Building a new desktop machine, advice welcome

By Knghtmare ยท 11 replies
Jul 15, 2011
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  1. Greetings,

    I have recently decided to build myself a Desktop Computer to replace my current laptop since I no longer require mobility. That said, it has been years since I built a computer from scratch and even then the machine was not built for any kind of real performance.

    I have been spending some time searching across the web, evaluating needs vs. wants, setting my budget, picking out parts, etc., and now I fall upon the graces of my online peers for advice.

    On to the nitty-gritty:

    Purpose: The machine will be used primarily for Graphic Arts. I work in programs such as Photoshop, Daz3D, Poser, Maya, 3DSMax, Illustrator, etc. The secondary use for the machine (and should probably be called primary) is gaming. Currently I play World of Warcraft, Rift, and Starcraft 2. I also do some work in Visual Studio.

    Budget: I'd like to keep it around or under $2000.

    Parts and Purchase: I am starting from scratch, with no preexisting parts and nothing currently purchased. Where I buy from is of little consequence, though to avoid exorbitant shipping costs I would prefer to buy as much from one place as possible. I am fine with online shopping.

    Peripherals: Not needed.

    OS: I have a copy of Windows 7 Pro 64-bit, but may be purchasing another Home version, not sure yet.

    Cooling: I would like to keep the machine as cool as possible but am tepid about liquid cooling, any advise/opinions on this is welcome.

    All of that said, as I mentioned before I have been looking for parts and have put together a list of parts that I think will take care of what I need. But, whether they are the best part for my dollar is unknown to me. I do not think I will have any compatibility issues, except perhaps with the SSD, I'm not sure on that one.

    What I'd like is for any and all of you to pick my list apart and let me know your thoughts or any problems you see. I am open to switching out any of what I have chosen for a better and/or cheaper product as long as everything stays within my budget.

    After researching, these are the parts that I am looking into buying:

    Cooler Master RC-932-KKN5-GP HAF 932 Advance Full Tower Case - ATX, Black, SuperSpeed USB 3.0

    PSU: Ultra U12-40841 X4 Gold Edition Modular Power Supply - 1000W, ATX, 80 Plus Gold, 135mm Fan, SLI Ready, CrossFire Technology, Active PFC, Vibration Dampener Included, Lifetime Warranty w/ Registration

    Mobo: ASUS P8P67 Deluxe B3 Intel P67 Motherboard - ATX, Socket H2 (LGA 1155), Intel P67 Express, 2200MHz DDR3 (O.C.), Dual Gigabit LAN, 8-CH Audio, SATA 6.0 Gb/s, USB 3.0, SLI/CrossFireX, Bluetooth

    CPU: Intel Core i7-2600K BX80623I72600K Unlocked Processor - Quad Core, 8MB L3 Cache, 3.40 GHz, Socket H2 (LGA1155), Retail

    CPU Cooler: Corsair CWCH50-1 Hydro H50 CPU Liquid Cooler - 120mm Fan, Copper Cold Plate, Aluminum Radiator, LGA775, LGA1366, LGA1156, AM2/AM3

    Corsair CML16GX3M4A1600C9 Vengeance LP Desktop Memory Kit - 16GB (4x 4GB), PC3-12800, DDR3-1600MHz, 9-9-9-24 CAS Latency, 240-pin DIMM, 1.5V, Unbuffered, Intel XMP Ready

    Video: EVGA 01G-P3-1561-AR GeForce GTX 560 Ti Free Performance Boost Video Card - 1GB, GDDR5, PCI-Express 2.0 (x16), Dual DVI, HDMI, DirectX 11, SLI Ready

    SSD: Corsair Performance 3 Series CSSD-P3256GB2-BRKT 2.5" 256GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)

    Thanks in advance!
  2. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,984   +72

    You'll love that case. I built a gaming rig for my brother-in-law using that case and it has plenty of fans. With a cpu cooler (which you list), it should do quite well in the cooling aspect. Keep in mind that periodic removing of dust is essential because the HAF (High Air Flow) cases move a lot of air.

    How much rendering will you be doing?
  3. klepto12

    klepto12 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,115   +9

    my suggestion is something like this.

    Cpu - Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz
    MB - ASUS P8Z68-V LGA 1155 Intel Z68
    ram - CORSAIR Vengeance 16GB
    PSU - OCZ ZX Series 850W Fully-Modular 80PLUS Gold High Performance Power Supply because ultra psu are crap and u dont need 1000watts anyway this psu is a beast.
    Case - COOLER MASTER HAF 932
    HDD - Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache for storage
    SSD - OCZ Vertex 3 120G 2.5" 120GB SATA III
    HSF - Noctua NH-D14 this is the best air cooler and cools better than the h50 and h70 water loops.
    Video card -ASUS ENGTX580

    all this for around $1835 with shipping.
  4. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    How about a Thermalright archon instead of that Noctua?
    Maybe a samsung F3 1TB instead of the WD black, and you can tone it down on the power supply.
    I would personally get a 2600k too.
  5. klepto12

    klepto12 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,115   +9

    there is no real benefit using the 2600k over the 2500k except HT and imo thats not worth over $100 also the noctua is the best cooler period and is only slightly more than the Thermalright archon and cools better. The HDD is a toss up get what you like but just for gaming and 3d use and the such this system will destroy even an i7 990x in gaming benchmarks.
  6. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,224   +164

    *** ^ pun noticed :)

    I recently purchased the Noctua NH-D14 and The Thermalright Silver Arrow and overclocked,overvolted, and basically abused the both of them. The Silver Arrow came out on top (albeit by 1-2c) like the majority of reviews. I added the third TR-TY_140mm fan and can tell you that it is near silent and the exhausted air pins the curtains to the window. The Archon that HK suggested is also a tremendous cooler. So if you indeed do not want to go 'big water' , that being more than the closed CPU loops available, All three of these coolers should be on your short list.
    as always , my 2 cents.
  7. klepto12

    klepto12 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,115   +9

    i just watched some reviews on the arrow cooler its nice and does come out on top over the noctua anyways just choose the one you like the best i think there both ugly lol.
  8. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,224   +164

    They are so close, you wont notice a practical pick the one you find least offensive to your eyes :) ( I rather like the looks of both....except the weird color schemes both companies picked for their fans) kind of a muted pastel thing for a newborns room.
  9. klepto12

    klepto12 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,115   +9

    yeah the fan color is just ugly lol but it does its job well. what do you think of the build i posted red?
  10. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,224   +164

    Looks good. I am going to give the CORSAIR Vengeance line a try myself. So is this your next upgrade? (except the CPU obviously)
  11. klepto12

    klepto12 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,115   +9

    nope i think im good for a while maybe around tax time i might sli my 470 and see how that works out idk yet though this is for the guy who asked for it. i do have a question though how much better is the silver arrow cooler over a push pull h50?
  12. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,224   +164

    Quite a bit, in the 6- 10c range depending on the fans/RPM.
    That reminded me of this:

    From the Vortez review:
    here is the rest:,9.html

    This thing really is amazing. I think the SA and the NH-D14 are close to it for standard heatpipe & fin array coolers. Since the Ultra 120E, its been rather stop! liquid metal heat-pipe circulation.

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