Hardware Buy Or Build?

Intimidator88

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Ok so im looking to get into some serious pc gaming and 720 to 1080 hd video recording and editing but this pc im on atm aint gonna cut it anymore.So i started looking into buying a whole new one which is gonna cost some serious dough (thanks goodness for tax money and bonuses xD )or buying the parts 1 by 1 and having someone build it for me,so my question is which would be better?

If i buy a premade one ive got it already picked out but its roughly gonna cost around 3400 :(! Heres the specs tell me if its worth it (also it comes with a mouse,keyboard,printer/fax,and 3 year warranty) Thanks guys

PROCESSOR Intel® Core™ i7-3960X (Six Core Extreme, 15MB Cache,Overclocked up to 4.2Ghz)

MEMORY 16GB Quad Channel DDR3 at 1600MHz

VIDEO CARD Dual 1GB GDDR5 AMD Radeon™ HD 6870 - AMD CrossFireX™ Enabled

HARD DRIVE 2TB RAID 0 (2x 1TB SATA 6Gb/s) 7,200RPM

MEDIA READER 19-in-1 Media Card Reader

SOUND CARD Integrated 7.1 Channel Audio

WIRELESS & BLUETOOTH 802.11n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.1 EDR USB Combo Adapter

OPTICAL DRIVE Single Drive: Dual Layer Blu-ray Reader (BD-ROM, DVD±RW, CD-RW)
 

X_XSlashX_X

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Depends. Building your own is the cheaper method obviously but when doing so there is a negative. You won't have a warranty and if your not tech savvy and something goes wrong you could be in trouble.
 

ZAFDeltaForce

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Depends. Building your own is the cheaper method obviously but when doing so there is a negative. You won't have a warranty and if your not tech savvy and something goes wrong you could be in trouble.
Well technically you'll get warranties of each individual component, which to others is a big plus.

Say your graphic card gets fried. You can claim warranty on your graphic card without needing to claim the whole PC to HP or something. It's a faster process too.

I'm a strong advocate of DIY PCs. But unless you're thinking of communicating with alien life or controlling a lunar rover on the Moon, I don't think such a powerful rig will be necessary.

It'd be kick ass to have though
 

Intimidator88

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Depends. Building your own is the cheaper method obviously but when doing so there is a negative. You won't have a warranty and if your not tech savvy and something goes wrong you could be in trouble.
Well technically you'll get warranties of each individual component, which to others is a big plus.

Say your graphic card gets fried. You can claim warranty on your graphic card without needing to claim the whole PC to HP or something. It's a faster process too.

I'm a strong advocate of DIY PCs. But unless you're thinking of communicating with alien life or controlling a lunar rover on the Moon, I don't think such a powerful rig will be necessary.

It'd be kick ass to have though


Well its alot of cash maybe i went little overboard when building it on thewebsite i could take away from stuff to make it cheaper but if i got this pc the way it is would it be able to run let say every pc game for the next few years?
 

marcus134

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Well its alot of cash maybe i went little overboard when building it on thewebsite i could take away from stuff to make it cheaper but if i got this pc the way it is would it be able to run let say every pc game for the next few years?
well the main spender on your rig is the i7-3960x which wont bring you any benefit in gaming.
here's a little run down of i7-3960x vs i5 2500k or what you get for 800$ more
1. hyper-threading (no benefit for gaming)
2. six core (no benefit for gaming, they're just starting to toot quad threading gaming while quad core cpu have been available since 2007 - 5 years ago (core 2 Q6600))
3. 35 watt of extra tdp ( dissipate more heat and consume more power, overclocking potential on air is lower than i5, need exotic cooling sooner)
4. unlocked multiplier ( k's series multipliers are unlocked up to 57 while on X's series they're unlimited, good for overclock, but need exotic cooling to take advantage of)
5. both are clocked at 3.3ghz ( may be what may have the most impact in the long term but neither have an advantage on each other)
6. need a lga 2011 mobo which are more pricy and may be a dead end on upgradability or will only fit extra pricy cpu that doesn't bring much benefit to gaming compared to their cheaper counter parts.

Also what is bottlenecking the gaming performances of a pc is the gpu instead of buying a 6870, if you have a lot of cash, you should get a 7970, a 6970 or a gtx580.
but even there I could argue that what makes a gpu "old" can be caused by a big generation performance gap (haven't happened for a while) or a change in directx which require physical implementation to the gpu (can't be done by a software update) and that extra 250$ you spent to get the best gpu out there wont save you from that. What that extra money gives you is the ability to play games with higher quality and visual effects with more framerate. Also If you were to ask me what's the most money efficient gpu in the high end ones I'd answer the hd7870

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-7950-overclock-crossfire-benchmark,3123-6.html
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-7870-review-benchmark,3148-6.html
 

geoGolem

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I'm no expert but heres my advice:

Don't bother getting that expensive i7 processor, go for the i5 2500k or if you want the grab the i7 2600k (depending on the price difference). When selecting a processor make sure to pay attention to the socket, price, and performance differences. Try to get a mobo/cpu that uses a socket that will hopefully be around for a while but also do't spend so much extra money for only marginal performance increases. I think you can build an extremely awesome computer for like ~$1500 these days. Maybe ~2000 if you grab an SSD and extra video card for SLI. Don't waste so much money on a cpu that will only give you a minor performance increase. Make sure you get 8GB of dual channel memory (2x4GB) at the highest clock speed your selected motherboard will support.

I prefer nvidia cards over AMD but thats just me. The nvidia GTX 680 was just released in the past few days. If you want to spend extra money grab that but if it was me I would wait for GTX 560 TI to drop in price and buy 1 or 2 of those for SLI.

Make sure you get a decent power supply. The power supply and motherboard are where the prebuilt systems cheap out. The ones that come with pre-built systems present many restrictions and usually make the system barely upgradable. I prefer building my own systems myself since you have better control and knowledge of whats inside but I have had issues in the past where I wasted money on replacement parts trying to track down a problem I was having. That was a good experience though as I learned alot and am quite confident at building/upgrading my rig now ;)

I would reccomend investing in a 120GB SSD for boot/applications and a larger hard drive for data storage.

If your building a high end system (i.e. 1500 - 2000) i prefer to build my own. But if I am building a lower end system I don't mind buying a pre-built system and throwing in my own video card or something as long as the power supply will handle it.

Personally I think this holiday season (Dec 2012) will be a better time to buy as Intel will be releasing new CPU's, more of nvidia's 6xx series will be in the market and Windows 8 will likely be released in October. This is all just my opinon... Hope it helps.
 

Pyrmon

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PROCESSOR Intel® Core™ i7-3960X (Six Core Extreme, 15MB Cache,Overclocked up to 4.2Ghz)
MEMORY 16GB Quad Channel DDR3 at 1600MHz
VIDEO CARD Dual 1GB GDDR5 AMD Radeon™ HD 6870 - AMD CrossFireX™ Enabled
HARD DRIVE 2TB RAID 0 (2x 1TB SATA 6Gb/s) 7,200RPM
MEDIA READER 19-in-1 Media Card Reader
SOUND CARD Integrated 7.1 Channel Audio
WIRELESS & BLUETOOTH 802.11n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.1 EDR USB Combo Adapter
OPTICAL DRIVE Single Drive: Dual Layer Blu-ray Reader (BD-ROM, DVD±RW, CD-RW)


First of all, forget that CPU. Get an i5-2500k, overclock it and be on your merry way. There is no way that CPU is worth it.
Second, unless you plan on playing several instances of a game at the same time, save yourself the cash and get 8Gb of RAM.
Third, SLI/Crossfire is only really worth it if you get 3+ cards in there. Otherwise, you'll suffer from micro-stuttering. Also, since you're willing to spend so much on a PC, get a single, really good CPU.

Personally, if I had a lot of money to burn, I'd go with something like this:


Part list permalink / Part price breakdown by merchant

CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor ($179.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: Asus Maximus IV Gene-Z/GEN3 Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($179.99 @ NCIX US)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($129.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($129.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Video Card: Asus Radeon HD 7870 2GB Video Card ($349.99 @ Amazon)
Case: Rosewill THOR V2 ATX Full Tower Case ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: OCZ 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($79.15 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-B123L/RSBP Blu-Ray Reader, DVD/CD Writer ($77.62 @ Compuvest)
Total: $1306.70
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated 2012-03-25 09:07 EDT-0400)
 
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