Please help, £2000-£3000 Gaming/Editing PC

richiespeed13

Honorable
Oct 27, 2012
23
0
10,510
Hi All,

Firstly, let me just say I am not very rich, so please do not be put off by the title! I have three real hobbies, Pc's, downhill MTB riding, and motorsports. All of them require stupid amounts of money, and for this reason I am focusing just on MTB and PC's for now, will get back into racing next year hopefully.

I am willing to spend some time saving up for this build, so I really want to do this right, and research well in advance of building. I have been involved with PC's and IT for many years, but in the last three or so I have really found a passion for it. I built my current PC in 2008/2009, it was my first build and was powered by an E8500 CPU, a 512mb Radeon 4870, and had 4GB DDR2 RAM. It was running just a 500gb 7200rpm hdd, an an Asus P5QC mobo.

Since then I have upgraded a lot, I have a 1GB 5870 now, 8GB DDR3 RAM, a 1TB HDD, new PSU, and a few other very small bits. Mobo and CPU remain the same.

Anyhow, she has been great to me, and I have learnt a lot from building and modifying her, but it is time for me to move on. I love gaming and video editing, and unfortunately my trusty E8500 is really starting to struggle in this modern age.

I have done some research and have created a rough list of what I would like in my PC. As I am still far from buying the parts, I understand that prices will change in the future, and many new products will be released. If you know any new components better than what I have listed that will be released next year, please let me know! My list is based on current hardware, and I expect to buy whatever the equivalent product is in 6 months.

Asus Rampage Extreme Mobo OR Asus P9X79 Pro
Core i7-3930K OR Core i7-3960X (I am very undecided, is the performance increase worth the huge price gap?)
I would like 16GB of DDR3 RAM
I will probably purchase a single GPU at first, but crossfire/SLI is something I am aiming for afterwards.
I like the look of the Corsair AX1200 PSU, I would like at least 1000w
I also would like to run 2x 1TB HDD's in raid 0
And a good SSD to run the OS and a few games.
Additionally, I would very much like a good sound card capable of 7.1 surround sound, but, it is not vital.

I would like a full size case, with water cooling so that I can achieve good overclocks. I plan on adding some led's and keeping cables very tidy.

If it's useful, here is the template from the sticky:

Approximate Purchase Date: 6 months from now

Budget Range: £2000 - £3000 (A wide gap I know, I am trying to aim for £2500 but a little over or under is ok)

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, video editing, 3D modeling

I will not need a monitor, but I would love suggestions on good quality keyboard and mouse.

Do you need to buy OS: No

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Amazon, any other highly rated UK based vendor.

Location: London, UK

Parts Preferences: Intel CPU only, AMD preferred GPU but I'm open to all advice.

Overclocking: Yes

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe

Your Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080, plan to upgrade to triple monitors in future.

Additional Comments: As this is from scratch, I really need help with getting a good case. I would like a large, full sized case as oppose to midi. I plan on having a quiet, water cooled PC, with nice design, tidy cables, and some nice lights for style.

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: Because I am a PC enthusiast, and really really want to build a really great system from scratch.

Anyway, I know this is not the most well planned build, but that is why I am posting here. If you guys could give any advice on any and all aspects of building this PC I would be very grateful.

Hopefully with your help, I can develop a very good and well structured build plan over the next few months, learning many new things along the way. As I am posting quite early, I hope it gives me plenty of time to really research things and notice any flaws long before I throw my money at someone... lol.

Thank you all very much,

Regards,

Richie
 

richiespeed13

Honorable
Oct 27, 2012
23
0
10,510
I just want to apologize for my double thread, I somehow posted halfway through typing the thread. My apologies.

Thanks very much to Dingo for his advice in the first thread, it is sound advice and I will take note of what you said.

Cheers mate.
 

Cerunnos

Honorable
Sep 25, 2012
30
0
10,540
A suggestion, could not find all the parts I first selected on the UK version. Also, many parts are a bit overpriced (vs the States, but that is to be expected).

Matched according to your preferences the build would look like this. (The H100 is a placeholder). Components picked for matching color.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-3930K 3.2GHz 6-Core Processor (£433.06 @ Amazon UK)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H100i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler (£89.99 @ Amazon UK)
Motherboard: Asus Rampage IV Extreme EATX LGA2011 Motherboard (£306.95 @ Dabs)
Memory: Corsair DOMINATOR GT 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 Memory (£193.45 @ Scan.co.uk)
Storage: Western Digital Red 2TB 3.5" 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive (£89.97 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Western Digital Red 2TB 3.5" 5400RPM Internal Hard Drive (£89.97 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Corsair Neutron Series GTX 240GB 2.5" Solid State Disk (£180.96 @ Dabs)
Storage: Corsair Neutron Series GTX 240GB 2.5" Solid State Disk (£180.96 @ Dabs)
Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 7970 3GB Video Card (£299.75 @ Scan.co.uk)
Sound Card: Asus Xonar Essence STX 24-bit 192 KHz Sound Card (£145.01 @ Novatech)
Case: Corsair Obsidian Series 800D ATX Full Tower Case (£228.00 @ Aria PC)
Power Supply: Corsair Professional Gold 1200W 80 PLUS Gold Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply (£194.92 @ Dabs)
Total: £2432.99
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-12-20 00:51 GMT+0000)

However, I would suggest you do research into building a real, decent watercooling system (not these closed loop ones). It will make the system look fabulous. If you cannot find the parts or don't have the time, a closed loop system can last you a while (at the tiny tiny tiny chance of causing a system failure, depends on if you use your system professionally for editing), or high end air cooling such as Noctua D14s (will look a bit bad)/Megahalems (geting rare).

3930K is fine.

If you do editing on Premiere Pro, you may want a Nvidia GPU for CUDA. Also more than 16GB may be nice. If you do some semi-serious modeling, you may want to consider packing in a FireGL/Quadro card (an entry-mid level would suffice).

I would suggest you do RAID 0+1 with Intel's RST software for protection and speed (two seperate partitions). Or better yet, do a 4 drive setup for RAID10.

Again, I'm not sure if you are really into editing, and if it is, you may consider getting two SSDs either for...
A. Scratch disk (would suggest something else for this)
B. RAID0 for general performance
C. RAID1 for redundency of system (eg, you edit for professional work)
D. Capacity you may want/need. So you can probably jumble that up into a 480/512GB disk or just keep one.

I may suggest getting the Seasonic 1000W Platinum, but it doesn't look as good (IMO). The AX1200i may be your choice instead, which has good reviews (check jonnyguru.com). If you don't plan on SLI/XFire yet (if you only consider it... most likely you won't), I would suggest the AX860, or AX760 as an interim solution (higher efficiency), and you can grab a higher wattage PSU later on only if needed (plus PSU's don't really get outdated, and they last pretty long so you can keep them in a spare machine). The AX series are solid Seasonic designs (the 750/760/850/860 non i) and have good default cabling (completely black). You may also switch them to individually sleeved cables if you want (Corsair sells them).

800D remains my choice for a full tower. Lian Li hasn't really produced anything spectacular these days.

I would suggest you check out what you want for the 7.1 surround system. I may suggest you just use the digital out and invest in a decent (expensive) receiver and (again expensive) speakers. The ASUS cards seem to have some issues with some games (notably Battlefield, or anything that has Punkbuster) so you may want to switch it for a Creative card. HT Omega doesn't really have any decent PCI-E cards, so you can choose a Titanium HD which is a good cheap card (and has RCA outputs), or wait for the ZxR which is to replace the Titanium HD supposedly this month (its not out yet). Otherwise the Essence STX is probaly a good choice, or the Phoebus (I haven't checked its reviews yet). The flip side is that if you don't have said equipment or high end headphones, you probably won't notice the difference from the onboard sound (which is better than most onboard sound).
 

g-unit1111

Titan
Moderator
However, I would suggest you do research into building a real, decent watercooling system (not these closed loop ones). It will make the system look fabulous. If you cannot find the parts or don't have the time, a closed loop system can last you a while (at the tiny tiny tiny chance of causing a system failure, depends on if you use your system professionally for editing), or high end air cooling such as Noctua D14s (will look a bit bad)/Megahalems (geting rare).

I agree with this 100% - the plastic water blocks are not the same as a full custom loop. If you're going to do that use the real thing or don't use it at all. If you're skeptical I'd go with a strong air cooler like a Noctua D14 instead.

I may suggest getting the Seasonic 1000W Platinum, but it doesn't look as good (IMO). The AX1200i may be your choice instead, which has good reviews (check jonnyguru.com). If you don't plan on SLI/XFire yet (if you only consider it... most likely you won't), I would suggest the AX860, or AX760 as an interim solution (higher efficiency), and you can grab a higher wattage PSU later on only if needed (plus PSU's don't really get outdated, and they last pretty long so you can keep them in a spare machine). The AX series are solid Seasonic designs (the 750/760/850/860 non i) and have good default cabling (completely black). You may also switch them to individually sleeved cables if you want (Corsair sells them).

Jonnyguru gave the AX1200i really high remarks and really liked the Corsair Link software. The PC Power & Cooling Silencer 1200W is another good choice as it uses the excellent Super Flower platform.

Additional Comments: As this is from scratch, I really need help with getting a good case. I would like a large, full sized case as oppose to midi. I plan on having a quiet, water cooled PC, with nice design, tidy cables, and some nice lights for style.

Me personally I wouldn't spend the money on things like fancy lighting. It's kind of a waste if you ask me.

800D remains my choice for a full tower. Lian Li hasn't really produced anything spectacular these days.

I think Lian Li is overrated. They do make some good ATX and mATX towers but there's far better on the market. I like the 800D but my full tower of choice right now is the NZXT Switch 810.
 

Cerunnos

Honorable
Sep 25, 2012
30
0
10,540


Well it (hype) was mainly due to the use of aluminum.

They do have some nice full towers, well actually only one this year, and its a refresh, which was why I said they haven't had anything spectacular (or new). They may as well be more suitable for a workstation build too. The quality, storage design, and simple minimalistic looks would be my choice if I needed to assemble something for work (or something more unique, yet simple). No side windows (which sometimes is good). Something like the X2000FN pretty much represents the highest spectrum of high-end for PCs. While looks obviously are subjective, material and compartment designs are top notch. Only thing is its not widely available (though obviously a low-volume unit).