Building a Computer - Advice please!

10 replies
Found 24th Oct 2016
I'm going to use the same case as my current build - it has water cooling access although currently using fans.

Upgrading from a Radeon 4870 series.... I'm thinking a GTX 1070 as it should future proof for another 5 to 7 years for me.

Will need a new motherboard / RAM / Processor as current motherboard doesn't have PCI but an older format, even though processor is i7 quad core dual threaded from 2008/2009.

Anybody built a computer recently and want to recommend me some hardware. Looking circa £1,000 but appreciate I need a new monitor as well so can easily push the budget (Should I be aiming higher than £1,000? I have peripherals & case). My current build has lasted 7 years gaming and was - at the time - had some of the fastest specs possible.

I should add I already have some of the faster SSDs that are for sale to consumers - so I don't need to buy any SSDs/HDDs.

Will be used for Occassional photo/video editing. Mainly, it will be used for modern Gaming in Ultra HD. Lots of multi-tasking in terms of multiple programmes running at once as I currently do.

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Built mine around 12 months ago. Had roughly £1000 budget (though did reuse a couple of bits)

CPU = i7 6700k
Mobo = Asus Pro Gaming Z170
Memory = 24GB Crucial DDR4 2400Mhz (cant remember model)
Watercooling = Arctic Liquid Freezer 240
Graphics = ASUS Strix GTX 980Ti (better for you to get GTX 1080 now)
SSD 1 = Crucial M550 512Gb (re-used from old PC)
SSD 2 = Samsung 850 EVO 500Gb
PSU = Corsair AX 860 (reused from Old PC)
Case = £50 one from CCL (cant remember model)

Just a guide. mine was £1000 budget and i pretty much met the budget but had to reuse some parts. (Graphics card took up half the budget alone and the processor took up a good chunk too)
But has been an excellent PC and has run everything ive thrown at it with no problems at all.

Might struggle with the budget if you plan on playing 4k for the next 5 years. Top of the range can do it but only just at decent fps. Id get some good base parts, MB, PSU and CPU but just a cheap used 970 and stick with 1080p for now (can get them for about £130 now, I actually have one for sale if your interested) then I'd wait for the next gen of GPU's and get the top of the range then as an upgrade. I recon they will be a lot more comfortable at 4k

Original Poster

118luke

Built mine around 12 months ago. Had roughly £1000 budget (though did … Built mine around 12 months ago. Had roughly £1000 budget (though did reuse a couple of bits)CPU = i7 6700k Mobo = Asus Pro Gaming Z170Memory = 24GB Crucial DDR4 2400Mhz (cant remember model)Watercooling = Arctic Liquid Freezer 240Graphics = ASUS Strix GTX 980Ti (better for you to get GTX 1080 now)SSD 1 = Crucial M550 512Gb (re-used from old PC)SSD 2 = Samsung 850 EVO 500GbPSU = Corsair AX 860 (reused from Old PC)Case = £50 one from CCL (cant remember model)Just a guide. mine was £1000 budget and i pretty much met the budget but had to reuse some parts. (Graphics card took up half the budget alone and the processor took up a good chunk too)But has been an excellent PC and has run everything ive thrown at it with no problems at all.



Thanks for the advice. The 1080 adds another £200 to the build compared to a 1070 and the benefits seem to be 4k gaming over ultra HD.

And G-sync screen? Worth it? Hmm.

Firefly1

the benefits seem to be 4k gaming over ultra HD.



They're the same thing. 4k and UHD are both film/TV terms for 3840x2160. (or sometimes 4096x2160 in cinema contexts but the difference is small).

You're obviously not expecting to play a lot of the most demanding games. Having owned a 4850 myself I know it started to struggle with them at ~1920x1200 five years ago and I'm sure your 4870 hasn't been able to run quite a few new games at a sensible resolution in the last couple of years. 3840x2160 is very demanding though and I'd be doubtful whether you'll get five years out of a 1070 even on second and third tier games.

I'd be inclined to spend half or a third of the amount now on a 470 or 480 and replace it in a couple of years. The worst case scenario is that you end up spending the rest in a couple of years on something as fast as the 1070 and it's entirely possible the total lifetime of the cards bought with the same budget will be closer to your desired 7 years.

p.s. As far as I'm aware the 4870 was only available in PCI-E and it would be unusual to see an LGA 1366 motherboard without PCI-E slots so your system is almost certainly compatible with a new card. You probably do want a CPU upgrade if you're going to be running on the bleeding edge though.

Original Poster

EndlessWaves

They're the same thing. 4k and UHD are both film/TV terms for 3840x2160. … They're the same thing. 4k and UHD are both film/TV terms for 3840x2160. (or sometimes 4096x2160 in cinema contexts but the difference is small).You're obviously not expecting to play a lot of the most demanding games. Having owned a 4850 myself I know it started to struggle with them at ~1920x1200 five years ago and I'm sure your 4870 hasn't been able to run quite a few new games at a sensible resolution in the last couple of years. 3840x2160 is very demanding though and I'd be doubtful whether you'll get five years out of a 1070 even on second and third tier games. I'd be inclined to spend half or a third of the amount now on a 470 or 480 and replace it in a couple of years. The worst case scenario is that you end up spending the rest in a couple of years on something as fast as the 1070 and it's entirely possible the total lifetime of the cards bought with the same budget will be closer to your desired 7 years.p.s. As far as I'm aware the 4870 was only available in PCI-E and it would be unusual to see an LGA 1366 motherboard without PCI-E slots so your system is almost certainly compatible with a new card. You probably do want a CPU upgrade if you're going to be running on the bleeding edge though.



It's either a 4870 or 5870 series, I will double check at the weekend as away from home this week and perhaps post my current hardware specs in full It can play games like Rome 2 total war on medium settings but my current screen is 1920 x 1024.

In terms of monitors, I'm looking at a G-sync 2560 x 1440, which as far as I understand, is below 4k and therefore GTX 1080 is unnecessary compared to 1070.

I'm at work at the moment but I'll reply later in more detail

On the other hand, I don't upgrade things as often as others and rather buy top of the line and then skip the next upgrade cycle and save up if you know what I mean

Banned

Rather than splurge and get an i7, look at a Xeon, same socket, same bang just less buck.

Firefly1

In terms of monitors, I'm looking at a G-sync 2560 x 1440, which as far … In terms of monitors, I'm looking at a G-sync 2560 x 1440, which as far as I understand, is below 4k and therefore GTX 1080 is unnecessary compared to 1070.



In TV-style terminology that's Quad HD (QHD), rather than Ultra HD, as it's equivalent to a 2x2 grid of HD screens (1280x720).

2560x1440 is 3.7 megapixels (multiply then together) so it's less than half the pixels to be calculated than the 8.3 megapixels of 3840x2160. It doesn't quite scale up exactly with pixel count but it's fairly close so you'd expect around double the frame rates.

Oh, and as far as I know nobody's ever made a 1920x1024 monitor, it's likely that it's either 1920x1200, 1920x1080 or 1280x1024.

Firefly1

On the other hand, I don't upgrade things as often as others and rather … On the other hand, I don't upgrade things as often as others and rather buy top of the line and then skip the next upgrade cycle and save up if you know what I mean



A card half the price will generally last more than half as long though.

As a rule of thumb the next model down is good for 18 months less so if the 1070 would last you six years then the 470/480/1060 will last you four and a half and the 460/1050 will last you three.

So you can pay £65 a year for a £390 GTX 1070, £45 a year for a £200 480/1060 or £35 a year for a £105 RX 460.

The higher end cards only make financial sense if you're demanding enough of image quality that you need to change them every three years (or if you sell them on, which is a different kettle of fish).

If you want to pay extra for the privilege of not having to buy new cards then that's fine, but be aware that you're doing so.

Just built a PC i7 6700k most parts from from awd-it , it came as bundle so mobo, ram, CPU and arctic freezer fitted and overclocked to 4.5. They have some great component bundles that I couldn't find cheaper. Paired it with palit gtx 1070 jet stream but only doing 144hz 1080p g-sync.
Just upgraded from 2500k HD 7950 so understand where you are coming from.
Edited by: "lugsy3" 26th Oct 2016

Original Poster

EndlessWaves

They're the same thing. 4k and UHD are both film/TV terms for 3840x2160. … They're the same thing. 4k and UHD are both film/TV terms for 3840x2160. (or sometimes 4096x2160 in cinema contexts but the difference is small).You're obviously not expecting to play a lot of the most demanding games. Having owned a 4850 myself I know it started to struggle with them at ~1920x1200 five years ago and I'm sure your 4870 hasn't been able to run quite a few new games at a sensible resolution in the last couple of years. 3840x2160 is very demanding though and I'd be doubtful whether you'll get five years out of a 1070 even on second and third tier games. I'd be inclined to spend half or a third of the amount now on a 470 or 480 and replace it in a couple of years. The worst case scenario is that you end up spending the rest in a couple of years on something as fast as the 1070 and it's entirely possible the total lifetime of the cards bought with the same budget will be closer to your desired 7 years.p.s. As far as I'm aware the 4870 was only available in PCI-E and it would be unusual to see an LGA 1366 motherboard without PCI-E slots so your system is almost certainly compatible with a new card. You probably do want a CPU upgrade if you're going to be running on the bleeding edge though.



Here's my specs, just got home:

Processor Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU 920 @ 2.67GHz
Manufacturer Intel
Speed 2.8 GHz
Number of Cores 4 (Dual threaded to 8 )
Video Card AMD Radeon HD 5800 Series
Manufacturer ATI
Chipset AMD Radeon HD 5800 Series
Dedicated Memory 1.0 GB
Total Memory 4.0 GB

Operating System Microsoft Windows 10 (build 10586), 64-bit
Service Pack 0
Size 64-bit

BIOS Award Modular BIOS v6.00PG
Version Award Software International, Inc. F7
Manufacturer Award Software International, Inc.
Date 05/11/09

Memory
RAM 12 GB
1000W good-brand power supply (Had an issue previously with around 600W so just went big )
Got a nice gaming case that is large & I'll keep

Current screen one Viewsonic VX922 (Gaming screen); 1280 x 1024. Preferred the square shape of monitor up until now for gaming hence why using the poorer resolution monitor for gaming.
Current screen two: Newer ilyama PL2488H (2nd Screen): 1920 x 1080.

Will replace screen one in this upgrade - thinking a G-Sync 2560x1440.

I appreciate my earlier budget isn't enough - so going to far exceed this once and then not touch it again for a long time I get your point at £/year usage but I also have to factor in my time and I think for the convenience, I'll just do it once.



Edited by: "Firefly1" 28th Oct 2016

Original Poster

EndlessWaves

They're the same thing. 4k and UHD are both film/TV terms for 3840x2160. … They're the same thing. 4k and UHD are both film/TV terms for 3840x2160. (or sometimes 4096x2160 in cinema contexts but the difference is small).You're obviously not expecting to play a lot of the most demanding games. Having owned a 4850 myself I know it started to struggle with them at ~1920x1200 five years ago and I'm sure your 4870 hasn't been able to run quite a few new games at a sensible resolution in the last couple of years. 3840x2160 is very demanding though and I'd be doubtful whether you'll get five years out of a 1070 even on second and third tier games. I'd be inclined to spend half or a third of the amount now on a 470 or 480 and replace it in a couple of years. The worst case scenario is that you end up spending the rest in a couple of years on something as fast as the 1070 and it's entirely possible the total lifetime of the cards bought with the same budget will be closer to your desired 7 years.p.s. As far as I'm aware the 4870 was only available in PCI-E and it would be unusual to see an LGA 1366 motherboard without PCI-E slots so your system is almost certainly compatible with a new card. You probably do want a CPU upgrade if you're going to be running on the bleeding edge though.



Turns out you were right! It's a PCI 2.0 16 motherboard..... Looking into it further, it shouldn't be any detriment to a 3.0 PCI graphics card. So upgraded to a GTX 1080 & new monitor and will see how things go and whether anything else needs doing.
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