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Advices on my first Gaming/music i7 3770K build

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September 17, 2012 6:28:48 AM

Approximate Purchase Date: not in a hurry, would like this year though.

Budget Range: 1500-2200$ After Rebates / After Shipping

System Usage from Most to Least Important: gaming, sporadic amateur music recording (need firewire) (cubase), work (mostly multiple pdfs open, word, excel, spss)

Are you buying a monitor: Yes

Do you need to buy OS: No

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: none.

Location: Québec, Canada

Parts Preferences: Intel CPU, NVIDIA GPU and overall, high quality brands

Overclocking: Yes

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe SLI in the future

Your Monitor Resolution:
at leat 1920x1080

Additional Comments:
I want to be able to run games at max settings. For me, quality=performance and both >> price (i.e. I prefer a better quality part over a lesser quality part that has a better performance). It'll be my first time building my own PC.



So far, I've came with that :

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/hI0k
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/hI0k/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/hI0k/benchmarks/

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($314.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($27.98 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: Asus P8Z77-V DELUXE ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($267.98 @ Amazon)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 32GB (4 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($184.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung Spinpoint F4 2TB 3.5" 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Intel 520 Series Cherryville 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($129.00 @ B&H)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 680 4GB Video Card ($579.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Rosewill THOR V2 ATX Full Tower Case ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair Professional 750W 80 PLUS Silver Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($126.98 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus BC-12B1ST/BLK/B/AS Blu-Ray Reader, DVD/CD Writer ($39.99 @ NCIX US)
Monitor: Samsung P2770FH 27.0" Monitor ($294.98 @ NCIX US)
Total: $2196.86
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-09-17 02:22 EDT-0400)

+Rosewill PCIE FireWire 1394a Card 2+1 Ports Model RC-504

I'm really fixed on the i7 3770k. Then, I tried to take the best match for the other parts. I'd like a SSD for the OS (mainly) and the 2tb will be mostly for storage so I don't need high speed mechanical drives. I'm also very fond of the samsung monitor... The reason I chosed the 32gb of ram is because I sometime loads very heavy VST software that loads huge banks of samples.

So, what do you think?

(more general)
A) Will I have compatibility issues?
B) Will I suffer from a "bottleneck" effect from any of those parts?
C) Are some parts simply "overkill"?
D) Are most parts of good quality?

(more specific)
E) Should I switch my ram to a low profile version so I don't have any space issues with the CPU cooler?
F) What do you think of my GPU choice? Should I switch with a SLI config of 2 cheaper cards?


Thanks you guys, if you could give me any hints, you'll rock my day :D  :sol: 

Max

Best solution

September 17, 2012 12:26:46 PM

A: Maybe. The components will all work together, the issue is more software. If your OS is 32-bit, it can only take advantage of 3.25GB of RAM. If its Win 7 Home Premium 64-bit, can only use 16GB of RAM. If its Win7 Professional or higher 64-bit, you can get up to 64GB.

B: No, unless the above is applicable.

C: YES!
Music editing isnt that intensive, an i5 is plenty sufficient.
32GB of RAM is way overkill, dedicated video editing rigs usually only have 16GB.
The GTX680 is pointless IMO given that the 670 is 20% (~$100) cheaper and within 5% performance. Can even overclock to hit 680 performance.
Mobo is very expensive, can get cheaper boards that will do the same job just as well.

D: They are all pretty good quality except the HDD. Get a proper 7200RPM drive, no need to cut down on performance here.

E: Yep, you will need Low Profile RAM if you want to fill all those RAM slots.

F: See above, go with a single GTX670. No need for SLI/Crossfire unless you have a 120hz or multiple monitors.
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September 17, 2012 1:54:59 PM

^Big +1 on the motherboard comment. Get an ASRock Z77 Extreme4 or a Gigabyte GA-Z77-D3H.
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September 17, 2012 2:14:45 PM

Manofchalk has great comments - all.

c. Yes. get an i5 3570k. Mobo: ASRock z77 Extreme 4. You just saved $200 and did not lose any performance gamewise.

e. RAM. 16 GB is more than enuff. (save another $100) Low profile not req'd, but just nicer. EVO cooler has adjustable fan in order to clear 'taller' ram. 1.5 volt works best w/ intel

f. Best GPU i could afford. For me that's a 7870 .... nvdia right now?, ur paying more for less performance - imho.

other misc thoughts:

you will love your intel SSD. I went for the 330, 180 GB. It's awesome. You will never install another OS on an HDD

HDD. 7200 rpm ..

Good Luck!
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September 17, 2012 3:05:35 PM

Hi guys,

Thanks for the quick replies :) 

Regarding the O.S., that's good to know. Fortunately, we have a deal for the Windows 7 professional 64 bits with my university at a very low price (less than half price).

Regarding the "overkill" aspects of the build, I'm really fixed on the i7 3770k, even though I know an i5 would be enough.

For the ram, I think you are right and I could save 100$ by going to a 16gb module instead. I'm wondering if there are modules sold as 2x8gb sticks, so when if I want to upgrade, I simply have to buy 2 other 8 gb sticks instead of changing the whole set of 4x4gb.

For the video card, that's a really good advice. I'll look into the GTX670. @odiervr: I think it's because I'm an assumed Nvidia fanboy :p  I'm used to their products and software and I feel uncomfortable changing to radeon (same story for the cpu :p ).

Good advice for the HDD, I'll look into that.

Finally, I'm not sold to Asrock motherboard even though almost everyone seem to recommend it. Two friends of mine that work in computer programming/engineering told me to avoid this brand and this kind of scared me. I'll look for the gigabyte that kajabla suggested though.

Another question remains: what do you think of the case? What I need is a full atx tower for enough space and some kind of cable management system (I'm kind of OCD on tidiness lol). On top of all, I want one that has no static/shock issues. The thor v2 seemed like a good choice to me.



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September 17, 2012 3:18:07 PM

You can get 2x8GB kits, they are a bit more expensive than 4x4GB kits though.

I will admit that AsRock has had a shaky past, its only recently they'v pulled themselves together and made some amazing boards. Their current gen stuff (P67/H61 onward) is fairly top notch.

Dont know much about that particular case. I would read some reviews on it (not Newegg comments, proper reviews). They will point out any issues or flaws with it, and highlight any good features.
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September 17, 2012 5:52:44 PM

Thanks for those very appreciated advice!

So finally, I came down with those choices based on your suggestions.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($319.99 @ TigerDirect)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($27.98 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: Asus P8Z77-V DELUXE ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($267.98 @ Amazon)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($82.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($88.98 @ Newegg)
Storage: Crucial M4 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($194.91 @ Amazon)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 4GB Video Card ($465.08 @ Amazon)
Case: Thermaltake VN300M1W2N ATX Full Tower Case ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair Enthusiast 750W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus BC-12B1ST/BLK/B/AS Blu-Ray Reader, DVD/CD Writer ($39.99 @ NCIX US)
Monitor: Samsung P2770FH 27.0" Monitor ($294.98 @ NCIX US)
Total: $1962.86
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-09-17 13:54 EDT-0400)
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September 17, 2012 6:44:18 PM

Best answer selected by nightale.
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September 18, 2012 1:38:42 AM

Why a 4GB graphics card? Unless you are gaming across six screens (at which point the card will be chocking on its own blood trying to keep up), that amount of VRAM is pointless. Just get the standard 2GB model.
Also why EVGA? They use reference design cooling, which is louder and hotter than custom designs.
MSI GTX670. $410 ($10 rebate)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Spinpoint drives are not all that great. Seagate Barracuda's are faster and the same price.
Seagate Barracuda 1TB 7200RPM. $90
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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September 18, 2012 4:44:55 AM

Thanks for the HDD suggestion, I was kinda of lost in the sea of possibilities there was :p 

I chosed the 4gb because it was only 10$ more expensive than the 2gb version (special discount at a canadian store CC&E; 439$ vs 429$, I thought that was a no brainer), but I was leaning toward the 2gb at first. Well actually, I got a raincheck because it was backordered so... :-P

Temperature-wise, this review reported acceptable result to my humble knowledge (http://www.guru3d.com/miraserver/images/2012/gtx670-evg...). But I get your point, just looking at the card, you can tell it's going to run hotter.

You are right for the noise level too, but I thought the difference at full load was non significant. (http://www.guru3d.com/miraserver/images/2012/gtx670-evg...)

My interpretations of those results might be wrong though, as I am still a rookie in the world of custom DIY pc :p 

Nonetheless, I appreciate your help, you have been especially helpful.




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September 18, 2012 5:10:38 AM

80C at full load is acceptable, but doesn't give much thermal headroom for overclocking. I personally don't let my card over 70C (which is perfect because it hits 65C under full load), but anything up to ~100C is technically safe.

Sound will be a big difference though.
http://www.guru3d.com/articles_pages/msi_geforce_gtx_67...
It may seem to only be difference of 3Decibels, but the decibel scale is different to normal scales. Also consider that normal background noise is around 30.
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September 18, 2012 5:29:33 AM

Oh right, I guess dB scale isn't linear, more like exponential?


Well I'll look into that and see If i'll cancel the order (its backordered) and change my mind.

Thanks ;) 
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September 18, 2012 5:36:47 AM

nightale said:
Oh right, I guess dB scale isn't linear, more like exponential?


Thats the word! Couldnt think of it when typing the reply. Yep, its exponential, not linear.
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