Question System Build for Developer - Light Gamer

Jul 5, 2019
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Approximate purchase date: I’ll buy parts immediately once I have a list

Budget Range: $2,000 to $3000 not including monitor(s)

System Usage: 2 categories, software development and gaming with software development being the most important.

Software development, host OS is Windows 10 Pro running Visual Studio, SQL Server, IIS, Apache, VMWare VMs. The VMs will be Linux development environments, Linux Runtime environments, Windows Runtime environments. The runtime environments contain the test/production OS images that are used for deployment testing and general runtime testing of the software I build. I use the development in the host OS to test/debug software running in the VM’s. I want to be able to run multiple VMs simultaneously. I write multi-threaded software that benefits from multiple cores.

Gaming, World of Warcraft, some current version of Doom, Fortnite, something like Age of Empires, other misc games I may not have discovered yet. I don’t need to run games @ the highest frame rates or highest quality.

OS: Windows 10 Pro will be purchased for this build

Preferred websites, Amazon, Newegg

Location: Chicago, IL

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: Probably not worth it for me; I think a mid-level+ video card will work for me.

Monitor Resolution: I’m looking for a good widescreen (size of 2 monitors) or dual monitors for high resolution great for programmers. I would appreciate suggestions.

Parts Preferences: I want very fast 2 TB storage, Intel based mid-tower easy to assemble case (Corsair Obsidian 450D?), 48 GB Ram; mid-range video card. I need a DVD/CD burner, blu-ray is a plus but not required. I don't need internal case lighting. From a very quick assessment I am thinking of an i9 based system.

Additional Comments: I want a simple to assemble system. I don’t want to be on the bleeding edge. I won’t be spending a lot of time gaming; but I want to play games without any problems. I want a reliable chipset, no overclocking. I don’t need the highest frame rates or highest quality. I am not up to date with the latest processors, motherboards, etc. and could use some guidance.

Why the upgrade? It’s been 10+ years since my last build; 5 years since my last development system upgrade.

What parts list would fit these requirements?
 
Jul 5, 2019
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Thanks for the reply.

I would like an Intel based system because I believe the chipsets are less problematic. I'm going to use this system primary for making my living. That is why I don't want to be on the bleeding edge.

For example the X470 chipset restricts the performance on the first M2 socket; it runs @ a slower speed than the 2nd M2 socket.

Again, thanks for taking the time to help.
 
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PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: Intel - Core i9-9900K 3.6 GHz 8-Core Processor ($484.99 @ Amazon)
CPU Cooler: Noctua - NH-D15 82.5 CFM CPU Cooler ($89.95 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Gigabyte - Z390 AORUS ELITE ATX LGA1151 Motherboard ($169.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill - Ripjaws V Series 64 GB (4 x 16 GB) DDR4-3000 Memory ($294.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: SanDisk - Ultra 3D 500 GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($59.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Intel - 660p Series 2.048 TB M.2-2280 Solid State Drive ($190.70 @ Amazon)
Storage: Hitachi - 4 TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($74.99 @ Amazon)
Video Card: MSI - GeForce RTX 2070 8 GB Video Card ($449.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair - 450D ATX Mid Tower Case ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: SeaSonic - FOCUS Plus Platinum 650 W 80+ Platinum Certified Fully Modular ATX Power Supply ($109.99 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: LG - WH14NS40 Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($56.17 @ Amazon)
Monitor: LG - 38UC99-W 37.5" 3840x1600 75 Hz Monitor ($899.00 @ Amazon)
Total: $2990.74
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2019-07-05 13:19 EDT-0400
 
Thanks for the reply.

I would like an Intel based system because I believe the chipsets are less problematic. I'm going to use this system primary for making my living. That is why I don't want to be on the bleeding edge.

For example the X470 chipset restricts the performance on the first M2 socket; it runs @ a slower speed than the 2nd M2 socket.

Again, thanks for taking the time to help.
AMD Ryzen after 2Generations this being its 3rd gen roll-up I bet it will be as reliable as Intel.

When it comes to SSD speeds X570 board will be supporting M.2 PCIe 4.0 SSDs which will be faster than ever.

I think you need to give AMD a chance specially for Productive workload.
 
Jul 5, 2019
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For storage I am leaning towards Samsung 970 Evo Plus m.2 NVMe. Disk I/O will have a big impact on performance for me during builds in Windows and on the Linux VMs.
https://pcpartpicker.com/product/Fv8j4D/samsung-970-evo-plus-2-tb-m2-2280-solid-state-drive-mz-v7s2t0bam

I believe the motherboard you recommended supports M.2 PCIe (4.0?)

I will look at the monitor; so far at a glance it looks good.

How do you think this will all fit together in the case? I'm hoping for an easy to assemble build.

As far as AMD; I don't want to be the bleeding edge, among the first customers for a component, etc..

I appreciate all the feedback I've received so far; its been very helpful.
 

ConanLock

Commendable
May 22, 2019
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My list is very similar to Jeremy's. https://pcpartpicker.com/list/CYjDBb
The differences:
Advantages of mine:
•Much faster storage 970 Evo Plus and Evo only
•2080 Ti as opposed to 2070
•3200MHz RAM as opposed to 3000MHz
•Better PSU
Disadvantages of mine:
•Less storage (3TB as opposed to 6.5TB)
•Slightly worse motherboard
•Equivalent but non overclockable CPU
•No monitor (as requested).
As you can see, the lack of monitor in my build choice has meant I have opted for a much more powerful system. Both are very respectable, with each having pros and cons. You might even choose to cherry pick from the two as you please. Both will easily play anything from Age of Empires 1997 (nice game tastes btw) to any upcoming AAA game. You will also not need to upgrade either for years to come. In 6-7 years time you might think of upgrading the graphics, however.
 
My list is very similar to Jeremy's. https://pcpartpicker.com/list/CYjDBb
The differences:
Advantages of mine:
•Much faster storage 970 Evo Plus and Evo only
•2080 Ti as opposed to 2070
•3200MHz RAM as opposed to 3000MHz
•Better PSU
Disadvantages of mine:
•Less storage (3TB as opposed to 6.5TB)
•Slightly worse motherboard
•Equivalent but non overclockable CPU
•No monitor (as requested).
As you can see, the lack of monitor in my build choice has meant I have opted for a much more powerful system. Both are very respectable, with each having pros and cons. You might even choose to cherry pick from the two as you please. Both will easily play anything from Age of Empires 1997 (nice game tastes btw) to any upcoming AAA game. You will also not need to upgrade either for years to come. In 6-7 years time you might think of upgrading the graphics, however.
You will need more than a 550W PSU for that system if you want it to last 6-7 years and the Focus + Gold and the SuperNova G3 are equals, the Focus Platnium is the better PSU. You will want one 64GB kit instead of 2x 32GB just to make sure they play nice with each other.
 
PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: Intel - Core i9-9900K 3.6 GHz 8-Core Processor ($494.99 @ Newegg)
CPU Cooler: Noctua - NH-D15 82.5 CFM CPU Cooler ($89.95 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Gigabyte - Z390 AORUS ELITE ATX LGA1151 Motherboard ($169.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill - Ripjaws V Series 64 GB (4 x 16 GB) DDR4-3000 Memory ($294.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung - 970 Pro 1 TB M.2-2280 Solid State Drive ($297.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Samsung - 970 Evo 2 TB M.2-2280 Solid State Drive ($489.95 @ Amazon)
Storage: Hitachi - 4 TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($74.99 @ Amazon)
Video Card: Gigabyte - GeForce RTX 2080 8 GB TURBO OC Video Card ($669.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair - 450D ATX Mid Tower Case ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: SeaSonic - PRIME Ultra Platinum 750 W 80+ Platinum Certified Fully Modular ATX Power Supply ($149.99 @ Amazon)
Optical Drive: LG - WH14NS40 Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($56.17 @ Amazon)
Monitor: LG - 38UC99-W 37.5" 3840x1600 75 Hz Monitor ($899.00 @ Amazon)
Total: $3797.99
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2019-07-05 16:04 EDT-0400


Kept the monitor on the build just as a reference for a great productivity and good gaming monitor. Realistically the 660p will give plenty of I/O for your VM workloads, but I went with the Samsung drives instead here with an even better PSU and higher end GPU.
 

ConanLock

Commendable
May 22, 2019
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Ah yes, I didn't see it was only 550w. I think Jeremy's new build is probably the best. Although the 2080Ti is still viable if you drop the aftermarket cooler, the HDD and get a cheaper monitor.
 
Jul 5, 2019
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Like any typical PM as a project nears the delivery date, time to change the requirements.

The mid-tower case size is to large. I would like a smaller case. Toms Hardware likes the NZXT Case H400i. I don't care about RGB lighting; in fact the less RGB the better. I would like a quiet case. Is this the best solution?

Given the new case size I will need a micro-ATX motherboard.

Thanks again for all your help!
 
Jul 5, 2019
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That is a very good case but for low budget builds. When you are spending that high there re better and more suitable options to choose from high up the line.
I want little to no RGB; I want a micro ATX case; and quiet. It needs to support a DVD/CD writer. I would like it to be simple to work with. I don't mind spending several hundred dollars on a quality case. What cases would you recommend?
 
Jul 5, 2019
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I am liking the NZXT Case H400i. It looks easy to work with and I don't need to hook up all the RGB if I don't want to. I'll keep looking at it. The build is looking like ConanLock + the NZXT case.

Will the memory specified in this build fit underneath the air cooler? Or is the heat shield on the memory to high?
 
Jul 5, 2019
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What do you think of the Mugen 5 Rev. B CPU Cooler PWM Fan? I read the NZXT Case H400i has 164 mm clearance for a cooler and the Noctua - NH-D15 82.5 CFM CPU Cooler requires 165 mm with the fan. Plus there looks to be plenty of room for memory.
 
Jul 5, 2019
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OK. I've been doing some more researching. I've updated the build:

https://pcpartpicker.com/list/2KJvTB


The PC Part Picker website didn't have the NZXT H400i case which goes for $200. I'll be researching the video board tomorrow but I suspect the MSI - GeoForce RTX 2080 8 GB DUKE will work for me. Total about $3300 (with monitor).
 
Jul 5, 2019
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Well so much for the Gigabyte - Z390 M GAMING Micro ATX LGA1151 Motherboard. It's not been reviewed very well on the reviews I could find. And one comment was the board didn't support booting off a USB device (really?). Anyway still need a decent motherboard.
 
The video card market has gotten a lot more confusing since the last time I built a system. NVIDIA releases a version, 3rd party manufacturers build their cards, lots of versions of the same version is where it gets confusing.

Anyway I found a EVGA GeForce RTX 2070 FTW3 ULTRA GAMING for $499 ($120 off) on EVGA's website. This seems like a good deal?

https://www.evga.com/products/product.aspx?pn=08G-P4-2277-KR
Not really since $499 is the 2070's MSRP. The 2070 Supers are being released with the same $499 MSRP as the 2070's but with performance closer to the 2080.
 
Jul 5, 2019
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Not really since $499 is the 2070's MSRP. The 2070 Supers are being released with the same $499 MSRP as the 2070's but with performance closer to the 2080.
Thanks, I didn't know anything about the Supers. I don't follow the HW market very closely and it can get confusing.

For example on EVGA's page listing their new lineup of 2070 Super cards they have one card EVGA GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER XC GAMING for $529 and EVGA GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER XC ULTRA GAMING for $539. As best I can tell the only difference is the more expensive card size requires 2.75 slots whereas the cheaper card size uses 2 slots, otherwise their specs are identical. EVGA isn't the only one doing this either.

https://www.evga.com/products/Compare.aspx

I can understand a company having multiple cards in their lineup but cards so close in specs & price just introduce noise and confusion for us neophytes trying to decide on a card to purchase.

For me I think the best choice in EVGA's lineup is EVGA GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER XC GAMING 08G-P4-3172-KR for $529. It's size requires 2 slots rather than 3 (2.75) and is on the upper end of the performance scale for this line.

Now I'll need to find a new power supply as the one in the build is 650W and I would like a little headroom.
 
Thanks, I didn't know anything about the Supers. I don't follow the HW market very closely and it can get confusing.

For example on EVGA's page listing their new lineup of 2070 Super cards they have one card EVGA GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER XC GAMING for $529 and EVGA GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER XC ULTRA GAMING for $539. As best I can tell the only difference is the more expensive card size requires 2.75 slots whereas the cheaper card size uses 2 slots, otherwise their specs are identical. EVGA isn't the only one doing this either.

https://www.evga.com/products/Compare.aspx

I can understand a company having multiple cards in their lineup but cards so close in specs & price just introduce noise and confusion for us neophytes trying to decide on a card to purchase.

For me I think the best choice in EVGA's lineup is EVGA GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER XC GAMING 08G-P4-3172-KR for $529. It's size requires 2 slots rather than 3 (2.75) and is on the upper end of the performance scale for this line.

Now I'll need to find a new power supply as the one in the build is 650W and I would like a little headroom.
Just go with the 750W Focus Platinum instead.
 

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