New system for $600-$680

bendash

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Hi there,

First of all, I wanted to thank all the respected participants here, whose topics on how to build a new system helped me understand hardware components and their relations a bit better. Although I'm in the IT business, hardware components were never my strong side, so cudos to you all for expanding my knowledge on this area.

Secondly, I wanted to ask your opinion on the following components that I want to buy for a new system:

Approximate Purchase Date: next week would be preferable, but soon

Budget Range: 600 USD (I never used rebates, and I think we don't have rebates in Hungary, so let's forget about that) - I can go up to 680 USD, but I really don't want to spend much more than that

System Usage from Most to Least Important: watching movies, gaming, surfing the internet

Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS, HDDs for data storage

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com, although obviously I will buy the parts in Hungary, so I really just use it for reviews - don't know how much it would help to show you a Hungarian computer hardware website... (will do if you ask me to)

Country: Hungary

Parts Preferences: I would like to use an AMD CPU, full tower case, and preferably a radeon, but you can override my decisions as you want to, because although I have an AMD CPU now, I really don't bend towards any brands

Overclocking: Maybe, but probably will stick to the defaults in the first half year

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe, but that's for later, too, not right now, one GPU would be fine

Monitor Resolution: right now my LG IPS231P-BN runs on 1920x1080, and I intend to keep using it like that

Additional Comments: I would like a quiet PC, and a rather fast one, too, of course. The price range is converted from HUF (Hungarian Forints).

These are the parts I chose:

Motherboard: ASUS Sabertooth 990FX AM3+ AMD 990FX SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS

Processor: AMD FX-4100 Zambezi 3.6GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) Socket AM3+ 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor FD4100WMGUSBX

Memory: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL

Graphics Card: SAPPHIRE 100315L Radeon HD 6850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity

Hard Drive (SSD for OS): Intel 320 Series SSDSA2CT040G3K5 2.5" 40GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)

PSU: OCZ ModXStream Pro 500W Modular High Performance Power Supply compatible with Intel Sandybridge Core i3 i5 i7 and AMD Phenom

I intent to use the CPU's default cooler, that's why it's not on the list.

What do you think? What would you change?

Thanks in advance for your answers,
Ben
 

flashfir

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BTW* EDIT: You do have pretty solid parts going on there what you picked. You can do better for the money though ;)

Mobo is rock solid, gskill is legit, sapphire is reputable relative to xfx and diamond, and the like, and the modxstream pro is a good budget PSU that got an excellent review on hardwaresecrets.com

However... you can go sandybridge, have better performance NOW for relatively same price and a much better upgrade path in the future.
done editing*

==================

here's a sample build i've done with a slightly lower budget.
$500 build, NOTE: Pricing is REALLY low, since I was sucking the ground dry for bargains with this build. You probably cannot get that kind of pricing since there's rebates, coupon codes, and free shipping. We are quite fortunate to live in the United States! And specifically, near a computer store called MicroCenter which offers things like i3-2100+MSI H61 board for $123. :OOOOOOOOOO
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0Aoqm-6PvQW_OdDJFT2lwNExtMFhDTmtmcWQwc0h3U3c
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I'll try to think about your build in normal retail pricing rather than a deal hunter's since you might not have the same kind of sales/rebates available in Hungary.

First things first: I would get away from AMD and go LGA 1155 for Sandy Bridge.
For price/performance, Sandy Bridge is it almost at all price points thanks to their i3-2100 model which smokes/edges out all of AMDs offerings, overclocked or not pretty much.

Your CPU? Two options: i3-2100 or the i5-2500k. $115 or $225
Your mobo? Two Options: H61 or P67/Z68?. I suggest the latter. MAKE SURE you pick a board that has more than 4+1 VRMs. Long read about why but basically means OC'ing is safe and your board won't limit your CPU and definitely not catch fire. $100 to $200 depending which chipset. A decent P67/Z68 should run ~$140. http://www.overclock.net/t/943109/about-vrms-mosfets-motherboard-safety-with-125w-tdp-processors

I would highly recommend getting a p67 or z68 board so you can overclock. an i5-2500k is the hands down chip you would get either now or upgrade to later down the line. 4.0~4.4ghz on air, stock cooler? THIS IS MADNESS!

P.S. i3-2100 will NOT bottleneck any single GPU. SLI/XFire, I don't know. Ask on some forums.

Your Boot Drive? Personally I would pick a $1/GB drive, probably OCZ can work or there's lots of sales going on in the US, not sure about abroad but you can find non-OCZ brands for $1/gb easy here. Corsair, etc. $40-60 & 40-60gb.

AT THIS POINT you got what. $680-50-115-150=? $365!

Your PSU: PLEASE spare yourself time and frustration, and do research here, start @ the stickies http://www.overclock.net/f/31/power-supplies Jonnyguru.com Hardwaresecrets.com all do legit reviews of PSUs and some of them fail to do what they state they can. $40-50. 500w is more than sufficient for single GPU systems. It can handle a first gen i7 & gtx 580 BOTH with HIGH overclocks.

PSU CALC: http://www.overclock.net/t/1140534/psu-calc-final-release/0_100

$40-$50... so You have $300 left.

Your RAM: NOW is the time. $20-$30 for 8GB DDR3, @ 1600, 1.5v, CL9 is flying like HOTCAKES every other week. Do NOT get 1.65v RAM. 1600 is worth getting over 1333 but don't bust your balls over it.

Your case? You didn't list one but I'm assuming you're going to breadboard your build forever like mine is right next to me right now since I brought mine home on winterbreak. SILENCE. Fractal Design Define R3 is what I have, it is LEGITLY quiet. I did put in more fans however, 120mm fans cost money but they reduce noise and increase cooling.

$30-50 for a decent case no frills. $120 for Fractal R3... That extra $90 goes a LONG way for your GPU so I would recommend a normal case.

Because I've purposely gotten the i3-2100 instead of the i5-2500k, here's where your gaming bottleneck lies, your GPU. I don't try and skimp on other components but I do try and get quality parts, no frills, everything just what one needs so the rest of the money can juice up the graphics card which usually makes the biggest visible difference in gaming.

Assuming you have an
i3-2100,
P67/Z68 mobo with enough VRMs & vrm cooling,
500w legitimate PSU with good reviews from that http://www.overclock.net/t/183810/faq-recommended-power-supplies/0_100 I asked you to look at up there
A case
DDR3 RAM, 4gb is fine if you can't get 8, just don't have 100 Google Chrome tabs when you're playing BF3.

GPU! WHADDYA GOT? Well, $600-all that = ~$235 is between a Gtx 560 Ti WITH 448 SHADERS, and a GTX 570. Similarly you can get a 6950 2GB model, but that extra 1gb VRAM is wasted @ resolutions 1080p and under. 6970 1gb? NVIDIA seems like the better option.

The PSU does not allow you to do SLI in the future and honestly, there's lots of headache involved in getting those to work. Heat & Power consumption issues just become much more real rather than if you have single card solution.




-------------------------------------------------------------------
So

i3-2100
1155 mobo with good vrms, & is p67/z68 for you to upgrade to i5-2500k down the line
4-8gb ddr3
a cheap but decent case, stick with antec, cooler master, and other known brands
PSU: PLEASE get a decent one. Reviews are plentiful online. Bad PSUs are plentiful everywhere also.
GPU: GTX 560 Ti/570 or 6950/6970.

@ The cusp of 7xxx series release you could wait... personal choice. Otherwise get a gtx 570 or 6950/6970.

1gb model of 6950/6970 if you're planning on staying @ 1080p resolution, aka NOT doing eyefinity. If you see yourself possibly buying 3 monitors down the line, get the 2gb model and perhaps you should revise the PSU to a 750-850w to do XFIRE/SLI since running 3x1080p monitors for eyefinity requires a healthy amount of horsepower to max everything out.

That was long, hope this was helpful.
 

bendash

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Wow, thanks very much for the exhausting answer, I'll read the links you gave me, and play with the config a little more :)
 

danraies

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For $125 the ASRock Z68 Extreme3 is a better gaming board than the P8Z68-V LX, however part of that is because the Extreme3 overclocks better. One advantage of the Extreme3, though, is that it offers x8/x8 SLI if you want to use two cards later. If you're not overclocking and you're not ever going to SLI then you can go pretty far into the low-budget boards without sacrificing performance. The MSI H67A-G43 is $88.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813130616

A 6850 seems like it should be pretty reasonable on your budget. I wouldn't downgrade from that.
 

bendash

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Oh, I would upgrade my HD 6850 to a 6870 or 6950, not downgrade it :)

And I've looked at the ASRock Z68 Extreme3, but sadly it costs more in Hungary than the P8Z68-V LX... I don't know why...
 

flashfir

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GPU:
Do not upgrade a 6850 to a 6870. If you care to overclock, overclock.net is a very professional community, who can help you out if you want.
A 6850 runs games... as you see it now. It won't pump everything to ULTRA settings at MAX resolution but its still pretty good.

MOBO:

First off: VRMs.

Don't get that mobo if you're spending that kind of money, you can get a stronger VRM setup (more phases 4+2 or 6+2) and a heatsink on them. Look at the picture @ the newegg link: See the black things next to the square cubes? They have no heatsink on them! And there are not a lot of them. I count 6 phases, one is probably for memory, making this a 4+1 VRM setup which isn't bad but if you're spending this kind of money and you don't want your mobo to put a glass ceiling on your overclock, find one that has more phases, & a heatsink on them.


Look here: Same setup except heatsinked. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131783
Here is an excellent example of a cheap mobo (Not for you though, it's an am3+) that is cheap but is SOLID all around.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128519
See how many phases it has: 8+2


Why VRMs so important to pay attention to? Read this again.
http://www.overclock.net/t/943109/about-vrms-mosfets-motherboard-safety-with-125w-tdp-processors
If you want to overclock, then 4+1 VRMs are not usually the best. VRMs take the voltage from your PSU and turn it into power your CPU can use. The more you have, the less time each one has to be "ON". When you overclock later, like with an i5-2500k, you're increasing power usage by a significant amount. 1GHZ to 4.2ghz from 3.2ghz is 33% increase. Meaning more stress for the VRMs. Read the article if you want more information.

DISCLAIMER: Running @ Stock, all of this doesn't matter! As long it isn't a horrendous 2+1 setup which at that point facepalm-I-say-no-more.

If you read the link, major props to xd_1771 on overclock.net, you'll learn a lot and you'll find that ASUS & ASRock VRMs tend to be high quality, so if you do have a 4+1 they won't catch fire if they get overstressed but rather they'll throttle your CPU which is why some people when they overclock on 4+1 setups all of a sudden their system will drop CPU frequency for seemingly no reason during stress testing. So... they're good.

BUT
BOTTOMLINE: You can get a mobo with more phases&heatsinked @ the same price or maybe ~$10 more which is totally worth it if you're OC'ing in the future.



ASRocks are good because they provide lots of features, reliability (don't hear much about them failing), and mainly sell for good prices. If you don't have good prices, don't aim necessarily for ASRock. Gigabyte, Asus are also good.







Last suggestion.
Given you've picked the rest of your parts (CPU MOBO ETC), update us on the PSU you select before you buy it! I love PSU reviews.

& I actually suggest sticking with your 6850 for now, it won't be dated for a little while longer, after which THEN think about upgrading. By that time more price drops would have happened because of Tahiti & Keplar coming out (ATI NVIDIA new generation).
 

bendash

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Huh, ok, I've read the article, And I see what you mean. I'll probably go with the

ASUS P8H67-V

then, looks more reliable in terms of overclocking. I've also switched the RAM to a

CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ8GX3M2A1600C9[url]

And for now, I've stayed with the [url=http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817341016]OCZ ModXStream Pro 500W Modular High Performance Power Supply


Because I believe they should be good. All in all, I've the following components now:

PSU: OCZ ModXStream-Pro 500W (63 USD in Hungary)
MOBO: Asus P8H67-V (176 USD in Hungary)
Processor: Intel Core i3-2100 Sandy Bridge 3.1GHz (140 USD in Hungary)
Memory: CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 (57 USD in Hungary)
GPU: SAPPHIRE 100315L Radeon HD 6850 1GB (170 USD in Hungary)
OS Drive: OCZ Agility 3 AGT3-25SAT3-60G 2.5" 60GB SSD (105 USD in Hungary)
Case: Cooler Master CM 690 II Advanced (122 USD in Hungary)

By this time it's slowly getting out of my budget, and I'll still have to order these parts from the different shops in Hungary, because of course we don't have a shop like your newegg.com site where everything can be ordered, so I expect a minor delivery cost, too (around 10 USD). I even thought about just postponing this new system buy with a month or so (of course the configuration would be different then). Do you think prices will go down after Christmas/New Years?
 

flashfir

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You cannot overclock the CPU with the H67 chipset. And if you wanted to OC, I'd suggest picking a higher phase one... If you can list the website(s) you're shopping from, I'd poke around mobos with you.

From the pricing you put, here's what I'd do.

1. Change the mobo if you're going to go to i5-2500k within the next 5 years (need p67/z68! can't overclock on the budget chipsets) [FYI if you didn't know you can't OC the i3-2100 much at all but it should last you awhile)
2. Memory 8gb-->4gb, if you want to reduce bottlenecks for gaming in your computer your RAM has "wasted" money going there. Reduce RAM to 4gb since games don't max out RAM that much. That being said, if you do like huge photoshop or I have no idea what uses huge gobs of RAM other than games, then keep the 8gb kit.
3. Case: You're paying A LOT for a case. Personally, I'd get a cheaper case, flush the money into the GPU.
4. OS Drive: Maybe put this $105 into the graphics card so it can jump to the next tier up? Or keep it and get much improved OS loading times? It's arguable which one you want.
 

bendash

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Ok, I clearly misunderstood something. My apologies, it's still 9:30 in the morning here, and I'm still learning this stuff, so bare with me please...

So, I would say that within the next 5 years overclocking would be a serious possibility for me, hence: switching mobo - again. Here is a Hungarian website that I'm using now, you can take a look around for motherboards:

http://visualelektronic.com

The link will take you directly to the English google-translated Motherboards section. Prices are in Huf, so if you see e.g. 11.491, thats 11.491 HUF = ~48.7 USD.

Not the best site, has crappy navigation, because you cannot filter anything, just order by lowest price etc., but it's nearly the only one that has free shipping above 25.000 HUF (~106 USD), and it has the OCZ PSU too, which is surprisingly hard to find in Hungary.

Anyway, I very much appreciate the time you put into giving me these advices and trying to find the components, so a big thanks for your time and effort on this.

 

bendash

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As for the other notes:

- I would like to have an SSD for faster boots, and will probably replace the case, as it's really an expensive one. I'll replace the RAM with 2x2GB Corsair.
 

flashfir

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A little higher than you could go but this mobo will keep you future proof for quite some time. :D

Highlights!
1
x8 x8 = SLI/XFire is a possibility compared to x16 x4 where your 2nd card will be gimped bandwidth-wise.
2
Has Dr. Debug: The savior I wish I had. When your computer doesn't post, this bad boy will tell you what component is weirding out. I can't tell if its my RAM or not sometimes...
3
VRM setup: Digi Power - not sure what this is, need to read up but supposedly marketing says digital > analog for the VRM's power delivery to your CPU. 8+2 setup and heatsinked, very niiiiice.
4
PCI 3.0 OH MY. Ready for graphics cards in the many years to come.
5
Gold caps are kinda gimmicky but you know these are solid caps. (Not that the ones that pretty much most people buy aren't solid dcaps... but its nice :))


It's a little more expensive but this mobo is BUFF.

Just wondering, why are you trying really hard to stick to an OCZ psu? There's lots of other solid/inexpensive PSU lines out there :p

And one more decision for PSU.

Honestly I don't think you'd want to deal with XFIRE/SLI possibilities when upgrade time comes, since midrange 6850's have microstuttering if you're affected by it, and it means your PSU needs to be more expensive.

http://visualelektronic.com/pc-tapegyseg/3412-neo-eco-520c-pc-tapegyseg---520-w.html

The antec neo eco 520c is better than the modxstream pro I think. Both are well rated but I'd trust antec over OCZ all things being equal. I'm just shopping and hitting lowest price and scooping around until I see something I recognize (which I think I know all the major decent PSUs ^^)
 

bendash

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Wow, another well-written response, thank you :)

Honestly, I hoped that this P67 would do the trick, because I also thought that some features are nice to have in the future - e.g. the Dr.Debug, but that wasn't the main reason. PCI 3.0 and the 8+2 VRMs with heatsinks were :)

And as for the PSU - No other reason other than the fact that it has good reviews, and I managed to find it in Hungary, because most of the PSUs here are not reviewed/cheap compared to the ModXStream Pro.

But, to my surprise, yes, this one is also on the site I gave you, and it's cheaper than the OCZ, so guess what - switched to Neo Eco 520c :)

All in all, I think I now have everything - except for the SSD. I chose the Intel 320 Series 40 Gb because I've read a lot of reviews about it, some of them very technical, and they said that this is the most reliable on the market now, with very little chance of failure within 10 years, and the 5 years warranty sounded good, too. But, upon reading further, I've realized that it's not the best price/value, and also not the fastest - it's rather slow compard to others like Samsung or OCZ. So if you can advise a good SSD, that would be the last thing I need to build this new system, and then I will order the parts on Monday, and hopefully build it by the end of next week.

Thanks again for your help, I'm very much indebted to you for this.
 

flashfir

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You're welcome :)
Do you use steam?

Case wise
Looking at the website you linked me... I'm browsing from lowest to highest. Past $50 USD you're going to be "wasting" money IMO. There can be a HUGE difference in cooling capabilities at low prices however so picking is still crucial.
Here's the thing with my advise, grain of salt: The cases I'm recommending are bare minimums: You might want to upgrade in the future even though they work perfectly allright for a gaming PC.

Might need to grab a 120mm (140mm is better if it fits) fan or two for you to complete it since most cases at this price point don't come with 2 or more fans.


Fractal Design's Core 1000 has great build quality but it only supports mATX... & it IS indeed a top PSU mount... so probably not.

Checking out the Cooler Master Elite's since they keep popping up on the first few pages @ bottom of the $ totem pole... Everything looks like a so-so choice since top psu mounts and just meh.

EXCEPT: Elite 335. 430 is also good. I had the 430 before upgraded to my Fractal R3.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119244
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119227
*Thankgoodness for NewEgg's pictures! They are the best :)

Nicer cases? The next one I might get is the Antec Three Hundred but that's @ 16482 ~ $70 which is money that could be going into your components.

SSDs...
I didn't know before I got my Vertex but 4k random reads/writes are what you want from an boot drive SSD, not sequential. Sequential is for your storage drive and loading files in the GBs like movies or what not.

You're gonna partially be on your own but what I do know is I hear that "synchronous" vs "asynchronous" is key difference in your question.

The bottom line is this: Pretty much any SSD that isn't terrible in 4k random reads/writes is going to be felt to be a drastic improvement. I speak from personal experience. I got a cheap Vertex 1 last November and it's GREAT. The difference between high end low end SSDs are not that great, just don't go for the 1st generation JUNK like jMicron or Kingston V series (different from the V+ series mind you). Past Indilinx 1st gen I think anything will do. Just find a cheap one, pull up a review to confirm its not terrible then put the rest of the money into your parts!

How I came to this conclusion: Personal experience +
when we started hitting it with real world tests it quickly became apparent that the Agility 3 wasn’t much faster than last year’s Vertex 2. We were not happy with the performance, but the Agility 3 was also $100 less at the time than the Vertex 3, so there was still solid value in the offering.
~http://www.hardocp.com/article/2011/08/07/nand_flash_faces_off_synchronous_vs_asynchronous/6
+
But then again...
The Agility 3 is a damn fast drive, but once you actually start storing data it slows at a much faster rate than the Vertex 3. We think this is a result of the async flash,
~http://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/4139/ocz_technology_agility_3_240gb_ssd_review/index13.html

Meaning... since your OS drive is mainly concerned with reads, writes aren't going to be piling up like hotcakes (like some intensive app... like photoshop???), this don't matter!


How much is that ASROCK board you linked? I can't find it on that website you linked me... And no doubt it's going to be more than $150 USD... D:

The cheapest one with heatsinked vrms and more than a 4+1 is this one:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157230
http://visualelektronic.com/alaplap/412-p67-pro3-rev-b3---1155-socket---p67-chipset---atx.html

It only has 1 pci express slot but every other board in this price range uses x16 x4 which renders the second slot to accessories like PCI-E SSD's which you would not be getting since they cost as much as your entire computer...

This means SLI/XFIRE isn't an option down the line. No big deal IMO.


Questions:
1. Mobo decided? You picked a really nice one but I can't find it online. The one I would pick is --> no sli/xfire. no biggie.
2. SSD: Eh don't worry about what you learned. Not a worthwhile difference IMO to get a "better" SSD. Just find an inexpensive one, google reviews, make sure its not terrible.
3. Case: Elite 430, or 335. You need @ least 1 more 120mm/140mm fan, it should come with one.
 

bendash

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Steam? If you mean, http://store.steampowered.com/ then I don't :)

Answers :)

1. I think I'll stick with this mobo (ASROCK P67 Extreme4), because although it's fairly expensive, it's future-proof. I'm trying to buy from different places cost-wise, so wherever I find this mobo cheaply enough (with shipping) is where I'm gonna buy it. We have sites that collect the prices from computer webstores, and right now the cheapest that I could find is 160 USD including shipping, AND they have the mobo in stock, which is important to me because I want to build it before New Year's eve. But I have to look around a little more, maybe there's a better offer out there.

2. Ok, duly noted, I'll find a cheap one and stick with that.

3. Case: aaah, that's a tough one, because I'm developing a sort of platonic love with this CM 690 II Advanced :) But I guess it's just not meant to be... I'll probably choose the 430, which I've seen before on reviews. By the way, the place where I'll be buying my HD 6850 and my RAM (which can be G.Skill, so I'll go with G.Skill DDR-3 4Gb /1600 KIT*(F3-12800CL9D-4GBXL)) is:

http://www.interevo.hu

And I'm sorry but I have to link it like this because if you translate it with google the links won't work, so you cannot navigate. Anyway, I would appreciate if you could check the cases here also, and maybe the SSDs, too.

SSDs

Cases

To sum it up: mobo is decided, SSD will be a cheap but fast one with good reviews, and case is the Elite 430 as for now.


 

bendash

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And what about this SSD?

Crucial M4 CT064M4SSD2 2.5" 64GB SATA

Seems to have good rviews, and it's one of the recommended choices from Tom's Hardware's Best SSDs for November 2011. Looks like a winner to me.

As far as the price goes, it looks like I'm gonna have to up my costs a little bit to get everything I intended, but I've expected that.
 

flashfir

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I heard good things, vague memory about Crucial M4 series.

I still would spend less $ on the mobo and more on the graphics card, I think that will bring you greater "futureproofing" because:

1. The 6850 would already bottleneck games that are not a few years old. You can't put them on the HIGHEST settings already with this card.

2. The ASRock mobo listed is great but only if you can put great hardware in it. Putting the money in your build here will bottleneck you earlier. Effectively denying the futureproofing you wanted since you're ... presently-not-proofed... UNLESS. You know you're going to have big $ for upgrade later, THEN you would want to get this mobo because you know nice juicy hardware will be coming soon in the next year to come.

Otherwise, in my opinion, you should drop that mobo and get one of those boards I linked earlier. I searched here
http://www.interevo.hu/termekek/Alaplap/Intel_rendszerhez/

Couldn't find anything of great value. Most of those boards are excellent and that website chose the right stuff to import mostly but they're all $160USD+ which at this price point, does not make a good Performance/Price.

ASRock with an excellent VRM setup for OC'ing later.
http://visualelektronic.com/alaplap/412-p67-pro3-rev-b3---1155-socket---p67-chipset---atx.html

@$127. If you decide to do so, that would be ~$60 more to go to your GPU.
 

bendash

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Merry Christmas, by the way :)

Well, I would say that in the future further big bucks are likely to be spent on this new machine, so I would still stick with the mobo. Out of curiosity, what would you recommend for a GPU that would be better than the 6850 and would cost... let's say, $50-$60 more? :)
 

flashfir

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Using the United States as a reference point, and SALES as a even further reference point: http://slickdeals.net/newsearch.php?forumchoice%5B%5D=9&q=6850&showposts=0&archive=0&firstonly=1

A 6850 can run now for as low as 100-120.

$200 you can grab a 560 Ti.

http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/330?vs=291

So it's a a tier and a half jump upward. I think you'll have a pretty noticeable difference between the two...

Choice is yours for the money! At this point it's your discretion. Just keep in mind that buying a 6850 and upgrading later is like losing >$50 :(
 

bendash

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Oh - looking at the benchmark results, it IS a noticable difference... And in terms of brand, which one would you prefer? Would it matter if it's an MSI or Gigabyte (or other)? Because I think I could grab a Gigabyte GV-N560UD-1GI or a MSI N560GTX-TI-TWIN for a reasonable price.
 

flashfir

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MSI's Twin Frzr's coolers are well known to keep cards cool and @ pretty low sound levels.

However if it's about saving $10-$20 I'd choose the Gigabyte since I THINK I recall gigabyte's multifan models working quite well.
 

bendash

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Good enough for me. Ok then, it's settled! :)

I'll spend some extra bucks now and get a 560 Ti (Either MSI or Gigabyte, whichever is cheaper/will check reviews) instead of the 6850.

It will cost me a bit more than I originally intended for it, but what the hell, it's my 25th birthday in January, so I can afford it once in a year :)

Also, somehow - and I don't really understand why - I seem to be able to get the i3 2120 cheaper than the i3 2100!! What the heck...

Thanks again for the great advices and the review/website checks you've done for me, it's really helpful, and it's good to know that there are still people who are this kind and helpful in the world.

Starting tomorrow, I'll begin the mighty adventure of tracking down the various components for the cheapest price possible, and then hopefully at the end of this week, I'll have successfully assembled all the parts and have a brand new shiny system. :)
 

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