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$1500 Gaming PC build (maybe more). First Timer

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February 11, 2013 6:34:31 AM

Approximate Purchase Date: Would like to get this up and running within the month but depending on what i learn here i am willing to change that.

Budget Range: $1500 was my limit but i can push it up to $2000 + a bit if necassery.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming mainly. Movies and Music also.

Are you buying a monitor: Not straight away. Once the PC is up and running ill research and invest in a nice moniter. So suggestions for the future are more than welcome.

Parts to Upgrade: Seeing as this is a new build from ground up there are none but i am thinking of going for a single beastly GPU with the option to have 2 later.

Do you need to buy OS: Yes. Thinking Windows 7 as i have read that it is slightly better at gaming. Once again im all ears (or eyes) to your suggestions.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg is the only place ive really looked. Slightly overwhelmed at the amount of stores with discounts, rebates etc so i just picked one.

Location: Australia, South Australia, Adelaide

Parts Preferences: Im fairly certain ill stick with the pricier but supposedly better INTEL and NVIDIA brands. This is my baby and it must make me proud.

Overclocking: Hoping to not have to worry about this to begin with but i also want to be able to squeeze more out if needed. The thing is i have no idea how to (YET) and to be honest building my first PC is enough to learn for now.

SLI or Crossfire: Yes but only for future upgrades. I figure a better single graphics card with the option to put another in later (when the price drops) is more than likely going to extend my PC's life span than purchasing 2 straight away.

Your Monitor Resolution: At the moment i am using an LG Flatron W1942T, its has a 60hz refresh rate and 1440 X 900 resolution BUT i will be upgrading after my build as i want a wider screen that will compliment my new PC.

Additional Comments:
I'm upgrading because im getting into PC gaming alot more now and my 5yr old PC is just not doing the job. I want to play ARMA 2/3, CRYSIS 3, and maybe a few RTS games. I really want good frame rates and high settings for a couple of years so ive compiled a list of some top range hardware but it goes above what i can justify spending on a gaming PC. Although having "the best" is pretty attractive to me.

OK, i think i've covered everything and if i havent let me know.

Parts i fairly quickly looked at on Newegg. Unfortunatly i found these prior to reading that i should have links so hopefully that isnt an issue.

PROCESSOR
Intel Core i7-3930K Sandy Bridge-E 3.2GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 2011 130W Six-Core Desktop Processor BX80619i73930K
$570

CASE
1x Rosewill BLACKHAWK-ULTRA Gaming Super Tower Computer Case, support up to HPTX, come with Eight Fans,Top HDD docking (available in a deal with i7 3930l)
$714 with i7 so about $144

MOTHERBOARD
ASUS Sabertooth X79 LGA 2011 Intel X79 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
$330

RAM STICKS
G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1866 (PC3 14900) Desktop Memory Model F3-14900CL9Q-16GBXL $110

GRAPHICS CARD
EVGA 04G-P4-3673-KR GeForce GTX 670 FTW+ 4GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
$440
(sli ready as i might want two in the future)
OR
EVGA 04G-P4-3687-KR GeForce GTX 680 FTW+ w/Backplate 4GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
$560

POWER SUPPLY
CORSAIR AX1200i 1200W Digital ATX12V v2.31 and EPS 2.92 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS PLATINUM Certified Full Modular Active PFC Power Supply
$330

SSD
SAMSUNG 840 Series MZ-7TD250BW 2.5" 250GB SATA III Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
$180

HDD
Seagate Barracuda ST2000DM001 2TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
$105

OPTICAL DRIVE
I would like a DVD burner and Blu-Ray player.

SOUND CARD
I also have no idea about Sound cards so if someone can suggest a good one that supports 5.1 or 7.1 (headsets seem to be 7.1). Do i need HDMI/Optical Drives and do they have sound cards with Bluetooth as i have some TurtleBeach PX5's that might be nice to use. (Broke my G35's ear muff off :(  )


TOTAL $2209 without the optical drive and sound card so a little pricey.
Is it worth the money for me if all i want is a gaming PC that will play current games at thier best and future games (at least the next 2 years) at a pretty sexy level of graphics settings. I understand there is no future proofing but i figure if i jump ahead a bit then its money well spent for a longer lifespan, however im no expert (barely a novice) so your wisdom and knowledge will help greatly.

Thanks for taking the time to read my thread and giving any opinions/advice


More about : 1500 gaming build timer

February 11, 2013 7:09:05 AM

Thnaks for the quick reply!
That does seem nice, especially for $1000 cheaper. Could get my new moniter at the same time with this build.

No i dont need SLI but it seemed to my logic that if i bought it with the SLI capable GPU then i would have more upgrade option in the future. I also read that ATI suffers more micro stutter and the driver support is pretty average.
From what i can tell this would be a great PC now but how will it go in a year or two?
i guess its all going to be an improvement on this over sized potato powered clock im using now.

Im constantly reading other peoples builds and trying to get an idea of what i want. So you think what i had in mind is unnecessary overkill?
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February 11, 2013 2:35:58 PM

That build is alright, though I would go with faster RAM (2133+) as it will bottleneck the video/process a little bit, and maybe 16GB to futureproof it a bit, especially with such low prices at the moment.
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February 11, 2013 2:39:27 PM

As you move to a 2560x1440 or 1600 resolution one 670 won't be enough. you will have to SLI. However at high resolutions you don't have to use all the eye candies so it is playable ...unless you can't live.
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a b 4 Gaming
February 11, 2013 2:59:07 PM

icemunk said:
That build is alright, though I would go with faster RAM (2133+) as it will bottleneck the video/process a little bit, and maybe 16GB to futureproof it a bit, especially with such low prices at the moment.


Not true. There will be little to no bottleneck with anything less than 1600. 16GB RAM is way overkill for gaming.

This is what I would suggest with the KOREA monitor that Noob12 suggested.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($214.99 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler ($80.52 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: MSI Z77A-GD55 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($132.86 @ Newegg)
Memory: Crucial Ballistix 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($48.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($102.73 @ Amazon)
Storage: Plextor M5S Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($94.99 @ Microcenter)
Video Card: Galaxy GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card (2-Way SLI) ($359.99 @ TigerDirect)
Video Card: Galaxy GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card (2-Way SLI) ($359.99 @ TigerDirect)
Case: Corsair 400R ATX Mid Tower Case ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: XFX ProSeries 850W 80 PLUS Silver Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($122.75 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: Asus BC-12B1ST/BLK/B/AS Blu-Ray Reader, DVD/CD Writer ($56.23 @ Amazon)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($89.98 @ Outlet PC)
Other: KOREA 27" LED PC MONITOR 2560X1440 WQHD 16:9 WIDE SCREEN LG IPS PANEL ($378.90)
Total: $2132.91
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-02-11 11:57 EST-0500)
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February 11, 2013 6:12:03 PM

OK well appreciate all the help.
Should I have a 1000w PSU just to be safe?

Looks like I'll step away from the i7 for now at least.
I guess I want to be able to use SLI so I'll just get the 2 670's. I've read so much 670 v 680 and as far as I can tell may as well stick with 670.

I'll also go with the faster ram just because I can and it wont hurt.

Once again I really do thank everyone for their input its all been very helpful.
Now to take the plunge and buy the gear and put it together.

When I get home tonight I'll post what I'm going to be using.
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February 12, 2013 5:05:26 AM

hey cbal1311, you seem to know what your talking about.

I do want the 2133 ram as it really isnt much more expensive but i read that its actually an overclocked ram stick and has to be set in the bios to get the 2133mhz speed. that said i would think if i bought the 2133mhz corsair vengeance ram and it runs at 1600hz would it be more stable as its actually capable of more?
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February 13, 2013 8:01:38 AM


Now my friend has been telling me that SLI/CrossFire setups can be worse than having a better single card. I was thinking either a GTX 680 SLI ready or 7970 CrossFire ready. And just useing one, then i can get the other when i need it and for cheaper. OR do i go with 2 670's. UGH! decisions.
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February 13, 2013 9:33:48 AM

This is what i have come up with, i think all of these components work together and should serve as a pretty sweet rig. Leave your comments and let me know what you think, especially with GPU choice.

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Microcenter)

CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler ($80.52 @ Amazon)

MotherBoard: : MSI Z77A-GD55 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($132.86 @ Newegg)

Ram: CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ16GX3M4A1600C9 ($99.99 @ newegg.com)

Storage: SAMSUNG 840 Series MZ-7TD250BW 2.5" 250GB SATA III Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) ($189.99 @ newegg.com)

Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($102.73 @ Amazon)

Video Card: undecided, read my last post and help

Case: Corsair: CM Storm Enforcer - Gaming Mid Tower Computer Case with USB 3.0 Ports (SGC-1000-KWN1)

Case Fan: Is this necessary? looked for the optional side fan with this case but cant find it!

PSU: XFX ProSeries 850W 80 PLUS Silver Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($122.75 @ Amazon)
( was told 100ow is the safest option in case of when i overclock. true/false?)

Optical Drive: Asus BC-12B1ST/BLK/B/AS Blu-Ray Reader, DVD/CD Writer ($56.23 @ Amazon)

OS: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($89.98 @ Outlet PC)

Also. the more i read the more i think i will want to overclock. This should be fine with what i have? apart from cooling, i can always add that in even if a new case is needed for water cooling or whatever
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a b 4 Gaming
February 13, 2013 1:35:38 PM

You could look into this case.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811124144

Plenty of cooling options on it and if you plan to do any type of overclocking on the GPU, I recommend a side air duct to get fresh air to the GPU.

2 670's in SLI beats a 690 right now, so go with that route. The 680 is just a bit better than the 670 and it is like $100 more, so I wouldn't go with the 680. Personally, the 7970 is my choice overall.
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February 13, 2013 5:48:43 PM

Thanks for spoon feeding me on this mate.
Always liked the look of the 7970 so im getting that but Crossfire ready as it might choke on newer games at high res, and crossfire ensures when the price comes down i can chuck another one in and get that extra power.

Cheers for the help
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February 13, 2013 5:50:01 PM

Best answer selected by hsv7ltr.
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February 14, 2013 6:24:24 PM

I forgot sound card! do i need one?
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a b 4 Gaming
February 14, 2013 7:09:04 PM

Nope. Integrated into the motherboad. You are good to go. :D 
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February 17, 2013 4:11:14 AM

Actually,

You might want to revise your build, since the parts are selected for the U.S. and you are based in Australia which will raise the final ticket by a few hundred dollars.

Some parts may not be available from pcpartpicker, you might want to check out more comprehensive vendors such as

www.umart.com.au

cheers,
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February 17, 2013 6:43:03 AM

Yea i face palmed so hard and nearly cried. I had all sorts of free stuff too then i realised :( 
Ive found most things at fairly competative prices, just now theyre saying ii should go with watercooling.
ugh! i will never get this thing together so im just going for it and paying a little extra.
thanks for the link though
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February 17, 2013 10:03:32 PM

Watercooling is more flash than bran..

I can help you if you want to revisit your build.
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February 18, 2013 11:48:49 PM

Cheers for the offer but I'm fairly happy with what I've picked.
The few concerns I have are:
The d14 cooler has good reviews but someone. Ut aid the weight on the mobo can cause damage so I've been convinced a thermaltake water 2.0 or H100i is the go but it means I need a case that has the appropriate fan slots or whatever.

Secondly I can't find that enermax fulmo advance tower so to get the same look m going for its big brother the enermax GT Big Tower.

Last but not least is 900w PSU enough.

I'm buying most of the gear from MSY and paying them $70 to build it. I'll try my hand at building with a cheaper PC. Especially after looking at thermal paste lol.
Also constantly doubting the AMD but its cheaper so I'm going for it over the 680 as whoever I ask it basically comes down to your own experience with each brand. Of which I have none.
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February 19, 2013 12:15:08 AM

Oh and I really want the gigabyte GHz edition 7970 but I have to order it from another city. Is it worth it just for an overclocked GPU? Plus its $70 more than the stock one. Worth it or not? Hmmmm
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a b 4 Gaming
February 19, 2013 1:29:46 AM

hsv7ltr said:
Oh and I really want the gigabyte GHz edition 7970 but I have to order it from another city. Is it worth it just for an overclocked GPU? Plus its $70 more than the stock one. Worth it or not? Hmmmm


No need. You can overclock it yourself, easily.
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February 20, 2013 3:53:46 AM

So I am guessing you are looking for a case ~$100AU ?
NZXT Phantom 410 Mid Tower Case Black NO PSU is going for $125AU

should be good for water cooling and keeping temps down - comes in different colors.

Also see:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/346748-28-best-case-w...

Concerning power supply - you can use a power supply calculator,
http://www.extreme.outervision.com/psucalculatorlite.js...

900W sounds more than plenty, probably may need to tone down to 850.

You building the machine is a fun experience and it is not hard, I understand the fear --- but come to the dark side :) 
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