Building a new gaming pc


Sep 24, 2011
Hi guys,

1st of all, I'm a 1st time poster here so sorry if I put this in the wrong section.

It's my first time choosing the components for my gaming pc myself, so I know I've got quite a lot to ask! Right now I've done some pretty extensive research already (or that's what I think hehe) and I've narrowed it down to these components for my new rig:

CPU - Intel Core I7 2600k
- Intel Core I5 2500k?

Mobo - Asus P8Z68-V (Not pro)
- Asrock Z68-Professional Extreme4 Gen 3
- Asrock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3?

RAM - G.Skill Ripjaws-X 8G Kit(4Gx2) DDR3 2133 F3-17000CL11D-8GBXL

GPU - Asus Nvidia Geforce GTX 570 (would likely SLI sometime in the future)

HDD - Western Digital 3.5" Black 1TB WD1002FAEX SATA3 7200rpm HDD

Case - Cooler Master HAF 922

PSU - Thermaltake Toughpower-XT 875/775Watt
- Antec HCG-900/750

Cooler - Thermaltake FRIO

DVD/blu ray drive (just any one I suppose it won't matter a lot)

So first, about the CPU, I've heard that the 2500k has basically the same performance of the 2600k in gaming and that it's mainly missing out on hyperthreading. However given how much money I'm spending I don't think I'll be buying another pc anytime for years, so I thought I might future proof if games do eventually support hyperthreading. What do you guys think, is it a good decision? My first game for this rig would probably be Battlefield 3 and I've heard that it does support hyperthreading, but I'm not too sure about that.

About the RAM, I've never used G.skill and I haven't even heard of it before, but based on my research I've been given the impression that they are a good brand and the ripjaws-x is built for sandy bridge so I think it would work well for my specs?

The motherboard is either the Asus P8Z68-V (Not pro) Asrock Z68-Professional Extreme4 Gen 3. I've been using Asus for quite a while and I think I would feel safer with it. But I found the Asrock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 was quite a bit cheaper than the two, also supports SLI and doesn't really seem to be missing out on much, so would there be any noticeable difference performance wise?

Finally the PSU was quite a decision. I think a 700 watt PSU will be fine but take into account that I might SLI my GTX 570 sometime in the future. I used the power supply calculator and it shows that I should be fine with a Thermaltake 775 or an Antec HCG-750 but should I up to the 875/850 it a bit if I want to overclock, just to be safe? And which do you think would be better, the Thermaltake or the Antec?

So what do you guys think? Is it a good, working config? Are there any that i might be spending too much on with little benefit (HDD, cooler etc)? And are there any vital components I'm missing, if any? (discluding optionals like sound cards etc)

Thanks in advance!
It has been shown multiple times that performance in most tasks does not scale well with increased memory frequency beyond 1600MHz, certainly not by enough to justify any price premium. I can provide links that support this if you wish.
So I'd suggest saving some money and buying a good 1600MHz set with voltage at or below 1.5V as this is what Sandy Bridge's memory controller prefers. Avoiding really tall heatspreaders if possible.
Yes your current choice would work and G.Skill are a very good RAM brand.

The Samsung Spinpoint F3 or the Seagate 1TB drive around $60 are better value than the WD 1TB FAEX as they perform just as well, if not better, yet are cheaper, quieter, cooler and consume less energy.

I'm assuming that you are buying in the US and from newegg:
If the TT XT 775 comes back into stock at ~$110 when you buy then it is by far the best option IMO, and will be plenty for your build even if overclocking.
If you decide that an ~850W is what you want to go for then the XT 875 is a good unit, but not the best option because there are better 850W units that are cheaper than it. Of which this is the best option:
Antec High Current Pro 850W 80Plus Gold Modular $150 ($30 rebate)

I'm mostly favouring modular units because that is what I prefer, but also because I think there is evidence that the ones mentioned in this thread so far perform really well and the budget seems to allow for it. However it is not necessary as the HAF 922 is a large, high airflow case so having lots of unused cables won't be an issue for it.

I would favour the i5-2500K personally. I think it's really only justified going for an i7 if you have plans to run programs which really will benefit from hyperthreading.

Can't say I know which motherboard I would go for.

The Thermaltake Frio is a good choice for keeping temps down. However a minimum fan speed of 1200RPM and a maximum fan speed of 2500RPM means that it is not going to be that quiet. Some of your other choices indicate to me that quietness is not a high priority, but I would like to point out a very good heatsink which is only ~$10 more expensive, which should compete quite well in terms of keeping temps down but should have quieter fan(s):
NZXT Havik 140 $65 ($3 shipping)
It was reviewed quite favourably at SPCR and Xbitlabs if you want to do some research about it.