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Thread: Somebody stop me... (Gaming PC Build Thread)

  1. #1
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    Somebody stop me... (Gaming PC Build Thread)

    All it takes is a friend rounding up components for a gaming PC... it's been downhill from there ever since; I've officially been sucked into the vortex of PC gaming hardware.

    Currently, this is my high-end (yet somewhat affordable) dream build. Some components may or may not change, but ultimately I'm pretty set on this list.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

    CPU: Intel Core i7-4790K 4.0GHz Quad-Core Processor ($338.99 @ Amazon)
    CPU Cooler: Corsair H100i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler ($89.99 @ Amazon)
    Motherboard: Asus SABERTOOTH Z97 MARK S ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($269.00 @ Amazon)
    Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($116.23 @ Amazon)
    Storage: Samsung 850 EVO-Series 250GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($94.99 @ Amazon)
    Storage: Western Digital BLACK SERIES 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.99 @ Amazon)
    Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 980 4GB FTW ACX 2.0 Video Card ($575.91 @ Newegg)
    Case: Corsair 750D ATX Full Tower Case ($119.99 @ Newegg)
    Power Supply: EVGA 750W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($115.79 @ Amazon)
    Optical Drive: Samsung SH-224DB/RSBS DVD/CD Writer ($17.79 @ OutletPC)
    Case Fan: Corsair Air Series SP120 High Performance Edition (2-Pack) 62.7 CFM 120mm Fans ($27.99 @ Amazon)
    Total: $1836.66
    Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
    Generated by PCPartPicker 2015-04-16 22:17 EDT-0400

    Thoughts? - I'll still need to pick up an OS at some point. I don't know when I'll have the balls to pull the trigger. My justifications are that it's a fun project and I have computer needs (been making my current laptop last 4.5 years so far).

    This build is slightly future-proofed by being compatible with the next line of 5th gen core processors and having room for another 980 eventually. So it has that going for it.

    Also, feel free to use this thread as further building discussion, not just for me. Now that I'm entrenched in gaming hardware, it's really interesting to see what's out there and what's coming down the line.

  2. #2
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    Initial thoughts are:

    i7 is, perhaps, overkill. It depends how 'future proof' you want it to be. Remember there's always a new CPU standard coming. You could go X99 now for example, although much more expensive. I will agree though that games are now starting to take advantage of an I7 and the multiple cores.

    You could conceivably save some money on the Motherboard. Sure it's a great board but look carefully at the features and think what you'll use.

    Ditch the Black Mechanical hard disk. Anything worth running quickly is worth putting on your SSD. Everything else will happily sit on a 'normal' hard disk. By all means look at a bigger SSD. I have a 250GB one and by the time I had Battlefield 4 and Titanfall as well as Windows I didn't have enough space on it for GTA5.

    If you're going to SLI then I'd be looking at an 850w PSU, just in case. Either go bigger on the watts or smaller. You're kind of in no mans land with 750W.

    Optical drive? How fast is your internet? Will you really be purchasing anything on DVD in the future? Even GTA5 on PC needed a 5GB patch on release and I haven't bought a Disc copy of a game since 2013.

    You've forgotten (or neglected to mention you already have) Keyboard, Mouse and Monitor?

  3. #3
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    Peripherals: Ah, right, I have a G500S and a monitor that will suffice for now.
    I'll likely pick up a mechanical keyboard... I saw a review for the Razr Chroma and I'm in looove, but I'm not sure I want to spend that much.

    CPU/Mobo: I'm pretty set on the 4790k. Also, there are Z97 mobos out there that are half the price, but looking at the reviews, it seems like such a crap-shoot. I feel like all these mobo manufacturers have really iffy QC. I'll need to really dig in more and compare features. But that Mark S is sturdy, has lots of inputs, room for fans, good air flow, and goddamn it looks pretty. Kind of sparks my idea for a black/white theme... that being the only white component

    HDD: So you'd recommend bumping to the 500 gig EVO and a WD Blue or equivalent?
    Not going to lie, I saw the Seagate issues YW posted in that other thread and got scared so I jumped on a solid product line from a different manufacturer I knew well.
    Can I ask how big is your Windows install? Also, how feasible is it to swap games between harddrives? Like if you stopped playing BF3, could you just switch it to the standard drive?

    PSU: I did have an 850 W PSU spec'd, but a buddy told me that might be unnecessary. I'll have to do some more research, but yeah, an 850 seems like the logical choice to me as well.

    Optical Drive: This was another thing I was unsure with. Honestly, installing Windows was my key contributing factor for selecting this. Now that I said that out loud, here's a dumb question: What are my other options for installing the OS without a disk?

  4. #4
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    I would echo Alan's sentiment on the motherboard - three bills for a board is nutso unless you're just oozing money. My approach would probably be to cut that board in half, dump the WD 1tb, dump the 250gb EVO, and put all that into a $300 980gb M500. I agree on the 750w PSU - but there really isn't much on the table here - dropping to a lower wattage is only going to save you $20-$40. Although, like Alan said, might as well save the money and go with a ~500w or spend an extra $20-$40 and get to an 850w. Even though you'll probably never use it, I would keep the optical drive. $20 to just not have to worry about the oddball thing coming on disk is worth it. Windows is only available on optical media, so while you can install it from a flash drive (recommend - it's fast!) you need a computer with an optical drive to get it on the flash drive in the first place.

    If you have one nearby, you can get that CPU at Microcenter for $280.

  5. #5
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    It's very simple. Wait for Skylake to come out later this year. Broadwell is good but it's already old tech. Skylake will at least give you another bump in performance, including in terms of disk IO, and possibly better USB 3.1 support too.

    That said, if you must buy now, definitely ditch the mechanical HDD unless you need it for backing up stuff (I like to keep a Google Drive backup of important drivers etc. which is synced) and/or storing large amounts of photo/video. My desktop at home has 3 WD Blacks but that's mainly because of the cloud syncing, photography/MP3s/FLAC/videos/photog scratch disks (notpr0nz).

    Also, if I were building now I'd get a 1TB SSD just like TSG recommended. 850 EVO looks good, but I'd probably get a Crucial BX100 as that's more than fast enough, and you can always get another 1TB whatever-brand later for even cheaper if you really need it. Plus I have read some issues of Samsung SSDs shitting the bed whereas the Crucials are (anecdotally and from my experience) more solid.

    If you are going to have a pure Steam/Origin/game drive, you should get a minimum of 512GB. For example, my 480GB SSD (relatively old Crucial M500 with only 446GB available) on my work computer only has around 64GB left on it. That's admittedly with cloud synced media, but there are no Origin games on it and no heavy-hitter Steam games on it (I think the heaviest are probably Homeworld Remastered/Crusader Kings II and the whole Steam directory already takes up 63GB). All the work gear and files (including full Outlook downloads of 2 email accounts) take up maybe 100GB max. Windows install is 23.5GB. Cloud storage syncing is around 120GB. If it's going to be your only drive, and you want more than 4 triple-A titles on your disk at any one time, then 1TB is ideal.

    I would definitely keep an optical drive, because why not. BD-ROM too for the extra $$.

    If you do get a hard drive, I'd get a 2TB or even a 4TB WD Black. The price difference isn't substantial over a 1TB, and why not get more space if you can. Just avoid the 3TB HDDs.

    I echo what the others have said about motherboards. Unless you really need the extra features, save some money on that and put it towards a bigger HDD and/or SSD (as set out above).

  6. #6
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    On the subject of big mechanical storage, go for broke.

    http://www.microcenter.com/product/4...e_PH3500U-1I72

  7. #7
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    And again, really, a US$260 motherboard? Z97-E is US$89.99 after MIR: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...c-tomshardware

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    I had myself convinced the price = lasting quality to choose that mobo. But its good to keep that in check. I've never even seen that Z97-E board. Good deal. I may make an upper mid-tier PC using Devil's Canyon i5 and a 970. I can splurge on case, PSU, and HDD and probably the cooler for a transplant build eventually. It will still be good for everything else I need to do and run games at 1080p.

    tsg, there is a Microcenter in Philly, which is roughly 1.5 hours away. I may have to make an excuse to get down there. I didn't realize one was so close.

  9. #9
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    Or you could save the 1.5 hours drive and get one for USD289.99 off the Egg: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/...eals,4106.html (which is where I got that Z97 board from).

    But seriously, just wait for Skylake.

  10. #10
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    I will know at 1:30 PM, when the Battlefront trailer comes out, how much I want to invest. Maybe at that point this thread will become very important to me.
    Get that weak shit off my track

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