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New System build! need suggestions and advice!

rg27021

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#1
Hey everyone. Im a first time builder and have set a goal to build a new pc for myself. I would love to have some personal suggestions or advice from anyone who is knowledgeable and is willing to help. I came here because i hear there are pro's here, so that's a huge plus for me! as long as i can get worthwhile suggestions, i can proceed with confidence! thanks everyone.

Approximate Purchase Date: within the next two months

Budget Range: 4500 Before Rebates

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Audio engineering and creation, entertainment (movies, dvds, etc.) and word processing (MS office)

Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com, tigerdirect.com, or another reputable site.

Country of Origin: USA

Parts Preferences: Intel CPU and Asus Mobo.

Overclocking: Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: Yes

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

Additional Comments: May only purchase one GPU initially, then SLI it later on; set up must be HD 1080p. I will be leaving the Mobo and CPU for last so that I can skip the recall issue. I have already purchased the following components:

NZXT Phantom case:
Computer Parts, PC Components, Laptop Computers, L... [...] -_-Product

LG UH10LS20 OEM
Computer Parts, PC Components, Laptop Computers, L... [...] -_-Product

WD Caviar black 2TB HD
Computer Parts, PC Components, Laptop Computers, L... [...] -_-Product

These are the components I'm looking at:

1. Core i7 2600k

2. ASUS RoG Maximus IV

3. CRUCIAL REALSSD 256GB IHD

4. NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 x2 in SLI

5. CORSAIR DOMINATOR 12GB 1600 mhz(3 x 4GB)

6. Corsair Professional Series Gold 1200-Watt PSU

7. WINDOWS 7 ULTIMATE 64-bit OS

8. HAUPPAUGE WinTV-hvr-2250

9. Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi ELITE PRO

10. Logitech G15 keyboard

Not sure on HD monitors, Studio monitors, and as far as the mouse goes, I'm unsure whether to get the RAZER mamba or the LOGITECH G5. If anyone has any knowledge of audio interfaces for audio recording, I would love to hear from you as well. Thanks!
 
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Video Card(s) Nvidia Geforce 1070 GTX (Internal)/ASUS Geforce GTX 1080 Ti (in AMP)
Storage 500GB RD400 RevoDrive m2/ 1TB Cruical BX200
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Audio Device(s) Sennhesier GSX1000
Power Supply 330W Dell PSU
Mouse Razer Mamba TE Chroma
Keyboard Razer Blackwidow Chroma
#2
Looking over your list of parts there, at my store we have had a ton of issues with any of the RoG boards from ASUS. We have had a ton of returns and if you look at the reviews from both the Rampages and Crosshair on Newegg, some people are on their 3rd and 4th boards in a year.

If you want an ASUS board, I would look at the Sabertooth P67 or if you don't mind switching up brands, get the Marshall from MSI. Both are good quality boards but I would seriously avoid the RoG boards.

If you happen to live near a Microcenter, you can get your Processor for $279.99. If you happen to live in or near Saint Louis, MO I would gladly like to help you out :):):):):)

Crucial SSDs are excellent for an OS drive. They have some of the best if not the best read speeds on SSDs right now, unless you count the Revodrives. You will also need a bracket to mount the 2.5" SSD into your case unless it already comes with the hardware to do so.

The only other PSU I would recommend would be a PC Power & Cooling 1200W.

If you are looking at a G5 mouse, I would give the G500 a really good look. It is pretty much an updated G5 with more buttons and I think it feels a bit nicer.

For the sound card, Creative is notorious for having terrible driver support. I would look at the ASUS Xense or the ASUS Essence sound cards. Their drivers are really soild and I love my Xense. The Sennheiser PC350 headset is a nice thing to get with the Xense :D.

The rest really looks soild.

I would look at the MSI Twin Frozer 580GTXs or the Palit 580GTXs. The cooling on those cards is really good and seems to be better than the reference design.
 
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#3
Hey rg27021, welcome to TPU.

Given your budget and audio work, I'd recommend RAID. For audio only, you don't need a RAID scratch disk, though that might come in handy if you get into video work as well. On that note, do you have any desire/need to record games with something like Fraps? That would make me suggest a RAID 0 scratch disk as well.

Back to audio, you don't want to lose your work, so a nice RAID 5 array of a few smaller drives might be of benefit. Is that something you'd consider?

A 1000w PSU would be more than sufficient for this rig. The Silverstone ST1000-G would do nicely, and if you did want to stick to 1200W, there's the 1200W version as well.

80Plus ratings:
Strider ST1000-G
Strider ST1200-G

Will you be running Folding@home (you should :D)? That will impact which PSU would be a more efficient choice for your build.
 

Fourstaff

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#4
256GB SSD is overkill imo. Get a 64GB, Raid 2 1Tb Blacks for speed, and get a 2TB one for storage. I am pretty sure 1155 is dual-channel, so getting a trichannel kit is not going to help you much. 2x4Gb and upgrading in the future for another 2 sticks is what I have in mind right now. You will also want an aftermarket cooler, there are plenty of good ones out there. Probably something along the lines of Noctua C14 or Thermaltake Frio. Instead of getting a G15, you might want to take a look at mechanical keyboards, they seem to be better. As for mouse, I would stay away from Razer as much as possible, and take a look at others instead like Steelseries and Saitek.

As for Audio card, I am not too sure about Creative's offering, I have heard good things from other manufacturers too, eg Asus's Xonar range. Take a look at that (if you haven't)?
 

rg27021

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#5
Looking over your list of parts there, at my store we have had a ton of issues with any of the RoG boards from ASUS. We have had a ton of returns and if you look at the reviews from both the Rampages and Crosshair on Newegg, some people are on their 3rd and 4th boards in a year.

If you want an ASUS board, I would look at the Sabertooth P67 or if you don't mind switching up brands, get the Marshall from MSI. Both are good quality boards but I would seriously avoid the RoG boards.

If you happen to live near a Microcenter, you can get your Processor for $279.99. If you happen to live in or near Saint Louis, MO I would gladly like to help you out :):):):):)

Crucial SSDs are excellent for an OS drive. They have some of the best if not the best read speeds on SSDs right now, unless you count the Revodrives. You will also need a bracket to mount the 2.5" SSD into your case unless it already comes with the hardware to do so.

The only other PSU I would recommend would be a PC Power & Cooling 1200W.

If you are looking at a G5 mouse, I would give the G500 a really good look. It is pretty much an updated G5 with more buttons and I think it feels a bit nicer.

For the sound card, Creative is notorious for having terrible driver support. I would look at the ASUS Xense or the ASUS Essence sound cards. Their drivers are really soild and I love my Xense. The Sennheiser PC350 headset is a nice thing to get with the Xense :D.

The rest really looks soild.

I would look at the MSI Twin Frozer 580GTXs or the Palit 580GTXs. The cooling on those cards is really good and seems to be better than the reference design.
I'll do some more research on the asus boards. as far as creative, i do need a card that can record audio at higher than 92hz, which is what most other sound cards seem to record at. thats why i chose that card in particular. I will be also looking at everyone's suggestions as well. thanks everyone. oh btw i'm in CA so i dont think i can get that help :(
 

rg27021

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#6
Hey rg27021, welcome to TPU.

Given your budget and audio work, I'd recommend RAID. For audio only, you don't need a RAID scratch disk, though that might come in handy if you get into video work as well. On that note, do you have any desire/need to record games with something like Fraps? That would make me suggest a RAID 0 scratch disk as well.

Back to audio, you don't want to lose your work, so a nice RAID 5 array of a few smaller drives might be of benefit. Is that something you'd consider?

A 1000w PSU would be more than sufficient for this rig. The Silverstone ST1000-G would do nicely, and if you did want to stick to 1200W, there's the 1200W version as well.

80Plus ratings:
Strider ST1000-G
Strider ST1200-G

Will you be running Folding@home (you should :D)? That will impact which PSU would be a more efficient choice for your build.
I'm thinking of going for 1200w just as insurance in case i decide to upgrade later on. Im not big on raid, so i dont think i'll be using it. I'm not really interested in video work, just mainly audio. I play in a band, and i would like a way to record some tracks or riffs on my pc. problem is, i dont know whether to go with a sound card or a usb interface, and since i will be playing lots of games, i figured to go with a sound card. btw, i dont know what folding@home is tbh...
 
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#7
Go for low-latency RAM, rather than high-speed (unless you can combine the 2 of course).
As for the X-Fi Elite Pro: I have it and am still loving it (the external I/O is also handy).
There's zero issues with drivers, supported Windows 7 64-bit from beta onwards, so drivers are no problem either.
However, purer audio fidelity can be had from Asus Xonar (in my opinion), but the X-Fi kills the Xonar in games. The X-Fi is also far more flexible in general use.
M-Audio has far superior soundcards though (as do some other manufacturers), but most throw a bit of a wobbly when it comes to games.. It's a trade-off I guess.
Also.. don't forget the X-Fi is a PCI (not PCI-x) card, so make sure you have room on whatever mobo you choose (lowest PCI on the mobo is the best place for it - least chance of getting RFI humming away in your recordings).
:)
 

rg27021

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#8
256GB SSD is overkill imo. Get a 64GB, Raid 2 1Tb Blacks for speed, and get a 2TB one for storage. I am pretty sure 1155 is dual-channel, so getting a trichannel kit is not going to help you much. 2x4Gb and upgrading in the future for another 2 sticks is what I have in mind right now. You will also want an aftermarket cooler, there are plenty of good ones out there. Probably something along the lines of Noctua C14 or Thermaltake Frio. Instead of getting a G15, you might want to take a look at mechanical keyboards, they seem to be better. As for mouse, I would stay away from Razer as much as possible, and take a look at others instead like Steelseries and Saitek.

As for Audio card, I am not too sure about Creative's offering, I have heard good things from other manufacturers too, eg Asus's Xonar range. Take a look at that (if you haven't)?
tbh id rather not set up raid. will set up raid for another build, but not this one. and i chose 256gb ssd as i will be putting my windows install there, along with other programs and games. fast bootup ftw.

Go for low-latency RAM, rather than high-speed (unless you can combine the 2 of course).
As for the X-Fi Elite Pro: I have it and am still loving it (the external I/O is also handy).
There's zero issues with drivers, supported Windows 7 64-bit from beta onwards, so drivers are no problem either.
However, purer audio fidelity can be had from Asus Xonar (in my opinion), but the X-Fi kills the Xonar in games. The X-Fi is also far more flexible in general use.
M-Audio has far superior soundcards though (as do some other manufacturers), but most throw a bit of a wobbly when it comes to games.. It's a trade-off I guess.
Also.. don't forget the X-Fi is a PCI (not PCI-x) card, so make sure you have room on whatever mobo you choose (lowest PCI on the mobo is the best place for it - least chance of getting RFI humming away in your recordings).
:)
awesome. thats what i wanted to hear lol. i really want a card that will give me excellent recording performance without sacrificing gaming audio. thats why i chose the elite pro. :D
 
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#9
I'm thinking of going for 1200w just as insurance in case i decide to upgrade later on. Im not big on raid, so i dont think i'll be using it. I'm not really interested in video work, just mainly audio. I play in a band, and i would like a way to record some tracks or riffs on my pc. problem is, i dont know whether to go with a sound card or a usb interface, and since i will be playing lots of games, i figured to go with a sound card. btw, i dont know what folding@home is tbh...
If you're serious about audio recording, a true interface would be wise. I use an Alesis MultiMix 16 USB 2.0 because it allows for true multi-tracking and the SQ is fantastic for the price for 16 channels. The effects are lame; I never use them anyway. If you so desire, you can even use something like that as your "sound card" as long as you are careful (it can put out an overwhelmingly powerful, though clean, signal).

About RAID—I urge you to reconsider. RAID can be intimidating, but when you get right down to setting it up (especially in this Windows 7 era), it's downright simple. With RAID 5, you don't sacrifice too much disk space (your capacity will be that of all drives in the array minus one), read performance is almost as good as RAID 0, random writes suffer but this can be mitigated with write-back cache and mainly pertains to things like database work, and most importantly of all, if one of your drives fail, you don't lose all that audio you spent hundreds or thousands of hours recording and editing—without having to constantly back up what you don't want to lose manually, every time you do something new.
 

Undead46

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#10
Sabertooth sucks, get the ASUS P8P67 WS Revolution if you want a rocking NF200 chipset board.

And Caviar Black sucks, Samsung Spinpoint F3's compete with them at a fraction of the cost.

Why the heck would you get 12GB of RAM? And i7-2600K is Dual Channel, not Triple, so that wouldn't even work for you.
Get 4x2GB G.SKILL DDR3 1600MHz Cas6 1.5V if you want to rock out a fast 8GB.

I heard a lot of bad things about the G15 keyboard, but also some goods.
If you could do without the LCD Screen, I'd recommend the Microsoft SideWinder X4. (Not the Gaming X6, that one is terrible)

I see no purpose in getting Windows Ultimate as compared to Professional or even Home Premium.. Unless you're going to absolutely need a feature not provided in the others.

Since you seem to have a lot of cash, I'd recommend getting 2x 120GB SSD's and put them in RAID 0 for optimal performance.

Did you just get the most expensive items and put them together...? >.>

Another thing.. If you're going to wait 2 months before you purchase, you should ask a week prior to transaction... A LOT can happen over 2 months...
 
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Fourstaff

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#11
Did you just get the most expensive items and put them together...? >.>
That's what happened. I am willing to bet my TPU membership on that.
 

rg27021

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#12
Sabertooth sucks, get the ASUS P8P67 WS Revolution if you want a rocking NF200 chipset board.

And Caviar Black sucks, Samsung Spinpoint F3's compete with them at a fraction of the cost.

Why the heck would you get 12GB of RAM? And i7-2600K is Dual Channel, not Triple, so that wouldn't even work for you.
Get 4x2GB G.SKILL DDR3 1600MHz Cas6 1.5V if you want to rock out a fast 8GB.

I heard a lot of bad things about the G15 keyboard, but also some goods.
If you could do without the LCD Screen, I'd recommend the Microsoft SideWinder X4. (Not the Gaming X6, that one is terrible)

I see no purpose in getting Windows Ultimate as compared to Professional or even Home Premium.. Unless you're going to absolutely need a feature not provided in the others.

Since you seem to have a lot of cash, I'd recommend getting 2x 120GB SSD's and put them in RAID 0 for optimal performance.

Did you just get the most expensive items and put them together...? >.>

Another thing.. If you're going to wait 2 months before you purchase, you should ask a week prior to transaction... A LOT can happen over 2 months...
I chose the WD because I personally know ppl who have had good experiences with them. Since i'm not really interested in using RAID, i only need one drive for storage (my ssd would be for installation and faster running programs). I did notice the 12gb was triple channel, so I'm currently looking for low latency double channel RAM. I did my research after having posted. fml. I'm not planning on using RAID for this build, so that's out. thats why i got the 256gb ssd. And, tbh i had set up a list of components based on the x58 chipset, so when i made the jump to SB i forgot to update some components. fail #2. I really wanted suggestions for this build, thats why i posted this so early. since this is my first build, i wanted to go into it with confidence.

That's what happened. I am willing to bet my TPU membership on that.
Not necessarily. I just want a great performing PC, but im not too familiar with everything thats out there. hence why posted here. I had an idea for parts, and thats why im here collecting opinions and suggestions. its helping out indeed.:D

If you're serious about audio recording, a true interface would be wise. I use an Alesis MultiMix 16 USB 2.0 because it allows for true multi-tracking and the SQ is fantastic for the price for 16 channels. The effects are lame; I never use them anyway. If you so desire, you can even use something like that as your "sound card" as long as you are careful (it can put out an overwhelmingly powerful, though clean, signal).

About RAID—I urge you to reconsider. RAID can be intimidating, but when you get right down to setting it up (especially in this Windows 7 era), it's downright simple. With RAID 5, you don't sacrifice too much disk space (your capacity will be that of all drives in the array minus one), read performance is almost as good as RAID 0, random writes suffer but this can be mitigated with write-back cache and mainly pertains to things like database work, and most importantly of all, if one of your drives fail, you don't lose all that audio you spent hundreds or thousands of hours recording and editing—without having to constantly back up what you don't want to lose manually, every time you do something new.
I'd rather not attempt RAID, tbh. i considered it before even compiling a list of parts...i just rather not do it now. as far as an interface, Im completely in the dark regarding a sound card vs. an interface. if an interface would be the better way to go, i'd definitely go down that route. would you need a sound card to use an interface? im a complete noob in this particular field :(
 

Fourstaff

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#13
Its not always about getting the best component out there, you know. Its more about getting the maximum bang for your buck.

And based on that, you can afford to cheap out a bit and still get a very competent system.
 

rg27021

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#14
Its not always about getting the best component out there, you know. Its more about getting the maximum bang for your buck.

And based on that, you can afford to cheap out a bit and still get a very competent system.
Since i already have the WD, what else would you recommend? I know i need to change up RAM, and as far as PSU, i'd need at least 1000w, what with OC'ing and gtx580 x2 in sli....any recommendations on dual channel RAM for my application?
 

cever89

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#15
256GB SSD is overkill imo. Get a 64GB, Raid 2 1Tb Blacks for speed, and get a 2TB one for storage. I am pretty sure 1155 is dual-channel, so getting a trichannel kit is not going to help you much. 2x4Gb and upgrading in the future for another 2 sticks is what I have in mind right now. You will also want an aftermarket cooler, there are plenty of good ones out there. Probably something along the lines of Noctua C14 or Thermaltake Frio. Instead of getting a G15, you might want to take a look at mechanical keyboards, they seem to be better. As for mouse, I would stay away from Razer as much as possible, and take a look at others instead like Steelseries and Saitek.

As for Audio card, I am not too sure about Creative's offering, I have heard good things from other manufacturers too, eg Asus's Xonar range. Take a look at that (if you haven't)?
Agreed on the 256GB SSD being overkill. You'd probably just want to use it as your OS disk anyhow. I'm looking at a 128GB because my iPod Touch 4th gen syncs to the C: drive and damn iTunes doesn't let you change the location. Boo. :p

Don't know about mechanical keyboards. I actually prefer the flatter "laptop style" keys like those on the Logitech Illuminated Keyboard. Really comfortable for typing, but not that great for gaming due to apparent ghosting issues.
 
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#16
For cards at that res I'd go with a pair of 6950 1gb or gtx 560 ti's. No need for more than 1gb of ram. However, if I had 4500 to spend on a pc I'd definitely go with 3 23 inch 1080ps in surround or eyefinity. And in that case, the 6950 2gb in crossfire is a great pair for the money.
 

rg27021

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#17
Agreed on the 256GB SSD being overkill. You'd probably just want to use it as your OS disk anyhow. I'm looking at a 128GB because my iPod Touch 4th gen syncs to the C: drive and damn iTunes doesn't let you change the location. Boo. :p

Don't know about mechanical keyboards. I actually prefer the flatter "laptop style" keys like those on the Logitech Illuminated Keyboard. Really comfortable for typing, but not that great for gaming due to apparent ghosting issues.
Yep, I've decided to bump it down to 128GB. that shgould be more than enough to house the OS, games, and any updates. Thanks!

For cards at that res I'd go with a pair of 6950 1gb or gtx 560 ti's. No need for more than 1gb of ram. However, if I had 4500 to spend on a pc I'd definitely go with 3 23 inch 1080ps in surround or eyefinity. And in that case, the 6950 2gb in crossfire is a great pair for the money.
Also, I decided to just go with one GTX 580 for now. I'll wait until the 580 gets a price drop to run SLI. 1 gtx 580 will suffice for 1080p. Thanks guys youve been very helpful.
Theres an update, too. I got 2 1TB samsung f3 spinpoints to run in RAID, and I'll use the 2tb for backup. also got a cooler master hyper 212+ CPU cooler as well. for RAM, i purchased 8GB (2 x 4gb) of G. Skill ripjaws x at 8-8-8-24. its looking good, so far!