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~$1300 Gaming Build for Friend

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January 31, 2013 9:28:45 AM

Hey TH Community,

I'm building a new gaming computer for a friend. Here's all the particulars:

Approximate Purchase Date: After tax return, next week or following week.

Budget Range: 1200-1400

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Surfing

Are you buying a monitor: Yes

Do you need to buy OS: Yes

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg/Amazon

Location: City, State/Region, Country - Live in UK, but have US mailing address. (APO)

Parts Preferences: by brand or type: Intel CPU, other than that no preference

Overclocking: More than likely. I will be doing it for him.

SLI or Crossfire: Capability yes, but only for future-proofing

Your Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080 or 1920x1200 (if affordable)

Additional Comments: Case window, air cooling, SSD for system+1-2 games

Here's what I have so far:
CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($219.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 76.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($19.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Pro4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($117.86 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($48.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: OCZ Agility 3 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Black 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($84.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($349.99 @ Newegg)
Case: BitFenix Shinobi Window ATX Mid Tower Case ($84.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 500W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($51.98 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($22.98 @ Newegg)
Monitor: Asus VS238H-P 23.0" Monitor ($149.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8 (OEM) (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1345.72

Let me know what you think. We're open to tweaks in almost every component to improve price/performance ratio.

Thanks in advance!

January 31, 2013 9:43:13 AM

The build looks pretty solid

Although couple of things;
CPU cooler will push out about 4.2Ghz comfortably after that it's a matter of luck... possible a little higher (for being able to cope with heat) [some people get 4.5Ghz, some dont]

the case that you chose is a mid tower... it will be pretty hard to fit in that video card in there, maybe could upgrade to a cheap full tower?

if you wish to futureproof with SLI set up on vid cards, you will need more than 500Watt psu ... something around 700watt [even for current set up i would say take a 600watt psu]

your secondary hard drive, why not just get WD caviar BLUE 1TB instead of black 500gb, its cheaper and has 1tb, for secondary hdd should be good no?


GL
January 31, 2013 10:10:26 AM

gussrtk said:
CPU cooler will push out about 4.2Ghz comfortably after that it's a matter of luck... possible a little higher (for being able to cope with heat) [some people get 4.5Ghz, some dont]


Valid point. Don't plan on going above 4.2 however. Want it to be rock solid and 4.2 is usually where I stop.

gussrtk said:
the case that you chose is a mid tower... it will be pretty hard to fit in that video card in there, maybe could upgrade to a cheap full tower?


13" clearance without a HDD (which would be mounted on the bottom). The video card is 9.5" and 6 pins plug on the outside. No worries there.

gussrtk said:
if you wish to futureproof with SLI set up on vid cards, you will need more than 500Watt psu ... something around 700watt


Noted and excellent catch. Didn't even think about it. Thank you

gussrtk said:
your secondary hard drive, why not just get WD caviar BLUE 1TB instead of black 500gb, its cheaper and has 1tb, for secondary hdd should be good no?


Also very excellent suggestion! I will be making that change for sure. Thanks!
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January 31, 2013 10:25:50 AM

If you want a futureproof system, I would find room in your budget for a better power supply and a motherboard that supports SLI. For price/performance, you really can't beat the GTX 660 Ti.. You can save a little money there, put that money towards a better motherboard and PSU, and in the future get another 660 Ti if you really think it's necessary, although you might find that a single 660 Ti is enough!

Case:Corsair Carbide 200R($34.99 @ Newegg)

Power Supply:Corsair Enthusiast 750W 80 PLUS Bronze Cerified ATX12V PSU($99.99 @ Newegg)

Memory:Corsair Vengeance 2*4GB DDR3 1600 CL9($48.99 @ Newegg)

CPU:Intel i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor($229.99 @ Newegg)

CPU Cooler:Corsair Hydro H55 Quiet CPU Cooler($69.99 @ Newegg)

Motherboard:ASRock Z77 Extreme3 ATX LGA 1155 Motherboard($124.990 @ Newegg)

Video Card:Asus GeForce GTX 660 Ti 2GB Video Card($289.99 @ Newegg)

SSD:Corsair 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk($124.99 @ Newegg)

Storage:Western Digital Caviar Blue 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive($65.99 @ Newegg)

Optical Drive:Asus DVD/CD Writer($19.99 @ Newegg)

MonitorAsus VS229H-P 21.5" IPS Monitor($149.99 @ Newegg)

Operating System:Microsoft Windows 8 (OEM) (64-Bit) OS($99.99 @ Newegg)

Total:$1358.88

January 31, 2013 10:53:21 AM

For your standard HDD, I recommend the Western Digital Blue WD10EZEX. It's a single-platter 1TB drive w/ 64mb cache @ 7200RPM.


Currently $75 @ Amazon.com
January 31, 2013 11:14:45 AM

dns7950 said:
If you want a futureproof system, I would find room in your budget for a better power supply and a motherboard that supports SLI. For price/performance, you really can't beat the GTX 660 Ti.. You can save a little money there, put that money towards a better motherboard and PSU, and in the future get another 660 Ti if you really think it's necessary, although you might find that a single 660 Ti is enough!


After some research, you're right. A 660ti will be just fine and quite a bit cheaper. Also, I didn't notice the mobo I had chosen wasn't SLI capable. Thank you for pointing that out. Already upgraded PSU. Thanks

dns7950 said:
<Your build recommendation>


I appreciate the effort you put forth in this, but it's almost a completely different build. I've already got the ground work, just looking for tweaks. Thanks though.

svengeguttensen said:
For your standard HDD, I recommend the Western Digital Blue WD10EZEX. It's a single-platter 1TB drive w/ 64mb cache @ 7200RPM.

Currently $75 @ Amazon.com


Yep, already changing the HDD. Here's what I'm looking at now:

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($219.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 76.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($19.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme3 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($132.86 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($48.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: OCZ Agility 3 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($84.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 660 Ti 2GB Video Card ($283.98 @ Newegg)
Case: BitFenix Shinobi Window ATX Mid Tower Case ($84.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: SeaSonic 620W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($90.17 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($22.98 @ Newegg)
Monitor: Asus VS238H-P 23.0" Monitor ($149.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8 (OEM) (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1345.90

*CHANGED: Mobo, to get SLI capability; HDD, for price/performance ratio; Video Card, for price/performance ratio; Power supply, for future-proofing
January 31, 2013 11:23:31 AM

Also, when it comes to picking the parts, I'll be shopping around for deals. Just listing NewEgg for consistancy at this point.
January 31, 2013 11:28:19 AM

Well another "small tweak"would be the monitor i suggested.. I doubt you would notice much of a difference between 21.5" and 23", but you would definitely notice the upgrade to an IPS panel
a b 4 Gaming
January 31, 2013 11:40:19 AM

If he values future proofing, then take a look at the build i made.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor ($213.79 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: MSI P67A-GD80 (B3) ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($78.49 @ Newegg)
Memory: Crucial Ballistix Sport 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($43.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: OCZ Vertex 3 – MAX IOPS Edition 240GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($154.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($89.99 @ Amazon)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 3GB Video Card ($379.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case ($34.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: XFX 850W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($19.99 @ Newegg)
Monitor: LG IPS231B-BN 23.0" Monitor ($199.98 @ Outlet PC)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8 Full (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1402.18
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-31 08:34 EST-0500)

In terms of CPU overclocking capabilities, it exceeds all of the builds above.It doesn't have a CPU cooler included though.
Its motherboard is old but high end.
It uses a low voltage memory kit which promisses good overclocking potential.
It has both a moderatly fast, high capacity hard drive and a fast, high capacity SSD.
It's graphics card better performance at stock than the GTX 680 and overclocks like a beast.
Its case has poor cooling performance at default, but you can easily add a fan or two in the feature if that turns out to be a problem.Other than that it's a very good budget case.
The power supply can provide enough power for all of your extreme overclocks.
The monitor has a very high quality IPS panel, which means both its image quality and its repsponse are great.(It's stated 5ms, but it's faster than a lot of 2ms TN monitors)


!