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Gaming rig help


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#1
Lokhe

Lokhe

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Greetings techies!

I'm a first time builder but I've got a friend to help me out should I need it. I'm building myself a gaming rig, but I'm not aiming at a monster. I just want a solid rig that I can build upon and upgrade in the future.

So, I'm new at this, meaning that I don't really feel very comfortable choosing which components to put in my rig. I therefore ask you humbly for a minute of your time to look over my list and tell me if I've completely dropped the ball somewhere or went completely over board elsewhere!

So the motherboard, I looked at this ASUS P8Z68 Deluxe/GEN3 and from what I can tell it should be adequate for my needs. I want a solid board that will be compatible with future upgrades.
http://www.asus.com/...#specifications

For my CPU I decided to go with the Intel 2nd gen quad-core i5 2500 3.3GHz. I couldn't find this on their site but it's pretty straight forward. I assume most of you know the basic specs of this part.

For my GPU I decided on the GeForce 550ti DC/DI 1GB. I'm not really interested in going all out on the Graphics card and when I need to this component is easily upgraded right.
http://www.asus.com/...#specifications

For the RAM I chose a Corsair Dominator 8GB DDR3 1600Hz 4x2GB. Again pretty straight forward. I reckon 8GB will be enough for a good while and in the future, also simple to upgrade.

For storage I thought of going with one HDD and one SSD of 320GB and 120GB respectively. Some of you might **** your pants at the sight of less than 500GB of storage, but tbh I'm not using this for anything other than gaming. I have other computers so the storage is not a real problem for me (and I'm not afraid to clear space if I need to) so I thought to save some here. Now my question is, does this work practically? I would assume it does but I'm no guru.

For the PSU I haven't decided yet. This is probably the hardest part for me because I have no idea how to calculate my needs. I've looked around for reference and my initial thought is to go with a Corsair GS700W. I think this is might be a bit much but I could use the extra watts for future upgrades I figured.
http://www.corsair.c...its/gs700w.html

As for the chassi I have some ideas but I am non the wiser after looking around for a while. Suggestions are very welcome!

I'm running Windows 7 on this rig. Now, have I forgotten to mention some crucial bit of information? I wonder if I've picked any components that will be bottlenecks or any that are just completely over board for the rest.

Thanks for taking the time!

-Lokhe

Edited by Lokhe, 22 May 2012 - 04:47 AM.

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#2
phillpower2

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:welcome: Lokhe

You have the foundations for a good build already which I can use to put a complete rig together for you including the best prices for you.
Couple of pointers and a bit of guidance for you, you have not included an optical drive and you will need a DVD drive to install Windows 7, do you already have one?
Do you have a full retail Windows 7 disk that is not installed on another computer, see my canned guidance below;

Just a cautionary note, unless your OS disk is the full retail edition you cannot use it with a new MB as an OEM disk is tied to the original MB it was paired with, to use an OEM disk with a new MB is software piracy and therefore illegal.
Exceptions to the above are 1: If your MB is replaced under warranty and 2: If your MB is replaced out of warranty with an alternative type but same brand due to the original model no longer being available, an upgraded MB however will require the purchase of a new OS licence.

For the best and most stable performance you should where possible purchase a CPU and Ram that have been tested and approved by the motherboard manufacturer, this is referred to as the QVL ( qualified vendors list ) understand though that there are too many products released for them all to be tested so other hardware will be compatible but not proven to be.

Choose a case that has good cooling fans and removable/washable dust filters to maximise air induction at the front and hot air exhaust at the rear.

Let us know if what if any parts that you may already have to bring to the build such as keyboard, mouse, screen, DVD drive etc.

A list for you to consider available @ http://pcpartpicker.com/p/8G6s
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#3
Lokhe

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Hello again

I didn't include the DVD drive in the list because I feel it doesn't really matter what I have as long as I have one, which I do. I also have a copy of Windows 7, or rather, I can procure one for free via university. I also didn't include the monitor, keyboard etc into the list since peripherals weren't really the interest here for me.

Prior to reading your reply I was doing some more reserach and I settled for a Z77 V mobo which is compatible with both Sandy and Ivy Bridge processors and switched up to an Ivy Bridge i5 processor. I changed up the RAM to 2x4GB Vengeance low profile and went with the GTX570 instead since I settled for a cheaper mobo. I heard the Radeon HD 7850 would give me more value for money than the GTX570 but it wasn't available.

All in all with a new monitor this build lands around $1800 which is about $800 more than the list you suggested but you also have to keep in mind that hardware is a lot more expensive in Sweden than in the US. Also this pricepoint is no problem for me.

How does this sound to you?

Thanks,
Lokhe
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#4
phillpower2

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I didn't include the DVD drive in the list because I feel it doesn't really matter what I have as long as I have one, which I do. I also have a copy of Windows 7, or rather, I can procure one for free via university. I also didn't include the monitor, keyboard etc into the list since peripherals weren't really the interest here for me.

Sorry I had to ask in case you couldn`t install your OS because you only had a CD drive.

Prior to reading your reply I was doing some more reserach and I settled for a Z77 V mobo which is compatible with both Sandy and Ivy Bridge processors

The same reason that I suggested the Z77 platform.

I heard the Radeon HD 7850 would give me more value for money than the GTX570 but it wasn't available.

Benchmarks http://www.videocard...GeForce GTX 570

All in all with a new monitor this build lands around $1800 which is about $800 more than the list you suggested but you also have to keep in mind that hardware is a lot more expensive in Sweden than in the US

Again we had no way of knowing this especially as the PSU you provided the link to is priced in US $ :P http://www.corsair.c...its/gs700w.html

How does this sound to you?

Very good but before you order have a look at the GTX 480 http://www.videocard...GeForce GTX 480
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#5
Macboatmaster

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If I may just drop in on this topic and refer you to your chosen processor
http://ark.intel.com/products/52209

If you look at that specification you will see that the ram is shown as DDR3
Memory TypesDDR3-1066/1333
That means that the CPU will accept the shown ram eg 1066 or 1333Mhz without any settings other than default .

It does not mean that it will not accept the ram you have selected which I think you have settled on the Vengeance 1600 Mhz.
However please see this, a short article I have written.

http://www.geekstogo...-do-i-purchase/
To use that ram at the 1600Mhz you will have to alter settings, that is not always the easiest of tasks.
The reason is that the Serial Presence Detect of that ram, programmed in to the memory chips is 1333Mhz
See this
http://www.corsair.c...m2a1600c9r.html

That link is I am sure for the ram you are now thinking of - which by the way is not on the QVL list
That does not mean, as my good colleavgue phillpower2 has mentioned of course, in his post 2, that just because it is not on the list it will not work.
The Corsair ram in 4Gb sticks - listed on the QVL is
DDR3 1600 4GB Corsair CML16GX3M4A1600C9 DS v 4pcs

However you will see that the ram you mention is specifically designed by Corsair for overclock capabilities
see the opening comment by Corsair on the link I have sent you
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#6
phillpower2

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Thanks for pitching in Mac :thumbsup:
I was rather hoping that Lokhe would let us know what MB was being considered so that we could check the QVL.
Ivy Bridge - Sandy Bridge comparisons http://hexus.net/tec...2nm-ivy-bridge/
Benchmarks http://www.cpubenchm...3570K @ 3.40GHz
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#7
Lokhe

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Sorry I had to ask in case you couldn`t install your OS because you only had a CD drive.


I guess you're right to not base your answers on assumptions :) I should've noted it!

If by "which MB" you mean which one specifically it's the Z77 V LK.

Thanks for pitching in Mac, there's no such thing as too much help for me in this situation ;) The link you provided was for the i5 2500 right? I changed that to the i5 3450 Ivy Bridge one and if I'm not mistaken that one lists memory type as 1600 :) Did you mean the low profile Vengeance RAM was made with OC in mind? I would assume it works just fine without it though am I right?

Thanks for the insight guys.

-Lokhe
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#8
Macboatmaster

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Did not notice you had changed the processor my error

The point I was making was, not so much that the ram was designed by Corsair for overclock capabilities, which of course doing so, may well invalidate warranties but that as per my article., re the need to consider the ram accepted by the CPU as default settings ram, rather than simply what the motherboard specifications list.

Also as I said, I did NOT see that ram you have listed, on the QVL list
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#9
Lokhe

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Oh also! When it comes to actually putting the thing together I'm a bit confused. Different places say to put it together in different orders and most of them are not updated for over 12 months. I get the feeling it differs a bit depending on what rig you're building? Could you guys just tell me basically what order things go together in? :) The "how" part I can figure out myself I guess.

Cheers!
Lokhe
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#10
Lokhe

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Also as I said, I did NOT see that ram you have listed, on the QVL list


Ok :) I was recommended this RAM but if it doesn't work out for me it's thankfully one of the cheapest and easiest parts to replace so I will stick with it. If it ends up coming back to bite me later I'll be sure to let you know so you can tell me "I told you so" ;p

Lokhe
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#11
iammykyl

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Another sticky beak here.

Intel® Core™ i5-3450Memory Types


DDR3-1333/1600 Source, > http://ark.intel.com...up-to-3_50-GHz)


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#12
Macboatmaster

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If my colleague phillpower2 has recommended it I am sure it will be OK, and especially now you have changed the processor from the one I listed.
As on that other processor 1600Mhz is a default ram speed.

Re the order.
Fit the processor, and the cooler, to the motherboard, and the ram before you put the motherboard in the case, at least that is the way I do it, as those components require the most force, for want of a better word, to seat them, and when the motherboard is supported on its stand-offs, there is not always really adequate support for the force needed to seat, especially the cooler clips

Also if the 24 pin power connection is on the edge of the board as it is on some, make sure you support it - the edge of gthe board, when you connect that.
The front panel headers, usb headers etc do not require any force to speak of, but it is always best to support the edge of the board if possible.

Anti-static precautions are vital.

I always put the power supply in first., then the opitcal drive/drives and connect power to those, BEFORE securing them in position, and the sata data cable, as when that is done the space can be restrictive to connect, then the board and the HDD

Also make sure you fit the I/O plate to the case, before you put the board in and it is unless the case is quick release tooless type best to take out the blank plate for where the video card will go. BEFORE you put the board in.

See this
http://www.geekstogo...r-own-computer/

and this is from that article

Update to the Quick Note: Lately I have been installing the CPU, CPU heatsink, and RAM into the motherboard before putting the motherboard into the case. I find it much easier to work on by itself. As I've said above, either way works...

An excellent article with images written and imaged by two of our Staff members Troy and Artellos

DO NOT put the fans in before the motherboard, as that in the case of the rear case fan restricts the ease of putting in the motherboard

I always put the PSU in first. If by chance it slips as you go to put it in place with the board in, it could easily be bye-bye motherboard.

Good luck and here is another guide so that you have the benefit of both.
http://www.tomshardw...w-31889-12.html
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#13
iammykyl

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i5 3450 http://www.newegg.co...N82E16819116506

Combo savings with Blu-ray burner, ends 5/31

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#14
iammykyl

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Same order here as Macboatmaster
But I do a bare bones test before installing Mobo in the case.
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#15
Macboatmaster

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But I do a bare bones test before installing Mobo in the case.


A very good point.
I missed it, the great benefit is that if it works then, and does not when you put it all together, you know it is the installation in the case, that is faulty.

In that regard, and I forgot to mention it, from experience, when you get the components, sort out all the screws, stand-offs etc into gtheir respective groups and put the screws that go with the stand-offs just slightly into them. It makes it so much easier when you come to the stage of putting it together.

Also when you take the board out of the box always place it, and the ram sticks on their anti-static wrappers, and it may seem insulting, but do not place your tea, coffee mug or whatever, anywhere near where you are building it, you will not be the first person to knock the cup of coffee or whatever all over the components.
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