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Old 02-02-2012, 04:54 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Building my first computer.

My pc is around 10 years old and I want to build one to last me another 10 years. I am building this pc for gaming only. My budget is $2,000 max, but 1,400 or so is a better number, since I don't want to waste my money and I want the most performance per dollar.

I have done about 3 weeks of constant research and I know quite a bit now. However there are a few parts I could use help with. I will be using my simple mouse and keyboard on my old pc, so I don't need those parts. I want to build this computer as soon as possible, but I also want to make sure I get the best parts for the right price.

I will not be overclocking and I will be using the stock heatsink on everything, so I don't void the warranty. My computer will be fast enough that I don't need to overclock for gaming and if I need to in the future I can buy water cooling then.

I am open to using any vendor, but I trust newegg and amazon. I also plan on purchasing from microcenter and mwave and I was wondering if anyone knows how reliable these places are.

My computer build at pcpartpicker with best prices- System Build - PCPartPicker

The same computer with prices at each vender - http://pcpartpicker.com/p/4jgb/by_merchant/

Here are my thoughts on my current build:

CPU - Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor $179.99 @ Microcenter

This will not change. It has the best price per performance in video games.

CPU Cooler - None

I don't want to void the warranty with overclocking or different heatsink. This pc can handle all the top games without overclocking anyway. If my computer can't handle games later on I will add water cooling and overclock it.


Motherboard - Asrock P67 Extreme4 Gen3 $100 @ microcenter since I get $50 off when I buy motherboard and CPU combo.

I was gonna buy the ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 ATX LGA1155, but it is not for sale at microcenter and I get $50 dollars off motherboards there for a combo deal. Someone said this is the next best board available at microcenter and with 50 dollars off it is cheaper. I like the overclock option since I may change my system later to overclock if it becomes too slow for games.

Memory - Corsair XMS3 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory $27.99 @ Newegg

This is the cheapest 2 x 4gb 1,333 memory available. The difference between 1,333 memory and 1,866 memory is only 1-2 frames per second on a video game and is not worth the extra money for the ram and not worth the extra money for a motherboard that supports higher speeds.

Hard Drive - Seagate Barracuda Green 2TB 3.5" 5900RPM Internal Hard Drive $129.99 @ Amazon

This is the cheapest 2tb hard drive I can find that has decent reviews. I didn't pick an ssd, because it won't make the video game run faster. The game may take long to load without an ssd, but if it doesn't affect gameplay then I do not care.

Video Card - HIS Radeon HD 7970 3GB Video Card $557.86 @ Newegg

The videocard is my bottleneck for gaming and I chose the best video card available to get the best graphics and play the best games. I don't know the difference between the various versions of the radeon hd 7970, so I just chose the cheapest one for sale.

Case - NZXT Phantom (White) ATX Full Tower Case $109.99 @ Newegg

This is the cheapest full tower I found with decent reviews and good cooling including 4 fans. It looks ugly, but all I care about it price per performance.

Power Supply - Rosewill Capstone 650W 80Plus Gold $90 (10% off promo code) @ newegg

I am not sure if this is enough power. I am not overclocking, but I may in the future. I read 850 watts would be better, so I won't have to pay for a new PSU 5 years or so down the road when I decide to overclock. I definitely want my power supply to be very reliable since the cheap ones destroy other computer parts fairly often.


Optical Drive - LG GH22NS90B DVD/CD Writer $22.98 @ Newegg

This is the cheapest dvd writer I could find with decent reviews.

Monitor - Asus VE247H 23.6" Monitor $159.99 @ Mwave

Someone on another building forum recommended this as a cheap monitor that is high in quality. I know very little about Monitors and would appreciate some more info or advice on monitors.

Operating System - Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 (64-bit) $138.99 @ B&H

I chose the 64 bit for better graphics and I chose professional because it is supported until 2020 but the home edition is only supported until the beginning of 2015.

__________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ ___________________

Questions:

1. Is there anything I can save money on without sacrificing quality or possibly something much better for a little more money?

2. Are all of these parts 100% compatible with eachother?

3. Other than using that thing on my wrist to stop static electricity and being careful, is there anything else I should know about building a computer the first time?

__________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ ___________________

I welcome all comments and suggestions. Thanks.
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Old 02-03-2012, 12:03 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building my first computer.

Hey Welcome to the forums! glad to see a new member.

first thing i see is that your HDD is a 5900rpm drive, those drives are for storage, music, videos, pictures, things like that. for a boot drive ( the hard drive that your operating system is installed on and from which it boots ) you want a drive that is at least 7200 RPM. with a 5900 rpm drive it will take significantly longer to boot/load games, and video files might not play right because the drive cant read the information fast enough. here is a build i put together for you that is going to give you everything you are looking for and is in budget. A lot of the parts i re-used from what you already picked...


Case: $100
Corsair 400R
Newegg.com - Corsair Carbide Series 400R Graphite grey and black Steel / Plastic ATX Mid Tower Gaming Case

i saw that you said you dont really care too much for the phantom, and you said it seems like it has a pretty good price to performance ratio. this is my favorite case because it has by far the ebst price to performance ratio and can hold 10 fans! easily my favorite case, its just not white like the NZXT Phantom you choose...

Motherboard: $170
P67A-GD65
Newegg.com - MSI P67A-GD65 (B3) LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

CPU: $230
2500k
Newegg.com - Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623I52500K

Memory: $47
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600
Newegg.com - G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL

this Ram is dfferent than the ram you chose because it is faster...

Power Supply: $150
ORSAIR Professional Series HX750
Newegg.com - CORSAIR Professional Series HX750 (CMPSU-750HX) 750W ATX12V 2.3 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS SILVER Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply

this powersupply is differnet and higher wattage, because i wanted to give you a little more head room for later upgrades, say for example if you wanted tog et another graphics card in a few months, youd have the power to do so. also, i dont build computer with anything but Corsair powersupplies..


Graphics card: $580
MSI R7970-2PMD3GD5 Radeon HD 7970 3GB
Newegg.com - MSI R7970-2PMD3GD5 Radeon HD 7970 3GB 384-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card

i went with this one because its really all Newegg has in stock, if you can i would get one with a fan in the middle instead of this blower style fan, just because this style cooler can be pretty loud...

HDD: $270
Western Digital Caviar Black WDBAAZ0020HNC-NRSN 2TB 7200 RPM
Newegg.com - Western Digital Caviar Black WDBAAZ0020HNC-NRSN 2TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.5" Internal Hard Drive

this is the proper RPM HDD that i talked about earlier...

DVD burner: $20
Newegg.com - ASUS 24X DVD Burner - Bulk 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM Black SATA Model DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS - CD / DVD Burners


Total: $1567
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Old 02-03-2012, 05:43 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building my first computer.

If I may add:

- I would suggest 2 hard drives. One smaller one with just your OS and main programs on it. The other with your media, and save files. this way if something happens and you have to reload or it crashes, you don't lose everything in the process.

- you won't void any warranty with an after market cooler, and your system will thank you for it.
Newegg.com - COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO RR-212E-20PK-R2 Continuous Direct Contact 120mm Sleeve CPU Cooler Compatible with latest Intel 2011/1366/1155 and AMD FM1/AM3+


if you search the forum there are many builds that can suit your needs, and keep up with future needs and they are a little cheaper.
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Old 02-03-2012, 12:13 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building my first computer.

2500k is a good choice, pair it up with a z68 mb. you are also going to want a 1600 speed for ram. the case seems nice, if you insist on a full tower. they are big. i dont think that you really want one.

i just pulled off from newegg, but local prices being cheaper only helps you.


Newegg.com - COOLER MASTER CM Storm Series Trooper (SGC-5000-KKN1) Black Steel / Plastic ATX Full Tower Computer Case
Newegg.com - SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Newegg.com - MSI R7970-2PMD3GD5 Radeon HD 7970 3GB 384-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
Newegg.com - CORSAIR Professional Series HX750 (CMPSU-750HX) 750W ATX12V 2.3 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS SILVER Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
Newegg.com - G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL
Newegg.com - ASUS P8Z68-V LE LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
Newegg.com - Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623I52500K
Newegg.com - LG Black 12X BD-R 2X BD-RE 16X DVD+R 12X DVD-RAM 10X BD-ROM 4MB Cache SATA 12X Super Multi Blue with 3D Playback & M-DISC Support WH12LS39 LightScribe Support - Blu-Ray Burners
Newegg.com - OCZ Agility 3 AGT3-25SAT3-120G 2.5" 120GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)

$1690 + windows 7 if you need it.
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Old 02-03-2012, 02:41 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building my first computer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nukem View Post
A word from personal experience... you only void the warranty if you tell Intel/AMD that you are/were using an aftermarket cooler.
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Old 02-03-2012, 03:10 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building my first computer.

I would grab a 1tb Caviar Black for media, and a small SSD for the OS and important programs. Something like this one:

Newegg.com - OCZ Agility 3 AGT3-25SAT3-60G 2.5" 60GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
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Old 02-03-2012, 03:18 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building my first computer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tj_extreme View Post
I would grab a 1tb Caviar Black for media, and a small SSD for the OS and important programs. Something like this one:

Newegg.com - OCZ Agility 3 AGT3-25SAT3-60G 2.5" 60GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
+1
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Old 02-03-2012, 05:11 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building my first computer.

I think your build and reasons are very well thought out.
for a pure gaming system, I think it hits the nail spot on.
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Old 02-05-2012, 07:52 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building my first computer.

Thanks for the help everyone.

On another computer building forum, someone said that this video card was faster than the amd 7970 and on sale for 150 dollars less on amazon. See here - Amazon.com: PowerColor ATI Radeon HD6870 x2 2GB DDR5 2DVI/HDMI/2x Mini DisplayPort PCI-Express Video Card AX6870X2 2GBD5-2DHG: Electronics

It looks like 2 videos cards but they are combined into 1. Anyone know if this really is faster than the 7970? The price just looks to good to be true...

Also someone else said the 3 gb video card will be better for future games than 2 gb. Can anyone confirm if this is true or not?

Someone told me I should get a full tower since I may want to upgrade later to 2 video cards or maybe even 3. But if this is a really long time into the future before I need a new video card, then by that time I will need to build an entirely new computer anyway. Any thoughts on this?

That 2 Tb hard drive is way too expensive. I bought 3 western digital elements 2 tb external hard drives for 90 dollars each around a year ago. 1 was for a friend who couldn't accept the gift, so now I have an extra laying around the house.

I already have 2 external hard drives with 2 tb each so I can have 2 copies of all my files in case 1 hard drive crashes. I was thinking a 120 gb ssd would be plenty for my operating system and my files that I keep in bulk and don't use as much will go on my external hard drives. I don't mind waiting for my external hard drives to load up right now, so I won't mind waiting later anyway. Most of the time I am gonna be gaming for hours anyway.
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Old 02-05-2012, 10:33 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Building my first computer.

the 6870x2 is basically 2 GPU's in one package. as for benchmarks, I'm not sure it is better, but I'm sure someone else can confirm or deny.

Full tower is nice, but not really a need in every situation. you may not have the room, or the case you want is just to expensive for your needs.
Most mid tower cases will suit your need with little no no re-configuration required and they will fit most cards today with the exception of the HUGE cards like the GTX590 or equivalent.
We can give you some links to good cases if you wish, but I'm sure you have a good idea i mind already.

3GB, 2GB, truthfully... it doesn't matter... in 12 to 18 months there is going to be a brand new set of components out so I would go with a good build now. Just my 2 and a half cents. Your system is still going to rock any game out right now, so who cares.
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