My $700 Intel Build - Time Sensitive Help

Please keep in mind this is the first PC I have ever put together by myself. I need this ASAP for work which involves a lot of web design, graphic design, audio engineering and some video editing. I need the essentials right now and have detailed them below. I need to overnight these ASAP so I would love some help. I need to get an Intel PC, preferably w. PCI 3 and potential for Crossfire in the future when I can grab a second card. Ordering something ASAP is my current priority.

PROCESSOR: i5-3570k
---For starters, I was looking at the i5-3570k for starters, until I was told I shouldn't bother with an i5 and go for an i7. Can someone please enlighten me on this? And, are the stock fans acceptable or will I need a better one?

Mobo: Gigabyte Intel Z77 LGA 1155

Memory: GeIL Black Dragon 16GB (2 x 8GB)

Graphics: ASUS HD7770-DC-1GD5-V2 AMD Radeon HD 7770 VGA 1 GB GDDR5 Graphics Card

HD: Is SSD essential or would this work - Western Digital Caviar Black 1 TB

---I have a tower, monitor and the current power supply I have w/ my current set up that I got a few years ago. Will I require a new power supply like this...

Total Pirce: ~709.00

I'd love some help as i am in some dire straits. I am glad I found Tom's. I am not sure if I was allowed to post links or not, so I left them out. Thanks and I will be checking back frequently.
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  1. Best answer
    You may and should post links to the parts.

    Overall, the parts seem fine, although I tend to shy away from RAIDMAX power supplies and GeIL isn't in my first few choices for memory. I'm not familiar with that particular power supply, so I won't say anything good nor bad about it. The memory is probably great, just not my first choice. My first choices are Samsung and Crucial, followed by G.Skill, Corsair, Patriot, and a few others.

    SSD is rarely essential, but they are extremely convenient to have for any machine IMO so long as you have the budget for them. The sheer system responsiveness that they give makes them worth the money as boot drives, but you tend to need a hard drive for high capacity storage. Having an SSD boot drive and a hard drive storage/data drive is a common and effective solution.

    It's best to not reuse power supplies if they're more than a year or two old IMO.

    i7s only beat i5s in workloads where more than four threads are utilized and the four cores of the i5 are not fast enough. i7s have four cores too, but their Hyper-Threading functionality improves highly threaded performance up to around 20-30% compared to i5s of same core count, similar micro-architecture, and similar frequency.

    Stock fans are almost always sufficient so long as you are not overclocking and/or living in an extremely hot/humid area.
  2. A Caviar black is good enough in my opinion since SSD are expensive right now. I think you should go with a Corsair Power Supply, they are my favorite right now.

    Also what is your graphics card? It doesn't say.
  3. NEW RAM -
    -Corsair Vengeance Black 2x4GB

    Processor -
    -- i5-3750K

    Updated Graphics -
    --ASUS HD7770-DC-1GD5-V2 AMD Radeon HD 7770 VGA 1 GB GDDR5 Graphics Card

    Mobo -
    --Gigabyte Intel Z77 LGA 1155

    HD -
    --Western Digital Caviar Black 1 TB

    Updated and need help w this POWER SUPPLY: Need help. I just changed it to this, would this work with XFire, Pci 3, etc.?
    --- What is the Wattage needed for CrossFire?

    Thanks for the great help. Tryin to order this tonight or tomorrow AM
  4. There's no good reason for Crossfire with the Radeon 7770. It'd be better to buy a Radeon 7870 (similar performance, better memory, slightly fewer driver complications, better pricing, etc.).

    If you're dead-set on two Radeon 7770s, then I suggest something such as a 550W XFX PSU.

    As a side note, wattage of a power supply does not actually matter. What matters is build quality, +12V amperage handling, and such. For example, a 600W PSU with crap +12V amperage could not be enough for what you want, yet a 450W PSU with excellent +12V amperage could be plenty.

    SSDs are not expensive. You can get a good 64GB model as a boot drive for around $50.
  5. The money saved from going from Crossfire Radeon 7770s to a single Radeon 7870 would be plenty to get a very high-quality power supply such as this:

    XFX 550W 80+Bronze 44amp rated +12V rail
    This power supply is much more efficient than that Cooler Master model and much more reliable while probably having much better power delivery (I'd have to check to be absolutely sure on that one, but given how weak that Cooler Master model seems in other areas, I don't think that that's necessary).
    The power supply has nothing to do with PCIe.
  6. As far as the graphics card goes, I wasn't dead set on anything. I would however, like to keep the build arond the $700 dollar mark where it is right now. The reason I suggested CrossFire in the future, was because I was only buying one card now. Does that make sense, or would it really be worth it to go and spend the extra $100 on a Radeon 7870? (Maybe I looked up the wrong one?)

    Unless you see any other glaring issues, then I guess I just need figure out the graphics card. You're the man blaze
  7. It is worth it to simply go up to the Radeon 7870. However, if you can't afford to do it right now, then that's unavoidable. Crossfire isn't bad at all, it's just not a perfect solution (granted there is no such thing), especially since the Radeon 7870 is generally able to be found cheaper than two Radeon 7770s. Crossfire is usually reserved for higher end gaming computers.

    Other than what I said about that Cooler Master power supply in the comment that I posted a minute ago, I see no serious issues.
  8. How woud I determine what I am looking for in a power supply? the processor, card or what? The reason I ask is because I can not overnight that particular model from where I am ordering and was going to have to find an alternative.

    Based on what I am doing, I am also going to have to stick wiht the Radeon 7770 for now, because I really do not think I will encounter anything I will need more than that for at this point in my life gaming and career wise. u da man
  9. Best answer selected by willrod.
  10. Well, anything from XFX is guaranteed to be a high quality model (doesn't mean they never fail, but they're among the best) and the same is true for Antec and Seasonic. Corsair has some good models as do many other companies.

    If you don't get a second Radeon 7770, then I'd recommend a 450W Antec PSU such as the VP-450 or the 450W Basiq. If you go for a second Radeon 7770, then I'd suggest something such as the 550W XFX model I brought up earlier or an Antec model around 500W such as the 520W Neo or Green or a 550W Basiq Plus. Those are usually what I find to be the cheapest fairly high quality models for their levels of +12V power delivery.

    If you want to pick out a PSU yourself, then I suggest looking at +12V amperage, efficiency, and choosing from something on this list's tier 3 or better models (Preferably tier 2a or tier 2):

    Glad to help.
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