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Need help for my first build

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sarpshark6

New Member
Joined
May 20, 2017
Hey guys and girls,

I am putting together my first build and would love advice.

What I want:
I am trying to build a desktop that is completely tricked out that will last a long time.
Desired Features:
Top performance. I want to be able to be able to play my games, and run all my program as seamlessly as possible.
Gaming with the best resolution possible
Dual OS (Linux and Windows). Do I/should I get two SSD's for this. I am a software developer and plan on using this desktop for personal projects.
3D modeling. I will be running programs like Maya (for 3D animations) and Unity (for game development). I currently run some of these programs on my MacBook and it will frequently crash and overheat my laptop. I want to be able to run these programs without a hitch.
4K Resolution for streaming and downloaded content
A wide monitor (I am heavily leaning towards 34'' but I am open to suggestions about dual monitors). I care a lot about great resolution so I am willing to spend more on my monitor, but I'm not sure where I will get the most bang for my buck.
I want it to look aesthetically pleasing. I like the look of liquid coolers, which is why I provided it as part of my build.

Budget: ~3k but I am hoping to bring it below that budget. I don't want to be wasting money, and I am not sure where I am spending too much money. Below is my build, please criticize it as much as you want. I've already worked through a few different drafts and people on reddit have helped me develop my current build. I don't think there are any compatibility issues, but I would like to know if putting together a computer with these parts will provide me with the result I want. Thanks to every who will take a look at this and please let me know if my budget is realistic/too much/too little for all the features I want.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: Intel - Core i7-7700K 4.2GHz Quad-Core Processor ($329.89 @ OutletPC)
CPU Cooler: be quiet! - Dark Rock 3 67.8 CFM Fluid Dynamic Bearing CPU Cooler ($65.49 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: MSI - Z270-A PRO ATX LGA1151 Motherboard ($109.49 @ SuperBiiz)
Memory: Corsair - Vengeance LPX 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4-3000 Memory ($126.59 @ OutletPC)
Storage: Samsung - 960 EVO 1TB M.2-2280 Solid State Drive ($449.99 @ B&H)
Video Card: EVGA - GeForce GTX 1080 8GB FTW Gaming ACX 3.0 Video Card ($528.11 @ Amazon)
Case: NZXT - S340 Elite (White) ATX Mid Tower Case ($99.99 @ B&H)
Power Supply: EVGA - 650W 80+ Gold Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply ($64.89 @ OutletPC)
Operating System: Microsoft - Windows 10 Pro Full 32/64-bit ($199.99 @ B&H)
Monitor: Acer - Predator X34 34.0" 3440x1440 100Hz Monitor ($1195.03 @ Amazon)
Total: $3169.46
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2017-05-20 19:58 EDT-0400
 

trents

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
Good choices with three question marks:

1. Will the CPU cooler you chose clear the RAM heat spreaders? You might want to look at RAM with low profile heats readers.

2. Most importantly, Is a GTX 1080 FTW enough video card to handle the monitor you chose in gaming situations? Do you need to look at the GTX 1080Ti ?

3. Would it be a better use of money to go with a smaller SSD and store data on a spinner hard drive?
 

Suppressor1137

Member
Joined
May 4, 2011
On the video card:

I'd bump up the video card to a 1080ti, or wait about two weeks for vega to see how it performs. The 1080 will struggle with 4k on AAA titles. It usually needs 2 in sli to get solid fps.

You mentioned you liked the asthetics of Water cooling, so take a look at https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814487346&ignorebbr=1

If that doesn't suit your fancy, maybe nab a ICX system and eventually go full custom loop water cooling: https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814487338&ignorebbr=1, https://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod...br=1&cm_re=gtx_1080_ti-_-14-487-336-_-Product

The 1080 would not be able to drive most AAA games to 60 fps on ultra, let alone 100 fps capability of the predator.

On the ram:

I'd bump up to 32 gigs in consideration of unity and Maya, but this is completely optional. 16 gigs will do the job just fine. If you were doing any rendering in the future, such as a blender movie or Whatever, then more ram definitely helps speed up the encoding process.

On the storage:

That 960 pro is kind of overkill, you could drop the price a lot and still get blazing fast performance on an 850 evo M.2. 540/520 is super fast, and while 3200/1900 IS ridiculously fast, for what you are going to be using the pc for, I don't think there will be a perceivable difference in speed. Boot times on the 850 evo is ~ 7 seconds without special "fast boot" settings on mobo. With the 960 pro, it MAYBE shaves it down to ~5 seconds? Possibly more if you use the "fast boot" options.

I also want to inform you the difference between Samsung's "Pro" and "Evo" tag.

The "Evo" tag will last for about 100 Terrabytes of rewrites before the expected failure, While the pro lasts longer, around 175 Terrabytes of writes befoe the expected failure. As such, the "pro" series has a 10 year warranty, While the "evo" series has a 5 yr warranty.

Real world cases are sometimes even better; for a gaming pc, even after 6 years, my old 840 evo only had 26 Terrabytes of write usage(was my OS drive), meaning it is going to last another 6-10 years if the writing limit is the cause of it being killed





You will want two separate drives for a windows/linux dual boot, for a number of reasons.


1: Data integrity; While not working on the pc, you may end up visiting a website that drops a virus on your system/keylogger. Having a NAS for storing all of your work files is the BEST counter for ensuring trade secrets or business vital information, but if you don't have the currency to set one up, having another SSD or HDD that is uninitialized will at least make it a bit harder to get access to.

2: Data Security; Drives DO fail. Having your work files on one drive is asking for permanent data loss. Again, for business purposes, storing on a NAS or cloud data center are the best options you can do.

3: Reset options; Having work and play on the same drive will make it very difficult to allow regular re-formats(or reinstall) of the OS to fix "apparent slowdowns" that come with OS clutter and age. If you were very familiar with Windows, you could perform registry maintenance and file deletion yourself; but nothing beats the speed of "Hey, delete all this. Now re-install windows/linux!"

4: Organization; Again, Work & play on the same drive will make the drive fill up faster(and wear out faster in the case of SSD's). This can make it very annoying to find your work files among your gaming/personal use files, if not just more time consuming. In the business world, time is money; and that extra minute to navigate to your work files adds up over the years.


Lastly, I would get a 3-8 tb HDD on the side to run daily/weekly backups of your system in case of a sudden loss of a drive.

I do recommend looking into building a cheap NAS system for your work needs if budget is not an issue, which if it is, the backups on the HDD mentioned above will do a similar job.

On the PSU:

I'd swap the psu with this one: https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA2F85314153&cm_re=evga_g3-_-17-438-094-_-Product ; It's hands down the best 650 watt sub plat/titanium rating.(Which are only useful for 24/7 compute unit mining like [email protected]).

Finally, I'd recommend grabbing 2 1080P(Or 2k/4k if budget isnt a concern; just know that multiple 4k monitors puts a big strain on the gpu) monitors for Software Development purposes. I have had the pleasure of using 3 monitors, and will NEVER go back to just 1 for development purposes.

PS: I missed the "personal projects" bit on your post. The NAS information is as such, not really that important, BUT, It is good to know if you ever wanted to expand your scope of projects.

And this video has pretty good info for you, I learned something from it: https://youtu.be/jkVWn4sKvB8?t=235 The part that was new to me was at 6:54

feel free to watch from beginning if you are interested.

I hope this information is helpful at the very least.
 
Last edited:
OP
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sarpshark6

New Member
Joined
May 20, 2017
Thanks so much for all this information. It has been incredibly helpful. I feel as though I am in the home stretch and might have my final build and would like to get a final opinion. I read everything and decided to change a few things around based on your suggestions (while keeping a few other things the same). Based on the fact that I trust my ability to stay organized I think I'm going to keep a single hard drive (especially since I don't imagine I will have too many personal projects). Would you sign off on this build?

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: Intel - Core i7-7700K 4.2GHz Quad-Core Processor ($329.89 @ OutletPC)
CPU Cooler: be quiet! - Dark Rock 3 67.8 CFM Fluid Dynamic Bearing CPU Cooler ($65.49 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: MSI - Z270-A PRO ATX LGA1151 Motherboard ($109.49 @ SuperBiiz)
Memory: Corsair - Vengeance LPX 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4-3000 Memory ($126.59 @ OutletPC)
Storage: Samsung - 960 EVO 1TB M.2-2280 Solid State Drive ($449.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: EVGA - GeForce GTX 1080 Ti 11GB Founder Edition Video Card ($697.89 @ SuperBiiz)
Case: NZXT - S340 Elite (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: EVGA - SuperNOVA G3 650W 80+ Gold Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply ($77.88 @ OutletPC)
Operating System: Microsoft - Windows 10 Pro Full 32/64-bit ($199.99 @ B&H)
Monitor: Acer - Predator X34 34.0" 3440x1440 100Hz Monitor ($1194.97 @ Amazon)
Total: $3352.17
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2017-05-21 13:36 EDT-0400

Much Appreciated
 

trents

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
Looks good to me. Looks like your one change was the video card unless I missed something.
 

Suppressor1137

Member
Joined
May 4, 2011
Looks good to me. Looks like your one change was the video card unless I missed something.

Video card, PSU, and I think thats it..

to you sarp; I still recommend getting a large 3-8 tb HDD that you use as a backup drive. Unless all data on your machine is stored in the cloud somewhere.

The FE is not as good as the other 1080 ti's(in terms of noise production vs cooling capabilty) if you plan to keep the stock cooler. If you are planning to water cool, its a great choice. The blower cooler is very noisy.
 

caddi daddi

Godzilla to ant hills
Joined
Jan 10, 2012
you're going to want 32 gigs of ram with maya and unity.
I run arnold, maya, nuke, 16 gigs just isn't enough.
install the operating systems on their own drives.
install win10 on a drive then remove it.
install a second drive, then install autodesk.
I have quit multi booting the rig, I swap out drives for autodesk, rhel and win10, it just prevents headaches.
 

trents

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
you're going to want 32 gigs of ram with maya and unity.
I run arnold, maya, nuke, 16 gigs just isn't enough.
install the operating systems on their own drives.
install win10 on a drive then remove it.
install a second drive, then install autodesk.
I have quit multi booting the rig, I swap out drives for autodesk, rhel and win10, it just prevents headaches.

Better heed this. A lot of us have learned from hard experience this is the way it is. You can put both system drives back in and reconnect them after the OSes are installed. Then choose from bios which one to boot from.