May 22, 2012
I know VERY little about computers, but slowly learning, and am trying to build one for gaming. I was asking some friends what components i should get and picked the i5 2500k for my processor. One of my friends who is a part time troll told me the i3 has 2 physical cores and 2 virtual cores, the i5 has 4 physical cores and the i7 has 4 physicsal and 4 virtual cores. windows and most applications only address 1-2 cores, unless you are doing complex stuff like video rendering in after effects or software designed for paralel computing. so you will have 2 times the cores you have , but half of them will be doing nothing all of the time. This leads me to believe the i5 isn't worth it or is he just messing with me? Here is my full setup as of now
CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor ($169.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.90 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: Asus P8Z77-M PRO Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($154.99 @ NCIX US)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($54.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Crucial M4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($122.00 @ B&H)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 670 2GB Video Card ($399.99 @ Newegg)
Case: NZXT Phantom 410 (White) ATX Mid Tower Case ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Corsair 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($89.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus BC-12B1ST/BLK/B/AS Blu-Ray Reader, DVD/CD Writer ($56.23 @ Amazon)
Monitor: Asus VH236H 23.0" Monitor ($139.99 @ NCIX US)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($96.48 @ Amazon)
Total: $1534.53
Everything looks OK. I would get the 2500k rather than the i3-2120. The friend is right about his descriptions, except that virtual cores suck compared to the physical cores so you really want to have 4 physical cores for anything that can use 4 cores.

Even in gaming, you can OC the 2500k to be a huge amount better than an i3-2120 in gaming or just not OC and let the computer use Turbo Boost instead. Either one would work.

The 2500ks blow away the i3-2120s on everything regardless of what it is, the 2 core stuff they just blow away the 2120 without making it absolutely cry (as with anything that can use 4 cores).

On a separate note. I would get CT2KIT51264BA1339 instead of that RAM.
Is that deal current?

I know that Micro Center is giving $50 - $90 off motherboards with 3570ks right now, but I don't know that they have their regular $50 off deal with 2500ks at this moment. The deal could be temporarily inactive to try to sell the 3570ks.