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dean1484
dean1484 UberDork
4/2/13 1:52 p.m.

I am kind of in the market for another computer. I have built many of the ones I have had in the past from parts I source from the local MicroCenter or from on line.

What I want is the computer equivalent of a sports car. It needs to have high HP lots of ram a good / excellent video card. two good size HDds (probably run them as a mirror to each other)

What I usually do is look at the processors offered select that and then work my way out from there. With the processor selected I then move on the motherboards and from there is is just a matter of selecting the correct add on's that play nice with the motherboard. Obviously I look at cost versus performance.

I am not cheap I just like getting exactly what I want / need and not getting all the other stuff that I don't. All the extras add complexity and in the end cost.

Is there some one that makes something like this? Or am I still better off just building one.

Is there a place like a "you build it PC" Place an order for all the parts and a box shows up for you to put together.

What says you all?

Rxbalt
Rxbalt Reader
4/2/13 2:17 p.m.

I've started using PC Part Picker for planning out my next compy, pretty simple to use and looks on Newegg, Tiger, and the like to find sales and rebates. As far as I've seen it also detects incompatibilities.

Edit: That sounded really canoe-y.

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH UltimaDork
4/2/13 2:43 p.m.

What do you want to do with it? Just as a good autocross car is different from a good drag car it depends on what you want.

From the way you build PCs you seem to be into non-GPU-optimized heavy calculation programs or video editing, is that correct? This is the wrong way for just about any other use.

If you just want a PC that "feels fast" you want a fast HDD (or RAID setup) and some extra RAM, modern CPUs are never the bottleneck for everyday activities. For gaming you want the same as the above but a higher-end CPU and a very good video card.

Here's a good page to bring yourself up to date on the best parts:

http://www.maximumpc.com/best-of-the-best

scardeal
scardeal Dork
4/2/13 2:45 p.m.

You might want to check out the Ars Technica System guide:
http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2012/12/ars-technica-system-guide-december-2012/

It looks like you might fall into the "Hot Rod" category.

aircooled
aircooled PowerDork
4/2/13 3:16 p.m.
HiTempguy
HiTempguy UltraDork
4/2/13 3:25 p.m.
GameboyRMH wrote: What do you want to do with it?

Exactly. For most people, more GPU than CPU is in order nowadays unless your doing calculations of some sort.

The best I've ever done is a gentleman on the local car forums also does a ton with computers. He builds computers on the side.

He basically has tons of used for less than a month equipment, all the higher end name brand stuff, and it isn't worth anything. He can build a $1500 computer for $500 for you. Might want to look into something like that locally.

The0retical
The0retical Reader
4/2/13 3:27 p.m.

I saw these promoted somewhere and they appear to be up to date from what I can tell.

CPUs
Video Cards

They appear to aggregate info from multiple sites which gives me a bit more confidence. Rooting through multiple websites gets a little old especially since the info on the "best" cards is often several months old. Plus the comparison tools and price tools are pretty handy to sort the wheat from the chaff.

It's similar to that laptopcheck website just without the ungodly amount of confusing information on it without any citations.

JeffHarbert
JeffHarbert Reader
4/2/13 3:36 p.m.

If you're not playing video games, onboard Intel HD video is all you need. If you're not rendering audio or video, a dual core CPU is plenty. I just built a box with Intel's recently released Ivy Bridge G2020 CPU, MSI ZH77A-G43 motherboard, and 8Gb RAM. I re-used my 300Gb 10kRPM Velociraptor boot drive, 1Tb storage drive, and case. It even handles Star Trek Online perfectly. Along with a nice 80 Plus Gold certified power supply, I spent about $260. Except for switching to an SSD for the boot drive, anything more would be overkill and a waste of money. (I'm a longtime hardware guy who's built over a hundred boxes.)

dean1484
dean1484 UberDork
4/2/13 3:56 p.m.

I am playing video games and I do some video editing. I also do a lot of Autocad. So Ya I want / need a "hot rod".

JeffHarbert
JeffHarbert Reader
4/2/13 4:52 p.m.

In that case, my motherboard, Intel Core i7-3770K, Radeon HD 7870 2Gb, 16Gb RAM, 256Gb SSD for the boot drive.

mndsm
mndsm PowerDork
4/2/13 5:03 p.m.

What kinda games? I mean, damn near any GPU can handle Minecraft, but many will cry at the sight of Crysis 3. I tend to do overkill, mostly so I don't have to again for a few years. I'm scared of my next rig.

Conquest351
Conquest351 SuperDork
4/2/13 5:03 p.m.
JeffHarbert wrote: In that case, my motherboard, Intel Core i7-3770K, Radeon HD 7870 2Gb, 16Gb RAM, 256Gb SSD for the boot drive.

I'm kinda lurking here because this is relevant to my interests. What would something like this setup cost? What kind of power supply and all that good stuff? I play some high graphic intensive games.

dean1484
dean1484 UberDork
4/2/13 5:59 p.m.

Believe it or not the latest train simulator is a computer killer. The biggest one is when I do video editing. It will make what is otherwise a good machine cry for mercy.

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH UltimaDork
4/2/13 6:31 p.m.

Well then you were mostly on the right track, just get a good high-end video card (3GB video RAM, this is what you'll be missing later on if you don't get lots) and don't look at the mobo as an afterthought.

JeffHarbert
JeffHarbert Reader
4/2/13 11:06 p.m.

In reply to Conquest351:

Roughly $1150 for those parts. Add another $250 if you want to run dual 7870s, and another $100 or so if you need a good case.

curtis73
curtis73 UltraDork
4/3/13 1:12 a.m.

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH UltimaDork
4/3/13 9:35 a.m.
JeffHarbert wrote: In reply to Conquest351: Roughly $1150 for those parts. Add another $250 if you want to run dual 7870s, and another $100 or so if you need a good case.

SLI/Crossfire is a waste of money, I've done it, only the very high end games benefit a little. It's better and cheaper to just upgrade more regularly.

scardeal
scardeal Dork
4/3/13 9:59 a.m.

In terms of storage, I would recommend
SSD for OS/applications
RAID5 (3 drives) for data

There's no reason to get less than 16GB of RAM. Considering AutoCAD, rendering and games, I'd get the max the motherboard accepts. I don't keep up with video cards and CPUs as much these days, so I can't really be helpful there.

If you're doing rendering, I'd investigate whether the software uses CUDA or similar, and get a video card that supports it. Also, if it supports CUDA, I'd get my hands on as many GPU cores as you can afford. I'd also get as many cores as you can on the CPU.

JeffHarbert
JeffHarbert Reader
4/3/13 10:32 a.m.

In reply to GameboyRMH: I agree, but some people like the option.

In reply to scardeal: In my experience, using RAID on desktop hardware is a waste of time, unless you're using a server-quality RAID controller with associated software (very expensive) and are very familiar with how to rebuild an array when a drive fails. I find it far easier to use separate OS and data drives, be religious about backups of the data drive, and take an image of the OS drive at least monthly.

dean1484
dean1484 UberDork
4/3/13 10:32 a.m.

@scardeal ya basically my thoughts.

My usual mantra has been to get the processor that is not quite at the edge of the curve. These are usually at least 1/2 the $$$ and the latest and greatest if not less. I really like the i7. I have a lap top that uses it and it has been a great machine.

I agree about as much ram as possible. That has always been my strategy when building computers. As for a video card I am going to research that. There are some high dollar cards out there and if they are worth it I am not apposed to spending the $$$$. They seem to be one of the biggest bottlenecks in a machines performance.

As for motherboards again I usually surf the web once I have determined the processor I want and see what is the best for the processor and what trad offs there may be with respect to video cards. I know in years past if you can keep the manufactures of the components the same things seem to work much better.

dean1484
dean1484 UberDork
4/3/13 10:47 a.m.

So these are the processors I am looking at at the moment. The 3930K seems like the way to go BUT I have to do a cost/performance comparison between that and the 980 and the 960

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH UltimaDork
4/3/13 10:52 a.m.

The i7-3820 would give you better single-thread performance, which when you have 4+ effective cores is definitely the most important kind of performance these days.

dean1484
dean1484 UberDork
4/3/13 2:10 p.m.
GameboyRMH wrote: The i7-3820 would give you better single-thread performance, which when you have 4+ effective cores is definitely the most important kind of performance these days.

This is where I get confused. Is the strait out GHz gain with the of the 3820 better than the 3930K that has more cores more threads and a larger cash but .40 GHz slower clock speed?

I wonder what the cost difference between the two of them is.

Type Q
Type Q Dork
4/3/13 2:15 p.m.
dean1484 wrote: As for a video card I am going to research that. There are some high dollar cards out there and if they are worth it I am not apposed to spending the $$$$. They seem to be one of the biggest bottlenecks in a machines performance.

Sometimes I forget how lucky I am. My brother is a GPU architect/guru at Nvidia. Whenever I am considering a PC build, I'll call him tell what I am planning to do with it, what my budget is and how long I plan to use it before replacing. What I get in return is a recommendation for chip set, clock speeds, etc. I also get the insiders view on who's hardware fails the least and what plays well together. His recommendations have always worked as advertised.

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH UltimaDork
4/3/13 8:15 p.m.
dean1484 wrote:
GameboyRMH wrote: The i7-3820 would give you better single-thread performance, which when you have 4+ effective cores is definitely the most important kind of performance these days.
This is where I get confused. Is the strait out GHz gain with the of the 3820 better than the 3930K that has more cores more threads and a larger cash but .40 GHz slower clock speed? I wonder what the cost difference between the two of them is.

That's the difference between single-thread performance and multi-thread performance. Single-threaded performance is basically all about the clock speed. Multi-threaded performance is basically your combined processing power. Most apps are not multi-threaded so they'll be pegging one of your cores (or half of the HT capability on one of your cores) while everything else sits idle or doing little running background apps. That's where higher clock speed is better.

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