Help me build my PC 2020 Catch All

Parts ordered. Let the waiting begin!

Saw Asus 3070 at 4am on Amazon. Cats woke me up for food, and I browsed Twitter for a minute. Clicked link and there was an actual add to cart button, sold by Amazon and everything. But WTF, I spent just over $700 on the entire rest of my build a few weeks ago, what do I need with a $670 video card?

Maybe I should have just bought it to sell to someone here. Oh well.

Even if that is MSRP for that card, $670 is a terrible price...

fangblackbone wrote:

Even if that is MSRP for that card, $670 is a terrible price...

Oh yeah now that I'm awake, 3070 retail is supposed to be $500 ish. Huh, good thing I didn't do something stupid while half asleep.

Because of the tariffs, it's more like a $625 card. $670 is not a bad price for a 3070, and you would certainly have moved it.

3080s are now retailing for $1000+, so $670 doesn't look quite as unreasonable as it might.

merphle wrote:

Parts ordered. Let the waiting begin!

Good luck! I think you're going to be pleased. What was your old system?

Malor wrote:
merphle wrote:

Parts ordered. Let the waiting begin!

Good luck! I think you're going to be pleased. What was your old system?

Core i5 4690k (4 cores, no hyperthreading) sitting on an MSI Z97 Gaming motherboard with 32GB DDR3, assembled in 2014. And the aforementioned NVMe, case, and 2080 Super GPU. I've upgraded the GPU (a few times) over the years, and migrated from spinning rust, to SATA SSD, to NVMe M.2, and added 16GB to the original 16GB.

It still plays games pretty well, but it's feeling a bit long in the tooth, and with the new generation of consoles, I have concerns that the 4 cores is going to be too limiting going forward.

Just got the rest of my parts via Amazon. Mobo, CPU cooler, power supply and RAM. All in one box with a meager amount of bubble wrap that looks like it just got tossed on top of the items. RAM package was split wide open and the sticks were loose inside.

Gonna try it tonight. Might need a bit of luck with this build.

Heretk wrote:

Just got the rest of my parts via Amazon. Mobo, CPU cooler, power supply and RAM. All in one box with a meager amount of bubble wrap that looks like it just got tossed on top of the items. RAM package was split wide open and the sticks were loose inside.

Gonna try it tonight. Might need a bit of luck with this build.

Did you take pictures? Probably not necessary but could help with possible RMA

Gaald wrote:
Heretk wrote:

Just got the rest of my parts via Amazon. Mobo, CPU cooler, power supply and RAM. All in one box with a meager amount of bubble wrap that looks like it just got tossed on top of the items. RAM package was split wide open and the sticks were loose inside.

Gonna try it tonight. Might need a bit of luck with this build.

Did you take pictures? Probably not necessary but could help with possible RMA

I did. The RAM sticks look OK physically but the hard plastic box they came in was split down the middle. RAM was still in the box but unsecured. Perhaps from bouncing around in the larger box with the heavier items like the power supply.

I chose to get most of the components from Amazon as their return policy is pretty laid back. Fingers crossed it won't be needed as I have cleared most of my weekend to build and then game myself silly in glorious 1440p at max settings!

RAM appears to be bad. Build went well from an assembly standpoint. On first boot it did go to BIOS. I enabled the XMP profile, changed boot order, saved and quit .. then it would not boot even to BIOS. And the RAM LED is bright red on the motherboard troubleshooting LEDs. I tried rebooting multiple times, re-seated the RAM, same issue. I thought about defaulting the BIOS with the jumper but that requires removing the GPU to get to it. And if the RAM cannot work at 3600 there is no point in fiddling with it.

Going to go to Best Buy in the AM to pick up some less than ideal memory to do a final test.

Ouch, Heretk. That's bound to happen sometimes, sucks it was you. You're the first person with a bad build component in awhile. Argh. Amazon should give you no grief on the return, and you should probably be back at it on Tuesday or Wednesday.

merphle wrote:
Malor wrote:
merphle wrote:

Parts ordered. Let the waiting begin!

Good luck! I think you're going to be pleased. What was your old system?

Core i5 4690k (4 cores, no hyperthreading) sitting on an MSI Z97 Gaming motherboard with 32GB DDR3, assembled in 2014. And the aforementioned NVMe, case, and 2080 Super GPU. I've upgraded the GPU (a few times) over the years, and migrated from spinning rust, to SATA SSD, to NVMe M.2, and added 16GB to the original 16GB.

It still plays games pretty well, but it's feeling a bit long in the tooth, and with the new generation of consoles, I have concerns that the 4 cores is going to be too limiting going forward.

That's amazingly close to my prior build, a 4790K on an ASUS Z97-something, 32 gigs, GTX 970, also built in 2014. (I brought over the 32 gigs from my prior 2600K build.) We're swapping positions; I had the stronger CPU last time, you have the stronger CPU this time.

In routine desktop use, the 5800X doesn't feel that much different than the 4790K, but when I do something demanding, the difference is often huge. I do a fair bit of emulation, and this new chip is much faster than the old one. It's really a beast.

After adding the 3070, I now realize that mostly what I bought is an absence of headache. With the 970, I was always struggling with current games; they would always run, but I'd have to futz around with the settings for awhile until I found a resolution and frame rate I could live with. And I'd usually be aware that the experience was subpar. Playing Valheim, for instance, ran okay at 1440p (which is more than the 970 is really good at), giving me 35ish FPS, but the fans on the card would be at max speed, constantly. It was a very noisy game. Red Dead Redemption 2 was playable at 1080p, but I had to turn the settings way down.

With the 3070, I just set every game to 1440p max settings, and I'm done. It just works. And I don't think I've heard the fans on the card yet. Between the 5800X and the 3070, it's a zero-friction environment, as the new machine totally outmuscles everything that's currently out. Add in GSync on the new monitor, and I'm a happy camper. I'm relatively insensitive to screen tearing, but it's definitely nice never having any, period.

I really only have two gripes with this build. No, three. First, the case is awful. It looks nice, but it sucks. Second, I didn't buy a big enough CPU cooler, at least in this case. I will eventually fix that, but haven't yet. Third, this was a cheapish monitor($400), and it suffers from more black crush than I really like. It calibrates fine, but really dark scenes don't seem to come out as good as they should. Spending somewhat more money wouldn't have fixed it, I don't think, as the $800ish offerings weren't that great. The only screen I saw that I was sure would be excellent was the $1500 LG plasma, and that was much more than I wanted to spend.

On the whole, it's a great build; the problems are minor, and the upgrade is massive.

UPDATE - got back from BB with some 3600 DDR4 RAM. It's CAS 18 instead of 16 (the latter I originally ordered from Amazon). Swapped the memory and BAM same issue. Red LED for DRAM and all. I pressed forward and cleared CMOS, and it once again would boot to BIOS. This time I flashed the BIOS to the last revision that wasn't a beta. Went from a rev dated Sept 2020 to Jan 2021. Rebooted to BIOS OK and was able to enable XMP, reboot and verify RAM speed is now 3600.

Rebooted from the Win10 USB stick and am in process of installing the OS.

So I am not sure if this was an issue with the RAM that first came in the damaged box, the BIOS version, or both. I bought this B550 MSI Tomahawk brand new and labeling on the packaging stated "Zen 3 ready".

In any case I decided to return the dubious RAM to Amazon. I will get along with the new RAM until my budget allows.

If you've got the time and inclination, it might be worth putting the original RAM back in to see what happens.

Oh, note that there's some weird USB bug in the older AGESAs if you're running a PCIe4 video card. The beta BIOSes mostly had a patch to AGESA 1.2.0.1 to fix the USB bug. The upcoming 1.2.0.2 (might not be out yet, isn't yet from ASUS) should, supposedly, fix the problem. I haven't yet checked to see if users say it's fixed, though.

So, after digging around in some of my old machines, the best video card I could find that would fit was an old GTX 555 :-/

But the 11400 with the noctua NH-U9S and 2 NF-P12 case fans is snappy, very cool and whisper quiet!

I have the Lian Li tu150 and its an itx case. Does anyone know if most 3060s would fit? The 970 I tried was too long, BUT it was in an Alienware and had a long metal bracket screwed and soldered into it, I guess so it didn’t sag?

Now, even this 750 TI I found for $125 is tempting me, so I can at least play SOME games. This 555 is soooooo old!

merphle wrote:

Parts ordered. Let the waiting begin!

Woah. Amazon was quoting me about a 2.5 week delivery time for the CPU (May 8-13), but just revised it to be this coming Monday. Thank you, Amazon! The rest of my stuff isn't due to arrive until later next week, but this just shaved 2 weeks of nail-biting waiting off.

Malor wrote:

If you've got the time and inclination, it might be worth putting the original RAM back in to see what happens.

Oh, note that there's some weird USB bug in the older AGESAs if you're running a PCIe4 video card. The beta BIOSes mostly had a patch to AGESA 1.2.0.1 to fix the USB bug. The upcoming 1.2.0.2 (might not be out yet, isn't yet from ASUS) should, supposedly, fix the problem. I haven't yet checked to see if users say it's fixed, though.

Yes I have noticed intermittent chop with USB since I finished loading Windows. MSI has a beta bios update available but I have not yet tried it.

Man every amazon link I get off of my stupid discord is hounded by bots so bad I haven't seen an add to cart button in a month, let alone been able to checkout in time for it to matter.

My best guess, at this point, is that Amazon is deliberately enabling bots, because of the way they stagger their releases and only trickle out a little at a time. It is very difficult to fight your way through to an actual purchase.

After all, if they fix the problem in any meaningful way, then they lose revenue. As is, they get to sell many of the cards twice; once to a scalper, and then again via their marketplace, so they get a second cut. They have a strong disincentive not to fix anything.

manta173 wrote:

Man every amazon link I get off of my stupid discord is hounded by bots so bad I haven't seen an add to cart button in a month, let alone been able to checkout in time for it to matter.

I used discord bots for months without success. IMHO your best bet to get a GPU at MSRP is through a Best Buy stock drop. Camp the fixitfixitfixit YouTube channel. They track BB drops, which have been occurring every couple of weeks.

Heretk wrote:
manta173 wrote:

Man every amazon link I get off of my stupid discord is hounded by bots so bad I haven't seen an add to cart button in a month, let alone been able to checkout in time for it to matter.

I used discord bots for months without success. IMHO your best bet to get a GPU at MSRP is through a Best Buy stock drop. Camp the fixitfixitfixit YouTube channel. They track BB drops, which have been occurring every couple of weeks.

Thanks, I've been late to a few of those, but only ever gotten past the first stage. Almost got one but the damned 2 factor got in my way. Hopefully fixit^3 will get me there a bit sooner.

Best Buy stock drops seem to go the exact same way as Amazon - by the time the page has loaded, they're gone.

I hang around on the page waiting for that Buy button to turn yellow again, and it either never does, or by the time I click it, the stock has gone again.

Jonman wrote:

Best Buy stock drops seem to go the exact same way as Amazon - by the time the page has loaded, they're gone.

I hang around on the page waiting for that Buy button to turn yellow again, and it either never does, or by the time I click it, the stock has gone again.

This is subjective observation on my part, but I had the same issue with several BB drops. But I was queuing up for as many GPUs as I could. With ones that did go to "add to cart" it would not get past that point. On my last run where I did snag the 3070, I lined up maybe 3-4 cards, only the ones I really wanted. That time the pages loaded much faster, and I got through the entire transaction without much delay.

manta173 wrote:
Heretk wrote:
manta173 wrote:

Man every amazon link I get off of my stupid discord is hounded by bots so bad I haven't seen an add to cart button in a month, let alone been able to checkout in time for it to matter.

I used discord bots for months without success. IMHO your best bet to get a GPU at MSRP is through a Best Buy stock drop. Camp the fixitfixitfixit YouTube channel. They track BB drops, which have been occurring every couple of weeks.

Thanks, I've been late to a few of those, but only ever gotten past the first stage. Almost got one but the damned 2 factor got in my way. Hopefully fixit^3 will get me there a bit sooner.

Amazon seems to trickle their stock out slowly over the course of like an hour. Don't give up if the page shows that it's no longer in stock. Follow the Merphle Method! Keep refreshing on the "couldn't be added to cart" page, or the "there's 0 quantity of this item in your cart" page. It works! I succeeded in completing an order for a 5900X 20-30 minutes after Brobot initially said there was stock available - and actually 2 minutes AFTER Brobot said it was out of stock. The bots are not infallible! Human ingenuity perseveres!

I nearly scored with the Merphle method, and it’s given me hope.

The Merphle method sounds like The One Weird Fertility Trick Your Doctor Won't Tell You About.

Jonman wrote:

The Merphle method sounds like The One Weird Fertility Trick Your Doctor Won't Tell You About.

Can confirm - had three kids before 30. It's all about hitting F5.

merphle wrote:
Jonman wrote:

The Merphle method sounds like The One Weird Fertility Trick Your Doctor Won't Tell You About.

Can confirm - had three kids before 30. It's all about hitting F5.

It's this kind of out of context humor potential that keeps me going

Malor wrote:

In routine desktop use, the 5800X doesn't feel that much different than the 4790K, but when I do something demanding, the difference is often huge. I do a fair bit of emulation, and this new chip is much faster than the old one. It's really a beast.

I meant to ask before, Malor - what sort of emulation are you running that's working the 5800X so much over the 4790k?

merphle wrote:
Malor wrote:

In routine desktop use, the 5800X doesn't feel that much different than the 4790K, but when I do something demanding, the difference is often huge. I do a fair bit of emulation, and this new chip is much faster than the old one. It's really a beast.

I meant to ask before, Malor - what sort of emulation are you running that's working the 5800X so much over the 4790k?

DOSBox is the biggest thing. I'm fond of an old game called 1830, which has an amazingly good AI in its hardest mode, but burns crazy amounts of CPU. It plays best at 700MHz+ (for a 16-bit DOS game!) and the 5800X is the first time I've been able to realistically play the hardest mode in many years. It's still a little sluggish taking turns, but I think I'm getting 500Mhz-ish performance out of the emulator, so it gets pretty close to real hardware, finally.

In the 32-bit XP era, I was able to play at real hardware speed, and I might be able to again via virtualization, as AMD virtualization supports 16-bit mode (Intel's doesn't.) But I haven't messed with any of that yet.

Dolphin is the other major emulator I run, but the 5800X isn't that much faster than the 4790K there. That program is much more bottlenecked by the GPU.

edit: another thought I've had is that the huge cache of the 5800X might be a lot of the reason DOSBox performs so well. The DOSBox executable is about 6 megs, and even the biggest DOS programs run happily in 16, which would all comfortably fit in the L3 cache.