New Build - feedback on config

djdas

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May 3, 2013
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Hello,
I look forward to feedback from the experienced members on the config for my new build. Advice on mobo and CPU pairing is appreciated. Plan to use this config for 3 - 4 years.

Usage: Machine is powered on all day. Wife does photoshop and graphics work. We both watch LOTS of movies. I do occasional video and sound editing. Light gaming - Play Quake III Arena (I know - stuck in a time warp - who knows what Crysis may be round the corner).
Location: Purchase from Lamington Road, Mumbai, India
Budget: 650 to 850 USD
Purchase Date:This month - May 2013
Overclocking: No
SLI / Crossfire: No
Discrete Graphics: Maybe
CPU: Core i5 3570K. I am preferring this because of HD4000 IGP. I dont plan to over clock it. Another option is i3 3220 but this has HD2500. i3 3225 is not available in India.
Cooler: Stock intel cooler
Mobo: Gigabyte GA B75M D3H. Supports USB 3.0. Right now I dont have any other requirement from the chipset.
HDD: Seagate Barracuda 1TB, 7200 rpm
Ram: 8GB - 1333 Ghz brand not decided
Case: Cooler master Elite 344 (USB 3.0)
PSU: Corsair 450W
Monitor: Dell S2240

Thanks for your time
 

marshallbradley

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Sep 24, 2012
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Why no graphics card?

For the price difference between a an i3 and an i5 3570K, you can easily get a graphics card with 3-4 times the performance of the HD 4000. Check out something like the HD 7750/70. I think the i3/dedicated graphics would be a much better call if you plan on doing any graphics work/gaming. An i5 is probably 25-35% faster in SOME media editing/encoding tasks, but a dedicated graphics would be 400-500% faster in most gaming situations (though you do mention a very old game), but more importantly it might be needed depending on the graphics work your wife does.

I'd rather have a computer that can be used for a broad range of tasks, rather than being good at a couple, but just sucking at others. This is what people mean about building a balanced system.

M
 

djdas

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May 3, 2013
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@ AMD Radoen and Marcopolo123: Noted your inputs, will go for 2x 4GB 1600 mhz

@ Marshallbradeley: You have touched my core (pun intended!) dilemma. I have been un able to decide between i3 + dedicated graphics and i5 + IGP. My thought was that HD 4000 will suffice for all my graphics load. Hence no dedicated Graphics was needed. The graphics is an additional heat and noise generating element.
However I am seriously considering you advice of i3 + HD 7750.
 

Transmaniacon

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Keep in mind, you can always add a GPU at a later time. Going with the i5 now at least gives you a better foundation that will last you longer. I think for your needs the integrated graphics will suffice, and you will get more benefit from the i5. If you want to play more games, pick up a GPU; It is a lot easier to add a GPU then buy a new CPU.
 

DSzymborski

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Is it possible for you to wait a month for the build? Haswell comes out in early June and in your specific case, waiting may be beneficial as it will allow you to get the HD4600 IGP instead of HD4000 (for most gaming builds, it's no big deal since the recommendations are for discrete cards anyway). And you'll still be able to get a dedicated GPU down the road if you wanted, just like with the 3570k. One catch: I'm not sure how good your parts availability is where you are.
 

djdas

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May 3, 2013
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Keeping the upgrade path in mind i5 is definitely a better option


What will be the cost impact of Haswell ? Will we also need to reconsider the MoBo and other components?
 

Transmaniacon

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I would wager Haswell will be comparable in price to Ivy Bridge. Somewhere in the $200-250 range for an i5, and motherboards should be consistent with what they are now. But yes you will need to wait and buy a different CPU and motherboard. The other components will be the same unless you purchase an aftermarket CPU cooler (you will need to wait until they are compatible with the new socket).
 

marshallbradley

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Haswell will be on a new socket (so yes you'll need a different motherboard, which is good in a way because it means that you'll be able to upgrade to the generation after Haswell as well, whereas with current i3s/i5s it's the end of the line as far as upgrade path in concerned). The aim of Haswell is not performance gains (it's only about 10%) but a power lower TDP (so better power consumption, this is not really an issue for desktop users though) and the new, faster 4600 iGPU.

The choice is really yours between getting a current i5, getting an i3 + dedicated graphics card or waiting for Haswell. I'll quickly summarise each option:

Current gen i5 with iGPU

Pros:

+ Fastest option for video/sound editing (the gain depends on the application used though, if it can't use more than 2 threads, it will likely be very close between the i3 and this)

+ (Likely) will last a decent amount of time. I never like to talk about "futureproofing" as I think it's a terrible concept, but for what it's worth, CPUs have much longer usable life spans than GPUs.

+ Adding in a GPU is fairly easy compared with swapping out a CPU

Cons:

- Gaming performance will be abysmal

- Depending on the type of graphics work your wife does, the iGPU might be too lacking (you'll want to check with her probably)

- Socket will be outdated next generation

Current gen i3 with dedicated graphics

+ very respectable gaming performance

+ dedicated graphics might be required for certain graphics/PhotoShop work

+ depending on the application, not far behind the i5: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/fx-4170-core-i3-3220-benchmarks,3314-8.html (65% of the i5s speed across all applications tested, which fits in with my 35% slower guess-timate, the gaming difference is less). Is this a big difference? Up to you, if you're encoding stuff that takes hours, yes. If it's merely seconds, no. In light of these benchmarks, perhaps you should be considering AMD as well? Something like an FX 6300 + dedicated you have the best of both worlds in my eyes. I'm not sure of the pricing in India though.

Cons:

- Obviously slower than the i5 across most productivity tasks, you have to decide whether the slower productivity performance is compensated for by the ability to game.

- May become out-dated faster as quad cores become more and more "the baseline" (considering Haswell has no increase in core count though, and Intel has something like 85% of the market share, this won't affect you too much for a few years).

- Again, the socket will be outdated next generation

Wait for Haswell

Pros:

+ Much faster iGPU

+ Motherboard can last an upgrade if it needs to

+ Slight energy savings

Cons:

- You have to wait

- Pricing is still not set in stone

Lastly it's really up to you to make the choice as to what you go for, don't let someone else (even me) make it for you. Weigh up each option and try and imagine what you're going to be mostly using the computer for. It's your computer, not ours!

M
 

djdas

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May 3, 2013
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Wow, thanks for the summary. Puts the whole discussion into perspective.
With the new Haswell chips and motherboards do you think they will take some time to stabilize ? I did read about some USB and Power issues with with Haswell at Toms hardware - though they got fixed I think
 

DSzymborski

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If you have a USB SuperSpeed thumb drive, you may have to reconnect it when the computer comes out of sleep with it still plugged in.
 

djdas

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May 3, 2013
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Thanks to everyone for the valuable inputs. I have decided to go with the i3 + GPU option. This seems to be a cost effective solution for my current applications and usage.

Given that the components I have chosen are end of line, I think I will be able to extract good performance for the next three years at least. After that I will plan my next upgrade with the latest available at that time.
 

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