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First Build on a Gaming PC

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October 30, 2012 1:50:23 AM

I'm building my first gaming PC and I need some guidance. This is what I'm planning to purchase:
Edit: I have revised my thread thanks to ckholt83 for pointing it out, and thanks to FinneousPJ for the template(Sorry I didn't read more before posting)



Approximate Purchase Date: Very soon. Probably within the next 2 months

Budget Range: 600-1000 or so (open ended)

System Usage from Most to Least Important: All around computer. Games mostly but also standard internet stuff.

Are you buying a monitor: If I find a decently priced one.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: New Egg(Great customer service and great prices)

Location: Im building my PC in Victorville CA

Overclocking: maybe...

SLI or Crossfire: Yes
--[[ Parts List ]]--
Case - COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN3-GP Black Steel + Plastic and Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case with USB 3.0 and Black Interior

Motherboard - GIGABYTE GA-990FXA-UD3 AM3+ AMD 990FX SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard

CPU - AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor HDZ965FBGMBOX

Heatsink - ZALMAN CNPS9900ALED 120mm 2 Ball Low-noise Blue LED CPU Cooler

Video Card - SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 6850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity (100315L )

RAM - G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-1600C9D-16GXM

Hard Drive - Seagate Barracuda ST3000DM001 3TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

Power Supply - CORSAIR HX Series HX750 750W ATX12V 2.3 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS GOLD Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply

Optical Drive - ASUS 24X DVD Burner - Bulk 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM Black SATA Model DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS - OEM

I've already done the math and from the looks of it, I'm going to be spending $1120 for all this.(From New Egg) I'd love for it to be cheaper, but I don't want to sacrifice performance.

Thanks in advance.

More about : build gaming

October 30, 2012 2:25:25 AM

Thank you for your advice. I went ahead and redid my posting. Hope someone can help!
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 30, 2012 2:40:29 AM

Okay, here you go:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($169.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Zalman CNPS9900ALED Ball Bearing CPU Cooler ($49.98 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($127.86 @ Newegg)
Memory: Kingston HyperX T1 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($25.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 3TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung 830 Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($87.99 @ B&H)
Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition 2GB Video Card ($237.55 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF 922 ATX Mid Tower Case ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec EarthWatts Green 650W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($39.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($15.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $955.32
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)


For less money that gives you a better CPU, a much better GPU, and an SSD for vastly improved load times. You don't need 16GB of RAM right now, and you can always easily add more later when you start to hit that 8GB cap down the road. The PSU you picked out was overkill too, you don't need more than about 500W at most typically for a single GPU setup. I assume you like the aesthetic of the case and the HSF, so I stuck with the ones you already had, but otherwise I'd suggest some other options for those.

Edit: Also I think newegg might still be running a promotion to give you 8GB of RAM free with that motherboard, so you might not need to spend the extra $25 on the kingston kit.
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October 30, 2012 4:00:19 AM


Thank you very much. Whats your opinion on the case? Im not dead set in that style it just looking interesting I suppose.
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a c 136 B Homebuilt system
October 30, 2012 4:16:26 AM

ckholt83 said:
Okay, here you go:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($169.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Zalman CNPS9900ALED Ball Bearing CPU Cooler ($49.98 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($127.86 @ Newegg)
Memory: Kingston HyperX T1 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($25.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 3TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung 830 Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($87.99 @ B&H)
Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition 2GB Video Card ($237.55 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF 922 ATX Mid Tower Case ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec EarthWatts Green 650W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($39.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($15.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $955.32
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)


For less money that gives you a better CPU, a much better GPU, and an SSD for vastly improved load times. You don't need 16GB of RAM right now, and you can always easily add more later when you start to hit that 8GB cap down the road. The PSU you picked out was overkill too, you don't need more than about 500W at most typically for a single GPU setup. I assume you like the aesthetic of the case and the HSF, so I stuck with the ones you already had, but otherwise I'd suggest some other options for those.

Edit: Also I think newegg might still be running a promotion to give you 8GB of RAM free with that motherboard, so you might not need to spend the extra $25 on the kingston kit.


The cpu cooler is old and expensive. Also not that good

The RAM is not suitable for an Ivy bridge processor because the voltage is too high . It would run but instantly void the warranty on the processor and probably shorten its life span
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October 30, 2012 4:31:20 AM

Outlander_04 said:
The cpu cooler is old and expensive. Also not that good

The RAM is not suitable for an Ivy bridge processor because the voltage is too high . It would run but instantly void the warranty on the processor and probably shorten its life span



Do you have a better choice for a CPU cooler? I was also looking at this one. Noctua NH-D14 120mm & 140mm SSO CPU Cooler
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 30, 2012 4:54:56 AM

My understanding is that the motherboard regulates the memory voltage and the CPU shouldn't be affected, but I'll defer. I also didn't look very closely at the memory itself and they're not the ones I'd thought, the heat spreaders on those are big and awkward, could cause a conflict with HSF. In light of that, I'd go with this kit instead: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I also didn't notice that you edited your preferences to include SLI as an option. For that, I'd switch the power supply to this XFX 750W: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

If you're not particularly attached to the Zalman cooler, I think you'd be fine with something a little less expensive like the Xigmatek Gaia: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

The Noctua NH-D14 is an unholy beast of a cooler, but totally unnecessary unless you're planning to do a pretty extreme overclock. I think you'd probably be better off sinking that money into other parts of the build instead. The i5 3570 is already a phenomenal performer and you're not really going to get much of an FPS improvement in games by overclocking it, you'll see more of a benefit from putting that cash towards GPU / SSD.

As for my opinion on the case, I have the HAF X, which is the big brother of the 922. I'm mostly pretty happy with it, but I've had to pay for several fan replacements out of pocket and the customer support was pretty bad, so I don't generally advocate cooler master any more. For some other good options, take a look at the following:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://us.ncix.com/products/?sku=60585&vpn=BFC-SNB-150-...

http://us.ncix.com/products/?sku=58342&vpn=FD-CA-CORE-3...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://us.ncix.com/products/?sku=61928&vpn=CC-9011011-W...

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October 30, 2012 5:10:24 AM

I've heard the CoolerMaster Hyper 212 Evo is a decent, great value cooler.
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a c 136 B Homebuilt system
October 30, 2012 6:04:27 AM

The memory controller is on the processor . Voltage flowing through the memory also runs through a portion of the processor . And at 1.5 volts its already much higher than the rest of an intel cpu circuitry

It can work, but as I said it voids the warranty , and it will shorten the life of the processor
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October 31, 2012 6:59:48 AM

Thank you all for the very quick and informative posts. I do have a lot more thinking to do over the next few weeks and I really appreciate all the new information I have now! :) 
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November 1, 2012 5:39:20 AM

Best answer selected by hepcat2299.
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