I VERY recently joined the forums here at GTG admittedly mostly for the purpose of receiving advice on how to go about building a desktop computer. Currently I’m using a 15” Mac Book Pro that’s “bootcamped” into Windows 7 64bit. For the most part it performs well but it is by no means a competent gaming machine, and recently both the HDD and disc drive have shown signs of giving up the ghost quite soon, so I decided it was time to build a desktop myself rather than pay superfluous amounts to get my laptop fixed.
My main goal with this build is to achieve a rig that can handle any current game on “ultra” settings without breaking a sweat (games like Crysis 2, Skyrim, and Battlefield 3 with the graphics settings maxed out). That is to say the only noticeable decrease in performance should be seen from my somewhat lack luster internet connection. This shouldn’t be too difficult a goal to meet as I don’t plan on using anything more than a single 23 or 24 inch monitor at basic HD 1920x1080p resolution.
I’ve been chatting with a friend of mine on Steam who’s built a computer or two in his time but (no offense meant to him) it seems as though his personal preference is swaying his suggestions a bit too much and thus I decided to ask the experts here. What I’d like to know is recommendations for certain parts of the build and suggestions based on what I’ve selected already, and if necessary changes to my selections.
After reading a few other build topics I’ll try and provide all the information you need, and all the questions I’d like answered in this initial post. I apologize in advance as I believe this will be quite long. In my head my budget is somewhere in the $2400 USD range, but realistically I’d rather the cost come to around $1500-$1800. I’m situated in the United States and as such will purchase all the components within my native country (most likely the majority of them will come from Newegg). Unfortunately I have no peripherals so I’ll need to purchase a mouse, keyboard, and monitor at least. I have a pair of Grado SR-60s that perform superbly so sound will not be an issue initially. I’d like to have a nice microphone for chatting though, especially on that would work well in conjunction with my headphones. Parts that I have already selected that I’d rather not change (unless you know of a substantially better product) are the Case, Mouse, and Keyboard.
I plan to build in the summer (hopefully around June) so I’m waiting for the new Ivy Bridge processors to be released, and the motherboards which support them of course. After doing some research on RAM it appears that, as far as gaming goes, there isn’t much point to purchasing ram with clock speeds higher than 1333 or 1600 so long as they have a respectable cache latency. Is this true? It would be a place where I could save some money. Considering my graphics proficiency goal, I was considering the nVidia GTX 680 graphics card, but I’ve heard that it’s a bit overpriced (just because it out-performs the HD 7970) and most people believe it should be around $300 instead of $500. Is that enough to forgo that card or is it worth the price it’s currently set at? Would it be more worthwhile to wait for the GTX 780 or will that card be even more expensive? And finally I’ve selected a group of remarkably thin monitors from which I’d like to select the most “bang-for-buck” unit. Ultra slimness isn’t exactly a necessity so if there’s a monitor in the $200 range that you think would be fenominally better than any of the ones in my list please do not hesitate to suggest it, otherwise I’d really like to go with one of these slim ones. I will provide links for the monitors that I have selected after the parts list:
Motherboard – NOT SELECTED/Suggestion appreciated (most likely some variant of the Z77 to ensure compatibility with Ivy Bridge)
CPU – Intel i5-3570K (no link for this item as it’s not yet released, sorry)
RAM – NOT SELECTED/Suggestion appreciated (waiting for suggestion, not sure if beneficial to go above 1333 clock speed)
Graphics Card – EVGA GeForce GTX 680 (subject to change if better suggestion is made)
PSU – NOT SELECTED/Suggestion appreciated (not sure what wattage to shoot for; been told that 1k wattage is required?)
SSD – Crucial M4 64GB (to be used as boot drive, subject to change if better suggestion is made)
HDD – Seagate Spinpoint F3 500GB 7200rpm (subject to change if better suggestion is made)
CD Drive – ASUS 24x DVD Burner (subject to change if better suggestion is made)
Case – NZXT H2 (preferred to keep but subject to change if better suggestion is made)
Monitor – NOT SELECTED/Suggestion appreciated (see monitor link list below)
Keyboard – Microsoft Sidewinder X4 (preferred to keep but subject to change if better suggestion is made)
Mouse – Mionix Naos 3200 (preferred to keep but subject to change if better suggestion is made)
One final note I'd like to make is that this computer will (at least initially) not be able to be hooked up via hardline to the internet so some sort of wireless solution will be needed. As with all the other components any and all suggestions on this matter will be very much appreciated. Please let me know if there's any other info I missed that may be relevant. I greatly look forward to your insights on this matter. Thank you for taking the time to review my inquiries.