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First Time Build - Advice Appreciated

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January 17, 2013 6:31:41 AM

Hello everyone, I've been frequently visiting this site for the past few months, doing research on my own to try and find a good first timer's desktop build. I plan on using the machine mainly for Adobe CS6 and some moderate gaming (mostly Skyrim, some shooters, although nothing online). This site has been my number one source of information and opinions, and now, as I near closer to actually purchasing my computer components, I'm asking for advice. First, my prospective build:

CPU: Intel i5-3570k OR i7-3770k (UNDECIDED)
Motherboard: ASUS P8Z77-V LK LGA 1155
PSU: Corsair HX750
RAM: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (2x8GB) Low Profile
Storage: Samsung 840 Pro 128GB AND Western Digital Black 1TB
Drive: Lite-On DVD/CD Writer (planning to add a Blu-Ray drive down the road)
Case: NZXT Phantom Black/Green
GPU: UNDECIDED

Right now, my build comes out to a little more than $1,000 according to Newegg (which is pretty much the max for my initial budget, as I do plan to add to this build in the near future). Also of note: I am planning to purchase everything from Newegg, as there are no component stores in my area and from what I've read, Newegg has a great return process in case something arrives DOA. But I have a few concerns, since this is my first build and aside from the four or so months of "research" I've been doing online, I do not have any computer hardware knowledge. Here are my concerns:

First, with either CPU, are there any glaring issues (i.e. compatibility problems, apparent bottlenecks, etc.) with my build as it is now? I know my budget is somewhat limited, but I would like a system that I can still use without headaches a few years down the road.

Second, with the cost of my build maxing my budget as it is, I am planning to run with the integrated graphics of the CPU for awhile until I can get a graphics card. Will the on-board graphics be adequate, or will I need a dedicated GPU ASAP? Any recommendations for a good graphics card (preferably within the $200-300 range (or cheaper!!!)) would be appreciated :) 

Lastly, I would very much welcome some CPU advice overall. As I stated above, I'm currently torn between the i5 and i7, which were my two original choices when I started searching for components. I went through a "phase" where I thought a cheaper AMD processor would benefit me more, and I was trying to decide between the top of the line-ish FX-8350 (which I understood was a multi-tasking powerhouse) and the middle of the road-ish FX-4170 (which seemed to have good specs at a very attractive price, but "on the way out the door" in terms of technology). Then I read a thread on this site where everyone knocked AMD processors for their sub-par gaming performance (despite many Newegg reviews that supported both the 4170 and 8350 for gaming), so I went back to Intel. I am still leaning towards Intel for my CPU, but honestly I'm still on the fence, so if someone can convince me to go AMD again, I'll gladly thank them for saving me a substantial bit of money!!!

I've been back and forth a little too much for me to make a sub-$1000 purchase without any experienced input, so here I am! Thank you to all for reading, and I certainly appreciate any advice!

Edit: my apologies for not using the "Build Advice Template" for my post, I already have a build picked out, so I figured posting in that format would not be beneficial for me. I just need advice on some of the components :) 

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January 17, 2013 7:27:04 AM

1. i7 will not be beneficial for gaming. and may even crap your fps on some games with hypertheading. But I think since your not a hardcore gamer. It will all comes down to, "Are you will to spend more money?" If yes, then go i7, if no go i5. Not much of a difference in gaming but other than that, i7 will be fine and will be better on other aspects.
2. Are you planning on dual video cards in the future? if no, you can decrease that psu to 550w/600w.
3. You'll be fine with the integrated graphics as you plan to buy a video card in the future. But just don't expect too much on it. But I would say, hd grapics 4000 is great, with regards to its predecessors.
4. There is really no bottlenecks there. There would be if you add a cheap video card. I suggest don't waste money buying a cheap video card, save it then buy a high-end video card instead. there will be no bottleneck on high-end gpu with your build. anyway, what is the gpu you are planning with this build? 670 sli? 680 sli? 7950 cfx? 7970 cfx? or singles of those card? any of those will do. It would just depend on your budget. Just remember number 2. if your planning on single gpu.
5. Don't forget a cooler as you plan to overclock. a hyper 212 evo will do.
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January 17, 2013 9:46:15 AM

Thank you for the quick response!

As you said, I will not be doing hardcore gaming (i.e. any online MMO type stuff), so I'm not looking for the perfect fps in games, just something playable coming from a lifetime of console gaming. As far as running Crossfire or SLI, it sounds interesting, but I couldn't justify the cost of two cards, I'm struggling deciding on one right now! On the processor side, the i7 still looks to be my best choice, mainly for its Hyperthreading feature over the i5, and Intel's significantly better single-thread performance versus AMD overall. The CPU is definitely something I DO NOT want to "save money" on. I will also look into a lower watt PSU to save maybe $20-40, but I will still most likely stay with a Corsair. The only other PSU brand I was interested in was Seasonic, but it didn't seem to have the same consumer support as Corsair.

I haven't really explored any "viable" options for video cards. I was originally looking at an MSI GT 630 4GB 128-bit but I later found advice that matches yours, basically that a cheap video card is a waste of money.

My issue with the video cards is that I don't understand what sets one card apart from another, for example:

Asus GTX 560 1GB 256-bit - $169 - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
VS
MSI GT 630 4GB 128-bit - $79 - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Obviously, the model numbers, memory size, and interface stats are different, but why does the first card warrant the extra $90 cost?

To address your last point, I don't intend to overclock for sake of the warranty (I've read that oc-ing will void warranties, no thanks for me). For the extra $10, getting the unlocked model (3570/k and 3770/k) is a no-brainer. I was looking into getting the Hyper 212 Evo if the stock cooler under-performs at base clock, making temp an issue. But I've also read that using an aftermarket cooler will void the warranty on the CPU, so I'm on the fence about that as well.

I appreciate your input, especially on the video card and power supply. Your advice should save me some money when purchasing my parts (and also save me headaches later on!). I'm hoping to find a few more perspectives, possibly ones contrasting my choices of parts (I think its good to hear arguments from both sides). Thanks again to all for who read or respond!

EDIT: My apologies, the 3770/k price difference is $30 currently. I was mistaken. The K version may not be worth the extra money since I am already "at capacity" with my budget. Any opinions on the non-K vs K CPU for someone not planning to overclock would be welcome as well :) 
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January 17, 2013 9:55:03 AM

if you are a worker, id suggest i7. if you dont want to pay full i7 price, you can get a xeon for 240 bucks. just that you cant overclock and there is no graphics
-no need for 750w. that is for dual video cards, and given you are not building a dedicated gaming rig, one is enough
-id get a gtx 660 given it can both game pretty well and you can use it for cuda accleration
-optical media is dying out. i really dont see any point in the near future to get a blu-ray

get this
http://pcpartpicker.com/p/y3gI

to get free shipping for the CPU go to us.ncix ,put a e3 1230v2 in the shopping cart and you can price match it with the 228.99 price of superbiz
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January 17, 2013 11:24:08 AM

Thanks for the recommendations!

The Xeon sounds very intriguing. One reviewer on Newegg calls it an i7 without the integrated graphics (and also as you said, no overclock capability, which isn't a big deal). I will definitely look into the Xeon, and with the change in power supply, I may be able to squeeze a graphics card such as the one you recommended. One thing about the Xeon though, it's listed as a server processor on Newegg. Is that just because it has no integrated graphics, or is there some other characteristic to this CPU?

I did notice the XFX PSU in your build link is currently sold out on Newegg, but if I decide to go with that one, I can explore going through another online retailer (I've initially been looking for an all-Newegg purchase for easy RMA processes) unless it gets restocked soon.

As for other PSUs, any preferences on these (prices before rebates, I'm skeptical about mail-in rebates...):

Seasonic 620W - $84 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
----There is a similar model for $5 cheaper, but the reviews number fewer and have a lower average score as well.

Thermaltake 750W - $89 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
----This is a higher max power, but also $40 cheaper than the Corsair I originally chose.

Corsair 600W - $79 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
----I like the Corsair brand, this model is a new release though, early adopt maybe a risk? Out of the three, I like this one
the most however.

If it hasn't become obvious from my choices of PSU, I'm trying to find one that is of a modular design minimize cord clutter. I figure it will make my first computer build considerably easier :) 

The GTX 660 seems a good choice for me: not too expensive yet up to snuff on performance. Is Galaxy a good brand? I'm in the dark as far as graphics go. Galaxy doesn't seem to have as many offerings as, say, MSI or EVGA, but that particular card in your build link has all good reviews on Newegg.

Lastly, the Blu-Ray add-on isn't something I'm for sure going to do. If Blu-Ray does become more prominent (and less expensive per movie), I may consider the extra drive. I'm not a fan of digital media; I prefer the physical media myself. Either way, it won't be considered until later down the road.

Thanks again for the build link and advice! The price is definitely tempting, especially since I'm planning to purchase Windows separately (knocking the price down by ~$100), but as for my other parts (storage, mobo, case, etc.), I'm pretty dead-set there. I will definitely check into the other parts you recommended though.
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January 17, 2013 11:34:23 AM

difference between a regular i7 and a xeon is that a xeon uses less power, runs cooler, and is tested for stability. you can run these one month straight at 100% load without it crashing

the psu i suggested is better than the ones you have except for the seasonic given the xfx is made by seasonic and uses the same platform. id buy most of my components at us.ncix instead of newegg. customer service is un-matched

galaxy is a pretty good brand.


id change the motherboard given z77 is essentially pointless without a K chip. h77 offers the same features

WD drives are extermely overpriced. would never get anything more than a WD blue 1tb 64mb.for the price of a WD black, i can get a 2tb seagate

840 pro is pretty overpriced. you cant really tell the difference in performance between the 2 SSDs. would not waste my money there

case you chose is suitable for a build above 1300 dollars. anything lower get something else.
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January 17, 2013 11:49:34 AM

I've put together this build: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/y3xo

Intel Xeon E3-1230
Asus P8Z77-V LK (I'm thinking the UEFI BIOS of the Asus would be useful for a first time build)
Corsair Vengeance LP 16GB
WD Caviar Black 1TB
Samsung 840 Pro 128GB
Galaxy GTX 660
NZXT Phantom (Black/Green)
Corsair CX600M PSU
Asus DVD/CD Writer

For a grand total of $1054.42 after rebates and shipping, from 3 different merchants (Newegg, TigerDirect, and NCIX US). This is pretty much within my budget, and excellent in my opinion because not only am I getting the HD/SSD combo I really want, but I'm also getting both a processor and dedicated graphics card that are of excellent performance for the price. I may explore the prices exclusively from Newegg as well as checking out these other merchants and their RMA policies.

Still open for suggestions though! I'm pretty dead-set on the HD/SSD combo, and as far as the case goes, its more of an aesthetic choice but I also wanted a full tower case to have the most room for easy air flow and workspace (again, first time builder). I noticed TheBigTroll's build link included a Micro-ATX mobo, which I would entertain the idea of it, but since I've picked out a full tower case (it's probably the coolest looking case I've seen, honestly), I think a Micro in a Full Tower would be incredibly silly. I wouldn't mind having a smaller form factor "tower" for space-saving purposes, so I will check around for smaller towers. Thanks again for all the advice!
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January 17, 2013 12:08:36 PM

-give me a full valid reason to get the 840 pro SSD and the WD black drive. otherwise, get something else
-corsair ram is no different from kingston ram. dont waste money
-the cx series are sub par by any comparison to the xfx 550w
-also give me a valid reason to get the phantom. asthetics are not one of them
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January 17, 2013 12:12:29 PM

TheBigTroll said:
difference between a regular i7 and a xeon is ...

Sorry, I did not see your post before I composed and posted my latest one. My main concern with the HD/SSD combo was brand reliability. As far as the 840 Pro, I was originally considering the 830 when I started gathering info, in the meantime the 840s were released. I've heard nothing but good things about the Samsung SSDs (both 830 and 840 Pro, I haven't looked into the 840 much, I heard the TLC technology it utilizes has a shorter lifespan compared to the MLC tech the 830 and 840 Pro has). As for other brands I have read about, it's been hit or miss, while Samsung seems to have a pretty stellar SSD record.

I figured the added price of the WD Black with the 5 year warranty (opposed to a 2 or 3 year warranty with another WD or other brand) would justify the cost difference. I've heard that Seagate HDs are of a lower quality, are re-branded Samsung drives, among other discouraging comments (not sure of the validity of these claims however). I originally had chosen a Seagate HD, but changed my mind to the WD brand after reading a LOT of reviews. I will re-evaluate Seagate however, starting with the model you recommended in your build link.

You say XFX is made by Seasonic? That is interesting, because the XFX you recommended is at a very desirable price point. That may very well be my PSU.

I forgot that the Z77 line of mobos were "optimized" for overclocking. That is something I will definitely re-evaluate. However, as I mentioned in my previous post, would ATX vs. Micro-ATX have any glaring differences, besides their size, I guess?

Along with the motherboard, I will re-evaluate my case decision as well. My original choice was the considerably more expensive Corsair CC650DW, which I liked because of the easy access side door and good choice of connections in front and back. {EDIT: I then switched to the NZXT because I couldn't justify paying $150 for a case with an easy-to-open side panel as its main feature for me. I do understand that looks alone should never determine a case choice (unless one has the money to spend for it), but it seemed to me to have a relatively good structure and a good amount of connections, as well as enough pre-installed fans to run without any extra cooling purchases. Cooling is something, much like the graphics cards, that I know next to nothing about and would rather not mess up :) }

I do appreciate the advice! I'm very glad that I posted here before pulling the trigger on the build I originally had! Also, I will start checking out the NCIX site. Until today, I had never heard of it. I figured Newegg was kind of like the go-to merchant for the computer hardware market.

EDIT: I'm also still a few weeks away from actually purchasing the new build. I made the build with PCPartPicker mainly to check out its functionality. :)  It's extremely useful!
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January 17, 2013 12:23:10 PM

so what if the SSDs are good. the price isnt and the performance difference is almost non existent. plextor is a great brand and id say they are just as good

seagate drives are not lower quality. they make samsung drives.i have no problems with them. if you dont want a seagate, the WD blue is a better option. same drive but with less warranty that costs 30 bucks. not worth it

yes i have a xfx unit. they are all built by seasonic

650D is pretty terrible in my opinion. my friend has one and hates it. at that rate you are better off with a R4



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January 17, 2013 1:41:39 PM

TheBigTroll said:
so what if the SSDs are good...

I was actually considering a WD Blue at one point in time, but I noticed that the Black has a 64Mb cache while the Blue only had a 32Mb, and for the $10 difference, I would prefer double the cache and double the warranty as well. As far as the 2TB Seagate vs. WD Black goes, the price is basically the same as you said. I understand that the Seagate has double the capacity while matching up with the Black as far as speeds and cache are concerned, but the 5 year warranty and better overall reviews (gauging quantity and quality of reviews) on Newegg still has me leaning towards the Black's smaller capacity with better quality assurance. I think if there were a substantial price difference between the Seagate and the Black (>$20), I would be sold on the Seagate, but at the same price point, I'd prefer a longer warranty over more capacity. As a comparison, I'm currently using a 5 year old laptop with a 250GB HD and I still have over 150GB available, so capacity isn't a big deal for now. Mind you, this has only been a light work computer, so storage would definitely increase on the new machine, but if I need more space, I think I'd prefer to add another drive in the future. I respect your stance on the issue by all means, and appreciate the advice, but as I said, I'd prefer double the warranty over double the capacity, at least for my first storage drive.

As for the SSDs, the Plextor at a $100 price point is very desirable, and that is Newegg's currently advertised price, but they appear to be out of stock until almost April (something I just noticed). PCPartPicker's price comparison has MicroCenter as the next competitive price at $120, then Amazon at $130, and NCIX at almost $150. At those prices, it seems to me that the Samsung may be a more reasonable deal, with NCIX selling it at $130, right? I know it probably sounds like I'm stuck on this SSD (which I am a little) but I do very much like the reputation that Samsung holds as an SSD manufacturer. According to sources I've read, they own and manufacture all of their SSD technologies in-house, as opposed to other companies that may borrow technology from one another. That's got to account for something right? Anyhow, at a current $10 difference, I would prefer going with the Samsung 840 Pro over the Plextor, but if prices or availability change, that preference may very well change as well.

I'm pretty well sold on the XFX. Count me in for that one.

I will be re-examining the case issue within the next day or two, I will return with results.

Likewise with the motherboards.

Oh, and I'm on board for the Kingston RAM instead of the Corsair. Great recommendation there!

All around, great discussion and advice! I'm calling it a night, but in the meantime, I'll be reading up on the mobo and case alternatives, starting with the products mentioned. Thanks again!
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January 17, 2013 3:29:57 PM

You can still get the black if it doubles the warranty for a small amount difference. But you can probably go with something like this.
PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/y51i
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/y51i/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/y51i/benchmarks/

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($289.98 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock H77M Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($69.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($93.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($77.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Storage: Samsung 840 Pro Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($129.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card ($209.99 @ Newegg)
Case: NZXT Phantom 410 (White) ATX Mid Tower Case ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: SeaSonic 620W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($88.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($22.98 @ Newegg)
Total: $1083.87
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-17 12:29 EST-0500)
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January 17, 2013 3:49:05 PM

admbautista said:
You can still get the black if it doubles the warranty for a small amount difference. But you can probably go with something like this.
PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/y51i
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/y51i/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/y51i/benchmarks/

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($289.98 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock H77M Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($69.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($93.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($77.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Storage: Samsung 840 Pro Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($129.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card ($209.99 @ Newegg)
Case: NZXT Phantom 410 (White) ATX Mid Tower Case ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: SeaSonic 620W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($88.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($22.98 @ Newegg)
Total: $1083.87
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-17 12:29 EST-0500)


picked up the wrong blue drive. the more expensive one is the older model with less performance. and 30 bucks extra for a hard drive is a lot of extra storage i can buy
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January 17, 2013 4:36:46 PM

Please WATCH this before you buy intel cpu...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eu8Sekdb-IE&list=UUNovoA...

I have a an intel i5 2550k and I am very happy with it... This youtube channel has gaming builds, editing builds and basically tech advice. I have always preferred intel, but supposedly the new FX 8350 is actually very good. I wont go with a xeon chip due to fact that you cannot overclock them and they are not made for general consumer use, but workstation, servers, etc.

On the topic of graphics card, I believe the AMD are much better bang of the buck... But for editing the CUDA cores on some of the Nvidia chips improve performance in photoshop and video editing very significantly... So i would suggest a 660 ti or something like that... You wont need anything more then 700 watt for a power supply or even 600 watts for that matter.

Watch the videos in that channel.. including http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f8Ga_26h1MU to get a sense of what is recommended.

But for a $1000 build, I wouldnt get a i7 or a xeon for that matter. i5 or a FX 8350 is probably best.
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January 17, 2013 9:45:06 PM

-my friend uses a xeon x5660. and hes using it for gaming, problem?
-i find logans builds pretty terrible if you ask me. i can change just about everything except for the CPU
-it would be dumb to recommend a i5 for a workstation build. a fx 8350 would be nice, but given it uses 2x as much power and that a good amd board (120 dollars) + a fx 8320 cost more than my xeon + motherboard, id get intel
-note that for the gaming tests, he didnt test skyrim. go look at toms review and you see a 20fps difference. skyrim is always CPU intensive and not so much multi-threaeded
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January 17, 2013 11:08:11 PM

TheBigTroll said:
-my friend uses a xeon x5660. and hes using it for gaming, problem?
-i find logans builds pretty terrible if you ask me. i can change just about everything except for the CPU
-it would be dumb to recommend a i5 for a workstation build. a fx 8350 would be nice, but given it uses 2x as much power and that a good amd board (120 dollars) + a fx 8320 cost more than my xeon + motherboard, id get intel
-note that for the gaming tests, he didnt test skyrim. go look at toms review and you see a 20fps difference. skyrim is always CPU intensive and not so much multi-threaeded



LOL an x5660, why not an Intel Core i7-3970X ... That is a $1200 cpu, that is completely not relevant in this conversation and its just plain overkill... of course it wont make a difference when compared to an fx or i5 or i7 for gaming. Based on his comparison of the new 8350 it shows that is is better in MOST circumstances. Yes most of all the FX cpus are not worth getting likethe 8320, but the 8350 is... yes it does require more power, but in overall the motherboard socket will most likely last him longer then the intel 1155... intel changes sockets sized all the time... amd makes more products for their sockets over longer periods of time. And now that there is an actual fx cpu that is worth buying, it will last longer and be just as good if not better. Also the fx is overclockable, like the i5 and i7... but the xeon is not, thus once it slows down... you will have to upgrade to something else... and knowing intel, you will have to upgrade the motherboard as well.

Also when you looked at the benchmarks on tomshardware you didnt look at the 2560x1600 skyrim benchmarks which are nearly identical for the 8350, 3570k, and 3770k. Also tomshardware only reviewed three games skyrim, battlefield 3, and world of warcraft... Watch logans video again, he tested a bunch more games.... like crysis, metro (with is very cpu-gpu intensive).... there is also a 8350 that comes bundled with a watercooling kit... so you are ready to overclock whenever you are ready.

Also the motherboard that you had selected is the Asus P8Z77-V LK ($135), and for the xeon cpu is $245... that is $380... for that money get the fx8350 ($200) and the sabertooth 990fx R2.0 ($180). the sabertooth is a TON better then the cheaper p8z77-V ... it has 6, YES 6 SATA 6Gb/s compared to the Asus P8Z77-V LK which has only 2.... its really makes no sense to buy a CRAPPY motherboard that has only 2 SATA 6Gb/s when you can get a much better motherboard and processor that will last longer and be better in overall.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Just look at the specs of the motherboard and compare it to the features of the Asus P8Z77-V LK, plus the sabertooth has a 5 year warranty.

And dont get me wrong, again I love my i5 2550k. But right now i would get the CHEAPER, EQUAL in processing power, am3+ socket will last longer then the 1155, and its OVERCLOCKABLE.
* The ONLY downside of the FX series is the power usage.

PLEASE watch this again, since you didn't pay attention the last time... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eu8Sekdb-IE&list=UUNovoA...

Its really funny how people are so into recommending the stuff that they already bought... because they have to justify it to themselves... Again i have an overclocked intel 2550k with a asus sabertooth z77, so I have no ego invested in this like some people.
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January 17, 2013 11:52:06 PM

-hes rich. he doesnt give a crap. he actually BOUGHT windows 7 ultimate even though he didnt have more than 8gb of ram in his build. last time i checked there was a gtx 280 inside and hes using it to watch movies and cat videos
-lol. a 8320 is a 3.5ghz 8350. are you sure that you know what you are talking about?
-am3 boards werent exactly compatable with fx chips. i dont see your point
-a fx chip uses double the power of a intel counterpart. toms had a review of the 3970x and the fx used the same amount of power
-the 8350 that comes with a $hitty watercooler costs more than a intel 3570k. watercooler might be a lot better than the stock heatsink, but still not good as good as a good heatsink like the d14
-why would someone be dumb enough to get z77 if they were not to overclock or do dual video cards. i used a h77 board for the build, that was 90 bucks.
-i have never recommended a asus z77-v board. never. only the Lk but when i do, its 120 bucks.
-a z77 sabertooth vs a z77-v pro has no differences in terms of performance. you just pay for a plastic shell that does crap. you sir made a pretty terrible purchase with that sabertooth board that you have bought
-if i were to get an amd board, it would be the m5a99x r2. or something like that
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January 18, 2013 3:19:51 AM

TheBigTroll said:
-hes rich. he doesnt give a crap. he actually BOUGHT windows 7 ultimate even though he didnt have more than 8gb of ram in his build. last time i checked there was a gtx 280 inside and hes using it to watch movies and cat videos
-lol. a 8320 is a 3.5ghz 8350. are you sure that you know what you are talking about?
-am3 boards werent exactly compatable with fx chips. i dont see your point
-a fx chip uses double the power of a intel counterpart. toms had a review of the 3970x and the fx used the same amount of power
-the 8350 that comes with a $hitty watercooler costs more than a intel 3570k. watercooler might be a lot better than the stock heatsink, but still not good as good as a good heatsink like the d14
-why would someone be dumb enough to get z77 if they were not to overclock or do dual video cards. i used a h77 board for the build, that was 90 bucks.
-i have never recommended a asus z77-v board. never. only the Lk but when i do, its 120 bucks.
-a z77 sabertooth vs a z77-v pro has no differences in terms of performance. you just pay for a plastic shell that does crap. you sir made a pretty terrible purchase with that sabertooth board that you have bought
-if i were to get an amd board, it would be the m5a99x r2. or something like that


The reason why I bought a sabertooth is because they are insanely reliable, they run cool, and easy to overclock, .... I'm not planing to do sli or crossfire, so it didn't matter. They run cool and had the specs that I wanted at the time. But again games that ran at higher resolution then 1080p worked better then the i5 or i7 is my biggest turning point to the fx... Everything is going to towards higher resolution another at 1200 or 1440... Even look at how metro played on higher resolution in the video that I posted. In overall the fx work well in computing that uses more cores and in multitasking... I'm not saying that intel is worse, just for the money I would by the fx... And I have overclocked my gpu and CPU and it was fine... The sabertooth and there are plenty of reviews to show that it is a great motherboard, so you can say whatever you want but it has been reviews by many and eveyone likes them.

And why would someone by a d14 cooler when they can water cool for that price... H80 sometimes are on sale for a similar price... Buying a air cooler for more the $50 is just plain stupid if you ask me.

Also I'm just saying that amd uses their socket much longer then intel... And you can't argue with that, that is just plain fact.

It's just silly to me that people like you ignore the facts that Logan in the video has posted and he was surprised himself... But it's rediculous that the fx 8350 is equivalent or better in gaming, especially in higher resolution... Also it's very overclockable... And you have pointed out only a single drawback, is that it used more power... So What??? What does that even matter as long as you don't get a cheap ass motherboard?
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January 18, 2013 3:30:12 AM

There are people who doesn't like water cooling... Getting a cheap motherboard like h77 board is actually better than wasting money on stuffs that you won't use.
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January 18, 2013 6:09:46 AM

Wow! A lot of discussion here! I'm intrigued by the FX-8350 recommendation; I had been considering that CPU for awhile. But most of the opinions I read have ranked it slightly lower than the 3570k in terms of performance, with an affinity for multi-tasking with the 8 cores, but with a reportedly lower single-thread performance versus the Intel processors.

If I went with an AMD processor, I would definitely be looking for a significantly cheaper CPU/mobo combo, because really, isn't that the caveat of getting an AMD versus an Intel?

To address a few of the talking points being debated, I don't plan on using watercooling, I don't plan on overclocking (which is why the Xeon processor appeals to me, well, that and the $100 difference with the 3770k), and I am looking into an H77 board (although it is different from the board recommended by TheBigTroll), the MSI ZH77A-G43
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Does this mobo seem like a decent choice? Price-wise, it is $40 cheaper than the Z77 I had selected initially, and it still features a UEFI Bios, which I'm interested in. Although, I cannot seem to find this motherboard on PCPartPicker, so could there be something wrong with it, or perhaps it is an old/discontinued model? Any thoughts? As a general rule, I would like to stick with a standard ATX form factor, just for simplicity's sake. The advice and discussion here is great!
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January 18, 2013 6:31:10 AM

admbautista said:
There are people who doesn't like water cooling... Getting a cheap motherboard like h77 board is actually better than wasting money on stuffs that you won't use.


I'm not saying regular old air cooling is bad... But when you suggest an aftermarket huge air cooler that you need a big enough case for, plus you have to pay $80, you might as well buy a corsair h80 and get the benefits of liquid cooling.... But if you don't want to get any aftermarket cooler or just a cheaper one like the 212, I agree with that.

On the topic on motherboards, read this http://www.pugetsystems.com/blog/2012/04/12/z68-z77-and...

I agree the H77 are ok for everyday, regular computing use... But if your thinking of adding an additional graphics card one day or maybe overclocking, you can't... Also it has only 2 Sata 6gb/s, so if you add an additional ssd or hard drive, or even blu-ray drive it will be slower.... Again I'm not saying the the h77 chipset is bad, but it's subpar because it limits what you can do in the long haul. For a $500-700 build maybe a h77 with an i3 or i5 would be great... But for 1000 you definitely have room to breath and can get something that will last longer and get be overclocked... Why not get the better motherboard that is more stable and offers duel graphics and overclocking... Why not get a CPU that will play games at higher resolutions like 2560 x 1440 because that the next stage of moniter tech...

It's easy to buy crap and not think ahead. Especially when people act like they know what they are talking about.... But why are people suggesting the Xeon CPUs for a regular guy that wants to do some regular computing and play games once in a while. Xeon CPUs are for Workstations and servers... They have low power usage, because they are made to stay on the whole day if not for weeks and months at a time... Who never turns off their computer at home? I do and everyone else I know. If you don't plan to ever turn off your computer then a Xeon might be a good choice... But for performance and regular day-to-day computing, don't talk about power usage... It's doesn't really make a differance...

Again it's funny how people are suggesting CPUs and mobos that they have themselves. But hey if you wanna save costs and build a pc that you cannot overclock, or get sli/crossfire, then sure get the h77... But again for performance and longevity, I would advise against that. For $1000 build you really don't need to get a dumbed down chipset board, or locked CPU. You should be able to get a CPU is overclockable, a sli/crossfire mobo that is realiable and stable, 16gb ram, ssd, Hd, decent case, and gpu.
I haven't had time to look at exactly what mobo that I would get with the fx 8350 but based on the video review of it by Logan, I would suggest using that CPU... Again the only drawback is more power usage, but everything is similar or better, and it's overclockable.

If you seriously for some reason hate amd, although at this time it looks like a better buy... Get a decent z77 board and some sort of unlocked i5... Don't bother with an i7, unless your going to be doing video editing or serious rendering it won't make a big difference... But again going the intel route is more costly and in my opinion not worth it, especially cause if you don't have enough money you have to compromise and get crap in some other part on your pc.

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January 18, 2013 7:14:51 AM

we know all of that. the deal is, if he is not planning or even wanting to have dual gpu/overclock why then waste money?

go ahead spend all the moeny you have for all the things that you won't be using. That is waht I'm trying to say. I know you can think ahead, but what if he doesn't want to? He would jsut stick with this for a long time. And with that period alot of newer generations would have came out. Try to look at the asker's point first before suggesting spending all his money to what he won't be using. He's been saying that he won't oc and stuffs. As for cooling, check this, http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/h100i-elc240-seidon...
Why get sophisticated with cooling if you can have just air cooling with better cooling/noise value. Leaking all over the place... booom.
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January 18, 2013 7:17:16 AM

And yeah, if you do not plan to overclock, you can live with the stock cooler and save money buy not buying an aftermarket cooler.
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January 18, 2013 9:54:55 AM

timmy97236 said:
The reason why I bought a sabertooth is because they are insanely reliable, they run cool, and easy to overclock, .... I'm not planing to do sli or crossfire, so it didn't matter. They run cool and had the specs that I wanted at the time. But again games that ran at higher resolution then 1080p worked better then the i5 or i7 is my biggest turning point to the fx... Everything is going to towards higher resolution another at 1200 or 1440... Even look at how metro played on higher resolution in the video that I posted. In overall the fx work well in computing that uses more cores and in multitasking... I'm not saying that intel is worse, just for the money I would by the fx... And I have overclocked my gpu and CPU and it was fine... The sabertooth and there are plenty of reviews to show that it is a great motherboard, so you can say whatever you want but it has been reviews by many and eveyone likes them.

And why would someone by a d14 cooler when they can water cool for that price... H80 sometimes are on sale for a similar price... Buying a air cooler for more the $50 is just plain stupid if you ask me.

Also I'm just saying that amd uses their socket much longer then intel... And you can't argue with that, that is just plain fact.

It's just silly to me that people like you ignore the facts that Logan in the video has posted and he was surprised himself... But it's rediculous that the fx 8350 is equivalent or better in gaming, especially in higher resolution... Also it's very overclockable... And you have pointed out only a single drawback, is that it used more power... So What??? What does that even matter as long as you don't get a cheap ass motherboard?


the sabertooth doesnt run cool enough if it needs cooling fans to keep the shell (that traps heat) cool

because a h80 is 3x as loud and closed loop coolers have pretty crappy pumps and quality. you tack some good fans to that it will rack you 30 dollars more than usual. i see zero point of closed loop coolers unless you are space confined. and note, i can get 4ghz with my i7 3770k with a d14 passive. you cant with your watercooler. if i were to get one though, it would be the much higher quality swiftech h220.

assuming lga 775 was long lasting. and assuming fm1 was extremely short lived, id say they are about the same

if i can get 4.8ghz out of my i7 on a Lk series motherboard (with a good voltage push) what difference does it make for me to get anything higher. they literally perform the same. the only thing that would drive me to go higher (the z77-v pro) is more IO, but the odds are that most people dont fill up their IO. they will overclock the same. they show differences under watercooling

the "higher" level boards use more power bro. more power phases and more IO always mean more power
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January 18, 2013 9:59:34 AM

timmy97236 said:
I'm not saying regular old air cooling is bad... But when you suggest an aftermarket huge air cooler that you need a big enough case for, plus you have to pay $80, you might as well buy a corsair h80 and get the benefits of liquid cooling.... But if you don't want to get any aftermarket cooler or just a cheaper one like the 212, I agree with that.

On the topic on motherboards, read this http://www.pugetsystems.com/blog/2012/04/12/z68-z77-and...

I agree the H77 are ok for everyday, regular computing use... But if your thinking of adding an additional graphics card one day or maybe overclocking, you can't... Also it has only 2 Sata 6gb/s, so if you add an additional ssd or hard drive, or even blu-ray drive it will be slower.... Again I'm not saying the the h77 chipset is bad, but it's subpar because it limits what you can do in the long haul. For a $500-700 build maybe a h77 with an i3 or i5 would be great... But for 1000 you definitely have room to breath and can get something that will last longer and get be overclocked... Why not get the better motherboard that is more stable and offers duel graphics and overclocking... Why not get a CPU that will play games at higher resolutions like 2560 x 1440 because that the next stage of moniter tech...

It's easy to buy crap and not think ahead. Especially when people act like they know what they are talking about.... But why are people suggesting the Xeon CPUs for a regular guy that wants to do some regular computing and play games once in a while. Xeon CPUs are for Workstations and servers... They have low power usage, because they are made to stay on the whole day if not for weeks and months at a time... Who never turns off their computer at home? I do and everyone else I know. If you don't plan to ever turn off your computer then a Xeon might be a good choice... But for performance and regular day-to-day computing, don't talk about power usage... It's doesn't really make a differance...

Again it's funny how people are suggesting CPUs and mobos that they have themselves. But hey if you wanna save costs and build a pc that you cannot overclock, or get sli/crossfire, then sure get the h77... But again for performance and longevity, I would advise against that. For $1000 build you really don't need to get a dumbed down chipset board, or locked CPU. You should be able to get a CPU is overclockable, a sli/crossfire mobo that is realiable and stable, 16gb ram, ssd, Hd, decent case, and gpu.
I haven't had time to look at exactly what mobo that I would get with the fx 8350 but based on the video review of it by Logan, I would suggest using that CPU... Again the only drawback is more power usage, but everything is similar or better, and it's overclockable.

If you seriously for some reason hate amd, although at this time it looks like a better buy... Get a decent z77 board and some sort of unlocked i5... Don't bother with an i7, unless your going to be doing video editing or serious rendering it won't make a big difference... But again going the intel route is more costly and in my opinion not worth it, especially cause if you don't have enough money you have to compromise and get crap in some other part on your pc.


the fact that i use xeons is for the reason they are cheaper than a i7, perform the same as a i7, and is overall better than a i7. not because its so called workstation chips. a xeon e3 1230v2 will smack a i5 3570k in the face in any video process even if you overclock it to 4.5ghz. why would i recommend the guy to do that? if i did, that would be plain stupid. at that rate i would recommend a fx.

the workstation moniker means it uses less power and runs cooler. otherwise it means nothing to me. the price does

a xeon e3 + a h77 board is around the same price as a fx 8320 + a m5a99x r2 motherboard.
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January 18, 2013 3:26:01 PM

First of all, TheBigTroll you are the one that suggested the d14... all i said was that you can find a bundle if the person is interested. I agree that a stock cooler will work fine for this build... All im saying s that you are just limiting yourself when you go for xeon or for a h77.... Again you both bought these boards so it is understanding why you are defending them so much.

im not saying to get the i5 or even i7... im just saying that by getting a xeon with a h77 you will be limiting yourself a huge ton in motherboard quality and specs.

for example lets look at some actual money cost for the cpu and mobo that you are suggesting, looking at newegg prices...

ASUS P8H77-V LE $100 right now with rebate
xeon e3 1230v2 $240
total $340


now look at FX:
FX 8350 $200
m5a99x r2 $120
total $320

Yes close to the the same price as you mentioned... but you can also get the ASUS M5A99FX PRO R2.0 which is $140 with rebate right now... which has 7 slots for 6Gb/s Sata .... this motherboard is much better then the h77 one, there is no comparison... but in overall, again logan's video shows that the fx 8350 is better for gaming and multitasking processes like streaming. It plays even better in higher resolution as well.

Please argue about his benchmarks, yes i understand that there isnt a perfect cpu for all games... but again the fx 8350 is better in the long run.

And lets say in the future the person decided to he wants to play with overclocking or getting sli/crossfire... if he goes with the xeon he cannot... but if he goes with the fx he can... but the prices for both amd and intel builds are basically the same, although the amd is a little cheaper if you are thinking of getting more expensive intel cpus...

But again, no one has said anything about the benchmarks that logan talks about in his benchmarking the 8350 vs intel's cpus...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eu8Sekdb-IE&list=UUNovoA...
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January 18, 2013 10:52:17 PM

they are even. i used a h77m-d3h board in the build. no reason to go atx unless you can fill up all the slots which 99% of people dont.

a lower quality board would be the z77 extreme4. doesnt even have digital power delivery

yes i know you get more for your money in terms of features on a AMD board. i didnt deny that.

i have watched logans video a couple of times. its nice to know. but if all the other sites state otherwise in performance, id go without him
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January 19, 2013 5:53:55 PM

All other sites use resolution 1080p or less.... I've looked at other reviews and they all test like one or two games and all benchmarks seem to be done with less then 1080p resolutions... I wonder why that is??? Cause the lower resolutions show intel in the lead, but when you increase resolution to 1440 or 1200, the 8350 is equal or a lot of the times even better.

Again I have an i5 2550k overclocked and I'm really happy with it but that fact is that all the review sites test one or two games and toms tested only three... But Logan tested other games especially those that are more demanding like metro... You can say what you want about the other reviews, but they just don't really test enough games and at different specs... and toms tested WOW, which is a old and completely irrelevant game to measure performance on, why not guild wars 2... My old 8 year old laptop can handle wow with no problems... My problem is that toms did not test as much games as they should have. And even Logan is surprised by the results of his testing.

Again I'm not suggesting a h77 or intel CPU, because if that fact that to will have to compromise by getting a subpar motherboard which has less features. And yes z77 tend to be more expensive. So by going to the h77 intel route you limit yourself in motherboard features, lack of ability for sli/crossfire, and potential overclocking. Again even though you might not use these features in long run, it is still better to have them then not. Especially since you can get the same performance if not better on the 8350 with a 990fx morherboard... Again I have an i5 and I'm looking at this objectively.... It's even funny how fan boys are now saying that Logan's review is crap and don't believe him... Look at the other reviews and understand the limits of their reviews... They don't test as much for games and that is fact.

And again, TheBigTroll you are justifying getting less for your money by saying that you will not use any of the slots... What if he decided to go raid in the long run or get a sound card or go sli in the future... Your just stuck in getting intel and don't care that you are getting less for your money... Again the only downside of getting and is power usage, but if he is going to use this computer at home and won't leave it on for weeks at a time, it should be fine.
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January 19, 2013 5:56:00 PM

-raid isnt viable or useful for gaming. if he needs speed for editing, that can be done through a ramdisk
-gaming isnt his first priority. i wouldnt even think SLI would make much sense otherwise
-there is enough room on a matx board for a sound card
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January 19, 2013 6:03:25 PM

But again why are you justifying spending the same money for less features and equivalent performance (although less performance in higher resolution).

When I build a computer, i want it to last as long as possible. I want it to be upgradable and be able to handle things that I might what to later throw at it... Again monitor resolutions are starting to go up and with higher resolution gaming works better or pretty close on the 8350... But again you are still suggesting paying the same money for less in features, less performance, and less in terms of longevity if your pc...

You keep saving sli/crossfire does not make sense that that a micro atx will be enough. But why not get more than what you need for the same money... It doesn't make sense for me to play the same money for less.
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January 19, 2013 7:04:43 PM

as i said again, id love to have more features for the money, but then id rather not sacrifice my power and my performance to a degree

he is only playing at 1080p, there is a difference in performance in games. if its 1600p, i really dont give a dam which chip you chose.

to be realistic, very little people would upgrade by the next generation of stuff. maybe 3 years maybe more. but 3 years ago on a amd platform from what i know they were running am3 socket and that isnt compatible with the newer 3+ procs (not without modification). upgrade ability is not always relevant
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January 20, 2013 6:10:42 AM

Yeah he might play at 1080p now, but what if he decided to get a 1600 monitor later... Monitor resolutions are starting to go up and prices are slowly dropping... Also performance on an 1155 i7 is again very similar to a 8350, and again Logan demonstrated that the 8350 shines in many games that these so called 'unbiased' reviews sites have failed to use in their benchmarks. I do agree that the i7 is better in many ways but when you take money into the mix, and practical performance, including multitasking, gaming, etc.... The fx 8350 is a bigger buy.... Im also not solely talking about future upgrading of the CPU. Yes the amd sockets are usually in production longer in recent years then the intel... But that is not the upgrade that I'm talking about... I'm looking at potential for future sli/crossfire, overclocking, and again the 990fx boards have much more features including more of the 6gb/s Sata connectors....

Your whole premise is why should I spend my money on things that I'm not gonna use because you think that you will be sacrificing performance in some way.... But again look at it realistically, a person will not notice any difference in an i7 or an fx 8350 on day to day applications... You just won't... What you will notice is in game performance, 3d editing/rendering, etc... And again there is evidence to say that the fx 8350 is superior in that, not the other fx CPUs but only the 8350 (the 3d stuff has actually been shown on a difference website that reviewed the 8350)... Again you are saying that the person will only be gaming in 1080p, but how do you know if he won't want to get a higher resolution monitor...

Again your argument is based on if the individual's wants and needs will be the same in a year or two, when that might not be the case... You keep saying that performance will be sacrificed but again it has been shown that it will not... So what the heck are you arguing about.

I'm guessing the owner of this thread has seen the arguments and can make a decision for himself...
I'm gonna check myself out of this argument, cause everything that I have wanted to say I have, and your kind of saying the same thing now... If the owner of this thread posts on here and if he needs further advice and wants my specific opinion, I'll check on the thread and answer back... But I'm done arguing with people that can't look at facts and can't look past their own biases... I have always been an intel guy and currently have an i5 but that is not what I would recommend at this time, and I explained my reasons.
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January 20, 2013 3:51:08 PM

a 8320 is no different from a 8350 other than the clockspeed. just pointing that out

he can make his own choice. just that im saying id get a e3 1230v2 while you would get a fx 8320/8350.
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January 21, 2013 6:06:01 AM

Hey guys, sorry I've been away for a few days! I have been checking out the discussions here but have been really busy with work, so I've been unable to reply. I see both sides of the discussion here, and while initially I was leaning towards getting the Xeon processor, since I have no desire to overclock because of warranty issues, I started to think that perhaps the 8350 would be better. I've also been considering doing what I initially planned, while utilizing the advice on other parts given to me (Kingston memory vs. Corsair, Seasonic vs. Corsair PSU, cheaper case, etc.), which was to purchase an i5 or i7 and utilize the integrated graphics for a short time until I can more comfortably afford a decent graphics card. So just out of curiosity, I pieced together a build using both new and old part ideas, and I actually like the outcome! http://pcpartpicker.com/parts/partlist/

Intel i7 3770k Processor $309
Asus P8Z77-V LK Motherboard $139
Kingston Black 16GB RAM $70
WD Caviar Blue 1TB $69
Samsung 840 Pro 128GB $129
NZXT Lexa S Black Mid Case $66
Seasonic 620W Power Supply $84
Lite-On DVD/CD Drive $17

For a total of $889 (disregarding change).

I'm liking this price A LOT, but PCPartPicker pointed out that the Asus mobo and NZXT case don't get along well (case has no USB 3.0 front ports, while mobo has 3.0 header), so I figured with that good of a price, I could swap for a similar priced case (I'm looking at some CoolerMaster cases currently, the NZXT was just another "flashy" choice) and possibly a slightly better motherboard (but not an outrageous one), and hopefully still be under $1000, which would be awesome for me.

While I certainly did entertain the idea of going with AMD for my processor, I think the easiest way to stay within or under budget is to just use integrated graphics until I can afford a good graphics card. With any luck, it will only be a month or so after I get the computer built that I can afford to add in the graphics card, so I do not think the wait will be long.

Any further thoughts or recommendations on this build? I feel like I am pretty well decided on everything except for the case and the motherboard, but any advice is still welcome!
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January 21, 2013 6:51:16 AM

Okay since your pretty decided on that build I won't contest it since it is pretty fine. Just dont forget a cooler once you plan to OC.

Regarding that board and case, it will work fine, it is just that you won't have usb 3.0 port at the front of the case, only 2.0. You'll have tne 3.0 at the back with your mobo. Nevertheless, I would recommend other cases because there are alot of better cases than lexa s.
If your into nzxt, check the phantom 410.
If your into cooler master, check the storm enforcer.
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January 21, 2013 9:50:50 AM

XxButch2000xX said:
Hey guys, sorry I've been away for a few days! I have been checking out the discussions here but have been really busy with work, so I've been unable to reply. I see both sides of the discussion here, and while initially I was leaning towards getting the Xeon processor, since I have no desire to overclock because of warranty issues, I started to think that perhaps the 8350 would be better. I've also been considering doing what I initially planned, while utilizing the advice on other parts given to me (Kingston memory vs. Corsair, Seasonic vs. Corsair PSU, cheaper case, etc.), which was to purchase an i5 or i7 and utilize the integrated graphics for a short time until I can more comfortably afford a decent graphics card. So just out of curiosity, I pieced together a build using both new and old part ideas, and I actually like the outcome! http://pcpartpicker.com/parts/partlist/

Intel i7 3770k Processor $309
Asus P8Z77-V LK Motherboard $139
Kingston Black 16GB RAM $70
WD Caviar Blue 1TB $69
Samsung 840 Pro 128GB $129
NZXT Lexa S Black Mid Case $66
Seasonic 620W Power Supply $84
Lite-On DVD/CD Drive $17

For a total of $889 (disregarding change).

I'm liking this price A LOT, but PCPartPicker pointed out that the Asus mobo and NZXT case don't get along well (case has no USB 3.0 front ports, while mobo has 3.0 header), so I figured with that good of a price, I could swap for a similar priced case (I'm looking at some CoolerMaster cases currently, the NZXT was just another "flashy" choice) and possibly a slightly better motherboard (but not an outrageous one), and hopefully still be under $1000, which would be awesome for me.

While I certainly did entertain the idea of going with AMD for my processor, I think the easiest way to stay within or under budget is to just use integrated graphics until I can afford a good graphics card. With any luck, it will only be a month or so after I get the computer built that I can afford to add in the graphics card, so I do not think the wait will be long.

Any further thoughts or recommendations on this build? I feel like I am pretty well decided on everything except for the case and the motherboard, but any advice is still welcome!


-get a better case like the corsair 200R. at least it has usb3
-get a xfx 550w. same power supply, but a lot cheaper. and you dont need the extra wattage
-id get a 830 256gb. you will want more storage.
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January 21, 2013 9:51:13 AM

and given that you are overclocking, get a hyper 212 evo
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January 21, 2013 11:28:21 PM

Thanks for the additional advice!

I've switched my build list to include the Corsair 200R case, the XFX 550W PSU, and I've also upgraded to a higher level motherboard, the Asus P8Z77-V
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... , which has more connections and features. I'm pretty certain this will be my first build! And at a price that is right around my original budget ($900). I feel like this system will keep me satisfied for awhile, and if I choose to overclock, I will certainly purchase the 212 Evo to replace the old heatsink fan. I will also monitor temperatures in my build closely; with only two fans pre-installed in the 200R, I will probably buy another one or two fans to increase air flow, especially once I get a graphics card.

Regarding future upgrades on this build, I think that I will keep the core of this system relatively the same. The only upgrades I plan on doing are the graphics card, 212 Evo, and possibly more fans. Things generally thought of as add-ons (except maybe the GPU). If computing technology advances a considerable degree in the next few years, I will probably just get another machine altogether, depending on how this build goes.

Many thanks to all who shared their knowledge, suggestions, and advice, and unless anyone has anything to add to this discussion, I think this will be my final build, and I will be ordering it hopefully within a few weeks!
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January 22, 2013 12:57:43 AM

-upgrade to a z77-v was pointless. the LK is fine. if you want features, go and get yourself a gigabyte z77-xud5h
-i dont see a point of adding more fans. made no difference in temps for me
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January 22, 2013 1:35:13 AM

TheBigTroll said:
-upgrade to a z77-v was pointless. the LK is fine. if you want features, go and get yourself a gigabyte z77-xud5h
-i dont see a point of adding more fans. made no difference in temps for me

I see your point. I will switch back to the LK and just save the difference :) 

I'm not going to get extra fans right away. I only intend to add additional fans if temp runs high at stock speed (for whatever reason). Obviously though, if I overclock, I will probably add a fan or two when I get the 212 Evo. But initially, I'm not adding any fans.

Thanks for the comments!
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February 1, 2013 2:39:48 AM

Just an update to my thread:

I changed my build around a little to meet a slightly stricter budget (and get some Newegg discounts :D  ). Here's what I went with:

i5 3570k Processor (I decided the i-7's multithreading wasn't worth the extra $100, especially for a "budget" build.)
Corsair Vengeance 16GB Low Profile RAM (Kingston RAM was out of stock at $70, plus Newegg had a combo with the i-5.)
Asus P8Z77-LK Motherboard
Corsair Carbide 200R Case
Samsung 840 Pro 128GB SSD (With a Newegg promo, it came to $119!)
WD Caviar Blue 1TB HDD (Also had a Newegg promo dropping $15 off the price!)
Lite-on DVD Burner
Seasonic M12II PSU (Chosen over the XFX due to the comparable prices, higher power capability, and most importantly, the modular design; it definitely came in handy while building!)

For a grand total of $777, after combo and promo discounts (no MIRs yet), with everything purchased from Newegg.
Note: I purchased Windows 7 Home through Best Buy for only $35 with the use of gift certificates. I didn't count that in the price of my build.

The build went pretty well. I only had a few issues, luckily:

1. The I/O shield that came with the motherboard had prongs in between each opening that made installing the board very difficult. I decided to just bend the prongs straight out so they wouldn't interfere with any of the ports/openings. I'm not sure if that was what I was supposed to do, and I'm not really sure what purpose those prongs serve, but the board did fit snugly in place and none of the ports were obstructed by the shield, so no big deal I suppose.

2. When attempting to access the BIOS, I would instead be greeted with the clock and date/time that is part of the BIOS, but the rest of the BIOS wouldn't appear. It would just show the clock and an otherwise blank screen. So on a hunch, I powered down, unplugged the HDMI cable I was using, and reconnected the machine to my HDTV using an analog RGB cable. Success! The BIOS was appearing as it should!

I'm glad to report my first build went extremely well, and I'd like to thank everyone on here for their help and recommendations, it saved me a bunch of money and quite a headache! Although there was a lot of good discussion on the thread (much thanks to TheBigTroll and Timmy97236), I'd like to thank admbautista for what I felt was ultimately the most helpful and succinct advice. I'll definitely be returning for advice when I start on my next build, and maybe I'll try out one of the AMD processors... Maybe... :sol: 
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February 1, 2013 2:41:33 AM

Best answer selected by XxButch2000xX.
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