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Thread: Price-check for New PC

  1. #1

    Default Price-check for New PC

    My current/old PC has a decent CPU - i7-2600 - but I'd rather not go into why it has a bottom-rung 1GB graphics card.

    Suffice to say that a year ago it was barely enough for me to sluggishly-play Fallout: New Vegas, and ATM is simply incapable of playing Skyrim.*

    Both of my games are modded to the utmost, but playing vanilla is simply not an option.

    So I need an upgrade, either to build myself or to purchase (likely as a custom-build).

    The build I'm thinking of is:

    CPU: i7-4790K 4.0 Ghz
    GPU: GTX 970 4GB
    RAM: 16GB (8GBx2) 2133Mhz
    HDD: 3TB + 256GB SSD

    As a custom-build on one of those sites that do it, I would pay, including all add-ons, accessories, and software, around $1900.

    From quick Googling, I could build a near-identical machine myself for up to $150 less.

    Should I keep looking into part-prices for DIY? $150 in savings is not worth, IMO, the hassle involved, the extra labor, and the lack of warranty.

    Thoughts?

    *Interestingly, New Vegas the way I modded it would run reliably but with obscene loading times. Skyrim, on the other hand almost-constantly either froze, CTD'd, or went into ILS (infinite loading screen), with the load times being very reasonable when actually leading to something.
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  2. #2
    The very model of a modern Moderator Xiahou's Avatar
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    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    Why not just upgrade your graphics card and get more RAM if needed? I think the i7 CPU should be able to handle any modern games- most are GPU, not CPU bound.

    You'd save a pile of cash that way....My main rig is a 5 year old PhenomII. I upgraded the GPU not too long ago and it runs everything fine that I play- certainly Skyrim is no problem.
    Last edited by Xiahou; 01-06-2015 at 04:40.
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  3. #3

    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    I should have mentioned that wouldn't be the preferred option.

    I mean, the upgrade isn't just for Skyrim, though that's the most proximate example. I'd like as modern a rig as is both possible and relatively cost-effective to last me through the decade, so I'm picking out the above hardware based on value benchmarks. For example, up from the i7-4790K and the GTX 970 prices seem to skyrocket with rapidly-diminishing returns (don't know nothing about Radeon ). Now, having fixated on these specific CPU and GPU, I find that my current motherboard would not be compatible.

    Leaving aside basic Microsoft/AV software, there's not then much left for me to conserve besides the case and the monitor, with standard keyboard and mouse being trivial outlays. Suffice to say I'm not satisfied with my existing 20'' monitor, and, heck, I'm not above paying $50 for a nicer-looking case.
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  4. #4

    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    Sounds to me like you are not too hard up for money, and you'll be kicking yourself if it turns out that you needed the warranty and didn't get one. You'd pay $50 for a nicer case, but not sure about $150 more to have a warranty? Well, I guess it depends on how much a nicer case means to you, but I'd say that a warranty would be a least 3 times as important.
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  5. #5
    Backordered Member CrossLOPER's Avatar
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    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    Chuck one of the HDDs and buy a bigger SSD. As of now, a 1TB Samsung Evo costs about 450 on newegg. Do you actually have stuff to store on the HDDs or are you playing games on them? If that is the case, you should use SSDs. I still think it is a bit premature to jump on the hyperthreading train with the i7, especially if you are just gaming, but that is your call. 1900 seems a little low, honestly. You aren't skimping on the MBR and the PSU, are you?
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  6. #6
    BrownWings: AirViceMarshall Senior Member Furunculus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    i like the idea of 1TB ssd's, split 128GB for Windows and 850GB for games/apps.

    intend to do that on mine as soon as 1tb M.2 ssd's with NVME support arrive.

    build looks good, if you are running hi-res (2560x1440 or more), then i'd tilt the cash more towards GPU and less towards CPU.
    Furunculus Maneuver: Adopt a highly logical position on a controversial subject where you cannot disagree with the merits of the proposal, only disagree with an opinion based on fundamental values. - Beskar

  7. #7

    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    Quote Originally Posted by Brandy Blue
    Sounds to me like you are not too hard up for money, and you'll be kicking yourself if it turns out that you needed the warranty and didn't get one. You'd pay $50 for a nicer case, but not sure about $150 more to have a warranty? Well, I guess it depends on how much a nicer case means to you, but I'd say that a warranty would be a least 3 times as important.
    Point taken, but I was being a bit facetious there.

    Quote Originally Posted by CrossLOPER
    Chuck one of the HDDs and buy a bigger SSD. As of now, a 1TB Samsung Evo costs about 450 on newegg. Do you actually have stuff to store on the HDDs or are you playing games on them? If that is the case, you should use SSDs. I still think it is a bit premature to jump on the hyperthreading train with the i7, especially if you are just gaming, but that is your call. 1900 seems a little low, honestly. You aren't skimping on the MBR and the PSU, are you?
    I actually do relatively-little gaming, but I do want to just be able to sit down and play/mod without having to worry about how many FPS this or that texture will eat up. I mean, even on vanilla Skyrim, on my current PC I get 20-30 FPS. It's just annoying.

    I do need the storage over SSD. 256GB is definitely more than enough for my games and other programs. Meanwhile, for movies, music, books, pictures, etc. (not to mention the full backup of my old XP-era data) - I'll need 1 TB just for that.

    With 3GB storage, I'll definitely not need to worry about storage again this decade. Anyway, from 2GB to 3GB of storage it's like $25, so why not?

    For power supply, I would be getting something like 650W, and the motherboard would be in the $100-150 range.
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  8. #8
    Iron Fist Senior Member Husar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    I agree with Xiahou, why not just change the GPU?

    I'm also on a Phenom II and if it hadn't started to bluescreen sometimes (I suspect a faulty mainboard), I would still be quite happy with it.
    If I'm not mistaken, an i7 is quite a bit faster, even the somewhat older models.

    And unless you want to overclock the machine or other fancy custom things, an i7 can often be replaced with a Xeon. They're meant for servers but are basically i7s without the overclocking functionality and with a lower price.

    I'm not entirely sure what you mean by warranty as individual parts should have a warranty as well and if you can afford a 1900$ upgrade, then you can certainly afford the "risk" of just trying a GPU-upgrade first.
    I also like to buy at smaller local shops/companies if available, I don't know the situation in the US but the store where I bought most of my current PC hardware is pretty great and they are very friendly and helpful if there is a problem.


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  9. #9

    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    an i7 can often be replaced with a Xeon
    From a quick search, available Xeons seem to be either more expensive or inferior to the i7 that I'm looking at.

    I'm not entirely sure what you mean by warranty as individual parts should have a warranty as well
    A machine warranty is valuable for obvious reasons.

    you can certainly afford the "risk" of just trying a GPU-upgrade first.
    Time and effort are also part of the equation.

    I also like to buy at smaller local shops/companies if available, I don't know the situation in the US but the store where I bought most of my current PC hardware is pretty great and they are very friendly and helpful if there is a problem.
    No idea, but there's a certain stereotype here...
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  10. #10
    Mr Self Important Senior Member Beskar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    I have to admit, interested in a rig myself at some point. I just seem to fail at getting the balance right. It is like "you can buy gaming tower at £800" and it looks pretty subpar, then it is like "or this one at £2000!" which you then have to finetune and it ends up at like "£2500" and you are like "I don't want to spend that much.."

    All I want is a pretty silent, good cooling (even water cooled) right where Star Citizen can be ran at 60fps on max settings!

    Not even sure those super expensive ones would be too much overkill either.
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  11. #11

    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    Am getting something along the lines described in OP. Will report on performance in a week.

    What are some personal benchmarking software I could use in the testing? The final test, of course, will be how sexily Skyrim runs with 500+ (Merged) esps and 3/4 of the textures and meshes replaced, all on ultra settings.

    If it all works with no further configuration, I will give praise to Allah forever.
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  12. #12
    Infinite Jest Member easytarget's Avatar
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    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    Not sure where you're located, but if in US and you decide you want to custom build you should sign up at the forum of MaxForce PC and describe what you want and he'll quote it out for you (and make recommendations as you see fit). This is a boutique builder who will put a system together basically by any specification you can describe using any specific parts by brand you want.

    I didn't feel like building one the last time I needed a system so I got him to do it for me, it ended up being maybe 100 bucks more than if I had piece parted everything through Newegg myself. And it came with a 3 year warranty which thanks to an lightening strike netted me a replaced system. I also had a failed sound card he replaced by sending me a brand new boxed SB card (the one that has front mounted access).

    http://www.maxforcepc.com/

    Anyway, that's my 2 cents. Well, here's one extra penny of input, on the GTX970 choices, get the twin frozr MSI, it has cooling that is so good you can run it w/ no fans up to 40C, in fact it comes with that fan curve defaulted. Every other GTX I've run S2 or R2 on ran w/ high fan noise & high temps (i'm talking low to mid 80s), the custom cooling on MSI under full load is low 60's on ultra.

    http://www.guru3d.com/articles-pages...-review,1.html
    Last edited by easytarget; 01-17-2015 at 04:08.

  13. #13
    Mr Self Important Senior Member Beskar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    For performance checking, you want to run a cryengine game. Cryengine is currently the most demanding and advanced game-engine, with a lot of brand new games uses their engine. So Crysis 3, Evolve, StarCitizen, Kingdom Come: Deliverance, etc.

    It is why I would love my hypothetical system to run one at 60fps, it will be very time relevant unless there is a big breakthrough in technology.

    Quote Originally Posted by Furunculus View Post
    i like the idea of 1TB ssd's, split 128GB for Windows and 850GB for games/apps.

    intend to do that on mine as soon as 1tb M.2 ssd's with NVME support arrive.
    Considering my gaming folder is over 500, when would you expect one of these to arrive on the market?
    Last edited by Beskar; 01-18-2015 at 15:11.
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  14. #14

    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    Spent the last week tooling around with the new PC and with Skyrim. At first, stability was outrageously-low and I thought I would have to pare-down my mod selection and texture-packs.

    With fixes for RAM and VRAM allocation, I can now run Skyrim quite well. Not well enough to have any AA or ASF, or an ENB (though who has time to sort those out anyway?), but well-enough to go Ultra with near-perfect stability, and with just about every mesh improved and most-every texture upgraded from 512x512 to 2Kx2K or even 4Kx4K, not to mention the hundreds of non-graphical mods.

    I limit my FPS to 50, just arbitrarily. I don't think I've ever had higher than 30 FPS average on a PC game anyway. Stutter is rare.

    Good stuff. Praise to Allah SWT.
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  15. #15
    Mr Self Important Senior Member Beskar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    You should limit it at 60fps, Monty. That is pretty much as much as we can 'see'. People who go over that are rather deluded.

    Normal television is only 20fps too, for example.
    Last edited by Beskar; 01-27-2015 at 19:28.
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  16. #16
    BrownWings: AirViceMarshall Senior Member Furunculus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    Quote Originally Posted by Beskar View Post
    Considering my gaming folder is over 500, when would you expect one of these to arrive on the market?
    there were at least three PCIe3.0/NVME controllers suitable for the m.2 format announced last week at CES.
    that said, it seems that we will first see a number of PCIe 2.0 controllers with AHCI, as actual products sporting them were announced at the same time.

    i'd say we'll see the 3.0/NVME m.2 drives arrive in 1tb capacities in summer.

    need to be careful about the board tho.
    with Intel socket 1150 (Z97 chipset) it can only support 2x PCIe 2.0 lanes from the chipset, whereas socket 2011-3 (X99 chipset) has enough lanes to provide 4x PCIe 3.0 direct from the CPU.

    there is a nice looking AMD AM3+ (970 chipset) board from asrock just announced that has a 4x PCIe 2.0 m.2 slot, so matched with a cheap 8320e CPU might make a very good cheap gaming rig...
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  17. #17
    BrownWings: AirViceMarshall Senior Member Furunculus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    if i was going to recommend a cheap pre-built gaming box right now i think you'd be hard pressed to find better value than this:

    http://www.ebuyer.com/667105-cyberpo...op-pc-ecc01216

    should be able to play everything at 1920x1080 @ 60fps. maybe not at max settings in a brand new AAA title, but very close.
    Furunculus Maneuver: Adopt a highly logical position on a controversial subject where you cannot disagree with the merits of the proposal, only disagree with an opinion based on fundamental values. - Beskar

  18. #18
    Iron Fist Senior Member Husar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    Eh, this only surfaced recently, but in case you are wondering why your 4GB VRAM card may not work like a 4GB card in Skyrim, maybe it's because it really is just a 3.5GB card or a really slow 4GB card: http://www.pcgamer.com/why-nvidias-g...han-35gb-vram/

    AMD has released a corresponding ad: http://hexus.net/tech/news/graphics/...r9-290x-price/


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  19. #19
    Iron Fist Senior Member Husar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    Here's a relevant interview. The subtitles are a bit fast towards the end but I found it worth watching:



    "Topic is tired and needs a nap." - Tosa Inu

  20. #20

    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    What, you couldn't find a Hitler video for that? I'm sure this will be relevant to me in 5 years or so, but by then it won't matter.

    Anyway, over here I've loaded up on FXAA post-processing, because it turned out my game could handle ENBs fine but it's too much of a pain to find a good-looking one.

    Overall quite satisfied - I'm not an enthusiast or a "screen archer", after all.
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  21. #21
    Iron Fist Senior Member Husar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Price-check for New PC

    I didn't search for anything, I found it in a discussion. And it's much better than any Hitler video IMO, watched it several times myself.

    I posted about that because you said you loaded a ton of high-res texture mods and that may very well require more VRAM. With FXAA it may be less of a problem, but proper AA would also require more VRAM and so on. It's also not that the GTX 970 is necessarily a bad card, just that some people reported stuttering if a game required the use of all 4GB of VRAM.

    If you don't think it will become a problem, then just enjoy it!


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