New PC Build Advice

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Elsie, Sep 23, 2015.

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  1. Elsie

    Elsie Registered User

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    Hi All,

    During a game of Grid in July at epicLAN#15, my gaming PC decided it's time on this planet had come to an end and passed away. It just turned off and would not (even after buying and installing a new PSU) come back to life.

    It's time for a new one :)

    I was thinking of buying an off-the-shelf unit (my son is still using my old Dell XPS 720 that I used to take to LAN's!) but there is less fun in that; you always have to make compromises and it's never exactly what you want. Whilst it might tick the initial boxes, you find that you can't fit a bigger GPU or mount more drives - so I want to jump into the self-build arena again.

    I already have:

    GPU Nvidia 970 (buying from a friend)
    PSU Corsair 650W (bought trying to bring old PC to life)
    Storage ... if a woman can never have too many shoes, a man can never have too many hard drives.

    I'm looking at building the PC using Skylake, I figured I may as well jump to new technology. Yes, buying Z97/Z99 would be cheaper but it'll date quicker. The choices I have made so far (although I am willing to change!) are:

    Gigabyte Gaming 7 Socket 1151 board
    Intel i5 6600K
    Corsair Hydro H100i GTX
    Fractal Define S Case

    I'm not that good dealing with small spaces and I like the clean lines of the Define S, hiding the drives behind the main tray, the ability to mount s radiator on the top or front (I'm thinking of front) and excellent cable management.

    The two things I would like advice on are:

    RAM

    Being a bear of very little brain I am having trouble choosing suitable RAM. I’ve checked the Crucial web site and this shows me their generic, plain RAM which would be fine in a PC if it was never to be seen again. I might dabble with overclocking and with the Define S case the internals will be on display so generic Crucial RAM is not what I want. Please can anyone suggest RAM modules that would:
    1. Be compatible with the Gigabyte Z170 Gaming 7 board
    2. Be aesthetically pleasing … i.e. match the red / white / black of the board
    I would also be interested to know whether people would recommend filling all 4 RAM slots (4 sticks x of 4gb each) or using 2 (2 x 8gb) sticks? Is there a benefit / negative of using 2 or 4 sticks? If I did play with overclocking would it be better to have 2 or 4 sticks?

    M.2 Drive(s)

    I want to use one of the M.2 slots with a 256mb drive to hold the OS and a few apps. I have one of the thin iMac’s with hybrid HDD/SSD and the boot time (even 18 months down the line) on this is insanely fast. If I powered on my iMac and (now dead) PC at the same time I would be logged into my iMac before the PC had finished POST and BIOS screens! I don’t want to be waiting for Windows to load like this; I want to power on and be into Windows / Steam ASAP. Can you recommend a M.2 drive that would be compatible with my motherboard choice?

    I will be installing a pair of 250gb SSD’s in the tray behind the main board, one to hold Steam game files, the other for applications and libraries. I won’t be installing any HDD’s or an optical drive as besides the fans and heat sink pump I don’t want any mechanicals in the case. I’ve got more than enough external server storage for everything else.

    Finally, thanks for reading and I would love to hear your recommendations for the build. I built my first PC around ‘97/’98 and a few since – but I haven’t built one for at least 9 years … so this is a tad scary!

    Regards

    Elsie.

    P.S. Graeme, if you’re reading this, you’re still the best Duncan Banatyne impersonator I’ve seen :p
     
  2. Graeme*Kustom*

    Graeme*Kustom* Administrator

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    Ha, quite!

    I'll get your email from your forum account and email you later on the above, just handle sales quotes and so on that way only rather than on forum posts - will pop you a message in a couple of hours.
     
    Glod likes this.
  3. Elsie

    Elsie Registered User

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    Thanks Graeme :)
     
  4. Elsie

    Elsie Registered User

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    Thanks Graeme :)