I5 3570k + Motherboard Bundle vs i5 2500k


May 20, 2012
Okay so Micro Center is having CPU + MoBo Bundle Sales for the i5 3570k...

So I currently have bought the

i5 3570k @ 189.99 "Original Price: $249.99 You Save: $60.00"
AsRock Z77 Extreme 4 LGA 1155 @ 89.99 "Original Price: $174.99 You Save: $85.00"

Total Saving: $145.00
Total Spent: $279.00 + tax

But i do have a real hot room due to the A/C not being fixable for my room during the summer.
I did purchase a Corsair Hydro Series H100 CPU Liquid Cooler
but someone mentioned that it only does similar cooling as a $30 dollar cheaper air cooler..
i am not sure whether that'll be the same case in my room... but...

he also mentioned that the ivy bridge heats up alot more than the sandy bridge
and thats not a new news to me as i read up on that beforehand.. but i was hoping that the cpu liquid cooler will take care of that.
i won't be overclocking my cpu by that much. its stock is at 3.4Ghz. maybe get it to 3.8Ghz?

Would exchanging the above for

i5 2500k @ 169.99 "Original Price: $249.99 You Save: $80.00"
AsRock Z68 Extreme 4 LGA 1155 @ $164.99 "Original Price: $214.99 You Save: $50.00"
No Bundle Sale

Total Savings: $130.00
Total Spent: $334.98

be a better idea? better money spent? etc?

Opinions and advices please.

Full Computer Specs Here.

It is my first time building. I will be changing the PSU to a lower Wattage as I don't see myself doing SLI for quite some time.. No Point in wasting money on electricity bills..

Would the 580 GTX Liquid Cooled Edition have been a better choice than a 680 or a 670? Keeping in mind my room gets really hot. maybe 90's and above during summer.
Sidenote: I had a comp for a week that had 2x GTX 550 Ti SLI and they couldnt even run League of Legend in Low Settings 1920x1080 resolution without FPS dropping below 30 in the middle of the game... Could that have been due to the high temp? I returned it, hence why I decided to build my own comp..
If you aren't going to OC heavily, I would take the Ivy Bridge setup for cheaper.

I just got a 3570k + Asrock motherboard at Micro Center yesterday, actually. I guess you could say my money is where my mouth is on that.

The 2x 550 TIs are just not very good cards in the first place. It could be that those cards just aren't good enough for League of Legends. It could be some other things related to using 2x video cards too.

As far as 50 liquid cooled, I am not a huge fan of liquid cooling, but I guess in your situation if that is what you have to get then do it I suppose. With ambient temperatures of 90f it might be the better idea.

That being said, even 90f air is going to cool a video card. You might not think so, but video cards can approach 100c in temepratures (although running them that hot will shorten their lifespan considerably). It is pretty common for video cards to hit 80c when they are being pushed hard and that is like 250f. 90f temperatures would still be a vast reduction from that.

I like having my video card at a nice and frosty, but if your video card temperatures went from 70 - 80c up to 80 - 90c from the higher ambient temperatures in the summer it shouldn't be a big deal.

The safest bet is probably to go with the liquid cooled card and take the PITA that comes with it, but you can probably get by on air if you have to. Especially so if you are getting a 670 or 680 which use less power and therefore have lower temperatures when they are pushed hard. They are more efficient with power usage which means a drop in temperatures across the board, even for things that a 680 can do in its sleep.


May 20, 2012
yea im not going to be heavily overclocking anything.

also, the 580 i ordered is a close looped pre set liquid cooled card..
should i stick with that or should i just get a 680 from micro center?
I would rather have the 680 if it were me. The hassles would be 100x less, energy usage a good bit less, and the power quite a bit more. That being said, my video card is at like 40c right now.

I couldn't fault you for going either direction, but if I already had one card being shipped to me I would just stick with that.
SB for overclocking to 4.4 - 5.2 GHz, IB is OK for up to 4.4

The H100 offers perhaps 1/4 degree over the better air coolers at the cost of mucho noise. To my mind, 1/4 degree not worth the risk of introducing water inside the box.

The 670 / 680 run much cooler than the 580 .... the Asus DCII TOP models especially so and they attain beastly OC's..



May 20, 2012
so get rid of the H100 and get an air cooling CPU cooler?

well, the gtx 580 thats being shipped is a pre-set liquid cooled card.. the reviews said it runs really cool...
but its the same price as a 670.... idk... whether to just return it and get 670 or keep it...

thanks raiddinn and jack.


Oct 8, 2011

Changing to a lower wattage PSU wont save you electricity, the PSU only pulls from the wall what the system needs, no more. Lower wattage PSU only means more hassle with having to change it later if you change your mind. I'd stick to what you have. Quality PSU's are very important.


May 20, 2012

well, that answers my question from the other thread.
is the PSU i have chosen

Cooler Master Silent Pro Gold 800W a good PSU?

ps. If I don't do CPU Liquid Cooling with the H100,
but keep the Liquid Cooled GTX 580... And say that breaks...
And water falls into the PSU, does it take out my entire system or just the PSU and the Graphic Card?
the fan for the graphic card will be mounted on the back fan space of the 650D case..


Oct 8, 2011
Either could happen realistically. It could fry the entire system potentially, PSU, Hard Drives, CPU, Mobo and Graphics. I've never really been a fan of water cooling. Too risky and not enough gain. I use a pretty oversized Noctua air cooler for my system. Even with crossfired AMD Radeon 5770's jammed right up against each other, no part of my system gets too hot.

I'm also pretty sure those are quality PSUs. Cooler Master are usually trustworthy.
If water falls straight down then it shouldn't be able to enter the PSU.

If the PSU is mounted on the bottom with the fan side up it is either a bad case or an incorrectly mounted PSU. The PSUs should be facing down regardless whether they are top or bottom mounted. The bottom mounted PSUs should have air intake from below the case to account for this.

An Obsidian 650d would almost certainly have the correct air vents. That is like a $200 case.

However, I want to contradict OYMI's statement that the PSU wattage won't save you electricity based on the total wattage of the PSU.

All PSUs regardless of maker/model are optimally efficient at 50% load. Efficiency matters because it directly impacts the ratio of how much power needs to be pulled from the wall to deliver a certain amount to the components.

Say for example a PSU is 90% efficient at 50% load and 80% efficient at 100% load and that you have a 400w and 800w PSU.

The 400w would need to pull 500w from the wall (400w / 0.8 = 500w) to give 400 to the components. The 800w with 90% efficiency at 50% load would only need 444.4w (400 / 0.9) to give 400w to the components.

That extra 55.5~6w is going to be pulled from the wall by the 400w and not by the 800w. It is also going to be turned into heat inside the PSU and make the PSU have stability issues much more often and much more quickly compared to the 800w.

Also, using the PSU at 100% all the time would greatly decrease it's useful life whereas using a PSU at 50% load as much as possible greatly increases its useful life.

As far as Cooler Master PSUs go, I don't really trust them, but some people do OK with them. The brand is spotty at best and at least as many models are pure crap as the number that are worth using. Probably more like 80% are pure crap purely on the design.

I would try to look up and see whether the people at hardwaresecrets.com or johnnyguru.com have reviewed the Cooler Master Silent Pro 800w. If neither one of them has rated that PSU or if it got anything less than a stellar rating from either one, I wouldn't get it.

Johnnyguru rates the PSUs with numbers and it should at least be a 9 to be worth using. Hardware secrets uses more of an explanation, but he will definitely let you know if something sucks or not, usually on page 7 or 8.

- Edit - Typo


Nov 18, 2011
Higher wattage is not better technically, I believe Raiddinn is stating that PSU efficiency is far more important. 80+ gold means it has high efficiency, which would then create lower costs. Higher efficiency is always a better choice. Cheers and GL with the build
I would suggest everyone try to target their max usage at about 60% of a good PSUs total wattage and average load more like 40 - 45% of total wattage, that way it is close to 50% as often as possible.

So yes, having a higher wattage PSU is better for the internal workings of your computer than having a lower wattage one is.

The higher wattage PSU doesn't necessarily result in the lowest direct cost, because you are paying more up front for the higher wattage PSU vs more over time for the higher energy bills.

However, the wear and tear on the internal components is less if you aim for 50% load.

Better efficiency really does very little to help anybody. It is a buzzword at best. If you get an average of 92% efficiency with platinum instead of 88% efficiency with a regular PSU and you have to pay like $100 extra for the privelage on the price tag of the PSU, you don't really come out ahead in direct costs.

If anything having a higher efficiency PSU encourages you to hit the extremes on the PSUs load values. Like the difference between an 800w PSU providing 400w at 90% efficiency at 50% load vs a platinum PSU with like 500w total that is still getting 90% efficiency when its at 80% load.

The 80% load will be more wear and tear on the platinum parts than the 50% load will be on the 800w and the power bill will be the same both ways.

You could buy an 800w with super awesome efficiency and use it at 50% load all day, but in my experience that's just not how people do it most of the time since the biggest gains in gold/platinum are at the extremes.

Even if you go that route with a gold or platinum PSU aiming for 50% load the reduction in power bill isn't that great from 92% vs 88ish% (regular). For 400w that is a difference between 435w and 455w from the wall.

At a couple cents per killowat hour it would take like 20 years to make up the price premium in the purchase cost. You might as well just buy the higher wattage regular PSU as compared to the lower wattage higher efficiency PSU.

Unless you just have so much money that you don't know what to do with it all, then you can have your cake and eat it too with a higher wattage and higher efficiency PSU at the same time.

I don't have that kinda money to flush down the toilet, though, so the differences matter a lot.


May 20, 2012
actually the 670 is $100 cheaper than the liquid cooled 580 i ordered.
it has higher clocks and stuff.
what im more concerned about is the temperatures.
i dont really play the most demanding games like crysis , bf3, etc that are used on benchmarks.
i just need a nice graphics card that will be with me for years to come if i decide to go for demanding games but not get too high in temperature.
i hear the gigabyte 670 is good?

if i do push and pull method on the case fans along with the high end air cpu cooler instead of the h100, will that help with temperature too even if the room is hot? (both cpu temp [ivy bridge cpu] and graphics card [gtx 670? 680?])

or just change the h100 for hgih end cpu cooler and do push and pull method on case fans / get bigger than 120mm case fans and keep the liquid cooled gtx 580?

the rig my friend built me 2 years ago has a evga gtx 260 superclocked edition.
which i gave to my brother as im building this new one.
would that pny liquid cooled gtx 580 even last me around 4years?
will the 670/680 last me around 4years?

im not going to be overclocking. maybe the cpu a little bit depending on the cpu temperature.
The only thing that I see right now that even dent's today's graphics cards is AA. Most people play with it off because it does stupid things to frame rates. I would only suggest using it for people that have 60+ FPS even with it on. High levels like 8x AA can make even the best video cards cry.

As long as you are fine with low/no AA then it doesn't matter which of the video cards you get because you will most definitely be fine 4 years out with any of them.

As far as air cooling vs water cooling, I have always viewed water as a cute little toy for people with a lot of money, time on their hands, and tolerance for noise.

That being said, I am not used to designing computers meant to be used in 90f ambient temperatures. This is actually my first attempt at doing so.

My gut feeling is that the computer should be able to manage on air and that the computer's biggest problem will be PSU strain which is something you can't liquid cool.

It seems like the water cooling would be the conservative choice with all this since it takes the hot air out of the equation if you can tolerate all the crap that comes with it.

There are still a lot of parts like voltage regulators that will be screwed in a liquid cooled setup just as much as in a high end air cooled setup. The only way to hit this stuff is with dispersal fans anyway and that will be pushing 90f air which also sucks.

Anyway, if my gut feeling is right, it doesn't really matter which you choose between air or water since the weakest links in the proverbial chain will be things you can't hit either way.

Given that, I would probably take the 670 above the 580 if I were in your shoes. Make it a 670 that pushes the hot air out the back and doesn't keep it in the case.

I would keep CPU OCing low because that depends on the voltage regulators and puts additional strain on the voltage regulators. If they screw up you will have all kinds of stability problems if not a straight up destroyed motherboard.

The more you OC the more the correct voltage matters and the easier it is to go outside it. That isn't even considering the effect of 90f ambient temperatures. I would be worried they can't even handle the 90f ambient much less the added strain of OC.

If it were me and I had all kinds of money to waste on this project I would be considering trying to mount the motherboard in a refrigerator (ensure 0 condensation) somehow.

Either that or try to acquire some sort of device that can turn hot air into cold air and stick it in front of the fan intake slots.

This problem you have really screams out to me for some kind of outside the box thinking that will address major problems that are otherwise completely outside your power to affect.



Except that this isn't really a fair comparison, if you are comparing a regular power supply, an 80Plus PS, and an 80Plus Gold PS when your machine needs 250watts used on average you're comparing something about 70%, 80% and 90% efficient. This means, if your machine runs 24/7, that you'd be using 357 watts, 312 Watts, or 277 watts in each case. Over the course of a day that's 8.568 KWh, 7.488 KWh, 6.648 KWh . . . at 12 cents per KWh it translates to: $1.02816 a day, $0.89856, and $0.79776 or $375.28, $327.97, and $291.18 per year.

So going from a POS generic PSU at 70% efficient to a 80Plus Gold at 90% efficient saves a shade over 80 bucks a year in this case. If you plan on having it for three years you can spend up to $240 more and still come out ahead. Not to mention the 80Plus Gold will probably be made with higher quality components.

Obviously there are a lot of assumptions here, but to call that not helping anybody and a buzzword at best is not the best way to describe it. Sure, the difference between 80Plus Gold and 80Plus Platinum is sometimes not worth the extra cost, but there are very few "Regular" power supplies that are hitting 88% efficiency.
I am going to go ahead and define regular as not being a complete piece of garbage so that pretty much means regular constitutes at least Bronze.

My XFX 650w is pretty regular and that hits 86% at 50% load with 82% at both ends. That is pretty common for what I would consider to be regular PSUs.

Silver being more like 88, gold more like 90, and platinum more like 92 at 50% and more like 85, 87, and 90% at the ends.

Now I got my XFX 650w at a time with a pretty good deal and it was $60 after rebates. That is about normal for a bronze rated PSUs which are usually about $1 per 10w.

To get a 650w platinum right now would cost about $125. If you type in 650w platinum in Newegg you get this


and this


which are both $120 plus shipping of $3 and $6, so average shipping about $4.5 or about $124.50 for a 650w platinum.

What kind of platinum PSU could you get for the same $1 per 10w-ish = $60 from what I spent on my PSU?

The Antec 450w platinum clocks in at $106. Two 550w Platinums are about $110. Nothing at all comes in cheaper than the 450w platinum. So I can't even really make this comparison at all.

I am going to have to set the baseline at the Antec 450w Platinum and figure out what sort of PSU I can get for the same $106.

Turns out I can get an XFX Pro 850w Core for pretty much exactly that price.

At 50% load, that XFX 850w would be hitting 425w so thats going to be our load figure used in the comparison as it is achievable by both.

The XFX 850w is getting 86% at 425w. What is the Antec doing at 425w? Around 90%.

Sure, there is a 4% swing there with wattages from the wall that come out to 472 vs 494.

We are going to ignore the likelihood that anything an 850w PSU would be powering might very well try to max over 450w putting the 450w into an area where that 90% efficiency falls off a cliff. These things only have to make ratings at 20%, 50%, and 100% after all, not at 10% or 110%.

At 472 / 494 = 95.5% the difference in power bills comes out to about 4.5% over the course of a year. To have a difference of $300 at the end of the year would require that the power bills were clocking in at $300 / 0.045 = $6666.67 per year for the PC alone.

I don't know about you, but my power bills aren't anywhere near that for a full year for my whole house.

It is much more likely that my PC is using about $20 a month for power with a monthly power bill in total of more like $100 on average. Even $20 sounds a little high, but I will go with that. That would make the difference in power bills more like $20 * 0.045 = $0.90 a month.

So, if I went the platinum route I would be running my PSU at pretty much 100% all the time in order to save myself 90 cents a month. 90 cents a month that falls off a cliff as soon as I try to pull more than 450w for my components, something an 850w can handle much easier than a 450w can.

So by "not helping anybody" what I really mean is that dollar for dollar I have to put hugely more strain on my PSU, potentially going outside of the safe zone in order to try to save myself 90 cents a month or (hopefully) about $11 a year.

So yes 80+ platinum is only really that good in comparison with PSUs that are better off in the garbage can than in a PC.

Environmental concerns aside, all platinum allows you to do is to pay the entire cash cost up front rather than amortizing it over the (must be long or you don't get your value) life of the (used at 100% load all the time) PSU.

This all assumes people have to choose between more efficient lower wattage PSU or a less efficient higher wattage one. To be completely fair, I think that is a pretty common choice people have to make when looking at PSU components.

Not many people I know are looking into the $350 Enermax 1200w Platinum PSU's, for instance, because nobody really wants to spend that kind of money on a PSU. In fact, pretty much everybody that comes on these boards wants to minimize the PSU expense line item in order to increase other line item expenses like processor, motherboard, and video card.

So I think all the above is actually a whole lot more real world applicable math than your counter example was.

- Edit - Typo


May 20, 2012
anyways could we comment on my revised build?

i5 3570k @ 189.99
AsRock Z77 Extreme4 @ 89.99
Samsung 2.5" SSD 128GB @ 129.99
Cooler Master Silent Pro Gold 800w @ 159.99
Gigabyte GTX 670 (not yet purchased @ 399.99) (looking to SLI later on near end of the year)
G.SKILL Sniper Low Voltage Series 8GB DDR3 1600 @ 49.99
Corsair Obsidian 650D @ 179.99 / 159.99 MIR
Samsung 22x DVD+RW Burner @ 15.99
Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO @ 34.99
Samsung 27" 2ms Monitor @ 296.99
Windows 7 Ultimate 64x Bit @ 189.99
Logitech G400 Mouse @ 39.99
Total: $1777.88

should i buy all these right now and build or should i wait till black friday or some other huge sale event?
also, did i miss anything?
the hard drive, i will just use my external hard drive i bought last year until the prices go down because i hear the prices for HDD have shot up recently?
Why do you want Windows 7 Ultimate? All it really has over Professional is Bitlocker and I don't know any gamers that use that.

Samsung CD - The Asus DRW-24B1ST is a much better drive for pennies compared to $1800.

Obsidian 650d - Might as well get a HAF X instead. Everybody dreams of getting a HAF X when they dream about godly cases.

- Edit - 200 on the side >>>>>>> 0 on the side.

PSU - If I was spending $160 on a PSU I would probably pick a different one, but it should be good enough I guess.

Otherwise the rest of the stuff is fine.

HD prices did go up quite a bit lately so it wouldn't be the worst idea to just use the external drive for now.

BTW, you have a mouse in there but no keyboard, just sayin.


May 20, 2012
well .. i already have a keyboard lol
i actually have a intelli ex3.0 mouse too but that 400dpi... so im upgrading.

let me look up that asus cd one for a sec.

this one?
or this one?
the reason i went for samsung is.. im korean.. LOL
and i like samsung... and that was chosen before i went for a samsung monitor. i'd like to have a samsung on my computer..
even tho i was expecting the word "samsung" written on the cd driver except it doesnt... sadly..
so im willing to change for a better money worth.
EDIT: oh.. you meant this one.. its 15.99 + 6.98 shipping though..

well, the HAF-X looks ugly... to me... idk... plus its a full tower... 650D is mid tower...
ill just have to get different fans than the stocks.

which PSU would you pick? if the one i got isnt good then i'll change.
i'd rather get the best for my money. micro center isnt far from my house.
i can even just order from newegg. not in any rush as i just noticed evga gtx 670 got back on sale for about 10minutes on newegg.... and i couldnt get it since im still waiting for my gtx 580 to either be shipped so i can return or cancelled.
i did request a cancellation of the order yesterday but its still in "preparing to ship" mode..
i will probably be getting the evga gtx 670 ftw version. (sidenote: can i add the evga gtx 680 backside thing to this? from wat i see, it seems to use the 680 pcb..)
probably won't sli for a good year or two.
which company is good for psu?
Bitlocker encryption is one of the very very few things that separate the ultimate edition from the professional edition and the one that is the deciding factor for most of the people that get ultimate for an actually good reason.

AFAIK, though, if you use it it slows down your PC measurably. It really only helps you if someone steals your computer so they can't look at your files.

I wouldn't go down to home premium because Professional actually has quite a lot of advantages over that version.

As for full tower vs mid tower, the lines are pretty blurry as to what constitutes one or the other. I have a mid tower that is positively huge. It apparently just happens to be 1 millimeter under the cutoff or whatever as opposed to 1 millimeter over it.

The actual height difference is 21.7 inches (HAF X) vs 20.5 inches (650d). That is barely over 1 inch more.

I would take the extra inch to get hugely better cooling. The extra 230mm fan on the HAF X makes that case move hugely more air as compared to the 650d and the side 200 is great at hitting hard to reach things like voltage regulators.

CD Drives - The Asus is quite a bit more expensive than the Samsung because it is rated hugely higher and worth it. The Asus sells hugely more units and gets much better reviews from buyers. Another area where I put my money where my mouth is, I own the Asus and I am one of the poorest people on TH.

PSU - This system isn't going to use anything remotely near 800w even if you add a 2nd 670 to it. If you went with the Corsair AX 750w instead the PSU would probably put out more juice and it would have a major review site (Johnnyguru) backing it 100%.

AFAIK, no major review site is backing the Cooler Master PSUs like that. In any event I trust Corsair PSUs a whole lot more than Cooler Master PSUs.

Samsung stuff - Whatever I guess. I am an American and I buy Hondas.



Going with Home Premium you lose XP Mode, The Ability to Join a Domain, and the Backup and Restore functionality. Also, 7 Home Premium will only use 16GB of RAM max, while Professional and Ultimate will use 192GB if I'm remembering correctly.

If any of those features don't seem worth it, then 7 Home Premium is the one you want . . . spend the money on hardware . . . or a portable A/C unit ;)



May 20, 2012
again, as for the portable ac device, thats up to the landlord as hes the one that couldnt fix the a/c piping in my room last summer. im going to drop him a word.

so go for win7prem okay.

ill check out the haf-x in microcenter and compare it to the 650d and see what i like.
which asus one are we talking about? out of the three i listed? the one from newegg? with the shipping?

i was thinking of a 600w or 650w but go for the 750w?
750w is for the future when i go for 670 sli right?

and i just read up on these asus gtx 670 directCU II TOP cards..
do any of you know when those will be released? / be in newegg?