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Beginner Build

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November 29, 2012 7:54:10 PM

Hello Everyone,

I am currently doing the research for my first build and after spending a good deal of time going back and forth on several things I though I would ask someone who knows what they are talking about. I am trying to keep costs as low as I can (college student) without compromising performance too much. I am not a hardcore gamer by far, though I do enjoy running some light games occasionally (I think my most recent game is Homeworld 2, released back in 2003 because the computer I had for many years had a whopping 16 mb video card XD ) and I dabble occasionally in some light video editing. However, I do run BOINC occasionally which is highly cpu intensive so processing power and cooling are more important than they otherwise would be. I have a good amount of components picked out though I want to get your opinions of whether or not anything is overkill, needs to be upgraded to match the rest, is incompatible, etc.

Case: Antec 902 Case (this is the one thing I am fairly certain of)
Motherboard: ASRock Pro4-M LGA1155 Intel H77 Motherboard
Processor: Intel Core i5 3570K
RAM: G. Skill RipJaws X Series 2x4GB DDR3 RAM 1600MHz
Storage: Western Digital Blue 750 GB: 3.5in, 7200 RPM
Graphics: Sapphire Radeon HD 7750 1GB DDR5 Graphics Card
PSU: Corsair Enthusiast Series 650W - TX650 Power Supply
Optical Drive: PLDS LiteOn IHAS124-04 24X (unless someone has a better recommendation)

Also, I am not sure if I need to buy a heatsink for the processor separate or if there should be a stock one that comes with it.

Again, this is my first build, so I may look like an idiot with the setup I just posted. Please be nice!!

Thank you!!

More about : beginner build

November 29, 2012 8:12:42 PM

Do you want to overclock? And what is your budget? This build as a couple of...imperfections we can work out.
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November 29, 2012 8:16:47 PM

I know I can't go over $1000 but I was trying to keep it lower in this build, preferably around $750 if possible. I was not planning to overclock at this point, though in the future I may to get more time out of my system so I thought I would pay the $10 more to upgrade to the unlocked processor and have the option. Though I just realized the issue about the processor being unlocked and the motherboard not supporting it so...

I also hadn't noticed that the board is a micro, I may have clicked the wrong one...
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November 29, 2012 8:17:41 PM

The thing that stands out, as requiring some change, is either motherboard or processor. The i5-3570K is "unlocked" specifically to allow overclocking, but H77 motherboards will not provide CPU overclocking. The two would "work" together, but not fully, and rather pointless.
Either you should use a Z77 mobo, with that i5-3570K, in which case you need an aftermarket cooler, like Coolermaster Hyper 212Evo; or you should use a locked processor, like i5-3450, or i5-3470, with your H77 mobo.
Unless you are planning to have TWO graphics cards, 650w is a good bit more than you need 500/550w is plenty, even if you are overclocking. Less if you're not.
Case is also, probably, a bit more than you need, but that's very much personal choice.
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November 29, 2012 8:31:37 PM

Ok, I wasn't planning on having two graphics cards ( or even a single high end one at this point ), so the 500W corsair looks like a better choice by that logic. And what case would you recommend? I still would like to have one that I could overclock the processor in assuming I decided to go that route with the mobo/processor pairing.
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November 29, 2012 8:42:54 PM

If you want the case, go for the case. The case is the one thing I usually don't recommend, as its mainly the user's choice.
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November 29, 2012 8:58:05 PM

Most people around here are gamers, who will tell you that more should be spent on the graphics card relative to the CPU. In your case, playing older games, but specifically wanting CPU power for BOINC, that may not be the case, although you may want a little more GPU power.
I suspect that overclocking is, or should be, a very low priority for you, unless you'd specifically like to tinker around with this machine. If you just want a build that works, with no muss and no fuss, you can forsake overclocking. Maybe do that on your next build :-). In that case, get a locked CPU like an i5-3470. If you think you might get more into games, you may wish to choose a card like the HD7770. If not, a HD7750 will be fine, especially if your monitor is only 1368x768 or 1440x900.
For either of those cards, a 360W Seasonic G-360 is all you need to power it, 24/7 running heavy loads like BOINC. If you want more room for upgrades, something around 500W-550W might be better. The Seasonic G-550 is modular, a nice plus. Avoid the Corsair V2 Builder; it was made by CWT, not Seasonic, using inferior Samxon capacitors from a line known to experience early failure. This information comes from HardwareSecrets, a site I trust for information about PSUs (and further references the badcaps.org forums, where the grisly details of bad capacitors are rigorously hashed out ad nauseum). XFX is a good Seasonic-built unit. Rosewill Hive and Capstone are also good; built by Superflower.
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November 30, 2012 12:21:43 AM

Thanks for the replies everyone, you have all been really helpful!
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November 30, 2012 10:28:42 AM

Laisyn said:
Ok, I wasn't planning on having two graphics cards ( or even a single high end one at this point ), so the 500W corsair looks like a better choice by that logic. And what case would you recommend? I still would like to have one that I could overclock the processor in assuming I decided to go that route with the mobo/processor pairing.

My personal favourite in the more compact cases is the Corsair Carbide 300R. Good quality, and you don't NEED anything more, but it's important to have a case YOU like, you're the one who's going to be looking at it, every day.
If you want ability to overclock, you need a Z77 mobo. The ASRock Extremes are good value, although I prefer the quality of Gigabyte (just plain Z77, you don't need Z77X), or Asus. With CPU overclocking, and a bit of scope, you want PSU around 520w.
If you have a non "K" processor and something like HD7770 GPU, you only really need around 400w. Seasonic/Antec/XFX do PSUs around the 430/450 mark.
Corsair are usually good for PSUs, but their 500 V2 is not their best. Seasonic or Antec do good 520s, or XFX do a 550w.
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November 30, 2012 9:13:59 PM

^Right, the Corsair V2 Builder PSUs aren't good. Stick to something built by Seasonic, FSP, or Enermax/LEPA; or even SuperFlower (the new Rosewill Capstone and Hive units).
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November 30, 2012 10:54:53 PM

Ok, after more research I am now looking at this setup...

Case: CoolerMaster Storm Scout
Motherboard: This is where I need the most help
Processor: Intel Core i5 3470
RAM: G. Skill RipJaws X Series 2x4GB DDR3 RAM 1600MHz
Storage: Western Digital Blue 750 GB: 3.5in, 7200 RPM
Graphics: Sapphire Radeon HD 7770 1GB DDR5 Graphics Card
PSU: PC Power & Cooling Silencer MK III 400W
Optical Drive: PLDS LiteOn IHAS124-04 24X (unless someone has a better recommendation)

Thoughts?
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November 30, 2012 11:50:24 PM

Looks good to me; sufficient power, and all of the parts look to be of decent quality. IMHO one optical drive is much like another; none I've used stand out, either good or bad.
I'd get a H77 board, or maybe a B75. Also IMHO, Asus > ASRock = Gigabyte > any others.
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December 2, 2012 7:08:06 AM

For mobo, the ASRock H77 Pro4's are fine, either the ATX, or mATX.
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December 2, 2012 2:33:17 PM

^Agreed.
Fwiw, I just ordered that same PSU for a build I'll be doing for my father in a month or two (got the PSU early due to a discount).
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December 2, 2012 9:14:02 PM

Ok, due to some interesting prices where I live, I decided it makes more sense to pay a surprisingly small amount more and have the overclocking options available. I just want to be 100% sure that this power supply will be able to handle these options. I am still not planning on adding a second gpu, and if I did it would either be a very low powered unit or well into the future so I'm not as worried about that. Sorry to be so indecisive.

Also, if someone could just give me an idea of how to calculate what power supply is needed for a system I would really appreciate it.

Case: CoolerMaster Storm Scout
Motherboard: ASUS P8Z77-LK
Processor: Intel Core i5 3570k
RAM: G. Skill RipJaws X Series 2x4GB DDR3 RAM 1600MHz
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1tb 7200RPM
Graphics: Sapphire Radeon HD 7770 Vapor-X 1GB DDR5 Graphics Card
PSU: PC Power & Cooling Silencer MK III 600W
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December 2, 2012 9:21:55 PM

Power supply is enough for 2 7770's for sure. They dont use that much power.

also, make sure you are getting a CPU cooler if you plan to overclock as well.
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December 2, 2012 9:33:10 PM

Oops, I left it off the list. I'm looking at a CM Hyper 212 Evo push/pull setup, which could be looking at an upgrade if I ever decide to overclock by anything more than a modest amount.
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December 2, 2012 11:08:51 PM

Get a Xigmatek Gaia; it's $20 in the US right now (vs. $35 for the Crappermaster), per Frostytech.com it works as well as the CM (within 1C {error margin} and up to 6db quieter), and doesn't require giving any of your money to a dishonest company (Crappermaster).
For PSU sizing assistance, go here: http://www.extreme.outervision.com/psucalculatorlite.js...
Other than the Crappermaster products, which I can't ethically recommend (but accept as a personal choice), your build looks good.
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!