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Building a mid-range PC for gaming, need help


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#1
Ggilmann

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Good day,

It was around 10-12 years ago that I built my first and only PC from individually ordered computer pieces. Afterwards, I started using laptops for work and study and lost touch with PC building. It now seems that choosing pieces has become way more complex than it was at that time I built my first PC. After spending many hours looking through the parts available at NewEgg, I came to the conclusion that I could use a little bit of help. I figured that by posting on a forum such as this one, I could profit from the collective pool of knowledge and avoid hours upon hours of sifting through hundreds of models of CPUs, motherboards and graphics cards.

However, I did manage to gather a list of components that are relatively cheap and that seem to offer acceptable performance. This list is actually a kit that a local shop sells for around 800-900$ for moderate to heavy gamers, apparently. Here it is :

CPU Intel Core i5-2320 Sandy Bridge 3.0GHz (3.3GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 2000 BX80623I52320
MotherBoard ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
RAM Kingston HyperX 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 Desktop Memory Model KHX1600C9D3K2/8G
Video PowerColor AX6850 1GBD5-DH Radeon HD 6850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity
Hard Drive Seagate Pipeline HD ST31000322CS 1TB 5900 RPM 8MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Case NZXT M59 - 001BK Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
Power Supply Orion 650W 140mm Fan
Sound card Not specified
CD Drive Not Specified

A couple of notes, the case has to go, I hate the NZXT M59, I want something simple with space. The motherboard seems a bit iffy to me, from reviews on NewEgg. The PSU is impossible to find on NewEgg so I'm also unsure on that one. Also, there's probably a better video card available out there for the same price. Suggestions on a monitor, 24 to 27 inches are also welcomed!

Now, I would like to first see what you guys think of this build. Then I would like suggestions on how to upgrade this list while remaining in a reasonable budget. I figure you guys have already sifted through available components and can save me a ton of time.

Thank you all for your help,


Ggilmann
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#2
Ggilmann

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I'm not having much luck on this forum it seems, maybe it's my title that's boring or maybe I did something wrong in my opening post... Anyhow, I've spent the better part of the day on NewEgg, trying to choose a better build than what I put up in my OP. I've managed to choose a full list of components. If you guys can tell me first if every piece works together and second if there's anything I can do to make it better while keeping it within the same budget.

CPU
Intel Core i5-2500 (3.3GHz LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 2000)

MotherBoard
ASRock Z68 Ext.3 Gen3 (LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard)

RAM
Ripjaws 8GB (2 x 4GB) (240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 PC3 12800)

Video
Gigabyte HD 6850 (Radeon 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support with Eyefinity)

Hard Drive
Western Digital 500GB (7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5")

Case
Cooler Master HAF 912 (Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case)

Power Supply
Cooler Master M700 (700W ATX12V V2.3 SLI and CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply)

CD Drive Lite-On DVD Burner

OS
Windows 7 64-Bit

Monitor
ASUS VW246H (24" 2ms(GTG) HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor 300 cd/m2 ASCR 20000:1 (1000:1) Built-in Speakers)

Total Price
1150$ (Before Taxes and shipping)

Edited by Ggilmann, 14 January 2012 - 03:56 PM.

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#3
iammykyl

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Hi Ggilmann, Posted Image

Sorry you were missed, just spotted your posts. There was nothing wrong with the first one.

Your own selected parts list, much better, the first one, very very poor. I did notice you original budget had to streeeetched a little, Posted Image

Have to do some outside work, else the trouble and strife will kill me, but will post tonight with suggestions.

Edited by iammykyl, 14 January 2012 - 10:03 PM.

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#4
Ggilmann

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Heyy, many thanks for the reply!

In the first list, I forgot to include the OS, the Monitor and taxes so I think that all in all, both lists almost add up. Anyhow, my budget is around 1300 so it's still all good (For very valuable upgrades, I'm willing to bend the budget a little). Right now, I've entered my list in my NewEgg cart and am planning on sending the list tommorrow, so I will be open to any suggestions until then. My total is 1296$ (Can) taxes and shipping included.

One precision on the PSU, I went for the Silent Pro Coolermaster design instead of the Extreme Power Plus, I read better review on the Silent Pro.

Also, at first, I entered my list on NewEgg.com and was amazed at the prices and combos. Then I saw that they don't ship to Canada. I went to NewEgg.ca and found out that the deals were way less interesting... d'oh!

Couple more questions. Are extra fans worth it? I'm not planning on overclocking. I might add another graphic card at some point. Is the audio chipset on the ASRock mother board of reasonable quality? Would 4 sticks of RAM make my build any better?

Thanks for the help,

Ggilmann

Edited by Ggilmann, 14 January 2012 - 11:26 PM.

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#5
iammykyl

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Are extra fans worth it?


If sticking with the HAF 912, you really need a top fan to optimize performance. I recommend moving up to at least the HAF 922.
http://www.newegg.co...5^11-119-225-TS

Is the audio chipset on the ASRock mother board of reasonable quality?


Yes, pretty good, have had no complaints from people I have built for. I see you were a bit hesitant about the Extreme3, I can tell you it is has been great board for me, 7 builds, no failures.

Would 4 sticks of RAM make my build any better?


No, not for your build, had you been heavy into Photo/video, I would have upped it to 16GB.

Your GPU.Newegg page, has a Gigabyte + others, Check that the Gigabyte you have selected has the right video outlets you want, a couple of them only come with HDMI and Display Port.
http://www.newegg.co...3^14-125-353-TS

PSU, OK. be aware it has only 2 PCI-E connectors so will not do for dual video cards.
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#6
Ggilmann

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Also for the power supply, I'd like to use a Corsair model instead but I'm unsure if it will fit my case.

A user on another forum suggested I use a 200mm fan in front and move the 120mm to the top... Seems to make sense to me? However, the Coolermaster fans do not have flattering reviews. Can I use another model of 200mm fan?

Tha user also suggested I upgrade my videocard from the Gigabyte to a Sapphire HD 6870 model (http://www.newegg.ca...N82E16814102948). I'm Not sure what you mean about the Graphic Card outputs. From what I see, the monitor is HDMI and the card has an HDMI output...

Edited by Ggilmann, 15 January 2012 - 07:33 AM.

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#7
iammykyl

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Also for the power supply, I'd like to use a Corsair model instead but I'm unsure if it will fit my case


Yes, The case will take any PSU, conforming to The ATX12V standard.

A user on another forum suggested I use a 200mm fan in front and move the 120mm to the top.


Sounds feasible, happen he can tell you how to configure and control the speeds.

I'm Not sure what you mean about the Graphic Card outputs. From what I see, the monitor is HDMI and the card has an HDMI output..


With just 2 different ports you are limited to what devices you may want to connect to in the future.

Tha user also suggested I upgrade my videocard from the Gigabyte to a Sapphire HD 6870 model


Yes, another option, I put a couple up on the Newegg page, but trying not to creep to far outside a budget.
Here is one review. http://www.hardwarec...king-study.html
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#8
Ggilmann

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Thank you so much for your insight, here's my latest version, I think it's pretty final. I decided to stick with the coolermaster PSU, it has good reviews. Also, There was a combo for HAF 922 and the Sapphire Card. The HAF 922 has 3 fans instead of the one the HAF 912 has. I just hope I can tone down the leds on the case...


CPU
Intel Core i5-2500 (3.3GHz LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 2000)

MotherBoard
ASRock Z68 Ext.3 Gen3 (LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard)

RAM
Ripjaws 8GB (2 x 4GB) (240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 PC3 12800)

Video
Sapphire HD 6870 (1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card)

Hard Drive
Western Digital 500GB (7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5")

Case
Cooler Master HAF 922 (Black ATX Mid Tower Computer Case with Side window)

Power Supply
Cooler Master M700 (700W ATX12V V2.3 SLI and CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply)

CD Drive
ASUS 24X DVD Burner

OS
Windows 7 64-Bit

Monitor
ASUS VW246H (24" 2ms(GTG) HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor 300 cd/m2 ASCR 20000:1 (1000:1) Built-in Speakers)

Total Price:
1355$ (with taxes and shipping)

Edited by Ggilmann, 15 January 2012 - 08:40 AM.

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#9
iammykyl

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Very good choice for the HAF 922, and the Saphire will give you better performance.

Some info about TIM. thanks to

Digerati Posted Image


http://www.geekstogo...rface-material/



Looks like you are A OK to go.
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#10
northernCX

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Just to help you out (or drive you crazy looking at parts!), I noticed you're looking at stuff in Canadian dollars- I'm in the midst of building a new rig myself, and being in Canada has its challenges when dealing with parts and prices on the forums here. I haven't been impressed with Newegg.ca; their prices seem high. Give these places a good look:

Tigerdirect.ca
canadacomputers.com
NCIX.com

Those are the three I've dealt with, some excellent bargains if you hunt around. For about the same budget (my total right now including taxes and shipping is $1440) you're talking about, I've pulled together the following:

Intel Core i52500K CPU
Gigabyte Z68 Motherboard
8GB Mushkin RAM
128GB Kingston SSD (extra internal HDD will come later; for now I'll be using a 1.5TB external for data and large programs)
Gigabyte GTX560 1GB DDR5 Video card
Thermaltake 750 watt PSU
Thermaltake V3 case and 2 additional LED fans (three total)
Gigabyte gaming mouse
Thermaltake eSports Challenger Gaming Keyboard
Optical Drive
Multimedia Card reader/extra front USB ports
Wireless N router
Wireless PCI-e adapter card
Windows 7 OS disk
23" Acer Widescreen LCD, 2ms response rate
And Artic Cooling MX-4 Thermal Paste

There are rebates on the way back also; and I was shopping piecemeal. Check the items you've picked at the other sites; you might be pleasantly surprised.
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#11
iammykyl

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*

*

*

*

More info for your build.


How To Build Your Own Computer

Text byTroy, Pictures by Artellos. http://www.geekstogo...r-own-computer/


Another. http://www.diy-gamin...ild-a-Computer/

Get a little more cooling performance by replacing the TIM pad on stock coolers,

all about TIM, thank's to DigeratiPosted Image http://www.geekstogo...rface-material/


I suggest.

Motherboard installation disc. Select manual install and then look at what is available. select carefully as some is bloat-ware, and unnecessary.

When updating the video driver, only download from the GPU manufacturers website. They are less likely to put up drivers that contain bugs.

When you have installed the OS, what you want from the Mobo disc, updated your drivers and BEFORE installing any other programs, create an image of the C drive and save to a small backup partition, you should also create a recovery disc. Should you have major problems down the track, you can do a repair, recovery or restore.

Perform regular inspection of filter and interior of case, clean if necessary.


*

Edited by iammykyl, 16 January 2012 - 07:24 PM.

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#12
Ggilmann

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I passed my order with NewEgg, next time, I'll have a look at the other sites suggested. For now, I'm satisfied with the price I paid and the parts I'm getting. A big part of the fun for me was looking at all that was available and making small tweaks to my list so I could get exactly what I wanted. A very good experience so far! Everything should arrive this week.

I am somewhat worried about the assembling of my system, however, with the links you have provided and the helpful suggestions, I'm sure I'll manage. If I run into any problem, I will come back to this board.

Thanks for all the help!

Ggilmann
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#13
iammykyl

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Thanks for all the help!


Your welcome. When you have finished your build, please update the post and let us know the results. We really appreciate the feedback as it helps us and others using the site.

I'm sure I'll manage.


Of course you will. Just remember to take your time, always unplug from the wall socket, take anti static measures, and pay very particular attention to those pesky Mobo stand-offs.

If I haven't mentioned it before, go to your Mobo manufacturers website and download the user manual. ^

Good luck.

Edited by iammykyl, 16 January 2012 - 11:34 PM.

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