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1st time father/son project build (~$1300 +/-)

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September 25, 2012 12:02:03 AM

Hey all,

My 16yo son has been asking for a computer to replace our 2004 vintage Compaq Presario SR1230nx desktop (don't know why?, it still runs fine .... well, Chrome and Hitman2 anyway....sort of... lol). Ok, so maybe I want a new one too. Im the tinkerer, but he's just interested in gaming. I figured as a way to get him to learn something about computers, I'd ok a new computer if he helped build it. Of course, here I am doing all the leg work!

I've been following the forums here for the last few months, and feel like I've done enough research to have a pretty good idea of the basics, but thought I'd run my build past the experience on here for any tips, ect:


Approximate Purchase Date: Like to have built by Oct 9th, 2012: (release date for Dishonored)

Budget Range: ~$1300 (not including monitor, keyboard, mouse)

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Games/movies/browsing

Are you buying a monitor: Already preordered an Overlord Temptest 270oc (which is same as overclockable 27" catleap 1440p)..see this link:


Do you need to buy OS: NO

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Amazon (I guess Newegg does not do free shipping to Alaska )

Location: Fairbanks, AK.

Parts Preferences: None.

Overclocking: Yes

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe

Your Monitor Resolution: 2560-by-1440 - would like to overclock monitor to 100hz+.

Additional Comments: Looking for unassuming, quiet(er) build. Doesn't have to be tiny, but don't want a spaceship either. Like the looks & size of the Silverstone TJ08-e, but willing to go a bit bigger if needed.

Here's my cart in Amazon:
Crucial 128 GB m4 2.5-Inch Solid State Drive SATA 6Gb/s CT128M4SSD2 - Crucial Technology
$102.55

CORSAIR Enthusiast Series TX750 V2 750W ATX 12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC High Performance Power Supply - CMPSU-750TXV2 - Corsair
$104.99

Asus 24xDVD-RW Serial ATA Internal OEM Drive DRW-24B1ST (Black) - Asus
$23.20

Asus MAXIMUS V GENE Z77 mATX DDR3 Intel LGA 1155 Motherboard - Asus
$209.00

Silverstone Tek Micro-ATX Mini-DTX, Mini-ITX Mid Tower Computer Case with Aluminum Front Panel and Steel Body TJ08B-E - Black - Silverstone Tek
$99.99

Western Digital Caviar Black 1 TB SATA III 7200 RPM 64 MB Cache Internal Desktop Hard Drive Bulk/OEM - WD1002FAEX - Western Digital
$98.03

Intel Core i5-3570K Quad-Core Processor 3.4 GHz 4 Core LGA 1155 - BX80637I53570K - Intel
$219.99


PNY XLR8 8 GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3 1600 (PC3-12800) 240-Pin CAS CL9 Dual Channel Memory Kit SDRAM (MD8192KD3-1600-X9) - PNY
$39.99


PNY GeForce GTX 670 Graphics Card VCGGTX670XPB - PNY
$410.99

TOTAL: $1308.73

Thanks for any help/suggestions!
MB.

September 25, 2012 12:32:10 AM

Ouch, that price sticker on the 670, you should get the 2GB 7870 IceQ

It runs the higher end games like BF3 on ultra with 70fps :D 
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September 25, 2012 1:01:01 AM

A 750W PSU is overkill for a system with a single graphics card.
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September 25, 2012 1:02:52 AM

You want him to *really* "learn something" about computers? Get a raspberry pi, and let the fun commence...

Or you want him to really learn "something" about computers?
IMO a modern PC is too specialized and complicated to be able to learn anything.

But anyways, its a gaming build, so:

You can do with a cheaper motherboard. Any particular reason why you're going for mATX? How about P8-Z77V ?
The graphics card can definitely be cheaper. Maybe a 7870 as suggested above.
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a b B Homebuilt system
September 25, 2012 1:07:48 AM

drop the mini case and pick up a good size mid size case. it be easer to work on and have better airflow. also pick up an evo 212 or other clone cpu heat sink like it. the intel cpu heat sink with the plastic legs are ok for reg pc but if your going to do some gaming on the pc pick up a better heat sink.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
want a case with a pull in fan and one or two output fans. if not your case is going to heat up and your cpu and gpu going to have a hard time running cool.
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a b B Homebuilt system
September 25, 2012 4:09:51 AM

IMO it depends on what you want for a computer. If you are probably gonna sli you should keep that PSU. Also what gaming level are you going for? This will max out basically every game on the market.
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September 25, 2012 6:31:55 AM

Thanks for the input folks! Especially when it comes to the motherboards, as I really have no idea what the benefits are of the more expensive one. The only reason i picked it is because most of the folks over at overclock.net in the silverstone TJ08E owners club are using the asus maximus gene motherboard.

As far as the psu, it's only a few bucks more for the 750 than the 650, so I figured why not have some leeway if I end up going sli.

As for graphics/gaming, I'm building to drive the monitor I've already purchased. From reading forums (120hz.net) about the catleap 2560x1440 monitors, you need some serious horsepower to drive that resolution especially if you intend to overclock the monitor. Supposedly these are the only IPS monitors in existence that can be overclocked to 120hz, which makes for a really sweet eye candy experience.
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a b B Homebuilt system
September 26, 2012 9:51:08 PM

with mb there are for the x77 chipset three levels of the chipset the b/h/z. the b are for the low end mini atx mb. there more for people on low end budget. that there going to toss in a non-k chip and not over clock the system. on the z chipset mb. the newer high end mb have the new intel thuderbolt port on them. most of the top end mb will have bluetooth and wifi built into the mb saving you a pci slot. some of the mb like the one you were looking at is made for 3 or 4 way sli. other mb like the asus sabertooth is made for 2 way sli. and a few add in cards. (sound/wifi). look at the mb spec make sure it does sli and crossfire some dont do both. also if there two or more pci video slots make sure the spec are 16x for one slot and 8x 8x for two. some are 16x and 4x.
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October 3, 2012 1:18:50 AM

Thanks Smor, I just ordered my build from Amazon (see below)....I'm hoping I didn't screw up on the mobo though.

Went with the GIGABYTE G1.Sniper M3 , as it was $150 (after $20 rebate) vs. $195 for the Maximus V Gene. As I'm running a 27" 1440 monitor (with a possible overclock to 80-120hz) I'm not sure a single gpu will cut it. Unfortunately just heard there may be a problem with a dual 670 SLI setup with that motherboard due to how the pci slots are physically oriented on the board (not sure if that's a problem with my case, or with all SLI setups with this board).

-SilverstoneTek Micro-ATX Tower Computer Case TJ08B-E - Black $99.99
-Seasonic 80Plus Power Supply M12II 620 BRONZE $89.99
-Gigabyte Intel Z77 LGA 1155 mATX Motherboard G1.SNIPER M3 $169.99 ($20.00 rebate)
-Intel Core i5-3570K Quad-Core Processor 3.4 GHz 4 Core LGA 1155 - $229.99
-Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus CPU Cooler $25.00
-Crucial 128 GB m4 2.5-Inch Solid State Drive SATA 6Gb/s $102.63
-Western Digital 2 TB WD Green Hard Drive $99.98-
-Kingston Technology HyperX 8 GB (2x4 GB Modules) 1600 MHz DDR3 $39.99
-24xDVD-RW Serial ATA Internal OEM Drive DRW-24B1ST (Black) $23.49

Thanks!

Mike.
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 3, 2012 3:43:48 AM

I had just found this awesome msi mobo. But I don't think that it is worth canceling the one you got, it is just a little cheaper. But 1 670 will definitely cut it here are some benchmarks.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/geforce-gtx-670-rev...
The 670 is getting over 60 frames on metro with the high setting in 1600p with 37fps. This is one of the strongest single cards out there and I am sure you will be satisfied with just one for the time being. If you card starts showing age in a few years you will probably be able to get one really cheap at that point.
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 4, 2012 9:21:39 AM

should posted first then bought. the min axt going to have two issue off the bat. the length of the video card may hit the hard drive tray that fixed in the case. the other issues is the slots on the back of the case. for video cards.most standard mid size not mini will have seven slots for an sli set up.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=...
if your have had you order this case for 20.00 more.
case like this has extra fan controllers build in and large fans for cooling. it also has low noise fan so your son when he gaming wont hear anything. the other issue is with small cases your going to be shoe horning your hands in there. for a first build i would have told you go with a larger case for an easer build. as the vbideo shows the black and white case already have most of the wires run for you neat and have more runs for a power supply and a water block set up for the top of the case if you wanted to go that way or add extra fans.
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October 4, 2012 9:38:23 AM

smorizio said:
should posted first then bought. the min axt going to have two issue off the bat. the length of the video card may hit the hard drive tray that fixed in the case. the other issues is the slots on the back of the case. for video cards.most standard mid size not mini will have seven slots for an sli set up.

The case can accomodate graphics cards up to 13.25 inches long. That's plenty - for example, a Radeon HD 7970 is about 10.5 inches long and a GTX 680 is 10 inches long.

As for SLI, I wouldn't go that way with the first build anyway. And a single GTX 670 really should be plenty powerful.
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 4, 2012 1:19:45 PM

If you haven't already ordered your video card, you may consider a 7970 Ghz Edition. The 7950 and 7970 are currently the two best video cards for anything beyond 1080p due to their increased VRAM and Memory Bandwidth. Allows you to not only turn up your graphics settings, but also lets you turn up AA and other optional things without losing much.
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October 4, 2012 4:22:51 PM

Bolivious said:
If you haven't already ordered your video card, you may consider a 7970 Ghz Edition. The 7950 and 7970 are currently the two best video cards for anything beyond 1080p due to their increased VRAM and Memory Bandwidth. Allows you to not only turn up your graphics settings, but also lets you turn up AA and other optional things without losing much.


I have not yet purchased the video card. Might wait for a black friday deal, I'm not sure. I'll will take a look at the 79XX cards as possibilities too! Thanks for the tip.
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