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Welcoming Suggestions on $2,000 Build

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October 13, 2012 2:56:40 PM

I'd like to make my innagural post by asking for approval of my first PC build. I would like to know if the components I selected are compatible (I think they are, but I want to be assured). I would also like to see suggestions for alternative items. Since this is my first build, I'm going off suggestions from this site, Maximum PC, and other enthusiast sites. I appreciate any input provided :) 

With that being said, purchasing of components will happen at one time. I plan on purchasing towards the end of October or second week of November.

$ 2,000.00 is my budget for all components, monitor, mouse, keyboard and OS. I do not want to go over $ 2,000.00 but I can if I need to cover additional shipping.

This computer will be used primarily for gaming. Other uses will be MS Office, various programs, and also a place for document storage and back up for my business laptop.
With this build, I will need a monitor and operating stem. The monitor that I had tentatively selected has a 1920x1080 resolution

I am partial to Newegg.com but after viewing PCpartspicker.com, there are some deals to be had on the other sites they list, I will order from them as well.

My current residence is in Lexington, KY. I am not aware of any major computer component retailers around town yet.
I prefer an Intel CPU, and an Nvidia graphics card, however I am not set on Nvidia. The basic research I’ve done suggests that for what I want to do and the budget I have, the 670 is a good fit. I am open to suggestions though.

Overclocking is a possibility down the road. Creating a stable build is of utmost importance to me before I take on exciting tasks like overclocking or SLI.

If anyone has suggestions on a nice speaker system to go with this build I would like to look into purchasing one. I am currently running my laptop sound through my 425 watt Sony shelf stereo speakers. While the sound is good, for the most part, they’re simply too bulky and could get in the way of what I want to do in the future.

I’m building this computer because I’m tired of watching good PC games pass me by while I sit and drool, on PCgamer.com or other websites, at the fun and exciting games that are out there. I’ve saved for a while and I think now is the time to make this rig a reality. Please share your wisdom. I know a bit about how things come together, but I’ve never physically built a rig. I’m excited to have a chance to finally build one.
The components I’ve selected are as follows:

Intel Core i5 3570K
Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UP4 TH LGA 1155
Corsair Vengeance 8GB DDR3 1600
Seagate 1TB
Samsung 830 128 GB SSD
Asus GTX670
Asus Xonar_DG 5.1
Corsair 400R
Corsair HX750
Samsung SH-222BB/BEBE Optical Drive
Asus VE278Q 27” Monitor
Windows 7 Home Premium
Microsoft Sidewinder X4
Logitech G500
October 13, 2012 3:06:41 PM

Pretty solid build you got, pretty much the same as the one I built. Havent used the mouse or keyboard myself, but I do like the keyboard and the way it looks.

Get a CPU cooler Hyper 212 is one I would advise for new OC'ers as it is a very reliable and easy part to install on a lot of motherboards
October 13, 2012 4:39:12 PM

How about the 3rd week of November instead for the Black Friday sale? :) 
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October 13, 2012 5:09:29 PM
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oh board sound has gotten better so there is no need to get a sound card.

would do this kind of build

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($215.99 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($27.98 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($149.98 @ NCIX US)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($39.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.99 @ NCIX US)
Storage: OCZ Vertex 4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($89.99 @ Microcenter)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition 3GB Video Card ($413.78 @ NCIX US)
Case: Cooler Master HAF XM (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 850W 80 PLUS Silver Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($119.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($15.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Monitor: BenQ XL2420T 120Hz 24.0" Monitor ($370.99 @ Amazon)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($92.11 @ Amazon)
Total: $1706.77
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)

for keyboard i would go these
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0068INSUM/?tag=pcpapi-20
but if you want macro keys then you can get these instead
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007TFOO6K/?tag=pcpapi-20
(can choose what kind of switches you want)
you can read up on switches here
http://www.overclock.net/t/491752/mechanical-keyboard-g...
i would personally choose black, red, or blue(ordered in personal preference)

mouse
http://pcpartpicker.com/part/logitech-mouse-910002864
if your preference is mmo can also choose g500 instead
October 13, 2012 9:31:15 PM

850W PSU is too much for even SLI, 750W would be more then enough
October 13, 2012 10:38:13 PM

Emelth said:
Pretty solid build you got, pretty much the same as the one I built. Havent used the mouse or keyboard myself, but I do like the keyboard and the way it looks.

Get a CPU cooler Hyper 212 is one I would advise for new OC'ers as it is a very reliable and easy part to install on a lot of motherboards


Emelth, I was looking into that cooler as an option. I've read good things about it as well. Would I need a special paste for such a task, or would Arctic Silver or something like that suffice?
October 13, 2012 10:53:55 PM

Emelth said:
850W PSU is too much for even SLI, 750W would be more then enough


that is for SLI

SLI 670 = 650W

SLI 680 = 700-750W

but if you checked at all i have a 7970 GHz which uses around 800W when CFX so i put inside a 850W to give some more power for overclock and such
October 13, 2012 10:55:30 PM

Ferromagnetic Bobsledder said:
Emelth, I was looking into that cooler as an option. I've read good things about it as well. Would I need a special paste for such a task, or would Arctic Silver or something like that suffice?



Hyper 212 evo comes with its own thermal paste and it doesnt really make a difference if you get a more expensive one or not.

the paste i used from the evo gave me around 3-4 tries so you are welcome to fail a bit.(using dot method)
October 14, 2012 12:02:46 AM

Nice build. As one of the members above said, motherboard sound is quite decent nowadays, and so you don't really need the Zonar sound card.

I'd recommend the Corsair 500R case over the 400R: http://pcpartpicker.com/part/corsair-case-500rbk
Only a $30 difference

EDIT: Also, good choice on the Samsung SSD. Very reliable - I have a 256GB drive sitting in my new build and it works great!
October 14, 2012 1:45:49 PM

I'll nix the sound card. That's money I could put towards something else, such as the case. I looked at it very quickly last evening and I noticed the large fan on the side, good for cooling. I was trying to look for a case that had a window on the side so I could look in periodically, but I haven't found one to suit my fancy quite yet.

I heard good things from Maximum PC on that SSD, it's one they've used for their builds recently.

Does anyone have experience with speaker systems? I'm really entertaining the thought of replacing the large shelf speakers on my desk currently.
October 14, 2012 1:52:40 PM

boulbox said:

Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($149.98 @ NCIX US)

I'll look in depth further here shortly, but what sets this board apart from the one I have selected?

Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition 3GB Video Card ($413.78 @ NCIX US)

I thought the 670 was the sweet spot for price and performance currently. I have not done a massive amount of research on this, but could you shed a bit more light on the 7970? :D 



for keyboard i would go these
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0068INSUM/?tag=pcpapi-20
but if you want macro keys then you can get these instead
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007TFOO6K/?tag=pcpapi-20
(can choose what kind of switches you want)
you can read up on switches here
http://www.overclock.net/t/491752/mechanical-keyboard-g...
i would personally choose black, red, or blue(ordered in personal preference)

mouse
http://pcpartpicker.com/part/logitech-mouse-910002864
if your preference is mmo can also choose g500 instead


Is the G600 a functional mouse aside from MMO gaming? I was a HUGE fan of World of Warcraft, then college happened. I don't think I have the time anymore to devote to an MMO...but they are so very tempting. I need a good all around keyboard and mouse.

The CM Quickfire keyboard does not have a number pad. I'm a big fan of those in terms of convenience. It's a weird preference, but I'm a weird fellow. :D 
EDIT: I didn't notice the second option you posted. It seems interesting. I like the idea of back lit keys. I believe the Sidewinder has them as well.

I am enjoying the fresh ideas. I'll do some more comparison and edit my build accordingly.
October 14, 2012 4:41:30 PM

the g600 is pretty comfy even when not playing games and a pretty nice DPI(believe it is changeable with their software)

the reason i went with these more expensive keyboards is because they are mechanical. blue and red key switches tend to be a bit loud so black is preferred if you have to stay quiet and is really nice with games too.
mechanical keyboards are really durable(as in keystrokes) and lets you type a bit faster than some other keyboards
October 14, 2012 5:08:10 PM

I've always been a Razer loyalist when it comes to peripherals.
Admittedly, a bit overpriced, but hey it's quality. :D 
October 14, 2012 6:47:19 PM

my black widow has some problems so im not returning to their keyboards. on the other hand, their mouses are pretty awesome, they have a nice feel and are pretty comfy.

right now i switched to corsair models to try them out. the k90 is pretty nice. the red switches are a bit loud and has a lot of g macros on them with 3 different modes and has Led lights for each and every switch. also using a m60. its kind of alright i think they could of done better with their mouses
October 15, 2012 12:22:18 AM

What kinds of problems exactly?
October 15, 2012 3:01:16 AM

space bar being defected and such it would press alt keys since it was close together.

also after finding out about it i found out that razer doesnt use an exact dimension for their keys so some people got the problem some others didnt
October 15, 2012 3:03:33 AM

Ah, factory defects.
I think they have good warranty service. No problems on mine yet, so I'm not sure though.
October 18, 2012 2:30:42 AM

I have made a few small changes to the build thus far. I stuck with my current motherboard, I was torn on the absence of a Display Port...port, on the one I had selected. However, after reading about the differences of HDMI and Display Port, I don't think I'll notice a difference.

I just thought of this, due to the fact that I have a dedicated graphics card, does the absence of a display port on the motherboard mean anything? There is one on the 670 I had listed. Would anyone be kind enough to confirm my assumptions?


Updated Component List:

Intel Core i5 3570K
Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo
Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UP4 TH LGA 1155
Corsair Vengeance 8GB DDR3 1600
Seagate 1TB
Samsung 830 128 GB SSD
Asus GTX670
Corsair 500R
Corsair HX750
Samsung SH-222BB/BEBE Optical Drive
Asus VE278Q 27” Monitor
Windows 7 Home Premium
Microsoft Sidewinder X4
Logitech G500

I'm still wrestling with the idea of keyboards. I'm leaning to the side of the mechanical keyboard. The overclocker's guide boulbox posted was very informative. However, I can't wrap my head around spending upwards of $ 100 on a keyboard. Perhaps I'm being too narrow minded, what's $ 100 or so when you're spending $ 2,000?

I'm getting nearer to the point in which I'll order components. I'll plan to order next week around this time or perhaps the final week in October and have items start arriving the first week of November. I truly appreciate the input thus far. :) 
October 18, 2012 3:05:32 AM

You're gonna plug the monitor into the GPU, so I guess not.
October 19, 2012 2:09:19 AM

On second thought, I think I'll opt for the Cooler Master Quickfire Pro. What is an extra $ 30-$ 40 when you're spending almost $ 2000 anyway? I didn't like the non back lit keys on the K60. That was one of my main items I wanted in a new keyboard. I'm excited to see the difference is between a mechanical keyboard and what I've been using for two years.

I think I'll start the order process tomorrow and during the weekend. That way I'll start receiving parts throughout next week. I'm getting nervous on pulling the trigger. I know everything is compatible and it's a solid configuration. I guess it's just fear of the unknown...I'm a wuss. :sarcastic: 

In your all's opinion, are any special tools needed to create this fun project? Or is it pretty much tool less now-a-days?

October 19, 2012 2:54:34 AM

also just mentioning this before you buy.

the new samsung 840 is coming out in a week or 2 and i have to say that i love samsung way more than OCZ. i had far to many failed drives from OZC old models that i pretty much hate them now but now i hear that a lot of people are loving their new vertex 4.

just putting that out there.

for tools all you need to know is
1)screw driver
2)common sense(if you don't know how to do something just watch a tutorial or read the instructions)
3)touching metal often so you do not short circuit anything
4)try building on something that does not make a lot of static

also if you are still thinking about keyboards, i have a k90 and i have to say it is pretty nice. has a nice silver metal color on it and a tons of features. has cherry mx reds and has a 4 stage LED lighting. wish the software could be a bit better like logitech but thats about it.
October 20, 2012 2:08:53 PM

I had heard about the 840. I have been doing a small bit of reading on it and the 840 Pro seems like a substantial increase in speed over the 830. However, I feel as though it's a bit out of my price range. The 840 is a jump in performance it seems as well, but not as big. Is the 840 that big of an increase in SSD technology?

What I'm thinking about doing is to order the majority of components starting Monday or Tuesday ( I keep pushing the date back :sarcastic:  ) and make the SSD purchase the final decision, and final part I order.

I'll purchase a screw driver set. I need one anyway for around my apartment.

I'll probably be building this on a metal card tabl that has a vinyl top to it. It's not the best. :( 

I looked at the Cooler Master Quick Fire Pro a bit more and I have settled on that. I'm not a big fan of Razer and the way they portray their products. I like things to look good, but at the same time don't scream "Hey look at me!" The CM keyboard did it for me.
October 20, 2012 4:46:26 PM

the 830 is at a great price right now($170 for 256GB) i would diffidently get the 830 256GB over the 840 as of right now since the price drop is a very big one.
October 23, 2012 2:15:06 AM

I'm ordering five or six parts tonight (peripherals mainly) and I am wondering about NCIX.com. Is that a reputable retailer for the United States? I have read they're pretty good in Canada. They're dubbed "the newegg.com of Canada." If they are good in Canada, I would imagine they'd be alright to deal with through the US as well. Does anyone have experience with them in the past? :D 

Update: I ordered the Case, Mouse, Keyboard, and OS from Amazon. The Monitor I ordered off NCIX.com. I'll order the rest of the items tomorrow or Wednesday. Thank you boulbox, excella1221, evilqueens and Emelth. I truly appreciate the input! :D 
October 23, 2012 3:06:04 AM

NCIX is fine. They have great prices too.
You can just order from both Newegg and NCIX, depending on which has the cheaper price for the component/peripheral.
October 27, 2012 6:00:32 PM

I ordered everything on Monday and Tuesday of this week. The keyboard, motherboard, GPU, HDD, SSD, and optical drive arrived yesterday. The rest should be coming on the 29th and 30th. The monitor should be in later in that week. NCIX is taking its time in processing the order for the monitor though. I think that's kind of odd.

I got to thinking, will I be able to connect to the internet with my wifi connection on this PC when I initially boot up? I didn't even look to see if that motherboard had wifi capabilities or not. I'll look through the guide that came with it.

Also, will the thermal paste that comes with the CPU or aftermarket cooler be sufficient, or should I pick up some Arctic Silver or something else while I'm waiting for parts to arrive.


boulbox, good call on the keyboard, very solid build quality, and the keys are lightning fast. I guess I've gotten used to the stubborn keys on this laptop over the years.

I was looking at the components I have received, and the motherboard looks extremely easy to mount. The mounting screw holes are easily seen. I'm getting excited to put this together. :bounce: 

Thanks again everyone for the help! :D 
October 27, 2012 6:14:20 PM

it does not have Wifi on board i believe, but if you are gaming you usually want to be on a ethernet connection, if you can only use wifi just get one online such as this one
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

the hyper 212 evo comes with thermal paste it should be enough for practice and for getting it on perfectly,(use dot method)

also check your email and see if the order actually processed, it may have a dead card or it had something wrong in the billing.

also may i ask you to put down the list of the parts you are using for the build
October 28, 2012 2:59:15 AM

The final list of components are below:

Intel Core i5 3570K
Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo
Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UP4 TH LGA 1155
Corsair Vengeance 8GB DDR3 1600
Seagate 1TB
Samsung 830 256 GB SSD
Asus GTX670
Corsair 500R
Corsair HX750
Samsung SH-222BB/BEBE Optical Drive
Asus VE278Q 27” Monitor
Windows 7 Home Premium
Cooler Master Quick Fire Pro
Logitech G500


I'm weighing the options of buying the wifi card, or purchasing 200' of Cat6 cable and routing the cable along the floor molding and door frames across my apartment eventually ending up to the connection in my bedroom. I'm not sure if I can effectively route the cable and keep it neat throughout my door frames and such. I wonder how much of a performance reduction wireless internet will be vs. a hardwired connection?

I checked the NCIX website and it describes my monitor order as being processed fully. I did get notification of successful payment processing price verification and order reception, but have not been charged yet. Noting in my inbox of this order aside from it being scheduled for shipment. If I don't hear anything by Monday afternoon I'll be on the phone to NCIX. I can't imagine how an in stock item should take so long to ship, whether it be a monitor, case or whatever. I wonder what's up :??: 
November 10, 2012 11:47:40 PM

I have everything assembled. It was just as easy as everyone described it to be. What a process! I spent all morning and afternoon setting the tower up, trouble shooting a few minor issues, and making sure my fans operated correctly. I did not connect the fan controller nor the LED on/off switch for the 500R. I may look into a more robust fan controller down the road.

So far, after running basic operating system functions and installations the system seems stable. With that being said, does anyone have any suggestions as to places to look to download free bench marking programs? I'd like to see this machine's base line potential. After that I'll install a few games and test the waters of overclocking. I truly appreciate all the input on this topic. Building my first PC was a truly memorable experience. :)  :D 
November 10, 2012 11:57:53 PM

Download MSI afterburner it has a GPU stress test other ones you can do is CPU stress tests(mostly for temps and to find problems) PcMark, 3D mark and of that such
November 11, 2012 1:31:58 AM

Is 3D Mark worth the one time use? I'll give MSI a shot. Boulbox, have you had much experience with the program that came with the GTX 670, GPU Tweak? I've read that it isn't very good. I don't think this is a bench marking tool, rather something to overclock and fine tune the GPU.
November 11, 2012 1:44:15 AM

it is MSI afterburner is for Overclocking and such what also comes inside in MSI kombuster which is pretty much like a benchmark tool
!