You'll be fine.
GPU's listed requirements for PSU are way overestimated because they have to account for all kinds of quality of supplies, from the ones that make fireworks all the way up to something that costs a couple hundred bucks. There's also many supplies that don't even meet their rated wattage spec, so the GPU manufacturers play it very, very safe.
So the link you gave is different than your original post suggests, and different than the model you gave as well. So I'll approach a couple possibilities.
I'm going to guess that your board in the build is the ASRock x570 Pro4. If so, then the only way that I can think that you would be able to get functionality would be with a USB3/USB2 adapter, something like this as an example, so you'd be able to plug the WIFI's internal cable with the unpopulated USB3 slot on the motherboard.
On the other hand, if the motherboard in your list is the Gigabyte that you just linked to, then there are 2 USB2 and 2 USB3 headers, so there would be an open slot available.
So that Wifi card needs to be installed in the PCIe slots. That means you'll be installing it in the same kind of slots that the GPU went in, or the smaller versions of those slots in between. Even though it might look a little weird, that Wifi card will still install into the full-size PCIe slots just fine.
That said, the card also does require an internal USB connection to function. So that means connecting that internal cable to any available USB header on the motherboard. Your link for the build has a parametric filter for the motherboard, so from that link alone I can't be sure what motherboard your build is actually using, and without that information I can't be any more specific.
There is some value that you get from a pre-built, mainly in the way of warranty. However, it's pretty rare for anything to be an issue in a custom build aside from accidents, which the Alienware only would cover if you get the really expensive plan for. The only other real benefit of a pre-built is that you can't get exactly the same looks since their cases are proprietary, though there are plenty of good-looking cases on the market right now anyway.
If you are willing to put in the work of building one on your own, then I definitely think it is worth it over getting the Alienware. It's usually pretty difficult for me to rationalize all the extra cost just to have (typically) lower quality. Plus, I love the process of building anyway
Spec for spec, $1550. By choosing different parts, you can easily get essentially identical (or better) performance for less, though it depends on what exactly you're going to expect out of it.
If you're not shooting for 144hz+, then this list gets much better high-res performance for less than the Alienware price.
PCPartPicker Part List
Here's what I came up with. It gives strong performance for the price range, but I ended up going over because I had to factor in the cost of Operating System. Unless you can manage to get a free/discounted license through school, then you will need OS to work properly. If you manage to pick it up elsewhere, you can use that cost difference to invest in a CPU cooler like the Cryorig H7 to get quieter cooling and a stronger white theme on the interior.
It's likely that the rev.2 has a firmware update that rev.1 doesn't come with out of the box. Rev.1 would make sense to be more expensive since it's technically out of production, and supply/demand does that weird thing.
As far as users go, they are basically identical.
In addition to what Gilroar said, the tradeoff between clock speed and latency is pretty small. A pretty decent rule of thumb is that upping the clock speed by one 'step' (e.g. 3000MHz to 3200MHz) has the same effect as lowering the CL by 1 (e.g. 16 to 15). So by this logic, 3000MHzCL15 is nearly the same in effective speed as 3200MHzCL16.
I'm too lazy to go through the actual math of it, but that pattern is pretty useful for doing a quick comparison
The 1660ti is the more powerful card than the 5500XT, so if you're fine with spending that much on the GPU, then the 1660ti is very worth the upgrade in my opinion. With the 1660ti, you'd be looking at high/ultra settings for most titles at 1080p, whereas with the 5500XT, you'd have to turn some settings down on some titles.
Between the two 1660ti cards, there is very little difference. One has a slightly higher clock speed out of the box, but that will be a minor difference at most. I personally would go with the cheaper 1660ti, of all 3 options.
If you plug it into the CPU_FAN header on your motherboard, then it should, yes.
You make a really good point. I guess I got too focused on bare pricing that I forgot to go back and check that
So this is what I could do. It's not groundbreaking by any means, but it'll run the games just fine.
With any additional money, I'd suggest upping the headset, then I'd take a look at the cases I guess. That's about all you can really update a whole lot without it being too expensive across every build.
The motherboard needs an 8-pin EPS connector and a 4-pin ATX connector in order to deliver the full power to the board. The only ones listed on PCPP under that spec are the Thermaltake TPG, which are all too large to fit in the case's PSU compartment.
You'll need to look into what that additional power connector does for the board specifically, and then decide if that additional functionality would be worth a different case selection, or if you should go with a different motherboard instead.
This is a way to successfully install windows 10. However, the cost for Windows otherwise is for activating it. Using this method to the dot will install an unactivated windows.
It should work just fine.
That said, if you haven't purchased yet, this supply is a little bit better and less expensive, though it is only semi-modular
The compatibility flag might be important, but it might not. It depends on if the motherboard has the latest BIOS revision. Unfortunately, to update the BIOS you need an already-compatible CPU unless the board supports other update methods.
The board in the list needs revision P3.30 to work out of the box with the 3600. There's not really any good way to know for sure if the specific board is already updated or not, but worst-case scenario, AMD is offering a free BIOS Update kit with a proof-of-purchase for a Ryzen 3000 series and corresponding motherboard. (details here )
You could also check with the sales associate to see if they know if Geek Squad can do the update (though I'd expect they would charge for that service).
Yeah, kinda. Any of these power supplies will offer just as much power and reliability for a build like this, but without as much cost. That said, they don't fit in with the white color scheme that seems to be going on already.
If the PSU is already purchased, I wouldn't worry about it. It's great for the list, there's just less expensive alternatives that offer the same functionality.
The Corsair ram is likely to work anyway, though it will be downclocked to 2933MHz or lower if it does work.
The PSU is fine, but is fairly overkill for the list.
I'd normally suggest going with one of the newer Zen chips, but it isn't likely to make much of a difference for a Server that isn't windows-based.
You can definitely get away with less for the GPU if it isn't doing any 3D application work, unless you need that specific video port selection.
Most MIDI will just go in direct via USB, thoughthe UR44 does offer some I/Os for that. The Steinberg should be fine for the analogs, as long as you've got enough inputs.
I'll recommend connecting the Mackies to the "main out" on the interface, that way you'll be able to bypass any less-than-stellar sound circuitry inside the computer.
Otherwise, you should be good to go! When price matching at Best Buy, you'll need to make sure the model numbers are exactly the same, as any single digit off or missing means they can say no to it. It'll also have to be in-stock at both retailers, and must be a "reasonable competitor" to Best Buy (e.g. can't match MicroCenter unless the BBY store is within a particular distance of it). The only people that really hate price matches at Best Buy are management, unless you go during a really busy time since it can pull the associates away from other sales. So I wouldn't worry about that. I worked BBY previously so I have the inside scoop on all of that!
They are, but major brands using the major memory chips are very unlikely to cause any issues.
The core of this system is already pretty well-defined by your requirements. So what I'd like to ask is what type of external peripherals you'll be using alongside this. Primarily stuff like incoming recording interfaces, any DACs/Amps for external speakers, that type of stuff.
This is mainly to make sure that you wouldn't be better off putting some of the money into a decent DAC or a nicer interface rather than additional ram or storage that are very easy to put in later.
Otherwise, building as though the external setup is perfect:
The list ticks all the boxes for your requirements, it definitely has more than enough power and very quiet fans
The GPU is the least expensive option that will do 2 HDMI ports, and it offers way more than enough power
Budget allowed for it, so I went with 2 nice 1440p monitors. It'll look super crisp, especially if you're used to 1080p. There's enough left that you could easily do 4k instead
Mouse and keyboard are where I'd recommend that you look into it on your own, since it's usually so preference-driven, but I did recommend some common choices that are typically well-received.
The fans in the list are to add to the front panel. The case includes a rear fan, so between the 3 you'll have more than enough. They are PWM fans, so they won't always be running at full speed, which means they will be very quiet
So yeah. There's still a lot left to work with, and there's not much improvement to make on it unless you're just willing to overspend for the PC
OP definitely doesn't need a powerful graphics card since the system is just using desktop-based programs, and not anything that's 3D.
I'd go for whichever one is cheaper, but I lean toward the single, larger drive.
One benefit (or not, depending on how you look at it) of the single drive is that the single 4tb has a single point of failure, while the dual 2tb has two places to fail. That said, with redundant backups it's going to be splitting hairs.
Other differences that likely don't matter but can be considered:
The single 4tb will consume less power and create less noise (especially since the two smaller ones are higher rpm)
The single 4tb only requires one set of cables while you'd need the same amount for each of the 2tb drives
Pretty much the reason for the "almost". I hope to join the ranks one day, however
120 are almost never worth it nowadays, and these are the best 240 under 100.
The NF-S12A consumes up to 1.44W at 12V, corresponding to a max current of 120mA/0.12A (source: https://noctua.at/en/nf-s12a-pwm/specification )
Fan headers can typically support at least 1A of current, though it's not necessarily a given. According to the motherboard's user manual, the CPU_FAN header supports up to 24W or 2A of current (pg. 1-17, section 9: user manual )
As such, it wouldn't be unreasonable to assume that the other fan headers can support similar current handling. Even at half that rating, it still supplies more than enough current for two of those fans.
Any mid-level processor will suffice just fine unless you're going for high refresh rate monitors.
For AMD, that would mean the 3600X and up. For Intel, the 9600K and up.
If the backup drive is always plugged in, Windows can still read the files through that as though they are part of the rest of the system. Check the directories for the music and verify if their location is the C: or F: drive
You actually have the acoustics backwards on the two.
Air coolers tend to be quieter because the only part making any sound is the fan(s) on the heatsink. They are usually designed to be as quiet as possible too.
For liquid coolers, you have the fans on the radiator (already at more fans which means more noise, plus static pressure fans tend to run louder), plus the sound of the pump.
Historically, the benefits of liquid cooling have been cooling power, small form factor builds, and aesthetics. However, modern air coolers (and CPU thermals) make it so that many liquid coolers are on par with, or outperformed by, a decent air cooler. So that leaves the only real modern benefits being aesthetic, and the space. In some extreme cases of overclocking, an outstanding liquid cooler pulls ahead, but that's getting more into record-setting levels of overclocking.
Another less-mentioned benefit of air coolers is reliability. Air coolers have a single point of failure: the fan. Liquid coolers can fail at the pump, any of the fans, and any of the liquid junctions.
The PSU has enough power connectors, so you should be good to go.
Any decent Displayport cable is going to be the best bet.
With HDMI you might run into the question of if an HDMI cable will actually support the bandwidth needed for the resolution and framerate of this monitor. Any 4k-rated cable would be fine for it.
However, with Displayport having supported this resolution and framerate for over a decade, you definitely won't have any hiccups with it.
Pretty much to add on to what mark5916 said:
It's hard to go wrong with any of the AIB cards. Historically, Sapphire and MSI tend to make the best coolers for AMD cards, but XFX usually makes good ones as well.
If you're looking at overclocking the card heavily, then one of the higher-end options such as the Sapphire Nitro or the MSI Gaming would be great. If you're planning to stay fairly close to out-of-the-box speeds, then just about any AIB card should be fine.
Yes, but ram is usually separated far enough from the source that it is very unlikely to be affected by it. The motherboard, on the other hand, would be the at-risk component here.
I'd go with the 5700XT. It performs really similarly to the 2070 and 2060 Super, but it's the least expensive of the three.
It won't push your PSU too hard, and you won't have any issues with cooling based on the rest of the list.
That said, if you play a bunch of games that utilize the NVidia-exclusive settings, then there is benefit in the NVidia options based on that.
I'm not going to suggest a specific card within those general groups, because most options for any of the cards is fine and I'd pick based on pricing which is always changing. Plus, the 5700XT has some of the custom-cooling cards releasing soon, so you won't be stuck to the blower-style cooler if that's an option.
I've also approached this just based on raw power. If you're not running anything super intensive or high resolution/framerate and don't plan to, then you could likely eke out just fine with a less expensive card. (just a general disclaimer)
No, the iGPU is basically a weak integrated graphics card. It's designed to run basic desktop functions, but it can usually run simple games like League without any issue.
The type of power needed to harm the CPU electrically is far beyond what any other component in the system can produce without typically failing themselves.
Have you checked the pins on the CPU itself? It's a fairly common thing to overlook, but a broken or improperly bent pin can lead to a functional failure of the chip.
As a side note, I did want to check to make sure the heatsink has been properly applied to the CPU with thermal paste. It's something that even I have overlooked in the past, and it could cause a system to run for only a split second at startup.
The k70 RGB is pretty popular, and it often goes on sale to $130 on Newegg.
Razer keyboards, with their blue-equivalent Razer Green switches, are also typically pretty nice, but they are out of my realm of preference, so I know a lot less about their options. https://pcpartpicker.com/products/keyboard/#s=21&sort=price&b=46&X=0,15000
The System Builder isn't even able to filter PSU's by available EPS/CPU power connectors yet, so in funky situations like this it's best to not trust it fully.
The motherboard receives power via a 19V DC port that is on the I/O shield next to one of the USB sets. I'm having trouble finding any documentation (in my short google searches, at least) for how to utilize those 2-pin power connectors, but they definitely won't work with a standard ATX supply, because those only provide 12V.
Your best bet is to find a 19V laptop-style power supply with sufficient power handling. Otherwise, you can find what are essentially jumper kits that can connect to ATX12V PSUs, but those will usually be much more expensive than the power brick option.
The RX570 or GTX1060 (3gb) will be the most powerful options for the price range. They are pretty evenly-matched, and either one should fit in just fine with your build.
Yep, that's pretty much it!
These are all great options without being overly expensive: https://pcpartpicker.com/products/compare/qxcMnQ,XRmxFT,jWFXsY,79tQzy/
The video ports on the motherboard will have no impact on your uses because the dedicated graphics card in the build will cause the motherboard/iGPU graphics to be disabled. In the case of the AMD build, the platform can't output video from the motherboard with that CPU.
So the framerate will not be limited by the motherboard's video ports in this case because the ports on the GPU are HDMI 2.0 (or newer) and Displayport 1.4 (or newer) which both support 144hz.
I went through the list and made a couple changes, but nothing big. I think AMD offers just as good an option for the uses as Intel, but it does really need a proper aftermarket cooler for overclocking it enough to close any (albeit small) performance gap. Other changes include faster RAM, which benefits Ryzen in gaming, less expensive storage that is otherwise essentially the same, the platinum version of the power supply since it's a bit cheaper, and different case fans. The 140mm case fans will move more air overall while being generally quieter than 120mm fans. Since the case supports 2x140mm fans on the front panel, I think it will be much more effective to put them there and use the extra included 120mm case fans elsewhere.
That motherboard supports 3000 series as long as it has bios revision F40. You could try contacting the seller to see if the boards are on the updated revision, as the older ones (F2, F4, F5) will not support the 3000 series.
Otherwise, it will require a separate supported processor for the bios update.
Usually, going through GeForce Experience is the easiest way to work with the NVidia drivers. It's a software from NVidia that you can get from their site if your system doesn't already have it installed.
It's just as reliable as any other mainstream hard drive.
The things about Seagate being unreliable are from a study that was debunked because of poor methodology. People still like to quote it as though it's gospel truth, however.
You'll be fine, congrats on nabbing the sale!
I prefer the Strix card since historically they have offered better power delivery, otherwise the only glaring thing I see is the power supply.
First, make sure you are using the video ports on the graphics card. Plugging the monitor into the motherboard instead can cause a whole host of issues.
Second, if you are using HDMI, it will need to be a cable that supports 4k. Sadly there isn't a great way to test this if you don't know the details on the cable.
Beyond this, I'd check to make sure your GPU driver is up to date. Monitors don't have drivers associated with them, since they just take standard video data.
They are effectively the same thing with a different name on the outside. They are the market standard for "1TB 7200rpm" drives. Any type of difference between them performance-wise or reliability-wise is just splitting hairs.
Go with whichever is the least expensive.
The 9900k does better in gaming but only when the GPU is not the limiting factor (typically the RTX 2080 or equivalent upwards, depending on resolution), and when the monitor refresh rate is over 90fps.
If either of those aren't met, then the chips are essentially the same for gaming. If you're doing any video editing or any type of rendering, then go with the 3900x. If it's just gaming but you don't meet the previous conditions, go with whichever option gives the cheaper platform.
Finally, if you are just doing gaming and meet the earlier conditions, then the 9900k makes a slightly better choice (or the 9900kf alternative which offers a slightly better price at the moment)
What all do your parents do on the computer that makes you think new ram will fix the issue?
Many people incorrectly think ram is the panacea for slow computers but it's far more complex than that.
The issue is most likely the age of the CPU, especially if running windows 8 or later. As an example, the fastest CPU that used ddr2 isn't as fast as one of the cheapest modern mainstream CPUs that you can buy.
All that said, here is which ram will actually work with the build: https://pcpartpicker.com/products/memory/#s=200800&sort=ppgb&t=11