Creating an ATX Mid-Tower build for my friend for high-performance gaming. The person is tech savvy, so there will be some overclocking done on the processor and the GPU. The main games that will be played are Diablo 3, Starcraft 2, Heroes of Newerth, XCOM Enemy Unknown, and Battlefield 3. Please let me know if there are areas that can be improved, and the budget is a little flexible so a future extra $$$ for future-proofing is not out of the game. In addition, my friend is likely to crossfire the card about 4-5 months out to keep up with the game selection then, so please keep that in mind. Anyways, thanks for reading and commenting!
Approximate Purchase Date: Now till Thanksgiving
Budget Range: $1050-1250
System Usage from Most to Least Important: Video games (as listed above), general computing use (webs, video watching, other basic windows functionality)
Are you buying a monitor: No
Parts to upgrade: N/A
Do you need to buy OS: No
Preferred website for parts: Newegg & Amazon
Parts Preference: Intel Processor, Caviar black HDD
Overclocking: Yes (CPU & GPU)
SLI or Crossfire: Yes (in 4-5 months, another Radeon 7870)
Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080
Additional Comments: See intro paragraph above
Why are you upgrading: Friend is sick of playing games on his XPS laptop, time to upgrade to the desktop big leagues.
Are you near Beltway/Rockville if so hit Microcenter
Intel core I5 3570K socket 1155 quad core processor $189.99
Z77 Extreme4 LGA 1155 Z77 ATX Intel Motherboard $ 84.99 when purchaced with I5
Board is an upgrade over your selection
CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($229.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($142.86 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($38.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: OCZ Vertex 4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($86.98 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card ($269.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair 400R ATX Mid Tower Case ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Rosewill Capstone 750W 80 PLUS Gold Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: LG GH24NS90 DVD/CD Writer ($15.99 @ Newegg)
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
+1 - This is a very solid build. The higher speed RAM is nice, but not worth double the cost of the same capacity kit! Similarly, your PSU was unnecessarily expensive earlier, this one is great and it will be enough to CFX if you want.
I will mention one thing about the GPU. For the games you have listed (especially Starcraft II and Battlefield 3), nVidia cards tend to do better than their AMD counterparts. You may want to look into the nVidia GeForce GTX 660 card instead. It is about $40-50 cheaper and gives better results than then Radeon HD 7950 for those two games specifically. You can take a look at this benchmark comparing the two cards and some games that are featured on them. Based on this, you (and your friend) can make up your mind!
Just one other thing - keep the Sammy SSD in there!
its under $1200 and gives you a reliable durable motherboard, room for upgrades in the future and a graphcis card that run the games you want on ultra settings, BF3 64person maps 75+ FPS. So unless you are planning to use a 120Hz monitor this sysetm I'm suggesting will rock anything now and up coming.