Build a PC: Recommended Builds (July 2014)

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Xlr8torZ28

Who wrote this article... lmao
I wont get involved in the childish AMD vs Intel or AMD vs Nvidia. What I will say is that a $180 case is NOT baseline.
A $180 mobo, is NOT baseline.
Intel chips are overpriced and wouldn't be used in a "budget" baseline build either.
A $250 graphics card is NOT baseline.
A baseline "budget" build would also not have the expense of an SSD.
I have built 3 budget PCs in the last 6 months for customers with 6 core AMD, 1GB graphics card, 1TB 64mb cache 7200rpm drive, 8GB ram, on an Asus mobo... under $700
$1212 is NOT a "budget" or baseline build...

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pcjoeyd

Can anyone tell me what you gain by going to haswell (from sandy bridge cpu)? I'm thinking of building a pc using a sandy bridge core i7 2600k cpu and clocking it at 4.5ghz. What is the difference between a haswell running at 4.5ghz. Does that cpu have more cache?? I just don't understand why there is a need to go to haswell cpu's when there doesn't seem to be a big difference between sand/ivy/haswell. I actually like the sandy bridge cpu's because they have the IC heat spreaders soldered to the cpu die, whereas on ivy or haswell cpu's they are attached via inferior thermal paste (limiting overclocks slightly and making cpu's run hotter). This is going to be my first foray into core i7 technology (currently using a q6600 quad core system). I just wanted to get some advice and/or feedback into what you guys think. Thanks.

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Maervince Gonzales

Sir could I ask if I could put an i7 intel core processor on the BASELINE build?

Sorry for my dumb question. I am just a newbie in these custom pc's. Thanks. :)

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bairrd

Clearly they do not build these pcs. The h100i water cooler does not fit in the Phantom 530 case. Yay returns, and screw you PC Mag!

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bairrd

The fans for the h100i do not fit in between the space for the radiator on the cooler and all the heatsinks on the motherboard

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beatyas

No mention of a discrete sound card?
Is onboard that good?
Creative or Asus, for example.

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Mekan

This may have changed, but the reason I changed from AMD and back to Nvidia was simply because AMD never made their drivers quite right. I had all types of problems from simple OS to intense games. Nvidia has always had solid drivers and responsive fixes when issues arose.

Has this changed today? A bit faster means nothing if the game won't run do to driver issues.

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pcjoeyd

Mekan, I don't think it's nearly as bad as it used to be for ATI, buit Nvidia drivers are still more robust. I put together a Q6700 quad core system (running at 3.3ghz) using an abit ip35pro mobo, 6gb ram & an AMD Radeon 7850 2gb pci-e graphics card. This is basically an emulation machine used for running video game emulators and watching movies (netflix streaming, etc), and some pc gaming as well. I have another similar system running an nvidia geforce gtx 260 (core 216) and across the board in my emulators I was getting better framerates with the nvidia system (using a much older, slower card). I thought maybe it was a win 8 issue as the nvidia machine has win 7, but that is not the case. I switched video cards by putting the nvidia card into my living room pc and then all of a sudden my ps2, dreamcast & Wii (dolphin emu) games ran better (generally 5-10fps faster). I put the radeon card in my win 7 machine and noticed slower framerates on that system as well. I made sure to use ccleaner to completely remove old graphics card drivers and made sure to download and install the latest drivers from AMD/Nvidia websites, so i know it's not a case of outdated drivers. With pc games however, framerates were much faster using the radeon card (which it should have been since it's a much newer card). I can't explain the poor performance of the radeon card running emulators though. I was told that radeon cards are good with emulators, but in my experience I find that to not be the case at all.
SO, the moral of the story is,, if you're going to be using your video card to exclusively run pc games, I think you'll be good to go with a radeon card...drivers seem stable, games run great, and I didn't notice any issues at all...seems to run just as good as nvidia cards. However, if you're going to be playing pc games AS WELL AS running emulators (such as nulldc, pcx2, dolphin, etc), you're much better off sticking with Nvidia.

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Mangoman232

Well, I've been using AMD video cards for the last nine years, and they've been kicking ass all along. Right now I'm running an XFX Radeon 7950 with 3GB 384-bit GDDR5 memory I purchased Feb. of last year, and with every upgrade of driver, it stays just as solid as a damn rock. Never had a bit of wonkiness, or anything, and the games I play are gorgeous at maxxed out resolutions on my 27 inch monitor. So I can vouch for the solidity of their drivers personally. On my wife's 'puter, I put in an Nvidia vid card, and never had a problem with that, either (note I did NOT use the word ISSUE???). So, there ya go. Give AMD another try. I like 'em. You will too.

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aarcane

WTF is with the pure Radeon month? I've got nothing against AMD except that I like my graphics to actually look presentable, but seriously, did you have to contaminate the entire month's builds with their wretched taint?

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Jacob Stanbery

Though I wouldn't touch current AMD CPUs, when it comes to the performance you get for the price you pay, their GPUs are the smarter option.

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NASzi

I agree with this, that original comment seems a little Nvidia biased. Though I can't speak of actual performance because I've actually never owned an AMD card, i'm not opposed to it, they're just never fallen in my sweet spot when I was in the market for a card.

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Jacob Stanbery

EDIT: duplicate comment

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mynamewasstolen

X79 is so old. A 4790K build would clean the "Performance" build's clock, not to mention leaving enough extra money for other nice parts.

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NASzi

I'd have to disagree with this. X79 is still very relevant and though the builds have the lower to mid range X79 chips, they leave room for upgrading to a better chip such as the 4960X.

On the other hand, for the mid range build, I think they should have stuck with Z97 as the chips are more current and overclock well.