Christmas Gaming and Video Editing Build [December 2011]

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So all you got for Christmas is money. What better way to spend that money than to put together you own awesome gaming / video editing machine?

CPU – Intel Core i7 2600K

Normally for all gaming machines I recommend going with the i5 2500K, but today’s machine will also needs to be well suited for some video editing. That’s why we’re going to go with the i7 2600K. The i7 2600K like the i5 2500K is unlocked allowing you to easily overclock and includes hyper threading technology which depending on your video editing application will give you up to a 30% performance boost in rendering times.

Motherboard – Gigabyte Z68X UD3H

Gigabyte makes solid boards. Everyone knows that. So, for a solid mid range motherboard that fits the budget we’ll go with the Gigabyte Z68X UD3H motherboard. It has all the standard connectors you need, SLI and Crossfire compatibility, USB 3.0, SATA 3 6.0Gbps and a fantastic looking black pcb to boot. The question isn’t why, it’s why not?

Memory – Corsair Vengeance 1600MHZ DDR3 Low Profile 1.5v

Again, we’re going with the Corsair Vengeance for ram. Low profile, 1.5v, stable, compatible, and from Corsair. If you’d like another brand of memory, check our Gskill. Just make sure you are buying memory 1.5v or less to prevent damage to the Sandy Bridge CPU.

Video Card – Galaxy GeForce GTX 570 1280Mb GDDR5

The GTX 570 will run pretty much every game out there at high to ultra settings. It is very comparable to the Radeon HD 6970 and 6950 and is only one step below Nvidia’s top of the line single gpu card the GTX 580. Depending on your video encoding application, you may also use Nvidia’s CUDA technology to speed up encodes as well. Currently this card is an extra special deal due to the $50 mail in rebate attached. If you don’t mind the rebate you can currently nab one of these off Amazon for $269.99 making this an excellent deal. Of course, I don’t expect pricing like this to last very long so if you’re planning to jump, do it soon!

Boot Drive – OCZ Vertex 3 120GB

For the boot drive we’re going with the OCZ Vertex 3 120gb solid state drive. The Vertex 3 is a very fast sandforce based SSD and will allow you to load apps like Premiere or load games like Battlefield 3 with ease. Considering the Vertex 3 also has a $20 mail in rebate, the price tag isn’t too bad either.

Storage Drive – Western Digital Caviar Green 2TB

For a gaming machine, we can skip the storage drive altogether and opt for a single SSD, but for a video editing machine we are going to need somewhere to put all the video files, music and photos that you need to make a great video. So, we’re going to grab a Western Digital Caviar Green 2TB. 2TBs is enough for most video projects out there and should hold you over until the end of the hard drive shortage projected to last throughout 2012.

Optical Drive – OEM DVD Drive or OEM Blu Ray Drive (Any Manufacturer)

Basic oem dvd drive for the first installation of Windows. You can buy a Blu-ray drive if you are intending on burning some of your productions on Blu-ray.

PSU Corsair TX650M V2

High quality Seasonic made power supply. Modular, 650w and includes a 5 year warranty. I use this for all of my builds.

Case – Corsair Carbide 500r

The Corsair Carbide 500r is an excellent mid tower case with features that are typically reserved for cases double its price. With features like dust filters, an included fan speed controller, white fan leds, usb 3.0, and more you can’t go wrong.

CPU Cooler – Hyper 212 Plus

We’re overclocking the i7 2600K. That’s why we bought the K edition processor. Because of this, we need a cpu cooler. Can you really think of something as cost efficient and high quality as the Hyper 212 Plus?

Operating System – Windows 7 64 bit

Last we do have Windows. Most games do require Windows 7 these days, so make sure you nab a copy.

Total current price on Amazon, 1,436.71. Don’t forget to also include any rebates such as the $50 MIR from Galaxy, the $20 MIR from OCZ and the $10 MIR from Corsair!

Anyway, that’s the build. If you have any questions, feel free to visit the forums at http://www.forums.custompcreview.com

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