First Build, kinda freaked out and could use some advise

Hi Everyone!

I'm excited and frightened to attempt my first hands-on build. About 6 mos. ago, after almost a year of research I sourced out the components for a good, but basic media centre pc. I went to my local ncix intending to buy the parts and build it, but instead paid 50$ for them to build and warranty it. Since then I realized I want to play pc games on my media pc and have bought and installed a new video card(XFX 7870 DD) and an internal hd(1T WD black) as well as updated the bios for my motherboard. I know to many this won't sound like much but I was pretty fired up about it all and am now looking to build a full on gaming rig. Here's the info;

Approximate Purchase Date: Within the next 3 months or so. Willing to be patient for deals.

Budget Range: $1200- &1500

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming

Are you buying a monitor: Yes

Do you need to buy OS: Yes

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: NCIX, Newegg

Location: Toronto - Canada

Parts Preference: Intel

Overclocking: Yes

SLI or Crossfire: Eventually

Your Monitor Resolution: 1920 x 1080

Additional Comments: Looking for a gaming rig that I can eventually crossfire. Need some advice regarding common mistakes to watch for.

Why Are You Upgrading:Partly so my gf can do homework on one while I use the other. Partly to build a computer.

Parts List

Mobo: Asrock z77 Extreme 4

CPU: i5 3570k Planning to OC to around 4 - 4.2Ghz

GPU: XFX 7870 Double D (Swapping out the video card on my current media pc and gonna run that with the onboard graphics from its i5 3470) But here's the link for informations sake.

SSD: 120g minimum, would love 256g. Samsung or Intel strike me as the best, but am open to advice.

HDD: Happy with the WD 1T Caviar Black I own, so I'd probably get another of those.

RAM: I happen to have 8g(4x2) of Mushkin Enhanced Stilletto 1333 sitting around, but Im leaning towards getting 16g(8x2) 1600 for overclocking and to ensure compatibility. Here's the Mushkin link:

Cooler: Maybe Coolermaster Hyper 212 Evo?

PSU: I want quality here. Since I'm eventually going to be CFing two 7870's what would be a good wattage ceiling?

Optical Drive: Whatever.

Case: No idea. Atx with good airflow and 2 front usb 3.0 headers preferably.

Monitor: Also have no idea here. I like Samsung and Asus and would be looking to eventually buy another in order to CF.

So, I'm looking to find an SSD, a case, and a monitor for this set up but more importantly I want to know the little things. Like do I need thermal paste for when I attach the cooler? Do I buy that separately? When I first boot it will it automatically let me insert the windows cd? How often do CPU and Mobo joining go wrong? Should I be worried? Anyway, thanks everyone!
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  1. yay a canadian.

    -buying a extreme4 in canada is a mistake. EXTREMELY overpriced
    -just keep the mushkin ram that you already have
    -overclocking ram is useless
    -id get a blue drive. not much of a performance gain
    -overclocking to 4.2ghz wont be much of a performance gain but ok
    -the thermal paste proivded with the hyper 212 is good enough. id stick with it

    heres what i would get

    monitor: a pa238qr. have one myself. very good deal

    case: my personal favourite. and its silent and has a near perfect layout

    hard drive: just get a blue

    motherboard. has everything you need to get going and overclocking

    psu: have one myself.

    optical drive: yeah. just get whatever is cheapest.
  2. Thanks for the response, just going over everything you linked now. Ive never read that opinion on the Asrock board. I was originally looking for a gigabyte board, I currentlt have a H77 DS3H and its fine for what it does but my understanding was the Asrock was the way to go for gaming boards, plus its only 20$ more expensive. Let me read up a bit more on that gigabyte board though.
    The fractal case seems pretty slick.
    Mostly though, do I have a reason to be so worried about trying this? I am an electrician, so I am good with my hands and can follow directions well. Am I blowing it all out of proportion?
  3. well, the asrock extreme4 is a great buy in the US, but that is only if it was 120-135 dollars. in canada, its 170 if you didnt notice

    the gigabyte has the same features as the asrock + plus or minus a few

    you should be good from now
  4. I hope so! Im looking forward to it! Thanks again.
  5. no problem
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