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New builder looking for help.

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December 6, 2012 8:43:32 PM

Finally planning to upgrade from my laptop to a decent PC. I've never done anything like this before, and I'm a little paranoid of something going horribly wrong. I've read a few dozen threads on this site, and the community seems very constructive and helpful, so this seemed like the place to go. :) 

Approximate Purchase Date: I would like to start ordering parts in a week or less, if possible.

Budget Range: Expecting to spend around $1000 - $1400 once everything is done (will probably need an OS)

System Usage from Most to Least Important: I'll be using this mostly for video transcoding, digital painting (perhaps some 3d work in the future), video editing, and regular browsing.

Are you buying a monitor: No



Parts to Upgrade:
Full new build, just an all around upgrade from my laptop focusing on CPU.
Do you need to buy OS: Yes

Preferred Website(s) for Parts:
NewEgg.ca or Amazon.ca would be nice.

Location: Manitoba, Canada. Near the Winnipeg area.

Parts Preferences: I don't really know. There seem to be many reliable brands.

Overclocking: Yes. I am also new to overclocking, so I intend to proceed with caution/recommendations.

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe as an up-gradable option in the future.

Your Monitor Resolution: 1920x1200

Additional Comments: I would like to build a machine that is relatively quiet, and that stays relatively cool even when running at %100 for a while (when transcoding/rendering/etc.).

Why Are You Upgrading: My laptop is starting to get old, and seems to run very hot with the fan often running hard even after cleaning. Still on a Core 2 Duo, and I would really like a lot more CPU power. Running this laptop at 100% can quickly cause it to overheat, so if I want it to transcode files while I am away, I have to limit core usage, and files can take ages to process. It also is virtually incapable of producing a decent preview when editing in Sony Vegas.


Build:


CPU: Intel Core i7 3770K Processor 3.5 4 LGA 1155 BX80637I73770K $ 324.99
http://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B007SZ0EOW/ref=ox_sc_ac...

Also planning to use COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO RR-212E-20PK-R2 Continuous Direct Contact 120mm Sleeve CPU Cooler Compatible with latest Intel 2011/1366/1155 and AMD FM1/FM2/AM3+ $34.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1683...

With Arctic Silver 5 High-Density Polysynthetic Silver Thermal Compound AS5-3.5G - OEM $8.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1683...
To hopefully keep temperature low after OC.

Motherboard: ASUS P8B75-V LGA 1155 Intel B75 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard $99.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
Okay, I think this motherboard should fit my needs.

Memory: CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 Desktop Memory Model CMZ16GX3M2A1600C10R $65.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1682... This looks good to me?

Storage: Seagate Barracuda 7200 3 TB 7200RPM SATA 6 Gb/s NCQ 64MB Cache 3.5-Inch Internal Bare Drive ST3000DM001 $ 154.00
http://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B005T3GRLY/ref=ox_sc_ac...

Also considering SSD for a boot-drive.

Video Card: Gigabyte ATI Radeon HD6670 1 GB DDR3 VGA/DVI/HDMI PCI-Express Video Card GV-R667D3-1GI $ 74.99
http://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B005MED9X4/ref=ox_sc_ac...

Case: Corsair Carbide Series 400R Graphite grey and black Steel / Plastic ATX Mid Tower Gaming Case $109.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

Power Supply: CORSAIR Builder Series CX600 600W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply $73.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

Optical Drive: SONY Black SATA DVD-ROM Drive Model DDU1681S-0B - OEM $18.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1682...

Operating System: Either Windows 7 or 8. I haven't really looked into that quite yet. Thoughts on whether Windows 8 would be good for my usage would be appreciated too.
Keyboard: Considering a mechanical keyboard, but I also have had some problems with my wrists a while ago, so if anyone has a comfy keyboard that they love that would be cool. No need for things like back-lighting.

Total: Looks to be a bit shy of $1000 so far. It should break that after keyboard and OS.

Suggestions on basically anything in here would be really appreciated. Especially with things like the MOBO, case and cooling in general. I'm hoping to make this a pretty quiet machine, and for it not to have much trouble running at max load for a while at a time. Things like the Video Card I am not really sure about, since I just chose one that looks like a good upgrade to my current one while still being a lower price. If anyone knows whether it would be compatible with GPU acceleration in programs like Sony Vegas and Mediacoder, that would be really appreciated.

I think this is everything, sorry if it is a bit long. If anyone wants additional info you think I can provide, ask away. :) 

EDIT: I added a motherboard that I think should work with my needs.

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Best solution

December 6, 2012 9:51:37 PM

This is what I'd buy for $1400 (actually a little less): http://pcpartpicker.com/p/rfCO

These are US prices though so I'm not sure if you could get the same or close in Canada.

Oh and in general I prefer to have an SSD as a boot drive and then several different 1-2TB storage drives. Having one 3TB HDD is asking for a hard drive failure for me.

Currently I have a 120GB SSD, 1 TB HDD, and a 640GB HDD. I keep all my backups on the smaller HDD and don't use it for anything else.

As far as motherboards go, you just need something that's reliable, has the best compatibility with your CPU, and comes from a reliable brand. Gigabyte, Asus (my personal favorite), MSI, and Asrock are all pretty decent brands. Since you want an Ivy Bridge CPU, you need an H77 or Z77, and since you want to O/C, you need a Z77.
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December 6, 2012 10:05:36 PM

JMer806 said:
This is what I'd buy for $1400 (actually a little less): http://pcpartpicker.com/p/rfCO

These are US prices though so I'm not sure if you could get the same or close in Canada.

Oh and in general I prefer to have an SSD as a boot drive and then several different 1-2TB storage drives. Having one 3TB HDD is asking for a hard drive failure for me.

Currently I have a 120GB SSD, 1 TB HDD, and a 640GB HDD. I keep all my backups on the smaller HDD and don't use it for anything else.

As far as motherboards go, you just need something that's reliable, has the best compatibility with your CPU, and comes from a reliable brand. Gigabyte, Asus (my personal favorite), MSI, and Asrock are all pretty decent brands. Since you want an Ivy Bridge CPU, you need an H77 or Z77, and since you want to O/C, you need a Z77.


Ahh okay. I was wondering about the 3tb thing myself. I think perhaps I will change that then, since I shouldn't need that much space for a while, and might be better off just using a few 1 or 1.5 tbs.
Thanks a lot for the direction with the motherboard. I have read so many articles and I was still finding them very daunting.
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December 7, 2012 3:09:08 AM

Okay. I think this is very close to finalized. Any additional thoughts are still very welcome though. Does this sound like a system that would be good for video editing and transcoding?

CPU: Intel Core i7 3770K Processor 3.5 4 LGA 1155 BX80637I73770K $ 324.99
http://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B0 [...] YIK6Y9EEQB

Also planning to use COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO RR-212E-20PK-R2 Continuous Direct Contact 120mm Sleeve CPU Cooler Compatible with latest Intel 2011/1366/1155 and AMD FM1/FM2/AM3+ $34.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Produ [...] 6835103099

With Arctic Silver 5 High-Density Polysynthetic Silver Thermal Compound AS5-3.5G - OEM $8.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Produ [...] 6835100007
To hopefully keep temperature low after OC.

Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-Z77X-UD3H LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard $149.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

Memory: CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 Desktop Memory Model CMZ16GX3M2A1600C10R $65.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Produ [...] 6820233310 This looks good to me?

Storage: Seagate ST2000DM001 Barracuda 7200RPM 2 TB SATA 6 GB/s NCQ 64 MB Cache 3.5-Inch Internal Bare Drive $ 94.98
http://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B005T3GRN2/ref=ox_sc_ac...

Considering adding:
Kingston Hyper X 3K 120 GB SATA III 2.5-Inch 6.0 Gb/s Solid State Drive SH103S3/120G
http://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B007R67FNA/ref=ox_sc_ac...

Video Card: ASUS GTX650-DCO-1GD5 GeForce GTX 650 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card $129.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

Case: Corsair Carbide Series 400R Graphite grey and black Steel / Plastic ATX Mid Tower Gaming Case $109.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Produ [...] 6811139008

Power Supply: CORSAIR Enthusiast Series TX650 V2 650W ATX12V v2.31/ EPS12V v2.92 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC High Performance Power Supply $99.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

Optical Drive:
SONY Black SATA DVD-ROM Drive Model DDU1681S-0B - OEM $18.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Produ [...] 6827118031

Operating System: Probably Windows 8. If anything here has problems with normal Windows 8 x64 please let me know.

Keyboard: Considering a mechanical keyboard, but I also have had some problems with my wrists a while ago, so if anyone has a comfy keyboard that they love that would be cool. No need for things like back-lighting.

Total: After rebates and OS as well as SSD, should be around $1300.

I changed the Motherboard, PSU, Graphics card, and storage.
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December 7, 2012 6:24:03 PM

That all looks good, and yes I think it would do what you want.

A couple of very minor things:

1. I'd get the Crucial M4 128GB SSD over the one you have picked. It's the same price, but is a more solid SSD with 8GB more storage: http://www.amazon.ca/Crucial-CT128M4SSD2-2-5-Inch-Solid...

2. If you intend to do any gaming at all, you'll want a more powerful graphics card. The one you chose is not particularly powerful, though it should be good enough for the uses you've mentioned.

3. Finally, consider this PSU instead of the one you've chosen: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

It's 750W, with more room to expand if you ever want to add another GPU, and it's modular, so your cable management will be much easier.

Don't get me wrong, the one you've chosen is perfectly good (in fact I have the same one), but the modular version with more room to expand is a great option.
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December 7, 2012 10:29:57 PM

Thanks once again for your advice. I was curious about the Kingston myself, as they make decent small drives (and I seem to recall their SD cards are pretty good), but I have never bought a SSD before, so I wasn't sure. I'll swap the current one for that.

I really don't do much gaming, the last computer game I played was Portal 2, which could run quite well even on my old laptop :) 
However, looking a bit more into it, I may be cheeping out on the GPU a bit too much, so maybe I should consider a more middle of the road one:

GIGABYTE GV-N660OC-2GD GeForce GTX 660 2GB 192-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card $229.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

This one looks leaps and bounds better than what I was looking at before and is still reasonably cheap as far as GPUs go. Since it can go up to 3-way SLI, I'm assuming that if I ever decide I DO want to get into computer gaming, adding another one should do what I need.
Just wondering, do you know if adding another card in SLI is essentially doubling the power? Not sure if I wanted more power in the future if adding another card would be the way to go, or if it would be best to just replace it altogether with a better one.

Good idea with the PSU. I'm guessing 650 would be starting to cut it closer if I added another GPU later on, and modular does sound like candy to the new builder. PSU seems like one of those things I should overshoot a decent amount on, so I don't have to bother with replacing it until I want an entirely different machine all together.
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December 8, 2012 6:34:08 PM

FinalPyre said:
Thanks once again for your advice. I was curious about the Kingston myself, as they make decent small drives (and I seem to recall their SD cards are pretty good), but I have never bought a SSD before, so I wasn't sure. I'll swap the current one for that.

I really don't do much gaming, the last computer game I played was Portal 2, which could run quite well even on my old laptop :) 
However, looking a bit more into it, I may be cheeping out on the GPU a bit too much, so maybe I should consider a more middle of the road one:

GIGABYTE GV-N660OC-2GD GeForce GTX 660 2GB 192-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card $229.99
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

This one looks leaps and bounds better than what I was looking at before and is still reasonably cheap as far as GPUs go. Since it can go up to 3-way SLI, I'm assuming that if I ever decide I DO want to get into computer gaming, adding another one should do what I need.
Just wondering, do you know if adding another card in SLI is essentially doubling the power? Not sure if I wanted more power in the future if adding another card would be the way to go, or if it would be best to just replace it altogether with a better one.

Good idea with the PSU. I'm guessing 650 would be starting to cut it closer if I added another GPU later on, and modular does sound like candy to the new builder. PSU seems like one of those things I should overshoot a decent amount on, so I don't have to bother with replacing it until I want an entirely different machine all together.


Yep, that's a much better card, and if you want more GPU power next year you should be able to pick up another one for pretty cheap.

I think you're looking good as you've got it right now!
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December 8, 2012 10:34:08 PM

Last thing: do you think there is a good chance a bunch of these parts will go on sale on Boxing Day? Someone recently brought that up, and as I'm not really in a huge rush I'm not sure if it would be worth the wait or if it is unlikely for them to go on sale.

This has been pretty helpful, I've learned quite a bit more with your help. :) 
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December 9, 2012 1:08:02 PM

Best answer selected by FinalPyre.
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