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New PC Build
Gold Coast, Queensland
2813 posts
Okay so looking to build a new PC to replace my current box which is running an

AMD A10 5800k
750ti 2GB

This is what I'm looking at any advice would be recommended as it's been a while since I've built a PC from scratch.

BenQ 27" Gaming LED Monitor $349
Intel i5 6600k 3.5GHz $358
Corsair Hydro CPU Cooler H105 $149
MSI H170 Gaming M3 Motherboard $219
MSI GTX 980 4GB $749
Corsair 16gb DDR4 Vengeance $149
Intel 535 240GB SSD $145
WD 2TB HDD $179
Corsair Obsidian 450D Mid Tower $167
Corsair CS750M ATX PSU $159
12:14pm 19/01/16 Permalink
12:14pm 19/01/16 Permalink
Gold Coast, Queensland
252 posts
That monitor, along with every other TN monitor sucks ass. The gamma shift is going to be very pronounced at that size, colours will look different on the top and bottom of the screen and although you will get pretty silky smooth framerates I personally don't think it's worth the pretty substantial downgrade in visual quality, particularly when you can get a Crossover 27qhd on ebay for pretty cheap. People call it a gamble but honestly, you roll the dice with any monitor and these Crossover monitors are pretty consistent for Korean specials. They're easy to overclock (most can hit at least 100hz) and the quality of the panel is stunning. Takes no time to ship and arrive either.

CPU is a good choice as is the cooler.

That motherboard isn't what you want. That chipset isn't capable of overclocking your CPU and MSI doesn't top the list of quality motherboard manufacturers (their RMA rates are somewhat higher than ASUS, AsRock and Gigabyte). The onboard Killer networking f*****g /sucks/ too, get something with Intel, preferably. Even Realtek is better than that junk.

Video card is fine. Memory is OK.

I tend to recommend people get Samsung 850EVOs if they want an SSD. They're faster than Intel's parts and tend to come in cheaper. Intel is still a good choice though, super reliable.

Make sure you don't get a WD Green HDD, the firmware effectively sabotages the lifespan of the drive by parking the head way too much (it's a "feature"). WD Red drives are identical except for firmware that doesn't do that and WD Black are their most reliable consumer-level drives.

I always go budget on the tower, even the cheapest cases are able to do the job of holding all the components together just fine. Just make sure the case has room for the monstrous CPU cooler you're using. PSU is all good too, I buy Corsair for myself.

last edited by SwissCM at 14:24:38 19/Jan/16
02:22pm 19/01/16 Permalink
3824 posts

I always go budget on the tower, even the cheapest cases are able to do the job of holding all the components together just fine. Just make sure the case has room for the monstrous CPU cooler you're using.
I don't know about that, I helped build my nephew a machine not long ago and the case he got was terrible. It was some cheap gaming case which had all the cosmetic looks a young gamer might want but was a pretty s***** case to work with. The frame ended up bending, plastic bits were broken and despite having cable management holes there was no room for cables between the back panel and the case frame which led to a bowed back panel.

Not to say you can't get decent quality for a decent price but I'd still be getting a name brand case especially if I was building it myself.
03:26pm 19/01/16 Permalink
Gold Coast, Queensland
253 posts
Garbage is garbage but I've gotten cases for about $40 that are alright.

I suppose if you go generic you should try to get something as plain-looking as possible (minimal fancy pants LEDs), has a decent amount of airflow, bottom-mounted PSU and whatever mount points your hardware requires.

last edited by SwissCM at 16:12:26 19/Jan/16
04:07pm 19/01/16 Permalink
Gold Coast, Queensland
254 posts

Here's a decent list based off yours.
04:22pm 19/01/16 Permalink
Perth, Western Australia
555 posts
If you are looking to try some VR you might want to ensure the 3+ USB 3.0 ports are not ASMedia chip ones, as they don't work with some future offerings (Oculus Rift).

Personally I like a case with good airflow.
04:41pm 19/01/16 Permalink
Gold Coast, Queensland
2815 posts
Ok ill review the mother board and look at another monitor.

I want to order it in the next 24 hours to give me something to do this weekend.
04:46pm 19/01/16 Permalink
Gold Coast, Queensland
255 posts
Optimised airflow is nice, but virtually every case nowadays is "good enough" and has mounting points for fans just about everywhere. Any GPU design that uses open-air fans just blows air all over the place anyway so it's mostly about just keeping an airflow intake through the front and bottom and blowing it out the top and back. Keep that in mind when placing fans and thermal issues shouldn't become a problem.

Of course, getting a nice case to treat yourself is fine! Aesthetics are definitely important to an extent, but the case is probably the first thing you should look at cutting back on if you want to hit a tight budget.
04:51pm 19/01/16 Permalink
Gold Coast, Queensland
256 posts
If you buy a Crossover monitor, make sure to get the one I linked earlier. There's lots of similar-looking versions that are inferior (lower quality panels, bad input lag etc). I've bought from that seller before too, they're good, it arrived in 5 days.

I should probably give a better rundown on the Crossover too. It uses a panel that was destined for the 27" iMac, manufactured by either Samsung or LG but rejected by Apple because of their quality control standards.

In theory, the monitors should be of bad quality, they're rejected aren't they? In practice they're some of the best monitors you can buy. The issues are usually very minor with a dead pixel or maybe a tiny bit of backlight bleed. A TN monitor is a bigger overall downgrade compared to that and it should be noted that mine had neither. It may seem counter-intuitive but these monitors tend to have higher quality overall compared to similar offerings on the market from brand-name sellers, maybe because from the very start they were manufactured for Apple?

They do cheap-out on some components. The monitor has no scaling circuitry, it is only able to receive a 2560x1440 signal over a dual-link DVI cable and nothing else. Turns out this is one of the best things about the monitor since it makes it a lot more flexible with regard to refresh rates. Some have reported being able to hit 120hz, but the most common is 100hz, bottoming out at 96hz. 96hz is still a very respectable number and is the refresh rate that both the Rift and HTC Vive are targeting. It's a multiple of 24hz too so movies will be nice and smooth.

The lack of scaling circuitry isn't a problem and you can run different resolutions just fine since all video cards have the functionality to scale to a monitor's native resolution built-in. Colour management is also fully controllable in software. The monitor has no OSD, only buttons for power, brightness and audio (it has a dinky little speaker in it).

Seriously, they're good. I've recommended them all over the place and had nothing but happy buyers.
05:08pm 19/01/16 Permalink
Sydney, New South Wales
641 posts
What are you going to play on it? I normally upgrade for a game in mind, but lately it's hard to find something upgrade-worthy.
05:57pm 19/01/16 Permalink
Gold Coast, Queensland
2816 posts
Yeah I'll definitely have a look at that monitor, honestly money isn't really an issue but I want to be sensible about it so around the $3k is what I'm looking at that includes keyboard and mouse as well.

As for games I'm still playing Witcher 3, I need to play MGS:5 and Fallout 4. There are plenty of games coming out this year that I just want to ensure I have a smooth experience, and I figured if I spend the cash on a nice PC as a base I can just upgrade the graphics card in two years time.
06:08pm 19/01/16 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
18150 posts
144hz monitor, do it.
07:35pm 19/01/16 Permalink
2276 posts
I am a fan of Corsair cases, that one is pretty good. I got a 400R myself.

I don't know enough about monitors to comment about them.

I have a crucial 256gb SSD and it's pretty good I guess. I don't have anything to compare it to. I have heard Samsungs are pretty good though.

I'm jelly of your GTX980.
05:50am 20/01/16 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
6028 posts
If you can get a monitor that supports gsync and 144Hz or higher, I can highly recommend it. I have a couple of the Samsung 850 evo ssd drives and ther are excellent.
09:09am 20/01/16 Permalink
Cairns, Queensland
16309 posts

If you can afford it, and its probably a couple hunge extra, I'm hearing crazy good things about M.2 SSD drives for your main drive.

Basically they are an SSD that you plug directly into the motherboard and use the PCIe bus to transfer data rather than SATA. Crazy quick reads, like 2Gbps. My next rig (looking to build a new over the top PC this year for VR readiness) will have one of these methinks.

09:43am 20/01/16 Permalink
Melbourne, Victoria
9153 posts
Biggest pain about m.2 SSDs is the cost of a motherboard supporting them.

I'm currently running 3xSSDs (1.25TB total) and would love to upgrade the boot drive to an m.2, but honestly, to what benefit? It's not like when we went from mechanical HDDs to SSDs - SSDs are already so crazy fast you're unlikely to see much advantage at those speeds - surely? At some point the difference between 500MB/s and 1500MB/s just becomes academic.

I have a crucial 256gb SSD and it's pretty good I guess. I don't have anything to compare it to. I have heard Samsungs are pretty good though.

FYI I'm super happy with my Samsung SSDs.
I currently have a 500GB 840EVO as my games drive, 500GB 850EVO as my boot drive, and in my Samsung Ultrabook I have a 250GB mSATA 840EVO - all have been great.
Previously I've had 3x OCZ Vertex 2/3s, a couple of Sandisk X210s and Sandisk Extremes. The Sandisks have been the biggest problem, with 2 RMAs, the OCZs had major issues but firmware eventually fixed them.

last edited by Raven at 09:56:58 20/Jan/16
09:53am 20/01/16 Permalink
Cairns, Queensland
16310 posts
Biggest pain about m.2 SSDs is the cost of a motherboard supporting them.

You can buy an expansion card rather than a board that directly supports them, the review I linked has them for like $25 - I assume USD.

The article also confirms that it is a discernible and real (although difficult to express) performance upgrade over a regular SSD. I have a mate I play dota with who has an M.2 setup and he confirms that its a big difference. S*** is just faster.
10:01am 20/01/16 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
23094 posts
Yeah, my motherboard has a socket for an m2 ssd, been eying off getting one of those 512gb samsung ones but I wasn't sure if it would be worth it or not (I already have normal SSDs). Sounds like it probably could be though.

If you can get a monitor that supports gsync and 144Hz or higher, I can highly recommend it.


Absolutely love my 144hz Gsync monitor. Before I tried it myself, I probably would have dismissed it as a pointless gimmick, but I'm a convert now, s*** just looks so silky smooth. Its not all about having high fps and a high refresh rate, its the fact the monitor will be refreshing at exactly the same rate as your video card is rendering frames, so it just flat out eliminates tearing and stuttering and all that s***. I didn't realise how many visual artifacts I had just got used to seeing until they weren't there anymore, first time I booted up WoW on it I just sat there spinning the camera round in circles and marvelling at how perfectly smooth it was hehe
10:47am 20/01/16 Permalink
3825 posts
Biggest pain about m.2 SSDs is the cost of a motherboard supporting them.
Pretty much every H170 or Z170 mobo will come with an m.2 slot.

Also they aren't that much dearer, only $10 extra for an intel m.2.

Also if money was no option then I'd be getting a curved ultra wide monitor.
11:36am 20/01/16 Permalink
Perth, Western Australia
556 posts
If you do go down the m.2 path, make sure both the motherboard and the m.2 SSD are capable of NVMe.

A lot of the earlier ones weren't and they don't get the same speed increase that the NVMe ones do.

Samsung 850 EVO Series 250GB M.2 SSD = m.2 SATA
Samsung 950 Pro Series 256GB M.2 SSD = m.2 NVMe
01:06pm 20/01/16 Permalink
Melbourne, Victoria
9154 posts
They've certainly come down. Last time I looked at them m.2 was new so the motherboards were all premium boards and the drives themselves were as much as $100 more. Those are much more reasonable prices looking at it months later.
01:07pm 20/01/16 Permalink
Gold Coast, Queensland
2818 posts
Yeah so I made a few last minute changes, I went with a Samsung EVO 950 Pro 256gb M2, I changed the motherboard that would obviously support this. I also went with a 980ti 6GB card as well instead of the stock 980

Ordered it all last night so hopefully all the parts are available for pickup before the weekend, going to be a beast of a machine.
04:15pm 20/01/16 Permalink
Sydney, New South Wales
2856 posts
good choice. I'm going to grab a 980 6gb on the weekend as im f*****g over the ridiculous ram requirement for most recent games. 2gb just doesn't cut it anymore.
07:51pm 20/01/16 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
11505 posts
why AMD?
Performance per $ intel is betterer
08:28pm 20/01/16 Permalink
Cairns, Queensland
16311 posts
Also Pascall (new NVIDIA chipset) should be due out in a couple of months might be worth waiting, 980s might be a good whack cheaper soon.
08:42pm 20/01/16 Permalink
Sydney, New South Wales
2857 posts
how many months but? :( I've been waiting for a bit already and am getting kinda antsy, it's in my nature.

Edit* - yes, this has resulted in me paying too much for s*** many times..
09:44pm 20/01/16 Permalink
Cairns, Queensland
16313 posts
That's the question, we just don't know.

I'm timing my upgrade to a VR buy so I have until midyear. Be patient ;)
11:14am 21/01/16 Permalink
Gold Coast, Queensland
2820 posts
Picked everything up yesterday and built it, all up and running very smooth.

Witcher 3 & GTA 5 all maxed out smooth 60fps (I had the fps limiter on)

ARMA3 is abit of a beast, I get 30-60 FPS with everything maxed depending on what I am doing if it's flying over the island or running through the forests.

Installing Windows 10 via USB onto the M.2 SSD was insanely fast within 15minutes I had Windows up and running.
09:22am 22/01/16 Permalink
Brisbane, Queensland
23100 posts
Arma3 isn't a beast, its just a s*****, poorly optimised engine :p
12:54pm 22/01/16 Permalink
Gold Coast, Queensland
2823 posts
True but still looks nice
02:04pm 22/01/16 Permalink
02:04pm 22/01/16 Permalink
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