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 Please help me pick out a graphics card.  
 
 
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Posted: May 09, 2014 2:10:41 PM - Report post  (0)  (0)       Post Reply  post reply  

I am thinking of upgrading my pc this summer, my upgraded motherboard will be an asus rampage IV, my upgraded psu will be at least 1000w, my upgraded cpu is going to be an Intel Core i7-3960X, but choosing a graphics card has become a major headache. I am currently looking at a gtx titan black, but I don't know if it will be fast enough, I primarily use my rig for gaming and I use a single 1600x900 monitor, I have heard that there are amd cards faster than the titan and that the gtx 690 is faster than the titan.

Also it is worth mentioning that I don't want to go over 3,500$ (USD). Thanks

EDIT: I am clueless as to how radeon's card hierarchy works, like with nvidia it goes gtx 760,770, 780. Also my current graphics card is a gtx 560

[Edited by invaderzim48, 5/9/2014 2:14:10 PM]

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Posted: May 09, 2014 2:49:49 PM - Report post  (0)  (0)       Post Reply  post reply  

From someone who builds PC's for a living, this is what i recommend you get:


i7 4930 or AMD 8 Core FX CPU

16GB of 1833 or higher ram, be careful becuase DDR4 is coming out soon, don't mix up DDR3 and DDR4 tech/parts. Also make sure to get as MANY ram chips as possible. If you have 4 slots on your board (mine has 8, that's why i specify) fill all 4. It'll increase performance as much as 50%. having multiple channels of ram filled is just like having multiple GPU's. It links them together and runs faster. Having 1 stick of 16GB ram can be as much as 75% slower than having 4 sticks of 4GB. More ram IS better, but more ram also can cause problems. Always buy your ram in Kits. This means the chips were manufactured around the same time, and have the same specifications, down to microvolts. Minor differences can cause the PC not to boot. ALWAYS BUY YOUR RAM AT A LOCAL STORE. Waiting for your ram to be shipped back to you can take precious time away from testing the other hardware. Make sure you get your RAM and CPU from a place like Fry's or Microcenter. These are things that (if broken) need to be replaced IMMEDIATELY. same day. That way your build doesn't stagnate.

NVidia 770/780/Titan or ATI's R9 280 or 290 (or if you want to be nuts and drop 1500 on a GPU, get the 295. 2 290's on one board. Also, AMD reset their numbers, R9 is the gaming end of things, 270/280/290 is the same as nvidia's 760/770/780. The only difference between the cards is who to pick from, as NVidia pretty much has the same choices in companies as AMD does now. ATI no longer makes their own GPU's. Meaning ASUS/Powercolor/Sapphire are your top 3 companies for AMD GPU's, and for NVidia, i would ONLY stick with EVGA as their tech support is 24/7, 365, and they're located in california. That means no indian or chinese tech support answering calls when you need them the most. Sapphire is located in the UK, most of my experience with them was that it took FOREVER to get an RMA out. I would buy the card locally and get a warranty for it from the store so you can deal with the store's RMA service instead of the company's if you're going AMD. NVidia's support across the board is usually good. Avoid companies like ASUS for NVidia GPU's as they take forever to ship replacements out, even to systembuilders. All AMD gpu's will be the same replacement-wise as there are no local companies that handle AMD gpu's.)

Pick a case like the Coolermaster Cosmos 2. Something that will give you a lot of upgrade room to any board that comes out in the future. Your case choice is like the color of your car. Pick something you like looking at because it'll be in your vision a LOT. There's no Good/Better/Best list of cases because it's all about how it looks. Cooling is not an issue as most cases are made to exhaust the same amount of air as they suck in. Look for fan expansion for future upgrades. Even a good case will have empty fan slots for filling in later.

For cooling, get an H100 or H110 from Corsair. it's an all inclusive watercooling solution for the CPU, which you will need, trust me. Your CPU is the brain of your system, keep it as cold as possible to keep it working longer. Heat to the CPU is directly proportional to it's life. The more you overclock/overheat your CPU the less it will live.

Sound Blaster Z or higher sound card. Trust me, onboard sound is FINE until you run into a problem with noise on the line. Onboard sound cards are cheap and universal for a reason. They're not made for people who play games with headphones on, or people who have good sound systems. You hear everything. Speaking of sound, Grab a pair of Klipsch THX 2.1 speakers. Surround sound isn't necessary to enjoy your audio, GOOD SPEAKERS are though. Klipsch makes some of the best audio equipment in the PC market. You'll be thankful you did.

The rest is just filler. I would get 2 SSD's and put them in RAID0 for the OS and for storage, a couple of the largest hard drives you can afford. Remember to always back up your data, and never keep anything other than apps and windows on the SSD. Install your Steam and Origin games to the storage drives, it'll help speed up your PC, and keep you from having to reinstall EVERYTHING when/if your OS ****s on you.

Now, the most important part of building a PC: The OS.
Windows 7/8/8.1, doesn't matter, personal preference for you here. Literally 7 and 8/8.1 are THE SAME OS. same kernel behind it. In fact, Windows 7 is actually version 6.0, windows 8 is 6.1 and 8.1 is windows 6.2. They're all just different versions of the same kernel. As long as you're using a 6.0+ kernel, you will get the benefits of DX11, performance enhancements from better software/drivers, and the ability to play games at higher FPS.

All this shouldn't run you more than 2500-3000 bucks or so, and will last you many years to come, with just an occasional GPU upgrade here and there. The 8 core AMD FX9590 is the highest performance CPU out right now, an equivalent Intel would be over 1500 bucks. And is the best on the market, especially since the newest just hit 5Ghz without overclocking. www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113347
Make sure you start your build with this if possible, it may not be available at a local store, so order it first, way before the rest of the parts, and YOU MUST watercool it. 4.7 Ghz with turbo boost of over 5? it's gonna be insanely hot. It will also outperform any PC on the market. and all for the low price of 330 bucks.
GOOD LUCK! Let me know if you have any questions, i'll check back a few times in the next week to answer what i can! Feel free to PM me if you need, and remember, Opinions are like *******s. Everyone has one. If anyone thinks he should use different parts, talk to him about it, not me
I have no intel/AMD/NVidia/ATI bias btw. Everyone has their bad streaks. right now ATI is kicking the pants off NVidia's titan. Doesn't mean it will be the same next week!

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Posted: May 09, 2014 4:22:53 PM - Report post  (0)  (0)       Post Reply  post reply  

Any of the new high end NVidia or ATI cards will work for you. To me it all depends on your preference and which card brand you have had the best performance with in the past. I say this because most games released are specifically programed to take advantage of certain brands or chipsets of video cards. What do most of your games call for? That would be the brand to start the most serious of considerations with.

I prefer NVidia because the cards have always worked great for me while some earlier ATI Radeon based cards actually did fail on me. Look at refresh rates and shaders and the size and type of memory the video card is equipped with. DDR5 used to be the fastest memory and was when I picked up the nVidia 660 2gigger I am running now. I run three monitor surround and it does great but I am only running a quad AMD Black Label 3.4GHZ CPU.

There are some screaming video cards out there and the hottest ones of course are the big dollar ones so if $$$ is not an issue the sky is the limit!

But. As you said. You don't want to go over $3,500 USD. That will probably be an issue. Especially how fast the technology is advancing.

Best of luck!

[Edited by LudicrusLeon, 5/9/2014 4:26:17 PM]

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Posted: May 09, 2014 9:47:40 PM - Report post  (0)  (0)       Post Reply  post reply  

 quote:
 originally posted by LudicrusLeon:

Any of the new high end NVidia or ATI cards will work for you. To me it all depends on your preference and which card brand you have had the best performance with in the past. I say this because most games released are specifically programed to take advantage of certain brands or chipsets of video cards. What do most of your games call for? That would be the brand to start the most serious of considerations with.

I prefer NVidia because the cards have always worked great for me while some earlier ATI Radeon based cards actually did fail on me. Look at refresh rates and shaders and the size and type of memory the video card is equipped with. DDR5 used to be the fastest memory and was when I picked up the nVidia 660 2gigger I am running now. I run three monitor surround and it does great but I am only running a quad AMD Black Label 3.4GHZ CPU.

There are some screaming video cards out there and the hottest ones of course are the big dollar ones so if $$$ is not an issue the sky is the limit!

But. As you said. You don't want to go over $3,500 USD. That will probably be an issue. Especially how fast the technology is advancing.

Best of luck!

[Edited by LudicrusLeon, 5/9/2014 4:26:17 PM]

GDDR is not the same as DDR. That being said, GDDR5 is still the fastest tech in Graphics Memory. DDR3 going on DDR4 is the fastest in desktop memory.

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Posted: May 09, 2014 9:54:04 PM - Report post  (0)  (0)       Post Reply  post reply  

 quote:
 originally posted by LudicrusLeon:

Any of the new high end NVidia or ATI cards will work for you. To me it all depends on your preference and which card brand you have had the best performance with in the past. I say this because most games released are specifically programed to take advantage of certain brands or chipsets of video cards. What do most of your games call for? That would be the brand to start the most serious of considerations with.

I prefer NVidia because the cards have always worked great for me while some earlier ATI Radeon based cards actually did fail on me. Look at refresh rates and shaders and the size and type of memory the video card is equipped with. DDR5 used to be the fastest memory and was when I picked up the nVidia 660 2gigger I am running now. I run three monitor surround and it does great but I am only running a quad AMD Black Label 3.4GHZ CPU.

There are some screaming video cards out there and the hottest ones of course are the big dollar ones so if $$$ is not an issue the sky is the limit!

But. As you said. You don't want to go over $3,500 USD. That will probably be an issue. Especially how fast the technology is advancing.

Best of luck!

[Edited by LudicrusLeon, 5/9/2014 4:26:17 PM]

Thinking about after doing some more research I will probably go with the Titan if not that then a 780 ti, as far as amd/ati go I have always been happy with nvidia my current 560 has pulled off max settings in almost all my games the one exception being Crysis 3. Thanks for all the info everyone, I think my biggest problem is that I love building gaming rigs more than using them. But on the subject of memory are there any DDR4 motherboards yet?

[Edited by invaderzim48, 5/9/2014 9:55:59 PM]

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Posted: May 09, 2014 10:29:35 PM - Report post  (0)  (0)       Post Reply  post reply  

Yes, although i wouldn't touch them yet. most of the "fixes" on DDR4 motherboards will be done after it's mainstream. I would also wait to see if a new socket is coming out before grabbing onto DDR4 tech. Worst thing to do is buy last year's socket, but have next year's tech. Fastest way to have to replace your board AND cpu.
Also, check this out:

ROG Matrix GTX 780 Ti
Link

[Edited by hellfyredrgn, 5/9/2014 10:33:16 PM]

[Edited by hellfyredrgn, 5/9/2014 10:33:49 PM]

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Posted: May 10, 2014 1:04:29 PM - Report post  (0)  (0)       Post Reply  post reply  


I just ordered my first 64 bit pc a coupla days ago from Falcon-Northwest. I'm no builder and I've always wanted a Falcon. They talked me out of the 6 core and into INTEL's best 4 CORE: I7-4770K. They told me that was way plenty for gaming. I also ordered more ram than I needed (32 gb) and they suggested using a GTX TITAN BLACK for my 30" screen. I'm having my case air brushed in Michael Lavalie's True Fire. But you're using 3 monitors, so I dunno. My specs:

ASUS Z87 MAXIMUS VI EXTREME Mobo
INTEL CORE I7 4770K Liquid Cooled
G.SKILL 32GB 1866MHZ DDR3 - RIPJAWS
EVGA GEFORCE GTX TITAN BLACK
CRUCIAL M550 SSD - 1TB Primary
WESTERN DIGITAL BLACK - 2TB Secondary
SILVERSTONE ST1000P MODULAR 1000W PS
Win 7 Pro
Free Copy WatchDogs

Air-Brushed True Fire case:
i969.photobucket.com/albums/ae175/Judge_ment/AirBrushedTrueFire.png






[Edited by element5, 5/10/2014 1:17:25 PM]

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Posted: May 10, 2014 2:30:40 PM - Report post  (0)  (0)       Post Reply  post reply  

 quote:
 originally posted by element5:


I just ordered my first 64 bit pc a coupla days ago from Falcon-Northwest. I'm no builder and I've always wanted a Falcon. They talked me out of the 6 core and into INTEL's best 4 CORE: I7-4770K. They told me that was way plenty for gaming. I also ordered more ram than I needed (32 gb) and they suggested using a GTX TITAN BLACK for my 30" screen. I'm having my case air brushed in Michael Lavalie's True Fire. But you're using 3 monitors, so I dunno. My specs:

ASUS Z87 MAXIMUS VI EXTREME Mobo
INTEL CORE I7 4770K Liquid Cooled
G.SKILL 32GB 1866MHZ DDR3 - RIPJAWS
EVGA GEFORCE GTX TITAN BLACK
CRUCIAL M550 SSD - 1TB Primary
WESTERN DIGITAL BLACK - 2TB Secondary
SILVERSTONE ST1000P MODULAR 1000W PS
Win 7 Pro
Free Copy WatchDogs

Air-Brushed True Fire case:
i969.photobucket.com/albums/ae175/Judge_ment/AirBrushedTrueFire.png


[Edited by element5, 5/10/2014 1:17:25 PM]

I have looked into falcon northwest, but honestly I just want to build it myself. My current rig is an ibuypower that was a pre build, I will have to upgrade the motherboard if I want a new graphics card because of PCIe 3.0 and then I will have to upgrade my cpu because my current one is an amd and all 3.0 boards are Intel. Then I would have to upgrade my 700w power supply. So yeah Im never going to buy another pre-build again.

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