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Fractal Design define r4 Gaming Build

Hello Everyone,

I want to attempt on building my first gaming pc. After an extensive research I made up my mind on the Fractal Design Define R4 case and want your help to start from here.

I don't know anything about overclocking or if is even necessary. My understanding is that temperatures are going to be high inside the case and don't need to push the hardware too much.

Regarding CPU, CPU Cooler (I like the Noctua NH-D14) , Memory, Storage, Media drive, is all acceptable

I am interested to buy the BEST graphics card for my money and use it on a motherboard that is good accepting a high end graphics card. I have no interest to SLI or using multiple monitors. By saying that, I would like a motherboard that is solid but without too many unnecessary features that will never use and is intended on high end build using multiple graphics cards.

Hope all that helps.
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  1. There are a few things missing from your post, for anyone to advise you.
    Most importantly What is Your budget, and what don't you need that to include (monitor, operating system, keyboard, etc.)
    Where are you (helps us pick a supplier)
    What do you want computer to do (eg gaming, business, design etc)
    Monitor resolution.

    Then; do you want to overclock. Overclocking can give some boost in performance. It's not, as some people say, a "free" boost, because you have to start with equipment that is capable of overclocking. That does increase the additional cost. If you have a very healthy budget, it is generally worth having. If on a tight budget, it is probably better to spend that in other ways.
    By the way the Fractal case is very good, so can certainly include that, if you wish.
  2. My budget can be up to $2000. I dont need a monitor, keyboard, OS
    I live in the states, so Amazon, Newegg, Microcenter, etc. is good places to purchase
    As I stated, I would like it to be a gaming build.
    As I also stated, I dont know anything about overclocking but I am interested to learn. I just dont see yet the importance of pushing your hardware to produce something higher, with the risk of failing. I am might be wrong on that but like I said, I have more to learn about overclocking. Overall, lets say YES I am interested to overclock.
    p.s. Fractal Design Define R4 is the only case I am interested to build
  3. Given your budget, building in the capability to overclocking, is not a problem. These days, overclocking, with a motherboard that does it well, Like an Asus Z77, is not the "risky business" it once was. (provided you don't go silly). You can use the facility, if it's there, as and when you feel confident. It's late (in UK) now, will have a look in morning.
  4. Thank you malbluff for your response and looking forward on your recommendations. I am thrilled that finally found a case that I like and people that are interested to explain me the rest :)
  5. Best answer
    DionTheGreek said:
    Thank you malbluff for your response and looking forward on your recommendations. I am thrilled that finally found a case that I like and people that are interested to explain me the rest :)

    Apologies for delay, the brain doesn't multi-task as well as PC.
    I've put together what is probably the most powerful single GPU system, using high quality components, that will play virtually any game at near max settings, even on a 2560x1600 screen. It is probably more than you actually need, but should still give some change from your budget, for any "extras", like sound system, if you want. There ARE ways to save money, and I have left "suppliers" off. If you have local microcentre, they often have good "walk in deals". Here goes:

    CASE: Fractal Design Define R4 Mid-Tower ATX (different colours with, or without window)
    PSU: Intel Core i5-3570K
    COOLER: Noctua NH-D14
    MOBO: Asus P8Z77 Sabretooth
    MEMORY: GSkill Ares 8GB (2x4GB) 1600MHzC9 DDR3
    HARD DRIVE: Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB 6Gb/s 7200 rpm.
    SSD: 128GB Samsung 830
    PSU: Either Corsair HX, Rosewill Hive, or Seasonic 650W Modular 80 Plus Bronze ATX12V
    OPT DRIVE: Lite-On iHBS212-08 Blu-ray R/W
    GPU: MSI R7970 Lightning HD7970 3GB

    With a little "shopping around" (half the fun of it) that should total less than $1500. Really no point spending any more, other than on extras.

    The case comes in various colours, that's obviously personal choice. You can have it with, or without side window. Whilst it's nice to have a window, to show off your work (assuming you've done a neat job), a window does make it a bit more difficult to fit a side fan, should you ever add a 2nd graphics card.

    I have chosen the most capable, overall graphics card, which could be looked upon as the "Hummer" of cards. If you prefer nVidia for GPU, some of the GTX670's could be called the Ferrari's. They are particularly good in some games, that favour nVidia, like BF3, Portal, Starcraft, Skyrim, which makes up for their lower brute power. It is a matter of personal preference. If you used a GTX670, you could drop the power supply to 550W, they are more power efficient. If you do fancy a GTX 670, the BEST is Asus GTX670-DC2T-2GD5 (the T is important), if you can get it (they are sought after, and murder to get hold of). The Gigabyte GV-N670OC-2GD is another good one.
    I'm sure other contributors will have different, perhaps better, options to add, and as I said, there are ways to reduce costs, if you wish, so I should wait a day, or two, before rushing into anything.
  6. This by far the most complete answer I have ever seen in this forum and greatly appreciate your time you put into that. Your recommendations are very valuable and helped me made my mind on how to proceed.

    I'll come back with a question when the building process will begin :) A Very exciting moment!

    One last question for now: I heard a lot of people to get DOA defective hardware and have to RMA the product back. What seller do you recommend to use? (Micro-center, Amazon, NewEgg). I want to ensure of a good customer support and painless process in case I get a defective product.
  7. Best answer selected by DionTheGreek.
  8. DionTheGreek said:
    This by far the most complete answer I have ever seen in this forum and greatly appreciate your time you put into that. Your recommendations are very valuable and helped me made my mind on how to proceed.

    I'll come back with a question when the building process will begin :) A Very exciting moment!

    One last question for now: I heard a lot of people to get DOA defective hardware and have to RMA the product back. What seller do you recommend to use? (Micro-center, Amazon, NewEgg). I want to ensure of a good customer support and painless process in case I get a defective product.

    To be honest, from UK, I don't know US market well enough to advise on best place to buy, for customer care. In the UK, we have a supplier, called SCAN, who do lots of "sale offers", and even offer low cost build insurance, just in case of a "mishap". I don't know if there's anywhere like that in US.
    Happy building.
  9. I choose that case with my main focus on a well build case that will be good for years to come and also quiet!

    Now, I also have my eyes on the NZXT Phantom 410 (Red) that is also well build but not sure of how quiet can it be.

    Do you have a favorite case or other suggestion? So far all your recommendations are spot on!
  10. In terms of "quiet", the Fractal in certainly pretty good. A lot comes down to what you put in it, of course. For instance, the two 670's I suggested, at same settings, would be quieter than the Radeon. You can always MAKE a system quieter by a bit of soundproofing, and using aftermarket fans. The Phantom is quite a nice case, but not sure of quiet. The only real way you can compare, is look up reviews, for both, which should give sound readings (do it on the same site, to be comparable)
    I'm using a Corsair Carbide 500R, in my next build, but my criterea isn't really noise, and don't think it would beat the Fractal, in that respect.
  11. I am about ready to almost purchase all the stuff and start building. Can anyone give me some advice on where to buy them? I am looking for the best customer support on such a high volume order.
    It doesn't have to be all from the same place but want to be sure I am going to be protected in case something is DOA.

    In some reviews I read that Amazon is great on RMA policies and others say that newegg is best.
    How about a micro center near by? Do I get any advantage buying locally instead of online?
  12. From this side of the pond (UK), Newegg certainly APPEARS to be very good (I've heard few complaints). Amazon UK is very good most of the time, but occassionally "variable", particularly on products they are basically marketing, for other suppliers. I don't know if that's any different, in the States. Micro centre have some very good "walk in" deals, but problem there is that it will often be for something slightly different, than you intended, so you need reasonable knowledge, to know if that "slight difference" is significant. I have no idea what their after-sales is like. Sorry can't give more "positive" help, but difficult, from here.
  13. any help you gave me so far was very important to me and other readers. Thank you malbluff
  14. Here is the list of the items: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/heXn

    Now have to find some ways to save a little bit by waiting some of the prices to drop...
  15. One small point on your basket, one larger one.
    Large one- If you want to use Corsair for RAM you need to change from CMZ to CML. The high heat sinks on the CMZ will clash with cooler. Crucial Ballistic Sport, or GSkill Ares, are alternative. If you use Newegg or Amazon, it makes it easier to see what you're picking.
    Small Point- The Corsair PSU is very good, however, the Seasonic SS-750KM is slightly better, for same money.
  16. I made the changes based on your recommendations. Can you please take a look?

    http://pcpartpicker.com/p/hh9E
  17. Looks good to me. Will be nice system. Happy building.
  18. I am looking around my build http://pcpartpicker.com/p/hh9E and cannot find anything that I dont like. Everything is in the right place and have no doubt that system will take me to the next +3years of high end gaming and +7 for moderate/high based on my observation of the current speed of game development (unless 3d hits high that highly doubt it will).

    That pc will be efficient in gaming, quiet to do my studies and professional looking to disguise myself :P

    So, my last problem is where to purchase the items and what methods to use to save some money. Any suggestions?
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