Help Me Build My PC Catch-All

ThinJ,

What are your thoughts on the Asus VG278HE? It's the new model for the 27" in their 3D ready line; I believe they bumped these up to 144hz (2D). It seems to be getting good reviews so far.

When I move back to Ohio next month I will be needing a new monitor; I've been using a 27" lcd tv down here and, I like the size.

Honestly I have no idea. I had a 27 inch monitor for a long while, but eventually got tired of it for a variety of reasons. Mostly though it was just too big. After that I stopped paying attention to displays larger than 23 or 24 inches.

So I'm looking to do an upgrade this fall. I'm happy with my video card but want to upgrade from my Q6600 - could only push it to 3.2ghz through overclocking at reasonable temps, and too many things are CPU bottlenecked these days I feel.

Anyways, this is what I'm looking at as a build, based on what I've seen in this thread - figured I'd upgrade my crappy SSD while I'm at it.

http://pcpartpicker.com/ca/p/d5kG

Any red flags or obvious replacements?

Not that I can see. That's all quality and/or oft-recommended hardware in every build guide I've been reading.

BNice wrote:
Malor wrote:

Well, you can get Service Pack 1 as a single download, but I think you have to manually download individual patches for everything after that. After installing SP1, I would think Windows Update would be much, much faster than manually downloading and installing patches.

Bah, ok.

It's not an official source, but you could download a slipstreamed image from a torrent site.

MrDeVil909 wrote:
BNice wrote:
Malor wrote:

Well, you can get Service Pack 1 as a single download, but I think you have to manually download individual patches for everything after that. After installing SP1, I would think Windows Update would be much, much faster than manually downloading and installing patches.

Bah, ok.

It's not an official source, but you could download a slipstreamed image from a torrent site.

I don't know why it's a huge deal. After you install Windows (to be fair, I do have Win7 with SP1 from technet), but after the initial install, there are a bunch of updates, but it's not like you do them one at a time. Windows Update downloads them all, installs them all, and you reboot once. That's about it, there might be one or two more updates after that, but nothing that will kill you.

Dysplastic wrote:

Any red flags or obvious replacements?

On a technical basis, those parts are excellent. But there's one possible problem with the combination.

ASUS tends to put RAM slots on the recent boards very close to the CPU. This increases speed and stability, so it's a good idea overall. However, when you combine that with the Corsair Vengeance sticks, which are extremely tall, and an aftermarket cooler, it may not all fit correctly. It's quite common for the RAM to block the best position for the cooling fan on tower-style coolers, the 'push' side. It all depends on how tall the 212+ is.

It might work fine, but you can be CERTAIN it will work correctly if you buy regular-profile RAM.

They have Vengeance low profile sticks, I don't think the price difference is very much.

If anything, you'd think they'd be cheaper, because they should cost less to make.

Thin_J wrote:
EriktheRed wrote:

So I am in the market for a new gaming monitor and I am seriously considering going 120hz. Does anyone have any experience with or want to talk me out of the BenQ XL2420T?

No experience with that particular model, I've only bought one 120hz monitor so far. That said, I'm never going back to a 60hz display for my gaming rig. If my 120hz monitor were to die I would overnight another one before I spent any length of time on a standard monitor.

Right after reading this, my wife told me that our 22" Samsung LCD is flickering for a few seconds when she turns it on, and occasionally during use. A bit of Googling tells me it's probably dying, but could be a cheap fix if I replace the capacimators, but more than likely, I'm in the market for a new monitor, and with a ton of Amazon GCs, it's not going to cost me a dime.

That said, what 120Hz monitor should I buy? Preferably 24-27". Space is not an issue. Must be a chair.

Bonus_Eruptus wrote:

That said, what 120Hz monitor should I buy? Preferably 24-27". Space is not an issue. Must be a chair.

TigerBill wrote:

ThinJ,

What are your thoughts on the Asus VG278HE? It's the new model for the 27" in their 3D ready line; I believe they bumped these up to 144hz (2D). It seems to be getting good reviews so far.

This is the one I'm seriously considering.

I'm not up on current models really. The one I liked most is discontinued now

I'm vaguely interested in one of those Korean Catleap 27" IPS 1440P 120hz Monitors.. for $700 its not terrible for a 27" 1440P LCD.. you can find the HP IPS 27" for $650 but its 60hz. Now that there is a fairly uncomplicated hack to enable 120hz on Nvidia SLI it might be worth it.

My SSD should arrive tomorrow and I have a couple questions before installing it.

- The copy of Windows 7 I own is boxed/retail. Do I have to deactivate the license on my HDD before I install it on the SSD?

- And is this the correct process? Install SSD --> Update Firmware --> SSD Optimization Settings --> Put in Windows 7 Disc --> Install Windows 7 --> Reformat HDD

I'm worried that I'll mess something up.

So I'm having a weird problem with the new rig. When I turn it on it will turn on for a second, then go back off before it posts, and cycle through this a bunch of times before finally booting up. Once it's on it runs fine though. Any ideas before I unplug everything and try to narrow it down?

I have been running with my new PC for about a year now. A nice rig assembled thanks to the excellent advise in this thread. I have not had any issues until recently. The PC has been shutting itself off. At first I did not realize the cause. But a little poking around revealed that Core Temp was shutting it down. Particularly when I was engaged in large scale world PVP events in Guild Wars 2. Core Temp was set to an alarm threshold of 75C.

Right now my PC is idling at 32C. Ambient room temp of about 74F. In any game I have played in the last year, none have caused my temps to exceed 60C. But when I play GW2 in large scale PVP, my temps hit 75C and Core Temp shuts it down.

I have a Corsair H60 cooler, with the one stock fan. Using the stock thermal pad. Corsair 600T case with good airflow and cable management. i5 2500K CPU, not overclocked.

I get that large scale PVP would be very CPU intensive. At this point I am wondering: is the alarm threshold in Core Temp set too low? Where should it be? Is my cooling solution inadequate?

BNice wrote:

My SSD should arrive tomorrow and I have a couple questions before installing it.

- The copy of Windows 7 I own is boxed/retail. Do I have to deactivate the license on my HDD before I install it on the SSD?

- And is this the correct process? Install SSD --> Update Firmware --> SSD Optimization Settings --> Put in Windows 7 Disc --> Install Windows 7 --> Reformat HDD

I'm worried that I'll mess something up.

I'm pretty sure you don't have to deactivate it even if you were moving to a new motherboard. If you are using the same motherboard, it won't matter because the license is tied to the motherboard. You generally need to have the OS installed before updating the SSD firmware. You should probably do that as soon as you get Windows 7 installed, however just in case it messes with something. Do it even before updating Windows 7. Older SSDs used to be more of a pain. Newer ones tend to be more easy. Actually, come to think of it, I think you are saying that you want to just plug in the SSD and update the firmware through your current Windows 7 install. That'll definitely be the best idea. When you go to install Windows 7, just make sure your BIOS has optical drive as first priority.

complexmath wrote:

So I'm having a weird problem with the new rig. When I turn it on it will turn on for a second, then go back off before it posts, and cycle through this a bunch of times before finally booting up. Once it's on it runs fine though. Any ideas before I unplug everything and try to narrow it down?

I don't have any ideas. That sounds strange.

Heretk wrote:

I have been running with my new PC for about a year now. A nice rig assembled thanks to the excellent advise in this thread. I have not had any issues until recently. The PC has been shutting itself off. At first I did not realize the cause. But a little poking around revealed that Core Temp was shutting it down. Particularly when I was engaged in large scale world PVP events in Guild Wars 2. Core Temp was set to an alarm threshold of 75C.

Right now my PC is idling at 32C. Ambient room temp of about 74F. In any game I have played in the last year, none have caused my temps to exceed 60C. But when I play GW2 in large scale PVP, my temps hit 75C and Core Temp shuts it down.

I have a Corsair H60 cooler, with the one stock fan. Using the stock thermal pad. Corsair 600T case with good airflow and cable management. i5 2500K CPU, not overclocked.

I get that large scale PVP would be very CPU intensive. At this point I am wondering: is the alarm threshold in Core Temp set too low? Where should it be? Is my cooling solution inadequate?

It'll only shut off if it gets to 100 C or so. 75 C is a bit hot, but not a problem. You really won't be able to damage it. If you are very concerned, you could set the threshold to 80 C. You could probably get your temp at full load down to 65-70 max or so if you replaced the thermal pad with some arctic silver or something. The stock thing isn't very good and the cake it with too much.

complexmath wrote:

So I'm having a weird problem with the new rig. When I turn it on it will turn on for a second, then go back off before it posts, and cycle through this a bunch of times before finally booting up. Once it's on it runs fine though. Any ideas before I unplug everything and try to narrow it down?

My x79 based rig does this all the time and its intended...initially boot does some low level tests and then there's another reboot that takes you through the regular UEFI post. But multiple times seems weird unless your are misreading that

But when I play GW2 in large scale PVP, my temps hit 75C and Core Temp shuts it down.

75C is on the hot side, but that shouldn't be causing shutdowns by itself. 100C is the temp at which the chip will be immediately damaged, and all the current Intel chips self-throttle at 90, so it should be nearly impossible to cook one.

I'd probably try raising the limit to 80. If CoreTemp still forces a shutdown, then your H60 is probably failing. We've seen at least two stop working in the GWJ crowd, so a third would not be that surprising, at this point.

When I turn it on it will turn on for a second, then go back off before it posts, and cycle through this a bunch of times before finally booting up.

Mine does this one time ... turns on, runs for a second, turns off, sits a second, and then turns on permanently until I shut it down. If you're getting multiple cycles, you might be having a power supply problem, perhaps, or you might have a short somewhere. Did you have the supply I was thinking was a little on the weak side?

Although -- the new stuff is so much more efficient, your total power draw might actually be lower, rather than higher.

tuffalobuffalo wrote:
BNice wrote:

My SSD should arrive tomorrow and I have a couple questions before installing it.

- The copy of Windows 7 I own is boxed/retail. Do I have to deactivate the license on my HDD before I install it on the SSD?

- And is this the correct process? Install SSD --> Update Firmware --> SSD Optimization Settings --> Put in Windows 7 Disc --> Install Windows 7 --> Reformat HDD

I'm worried that I'll mess something up.

I'm pretty sure you don't have to deactivate it even if you were moving to a new motherboard. If you are using the same motherboard, it won't matter because the license is tied to the motherboard. You generally need to have the OS installed before updating the SSD firmware. You should probably do that as soon as you get Windows 7 installed, however just in case it messes with something. Do it even before updating Windows 7. Older SSDs used to be more of a pain. Newer ones tend to be more easy. Actually, come to think of it, I think you are saying that you want to just plug in the SSD and update the firmware through your current Windows 7 install. That'll definitely be the best idea. When you go to install Windows 7, just make sure your BIOS has optical drive as first priority.

Thanks man, appreciate it.

With retail windows, the deal is you should be able to reinstall it as many times as you like, but you can only have it on one computer at a time. If activation fails you should be able to just get MS on the phone to get you going. That said, if you're on new hardware I might wait until it's all up and running well before telling it to activate, you've got 30 days grace and you can reset that 3 times.

Malor wrote:
But when I play GW2 in large scale PVP, my temps hit 75C and Core Temp shuts it down.

75C is on the hot side, but that shouldn't be causing shutdowns by itself. 100C is the temp at which the chip will be immediately damaged, and all the current Intel chips self-throttle at 90, so it should be nearly impossible to cook one.

I'd probably try raising the limit to 80. If CoreTemp still forces a shutdown, then your H60 is probably failing. We've seen at least two stop working in the GWJ crowd, so a third would not be that surprising, at this point.

I cracked open the case and removed the H60 radiator and stock fan. The rad was pretty darn dusty. Blew it out with compressed air and remounted with the fan pulling in air rather than pushing it out. Ran Prime95 for about 15 minutes and the temp peaked at 72C. I could feel the H60 pump working so I hope it's not that. Going to newegg next for a good push/pull fan pair.

Heretk wrote:

I cracked open the case and removed the H60 radiator and stock fan. The rad was pretty darn dusty. Blew it out with compressed air and remounted with the fan pulling in air rather than pushing it out. Ran Prime95 for about 15 minutes and the temp peaked at 72C. I could feel the H60 pump working so I hope it's not that. Going to newegg next for a good push/pull fan pair.

My stopped cooling this spring. It gave every indication that it was working fine but, it wouldn't cool as effectively as it used to.

TigerBill wrote:
Heretk wrote:

I cracked open the case and removed the H60 radiator and stock fan. The rad was pretty darn dusty. Blew it out with compressed air and remounted with the fan pulling in air rather than pushing it out. Ran Prime95 for about 15 minutes and the temp peaked at 72C. I could feel the H60 pump working so I hope it's not that. Going to newegg next for a good push/pull fan pair.

My stopped cooling this spring. It gave every indication that it was working fine but, it wouldn't cool as effectively as it used to.

Something has changed for sure. This whole just began this week. Evan after cleaning the radiator, the temps are still higher than they ever used to be. Not sure if the problem qualifies as an RMA issue though.

I did a cold boot and this time the computer came right up. At this point I'm assuming that it was reacting to a change in configuration, as I had a bunch of old HDs wired to it last boot and pulled them after I shut down. It's still weird that it cycled maybe 5 times (definitely not just once) though. And it's not a PSU issue--mine is more than powerful enough. If this issue returns I may just RMA the motherboard, since I can't imagine it being anything else.

Things continue to fluctuate. Earlier my idle temp (as shown by Core Temp) was around 35C and now its between 48-50C. I went to BIOS and there it stated my CPU temp was 75C. The CPU fan RPM in BIOS (which I believe is the pump) is at 1910 RPM. My sysfan 1 (radiator fan?) is at 4500 RPM. Is this RMA time?

I also just noticed that in Core Temp, my CPU frequency is bouncing between 3.4 and 3.7 GHz., Not sure if that's significant but it is a stock 3.3GHz i5 2500K.

After flip flopping back and forth for two weeks between a PC and a Synology NAS and being tempted by a Gameguru machine and then deciding to go Synology I flipped back to the the PC side and custom built one with exactly what I wanted. This is to replace a 2011 iMac that I used in my office for browsing, music, light gaming and as a Plex server with a bunch of USB drives hooked up for content. I wanted to go with a more reliable and expandable solution than USB drives, I had 4 drives with about 10TB of space and no real backup system. Replaced that setup with:

Corsair 650D case
Intel i5 3570k
EVGA Z77 FTW motherboard
Corsair Vengeance 8GB ram, red low profile
Seasonic X850W gold plus (overkill but I hate fan noise!)
Samsung 830 SSD 256GB
EVGA GeForce GTX 660 superclocked 2GB
Plextor DVDRW

I originally got the Corsair 550D case since I want a quiet system, but it's recessed motherboard tray blocked access to some of the side SATA and power ports on the EVGA Z77 board since it is about an inch wider than standard ATX. I don't really care for the window in the 650D but it is a nice case overall and more roomy.

So far I put in three WD Red 3TB drives for the Plex/media storage with a 4th on its way. I also picked up a Dell U2412M monitor and M-Audio AV40 speakers to go with it and will use the old USB drives for backups. I'm planning to sell the iMac to recoup some of the cost.

So far so good, finished the build and installed Windows yesterday. Still doing the ~8 TB of copies to the WD Reds from the USB drives. I did a Prime95 test for 30 minutes or so and saw the processor cores get up to 90 degrees, I am just using the stock Intel cooler right now. I reseated the heatsink with some AS5 and a quick test showed it lowered temps 5-10 degrees but still pretty hot. It idles about 30-35 degrees. I haven't decided if I'm brave enough to try to delid and repaste it or just buy a better cooler.

AMD's 12.11 drivers have some nice boosts for various games with no apparent tricks..

http://pcper.com/reviews/Graphics-Ca...

edit

And a pretty sweet game bundle for the holidays..

http://www.guru3d.com/articles_pages...

Malor wrote:

If anything, you'd think they'd be cheaper, because they should cost less to make.

Thanks for the tip - found a low-profile pair for the same price. Picking up the parts tonight!

TheGameguru wrote:

AMD's 12.11 drivers have some nice boosts for various games with no apparent tricks..

http://pcper.com/reviews/Graphics-Ca...

I'll wait for the official release, but I'm looking forward to the new drivers. Hopefully I'll be able to stop underclocking for Guild Wars 2.