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newb PC build critique

Discussion in 'Backline' started by He's Dead, Jim, Jun 27, 2015.

  1. He's Dead, Jim

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    After reading a lot and bothering several of you about whether to buy an iMac to replace my MBP or to get a PC instead, I'm leaning heavily toward the PC for the cost/performance ratio. I'm not a gamer, so this is designed solely to be fast, quiet, and have a respectable (hopefully 5-7 years?) lifespan for a hobbyist, ITB home studio. Tell me if this is shit or not shit:

    CPU: Intel i7 4790K 4.0 ghz quad core (not planning to overclock)
    CPU fan: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO
    Motherboard: ASUS Z97-E USB 3.1
    RAM: 16GB Corsair Vengeance DDR3 1600Mhz
    HD/SDD: 1TB WD Blue and 250GB Samsung 850 EVO
    DVD drive: LG lol
    Video card: N/A- hope to use just the CPU
    OS: Windows 8.1 64 bit
    Case: Fractal Define R5 (comes with noise insulating material)
    Wifi: PCI-E 300 mbps wireless adapter
    Soundcard: Onboard
    PSU: Corsair CX430

    Cost: $1348 (1207 Euro/856 GBP equivalent) from eCollegePC*

    I know more drives is ideal, but I just do this for fun for myself, so I figure I can upgrade later if I really need to. Thoughts? I use 64 bit Reaper with a Roland Quad Capture. Thanks guys :)

    *Super janky-looking website, but apparently they're quite good. I could build myself but I am a huge klutz and the convenience is worth a couple hundred to me.
     
  2. ForHerDeadEyes

    ForHerDeadEyes Señor Member

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    I have a Samsung SSD, but there was a problem with the 850 EVO, not sure it's been resolved..
    Windows 10 is released next month, if you have a Win 7 license you can upgrade to Win 10 for free..
    Depending on upgrades, it doesn't hurt to have a stronger PSU..
     
  3. MoTang

    MoTang Member

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    Wait, so you don't want to overclock?

    I see very little point in spending more for a K processor and Z motherboard then, personally. That's the main attraction of these processors, their ability to overclock and be future proof...I know gamers out there who are still using the 3 year old i5-2500k because of its overclocking ability.

    Also, if you want a cheap copy of Windows that is 100% legit, in case you don't know already:

    http://www.reddit.com/r/microsoftso..._windows_7_8_81_servers_office_visio_project/

    They buy the keys in bulk so the price is way cheaper than buying an OEM $100 license.
     
  4. He's Dead, Jim

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    Tbh I just went with the K processor because it was like 40 bucks more for 4 ghz instead of 3.6. Do you think I should go for the standard 4790 then? I guess once it starts to age I could overclock just to extend its life. And for the motherboard, the site has a list of about 20, and the lower-end ones are brands like Gigabyte and Asrock, which I don't know much about, but I know Asus makes good stuff. But if you don't think there's a risk of a cheaper mobo shitting the bed, I could definitely go for one of the lower-end models.

    And thanks for the reddit link- had no idea about that!
     
  5. MoTang

    MoTang Member

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    Ah sorry, I just realized you weren't building yourself.

    In that case, if it's only $40 more, go for the K processor. Who knows, maybe down the line you will change your mind about overclocking and it's great to have that option.

    Your motherboard choice is fine, I'm not that knowledgeable about optimal build paths, especially when it's nothing to do with gaming, but my ASUS motherboard in my last build is still going strong and its a couple years old now.
     
  6. nezvers

    nezvers Beast

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    Dunno, I don't get why so big stress about pulling that big muscles in audio realm, I have no problem with macbook pro 13" (late 2011) using profire 2626 and recording into external drive. haven't done more than 8 tracks yet, but it has no problems keeping up. Only moment when stuff get hot is when running shit-ton tracks ITB with load of pluggins (especially if having amp sims - need to bounce). It haven't failed me yet. And now I'm working on full length album (in one Reaper project having 2 nexus synth not bounced yet) for local band and have no problem to take my laptop to their place to go through songs and ideas for changes.
    Had to buy macbook only because it was only locally available laptop with firewire. New macbooks probably are way more powerful than mine or there more laptops with needed ports if you are willing to go mobile route.

    BTW I'm using bootcamped Win 8.1 on my laptop.
     
  7. MoTang

    MoTang Member

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    So in an attempt to be more useful, I took a good look at the site you are getting your build from and also recent builds on PcPartPicker to see what's up.

    Looking at the options for the motherboard, in at least gaming builds, I typically saw Asus and Gigabyte motherboards, but ASRock boards seem to be reliable as well, but are usually found in lower end builds. Obviously, you need a Z motherboard if you are ever going to overclock.

    I think your CPU choice is fine, in the end, all of your other options are just downgrades so if you are contempt with spending what you are spending, why settle for less? The i7 4790k is rated fairly high on the credible benchmarking sites, and I know you said you don't want to overclock, but it you do, you could easily reach speeds of cpu's that are benched higher.

    The PSU seems fine if you don't plan on overclocking, I'm not too sure if 430 watts will be safe to overclock, but since you don't care for it, I think you will be fine.

    I honestly don't see anything wrong with the build. While some may argue that you don't need such a powerful PC, I'd say there is no such thing as not having enough power. I have a laptop which I use for portable recording that has an i7-4700MQ and when I am too lazy to bounce tracks to my main PC I have to print tracks on my laptop because it can't keep up with projects with many plugins.

    To teach their own though. Depending on your needs, you could potentially save money, but if you are willing to spend the money I'd say fuck it, haha.
     
  8. He's Dead, Jim

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    I should have done this before, but I took the time to look at the prices of the individual components and watch a bunch of instructional PC build videos and it just doesn't seem worth it to pay $400 to have someone build an inferior PC for me, so now I'm picking other stuff. Here's what I have so far- a lot of it is carried over from the build I originally listed, but the whole package is a lot cheaper:

    CPU: Intel i7 4790K (329)
    Motherboard: ASUS Z97-A (144)
    RAM: Corsair Vengeance 8X2 (100)
    CPU fan: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO (27)
    CD Drive: LG (13)
    HD: 1TB WD Blue (48)
    SSD: Samsung 850 EVO 250GB (100)
    PSU: Corsair RM650 (75)
    Wifi: PCE adapter (37)
    Windows 8.
    Case: Fractal Define R5 (100)

    So around $1000. I'm happy to go with lesser components, but it doesn't look like the price differences in CPUs are that substantial once you get into the higher-end i7s, and the other stuff- motherboard, RAM, PSU- seem to be a "you get what you pay for and you don't want something cheap" sort of purchase. Only thing I'm iffy about is whether I need a graphics card- some people say yes, some no, given that I won't be gaming on it. But I don't think my current MBP has a graphics card and it seems fine. RAM might take a small hit I guess, but I only have 8 gigs on here and I've never run into issues.

    That said, I have no idea what I'm doing as far as speed requirements for the CPU and how nice the motherboard needs to be to go with it- I just know I always hit the 55-65% CPU mark when I'm mixing and shit starts crackling unless I heavily economize my plugins, so I don't really know what I need per se. If you guys have recommendations I'm totally open to them :)
     
  9. Flow Of Time

    Flow Of Time Member

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    I didn't read the whole thread but:
    Have you considered getting a Hackintosh? Even if you don't intend to use OSX right now, I'd get Hackintosh compatible parts, just in case you'll want it later.
     
  10. He's Dead, Jim

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    As far as I know based on the Tony86 dude's guide, everything is compatible. RAM isn't the brand they recommend but it's still DDR3. I'm just totally terrified of the lack of widespread knowledge/tech support/inherent mismatches involved in using OSX on a non-Apple machine, fucking around in the BIOS, etc. That's probably irrational but this is all new to me hahah.
     
  11. Benqbasic

    Benqbasic Member

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    Funny you should say this because installing osx was easier than windows 7 on my PC. Only my studio is a hack all my others are genuine apple computers, but I never update my studio computer so it doesn't matter too much.
     
  12. He's Dead, Jim

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    I believe you and I was definitely considering it. Then I went on the hackintosh subreddit and saw a guy with almost all the same parts in his computer I'm planning on using- all hackintosh-certified by tonymac86- and he was talking about all the "little changes" he had to make to the BIOS to make it run correctly. Like command line shit that I couldn't understand even if I tried. :lol:

    but idk, maybe I'll have a go at making it a hackintosh and then if I fuck everything up just wipe the BIOS and reset the mobo and install Windows!

    Parenthetically, small addition: EVGA GeForce GT 730 1GB video card, just to lighten the load on the cpu/ram, because why not. Apparently one of the best low-end gpu out there.
     
  13. dominus_malas

    dominus_malas Member

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    Parts list is about identical to what I have in my personal system and I used to build systems for musicians and videographers. I always used AMD (ATI) cards with the audio systems. Would get lower DPC latency numbers.

    I'd say run it as a Hackintosh only if you have some reason to run Mac software. Otherwise you'll be either booting to the Windows side (if you install both) or getting annoyed every time there's a new cool free Windows VST. :lol:

    BTW, the BIOS changes for a Hackintosh you'd probably be doing anyway to max out your performance under Windows. They've actually come a long way with making changes in the BIOS, everything is mouse and tabs rather than being keyboard based. (I've been doing this stuff long enough to remember when you had to manually put in your hard drive specs. "Auto Detect" wasn't added until the mid-late 90s. :D )
     
  14. AboutBlank

    AboutBlank Member

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    I have build a hackintosh with pretty much the same components(except PSU/RAM)
    After years of AMD I'm totally happy with the switch, finally. Used the AMD FX8350 on W7 until I switched. Got CPU spikes and it was maxed out often.

    After a few hickups my machine is running smooth now and I couldn't be happier, well worth the time to read into all the stuff.
     
  15. ForHerDeadEyes

    ForHerDeadEyes Señor Member

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    If you haven't ordered parts yet, Intel Skylake will soon be released, tempted to save up for it myself.
     

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