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First time builder help

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February 6, 2013 3:31:22 AM

I'm going to be building a mid-range rig primarily for gaming and general use. So far here's what I've come up with:

Mobo
MSI ZH77A-G43 LGA 1155 for around $90
Processor
i5 3350P for around $180
GPU
HIS H785F2G2M- Radeon HD 7850 2GB for roughly $200
HDD
64GB Crucial M4 (Boot)
WD 500GB (Mass)
(I have plenty of external storage already)

I haven't made a decision on RAM yet, but I'm not worried about that, since I'm comfortable making that decision on my own. What I'm worried about is any potential problems (incompatibility, bottlenecking, etc) or if there is a comparable build for a cheaper price. I'm thinking about a 600W PSU, 2 DVD RW and blu ray. I'm undecided on a case. I'm trying to keep the entire build in the $800-1000 range.

Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.

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February 6, 2013 3:46:20 AM

What you listed is reasonable.

Here are some thoughts:

1. 64gb is a bit small for a boot drive.
See if you can't justify a 120gb ssd. Since you have external storage, perhaps you can defer on the hard drive.

2. The 7850 only needs a 450w psu. Perhaps you can save a bit there.

3. Nothing wrong with the motherboard, but why not consider a M-ATX size which will be cheaper.
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February 6, 2013 3:50:57 AM

Bit pricier but you can drop the cooler and grab a cheaper mb if not planning to OC (The 3470 can OC to 4.0ghz)
Blu-ray is read only
cases can be found for cheaper arround $50 (so $30 cheaper) zalaman z11plus

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3470 3.2GHz Quad-Core Processor ($193.79 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 76.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($24.98 @ Outlet PC)
Motherboard: MSI Z77A-GD55 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($132.86 @ Newegg)
Memory: Patriot Gamer 2 Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($38.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($49.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Crucial M4 64GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($72.51 @ SuperBiiz)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card ($295.66 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master Storm Enforcer ATX Mid Tower Case ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 600W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: LG UH12NS29 Blu-Ray Reader, DVD/CD Writer ($49.98 @ Outlet PC)
Total: $988.74
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-02-06 00:48 EST-0500)
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February 6, 2013 4:17:13 AM

@Geofelt: Thanks for the feedback. I'm going to look into the M-Atx mobos. I didn't really have a good feel for what I was looking for in a mobo, but it seems like that's an area I can cut a little bit of cost. But maybe I should look into a larger boot drive. I'm pretty set on that CPU and GPU but thanks again.

@Stickmansam: I'm looking to add a blu ray reader and a dvd RW (two drives). I do a lot of sound editing too so the second drive is necessary for me. I don't intend to OC but I might keep the cooler anyway just in case. The 3350 is locked but you can OC to about 3.5 from what I'm seeing, so I'll get a cooler just in case. Thanks for the info though. I'm liking the look of that power supply and case.
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February 6, 2013 4:18:27 AM

i5-3470 adds a little more horse power.

64gb is great for a boot drive. You can fit OS+programs but I wouldn't put games on it.
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February 6, 2013 4:30:40 AM

^ yep the 3470 has a higher stock, turbo and OC and is well worth the bit extra IMO

64gb is enough for OS + some apps and files

If you don't get a z77 mb you won't be able to OC at all so keep that in mind when choosing a board

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February 6, 2013 4:43:41 AM

Maybe I should consider something a little more future-proof and go toward the 3470 instead. That's something for me to consider.

Thanks geofelt. That's another option for me to consider in a case. That really seems to fit me in function and style so I think I can justify the extra $.
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February 6, 2013 4:54:38 AM

So the (near) final draft is:
Case
Silverstone TJ08-E
$100

Mobo
MSI ZH77A-G43 LGA 1155
$90

Processor
i5 3470
$200

GPU
HIS H785F2G2M Radeon HD 7850 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
$200

HDD
SSD (Boot) and Hdd (storage)
Crucial m4 64GB (boot)
$70
Western Digital 500GB
$65

Cooler
Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 76.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler
$24.98 @ Outlet PC

Ram
Patriot Gamer 2 Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory
$38.99

Power Supply
Corsair Builder 600W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply
$49.99 @ Newegg

Drives
LG UH12NS29 Blu-Ray Reader, DVD/CD Writer
$49.99
LG 24X DVD Burner - Bare Drive Black SATA Model GH24NS95 - OEM
$17.99

I'm going to be ordering this on Friday so there's bound to be a few tweaks. Will 600W be sufficient?
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February 6, 2013 5:30:59 AM

Quote:
Maybe I should consider something a little more future-proof and go toward the 3470 instead. That's something for me to consider.

Thanks geofelt. That's another option for me to consider in a case. That really seems to fit me in function and style so I think I can justify the extra $.

If you want more future proof then I recommend a "K" model....3570k or 3770k but you do need a Z77 not H77 mobo.

Why? The 2500k has a stock 3.7GHz (turbo boost). By safely overclocking I get it to 4.4GHz. Big difference. My temps are fine and I think this should last a couple years.

On a more reasonable budget, I would buy a 3470 and use it for years.
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February 6, 2013 6:29:39 AM

I noticed your ram is currently out of stock at newegg. I looked to make sure it was low profile so it'll fit under the hyper 212 cooler.

I second the suggestion of a cheaper model hd7850 2GB. Also skipping an HDD and getting a larger 128GB SSD.

For a few more bucks, you might consider a blu-ray burner over just a reader. Media prices are dropping all the time, and if you use dvds to archive anything(though why would you, with lots of external hdd space), you might like the larger storage capacity vs dvd.
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February 6, 2013 1:37:39 PM

1. The motherboard you listed is a full ATX motherboard. For the TJ-08E you will need a M-ATX sized motherboard.
Here is the least expensive MSI H77 motherboard: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

2. For a bit more "future proof", I might suggest a 3570K and a Z77 based M-ATX motherboard like this:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

A 3570K will cost $220($180 at microcenter to walk in's). For the extra $20, you will get the ability to up the multiplier from 34 to 43 or so, a nice 25% boost in cpu capability for a small increase in price.

3. The Corsair 600w unit is fine.
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February 6, 2013 1:48:38 PM

Thanks for that. I didn't even think about the mobo size. I'll keep the processor upgrade in mind. I think I'm narrowed down to either the 3350P or the 3570K, depending on the $/performance comparison. Thanks for the input. This is a huge help. I'm feeling a lot more comfortable about this decision now.
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February 6, 2013 2:12:07 PM

This topic has been moved from the section CPU & Components to section Systems by Mousemonkey
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February 7, 2013 3:52:58 AM

mahnahmanoia said:
Thanks for that. I didn't even think about the mobo size. I'll keep the processor upgrade in mind. I think I'm narrowed down to either the 3350P or the 3570K, depending on the $/performance comparison. Thanks for the input. This is a huge help. I'm feeling a lot more comfortable about this decision now.

If you buy a mini case, such as the Silverstone one, then you need a mATX mobo. AN issue with that case is that its small and the motherboard is flipped (GPU will be next to PSU- gonna be hot) and there are only 2 fans. Not good for cooling.
This one is quiet and has room for better cooling.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Don't forget about the 3470. It can't overclock but it's fast.
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February 7, 2013 6:26:18 PM

envy14tpe said:
If you buy a mini case, such as the Silverstone one, then you need a mATX mobo. AN issue with that case is that its small and the motherboard is flipped (GPU will be next to PSU- gonna be hot) and there are only 2 fans. Not good for cooling.
This one is quiet and has room for better cooling.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Don't forget about the 3470. It can't overclock but it's fast.


I respectfully disagree:

I have been using the Silverstone TJ-08E for some time.
It has very good cooling. Mine contains an overclocked 3570K and a GTX680.
There is room for a full sized air cooler; I use a prolimatech megahalems.

The cooling is so good that I undervolt the cpu fan, and the front 180mm fan is on low and even undervolted. There is room for a rear 120mm exhaust fan which I did not install because it was unnecessary. Because the fans turn slowly, it is also a very quiet case.
It has a washable front filter, and so as a positive pressure case, it stays very clean.
I highly recommend it.
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February 8, 2013 4:14:51 AM

geofelt said:
I respectfully disagree:

I have been using the Silverstone TJ-08E for some time.
It has very good cooling. Mine contains an overclocked 3570K and a GTX680.
There is room for a full sized air cooler; I use a prolimatech megahalems.

The cooling is so good that I undervolt the cpu fan, and the front 180mm fan is on low and even undervolted. There is room for a rear 120mm exhaust fan which I did not install because it was unnecessary. Because the fans turn slowly, it is also a very quiet case.
It has a washable front filter, and so as a positive pressure case, it stays very clean.
I highly recommend it.

Glad to hear from someone that owns one (Silverstone). Why is your case so cool with one intake fan? I'm guessing cuz so much is closed off that its efficient. Do you live in a cold region? Currently I'm in Taiwan and summer gets hot so I need extra fans. I have a front and side intake, as well as a rear exhaust. It all seems necessary to keep my case cool. The downside is that I have to put fans on High when I game.
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February 8, 2013 1:23:13 PM

envy14tpe said:
Glad to hear from someone that owns one (Silverstone). Why is your case so cool with one intake fan? I'm guessing cuz so much is closed off that its efficient. Do you live in a cold region? Currently I'm in Taiwan and summer gets hot so I need extra fans. I have a front and side intake, as well as a rear exhaust. It all seems necessary to keep my case cool. The downside is that I have to put fans on High when I game.


The main reason is the 180mm intake fan. It pushes lots of air at low rpm.
and...

1. I have only need of a single ssd. So I removed both hard drive cages. That allows unrestricted airflow through to the cpu and gpu.
2. Even with the cages installed, I think airflow would still be unrestricted.
3. Tht GTX680 has the direct exhaust stock type cooler favored by EVGA. It sends the hot air directly out the back of the case. I very much favor this type of cooler.
Other types do a good job of cooling the gpu, but they then dump heat back into the case where case cooling has to deal with it. That hurts both gpu and cpu cooling.
4. The airflow is direct, in from the front, and out the back. Side fans disrupt the airflow.

Other thoughts:

Silverstone makes an acoustic pad material that I added to the insides of the case to reduce noise.

I use a gold rated Seasonic X750 psu which I bought at a great sale price. The fan does not ever need to turn. It is oriented to draw in cooling air from the top, so it plays no part in cooling.
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