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1247 posts

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Topic # 113606 22-Jan-2013 09:40
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My wife has been learning about building PCs, to improve her IT knowledge, and is keen to build her own PC as a result.  She's been researching the parts for a couple of months now, and will likely be putting in the order soon.  Does anyone have any thoughts on the following build?

Case: Fractal Design Define R4
Mobo: Asus Sabertooth Z77
CPU: Intel Core i5 3570k
RAM: Corsair Dominator 2x4GB CL9
Video: Asus GTX 660Ti 2GB
PSU: Corsair AX750W + Corsair sleeved white PSU cables
SSD: Intel 330 120GB
HDD: WD Caviar Black 1TB
Optical: LG Blu Ray reader:DVD writer
CPU cooling: Corsair Hydro H80i
WIFI: Intel Centrino N2200
Keyboard: Corsair K60 mechanical gaming keyboard
Mouse: Corsair M60 FPS gaming mouse
OS: Windows 8 Pro

I should state that my wife has a strong aesthetic angle with her build, and so some of the parts are chosen specifically to achieve that aesthetic - the case, the Sabertooth (the "armour" helps to achieve the clean black/white look she's going for), the RAM, and the white Corsair PSU cables are all part of that aesthetic.  Just in case you were about to suggest that the parts were over specced.  She is thinking about doing some overclocking (part of her knowledge building), and will probably do some gaming (FPS probably).

In addition to any general thoughts you might have about this build, there are some specific questions, (which I might have posted about separately - apologies):
1. The Define R4 isn't sold in Aus/NZ with the windowed side panel.  It is available on Amazon, but the shipping cost through Youshop is prohibitively expensive.  Does anyone know of another way to get hold of the windowed version of the case - a different company for shipping on to NZ, a company that sells the case direct to NZ?  If we can't lay our hands on a windowed version of the case, then my wife is prepared to have a crack at modding the panel to install a window, but neither of us have done it before, and we'll have to buy/borrow the tools to do it, so it would be easier to just get the window version if the cost isn't too high.
2. Monitor - my wife is sold on the Acer T232HL, but it's not yet available in NZ.  With Windows 8, she wants to prepare for touch by getting a touchscreen monitor.  She'll be sitting close enough to the screen to actually make use of it, but she also likes the look of the Acer model.  She can't really see the value in "ordinary" monitors with touch becoming more commonplace, so she's reluctant to buy a standard TN or IPS panel.  What do people recommend?  Waiting for touchscreen monitors to become more available in NZ at a reasonable price, jump in now and import a touchscreen panel from overseas, or just go with a standard monitor and forego the touchscreen option?

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  Reply # 748652 22-Jan-2013 09:56
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Are you looking for the white or black windowed Define R4?

if white then is this it?

If black, drop a line to CL and in my experience they are usually very good about sourcing these sorts of things if there is some interest in them.

Looks like a nice system... though if you can get a smaller PSU with the white cables you want I might think about that. Even overclocked, 750W is a lot for that system.  Though I guess if there's not much price difference you might as well stick with it.

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  Reply # 748669 22-Jan-2013 10:23
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Go for a touch screen. Even if only for the aesthetic. The practical reason is that most of our other devices have them. I'm using Windows 8 on my laptop and will definitely get a touch screen next.

Your options for getting a touch screen are largely determined by how much you're prepared to pay. The worst case buying from overseas is if a problem develops that needs a repair or replacement and you have to do it yourself.

Personally, I'd wait until they arrive in Australasia. You can find out how long you have to wait by contacting the local distributor. Also, You have some time because you have to build the PC first. Even better if you've got an interim option like hooking it up to an HD TV.

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  Reply # 748684 22-Jan-2013 10:47
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I don't like smudges or fingerprints on my screens, having a touchscreen for my main monitor would drive me nuts, I could see my second screen being touchscreen in the future but my main monitor will stay smudge free as long as possible.

Given the choice I would pick high res (2560x1440 or 2560x1600 or greater) over touchscreen for a pc any day of the week. My Yamakasi Catleap 27 is such a huge improvement from a 1080p tn led panel that I doubt I could go back.

Ssd wise I would consider going to a larger one than that, I've got a 128 and it is adequate but I could really use having a bit more space on it.

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  Reply # 748685 22-Jan-2013 10:52
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Ssd wise I would consider going to a larger one than that, I've got a 128 and it is adequate but I could really use having a bit more space on it.

I'm not too bothered about the size of the SSD.  I recently bought an Intel 120GB SSD for my own desktop, and after installing Win8 + all the programs I'm likely to use regularly, I still have about 75GB free.  I have my docs, pics, videos and music on a separate HDD, and in due course they will be located on the NAS.  My wife will be having the same setup, so she's probably wont need more space than me.  If it transpires that the 120Gb isn't large enough, then it could always be transplanted to the laptop (which we will be repurposing as a "media PC" in the lounge) and she can get a larger SSD, by which time the prices will have fallen/capacities increased.

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