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First Time Builder (Feedback Greatly Appreciated!)

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September 9, 2012 11:27:46 PM

Hey everyone! First time poster at Toms, but have been quite the avid reader since I decided to build my first PC. I basically have questions on the solidity of my first build (compatible parts, performance on a budget, etc.) and whether or not I can substitute any parts for something cheaper and/or more reliable without sacrificing too much performance.

I realize that there are plenty of these questions on these forums, and I truly do apologize if a similar thread has already been posted. I can only hope that my respectful typing can subtly yet effectively urge you to help me with this build more than the others! I've been an avid gamer since a young age, and many years later I still haven't had confidence in my gaming PC. Hell, I'm on a laptop right now that was prebuilt and bought from Best Buy! Yeah, sickening, I know!

The push I needed to start my own build was Guild Wars 2. It's barely playable on my current laptop (I'm at most getting 8 FPS here guys), and since my consoles seem to want to keep dying on me, I've had enough! It's time for a solid, effective machine that will kick games in the behind and get it rolling. At a budget, of course. *winks*

Enough rambling, it's time to get to the gut of it: The build.

Approximate Purchase Date: Around Black Friday for the sales (unless I splurge and get it within the next month or so.)

Budget Range: ~ $1000.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Streaming Movies, Everyday Tasks

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, Mouse, Speakers.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Whatever is cheapest from a reliable retailer.

Country: USA.

Parts Preferences: by brand or type: Intel/Nvidia if possible. Not a fan of ATI.

Overclocking: I'm not sure. I've never done it. If it's easy and affordable, sure. But I'm a noob with building.

SLI or Crossfire: In the future, YES. Pref. SLI.

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080. Good ol' 1080p HD, puhlease.

Additional Comments: Needs OS. Not getting other peripherals at the moment, just to make that number at the end smaller.

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz Quad-Core - $199.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MB: ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 ATX LGA1155 - $199.90
http://us.ncix.com/products/?sku=63945&vpn=Z68%20Extrem...

RAM: G.Skill Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 - $43.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

STORAGE: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM - $62.99
http://www.superbiiz.com/detail.php?name=HD-W50AAKX&c=C...

Crucial M4 64GB 2.5" SSD - $68.95
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/bhphotovideo/crucial-interna...

GPU: MSI GeForce GTX 560 Ti 1GB - $187.86
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/newegg/msi-video-card-n560gt...

CASE: Cooler Master HAF 912 ATX Mid Tower - $49.49
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/superbiiz/cooler-master-case...

PSU: Corsair 650W ATX12V / EPS12V - $69.99
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/newegg/corsair-power-supply-...

OPTICAL: Samsung SH-222BB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer - $16.98
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/outletpc/samsung-optical-dri...

MONITOR: Asus VE228H 21.5" - $136.40
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/amazon/asus-monitor-ve228h

OS: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) - $90.63
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/amazon/microsoft-os-gfc02050

TOTAL : $1047.17

In terms of the CPU/MB/GPU, I'm open to suggestions. I've heard things about upgrading to Ivy Bridge, or going with a Z77 chipset. These acronyms and terms fall on deaf ears for the most part, fellas. I did a bit of research, and have an overall understanding of the basics, but when it comes to the fine details, that's what I need you guys for. I really want an effective build that will play most games at high settings. I want options to be able to upgrade in the future (Better GPU, or SLI, etc.). I'll admit, I did most of this on PC Part Picker. I went by # of reviews/rating, looking at various other builds at this similar price range, and many many articles on Tom's. Also, a good deal on a good monitor would be outstanding.

I apologize again for all the reading, but hopefully it shows you how dedicated I am in my pursuit of an awesome gaming rig. Please keep the knowledge wars away, I would like just good ol' constructive criticism and suggestions instead of a debate on who has more PC experience. I thank you ahead of time for all of your comments. Thanks, thanks, and many thanks! :) 
September 10, 2012 12:51:41 AM

Hello buddy!!

get this:

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($215.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-D3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($39.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($88.98 @ Newegg)
Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card ($297.86 @ Newegg)
Case: Rosewill CHALLENGER ATX Mid Tower Case ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Rosewill 550W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($56.00 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-222BB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer ($16.98 @ Outlet PC)
Monitor: Asus VE247H 23.6" Monitor ($172.98 @ NCIX US)
Total: $1068.76

READ THIS
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September 10, 2012 10:41:42 AM

Going with that CPU would mean setting up an ivy bridge build right? Any reasoning for the mb choice? Seems much cheaper which is good, but is out comparable to my first choice? That also seems like a really expensive gpu. I plan to have sli at some point, but i guess crossfire is similar. At that gpu price i don't think it would happen. So would that single card stack up to dual gtx 560 ti's? And this build lacks an ssd, which i hear is a near must have these days. I'd rather have one at the start to boot up windows than do it later as i'm not knowledgeable on that sort of thing. I do like some if the swaps though, it looks solid! Thanks for the reply! Sorry for typos, doing this on a smartphone.
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September 10, 2012 12:26:35 PM

kiggaxwut said:
Going with that CPU would mean setting up an ivy bridge build right? Any reasoning for the mb choice? Seems much cheaper which is good, but is out comparable to my first choice? That also seems like a really expensive gpu. I plan to have sli at some point, but i guess crossfire is similar. At that gpu price i don't think it would happen. So would that single card stack up to dual gtx 560 ti's? And this build lacks an ssd, which i hear is a near must have these days. I'd rather have one at the start to boot up windows than do it later as i'm not knowledgeable on that sort of thing. I do like some if the swaps though, it looks solid! Thanks for the reply! Sorry for typos, doing this on a smartphone.



*Clock vs clock Ivy bridge is faster than sandy bridge, @4.2Ghz an i5 3570k has the same speed as an i5 2500 @ 4.6Ghz.

*i chose that motherboard simply because it has a lot of good reviews and Gigabyte mean quality.

*Well...dual GTX560tis will give you a FEW fps more than the 7970Ghz edition but they will make a lot of noise, consume a lot of power and you might run into drivers issue for some games, and by the time you actually need a second 7970Ghz they will cost about 300$ (because its gonna take a while before a single 7970Ghz edition isn't enough)

*You're right...a SSD is a must have today AFTER you covered all your performance needs.... what do you prefer? botting a game really fast and have a shitty framerate or botting it at a decent speed and have an amazing framerate??? besides... you can add a SSD later.
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September 11, 2012 1:23:16 AM

Alright, so I've revised my build after a little bit more research and with your comments in mind. I've gone a bit over my budget, but hell, if this build lasts me 2-3 years, I'll be happy. Here we go:

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor - $215.99
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/ncixus/intel-cpu-bx80637i535...

MB: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard - $134.99
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/amazon/asrock-motherboard-z7...

MEMORY: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory - $38.99
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/ncixus/gskill-memory-f312800...

STORAGE: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive - $74.99
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/ncixus/seagate-internal-hard...

GPU: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card - $399.99
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/amazon/gigabyte-video-card-g...

CASE: Rosewill CHALLENGER ATX Mid Tower Case - $49.99
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/newegg/rosewill-case-challen...

PSU: SeaSonic 620W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply - $83.99
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/superbiiz/seasonic-power-sup...

OPTICAL: Samsung SH-222BB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer - $16.98
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/outletpc/samsung-optical-dri...

MONITOR: Asus VE247H 23.6" Monitor - $172.98
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/ncixus/asus-monitor-ve247h

Total - $1188.89

I'm a bit iffy on the PSU and Storage. Are they good picks? And I'm still really considering an SSD to tack on to the build, as well as a cheap, effective cooling unit that isn't too complicated. Those choices I have in mind are:

SSD: Samsung 830 Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk - $96.49
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/bhphotovideo/samsung-interna...

COOLER: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler - $27.99
http://pcpartpicker.com/mr/ncixus/cooler-master-cpu-coo...

UPDATED TOTAL: $1313.37

This takes me way over budget, but I'm willing to suck it up if it's worth it.

How difficult is it to build a PC from the ground up for a user who is pretty savvy using computers, but has no experience in building them? I'm not familiar with where parts go, exactly how to do things, etc. I know there are how-to guides out there, and I hope that they are enough to get me through it. Any tips for a new builder to prevent any accidents? I'd be pretty depressed spending all this money just to end up frying my motherboard. And is there a guide to overclock the i5-3570k? How difficult would that be?

Thanks!
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September 11, 2012 1:30:17 AM

Also, any tips on how to cut the price down a bit without sacrificing any real performance? Thanks everyone.
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September 11, 2012 1:45:01 AM

kiggaxwut said:
Also, any tips on how to cut the price down a bit without sacrificing any real performance? Thanks everyone.


Newegg has an offer that gives you 8GB of ram for the purchase of the Extreme 4.... you might want to hurry.. tik tok tik tok :bounce: 
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September 11, 2012 1:58:27 AM

Building a computer is like those wooden puzzles. Square goes in square hole and so on and so forth. Pretty hard to fry your CPU by installing it. Just use common sense.
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September 11, 2012 2:13:41 AM

I see that deal, and it's looking pretty good. But I live near a microcenter and have been looking around on the site, and it seems I can get a i5-3570k and Z77 Ex4 combo for a pretty good deal. Looks like I'm saving nearly 80 bucks total with both. The MB itself drops down to 80-ish and the CPU to 189, if I pick it up in store. Any opinions on Microcenter? Heard good and bad things aplenty.

And that's good to hear obsama. I like puzzles.
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September 11, 2012 2:17:17 AM

kiggaxwut said:

And that's good to hear obsama. I like puzzles.


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