Intel Build Suggestions


Jul 22, 2011
System Usage from Most to Least Important: HD Movies, Solidworks (CAD), MATLAB, Some web development (adobe cs5), little gaming 

Approximate Purchase Date: August 1-15

Budget Range: whatever is best value, I would rather pay little for medium specs than alot for great specs

Parts Not Required: Monitor (I have a 20" Samsung LCD and will probably replace it with a 24" or 27" LED), keyboard,mouse,OS,speakers

Preferred Website(s) for Parts:

Country of Origin: USA

Parts Preferences: I am set on Intel CPU, Mobo, SSD (I work for Intel)

Overclocking: Probably not, but if its easy maybe like .5 ghz

SLI or Crossfire: Probably not necessary for my needs, would be nice to have the option to upgrade in the future

Monitor Resolution: currently 1440x900 but will be upgraded to 1920 x 1080

Additional Comments: I am trying to not spend alot of money but it is hard to get components to match the nice cpu+mobo+ssd thanks in advance for the help

CPU: i7-2600K

Mobo: Intel DP67BG, I can save money and get the DZ68DB but I think the built in graphics probably won't be enough? Should I just get the cheaper one and add a graphics card (since I'm going to buy one anyway)

SSD: Intel 160GB 320 Series.. I could also get a 120 G 510 series but the 320 series comes in a package making it a better deal

PSU: Help?? Don't really care just want something cheap, modular, reliable

RAM: Help?? 8GB Corsair Ram claims "Only qualified 1.5V XMP RAM on Intel Core i3/i5/i7"
OR Gskill
There seems to be multiple RAM with the same specs at different price from the same company, whats up with that?

Graphics: Help?? Looking for decent $100-150, probably whatever good deals come up around August

HDD: I have a Seagate external 1.5TB, probably will buy a 2TB internal on sale

Case: Help?? Looking for any Mid-tower that's not ridiculously expensive. The more compact the better. I'd like a USB3 port on the front but that seems to limit my options. I don't want something with alot of 5" bays, as I will only use one. I like this one:
Newegg has antec 900 on sale this weekend only for $60 AR & Coupon:
Could I just route a USB 3 extension cable from the back of the case (through water coolant seal) and somehow replace the front USB 2.0 port with it?

DVD: $20 Any DVD-RW will do

OS: Free Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit from school

Is it possible to overclock at all with the stock CPU cooling? I was recommended to get this Cooler but I don't know if I want to drop $80
Mobo: You probably want to go with the P67 based board, if you intend to SLI/Crossfire at some point. Since it's not possible with the Z68 board you listed.

SSD: the 510 would be quite a bit faster than the 320, but if you are getting a nice deal on the 320, it's still tons faster than a hard drive and i'm sure you get it at a nice price.

PSU: I think you just listed something that is very difficult to get in the same package. You'll want something in the 750W range to enable SLI/Crossfire.
Otherwise a good 500W:ish PSU will do fine.

RAM: 1.5V CAS9 1600Mhz seems to be the sweet spot. Corsair, GSkill, kingston or mushkin for manufacturers. See what's on sale, there is usually a set between $60-70

Graphics: Radeon 6870 ~$160 after rebates is a good starting point. Should play decently at 1920x1080.

HDD: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB is generally the recommended model for HDD here due to speed, price and reliability.

Case: Well the thing is that you don't have front panel connectors on either of the motherboards anyway, so you would end up hooking them up to the rear connectors anyway.
So if a case comes with wires like that it's ok for your usage. You can also get something like this: USB3 frontpanel $24 it will bring the USB ports to the front and you don't have to worry about the case having them. Also it will house your SSD if you want it to.

The Antec 900 is probably a good choice.

Cooler: OC with the stock cooler can't really be recommended, it's not really cut out to handle the OC:ing.
The Noctual you listed is one of the best, if not the best air cooler, so it's expensive.
Scythe Mugen 3 would be something in the middle at ~$50, but i think it needs thermal paste.
cheaper end would be the Coolermaster hyper 212+ ~$30



I have the Thermaltake V9 (non BlacX edition), I really wish I hadn't bought it and the BlacX doesn't change anything that would make me not regret it. Virtually no cable management, cramped HDD bays, the installation mechanism for the HDDs is also fiddly. Mine has sharp edges, don't know if this has been rectified with the BlacX - cut myself a few times.

There are plenty of better cases for ~$100.
Lian Li Lancool PC-K62 $100

Lian Li PC-7FN $100 (15% off promo code available)

Cooler Master CM 690 II Advanced $90 ($8 shipping)

If you don't mind the way they look the Lian Li PC-K59/63 have USB3 on the front panel and a good internal design.

For a power supply:
Corsair HX650 80Plus Silver Modular $120 ($20 rebate)
This would be powerful enough and connectors to crossfire 6870s.

Seasonic M12II Bronze 620 80Plus Bronze Modular $105 ($10 shipping)
The 520W version would also be plenty for single card builds.

Cooler Master Silent Pro M 600W 80Plus Modular $100 ($30 rebate, $2 shipping)


Jul 22, 2011
So I ended up getting a few different items

CPU: i5-2500K

RAM: Gskill Ripjaws X Series 4x4GB DDR3 1600

Mobo: I am looking for a z68 board that has Sata III & USB 3, SLI/Crossfire (if I upgrade), HD Audio (do new speaker sets require 3 ports or 6 these days?), I was considering this:

SSD: Not locked into Intel but was looking at Intel 120GB 510 Series which has a rebate now

CPU Fan: My CPU didn't come with a stock fan so I need to get a cooler regardless. I am looking for a mid-range (~$40) cooler that I can do some overclocking on the i5, Do I need to buy thermal paste?

Case: Leaning towards this Lian Li PC-K57W

Thank you for all the suggestions
I just installed the scythe mugen 3 and it is great, and actually comes with thermal paste. About $50 though, but recommending it again, it is really nice.
25C at stock clocks in bios. 59C at 4GHz on all 4 cores running prime95 according to HWmonitor ( antec 300 illusion case ).

The mobo will be good, tom's HW doesn't recommend crappy things, so it is nice.

Another option would be the OCZ vertex 3. It also has a rebate and CC bringing the price down to $199.

OCZ Vertex 3
$219.99 ($199.99 after rebate)

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