Just critique this build or give me comments. It is for a friend.

sram

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https://pcpartpicker.com/list/YXKhW3

Hi guys, I just want you to critique this build for me. It is for one of my friends. He wants a mid range pc that will last him long years. He wants it for his kids who are all less than 12 years old. It is a general purpose pc but he also wants them to game on it a little. I think this build can easily live more than 7 years, and he can upgrade the video card later on if he wants more gaming performance.
What do you think? I did it very quickly without too much thinking. I'm not sure about the video card. They are still expensive everywhere>
Any mistakes I did?
 

robijito123

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Not a bad PC, depending what games kids are into I would probably go amd 5600g and skip a gpu for now but the 1650 is passable for some 1080p titles at lower settings just to save some $.
 

BlueLineSwinger

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Seems to be some overkill in your build:

If you're not overclocking, the non-"k" i7-11700 goes for ~$40 less.

A good CPU tower cooler, like the Noctua NH-12S Redux, will be substantially cheaper (<~$60) and work just as well in a non-overclocked system.

A gold-rated Seasonic PSU in a more suitable power range goes for >$100 less than the one chosen.

16 GB RAM should be more than sufficient for games and common apps.

The base WD Red HDDs are SMR-based, which can have substantial performance issues. The Red Plus line, which are CMR-based, are usually only a few dollars more and will perform much better. Depending on the expected workload, a 5400 RPM HDD might be painful regardless, and a 7200 RPM unit would be worth the upgrade.

Best of luck getting an equivalent GPU anywhere close to that cheap. Cheapest I found actually in-stock was $350. As mentioned above, you may have to toss an Intel-based system aside and go with an AMD APU in order to get decent graphics for a reasonable price.
 
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travm

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Definately drop that HDD. Get a Barracuda, or a WD black (avoid blue as well).
Would also recommend backing off on the PSU slightly, but no issue with it, just you can get something 95% as good, for 50% of the cost.
I would not recommend an APU, it won't be cheaper, and when you do, it won't be as good a gaming PC. Buy a 1050ti if needed. Unless your friend only plays Facebook games, but in that case the whole build is funky.
 

LukeTbk

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16 GB RAM should be more than sufficient for games and common apps.
He aim a 7 year's build, 32 gig is a minimum I think (DDR 5 risk to have made 128 to 512 gig somewhat common by then), I would cut cost on the motherboard, cooling and the psu way before the ram.
 

BlueLineSwinger

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He aim a 7 year's build, 32 gig is a minimum I think (DDR 5 risk to have made 128 to 512 gig somewhat common by then), I would cut cost on the motherboard, cooling and the psu way before the ram.

1. Aiming for a seven-year build is silly, and will usually result in paying too much and being stuck with a system that, towards the expected end of its life, is at best a poor experience. This isn't the doldrums of the 2010s anymore, where AMD was a virtual non-player and Intel sat on its ass. Things are actually moving again. Aim to get three, maybe four years out of a build, and anything beyond that is gravy.

2. Unless building a compact/mini-ITX system, the mainboard will have four RAM slots. It'll be simple enough to add additional RAM later if needed, and not have to throw out the existing sticks.

3. There's no way in hell 128+ GB RAM will be common for end-user desktop systems in seven years.


Definately drop that HDD. Get a Barracuda, or a WD black (avoid blue as well).

The base Barracuda line is SMR 5400 RPM as well, so it won't be any improvement. It's Seagate's equivalent to the WD Blue.
 
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LukeTbk

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1. Aiming for a seven-year build is silly, and will usually result in paying too much and being stuck with a system that, towards the expected end of its life, is at best a poor experience. This isn't the doldrums of the 2010s anymore, where AMD was a virtual non-player and Intel sat on its ass. Things are actually moving again. Aim to get three, maybe four years out of a build, and anything beyond that is gravy.
I would agree specially for easy to upgrade part like ram, but the OP is saying is goal (maybe the friend in question is completely hardware ignorant so better have the ram right of the bat), I would not assume the simple enough anything for someone that goes around asking help for friend help about the simplest of all projects. That said the PSU choice seem to be made for upgrading in the future (or it is quite overkill), which could make you right.

But even 3-4 year's I feel 16 gig of ram is low, that said it could be just because I did try to go back to only 16 gig recently and it is not just how much windows was compressing giant % of stuff in ram constantly, but lot of stuff was completely failing to just run at all with that amount, which make feel 16 gig ram is really low yesterday.
 

BlueLineSwinger

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hell it is. They dont do static RPM anymore which blurs the lines. Barracuda's are equiv to WD blacks. I rank them slightly higher due to personal experience wrt better reliability.

Seagate's own data sheet (edit: link corrected) states that, aside from a couple lower-capacity models (i.e., not a 4 TB unit), the Barracuda (not Barracuda Pro, which I think may have been dropped?) HDDs are 5400 RPM. It also states all are SMR.

The WD Black line is 7200 RPM all around, and CMR.

They are in no way equivalent lines.
 
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travm

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Seagate's own data sheet states that, aside from a couple lower-capacity models (i.e., not a 4 TB unit), the Barracuda (not Barracuda Pro, which I think may have been dropped?) HDDs are 5400 RPM. It also states all are SMR.

The WD Black line is 7200 RPM all around, and CMR.

They are in no way equivalent lines.
link to 5400 rpm? I'm not seeing anything. Baracudas were always 7200

https://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=15_1086_210&item_id=132494

looking further I do see a few 5400 baracudas.

Avoid 5400 rpm drives. I see no reason to completely avoid SMR drives for a gaming build, but do ensure its a 7200rpm drive. The benefit in read speed will be noticeable. Anything you have going on in a gaming session will most likely not overwhelm the cache, and the extra storage space of SMR might even be a benefit, without downside in this application.
 
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BlueLineSwinger

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link to 5400 rpm? I'm not seeing anything. Baracudas were always 7200

It's a line item ("Spindle Speed (RPM)") in the table of the data sheet I linked.

(Crap, I bungled URLs and accidentally linked to the 2.5" version. Here's the correct data sheet for the 3.5" version. My bad. Still, it tells much the same story.)


Avoid 5400 rpm drives. I see no reason to completely avoid SMR drives for a gaming build, but do ensure its a 7200rpm drive. The benefit in read speed will be noticeable. Anything you have going on in a gaming session will most likely not overwhelm the cache, and the extra storage space of SMR might even be a benefit, without downside in this application.

Higher RPM does help some with transfer rate, but in reality platter density is probably a better predictor. Look at the Barracuda data sheet again. The difference between the 5400 and 7200 RPM units is only ~20-30 MB/s (~10-15%), probably imperceptible in everyday use. Where RPM really matters is latency (which, yes, can be very important for a game that's for instance loading a bunch of small texture files/etc. between levels). Latency, not overall transfer rate, is also the real reason SSDs shine.

If this is a pure gaming build, I could maybe be OK with a SMR HDD (though I'd rather go with an inexpensive large SATA SSD if at all possible). But the OP states it's a general purpose build with a side of gaming. There may be a fair bit of writing to the HDD, and a SMR HDD could really tank the system.
 
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travm

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). But the OP states it's a general purpose build with a side of gaming. There may be a fair bit of writing to the HDD, and a SMR HDD could really tank the system.
The original HDD choice was apparently made in effort to save some change. The extra capacity and reduced cost may still be a plus. Depends very much on the specific application. Outside of work, long(relatively) file transfers are ok, at home I can literally relax and wait, yell at children, etc. I wouldn't completely write off a SMR for this build.
But you are correct. A good deal on a WD black would be much better, in specific workloads.

I also would recommend a large sata SSD over the spinner (most of the time, spinners are still more reliable, I own dead ssds, never had a HDD die), so i've never really dove deep into the SMR / CMR end of this.

I'm seeing some slick pricing on 2TB barracudas, which are CMR, according to your linked chart. about half a 2tb black. Unfortunately I didnt find any good reviews with a quick search. It seems interest in these disks has waned.
 
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TheHig

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Here is what I worked up with a similar budget keeping the platform you chose.

https://pcpartpicker.com/list/KVPQt8

The GPU listed s a placeholder for a dollar amount. Basically find the best GPU you can for around $260 or less to stay on this budget. Used cards like 1060 6g, 1070, rx 570/580 or if you have to go new I guess dig for 1650 or overpay for a 1050ti

Ram:
Start with 32GB right now in 2x16 and double it if needed down the road. A build over a grand should not start with 16Gb IMO any longer. Maybe a pure gaming build and you spend 700 on the GPU and by used and or cheap out on literally everything else? :D

Storage:
1Tb ssd for OS. 2Tb ssd for games and a 2Tb or larger spinner for 'stuff' is what I did here. You could lose the 2Tb nvme to save $ but I would get it now and be set for a long time. If anything I would lose the spinner and go all SSD and manage the space now and add more later if needed.

CPU cooler:
Since you mentioned long term build-- Go with a decent air cooler and not have to dick with AIO issues if / when they crop up. I have a Corsair H100 that won't die so sometimes they do last but this PC is not going in your house so go with air.

Case :
Get one you like and has room for a good cooler and some included fans. I like the one I have selected for the $$ and you had a white one on your list.

PSU:
750W Gold at minimum for any mid to mid high end future GPU. I like the Seasonic I have on this list.

The only upgrade this PC is going to need is a GPU and that is the easiest thing to change down the line when your platform is good to go from the beginning.

Good luck!
 

travm

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I think one SSD is enough. Here is the current list:

https://pcpartpicker.com/list/DKQLt8

The PSU had a mail-in-rebate and a discount. I think my friend bought it already.
The 7200 red might be ok. I would highly recommend a WD black over it though. That 500gb will work for your OS, and 2-3 games before it becomes rammed full and the system tanks. There will be games on the HDD, you would be much better served by a faster HDD, or a 1tb SSD.
 

sram

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He will use light games.

I see. So black drives are performance drives. Okay I will switch.
 
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sram

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My friend wants to go with the new i7 12700K cpu, so he should change the motherboard. He will return what he bought and get the 12700K when it is released .There is an equivalent Z690 board, right? How about the ram? But I think it only supports DDR4. What would be a good mobo to go for DDR5, and while at it, suggest me a 32GB DDR5 kit. Thanks.
 

3dprophet

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WD Black are a bit noisy. Otherwise they are good drives.

I like Red Plus with are CMR. I don't mechanical drives for games though.
 

hititnquitit

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My friend wants to go with the new i7 12700K cpu, so he should change the motherboard. He will return what he bought and get the 12700K when it is released .There is an equivalent Z690 board, right? How about the ram? But I think it only supports DDR4. What would be a good mobo to go for DDR5, and while at it, suggest me a 32GB DDR5 kit. Thanks.
There will be plenty of ddr4 z690 mbs.
This is the entry level Asus z690. Page down to the "change" option to see all of the z690 mbs. The ddr4 mbs are signified by the D4.
https://www.newegg.com/p/N82E16813119507
NDA is in effect until the 4th i believe. So no reviews yet.
Get any ddr5 4800 2x16gb kit you can find(they will all come with a lifetime warranty). They will be very very hard to find for the next couple of weeks to months. Expect to spend around $300. Do a search for "ddr5 2x16gb" to see pricing and speeds and to try to find a set you like elsewhere.
The 12700 will probably be just as difficult to find, so try to get in on a pre order asap.
GL!
 

sram

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There will be plenty of ddr4 z690 mbs.
This is the entry level Asus z690. Page down to the "change" option to see all of the z690 mbs. The ddr4 mbs are signified by the D4.
https://www.newegg.com/p/N82E16813119507
NDA is in effect until the 4th i believe. So no reviews yet.
Get any ddr5 4800 2x16gb kit you can find(they will all come with a lifetime warranty). They will be very very hard to find for the next couple of weeks to months. Expect to spend around $300. Do a search for "ddr5 2x16gb" to see pricing and speeds and to try to find a set you like elsewhere.
The 12700 will probably be just as difficult to find, so try to get in on a pre order asap.
GL!
Thanks buddy. My friend is in the US currently and is near a microcenter. I don't know if that helps but he will try.
 

hititnquitit

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Thanks buddy. My friend is in the US currently and is near a microcenter. I don't know if that helps but he will try.
No prob, glad to help.
That should make his mb and cpu search much easier. Microcenter is where i get most of my cpu and mbs for their combo discounts and because they almost always have stock(harder for scalpers to clean them out). Finding ddr5 if that's what he goes with will probably be easier online. MC doesn't carry a very wide selection of memory so they sell out fast.
 

crazycrave

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I used an SSD for my windows and bought a WD Black P10 Gaming drive that is USB 3.2 / 1 and what the PS5 and X Box gang is using because it's 4TB and cost around $110 from BB .. I have loaded about 6 games so far on it and here is Death Stranding running from it with the Steam platform over USB as I wanted to be able to take the drive to another one of my systems .

 
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