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New Builder Needs Help - Specific Build Questions

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eMpTy43

Registered
Joined
Oct 17, 2010
Location
Arizona, Soon to be Colorado
First let me give you a little about my background. I’ve build on PC back in the days of Win 3.1, needless to say my knowledge of building is outdated but I have been refreshing that knowledge. For the past 15 years I’ve been getting by with sub-par performance from custom Dell builds, but it’s time to get back to real performance.

I’ve put together a dream machine that I am intending to build within the next 3-6 months and need advice. The system is comprised of the best of the best components available with liquid cooling. Let me just make something clear; It’s not that I NEED this kind of performance, it’s that I WANT it and don’t want to be forced into upgrading on a per-year basis.

MY PREFERENCES:
1.) Performance
2.) Efficiency and need for cooling (Not power efficiency, I know it will suck power)
3.) Overclocking ability rather than the need to upgrade components
4.) Compatibility of performance for gaming
5.) Simplicity of Design
6.) Cost

Please keep MY preferences in mind when answering my questions rather than yours. Although performance is my top priority, if I can achieve the same performance with a lesser cost component then it is a win-win for me.

MY INTENDED BUILD:
- Cooler Master HAF 932 Full Tower Case
- ASUS Rampage III Extreme Mobo (LGA 1366 and Intel X58)
- Intel Core i7-980x Gulftown 3.33Ghz (LGA 1366) Six-Core Processor
- 12GB Corsair Dominator-GT DDR3 1866 RAM
- HIS ATI Radeon 5970 (Hemlock) 2GB (512(256x2)-bit) GDDR5 PCIe 2.1x16
- Crucial 64GB 2.5” SATA III SSD (OS BOOT DRIVE)
- WD VelociRaptor 10k RPM 600GB HDD
- LITE-ON Blu-Ray Burner
- (2) LITE-ON DVD/CD Burners
- Corsair HX 1000w, Modular, 2-Rail PSU

COOLING SYSTEM (Koolance):
- RP-1000BK (Reservoir and Pump (PMP400))
- HX-CU720V (High-flow Radiator w/ 2x120mm fans)
- CPU-360 (For i7-980x with possibly OC)
- MB-ASR3E (For mobo cooling because of possible memory OC)
- VID-AR597 (For ATI 5970 GPU)
- HD-60 (For WD VelociRaptor 10k RPM HDD)

Now for my questions, please keep my preferences in mind when answering. Also, if you answer please provide factual reasons why, not just opinions or simply “this one, that one”.

- Is the i7-980x one of the easier processors to OC? If not which are?

- Can the stock speed (3.33Ghz) of the i7-980x be achieved with a cheaper processor?
- Can the OC’d speeds of the i7-980x be achieved with a cheaper processor?

- The RAM is DDR3 1866, from what I’ve read the i7 supports up to 1066 and will reduce the memory clock to 1066. Is there a way to get the memory clock to 1866 without OC’ing the processor itself? Such as just OC’ing the RAM and FSB multipliers but not the processor multiplier?

- Am I gaining or sacrificing performance by choosing the ATI 5970? I primarily chose it to keep game compatibility strong and cooling system efficiency high.

- Is running the OS on an SSD going to give me performance gains while gaming or just on boot? If I installed games to the SSD would I benefit while gaming?

- Is the 10k RPM HDD worth the cost?

- Considering I’m not encoding and burning blu-ray all day, is it worth it to liquid cool the HDD?

- Is the power supply enough? And what are the advantages/differences of 2 rail over 1 rail PSUs?

- What components are typical cooled using the liquid cooling system? Considering I’m planning to OC, I’m assuming cooling the CPU and Mobo are a definite but would like more information on the topic.

- Is the radiator I’ve chosen sufficient for cooling the intended components?

EDIT: - OH AND LASTLY... I double and triple checked, but can someone else check again for me that all of these parts are compatible?

Please quote my post and reply to as many questions as you feel up to, I appreciate the help. Please be blunt and honest, I haven't been in the building arena for years and need to know if I should get into this project. I am very technologically savvy and have a ton of experience with computer hardware but not with building a machine from scratch.

Thank you.
 
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Knufire

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 17, 2010
Location
Manassas, VA
The Crucial drives have amazing read speeds, but lack in write. The OCZ vertex two is rated at about 50Mb/s slower read, but 180Mb/s faster write. I'd rather go with the OCZ. If you just have your OS on the SSD, then you'll get faster boot. If you put a game on it, you'll get faster load times, no FPS jump.

My i7-920 is a 3.8 stable 24/7, with load temps under 70C, and I'm on air cooling. On water, you can get any i7 to 4.2 and beyond, the main benefit of the 980x is that it's a hexacore. But yes, it's unlocked so it is fairly easy to OC.

10k RPM HDD, not worth it at all. Just get a Samsung Spinpoint F3 or a WD Cavair Black. Not worth it to cool the HDD either with a normal one.

For the 5970, gaining/sacrificing compared to what? That's the (second) fastest single card around. Of course, the fastest is $1200, and only 1000 exist, so for all practical purposes, it is the fastest card you can buy.

The memory, at least on my 920, a multiplier increase will get it to 1600, so you would have to OC to get it to 1866.
 

Wathnix

Member
Joined
Feb 8, 2004
Awesome system!!

-Blu-ray drive
Think on this real hard, most people are disappointed with blu-ray on a PC. Unless you have a solid reason to buy it then don't. You will have to buy software to make it run properly.

-Video card-
You are gaining performance, this is one of the biggest beasts out there.

-SSD drive
This will vastly boost performance on all data stored on it, you will find Windows and such loads at incredible speeds. When gaming you will need to install the game on the drive for biggest boost in performance, but if you install the game to another drive it will also increase general computer performance from having such a fast drive.

-10K RPM drive-
Not worth it. Go with a WD black 2TB drive, it will get near the same performance for less. And liquid cooling it IMHO is not worth it either, these drives run fine without the cooling

-Power supply
This will be more than adequate, you could even go with a 800Watt PSU unless you plan to add another video card later. Different parts in your computer need different voltages to run properly. All power supplies put out power for five separate voltages. Each one of these is called a rail. Whenever the designers need voltage somewhere they run a wire from that particular rail to the part that needs power. The +12 volt rail is the most heavily used and when any rail approaches it's maximum load the voltage will drop slightly and start fluctuating, this causes system stability problems or worse. Because the +12 volt rail is so heavily used the high quality manufacturers may opt to make two separate rails each with their own, independent circuitry. This reduces voltage drops and fluctuations and increases the life of the power supply because each rail does not have to work so hard.
 
OP
eMpTy43

eMpTy43

Registered
Joined
Oct 17, 2010
Location
Arizona, Soon to be Colorado
Thanks for the replies, I've made a few changes to the system now.

- Blu-ray removed
- HDD is now WD Caviar Black 1TB 7200RPM SATA III
- SSD is now OCZ V2 90GB SATA II 2.5"

I've also chosen to stick with air-cooling until I want to push the processor beyond 4Ghz.

I've also been told 12GB of RAM is "too much." In my mind how can't you have "too much" of something, if capitalism has taught us anything it's that you can never have too much (money in particular but it can be applied elsewhere :p). I frequently play games and have 6-10 Chrome tabs up in the background along with Skype or Ventrillo and a couple other programs once in a while.
 
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cyberfish

Member
Joined
May 23, 2008
Location
London, England
Ok, moving back from this thread
http://www.overclockers.com/forums/showthread.php?p=6644621#post6644621

Could you throw some Intel processor ideas my way? Some that would have a good money savings to performance loss ratio?
I can't, because I still live in the 775 era :D, but I'm sure other people here can. The trick is to get lower end CPUs, and overclock the hell out of them. A $200 CPU can typically run overclocked at within 10% of a $1k CPU overclocked. At that kind of speed, you won't even notice it, and you just saved $800 (that's almost a new system).
 
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eMpTy43

eMpTy43

Registered
Joined
Oct 17, 2010
Location
Arizona, Soon to be Colorado

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
Location
Buckeyes!
Check out the Buyers' Guide on the Front Page...

What is your goal with the 5970? Are you running a 2560x1600 monitor? If not, that can go less as well. ;)
 
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OP
eMpTy43

eMpTy43

Registered
Joined
Oct 17, 2010
Location
Arizona, Soon to be Colorado
Check out the Buyers' Guide on the Front Page...

What is your goal with the 5970? Are you running a 2560x1600 monitor? If not, that can go less as well. ;)

Probably shooting more toward a 1920 res 22" monitor. My main concern is high FramesPS for FPShooter games without rolling SLI or Crossfire.

What would be a well performing GPU? Will a single processor GPU hold me up with no FPS spikes and/or stuttering?
 

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
Location
Buckeyes!
Absolutely.

GTX480 is top single GPU card out and 5870 is on its heals. Choice is up to you on those really. Both are monster cards for 1920x1080/1200.
 
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eMpTy43

eMpTy43

Registered
Joined
Oct 17, 2010
Location
Arizona, Soon to be Colorado
Was looking at the buyers guide concurrently :) Now I'm looking at the i7 860... what are the differences between these?

Obviously the clock speeds... but anything else? Would the i7-870 be a viable option for me? Say OC it to 3.4-3.5Ghz-ish?
 

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
Location
Buckeyes!
i7 870 is the lower platform... not something to build off of if you follow that dude's advice in the other thread. GO X58 based, an i7 930, and then in a year or two if thats not working for you, you can upgrade to a cheaper hex, or go to a new platform.
 
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eMpTy43

eMpTy43

Registered
Joined
Oct 17, 2010
Location
Arizona, Soon to be Colorado
i7 870 is the lower platform... not something to build off of if you follow that dude's advice in the other thread. GO X58 based, an i7 930, and then in a year or two if thats not working for you, you can upgrade to a cheaper hex, or go to a new platform.

Thx for helping me out, I appreciate it.

With a X58 platform, which Mobo should i look into then? Is the Rampage III too much? The price difference even from a previous platform board isn't much...
Maybe the Rampage III Formula? Rather than the extreme.
 

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
Location
Buckeyes!
Let me correct my statement... not previous, but 'mainstream' as opposed to 'performance' (same generation of chipsets). The X58 at least allows you to upgrade to a Hex core. P/H55 will not ever have that option.

I would think again for your needs that the RIII Extreme, is too much, the Rampage III Genie sounds about right...the Giga X58A UD3R would be fine and take any chip out to 4Ghz with good air or better.
 
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eMpTy43

eMpTy43

Registered
Joined
Oct 17, 2010
Location
Arizona, Soon to be Colorado
Price is dropping but performance seems to be remaining around just as high... I like. :rock:

The Gene is a micro ATX board, but going with the GTX 480 gpu I'd still need a full tower case correct? I'm a little troubled on knowing how small of a case I can get into before I can't fit a 12" gpu card... :confused:

Another question... Tri-channel RAM means you want to have either 3 or 6 sticks installed right?
 
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eMpTy43

eMpTy43

Registered
Joined
Oct 17, 2010
Location
Arizona, Soon to be Colorado
Alright... considering I should be able to OC this processor to around 4.0Ghz I really like this system:

CASE: Cooler Master HAF 932
MOBO: Asus Rampage III Gene
CPU: Intel Core i7-930 Bloomfield 2.8Ghz (1366/X58)
HEATSINK: Zalman CNPS10X Extreme 120mm Cooler
RAM: G.Skill 6GB (3x2GB) DDR3 1600
GPU: EVGA GeForce GTX 480 1.5GB 384bit GDDR5
SSD: OCZ Vertex 2 90GB SATA II 2.5"
HDD: WDC Black 1TB 7200RPM SATA III 3.5"
ODD: (2) Lite-On 24x CD/DVD Burners
PSU: Antec CP-850 850w, Modular, 4-Rail

This is coming in at $1800 with shipping... damn I still need a monitor. Any suggestions?

Can someone proof it for me and let me know if all the components will work together?
 

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
Location
Buckeyes!
I would definately get a better cooler than that though...Noctua NHD14, Thermalright venomousX, Prolimatech Megahelems or something along those lines.

I would also just get a better brand PSU. While most antec's are good, I know their top of the line signature are the best and a few are sub par (neo series?). Stick with the original Corsair or the 750W HX as you dont need 850W.
 
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eMpTy43

eMpTy43

Registered
Joined
Oct 17, 2010
Location
Arizona, Soon to be Colorado
I would definately get a better cooler than that though...Noctua NHD14, Thermalright venomousX, Prolimatech Megahelems or something along those lines.

Prolimatech looks sexy... going with that.

I would also just get a better brand PSU. While most antec's are good, I know their top of the line signature are the best and a few are sub par (neo series?). Stick with the original Corsair or the 750W HX as you dont need 850W.

Going with the Corsair HX750 then :bday:
 
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eMpTy43

eMpTy43

Registered
Joined
Oct 17, 2010
Location
Arizona, Soon to be Colorado
You absolutely need a fan (or two) on the CPU heatsink.

lol realized that as i read further down the details page... what kinds of fans will hook up with the prolim?

so what about a monitor? and can i run dual monitors off the GTX480? one for a windowed game and the other to monitor stuff and look things up?