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New Gaming/3D Rendering Build Suggestions and Advice - Up to $2400 USD

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December 17, 2013 7:52:34 AM

Hello everyone!

My last build was back in 2011 (thanks for all the help!) and that computer was blazing fast and perfect for the last two years! So, I sold that one, and now I wanted to get the experts' opinions from TH on my new build! Please see below and let me know if you have any suggestions and/or tweaks to my build. :) 

Approximate Purchase Date: January-February, 2014

Budget Range: Up to $2,400 USD - The closer to $2,000 the better! (Prefer no rebates as they are usually reward cards)

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Daz Studio (3D Model/Rendering), Programming (Visual Studio, Android & iOS with Corona SDK), Photoshop, Surfing the web

Am I buying a monitor: No

Do I need to buy an OS: No - I will be using Windows 7 64-bit

Parts Not Required: Monitor, OS, Keyboard

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Microcenter is close to my house, Amazon.com, NCIX, Newegg.com, SuperBiiz.com, OutletPC.com, BHPhotoVideo.com

Location: Atlanta, GA - United States

Parts Preferences: Reliable i7 if HyperThreading is a benefit for Daz Studio/Programming software - i5 if not that big of a deal. Also, I really love Nvidia cards and SLI! :) 

Overclocking: Yes

SLI or Crossfire: Most likely if it's worth it at this point - if not I could add a card later. My last build I did SLI'd GTX 580's but that was two years ago and the second card was rarely used.

Monitor Resolution: 2560x1440 (Main monitor - has DisplayPort, HDMI, DLink DVI), 1024x1280 (Mainly used for programming to look-up stuff)

Additional Comments: I basically have a base build that I think looks good but the Video Cards elude me, so I list several below. I am not dead set on any particular component, but I am pretty set on the White Corsair 500r case - I absolutely love it. My thoughts on the i7 with HyperThreading are that it would be beneficial for 3D modeling/art and programming, but I don't want to hurt gaming performance either. It will likely be used for gaming more than 3D modeling etc. I basically want another machine that will be able to handle games for a few years but still render 3D images pretty fast and keep up with programming suites. For gaming with current top games - Now easily at Ultra. Before end of computer life at least be able to run them with a good frames per second. With all of that said if I could keep it closer to $2,000 that would be awesome, but might be hard with the video card choices!

*******************
Setup I am considering:
*******************

Estimated Total Build Cost without Video Card(S): $1,382.12

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($249.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H100i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($89.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: Asus SABERTOOTH Z87 ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($234.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($151.29 @ Amazon)
Storage: Crucial M500 240GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($139.99 @ B&H)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($79.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($79.99 @ Amazon)
Case: Corsair 500R White ATX Mid Tower Case ($119.99 @ Amazon)
Case Fan: Aerocool Shark 120mm White 82.6 CFM 120mm Fan ($12.98 @ OutletPC)
Case Fan: Aerocool Shark 120mm White 82.6 CFM 120mm Fan ($12.98 @ OutletPC)
Case Fan: Aerocool Shark 120mm White 82.6 CFM 120mm Fan ($12.98 @ OutletPC)
Power Supply: Corsair Professional 850W 80+ Gold Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply ($139.99 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($16.98 @ OutletPC)
Keyboard: SteelSeries Zboard Wired Gaming Keyboard (Already Purchased $0.00)
Mouse: Logitech G400s Wired Optical Mouse ($39.99 @ Amazon)

Video Card Considerations:

- 1x Gigabyte GeForce GTX 770 4GB Video Card ($383.99 @ SuperBiiz). Estimated Total Build Cost: $1,766.11
- 2x Gigabyte GeForce GTX 770 4GB Video Card (2-Way SLI) ($383.99 @ SuperBiiz). Estimated Total Build Cost: $2,150.10
- 1x EVGA GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3GB Video Card ($699.99 @ Microcenter). Estimated Total Build Cost: $2,082.11
- 1x EVGA GeForce GTX Titan 6GB Video Card ($1018.99 @ SuperBiiz). Estimated Total Build Cost: $2,401.11
- 2x EVGA GeForce GTX 780 3GB Video Card (2-Way SLI) ($509.99 @ B&H). Estimated Total Build Cost: $2,402.10
- 2x EVGA GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3GB Video Card (2-Way SLI) ($699.99 @ Microcenter). Estimated Total Build Cost: $2,782.10 (Just for fun - over budget!) :) 

(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-12-17 09:54 EST-0500)

Thanks for any build tweaks advice you can give! This is my second build and it has been a while! Also, is now the best time to buy and any overkill here?
December 17, 2013 7:55:58 AM

cheaper z87 motherboard
fractal r4

1 gtx 770 should be plenty for everything
or 1 gtx 780 (1440p)

add latter one more if you need to

dont need h100i


sometimes xfx gold/corsair ax/seasonic plat. psus are on sale..
December 17, 2013 8:13:55 AM

I would also drop down on the motherboard, but go for a GTX780 Ti. You have the budget and are gaming at 1440P so why not? Keep that PSU if a second GPU is on the horizon, otherwise something around 650 watts is plenty.
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December 17, 2013 9:05:32 AM

Thanks Marcopolo and Transmaniacon. Do you have suggestions for a cheaper motherboard and alternative to H100i?

Thinking of these MB's:

Asus MaximusVI Hero ($209.99 @ Amazon)
Asus Z87 Pro Socket ($184.99 @ Microcenter)
MSI Z87-G45 Gaming ($149.99 @ NCIX)

And why the Fractal r4? (I really love the 500r!)

Is the 780Ti capable of running everything at Ultra now with excellent FPS? Sorry not too sure about Video Cards!

I can always add an additional one later!

Thanks again!
December 17, 2013 9:23:04 AM

This would be a good choice:

Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z87X-UD4H ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($179.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $179.99

For a light overclock, the CoolerMaster Hyper 212 EVO is a great choice and much cheaper. You could also look at 120mm close loop rads, like the Corsair H60. The 500R is a great choice.

Yeah the 780 Ti should max games at 1440P (single monitor).
December 17, 2013 10:11:28 AM

Thanks Transmaniacon - I'll see what I can work up from the help!
December 17, 2013 10:35:22 AM

Getting closer! - Is the GTX 780Ti a better option than 2 SLI'd GTX 770's? The price difference is about $67.99, $2015.10 total with the 780Ti and $2083.09 total with the dual 770's. (Sorry again, video cards are my kryptonite!) :) 

And would this be a good MB? - MSI Z87-G45 Gaming

Thanks so much!
December 17, 2013 10:40:43 AM

I would probably go with the 780 Ti, SLI/Crossfire brings in driver issues, game compatibility, micro-stuttering. A single GPU system will work better assuming you aren't asking too much of the card.

That motherboard is a fine choice, I am just partial to Gigabyte.
December 17, 2013 10:51:55 AM

Gotcha - thank you!

Here's what I am thinking now - I know the H100i may be a lot but with the possibility of adding another 780Ti in the future I thought it would be fine ... and it's not very expensive.

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($249.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H100i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($89.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: MSI Z87-G45 Gaming ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($149.99 @ NCIX US)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($151.29 @ Amazon)
Storage: Crucial M500 240GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($139.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($79.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($79.99 @ Amazon)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3GB Video Card ($699.99 @ Microcenter)
Case: Corsair 500R White ATX Mid Tower Case ($119.99)
Case Fan: Aerocool Shark 120mm White 82.6 CFM 120mm Fan ($12.98 @ OutletPC)
Case Fan: Aerocool Shark 120mm White 82.6 CFM 120mm Fan ($12.98 @ OutletPC)
Case Fan: Aerocool Shark 120mm White 82.6 CFM 120mm Fan ($12.98 @ OutletPC)
Power Supply: Corsair Professional 850W 80+ Gold Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($16.98 @ OutletPC)
Keyboard: SteelSeries Zboard Wired Gaming Keyboard (Purchased For $17.99)
Mouse: Logitech G400s Wired Optical Mouse ($39.99 @ Amazon)

Total: $2015.10

(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-12-17 13:49 EST-0500)
December 17, 2013 11:30:46 AM

Thanks Marcopolo - Going to look over a few things and continue tweaking. I appreciate the help!
December 18, 2013 11:21:02 AM

Thanks everyone - This is what I ended up going with (although I still have to decide on the Video Cards - got everything else though!):

CPU: Intel Core i7-4770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($249.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H100i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($89.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: MSI Z87-G45 Gaming ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($149.99 @ NCIX US)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($151.29 @ Amazon)
Storage: Crucial M500 240GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($139.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($86.99 @ B&H)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($86.99 @ B&H)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3GB Video Card ($699.99 @ Microcenter)
Case: Corsair 500R White ATX Mid Tower Case ($130.26 @ TigerDirect)
Case Fan: Aerocool Shark 120mm White 82.6 CFM 120mm Fan ($12.98 @ OutletPC)
Case Fan: Aerocool Shark 120mm White 82.6 CFM 120mm Fan ($12.98 @ OutletPC)
Case Fan: Aerocool Shark 120mm White 82.6 CFM 120mm Fan ($12.98 @ OutletPC)
Power Supply: Corsair Professional 850W 80+ Gold Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($16.98 @ OutletPC)
Keyboard: SteelSeries Zboard Wired Gaming Keyboard (Purchased For $17.99)
Mouse: Logitech G400s Wired Optical Mouse ($47.99 @ B&H)

Total: $2047.37

(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-12-18 14:19 EST-0500)

Thanks for all of your help!
!