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Old 2012-02-16, 17:15   Link #21
Spectacular_Insanity
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Join Date: Apr 2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 0utf0xZer0 View Post
Motherboard and PSU are definitely more expensive than you need.
I would consider getting the K version of the 2500, it's only $20 more for the unlocked multiplier (makes overclocking easy)
I agree with Ledgem - if it weren't for the Thai floods driving prices up, I'd recommend more than 1TB for an anime collector.

Also, I highly recommend getting an external hard drive for backup. You don't want to entrust a large collection to a single drive.
Thank you. You're right, it's only $20 more... seems like a sound investment.

I have 2 100GB externals already. Should I really get another external? I'm mostly just using the 1TB drive to store stuff, I shouldn't be using it that often. Stuff I use a lot, like Word documents, will be on my master SSD. It's 120GB, so that should be fine with a 1TB secondary.

Current setup looks like this:
-ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
-SeaSonic Platinum Platinum-860 860W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS PLATINUM Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
-Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623I52500K
-G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL
-EVGA 01G-P3-1556-KR GeForce GTX 550 Ti (Fermi) FPB 1GB 192-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
-Intel 320 Series SSDSA2CW120G3K5 2.5" 120GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
-Seagate Barracuda ST31000524AS 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
-ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS Black SATA 24X DVD Burner - Bulk - OEM

While I'm at it, I might as well throw in a monitor.
-Acer S231HLbid Black 23" 5ms HDMI LED-Backlight LCD monitor Slim Design
Very nice deal on this one. Originally $199.99, on sale for $139.99. Hard to pass up a $60 sale (that's 30%).

Since I already have a decent keyboard and mouse, that just leaves the wireless adapter card. Assuming I need one. I would prefer to just use an ethernet cable. Our router sucks.

I'm already hopelessly overbudget at $1281. I probably need to make some adjustments to lower my costs. What can I say? I don't know how to plan.

Edit: My post from the bottom of the last page:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spectacular_Insanity View Post
Thanks. That's what I wanted to know. Is that PSU still good with the motherboard, or should I pick another motherboard, instead?

If I do need to change them both, I would probably go with these:
ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard $121.99
-Not sure if it's got enough PCI slots, but it's 1155 and relatively cheap. Definitely worried about there only being 3 PCI slots, though....
SeaSonic Platinum Platinum-860 860W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS PLATINUM Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
-Your suggestion looks very nice, with fan controls, too.

I would prefer something with more slots for expandability. My other top pick for a motherboard would be this:
ASRock Z68 Extreme7 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard $269.99

And for a graphics card:
EVGA 01G-P3-1556-KR GeForce GTX 550 Ti (Fermi) FPB 1GB 192-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card $139.99
-Not sure if this graphics card is suitable to my setup. Do I need a better one?
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Last edited by Spectacular_Insanity; 2012-02-16 at 17:29. Reason: Oops, made a math error. Not a big surprise. >_<
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Old 2012-02-16, 17:17   Link #22
0utf0xZer0
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What resolution is your monitor? Do you plant to upgrade it in the near future? (Personally I love, large, high res monitors)
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Old 2012-02-16, 17:20   Link #23
Spectacular_Insanity
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 0utf0xZer0 View Post
What resolution is your monitor? Do you plant to upgrade it in the near future? (Personally I love, large, high res monitors)
My current monitor on my laptop is a 19" widescreen. Its native res is 1600 x 900, and I keep it on that. Seems to suit my needs perfectly, but as they say, bigger is better.

I can always use that extra desktop space to put in useless icons for programs I never use.

Native res of the monitor I was looking at (23" screen) is 1920 x 1080. Seems like more than enough to me. At least for now.
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Old 2012-02-16, 17:37   Link #24
Random32
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Since this is a gaming setup, as much money should go to the GPU as possible without resulting in a setup that bottlenecks the GPU. I would suggest taking money away from other components (Maybe a slower i5, I would NOT recommend a Ph2X4 if you aren't going to overclock though) to try and fit at least a GTX580, if not a Radeon HD 7950 or 7970 into your budget.

I would recommend upgrading the GPU GTX560 Ti if you aren't willing to sacrifice other components for the GPU for whatever reason and should be enough for gaming at 1080p single monitor.

I would put off the 1TB drive until prices return to normal if possible.
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Old 2012-02-16, 17:47   Link #25
0utf0xZer0
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For 1920X1080 I'd be more comfortable with a GTX560Ti than a 550. You shouldn't need an uberGPU though.

A $140 LCD will be a TN panel LCD, which is fine for most people but IPS and VA panels tend to have richer colours and better viewing angles (especially an issue if you look at the LCD from below center on the vertical axis - dark colours become washed on on TNs when viewed from below). However, even on special IPS and VA panels tend to be $200 and up for a 1080P 23 inch.

As for the two 100GB hard drives, that's fine as long as you only have 200GB of stuff you care about enough to back up it's fine. But you should keep a second copy of anything you care about - hard drives just aren't reliable enough to keep only one copy of stuff you care about IMO.
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Old 2012-02-16, 17:59   Link #26
Spectacular_Insanity
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Random32 View Post
Since this is a gaming setup, as much money should go to the GPU as possible without resulting in a setup that bottlenecks the GPU. I would suggest taking money away from other components (Maybe a slower i5, I would NOT recommend a Ph2X4 if you aren't going to overclock though) to try and fit at least a GTX580, if not a Radeon HD 7950 or 7970 into your budget.

I would recommend upgrading the GPU GTX560 Ti if you aren't willing to sacrifice other components for the GPU for whatever reason and should be enough for gaming at 1080p single monitor.

I would put off the 1TB drive until prices return to normal if possible.
Alright. I really can't afford those higher end graphics cards you mentioned, but I'll go with this one:
EVGA 012-P3-1570-AR GeForce GTX 570 (Fermi) 1280MB 320-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

Seems like an above-average compromise. Maybe I'll upgrade in the future, but to be honest, I don't really NEED an extremely high-end graphics card. I'm willing to run stuff on lower resolutions. Hell, I played Oblivion on minimum settings on my laptop.

And because I'm a noob... what does "bottlenecking" the GPU mean? I've seen a few other people mention it, but I'm unfamiliar with the term.

To save cost, I cut out the 1TB secondary drive. I can always add it later, I guess.

Right now my "budget" (I dunno if I can still call it that) stands at $1370. I'm not sure if I want to throw any more money at this monster project. But I think I'm set, assuming this graphics card works for my setup. When everything's said and done, if I go with my current components, I'll have spent around $1440 total (including accessories). It's worse than I hoped, better than I feared. But I didn't expect a top-of-the-line gaming PC to be cheap. Just cheapER than a pre-built one.

Let's just hope that I'm reaching the end of my expedition, here. My wallet is starting to sweat.
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Old 2012-02-16, 18:10   Link #27
iceyfw
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to help you alleviate your costs a little... if you never EVER plan to use two GPUS in one system, go with the SeaSonic M12II 620 Bronze modular PSU for $89.99 and FREE SHIPPING! (OMG). this PSU will power any single GPU along with whatever else you have in your system. i've had it since april 2010 myself and never ever gave me any problems. i highly recommend this psu for someone in your budget range.

edit: fixed URL.
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Old 2012-02-16, 18:26   Link #28
Spectacular_Insanity
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iceyfw View Post
to help you alleviate your costs a little... if you never EVER plan to use two GPUS in one system, go with the SeaSonic M12II 620 Bronze modular PSU for $89.99 and FREE SHIPPING! (OMG). this PSU will power any single GPU along with whatever else you have in your system. i've had it since april 2010 myself and never ever gave me any problems. i highly recommend this psu for someone in your budget range.

edit: fixed URL.
Thanks for the suggestion. While I would normally go with it, I just might double up my GPU one day. You never know. And it's probably better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it.

And speaking of cost, when do you guys expect the cost of hard drives to drop? I really want a 1TB internal for my secondary, but I hear the Seagate drives are plagued by unreliability and the Western Digital ones are freaking expensive.
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Old 2012-02-16, 18:29   Link #29
Dhomochevsky
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Bottleneck:
The one part in your setup that reaches it's limit first.
Example: You have a super cpu that can crunch 100 GB/s of data. But you are reading that data from your hdd, which can only provide 30MB/s. Then this is your bottleneck for the application.

Important to note, that this changes with the use case. Encoding movies has a different bottleneck than playing FarCry.

And I agree with Random32 on this. If the application is gaming, then the graphics card is your bottleneck. This means you can downgrade your other hardware a lot, it will still be the GPU that dictates how much of a gaming machine you have.
If you want gaming, pick the best GPU you can afford, then build the rest of your system around that.

HDD prices:
I bought 8 TB of anime storage for under 200€ last year. The current prices are still really high compared to that. And then you'd usually expect last years hardware to go down in price not up.
But this doesn't really matter if you only want a 1TB hdd. Not with the budget your are using here. But for really building up storage, this is still a bad time.
Oh and I have used Seagate drives for 10+ years now (that 8TB too) and never had one fail on me. In fact the ones from 10 years ago still spin up fine. Statistics vs anecdotes...
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Old 2012-02-16, 18:31   Link #30
iceyfw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spectacular_Insanity View Post
And speaking of cost, when do you guys expect the cost of hard drives to drop? I really want a 1TB internal for my secondary, but I hear the Seagate drives are plagued by unreliability and the Western Digital ones are freaking expensive.
i read a couple of articles a while ago saying 3rd quarter of 2012 if we're lucky production will start to resume again. expect early 2013 for prices to go down. i personally stick to samsung hdds but that is just me.
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Old 2012-02-16, 19:34   Link #31
Spectacular_Insanity
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And it's done. I ordered my parts. I'm pretty sure I have everything I need for now, minus maybe a wireless adapter card. Assuming I need one, which I think I will.

I spent more than I planned on this, but a LOT less than buying a pre-built one. My various components should arrive in a few days. I'll keep you guys up-to-date when I begin assembling them and I'll take a picture of the final product and post it here.
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Old 2012-02-16, 20:09   Link #32
iceyfw
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make sure you put the ram on before screwing in the motherboard into the case if you got the $121 asrock z68 board. i've seen concerns over the interwebz where people thought they were going to break the board because it's so thin and it requires an amount of slight pressure on the board to make sure the ram stays in - especially if the board is already screwed into the case. aside from that minor issue, it's a great board for the price.
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Old 2012-02-16, 21:48   Link #33
Ledgem
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spectacular_Insanity View Post
And speaking of cost, when do you guys expect the cost of hard drives to drop? I really want a 1TB internal for my secondary, but I hear the Seagate drives are plagued by unreliability and the Western Digital ones are freaking expensive.
Prices are constantly dropping, but they're still not back to where they were before the floods. I've heard estimates ranging from summer 2012 to the end of 2012, but nobody really knows for certain. If you're really desperate, you do what you need to do, right? If I had to buy now, I'd probably go for a 500 GB drive as a stop-gap, and then snag a 1.5 TB when the prices dropped down to where they were before. You're still getting burned, but at least you'd end up with 2 TB, instead of paying about the same amount and only getting 1 TB.

Seagate vs. Western Digital is like saying Ford vs. Chevrolet. Some people have had bad experiences with one and will only buy from the other; others have the opposite experience. I'm currently running with four Western Digitals (one of which has been with me since 2002 and received a ton of use - ahh, the days when 200 GB was the biggest that drives came in...), one Hitachi, and two Seagates (one of which has been with me since 2004 or 2005). Knock on wood (crap, there's no wood nearby for me to knock on!), I've never suffered a drive failure. It's anecdotal and doesn't really mean anything, of course, but personally, I'd buy from either. Just read reviews on the specific model you're looking at to get a feel for whether the failure rate might be higher than normal.
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Old 2012-02-16, 22:13   Link #34
0utf0xZer0
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I've had a number of Seagates and WDs without issue either. I had to go Seagate for my last drive because I needed a 1.5TB 2.5 inch (portable size) USB 3 external drive to transport large amounts of data between two desktops on a regular basis and nobody else offered one.

Backblaze - an online backup company that goes through a lot of drives - apparently likes the Hitachi 5K3000 series but those are 1.5TB, 2TB, or 3TB only and I seldom see anyone stock the 1.5.
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Old 2012-02-17, 00:45   Link #35
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I find it weird no one offered feedback on his choice of GTX570 .. Waste of money, when GTX560 Ti offers like 5fps less on games .. I dont know the price difference but I doubt it was worth of extra 1-5fps.

iceyfw : I have Z68 and had no problem with my G.Skill ram .. Easy to put in. I was more worried about installing the COOLER into the processor, which was quite a project. In fact, building the computer took like .. half an hour, while installing the cooler took .. much longer =_=.

Spectacular .. If you can afford it, buy a processor cooler on top of the parts you chose. Even if you do not overclock, an external cooler is always much better, and quieter than the stock cooler that comes with the processor. I love how my PC stays really cool, and the fans are always at minimum, so I don't have to deal with annoying fan noise and can leave it on even for nights .. and I sleep literally next to the computer! (If you do buy one, get Mugen 3 or Ninja Scythe 3). Despite what I said above, installing one is not actually hard, but I recommend to pay attention to the manual unlike I did -_-. Also think hard about whether you want one or not, cause I doubt you want to install one later, since the only way to install a cooler is to put it into the motherboard BEFORE screwing it into the case so you need to do it at the beginning.
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Old 2012-02-17, 03:48   Link #36
Spectacular_Insanity
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I'll probably just stick with the stock fan. Noise isn't going to be an issue, since I use sound-reducing headphones in the first place.

I don't think I want to mess around with a non-stock heatsink and fan. If I had done this before that might be a different story, but I'm going to be struggling enough as it is to not screw anything up just installing the basic parts.

Besides, if I were to get an external cooling system, I would just go all the way and get a liquid-cooled system.
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Old 2012-02-17, 04:47   Link #37
0utf0xZer0
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I was going to reiterate my 560TI suggestion to save a few bucks over the 570 but the way my class schedule worked out I didn't get a chance to reply before the order went in.

And yes, I don't know about the newer Intel CPUs but the old LGA 775 coolers gave my friends and I headaches the first couple times we used them. Dead simple once we figured out how the mechanism actually works, but oh so easy to mess up.
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Old 2012-02-17, 07:49   Link #38
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Well the way I see it, is that if you read the manual, you'll do it right. It's not possible to install it incorrectly .. If force is required, you're doing it wrong. So for building your computer, you won't '' screw up '' anything as long as you check all the cables are in their correct slots and so on.

I am using headphones that block noise from outside too, but I do still like it quieter and cooler. I don't have experience with i5's stock cooler but my previous processor with the stock cooler was Phenom X4, and oh boy did it overheat? Case was and still is excellent (Coolermaster) but the stock cooler was just THAT bad. Heat = Slower CPU = Shorter CPU Life, so all in all, even if you don't OC (I don't, even tho I have the K version), it never hurts to have external cooler.

External cooler is quite different from liquid cooling though .. Mugen 3 costs like $40, comes with heatsink and a fan, and installation is pretty simple. But what about liquid cooling? Ain't talking about simple here, also is expensive, and you can't just build and plug it in and leave it there.. You have to change the liquids often and stuff .. Quite bothersome, and not worth of it if you don't OC..-

I understand if you won't get one though .. Building your first computer.. That on it's own may prove quite challenging at first. And well I will admit that though installing the cooler was '' simple '', it was also hard as hell with just two hands .. Fortunately I had a friend with me at the time ..

Just gonna note, that despite what you said in your OP that you won't be playing Crysis or stuff alike, I assure you that this setup WILL play Crysis and Crysis 2 on maximum settings. So now if there's a game you want to try .. Don't bother looking at the system requirements.. Your computer WILL play it :P
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Old 2012-02-17, 12:26   Link #39
0utf0xZer0
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Eh, I took a look at the installation diagrams for my LGA 775 cooler and still messed it up. Sure, it takes some force to put in wrong, but many older CPU coolers required some force to install - why would I have assumed this was any different?

LGA 478 coolers were far easier to install.
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Old 2012-02-17, 13:27   Link #40
Kitame
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why the hell did you just skip my post? it was a perfect recommendation and the price is just right, just drop one card and it'll be a tiny bit over 1,000$, now add your new monitor and voala! 1,250$ (this is if your monitor is roughly 200$)
oh and drop the case, since you already have one.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kitame View Post
perfect for 1080p gaming w/ max settings & 4AA/AF
Spoiler for Intel:
if you're curious if the 650Watts PSU is enough then i'll do the math for you.
GTX 560 Ti - 448 consumes an approximate of 215Watts, based on it's 210 TDP with the extra 5watts for whatever HSF is stuck on it.
i5-2500K consumes an approximate of 95Watts based on it's 95 TDP + overclock percentage. lets say you overclock it to 5Ghz which should be roughly 50% overclock, that means it'll be about 145Watts overall.
do note that the TDP is a worst case scenario where every single core of it is running at 100% full throttle, the only thing that can make this happen is benchmarks and stress tests.

summing everything 215+215+145 = 575Watts for the main powerhogs
so adding pheriperals such as the mobo(20watts approx) harddisks(15watts approx) SSD(10watts approx) ODD(20watts approx) rams!?(5watts per pair)
so thats 575+20+15+10+20+5 = 645Watts! amen.

if you're concerned about this super tight headroom you could bump it to a 750Watts PSU.

Quote:
for harddrives, well ask your self, how much space do you need? to enlighten you about something, windows 7 64bit uses about 25-30GB w/ drivers, patches and so on included in it, a game on average uses 10GB, so to calculate, all in all an OS+5games(surely that'll be enough right? unless you play 24/7) sums up to about 80GB usage. meaning you won't really be needing anything bigger than 250GB of space unless you're running a fileserver or something.
but theres this funny thing about harddrives, there exist an alternate form of a harddrive called solid state drive, or SSD for short. these SSDs are capable of running 2-5x faster(hdd = 50-150MB/s || ssd = 200-500MB/s) than an ordinary harddisk which is quite awesome, plus it's delay in accessing files is nearly instant, though one problem about this thing here is that it's more expensive than a harddisk in GB/price.

as for the soundcard, well to give you a clue, you wont be needing anything better than the onboard ALC889 or ALC892 if you don't own a headphone worth 100+$ or a speaker system comparable to a theater. meaning what good will your shiny soundcard do if your headphones sounds crap?
if you'll ask what kind of headphones then for starters, try looking for headphones made by seinnheiser, audio technica or AKG. and no, skullcandy and Beats isn't listed.
Edit: i was bored, so i recalculated it myself...

Last edited by Kitame; 2012-02-17 at 14:04.
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