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Magical gaming-productivity desktop computer machine

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  • New Build
  • Desktops
  • Productivity
  • Systems
  • Product
Last response: in Systems
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January 3, 2013 6:15:40 AM

Hey all, I'm looking for a good start to building a new desktop. I'd like to establish a productivity center in my bedroom for both work and play that will be a reliable workhorse for the next few years (I'm not asking for future proofing, I'd just like good reliability). The amount of decision making is tricky and I easily get so overwhelmed by it. It would be extremely appreciated to get some pointers from people who really know how to bang this stuff together!

Approximate Purchase Date: next few days

Budget Range: $800-$1200 after shipping/rebates

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Internet/Video Streaming/Basic Productivity, Gaming (specifically new SimCity), CAD/Numerical analysis (don't anticipate anything too heavy)

hardware/firmware development

Are you buying a monitor: No

Do you need to buy OS: Yes (windows 8)

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: limited vendors is desired for purchasing convenience

Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota (online purchasing desired)

Parts Preferences: None

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe (don't know about this or if I need it)

Your Monitor Resolution: currently have pair of 1920x1200 monitors, but ability to upgrde would be awesome.

Additional Comments:
Needed items:
Blu-Ray Optical Drive
Serial Port

Would be nice:
SSD for fast boot-up/application loading
Good thermal reliablity/Easily cleanable
plenty of front mounted USB 3.0 ports
Can accomodate parrallel port if needed
Can accomodate floppy drive if needed (I have a habit of acquiring ancient test equipment with floppy drives)
Dim lighting and quiet operation
Small footprint with space for limited expansion

More about : magical gaming productivity desktop computer machine

January 3, 2013 8:27:31 AM

All from Tigerdirect.com

Case: $99.00
Cooler Master HAF 922M RC-922M-KKN3-GP

Motherboard: $75.00
MSI 970A-G46 AMD 9 Series Motherboard

RAM:$90.00
Kingston Hyper X Beast KHX16C9T3K4/16X 16GB

CPU : $160.00
AMD FD8320FRHKBOX FX-8320 Eight-Core 3.5GHz AM3+ Processor

Video Card: &135
HIS H777F1G2M Radeon HD 7770 Video Card - 1024MB, GDDR5

Power Supply: $98.00
Corsair TX750W 750-Watt Power Supply

SSD - $165.00
Crucial v4 CT256V4SSD2 256GB Internal Solid State Drive

reg HDD - $70.00
Toshiba HDKPC03 DT01ACA100 1TB Hard Drive

blue ray- $70.00
Lite On IHES312-98 12X Blu-Ray Drive



Total = $962.00 (price does not include rebates)


This will get you at least 5 years at the current rate technology is advancing.
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January 3, 2013 9:31:26 PM

Okay, I've checked this out a bit, and I think this will work pretty well for me (huge thanks). I talked to few techy friends and they had a few ideas:

Things I'm considering
1. Switch to USB based optical drive (I don't use optical drives that much so wouldn't be a great loss.
2. I could probably use usb to serial adapter if that allows for better mobo value
3. Change bulk storagae drive to something with a little more capacity.

Concerns I have:
1. Overall case noise
2. Graphical performance on new game (specifically SimCity), especially in multiple monitor config (I like the possibility of triple monitor support)

Should I take pictures and post here when it gets made?
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January 25, 2013 7:26:49 PM

Perfs said:
Okay, I've checked this out a bit, and I think this will work pretty well for me (huge thanks). I talked to few techy friends and they had a few ideas:

Things I'm considering
1. Switch to USB based optical drive (I don't use optical drives that much so wouldn't be a great loss.
2. I could probably use usb to serial adapter if that allows for better mobo value
3. Change bulk storagae drive to something with a little more capacity.

Concerns I have:
1. Overall case noise
2. Graphical performance on new game (specifically SimCity), especially in multiple monitor config (I like the possibility of triple monitor support)

Should I take pictures and post here when it gets made?


Why? Just get a regular DVD drive - you can get one for like $15 anymore.

I'd suggest something like this:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3470 3.2GHz Quad-Core Processor ($199.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock H77 Pro4/MVP ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($87.55 @ Newegg)
Memory: Mushkin Blackline 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($52.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($84.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: OCZ Vector Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition 2GB Video Card ($239.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair 300R ATX Mid Tower Case ($92.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling Silencer MK III 500W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($69.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1085.45
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-25 16:25 EST-0500)

Faster SSD, better GPU, better CPU, and is probably better suited for CAD work than an AMD rig is.
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January 25, 2013 7:28:42 PM

@Noob

7870 is significantly more expensive. What additional value would I get with it?

What would be a specific MoBo that be a better value?
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January 25, 2013 7:43:10 PM

g-unit1111 said:
Why? Just get a regular DVD drive - you can get one for like $15 anymore.

I'd suggest something like this:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3470 3.2GHz Quad-Core Processor ($199.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock H77 Pro4/MVP ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($87.55 @ Newegg)
Memory: Mushkin Blackline 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($52.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($84.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: OCZ Vector Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition 2GB Video Card ($239.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair 300R ATX Mid Tower Case ($92.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling Silencer MK III 500W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($69.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1085.45
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-25 16:25 EST-0500)


Faster SSD, better GPU, better CPU, and is probably better suited for CAD work than an AMD rig is.


Thanks for the input!

Blu-Ray would be handy, but probably not $50 handy. Maybe $20 handy. So I think that's a decent idea.

A few things I note is that you're lowering the RAM. Is 8GB enough?

Lastly you recommend 7 over 8?

Trading speed for capacity on the SSD might be worth it. I don't think I'll use that much for software. I'll look at it.

As for Intel versus AMD, is intel strictly better then AMD, or am I trading off gaming performance?
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January 25, 2013 7:49:25 PM

Quote:
A few things I note is that you're lowering the RAM. Is 8GB enough?


Yeah for what you need you most likely won't use more than that. If you need more you can always add more as needed. Beware that Home Premium has a 16GB RAM ceiling.

Quote:
Lastly you recommend 7 over 8?


Yeah 8 is kind of a pain in the ass if you're new to using it - Microsoft changed a lot of the way the standard OS functions work. Once you get past Metro (I can take it or leave it) then the desktop is fine as usual.

Quote:
Trading speed for capacity on the SSD might be worth it. I don't think I'll use that much for software. I'll look at it.


Yeah you typically won't. You will use your SSD for OS and main programs only - store everything else on the secondary.

Quote:
As for Intel versus AMD, is intel strictly better then AMD, or am I trading off gaming performance?


For gaming Intel is far better than AMD - just about every benchmark you could search proves it.
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January 25, 2013 8:18:40 PM

g-unit1111 said:
Quote:
A few things I note is that you're lowering the RAM. Is 8GB enough?


Yeah for what you need you most likely won't use more than that. If you need more you can always add more as needed. Beware that Home Premium has a 16GB RAM ceiling.
[/quote]So if I got 8 I wouldn't run into that?

I'm thinking maybe get 8 for now in two slots then use two more slots if needed?


g-unit1111 said:
Quote:
Lastly you recommend 7 over 8?


Yeah 8 is kind of a pain in the ass if you're new to using it - Microsoft changed a lot of the way the standard OS functions work. Once you get past Metro (I can take it or leave it) then the desktop is fine as usual.
I'll have to think about that. I'd generally prefer a new OS if it isn't a stinker, obnoxious changes to UI I can deal with.

g-unit1111 said:
Quote:
Trading speed for capacity on the SSD might be worth it. I don't think I'll use that much for software. I'll look at it.


Yeah you typically won't. You will use your SSD for OS and main programs only - store everything else on the secondary.
How much are typical games these days? If we're talking 10GB each then we're probably workable, I don't want to have to upgrade my HD to install new stuff in a couple years, removing that hassle is worth it IMO.

g-unit1111 said:
Quote:
As for Intel versus AMD, is intel strictly better then AMD, or am I trading off gaming performance?


For gaming Intel is far better than AMD - just about every benchmark you could search proves it.
Cool
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January 25, 2013 8:51:13 PM

Quote:
So if I got 8 I wouldn't run into that?

I'm thinking maybe get 8 for now in two slots then use two more slots if needed?


No - Windows 8 still has the RAM ceiling. 8 standard supports up to 16GB, Pro supports nearly unlimited. But for gaming you won't really need more than 16GB.

Quote:
How much are typical games these days? If we're talking 10GB each then we're probably workable, I don't want to have to upgrade my HD to install new stuff in a couple years, removing that hassle is worth it IMO.


Games can run anywhere from 6GB (Skyrim) to 16GB (Portal 2, Assassin's Creed III) to 25GB (Battlefield 3) which is why a secondary storage solution is always recommended.

Quote:
Cool


Just don't get a Xeon - I don't know why some of the new people on this board are so gung ho for them.
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January 26, 2013 12:30:15 AM

Okay so if I get the smaller drive, I'd be limited to a fairly small number of games/software packages to locate there. I will need to take that into account.

As for bulks storage I'm thinking of using a Seagate ST2000DM001, I've seen some negative reviews but can't say if this is typical for hard drives (there's always a certain number that have problems), or if I should exercise more caution.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=22-148-...
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January 26, 2013 12:48:52 AM

Just going through the reviews of the ASRock H77 Pro4/MVP ATX LGA1155 and it seems a little iffy, if I were to go with the intel chipset would there be an option that is likely more reliable?
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January 26, 2013 1:14:00 AM

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/zBBM
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/zBBM/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/zBBM/benchmarks/

CPU: AMD FX-8350 4.0GHz 8-Core Processor ($193.79 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock 970DE3/U3S3 ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($69.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: Mushkin Blackline 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($44.98 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.98 @ Outlet PC)
Storage: Mushkin Chronos 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($99.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: Zotac GeForce GTX 570 1.25GB Video Card ($169.99 @ Microcenter)
Case: Antec Three Hundred Illusion ATX Mid Tower Case ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: XFX 550W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($53.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Asus BC-12B1ST/BLK/B/AS Blu-Ray Reader, DVD/CD Writer ($55.98 @ NCIX US)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($89.98 @ Outlet PC)
Total: $928.64
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-25 22:13 EST-0500)

ase Total: $976.64
Mail-in Rebates: -$48.00
Total: $928.64

asrock is quite solid brand. depends of what model u get tho.

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