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Looking to Build my First PC!

Computer issues? Problems with your drivers? or do you like to help out? Post your questions and answers here!

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Romeo

04 May 2018, 17:38

Hey all,

I have wanted to get into PC gaming for a while; but watching Liru's vids on Youtube made me make the decision to start now! I'm looking for a kind of mid budget build (£900- £1200). I've started to research the best ways to go about it but any hints and tips would be appreciated!

Looking to be able to run Arma super smooth as well as modern AAA games and possibly stream in future!

Thanks in advance all!!
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Ratking15
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05 May 2018, 00:11

Okay your first mistake is thinking Arma will run smoothly no matter what your running with and honestly if you want triple A game that are going to be coming out to run smoothly all the time on that budget you will have to do some bargain bin hunting. This is due to some issues arising which cause prices to rise for RAM and graphics cards (bit coin mining) so with that in mind I suggest you go for stuff that is at least an generation lower than the current ones. e.g. 1080 TI can be over £1k but minimal of £400 (very shady) while 980 can be £400-£700 depending where you get it. With the prices to make sure you don't get and used card make sure it's within the average pricing of the card though there are some good discounts around so don't go for SLI because the price is low as the card may burn out quickly.

(If you just want an kinda of summery just go to the end though I've done sections to maybe help and I'm talking in terms of pounds as I'm british)

RAM/Memory
So graphics cards will take a fair chunk of your budget and the ram is similar where you will want DDR4 and maybe 2000 Mhz minimal though 2400 Mhz would be what I would recommend and with arma you want a fair bit so 8-16 GB is where you want to be which for that speed can be 150-300 again depending where and who you get it from and maker.

Motherboard
What you want to focus on next is then your motherboard which goes based on your preferences of USB slots, WIfI/lan, expansion slots, memory limits (RAM speed and size), SATA limits. As those will impact your peripherals, internet, graphics card upgrades, memory upgrades, storage upgrades. Of course this includes CPU upgrades with that however those you can search for after really sorting out the motherboard or beforehand they will limit your options of each other to a degree. This also makes the price vary depending on the aforementioned preferences as you can get some which are 50 or less or go for 150 which are less likely to limit you. Oh and the size of motherboard will determine your case size but ATX is the general size of all and what you would expect for an pc. The motherboard will effect which CPU maker you can go with at times as well so keep that in mind for this next part.

CPU
Now CPU for arma you want fast speeds (3.4-4.2GHz) and at least quad-core in my mind, right now (as an intel user) which really would end up being an I7 7700k 250 or the I5 variant which is 100 cheaper give or take. Now I have thought about doing AMD myself but through my research I just kept finding issues where intel was more generalized and didn't have as many issues with graphics card Nivida makes while AMD don't like you going away from their products. This does make the CPU price go up as intel are losing compared to AMD in that area along with performance but again I have yet had an issue with intel. AMD user probably will say the same though, along with saying we've had issues with the other sides, it's an ongoing war in an way. However again the CPU will be dictated upon the motherboard you choose so in your research for the parts make sure you at least have an avid idea about which CPU maker your going with: AMD or Intel.

CPU Cooler
CPU also need an cooler and there in what I've found is that you want to be cheap then going stock is FINE but there is some good fan upgrades which are 30 or a bit less. The main issue though with your cooler will be your own expertise with making the computer, so if you've done NOTHING like this at all especially with electronics and water then I recommend not doing water cooled and just go fan. From my own research is even to water but doesn't hold up if CPU is running max for a long time which can happen with any new games coming out in the future however my own experience is currently I can't see much of a difference myself except with fiddling for the upgrading of CPU's later on.

Storage
Now storage....go SSD....right now HDD, Hybrid do not beat SSD in reliability, storage and price and this goes for games as I've got an SSD from about 4 years ago maybe and it doesn't seem be running out of the number of writes it has left and it has infinite reads which makes it last longer and can be written or read from a lot faster. The size I would say go for a few TB which will add on 200 for 1TB, 370 for 2TB and so on. Though I would get an 150 GB one for your operating system and if possible and HDD or another SSD for things that aren't games to best optimize as you can find some bargain bucket HDD of an fair size so you can dump documents or video recordings on there and so on because games are getting big in size.

Final Bits
Finally you can think about the last bits, power supply, case and possibly and optical drive. The power supply I would say should be 600 Watts to 800 as we never know if your upgrades will gulp up a ton of power but that's mainly the CPU and graphics card. The case is up to your preference though motherboard has a hand in saying if you go for an ATC minimal if you even want one as you can go without an case but that is messy and not recommend in terms of space and storage though dusting is easier. An optical drive can be useful but again your preference as there can be times of when you need something burnt to a disk and brought into work or uni which can't be done online as stuff online can be intercepted. These all together can be under an 100.

Summary
Now you may have realized at the end of this that the pricing may have come to your budget or a bit more if you've been looking up prices from something like pcpartpicker.com which I was looking at roughly for this and I got this: https://uk.pcpartpicker.com/list/pMKz7W
Yes pricey but I wasn't being fully careful with what I picked and the site doesn't show all parts as some may have been removed or not be in production/not have a price as it takes it's prices for a few websites namely amazon. I did go with makers that I prefer on some parts but others I just flipped a coin and went with reviews or price. The good news is that you could find all this for cheaper as amazon is a good place to find average pricing for parts but can show the extremes depending upon the seller you choose and they can give you an bad version.
Although there is an cheaper way about this as I found when I was looking to upgrade my pc and was trying to be mister cheap though I luckily didn't need to upgrade anything more than CPU and RAM though this caused me to upgrade casing, motherboard, power supply and CPU cooler (kinda of it's stock). It's through PC bundles where you can get the CORE pieces of your computer pre-built with or without an case for 300-900 and with some you can pick and choose some parts you want though it's small. Here's what I go roughly: https://uk.pcpartpicker.com/list/PBtvfH
The price is different to what I actually ended up paying as the bundle included extras like keyboard, mouse, headset and the case isn't what I have but it roughly looks the same and it all came built for me though I needed to add in my GTX 980 and my storage which is half SSD and HDD with one hybrid (it's dying slowly but good space and corruption is limited). So it wasn't much of a building of a PC though it was cheap and allows me to game again with modern game at high graphics and allows myself to upgrade in the future since the motherboard, case and power supply supports it. So far I have had no issues with the PC except for moving the storage over broke a few things with software and operating system but were fixed via reinstall or customer service (speedy as well for once Microsoft!) and I do stream and record with the PC for Arma which I get 40 FPS max in combat arma. The only real downer was the fact I had to get some parts like the headset bundle and that the warranty is voided if I do anything to the computer without letting them know in some way.

Btw I've not proof read this so yeah I've probably messed up somewhere a few time with my typing....oosp.
Oh I have an arma unit which is meant for messing around and be serious when required, here's some links:
http://steamcommunity.com/groups/puddi- ... ing-puddi/ https://units.arma3.com/unit/puddi-pudd ... uddi-puddi https://i.imgur.com/x41vIZz.jpg https://i.imgur.com/OdCOfWM.jpg

Puddi Puddi Giga Pudding :D
Romeo

05 May 2018, 20:32

Thanks for taking the time to help!

That's absolutely sounds advice mate; I had no idea where to start so thank you for a foothold!

I've started with a case (Cooler Master Masterbox lite 5) It fits all motherboard sizes and had really good reviews online.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B06 ... UTF8&psc=1

I went for a 650W power supply because I did think that there would be a lot of drain and I can always go bigger as I upgrade in the future!
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01 ... UTF8&psc=1

And then I went for the Cooler Master Hyper 212, which is the only thing I'm worried about since reading your post about water cooling, but it is compatible with the CPU I want! I want more than one fan so I may just buy a couple of 120mm fans and leave this till later on.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00 ... UTF8&psc=1

That's as far as I have got with it this month; next month I'll look at RAM and the Motherboard
I am British myself so no worries on everything being in pounds it was preferred!

Thank you again!
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Ratking15
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05 May 2018, 21:38

Romeo wrote:
05 May 2018, 20:32
Thanks for taking the time to help!

That's absolutely sounds advice mate; I had no idea where to start so thank you for a foothold!

I've started with a case (Cooler Master Masterbox lite 5) It fits all motherboard sizes and had really good reviews online.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B06 ... UTF8&psc=1

I went for a 650W power supply because I did think that there would be a lot of drain and I can always go bigger as I upgrade in the future!
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01 ... UTF8&psc=1

And then I went for the Cooler Master Hyper 212, which is the only thing I'm worried about since reading your post about water cooling, but it is compatible with the CPU I want! I want more than one fan so I may just buy a couple of 120mm fans and leave this till later on.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00 ... UTF8&psc=1

That's as far as I have got with it this month; next month I'll look at RAM and the Motherboard
I am British myself so no worries on everything being in pounds it was preferred!

Thank you again!
No problem glad you understand it and you've reminded me about something that I got an bad surprise about with my case which you may get with yours. The expansion slots for the graphics card may be break-away's which will mean you'll have to bend them in and out until they snap off CAREFULLY take your time with it and make sure you've removed the screws that could be holding them in place, but again this is an possible thing to happen and not assured.

Second is that you will have some issues with power supply and storage installation along with cabling. This is due to that box at the bottom which is meant for those two component types and removing that will be needed for the power supply while the storage you put in via the non-glassed panel. The storage will be extremely tricky to screw into place however cables and the panel would be enough on their own especially if you go for just SSD's as they have no moving parts while HDD's and Hybrids do and can break if they are shaken the wrong way constantly . My storage is not screwed in and is being held in by the cables and the case panel though when I initially put the panel on there was an sound caused by the HDD's or the hybrid being against the panel too much and needed a little bit of cable adjustment to stop the noise.

The fan is the easiest to do and extra fans you'll want on the front of the case as it comes with an fan at the back, you might want to think about which direction they blow as well as if they blow outwards then the air will be coming in from the bottom and the back lower area. This will mean the case can end up getting heated faster, but also dust can easily clog up the power supply and graphics card if you do not clean with pressurized air every few months or so.
Oh I have an arma unit which is meant for messing around and be serious when required, here's some links:
http://steamcommunity.com/groups/puddi- ... ing-puddi/ https://units.arma3.com/unit/puddi-pudd ... uddi-puddi https://i.imgur.com/x41vIZz.jpg https://i.imgur.com/OdCOfWM.jpg

Puddi Puddi Giga Pudding :D
SpartanD39
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06 May 2018, 13:15

Romeo wrote:
05 May 2018, 20:32
I went for a 650W power supply because I did think that there would be a lot of drain and I can always go bigger as I upgrade in the future!
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01 ... UTF8&psc=1
If you can, I would get a 750-1000W power rather than a 650w. It'll save you an upgrade in the future, and will leave you with plenty of power to put future upgrades in to your rig. This is just a suggestion based on personal preference as PSUs can get kind pricey.
And then I went for the Cooler Master Hyper 212, which is the only thing I'm worried about since reading your post about water cooling, but it is compatible with the CPU I want! I want more than one fan so I may just buy a couple of 120mm fans and leave this till later on.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00 ... UTF8&psc=1
I have that same cooler setup on my machine, and it works amazingly. I'm an AMD fanboy so temps can be kind of an issue for me. I swapped to this from the stock cooler and immediately saw ~10C shaved off when I'm under load. It's a pretty good-sized cooler so just be aware of clearances around the socket on your motherboard, and how wide your case is (first case I bought didn't have the clearance for the cooler to fit, so had to size up).

I wanted to comment on fan setups quickly; Get yourself screens for all of your fans, and go for a positive (or even neutral) pressure setup. The screens will help keep your rigs innards clear of nastiness that can reduce cooling efficiency. Positive pressure keeps dust and other crap from getting sucked in to the case (and thus components inside of it) through cracks/crevices in the case.

If you ever want to give water-cooling a shot, get yourself a Corsair closed-loop system or similar. They consist of a cooling block connected to a radiator and 120mm fan (in most cases). There's no real setup required other than mounting the block and radiator, and work very well from what I've seen, plus warranty against leaks and such.
Oster

22 May 2018, 03:19

Just make sure you get an SSD and run your operating system off of it if you want Arma to run smooth. When I switched my OS from HDD to SSD my frames jumped from 15-25 to 35-50 no lag with 3k+ view distance in cities with over 80 people on a server.
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Ratking15
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22 May 2018, 09:21

Oster wrote:
22 May 2018, 03:19
Just make sure you get an SSD and run your operating system off of it if you want Arma to run smooth. When I switched my OS from HDD to SSD my frames jumped from 15-25 to 35-50 no lag with 3k+ view distance in cities with over 80 people on a server.
That's true if Arma is installed on an SSD as well.
Oh I have an arma unit which is meant for messing around and be serious when required, here's some links:
http://steamcommunity.com/groups/puddi- ... ing-puddi/ https://units.arma3.com/unit/puddi-pudd ... uddi-puddi https://i.imgur.com/x41vIZz.jpg https://i.imgur.com/OdCOfWM.jpg

Puddi Puddi Giga Pudding :D
Romeo

23 May 2018, 20:57

Will do thank you!
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