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Old 06-19-2013, 06:53 PM   #1
Morphismus
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Lightbulb New PC Build going Haswell!

Its time to build myself a new PC. This is the 3rd build Ill do. Some years ago I had to exchange a broken Motherboard, and as you might know that is essentially like building a new PC since you have to take everything apart. At that time I thought why not build the next one myself completely? Worked fine every time, never had problems and its fun!

I do a bit of everything with my PC: Gaming, poker, development, simulation, movies, music... I plan to do an upgrade (CPU, graphics) in 1-1,5 years. Here are the specs:

CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K Box, LGA1150
Im going with the boxed-cooler for now, as people always lol when I tell them of the big monster of cpu-cooler I installed. If its too loud I can still change that later, e.g. when I upgrade to an i7.

Motherboard:
MSI Z87-G45 Gaming, ATX, Socket 1150
Thought about the GD65 first, but I dont see much additional value actually.

RAM: 16GB-Kit Corsair Vengeance Low Profile PC3-12800U CL9
Probably going for 32GB when upgrading.

Graphics: MSI N660 Twin Frozr 2GD5/OC, GeForce GTX 660, 2048MB DDR5
This one has still reasonable performance, is pretty cheap (170,-), and its silent. The idea is to go for a GTX 780 or Titan later when they are available for a reasonable price. Thought about trying an ATI card, but Im skeptical how that would work together with the GPU of the Haswell, as I will put 1-2 of my 3 Monitors on that. I also want to fiddle around with CUDA a bit.

System-Disks: 2x Samsung SSD 840 Series Kit 250GB
Finally SSD Im super excited about this! I will use them as a RAID1 for the O/S (Win7 Pro) and programs that might benefit from it. I probably put 1-2 virtual machines on it (VBox) with Linux distros for development and maybe one just for surfing, as I think it might be a good idea to do that on a VM. I expect big things from the Haswell here, as my current Q9550 simply isnt up for the task.

Data disks: 2x Seagate Barracuda 7200 1000GB
Also as a RAID1. Silence is again a main factor here.

PSU: be quiet! DARK POWER PRO 10 650W
Case: FRACTAL DESIGN Define R4 PCGH Edition
The last two also with silence in mind. The whole thing will cost me about 1340,- without OS.

I bought the SSDs today at a local store; while I could get everything else from the same online shop they hadnt these. Here they are:



I actually wanted to buy only one, but decided for 2 at the last minute for additional RAID1 safety (new technology and all; I currently have 4 500GB disks in a RAID10 combo lol).

The rest should arrive Thursday or Friday, I plan to update on the process and the results.
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Old 06-20-2013, 01:29 PM   #2
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

Well, this doesn't seem to generate too much interest. Anyway, all the components arrived today:



However, I noticed that I forgot to order a Blueray Player! So it's another trip to the local store... I don't have time to assemble this before Saturday anyway.
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Old 06-20-2013, 09:38 PM   #3
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

Nice thread, I'll definitely follow this and am looking forward to some more nice pics. I love great looking hardware! Can't believe there isn't a 'rigs' or a 'casemods' thread anyway but whatever.

That's a nice gaming rig with well matched components you're going to build there, esp the board seems overall great and looks awesome. Didn't find anything about it supporting using the iGPU and graphics cards at once though, I believe it's more designed for SLI/Crossfire, but the N660 should be fine to run 3 monitors.

I was about to recommend a faster 8GB kit over the 16GB you picked, but after checking the prices for DDR3-3000 (3000! That's almost twice as fast ) I agree it's prolly better to wait for more reasonable prices... or should I say, less ridiculous prices. My point though is, from 8GB+ speed is almost always more valuable than size, esp considering that you can easily upgrade 8GB to 16 with just 2 more sticks whereas an actual performance increase requires you to replace the whole 4x kit.

Anyway gj, hf and keep it coming.

Last edited by Baobhan-Sith; 06-20-2013 at 09:43 PM.
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Old 06-22-2013, 01:10 AM   #4
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

Nice build man. Did you do much research on the difference between the 840 and 840PRO SSD's for poker (HEM / Pt4) performance?
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Old 06-22-2013, 05:43 AM   #5
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Baobhan-Sith View Post
I was about to recommend a faster 8GB kit over the 16GB you picked, but after checking the prices for DDR3-3000 (3000! That's almost twice as fast ) I agree it's prolly better to wait for more reasonable prices... or should I say, less ridiculous prices. My point though is, from 8GB+ speed is almost always more valuable than size, esp considering that you can easily upgrade 8GB to 16 with just 2 more sticks whereas an actual performance increase requires you to replace the whole 4x kit.
Yeah I'm always a bit lost with RAM tbh and tend to be more conservative. I will educate myself better here before the upgrade.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FoldEqu1ty View Post
Nice build man. Did you do much research on the difference between the 840 and 840PRO SSD's for poker (HEM / Pt4) performance?
No, but of course the 840PRO is faster (and of course more expensive), so that should help. However using RAID1 will at least increase read performance.

Anyway, gonna start assembling now!
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Old 06-22-2013, 10:19 AM   #6
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

That looks like a great build. I'm planning a build as well. It will be a little more budget oriented though but with the same GPU.
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Old 06-22-2013, 11:31 AM   #7
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

So, its basically done! Gonna fire that baby up after dinner. I started up by mounting the SSDs into a frame which fits into the 3.5 slots.



Later it turned out that I cant really connect them that way, because its all too close together ; so I mounted the top one the other way round and connected it from the other side.



This shows the PSU installed and the drives slid in. I can also add an overclocking switch to the PSU, but I dont plan on overclocking and dont know what that switch does, so I might leave that away.
I forgot to mention that I actually bought a 3rd SSD (32GB) just for the swapfile; lets see how this turns out



Time to install the CPU! The great thing about the boxed cooler is that they have the thermal paste already on it. On my first build I had a big cooler and tried liquid metal thermal paste right away. I accidentally speckled the motherboard with it, and spent like half a day removing every little bit.



The cooler looks quiet unimpressive though.



Motherboard mounted and everything connected!



Turns out that I could have mounted the SSDs at the back, at the right of the picture, but saw that to late in the manual.

Final step: the graphics card!




and its all together:



One lesson learned (apart from the SSD mounting stuff): While it looks kinda great with all the stuff in black it can be actually annyoing while fiddling with all the small connectors because you don't see well...

So Im reporting later on how its working. If I dont report back its because the things not working and Im grumpy . If you guys see something on the pictures I messed up just let me know. And btw any tips on RAID stripe sizes?
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Old 06-22-2013, 11:46 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morphismus View Post
So, it’s basically done! Gonna fire that baby up after dinner. I started up by mounting the SSDs into a frame which fits into the 3.5’’ slots.



Later it turned out that I can’t really connect them that way, because it’s all too close together ; so I mounted the top one the other way round and connected it from the other side.



This shows the PSU installed and the drives slid in. I can also add an overclocking switch to the PSU, but I don’t plan on overclocking and don’t know what that switch does, so I might leave that away.
I forgot to mention that I actually bought a 3rd SSD (32GB) just for the swapfile; let’s see how this turns out…



Time to install the CPU! The great thing about the boxed cooler is that they have the thermal paste already on it. On my first build I had a big cooler and tried liquid metal thermal paste right away. I accidentally speckled the motherboard with it, and spent like half a day removing every little bit.



The cooler looks quiet unimpressive though.



Motherboard mounted and everything connected!



Turns out that I could have mounted the SSDs at the back, at the right of the picture, but saw that to late in the manual.

Final step: the graphics card!




…and it’s all together:



One lesson learned (apart from the SSD mounting stuff): While it looks kinda great with all the stuff in black it can be actually annyoing while fiddling with all the small connectors because you don't see well...

So I’m reporting later on how it’s working. If I don’t report back it’s because the thing’s not working and I’m grumpy . If you guys see something on the pictures I messed up just let me know. And btw any tips on RAID stripe sizes?

Awesome potential here. I like the 2 SSDs.
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Old 06-22-2013, 12:24 PM   #9
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

Looks pretty good. Cable management might have been a bit better if you'd routed the motherboard main and cpu power cables through the back of the case imo.
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Old 06-22-2013, 01:36 PM   #10
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

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Looks pretty good. Cable management might have been a bit better if you'd routed the motherboard main and cpu power cables through the back of the case imo.
Excellent idea which I implemented right away. This looks much better now:





And it works! I'm configuring the RAID now.
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Old 06-22-2013, 01:50 PM   #11
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

Didn't know that you don't need to set a strip size for RAID1. Installing Windows...
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Old 06-22-2013, 03:59 PM   #12
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

Since they are not mechanical (no moving parts), you can actually mount an SSD just about anywhere. Velcro works quite well.
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Old 06-22-2013, 05:15 PM   #13
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.mmmKay View Post
Looks pretty good. Cable management might have been a bit better if you'd routed the motherboard main and cpu power cables through the back of the case imo.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Morphismus View Post
Excellent idea which I implemented right away.
What about doing the same with all cables? Better air flow, less dust catchers and better accessibility to the drives - wtg imo.

While I dislike towers in general, I have to say this one looks well thought through and solid. Gotta love the cutout to access the cooler backplate.

Great built, thanks for the updates and pics.



edit:
Quote:
One lesson learned (apart from the SSD mounting stuff): While it looks kinda great with all the stuff in black it can be actually annyoing while fiddling with all the small connectors because you don't see well...
That's what LEDs are there for
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Old 06-22-2013, 06:03 PM   #14
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

You have 16GB RAM and need a swap file?
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Old 06-22-2013, 06:29 PM   #15
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

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Originally Posted by Baobhan-Sith View Post
What about doing the same with all cables? Better air flow, less dust catchers and better accessibility to the drives - wtg imo.

...

Gotta love the cutout to access the cooler backplate.
The cutouts are great. I could maybe also route the graphics card power supply through the back, but that's it, the SATA power supplies aren't long enough, and have to visit a lot of drives...it's also getting a bit cramped back there...

Anyway, I'm writing these on the new machine already, sitting in my Ubuntu VM which runs smoothly. WIndows installed in like 15 minutes, and starts up in under a minute.

Windows performance (in German, but i think you get it anyway):



So this is probably at the top of the range Microsoft thought was possible when they made Win7. Any tips for more meaningful benchmarks I could use?

In any case, this SSD stuff is the ****!
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Old 06-22-2013, 06:37 PM   #16
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

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You have 16GB RAM and need a swap file?
Well, at least Windows thinks I do; the system automatically generates one (about 16 Gig). You can switch it off, but I really don't know if that's wise.

I was discussing with a friend a while ago that putting it on a seperate small SSD might be beneficial, also for the durability of the main SSD. Maybe it's silly, but it didn't cost too much anyway.
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Old 06-22-2013, 06:45 PM   #17
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

Windows is easily impressed by graphics cards imo.

Why the **** would they make a scale from 1 to 7.9 tho

Edit: it even gives my 5 year old laptop GPU a 6.2
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Old 06-22-2013, 06:53 PM   #18
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

Some progs require a pagefile, and yes it will obv increase the main SSDs' durability as well as performance so it's not silly at all.

Fwiw the performance index is pretty much worthless, I get almost the same with my Phenom II x4 945, 8GB @ 1333MHz, a Radeon HD7850, and an Agility3 connected via SATA2. Clearly your system pwns mine in all regards. Do some actual benchmarks and compare online.
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Old 06-23-2013, 02:48 AM   #19
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

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Well, at least Windows thinks I do; the system automatically generates one (about 16 Gig). You can switch it off, but I really don't know if that's wise.

I was discussing with a friend a while ago that putting it on a seperate small SSD might be beneficial, also for the durability of the main SSD. Maybe it's silly, but it didn't cost too much anyway.
I believe Windows is wrong, I set my page file to be 1.2GB max (16MB min) and it just pretty much doesn't go above the 16MB min. I got 8GB RAM. I sure heck don't think you the a full disk for that
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Old 06-23-2013, 01:19 PM   #20
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I believe Windows is wrong, I set my page file to be 1.2GB max (16MB min) and it just pretty much doesn't go above the 16MB min. I got 8GB RAM. I sure heck don't think you the a full disk for that
I could be wrong but mega large paging files would not usually be required. Caching large DBs would be one where or would come in handy.

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Old 06-23-2013, 01:50 PM   #21
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

Windows Experience Index is shot lol

Just for fun I ran it on the MBP, Win 7 running in Parallels with 3GB of system RAM dedicated to it. It's one of the newer models with a 256GB Samsung SSD, quad Ivy i7 & GT 650 in it.



That's really generous on the graphics side.

Pretty sure 7.9 maxes it out in Win 7. I know 8 goes higher, at least 9.9. Maybe that's why, but Win 7 wouldn't know that.
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Old 06-23-2013, 05:47 PM   #22
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

The PCMARK7 benchmark gives me 5711 points - whatever that means. And I'm happy to announce that Crysis 3 runs smoothly with basically everything set to max.
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Old 06-27-2013, 06:02 AM   #23
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

Nice build. I recently made myself a haswell build as well and approached it a similar way; I am a big of shooting for a silent pc. I would also have to look into those fractal cases, it looks good.

Random thoughts:

1. If you re really interested in silence, change the stock cpu cooler with either a water cooler or a noctua air cpu cooler. In either case research what are the most silent fans; if I am not mistaken when I did my research some time ago, skythe were considered among the best.

2. You can always buy a fan controller and connect your fans there and run all of them in reduced speed. That also helps with silence and it's not a problem if you re not overclocking.

3. For silence's sake, I go with passively cooled video cards. What's your experience with yours?

4. I am ambivalent about the page file. If you use photoshop, then yes (though it calls it a scratch disk). If not, and your 16 gb of memory can handle it, then I think it's best to not have one. Samsung's 840 firmware recommends a page file set between 100MB and 2gb fwiw.

5. Memory speed helps. Not necessary to get 3000 mhz, but you can get 2100/2400 with a bit more money.

But again, these are quibbles. This is a nice build, have fun with it!
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Old 06-27-2013, 12:53 PM   #24
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

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Originally Posted by leviathan74 View Post
1. If you re really interested in silence, change the stock cpu cooler with either a water cooler or a noctua air cpu cooler. In either case research what are the most silent fans; if I am not mistaken when I did my research some time ago, skythe were considered among the best.
I took the stock cpu cooler because the online shop where I basically bought everything didn't have a tray version. Right now it's OK, only when the CPU load is high you hear it noticeably. But I've made the experience that these coolers get louder over time though, and when that happens I'll swap it.

Quote:
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2. You can always buy a fan controller and connect your fans there and run all of them in reduced speed. That also helps with silence and it's not a problem if you re not overclocking.
The case already has that! You can switch the voltage to 12V, 7V or 3V, and 7V is considerably more silent than 12V.

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3. For silence's sake, I go with passively cooled video cards. What's your experience with yours?
This one is great; I barely hear it. I had a passive card at work once which was enough for all the desktop stuff, but if you want a bit more bang than you gotta go active. Just looked it up and the most performant passive nVIDIA card is a GT640.

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4. I am ambivalent about the page file. If you use photoshop, then yes (though it calls it a scratch disk). If not, and your 16 gb of memory can handle it, then I think it's best to not have one. Samsung's 840 firmware recommends a page file set between 100MB and 2gb fwiw.
As I said, don't know if it makes much sense, also the pagefile in general, but it was only 36 and if it helps increasing the main SSDs lifetime it should be worth it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by leviathan74 View Post
5. Memory speed helps. Not necessary to get 3000 mhz, but you can get 2100/2400 with a bit more money.

But again, these are quibbles. This is a nice build, have fun with it!
Yeah I will definitely upgrade there later. And thnx, it is a lot of fun! Windows is fast, VM and gaming works great!
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Old 07-03-2013, 04:05 PM   #25
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Re: New PC Build going Haswell!

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Originally Posted by Morphismus View Post
Well, at least Windows thinks I do; the system automatically generates one (about 16 Gig). You can switch it off, but I really don't know if that's wise.

I was discussing with a friend a while ago that putting it on a seperate small SSD might be beneficial, also for the durability of the main SSD. Maybe it's silly, but it didn't cost too much anyway.
Just set the pagefile to 1024 MB and you are good to go. There are plenty of instructions for setting up SSD with Windows Vista/7
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