$1500 Gaming Build


Oct 4, 2011
Approximate Purchase Date: Shortly after 10/12, assuming BD releases then, and before BF3 releases.

Budget Range: $1400-1500

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, recording and writing music, general use.

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS (Windows 7 64-bit), case (Antec 1200).

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com or amazon.com when significantly cheaper.

Country of Origin: U.S.

Parts Preferences: Intel and Nvidia

Overclocking: Eventually but not right away.

SLI or Crossfire: Possibly in the future, not building for it now though.

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

Additional Comments: I'm looking to build a machine I will be happy with for as long as possible. I don't mind upgrading the PSU in the future should I decide to SLI, but I really don't think I will want to, as I prefer single card solutions. I have a MOTU Ultralite and Mackie HR824s, so no additional sound equipment is needed.

Here comes the build! Feel free to pick it apart, I'm happy for all my research to be worthless so long as I get the best build I can afford.

Intel Core i7-2600k. I'm looking at this cpu because of hyperthreading, as I've read a couple reviews by audio professionals that have experienced good results with hting. If an audio professional can convince me that ht makes no difference with 50+ channels of both recorded and VSTi tracks with multiple effects on each, then I would love to get the 2500k. Otherwise, the $100 is worth it to me in the long run. I'm also hoping/planning that 10/12 will see reduced prices on these bad boys, plus some actual hands on info of BD. I'm not holding my breath, though...

ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3. Everything I need at a good price and upgradable for a couple of years.

Corsair Professional Series HX750. Read many good things about this PSU and it's modular to boot.

PNY XLR8 GTX 580 Liquid Cooled w/ CPU block. I thought this was an awesome concept when I saw it in the recent Tom's build, but didn't think it would work well, so I poked around some and found some stellar reviews for its performance, such as this review from pureoverclock.com. Under their testing both the GPU and CPU, when tested at the same time, were kept cooler than either the reference card (by a lot) or the Noctua NH-D14 could do, and the GPU is highly overclockable in this model. Plus, it's $50 cheaper on amazon.com and my buddy is a prime member.

G.Skill Ripjaws X 8GB (2x4) DDR3 1600. Good RAM at a good price. I'll add another set in the future if I feel the need.

Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB x2. I'll be running a dual-boot setup for separate gaming and music sides. I plan on getting an SSD come Christmas, can't sneak it into the budget just yet.

ASUS 24x DVD Burner. For shiny discs of joy.
These were posted last cupla hours


PSU - You have an ANtec 1200 which was specifically built for CPX form factor PSU's ..... not putting one in would be criminal.'


Gets same jonnyguru 10.0 performance rating as HX750 but has 100 more watts and is quieter and runs cooler. Read about the "unfair advantage" Antec has with the case / PSU combo here:


ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3. Everything I need at a good price and upgradable for a couple of years.

It's only warranted for 2 years ..... industry standard and everybody else at 3

RAM - I'd skip the tall heat sinks .... the new Corsair Vengeance are low profile

$50 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233196
$5 off w/ promo code EMCJKKC52, ends 10/10

GFX - $650 ???? lotta money for 616 fps . Twin 900 Mhz 560 Ti's (863 fps) will blow the thing outta the water (pun intended) for $410


HD - The Spinpoint F3, Seagate 7200.12 and WD Black trade blows in all the 1TB model tests. But I'd try and find a way to squeeze a Barracuda XT in there.



Good looking build. :)

I have to agree with JackNaylorPE on the dual 560ti's for a few reasons. First off BF3 is coded for dual vid cards. Second dual 560ti's in SLI > single 580, also those new generation vid cards are due out sometime around the first of the year so chances of you adding another 580 later on are slim to none imo when those cards come out. You can pick up a pair of 560ti's for around $450 atm. Gigabyte and MSI both have them for around $225...newegg and also check amazon. That 750w psu would easily push two of those cards.

With the money saved I would go for the EVO that just came out a few weeks ago. It will get you to 4.6Ghz and you can add another fan to it if you feel the need for a "push - pull" effect. Anything after 4.4Ghz though is going to get you minimal gain if any in regards to FPS.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835103099 $34.99 FREE SHIPPING
COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 EVO RR-212E-20PK-R1 Continuous Direct Contact 120mm Sleeve CPU Cooler Compatible with latest Intel 1366/1155 and AMD FM1/AM3+


Oct 4, 2011
Thanks for the replies and advice, guys. Jack, that PSU is now very much in consideration, and your RAM advice is spot on, don't nee those spreaders. As far as the GPU goes, I live in Texas and one of the main reasons my current rig only works half the time is heat, especially from the GPU. I'm sitting next to my case right now, it's on a chair with the side panel off and a window AC unit pointed right at it. This has been the only way to keep it alive through the summer heat. Seriously. So that's why that liquid cooled unit is so attractive to me. I understand that I can beat a single 580 quite easily for less money, but I don't want to lose 1 or 2 cards to heat and I want this card to last for as long as possible. Does that sound reasonable?