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Buzko
14-10-2011, 12:38 PM
Cross-posting from overclockers.com.au. I'm a filthy colonial, so links to UK bargains will not necessarily assist.

A bargain on a Dell 3011 to go with my 3007 has prompted me to get with the upgrading.

I'm going to be reusing my current mouse, kb, speakers, headphones etc, but otherwise this will be a new computer. It'll be used for the same things as the current one - gaming, video encoding, some light CAD and whatever else takes my fancy. Mostly at 2560x1600. Or whatever double that is http://forums.overclockers.com.au/images/smilies/biggrin.gif Actually I'm not silly enough to try gaming at that res with all the bells and whistles on the latest games, but my Q6600/8800GT combo didn't do to badly.

Some points


I've done some research and have chosen some parts, but would still appreciate feedback.
I'm fortunate enough not to need to pinch every penny. I'm happy to spend a bit of money now rather than upgrade later.
That being said, I like bang for buck.
I'm not currently interested in SLI or watercooling. I plan to do some overclocking but I'm more interested in using the thing.
It doesn't need to be super quiet. I sleep fine with my current PC in the room.
I'm not a zealot, but this will be an Intel/Nvidia build.
I am planning to go Z68 for video encoding and HDD caching.
I currently have two network connections and have like the flexibility it offers (one for the network, one for crossover).
I want to keep my current data but can't keep the disks, so I've gone for a bit more storage than otherwise. I'd rather be able to add space to this PC than set up a separate NAS.

Parts

Pretty sure about these:

HAF X
Intel 2500K
GTX 570 - I plan to go with whichever brand is cheapest on the day
Crucial M4 120GB - for OS and currently-playing Steam
3x 2TB WD or Samsung Green
Silverstone Strider Plus 750W ST75F-P. Don't care about modularity, just about having enough juice for the 570 and enough plugs for future SATA devices.

Not sure, but have looked at reviews:

ASUS P8Z68 Deluxe - I like being able to plug lots of things in. Not worried about the lack of onboard video port.
Windows 7 64 Pro - Don't think I need Ultimate, but could be convinced otherwise.

Haven't researched:

BD reader/DVD/CD burner - may add another of these down the track, as I have a large DVD collection to rip.
CPU cooler/fan - I'll have room for something beefy in the case.
Fans - the case comes with a couple, but I'd be looking to add 2-3 more.
16GB DDR3 (4x4GB) RAM - Is Corsair still good?
A small SSD (40GB?) - To cache the stuff on the big HDDs. I'd prefer not to partition the OS drive.
Sound card - onboard sound has been fine for this machine. Does it make a difference?
Cables - I don't care about how it looks inside, but I ran into problems with my current case making them all reach/play nice with the side panel on. May look at right-angle SATA at least.

Thanks for reading this far. Look forward to hearing your thoughts, preferably with reasons for any recommendations.

Nullkigan
14-10-2011, 01:09 PM
Not sure, but have looked at reviews:


ASUS P8Z68 Deluxe - I like being able to plug lots of things in. Not worried about the lack of onboard video port.
Windows 7 64 Pro - Don't think I need Ultimate, but could be convinced otherwise.


Haven't researched:


BD reader/DVD/CD burner - may add another of these down the track, as I have a large DVD collection to rip.
CPU cooler/fan - I'll have room for something beefy in the case.
Fans - the case comes with a couple, but I'd be looking to add 2-3 more.
16GB DDR3 (4x4GB) RAM - Is Corsair still good?
A small SSD (40GB?) - To cache the stuff on the big HDDs. I'd prefer not to partition the OS drive.
Sound card - onboard sound has been fine for this machine. Does it make a difference?
Cables - I don't care about how it looks inside, but I ran into problems with my current case making them all reach/play nice with the side panel on. May look at right-angle SATA at least.


Thanks for reading this far. Look forward to hearing your thoughts, preferably with reasons for any recommendations.



A Z68 DOES have onboard graphics, which you can overclock. It does NOT offer significant advantage over a P68 board unless you want to enable ssd caching (automagically moves commonly used files to the ssd), which you probably don't as it sounds like you know how to make symlinks anyway.
Pro is fine, Ultimate adds nothing you need.
Any retail BluRay reader will be fine. BluRay is a proprietary format, so you need a special program to watch films with it. With a retail drive, this'll probably end up being Cyberlink PowerDVD or whatever they call it these days. Otherwise you'll have to pay out on top of the cost of the drive itself, so I don't think OEM will be any cheaper.
I have a ThermalTake Frio, which I customised with Akasa Venom fans to reduce noise. The concern is not what fits in your case but what you can have fans on without blocking a RAM slot. Can't make any recommendations on that, suggest you look at what retailers have in stock then do a quick google :(
You do not need more fans with the HAF-X. You'll actually have spare ones at the end. The only thing you could conceivably add is another 200mm fan to the top (you only get one).
Corsair is still good. Get Vengeance for Sandy Bridge systems, Dominator requires 1.65 volts whilst Intel say you shouldn't go above 1.5 volts.
Don't see the point in a second SSD for cacheing. You've got plenty of space for all your regularly used applications on the 120 GB, plus room for a half dozen big games.
If you were happy with onboard before, you'll be fine. If it turns out that for some reason your old onboard was much better, you can add a dedicated sound card later. A Xonar D2X or DX should be relatively cheap.
The only cable issue you need to worry about is powersupply to 8pin ATX on the motherboard. The PSU in the HAF-X is on the bottom, so that one cable might be a little tight. Otherwise you have lots of room to play with and a couple of cable ties will make things nice and tidy. The drive bays are easy to access so you don't even need right angle sata connectors, though you'll probably get a couple with the motherboard or HDDs anyway. A modular Corsair PSU (they have nice round cables) would mean you have less stuff in the way when reaching in for that monthly dust removal.

Buzko
14-10-2011, 01:57 PM
A Z68 DOES have onboard graphics, which you can overclock. It does NOT offer significant advantage over a P68 board unless you want to enable ssd caching (automagically moves commonly used files to the ssd), which you probably don't as it sounds like you know how to make symlinks anyway.

Thanks for the points.

I realise most Z68s do have onboard video, but the P8Z68 Deluxe doesn't have any outputs for it. I was just indicating I'm not worried by that. I am interested in SSD caching. I've heard about symlinks, but I'm on XP so haven't played around with them. I ended up installing a second Steam client to put games on the much bigger drive.


Pro is fine, Ultimate adds nothing you need.Good good.


Any retail BluRay reader will be fine. BluRay is a proprietary format, so you need a special program to watch films with it. With a retail drive, this'll probably end up being Cyberlink PowerDVD or whatever they call it these days. Otherwise you'll have to pay out on top of the cost of the drive itself, so I don't think OEM will be any cheaper.Wait, so it won't just play in VLC? Seriously? That sucks!


I have a ThermalTake Frio, which I customised with Akasa Venom fans to reduce noise. The concern is not what fits in your case but what you can have fans on without blocking a RAM slot. Can't make any recommendations on that, suggest you look at what retailers have in stock then do a quick google :(
oh goody. I'll bear that in mind :/


You do not need more fans with the HAF-X. You'll actually have spare ones at the end. The only thing you could conceivably add is another 200mm fan to the top (you only get one).Heh, fair enough.


Corsair is still good. Get Vengeance for Sandy Bridge systems, Dominator requires 1.65 volts whilst Intel say you shouldn't go above 1.5 volts.Thanks much!


Don't see the point in a second SSD for cacheing. You've got plenty of space for all your regularly used applications on the 120 GB, plus room for a half dozen big games.Um, dunno about that. I'm currently running a 130GB Velociraptor for the OS/Apps drive, and while I probably should be more ruthless (or more organised to begin with), I usually find myself having to uninstall something to make room for the new hotness.


If you were happy with onboard before, you'll be fine. If it turns out that for some reason your old onboard was much better, you can add a dedicated sound card later. A Xonar D2X or DX should be relatively cheap.Cool cool.


The only cable issue you need to worry about is powersupply to 8pin ATX on the motherboard. The PSU in the HAF-X is on the bottom, so that one cable might be a little tight. Otherwise you have lots of room to play with and a couple of cable ties will make things nice and tidy. The drive bays are easy to access so you don't even need right angle sata connectors, though you'll probably get a couple with the motherboard or HDDs anyway. A modular Corsair PSU (they have nice round cables) would mean you have less stuff in the way when reaching in for that monthly dust removal.Good point on the PSU cable length. Yes... monthly dust removal... The cables on the Silverstone are described as 'sleeved' - does that mean they're round? This picture makes them look roundish (http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules/NDReviews/images/SilverstoneST75FP/DSCF2093.JPG)...

You know what would be cool? some sort of software based building thing with 3d scale models of computer parts (with simple "this is a port that needs this much clearance" gubbins on them) so you can see what fits.