Help Me Build My PC Catch-All

Ranger Rick wrote:

Got our new machines put together this weekend. Only one snag that I didn't think of - the CPU cooler is so friggin' big it blocks putting the RAM in.

Buuuut, since we're not overclocking, and these cases move air pretty well, made an executive decision and put in the coolers that came with the i5's. Hopefully that's not a mistake... Now, to look into RMA'ing the coolers.

Other than that, holy s**t this machine is rockin'! Every game I've loaded up has said, "Uhm, well, why don't I just set everything to 'ultra'?"

I've seen people either move the RAM over a slot if they're only using two sticks to get the clearance, or even mounting the fan on the cooler a bit higher than it normally would go. My HSF allows the fan to be put on a bit higher without much work.

TempestBlayze wrote:

If you aren't oveclockng, the stock CPU coolers are actually really good.

That's what everybody had told me for years, so I just installed the stock cooler with my i5 760 and forgot about it. Then six months later I checked the temps on a whim and found it was around 80° F under load. (Yes, it was free from dust, case airflow is well managed, etc.) I promptly replaced it with one of those sealed water coolers that seem to be all the rage, and Bam, temps in the 40s where I like to see 'em.

TL;DR YMMV

It's Christmas time!

And as such, it's time for me to pretend my family will buy me whatever I want. As such, I thought I'd put a good video card on my wish list. I'm currently driving a GTS 250, and it's not terrible... so it's not an emergency to replace it... but a boy can dream, can't he?

My first instinct was a 7870... The hierarchy guide puts it over almost all other cards at that price point. But then I noticed you guys were recommending the 660 for other builds, and it made me curious. Since I had a GREAT warranty experience with Zotac, I decided to look into their 660 to see how much it was so I could support them again. But when I go look up 660 cards, a lot of people in the reviews recommend moving up to the 670. That produces a pretty significant price increase, but it does take you up over the 7870 on the chart.

Thoughts on what to ask for from imaginary relatives?

weswilson wrote:

Thoughts on what to ask for from imaginary relatives?

Real relatives.

weswilson wrote:

It's Christmas time!

And as such, it's time for me to pretend my family will buy me whatever I want. As such, I thought I'd put a good video card on my wish list. I'm currently driving a GTS 250, and it's not terrible... so it's not an emergency to replace it... but a boy can dream, can't he?

My first instinct was a 7870... The hierarchy guide puts it over almost all other cards at that price point. But then I noticed you guys were recommending the 660 for other builds, and it made me curious. Since I had a GREAT warranty experience with Zotac, I decided to look into their 660 to see how much it was so I could support them again. But when I go look up 660 cards, a lot of people in the reviews recommend moving up to the 670. That produces a pretty significant price increase, but it does take you up over the 7870 on the chart.

Thoughts on what to ask for from imaginary relatives?

If your machine is a old as that GTS 250, the power supply may not be sufficient. I have a 670 and it handles anything I throw at it. Works well with Ubuntu 12.10 also.

No, I got a new Mobo, Processor and Ram a few months ago. I have an SSD on my hardware list as well, but my steam folder is too big for one that is affordable.

weswilson wrote:

It's Christmas time!

And as such, it's time for me to pretend my family will buy me whatever I want. As such, I thought I'd put a good video card on my wish list. I'm currently driving a GTS 250, and it's not terrible... so it's not an emergency to replace it... but a boy can dream, can't he?

My first instinct was a 7870... The hierarchy guide puts it over almost all other cards at that price point. But then I noticed you guys were recommending the 660 for other builds, and it made me curious. Since I had a GREAT warranty experience with Zotac, I decided to look into their 660 to see how much it was so I could support them again. But when I go look up 660 cards, a lot of people in the reviews recommend moving up to the 670. That produces a pretty significant price increase, but it does take you up over the 7870 on the chart.

Thoughts on what to ask for from imaginary relatives?

670 > 7870 > 660Ti

In terms of performance. Price/performance I would probably give the nod to the 7870 over the 670. But if you that the $ to spend the 670 is very nice

Now I am starting to reconsider my Haswell idea and just might get the i5-3570K. I realized that I will definitely be paying a premium for the first 6 months when it comes out for maybe just a 10% increase in processing power over Ivy Bridge. Meanwhile, it's the christmas season and there are sales all over the damn place for 1155 motherboards, RAM and coolers. I can als put that non Haswell savings towards a GTX 670 upgrade.

Anyone disagree or do you think Haswell is worth the wait and price? I am upgrading from a Q6600 with DDR2 RAM.

TempestBlayze wrote:

Now I am starting to reconsider my Haswell idea and just might get the i5-3570K. I realized that I will definitely be paying a premium for the first 6 months when it comes out for maybe just a 10% increase in processing power over Ivy Bridge. Meanwhile, it's the christmas season and there are sales all over the damn place for 1155 motherboards, RAM and coolers. I can als put that non Haswell savings towards a GTX 670 upgrade.

Anyone disagree or do you think Haswell is worth the wait and price? I am upgrading from a Q6600 with DDR2 RAM.

If I had the choice between 10% more CPU power vs. a better video card, I am choosing the video card every time. Besides you can always overclock a bit to make up the difference.

EriktheRed wrote:
TempestBlayze wrote:

Now I am starting to reconsider my Haswell idea and just might get the i5-3570K. I realized that I will definitely be paying a premium for the first 6 months when it comes out for maybe just a 10% increase in processing power over Ivy Bridge. Meanwhile, it's the christmas season and there are sales all over the damn place for 1155 motherboards, RAM and coolers. I can als put that non Haswell savings towards a GTX 670 upgrade.

Anyone disagree or do you think Haswell is worth the wait and price? I am upgrading from a Q6600 with DDR2 RAM.

If I had the choice between 10% more CPU power vs. a better video card, I am choosing the video card every time. Besides you can always overclock a bit to make up the difference.

This is my thought and I am definitely going to over clock.

There's always something new on the horizon, but if you can get a good value for money improvement today it's worth going for.

I built my i5 750 system only a few months before Sandybridge because I really needed it, prices were good and haven't regretted it for 1 second.

I don't think you're as desperate as I was (AMD single core ) but I think you'll still get a tangible, value for money, improvement now.

If I do go the Ivy Bridge route, these are the parts I am thinking about getting.

There's a rumor that Intel might start moving all its chips to BGA contacts with Broadwell architecture. Instead of buying the CPU and mobo separately, you'd just buy them together. Simpler all around probably, except it'd be a real pain in the ass if your mobo died.

After reading around Anantech and Toms hardware, I am even more confused. Now I am thinking about just getting a powerful GPU like the 670 and keeping my Q6600 @ 3.4 I really want to be able to keep up with games for the next 2 years but I am not sure a 5 year old CPU can do that even after an overclock. I could e wrong though.

I am pretty set in the fact that I will not wait for Haswell though.

Best way to find out is jam the 670 into your system and see how it goes.

Worst case scenario is you end up spending the money you're planning on anyway, best case is you don't.

Quite the dilemma I got stuck in but I think I made my decision. I will go with the CPU upgrade because I want to build a computer for the next 3-4 years (with GPU updates over time of course). Once everything is working and I run some benchmarks, I will get a less expensive 660ti or the newer 700 series and sell my 560ti (hopefully to someone here)to compensate.

Once I get the alerts that the parts I want go on sale, I will buy them.

Chairman_Mao wrote:

There's a rumor that Intel might start moving all its chips to BGA contacts with Broadwell architecture. Instead of buying the CPU and mobo separately, you'd just buy them together. Simpler all around probably, except it'd be a real pain in the ass if your mobo died.

One earlier part to that ongoing story is that intel is moving more parts of what would be the chipset onto the CPU, so the motherboard becomes 'dumber' anyway.

I've been building systems for at least 15 years now, and I'm half-half on it. On one side, I can see the 'I like to upgrade bits, and combine them how I like' angle, but on the other I think a combined mobo/CPU as one unit is interesting (although annoying if you want to swap it out).

If they move the chipset onto the CPU, I wonder how long before a motherboard just becomes an I/O board that you only change if you want a different configuration of ports/slots. I'd be perfectly happy if my next upgrade was just swapping chips, as essentially my next upgrade is just a new CPU/chipset (and going from DDR2 to DDR3), I could get all that by popping the one chip and upgrade the PCIe, SATA, etc, too so long as it's all the same electronics between the chip and the hardware.

Alright the deed is done. The 3570K was $15 off today on Newegg so I bit.

I have a question about ram. Even though I overclock a lot I am still confused of actual RAm performance.

Currently I am looking at:

G.Skill Ripjaws X Series DDR3-1600

Would it really make a difference if I got a 1333 version?

Also I want to get 2x8gb stick but I see a lot of people getting 4x4gb. If there a point to that?

TempestBlayze wrote:

Alright the deed is done. The 3570K was $15 off today on Newegg so I bit.

I have a question about ram. Even though I overclock a lot I am still confused of actual RAm performance.

Currently I am looking at:

G.Skill Ripjaws X Series DDR3-1600

Would it really make a difference if I got a 1333 version?

Also I want to get 2x8gb stick but I see a lot of people getting 4x4gb. If there a point to that?

1600 is the minimum I'd go for a gaming machine. Especially with RAM prices as low as they are.

The reason for the 4x4GB a lot of us use is probably the fact that it's been cheaper that way than the two bigger sticks. Or people started with 8GB and moved up.

Alright, got my SSD installed with Windows 7 and no problems. But now I have a question: I have a HDD that was my old windows HDD and was looking for some advice on how to make it so that my new windows installation would recognize them and also, possibly the best way to clean off the old windows installation files. Thanks in advance!

Install the hard drive, and Windows shouldn't have any problems seeing it. Just make sure in the BIOS that you are booting from the SSD and not the HDD.

Hoping to get some recommendations here...

I'm looking to upgrade from:

AMD Phenom II X2 555 Black Edition Callisto 3.2GHz
2x2GB 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 675 (PC2 5400)

I will be keeping the videocard: EVGA GTX 560 Ti (driving a 1920x1080 monitor)

So for the processor, I was thinking of:
Intel Core i5-3570 3.4GHz (non-k version as I'm not planning on overclocking)

I need help on choosing a mobo. I saw these:
ASUS P8Z77-V LK
BIOSTAR TZ77XE3
ASRock Z77 Extreme4 (out of stock at newegg)

New Ram: 8 or 16gb of DDR3-1600

Budget $400

Any thoughts or other recommendations? Do you think I'll see a performance boost with just cpu+ram? I'm hoping to eliminate some stuttering/choppiness in Just Cause 2 & NFS: Hot Pursuit, etc..

TempestBlayze wrote:

Now I am starting to reconsider my Haswell idea and just might get the i5-3570K. I realized that I will definitely be paying a premium for the first 6 months when it comes out for maybe just a 10% increase in processing power over Ivy Bridge.

Is the i5-3570K the new belle of the ball, or is the 2500K overclocked still the way to go at this point in the game?

cheesycrouton wrote:

So for the processor, I was thinking of:
Intel Core i5-3570 3.4GHz (non-k version as I'm not planning on overclocking)

I need help on choosing a mobo. I saw these:
ASUS P8Z77-V LK
BIOSTAR TZ77XE3
ASRock Z77 Extreme4 (out of stock at newegg)

New Ram: 8 or 16gb of DDR3-1600

Budget $400

Any thoughts or other recommendations? Do you think I'll see a performance boost with just cpu+ram? I'm hoping to eliminate some stuttering/choppiness in Just Cause 2 & NFS: Hot Pursuit, etc..

I can't speak for the performance difference over your existing stuff, but I just built a machine days ago with the same processor you chose, and the ASRock Z77 Extreme4, and I'm very happy with it. I've got 16GB of DDR3-1600 in it as well.

Draco wrote:
TempestBlayze wrote:

Now I am starting to reconsider my Haswell idea and just might get the i5-3570K. I realized that I will definitely be paying a premium for the first 6 months when it comes out for maybe just a 10% increase in processing power over Ivy Bridge.

Is the i5-3570K the new belle of the ball, or is the 2500K overclocked still the way to go at this point in the game?

Yeah it is. It runs cooler than the 2500k when you over clock.

cheesycrouton wrote:

Hoping to get some recommendations here...

I'm looking to upgrade from:

AMD Phenom II X2 555 Black Edition Callisto 3.2GHz
2x2GB 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 675 (PC2 5400)

I will be keeping the videocard: EVGA GTX 560 Ti (driving a 1920x1080 monitor)

So for the processor, I was thinking of:
Intel Core i5-3570 3.4GHz (non-k version as I'm not planning on overclocking)

I need help on choosing a mobo. I saw these:
ASUS P8Z77-V LK
BIOSTAR TZ77XE3
ASRock Z77 Extreme4 (out of stock at newegg)

New Ram: 8 or 16gb of DDR3-1600

Budget $400

Any thoughts or other recommendations? Do you think I'll see a performance boost with just cpu+ram? I'm hoping to eliminate some stuttering/choppiness in Just Cause 2 & NFS: Hot Pursuit, etc..

If you are not overclocking, you might consider the Asrock Pro4 instead of the extreme4. Save you a bit of cash which could get you the additional ram.

tundra wrote:
cheesycrouton wrote:

Hoping to get some recommendations here...

I'm looking to upgrade from:

AMD Phenom II X2 555 Black Edition Callisto 3.2GHz
2x2GB 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 675 (PC2 5400)

I will be keeping the videocard: EVGA GTX 560 Ti (driving a 1920x1080 monitor)

So for the processor, I was thinking of:
Intel Core i5-3570 3.4GHz (non-k version as I'm not planning on overclocking)

I need help on choosing a mobo. I saw these:
ASUS P8Z77-V LK
BIOSTAR TZ77XE3
ASRock Z77 Extreme4 (out of stock at newegg)

New Ram: 8 or 16gb of DDR3-1600

Budget $400

Any thoughts or other recommendations? Do you think I'll see a performance boost with just cpu+ram? I'm hoping to eliminate some stuttering/choppiness in Just Cause 2 & NFS: Hot Pursuit, etc..

If you are not overclocking, you might consider the Asrock Pro4 instead of the extreme4. Save you a bit of cash which could get you the additional ram.

Thanks for the suggestion. I hadn't see that one yet. I've never purchased an Asrock before, so it might be a good one to start with. Also, this is my first UEFI board. Does it boot faster than a traditional BIOS POST?

ASRock has been great for me in my last three recent builds for family. The UEFI does not boot faster but rather lets you use your mouse in the BIOS and it's generally easier to get around.

Corsair RAM chips popped up on sale today and it has me second guessing me Ripjaw RAM decision. The specs are:

CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3 1600 $60
Timing 10-10-10-27
Cas Latency 10
Voltage 1.5V

Or

G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3 1600 $80
Timing 9-9-9
Cas Latency 9
Voltage 1.5V

I will be over clocking my new 3570k but is the minor timing change a big deal and worth the extra $20?

On a side note I was just looking through my Newegg history and discovered that I bought a AMD Clawhammer FX-55 for a ridiculous $800. Was I mad? I am amazed how much computer prices went down!

That FX-55 is currently being used by my wife, but once I build this Ivy Bridge PC she will get the q6600 and the $800 FX-55 will sit in a closet. At least it lasted a good 7-8 years.