Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question
Solved

Building first computer: future proofing vs budgeting

Last response: in Systems
Share
February 9, 2013 9:55:04 PM

I am making the transition from laptop to desktop for longevity, future cost, better gaming, etc and have decided to build a computer for school and gaming (ex Bioshock Infinite). I've done some research and based my build off others I have seen. I'd like to stay under $1200 and preferably under $1000. I'm pretty flexible as I am starting from scratch:

Monitor: 23 or 24 inch, 1080pHD, whatever Newegg has on sale that day. ($150)
Case: Corsair Obsidian 550D ($130-150) (pretty set on the case)
LG DVD Burner ($17)
Wireless USB adapter ($20)
Mouse/keyboard ~30 (not picky)

Mobo: ASRock Z77 Extreme 4 HDMI SATA 6.0Gb/s USB ($135 )
RAM: 8gb crucial ballistix sport 240pin DDR3 (free w/ mobo)
CPU: Intel i7-3770K ($320 )
GPU: Either Radeon 7850 ($179), Radeon 7870 ($225), or Radeon 7950 ($300)!
Cooler Master Hyper 212 PLUS ($30)
PSU: SeaSonic M12II 620W Bronze plus ($80)
Hard Drive: WD Black 1TB 7200RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s ($90)

Total: 12-1300... Not terrible, I would prefer to be under but I can manage. I have some questions:

1) Is this a stable/efficient build? Is there anything I am missing?
2) I want to future proof this machine but I also want to lower my costs. Its a "buy right or buy twice" situation.
-i7 is supposedly overkill and $100/more than i5-- how much more future proof is the i7 over the i5 do you think? Is it actually worth it, or is the i7 just "shinier" than the i5?
-with GPU, a little bit more money gets me a bit more performance each time- but if I keep going up in $50 increments its going to bust my budget for not much more noticeable performance right? Which is the best graphics card for my needs and budget? Would you recommend something else?

Thank you for taking the time to read this and for offering advice! Once I get the details nailed down I am super excited to build my first computer :D 

Best solution

a c 106 B Homebuilt system
February 9, 2013 10:17:32 PM

First off, by future proofing what are you looking for?
Are you looking for a rig that will play games on Ultra for the next 3yrs, or are you looking for a rig that is easily upgradable?

Because the first one is impossible, technology just moves too fast.
My advice, buy reasonable "Core" components (Mobo, CPU, GPU, RAM) and overspend on the "Outer" components (Case, PSU, Cooling, Peripherals, Storage and the Optical drive if it matters). Because CPU/GPU's go out of date so quick, if you buy a 3770k, within half a year Haswell will release, then a year after that Broadwell will release making Haswell outdated. You just cant future proof those components.
The "Outer" components will never go out of date, a case is a solid hunk of metal, it wont become obsolete. Nor will it become cheaper over time as metals become more expensive, so getting a good case now is a good move. Same goes with the rest of the "Outer" components (PSU to a lesser extent, they do degrade over time).

Getting good outer components means you can easily upgrade your core components. For instance if you want to Crossfire, having a 750W PSU from the start will allow you to do that, and a large case can easily accomodate it.

TL;DR
Watch this video, it probably explains it better than I can.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FK4ip08auGg

Your questions.
1. Looks fine to me
2. Read the above and watch the video
3. Its not future-proof, by the time a 3570k becomes obsolete a 3770k wont be far behind. Buy your processor and GPU for the performance you want/need now, not what you think it will perform in the future.
Share
February 9, 2013 10:46:11 PM

Best answer selected by Penguin88.
m
0
l
Related resources
February 9, 2013 10:52:45 PM

Wow thank you for the reply! After reading your answer and watching the video, I decided I'll go with the i5, which will save me $100. I think I might go with the 7870 for the GPU, still on the fence!

I feel good about the case, storage and cooler. I *think* the PSU is good enough? I'm pretty sure I won't crossfire anytime soon- one graphics card is expensive enough! Also I'm used to 5yr old laptop graphics so I'm sure a desktop is going to be amazing. I'm also going to reevaluate my motherboard.

Thank you again, it was super helpful!
m
0
l
a c 106 B Homebuilt system
February 9, 2013 10:57:53 PM

^ The Extreme4 is actually fairly good, will cover you for dual Crossfire/SLI if you do decide to go that route.
m
0
l
a b B Homebuilt system
February 9, 2013 11:08:55 PM

Go with the more powerful GPU. A 7870 won't be able to max out games - a 7950, because of its speed and overclocking headroom, WILL.

Rule of thumb is to spend twice on the GPU what you do on the CPU. (But it's flexible, which is why I recommend the 7950, rather than 670 or 7970.)

Also, two things. One: For gaming, you DO NOT want to be on wifi, at least not if you're playing MMOs or competitive games. Wired internet is WAY faster and almost infinitely more reliable. Two: If you're using this for anything BUT gaming as well as to game with, or play a lot of the aforementioned MMOs... go a little bit over budget and get a SSD. Your computer will boot faster, programs will start faster, the computer will feel "snappy," and loading screens will become nonexistent.
m
0
l
February 10, 2013 12:17:32 AM

DarkSable said:
Go with the more powerful GPU. A 7870 won't be able to max out games - a 7950, because of its speed and overclocking headroom, WILL.

Rule of thumb is to spend twice on the GPU what you do on the CPU. (But it's flexible, which is why I recommend the 7950, rather than 670 or 7970.)

Also, two things. One: For gaming, you DO NOT want to be on wifi, at least not if you're playing MMOs or competitive games. Wired internet is WAY faster and almost infinitely more reliable. Two: If you're using this for anything BUT gaming as well as to game with, or play a lot of the aforementioned MMOs... go a little bit over budget and get a SSD. Your computer will boot faster, programs will start faster, the computer will feel "snappy," and loading screens will become nonexistent.


at 1080p a 7870 will play all games on ultra
m
0
l
February 10, 2013 12:17:41 AM

Thanks, I'll stick with the extreme4. It has good reviews and isn't too expensive.

DarkSable, I can see what you are saying about the 7950, its $100/more but is much faster than the 7850. I'm heavily considering it, esp since I saved money by switching to the i5

I mostly wanted the wifi just for extra options, I plan on keeping it hooked up too.

SSDs.... I have never experienced one and I don't want to till I'm out of school and working!! Apparently once you have it there is no going back. I can't afford to have my expectations raised :D 
m
0
l
a c 106 B Homebuilt system
February 10, 2013 12:27:20 AM

^ That is true, whenever I use a HDD system I always cringe at how slow it is.
You really do become accustomed to the ridiculous speed of an SSD.

Can back up what Boulbox said about the 7870, though I wouldn't say Ultra if you want a solid 50+ FPS in the likes of BF3 and Far Cry 3, but definitely up there.

If you want Wireless-capability, do it properly and get a wireless internal Network Interface Card than a USB dongle.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
m
0
l
February 10, 2013 12:28:29 AM

If you are spending $1000 it is great to just have one, you can reuse it until it dies off on to your next PC

and get the Evo instead of the + because it does perform a bit better or just get Xigmatek dark knight which is a pretty strong CPU cooler

grab this case
http://us.ncix.com/products/?sku=75045&promoid=1332
a steal if you ask me, quality of a $100-120 case for $60
and very similar to Corsair's 550D


PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($214.99 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Xigmatek Dark Knight II SD1283 Night Hawk Edition 89.5 CFM CPU Cooler ($46.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($129.99 @ Microcenter)
Storage: Samsung Spinpoint F3 EG 1TB 3.5" 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive ($59.88 @ Outlet PC)
Storage: Plextor M5S Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($94.99 @ Microcenter)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card ($297.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Power Supply: Rosewill Capstone 750W 80 PLUS Gold Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($94.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-224BB DVD/CD Writer ($15.98 @ Outlet PC)
Monitor: Acer G236HLBbd 60Hz 23.0" Monitor ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1065.78
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-02-09 21:26 EST-0500)

$1065+60=1125
you can use the leftovers for the KB/M, switch over to the monitor that you wanted(make sure it is at least a backlit and IPS monitor for the price you are getting it at) wireless card and other such things
m
0
l
February 10, 2013 1:04:15 AM

manofchalk, thanks for the tip! I put that in my cart

boulbox, that is a really good deal on that case. It would definitely put me where I want to be budget wise. But I just love the aesthetic of the Corsair even if it is more money. I like the build you put together, esp how you were able to balance HDD and SSD. I'll get an SSD in a year when prices go down and when I'm pulling in a salary haha Thanks for the monitor tips- I will definitely look out for that!
m
0
l
!