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Building my dream FSX machine

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Hi All,

 

I'm trying to build my dream gaming machine to run flight simulator x and occasionally other games that aren't really intense such as sim city

 

I really want to run add ons, such as PMDG, ORBX, CARENADO, UK2000, REX TEXTURES DIRECT, ACTIVE SKY NEXT with glorious frames and smoothness :)

 

I've never built a system before and this is my first and probably last due to financial family commitments so I need to get it right. I've discussed this list with a friend but he doesn't play FSX so I really need some advanced input from the experts of system building and FSX

 

I have a budget of £1500. So far we've come up with this:

 

--

Intel Core i7 4790K 4GHz Socket 1150 8MB L3 Cache Retail Boxed Processor

Intel Core i7 4790K

Intel Socket 1150

4GHz Core Frequency

Retail Boxed Processor

http://www.ebuyer.com/645546-intel-core-i7-4790k-4ghz-socket-1150-8mb-l3-cache-retail-boxed-bx80646i74790k

I really want to overclock this to 4.4ghz, is this ok/doable/safe

 

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Asrock Z97 Extreme4 Socket 1150 VGA DVI HDMI DisplayPort 7.1 Channel Audio ATX Motherboard

Intel Z97 Chipset

Intel Socket 1150

ATX Form Factor

http://www.ebuyer.com/643685-asrock-z97-extreme4-socket-1150-vga-dvi-hdmi-displayport-7-1-channel-audio-z97-extreme4

 

Is this board sufficient? My understanding of mobo's isn't great, all I know is I need 12 USB ports minimum. Can I overclook to what I want and is doing so user friendly

 

--

Arctic Cooling Freezer I11 Compact Performance Cpu Cooler

Fan Speed: 500 - 2,000 RPM (Controlled by PWM)

Airflow: 74 CFM / 125.7 m³/h

Noise Level: 0.3 Sone

Current / Voltage: 0.16 A / +12V DC

http://www.ebuyer.com/620631-arctic-cooling-freezer-i11-compact-performance-cpu-cooler-ucaco-fi11001-csa01

Wow this an important bit of kit and I have no idea if this is man enough for the job?

 

--

Corsair CX850M Semi Modular 80 Plus Bronze Power Supply

Up to 85% energy efficiency means less heat generation and lower energy bills...

0.99 Active Power Factor Correction provides clean and reliable power

Universal AC input from 90-264V

http://www.ebuyer.com/669243-corsair-cx850m-semi-modular-80-plus-bronze-power-supply-cp-9020099-uk

My friend suggested that this would be a good psu for the money, I do want semi modular

 

--

Corsair Carbide Series SPEC-03 Red LED Mid-Tower Gaming Case

Cable routing and CPU cooler backplate motherboard cutouts

Seven PCIe slots with room for long graphics cards up to 426mm long

HxWxD(mm) 426 x 215 x 493

http://www.ebuyer.com/632835-corsair-carbide-series-spec-03-red-led-mid-tower-gaming-case-cc-9011052-ww

I'm not one to care how a case looks, it's all about practicality and ventilation.. His seemed to tick those boxes, if anyone can suggest better please do

 

**ALSO, extra ventilation for the case**

 

Corsair AF120 LED Red Quiet Edition High Airflow 120mm Fan Twin Pack

AF120 Quiet Edition LED

Dimensions 120mm x 25mm

Operating Voltage 7V - 12V

 

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MSI GTX 970 GAMING Twin Frozr V 4GB GDDR5 Dual DVI HDMI DisplayPort PCI-E Graphics Card

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970 GPU

MSI Twin Frozr V Edition

4GB GDDR5 Memory

PCI-Express Interface

http://www.ebuyer.com/663848-msi-gtx-970-gaming-twin-frozr-v-4gb-gddr5-dual-dvi-hdmi-gtx-970-gaming-4g

No particular reason I selected this GPU other than it seemed good for the money.. However it does only have 1xhdmi output which is annoying as I can't upgrade to dual monitor in the future. Can anyone suggest better or equal ? Also should I be looking at PCI 3?

 

--

RAM, where to begin, I have selected 3 possibilities.. They may all be rubbish so input highly needed :)

1)

Corsair 16GB DOMINATOR Platinum Memory Kit

2x 8GB Kit

DDR3 1866MHz

(9-10-9-27) 1.5V

Limited Lifetime Manufacturer Warranty

http://www.ebuyer.com/387430-corsair-16gb-dominator-platinum-memory-kit-cmd16gx3m2a1866c9

2 - my friend has this)

Corsair 16GB DDR3 1600MHz Vengeance LP Memory

2 x 8GB Kit

CL9 (9-9-9-24)

Limited Lifetime Manufacturer Warranty

http://www.ebuyer.com/413968-corsair-16gb-ddr3-1600mhz-vengeance-lp-memory-cml16gx3m2a1600c9

3)

Corsair 16GB DDR3 2133Mhz Vengeance Pro Kit

16GB (2x8GB Module)

2133MHz

PC3-17066

Timing: 11-11-11-27

DDR3

http://www.ebuyer.com/522981-corsair-16gb-ddr3-2133mhz-vengeance-pro-kit-cmy16gx3m2a2133c11

 

--

Storage, I really am unsure what to do. I would love an SSD but my fsx hard drive is 400gb. Can anyone suggest anything here

 

--

Optical drives, I have two spare in a drawer at home :)

 

 

 

Currently this seems to be well under budget thankfulLy. I've tried to be in depth and detailed as possible, this is probably my last gaming machine so really would appreciate as much input from all angles :)

 

 

Thanks in advance

Mark

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Arctic Cooling Freezer I11 Compact Performance Cpu Cooler

Fan Speed: 500 - 2,000 RPM (Controlled by PWM)

Airflow: 74 CFM / 125.7 m³/h

Noise Level: 0.3 Sone

Current / Voltage: 0.16 A / +12V DC

http://www.ebuyer.co...o-fi11001-csa01

Wow this an important bit of kit and I have no idea if this is man enough for the job?

 

This cooler probably won't hack it. That CPU really needs a 240mm water cooler to get its full potential. At stock speeds it might be OK, but its made for over clocking.

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Looks decent.  I'd pick RAM option #3 because I've heard the haswell's prefer faster memory.  I run 1866 on my "dated" i5 2500K.

 

Don't know much about the thermal properties of the 4790K (other than it's a excellent CPU for MSFS!)  Rhys probably has a better idea than me but how bout trying a Corsair wannabe liquid cooler?  H50 120mm lots of value on a budget:

(USA link sorry I'm lazy lol)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835181010

 

Or if you can find the extra cash to splurge the H105 (240mm)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835181060

 

SSD's are awesome... super fast load times.  But if you can't get a 500GB version (maybe $230-260 USD) for your sim just buy a 120GB for Windows and enjoy the immediate speed increase as your PC boots way faster and keep your FSX hard drive.

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Thanks Gents

 

All of this has been most helpful.. I'll make some amendments and repost

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Another perspective would be that you wait until August and look at building your "Dream Machine" around the new Skylake CPU and associated DDR4 based platform which would according to leaked statistics give you a 15% boost on your proposed build plus allow the opportunity to upgrade your CPU at a later date using the same platform. A Haswell (4790K) build is a dead end as far as upgrades go, as your motherboard and memory will not be compatible with newer tech.

 

I seriously can't understand the fixation with AIO water coolers on these forums, statements such as "That CPU really needs a 240mm water cooler to get its full potential" are just wrong. There are plenty of benchmarks proving that top of the range air coolers costing less that AIO coolers perform just as well at cooling overclocked CPU's, are much quieter in normal use and have significantly fewer points of failure.

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I seriously can't understand the fixation with AIO water coolers on these forums, statements such as "That CPU really needs a 240mm water cooler to get its full potential" are just wrong. There are plenty of benchmarks proving that top of the range air coolers costing less that AIO coolers perform just as well at cooling overclocked CPU's, are much quieter in normal use and have significantly fewer points of failure.

 

 

Agreed.  I have my i5 2500k running stable at 4.8 Ghz on a lowly air-cooled Cooler Master Hyper 212.

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1) CPU Speed

2) Video Card

3) Hard Drive and SSD's (though really only helps for load times)

99999) Everything else doesn't matter NEAR as much

 

Either wait for the next gen CPU to come out, or go with the 5820k instead and overclock it to 4+ GHZ over the i7-4790k. I own the i7-4790k and regret it after I realize all the other crap in the background running always using some percentage of half the cores (meaning things interfering with FSX CPU availability). I really wish I had 2 more cores (6 instead of 4), and besides the 5820k can be stablily overclocked to almost the same speed per core as the 4790k. I'd rather have 6 cores running at 4.2 - 4.5GHZ than 4 cores running at 4.5GHZ to 4.6GHZ.

 

I bought the 4790k because of the stock 4GHZ speed vs. the 5820k @ 3.3ghz stock, this kind of screams at you like wow the 5820k is only 3.3ghz, not even a contender, 6 cores or not. Yah well after a little research, basically it turns out Intel was WAY WAY too quick to set the default multiplier on the 4790k as a 4GHZ, as with stock cooling it basically will melt the CPU at 100% usage in many cases (depending on room temp and all that). The 5820k is basically a 3.8GHZ to 3.9GHZ CPU at stock cooling if the 4790k is 4GHZ, because the 5820k was a server cpu they rated it way lower than they should have. Both these CPU's easily overheat, so aftermarket cooling is an absolute necessity.

 

Don't waste your money on anything but the CPU and Video card, everything else is WAY WAY down the list.

 

Furthermore, it's just a better CPU with a better dual bus architecture, so that when doing file copies your Win machine across multiple drives, it won't be as slow. The speed of your memory will have virtually no effect on FSX speed with any modern memory. Buy the cheapest memory that the motherboard and chipset supports.

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I have a i5-4670K o/c'd to 4.2GHZ on the Noctua NH-D14(which was recommended in here last year or the year before) in an Antec 900/2 case with a 240mm top fan, plus 2 front-mounted 120mm.

 

Rock steady, and quiet too.

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Another perspective would be that you wait until August and look at building your "Dream Machine" around the new Skylake CPU and associated DDR4 based platform which would according to leaked statistics give you a 15% boost on your proposed build plus allow the opportunity to upgrade your CPU at a later date using the same platform. A Haswell (4790K) build is a dead end as far as upgrades go, as your motherboard and memory will not be compatible with newer tech.

 

I seriously can't understand the fixation with AIO water coolers on these forums, statements such as "That CPU really needs a 240mm water cooler to get its full potential" are just wrong. There are plenty of benchmarks proving that top of the range air coolers costing less that AIO coolers perform just as well at cooling overclocked CPU's, are much quieter in normal use and have significantly fewer points of failure.

Sorry, but I respectfully disagree... Before spending 70-89 dollars in a "top of the line" air cooler that will simply put a huge fugly "brick" inside my case (not to mention needing slimmer ram that fits), I would rather spend 20-30 more which is insignificant and get a Corsair AIO one...

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Sorry, but I respectfully disagree... Before spending 70-89 dollars in a "top of the line" air cooler that will simply put a huge fugly "brick" inside my case (not to mention needing slimmer ram that fits), I would rather spend 20-30 more which is insignificant and get a Corsair AIO one...

 

Exactly well said - I dont get it much easier to install also -good luck installing that brick

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Either solution works, just have to watch the memory height on the Noctua. The Corsair's have high failure rates and you have to replace the stock fans in order to achieve same temps as Noctua. That said, most people will not get a failure, but it can happen, on the Noctua it's almost unheard of.

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I seriously can't understand the fixation with AIO water coolers on these forums, statements such as "That CPU really needs a 240mm water cooler to get its full potential"

 

That is correct, I suppose I'm just biased based on my own experience. Giant air coolers can indeed be just as good, but they are huge. My Nepton keeps things under 80c at 4.8, and its compact when you mount the radiator on the top of your case. Just my two cents, at the end of the day its a personal choice and one you must make based on the room you have available.

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Just watched a you tube vid on the installation of a Hydro Series H110 280mm Extreme Performance Liquid CPU Cooler .

 

I used to fear water coolers but amazing how compact they have become.

 

The vid is 5 minutes long and he installs it in that time period.. In she goes for my next build!

 

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Just watched a you tube vid on the installation of a Hydro Series H110 280mm Extreme Performance Liquid CPU Cooler .

 

Corsair hydro's are a beautiful thing - never had a problem with them - not understanding the high temps stated - sim full bore barley hits 50 degrees on cpu and my gpu doesn't exceed 32 degrees - for the money cant be beat - maybe my large Phantom case has something to do with it - but I'm not going to complain - corsair link software is wonky so I just disconnected the usb link cable and uninstalled link software - now just use asus aisuite III to control them - 4.6ghz on cpu and no OC on gpu - not needed nor does it yield anything worth messing your card up for 

 

Oh and they look great - fyi corsair link does allow you to change the lighting color on the corsair insignia on the pump face - but I like white but if you want to change it to something else the usb cable and software is needed to change the color

 

Use arctic silver - dont use that factory paste - when it squashes down almost metal to metal - useless - how do I know did a fresh install on my gpu with factory paste then removed it to see what it looked like - did not look pretty

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Sorry, but I respectfully disagree... Before spending 70-89 dollars in a "top of the line" air cooler that will simply put a huge fugly "brick" inside my case (not to mention needing slimmer ram that fits), I would rather spend 20-30 more which is insignificant and get a Corsair AIO one...

 

What are you disagreeing with exactly, you appear to be just expressing your personal preference !?! I don't have a problem with the fact that AIO's can be more aesthetically pleasing but I expect most people are not in the habit of regularly opening up their case to gaze in wonder at the 'beauty' of their PC's components. In most normal cases having a "huge fugly brick" that cools an overclocked CPU just as effectively as an AIO but with less cost, less noise and less chance of failure, is going to be a non issue and the preferred option.

 

Exactly well said - I dont get it much easier to install also -good luck installing that brick

 

Anyone who can't install an air cooler shouldn't be attempting a PC build, and for those getting the system built for them it's a non issue anyway, so that's a bit of a daft statement.

 

I don't have a problem with people making an informed choice to purchase an AIO and appreciate many on these forums have made that choice and are happy with the results. The problem I have is the perceived wisdom that keeps being stated as fact in these threads that AIO coolers are the one and only choice if you want to overclock, when there is absolutely no basis for this.

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Use arctic silver - dont use that factory paste - when it squashes down almost metal to metal - useless - how do I know did a fresh install on my gpu with factory paste then removed it to see what it looked like - did not look pretty

 

I don't want to appear picky but do want to clear up any misconceptions. The best achievable heat transfer between processor and heatsink is through direct metal to metal contact, the purpose of thermal paste is just to fill in any air gaps between the two metal surfaces with a substance that is better at transferring heat than the air it replaces. So it's a bad idea to put too much paste between the processor and heatsink or to apply paste in a method that is likely to form air pockets as both scenarios will prevent proper heat transfer leading to high temperatures. Arctic silver is a quality product that has been around for many years, however there are newer kids on the block that offer better performance.

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I've not used it... yet, but Arctic Silver does have a ceramic based paste that conducts heat extremely well, but is electrically non-conductive.

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What are you disagreeing with exactly, you appear to be just expressing your personal preference !?! I don't have a problem with the fact that AIO's can be more aesthetically pleasing but I expect most people are not in the habit of regularly opening up their case to gaze in wonder at the 'beauty' of their PC's components. In most normal cases having a "huge fugly brick" that cools an overclocked CPU just as effectively as an AIO but with less cost, less noise and less chance of failure, is going to be a non issue and the preferred option.

 

 

Anyone who can't install an air cooler shouldn't be attempting a PC build, and for those getting the system built for them it's a non issue anyway, so that's a bit of a daft statement.

 

I don't have a problem with people making an informed choice to purchase an AIO and appreciate many on these forums have made that choice and are happy with the results. The problem I have is the perceived wisdom that keeps being stated as fact in these threads that AIO coolers are the one and only choice if you want to overclock, when there is absolutely no basis for this.

 

Not really.. my personal opinion is that said coolers are ugly (fugly really...). What I disagree with is stating that they're "a lot more expensive".

 

Regarding opening up the case, yeah, I don't, that's what side panel windows are for...  Regarding your last statements of your paragraph, "less noise, prweffered option, etc", yes that isin fact *your* opinion... Definietley not my preference and not others' either...

 

 

I do agree that it's not the only choice of course. I just don't care to have such a monstrous cooler period.

I don't want to appear picky but do want to clear up any misconceptions. The best achievable heat transfer between processor and heatsink is through direct metal to metal contact, the purpose of thermal paste is just to fill in any air gaps between the two metal surfaces with a substance that is better at transferring heat than the air it replaces. So it's a bad idea to put too much paste between the processor and heatsink or to apply paste in a method that is likely to form air pockets as both scenarios will prevent proper heat transfer leading to high temperatures. Arctic silver is a quality product that has been around for many years, however there are newer kids on the block that offer better performance.

 

Metal to metal? Yes, in an ideal (and unreal) world where surfaces are perfect... :P

 

Agree on all the paste statements.

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watch the memory height on the Noctua.

Had no problems whatsoever fitting 4 x 4Gb sticks Corsair Vengeance on Asus Z-87A boards, but they did not have high-profile heatsinks.

 

Agree with you, PieEater, that the application of a thermal paste is a very thin skin later to compensate for the 'pits' that appear on what in theory should be totally flat CPU heatsink metal cap and the opposite  mating flat surface of a cooler.

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I've had many enjoyable house on FSX, but do yourself a favour and invest $50 of your budget in Prepar3d. That is how you will get the most out of your new kit.

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Use arctic silver - dont use that factory paste - when it squashes down almost metal to metal - useless - how do I know did a fresh install on my gpu with factory paste then removed it to see what it looked like - did not look pretty

 

Just to give you another informed opinion, arctic silver used to be my go to thermal paste, but in recent times I have started using Gelid. Its the same consistency but I did have a noticeable result of 3-4 degree temp. drop. Its the same price and I believe its the better paste. Its just a little harder to find in the stores.

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What I disagree with is stating that they're "a lot more expensive".

 

I'm not going to address any of the other statements in your post as folks can read between the lines and make up their own mind.

 

AIO coolers *are* a lot more expensive than 'fugly bricks' it is just inherent by design, they have to incorporate pumps, hoses, radiators, fans,LED's, circuitry etc and be covered by a warranty for all of these sufficient to make them attractive, if this did not make them a lot more expensive I would have to question why. On the other hand these units have to be built to a price and because of this compromises are made, for instance the quality of the standard fans supplied. I'm aware that many users end up replacing the standard fans on their AIOs with quieter aftermarket options adding significantly to the original cost, just start typing in "replacement fans" into google and see what heads the list. In contrast Greggy_D has posted that his $30 Air Cooler keeps his 2500K sufficiently cooled to allow an overclock of 4.8GB, that's the cost of a couple of replacement fans........Sorry that you disagree but you're entitled to your opinions.

Just to give you another informed opinion, arctic silver used to be my go to thermal paste, but in recent times I have started using Gelid. Its the same consistency but I did have a noticeable result of 3-4 degree temp. drop. Its the same price and I believe its the better paste. Its just a little harder to find in the stores.

 

I use Gelid GC-Extreme myself following reviews and recommendations and have been happy with the results.

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I find air coolers a bit of a pain to install - have to look into Gelid - thanks

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have to look into Gelid - thanks

 

Don't be surprised if initially your temps don't improve, its got a two week "break in" period.

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