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Looking for input on gaming build.

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Getting ready to gut my old alienware chassis and throw in new components and looking for feedback. Just checking to see if there is anything that maybe I can do more cheaply but with keeping in quality gaming standards and reliability. The graphics card chosen is planned on being expanded to SLI once I can throw in the cash for the second card. My budget is sitting right around 1200.00 US. It's been a while since I last did a build so just checking to see if I have a nice solid rig set up that can be expanded upon if need be in the future. Mostly looking for gaming power and most of that is MMO gaming. The items I have sitting in my cart are as follows.

1. ASUS P8Z77-V Intel 7 Series Motherboard - ATX, Socket H2 (LGA1155), Intel Z77 Express, 2400MHz DDR3 (O.C.), SATA III (6Gb/s), RAID, 8-CH Audio, Gigabit LAN, USB 3.0, PCIe 3.0, WiFi-N, SLI/CrossFireX (price $190)

2. Intel Core i5-3570K BX806237i53570K Processor - Quad Core, 6MB L3 Cache, 3.40GHz (3.80GHz Max Turbo), Socket H2 (LGA1155), 77W, Fan, Unlocked (price $220)

3. Phanteks PH-TC14PE Dual Heat Pipe CPU Cooler - Socket LGA 2011, 1155, 1366, 1156, 775, Socket AM2, AM2+, AM3, 1200 RPM, 19 dBA, 78.1 CMF, 140mm Dual Fans, UFB Bearing (price $100)

4. Kingston Hyper X Beast KHX24C11T3K2/8X 8GB Memory Module Kit - 2400MHz, 2 x 4GB, DDR3, DIMM, CL11, XMP (price $63)

5. Corsair CX Series CX750 CP-9020015-NA 750W Power Supply - ATX, 24 Pin Connector, 80 Plus Bronze, Active PFC, SATA (price $90)

6. Asus GeForce GTX 660 GTX660-DC2-2GD5 Video Card - 2GB GDDR5, PCI-Express 3.0(x16), 1x Dual-link DVI-D, 1x Dual-link DVI-I, 1x DisplayPort, 1x HDMI, DirectX 11, SLI Ready, Dual-Slot, Fan (price $220)

7. Seagate Barracuda ST2000DM001 2TB Serial ATA Hard Drive - 7200RPM, 64MB, SATA 6Gb/s (price $100)

8. Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium GFC-02050 Operating System Software - 64bit (price $100)

The rest of the rig will be carried over from the alienware chassis that I will be repurpousing for the build so case fans, dvd drives etc are covered pretty well. The entire build is costing just over $1100 US and can go up $100 - $200 more at most. I plan on going RAID and SLI once I can sink a little more cash into her and get a couple other hard drives and another graphics card. If there's anything I could swap out that might maybe give me more power for around the same price range or anything that would give me the same amount of power for a bit cheaper so I could just go RAID and SLI out the gate would be great.
post #2 of 11
Maybe a 660ti or Hd7950/70 will be more worthwille?

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post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Maybe a 660ti or Hd7950/70 will be more worthwille?

On the 660ti I don't see much of a difference in the specifications, at least not enough to justify another $100.00 on it. Unless I'm missing something that you're seeing and I'm not? The HD7950/70 is something I am seriously considering after you mentioned it, the upgrade in specs on it justify the extra cash put out for it I think. Generally I'm a creature of habit and stick with SLI but not totally opposed to crossfire. Thanks for the input, gives me another option to consider.
post #4 of 11
How about an SSD?
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post #5 of 11
I would

1 - Don't blow so much on that RAM 2400MHz is going to give you no worthwhile gain over 1600MHz it'll just hit your wallet harder. Look for the new samsung RAM or some Corsair Vengance LP.

2 - Get a better GPU. Seriously this is what drives modern games. Why shell out so much on overkill RAM, mobo and cooler when you are going to be limited hard by the lower-mid range GPU you have chosen. SLi later is an option but it is better to get a single card solution with as much grunt as you can. IF you need to save cash to do this get a more modest cooler and a mobo like the gbyte z77x-ud3h.

3 - Fit an SSD in if you can. It may not improve FPS but the snappy boot and load times it will provide really make any system feel that much "faster".
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1Tb Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM 1Tb Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM 120GB OCZ Agility 3 SSD Cheapo DVDRW 
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post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
1 - Don't blow so much on that RAM 2400MHz is going to give you no worthwhile gain over 1600MHz it'll just hit your wallet harder. Look for the new samsung RAM or some Corsair Vengance LP.

This was something I had put previous thought into also and the price is there. The corsair vengeance 1600 is running the exact same price so I might as well go with the overkill RAM for the same cost. At 62 bucks for 8G 2400MHz RAM I can't beat the price. *edit note* Just happened to notice 1600MHz RAM is most that the gbyte mobo will run anyway so will have to go down to it anyway.
Quote:
2 - Get a better GPU. Seriously this is what drives modern games. Why shell out so much on overkill RAM, mobo and cooler when you are going to be limited hard by the lower-mid range GPU you have chosen. SLi later is an option but it is better to get a single card solution with as much grunt as you can. IF you need to save cash to do this get a more modest cooler and a mobo like the gbyte z77x-ud3h

This was a solid piece of advice which helped get costs down enough to throw an i7 in the mix. The price was what was holding me back originally on going to i7 in the first place, if I swap out for the gigabyte z77x that allows me to squeeze in Intel Core i7-3770K Processor 3.5G.
Quote:
3 - Fit an SSD in if you can. It may not improve FPS but the snappy boot and load times it will provide really make any system feel that much "faster"

Unfortunately I've done the math on SSD and it's just not in the budget currently. I'd love to go solid state but it's going to have to wait until I can afford to do so. HDD will just have to do because I can't put the money out for SSD.

Thanks for your input guys, I'm getting some solid suggestions and appreciate it very much.
Edited by 88hutch - 2/10/13 at 9:29am
post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by 88hutch View Post

This was a solid piece of advice which helped get costs down enough to throw an i7 in the mix. The price was what was holding me back originally on going to i7 in the first place, if I swap out for the gigabyte z77x that allows me to squeeze in Intel Core i7-3770K Processor 3.5G.

GPU = Graphics Processing Unit or Graphics Card not CPU..... seriously for gaming that i5 is all you will need for a very long time. The 660 as a GPU is the crippling part of your build (or if not crippling the part that just fails to live up to the rest).

That i7 will offer little to no real benefit gaming over the i5 but if you keep the i5 and spend the i7 upgrade money on a graphical upgrade you wil reap benefits.
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i5 3570k Gbyte Z77X-UD3H MSI GTX670 16GB (4X4) Corsair Vengance 1600MHz Low Profile 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveOptical Drive
1Tb Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM 1Tb Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM 120GB OCZ Agility 3 SSD Cheapo DVDRW 
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CM Hyper 212 EVO Push/Pull Win7 Pro Sidewinder X4 OCZ ZS 650W 
CaseMouse
CM HAF X RAT 5 
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Phenom II 1600T GA990XA-UD3 Palit 550ti Palit 550ti (sli) 
RAMHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
16GB (4X4) Gskill OCZ Agility 3 120GB Seagate Barracuda 500GB WD Black 500GB 
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post #8 of 11
I have that mobo too its great. The 660 seems kinda skimpy to me. I do agree with your choice of ram keeps you ahead of the curve.
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post #9 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by 88hutch View Post

1. ASUS P8Z77-V Intel 7 Series Motherboard - ATX, Socket H2 (LGA1155), Intel Z77 Express, 2400MHz DDR3 (O.C.), SATA III (6Gb/s), RAID, 8-CH Audio, Gigabit LAN, USB 3.0, PCIe 3.0, WiFi-N, SLI/CrossFireX (price $190)

2. Intel Core i5-3570K BX806237i53570K Processor - Quad Core, 6MB L3 Cache, 3.40GHz (3.80GHz Max Turbo), Socket H2 (LGA1155), 77W, Fan, Unlocked (price $220)

3. Phanteks PH-TC14PE Dual Heat Pipe CPU Cooler - Socket LGA 2011, 1155, 1366, 1156, 775, Socket AM2, AM2+, AM3, 1200 RPM, 19 dBA, 78.1 CMF, 140mm Dual Fans, UFB Bearing (price $100)

4. Kingston Hyper X Beast KHX24C11T3K2/8X 8GB Memory Module Kit - 2400MHz, 2 x 4GB, DDR3, DIMM, CL11, XMP (price $63)

5. Corsair CX Series CX750 CP-9020015-NA 750W Power Supply - ATX, 24 Pin Connector, 80 Plus Bronze, Active PFC, SATA (price $90)

6. Asus GeForce GTX 660 GTX660-DC2-2GD5 Video Card - 2GB GDDR5, PCI-Express 3.0(x16), 1x Dual-link DVI-D, 1x Dual-link DVI-I, 1x DisplayPort, 1x HDMI, DirectX 11, SLI Ready, Dual-Slot, Fan (price $220)

7. Seagate Barracuda ST2000DM001 2TB Serial ATA Hard Drive - 7200RPM, 64MB, SATA 6Gb/s (price $100)

I would suggest a complete re-think.

1. No reason for such an expensive motherboard. You are usually limited by how much voltage you are willing to push through your CPU for overclocking, otherwise you are paying for various features which may or may not be of benefit for your non-gaming uses. There are very capable Z77 motherboards for $50 less.

2. Keep this. Don't go to i7. For gaming/overclocking, almost zero difference in performance for your extra $100.

3. $100 for an air cooler? Is it twice as good as a $50 cooler? Is it even 20% better?

4. You can go with the cheapest 1600MHz RAM for near identical performance.

5. You can easily run a single GPU with a quad CPU, both overclocked, on a good quality 450W. I know you want to go SLI, but MMO games probably benefit the least from SLI.

6. I would suggest a GTX 670. Money saved on motherboard, RAM, CPU cooler and PSU will easily pay for the better card.

7. Do you need all that disk space? MMOs (some at least) are some of the few games which can benefit from an SSD. Highly, highly recommended. How many games will you have installed at once? 250GB Samsung 840 are running $150 right now, and it can hold Windows and a bunch of games. If you need data space, you can get good GB/$ from a 5400RPM drive. Your data would not know the difference. Why plan on RAID? It isn't a backup, and a single good SSD will run circles around even RAIDed VelociRaptors in the important things.
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post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
GPU = Graphics Processing Unit or Graphics Card not CPU..... seriously for gaming that i5 is all you will need for a very long time. The 660 as a GPU is the crippling part of your build (or if not crippling the part that just fails to live up to the rest).

Doh, I did misread that, I feel sheepish now. So no real reason to go up to the i7 then? I wasn't totally sure how much more performance I would get going up on it. As stated previously, it's been a minute (or few) since my last build and I'm a bit behind on a lot of the newer stuff.
Quote:
I would suggest a complete re-think.

1. No reason for such an expensive motherboard. You are usually limited by how much voltage you are willing to push through your CPU for overclocking, otherwise you are paying for various features which may or may not be of benefit for your non-gaming uses. There are very capable Z77 motherboards for $50 less.

2. Keep this. Don't go to i7. For gaming/overclocking, almost zero difference in performance for your extra $100.

3. $100 for an air cooler? Is it twice as good as a $50 cooler? Is it even 20% better?

4. You can go with the cheapest 1600MHz RAM for near identical performance.

5. You can easily run a single GPU with a quad CPU, both overclocked, on a good quality 450W. I know you want to go SLI, but MMO games probably benefit the least from SLI.

6. I would suggest a GTX 670. Money saved on motherboard, RAM, CPU cooler and PSU will easily pay for the better card.

7. Do you need all that disk space? MMOs (some at least) are some of the few games which can benefit from an SSD. Highly, highly recommended. How many games will you have installed at once? 250GB Samsung 840 are running $150 right now, and it can hold Windows and a bunch of games. If you need data space, you can get good GB/$ from a 5400RPM drive. Your data would not know the difference. Why plan on RAID? It isn't a backup, and a single good SSD will run circles around even RAIDed VelociRaptors in the important things.

This is more information I'll have to process and possibly rethink my build here, which is why I am asking for advice. Will be working on seeing if some changes will allow me to go SSD or not. Will reply when I crunch some numbers and see what people think. Thanks again for the help.
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