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A new Computer


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so someone who is considering building their own computer asked me recently to pick out a few parts for a hypothetical price points 

one at around £1000 and another at the £600/£700 mark. I've put together two systems at each of these prices and am looking for feedback for everyone.

a few caveats first though:

im an intel and nvidia guy i just am, don't want to start a debate, but i wouldn't know where to start with amd so my choices are intel/nvidia nothing against them but i haven't included them. you are more than welcome to recommend them.

it's a first build and i've recommended that they buy from scan for the benefit of scansure their insurance scheme that covers the first 28 days for any damage during installation i didn't have to use it but it was great knowing that if i pooped the build up i wouldn't be out of pocket.


okay first up the £1000 build:




First prices are ex VAT (uk sales tax)



Noctua NH-U9B SE2 Dual Fan Quiet CPU Cooler, Intel and AMD S1366/1156/775/AM2/AM2+/AM3 HTPC Ready £36.65 £43.98




8GB (2x4GB) Corsair DDR3 Vengeance Jet Black Low Profile, PC3-12800 (1600), Non-ECC, CAS 9-9-9-24, XMP, 1.5V £49.80 £59.76




650W Corsair Enthusiast Series TX650M, Modular, 85% Eff' , 80 PLUS Bronze, SLI/CrossFire, EPS 12V, Quiet Fan, ATX PSU £69.65 £83.58




Fractal Design Define R3 USB 3.0 Black Pearl, Mid Tower Performance Case NEW Cable Routing Noise Absorbing w/o PSU £50.98 £61.18




2TB Seagate ST2000DM001 Barracuda 7200.14 SATA 3 6GB/s 7200rpm 64MB Cache 8ms OEM NCQ £57.20 £68.64




2GB MSI GTX 670 Power Edition OC, 28nm, PCIe 3.0 (x16), 6008MHz GDDR5, GPU 1019MHz, Boost 1079MHz +Free Game £166.67 £200.00


256GB SanDisk Pulse, 2.5" SSD 7mm Slim SATA III - 6Gb/s, Flash Storage, Read 490MB/s, Write 350MB/s, 7300 IOPS Max. £104.25 £125.10




Intel Core i7 4770, 1150, Haswell, Quad Core, 3.4GHz, 3.9GHz Turbo, 1200MHz GPU, 34x Ratio, 84W, Retail £205.17 £246.20




MSI Z87-G41 PC Mate, Intel Z87, S 1150, DDR3, SATA III - 6Gb/s, SATA RAID, PCIe 3.0 (x16), D-Sub (VGA) DVI-D HDMI, ATX £67.87 £81.44

Net Total








this pretty much is a balling machine that runs 4 gen intel cpu and a stunning gpu great cooling with the quiet case and ssd for boot and hdd for storage 
next up is the £6/700 model where i did have to take a shortcut or two 





8GB (2x4GB) Corsair DDR3 Vengeance Jet Black Low Profile, PC3-12800 (1600), Non-ECC, CAS 9-9-9-24, XMP, 1.5V £49.80 £59.76




550W ThermalTake SP-550M SMART 80 Plus Bronze PSU with ATX 12V V2.3/EPS 12V, 140mm Fan with Auto Control, PSU £48.50 £58.20




Intel Core i5 3570K,1155, Ivy Bridge, Quad Core, 3.4GHz, 5 GT/s DMI, 650MHz GPU, 6MB Smart Cache, 34x Ratio, 77W, Retail £149.15 £178.98



Corsair Carbide Series 200R Compact ATX Case Black w/o PSU - With Solid Side Panel £41.20 £49.44 




2TB Toshiba DT01ACA200, 3.5" HDD, SATA III - 6Gb/s, 7200rpm, 64MB Cache 8ms NCQ £56.65 £67.98




Thermalright Macho 120 inc 120mm 600~1300RPM PWM-Fan (56.2CFM MAX) For Socket 2011/1366/1156/1155/775 & AM2/AM3 £24.68 £29.62




1GB EVGA GTX 650 Ti Boost, 28nm, PCIe 3.0 (x16), 5012MHz GDDR5, GPU 980MHz, Cores 768, DP/ 2x DL DVI/ HDMI+Free to Play* £103.65 £124.38


MSI Z77A-G41 Plus, Intel Z77, S 1155, DDR3, SATA III - 6Gb/s, RAID, PCIe 3.0 (x16), D-Sub/DVI-D/HDMI, ATX £63.41 £76.09

Net Total








so we've dropped haswell for ivy bridge and the gpu has been taken down a notch as well as i've dropped the ssd from the squad. case cooler and psu i've gone from my first choice to something more affordable while still being fairly good.
this system is far from a budget piece of poo but i would really recommend that a ssd be added maybe even only a 120gb one for windows so boot speed is increased. 

so what you all think?

these again are just my suggestions and are not set in stone also i realise that im missing out a huge segment by ignoring amd but i simply wouldn't feel comfortable including them as i don't know them well enough.


answers on a postcard!


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Those would make two good systems and as a self-builder I would almost always prefer to self-build, but some people will not have the time or the patience.

As an experiment I configured an (Dell) Alienware X51 gaming desktop to be almost identical to the cheaper of the two specs, but the X51 also comes with the newer i5 and Windows 7. The price came out at £749. So the extra £50 or £100 buys your legal copy of Windows and gives you a two year warranty and none of the hassle of self-build. You can always get Dell to knock of at least 10% of the cost of you call them and ask for a unique deal.


On the other hand, I would guess that the X51 may not have all the opportunities for overclocking that the self-build would have, but then if you were an overclocker I doubt you would buy the X51 in the first place.

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