out, so buy the new socket CPU and Motherboard then.


Ok, thank you for the input. A general question to anyone reading,is there any way to get a version of Windows 7 for cheap? £80 seems rather expensive. (also,is there no way of wiping my hard drive of normal files,but keeping windows 7 on it?)
September 4, 2012 2:57:59 PM

Delete all folders except for the system32 directory.
September 4, 2012 3:00:17 PM

You could do a System Image of the Hard Drive.
September 4, 2012 3:01:03 PM

azeem40 said:
Delete all folders except for the system32 directory.


Well that seems easy. Am i going to run into problems by doing that? or will it be straight forward? actually,come to think of it,is there any way to just copy windows 7 onto a large memory stick and then just download it to by hard drive once the new build has been assembled? (im starting to hate computers the more i think about it :lol:  )
September 4, 2012 3:05:18 PM

azeem40 said:
You could do a System Image of the Hard Drive.


Im sure if you told me what one of them was i could..?
September 4, 2012 3:20:14 PM

mrwoodys said:
The original reason i chose the mobo i did was for the future of my build. I plan on buying an i3 now,and then it a year or so,upgrading to an ivy bridge i5. Since the ivy bridge i3 has literally just became available,i thought id add that because it was only £7 extra over the 2120.

I would highly suggest either getting the CPU that you want today, and have it last a good long while, or else get the bare minimum today (read: Pentium G and an H61 mobo, or even used equipment if it only has to last a year), and plan on a major upgrade in a year or so when the new CPUs and mobos come out.

The upgrade CPU is not going to have any longer of a useful life if purchased a year or so from now than it would if you bought it today, so for the same time time period you will have paid money for 2 CPUs instead of the one you wanted (and it is very hard to resell Pentium and i3 processors as there is a very small after-market demand for them). On top of that, there will be much faster but similarly priced next-gen processors on the market this time next year. These new chips are going to have a new core design rather than a mere die shrink, which typically gives a 15-20% performance improvement (compare to Ivy Bridge which only gives us a ~5% improvement over Sandy Bridge), and the motherboards they will be paired with should bring more SATA3 and USB3 ports (though likely the same PCIe3 lanes available today).

There are a few times when a CPU upgrade makes sense, like at the beginning of a new core design (moving from a low end Sandy Bridge to a high end Ivy Bridge a year or so later), or in the event of a hardware failure where you are forced to purchase a new product anyways. But at the end of a product line, and the end of a mobo interface it is simply a dead-end for product upgrades. So again, either get what you want/need today, or else go with the bare minimum today and do a core upgrade (mobo, and processor as it looks like the new chips will still be on DDR3) next year.
September 4, 2012 3:26:38 PM

CaedenV said:
I would highly suggest either getting the CPU that you want today, and have it last a good long while, or else get the bare minimum today (read: Pentium G and an H61 mobo, or even used equipment if it only has to last a year), and plan on a major upgrade in a year or so when the new CPUs and mobos come out.

The upgrade CPU is not going to have any longer of a useful life if purchased a year or so from now than it would if you bought it today, so for the same time time period you will have paid money for 2 CPUs instead of the one you wanted (and it is very hard to resell Pentium and i3 processors as there is a very small after-market demand for them). On top of that, there will be much faster but similarly priced next-gen processors on the market this time next year. These new chips are going to have a new core design rather than a mere die shrink, which typically gives a 15-20% performance improvement (compare to Ivy Bridge which only gives us a ~5% improvement over Sandy Bridge), and the motherboards they will be paired with should bring more SATA3 and USB3 ports (though likely the same PCIe3 lanes available today).

There are a few times when a CPU upgrade makes sense, like at the beginning of a new core design (moving from a low end Sandy Bridge to a high end Ivy Bridge a year or so later), or in the event of a hardware failure where you are forced to purchase a new product anyways. But at the end of a product line, and the end of a mobo interface it is simply a dead-end for product upgrades. So again, either get what you want/need today, or else go with the bare minimum today and do a core upgrade (mobo, and processor as it looks like the new chips will still be on DDR3) next year.


I guess im just worried in the end,that my dual core i3 wont last me too long because im guessing more and more games will start needing 4 cores,and of course,the fact that i haven't got a big enough budget to stretch to an i5 (and iv heard amd's quad core processors aren't even that great)
September 4, 2012 3:33:00 PM

azeem40 said:
You could do a System Image of the Hard Drive.

Purchase Acronis, and follow the instructions :p 

You would want the for-pay version of Acronis as the 'home' edition does not allow you to make a hardware agnostic copy of the disc. If you move to a new/different platform this is a very important feature to have.

As for the win8 RTM it can be found on the MS website here: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/evalcenter/jj554510.asp...
Or you can get win8 Customer Preview from their main website, but that one expires as soon as win8 becomes available. However, my understanding is that you can pay to upgrade from win8CP without needing to reformat the system, where as you would have to do a fresh install to move from win8RTM to the final release. Though I could be wrong on this.
September 4, 2012 3:39:51 PM

This,its a fantastic option. You have just saved me a lot of time and hassle and for a fraction of the price and basically no effort. Thank you.
September 4, 2012 3:45:25 PM

mrwoodys said:
I guess im just worried in the end,that my dual core i3 wont last me too long because im guessing more and more games will start needing 4 cores,and of course,the fact that i haven't got a big enough budget to stretch to an i5 (and iv heard amd's quad core processors aren't even that great)

Well, there is a little hope for you on that front; It sounds like the new game consoles will be moving back to the x86 platform (making ports much easier to run on PC), and there is a chance they will be moving to intel chips, which means support for HT tech, which means that your i3 becomes a quad core as far as games are concerned.
Take note that this is entirely speculation at this point, and may be completely off base, but there is a chance (and a growing chance) that your little i3 may run well for a good long time.

This still does not change the fact (or at least extreme likelihood) that it would be more cost effective to upgrade to a new CPU and new mobo when the next gen equipment becomes available than to simply upgrade to a higher end Ivy Bridge CPU. So you would still be better off getting a low end CPU and low end mobo today, than getting a high end mobo today and upgrading the CPU to match it later.

How long would it take for you to save up for the $$ difference? an i3 here in the states costs ~$120, which gets you into entry to mid-level games quite easily, and an i5 is only $50-80 more which is not that much in the grand scheme of things, and would age much better as new games come out.

Another option is to get the cheaper mobo anyways (B75) and then get a non-K i5 processor which would fit the bill for a good long time provided that you:
1) do not need to OC and
2) can live with only 1 SATA3 port (HDDs don't take advantage of SATA3 in the first place, so the only time that becomes an issue is if you are planning on more than 1 SSD).

It would cost roughly the same as a z77mobo paired with an i3 CPU, and give you the performance you are looking for.
September 4, 2012 3:54:48 PM

I just went to the website im building this on,and its works out about £70 more expensive (i5 3450) and the inclusion of the price of the operating system) and im not so fussed about the idea of an SSD,that's something id reassess at a later date.
September 4, 2012 4:30:03 PM

you said about the b75 board,out of interest,would this one suffice?and is it a good brand? because this drops my budget to just £515 somehow. MSI B75MA-P45 Intel B75.
!