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New gaming rig advice

Post Date: 2011-01-19

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Coronablade View Drop Down
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  Quote Coronablade Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Topic: New gaming rig advice
    Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 1:01am
Budget: Roughly $2500-$3000(more towards the 2500 range, depending on how much the wife lets me spendDrooling)
Expectations: I want a computer that can handle what I throw at it and more for close to next 3 years with minumal upgrading ( 3 years is a lot in a gaming computers lifespan, i realizeBig%20Smile) I am a hardcore gamer when I've got the time ( which is alot more when my wife gets deployed in March). I'm also looking to use this for school so it needs to handle Visio, maybe multiple Virtual Machines at once, etc. I am an ITCNS student. Eventually when I get the extra money I am going to make this a 2-monitor setup as well ( my wife is the one who actually suggested it, cuz she's freakin awesome like thatHahaha)
Usage: Like I said, I am a hardcore gamer when I've got the time. Once my wife gets deployed I am going to be raiding heavily in WoW, and doing some heavy SCII play, possible try out DOA2 on PC as well. Also I would this for school as well, so handling multiple Virtual Machines is a plus.
Special Needs: I am going to try to stick the OS on the 40GB SSD and possibly SCII, and WoW if it'll fit. Plan on partitioning the 2nd HD for data/music/movies/pics and the other for other possibly applications/games/patches for WoW and SCII.
 
Hey, this is my first offical post on Digital Storm forums, but I have been actively searching your website for 6 months+, looking at customer reviews, researching different builds, extensively researching each indivivual piece I wanted on this rig.
 
From everything I've seen through customer reviews, feedback, and how well everyone rates you on not only building your PCs but the customer service, I'm beyond impressed already and I haven't even startedBig%20Smile. I decided about a month ago for sure that I would go with you guy's for my gaming needs.
 
I built a Dell XPS 720(when I say built, I mean some dude at Dell who probably couldnt even spell computer built itOops). At first It was the biggest and baddest computer I had ever owned, though at the time I had a computer with Windows ME (Windows 2000) on it....sooooo...ya...not hard to upgrade from that piece of crapLOL.
 
Since then I've had numerous problems with my XPS and Dell in general, so I decided to go with a custom PC. I searched Ibuypower and others but in the end by far the best reviews were from you guys.
 
All in all I want a PC that will last and be easy to upgrade in the future. Any advice on my built would be great.
 
Saved ticket: 479580
 
And this may sound stupid, but it there a way to post all your specs for your build automatically, or do I need to just list them? I saw most posts on the forums looked like they just copy and pasted it from the build page somehow.
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  Quote DST4ME Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 1:30am
when you click save and email, your build reloads and takes you to a page that has the ticket number, toward the bottom of this page, you will see the system specs, copy and paste from there if you like, tho for just looking at your ticket, the ticket number will do.


ok based on your build it looks like you don't want the ability to go sli in the future, that being the case, I dropped the mobo back down, was there something in deluxe that you wanted?

Here you go Ticket# 479591 --- $2386 (To see this build click here)

Copy of Specifications:
Chassis Model: Special Deal Hot Seller - HAF 922
Exterior Finish: - Standard Factory Finish
Trim Accents: - Standard Factory Finish
Processor: Intel Core i7 2600K 3.40GHz (Unlocked CPU for Extreme Overclocking) (Quad Core)
Motherboard: ASUS P8P67 Deluxe (Intel P67 Chipset) (Features USB 3.0 and SATA 6Gb/s)
System Memory: 8GB DDR3 1600MHz Digital Storm Certified Performance Series (Highly Recommended) (Hand Tested)
Power Supply: 750W Corsair TX (Dual SLI Compatible)
Expansion Bay: - No Thanks
Hard Drive Set 1: Operating System: 1x (40GB Solid State (By: Intel) (Model: X-25V Edition) (Extreme Performance)
Set 1 Raid Options: - No Thanks
Hard Drive Set 2: Multimedia\Data: 1x (1TB Hitachi/Seagate (7200 RPM) (32MB Cache)
Hard Drive Set 3: Backup\Misc.: - No Thanks
Optical Drive 1: DVD-R/RW/CD-R/RW (DVD Writer 24x / CD-Writer 48x) (LightScribe Edition)
Optical Drive 2: - No Thanks
Internet Access: High Speed Network Port (Supports High-Speed Cable / DSL / Network Connections)
Video Card: 1x NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 1.2GB (Includes PhysX Technology)
Add-on Card: - No Thanks
Sound Card: Integrated Motherboard Audio
Extreme Cooling: AIR: Stage 1: Noctua NH-U12P SE Dual 120mm Fans High Performance Cooler
H20 Tube Color:- Not Applicable, I do not have a FrostChill or Sub-Zero LCS Cooling System Selected
Chassis Airflow: Upgrade Chassis With LED Performance Fans (Blue) (Up to 6 Fans)
Internal Lighting: Internal Chassis Lighting System (Green)
Enhancements: - No Thanks
Chassis Mods: - No Thanks
Noise Reduction: - No Thanks
Boost Processor: FREE: Overclock the processor between 3.6GHz to 3.9GHz
Boost Video Card: - No Thanks, Please do not overclock my video card(s)
Boost Memory: - No Thanks, Please do not overclock my memory
Boost OS: - No Thanks, Please do not tweak the services on the operating system
Windows OS: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium (64-Bit Edition)
Recovery Tools: Windows Recovery Toolkit (Bundled with Windows 7 CD)
Virus Protection: - No Thanks
Office: - No Thanks
Benchmarking: - No Thanks
Install/Test Game: - No Thanks
Display: - No Thanks
Surge Shield: - No Thanks
Speakers: Logitech 2.1 System (Model LS21) (Includes Subwoofer)
Keyboard: Logitech G15 Gaming USB Desktop (Multimedia Keyboard)
Mouse: Cooler Master Sentinel Advance Gaming Mouse (High-Speed Gaming Grade)
External Storage: - No Thanks
Exclusive T-Shirt: FREE: Digital Storm T-Shirt - Black (Medium)
Priority Build: - No Thanks, Ship Within 5-15 Business Days After Order Is Successfully Processed
Warranty: Life-time Expert Customer Care with 3 Year Limited Warranty

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  Quote Smarmy Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 11:39am
If your going with an OS drive that small, you might want to have DS move your user profiles to the spinning media. Any browser you use should also have the download area set to the spinning media as well. I have a 40GB drive for my OS on my old machine and I've had issues with the amount of space used by the user profile and the download area.
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  Quote MagiK Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 11:58am
"Hard Core Gamer" = SLI or Crossfire in my book, so would go with a Mobo that supports either,   That is a smaller OS drive than I would use...Id go to the 80gig OS drive and put your "My Documents" and Downloads onto spinning media along with apps and games.  A WD 2TB Black drive would be ideal for everythign while the OS lived on an SSD.  Smarmy is right....too small an OS drive is a real headache.
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  Quote DST4ME Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 1:51pm
Moving user profile is not a good idea, cause then you are not taking full advantage of the ssd, you are making the os go to ssd and then to HDD to grab resources, this makes your ssd kinda pointless when it comes to apps and etc.

you can move your download folder to the HDD but instead it would just be easier to set your browser to save to downloads to HDD, opera/ff and other browsers allow you to set that, also when you download something you have the option of where you want to save it, so save it to the HDD and not ssd.

os/apps/games need to go on the ssd if you want the os/apps/games to take advantage of the ssd speeds.

I think he needs a bigger ssd, and a capable sli mobo and psu so that he can go sli in the future if he has the needs, but I went off of his build, waiting for his response on it.
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  Quote MagiK Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 2:06pm
DST NOT moving them gaurentees shorter lifespan for your SSD,  USER profiles has a ton of little tiny files that get read from and written to a lot.  You sacrifice in some areas and gain in others.  If you have a small SSD you dont want those files on it.  If you go with a LARGE SSD say the 160GB like I did' you have a much bigger reserve space for wear leveling.

(Edit just for clarity, SSD cells have a limited lifetime for writes, you only get so many before the cell dies.  Most SSD's have space reserved for swapping out dead cells, but the larger the drive the more cells you generally have available to replace dead ones.....this is not to say SSD's wont last very long, it is a relative life time issue.....most SSD's are good for years of service, its just that the user profiles area has a lot of activity that doesnt need to be kept on the SSD)  If you dont move the User Profiles to a second Device at least move the "My Documents" and "Downloads" directories over.....


Edited by MagiK - 19 Jan 2011 at 2:11pm
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  Quote DST4ME Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 2:12pm
magik, the user profile has all the app data for all the apps and games, moving the user profile makes having a ssd pointless as far as apps and games and whatever that has files in the profile.

it will make very little difference to your ssd's life.

if you gonna make the os go to HDD to run apps and whatever else holds data on that folder, then don't bother getting a ssd INMO.

Intels wear and tear is much better then others, and why we recommend intel and as I said you can just erase teh ssd and set it back to zero, and get practically full performance back, ask justin if you don't believe me, lol.

downloads and etc should be on the HDD, but that is what we are talking about when we say personal/media/work files on the HDD that includes your downloads.
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  Quote MagiK Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 2:15pm
That is EXACTLY why I do not recommend putting the apps on a small "Boot SSD"
If you are going to keep your apps on the SSD, then you need to get a bigger SSD to get your moneys worth.....  I got the 600GB Raptor for just that purpose when the 600GB G3 SSD's come out Ill swap them.

I will admit this is a personal philosophy and preferance.  Im not dising anyone's methodology that differs


Edited by MagiK - 19 Jan 2011 at 2:16pm
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  Quote DST4ME Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 2:18pm
Depending on the use a 80GB ssd should do for regular users, for users with big games a 160GB ssd should be used for HDD1.

I agree with you HDD1 should be a big enough drive to fit os/apps/games comfortably with a bit of room to play/add more games if you need.
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  Quote Sarah Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 2:54pm
You won't be able to fit SCII + WoW + OS on a 40GB SSD. WoW alone is using over 30GB of space these days and thats with no adds on and just all their game content. So that doesn't account for add-ons and additional game content that they like to slip in on Tuesday patch days.
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  Quote justin.kerr Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 3:06pm

By the time you wear out an SSD, there will be far faster, larger, cheaper ones.. I have been trying for years to kill the ones on my DM, and still at 98% life. lol

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  Quote MagiK Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 3:37pm
Better safe than sorry plus what Sarah has said.
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  Quote DST4ME Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 5:14pm
Ya either get a big enough ssd or add a ssd later when prices are better for you.
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  Quote Coronablade Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 5:50pm

Thanks for the info everybody. DST what'd you mean by is there something you wanted in deluxe?

So what I'm gathering from everybody is I should probably go with a 80GB SSD instead of 40? I was leaning towards a 80GB myself, I just didn't know off the top of my head how big WoW and SCII were lol.

I didn't have plans to go SLI, but would it be more cost effective to go like dual 470's or 480's, or stick with a 570? I've read benchmarks all over the internet, and from what I saw it was kinda even between the two setups, with a a little egde with dual 480s.
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  Quote DST4ME Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 6:04pm
To be honest, win7 wants 20GB, put 5GB of apps in there, then you got 30GB for the game, and then you have patches and etc to add in as you go, 80GB would do it, but personally I would feel more comfortable with a 120GB, intel goes from 80GB to 160GB so that means next option is 160GB, but then that would be a little too much perhaps.

You had picked the deluxe mobo, I was wondering why you specifically chose that.

dual sli will give better performance but its always better to get a single gpu that gives you what you need, in wow for example sli is pointless you will see no gains in wow, Its better to go with a single 570 and add a second later if you need it.


also 480s run hotter and use more power.

keep in mind if you are getting over 60 fps average and the game looks smooth to you, then you won't notice a difference from for fps and a second card.

Edited by DST4ME - 19 Jan 2011 at 6:06pm
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  Quote Coronablade Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 6:21pm
As far as the mobo goes I had just picked it because that what had popped uyp by default, and I didn't feel the need to change it because I had other priorities as far as what I was gonna buy with my budget. Was there another mobo you would suggest that would be better?
 
Ya I did see that 480's run a lot hotter than a single 570, thats another reason I picked it.
 
As far as the SSD goes, outside of personal preference would I be ok with a 80GB? If it's not going to give me that great a boost gameplay wise I was thinking just get like a 1TB or 1.5TB HD, but slow OS booting annoys me which was the main reason i settled on the 40GB to begin with.
 
At the end of the day I really just want to play games faster, that's my main concern with the whole hard drive situation.
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  Quote MagiK Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 7:12pm
I think you will want the larger SSD I know fanatical geeks who love to work at keep ing things clean and tidy (I am that way myself some times) can get by with just 40 gig  but the average person does NOT want to spend that much time house keeping.  Give yourself room to grow and expand.  Why box yourself in?  I have never ever had a customer (I dont work for DSO but I work in Business oriented systems) say he was mad because he had too much space on his boot drive...EVER in 30 some years of professional work.

I think you will be fine with a single 570 but putting in a second one is a snap if you are not water cooling them.

Just FYI I got the 160GB Intel SSD....System boots in 1 minute 3 seconds from the moment I hit the power button to working desktop.....if you eliminate the BIOS and system check times from that....windows takes about 30 seconds.
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  Quote Coronablade Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 7:26pm
If I go the route of just getting the route of just getting say a 1TB Hitatchi/Seagate and say just partition it for different things (games/apps/data etc) would that be an ok route? Slower booting start to working desktop is annoying for me but not a deal breaker. I really just want to play games faster and from I've read its minimal difference performance wise, though there is a difference of course.
 
The 160GB will be kinda breaking my budget however, I was thinking possible get 120GB Corsair but I read somewhere anything but an Intel SSD is almost a waste. My IT instructors in class tell me as much as well.
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  Quote Coronablade Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 7:29pm
Edit: Double posting because apparently I type stupidlyLOL  I'm at work so I'm sort of rushing when i typeOops
 
If I go the route of just getting say a 1TB Hitatchi/Seagate and say just partition it for different things (games/apps/data etc) would that be an ok route? Slower booting start to working desktop is annoying for me but not a deal breaker. I really just want to play games faster and from I've read its minimal difference performance wise, though there is a difference of course.
 
The 160GB will be kinda breaking my budget however, I was thinking possible get the 120GB Corsair but I read somewhere anything but an Intel SSD is almost a waste. My IT instructors in class tell me as much as well.
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  Quote DST4ME Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 7:34pm
every thing magik said in his last post I agree with.

here are you options the way I look at it.

1. go with a 1TB now and upgrade to ssd in a few months when intel gen 3 ssd comeout.

2. go with a 160GB ssd

3. go with a 80GB ssd now and add a second 80GB as HDD3 down the road when you need the space/or upgrade to a bigger ssd. Here id you add a second 80GB ssd, apps/games can go on that drive also and enjoy ssd benefits.

Edited by DST4ME - 19 Jan 2011 at 7:34pm
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  Quote Coronablade Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 7:42pm
I downgraded the mobo to P8P67 (minus the deluxe) to save me some money, and I think I will go the route of either 1TB HD now and upgrade to SSD later, or 80GB SSD/1TB and add another later. I've got like a month and half to decide, but thanks for all your info everybodyBig%20Smile.
 
I've got time to think how I might tweak this, and thanks to you guys I've got my options laid out for me. Thanks again, hopefully I will be calling to place my order within the next month!Awesome
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  Quote Coronablade Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 7:44pm
Oh and another thing, I was going to purchase a new monitor as well, and ill probably want to have my res at 1920x1080.
 
Anyone have some good monitor suggestions?
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  Quote DST4ME Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 8:42pm
Our pleasure and good luck

Dell UltraSharp U2311H 23

for a monitor go with an ips panel for better picture quality.

Edited by DST4ME - 19 Jan 2011 at 8:43pm
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  Quote Coronablade Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 8:59pm
Thanks for the advice DST.
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  Quote Dragoonseal Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 10:03pm
Originally posted by MagiK

Just FYI I got the 160GB Intel SSD....System boots in 1 minute 3 seconds from the moment I hit the power button to working desktop.....if you eliminate the BIOS and system check times from that....windows takes about 30 seconds.

Yuck, what all are you trying to load at start up exactly? From the moment I hit the power to working desktop for Lilim is 25-30 seconds, if I take BIOS and system check times from that we're down to 9 seconds.
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  Quote Coronablade Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 10:47pm
whats Lilim...type of SSD?Confused
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  Quote justin.kerr Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 10:59pm
it is in his sig. Big%20Smile Intel Gen 2 80Gb x 3
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  Quote Coronablade Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 19 Jan 2011 at 11:10pm
Gotcha, I need to learn to read LOL
 
If I had to extra money I would try 3x SSD lol
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  Quote MagiK Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 20 Jan 2011 at 8:18am
Its the stupid Jmicron and SATA 3 controllers...they take the longest time to initialize.  If there is a way to reduce the amount of time Im waiting for those Id be happy to implement.   Another reason NOT to use the Marvel Sata 3 ports.
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  Quote justin.kerr Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 20 Jan 2011 at 9:06am
disable all jmicron in BIOS, but make sure nothing is connected to them.  delete all the jmicron software, drivers ect...  just my $.02
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  Quote MagiK Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 20 Jan 2011 at 9:43am
I'll have to look, Im not sure if I am using them...I know Im not doing any RAID..which is what I "think" is what the jmicron stuff is for.
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  Quote justin.kerr Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 20 Jan 2011 at 9:46am
no, it will be the dreaded RED STATA's.
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  Quote MagiK Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 20 Jan 2011 at 10:01am
Ahh well yeah theres the rub....DSO did use the dreaded "Red Sata" ports, for the SSD and the Raptor drive.... my C: and D: drives Post from Alex said that the ports did in fact support Trim unless it was dealing with a RAID array....that was the one thing they deviated off my requests on... I had asked for all the drives to be on the ICH10R ports.

Problem is, I dont have the time right now to research what I need to do to move the drives off those ports...basically shifting all the sata connectors one port to the right.
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  Quote justin.kerr Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 20 Jan 2011 at 10:24am
if you have enough Intel SATA's, then just move the connectors to the Intel SATA's, as long as the BIOS has the Intel southbridge under ACHI to start with, no issues that I know of.. I have switched back inforth in the past, doing some testing, and as long as windows was installed with AHCI, or RAID on the Intel SB, then there was no issues
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  Quote MagiK Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 20 Jan 2011 at 10:31am
When I was first inspecting the BIOS I believe I did see them set to AHCI, Im just wondering what that will do to my drive letters, a change there would hose many of my apps....so Id have to go back in and reconfig the drive letters which would be a pain.

And on that subject...is there a simple way to check TRIM functionality?  A utility perhaps that says "Yes Trim is working"
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