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Old 03-23-2013, 11:36 AM   #1
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Default Need some expert advice on an i5 build

I am putting together my wish list for an upgrade to my 4 year old setup. I was one of the idiots who bought SimCity on day 1. When they offered a free game I jumped at Battle Field 3. However, when I tried multiplayer my computer had a heart attack. Its time for the old workhorse to get an upgrade.

The #1 build is the rock bottom minimum I am thinking of getting.
The #2 build has a few more upgrades that I am debating.
Current is what I am currently running (obviously)

My questions:
1. Is it worth getting 8gb of ram right away? I basically have 3 options. Get 2x2gb, get 1x4gb and add another stick when it becomes necessary, or just get 2x4gb and be done with it.

2. Do you see any real reason (other than storage space) to get a new hard drive? Either way I will get a new HDD eventually, but if it won't improve performance at all I will just wait on getting one.

3. I keep debating between the 7850 and the 7870. Is there a big enough difference to justify the extra cost? Any other suggestions for a GPU in the same price range?

4. Is my old PSU ok. When I bought it it had pretty good reviews and it has worked with zero problems for the last 4 years.

Thanks for any/all help.
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Old 03-23-2013, 06:41 PM   #2
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Default Re: Need some expert advice on an i5 build

To answer your questions;

1. Yes, I would absolutely get 8GB right off the bat. RAM is cheap enough so you might as well.

2. What kind of hard drive you got?

3. It all depends on what you're looking for. Personally, I would go with the 7870 over the 7850, but if money is tight, go with the 7850 and overclock the daylights out of it.

4. What type of PSU do you have? Brand and wattage?
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Old 03-23-2013, 06:54 PM   #3
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Default Re: Need some expert advice on an i5 build

If you plan on gaming or doing video and photo editing get 8GB or more as OhSnapWord said ram is very cheap these days.

You can choose to get a new hard drive and keep your current one or just get a new one on its own, 500GB to 1TB is good if you have a lot music, videos and games and probably an SSD for your OS to go on, If you have already got a list of parts can you provide a link.
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Old 03-23-2013, 07:04 PM   #4
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Default Re: Need some expert advice on an i5 build

Shoot, sorry guys. I meant to post this spreadsheet with my post (hence the #1 and #2 thing).
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Old 03-23-2013, 07:27 PM   #5
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Default Re: Need some expert advice on an i5 build

I would upgrade the hard drive as 250GB is pretty anemic these days.

Also, that 500W PSU might be tired as PSUs do degrade over time.
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Old 03-23-2013, 08:01 PM   #6
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Default Re: Need some expert advice on an i5 build

I have no problem getting a new PSU. I know they're incredibly important in a build and not a place to skimp.

Any suggestions on a budget/quality 5-600w PSU?

I doubt I'll ever add anything else to the computer to need more than 5 or 600. By the time I'm ready to upgrade, I'll most likely just build a whole new one. The first computer I bought (Sony Vaio 1.8ghz) lasted me from 2001-2008. My last one from 2008-2013.
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Old 03-23-2013, 08:05 PM   #7
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Default Re: Need some expert advice on an i5 build

Why do people have this love affair with terabyte drives? How the heck do you back them up? If it goes blooey then you have a terabyte of data and irreplaceable memories gone.
I would strongly recommend a couple of 500 giggers and raid them.

Like OhSnapWord said PSU's get worn out over time. I have the Corsair AX850. It's a mule for under 2 bills.
RAM's cheap but be careful which brand you buy. There's a lot of junk out there.

Do your homework. Shop and compare. Read reviews. Stop and think before you buy.
Take your time and don't get caught up in the starry eyed, "just got to have it" syndrome. I personally take weeks from the time I decide to build a new rig to actually sitting down and placing the order for the parts. The time in between is doing my homework.
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Old 03-23-2013, 10:17 PM   #8
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Default Re: Need some expert advice on an i5 build

Don't worry. I've been building a list for about 2 weeks now starting from an AMD 965 to an FX-6300 to finally this i5 build. I'll keep looking around and comparing for another month most likely before I pull the trigger.


I actually have a 2TB usb 3.0 HDD for mass storage. I do photography so I need a lot of space. My main HDD doesn't need to be huge. 250-500 is most likely more than enough. I'll probably stick with what I have for the time being.

Thanks for the help. Any other opinions or suggestions are welcomed.
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Old 03-23-2013, 10:32 PM   #9
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Default Re: Need some expert advice on an i5 build

I have the Intel i5 3570K CPU chip minding the store on an Intel DZ77GA-70K motherboard. It's sporting 2 500 giggers with 16 gigs of some 1600 ram.
The board is rated one of Intels top of the line workhorses. I believe it. The CPU chip and the board came at a little bit over 450.00 usd.
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Old 03-23-2013, 10:47 PM   #10
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Default Re: Need some expert advice on an i5 build

I would really like a micro ATX motherboard though. First off it would fit in the case I already have. Second, I'm pretty sure I can fit everything I need into one. I doubt I will ever "upgrade" any components. I'm not one to put new parts in every year.

Is there a problem with the board I picked?
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