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Old December 13, 2010, 06:33 AM
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Default Advice on new gaming build for a friend

Hello all!

My friend asked me to help him select a gaming build for him and where else better then to get some solid advice here. I built my own AMD PII-720 box last year, but since I've haven't been keeping up with the times, I am probably out of tune with current hardware.
I plan to have infonec build it for my friend, so I selected parts based on what they carry.

1. Gaming WOW and SC2, surfing the web, everyday use.

2. $1600 all in

3. Toronto, Canada

4. Been an AMD fanboy since my 386-Dx40, but my friend preferred an Intel

5. Brand new from the ground up

6. Yes I have read many previous new build posts.

7. no overclocking

8. After much more reading and from all the suggestions ppl here have thrown in, I'm waiting until Friday to order it.

9.resolution 1920x1080 right now

From reading some of the new builds in the forum and in addition to what ppl on this trhead have suggested, I've revised the list to the following:

Case: CoolerMaster Haf X
CPU: Intel i5-760
CPU Cooler: use stock cooler? (is there one that come with the CPU?)
Motherboard: ASUS P7P55D-E LX
Memory: Kingston HyperX - Memory - 4GB: 2 x 2 GB -DDR3-1600 (KHX1600C9D3K2/4GX)
PSU: SEASONIC 750W 80+ GOLD MODULE (R-X-750-A)
GPU: Asus Video Card EAH6870
OS: Windows 7 Home Premium 64
HDD: WD Black Sata3 w/64mb cache 1TB
SSD: OCZ Vertex 2 120GB

Any feedback on this setup would be much appreciated.

Thanks to all in advance.
VB

edited CPU, mobo, ram, PS and HDD.

Last edited by Visorboy; December 14, 2010 at 11:03 AM.
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Old December 13, 2010, 06:42 AM
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If no overclocking is planned stay with the stock heatsink-yes it does come with one. With the quality of the components you are choosing I would pick a newer PSU. Nothing really wrong with the TX850 but the AX850 is more efficient and modular for a cleaner build.
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Old December 13, 2010, 08:02 AM
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Looks pretty good but I would consider Nvidia for my gpu. The 400 series are still competitive with the new 6000s from AMD.

The psu is a bit high but gives you plenty of room for upgrades, which is what I would likely do. At least consider getting a modular unit like the HX series 750 w. Much easier to work with no extra cables.

If you're planning on xfire or sli the Asus boards have been good to me, the P6X58D-E is a great board as well. The one you chose is pretty good too.

Great case btw. I put a pair of 480s in it with a high cfm fan in the shroud which keeps a single cool enough to touch after an hour but haven't finished testing my sli setup yet.

Definitely warmer, but still seems reasonable.

As for SSD and HDD, the vertex II 120gb is what I use and it's fast. Consider the WD 1tb black for your hdd, or the new Samsung hdd. The new 6gb/s hdds really are alot faster.

It looks like your friend is going to have a solid unit but consider building it for him as it really isn't all that difficult. Mostly common sense.

Lots of build assists online including this site. My choice is HWC hands down!!!

Keep an eye on the BST threads. Some great deals.

Good luck with everything!
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Old December 13, 2010, 09:30 AM
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It looks like a great build, but I wonder if it wouldn't be a better idea to do a few changes to drop the price a bit. Specially considering the use and the fact it won't be overclocked.

I was thinking about LGA 1156 along with something like i5 760 for 200+ $ less, the money saved could be saved or used towards a better GPU.

But I will let other more knowledgeable people express themselves about that.
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Old December 13, 2010, 01:48 PM
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Thanks for the suggestions guys. I've switched the ps out to the HX series and the HDD for a WD Black 1TB.
I would build it myself, if it was for me, but I want my friend to feel better with the 1 yr of warranty the vendor is including, and besides they don't charge for assembly. I did lose the flexibility in price shopping over multi-vendors, but it's a give and take.

@Kilauea, I would have gone with i5 and the 1156 platform, but my friend asked that this system be upgradeable, so the 1366 platform would be the only one to offer it.
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Old December 13, 2010, 03:07 PM
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Sorry, but if he wants upgradeability, wait until January and the new LGA1155 chips. LGA1156 and LGA1366 will be EOL within the next year. Right now the ONLY advantage LGA1366 and the X58 chipset has over the P55's is in the number of PCI-E lanes, which is about a 4% difference with multiple cards. No difference in the single card configurations. So save his money if he's building now, or wait for Sandy Bridge and a better upgrade path.
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Old December 14, 2010, 02:01 AM
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+1 for the Crosair AX850W, better and newer.

Save some $
CM 690 II Advanced -$90~$100
i5 760 and Sabertooth 55i and 4GB RAM -$180~$200
WD Caviar Green 1TB -$30
60GB SSD -$120

Save $275~$425, upgrade to GTX 570, maximum performance on 1080P, yet.
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Old December 14, 2010, 04:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Luay79 View Post
+1 for the Crosair AX850W, better and newer.

Save some $
CM 690 II Advanced -$90~$100
i5 760 and Sabertooth 55i and 4GB RAM -$180~$200
WD Caviar Green 1TB -$30
60GB SSD -$120

Save $275~$425, upgrade to GTX 570, maximum performance on 1080P, yet.
I agree, and disagree with some of this. I haven't wrote a book on HWC in a while.. so here goes (i'm bored at work.. yay)

The CM 690II I agree with, or a Fractal Designs R3 case. I prefer a mid tower case, due to size and weight. The HAF X is an awesome case - but it's meant for overclockers and watercoolers alike - HAF = High Air Flow, it seems a bit pricey for something under utilized. Unless you like the look of it, than to each his own.

I wouldn't go the 1156 route, less ram - lower ram bandwith and whatnot. It's not a huge difference, but I value the 1136 socket more than the 1156 - basically due to the processor line up of the x58 motherboards.

I wouldn't go for a 1TB green as a storage drive, it's just too slow compared to an SSD. I wouldn't go with the 60gig SSD, because it's just too small. You can find a number of used 60 gigs on the forums, because people have figured this out and upgraded. If you use Steam for games - you cannot (that I know of) change the install path of games to any drive but the boot drive.

The Corsair HX 850 is a great power supply, very overkill for your system though. If you stick with the HAFX, you will have so much room, you can drive a truck through it - going with a modular PSU is recommended with mid size cases - but you could easily zip tie up the spare cables from a more moderate Corsair 600CX, which can power any of the latest video cards.
The only reason I'd go past a 600W PSU, is if you were going to SLI or Crossfire video cards down the road.

On the topic of video cards, once again, the 6870 is a good card.. you're looking at around $250 for the card (ish). Clearly this system is meant for gaming.. you have more than enough processor speed, your only bottleneck moving forward will be the video card. For another $100, you can move up to a GTX 570.. which is pretty damn popular now. It blows the doors off a 6870.. games would be so much smoother + higher settings.

But, after re-reading your OP, it seems you may have already ordered the system.. ah well.
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Old December 14, 2010, 05:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rison View Post
I agree, and disagree with some of this. I haven't wrote a book on HWC in a while.. so here goes (i'm bored at work.. yay)

The CM 690II I agree with, or a Fractal Designs R3 case. I prefer a mid tower case, due to size and weight. The HAF X is an awesome case - but it's meant for overclockers and watercoolers alike - HAF = High Air Flow, it seems a bit pricey for something under utilized. Unless you like the look of it, than to each his own.

I wouldn't go the 1156 route, less ram - lower ram bandwith and whatnot. It's not a huge difference, but I value the 1136 socket more than the 1156 - basically due to the processor line up of the x58 motherboards.

I wouldn't go for a 1TB green as a storage drive, it's just too slow compared to an SSD. I wouldn't go with the 60gig SSD, because it's just too small. You can find a number of used 60 gigs on the forums, because people have figured this out and upgraded. If you use Steam for games - you cannot (that I know of) change the install path of games to any drive but the boot drive.

The Corsair HX 850 is a great power supply, very overkill for your system though. If you stick with the HAFX, you will have so much room, you can drive a truck through it - going with a modular PSU is recommended with mid size cases - but you could easily zip tie up the spare cables from a more moderate Corsair 600CX, which can power any of the latest video cards.
The only reason I'd go past a 600W PSU, is if you were going to SLI or Crossfire video cards down the road.

On the topic of video cards, once again, the 6870 is a good card.. you're looking at around $250 for the card (ish). Clearly this system is meant for gaming.. you have more than enough processor speed, your only bottleneck moving forward will be the video card. For another $100, you can move up to a GTX 570.. which is pretty damn popular now. It blows the doors off a 6870.. games would be so much smoother + higher settings.

But, after re-reading your OP, it seems you may have already ordered the system.. ah well.
Nicely said. Ultimately I would get the GTX 570 rather than 6870 and cut corners wherever I can. My thoughts exactly on the CM690II andhold on, did he order it already?
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Old December 14, 2010, 05:55 AM
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You can EASILY change the install path of steam to any place you want. You simply install STEAM to a different hdd from the get go.
Right now I have a 120GB SSD for OS (and 8 2TB hdds) and steam is 250GB all of it on my "G" drive. Works fine, just start out as you plan to continue. :)

Greens are MEANT for storage. That is what they are designed for. Though I dont know If would use the smaller greeens for steam as game load times would suck. Id recoemend a 7200rpm Black as they would me MUCH more peppy than the green AND come with a 5 yr warranty.

60GB for your OS drive is plenty. IF you are careful. You install all the programs you use on the SSD and you install all your games on a HDD. Of course its easier with the bigger 120s but even 120 is not that big by today's stds and takes some management if you are not careful.

+1 on the 570. Great card. Bit of overkill for the OPs need though. 1080p is nothing for mid grade cards. BUT the 570 will give more future proofing. Though the OP could get one 6850 now and when he needs more power (ie when the get CHEAP) pick up a second for crossfire. ;)
+1 on 6902...unless OP plans to crossfire THEN the HAF X will come in handy.
+1 on the 850 being overkill...unless OP plans to crossfire THEN the 850 will come in handy. Still overkill but not a bad thing when dealing with PSU's.

1156 vs 1366...I prefer the 1366. BUT for more budget build Id recommend AMD. Better bang for your buck. YMMV on this one :)
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