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Hardware Thread, Recommendations for a desktop build in Technical; ...
  1. #1
    hawc's Avatar
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    Recommendations for a desktop build

    Hi all,
    Following on from my earlier thread about my desktop, I have decided to try and build one.
    I primarily use it for gaming.

    I have a few requirements:
    a) Ability to accept my current 2tb SATA drive
    b) Have an SSD + an other HDD (At least 1 tb) So I can use 3 drives at most
    c) I need to be able to drive 3 screens with games at 1080 (Counterstrike and others)
    d) 802.11ac wireless for 5ghz.
    e) Must be under £1200

    I do not mind AMD/Intel and AMD/Nvidia.

    Thanks
    Harry

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    Can I ask why wireless AC?

    It could all be done for around £700 with ease but just want to know why you pick wireless AC over (I'm assuming) wired.

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    mac_shinobi's Avatar
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    @Arthur ....... What do you think ??

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    hawc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nephilim View Post
    Can I ask why wireless AC?

    It could all be done for around £700 with ease but just want to know why you pick wireless AC over (I'm assuming) wired.
    I will be using it upstairs where I can not get Ethernet and power line is awful in this house. I also notice faster speeds over ac on my phone.

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    3s-gtech's Avatar
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    Three screens at 1080p will require some graphics horsepower, but this depends on what other games you will want to play. CS, even GO, doesn't need much to run it. If you want to play modern games at high settings, you're looking at R9 290X or GTX 780Ti for best results.

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    hawc (22nd April 2014)

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    flyinghaggis's Avatar
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    If I build another gaming PC from scratch I'm gonna go Small-ish Form Factor. Probably something like the following setups :-

    FS-007-OG_86490_350.jpg

    "Proton Proceed" Intel Core i5 4670 @ 3.8GHz Turbo Nvidia GeForce Mini ITX LAN Gaming PC [FS-013-OG]

    CA-073-BX_400.jpg

    "Photon Envy" Intel Core i7 4770K @ 3.9GHz Turbo Nvidia GeForce Quad Core LAN Gaming PC [FS-007-OG]

    Spec-wise in your position I'd for something like:-

    Intel i5/i7
    16Gb DDR3
    Nvidia Geforce 770/780
    512 SSD + 3-4tb HDD
    Last edited by flyinghaggis; 21st April 2014 at 09:16 AM.

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    Do you or will you ever want to overclock?

    Do you want a standard ATX build or something smaller? (or bigger?) or even will your current case suffice?

    Any peripherals?

    Do you want to be playing games at max settings as often as possible (in other words, do you want to use that whole budget of 1.2k)?

    and lastly, do you want it to be quiet? Replacing all the fans with silent ones?
    Last edited by mrbios; 21st April 2014 at 11:59 AM.

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    hawc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrbios View Post
    Do you or will you ever want to overclock? Yes, I am looking at that

    Do you want a standard ATX build or something smaller? (or bigger?) or even will your current case suffice?

    I will be looking for a new case as my current case is a Dell case. I do not mind what build is used.

    Any peripherals?

    I have a fine keyboard and mouse. I am purchasing 2 more HP Pavillion 23xi's. I just need the price to be right.

    Do you want to be playing games at max settings as often as possible (in other words, do you want to use that whole budget of 1.2k)?

    Ideally yes, I would not mind using the whole of that budget.

    and lastly, do you want it to be quiet? Replacing all the fans with silent ones?

    Most of the time I will be using a headset. My current headset dopes a good job at blocking the sound
    I can take the Blu-ray drive out of my current machine and this uses SATA.

    Thanks
    Harry

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    mrbios's Avatar
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    Needs a better cpu cooler adding for overclocking really but you can probably find various bits cheaper at different sites or vary manufactuers a bit to get things cheaper (i just like overclockers UK website so i use it for speccing)

    Anyway here's the list i've made up:
    i7 4770k - Intel Core i7-4770K 3.50GHz (Haswell) Socket LGA1150 Processor - Retail [BX80646I74770K]
    Gigabyte Z87X-D3H - Gigabyte Z87X-D3H Intel Z87 (Socket 1150) DDR3 ATX Motherboard [GA-Z87X-D3H]
    Kingston HyperX 16GB 1866mhz - Kingston HyperX Fury Red 16GB (2x8GB) DDR3 PC3-14900C10 1866MHz Dual Channel Kit (HX318C10FRK2/16) [HX318C10FRK2/16] (Overkill if you're not going to be delving "that" much into the overclocking front)
    Samsung 128GB 840 pro SSD - Samsung 128GB SSD 840 PRO SATA 6Gb/s Basic - (MZ-7PD128BW) [MZ-7PD128BW]
    Seasonic 750w psu - Seasonic M12II EVO Edition 750W '80 Plus Bronze' Fully Modular Power Supply [SS-750AM2 Active PFC F3] (slightly overkill, but PSUs last so long that it's worth having nice headroom for SLI/xfire if you ever fancy it)
    WD 2TB HDD - Western Digital Caviar Red 2TB SATA 6Gb/s 64MB Cache WD20EFRX - OEM HDD [WD20EFRX](Not as quick as the black, but quicker than the nasty greens. 3 year warranty though.)
    AMD R9 290X - MSI Radeon R9 290X Gaming Edition 4096MB GDDR5 PCI-Express Graphics Card [R9 290X GAMING 4G] (Alternative is an nvidia 780, 290X generally beats it marginally though at the same price point)
    Corsair carbide 300R - Corsair Carbide 300R Mid Tower Windowed Case - Black (CC-9011017-WW) [CC-9011017-WW] (Case is very personal preference, you pay for build quality and the little extra touches and features, worth going through the site and picking one out that you like. My favourite at the moment is the Corsair Carbide 540 air.)

    All that totals £1,163. Add a wireless card and a better cpu cooler and you're set for an awesome overclocking and gaming machine

    Cost cutting areas:
    You could get cheaper/slower ram, it depends how keen you are on the overclocking front.
    You could get the non-K variant processor if you decicded not to overclock
    Cheaper PSU if you think you'll never fancy having SLI/Xfire
    Cheaper HDD if you're not worried about warranty or if you're fine with slower drives like the seagates or WD greens.

    Areas you could improve if you cut cost in other areas:
    Bigger SSD. I've always found 120gb is fine for OS + programs personally, but that depends on how much programs you generally want one it, and how you intend to use your HDDs.
    Nicer case like the Corsair Carbide 540 (AWESOME build quality, and so easy to tidy your cables and keep looking neat)
    Wait for the Z97 chipset boards and get one of those instead.

    Quite a rough idea of what you could get really, there's quite a large degree of dependency on how you want to use the system as to how it's specced. If you're not going to be trying to find the CPUs limit etc with the overclocking then that ram is likely a bit OTT. Either way though it'll be loooovely compared to some naff dell store bought thing

    EDIT: That ram is actually only £14 more than the cheapest 16GB 1600mhz kit on there, so i guess it's not that overkill after all!
    Last edited by mrbios; 21st April 2014 at 01:23 PM.

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  13. #10
    hawc's Avatar
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    Hmm, I need to check if my current machine is economically repairable. If it is not then I will be ordering that lot.....

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    hawc (22nd April 2014)

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    ICTDirect_Dave's Avatar
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    You could always check out Custom Build PC | Gaming PC | Desktop PC | Gaming Laptops PC - MESH Computers - Award Winning Since 1987

    They usually offer some great configurable gaming rigs

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    LosOjos's Avatar
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    If it's primarily a gaming build, I'd say an i7 is overkill, an i5 will do you just fine and the money saved would be better spent on the GPU.

    Talking of GPU, I personally avoid AMD as I've had nothing but trouble with them. NVidia cost a bit more but they've always served me well. Not saying don't try AMD; if they work for you then you'll make a significant saving; just my personal preference. The only thing really to force you to buy NVidia is if you think you'll want to buy a Shield at some point down the line.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LosOjos View Post
    If it's primarily a gaming build, I'd say an i7 is overkill
    Wouldn't a Core-i7 future-proof the system a little, especially since games are starting to utilise eight-cores / threads? See the recommended specs for Watch Dogs...

    www.eurogamer.net/articles/2014-04-07-watch-dogs-pc-recommended-specs-are-pretty-tasty
    Last edited by Arthur; 22nd April 2014 at 10:48 AM.

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  21. #15
    hawc's Avatar
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    Thank you all. @LosOjos , I am sorry but I have to agree with @Arthur as I am looking to keep this one a long time. @ICTDirect_Dave , I have had a Mesh in the past and it died in smoke and flames. (I had a fun day with them in the local County Court)
    I think I will probably go with @mrbios 's suggestion as I like the system and I can see it having some great overclocking potential. I have added in a Corsair H75 CPU Liquid cooler and a ac WiFi card. I have also bagged some nice blue fans.

  22. Thanks to hawc from:

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