Hi, I'm new here and looking for some opinions and advice. Its been at least 5 yrs since I did my last new build and I feel like I'm learning all over again. Our media pc died this week (power supply burned out and took the motherboard with it ), so I'm looking to reconfigure my husbands computer for the media pc now and making him a new computer for Christmas. So this little lady needs advice. Here are the components I'm looking at (planning on re-using his current optical drive, as the old media pc still has an awesome one that I want to reuse for it). His pc is used for gaming and also animating in Maya.
Processor: Intel Core i5 3570k 3.4 GHz
Motherboard: Asus P8Z77-V LX
Ram: Corsair Vengeance 16 GB
GPU: Diamond Radeon HD 7970
Storage: WD Green Power 2TB serial ATA (and using his current 500 GB hard drive for the operating system)
Cooling: CM Hyper 212 EVO
Case: CM Elite 430 Mid Tower
Power Supply: CM GX series 750w
Thoughts? Like I said, its been awhile since I've done a new build so I feel rusty on selecting. Also, in terms of operating system should we upgrade or continue to use Vista 64-bit which is his current operating system. Anything I'm not thinking of?
I'm mostly looking for opinions on if this all works together. Is anything overkill? Will the GPU be adequate for PC gaming? Will the GPU be able to handle 3d when hooked up to our TV for PC games that have implemented 3d?
I've decided on Windows 7 Home for the OS. Also, I'm looking to purchase pieces this weekend as frankly I hate not having two PCs. I want to get back to my games as much as get him a better computer for his games.
Those look like some good choices. I'd recommend the GTX670 for graphics - identical performance to the 7970 across the board but costs less and you get the additional benefits of nVidia graphics - FXAA, TXAA, adaptive v-sync and PhysX. I'd actually agree on the 8GB usually, though the rendering can benefit from a bit more. As you say though, it can always be added later.
And aznshinobi makes a good point about the SSD - they're not just faster (though the performance difference is insane), they're also silent, ultra-low power consumption and far more reliable. I'd never consider keeping important documents on a hard disk now, and I wouldn't buy a system without an SSD. For gaming, it's mainly load times that will benefit (loading saves and new areas) but for general Windows performance (bootup, application loads, searches) you'll see a major improvement.
I disagree with the 670, personally although there is a nice set of benefits to the 670, the performance of the 7970 is better especially clock for clock. At 1GHZ which is the general clocks for 7970 now, it's better than the GTX 680 which the 7970 is priced at the GTX 670. http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/toxic-hd-7970-eyefi...
Another thing is that Nvidia 3D requires 3D approved monitors/screens from Nvidia. AMD 3D can be used on ANY 3D capable monitor/screen and you don't need ridiculously priced Nvidia 3D stuff.
Glad to help :-) Re GTX670/7970 pricing though, you won't find a 7970 at GTX670 prices, and it honestly isn't any faster on average (unless you're talking about the GHz Edition which has a slim lead, maybe 10% faster... nothing noticeable).
EDIT: And as for 3D, if you're using it, it's easier and works better with nVidia. THG did an article all about it and how compatible the solutions were in different games. I'll see if I can find the article.
The 7970 performs overall, especially after clocks better than the GTX 680 and GTX 670, and a fairly decent margin over the 670: http://www.hardocp.com/article/2012/05/14/geforce_680_6...
In 3D EVERY FRAME matters, 3D strains the GPUs too much and as the review stated, Metro 2033 was almost unable to be run at max settings no AA @ 1080P with SLI 580.
I never assumed that the OP overclocks, I meant that clock for clock the 7970 is better than the GTX 670. The 7970 gets clocked in at 1GHZ anyways most of the time by manufacturers, if the 7970 clock for clock can beat the GTX 680 by a pretty good margin @ 1GHZ, how couldn't it beat a GTX 670 that's stock clocked at 915mhz or 980mhz after boost...
Didn't realize I would have to apologize for not living in Britain, the majority of forum members here usually are American, so I assume. Sorry if that's so bad.
I'm not trying to be a fan boy, but the simple facts point to AMD being the better bang for the buck, in America at least.
You also ignored the biggest part of it all though, with Nvidia 3D you need to buy THEIR proprietary glasses and certified monitor. That's an extra $200 AT LEAST.
Funny that you assume it's mostly American - this is an international site started by a German. Check out the footer - there's Russian, Norwegian, even Danish and Finnish! If it was an American site, the first new language would be Spanish (which isn't there). Editorial team is largely American, benchmarking is done largely by the German (and maybe French) teams. Judging by currencies in 'new build' and upgrade threads, it's primarily Brits, Americans and Indians posting on the forums.
As for clock-for-clock, it's totally irrelevant because these cards are running at difference clock speeds at stock. That's why your comment has to relate to overclocking - because otherwise what does clock-for-clock performance matter? What clock frequencies are required to achieve stock performance is irrelevant if not overclocking. Out-of-the-box performance is much more useful for that.
Even if the 7970 delivers a full 5% more frame/second (and I think it's closer to half that, but for the sake of argument) then that represents the difference between 40fps and 42fps. Hardly a game changer. For £30, I'd rather take the money and the PhysX, adaptive v-sync etc than the 2fps performance boost. I've just had this exact same discussion with another American recommending the 7970. We ended up just agreeing on the importance of knowing where the OP is from, since value is dependent on country (and most Americans are unaware that not all countries get rebates on this stuff). Nothing could be argued against the other benefits of nVidia hardware.
I'm not trying to be closed minded in terms of global, but you're trying to pin that on me. I've browsed here long enough to see that the majority of the people that ask for build help use Newegg and say they're from either the US or Canada. I'm not trying to argue with you about where people are from.
AMD also has many offerings that Nvidia doesn't have either, both have alternatives and if you're going say Physx and Adaptive V-Sync are deal breakers, Physx I already know doesn't make a huge different in most modern games. IN FACT, it strains your GPU even more sometimes where you take more of a hit by even having Physx used.
The general FPS difference is NOT 2 fps, it's more like 10+ FPS.
But seeing as you already know OP personally, I won't argue.