computer build June 2011

A lot of people have been asking about computer builds lately so I figured I would post the setup I just built(June 2011). The systems is for 75% gaming 25% rendering. The budget was around $1000 but a couple hundred over was ok(for the most part avoided cheaper parts that always end in tears). I personally believe that anything over that starts to lose its bang for the buck. Instead of spending $2500 on one computer now, I personally think its better to go with one $1250 machine now and another $1250 later when that one starts to get dated. This way the system is usually more up to date(architecture, power consumption, compatibility, DirectX version, etc.). Of course these are just my opinions based on experience and never having $2500 to blow in one go

1 Motherboard-ASROCK Z68 EXTREME4 $189
2 Video Card/GPU-RADEON HD6870 1GB $188 each $376 total
1 Power-CORSAIR 650W $90
1 Cpu-INTEL CORE I5 2500K $225
1 Memory-2x4GB KINGSTON HYPERX 1600 $85
1 Hard Drive-1TB $60
1 DVD Drive-ASUS $21
2 Molex to PCI E adapters-$5 each
2 DIY Dust Filter Material-NYLON MESH PAINT FILTER $2 each
1 Operating System-WINDOWS 7 $130
1 Shipping $13

Total: $1303 before rebates and discounts $1215 after.

220mm case fan had to be mounted on exterior because of heat-sink(just bolted on the other side crude but effective), dust filters because house is dusty and not every opening was filtered. Removed usb door so it doesn’t obscure clock and case temp display when looking at it from where I sit. Cable routing needs work still. Problems installing Windows(duh).

Why Did You Choose That?
Ati Crossfire Radeon HD6870 1GB: Power per dollar, good discount. No matter what side of the fence you are on neither ati or nvidia will work for everything(please don’t turn into ati vs nvidia war, I could care less and have used both and both worked for me).
Z68 instead of P67: Probably could overclock more with P67 but I figured that someday there might actually be a useful program that can benefit from intel on die gpu acceleration.
Kingston Memory: Because the coin came up heads.
Only 650W: Would definitely not go any lower.
Intel 4 core vs AMD more cores: I’m not going to starting any wars, I’ve had both AMD and Intel and both worked just fine.
Senty Case: Figured it was worth a try. I like big quite fans that still move a lot of air.

Regrets: Crossfire(and SLI for that matter) are kind of hit and miss. Might have been more reliably served by a more expensive single card solution even though it wouldn’t have had near the power per dollar ratio. Might still get solid state drive.

Will post overclocking results and fps and render times when I get the chance.

All 1280X1024(I really need a new screen). Everything turned up as far as it will let me go.

Not overclocked:
Single GPU
Dirt3 51fps average

Dirt3 91fps average
3DMark Vantage around 25000

Overclocked 4.8ghz
3Dmark Vantage around 29000

not bad :slight_smile: i built a similar rig recently though mine cost around £1200 (not sure how that works out in dollars). The i5 2500k us supposed to give alot of punch for the price and i went with the same graphics card. The only thing i would be careful with would be making sure you have adequate power, especially if you’re considering overclocking it

I did a lot of research and used power calculators and I was surprised as well that 650 was enough, even when overclock(we will see if it works in the real world). Its a testament to the efficiency of 32nm. I was really surprised at how “efficient” the 6870s were especially when they double has heaters:mad:.

1200 Dollars=741 Pounds=838 Euro

All parts from Newegg

Edit: I also should have clarified that I am not going for max OC. Probably somewhere around 4ghz maybe a little higher but not by much, so shouldn’t need to increase voltage much.

1215? It seems very worthy as a computer!

i can imagine its going to do the trick :slight_smile: yeah i used a couple and it put mine at about 700w so i went with 750 in case i decide to OC :slight_smile:
it should be more than powerful enough for most modern applications :slight_smile:

With that much resources at your disposal, you sure are onto a winner.

Well I feel much better about my build now. Tomshardware just came out with their June $1000 system and its very similar(my price included windows theirs didn’t), including the same 650W power supply. According to there power draw graphs overclocked it consumed 399W. I’m using 6870s but it still should be alright. I ran everything at 100% and never had issues.

I had it overclocked to 4.8ghz just to see how high it would go and ran prime95 for over an hour(I know that’s not long enough but I got bored, good enough for benchmarking though) and never hit higher than 72C where theirs hit 90C at 4.5ghz. Even though I have thermal headroom I probably won’t push it too much harder for voltage reasons(and I think 72C is plenty hot enough, though it probably wouldn’t hit that in real world applications). On a side note one of the cores seems to need higher voltage than the others to run stably. At no point did I ever fail to boot to windows.