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Building a new computer, need help with a few things!

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November 10, 2012 8:28:41 PM

Hey guys!
I'm building a computer and just wanted to know if the choices i made were good. I have purchased all the components aside from the video card.

Components:
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H
CPU: Intel i7-3770K (Quad-Core 3.5GHz)
Memory: 32GB- G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 1600Mhz - (F3-12800CL10Q-32GBXL)
HHD: Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM 3TB - (ST3000DM001)
Optical Drive: LG Internal Blu-Ray Burner - (WH14NS40)
Power Supply: Corsair TX650 V2 650W

Let me know how well this set up is, in general the computer will be used as a HTPC and a moderately nice gaming pc (no care for super crazy amazing graphics, but i do want nice graphics). Also please recommend what video card would work well.

Case:
For the case I really want to build it myself, i want it to be a horizontal sitting case, and made out of see through acrylic to be able to see all the components. I eventually plan on getting LEDs in the case to add a color show. But for now I created a Google Sketch-Up of what i would think the case should look like. I really need to mainly know if the idea for my cooling system will work, so if anyone has any recommendations on where to position the fans and what not that would be greatly appreciated!

And yes I realize there is a Video Card set up in the sketch, I just needed a large one to get an idea of the size, also the mother board is not the same as mine however it is the same size and there is a dvd player instead of blu-ray, but it is the correct size.

Pictures:
Front:

Top:

Back:

Right:

Left:

Top Left:

Top Right:


The way the case works is that there is a bottom (black part) where all the components are connected to it, then just the clear acrylic part at the top is removable (lid) and then screws to the bottom black part.

So if anyone could let me know what video card I should get and how to improve the cooling of the case that would be great!

Thanks in advance everyone!
a b B Homebuilt system
November 10, 2012 9:49:48 PM

Ventilation/air flow looks like it could be better. Your two fans are blocked from each other by the PSU and the graphics card and the CPU fan doesn't look like it gets to exhaust anywhere, letting heat just build up around it. I'm not an expert in case design, but I think that you'd be better off getting a small tower cooler for the CPU and having an intake fan on the top of the case towards the center for the CPU cooler (maybe right over the RAM modules) and an exhaust fan on the side of the case right next to the CPU cooler. That'd give the CPU cooler intake and exhaust so that it doesn't overheat while also providing a little cooling for the RAM modules and chipset.


This intake would probably need to be a 120mm or 140mm and the exhaust would probably need to be either a 92mm or a 120mm fan so that you could get decent airflow without a lot of noise.

What do you think of that?
a c 122 B Homebuilt system
November 10, 2012 9:59:09 PM

Gaming and HTPC do not need an i7.
Related resources
November 10, 2012 10:10:18 PM

Blazorthon: thanks a lot! That's great help! Would I be smart to just get a small liquid cooling CPU radiator?
Jsc: I know, however I would like it to be the most optimal computer I can make it and have the possibility of installing Mac on it in the future to allow for video editing.
a b B Homebuilt system
November 10, 2012 10:18:33 PM

You could do that, but you'd probably still want the intake and exhaust fans for the memory and chipset and such to keep fairly cool. Heck, you could use the radiator's fan as the exhaust.
November 10, 2012 10:37:45 PM

Thanks, I'm probably going to go with you plan!
Any idea what graphics card would be nice?
a b B Homebuilt system
November 10, 2012 10:52:58 PM

Do you have a specific graphics budget set?
November 10, 2012 10:55:04 PM

Reasonably priced, would want $300 max
November 10, 2012 11:13:48 PM

I'd say that is a good card, however i have no idea. To me the more the memory on the gpu the better. So what would you get if this was your build?
a b B Homebuilt system
November 10, 2012 11:18:28 PM

Well, I'm not the heaviest gamer around myself, although I've built a lot of systems for big gamers. I wouldn't even both with a high end card and I can say that since I went with a little 7850 several months ago now and just overclocked the hell out of it for kicks.

That 7950 is a highly factory overclocked model despite being priced below MSRP for the 7950, so it's a great deal even if you didn't count the nearly $200 in free games that comes with 79xx cards under the Never Settle deal that AMD started up recently.

If you're not comfortable spending that much, then a cheaper Radeon 7870 would be a good compromise at about $60 cheaper such as this model:
http://pcpartpicker.com/part/gigabyte-video-card-gvr787...
November 10, 2012 11:45:47 PM

What the difference between radeons and geforces? I've always though that radeons should be used with amd processors and geforces to be used with intel?
a b B Homebuilt system
November 10, 2012 11:57:47 PM

Radeons are graphics cards made by AMD and Geforces are graphics cards made by Nvidia. You don't have to use either one with a specific type of CPU, they're just competing brands. You can use both Ati/AMD cards and Nvidia cards on both AMD and Intel CPUs.

Radeon 7750 thorugh 7970 all use the GCN (Graphics Core Next) architecture for their GPUs and the Geforce 600 series is mostly cards using the Kepler FP32 architecture for their GPUs. I could go into details beyond that, but it will only get mroe and more complicated and won't really be important information for a system builder anyway.
November 10, 2012 11:59:52 PM

okay thanks, i think the 7870 or 7950 is what I am going to go with!
November 11, 2012 8:34:27 PM

Here is what the updated case looks like!

Front:


Top Left:


Top Right:


So I'm thinking the exhaust fans will be the front left and back right (as well as the PSU fan) and the intakes will be the top, back left and front right). Or should i change it so the left side is the exhaust/intake and the right side is the intake/exhaust so it would be same sides instead of alternating. This would probably keep the intakes from sucking in exhaust heat.
What do you guys think?
a b B Homebuilt system
November 12, 2012 5:12:21 AM

Looks good, but I have one more concern. Are you sure that the PSU is getting sufficient air flow?

EDIT: Also, I can't help but wonder if it'd be better to have the side intake and exhaust fans on the sides that your not putting fans on. That way air flow would be less blocked by things such as the graphics card.

For example, the two side intake fans could be on either side of the PSU and exhaust could be on the side near the optical disk drive and the motherboard's rear connectors. The graphics card could be used as exhaust on the other side of the computer with the intake fans this way and you would probably be fine with a single exhaust fan other than the graphics card.
November 12, 2012 3:07:49 PM

blazorthon said:
Looks good, but I have one more concern. Are you sure that the PSU is getting sufficient air flow?

EDIT: Also, I can't help but wonder if it'd be better to have the side intake and exhaust fans on the sides that your not putting fans on. That way air flow would be less blocked by things such as the graphics card.

For example, the two side intake fans could be on either side of the PSU and exhaust could be on the side near the optical disk drive and the motherboard's rear connectors. The graphics card could be used as exhaust on the other side of the computer with the intake fans this way and you would probably be fine with a single exhaust fan other than the graphics card.


So you're saying move the left and right fans to the front and back?
I guess that would be better, I just didn't choose that way because I felt it didn't look as aesthetically pleasing. Would it really be that much better?
a b B Homebuilt system
November 12, 2012 3:45:26 PM

IDK about much better, but I think that it'd at least be somewhat better. Like I said earlier, I'm not an expert on this, I'm mostly estimating here. Just looking at it, my idea should in theory improve air flow by letting the intake/exhaust fans not be blocked from each other by other components and could also let you use one less exhaust fan.

Just look at it. One fan would still be blowing right towards the graphics card (which would function as exhaust for that intake fan), giving it ample intake while another is blowing right on the storage and PSU area and you still have the top fan blowing on the CPU/motherboard chipset/RAM modules along with one exhaust fan right on the side over the motherboard's rear connectors to cycle out the air.

Also, you could get some nice LED fans and grills/air filters, so it could be more aesthetically pleasing, or at least I'd think so. However, it's your build (literally), don't do something just because I said that it's what I'd do, do what you want. I'm kinda surprised that no one else has really chimed in on such an interesting project.
November 12, 2012 3:57:28 PM

blazorthon said:
IDK about much better, but I think that it'd at least be somewhat better. Like I said earlier, I'm not an expert on this, I'm mostly estimating here. Just looking at it, my idea should in theory improve air flow by letting the intake/exhaust fans not be blocked from each other by other components and could also let you use one less exhaust fan.

Just look at it. One fan would still be blowing right towards the graphics card (which would function as exhaust for that intake fan), giving it ample intake while another is blowing right on the storage and PSU area and you still have the top fan blowing on the CPU/motherboard chipset/RAM modules along with one exhaust fan right on the side over the motherboard's rear connectors to cycle out the air.

Also, you could get some nice LED fans and grills/air filters, so it could be more aesthetically pleasing, or at least I'd think so. However, it's your build (literally), don't do something just because I said that it's what I'd do, do what you want. I'm kinda surprised that no one else has really chimed in on such an interesting project.


I think you're right with all of this! Best to put it front and back, or just turn the motherboard so the graphics card is moving left and right...
And yeah I was hoping a lot more people would comment on this! Oh well, the components are due to come in today! So i'll keep posting pictures and updating about the whole build process along the way!

Also just realized, I don't have a power on and off button... didn't think about this until just this second! What do I do?!
a b B Homebuilt system
November 12, 2012 3:58:16 PM

Power on/off button, reset button, any any other buttons that you want are easy, just put them in the front of the case or maybe on the top of it near the corners and you should be fine IMO.
November 12, 2012 4:02:05 PM

blazorthon said:
Power on/off button, reset button, any any other buttons that you want are easy, just put them in the front of the case or maybe on the top of it near the corners and you should be fine IMO.


okay, so i just have to purchase these buttons from like newegg?
a b B Homebuilt system
November 12, 2012 4:05:10 PM

sw9394 said:
okay, so i just have to purchase these buttons from like newegg?


Newegg, Ebay, Amazon, lots of places have them. They're extremely cheap.

Also, do you have holes in the case for the power supply's power cable and the graphics card's output connectors? I could be wrong, but it doesn't look like you do. Sorry about not thinking of them sooner :/ 
November 12, 2012 4:10:33 PM

blazorthon said:
Newegg, Ebay, Amazon, lots of places have them. They're extremely cheap.

Also, do you have holes in the case for the power supply's power cable and the graphics card's output connectors? I could be wrong, but it doesn't look like you do. Sorry about not thinking of them sooner :/ 


I haven't put them in the sketch-up because i'm waiting for the actual parts to come in so I can place them accurately! And once I get the graphics card i'll drill its proper holes. I'll make sure to post an updated one with accurate placement of the PSU orientation and holes for the Graphics card though!

So for buttons all I need is a power switch and reset switch?
a b B Homebuilt system
November 12, 2012 4:25:04 PM

sw9394 said:
I haven't put them in the sketch-up because i'm waiting for the actual parts to come in so I can place them accurately! And once I get the graphics card i'll drill its proper holes. I'll make sure to post an updated one with accurate placement of the PSU orientation and holes for the Graphics card though!

So for buttons all I need is a power switch and reset switch?


Well, if you want more than you could probably also add stuff such as a BIOS reset button or something else, but a power switch is all you need. A reset switch is usually included to, but if you only want to get what you need and don't think that you'll actually use the reset switch, then it's not necessary to have it. Honestly, my reset switches are hardly ever used and I could make a case against having it (I often don't even bother to connect one in some of my personal builds), but it's so cheap, so why not?
!