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Attempting to upgrade but might have issues due to shot PSU

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September 10, 2012 3:53:07 AM

I am not opposed to buying a laptop and would possibly rather do that but am sure it's not possible with what I want. Also if a pre-built comes out cheaper and better then I am ok with that.

Approximate Purchase Date: ASAP

Budget Range: After everything I want to land under $1,000 - $1,200 I would rather under a thousand but if that extra 200 makes a significant difference it might be worth it to me.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: (e.g.: Folding@Home, gaming, surfing the internet, watching movies)

Are you buying a monitor: No

Parts to Upgrade: I am honestly unsure on this and looking for input.
My current build is all from newegg and these are the parts

Thermaltake M9 VI1000BWS Black Computer Case With Side Panel Window
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... *possibly replace*

RAIDMAX HYBRID 2 RX-730SS 730W Modular LED Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... *DEAD*

OCZ Reaper HPC 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... assuming I will be replacing

AMD Phenom II X4 940 3.0GHz Black Edition Quad-core Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... possibly replace? I want this setup to MOVE! =)

GIGABYTE GA-MA78G-DS3HP ATX AMD Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... Replace

EVGA GeForce 9800 GTX+ 512-P3-N879-AR Video Card
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... Replace My buddy is offerig me his 2 Radeon 6950 which he says he unlocked to run as a 6970 I am not sure how much he wants yet. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 500GB 3.5" SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... Replacing with SSD I plan on using this as a second drive if it's not to slow to keep the pc moving, I don't want it to slow me down.


Buy OS: Im not sure, I want a new MOBO and bought Microsoft Windows Vista Ultimate SP1 64-bit for System Builder and I believe there is no way to transfer the license.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Amazon due to the fact I have prime shipping. But I used newegg to build my previous set up. I don't truly mind any site. If the price comes out the cheapest it doesn't matter to me.

Location: Mercer county, NJ

Parts Preferences: I used to be an AMD fan but it's been a long time since I took any kind of preference, currently I have nvida for my graph card so I really don't have a end preference, honestly what ever gets me the best price and performance.

Overclocking: Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe

Monitor Resolution: 1920 x 1080 it's a 46" tv I am hoping to get a new one in the future. But it would be another 46"

Additional Comments: I can use the case I currently have but don't mind getting a newer one since this one is a bit roughed up. I play WoW, BF3, Skyrim and most other games that come out. I want to be able to play BF3 and other games on ultra because as of right now I can't. I want to go with SSD and use my old HDD for storing games when not being used as well all other storage so I don't need a very big drive but I figure 80GB or a little more. I assume my old HDD is fast enough.
Im going to use the disc drive from my older pc and want USB 3.0 on the new MOBO. I am also figuring I should go with about 6 or more gigs of RAM and am not sure if I should bother with a bluray drive but I feel it would be pointless.
My current CPU might be good enough to keep? I notice that nothing seems to max it out now.

I am upgrading because today suddenly my pc turned off and then I could smell burning and my PSU seemed dead but I did notice some of my stuff still lit up, I stupidly figured 10 minutes later lets see if it over heated and try turning it on. Turns on and after 10 seconds a nice sized spark lights up the room and its DEAD for sure this time. I will be trying to boot off a different power supply tomorrow at work and testing things out but as of right now I do not know what is dead or working. Either way the PC is about 4 years old and time for a upgrade! =)

I have no parts selected yet because it just happened now but have been wanting to rebuild or upgrade for a bit now so this was the final push. I will start to build a list of ideas I have now and hopefully have it finished tomorrow and add it to this post. I want SSD and a MOBO with usb 3.0 built in, I think in the end this is going to just end up being a full new build so that I can get a greater performance out of it.

Thanks for any input and sorry for all the text.
September 10, 2012 12:25:16 PM

To be honest, that Raidmax, probably did you a favour, in the long run. Your mobo is quite likely dead, along with the rest of it. It would be handy if you can salvage hard drive, as you will need one. There isn't enough in budget to allow for a big enough SSD, on it's own. Whether case is WORTH re-using, only you can say. You will need new OS, so whilst it's possible to put something together to run games like BF3, well, on your budget, salvaging case and/or hard drive, makes it easier to fit in high performance components, to get nearer to "ultra's".
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September 10, 2012 2:01:29 PM

malbluff said:
To be honest, that Raidmax, probably did you a favour, in the long run. Your mobo is quite likely dead, along with the rest of it. It would be handy if you can salvage hard drive, as you will need one. There isn't enough in budget to allow for a big enough SSD, on it's own. Whether case is WORTH re-using, only you can say. You will need new OS, so whilst it's possible to put something together to run games like BF3, well, on your budget, salvaging case and/or hard drive, makes it easier to fit in high performance components, to get nearer to "ultra's".

Thanks for the input, I planned on surely using my hard drive as the storage and only getting around a 80GB SSD. This pc had only cost me around 900 and was from 3 years ago and at the time played everything at ease with ultra settings. But for BF3 I got high and on certain maps could pull off ultra so I was assuming with the way cards have advanced I should be able to fit it all in at under 1k to get those settings. I guess in the end ill stick with reusing the case and if a new one fits the budget ill pick up a new one.
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September 10, 2012 3:51:46 PM

chuck the AMD cpu, as much as i prefer their company to intel, intel make better ones, and their is no getting past the i5 3570k for oc'ing or the i5 3550 for no oc.

EDIT: looking at what you have, if you can I would sell what you can of it then just get newer stuff.
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September 10, 2012 4:08:30 PM

OK. Will put something together with case, and see where it "ends up", in terms of cost. then you can re-use case to save money, if you want to. Shouldn't be a problem, provided you aren't desperate for CPU overclocking.
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September 10, 2012 5:18:40 PM

Ok thanks guys! I am not desperate to do anything but willing to do what ever will save me money...This sounds wrong lol. Like you said spat I was a very big AMD fan back 4 years ago and before. But it just doesn't matter to me anymore and it looks like intel is really kinda kicking there butt. So either works for me at this point. What ever is left over and working I was planing on turning into a little server. But maybe it would be wiser to just sell the parts and build a really cheap server it would only be for home use and the occasionally game server to game with friends so I believe it would not need much at all and would maybe cost way less then just wasting parts that I could sell on it.

My buddy built his PC a few months back and it runs BF3 at ultra he spent about 1,200 but I know newer and better parts are out now as well as he used things I don't need so I can cut them out and fix the price around some.

The items he had are.
ASUS Maximus IV Gene-Z LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...

ZOTAC ZT-50703-10M GeForce GTX 560 (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...

CORSAIR Gaming Series GS800 800W ATX12V v2.3 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC High Performance Power Supply http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...

Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623I52500K http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...

CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1866 (PC3 15000) Desktop Memory Model CMZ8GX3M2A1866C9 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...
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September 10, 2012 5:48:11 PM

mentalcase87 said:
Ok thanks guys! I am not desperate to do anything but willing to do what ever will save me money...This sounds wrong lol. Like you said spat I was a very big AMD fan back 4 years ago and before. But it just doesn't matter to me anymore and it looks like intel is really kinda kicking there butt. So either works for me at this point. What ever is left over and working I was planing on turning into a little server. But maybe it would be wiser to just sell the parts and build a really cheap server it would only be for home use and the occasionally game server to game with friends so I believe it would not need much at all and would maybe cost way less then just wasting parts that I could sell on it.

My buddy built his PC a few months back and it runs BF3 at ultra he spent about 1,200 but I know newer and better parts are out now as well as he used things I don't need so I can cut them out and fix the price around some.

The items he had are.
ASUS Maximus IV Gene-Z LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...

ZOTAC ZT-50703-10M GeForce GTX 560 (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...

CORSAIR Gaming Series GS800 800W ATX12V v2.3 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC High Performance Power Supply http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...

Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623I52500K http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...

CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1866 (PC3 15000) Desktop Memory Model CMZ8GX3M2A1866C9 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E168...

A bit "old hat" to be honest, compared to modern equipment. Put together the backbone of two possibilities. The cheapest to basically give what you want. The second a "step up" with overclocking, taking you more towards the "ultra zone" on most games

Option 1

CPU: Intel core i3-3220 3.3GHz Dual Core
MOBO: ASRock Z75 Pro 3 ATX
MEM: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2x4GB) 1600MHzC9 DDR3
SSD: 128GB Samsung 830
GPU: MSI Radeon HD7870
CASE: CoolerMaster Elite 431 Plus ATX Mid Tower
PSU: Rosewill Hive Modular 650W
OPT DR: Lite-On iHAS424-98
OS: Windows 7 Home Pr 64bit

APPROX COST: $840

Option 2

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4 GHz Quad core
CPU COOLER: CoolerMaster Hyper 212EVO
MOBO: Asus P8Z77-V
MEM: GSkill Ares 8GB (2x4GB) 1600MHzC9 DDR3
SSD: 128GB Samsung 830
GPU: MSI GTX 660Ti OC
CASE: CoolerMaster Elite 431 Plus ATX Mid Tower
PSU: Rosewill Hive Modular 550W
OPT DR: Lite-On iHAS424-98
OS: Windows 7 Home Pr 64bit

APPROX COST: $1095

These give you some idea of the options, and, of course, there are options in the middle. I have assumed that hard drive is the only thing to be salvaged fromold system.
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September 10, 2012 7:38:43 PM

malbluff said:
A bit "old hat" to be honest, compared to modern equipment. Put together the backbone of two possibilities. The cheapest to basically give what you want. The second a "step up" with overclocking, taking you more towards the "ultra zone" on most games

Option 1

CPU: Intel core i3-3220 3.3GHz Dual Core
MOBO: ASRock Z75 Pro 3 ATX
MEM: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2x4GB) 1600MHzC9 DDR3
SSD: 128GB Samsung 830
GPU: MSI Radeon HD7870
CASE: CoolerMaster Elite 431 Plus ATX Mid Tower
PSU: Rosewill Hive Modular 650W
OPT DR: Lite-On iHAS424-98
OS: Windows 7 Home Pr 64bit

APPROX COST: $840

Option 2

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4 GHz Quad core
CPU COOLER: CoolerMaster Hyper 212EVO
MOBO: Asus P8Z77-V
MEM: GSkill Ares 8GB (2x4GB) 1600MHzC9 DDR3
SSD: 128GB Samsung 830
GPU: MSI GTX 660Ti OC
CASE: CoolerMaster Elite 431 Plus ATX Mid Tower
PSU: Rosewill Hive Modular 550W
OPT DR: Lite-On iHAS424-98
OS: Windows 7 Home Pr 64bit

APPROX COST: $1095

These give you some idea of the options, and, of course, there are options in the middle. I have assumed that hard drive is the only thing to be salvaged fromold system.

Thanks for the builds! I will toy around with the second build and see what I can come up with. I am starting to think maybe some liquid cooling and ocing might be what I need to get me what I want. I had figured 1,200 would make me land in a max setting for all games, while the pc might of lacked in other areas.
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September 10, 2012 8:24:23 PM

I guess I should also ask exactly how much more would I need to be sure I can do max settings?
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September 10, 2012 8:56:39 PM

mentalcase87 said:
I guess I should also ask exactly how much more would I need to be sure I can do max settings?

That's a slightly impossible question, as there are some games, on some settings, where it's virtually impossible, with anything.
However, to give you an idea. That 2nd build should achieve around:

Battlefield 3: Ultra Setting 4xMSAA 1920x1080 Between 57 & 60 fps ave

or one of the most demanding
Crysis Warhead: Enthusiast Quality 4xAA 1920x1080 Between 40 & 43 fps ave.

Tell me what more you need!
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September 10, 2012 9:02:19 PM

Ah see there in lacks some of my knowledge! I had taken BF3 as to be the bench mark for what I want. Skyrim ran fine on either ultra or high on my pc as to where BF3 could not. Crysis ran great but I never tried 2, and didn't get around to warhead.

How did you go about getting those benchmarks for this build, based on the GPU and CPU? It's sad how far out of this I have fallen.

And thanks again for all your help! I really appreciate it, ive been slowly putting your build together on pcpartpicker
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September 10, 2012 9:05:12 PM

PS Those are stock figures. You would gain something with overclocking, though obviously not possible to say how much.
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September 10, 2012 9:09:28 PM

mentalcase87 said:
Ah see there in lacks some of my knowledge! I had taken BF3 as to be the bench mark for what I want. Skyrim ran fine on either ultra or high on my pc as to where BF3 could not. Crysis ran great but I never tried 2, and didn't get around to warhead.

How did you go about getting those benchmarks for this build, based on the GPU and CPU? It's sad how far out of this I have fallen.

And thanks again for all your help! I really appreciate it, ive been slowly putting your build together on pcpartpicker

Anantech did a review, recently for the GTX660Ti's + bit of extrapolating. nVidia skews it a bit, cos BF3 works better with nVidia, crysis doesn't favour nVidia as much. The lower powered Radeon, in the first build would probably lose more, in terms of BF3, than it would with Crysis. Still be reasonable though.
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September 10, 2012 9:35:02 PM

I put the build together on the site, when I get home I should have time to tweak it. I might not need a OS so i left that out, and since I am taking the drive from my other pc I don't need that either since I barely use it as is. If I got anything wrong let me know. http://pcpartpicker.com/p/h5Ox
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September 10, 2012 9:58:49 PM

Yes, basically OK. I note you've selected GSkill Ripjaws. I would recommend using their low profile Ares range. Whilst the Ripjaws MAY give adequate clearance to cooler, I KNOW the Ares do. (or Corsair CML)
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September 10, 2012 10:53:03 PM

Lol I picked that because I have no idea how to tell which is which in the ram selection. It's all model numbers and I couldn't find that one so I matched the specs and took a guess.
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September 11, 2012 12:27:14 AM

mentalcase87 said:
Lol I picked that because I have no idea how to tell which is which in the ram selection. It's all model numbers and I couldn't find that one so I matched the specs and took a guess.

To be honest, you're not the only one who has to keep double checking I'm using right part number. What makes it even worse is there's no way to accurately assess clearances, so best to have attitude "better safe than sorry"
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September 11, 2012 1:41:43 PM

malbluff said:
To be honest, you're not the only one who has to keep double checking I'm using right part number. What makes it even worse is there's no way to accurately assess clearances, so best to have attitude "better safe than sorry"

it's not even that, if you go to the ram part and look at g.skill they never use the word ripjaw or Ares so for me it was a total guess which was which lol. I assumed all your info to be correct I just couldn't match it up due to them not using model names.
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September 11, 2012 2:29:22 PM

mentalcase87 said:
it's not even that, if you go to the ram part and look at g.skill they never use the word ripjaw or Ares so for me it was a total guess which was which lol. I assumed all your info to be correct I just couldn't match it up due to them not using model names.

In UK, to be honest, the best place to "see" what you're buying, is Amazon or Newegg. Presume it's same in States. You can soon see which are "likely" to be an issue.
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September 11, 2012 10:51:11 PM

Looks like a fairly good deal to me. Certainly nothing wrong with it, and that's a decent mobo.
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September 12, 2012 11:06:38 AM

Agree Asus is better for build quality, and being slightly more "user friendly", not worth a LARGE price premium though.
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September 12, 2012 3:29:28 PM

I have changed my build around a bit, the graph card has been changed and I added a case. I really wanted a case with USB 3.0 on the front and this one claims to have it but also says in the video it's 2.0 so I am slightly confused. http://pcpartpicker.com/p/hfi8

And thanks a lot for the help guys! I might start buying stuff today.
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September 12, 2012 5:08:15 PM

Most of reviews etc date from early 2009. If memory is correct there wasn't USB 3.0, then. I would be surprised if design has not been updated, to include 3. That doesn't mean I know it for a fact. If you are buying from where it was described a USB 3.0, you are safe. If it didn't, they'd have to take it back. If you are in doubt, and want absolute confirmation, an email, requesting confirmation, to supplier is required. I note there's no RAM, OPT Dr, or HDD in that "cart". I take it that's intentional.
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September 12, 2012 5:24:09 PM

Malbluff I changed the case anyways but thank you for the insight! The no ram is due to the mobo coming with the exact ram you actually initially suggested, no OPT because I will take it from my current build and the HDD is left out because that will also be taken from my current, it's a 500 GB and it's only for storage. The 128GB SSD will hold system files and the games I will play frequently.

OK! So my full total is $1059.80 ATM tax and shipping included I have changed the build slightly with a new PSU. That price also doesn't include the rebates because odds are I might not bother with them because well..im lazy and rebates suck! My buddy is pushing me to do it so who knows.

Now I believe I am still missing things, like maybe sata cables? I have one for my current HDD. I also notice that for the HDD they offer a "upgrade kit" which includes stuff in it, I don't believe I need this but I have never had a SSD and I believe I would only need a Sata cable for it and it would fit right into a mounting bay? I am guessing the thermal paste that comes with the CPU is sufficient? I will probably buy fans for it later since they are cheap but ill wait to see how hot it gets. I will also see how much I can OC with this cheaper but well reviewed CPU Cooler, I honestly prob won't get around to OCing because I never did with my old pc that I built 4 years ago.

This is what I believe the final build =) http://pcpartpicker.com/p/hfvu
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September 12, 2012 6:18:07 PM

I should worry too much about cables. It's usually what to do with all the ones left over! For what it costs I would get thermal paste. You can get in kit with cleaning fluid, never a bad thing to have at hand. Always suggest not rushing into OC, get to know system, and be sure there are no "bugs", before overclocking, and then not knowing if that has caused an "issue" that arises.
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September 13, 2012 6:53:56 PM

malbluff thanks a lot for the help! You really got the ball rolling for me. I ordered it last night and can't wait to put it together. I will be running for at least a month before I decide to OC if I do and I am sure the cooler will handle it. And if not spending 100 on the H100 won't be bad since my case has room for it.

I am debating on taking the PSU I ordered and using it to power my old system and see if turns on at all. I would like to hope I didn't fry anything... but well I more then likely did.
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September 13, 2012 8:15:23 PM

You should be fine. Just noticed typo in last post, meant to read "shouldn't worry ..." lol. You will. however, be VERY lucky if you didn't fry half your old system.
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!