First Gaming Rig Build.

EDIT: Here is the pcpartpicker link to make viewing easier:

Approximate Purchase Date: Around Black Friday to end of the year.

Budget Range: $1450. I'd actually like it to be around $1200 though.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Multimedia streaming, Regular Use

Are you buying a monitor: Yes.


Parts to Upgrade: CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core

Cooling: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 76.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing

MOBO: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD3H ATX LGA1155

RAM: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600

STORAGE: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM | OCZ Vertex 4 128GB 2.5" SSD

GPU: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB

Case: Antec Nine Hundred ATX Mid Tower

PSU: Corsair 650W ATX12V / EPS12V

Optical Drive: Samsung SH-222BB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer

Monitor: Asus VH236H 23.0"

OS: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit)

Keyboard: Razer Lycosa


Do you need to buy OS: Yes.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Anything with good reputation and decent-good warranty.

Location: Duluth, GA.

Parts Preferences: I'd prefer an Intel build.

Overclocking: Sure, if it's not too difficult.

SLI or Crossfire: In the future.

Your Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080, for HD gaming.

Additional Comments: Need an OS and monitor. Peripherals as well. I'm looking at Razer keyboard/headset.

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: My laptop isn't capable of running games other than League of Legends. I want something to replace my console and last me for a couple of years with ease of upgrades in the future.


Any comments and suggestions would be appreciated. I'd like to get some good deals around Black Friday, which is the reason I'm putting that time frame. I also live by a microcenter, so I can get a good deal on the CPU/MOBO if needed. Any tips on how to cut prices without sacrificing performance would be phenomanal. Any tips on a monitor/keyboard would be great too. I already have a great mouse. Thanks so much guys!
16 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about first gaming build
  1. Everything looks good to me, not sure if you actually need any advice, I think you have it covered.
  2. As you stated, you will be ocing and running dual graphics, so i'm afraid you can't cut costs without giving up on this options.
  3. Thanks for the responses. I will only be doing those in the future. Theoretically, if the build is powerful enough to run most modern games at high settings, I won't have a need to. From what I hear, the CPU has built in programs to allow some overclocking to the point where I shouldn't have to tinker too much. Don't quote me on that though.

    So in the event that I do not overclock or run SLI in the near future, what other options do I have? I believe the 670 will do me fine for at least a year or two.
  4. If you dont plan on overclocking then
    save some money and get Z75 or H77 or B75 motheboard and i5-3470.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Core i5-3470 3.2GHz Quad-Core Processor ($191.97 @ CompUSA)
    CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 76.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($19.99 @ Newegg)
    Motherboard: ASRock H77 Pro4/MVP ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($87.55 @ Newegg)
    Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($39.99 @ Newegg)
    Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.99 @ NCIX US)
    Storage: OCZ Vertex 4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($103.99 @ NCIX US)
    Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($369.99 @ Newegg)
    Case: Antec Nine Hundred ATX Mid Tower Case ($95.35 @ Amazon)
    Power Supply: Corsair Enthusiast 650W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($74.99 @ NCIX US)
    Optical Drive: Samsung SH-222BB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer ($17.99 @ CompUSA)
    Monitor: Asus VH236H 23.0" Monitor ($148.77 @ NCIX US)
    Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($91.99 @ Amazon)
    Keyboard: Razer Lycosa Wired Gaming Keyboard ($49.99 @ NCIX US)
    Total: $1362.55
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-11-12 13:50 EST-0500)
  5. After a bit of research, I think I will overclock to a small extent. I'm pretty firm on the 3570k, as even minimal overclocking can get it up there. However, as for the motherboard, I'm up for suggestions. I realize this one is pretty expensive, but I've heard great things about it. I'm also considering the ASROCK z77 Extreme4 or comparables.

    Actually, I may as well say what my concerns with the build are: The MOBO, the RAM, the case, and finally the monitor. For the MOBO, I need a good balance of power/price. For the RAM, I'm unsure, I've always bought crucial but I want something to give me a slight edge. For the case, I'm completely clueless. I want something good and wicked looking (I'm a sucker for LEDs) but the good ones are out of my budget. As for a monitor, I think I've found the right one, but I'm unsure.

    Thanks again for the replies. I don't think I'll budge from the 3570k, and your MOBO choice I'll have to research a bit before I can make a decision.
  6. Asrock got rave reviews pretty much out of the blue for a company that started as a subsidiary of Asus, they released the Asrock Z68 Extreme 3 for Sandy Bridge, which a ton of tech sites gave high rating and this continued with The Asrock Z77 Extreme 4. Although, evidence has come to light to question their long term quality. I don't have the link off hand, but as I recall, they went cheap on the power mosfets and such. This is something that a tech site reviewing it wouldn't necessarily pick up during a review since like I said, its problem that presets itself more in the long term rather than someone playing with it a day or two to review it.

    As such, I'm going to say if you have the money, stick with what is known good. That would be Asus.


    Something along those lines.
  7. After doing some research on that first card, I'm still unconvinced. It seems the ASUS board is prone to faulty DIMM slots (memory, I believe). Whether 2 are faulty, or none, it seems 50-50. I looked more cards up, and a pricier version of that card (about 169.99) seems to be the top ranked best buy. My card (The gigabyte) falls 2nd as the best budget card. I'm not sure if I want to spend 50 more on the ASUS as there seem to be many disgruntled customers. I'm also finding my gigabyte mobo has problems with USB, of which I'll use for all my periphs. Choices, choices..
  8. Best answer
    Well, practically speaking, you only have 5 choices for a homebuilt system motherboard. BioStar, Asrock, Gigabyte, MSI and Asus. Yes, to a lesser extent, Foxxconn, and EVGA has been known to make a few boards, but you don't see them that often.

    MSI used to have really good quality boards, although lately I've noticed a lot of their boards have bad reviews on Newegg. I dunno whats up with them, they seem to not have their act together. Then you have gigabyte, I had one die on me after 3 weeks, I was treated poorly by their customer service, hence why my system has an Asus board in it now. So thats my bias against them.

    As far as anything else, well, you have to keep in mind that anything that is mass produced, be it a computer part or a tennis shoe has a risk of bad eggs slipping through quality control. Thats what warranties are for. You can only try to avoid "known issues". For example the questionable quality of the Asrock boards in the long term. I know it makes me sick to my stomach to find that out about the Z68 extreme 3. I must have recommended that board dozens of times in threads like yours on these forums.

    I wish I had the link to show you, I forget who brought it to my attention, or in what thread, maybe I'll get lucky and he'll drop by.
  9. After some thought, you're right. I shouldn't forsake a potentially good product just because a couple of manufacturing mistakes. Hopefully I'll get lucky. I think my fear is that when I finally get all the parts together, build it, try to turn it on, something doesn't work. I'm a new builder and am not very build-savvy, but I can't let my fears get to me. I'll go with the ASUS LK version.

    Now all that's left is the RAM, storage (which I think are decent enough, only question pertains to SSD), monitor, and the case. My budget for the SSD is about 100 bucks, so I want the best bang for buck. If a 256gb isn't too much more expensive, I'd like to upgrade to that instead. For the case, my budget is about $120. Monitor, I'd like under $150 but good quality.

    Any suggestions?
  10. Well, there is always a chance something might be DOA, thats why we're here to help you diagnose the problem should one occur.

    As far as the SSD, I would get the biggest one you can afford. Only because well a single game these days can easily take up 10GB. I don't have an SSD in my system, my main drive is a 500GB, I only have 200GB free space with all my games and programs installed (and thats with 2 extra backup drives for stuff like my music, pictures, videos etc). A 256GB SSD even wouldn't cut it for me. Depends on your individual needs.

    256GB Crucial M4 SSD

    For the case, my personal preference is going to be (as you can see I have one) the NZXT Phantom for that price range. They're awesome, very durable and very cool looking. The Phantom 410s are mid towers (slightly smaller), and plain old Phantoms are huge full towers. The 820s, must be new, I've never seen em, I woudlnt pay $250 for it lol. Or if you prefer the Antec 900 you initially were looking at, Antec is a good case maker as well. The only brand I can specifically tell you to avoid would be Sentey. Corsair and NZXT I can say to my knowledge have never made a low quality case. All the other brands, some are better than others.

    As far as the monitor, with a GTX 670, you should be playing games at 1080p.

    This monitor is a little overbudget, but with the 25 dollar promo code, it won't put you too far over, its basically a smaller scale than the 27 inch one I have.
  11. I've heard great things about m4 SSDs and would love to get one. They seem to be more expensive than other budget options though, such as OCZ. The tower I decided on is a little on the expensive side. HAF 922. I was going for that Antec 900, but apparently it's outdated. I liked the HAF 912, but it was a little plain for my tastes, so a little bit more shouldn't hurt.

    I've also downgraded my PSU to the CX600 v2 from Corsair. After some research it seems it should be able to handle an i5 and 670 well enough. Actually bought it yesterday for 49.99, will be 29.99 after a MIR. Couldn't pass on the deal. So the first part has been bought! lol.

    That monitor is nice, but it is a bit on the expensive side for my budget. Maybe I can tweak some things around to compensate. Can anyone recommend a buying order for parts? I'm getting stir crazy waiting for money to flow in and I want to be able to build as I buy. Case would be an obvious first choice. Hopefully within the next 2-3 weeks I should be able to get it all. I just hope I can find good deals on Black Friday/Cyber Monday.
  12. Also, is the evo 212 necessary for my kit? I may do easy OCing through the motherboard or whatever the process is, but to actually go in an tinker will take me some time. So I may not overclock at the start. Think I should go for it, or wait on it for something better?
  13. kiggaxwut said:
    Also, is the evo 212 necessary for my kit? I may do easy OCing through the motherboard or whatever the process is, but to actually go in an tinker will take me some time. So I may not overclock at the start. Think I should go for it, or wait on it for something better?

    Its not necessary, but you may find it less inconvenience in the long run, as when/if you decide to overclock, you're going to have to remove the stock heastink, clean off all the old thermal compound and re-apply new compound to install the fan. Its up to you if you want to go through that.

    Yes the Corsair CX series are decent, but they aren't on the same level as the TX. They are made by two different manufacturers. The CX are made by CWT and the TX are made by Seasonic. But 30 bucks for a CX600 is a nice price, and yes its sufficient.

    The M4s honestly I think are better quality than OCZ. I'm sure thats debatable, but thats my opinion, I'll stick to it. Crucial in my view has a stronger brand reputation than OCZ.

    As for the monitor, well you could drop to a 660 TI instead of the 670 and get your monitor, but with that level, no reason you shouldn't be playing 1080.

    Cases are personal choices, I don't see as though the Antec 900 is "outdated", but I will say that Antec's full towers tend to be kinda skinny, that may or may not affect the ability to install tall aftermarket coolers. I'm not sure.
  14. Alright, I did it. Took advantage of the Black Friday sales this season and got everything but the CPU/Mobo (I'll nab those at the microcenter in a couple weeks when I'm not completely broke). Thank you so much for your insightful comments. Here's the final build:

    CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($169.99 @ Microcenter)
    CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.98 @ Amazon)
    Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($144.99 @ Amazon)
    Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($39.99 @ Newegg)
    Storage: Samsung 830 Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($106.98 @ Newegg)
    Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($67.99 @ NCIX US)
    Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($349.99 @ NCIX US)
    Case: Cooler Master HAF 922 ATX Mid Tower Case ($99.67 @ CompUSA)
    Power Supply: Corsair Builder 600W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($61.98 @ Newegg)
    Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($19.98 @ Outlet PC)
    Monitor: Asus VS247H-P 23.6" Monitor ($139.99 @ Newegg) Operating System:
    Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($89.98 @ Outlet PC) Keyboard:
    Razer Lycosa Wired Gaming Keyboard ($69.99 @ Best Buy)
    Total: $1391.50
  15. Still undecided on the mobo. It will either be the one I have posted already, or your suggestion, the ASUS z77 LX/LK board. It may well depend on what prices they have at microcenter. I went with the HAF 922 case even though I did like the Phantom series. I was sold on a HAF 932 blue edition, but they were godly expensive, so I figured I'd scale down with the 922 which had a decent price with rebate. I did some research on the SSD, and it was between the m4 and the 830. A little more research led me to go with Samsung. Hopefully I made the right decisions.
  16. Best answer selected by kiggaxwut.
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