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Old December 19, 2010, 01:34 PM
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Default First time PC build

So I'm building a PC for the first time, and I've purchased the majority of the components already with just a pieces left, namely the video card and motherboard, both of which I've already decided on. The list of parts I'm going to use is as follows:

I7-950 CPU
Rampage 3 Extreme mobo
GTX 580 GPU
Corsair Dominator 12gb, (3 x 4gb)
Tuniq Tower 120 extreme rev.1 CPU heatsink
WD Caviar Black 1TB SATA 6.0Gb/s 64MB cache
ASUS DVD combo burner
Coolermaster HAF X case
Kingwin 1000W power supply

Can anyone see any problems that I might have when it comes to assembly? Like I said, this will be my first build, and I'm a little nervous about whats going to happen when I put all of it together and turn the power on. You know the one thing that's boggling my mind more than anything? Placing the heat sensors properly. Do you just get them as close each component as possible? Should they be in direct contact? Any help or insight on the build and sensors would be very much appreciated.
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Old December 19, 2010, 01:46 PM
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Heat sensors? for what component?
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Old December 19, 2010, 01:53 PM
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Oh right, I bought an Aerocool V12XT fan controller and the manual is super vague. It's my understanding that the sensors are just supposed to give you an approximate temp, and if this is the case then I'm probably overthinking it.
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Old December 19, 2010, 02:04 PM
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Everything looks pretty good to me except I'd go with a Corsair/Seasonic/Silverstone PSU over the Kingwin, only other thing I would do differently (besides watercooling everything...lol) is if your budget allows?..add an SSD as your boot drive and use the WD for files/programs...best money you'll ever spend ;)
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Old December 19, 2010, 02:07 PM
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Heat sensors are 'built' in to the mobo and you shouldn't have to worry about them.

I wouldn't buy the Rampage 3 Extreme unless you are an enthusiast over-clocker as you pay for a lot of features that you'll never use. There are many better priced high quality motherboards that have USB 3.0 and SATA 6. The only (non over-clocking) winning feature is the layout of the PCIe slots as all of them are 2 slots apart, allowing you to fit 4 double slot GPUs. So again, if you're not getting more than 3-way, why bother?

I haven't heard much about kingwing PSUs, but if you're paying $180 or more for that thing, I'd invest in a better PSU/brand. Nothing worse than have a PSU crap out on you.

A lot of people in this forum will tell you that the g.skills make better high end RAM and especially for o/c, but what you have is just fine. Although, if you're only gaming, the only advantage to buying more than 6 GB of RAM is making 6GB of your 12 as the windows swap file. Gaming on windows 7 does not use more than 3-4 GB of RAM (minus 2-3 games).

I think you could have bought a cheaper CPU cooler with similar performance, but since I don't actively research the issue, I may be wrong.

Overall, building is easy but time consuming. Make sure you don't miss any standoffs for your mobo as it's a PAIN to take apart your mobo to install the missing standoffs! since your case has a heat sink cut-out I suggest you install the mobo and then the CPU cooler after (if you can get someone to help you hold it, that will be perfect). Otherwise, if you plug something in wrong, etc, it just won't work and there is very little chance you will damage it. Most plugs, etc are pretty fool proof (other than the front panel) and can't be messed up.

1) mobo+CPU/PSU install
2) RAM install
3) CPU cooler install
4) Do all your cables (including front panel connectors and all cable management).
5) GPU/HDD/Optical drive install

Just take your time so you don't damage anything and be careful about electricity/shocks. My first time building was easy, just took me a long time :). Make sure that you install any case fans or extras FIRST if they will be impeded by the installation of the mobo, but otherwise follow the above order.
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Old December 19, 2010, 02:27 PM
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I'm not against using SSD's at all, and my budget is flexible in the sense that there isn't really a budget. I'm just building a PC that's sensible, reasonably powerful, and somewhat futureproof, (in the loosest sense of the term). Now for a super noob question: I was intending to get setup for RAID5 with 3 SATA 3.0Gb/s HDD's above and beyond the 1 that I already have listed, would you still recommend a SSD? And to further elaborate on the super noob question: Once I load up the 1TB drive I have listed as the boot drive, can I switch it in the future without reinstalling the OS?
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Old December 19, 2010, 02:30 PM
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Oh, and I guess I should mention that I DO plan on overclocking somewhat.
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Old December 19, 2010, 02:39 PM
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IMHO I would still recommend an SSD for boot drive and run your RAID setup as intended, but thats just my opinion. I'm not exactly sure what you mean by "switch it" but if you mean replace it and use it for storage, you can switch the drive as long as you "image" the drive to copy over to the new boot drive.
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Old December 19, 2010, 03:50 PM
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As others have recommended, go for Corsair, Seasonic & Antec power supplies.

I always recommend getting OCZ Vertex 2 ssd's as they are the best on the market. I would recommend getting at least 120GB as it has the capacity to hold the os & plenty of games

As for cpu coolers, I would recommend Cooler Master V6GT, Thermalright Venomous X, Prolimatech Megahalems, Thermaltake Frio or the like, check out the reviews on this site.

To help cut down on budget, you could look into getting the Asus P6X58D-E motherboard if your only going to have one or two video cards.

Any DDR3-1600 ram from Corsair, G skill, Mushkin or Patriot will do you fine

Lastly I highly recommend going with EVGA for your 580, they have great customer service & warranties

Everything else looks great Good luck with your build and enjoy the new machine
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Old December 19, 2010, 04:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Iron View Post
I'm not against using SSD's at all, and my budget is flexible in the sense that there isn't really a budget. I'm just building a PC that's sensible, reasonably powerful, and somewhat futureproof, (in the loosest sense of the term). Now for a super noob question: I was intending to get setup for RAID5 with 3 SATA 3.0Gb/s HDD's above and beyond the 1 that I already have listed, would you still recommend a SSD? And to further elaborate on the super noob question: Once I load up the 1TB drive I have listed as the boot drive, can I switch it in the future without reinstalling the OS?
SSDs are great for boot time of Windows if that is an issue for you. They are also great to put your commonly used programs like web browsers, word processing, etc. so you can get that 'instant on' feeling. Gaming mileage will vary and really depends on your perceived value. 60 GB will get you all the basics + 2 games on a SSD, where 32 GB might get you 1 game (under 10 GB) but isn't really worth putting games on. Then, you have to decide on how much you're willing to pay for gaming performance. SSDs won't usually help your FPS in games, but you will notice faster loading times throughout the game. I'm running a Caviar Green (supposedly a slow HDD) and a Agility 2 SSD and the difference in loading times for games is 5 seconds at best (BF:BC2, L4D 2, Metro 2033 to name a few). Most of the improvement to loading time is just the fast CPU + RAM.

Since SSDs are still maturing, I'm not a huge fan of over-committing to them yet. If you aren't worried about being value oriented, then just go for a large Vertex 2 or similar.

As for the boot drive, windows 7 (or the trial version of Acronis) allows you to create a disk image. This is an exact copy of your boot drive and it's contents. It's a fast and painless way to move your install from one drive to another (providing you don't change the path of the boot drive (i.e. C:\). As long as the new disk has the same capacity or higher of the disk space used on your old drive, there is no problem. (i.e. if you had 60GB in use on your old system, your disk image will be ~60GB and your new drive will have to be > 60GB). I'm not sure if you'll run into any problems if you boot drive is part of a RAID array, but I doubt it.
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