Christmas Gift Build for Me

First I would like to say this site has been a great source of information for a beginner. My wife is letting me build my first gaming PC for christmas with that said I obviously want the best of everything but money isn't growing on trees. I would like to keep the price to a minimum, I have been trying to budget myself to around $1000. I want to be able to play at a resolution of 1920x1080p while maintaining the most FPS in current AAA+ games for the next few years before buying another GPU to either replace or supplement my current.

Listed below is a rough sketch of what I have in mind so far I am torn on GPU's however, I check benchmark results for various ones and it just seems overwhelming. Also I am leary of buying a GPU that is more than I need I have no desire to have multiple displays or multitasking. I will either be streaming media and surfing the net or playing my games.









GPU's (undecided):

Im leaning toward the GTX 680 which will put my Build cost at around $1,240.31. I am willing to pay up to $1,500 if it meant a serious gain in performance. Keep in mind however I will only be gaming at 1920x1080. I also may attempt to overclock in the future or do an SLI/Crossfire but not soon.
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  1. I'd get a Samsung SSD 830 or OCZ Vertex 4 instead of the Mushkin.

    HDD is a little overpriced; if you are getting an SSD you don't need a fast storage drive.

    PSU is also on the steep side. One of these should be good:

    GPU wise I'd get a 7970:
    or 7950:
  2. Ok here are my comments. Take them as you will.

    Case: Very nice, clean, comes with all the fans you need, black on the inside, all around sharp looking. If you are willing to spend $100 on a case, it's a nice choice. If you want to bring the price down, this is an area you can do that. A decent case is $50, but trust me, you will not regret a nice case. Just an area you can cut if needed.

    CPU: This is the go to CPU for gamers. If you plan to overclock, it is a good choice. If you have no intention to overclock your CPU, don't bother with the K model. You can also save a few buck as Newegg have coupon codes for i5's alot of times. Usually the ones a few clicks down from the top. Another area to save a few bucks if needed.

    Mobo:ASRock has really shined the last few years. They are quickly becoming a go to for motherboards. I am still a die hard ASUS fan, but you can't bet the ASRock value. This board also comes with 8GB of free RAM. You can't beat that at all.

    PSU: It's a SeaSonics... that is all there is to say. Their stuff is great, but pricy. I see this has $35 knocked off. Good buy.

    HDD: WD Black drives are pricey. If this was a boot drive with your OS and apps, I'd say go for it. If you are only using this for Data and storage, you can save some money here. I'd suggest the Samsung F3 drive. They have been around a while and perform just slighly under a WD Black drive. However, their reliability is very high. I've run one for 2 years as a data drive. I've also recommended it to a large number of others and never heard of any failures. Newegg also frequently has coupon codes for them. Well look, but expires today.

    SSD: I am still not well versed in SSD's. I tend to go to the Intel SSDs because of reliability. Samsung has also come a long way and is now my second pick. However, there are a lot of good drives our there so just do your research. The price is nice on your choice. Also consider how much space you may need. I got a deal on an Intel 240GB because I do have alot of games. Before upgrading my RAID 0 had 250GB used on it. I have not reloaded all games, but I backup my STEAM games to my 1TB so they can be restored whenever I want them back. Just a thought. 120GB will probably be just under 110GB after formatting.

    Optical: Anything besides LiteOn is fine. I have an ASUS drive. It failed 4 years ago. They sent me another once, hasn't had an issue since.

    Keyboard: Dude... all that nice stuff and an $8 keyboard? Your fingers are like WTF dude. Just kidding. This is one of those things that doesn't really matter as long as it works for you. It has really good reviews.... I trust the reviews.

    GPU: Ok man, now this is where the your system needs the juice for gaming. I don't screw around with this component as I am a gamer. I sold my GTX580 on eBay 2 weeks before the GTX680 was to be released to get the most I could for it. I bought a GTX680 the day it came out. It sold out on Newegg in 20 minutes. My GTX580 paid for 2/3 of its cost so it wasn't that much to upgrade. If you play that game it doesn't hit the wallet to hard each time. However, if you want something that will last you for a few years. Just go for the best and get a 680. OC it a little or get one already OCed. Your next step down would be a GTX670. An AMD 7970 is also in there and flops around between the 670 and 680. Even if you have to cut the cost on a few other items, this is where your games need all they can get. Id swap out the 680 picked for this one since its the same price and slightly higher clocked.

    PS. I like how you said "my wife is letting me build my first PC". I always have to ask mine if I want an upgrade. She just rolls her eyes and asks if it's necessary.. and I say... is your makeup and 14 bottles of shampoo necessary? I get a dirty look, and a chuckle. "as long as it's a good deal and you realllllly need it". Thanks honey. Get her some flowers, and I'm in the clear. I'm still trying to figure out how I'm going to ask her when I need to upgrade the whole thing. I might need to present a formal business case for that one.
  3. The 670 is ~$100 cheaper than the 680 but performs much closer than the price difference would have you expect.

    The other option is a 7970 GHz Edition. About the same price as a 680, slightly more performance. Much higher when you turn up the AA or get to 5760x1080 or 2560x1440.
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