So happy I found this forum!
Ok, so my current workhorse has been my Asus M50VMB1 notebook. It's a beast of a computer from 2008. I'm telling you, this thing is amazing, but sadly it's starting to get a little tired. I knew it was time to move on when it couldn't comfortably run BF3... way too laggy at the lowest settings. I'm still amazed at what I can throw at this thing and run at once, but I have been wanting a desktop for a while. It's been a while since my last desktop, a Gateway 500GR.
My friend has been telling me to do a custom build for my next computer so I think this might finally be the time.
If I wasn't going to build, the pre-built model that I like is the Gateway FX6860-UR10P. What I like most about it and want in a computer: Hot swap bays, Intel i7, multiple USB 3.0s, and good GFX (AMD Radeon HD 7770). The cost for this is about my budget limit: $1,200.
So I'm a little lost on what to look for in a build. I know I want to spend $1,200, less if possible.
The only thing I've picked out so far is the computer case
, the Thermaltake Level 10 GT. When I first saw it, I hated it... but after I looked at it some more and what it can do... I knew I had to have it. I really like the hot swap bays. I'm a professional photographer and I work with some pretty massive files. Backups are beyond important and to be able to swap drives quickly and efficiently will be so valuable. The cooling looks pretty swell too.
SO that's just the case... not much of a computer. Also, if someone here feels that there is a better option, let me know! I'm open to opinions.
wise, I know I want an i7. I can't decide between the 3770K or 3820. It seems like people who like the 3770K point out that it can be OC'd and is good for gaming. The 3820 camp says that the 3820 is good for production (video and photography) and also better for future-proofing (whenever hex cores come out), but can't really be OC'd. I'm not sure I'd want or need to OC. The 3820 costs less than the 3770K at my local MC. Any thoughts or ideas?
After the CPU, I need to find a motherboard
. I read that the 3820 boards cost more than the 3770K boards. Is there any truth to this? It seems like that's hard to say considering how the prices vary so much. What I want in a motherboard: as many USB 3.0s as possible (some USB 2.0s are fine, but I want to start buying 3.0), eSATA (2x would be nice, but 1 is good too), and I feel like I'd want as many PCI slots as possible (whatever the case will accommodate). I want a good motherboard that goes nicely with the case.
I don't know much about the Cooling for CPU
options. I don't want water cooling, nor do I think I can afford it, but it's nice to know the case can handle it. Need some help on this one.
are one thing I have no opinion about. What I know is that I'd like to be able to play BF3 at (dare I say) high settings. I do a lot of photoshop (CS5), DxO Optics Pro (batch photo processing), Lightroom (batch photo processing and organization), PTGui (massive photo stitching), AVID (video editing), Pinnacle Studio (video editing) etc. I am very much into multimedia and I need a work horse. I would like HDMI output... I think that's pretty standard though. Of course VGA is a must too.
Truthfully, anything I get will be better than my current notebook, but I want to get good hardware regardless.
For the Hard drive
I am thinking a SSD would be nice, but if it helps me save cost, I'm willing to sacrifice. I've actually been looking at the hybrid drives, offering a best of both worlds option. I would like at least 750GB with a maximum of 1.5TB. I recently read an article that SSD prices have finally started to go down and they will continue to go down this year.
would be nice around 12GB for now. Along the lines of a mobo, I'd like to eventually be able to upgrade. Ram will be important for my programs and games.
I'm looking at getting a blu-ray reader/burner combo. I like the idea of being able to burn b-ray discs. I will admit that I don't know how well a b-ray burner compares to a DVD-burner at burning regular DVDs. I will continue my research unless someone knows.
Ah, Power supply
needs to be something good for the mobo, gfx card, and case cooling systems. Is a 650W PS a good option?
I know I'm missing something here... OS
? Windows 7 64bit, I think I'll get an OEM disc to try and save.
Here's a list of what I mentioned above:
- CASE - Thermaltake Level 10 GT
- CPU - ?
- Motherboard - ?
- Cooling for CPU - ?
- GPU - ?
- HDD - (SSD or hybrid. If hybrid, 750GB minmum) ?
- RAM - (12GB minimum) ?
- Optical Drive - (Blu-ray burner) ?
- Power Supply - ?
- OS - Windows 7 64bit
That's all I can think of for now. I really appreciate any advice! The CPU and motherboard have me the most confused right now...
I've been searching and shopping around. I've learned a lot a long the way. I have done most of my searching at micro center (online).
Here's what I've come up with so far (some of this may not work or be foolish, please feel free to share):
- CASE - Thermaltake Level 10 GT
- CPU - Intel Core i7 3820 LGA 2011 Boxed Processor
- Motherboard - ASUS P9X79 Socket 2011 X79 ATX Intel Motherboard
- Cooling for CPU - Cooler Master X6 Elite Universal CPU Cooler
- GPU - STILL DON'T KNOW... I think my limit is about$150-$170 since my cost is starting to grow too fast. Is this any good? SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 6870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card (100314-3L ) (For BF3 on ultra etc?)
- HD - OCZ Technology Vertex 4 VTX4-25SAT3-128G 128GB SATA 6.0GB/s Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) with Indilinx Everest 2 Controller (I guess I'll do SSD... I'll buy a secondary 500GB drive for now, like the Western Digital Caviar Blue 500GB 7,200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive WD5000AAKX - OEM)
- RAM - HyperX blu 12GB DDR3-1600 (PC3-12800) CL9 Triple Channel Desktop Memory Kit (Three 4GB Memory Modules)
- Optical Drive - LG 12X SATA Blu-ray Burner with 3D Playback
- Power Supply - Thermaltake TR2 Series 600 Watt ATX Power Supply (Will this work???)
- Internal Card Reader - Rosewill RDCR-11003 74-in-1 USB3.0 3.5" Internal Card Reader w/USB Port
So far, my total (without tax... or shipping... or GFX OR Window OS) is almost $1,300...
I wish I could cut this down a little and still get close to what I want. I am a sucker for the "well, for $50 more you could get____". It all adds up fast... and I'm sure there are still crucial things missing from this setup.