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  09 September 2012
What he said ^ Save yourself a couple 100 and knock off a measly 0.1GHz. And using 8gig sticks of ram instead of 4 will leave space for future upgrades and make overclocking easier.
Matthew O'Neill
  09 September 2012
Thanks for taking the time brasco to essentially spec a machine for me. I really appreciate that. Thanks for you advice too.

I have no attachment at all to the guys at the link I originally posted. I'm just after a reliable supplier I can trust and who doesn't talk gobbledeegook so I know what I'm getting. There are advantages and disadvantages to having a Mac since you're kind of stuck with what you get in the box. I say advantage because it works but it's a massive disadvantage when you're faced with sourcing better components. The PC market is much more bewildering purely through much greater choice.

One question I do have is, how quiet are these PC babies? My Mac is very quiet and I'm kind of used to not having a dull throbbing hum emanating from beneath my desk throughout the day. How would this stack up?

Thanks again for your time - you've made things a lot clearer.

Originally Posted by brasco: If I'm honest, it feels like they're trying to get rid of old stock with some of those coolers, but I may be wrong! Also a lot of the product descriptions have errors which puts me off, and calling HDDs memory scares and confuses me

I added a link in my post above to a system I'd say is good for a 2.5K budget, some of the SSD HDD config I may change. I buy from scan, as I trust them to deliver and are great on the RMAs, also for the choice, do you have any particular attachement to these other guys?

Also on a second look, not sure what the point of having a hybrid drive (which has it's own SSD cache drive internally) and a secondary cache drive is.

If you're brave enough to build it yourself, you'll get much better value IMO.

  09 September 2012
Originally Posted by imashination: What he said ^ Save yourself a couple 100 and knock off a measly 0.1GHz. And using 8gig sticks of ram instead of 4 will leave space for future upgrades and make overclocking easier.

Will the supplier overclock this or do I have to get it done from another source? What are the advantages and disadvantages of overclocking? I've never been exposed to this phenomenon with a Mac. I'm not even entirely sure what it is.... ;o)
  09 September 2012
Overclocking is basically setting your CPU to run at a higher clock rate than its default. Most CPU's now incorporate auto overclocking via the motherboard settings, such as turboboost when needed. Manual overclocking is done by settings in BIOS and will allow for a far higher overclock. Note warranties become invalid if you overclock ( though usually sites that sell preoverclocked systems give their own guarantees and Scan sell a cheap components insurance that covers you for any mistakes you make when building a new system- check if overclocking is included). Temperature is the main issue with overclocking as a faster CPU needs more volts and puts out more heat. See my basic I7 930 O/C guide for a quick intro

Scan sell overclocked bundles ( motherboard, CPU, ram and cooler) as well as overclocked systems, overclockersUK do the same but seem to have a better range though Scan systems seem to be more configurable

The Corsair 100 water cooler will be very loud at a good overclock, it my well be better to go with one of the scan water cooling kits or maybe a good air cooler such as a Noctua. The I7 3930K can overclock to 5.0 Ghz but that will depend on how many ram slots you are using. Temps at these high overclocks are a concern and it may well be worth spending a couple of hundred quid on a good water cooling rig
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Last edited by paulselhi : 09 September 2012 at 08:19 AM.
  09 September 2012
Thanks for explaining that Paul, that was very clear. I think I'll take your advice too and spend a little extra getting a decent water cooling kit.
  10 October 2012
I'd leave the hassle, cost, noise and stress that comes with water cooling to gaming geeks and opt for a good air cooler like the Noctua NH-D14. My 3930 is idling at 40c and peaking around 75c when rendering at 4.5ghz with the Noctua.
  10 October 2012
The Noctua is a good cooler, i use one myself, however it is very large and you need to check that you case can accommodate it. It also covers ram slots so some RAM, for example those with large heat spreaders, may not be usable. Even with RAM that fits on my motherboard the Noctua sits over some RAM slots meaning that if i want to swap out that ram i have to remove the cooler.

It used to be that water cooling kits were pretty naff but nowadays they are very good ( I mean pre made kits as opposed to self selected components) The Corsair H100 is in fact very good and easy to install however it is noisy.

Scan and Overclockers sell kits are are close to top of the range are are fairly easy to install, some kits even have the pumps and reservoirs built into the radiators making everything very easy to setup

of course before purchasing a watercooling setup you have to check whether or not your case is watercooling ready, especially with a larger 360 ( 3 fan ) Radiator. A simple inquiry to your vendor should sort that out, also make sure that the CPU heat sink mounting fixtures are compatible with your motherboard- especially if using the newer 2011 processors. This is still true for air coolers.
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  10 October 2012
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