Computers & Electronics

Gaming PC - Dream "I've gone insane" machine build

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  • Nov 2nd, 2020 2:00 pm
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Gaming PC - Dream "I've gone insane" machine build

9 year old Gaming PC upgrade - Need some advice

My last gaming PC was 9 years ago. I haven't even turned it on since then.
I want to build a new one but I have very incomplete knowledge on changes since then. Hell, my last PC still was BIOS based.

THREAD UPDATE - Nov 1st: This has turned into a dream machine build. I've gone WAAAAYYYY overboard. :)

Here's my usage/plans:
- Gaming (Definitely has to be able to handle MS Flight Simulator)
- VR (not right away, still need to decide on a setup)
- Just tinkering for fun.
- Water cool (just because)

**Parts**
CASE: Lian Li O11 Dynamic XL
Monitor: Alienware 34 Monitor - AW3420DW (GSync unfortunately. Bought this long before I thought about building a PC)
CPU: AMD 5900
GPU: Radeon 6800 XT or 6900 XT
MOBO: ASUS Tuff Gaming X570 PRO (WiFi)
PSU: Corsair HX850i High Performance Power Supply
RAM: Corsair Vengeance RGB Pro 32GB (2x16GB) DDR4 3200 (PC4-25600) C16
nVMe:
- XPG GAMMIX 2TB S11 Pro 3D NAND PCIe NVMe Gen3x4 M.2
- Samsung 970 EVO Plus 1TB NVMe M.2
Other Storage: TBD


**Watercooling**
CPU: EK-Velocity D-RGB – AMD Nickel + Plexi
TIM: Thermal Grizzly Conductonaut
GPU: TBD
Loop: Only CPU planned for now.
Radiator: 2x 360 Heatkiller (new one coming in November?)
Radiator Placement: Bottom and Top
Pump: EK-D5 PWM G2 Motor
Resevoir: HEATKILLER® Tube 150 D5 (Glass Reservoir with D5 Pump Mount) - Multi-Port Top Upgraded
Tubing: 16mm Glass tubes
Fittings: Bought a few different brands to test on the glass tubes
Exhaust Fans (3): EKWB EK-Vardar EVO 120S PWM 120mm (subject to change to Lian Li Unifan)
Intake Fans (6): EKWB EK-Vardar EVO 120S PWM 120mm (subject to change to Lian Li Unifan)


**Style and Colour Scheme (VERY Unfinished)**
Colour Scheme: UV Black/Black, Silver/Grey, Red
Lighting: D-RGB: plan to keep the RGB stuff single colour. One of the colours in the scheme or white.
- D-RGB: Fans, CPU Block, GPU Block, Flow/Temp Sensor, RAM
- TBD: Other UV or white light LEDS
Case: Glass with Black and Silver
Power Wiring: Tentative Cable Mode Cables. Not sure on the colours
Coolant: UV black? or Silver/Grey. Not sure
Radiator: Silver/Aluminum
Pump Cover: Black/Matte Black
Resevoir: Black and Silver/Aluminum OR Black and Blue? Black and Red?
nVME Heatsinks: Blue / Silver / Red
Fittings: Black or Silver or Black Nickel
Fans: Black with D-RGB


**Mods/Additional Touches**
360 Radiator gaskets
Control: Aquaero 6 LT USB
Sensors: Aquacomputer high flow NEXT (temp and flow)
Monitoring: Corsair (Power); AquaSuite? (Fans, temp, flow); ?? (D-RGB control, OLED Display control)
Fan & miscellaneous Wiring: TBD. Planning to get a sleeving kit
Small Transparent OLED display for monitoring stats (very long term)
AIDA software to program stats to display on transparent OLED. (very long term)
Last edited by Majoram on Nov 1st, 2020 10:51 pm, edited 10 times in total.
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48 replies
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i am currently looking for parts myself actually
i have found for 1300 plus taxes i can get a decent build
3600 amd
16 gb ram
mini itx case
motherboard with wifi bt
small ssd
by the time youll want a new one ddr 5 will be out so get what you need and nevermind the rest. new video cards coming out next few month tho.
mid tier video card.
[OP]
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Dec 15, 2005
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waven101 wrote: i am currently looking for parts myself actually
i have found for 1300 plus taxes i can get a decent build
3600 amd
16 gb ram
mini itx case
motherboard with wifi bt
small ssd
by the time youll want a new one ddr 5 will be out so get what you need and nevermind the rest. new video cards coming out next few month tho.
mid tier video card.
What's the latest AMD range of CPUs? I know there is Ryzen but do motherboards support the full range of Ryzen?
3600 is the sweet spot?

So i guess DDR4 is getting old now?

What is mid-tier for AMD video cards?

I think motherboard brands, features and chipsets are where I am lacking the most knowledge.
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3600 is best right now as any video cards out right now will bottleneck at this mostly for pure gaming.
if you're graphics designer that might matter a bit more.
there is one motherboard on clearance from mikes computer shop right now if you look in hot deals.
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Majoram wrote: 9 year old Gaming PC upgrade - Need some advice

My last gaming PC was 9 years ago. I haven't even turned it on since then.
I want to build a new one but I have very incomplete knowledge on changes since then. Hell, my last PC still was BIOS based.

Here's what I am thinking (and correct me if you think this is unrealistic):
- Budget of say $1500.
- If I can't make a beast then I at least want to make it as upgradable as it can be for 3-5 year period.
By this, I guess I want the best motherboard? and then I can upgrade the rest as needed?
- This will be one of my monitors: Alienware 34 Curved Gaming Monitor - AW3420DW
The PC should be able to handle games on it.
- I don't really care about lights etc
- I want a great case with awesome cable management.
- Would be "nice" to have water cooling and keep it quiet??? Is that the best way to keep it quiet?

Any help is appreciated.

I am not necessarily looking for specific component recommendations (but they are welcome).
I am more interested in what CPU/motherboard "tech family" that is the most forward looking/upgradable.
And / or what are the latest graphics features I should look for etc.
$1500 is definitely realistic for a strong gaming PC. Intel and AMD are both viable options, with each offering one more generation (possibly more than one if you buy an AMD 500-series motherboard) on its current platform. You'll likely want an Nvidia GPU, 16 GB of quality DDR4 (memory quality is much more important for AMD), and a fast PCI-Express SSD. If you want something that "just works" and your main focus will be gaming, you probably want to look at Intel; OTOH if you don't mind some tuning/optimization and are interested in productivity (CPU-intensive stuff like video encode or compiling code) as well as gaming, AMD would be the way to go.

A lot of people are blindly recommending AMD for *everything* these days, but if you actually do your research you'll find that the 10600K is very competitive with (for example) the Ryzen 5 3600 - it's a bit more expensive ~$340 for the non-IGP KF version vs. ~$270 for an R5 3600 - but that gets you roughly 16% more gaming performance (and, surprisingly, 5% better application performance) according to TPU's review. Intel CPUs are also a lot less picky about having the "right" memory (e.g. Samsung B-die ICs) to perform at its best, although this has improved for AMD with Zen 2.

Oh yes, if true silence is a priority, a good air cooler is likely a better choice than an AIO water cooler. Water cooling has its advantages but noise floor isn't one of them. As long as your case can accommodate a large air cooler, you get equivalent performance to a large AIO and there's no pump to make noise and/or fail. Air also tends to be cheaper per unit of cooling.

Assuming the first option (gaming-centric Intel build), I'd suggest something like the following. With its already high 4.8GHz turbo clocks, the KF doesn't really benefit much from OCing, so I chose a solid B460 motherboard with 2.5 gigabit ethernet, a good "future-proofing" feature IMO for the next few years as 2.5g switches and routers become affordable.

Finally, and to my surprise, I was able to squeeze an RTX 2070 into the build - that's quite a bit of GPU grunt! Hopefully I haven't overlooked any of your asks.

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: Intel Core i5-10600KF 4.1 GHz 6-Core Processor ($336.88 @ Vuugo)
CPU Cooler: be quiet! Dark Rock 4 CPU Cooler ($104.99 @ Mike's Computer Shop)
Motherboard: ASRock B460M Steel Legend Micro ATX LGA1200 Motherboard ($169.50 @ Vuugo)
Memory: G.Skill Aegis 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3000 CL16 Memory ($75.99 @ Newegg Canada)
Storage: Western Digital Blue SN550 500 GB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive ($94.75 @ Vuugo)
Video Card: MSI GeForce RTX 2070 8 GB VENTUS GP Video Card ($569.99 @ Memory Express)
Case: Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case ($67.52 @ Amazon Canada)
Power Supply: SeaSonic S12III 550 W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($74.75 @ Vuugo)
Total: $1494.37
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2020-07-08 20:29 EDT-0400

***I should note that availability is currently an issue for the CPU. Within the next couple of weeks, I would expect stock to show up, which might even drive down the price a bit vs. Vuugo's current $337.

I'll do an AMD build later tonight or tomorrow. Unfortunately, availability is an issue for the Red Team right now too, as the desirable B550 chipset (assuming you want easy Zen 3 upgradeability and 2.5 gbe) is in short supply. Again, this should improve over the next couple of weeks.
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Decide on your GPU first. A good gaming GPU is 450-700$ these days. If you list the games you play and what resolution, we can come up with suggestions.
[OP]
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Thanks for the replies so far. Busted a finger. Unable to do a proper reply right now. Will reply on weekend
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birthdaymonkey wrote: $1500 is definitely realistic for a strong gaming PC. Intel and AMD are both viable options, with each offering one more generation (possibly more than one if you buy an AMD 500-series motherboard) on its current platform. You'll likely want an Nvidia GPU, 16 GB of quality DDR4 (memory quality is much more important for AMD), and a fast PCI-Express SSD. If you want something that "just works" and your main focus will be gaming, you probably want to look at Intel; OTOH if you don't mind some tuning/optimization and are interested in productivity (CPU-intensive stuff like video encode or compiling code) as well as gaming, AMD would be the way to go.

A lot of people are blindly recommending AMD for *everything* these days, but if you actually do your research you'll find that the 10600K is very competitive with (for example) the Ryzen 5 3600 - it's a bit more expensive ~$340 for the non-IGP KF version vs. ~$270 for an R5 3600 - but that gets you roughly 16% more gaming performance (and, surprisingly, 5% better application performance) according to TPU's review. Intel CPUs are also a lot less picky about having the "right" memory (e.g. Samsung B-die ICs) to perform at its best, although this has improved for AMD with Zen 2.

Oh yes, if true silence is a priority, a good air cooler is likely a better choice than an AIO water cooler. Water cooling has its advantages but noise floor isn't one of them. As long as your case can accommodate a large air cooler, you get equivalent performance to a large AIO and there's no pump to make noise and/or fail. Air also tends to be cheaper per unit of cooling.

Assuming the first option (gaming-centric Intel build), I'd suggest something like the following. With its already high 4.8GHz turbo clocks, the KF doesn't really benefit much from OCing, so I chose a solid B460 motherboard with 2.5 gigabit ethernet, a good "future-proofing" feature IMO for the next few years as 2.5g switches and routers become affordable.

Finally, and to my surprise, I was able to squeeze an RTX 2070 into the build - that's quite a bit of GPU grunt! Hopefully I haven't overlooked any of your asks.

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: Intel Core i5-10600KF 4.1 GHz 6-Core Processor ($336.88 @ Vuugo)
CPU Cooler: be quiet! Dark Rock 4 CPU Cooler ($104.99 @ Mike's Computer Shop)
Motherboard: ASRock B460M Steel Legend Micro ATX LGA1200 Motherboard ($169.50 @ Vuugo)
Memory: G.Skill Aegis 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3000 CL16 Memory ($75.99 @ Newegg Canada)
Storage: Western Digital Blue SN550 500 GB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive ($94.75 @ Vuugo)
Video Card: MSI GeForce RTX 2070 8 GB VENTUS GP Video Card ($569.99 @ Memory Express)
Case: Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case ($67.52 @ Amazon Canada)
Power Supply: SeaSonic S12III 550 W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($74.75 @ Vuugo)
Total: $1494.37
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2020-07-08 20:29 EDT-0400

***I should note that availability is currently an issue for the CPU. Within the next couple of weeks, I would expect stock to show up, which might even drive down the price a bit vs. Vuugo's current $337.

I'll do an AMD build later tonight or tomorrow. Unfortunately, availability is an issue for the Red Team right now too, as the desirable B550 chipset (assuming you want easy Zen 3 upgradeability and 2.5 gbe) is in short supply. Again, this should improve over the next couple of weeks.
That is a good build if you need a PC right now. With the monitor OP is using I would suggest buying a cheaper video card right now, save the money and upgrade to the RTX3000 series when it releases later this year.
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submarine wrote: That is a good build if you need a PC right now. With the monitor OP is using I would suggest buying a cheaper video card right now, save the money and upgrade to the RTX3000 series when it releases later this year.
The rtx 3000 will be far from affordable. That's a good price on a 2070.
[OP]
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Thanks so far for the replies.
So basically I can get something decent for about $1500

Just to refine some points:
- Not looking to buy now. By the end of the year though.
- I can wait and buy parts one by one
- Usage: Most intensive usage will be for Gaming.

- Games: I haven't played any major PC games in a while. So I can't provide "sample" games. But I would like to play VR games and simulators and other games like Cyberpunk and Baldur's Gate 3 in the future

- Overclocking: I don't really intend to do this. My days of tweaking voltages and bus speeeds are behind me but I see now it's more mainstream now? I'll probably play with what's offered but won't go out of my way for overclockable parts specifically.

- Noise: Doesn't have to be whisper silent but my last PC had like 8 fans. Sounded like a plane engine starting.

- Aethetics:
Full RGB might be a bit too much but I wouldn't refuse it if it happens to be there.
I like a nicely designed & tooless case with great cable management though and ease of changing parts.

- FUTURE: I am thinking of doing a DIY standing desk with my PC built into it but this might be at least a year away.


Motherboard:
Chipset => AMD 500 Series: upgradable over more than 1 generation
Brand => ASRock B460M Steel Legend Micro ATX LGA1200 Motherboard
COMMENT: ASRock is a mid-tier? from what i remember it was a lower tier brand.

RAM:
G.Skill Aegis 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3000 CL16 Memory
COMMENT: I see G.Skill is still a good name but only 16GB? I thought more would be needed these days

CPU:
AMD Ryzen 5 3600
Intel Core i5-10600KF 4.1 GHz 6-Core Processor
COMMENT:


Video:
MSI GeForce RTX 2070 8 GB VENTUS GP Video Card
RTX3000
COMMENT: I have always preferred AMD but that's just a bias that I hope to put aside. Is this one of the cards with Ray Tracing?
I will have to read up on the RTX3000


PSU:
SeaSonic S12III 550 W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply
COMMENT: Really? 550W is all that's needed? I have and old modular Cosair PSU that outputs way more. Would it be usable?


Main drive:
Western Digital Blue SN550 500 GB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive
COMMENT: I am guess 1 TB M.2 is pretty expensive?


Case:
Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case
COMMENT: Nice, I guess. I might go for something higher end. This is purely my preference and not based on logic.


Cooling:
Air cooling should be quieter than water.
COMMENT: While I agree it can be quieter, I always hate that air cooling also pulls the air and dust into the case and eventually everything gets dust on them.
Also air cooling is also dependent case air flow as well.
For water cooling, I was thinking it would be better since the radiators would be the only only parts gathering dust?!
Please feel free to provide counter points.
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None of those games are particularly demanding. I can't imagin BG3 will need anything much faster than 1660. I run all teh Bioware/Obsidian and Larian RPGs with an rx 5700, and that is massive overkill. I used a gtx 970 for years.
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the new ampere cards and amd video cards with faster ray tracing is coming out in 2-3 months. By faster, like much faster. It's the wrong time to be buying an older gen video card if ray tracing is a must for you.
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Apr 21, 2017
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Why buy an overclocking cpu when your motherboard does not support overclock?
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If you have to buy right now then 3600x + 2070 Super is a good choice. By the end of the year, there is a good chance that there are much better CPUs and GPUs to pick from and there is also a chance that C19 fluster cucks everything and your gaming PC will be a gameboy color.
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[OP]
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mr_raider wrote: None of those games are particularly demanding. I can't imagin BG3 will need anything much faster than 1660. I run all teh Bioware/Obsidian and Larian RPGs with an rx 5700, and that is massive overkill. I used a gtx 970 for years.
I simply listed those because they are the two that I know of.
Building the computer first and then I'll look at what games to get after.
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badOne wrote: the new ampere cards and amd video cards with faster ray tracing is coming out in 2-3 months. By faster, like much faster. It's the wrong time to be buying an older gen video card if ray tracing is a must for you.
Who is Ampere?
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[OP]
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yingtsay wrote: Why buy an overclocking cpu when your motherboard does not support overclock?
This is part of the reason I made the post. I am only going on the recommendations in the thread and I don't know which CPU and mobo you are referring to?
toalan wrote: If you have to buy right now then 3600x + 2070 Super is a good choice. By the end of the year, there is a good chance that there are much better CPUs and GPUs to pick from and there is also a chance that C19 fluster cucks everything and your gaming PC will be a gameboy color.
C19? ok going to google it
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Majoram wrote: This is part of the reason I made the post. I am only going on the recommendations in the thread and I don't know which CPU and mobo you are referring to?



C19? ok going to google it
C19 = Covid 19. The current pricing on PC components has not fully recovered to pre Covid 19 prices.
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toalan wrote: C19 = Covid 19. The current pricing on PC components has not fully recovered to pre Covid 19 prices.
:facepalm: I think i've just shown how old i am. lol
Did some reading finally and at least now I know what Ampere and RDNA2 are.
I think I am ok on what's happening with video cards now.

What about chipsets and CPUs? Are any of them undergoing a generational change this year?
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Currently, the most badass and cheap CPU is the 3600x. By the end of the year AMD will release a newer generation of CPUs, likely it will bring 15%-20% improvements at the same price just like the past 2 generations did.
I own a 3600x and I have only used 40% of the CPU horsepower; running game + watching youtube + 3 virtual machines in the background, so an additional 20% to me would not mean anything to me aside from feeling more badass.
GPU though will bring huge improvements, GPU tech has been standing still the past 2 years so when new cards come out in September there is 2 years worth of asswhopping saved up to unleash, atleast from Nvidia. I think AMD GPUs are a lost cause, I am expecting rubbish GPUs from them in September.

As for motherboard, The B450 tomahawk max for ~$130 is stellar for the money, I ran a 3900x on one which is right at the Max of the motherboard specs and it worked ok, when I ran the 3600x on it everything was great. The B550 version of that board is ~$180, I do not know if it is worth the $50 price difference. For an additional $50 ontop of a B550 motherboard you could get an X570 motherboard.

For storage, between now and end of year, will not be much different in terms of new tech. I run an NVME SSD and compared to running a bottom of the barrel $99 for 1TB SATA SSD, I swear there is a difference but when I try to measure the difference objectively by timing the loading of apps like outlook/word/excel there is no difference. If there needs to be some cost-cutting, I would forego NVME and get a cheap SATA SSD.
Last edited by toalan on Jul 13th, 2020 11:27 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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