New system build for 2021 - $2k budget

jfenwick

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Hey guys, long since out of the building game so I'm kidding myself if I think I can maximize my build on my own knowledge. I'm looking for a build to do in February/March of 2021, no hurry as I keep my eyes open for high end parts in various auctions and other sites I frequent. I recognize that prices will change between now and then but I wanted to start looking at components I can pick up sooner rather than later.

I'm working with a $2000 budget and I already have the following:
- Case: Lian Li Mesh
- PSU: Corsair Supernova 1000 G+
- I also have a gtx 1070 I can use if I want to, or if it's in the budget, get another card.

About the system: This is my main computer that I use for work and play. I run 4 monitors off it; 3x24" and 1x27".
Monitor 1: 27" Acer predator 2560x1440 that I use for gaming and every day use.
Monitor 2: 24" for casual TV watching: netflix, prime, etc...
Monitor 3: 24" database management
Monitor 4: 24" portrait web browsing

Priorities:
1) Work (database management): The 4 monitors are used together when I'm working, ie. database management...it's boring, doesn't use a lot of system resources but takes up a lot of real-estate for continuously locating and updating database inventory. The only taxing thing about this work is that I'm using all 4 monitors at once.

2) Gaming is the next priority, but nothing super heavy. Primarily Dota 2 and borderlands 3. My current system is having a hard time handling borderlands 3 on the main computer and is my main reason for upgrading. I'd like to play it on high settings on the 27" monitor without worrying about the FPS dropping too low.

3) Photo editing: This is a hobby and pass time so not a huge priority but I do a lot of work in lightroom and photoshop. No video really, all photos. Not really a system stressor.

4) General use: I regularly have all 4 monitors in use, one for TV, one for webpage browsing and 2 for whatever I'm working on. But nothing too taxing.

Additional Notes:
- I don't plan on running a lot of storage space in the machine. I have a number of external hard drives for database backups and photo backups. Thinking maybe just a 2-3 SSDs: OS-Games-Everything else. I'm also setting up a NAS to keep as central storage so even less storage needed on this system.
- I wouldn't mind liquid cooling the cpu, but not a necessity if the money can be better put elsewhere
- OC: I pretty much always OC moderately. I'm not looking to break any records but I'm always willing to get more out of the hardware if I can. I currently have my 1070 and my 2600k maxed out to try and get the best I can out of borderlands 3.
- Longevity: I generally keep my computers for a long time, only updating them when they cannot handle what I'm throwing at them. In this case borderlands and dota are starting to drag it down. The 1070 got me another year out of it but I'm pretty sure it's being bottlenecked by the cpu now.

So really I'm just trying to figure out what to start looking at and for. I know my purchase date is still a while away and I have no desire to spend more than I need to. However, with black Friday and Christmas deals coming up I was thinking maybe some items might be worth keeping an eye open for now. What, if anything, would be worth pickup this far ahead of the final build if I see a good deal? SSDs? cpu cooler? I'm guessing I should be leaving RAM/CPU/Mobo to the last minute?

Any suggestions? Thanks guys.
 

PP Mguire

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I'm working with a $2000 budget and I already have the following:
- Case: Lian Li Mesh
- PSU: Corsair Supernova 1000 G+
2k is a good budget even for Canadian prices since you have 2 pieces already. Are you looking to max this budget out because you have it, or simply get what you need and the money is there just in case? For what you want to do we don't need to max the budget out really unless you want to.
1) Work (database management): The 4 monitors are used together when I'm working, ie. database management...it's boring, doesn't use a lot of system resources but takes up a lot of real-estate for continuously locating and updating database inventory. The only taxing thing about this work is that I'm using all 4 monitors at once.
You working with a large SQL database? Is this database hosted on your machine or is it hosted on a server than you run it off?
2) Gaming is the next priority, but nothing super heavy. Primarily Dota 2 and borderlands 3. My current system is having a hard time handling borderlands 3 on the main computer and is my main reason for upgrading. I'd like to play it on high settings on the 27" monitor without worrying about the FPS dropping too low.
With the new Nvidia/AMD cards that surely will be in stock come your buying time this is easy enough.
3) Photo editing: This is a hobby and pass time so not a huge priority but I do a lot of work in lightroom and photoshop. No video really, all photos. Not really a system stressor.
Do you care about color accuracy? A new 27" 1440p monitor might be in your favor. If not you can ignore this.
- I don't plan on running a lot of storage space in the machine. I have a number of external hard drives for database backups and photo backups. Thinking maybe just a 2-3 SSDs: OS-Games-Everything else. I'm also setting up a NAS to keep as central storage so even less storage needed on this system.
A 1TB NVMe for OS and games that need fast storage and a 1TB M.2 Sata SSD is what I'd do. I definitely would prioritize that NAS to get your stuff off those externals because that's not really a backup solution or even a good storing solution.
- OC: I pretty much always OC moderately. I'm not looking to break any records but I'm always willing to get more out of the hardware if I can. I currently have my 1070 and my 2600k maxed out to try and get the best I can out of borderlands 3.
I'm thinking an AMD chip, they OC themselves basically and not necessary. Kudos to still using a 2600k, still a decent chip almost 10 years later.
SSDs? cpu cooler? I'm guessing I should be leaving RAM/CPU/Mobo to the last minute?
You could get this now from a Canada etailer, and yea a couple SSDs wouldn't hurt. Just make sure you don't fall for heightened original price then slashed back down on Black Friday. Take a note of what an 860 EVO M.2 1TB price is now and double check during Black Friday.
https://www.amazon.com/EK-Premium-E...&qid=1605109615&sprefix=ek+240,aps,166&sr=8-1
 

PP Mguire

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Because it's too early for his initial purchase, he needs more drive space than 1TB, and RL will drive AMD prices down further around his purchase time frame to get a 5900X instead or an 11 series chip from Intel.
 

jfenwick

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2k is a good budget even for Canadian prices since you have 2 pieces already. Are you looking to max this budget out because you have it, or simply get what you need and the money is there just in case? For what you want to do we don't need to max the budget out really unless you want to.
If I don't need to max it out then great...but I have $2000 put aside, so no issue using it. I don't sell/build often so I don't mind putting in full budget.
You working with a large SQL database? Is this database hosted on your machine or is it hosted on a server than you run it off?
I have no clue....I'm not the IT or programmer, I'm the subject matter expert (legal compliance) but I help with the uploading and management of the documentation. It's actually a very straight forward operation, 10,000s of pdf that just need to be sorted and managed. Easily accessible and tracked....cloud hosted, I just access and manage them. Not taxing on the system at all, the only challenge is that it needs a lot of screen real-estate to do efficiently. It's also boring as hell so I watch tv on the fourth monitor while doing it. But all 3 other monitors are in full use.
With the new Nvidia/AMD cards that surely will be in stock come your buying time this is easy enough.
The gpu is the one thing I tend to upgrade over time...sometimes RAM if I find I'm a bit short. I know Dota 2 isn't very demanding so I was thinking that I should use the 1070 for now to max budget on other core parts and then in a couple years upgrade the gpu. But I don't mind picking up gpu.
Do you care about color accuracy? A new 27" 1440p monitor might be in your favor. If not you can ignore this.
Nope, hobby photographer so don't care.
A 1TB NVMe for OS and games that need fast storage and a 1TB M.2 Sata SSD is what I'd do. I definitely would prioritize that NAS to get your stuff off those externals because that's not really a backup solution or even a good storing solution.
Agreed, my old NAS is non compatible with Windows 10 so it's time to upgrade.
I'm thinking an AMD chip, they OC themselves basically and not necessary. Kudos to still using a 2600k, still a decent chip almost 10 years later.
My research is indicating the same thing regarding AMD. I haven't done AMD since the days of the Athlon 64 X2. That 2600k kicks ass, I've been very impressed with it. I have had to dial back the OC a bit in the past couple of years, but I run it a lot and it's still rock solid. I have a 2500k in one of the kids systems and it's still going as well. Kudos to intel on these processors.
You could get this now from a Canada etailer, and yea a couple SSDs wouldn't hurt. Just make sure you don't fall for heightened original price then slashed back down on Black Friday. Take a note of what an 860 EVO M.2 1TB price is now and double check during Black Friday.
https://www.amazon.com/EK-Premium-EK-Vardar-High-Performance-Computer/dp/B0842Z9WYG/ref=sr_1_1?crid=2QEQER05PAB4B&dchild=1&keywords=ek+240+aio&qid=1605109615&sprefix=ek+240,aps,166&sr=8-1
That's exactly why I've started shopping now, I'm in no hurry so I figured I'd start with stuff I've found locally at some auctions and then slowly pick up parts as I find them on good deals. I'm pricing out the parts that look like I want and will be watching them over black friday and boxing day for good sales. Finishing in the new year with the cpu/mobo/gpu.
Come to think of it he should wait for the rocket lake CPUs (Sounds like rocket league)
Might be a good idea, even if it's out of the budget it should drive down prices on others....
 

Trotter

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Definitely take a good look at the Ryzen CPUs. I will totally admit that I am an AMD guy but the Ryzen line has been awesome, and the 5000 series are even better. I am currently running a 3600X with a RX 5700 XT and wouldn't be afraid to tackle any game on the market.
 

PP Mguire

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Fort Worth, Texas
I have no clue....I'm not the IT or programmer, I'm the subject matter expert (legal compliance) but I help with the uploading and management of the documentation. It's actually a very straight forward operation, 10,000s of pdf that just need to be sorted and managed. Easily accessible and tracked....cloud hosted, I just access and manage them. Not taxing on the system at all, the only challenge is that it needs a lot of screen real-estate to do efficiently. It's also boring as hell so I watch tv on the fourth monitor while doing it. But all 3 other monitors are in full use.
Ahh ok makes perfect sense. When you say database my mind thinks SQL, like actual database. No biggie there.
The gpu is the one thing I tend to upgrade over time...sometimes RAM if I find I'm a bit short. I know Dota 2 isn't very demanding so I was thinking that I should use the 1070 for now to max budget on other core parts and then in a couple years upgrade the gpu. But I don't mind picking up gpu.
We will concentrate on the core parts come time of your purchase. This will allow time for stock shortages due to scalpers/bots to become iradicated, and Intel's 11th gen processors to be released. Then we can decide if you'll go 11th gen Intel or Ryzen 5000. Because of this we have to wait on a board too but RAM is simple since they both use DDR4. If you wanted to, you could pick up a 32GB (2x16) kit of DDR4 3600 if you find a good deal.
My research is indicating the same thing regarding AMD. I haven't done AMD since the days of the Athlon 64 X2. That 2600k kicks ass, I've been very impressed with it. I have had to dial back the OC a bit in the past couple of years, but I run it a lot and it's still rock solid. I have a 2500k in one of the kids systems and it's still going as well. Kudos to intel on these processors.
Sandy Bridge was really the huge nail in the coffin to AMD and they massively couldn't compete for generations. That all changed with their new architecture that is now on their 3rd generation with Ryzen 5000. I had an i7 7800x before I moved to my 3700x and so glad I did. I have a couple 2500k kicking around too, but bit long in the tooth now due to my kids playing the latest games.
Might be a good idea, even if it's out of the budget it should drive down prices on others....
Definitely won't be out of budget. By then 500 bucks CD will grant a 5900x I'm sure, or the top or mid range 11th gen Intel.
If he is waiting until 2021 I would get a 3060...
Nah, I'd say 3070. He won't need to upgrade for quite a long while. A 3060 would just be moving from a 1070 to 1080ti performance basically, a 3070 would be a step up from that. 500 for CPU, 600 for GPU and be done. That leaves more than plenty for RAM, board, and drives.
 
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