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Old December 1, 2011, 07:53 AM
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Okay, I'm trying to type this quietly and I only have about 15 minutes to type this, so sorry if I am missing some type of information. My girlfriend and I have Birthday's that are SOO close together, we sorta set up a bet for who can actually build a better PC for one another with only a budget of $1200-1700.

I would like some help making a build blueprint for my girlfriend's computer.

Computer uses
She plays games (BF3, Skyrim, Crysis)
Renders movies (Mainly at 1080p, using Sony Vegas), and sometimes does photoshop work (Not very extensive, but it doesn't hurt to say?)

She uses my computer for all of this stuff, but we would like to game together and with games becoming more extensive. My AM2+ PC is showing it's limits and age. And, her laptop has seen better days. I'm going to give away my system to a family member (Except for parts like the Optical drive)

This IS happening around Mid-May. I DO know that Ivy Bridge is coming out, and they have the motherboards for PCI 3.0. This is pretty far from now, in terms of advancing technology. But, I only foresee Ivy Bridge, Piledriver, and AMD 7000 series graphics cards. Along, with other NEW parts. It wouldn't be very difficult to set aside or configure the build to accommodate that.

More info:
I have read TONs of hardware reviews and forum posts for everywhere.
I'm currently live in the U.S.
In terms of brands I prefer Corsair, Intel, AMD (I'm a fan of the underdog), Nvidia, Lian Li.
I don't intend on using any of my old parts except for the DVD drive.
I plan to build this around my Gf's birthday which in May
The monitor res I use is 19201080
Wonder if I could put in an LGA 2011 chip (Doubt it though)
Don't care about an SSD.
I might have a couple of HDD's laying around.

Only requirements:

1. It needs overclocking headroom.
2. It needs to actually be able to play BF3 on High or Ultra.
3. I need to fit an H70 or H80, or something along those lines.
4. It needs a tool-less or nice case.
5. IT NEEDS TO BEAT MY GIRLFRIEND'S BUILD

Wow, I typed a lot. She's waking up now so I have to end this post here.
If anyone can help or give ideas of parts. I'd appreciate it!
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Old December 1, 2011, 11:31 AM
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Sounds like an awesome girlfriend that you have there . But really, it's a little early to be able to recommend parts. You said so yourself. ATI 7xxx will be coming out, as will Ivy Bridge. Who knows how they will compare to the current crop of parts (although I doubt Intel is currently capable of engineering such a flop as Bulldozer, so it should be good).

I guess right now, because of the extreme prices of HDD's, you should try to salvage some of your existing drives to act as storage, and pick up an SSD for all your installs.
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Old December 1, 2011, 12:32 PM
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Well, the specs of the Ivy Bridges that are being released seem a bit like overkill, along with the high end Sandy Bridges. Especially for gaming and a bit of video rendering. It seems like they're are releasing a processor called i7-3770k with similar clock speeds to the i7 2700k. And, another processor called i5-3570k which seems similar to the i-2500k with the fact that it doesn't have hyper-threading. For some reason, I'm doubting Intel would price these processors beyond $400.

It couldn't hurt to look at the other parts though correct?
Such as a PSU, Case, Cooler etc?
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Old December 1, 2011, 12:59 PM
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Well, you are wll into SLI/Crossfire Price range, so let's start with a few parts you can get now that won't be outdated.

PSU: AX-850 (This will run pretty much anything in 2-way-SLI) $200ish

Case: Too many good choices out there...I still like big ass cases like the HAF-X...lots of room for lots of cards and cooling, but you have to pick based on looks here so...not sure. $150 - $200

Anything else I would wait and see but I can take some guesses.

Video: If she plays BF3 go NVidia...not AMD stuttering issues are still a problem and with the new cards who knows how long it'll take AMD to fix the drivers. So I'd go dual GTX 670s or whatever the followup to the 570 is...preferably with 2GB or more RAM..,it'd be 2.5 if they follow the current path. At release I'd expect close to $800 for those. This is where all your gaming power comes from though so it's worth the money. If this is blowing your budget dual 560 Tis or the newest equivalent with lots of RAM.

CPU/MB: If buying now get a Z68 V-Pro with the V3 PCI-Express and a 2500K If later, get the follow up equivalent to that..should be around $400 on release of the followup.

RAM: I've never thought C7 RAM was worth it but your call... I'd go with whatever is cheap at the time...might go 16 gigs although the list of uses you gave probably doesn't need it.

Cooler: you already said H80...so H80

Hopefully Hard Drives come back down in price by the time you build or this will go over budget...my prices are all on the high side since I'm guessing at release prices.
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Old December 1, 2011, 02:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Razamatraz View Post
Video: If she plays BF3 go NVidia...not AMD stuttering issues are still a problem and with the new cards who knows how long it'll take AMD to fix the drivers. So I'd go dual GTX 670s or whatever the followup to the 570 is...preferably with 2GB or more RAM..,it'd be 2.5 if they follow the current path. At release I'd expect close to $800 for those. This is where all your gaming power comes from though so it's worth the money. If this is blowing your budget dual 560 Tis or the newest equivalent with lots of RAM.
Wierd, I'm running an ATI card, and i don't suffer from stuttering in BF3. This sort of ATI bashing seems to be pretty popular.

But in all seriousness, wait until the new architecture comes out. If it's a flop, go with something proven. nVidia if you want. But if it's the game changer it probably will be, well, looks like ATI will be the way to go.
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Son's Rig: M5A97; 1055T; CNPS20LQ; 2x4GB Corsair Vengeance 1600Mhz; ASUS GTX650Ti Boost; 80GB Intel 520 SSD; 320GB WD Black HDD; SPI 700W; Bitfenix Shinobi;
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Old December 1, 2011, 02:12 PM
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In terms of a PSU, I don't know if I need a modular one. I'll consider it!
However, I think a TX850 would suffice.


For a video card, whatever that will be I think would be going overboard a bit. I don't know what game will use that many resources beyond BF3 or a poorly coded GTA game.

When the newer Ivy bridge CPU's are released they will release MORE motherboards, but I think the price range will be similar to whatever is out now.

RAM: Well, with video editing. I'd LIKE to have at least 8GBs. Which is dirt cheap.

Cooler: Well, I know the H80 will fit in MORE cases, but the h100 is nice also.


The case seems to be my dilemma, I really enjoy cases like Lian-Li, Silverstone etc. But there's nothing that is a real STEAL at the $200 and under mark. I just want it to be have good airflow and keep quiet. (Seriously, when my case is at FULL blast. I cannot sleep with it on)
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Old December 1, 2011, 02:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Razamatraz View Post
Well, you are wll into SLI/Crossfire Price range, so let's start with a few parts you can get now that won't be outdated.

PSU: AX-850 (This will run pretty much anything in 2-way-SLI) $200ish

Case: Too many good choices out there...I still like big ass cases like the HAF-X...lots of room for lots of cards and cooling, but you have to pick based on looks here so...not sure. $150 - $200

Anything else I would wait and see but I can take some guesses.

Video: If she plays BF3 go NVidia...not AMD stuttering issues are still a problem and with the new cards who knows how long it'll take AMD to fix the drivers. So I'd go dual GTX 670s or whatever the followup to the 570 is...preferably with 2GB or more RAM..,it'd be 2.5 if they follow the current path. At release I'd expect close to $800 for those. This is where all your gaming power comes from though so it's worth the money. If this is blowing your budget dual 560 Tis or the newest equivalent with lots of RAM.

CPU/MB: If buying now get a Z68 V-Pro with the V3 PCI-Express and a 2500K If later, get the follow up equivalent to that..should be around $400 on release of the followup.

RAM: I've never thought C7 RAM was worth it but your call... I'd go with whatever is cheap at the time...might go 16 gigs although the list of uses you gave probably doesn't need it.

Cooler: you already said H80...so H80

Hopefully Hard Drives come back down in price by the time you build or this will go over budget...my prices are all on the high side since I'm guessing at release prices.
i have bolded the main issue i have, and i can say, NO, there are not issues with the video cards stuttering, i run a 6950 unlocked, and there are no stuttering, my friend recently bout a 6870l NO stuttering, there are just people who do not know how to properly install drivers and diagnose other pc problems!. sorry for the rant, but really am tired of people bashing amd drivers, when i have NEVER had an issue with them, (amd cards, 9200, 9600xt, x800 modded to x800xt, 4850,5770, 6950 modded to 6970)

/rant.

Sorry, other than that the build is great.
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Old December 1, 2011, 03:33 PM
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Can anyone recommend a good case? I look at the HAF 932, the NZXT cases, RV03 etc.
I might get the HAF 932 or the NZXT. Bc, Lian Li doesn't have anything that looks nice right now.
And the RV03 cannot mount a h100.. And I'm leery about the 90 degree thing.. As clumsy as my girlfriend can be she might drop a card (Reason why she gets a H100 and not a custom watercooling set-up)


I think a lot of people have the HAF 932 which proves it's a battle hardened case, but I wanna be unique at least.
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Old December 1, 2011, 03:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maverick_brent View Post
i have bolded the main issue i have, and i can say, NO, there are not issues with the video cards stuttering, i run a 6950 unlocked, and there are no stuttering, my friend recently bout a 6870l NO stuttering, there are just people who do not know how to properly install drivers and diagnose other pc problems!. sorry for the rant, but really am tired of people bashing amd drivers, when i have NEVER had an issue with them, (amd cards, 9200, 9600xt, x800 modded to x800xt, 4850,5770, 6950 modded to 6970)

/rant.

Sorry, other than that the build is great.
I've only used Nvidia cards.. But AMD cards are starting to become really nice. I don't know if they're loud or run hot though. I've seen a 6990 crossfire set up, before no stutters. It was amazing. Ran Crysis 2 like a charm.
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Old December 2, 2011, 07:31 AM
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May is still a very long time from now and you'd probably be swapping parts and readjusting to fit the parts that are available next year. A precise and exact recommendation would be pointless when things change in a few months time. Here are some key notes instead..

1. Get a Core i5, whether it is the Core i5 2500K or Core i5 3570K(Ivy Bridge). The extra spent on something like a Core i7 2600K is better used for a higher end GPU.
2. For the GPU, check out the reviews that are available for the games that you will be testing it on. Pick whichever performs the best in that particular game. Be it AMD or Nvidia, pick whichever brand which performs the best for that game.
3. A single powerful GPU is always better than dual GPU that is half of that, you don't have to worry about scaling with a single GPU. If there are good HD7000 series or GTX600 series GPU that performs better and fits your budget, take it.
4. Skip the prefilled WC, get a Noctua NH-D14 and push for 4.5GHz or higher.
5. Corsair cases are pretty decent for the price especially the 400R. The 400R should be sufficient and allocate more of the budget on the CPU and GPU.
6. If there is room for a SSD, go for it even if it is a small capacity SSD.
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