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New PC - System Specs

Discussion in 'General Software & Hardware Forum:' started by Squiddy, Nov 1, 2012.

  1. Squiddy

    Squiddy Guest

    So, my current computer is officially 3 years and 8 months old as of an hour ago:

    Mobo: Gigabyte EP45-UD3R
    CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E8400
    RAM: 6GB DDR2 PC2-6400 RAM (2x 2GB OCZ & 2x 1GB Geil)
    GPU: nVidia 9800GTX+
    HDD: 1TB Samsung Spinpoint HDD
    PSU: Antec EarthWatts 500W PSU
    Case: Antec Sonata 3

    After a lot of research I have compiled the following system:

    Mobo: Gigabyte Z77X-D3H - http://www.novatech....a-z77x-d3h.html
    CPU: Intel i5 3450 - http://www.novatech....0637i53450.html
    RAM: Keeping what I've got for now
    GPU: Ditto
    HDD: Ditto
    SSD: Samsung 830 Series 126GB - http://www.novatech....-7pc128bww.html
    PSU: Corsair 430W v2 CX -
    Case: Cooler Master Storm Enforcer -

    Any thoughts/comments/advice/criticism would be greatly appreciated. I'm hoping I haven't missed anything too glaringly obvious... the mobo definitely fits into the case ;)
  2. Levi

    Levi Moderator Staff Member

    shame the ram doesn't fit the motherboard though :p

    old motherboard is using ddr2, new one uses ddr3. Also the higher spec i5 3470 is cheaper than the 3450 for some reason....

    I'd be concerned with 430w gpu personally, I'd be looking at around 500-600w if it was me. Officially you should need a new os too unless your os is a retail one in which case you can swap it over. I'd also suggest an aftermarket cooler such as one of the all in one water cooled units, can never have enough cooling on a cpu/gpu in my opinion.

    Don't know your budget but personally I'd be going for an i7, although if you can't stretch to that see if you can get to the 3570k, and I'd also be looking at how much it would cost to keep the original system 'alive' versus striping it like you are now. As you realistically need new ram (I'd suggest 2x8gb sticks) and a new psu all you need to keep the old one alive is an os, a case, optional hard drive/ssd and a low end gpu.... which would be what 150 quid tops.

    It would give you a 'fall back' pc if there were any issues with the primary one (I always have at least 2 pc's just in case one fails)
  3. Squiddy

    Squiddy Guest

    Thanks for the advice Levi.

    Ahh yes.. cursed RAM, I thought they would be backwards compatible... I will take a look at the 3470 vs 3450, was that on novatech you found it cheaper? Yeah, I should have mentioned that I'm getting Windows 7 Home Premium OEM. I don't have any need for their so called technical support and I don't intend on upgrading my motherboard in at least another 3 years so.. limited number of installs won't be an issue.

    As for an i7 CPU, I was making my purchases based largely off of Tom's Hardware review. The following chart lists CPU's in a hierarchical order and thought that this would be a solid CPU and provide considerable performance enhancements over what I currently have which only really struggles when rendering/saving large illustrations in Illustrator, which is quite annoying but it doesn't really stutter doing anything else. Would an i7 really give a considerable performance increase for the extra money required? I don't do heavy rendering, even in Illustrator it's only some simple objects to help with perspectives and foreshortening.

    As for the PSU, I used a PSU wattage calculator which gave me 430 recommended for the specs mentioned above. I did think it was a little low, but I'm not sure how to calculate it otherwise. I'll get the next one up of that model, unless you have any other recommendations for PSU's?

    I won't need a case for the old comp as I'm buying a new one anyway, so I'll have two. I'll definitely keep it running in some way, but now that I need to buy new RAM as well, I don't really want to spend anything more.

    Thanks again for the advice.
  4. Levi

    Levi Moderator Staff Member

    well the i7 is better than the i5, iirc it has hyperthreading (virtual 4+4 real versus 4 real) where the i5 doesn't so really depends on how much performance you'll want type affair versus the extra £100 or so. For me personally hyperthreading would help although not sure if it's needed in illustrator, I don't use it a lot.

    I looked on (usually cheaper for my stuff than novatech plus I get free postage) or scan (again free postage, thanks hexus forum :)) but novatech is also cheaper by a couple of quid.

    My psu is a 750w modular coolermaster one, got it cheap during a sale for less than a 600w one. Corsair is a pretty good brand too though. As to calculators, I never fully trust them as your psu does lose 'power' over time so I always add a bit of a cushion.

    Old pc... well seeing as you're keeping the case, you only need a cheap os drive (assuming 1tb is being transferred for storage) and a cheap gpu for £47 (500gb) and £22 (Nvidia 8400gs - no gamer but should be fine for graphic work, a gt610 is about £35) so under £70... it's worth considering for later if nothing else :)

    Forgot to say - assuming you're getting an optical drive?

    Also if you're a student/teacher (or have a relative that is one) don't forget you can cheap ms software from places like software4students. Doesn't matter if it doesn't get 'registered' in their name on the pc, I've grabbed office, project, visio etc cheap due to my mum being a HLTA :)
  5. Squiddy

    Squiddy Guest

    Yeah I think I'll pass on the i7, I'm not willing to pay another £100 for something I probably won't use very much! Thanks for thinking about it though.I will have a quick check on the popular ones for prices once I've chosen the components, I like to check dabs, novatech, ebuyer, overclockers etc

    I heard that it's also bad if you get a PSU that is too much more than you actually need?

    I will consider it for later :)

    I forgot to mention that (probably because I never use the damn thing, haha) I will be transferring my optical drive too.

    I've looked at the student discount thing and everywhere says that you're not allowed to use it for commercial purposes. I realise that that's rather an unenforceable policy, but I wasn't really sure how much of an issue that would be in reality? I could get a student version... what do you reckon?
  6. Levi

    Levi Moderator Staff Member

    If you join the hexus forum, post 20 or so relevant posts (might have changed) you can get free postage at scan :)

    A psu will only draw what is actually needed (+ a bit due to efficiency), the rating is the max it can supply but it could draw more so (I forgot to say) you should grab an 80+ type psu (the corsair you linked to is). My 750w for example on average only pulls around 2-300w from the mains according to a plug in energy reader.

    student discount - no good for adobe (they're a bit stricter on actually buying it) but ms office stuff is just plain old 16/20 digit code like normal... not that they'll notice it being used for the wrong purpose anyways... and I'm sure there's plenty of students (who actually bought adobe software... they do do that right lol) who use photoshop etc for work
  7. Squiddy

    Squiddy Guest

    Thanks, I'll make sure to check out scan. I'll look into the discount for the OS though. I wonder how strict Adobe are with their student packages not being used for commercial work.

    Cheers for all the help, don't think I've forgotten to mention anything else..!
  8. Squiddy

    Squiddy Guest

    Wondering if are a reputable company to purchase components from? Anyone had any experience with them?
  9. Levi

    Levi Moderator Staff Member

    I've used aria but it was a long time ago... don't forget to check amazon, they do sometimes have some cracking deals, almost got my ssd from there :)
  10. I have a Lenovo Z575 which has a AMD A6-3420M with Radeon HD graphics 1500 Mhz 4 Cors and 4 Logical Processors. With 6GB of RAM and 10.6 GB of Virtual RAM. It also has a 500 GB HD (small i know, but i have a few external drives) all running Win 7.

    Not the best i know but it works for me and what i need it for.
  11. Squiddy

    Squiddy Guest

    Well it's all set up now! In the end I went for the following specs:

    Case & GPU Bundle:
    Motherboard, CPU & RAM Bundle: (Daily Deal from Gigabyte Z77-D3H Motherboard, Intel Core i5 3750K 2x4GB Corsair Vengeance Memory (£225.99)
    Mouse: Logitech Performance MX
    SSD: Samsung 830 128GB (to go with my 1TB HDD for data backup)

    After a few hiccups with the CPU thermal compound, everything is running smoothly now!

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