Custom PC

For months I’ve been saying that I’m going to build a pc but now that I have the money I’m not sure. I’ve done tons of research and it doesnt seem super hard if you read the manual but there’s always a risk when building a pc. Should I just go for it and build it myself or buy a custom pc built by someone else. I recently came across this site cyberpowerpc.com. It allows for a lot of customization and has relatively low prices. Has anyone bought a computer from them?

Here is a public wishlist from newegg that I made the other day. What do you guys think? I’m trying to keep it below $800. Can anybody recommend a cheap and reliable power supply.

Dude imo thats not bad at all.
Although i would not advise skimping out in a PSU, 80 gold plus certification will not only save you money on your electric bill but will also provide clean power to the pc components, thus saving you money in the long run.

If you want to save some money you can get a cheaper case, but sometimes you gotta have that look you want, just make sure it cools well.

i am little iffy on the mobo tho, it has a (useless?) parallel port, that i have no idea what you would use for, and only 2 ram slots, with 4 ram slots you can get 4 sticks of 2gb ram which would be cheaper and more efficient…i think (can anyone confirm?) - nvm that actually 4 sticks would cost a few more dollars, but it still could be more efficient as you have 4 lanes to the memory instead of 2… again i could be totally wrong though, need to do some research on that.

but yeah i still would urge you to not get a “cheap” psu, as i said while it may cost you a bit more now, it will pay off later.

also i guess you can shave off $100 by going with a linux distro, but, personally i cant let go of windows yet…

if you want you can also get an amd cpu/mobo, even though i got an intel myself, amd cpu/boards are way cheaper than their intel counterparts.

one more thought, look up some components on amazon or something, one online retailer might have a cheaper component than the other. When i was buying my computer i bought half on new egg and half on amazon, and saved a bit of money.

my build if you are interested in looking: http://blenderartists.org/forum/showthread.php?256773

The PSU I chose had pretty good reviews. What about this one? http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817341017

So many motherboards out there, its hard to choose the right one. Just found this one with more ram slots. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813121506 Is 1600 ram compatible with a mobo that supports up to 1333

I did notice some of the components in my list were slightly cheaper on amazon

For psu, again i would recommend 80+GOLD here is a filtered list on new egg: http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&N=100007657%20600037998&IsNodeId=1&bop=And&Order=BESTMATCH&PageSize=20

not sure on the mobo, but you can go with a p67 chipset…

Every time I’ve built a machine using an ASUS mobo it’s been a pleasure. I’ve seen some crazy MSI boards but I’m not sold on their integrity. I am mostly speaking from a usability/utility standpoint… you want to get more information about actual performance from some of the more hardcore power users.

As far as CyberpowerPC, my first non-Dell was through those guys. That’s been a pretty long time ago but they were fast, the machine ran nice, I could cut out the stuff I didn’t need, and you don’t have to worry about compatibility on components.

Definitely listen to DDD on the PSU… although I would say that if you hit your spending limit I might make the other parts a priority and plan to swap into the 80+Gold later… just make sure you actually do it.

get one of these video cards instead they have 2GB of VRAM for about the same price.
with only 1GB,
when Cycles cant render your scene you will be mad that you didnt spend the extra $20 to get the extra 1GB of VRAM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&N=100006662&IsNodeId=1&Description=geforce%20560%202GB&bop=And&Order=PRICE&PageSize=20

Since 1994 (the year Commodore died) I’ve built, or had a hand in building, dozens PCs. Last year, I did a crap-load of catch-up research and built two more. After 12-plus months, they’re both running fine.

Here are my recommendations:

  • If you can find a local computer store with acceptable prices*, shop local rather than online. It’s far cheaper to drive back and forth to bricks-n-mortar for resolving issues as opposed to facing (possibly) multiple shipping charges. Even driving 50 or so miles to a store in a nearby town/city can be cheaper under those circumstances.
  • Have the local store do the build if you aren’t comfortable with doing it yourself. If anything goes wrong during the build, they can pull another motherboard/CPU/case or what-have-you from stock. You can’t. Also, they rarely charge more than $50 and they’ve got experience. Hook-ups between front-of-case and motherboard can be confusing and that’s where they earn their money.
  • The most important consideration for a power supply is the 80 PLUS rating, not the color (bronze, silver or gold). You can read more about that here. All power supplies, even the most expensive ones, will lose efficiency over time. If you’re really concerned about wasting energy, plan to replace your power supply once a year.
  • Four RAM slots is definitely better. Don’t be afraid to populate them with 4gb sticks, two for now if that’s all your budget allows.
  • As for motherboard manufacturer, they’re all pretty much equal these days. If you pay in excess of $100, you’ll get reasonable quality. All other criteria are personal preference. Every manufacturer has their duds and someone is going to end up with them and flood the forums with stories of woe.
  • Save part of your budget for a UPS. NEVER use a surge protector, only a UPS. It’s the only way to isolate your computer (or TV, or stereo, or whatever) from dangerous surges. Surge protectors cannot under ANY circumstances react fast enough to prevent damage. I stress this even more if you live in a rural area.
  • Get the fastest nVidia GPU that fits your budget. Right now, these are the cards best supported by Blender.
  • Buy a case with as much extra room behind the motherboard as you can. It makes cable routing far easier and, even if you aren’t doing the build yourself, the guy who is will be far less grumpy and therefore do a better job.
  • As tempting and trendy as it might be, don’t buy so-called green hard drives if you expect performance. The modicum of extra power you use is worth it. If you’re really concerned about power consumption, you have two choices: a) make sure to use sleep/suspend modes or, b) don’t buy a computer (or any other electronic gear). :0
  • The size of the power supply you need will mostly depend on the amount of RAM you plan to end up with as well as which GPU you buy (or will upgrade to). The minimum size for a graphics workstation is 650 watts. A PSU that size will run a single GPU system (such as the nVidia GTX-560 Ti), three hard drives and 16gb of RAM.

Common sense should tell you the rest.

  • Here ‘acceptable’ doesn’t necessarily mean ‘cheapest.’ When you factor out shipping charges (if any) a local store with slightly higher prices can still be far-and-away the better choice.

That’s a LOT of great advice. I thought of something else that I did that screwed me over a bit and I had to pay (in a few ways) because of it.
If you partition your HDD for your OS don’t trim it down to where you only have a few gigs spare. The amount to leave might vary depending on who you talk to but leaving too little can and will result in catastrophic failure. If you decide to put your OS on a solid state drive make sure it is actually big enough as well… For me, at least 20gigs extra is enough headspace. Also make sure that if you do partition out a storage drive, that you actually configure it properly and point all of your browsers, scratch disks, etc in that direction.
I have mine set up with
OS: main OS and critical installs for things like Anti-Virus and drivers
Storage Tank: Files I work with regularly and installs.
Vault (separate drive): Backups, files that I need but don’t access regularly (tax documents and that kinda stuff), etc.

You definitely don’t have to follow my layout, but whatever you DO choose to do, plan it out ahead of time. Re-sizing partitions can put you in some bad situations if you don’t have a way of saving your critical info.

your build is on the right track. The Previous posters have been spot on, get a mobo that has 4 ram slots, because, like previously stated, the more physical ram sticks you have the faster your ram will operate. You definitely want a graphics card with more ram if you plan to use cycles (on larger scenes in blender internal I quite frequently run out of ram, and I have 16gb).

You guys are awesome. Thanks for the advice :slight_smile:
Updated the list(Link)
What do you guys think?
Looks like I’m going to spend more money than I thought. I still need to find a monitor

UPS don’t forget !

If your going to build your own PC, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE make sure you use anti static precautions. I dont agree with simply touching a piece of metal before you start…an anti static wrist strap is a must. Don’t place any of your components on your carpet or rub them against balloons (you’d be surprised) be very careful. Do this and immortality shall be yours :smiley: i say this because of a video i watched the other day on youtube of someone building a pc and he could have potentially destroyed every piece of hardware he bought lol

not certain if it is worth to build it or buy it in store ?

but for instance how do you select the casing size ?

let me give example of what i got and what i would like !

i have an older ACER 32 bits vista with intel chipset set
which is working fine
but may be time to upgrade to a 64 bits [email protected]

i did see a lot of mother board at Neweeg
but not easy to choose which one !

ok here is a crazy idea may be

is there anyway that i could simply remove the mother from my old Acer and replace it with a new mother board
64 bits like an I7 may be !
seen some board for I7 around $300!

what about the OS i guess it does not come with the mother board and have to buy a new one here too !

thanks for any advices

Well, yep you could buy a new mobo and then stick an i7 in it. As long as you have a power supply to support your upgrades and your case is capable of housing an ATX motherboard. You would need to reinstall your OS even if you use the same hard drive on the new machine, the bios setting etc would not match those of your current install.

building a pc yourself is often a lot cheaper than buying a ready built PC in store.

well i’m lookng at sales right now which are beginnign for christmas season
and I7 is around $1000

so not certain at all that i can build one for less then that !

but if i could change only the mother board in my old Acer machine
which is equipped with Q6600 with a TDP of 100 Watts

which is closed to the I7 TDP i think i might be able to upgrade with a new I7 IVY mother board may be which is supposed to be using a lot less power

but wondering if possible at all!

sorry but what mobo word means ?

if i have to buy a new Cabinet and power supply cables ect…
i mean this might cost a lot more and be time consumming too i think

i have to check on Newegg to see if they have the new IVY chip mother board

but this new IVY 7 seems to be interesting
but also check out about this new GPU the Knight chip
which is supposed to be a revolution and if compatabile with IVY board
mind you it use a PCI socket so not on the mother board itself!

but there is the whole question how to set it up
probably have to get also a new HD and get window 8 and install this for the new mother board

have yu build a few systems like that before ?

thanks

mobo is short for motherboard :smiley: I built my PC and all in all it cost around £500-£600. I bought what i could afford and when i could afford it. Its not the best PC in the world and a couple of my friends have much better PC’s than me…but it runs any game at max settings and can render pretty fast in blender. if you could just go and buy a i7 PC for $1000 and it has good specs etc, then go for that if you can afford it. But, if the specs are like yeaaaah, we have an i7…but your graphics card is a potato…then you should look at something else…

well have to wait a little later this fall to see what comes out and at what cost
then i’ll check more on this new IVY and knight chip
don’t know we should be able to find new PC on market with this IVY system this fall
then compare prices and see if i upgrade my PC or buy a new one

i would like to change machine this fall or later on next spring
so no rush really unless i loose my machine before that time and hopefuly not!

thanks

I’ve been thinking of spending and extra $200 so I can get an i7 and a gtx 570( or 660 ti)

660 ti has more than double the cuda cores than the 570 but it has half the memory bus width
Can anybody explain how having a lower memory bus width affects performance?
Has anybody tested the 660 ti with cycles?