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Advice for $2000 PC Gaming build

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January 17, 2013 12:06:46 AM

Hello and well met, I built my own PCs while in the army, my last gaming rig I built 4 years ago before I got out, and its still running strong but I'm missing out on some new tech that I would like to partake on (SSDD USB 3.0). I came up with some specs randomly on Newegg then came to these forums to make sure i'm not over or under doing it. Suffice to say that I'm out of touch with what is necessary, overkill, or underkill.

In military fashion I will follow the prescribed format for a request.

Approximate Purchase Date: Jan-Mar 2013

Budget Range: $2000 or around that

System Usage from Most to Least Important: #1 PC gaming, Counterstrike, TF2, Battlefield 3, Skyrim with 115+ mods (enb, textures, etc..), MMORPGS (Rift, Guildwars 2, Future releases), #2 Video Streaming myself and watching streams (LoL, Smite) #3 Video Encoding for HTPC (seperate machine) Most times Dual Monitor watching streams and Gaming.

Parts Not Required: Do not need Bluray (HTPC covers media). Do not trust RAID

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg > Amazon > Tigerdirect

THE Country:United States of America

Parts Preferences: Specs I produced that seem to be off of consensus: Case: COOLER MASTER HAF X $199 | CPU I7 3770 - $299 | Mobo ASRock Z77 - $135 | PSU CORSAIR TX Series $109 | Memory G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) $92
Graphics GTX 670 $399 |Games HDD OCZ Vertex 4 250gb - $219 | OS HDD OCZ Vertex 4 120 - $118 | OS Win 7 Pro - $139

I'm not attached to any of the above specs that's just what I randomly came up with

Overclocking: I Prefer to stick with prescribed specifications and tolerances so no OC

SLI or Crossfire: will use dual graphics cards eventually but want to buy 2 nice cards 1 at a time so initially just 1.

Monitor Resolution:Have an 24" LED at native 1080p and a second DELL 24" also at 1080p to match. They are capable of more.

Additional Comments: I need a MOBO that supports case USB 3.0s and a case that has USB 3.0s. The VRAM has to be 2gb or greater because of the skyrim mods.

Thank you in advance for your time.

-Mal
"I aim to misbehave"
January 17, 2013 12:27:10 AM

Just put the case you like, and a single 256GB SSD, like the crucial M4, in my opinion it's better than the one you had in mind, the psu supports two 670 gtx without worries and it's modular, also a mobo with SLI support, it's probably the asrock you had in mind.
You can drop the cooler if you don't want to overclock, and add this i7 : http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007SZ0EHE/?tag=pcpapi-20
Also with a good 670 GTX, the MSI PE :


PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($322.28 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.98 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($124.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Crucial Ballistix sport 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($83.49 @ Amazon)
Storage: Crucial M4 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($199.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Green 1.5TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($74.99 @ Amazon)
Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($389.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF X ATX Full Tower Case ($162.98 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Rosewill Hive 750W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($24.98 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($92.65 @ Amazon)
Total: $1596.31
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
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January 17, 2013 12:28:45 AM

You're wasting a LOT of money in a lot of ways.

Drop the budget a little, to buy NICE peripherals (A quality 5-button mouse and mechanical keyboard are must-haves... and a 120Hz monitor to game on certainly wouldn't be wasted, with a 670.)

As for how to drop the budget, well...

Get a cheaper case. You won't lose anything but aesthetics and you'll save $100.

Get an i5-3570k instead of the i7; the only difference is that the i7 has hyperthreading, which games don't use, so it's a complete waste of money.

Is that AsRock the Z77 extreme 4? Make sure it's the full ATX, not the micro ATX.

Get a 550w power supply; 750w if you want to crossfire / SLI in the future. Corsair is always good, but Seasonic and Antec are just as good, and cheaper.

Don't bother with 16GB of ram - running battlefield 3, photoshop, AND 20 tabs in chrome doesn't even use up 8GB.

The only 670 I know of for that price is PNY, which is a crappy one. Get a good brand - Asus, MSI, Galaxy, Gigabyte, or EVGA.

Don't get a SSD for games - get a 1TB hard drive for data and put any biggies like MMOs on your boot drive. Good pick with the Vertex 4, though; it's got great value.

You're wasting money getting the professional version of windows 7 - Home Premium is $80, and there are NO extra features that a non-business oriented computer could need.

Since you don't want to overclock, get an i5-3470 and a h77 motherboard - that'll be plenty.


Love the firefly reference, by the way, but a space pirate would never waste money he didn't have to. ;) 
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January 17, 2013 12:52:04 AM

Thank you all for the quick responses

@Django : looking into your specs as we type the reasoning behind two hard drives is my habit to put the OS on its own drive so a catastrophic loss wouldnt require complete reinstall of everything. However with steam and digital downloads as they are nowadays its not a huge deal.

@Darksable : Absolutely want a full ATX ill make sure before I buy, 750W for future SLI, And 90% of the time I buy EVGA cards (looking at http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...). The 16GB is actually to play around with RAMDISK which is also the reasoning behind gaming on SSDs the load times I am trying to beat. Both MMOs and Heavily Modded skyrim load times can be drastically reduced by SSDDs or so I read. The professional is for XP Mode, Windows Server Domain and Remote Desktop Server.

@Plasma : The 7970s better for my purposes in SLI or would 2 GTX 670s be better?
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January 24, 2013 4:22:31 AM

I have taken some of your advice and came up with this spec.

I would like your guys input on it. I know there's a lot of speculation on the need for a 4gb Video card but you have not seen my 100+ modded Skyrim with every graphical improvement and setting I can possibly throw at it.

There is no case listed because i'm pondering on waiting for the NZXT Phantom 630 to be released in Feb.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($229.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($124.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($80.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 3TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: OCZ Vertex 4 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($229.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 4GB Video Card ($419.99 @ Newegg)
Sound Card: Asus Xonar DX 24-bit 192 KHz Sound Card ($80.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair Professional Gold 750W 80 PLUS Gold Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($155.98 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($24.98 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1609.88
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-24 01:20 EST-0500)
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