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Seeking advice for computer setup

Non-MS Tech Forum Talk about computer and tech topics

rwong38 Level 57 Windia Cleric
Hi I'm currently deciding on a desktop setup for casual browsing use (might do some gaming but nothing really intensive). My most intensive software will likely be MATLAB and other engineering-related simulation and calculation software. Also, I live in Australia.

I have some questions regarding an ideal build for me. Firstly, what functional difference is there between the Intel 1151 and Intel 1150 microprocessors? What capacity on the power supply should be sufficient for my needs/parts (without risking being insufficient as has happened to me in the past)? Does the manufacturer really matter that much? Is paying $20 more for Corsair as opposed to Kingston etc. really worth it?

I don't have a set budget but it would ideally be under $1400 AUD (I plan to keep the peripherals/operating system for use when I replace this computer for later use so I think that would be a good value).

Some of the parts I'm thinking of getting is:

CPU - Intel S1151 Core i5 6400 2.7GHz Quad Core /Intel S1151 Core i5 6400 2.7GHz (prefer an i5 over i3 just so it doesn't get outdated too quickly

Motherboard - appropriate for the cpu is all I need.

Memory -
Need 16GB ram for my simulations so I will be aiming for two 8GB RAM modules.

Video - Nvidia GTX950 (just don't want to get outdated as I said I may be doing some gaming, not sure what kind though)


Tbh, I don't mind using a 64GB version of the Samsung EVO if it were available. Mainly need it for my OS and programs.


Case: Unsure about this. I remember back in the day all the gamers ran Antec 900/2s and they were pretty affordable and looked nice. But I've also heard about MicroATXs and I like their compact design (if I could choose)

Cooler - Do I need an 'aftermarket' cooler or is the stock cooler sufficient for my needs? I do not intend to overclock.

Network adapter -
I have NBN at home and will be connecting wirelessly. Can anyone recommend the best and most efficient method of connecting wirelessly these days? I am aware that some use network cards etc.


Keyboard -
Want a good, cheap mechanical keyboard, nothing too fancy with backlit lights cos that gets old for me quickly.
Mouse -
Have been personally recommended this mouse and it seems to be pretty decent for its price.

Monitor -
Doesn't have to be large, have resolution higher than 1080p although I was recommended to use 2 monitors for convenience.


OS - Windows 10 Home Edition


Can anyone recommend a decent headset? I'm not an audiophile but I prefer noise cancellation and just an overall comfortable headset that can cover my ears completely and has decent sound quality.
Posted: July 2016 Permalink


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spandax Level 177 Bera Shadower
I don't get your question about the chipsets. 1151 is essentially the newest there is available. (In other words a better processor, but generally processors are only needed for rendering). Do not get a 950, its practically the worse. Want a cheap GPU? Heres a link to cheap ones straight from EVGA.;amp;family=GeForce+900+Series+Family I believe these are refurbished but come with 3 year warranty. Keyboard, don't get blackwidow sucks, if you want a real mechanical keyboard get a ducky, I have heard they are the best, but honestly as a beginner I would get a corsair K70. For gaming mouse if you are serious, go wired, Corsair m65, or razer deathadder. For a headphone? Anything you like. The cheaper logitech ones are good for their price, a G430 should do fine.
Jul 31 2016
anthorix Level 201 Windia Mechanic 4
hi i've built 5 pcs for friends and family >u>

CPU: so first thing: 1151 cpu to 1151 motherboard
1150 cpu to 1150 motherboard.

1151 is newer and thus has had bad news in december of 2015, so i recommend the reliable
and still capable 1150 cpu. MATLAB hardware requirements suggest a 4 core cpu. i5 4590 with the included cooler is what you need. aftermarket coolers aren't for you at the moment.

Solid State Drives/ SSD: Will always be faster and quiter than HDD loading and reading any file. in this year 2016 with your budget you can afford to have a large capacity solid drive. like 240gb or something. the difference between using an SSD and an HDD is very noticeable. you'll see.

Powersupply: yes there are bad manufacturers with products that just stop working and can damage your whole pc when it fails. get

Monitor Screen: so not many people know this but there are actually many types of monitors. like 10+ and it would be alot of reading to describe them all. basically out of all monitor types like LED BACKLIT and TFT LCD, i suggest an IPS Monitor for your viewing pleasure.

Wifi/ Wireless adapter card: ideally you should connect to the internet directly through a cable to our modem... but you can install a wireless card like this
in the back of your pc like a graphics card.

RAM/ randommemory: so theres different versions of ram. get DDR3. get 2 sticks of the same name, ideally as a 16gb 2 stick pack of 8gb. get 1600mhz since its a common speed on alot of motherboards.

GPU/ Video display card: since your not really into gaming, a gtx 950 is just fine. theres a video on youtube of someone using it to play maplestory 2 casually.

Computer Case: normally on a gaming pc budget i'd suggest the cheapest piece of crap box and use most of the budget for the GPU. but for this "case" select what looks sexy to you. your prolly gonna see it everyday so you should enjoy it. just make sure to match the size of your motherboard to the size of your pc case. ex.) micro atx motherboard to micro atx computer case. Atx motherboard to Atx case. mini motherboard to mini case. you can put a small motherboard into a large case if you want.

Keyboard: just get any old keyboard for the office, razer keyboards seem to be aimed toward the gaming kids market and you might get sick of it. also its overpriced. im a keyboard hobbyist and i solder and know about alot of different switches and stuff and i'm telling you a normal keyboard for office work is quiet and reliable.

Headphones: i dont live in your area but search for keywords: Circumaural Budget Audiophile Forum
i hope this helps you build that dream desk theres alot i didn't cover but its all an experience since you want to build it yourself.
just remember that parts have to be compatible. ddr3 motherboard ddr3 ram
1150 motherboard 1150 ram
atx motherboard atx computer case
1600mhz ram 1600mhz motherboard

if you do it right it'll run faster and cheaper than anything store bought.
Jul 31 2016
rwong38 Level 57 Windia Cleric

With the CPU, I am of the impression that both the 6400 and the 4590 are quad-core cpus, so why do you prefer the 4590? It's quite a bit more expensive for me.

Yes I am aware. I intend to get both an SSD and a HDD. It's in my OP.

Your power supply comment is incomplete.

With the monitor, I usually lower the brightness/contrast significantly so it's not really a strain for my eyes. As long as it's of a decent size (21+ inches) and has 1080p, it's good enough for me. I checked computer alliance (the cheapest store in my town) and the IPS ones cost quite a bit more. I think I would prefer to invest in a second monitor instead.

Your wifi card link is dead.

Yes I intend to get two identical RAM sticks, question is does the manufacturer really matter that much?

GPU: fair enough. The most I'll get into is probably Fallout 4 modding. Does this card handle the realENB mods?

With the case, yeah I'll be sure to look into that.

I'm looking for a mechanical keyboard because the stock office keyboards lack the sensitivity that I require. As for the mouse, it's more for comfort and DPI manipulation which a stock mouse does not provide.
Jul 31 2016
anthorix Level 201 Windia Mechanic 4

the cpu i just suggested because its the best stock 4 core i know of
but since the 6400 is cheaper you can get that instead. remember to get a motherboard that is socket type 1151 and get ram that is compatible which is most likely DDR4.

also get any RAM that has at least a heatsink on it.

power supply:

Jul 31 2016
rwong38 Level 57 Windia Cleric
@anthorix: Will 500W be sufficient? My 450W one seems to be insufficient for my 6 year old setup (low-end too).

Also best quad-core in terms of what? I'm curious because I'm unsure what differences are there between cpus (besides basic clock speeds)
Aug 01 2016
anthorix Level 201 Windia Mechanic 4
dood ive had budget ram without heatsinks fail(specifically, melted)

dood theres so much to explain and youre not even paying me.

500 seems sufficient because thats what i have on my brothers pc and he has overclocked junk with a gaming graphics card and plays demanding games all dam day using said graphics card and has been using it for years. yur fine with browsing and a low end gpu and non overclocked cpu...
Aug 01 2016
windowlegs Level 142 Kradia Buccaneer
just buy that computer nicknamed the potato
Aug 01 2016
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