First time builder

Friends have told me what a terrific community Toms Hardware has. I look forward to hearing your opinions/warnings and any other tips you might have for a first time builder.

Approximate Purchase Date: Now

Budget Range: $2000 After Rebates After Shipping

System Usage from Most to Least Important: (Gaming, Internet)

Are you buying a monitor: No

Parts to Upgrade: New build

Do you need to buy OS: Yes

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: I priced btwn Amazon and Newegg and Amazon was cheaper which is contrary to what I've read? Also I really enjoy the customer service and return policies of Amazon but I've heard great things about Newegg.

Location: Lebanon, OR

Parts Preferences: Intel

Overclocking: Yes

SLI or Crossfire: No

Your Monitor Resolution: 1920 x 1080

Additional Comments: Want to run GW2, Skyrim at highest settings. Want to OC but am new and don't want to push too hard - this is a mid-level gaming machine

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: Current computer is a few years old and unable to run LOTRO or GW2 or Skyrim at highest settings. Friends have told me that with due diligence I can build my own computer and not only save money but have the satisfaction of building one and learning more about my machine.

After investigating and talking with friends I am ordering the following and am looking for opinions:

COOLER MASTER HAF X RC-942-KKN1 Black Steel/ Plastic ATX (note: this is the only piece that was priced cheaper than Amazon)

Intel Core i7-3770K Quad-Core Processor 3.5 GHz 8 MB Cache LGA 1155

ASUS P8Z77-V DELUXE LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX

Corsair 16 GB Vengeance Blue Low Profile 1600mhz PC3-12800 240-pin Dual Channel DDR3

EVGA GeForce GTX 680 FTW 4096MB GDDR5

Cooler Master Silent Pro M - 700W 80 PLUS Bronze Power Supply with Modular Cables

Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus CPU Cooler

Crucial 256 GB m4 2.5-Inch Solid State Drive SATA 6Gb/s

Western Digital Caviar Black 1 TB SATA III 7200 RPM 64 MB Cache

Samsung SH-222BB/BEBE 22X SATA DVDRW & Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit

Being new to OC I was wondering if my RAM s/b higher than 1600? Is the Cooler Master Hyper 212 enough if I don't want to break speed records with OC? I really don't want to mess with water cooling if I don't have to.

Thanks in advance for taking the time to mentor a noob ;)
4 answers Last reply Best Answer
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  1. i7 is probably not going to be of use unless you use highly threaded programs such as graphics design tools (games are not highly threaded, many have 4 thread support). I would suggest an i5 instead.

    The 680 is apparently not worth the money, as the 670 can easily beat it if overclocked. I would suggest a 670.

    16 gbs of memory is probably never going to be used, I would suggest 8 gbs of ram unless you're going to run several games at one time.

    Cooler master is not a very reputable brand of PSUs. I would suggest either a Seasonic or a XFX brand PSU.
  2. Best answer
    You don't mention any intention of photo/video editing, or design work. If PC is for gaming and general computer activities, without any great photo or design work, there is little point to i7. It gains you nothing, for gaming, over i5. You don't need any more than 8GB of ram, which you should leave at 1600 MHz, that you have, just half as much.
    The GTX680 is a very powerful card, but at a resolution of 1920x1080, it gives very little more than a GTX670, to justify its higher price.
    Unless you are planning to add a 2nd graphics card, in SLi, for a 3 monitor rig, you don't need a 700w power supply, and ideally not CoolerMaster, anyway.
    It's necessary to decide exactly what you are having now, and in the near future, if you are thinking of 3 monitors, in order to decide the ideal PSU.
    The Asus deluxe is more a business orientated board, but once other items have been clarified, we can advise on a really good, well suited board.
  3. Thanks very much for the replies.

    I dropped the Coolermaster PSUwent with the Corsair 650W and kept the gtx680 since I'm running a second monitor. I also do music so I decided to stay with the i7 and the Asus mobo. Love the Asus AI Suite which has a nifty Autotune that OC'd me to 4.532gHz without a hitch.

    I was amazed at how smoothly my first build went. I breadboarded the setup first which really helped to acclimate me to the mobo with plenty of visibility before installing in the case. After installing in the case, on the first boot the power button did nothing but there was power to the mobo so I knew the power switch and come loose from the mobo during my cable management. Opened the case, re-seated the cable to the mobo and it fired right up.

    No more prebuilts for me :D
  4. Best answer selected by deanrd7.
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