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My First Gaming Rig (WIP) help wanted

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February 11, 2013 2:22:04 AM

Id like to know if any of these parts are bad or not fully compatible or if you guys have any suggestions for improvements, thanx. I'd also like to know how to set up crossfire (the whole link procedure and drivers) thanx again. Also I'm not sure if the second case fan is necessary because I think the case already comes with a fan. I'm kinda new to building custom Pc's just turned 18 lol.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($229.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H100 92.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Asus P8Z68-V PRO/GEN3 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 Memory ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Crucial M4 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($189.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 3GB Video Card (2-Way CrossFire) ($379.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 3GB Video Card (2-Way CrossFire) ($379.99 @ Newegg)
Sound Card: Asus Xonar D1 24-bit 192 KHz Sound Card ($89.00 @ Newegg)
Case: NZXT Phantom (White) ATX Full Tower Case ($119.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Thermaltake Black Widow 850W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($69.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($59.99 @ Newegg)
Case Fan: Enermax UCTVD12A 71.8 CFM 120mm Fan ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1845.89

More about : gaming rig wip wanted

February 11, 2013 2:33:14 AM

oh also I think I need a better sound card in it, i want one that supports 7.1 surround and that has all the right jacks for a 7.1 surround sound system, but i'm not even sure what 7.1 system to buy.
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February 11, 2013 2:44:36 AM

You don't need the soundcard, if you have a motherboard with a good onboard audio, you have a z68 board, i'd get the z77 board for ivybridge cpus, that one is a old model, also for gaming you don't need the i7 or the 16GB of ram, i'd get a better psu, the thermaltake one isn't good, change some stuff, also i added an aircooler, it's as good as the watercooler and without risks of leaks and it's cheaper.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($214.99 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Phanteks PH-TC12DX 68.5 CFM CPU Cooler ($65.66 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Asus P8Z77-V PRO ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($199.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: Patriot Intel Extreme Master, Limited Ed 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($47.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Crucial M4 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($189.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($74.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 3GB Video Card (2-Way CrossFire) ($379.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 3GB Video Card (2-Way CrossFire) ($379.99 @ Newegg)
Case: NZXT Phantom (White) ATX Full Tower Case ($119.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 850W 80 PLUS Silver Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($122.75 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-224BB DVD/CD Writer ($15.98 @ Outlet PC)
Case Fan: Enermax UCTVD12A 71.8 CFM 120mm Fan ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1815.29
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)


The phanteks cpu has several colors, for matching the motherboard and other stuff get the blue one : http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

The psu is actually $102.75 after mir, the ram in newegg 42$ after promo code.
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February 11, 2013 2:52:28 AM

Wow, thanx man. But what port of how would i hook up surround sound to the motherboard with the receiver?
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February 11, 2013 2:54:41 AM

thanx for that awesome fan and info about possible leaking. but do i need that second case fan for 16$ since the case itself comes with a fan?
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Best solution

February 11, 2013 3:19:22 AM

It's not necessary the fan, it's just optional, since you had in the list, i just listed.
You need to connect the grey(middle),black(rear),green(front),orange(front center/subwoofer).
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February 11, 2013 3:20:03 AM

Best answer selected by James Musacchio.
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February 11, 2013 3:21:28 AM

djangoringo said:
It's not necessary the fan, it's just optional, since you had in the list, i just listed.
You need to connect the grey(middle),black(rear),green(front),orange(front center/subwoofer).


thanks a ton again. I didn't know exactly what went where. also thanx for the clarification on the fan. I looked at some of the higher end asus mother boards and they talk about having great on board audio. Do you know which board has the best onboard audio? also i would mind more PCI slots but the audio is a bigger concern.
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February 11, 2013 3:30:50 AM

Is the audio system a good one ?
It has to be really good to take advantage of the sound card.
If it's just get the sound card you had, there's no point in getting the rog boards for the sound, it will be even more expensive than a z77 + soundcard.
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February 11, 2013 3:35:09 AM

djangoringo said:
Is the audio system a good one ?
It has to be really good to take advantage of the sound card.
If it's just get the sound card you had, there's no point in getting the rog boards for the sound, it will be even more expensive than a z77 + soundcard.


i'll be getting some onkyo 7.1 one for like 300-500ish so idk if thats good or not lol.
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February 11, 2013 3:37:12 AM

Just a word of caution, water coolers can leak, air coolers can't.
This Noctua NH-D14 can cool almost as good as those predone water coolers.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I have seen one of those Phantoms in person and it is one massive case, but it seems more of a style case instead of function based case.
If you aren't attached to that case try the following
Rosewill Thor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

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

or the white CM Stryker(same as above except it is white and has a window)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Paul of Newegg.com also just did a Crossfire tutorial on his youtube. Basically you download the most up-to-date Amd drivers for the cards and open them and enable crossfire by clicking on a box.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZphJB5cUNKE

Get a Seasonic PSU, I have one and it is rock solid. And the modular cables are really nice. BTW I did the power calculation for you with Newegg's calculator it says get a PSU bigger than 906W!!! 850W won't do.

try this Seasonic 1,050W PSU
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Also more storage space would be a good idea. How about a 1tb Seagate Barracuda?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Get this low profile Ram from Corsair so you do not have to worry about ram heatsinks getting in the way of CPU coolers. Ram heatsinks are only for show and don't serve any real function until you get to way higher speeds.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
or this
It is the same thing, except denser 8gb sticks and it is cheaper.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Last thought is if you want a cool system fill ALL of the case fan slots with the biggest fans appropriate. Cooler systems last longer and are more stable.

Hope this helps.

Darn almost forgot to tell you to check prices with another parts seller. NCIX
http://us.ncix.com/
They are a Canadian company and have a US office now and ship International. Sometimes they have better prices on some things, one example would be case fans here are way cheaper than the same exact fans at Newegg.
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February 11, 2013 3:47:40 AM

That's wrong, a quality psu with 850W will do for two 7950, he doesn't need 1000W.
http://tpucdn.com/reviews/ASUS/HD_7970_CrossFire/images...

The xfx is modular and made by seasonic.
He doesn't need 16GB of ram, it's just a waste.
The phanteks PH-TC12DX has clearance for tall heatsinks like the patriot ram.
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February 11, 2013 3:58:03 AM

ill do more research on the psu and will probably go without the liquid cooling but what i dont understand is how are there built in USB ports on the case if the if motherboard already has them?
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February 11, 2013 4:00:25 AM

and yeah honestly the phantom case is just to sexy to pass up but i seriously dont get how there are are already usb ports on cases when the mother board has them right on it :/ 
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February 11, 2013 4:01:37 AM

like do i connect the mother boards ports to the case's ports?
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February 11, 2013 4:04:20 AM

See the manual of the motherboard.
The motherboard has usb 3.0 ports in the back, any has, some have more than two, the gigabyte has four(in case you did check the motherboard link) the asus has also four.
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February 11, 2013 10:02:15 PM

djangoringo said:
See the manual of the motherboard.
The motherboard has usb 3.0 ports in the back, any has, some have more than two, the gigabyte has four(in case you did check the motherboard link) the asus has also four.


thanx but now im wondering if i should wait for the radeon 8000 series and the gtx 700 series since they will be out within 2
months probably.
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February 11, 2013 10:07:19 PM

They won't be coming so soon, specially the radeon 8000 series : http://www.techpowerup.com/180009/No-New-GPUs-from-AMD-...

There's the geforce Titan coming, which by the rumors will be almost as good as a 690 gtx, but with just a single gpu on the pcb, with a price point within 700-900$(rumors), it's to be said that it will come by the end of this month, i don't know if you want to wait for a review of it, and see if it has a decent good value price/performance, and if it really is better as a single card than two 670 gtx.
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February 12, 2013 1:05:12 AM

djangoringo said:
They won't be coming so soon, specially the radeon 8000 series : http://www.techpowerup.com/180009/No-New-GPUs-from-AMD-...

There's the geforce Titan coming, which by the rumors will be almost as good as a 690 gtx, but with just a single gpu on the pcb, with a price point within 700-900$(rumors), it's to be said that it will come by the end of this month, i don't know if you want to wait for a review of it, and see if it has a decent good value price/performance, and if it really is better as a single card than two 670 gtx.


oh thanx, so do you think it's still a good idea to got for the 7970's because their price vs performance is a really good ratio still? or should i consider two different cards?
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February 12, 2013 1:09:27 AM

djangoringo said:
They won't be coming so soon, specially the radeon 8000 series : http://www.techpowerup.com/180009/No-New-GPUs-from-AMD-...

There's the geforce Titan coming, which by the rumors will be almost as good as a 690 gtx, but with just a single gpu on the pcb, with a price point within 700-900$(rumors), it's to be said that it will come by the end of this month, i don't know if you want to wait for a review of it, and see if it has a decent good value price/performance, and if it really is better as a single card than two 670 gtx.


I also heard from a friend that the ram I choose isnt fully usable in windows 7. he said that the fastest that windows 7 actually capable of fully using is 1600 and nothing above or something.
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February 12, 2013 1:09:36 AM

Yes, my mistake, i thought it was two 670 gtx, from another thread, 7970 CF is a good option to go with, for a dual gpu setup, specially with the games offered by amd never settle.
It's up to you if you want to wait for a review of the geforce titan or get the two 7970 now.
The patriot ram is 1600 mhz and with 1.5v it's fine for ivybridge cpus.
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February 12, 2013 1:12:52 AM

djangoringo said:
Yes, my mistake, i thought it was two 670 gtx, from another thread, 7970 CF is a good option to go with, for a dual gpu setup, specially with the games offered by amd never settle.
It's up to you if you want to wait for a review of the geforce titan or get the two 7970 now.
The patriot ram is 1600 mhz and with 1.5v it's fine for ivybridge cpus.


is the titan a card from their 700 series?
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February 12, 2013 1:16:26 AM

djangoringo said:
Yes, my mistake, i thought it was two 670 gtx, from another thread, 7970 CF is a good option to go with, for a dual gpu setup, specially with the games offered by amd never settle.
It's up to you if you want to wait for a review of the geforce titan or get the two 7970 now.
The patriot ram is 1600 mhz and with 1.5v it's fine for ivybridge cpus.


wow, i looked up the titan and it seems amazing but its like $900 and both of 7970's together aren't even that that expensive.
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February 12, 2013 1:19:10 AM

djangoringo said:
Yes, my mistake, i thought it was two 670 gtx, from another thread, 7970 CF is a good option to go with, for a dual gpu setup, specially with the games offered by amd never settle.
It's up to you if you want to wait for a review of the geforce titan or get the two 7970 now.
The patriot ram is 1600 mhz and with 1.5v it's fine for ivybridge cpus.


I just remembered, do i need to buy a wireless networking card for the motherboard or does one come integrated?
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February 12, 2013 1:21:18 AM

djangoringo said:
It appears to be based on the Tesla K20.
http://www.tomshardware.com/news/GeForce-Titan-leak-lau...

Yes, two 7970 might be cheaper, like i said, it's up to you if you want to wait for a review of it or not.


yeah idk about the gpu, i think ill wait a month and see what amd says after the titan releases. also, what ram should i be getting? is 2133 speed a good idea?
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February 12, 2013 1:25:16 AM

The asus pro has wifi, it might not be the best, but it has.
Or get a usb or pcie wireless adapter, in that case, you might get the gigabyte, because it's cheaper.
Just stay with 8GB dual channel rated at 1600 mhz, you'll not notice any performance difference.
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February 12, 2013 1:28:25 AM

djangoringo said:
The asus pro has wifi, it might not be the best, but it has.
Or get a usb or pcie wireless adapter, in that case, you might get the gigabyte, because it's cheaper.
Just stay with 8GB dual channel rated at 1600 mhz, you'll not notice any performance difference.


but wouldnt games load faster from the SSD to the 2133 speed ram especially because the processor is super fast? or will 1600 speed ram not slow down load times?
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February 12, 2013 1:30:43 AM

djangoringo said:
The asus pro has wifi, it might not be the best, but it has.
Or get a usb or pcie wireless adapter, in that case, you might get the gigabyte, because it's cheaper.
Just stay with 8GB dual channel rated at 1600 mhz, you'll not notice any performance difference.


would adding this wireless card be any better than what the mother board comes with? its a PCI one http://pcpartpicker.com/part/rosewill-wireless-network-...

I'd also like to know which of the three is the best fan.
http://pcpartpicker.com/part/cooler-master-cpu-cooler-r...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://pcpartpicker.com/part/cooler-master-cpu-cooler-r...
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February 12, 2013 2:00:31 AM

The hyper 212 evo is cheap, and efficient, but if you want a better air cooler get the noctua.
The phanteks PH-TC12DX is a good cooler for the price, it has more clearance for ram with tall heat spreaders(not all of them), it matches the color style of the asus or gigabyte board and other stuff.
Review here : http://www.overclockersclub.com/reviews/phanteks_phtc12...
Nope, it will be the same as the asus wifi integrated.
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February 12, 2013 2:05:35 AM

I vote for the Noctua cpu cooler, it has better mounting hardware than the CM.
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February 12, 2013 2:11:13 AM

djangoringo said:
The hyper 212 evo is cheap, and efficient, but if you want a better air cooler get the noctua.
The phanteks PH-TC12DX is a good cooler for the price, it has more clearance for ram with tall heat spreaders(not all of them), it matches the color style of the asus or gigabyte board and other stuff.
Review here : http://www.overclockersclub.com/reviews/phanteks_phtc12...
Nope, it will be the same as the asus wifi integrated.


so would the noctua be the best?
also I'm not sure which mother board to get. I want one with good wireless conductivity and Bluetooth. either this http://pcpartpicker.com/part/asus-motherboard-maximusvf... or this http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I think I want the cheaper one because it has another audio port 6 instead of 5. I'm looking to get good sound quality but i might just get a sound card.
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February 12, 2013 2:14:48 AM

fixer762 said:
I vote for the Noctua cpu cooler, it has better mounting hardware than the CM.


awesome, thanx. I'll go with that plus it had two fans and a a great design for cooling it seems.
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February 12, 2013 2:22:45 AM

The noctua is slightly better than the phanteks, but not by much, and the phanteks color matches the rest, it also has more clearance, either way, both are good coolers.
You don't need the pro/thunderbolt, unless you have a device that needs the thunderbolt port.
The maximus V is expensive, since you'll have a sound card, it almost defeats any utility of the maximus vs the pro.
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February 12, 2013 2:31:21 AM

djangoringo said:
The noctua is slightly better than the phanteks, but not by much, and the phanteks color matches the rest, it also has more clearance, either way, both are good coolers.
You don't need the pro/thunderbolt, unless you have a device that needs the thunderbolt port.
The maximus V is expensive, since you'll have a sound card, it almost defeats any utility of the maximus vs the pro.


in that case, what would the be the best sound card for surround sound 7.1? and what motherboard should i go with then?
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February 12, 2013 2:34:27 AM

djangoringo said:
The noctua is slightly better than the phanteks, but not by much, and the phanteks color matches the rest, it also has more clearance, either way, both are good coolers.
You don't need the pro/thunderbolt, unless you have a device that needs the thunderbolt port.
The maximus V is expensive, since you'll have a sound card, it almost defeats any utility of the maximus vs the pro.


is there anything i should still change?


CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($229.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler ($80.52 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Asus P8Z77-V PRO ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($199.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 Memory ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Crucial M4 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($189.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 3GB Video Card (2-Way CrossFire) ($379.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 3GB Video Card (2-Way CrossFire) ($379.99 @ Newegg)
Case: NZXT Phantom (White) ATX Full Tower Case ($119.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Corsair Professional Gold 850W 80 PLUS Gold Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($144.49 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($59.99 @ Newegg)
Monitor: Asus VG248QE 144Hz 24.0" Monitor ($269.89 @ Adorama)
Keyboard: Razer BlackWidow Ultimate Wired Gaming Keyboard ($79.99 @ Amazon)
Total: $2244.81
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February 12, 2013 2:46:42 AM

Do you plan to do 3D gaming ? if it's yes, then switch for nvidia cards, like the 670 GTX gigabyte windforce 3x, if not, just stay with the 7970 CF, i'm saying this because i saw a 3D monitor in the list.
You don't need 16 GB of ram, and at 2133 mhz, it's just too expensive, get a hdd just for backup.
Make sure that you'll need the bluray drive, otherwise it's just a waste, if you're not planning to put in there any bluray disc.
This keyboard is cheaper : http://pcpartpicker.com/part/cooler-master-keyboard-sgk...
Yes, stay with that motherboard, if you want a sound card : http://pcpartpicker.com/part/asus-sound-card-xonard1

For that 7.1 system.
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February 12, 2013 2:52:51 AM

I'm not planning on doing 3d Gaming. I chose that monitor because its 144hz and has great contrast and resolution. and price. Do you know of any better monitors like that for a similar price?

but as for the keyboard, I'm a razor fanatic lol so I'm really just paying for the style :D 
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February 12, 2013 2:55:06 AM

djangoringo said:
Do you plan to do 3D gaming ? if it's yes, then switch for nvidia cards, like the 670 GTX gigabyte windforce 3x, if not, just stay with the 7970 CF, i'm saying this because i saw a 3D monitor in the list.
You don't need 16 GB of ram, and at 2133 mhz, it's just too expensive, get a hdd just for backup.
Make sure that you'll need the bluray drive, otherwise it's just a waste, if you're not planning to put in there any bluray disc.
This keyboard is cheaper : http://pcpartpicker.com/part/cooler-master-keyboard-sgk...
Yes, stay with that motherboard, if you want a sound card : http://pcpartpicker.com/part/asus-sound-card-xonard1

For that 7.1 system.


Also, I had 5.5 TB of external storage so no additional storage is really necessary. and 100$ for 16gb of fast ram doesn't seem that expensive.
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February 12, 2013 2:59:38 AM

Well, unless you planning to add a ram disk, there's no use for it, games don't use more than 8GB, the performance that you'll have with 2133 is negligible.
The monitor you have is a good one, stay with it.
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February 12, 2013 3:07:20 AM

djangoringo said:
Well, unless you planning to add a ram disk, there's no use for it, games don't use more than 8GB, the performance that you'll have with 2133 is negligible.
The monitor you have is a good one, stay with it.


omg you're completely right about games only using 8 gb of ram. some games dont even use that much ram like fallout 3.

which sound card should i go with?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

and does it matter if it's a PCI or PCI express card?
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February 12, 2013 3:09:37 AM

djangoringo said:
Well, unless you planning to add a ram disk, there's no use for it, games don't use more than 8GB, the performance that you'll have with 2133 is negligible.
The monitor you have is a good one, stay with it.


also I'm worried that the PSU might not have enough watts and that the mother board doesn't have enough connectors for all of the case's fans.
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February 12, 2013 3:16:18 AM

djangoringo said:
No, it doesn't matter, i'd get the first sound card that you had : http://pcpartpicker.com/part/asus-sound-card-xonard1


so tell me about ram, it wont let me select faster ram than 2133 even though the motherboard supports it...

i think it would be a good idea to buy 8bg sticks of ram since the motherboard supports up to 32 gb and i will upgrade in the future.

so whats good for ram?
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February 12, 2013 3:24:38 AM

djangoringo said:
Any dual channel kit ram with 8GB(2x4GB) rated at 1600 mhz and with 1.5v will do.
This one matches the colors of the rest of the build : http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Good luck with your build.


would one stick of 8gb 1600 speed ram be bad instead of having two 4gb ones?
for some reason i cant find any of the ripjaw series on PCpartpicker
edit... its F3-12800CL8D found it lol
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February 12, 2013 3:32:12 AM

To ensure your Ram will fit under your Noctua cpu Cooler here are some Noctua links.
http://www.noctua.at/main.php?show=faqs&step=2&products...

G.skill Ram Specs and height.
http://www.gskill.com/products.php?index=397

You have 44mm under the Noctua Cooler and the G.Skill Ripjaws X Series Ram is 40mm tall so it should fit.
or

http://www.gskill.com/products.php?index=491
If you want more Ram clearance get the G. Skill Ares (low profile ram 33mm tall)

For better cooling add more case fans. Your case already comes with a few fans.
http://www.nzxt.com/new/products/crafted_series/phantom

Add another NZXT 200mm Fan
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
and a 140mm intake fan in the front, I would recommend another Noctua product a
Noctua NF-P14 FLX 140mm fan, it is a bit expensive at about $28, but it is a really good fan.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Or you could just pick up a NZXT 140mm fan for a little less.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Lastly have you considered a keyboard that lights up? Same make and model with backlighting.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Fine Neweggs power calculator is wrong, making me wrong.
The eXtreme Power Supply Calculator Lite I used says 587W recommended, but that is with no overclocking and with all fans installed.

http://extreme.outervision.com/PSUEngine

Other than that it sounds like you are ready to order some parts. Hope this helps.
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