Solved advice on a gaming computer

February 12, 2014 at 09:30:01
Specs: Windows 7
what is better overall, 4x4GB memory or 2X8GB.
...and 2 graphics cards as opposed to one larger video card?

want to use:
Intel Core i7-4930K Ivy Bridge
ASUS Sabertooth X79 LGA 2011 Intel X79

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February 12, 2014 at 13:28:56
✔ Best Answer
Between 4x4 and 2x8, you probably won't notice much difference. In theory, having quad-channel (four sticks) should give you better speed, but in reality it won't increase performance that much. 4x4 would probably be cheaper, although if you only have 4 DIMM slots then you won't be able to upgrade without trashing some of the cards, which would be a waste of money. Personally I would get 2x8 just so I could upgrade in the future.

Considering the hard drive is about $350 (on newegg), I would suggest downgrading to a 120 GB SSD (~$120) and get a large 2 TB HDD (~$120). Same price, about 8x the storage, and you could store OS and heavily used programs on the solid state for better performance.

Personally, I'm an AMD person, so I really couldn't tell you much about the CPU you chose. I will say this, I have an 8 core and I haven't seen one game yet that has needed more than 4. You could save a little cash by downgrading to a quad-core, maybe at 4.2 GHz or something.

After looking at the mainboard, I now see that it has 8 RAM slots, so you would be OK with either 4x4 or 2x8, just go with whatever is cheaper.

Just note, you could only put up to 8 GB cards in each RAM slot, as the CPU only can use 64 GB. Also note that the fastest RAM you could use would be DDR3-1866 because of the processor.

Generally, getting two separate cards would be completely useless, unless you connected them using CrossFire or SLI (AMD or Nvidia, respectively). In which case, it would probably be more cost-effective to buy two medium power, although cooling might be a problem.

First off, you could always get a cheaper motherboard, as I really don't think you'll ever need 8 DIMMs or 3 PCIe slots (unless you go with that SSD, it takes up a PCIe).

Do you have any thoughts about PSU or case?

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February 12, 2014 at 16:16:21
Following up on my previous post, I would suggest getting a Power Supply Unit that is at least 500w. In general, stick with name-brand PSUs that have a long warranty. Do Not cheap out on the PSU, as it can ruin an otherwise awesome computer. 500w should be sufficient, it just depends on what/how many Graphics Cards etc. that you end up getting. You might be able to get by with only 400w or 430w, although this won't leave you much room to upgrade later on.

Also try to find a PSU that is rated 85+ or higher. What this means is that the PSU is 85% power efficient. It generates less heat, as well as saves electricity (and therefore money). If you could find 90+ that would be great, although it might start to get a little pricey.

I would suggest a bottom mount PSU for your computer.

Most people will probably suggest top mount, and say it provides better cooling rather than when mounted on the bottom. This is true, of course, but not optimal. The upper back of a case is where the primary cooling system should be. Rather than having your PSU there, I would suggest putting a 120mm fan there instead. This would be much more efficient that using a PSU to cool your system, especially with that CPU and two graphics cards.

Basically, an unobstructed fan tends to cool better than a metal box full of wires :)

In addition, all of the excess heat going through the PSU can greatly reduce it's life span.

Just make sure the case doesn't have too many useless openings, as this can cause dust and stuff to build up faster in the computer, which is usually a bad thing.

You could, on the other hand, find a case that allows you to mount fans on the top. This will really help cool the system, and is in no way a 'useless' opening.

Some people might also say that bottom mount PSUs are bad because they 'leak' heat up into the mainboard. With most PSUs, the fan is strong enough to counter this, so it really isn't a factor.

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February 13, 2014 at 15:05:39
hi NT56erbx, thank you for both responses.

My current set up is:
Processor: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU 870 @ 2.93GHz (8 CPUs), ~2.9GHz Memory: 8192MB RAM, using a sealed cooling system for the Processor,
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 480,
1156 socket Mobo (Asus) P7P55 supercomputer,
Case: COOLER MASTER COSMOS S ATX Full Tower Computer Case,
850watt PSU, 2x8GB Memory,
I am tying to build a rig to run a video game: "Star Citizen" by Chris Roberts.
I know very little to nothing about AMD and enough to get myself in trouble with intel. The game requirements are: smooth experience at Maximum settings at 1080p, a R9 290x or GTX 780 will be required (a GTX 680/R9 280x will likely therefore very likely achieve high comfortably). For a 4K experience, a pair of mid-high end cards (680/770 7970/280x or better) or a future high end card (GTX 880 or R9 390x etc) will be required. minimum: Dual core CPU Intel: core 2 duo 2, 8GB ram.
I know I would like to have an SSD PCI-e, but my other use is for my college courses, so I tried to find a 400GB high speed drive for extra storage. I like my case, and my PSU seems to be adequate at 850 Watts(Corsair). This game has only one module out and makes my PC sounds like it is getting ready for take off. But I really do want to upgrade my system not only to handle this game, but its already about 2 years old. I will highly consider what you have said so far, so if you have any suggestions I am all ears.
I wanted to build an AMD right after quad core came out on the market, but I was talked out of it. Since then intel seemed to have been effective for what I've tried to do. But if this game by Chris Roberts comes out as advertised, it is likely that I will buy no other game, which will keep my storage needs down low. I don't do any kind of archetectural/ design/ graphic work and I do not store movies or videos. But I do really enjoy a responsive machine. I like my case because it has a huge amount of room an can support ATX boards, I have attempted to ensure that airflow through the machine is efficient. Case heat exits at the back up high, and the CPU radiator exits at the top. I understand that SSD's are a great advantage and SSD PCI-e's have a marginal advantage over that. My current memory used is 220GB, out of 1,000GB available. so that is why I chose the higher capacity SSD PCI-e (240GB). The GPU I looked at is PNY GeForce GTX 770 VCGGTX7704XPB-OC2 Video Card, as the Dev's Forum suggested a GTX780, I figured I could sqeak by with a GTX770.. But again, I know enough to get myself in trouble. I also considered 2x16 Memory, but I am pretty sure I will not really need it.
Anyway any suggestion will be seriously and thoughtfully considered and if there is a direction you can send me for good instruction on AMD/ Gaming systems, or anything really, I would be happy to view/read it. I have spent many hours trying to figure out what I wanted and have watched hours of videos and read a lot of material on different things, so thanx for all of your assistance.

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Related Solutions

February 13, 2014 at 15:40:55
As stated, 120GB SSD drive is more than enough for your OS and a few important programs and games. Other storage needs are still best on a conventional HD due to the extra writing to the drive where fast access times are best for OS and programs so the SSD is the best option. Further, the money you save on the large PCIe SSD will probably allow the higher end graphics.
If you do go with the PCIe SSD, make sure to check into others with your MB to make sure that they have not had any boot problems with PCIe SSD's since I have heard of some of these issues with somewhat older MB's.

You have to be a little bit crazy to keep you from going insane.

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