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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I used to have a pretty good PC and an average level of hardware knowledge but after a period of moving around quite a lot I switched to a laptop and forgot pretty much all I know about building desktop computers. Now that I've settled... More or less... I'm looking at fixing up a gaming PC to shame the one I used to own some 5 or 6 years ago but back then I had someone with me to help along the way and I'm sadly without that expertise. Cue the experts of overclock!

So I'm looking at a budget around £800-1000 ($1300-1700), less would be best obviously as I'm not trying to bankrupt myself, and I'd like to build a pretty solid gaming computer. If it's not too much trouble I'd quite like to refresh my memory on all this jargon and improve on what I know as well (been browsing the forums and other sites but there's nothing quite like personal advice, right?)

Thanks in advance guys, if I've missed out any vital information in this let me know
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
A pretty wide variety of things, something of a gamer. But on the lower end stuff like Gmod and on the higher end I'm looking at getting Titanfall and Thief... those sorts of things. I'd like to be able to play them with the graphics looking pretty hot as well but I don't mind holding off on buying certain parts now in order to get better ones in the future.
I've been perusing CPU's so far and it's all nonsense to me now, I retained less than I initially thought
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Well I really don't see anything substantial releasing anytime soon that's worth waiting for, unless you plan on completing this build six months later..

But if you had to have it right now, with that budget, personally I would look for an Intel i5 4670K (Z87 Mobo) or AMD FX-8320 (990FX Mobo), 8GBs of DDR3 RAM, an Nvidia GeForce GTX 780 or AMD Radeon R9 290, a +240GB Solid State Drive, powered by a quality 650-850W 80Plus Modular power supply unit, all running inside of an attractive Antec/Cosair/Fractal/Lian Li enclosure.. but that's just me.

As for CPU cooling, I prefer sealed liquid coolers such as Antecs Kuhler or Corsairs Hydro Series because I can't stand bulky metal heatsinks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
That was a lot quicker and more thorough than I expected! Thanks for the input!
I'm still getting my head round the basic stuff again atm but from what I've gathered so far I'd figured an i5 as well as i7 seems unnecessary, at least for the price. And that was pretty much as far as I've gotten.

Right now isn't really a priority. I'd prefer to have it sooner, 6 months is a long time, but I'm expecting this to take at least 1-2 months to sort all the bits and pieces and the inevitable delays in ordering and delivery e.t.c... Overall I'm pretty impatient but I'd like to think I'm not stupid.

Looking into the parts as I'm typing this but what sort of level of performance could someone expect from a rig like that? And if it's not too much trouble why would you go for those specific parts?

Thanks again
 

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I'm not aware of UK pricing but in the US the 4670K is currently one of the best high end gaming CPUs for the money according to TomsHardware and many users here on OCN. I also mentioned the FX-8320 incase you're somebody that prefers AMD processors because of their almost-as-good gaming performance which sells at a considerably lower price point.

As for the RAM, +8GBs has become the new standard in high end gaming. More and more titles are releasing that utilize greater amounts of memory such as Battlefield 4 and Titanfall, which both recommend 8GBs as the requirement for optimal gameplay.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yeah, Tomshardware was one of the sites I was using to get an idea of the lay of it with some reddit thrown in for good measure. Annoyingly enough I never thought of running through the requirements list for the games I'm intending on running on my machine once it's up so thanks for that reminder as well.
Looking into it that cpu gets a lot of praise from a lot of different places (even though they comment on it not being much better than it's older sibling) so I'm pretty tempted to follow that route.
I'm going to scout out some mobo's with what you said in mind next, then move through from there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Reading through some other forums a lot of people tout the benefits of the 8320 saying that OCing it will bring it up to the 8350's level and that the extra cores will probably be used more in future games and also reference streaming and the like. What's your take on this?
Also I saw someone say the choice of motherboards for the 8320 is pretty poor... he seemed like something of an intel nut though
 

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The 8320/8350/9370/9590 are all pretty much the same CPU, with varying levels of factory OC. A 9370/9590 might OC slightly higher due to being better binned, but most 8320/8350s seem to land in the 4.5-5.0Ghz range anyway.

For motherboards, there are plenty of good ATX boards for an 8320, just make sure you get an overclocking-friendly chipset like 990fx. If you are going for a mini build then yes, there are slim pickings for micro ATX boards.

As for cores/gaming, Intel currently wins in gaming no contest. Intel CPUs get better performance per core, and games really only make use of up to 4 cores right now. However, people are hoping that the new consoles and their 8-core CPUs will light a fire under developers' asses to make use of more cores, and level the playing field a bit.
 

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Games only using 4 cores is a myth, even if most do only use 4. Frostbite 2/3, Cryengine 3 are already out there and are going to be used in quite a lot of upcoming games and use as many cores as you want. High core scaling was also a stated design goal of unreal engine.
 

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How about this OP?

CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor (£161.99 @ Aria PC)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Seidon 120V 86.2 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler (£32.55 @ Amazon UK)
Motherboard: Gigabyte G1.Sniper Z87 ATX LGA1150 Motherboard (£99.98 @ Amazon UK)
Memory: Kingston Beast 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-2400 Memory (£61.19 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk (£59.82 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£39.14 @ Aria PC)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon R9 290 4GB Video Card (£319.99 @ Novatech)
Case: Fractal Design Define R4 (Titanium Grey) ATX Mid Tower Case (£64.98 @ Amazon UK)
Power Supply: XFX 650W 80+ Bronze Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply (£67.86 @ CCL Computers)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHDS118-04 DVD/CD Drive (£10.78 @ Scan.co.uk)
Total: £918.28

I dont think you can get much better for the price.
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks for the input! Being as I'm still kinda hesitating on cpu's, why would you go for the i5 over an AMD personally?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cerifero View Post

Thanks for the input! Being as I'm still kinda hesitating on cpu's, why would you go for the i5 over an AMD personally?
Because, generally speaking, they are faster. Single core performance way past exceeds the 8350, which is what alot of things use. Most games only use 4 cores and like 6 threads (Anyone who tells you otherwise is either an AMD fanboy or is wrong). That is what I have experienced with my 3930k, only about 4 cores and 6-8 threads are used in 99% of games. BF4 and Civ 5 being the exceptions I've personally experienced. Alot of the time though, I find that only about 2-3 cores are used during games like LoL, Dirt 3, and NFS Shift 2. Minecraft just goes apeshizz and uses whatever it feels like atm, sometimes its 1 core, sometimes its 6. This is just my experience, everyone has their opinion on the matter though. Though, generally speaking, i5 4670k>fx-8320/50.
Im not an intel fanboy, I'm a fan of whatever is fastest.
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
So did you come up with this from experience and know-how Or do you use something to help you make sure, for example, everything will fit in the case fine without any parts getting in the way of others?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cerifero View Post

So did you come up with this from experience and know-how Or do you use something to help you make sure, for example, everything will fit in the case fine without any parts getting in the way of others?
Im assuming you mean the parts list. I came up with it from part experience, part know-how.
The only things you really have to worry about when it comes to the stuff your concerned about is CPU cooler interfering with RAM (and vise versa) and if the GPU will fit in the case. The CPU cooler here is a 120mm watercooling system, which means that you dont have to worry at all about it interfering with anything. Basically a small waterblock sits on the CPU and then tubes route to the radiator which is mounted over one of the fan holes on the case. Speaking of the case, this case will fit any GPU you want, so no worries there. You can even keep the top HDD cage in and still fit the GPU (only just though
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).
Any other questions feel free to ask!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
That was a mistake, I have so many questions. Moving on to coolers, I've read up on types (air, aio water coolers or diy water coolers) but I'm not really sure how to compare the benefits of each or even ones of the same type. Obviously I can look at what other people say and will take that into account... But is that all I have?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
In fact I have just found some good reviews that compare dBA, rpm and the temperature difference between core and room temp so never mind that last one. I'll continue on my own until I reach the next impass, thanks =]
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cerifero View Post

That was a mistake, I have so many questions. Moving on to coolers, I've read up on types (air, aio water coolers or diy water coolers) but I'm not really sure how to compare the benefits of each or even ones of the same type. Obviously I can look at what other people say and will take that into account... But is that all I have?
Never a mistake
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Ok so here are the basics on it.
Air coolers: Easy to install, Only moving parts are the fans so not hard to diagnose problems, cools well.
AIO water cooling: Easy to install, pump and fans for moving parts, cools excellent even in 120mm varieties
Custom loop water cooling: Very complex and hard to install, requires constant maintenance, lots of moving parts and fail-points, cools as good as you want it to.
Basically for you, I would go for a higher end air cooler or an AIO watercooling cooler, not the custom loop. Its just not practical for your first build to be a custom loop.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GorbazTheDragon View Post

I'd consider waiting for Devil's Canyon...
I don't expect much improvements from the Haswell refresh. Maybe a few C cooler, maybe uses slightly less power, but I doubt it will be worth the opening price, especially considering they are, yet again, going to a new board. If anything, I would still take this because it will drop drastically in price, and because you wouldn't have to work with growing pains of new processors/motherboards.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
What's Devil's canyon?

And then on to memory. I'm familiar with RAM in that I understand the increments but why go for a specific brand over another?
 
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