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Sub $2000 Gaming/Blender System

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February 12, 2013 6:10:01 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: this week

Budget Range: <$2000 (current config stands at $1900 after tax and shipping)

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Blender, Internet, etc.

Are you buying a monitor: No

Parts to Upgrade: Full new system minus peripherals and PSU

Do you need to buy OS: No (running Windows 7 Home Premium, will need new license possibly)

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: ncix.com

Overclocking: Yes

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe eventually

Your Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

Additional Comments: PSU is my current Cooler Master 850w

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: My current system was built four and a half years ago around a Radeon 4870 X2. She's done beautifully but is now getting tired. She doesn't like Skyrim very much (could be the mods, lol). I'm building this system around the same philosophy as my last, and that is that it must be comparable to the next generation of consoles.

I haven't payed attention to hardware all that much recently, so I'm primarily concerned about making sure everything plays nice together. From the research I have done this looks pretty good. Posting here mostly to make sure no alarm bells go off and I haven't messed something up. :)  Here's what I'm currently thinking:

Motherboard - Asus 79X79

CPU - Intel Core i7 1930k

RAM - Corsair Vengence 16GB

Video Card - ASUS GeForce GTX 670 DirectCU II

SSD - Samsung 840 250GB

Cooling - Corsair Hydro H100

Case - Antec P280

Thanks for your responses!
February 12, 2013 6:23:46 PM

No point in going X79 on a gaming rig. Too much investment for almost no performance difference from Z77. Drop that to a 3570K and then go SLI with your GTX 670.

Here's what I would suggest:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($229.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler ($80.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UP4 TH ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($192.86 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($84.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: OCZ Vector Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($149.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card (2-Way SLI) ($369.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card (2-Way SLI) ($369.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Fractal Design Define R4 w/Window (Titanium Grey) ATX Mid Tower Case ($134.98 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($22.98 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1866.74
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-02-12 15:23 EST-0500)
February 12, 2013 6:34:22 PM

g-unit1111 said:
No point in going X79 on a gaming rig. Too much investment for almost no performance difference from Z77. Drop that to a 3570K and then go SLI with your GTX 670.

Here's what I would suggest:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($229.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler ($80.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UP4 TH ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($192.86 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($84.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: OCZ Vector Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($149.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card (2-Way SLI) ($369.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card (2-Way SLI) ($369.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Fractal Design Define R4 w/Window (Titanium Grey) ATX Mid Tower Case ($134.98 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($22.98 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1866.74
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-02-12 15:23 EST-0500)


This is a much better build than your initial build. An i5 will render blender just fine, you don't need a x79 3930k setup unless this rig makes you lots of money, and a 2k build without SLI is bad. I would make some changes above, in the process of linking from ncix, though. Are you in the US or Canada, trying to decide what ncix site to use>?
Related resources
February 12, 2013 6:35:26 PM

I have a configuration that might surely fulfill your desire and with 690 its like a 3way SLI 670


CPU: Intel Core i5-3570 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor $214.99

CPU Cooler: Corsair H100 92.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler $99.99

Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme9 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard $309.47

Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory $94.99

Storage: Intel 320 Series 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk $184.99

Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive $84.99

Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 690 4GB Video Card $1004.98

Case: NZXT Phantom 410 (Gunmetal/Black) ATX Mid Tower Case $109.98

Optical Drive: Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer $59.99

Total: $2147.37 approximately

And Yes it is much better then the next gen consoles
February 12, 2013 6:42:46 PM

sanilmahambre said:
I have a configuration that might surely fulfill your desire and with 690 its like a 3way SLI 670


CPU: Intel Core i5-3570 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor $214.99

CPU Cooler: Corsair H100 92.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler $99.99

Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme9 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard $309.47

Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory $94.99

Storage: Intel 320 Series 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk $184.99

Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive $84.99

Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 690 4GB Video Card $1004.98

Case: NZXT Phantom 410 (Gunmetal/Black) ATX Mid Tower Case $109.98

Optical Drive: Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer $59.99

Total: $2147.37 approximately

And Yes it is much better then the next gen consoles


310$ motherboard... With 1 video card... And a 690's performance is terrible when SLI 680 will outperform it, run cooler, and cost less. Comparing a 690 to SLI 670s is kind of silly but it might outperform some stock 670s, Maybe, I doubt it, but once overclocked, even the 670 SLI setup will outperform the 690. It seems you've taken the High-End Intel Build thread a little to seriously as the highest-rated build also had the misfortune of posting a 690 in it. And an Intel 320 series SSD is bad compared to nearly any other SSD on the marketplace. It will get outperformed by the Samsung 840 Pro, Plextor M5P, Corsair GTX Neutron, OCZ Vector/Vertex4/3. Intel SSD lost viability when Samsung/Corsair/Plextor entered the marketplace, this isn't 2006.

Here are some graphs of some stock SLI 670s. Source

February 12, 2013 6:54:08 PM

Praxeology said:
This is a much better build than your initial build. An i5 will render blender just fine, you don't need a x79 3930k setup unless this rig makes you lots of money, and a 2k build without SLI is bad. I would make some changes above, in the process of linking from ncix, though. Are you in the US or Canada, trying to decide what ncix site to use>?


I'm ordering from NCIX.ca

So are you staying away from the i7 (even a 3770k?) because of budget or...? The new gen consoles are rumored to be 8 core machines, so we can expect games to be optimized for many cores. What I'm concerned about is having to pull the motherboard/cpu/ram two years from now. Video cards are easy I don't mind that. Thanks for the input, you have me thinking!

Hence why I posted. :p 

I should note that I only need the parts I've listed. Hard drives and optical drives will carry over from my current system. So that saves some money. The case is an aesthetic decision, my love affair with Antec continues. If I could keep my Sonata and make it work with the H100 I would!
February 12, 2013 7:18:29 PM

thecraftyhippo said:
I'm ordering from NCIX.ca

So are you staying away from the i7 (even a 3770k?) because of budget or...? The new gen consoles are rumored to be 8 core machines, so we can expect games to be optimized for many cores. What I'm concerned about is having to pull the motherboard/cpu/ram two years from now. Video cards are easy I don't mind that. Thanks for the input, you have me thinking!

Hence why I posted. :p 

I should note that I only need the parts I've listed. Hard drives and optical drives will carry over from my current system. So that saves some money. The case is an aesthetic decision, my love affair with Antec continues. If I could keep my Sonata and make it work with the H100 I would!


The case makes me sad, with this budget we could go big with a really nice(Huge) case and slap on the h110(140mm radiator, fresh from CES2013, courtesy of corsair xD) but thats fine, it might even fit on the antec, I'll check. Case picks don't bother me. As far as consoles having 8 cores, that'd be a good boost for AMD as game engines get more core utilization, it is just rumor lol. Assuming it is true though, both the i5 and i7 have the same # of cores and performance per core. The only difference is the i7 comes with hyper-threading, which is utilized in some software, not games, that makes it the choice for people who use rendering software(For their job, ie make money on it to make the feature worth it). With that said even if the next gen console comes with 8core amd processors, hyper-threading still isn't used in games so the i5 would still be the best pick right now, I won't bother arguing for a 8350 but the argument could be made xD since you brought up the next gen console idea. I thought you were from CA, so I will set you up the best build for the money on the CAnnxic website. Just letting you know the budget of 2k is huge so we can do a lot. I personally would go SLI 660Ti and pocket the rest of the money over sli 670 or 680s which can easily fit in the budget. I'll set up 3 builds for you just to give you some options.
February 12, 2013 7:32:25 PM

Well, recommend a case. I'm not one for flashy lights and computer that scream 'look at me!', however. You've already talked me out of the 3930k, lol.

Thanks for your help!
February 12, 2013 7:38:08 PM

thecraftyhippo said:
I'm ordering from NCIX.ca

So are you staying away from the i7 (even a 3770k?) because of budget or...? The new gen consoles are rumored to be 8 core machines, so we can expect games to be optimized for many cores. What I'm concerned about is having to pull the motherboard/cpu/ram two years from now. Video cards are easy I don't mind that. Thanks for the input, you have me thinking!

Hence why I posted. :p 

I should note that I only need the parts I've listed. Hard drives and optical drives will carry over from my current system. So that saves some money. The case is an aesthetic decision, my love affair with Antec continues. If I could keep my Sonata and make it work with the H100 I would!


Even though the next generation consoles are going to be using 8 core CPUs, etc - that many cores is really wasted unless you're playing some killer strategy games where multiple units are involved, like Civ V or Diablo III. Most first and third person games will use two cores at the most.

Where it really matters is the GPU.

Quote:
I thought you were from CA, so I will set you up the best build for the money on the CAnnxic website. Just letting you know the budget of 2k is huge so we can do a lot. I personally would go SLI 660Ti and pocket the rest of the money over sli 670 or 680s which can easily fit in the budget. I'll set up 3 builds for you just to give you some options.


CA can mean Canada or California on this website depending on the user. :lol: 
February 12, 2013 7:43:32 PM

g-unit1111 said:
Even though the next generation consoles are going to be using 8 core CPUs, etc - that many cores is really wasted unless you're playing some killer strategy games where multiple units are involved, like Civ V or Diablo III. Most first and third person games will use two cores at the most.

Where it really matters is the GPU.

Quote:
I thought you were from CA, so I will set you up the best build for the money on the CAnnxic website. Just letting you know the budget of 2k is huge so we can do a lot. I personally would go SLI 660Ti and pocket the rest of the money over sli 670 or 680s which can easily fit in the budget. I'll set up 3 builds for you just to give you some options.


CA can mean Canada or California on this website depending on the user. :lol: 


Not for websites xD, when the address changes from .com to .ca that is what you want. It comes up as .com for him though I think. Anyway, I had a feeling he was CA because of the nxic preferred website, if he was US I woulda recommended newegg, and once he said CA then I know to use the proper address with the proper inventory/currency. I am such a wizard :sol: 

thecraftyhippo said:
Well, recommend a case. I'm not one for flashy lights and computer that scream 'look at me!', however. You've already talked me out of the 3930k, lol.

Thanks for your help!

I am going to give you everything, in the works, gib 30-60minutes
February 12, 2013 7:51:18 PM

Praxeology said:
Not for websites xD, when the address changes from .com to .ca that is what you want. It comes up as .com for him though I think. Anyway, I had a feeling he was CA because of the nxic preferred website, if he was US I woulda recommended newegg, and once he said CA then I know to use the proper address with the proper inventory/currency. I am such a wizard :sol: 


Newegg has an official Canadian distribution website: http://www.newegg.ca

And they also have official sites for China and Malaysia.
February 12, 2013 7:55:09 PM

g-unit1111 said:
Newegg has an official Canadian distribution website: http://www.newegg.ca

And they also have official sites for China and Malaysia.


Precisely. It goes to .ca for Canada/something else for China and Malaysia; That was the context of CA in the post, it only could mean Canada because of the web address context. :D  We are arguing yet we agree, I love teh forums :bounce: 
February 12, 2013 8:02:22 PM

The thing is if your buying this week your CPU will already be "old" news as intel is coming with some improvement in a few months that use a new socket type. Also the "current" gen Xbox and PS are arleady some what multi core with the PS, spu's (or whatever they are called) and the xbox I believe and Three cores yet still the console ports still run like crap due to crappy ports. I would say for the next 4-5 years you don't have anything to worry about maxing out a quadcore system assuming the game isn't coded badly.
February 12, 2013 8:45:56 PM

Alright here we go :bounce: 

Build 1:

Your Antec Case

PSU

Motherboard

CPU

CPU Cooler

RAM

GPU x2 This will be +60$ 3/13/13

SSD x2

Optical Drive

System Specs:

Intel Core i5 3570K
H100i Heatsink
SLI MSI 670s
Raid 0 128GB 840Pro(z77 boards retain trim support in raid 0, unlike z79; Another reason to avoid z79)
8GB Ram

Sub-Total Price:

$2,004, before taxes/shipping. This is way expensive because of the raided SSD/670s.

***

Build 2:

Highest Rated Case on Newegg; Its hard to find a case that isn't flashy so you might prefer the antec mid-tower.

PSU

Motherboard

CPU

CPU Cooler

RAMx2

GPU x2

SSD x2

Optical Drive

System Specs:

Intel Core i5 3570K
H100i Heatsink
SLI MSI 660Tis
Raid 0 128GB 840Pro(z77 boards retain trim support in raid 0, unlike z79; Another reason to avoid z79)
16GB Ram

Sub-Total Price:

$1984, before taxes/shipping. This is way expensive because of the raided SSD.

***

Build 3: Basically this will be me in a few months, that is building a comp for 2,000$; Coming out of Air Force Basic with 3k in my military account, I will want to spend 2k on a comp, 500 on a watch, and 500 for savings.

Best case money can buy

Corsair 1200 Platinum, Best psu to end all psus

Motherboard

CPU

H110 240mm

RAMx2

GPU x2

SSD x1

Optical Drive

System Specs:

Intel Core i5 3570K
H110 Heatsink
SLI MSI 660
128GB 840 Pro
Amazing case, Amazing PSU

Sub-Total Price:

$1961, before taxes/shipping. This is way expensive because of the case/psu. The benefit is having the nicest case/psu money can buy with 7 year warranties. As far as performance, I think SLI 660 is the best bang for the buck. SLI 670 will have +20 fps over SLI 660s. Take a look at their performance:

This is sli 670s but the resolution is too high. You'll have to take my word on it lol its about 20fps higher than SLI 660s


Anyway, all of these builds are great, but I never want to have the feeling of, should I get another case/psu again?, on my next build so I am going to bunker down and get what I want when the time goes.

670 graph source= http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/geforce-gtx-670-rev...

660 graph source= http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/geforce-gtx-660-gef...

Those 660 benchmarks were using the Intel Core i7-3960X (Sandy Bridge-E), 3.3 GHz, Six Cores, LGA 2011, 15 MB Shared L3 Cache, Hyper-Threading enabled, Overclocked to 4.2 GHz

Those 670 benchmarks were using the Intel Core i7-3960X (Sandy Bridge-E) 3.3 GHz at 4.2 GHz (42 * 100 MHz), LGA 2011, 15 MB Shared L3, Hyper-Threading enabled, Power-savings enabled

-Prax :sol: 

February 12, 2013 8:53:14 PM

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 612 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($45.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: Asus P8Z77-V LE PLUS ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($154.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($92.78 @ Amazon)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Black 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($157.99 @ Adorama)
Storage: Samsung 840 Series 250GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($176.99 @ Adorama)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition 3GB Video Card (2-Way CrossFire) ($429.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition 3GB Video Card (2-Way CrossFire) ($429.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Rosewill THOR V2-W ATX Full Tower Case ($120.00 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair Enthusiast 850W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($118.99 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($17.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1935.68
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)

This will tear up ANYTHING you throw at it...

EDIT: You will want a new PSU in general, unless your "current" one is new, improve longevity of the system.
February 12, 2013 9:12:56 PM

burritobob said:
CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 612 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($45.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: Asus P8Z77-V LE PLUS ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($154.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($92.78 @ Amazon)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Black 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($157.99 @ Adorama)
Storage: Samsung 840 Series 250GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($176.99 @ Adorama)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition 3GB Video Card (2-Way CrossFire) ($429.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition 3GB Video Card (2-Way CrossFire) ($429.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Rosewill THOR V2-W ATX Full Tower Case ($120.00 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair Enthusiast 850W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($118.99 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($17.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $1935.68
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)

This will tear up ANYTHING you throw at it...

EDIT: You will want a new PSU in general, unless your "current" one is new, improve longevity of the system.


He doesn't have access to our prices unfortunately. He has to use www.ncix.ca; Looking at your build, I don't like the SSD performance, with a 2k build you should have high-performance raid array; Motherboard is overpriced, the MSI g45/ASRock Extreme 4 are the only competitive boards. Not to mention that board has a 30% 1 star rating and a small number of buyers; He also doesn't need HDD apparently and if he did why go caviar blacks, there isn't a performance increase, and it costs more; Air cooling on a 2k build? And crossfire 7970 is way overpriced and will lose to 680s. Not to mention nvidia cards are way more optimized for in the gaming industry, and on a neutral game nvidia's driver updates are much faster/stable; Nvidia also handles micro-stuttering better, and games that use Physx(Planet Side 2 for a recent example) run really badly on AMD. Graph Source




I sifted through more benchmarks and it loses in every game except metro2033 at a high resolution,
February 12, 2013 10:36:08 PM

Thanks all for your suggestions. We've come along way since my first config. :p 

Based on the suggestions I've put this together (no links, everything is already linked in this thread).

CPU - Intel i5 3570k Unlocked
Motherboard - MSI Z77A-G45
GPUx2 - MSI GeForce GTX 670 PE
RAM - Corsair Vengence Blue 16gb
SSDx2 - Samsung 840 Pro 128gb
Cooling - Corsair H100i Hydro
Case - Antec P280
PSU - Cooler Master Silent Pro M850 (already have)

The cost of this setup is exactly the same as the cost of my original config! Fancy that!

Thoughts?
February 12, 2013 11:09:15 PM

thecraftyhippo said:
Thanks all for your suggestions. We've come along way since my first config. :p 

Based on the suggestions I've put this together (no links, everything is already linked in this thread).

CPU - Intel i5 3570k Unlocked
Motherboard - MSI Z77A-G45
GPUx2 - MSI GeForce GTX 670 PE
RAM - Corsair Vengence Blue 16gb
SSDx2 - Samsung 840 Pro 128gb
Cooling - Corsair H100i Hydro
Case - Antec P280
PSU - Cooler Master Silent Pro M850 (already have)

The cost of this setup is exactly the same as the cost of my original config! Fancy that!

Thoughts?


Perfect, go buy it, and quickly because those video cards shoot up 30$ a pop by midnight tonight.
Add some arctic silver 5 thermal paste while you're at it. I hope you OC that i5 to a minimum of 4.5Ghz, and crank those MSI core/mem frequencies up, because they want it. Corsair's new mice/keyboards/mouse pads are hitting the market if you are into beastly mechanical keyboards/awesome build quality mice/pads. Keep an eye on it because nothing completes a build more than that. Except case fans... nom nom, af120/140... If you are satisfied with your build/thread, select a best answer and close it up,

-Prax :hello: 
February 12, 2013 11:24:45 PM

Don't know why you wouldn't grab an i7 3770k on a $2000 build. Seems silly not to, even if the i5 is just as good in games. It's 1/10th of the budget (~$100 more for an i7) to increase the performance of your CPU by ~30%.

I'm personally not a fan of SLI, though, so take what I say with a grain of salt. Personally I'd just grab an LGA-1155 platform with an i7 3770k, 16GB of 1600MHz DDR3, and the best single graphics card I can buy (GTX680 or HD7970 GHz) and bank whatever extra money's leftover. (EDIT: I'd also grab a bigger SSD; ~500GB is easily doable at that budget.)

That is, unless you have a triple-monitor setup sitting around collecting dust. The SLI shouldn't make much noticeable difference unless you want to game at obscene resolutions.
February 12, 2013 11:26:51 PM

Praxeology said:
Perfect, go buy it, and quickly because those video cards shoot up 30$ a pop by midnight tonight.
Add some arctic silver 5 thermal paste while you're at it. I hope you OC that i5 to a minimum of 4.5Ghz, and crank those MSI core/mem frequencies up, because they want it. Corsair's new mice/keyboards/mouse pads are hitting the market if you are into beastly mechanical keyboards/awesome build quality mice/pads. Keep an eye on it because nothing completes a build more than that. Except case fans... nom nom, af120/140... If you are satisfied with your build/thread, select a best answer and close it up,

-Prax :hello: 


Your Gpu performance charts are old. The chart clearly shows that a 2way crosfire 7970 will beat a 3way SLI 680.
http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/2012-vga-gpgpu/01-3D...
February 12, 2013 11:30:54 PM

ikes9711 said:
Your Gpu performance charts are old. The chart clearly shows that a 2way crosfire 7970 will beat a 3way SLI 680.
http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/2012-vga-gpgpu/01-3D...


That is the dumbest thing I have ever seen. 3Dmark means nothing, any "benchmarking software," means nothing. Games are the only thing that matters and in games nvidia wipes the floor with AMD right now. Stop it :non:  And again, I am generalizing but this is basically true. To the OP the guy is saying the benchmarks I am showing you are old, and he is right they are 11 months old, its hard to find current ones that compare what I want, but the point still stands. Right now, with all the games in the benchmarks above, AMD and Nvidia should pretty much be equal. Unfortunately it took AMD 6-8 months to release drivers that didn't get smacked down by nvidia. Another words, AMD performance tanks on new games because of drivers, not hardware, as these benchmarks show; However, nvidia was running good 6-8months ago, and is still running just fine. Because AMD caught up finally on cataylst control center 13.1 doesn't phase me. Great, they aren't 20fps under anymore, they took 8 months to get equal.

TL;DR Nvidia is the best choice right now.
February 13, 2013 12:08:55 AM

Praxeology said:
He doesn't have access to our prices unfortunately. He has to use www.ncix.ca; Looking at your build, I don't like the SSD performance, with a 2k build you should have high-performance raid array; Motherboard is overpriced, the MSI g45/ASRock Extreme 4 are the only competitive boards. Not to mention that board has a 30% 1 star rating and a small number of buyers; He also doesn't need HDD apparently and if he did why go caviar blacks, there isn't a performance increase, and it costs more; Air cooling on a 2k build? And crossfire 7970 is way overpriced and will lose to 680s. Not to mention nvidia cards are way more optimized for in the gaming industry, and on a neutral game nvidia's driver updates are much faster/stable; Nvidia also handles micro-stuttering better, and games that use Physx(Planet Side 2 for a recent example) run really badly on AMD. Graph Source


I appreciate your effort to provide information, but for the sake of thoroughness, a few thoughts:

1.) SSD RAID arrays perform better than singular SSDs in benchmarks, but as a practical matter? A single SSD is lightning fast. But hey, if he wants max possible performance, that's fine.

2.) Your charts are from an article dated March, 2012. AMD's cards perform better now than they did then. I'm not going to get into a huge AMD versus nVidia brand-loyalty debate because it's a waste of time, but it's worth noting that your data isn't strictly accurate as of this moment.

3.) As above, if you're gonna spend $2000 on a rig, you might as well grab the best CPU available in your socket of choice (in this case, the i7 3770k). The ~30% performance increase from Hyperthreading might not make a noticeable difference in current games, but it seems silly to me not to grab up such a vast general-use upgrade when the price for it is negligible in the grand scheme.

4.) Do we have any idea at what resolution the OP plans to play games? If he mentioned that and I missed it, I apologize, but resolutions greater than 1080p aren't relevant for the vast majority of computer users. If the OP doesn't plan to play at greater-than-1080p resolutions, and as your charts show, a single GTX 680 or 7970 GHz will handle most any game just fine for the foreseeable future -- and it'll run cooler, cost a lot less, and introduce much less micro-stutter than any dual-card solution.

And it'll require less power. The point here isn't to lampoon the builds you've suggested; they're very good for what they are -- representative builds from the extreme, spare-no-expense, gaming-is-the-end-all-be-all perspective. If that's what the OP wants, then more power to him. If he's got an ultra-high-resolution monitor sitting around, then sure, go nuts with the high-end SLI.

But if not, then he's buying a whole lot of extra performance that he probably won't even notice until the hardware begins to age -- and at that point, he'd be better served by an i7 rig that he can just upgrade with a then-current GPU.
February 13, 2013 12:10:52 AM

I ages past I ran a GeForce 8800GT... which was electronic love. I then upgraded to a Radeon 4870 X2. Never again will I buy a Radeon and put up with their drivers.

Thanks all for your advice, the order has been put in. :p 

If I knew how to close the thread I would, lol.

Best solution

February 13, 2013 12:16:34 AM
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thecraftyhippo said:
I ages past I ran a GeForce 8800GT... which was electronic love. I then upgraded to a Radeon 4870 X2. Never again will I buy a Radeon and put up with their drivers.

Thanks all for your advice, the order has been put in. :p 

If I knew how to close the thread I would, lol.


Glad to hear it!

You have to select a best answer to close the thread.
February 13, 2013 12:21:21 AM

thecraftyhippo said:
I ages past I ran a GeForce 8800GT... which was electronic love. I then upgraded to a Radeon 4870 X2. Never again will I buy a Radeon and put up with their drivers.

Thanks all for your advice, the order has been put in. :p 

If I knew how to close the thread I would, lol.


I'd say that as a general matter, nvidia's drivers are better -- based on personal experience. But you have to be careful about making sweeping judgments based on personal experience. Nvidia released a driver a couple of years ago that screwed up the fan controller to the point where people were frying their GPUs. (see link)

Like most debates about brand loyalty, the bottom line is that every company occasionally tosses out a dud. Happily, that's fairly rare with established PC-component companies. If you want to get a snapshot of various components' reliability sorted by brand name, the following is an excellent resource:

http://www.behardware.com/articles/881-2/components-ret...

In any case, I'm sure you'll enjoy your new rig :) 
February 13, 2013 12:24:50 AM

Best answer selected by thecraftyhippo.
February 13, 2013 12:32:47 AM

Fulgurant said:
I appreciate your effort to provide information, but for the sake of thoroughness, a few thoughts:

1.) SSD RAID arrays perform better than singular SSDs in benchmarks, but as a practical matter? A single SSD is lightning fast. But hey, if he wants max possible performance, that's fine.

2.) Your charts are from an article dated March, 2012. AMD's cards perform better now than they did then. I'm not going to get into a huge AMD versus nVidia brand-loyalty debate because it's a waste of time, but it's worth noting that your data isn't strictly accurate as of this moment.

3.) As above, if you're gonna spend $2000 on a rig, you might as well grab the best CPU available in your socket of choice (in this case, the i7 3770k). The ~30% performance increase from Hyperthreading might not make a noticeable difference in current games, but it seems silly to me not to grab up such a vast general-use upgrade when the price for it is negligible in the grand scheme.

4.) Do we have any idea at what resolution the OP plans to play games? If he mentioned that and I missed it, I apologize, but resolutions greater than 1080p aren't relevant for the vast majority of computer users. If the OP doesn't plan to play at greater-than-1080p resolutions, and as your charts show, a single GTX 680 or 7970 GHz will handle most any game just fine for the foreseeable future -- and it'll run cooler, cost a lot less, and introduce much less micro-stutter than any dual-card solution.

And it'll require less power. The point here isn't to lampoon the builds you've suggested; they're very good for what they are -- representative builds from the extreme, spare-no-expense, gaming-is-the-end-all-be-all perspective. If that's what the OP wants, then more power to him. If he's got an ultra-high-resolution monitor sitting around, then sure, go nuts with the high-end SLI.

But if not, then he's buying a whole lot of extra performance that he probably won't even notice until the hardware begins to age -- and at that point, he'd be better served by an i7 rig that he can just upgrade with a then-current GPU.


1.) SSD speeds degrade overtime, quite substantially in 2-3 years, making a higher starting r/w speed more desirable. As far as a practical matter, spending 2k on a computer isn't exactly practical but you might have a point. On the same token, if 1 system with a single Samsung 840 pro was to install the Aion Client, an mmorpg 30GB in size, and a second system was to install the same game(Install, not download) the raid 0 setup would be done in half the time. Installed a 30GB program will take maybe a minute on the first system but 30 seconds on the second system. There is some value to be had in raid, + there is double the space. Its more a question on should I spend an extra 30 bucks over the 256GB SSD for a raid 0 array, or just get a single 256GB ssd and be content with half the performance. I say spend the 30 bucks and get 2 128s.

2.) Yes the charts are old and I am actually debating someone else in another thread about how AMD's 7970s are no longer behind in fps. However you and the other individual in the thread prove my point. It took AMD 6-10 months to get up to CCC 12.11(Major performance increases with minor increases in the previous versions) before it caught up to nvidia's performance on SOME benchmarks. Nvidia on the other hand was destroying AMD for 6-10 months, and nvidia owners experienced much smoother gameplay in those games the internet benchmark. Between that fact, and the gaming industry's constant leaning toward nvidia optimization for new games to be released, makes it hard-pressed for anyone ,who really thinks about this sort of thing, to recommend AMD cards. Another point is that Nvidia drivers handles micro-stuttering much better than AMD, and Nvidia almost ALWAYS has higher minimum fps. TL;DR, yes the graphs are old, but it took AMD 6 months to catch up, while nvidia was working excellent 6 months AGO, which is my main reason for recommending nvidia.

3.) The i7 doesn't perform better in games, that is the problem with your third commend, at all. Games don't utilize hyper-threading and quite often slow down when hyper-threading is enabled. Certain programs can utilize hyper-threading which can help with launch times/rendering times but both can be more than adequately done with an i5, while still having money to SLI and Raid 0.

4.) A single card is adequate to run games now, yes. But for me atleast, and apparently the OP who wants to spend 2k on a computer, I would rather spend 2k and be taken care of for 5 years, than upgrade every 2-3 on a 1k budget. Overall its preference and numbers. And as far as the numbers go, 1920x1080 with an SLI setup ensures solid, smooth game play for today, and tomorrows, games without ever dipping below 60. Well worth it I would say.

And in your closing thoughts we can only assume the OP wants to build a 2k gaming rig because he indeed does want the most he can get for his budget. The key point is to make sure he gets the most FOR his money that he IS spending. And you again bring up the i7 as if it performs 30% better in games, it has absolutely no impact on fps, game engines don't use hyper-threading. Thanks for the conversation!

-Prax :sol: 
February 13, 2013 12:40:54 AM

Praxeology said:
1.) SSD speeds degrade overtime, quite substantially in 2-3 years, making a higher starting r/w speed more desirable. As far as a practical matter, spending 2k on a computer isn't exactly practical but you might have a point. On the same token, if 1 system with a single Samsung 840 pro was to install the Aion Client, an mmorpg 30GB in size, and a second system was to install the same game(Install, not download) the raid 0 setup would be done in half the time. Installed a 30GB program will take maybe a minute on the first system but 30 seconds on the second system. There is some value to be had in raid, + there is double the space. Its more a question on should I spend an extra 30 bucks over the 256GB SSD for a raid 0 array, or just get a single 256GB ssd and be content with half the performance. I say spend the 30 bucks and get 2 128s.


They only degrade over time if you don't provide the SSD with ample over-provisioning space and you don't allow the system to perform garbage collection. In any case, I'll concede the point that there's no real downside to buying two ~250GB SSDs for a RAID array, as opposed to buying a single ~500GB SSD. You're right that a $2000 PC isn't practical.

Quote:
3.) The i7 doesn't perform better in games, that is the problem with your third commend, at all. Games don't utilize hyper-threading and quite often slow down when hyper-threading is enabled. Certain programs can utilize hyper-threading which can help with launch times/rendering times but both can be more than adequately done with an i5, while still having money to SLI and Raid 0.


I didn't say the i7 performs better in games. Quite the opposite: I said it performs better in general -- and it seems silly to me not to spend an extra $100 on a CPU for such a massive increase in general performance if you're dropping $2000 on a computer system anyway. YMMV, but you can't simultaneously argue that the i7 is a waste of money and then in the next breath argue that SLI will give the OP better longevity. The i7 gives the rig more longevity.

Quote:
4.) A single card is adequate to run games now, yes. But for me atleast, and apparently the OP who wants to spend 2k on a computer, I would rather spend 2k and be taken care of for 5 years, than upgrade every 2-3 on a 1k budget. Overall its preference and numbers. And as far as the numbers go, 1920x1080 with an SLI setup ensures solid, smooth game play for today, and tomorrows, games without ever dipping below 60. Well worth it I would say.


Eye of the beholder. I only brought it up for perspective. If the OP isn't going to use an ultra-high res monitor, then the SLI will only introduce micro-stutter that a single card wouldn't have, while offering almost zero practical performance benefit over a single card, for the next year or so (guessing). After that, sure, the dual-card set up will age better.

Quote:
And in your closing thoughts we can only assume the OP wants to build a 2k gaming rig because he indeed does want the most he can get for his budget. The key point is to make sure he gets the most FOR his money that he IS spending.


Agreed.
!