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Old August 4, 2010, 07:03 PM
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 6
Default Budget i7 3d/Comp workstation (sub $1500)

Hey All, first post!

I'm getting ready to build an i7 on the cheap and thought I should get some thoughts from some hardware gurus before pulling the trigger. I'm trying to keep it below $1500 for the parts I don't own right now which are proc/mb/ram/vidcard/power supply/OS. I can spend a bit more for the right bits if I'm totally outta line on anything (sub $2k tops)

-i7 1366 chip, probably whatever is the best value/on sale that week... 930 2.8 is what I'm thinking of right now.

-Motherboard with Sata3/usb3.0... leaning towards a Gigabyte x58a-ud3r currently

-550- 650 watt power supply, whatever is best bang for the buck, hopefully modular/80+ but I can deal without either of those for an awesome deal.

-12gb ram in 3 x 4gb sticks, whatever is most reasonable (currently seems like OCZ)

-1 EVGA 1gb 460GTX superclocked ee (based on reviews)

-Windows 7 Pro 64 bit

This is $1415.00 or so from NCIX right now.

This will be built into an old Lian Li case I have laying around with an already purchased Corsair Force F60 SSD. The storage HD is from my current box, a 320gb seagate ide. That drive will get replaced very soon but it has the info from the project I'm currently working on so it'll do for now. Monitors are a pair of 23" LGs I already own.

It'll be used mainly for lighting and rendering in Maya, comp in Nuke, and some Realflow, Boujou and python scripting, with maaaaaybe an occasional FPS. Not likely to overclock, but if it can be done rock solid stable and reliable I'd consider it if the performance/value ratio is good.

So, comments, suggestions, critiques?

I'd consider SLI, but it was such a dud on my old HTPC build (7900gt SLI on an amd 4200x2) that I'd rather spend that money towards a kick-ass single card instead of a mediocre pair. Thoughts on that?



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Old August 4, 2010, 07:56 PM
Top Prospect
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Windsor, ON
Posts: 244

Welcome to the HWC Forums mate

Anyway, onto the build...

I would recommend Corsair's HX650 or 750 unit for your psu (750 unit is for SLI if you go that route), both are 80+ certified and fully modular so you'll enjoy the easy cable management

For ram I prefer Corsair, Mushkin or G skill, though Patriot is another I would get, due to all having lifetime warrantry. DDR3-1600 is the sweet spot for speed.

Everything else looks great, good luck with your build
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Old August 4, 2010, 08:28 PM
fishingfanatic's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Hamilton Ont
Posts: 1,368

My System Specs

Smile New Builds

Looks good so far. The 930 is a good cpu that overclocks easily. A motherboard to look at is the Asus P6X58D-E. Great board with sata 3/usb 3 features as well. Again, easy to work with and overclocking is a breeze.
As for psu, the Corsair as suggested is good. A 750 is good for allowing you to sli if you choose to later on.
As for memory, as the previous member mentioned, Mushkin,Corsair, Patriot and G Skills are all lifetime warranty and perform quite well. The 1600s are a good frequency. My preference is Mushkin, to each his own.
Good luck wit hthe build and enjoy the new system!
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Old August 8, 2010, 04:00 AM
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Niagara, Canada
Posts: 11

My System Specs


Just finished a build described below and got some excellent deals on the setup... If anything interests you lemme know and i will tell u what and where I grabbed it. My entire build came around the 1000 mark and the system flies. I have easily clocked it to 4Ghz which is where it is sitting right now and can push 60fps through JC2 which I think is good. I am also 17000 plus in PCMark Vantage which doesnt come near what some of the guys post but I think is a healthy score. It is my first build...

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Old August 8, 2010, 07:22 AM
Despicable's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: /Home/Canada/NS/Halifax
Posts: 34

Like other members have said, go with corsair, g-skills or Mushkin. I had to RMA my OCZ triple channel memory kit twice with bad memory chips. Its working now but i still very much regret going with OCZ.
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Old August 16, 2010, 04:55 PM
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 6

Thanks all for weighing in! I did some more research and ended up going 1156 instead of 1366... seemed better bang for the buck for a single vidcard system. To all those who suggested not going with OCZ ram too... The salesguy I had at NCIX agrees with your opinions. ;-)

In the end I got:
-2.93 i7 1156
-gigabyte ud3 board (I wanted the fast charging usb thing)
-evga 470 gtx superclocked (hard to find a 460 right now and this was on sale)
-2x4gb patriot ram
power supply is interesting- my initial choice was way too little once I went 470 so they sold me an OCZ 650w... After I installed it I found that it still didn't have enough amperage on the 12v side for the card. I'm returning it towards a corsair hx750 tomorrow.

Thanks again all! I'm waiting on the ram (which wasn't in stock) and then I'll build this thing up

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