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Author Topic: Specs for a new gaming computer  (Read 829 times)
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jztemple2
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« on: February 08, 2014, 12:12:19 AM »

After being disappointed with the new generation of consoles, I've decided to go ahead and get a dedicated gaming PC. I want to get it now while I can still get Windows 7 since I'm not impressed with what I've heard about Windows 8. Please check out the projected specs and let me know what you think. I'm using this pretty much only for gaming; no video streaming, no Photoshopping, nothing but gaming (and email and a little word processing).

Power Supply: SilverStone® 1000 Watt Modular
Motherboard: Asus® Z87 Deluxe
Processor: Intel® Core™ i7 4770K 3.5GHz
Processor Cooler: Asetek® Liquid Cooling
Memory: 1866MHz 2x8GB (16GB)
Video Card: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 780 3GB
Hard Drive 1: Crucial® M500 SSD 240GB
Hard Drive 2: Western Digital® Black™ 1TB
Optical Drive: Asus® 16x DVD Writer
64-Bit Operating System: Microsoft® Windows 7 Professional
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jztemple2
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« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2014, 06:21:32 AM »

After some more head scratching I've altered my proposed specs to:

Power Supply: SilverStone® 750 Watt Modular
Motherboard: Asus® Z87 Plus
Processor: Intel® Core™ i7 4770K 3.5GHz
Processor Cooler: Asetek® Liquid Cooling
Memory: 1866MHz 2x8GB (16GB)
Video Card: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 780 3GB
Hard Drive 1: Crucial® M500 SSD 240GB
Hard Drive 2: Western Digital® Black™ 1TB
Optical Drive: Asus® 16x DVD Writer
64-Bit Operating System: Microsoft® Windows 7 Professional

I lowered the power supply from 1000 watts to 750, which seems more reasonable. Also the motherboard is now the Asus® Z87 Plus rather than the Asus® Z87 deluxe, which I don't think I need for the extra USB ports.

I am wondering however, is a 240 GB SSD enough to install the OS plus the usual overhead programs plus a few games? I don't usually leave that many games installed if I don't intent to play them very much, but things do tend to accumulate on the hard drive. What are other folks experiences with this?
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TheAtomicKid
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« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2014, 09:11:57 AM »

my current machine has approx 40 gigs on the system partition, and the games volume has 150 gigs installed to it.

Might I suggest you swap that SSD to a samsung 840 pro edition/neutron gtx/etc etc etc. You get the idea... the m500's are good, but I wouldn't necessarily use one for the system/games volume.

If you keep it under control, 240 gigs is enough. Heck, 200 is enough. For now? Games are getting big. Real big.

You could save some on the memory... are you intending to overclock? You could get some decent ddr3/1600 ram instead.

I really like my gtx 780, but the 780ti's are a nice bump up... you might downgrade the ram speed, and trade up to the moderately faster card. You could even downgrade to a 4670k following this route, and the gpu increase would be more than you'd lose to the cpu. (which would only really show up in games that are cpu bound).

Note: General advice, rather than listing suggestion upon suggestion.... the gpu is the single biggest factor of gaming performance... spend money there first, then start spending money on supporting items, like cpu, faster ram, etc.

You could also save on the asetek cooling system, again, if you're not intending to overclock. Those AIO liquid coolers are good, and they generally offer performance equivalent to top-end air coolers, give or take... but they lack sheer capacity for super overclocking... given you're spending money already, consideration towards a 240, 280, 360 /etc unit might be warranted.

If you go with air cooling, as I recently linked another thread, the http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835103099 will serve you well, and is much cheaper.

Two 760's can be sourced cheaper than the 780/780ti, and will at least match the speed, if you want to deal with. Might consider going with the 4GB variants to give them a little more legroom... 2GB is starting to not be enough anymore.
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Mystic95Z
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« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2014, 12:30:23 PM »

For the vid card might wanna check this one out: PNY GeForce GTX 780 OC XLR8 and the review of it here: http://realhardwarereviews.com/pny-gtx-780-xlr8-oc/

It runs as fast as the TI's but is priced much better.
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jztemple2
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« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2014, 05:31:01 AM »

Thanks for the suggestions. I'm getting this computer built, rather than building it myself, so I'm a bit constrained on the components, but that's not too big a deal for me. I'm still playing around with my options; as you say, the video card is the pacing item. I'm preferring the NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 780 3GB based on this article over on Tom's Hardware where they gave the nod to the GTX 780. I'm not really looking at bleeding edge graphics as much as just being able to use this rig to run games for years in the future.

I'm not planning on overclocking; the asetek cooling comes with the rig. I did decide to upgrade to a 480 GB SSD, just to avoid having to swap out programs to keep under the limit.
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Crawley
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« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2014, 05:42:41 AM »

I would spend the $10 more for the Asus 780 GTX OC which runs faster than the reference 780s, quieter, and cooler.
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jztemple2
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« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2014, 06:38:30 AM »

Thanks for all the suggestions. As I said, because this was a custom machine I was limited in the range of components. This is the configuration I finally went with, a compromise between cost and performance. I opted for no overclocking as I'm more interested in this rig lasting as long as my previous one, which was nine years. I ordered it mid-February and it arrived yesterday. So far so good, things seem to be working fine.

Power Supply: SilverStone® 750 Watt Modular
Motherboard: Asus® Z87 Plus
Processor: Intel® Core™ i7 4770K 3.5GHz
Processor Cooler: Asetek® Liquid Cooling
Memory: 1866MHz 2x8GB (16GB)
Video Card: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 780 3GB
Hard Drive 1: Crucial® M500 SSD 480GB
Hard Drive 2: Western Digital® Black™ 1TB
Optical Drive: Asus® 16x DVD Writer
64-Bit Operating System: Microsoft® Windows 7 Home Premium
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JCC
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« Reply #7 on: March 01, 2014, 02:07:01 PM »

Wow, looks like a monster to me. Hope you enjoy it for a long time!
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-John

XBox Live ID: "JCC Davros"
jztemple2
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« Reply #8 on: March 03, 2014, 06:12:25 AM »

Quote from: JCC on March 01, 2014, 02:07:01 PM

Wow, looks like a monster to me. Hope you enjoy it for a long time!

I didn't think to check this till this evening, but when you right click the desktop "Computer" icon and check properties, you can see the "Windows Experience Index" which is a link. When I click the link I get the following:


So processor gets a 7.7 out of a possible 7.9, which I expected based on not getting the bleeding edge processor or getting overclocking. I notice that they rate the "gaming graphics" as 7.9 out of a max of 7.9, which is a surprise because even without going SLI or Crossfire there are more powerful video cards out there. I guess that the 7.9 represents not absolute performance but as fast or as powerful as currently recommended by a majority of games. I've made a note to myself to check this index every few months and see if the numbers come down as faster processors and more powerful video cards raise the bar, or as new games that arrive on the market raise the average recommended specs.
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Mystic95Z
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« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2014, 10:25:25 AM »

The WEI benchmark isn't terribly accurate to gauge a high end pc these days, my current rig (2yrs old in May) gets a 7.6 (processor, i5 2500k), 7.7 mem, and all 7.9's for graphics and I have a lowly 660 TI.
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