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Yet another PC build thread.

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Yet another PC build thread.

Postby Jeremoot » Mon Dec 26, 2011 1:51 pm

My Christmas present to myself this year is to finally get around to building a new machine. I don't want to spend much more than a grand. I'm looking to watch 1080p video and play video games on high settings at a large resolution (Minimum: 1280x720) with high frame rates (Ideally running ~60fps). I'll probably use Skyrim as a bench. Everything else will be untaxing (Visual Studio C++, Winamp, etc).

Okay, after some revisions I've ended up with this for a total of $1,100:

Storage:
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications ... No=6280178

Case:
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications ... No=7258569

Memory: (x2)
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications ... No=6688614

PSU:
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications ... No=7195038

GPU:
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications ... pNo=356683

MOBO:
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications ... No=1124769

CPU:
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications ... No=7073161

CPU Cooling:
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications ... No=5592441
Last edited by Jeremoot on Wed Dec 28, 2011 7:01 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Yet another PC build thread.

Postby Talaii » Tue Dec 27, 2011 12:04 am

If your aim is gaming, drop to a cheap 8G kit (2x4G) of 1600MHz DDR3 (if you overclock) or 1333MHz DDR3 (if you don't). Most games don't come anywhere near needing 8G of ram, let alone 16. And I don't think I've seen over 4G from general usage (including some compiling). If you know you'll be using more than 8G for some large task, it would be a different matter, but you say gaming is the most taxing thing you'll do with the computer. As far as specific kits, this is what I've got, don't pay more for fancy heatspreaders or tighter timings, it's not worth it for Sandy Bridge, especially if you're not overclocking. That'll save you $60.

I'd also drop the 2600. The only real difference between the 2500 and 2600 is hyper-threading; again, games don't generally use more than 4 cores anyway, so it's 2-3% faster for about 50% more money. Should save a good $90-100 here, if you're overclocking get a decent heatsink for the CPU with some of that (Coolermaster Hyper 212+). To repeat again: You can't overclock the 2500 or 2600 chips, you need the 2500k or 2600k; if you want to overclock then spend the extra $10.

As far as the hard disk goes: The 5400RPM drives are slow, I'd try and get at least a 7200RPM drive for your boot/applications. However, I'd recommend instead getting a 60 or 64G SSD (I'd recommend a Crucial M4, or possibly a Corsair Force. The intel and Samsung 830 drives are good, too. Avoid OCZ if possible); install windows/applications to that, and put games/media/large stuff on the slow hard disk. A 64G Crucial M4 is $109, put the extra money towards a better video card. I would recommend a 6950, if you can fit it into the budget (they start around $220), or a Geforce 560 Ti if you prefer the green team. You won't need the versions with 2G of video memory for a 1080p screen, so don't waste the money.

In summary: For gaming, the video card is almost always the limiting factor, and hyperthreading/masses of RAM is pointless. For anything nonintensive (general use, documents, etc), hard disk access time is often the limiting factor, and an SSD makes everything outside a game feel faster. Save money on the CPU and excessive amounts of RAM, and spend it where you'll notice it.

Last thing: Case. I built a system inside one of those cases last week for a friend, was fairly nice to work with. The tool-free drives were fairly simple to work with and worked well, though I don't know how well they'll cope if you're swapping drives a lot.
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Re: Yet another PC build thread.

Postby gibborim » Tue Dec 27, 2011 11:11 am

Talaii wrote:SSD makes everything especially games feel faster.


Fixed.
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Re: Yet another PC build thread.

Postby Jeremoot » Tue Dec 27, 2011 11:35 am

Thanks for the great response, Talaii! I'll take those points into consideration when I have the time to play around with other parts.
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Re: Yet another PC build thread.

Postby gibborim » Tue Dec 27, 2011 12:17 pm

There is a lot of value to be gained from keeping your games on an SSD as well. Load times become a memory of the past. I often don't have time to read the one liner Skyrim displays during its loading screen.

I would, if possible, delay buying a regular platter HDD for as long as possible. Because of the flooding, they literally cost over twice as much as they did four months ago. Their price should come back down to something more reasonable in the future.
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Re: Yet another PC build thread.

Postby Jeremoot » Tue Dec 27, 2011 4:10 pm

I think I'm going to go with one of these for storage:

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications ... TMD-500AS4

It's not as fast as an SSD, but it's faster than a 10k RPM HDD and actually has storage capacity on it.
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Re: Yet another PC build thread.

Postby Jeremoot » Wed Dec 28, 2011 9:42 am

Okay, took some things into consideration and swapped some parts around. Updated my original post, I think I have a pretty solid build now.

Still have the 16 gigs of RAM in there (at least for now) as I might as well with how cheap RAM is these days.
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Re: Yet another PC build thread.

Postby gibborim » Fri Dec 30, 2011 1:11 am

Jeremoot wrote:Still have the 16 gigs of RAM in there (at least for now) as I might as well with how cheap RAM is these days.


Yea, at $70 for a 4 channel 16GB kit on NewEgg, mise well never have to worry about it.
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