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Mid-range 2D & 3D Design/Gaming Build

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February 7, 2013 1:03:29 PM

Hello all,

I’m a designer but also gamer who is looking to build a completely new set-up within the next month or so. I’m not so knowledgeable about what components are best for my needs so I’m asking for help selecting.
I do digital painting everyday and in between that use programs like 3DSMax and ZBrush to do 3D work. With this new system I’ll be playing a bunch of games in my free time, mainly the huge steam backlog of games I bought in the sales in anticipation of this build :)  !! Watching movies, listening to music and internet browsing will also be common practice. I’m wanting this system to last around 4 years.
I’m happy to do things like searching for the best price for the components once I know what specification I’ll be needing.

Approximate Purchase Date:
As soon as I have decided on all the parts and can get the best offer for my timescale (needs to be up and running by at least mid March at the latest). Will be building it within 24 hours of the parts being delivered.

Budget Range: £1000-£1200 including shipping

System Usage from Most to Least Important:
(I’ve linked the system requirements for some of the software)
Digital Painting using Corel Painter, Photoshop CS3 (might upgrade to CS6 after build)
3D modelling using 3DSMax, Maya, Mudbox and ZBrush
Regular Gaming: games such as Sleeping Dogs, Dead Island

Are you buying a monitor: Yes 1920x1080 resolution
I will be using a dual monitor set-up. Planning to buy either Dell UltraSharp U2312HM 23 inch or Dell Ultrasharp U2212HM 22 inch


Parts to Upgrade: All parts since it is a completely new build.

Do you need to buy OS: Yes, Windows 7 Home Premium

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: These are ones that I’ve experienced/heard offer good customer service.
http://www.scan.co.uk/ (I have free delivery)
http://www.overclockers.co.uk/
http://www.amazon.co.uk/
http://www.microdirect.co.uk/
http://www.dabs.com/

Location: Manchester, UK

Parts Preferences: No preference as such, just wanting to get the best longevity for the price range. I’d rather pay a bit more for quality rather than skimp and have to re-buy sooner.

Overclocking: Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe

Your Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080
Will be using a dual monitor set-up. Planning to buy either Dell UltraSharp U2312HM 23 inch or Dell Ultrasharp U2212HM 22 inch

Additional Comments:

Will definitely be purchasing 16GB RAM, in the 2x8GB format. I also would like a Blu-Ray drive, in terms of what I might do in the future, I thinking RW is best.
I’m aiming for at least 2TB of HDD and a 128GB SSD. Not sure whether to purchase two 1TB HDD and use for work and one for gaming, or just stick to buying a single 2TB HDD.
I’m going to need to buy either a USB wireless adapter or a PCI wireless card. From initial research it seems like the PCI card comes up trumps however any extra advice would be helpful.
I’ve got a mouse already that I can use for now, I just need a wireless keyboard. This was the one I was thinking of buying this one or this one.

Why Are You Upgrading: Laptop is 4 years old and becoming temperamental , so it’s time for a change.

After doing some initial research, I've compiled the following parts:
CPU: Intel Core i5 3570K
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD3H, Intel Z77, S 1155, DDR3, SATA III - 6Gb/s, SATA RAID, D-Sub/ DisplayPort/ DVI/ HDMI, ATX
Or
Asus P8Z77-V, Intel Z77, S 1155, DDR3, SATA III - 6Gb/s, SATA RAID, PCIe 3.0 (x16), DisplayPort/ DVI-D/ HDMI, ATX
Or
Asus P8Z77-V PRO, Intel Z77, S 1155, DDR3, SATA III - 6Gb/s, D-Sub (VGA)/ DisplayPort/ DVI-I/ HDMI, ATX
February 7, 2013 1:22:47 PM

Thats where i'm up to at the moment. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
February 7, 2013 1:33:48 PM

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor (£239.99 @ Aria PC)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler (£25.45 @ Scan.co.uk)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard (£101.98 @ Dabs)
Memory: Patriot Viper 3 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory (£66.20 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£66.95 @ Aria PC)
Storage: OCZ Vertex 4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk (£93.96 @ Dabs)
Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 660 Ti 2GB Video Card (£215.59 @ Scan.co.uk)
Case: Corsair 300R ATX Mid Tower Case (£59.99 @ Amazon UK)
Power Supply: XFX 750W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply (£79.99 @ Overclockers.co.uk)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer (£12.98 @ Scan.co.uk)
Monitor: Asus ML238H 23.0" Monitor (£156.91 @ Amazon UK)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) (£67.99 @ Aria PC)
Total: £1187.98
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-02-07 15:33 GMT+0000)

Should have just enough left to get a wireless adaptor. Overclocking and SLI ready.
Related resources
February 7, 2013 1:34:38 PM

Since you are using creative apps, may I suggest a 3770k. It will render 3D faster too. As for motherboards, I like ASRock, so I recommend an Extreme 4. I also always recommend Seasonic and a 620w modular psu should be sufficient and is on sale at www.newegg.com. Step up to 32GB of memory so you can store your pro app files on a Ramdisk while you work on them. SSD=Samsung 840 Pro. As for a gpu, I recommend Nvidia, especially for Adobe apps. Save some bucks and get CUDA performance with a 570 GTX.
February 7, 2013 1:44:11 PM

cball1311 said:
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor (£239.99 @ Aria PC)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler (£25.45 @ Scan.co.uk)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard (£101.98 @ Dabs)
Memory: Patriot Viper 3 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory (£66.20 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£66.95 @ Aria PC)
Storage: OCZ Vertex 4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk (£93.96 @ Dabs)
Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 660 Ti 2GB Video Card (£215.59 @ Scan.co.uk)
Case: Corsair 300R ATX Mid Tower Case (£59.99 @ Amazon UK)
Power Supply: XFX 750W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply (£79.99 @ Overclockers.co.uk)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer (£12.98 @ Scan.co.uk)
Monitor: Asus ML238H 23.0" Monitor (£156.91 @ Amazon UK)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) (£67.99 @ Aria PC)
Total: £1187.98
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-02-07 15:33 GMT+0000)

Should have just enough left to get a wireless adaptor. Overclocking and SLI ready.



It's pretty much what i suggest you to build but remember than newer card are slower in rendering (a single 560ti is faster than a 680Sc from EVGA and i'd use dual 560ti so it's a lot slower now, only for rendering as gaming is almost the same but at better resolution and details)
!