New Mid-High gaming RIG, need opinions!
My tech friends are being fairly useless at helping me figure out whether the parts for my rig are balanced and work well with each other (I only dabble in tech specs when I am looking for upgrades). I'd appreciate any constructive comments you have about bottle necking, compatibility, and price for the components I have selected. The only 2 components I would be dismayed about changing are the i7 2600k processor and the GTX 560 Ti graphics card. All of the other components were essentially built around what I though to be on par with those two items.
As a side note a few of these items were cheaper but unfortunately some of their rebate deals ended so a couple of these prices may not be the cheapest anymore despite my recent research. The rough total for all of these items is around $1250-1300 not including any shipping fees that may apply. I would love to get the price down a bit but as long as it doesn't climb any higher (without significant reason/improvement) I am ok with it.
(There are 2 different types of RAM because I am still undecided, however, I am leaning towards the Patriot Viper series and getting 16G)
Micro Center - ASUS Sabertooth P67-R3 LGA 1155 Intel P67 ATX Motherboard 290049
Micro Center - Intel Core i7 2600K LGA 1155 Boxed Processor 179499
MSI N560GTX Twin Frozr II/OC GeForce GTX 560 Ti (Fermi) Video Card - 1028MB, GDDR5, Overclocked, PCI-Express 2.0 (x16), Dual DVI, HDMI, DirectX 11, SLI Ready at TigerDirect.com
Corsair CMZ16GX3M4A1600C9 Vengeance 16GB PC12800 DDR3 RAM - 1600MHz, 4x4096MB, Non-ECC, Unbuffered at TigerDirect.com
Micro Center - Patriot Viper Xtreme Series 8GB DDR3-1600 (PC3-12800) CL 8 Desktop Memory Kit (Two 4GB Memory Modules) PXD38G1600LLK
Corsair CWCH50-1 Hydro H50 CPU Liquid Cooler - 120mm Fan, Copper Cold Plate, Aluminum Radiator, LGA775, LGA1366, LGA1156, AM2/AM3 at TigerDirect.com
Cooler Master RS850-AMBAJ3-US Silent Pro M 850W Power Supply - ATX, Modular, 850 Watt, 80+ Bronze Certified, SLI, 135mm Ultra Silent Fan at TigerDirect.com
Asus DRW-24B3ST/BLK/G/AS Internal 24x CD/DVD Drive - DVD±R 24x, DVD+RW 8x, DVD-RW 6x, DVD±R DL 12x, DVD-RAM 12x, CD-R 48x, CD-RW 24x, SATA, 1.5MB, Black at TigerDirect.com
Seagate ST31000524AS Barracuda Hard Drive - 1TB, SATA 6Gbps, 7200 RPM, 32MB at TigerDirect.com
Corsair CSSD-F60GB3-BK Force Series 3 2.5 Solid State Drive - 60GB, SATA III 6Gb/s at TigerDirect.com
Cooler Master HAF 922M ATX Black Mid-Tower Case - 5 External 5.25 Drive Bays, 5 Internal 3.5 Drive Bays, 2 200mm Fans, 1 120mm Fan at TigerDirect.com
Edit: I am looking to run games such as Skyrim, Firefall, Starcraft 2, and possibly Battlefield 3. I would like them all to run on ultra graphics with no problem. :D
I am also using a 720p 32" HDTV atm (with an HDMI cable) for a monitor but I might get an LCD LED Backlit screen if I can find one big enough for my tastes. The largest I have found so far was 23" and I am looking for 26-28 or so. Opinions on this would be welcome as well.
Edited Edit: A few more pieces of information I neglected to put in.
I plan to use all new equipment (none that I currently own) and I will either be on 720p or 1080p depending on if I buy a monitor to take the place of my 32" HDTV.
I don't plan to overclock at first but I may use the option later.
I plan on getting everything within 2-4 weeks and I would prefer to stick with Intel and nVidia related items seeing as most people agree they are better for gaming.
I live in the USA so the best prices will likely be items inside the country but I am open to other venues so long as they are reliable and priced well.
(This should cover everything the sticky thread tells me to put in here unless I'm especially forgetful tonight)
In general it's fine except I would change a few things...(not a poll option so did not vote)
First off you don't need 16GB or HT for gaming. As a matter of fact loading up all 4 ram dimms may affect overclock stability...so getting a dual channel 2x4gb kit will probably give optimal performance and bang for buck (you wont rly ever be using more than 5gb or so anyways...till very recently the consensus was that u dont need more than 4gb).
Now as far as HT goes, I know you said u don't want to change the 2600k but keep in mind that the 2500k is nearly physically identical...only difference being that each of the 4 core on the i7 can handle 2 threads instead of one. Now this is useless in nearly every game as most don't use more than 2 to 4 threads anyways. However enabling HT does generate extra heat and can make overclocking a little more hazardous/tricky (also keep in mind u save about 100$ for no loss in gaming).
While on the overclocking subject; stay away from the H50. It's loud, expensive and just generally not good...performance is on par with 30$ air coolers and sound lvl of the native corsair fans are terrible. Either go for a decent well reviewed air cooler such as the NH-D14 (if u feel like getting the best temps possible without a custom water loop, however kinda pricey and needs ur ram not to have useless tall heatsinks) or build your own custom water loop...in general all the ALCs are not anywhere near comparable with this.
Last problem I see with this build, the psu. If you are going with single gpu then 850 is way way way overkill. If you are doing SLI on the other hand the wattage is fine (a little more than necessary but still fine) but I have always been less than impressed with cooler master psu quality (barely a notch above OCZ/Tt bad) and would never pay that kind of money for one. Take a look at corsair, xfx, seasonic (all the same OEM), silverstone, antec (and a few other good brands). 600-650W is more than enough for a single gpu system loaded with lots of extras and a massive OC. 800-850W for dual gpu. shouldn't cost any more than that CM unit (keep in mind build quality/rail setup is far more important than 80+ rating, however the 2 are not always mutually exclusive).
Finally, not rly a problem but the case, the 922 is fine but im sure u can find it cheaper elsewhere. Seen it go for 70$ quite often. If you can't find it at that price there are better cases in the 100$ range IMO but thats debatable as cases are very subjective and aesthetics might be a big factor when choosing one.
Very nice build but I would definitely get a better video card. That will probably be able to run SC2 on ultra but I don't think it will Skyrim or BF3 especially at a resolution higher then 1920x1080.
2. I haven't messed with OC yet and so I wouldn't be doing this much unless I was unhappy with my system performance but I don't mind paying a little extra for the option.
3. I'll look around a little more on the liquid coolers ;]
4. I was under the impression from a few sources that 750W would be the lowest you would want with the combo of i7 2600k and the 560 Ti so I was opting for a little extra... do you have any links that would support why only ~600 is needed? (I like to read things for myself if I can) Also would you suggest dual gpu or SLI for games like Skyrim or is single more than sufficient for max settings?
5. Thanks I'll look around a bit more for better deals on the case. The only ones I found (only looked at about 4 sites) that were cheaper were for factory refurbished and they were so dirt cheap I didn't want to trust them...
I do not think a GTX 570 would be worth the extra $250, if that's the case better to buy two GTX 560Ti and SLi them. they will beat the GTX 570.
Also go for a Asus Z68 mobo
I actually shopped around and managed to find a good rebate on a 570 to make it just under $300 vs the $225 for the 560Ti. I'm thinking that as long as I can get it at that price then it would be a worthwhile upgrade. Thoughts?
Any why the Z68? What kind of performance benefits do I get? Does it reduce performance degradation or is it better at preventing bottle necking? Does it offer support for tri-channel DDR3 or higher RAM speeds? Generic "buy this" comments won't satisfy me I'm afraid...I do appreciate that you took the time to comment I would just rather have a more constructive one. :)
The Z68 adds PCIe 3, which isn't actually used yet. Sorta futureproofing, I suppose. 68 combines the benefits of 2 earlier 67 series' (H67 + P67?), overclocking on one and ability to use the onboard GPU on the other. I have a Z, it supports SATA3 (as does 67) and also the ability to use an SSD drive as a cache, which 67 does not.
We don't know the specs yet for some of the games you mentioned, but even a 580 series GPU is over a year old now, and new ones will be out early in the new year, according to my last reading. Expecting a 570 to run 'everything on ultra' is questionable looking forward. BF3, there are tons of options disabled in the beta. Skyrim I expect to be a hog (on ultra). They'll still both run fine and look good on a lesser card like a 560/570, but my guess would be not 'ultra' maxed out settings. That said, both are also console friendly, so they could be dumbing things down some for PC and make me totally wrong. The 570 is better than a 560Ti, but not better than 2. Personally, I went with a 580 recently thinking I'd add another as prices came down...you could do that with either a 560Ti or a 570.
Keep in mind that dual vid card systems very often (not universally) have problems with frame stutter. Nvidia SLI has a better reputation than AMD Crossfire, but the problem still exists.
Back to PSU, @ 850 you are future proof as to the ability to run 2 vid cards. You sure don't need even 750 for 1.
Also, if I were looking to save dough I'd drop the SSD in a heartbeat. Sure, you're OS and saved games/area transitions will load faster with SSD...but you're not going to get more FPS or faster mouse twitch or whatever ;)
Personally I see nothing wrong with a single 570. Later on if it's not enough power for you add a second card. You'll have the advantage of having saved some money up front on the cost of a higher end card to offset the price of a second GPU.
You're looking at $450-$500USD for a GTX 580 where a GTX 570 would only set you back $300-$350USD. That's $100-$200USD difference. According to the posts in the Can My PC Run BF3 thread the 570 should be excellent for at least that game.
We tend to get into this argument, and I'm seeing it myself in my own build threads of, "Oh, you should wait! THIS new tech is coming out in 2 months! It'll change everything!" When that rolls around the cycle repeats itself. There's always going to be something newer, better, faster coming out. There's tons of engineers working to ensure that. The question is, do you want to wait forever or get what you can NOW and enjoy it?
I'm like you. Totally on the fence on the whole Z68 vs P67 thing. I don't really need an onboard GPU as I don't encode anything, ever. If I'm going to do that I have a file server I can make do it while I'm doing other things. The SRT thing seems a bit of a gimmick and a joke to me. Any real benchmarks I've seen on it seem to indicate if you run 2-3 applications consistently it's great. If you cycle between applications it tends to push the oldest out of the cache defeating the whole purpose. You already have a SSD in your build that I'm assuming is for your OS so I'd not even consider that a factor.
Which brings us back to the Sabertooth. That's the same board I'm considering. Just an FYI there were reports of a "sleep" issue where some machines won't wake from sleep with that board. It seems to be a fairly rare occurrence but those who experienced it have been pretty vocal.
Thanks for the info on dual cards and frame stutter and about the PSU, I'll keep it all in mind!
I know I can never actually future proof my PC, especially if it is for gaming, but since I have a good job now and I'm working overtime I figured I could afford to at least try a little to avoid my previous experiences. I am definitely looking to buy within a month unless there is some huge part coming out in 2 that will lower prices of the gear I am looking at, if that is on the way I might wait to get them at lower prices but that is unlikely.
Yes the SSD is for my OS and 1-2 games that I know I will play a TON (Skyrim for sure) but I don't plan to use more than half of it's space if I can (I heard their performance degrades quickly the more you fill them up after half full).
Thanks for the heads up on the P67! I'll look into that sleep issue...
What are your opinions on Coolmax?
I found this PSU for $50 cheaper than the one in my build and it has more power to boot...
Newegg.com - COOLMAX CUG-950B 950W ATX12V v2.3 EPS12V v2.91 SLI Certified / CrossFire Ready Modular Active PFC and Compatible with Core i3/i5/i7 Power Supply
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