Help Choosing Components

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Eldredge, Nov 12, 2012.

  1. I am seriously considering building a new trading computer. I will use it to run TWS with less than 20 symbols, and an API with a pretty typical worksheet. Probably about 15-20 charts on 4-8 1920x1080 monitors. I don't care how well the computer functions for anything else.

    I appreciate good value and would like to keep the computer under $1,000 unless there is some compelling reason to go beyond that. I have never done this before, so any advice is appreciated.

    Here is a list of the components I am leaning towards at the moment. Please let me know if you would suggest something different.

    CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($319.99 @ Amazon)
    CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($24.99 @ Newegg)
    Motherboard: Asus P8Z77-V LE PLUS ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($159.99 @ Amazon)
    Memory: Crucial Ballistix 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($69.99 @ Newegg)
    Storage: Samsung 840 Series 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($100.96 @ Amazon)
    Video Card: EVGA GeForce GT 520 1GB Video Card ($34.99 @ NCIX US) 2 or 3 of these.
    Case: Cooler Master Elite 431 Plus (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($50.98 @ Amazon)
    Power Supply: Rosewill Green 630W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($49.99 @ Amazon)
    Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($17.99 @ Newegg)
    Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($91.99 @ Amazon)
    Keyboard: Lite-On SK-1788/BS Wired Standard Keyboard ($14.97 @ Newegg)
    Mouse: Logitech B100 Wired Optical Mouse ($7.99 @ Mac Mall)
    Total: $944.82

    As I said, this will be a first for me, so be gentle. Thanks for any advice or input.
  2. Perhaps I should mention that I would like this computer to be reasonably quiet. The more silent the better, but I don't want to spend a lot of extra money or take extreme measures just to make it quiet.
  3. Xeon and i7 share the same 1366 socket on a lot of CPUs. They are interchangeable depending on the motherboard. You can buy hex-core Xeon processors (used, ebay) for under $350 these days. i7's are similar price, perhaps cheaper, but the Xeon's will have a higher resale value down the line; retail/i7 will not.

    You are suggesting running two sticks of DDR3; DDR3 is triple channel memory and likes to be in sets of three. Get a third stick - even if it means a jump down to 3x 4GB = 12 or 3x 8gb = 24

    Get Windows 8 Professional 64-bit. It's going to be a pain in the a$$ to get used to but it's better (and the same price as W7 x64 Pro). Whatever you do get a 64-bit Professional edition - home/student/basic/starter/home premium all SUCK. If you can get a copy of N or KN do it :) (

    Last I will leave you with a little cyclical advice. Santa jumps down the chimney in a few weeks. Shortly thereafter everyone who "treated themselves" to nerdy stuff like CPUs put them all up on eBay. The prices plummet in mid-late January through early March. (used prices not new)
  4. Thanks WinstonTJ. I wasn't aware that DDR3 memory was best in 3's - I thought it was just newer.

    I guess I had better do a little research and see if I should use DDR2 or DDR3. Any suggestions?
  5. What do you want for Christmas Winston?
  6. Is recommending LGA 1366 a good idea since it has been superseded by LGA 2011, and new processor support has been discontinued?

    Maybe if you really want or need the extra power of a (Intel) hex-core at the cheapest price?

    - If going with i7 I'd suggest to take the slightly cheaper 3770 over the 3770K since most people won't actually overclock anyway.
  7. Newer motherboards usually require DDR3. DDR2 and DDR3 are not compatible, though there was a time when you could use either on certain motherboards but not mix them. Besides as DDR3 is current, it will have the best deals/rebates. DDR2 is generally more expensive now.
  8. My two front teeth!

    (and I have my eye on a quad-socket motherboard that supports four 8-core Intel CPUs)

    The easy way to remember it is DDR2 is dual channel and DDR3 is triple channel. DDR2 likes to be installed in pairs and DDR3 likes to be installed in sets of 3.

    You don't need to - you can use 2 sticks of DDR3 or even 3 sticks of DDR2 but if you notice most of the DDR3 motherboards have the memory DIMMS in sets of 3 (you'll see 3 white and 3 black for a total of 6) and most DDR2 motherboards will have sets of 4 (4 white + 4 black for total of 8).

    In general DDR3 will be much faster than DDR2.

    I suggested that socket because the CPUs are getting really inexpensive and the horsepower of a 6-core 1366 CPU is usually going to be very much overkill for 99% of traders. Yes newer is going to be better and faster but 1366 is plenty for now and cheap.