Computer of the month – December 2017 / Laptops and PCs

Coffee Lake processors are slowly but surely cheaper. The assemblies of Intel, presented in this issue of the "Computer of the Month", have become more attractive. Even more profitable they will be in the next year, when the chip maker will introduce the younger sets of logic of the 300 series. In the starting assembly, the quad-core Core i3-8100 will most likely "settle", and in the base one – the six-core Core i5-8400 . In this regard, there is a reason to delay with the purchase of a system unit based on Intel components, if you are constrained in cash. Or, look at the hardware based AMD hardware – in five of six assemblies, the system blocks with Ryzen and Threadripper chips are cheaper than the configurations with the Coffee Lake and Skylake-X CPUs.

Important information: According to our data, Intel has delayed the release of motherboards based on H310, B360 and H370 Express chipsets for two or three months, that is, now it will be necessary to focus on February-March 2018.

The January issue of the "Computer of the Month" will be released right after the New Year holidays.

For those who come to us for the first time, it will be useful to study the September issue which details all aspects of the selection of components for six assemblies: starting, basic, optimal, advanced, maximum and extreme . I do not see the point of chewing the same thing every time, therefore, in this release, we will mainly describe alternative assembly variants, as well as methods for reducing the cost of or cheaper systems.

And for beginners, who still do not dare to "make" themselves PCs, a detailed step-by-step guide on assembling the system unit. It turns out that in the " Computer month and " I tell you what to build a computer from, and in the guide – how to do it.

I remind you that the heading shows average prices for "Yandex.Market" (region – Moscow). Depending on the location and the selected trading platform, you can assemble a similar system unit both cheaper and more expensive. Therefore, the assemblies given in the article do not have a strict price limit, only an approximate budget is stipulated. The cost of software in the calculations is not taken into account, only the components are evaluated.

# Starting assembly

The systems are relevant for modern games in Full HD resolution with medium / high graphics quality settings.

Here you can confirm the accuracy of the information specified in the description.

The starting assembly
The processor AMD Ryzen 3 1200, 4 cores, 3.1 (3.4) GHz, 8 MB L3, AM4, BOX 7 500 rubles.
Intel Pentium G4600, 2/4 core / stream, 3.6 GHz, 3 MB L3, LGA1151-v1, BOX 6,000 rubles.
The motherboard AMD B350 Examples:
• ASRock AB350M;
5,000 rubles.
Intel H110 Express Examples:
• MSI H110M PRO-D;
• ASRock H110M-DGS R3.0;
• ASUS H110M-K
3 000 rubles.
Operating memory 1 × 8 GB DDR4-2400 / 2666:
• Crucial CT8G4DFS824A;
• Samsung DDR4-2400
5 500 rubles.
The video card NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti, 4 GB GDDR5:
• Inno3D GeForce GTX1050 Ti Twin X2;
• Palit GeForce GTX1050 Ti Dual;
11 000 rubles.
The accumulator HDD, 1 TB, 7200 rpm, SATA 6 Gbps Examples:
• Western Digital WD10EZEX;
• Toshiba HDWD110UZSVA;
• Seagate ST1000DM010
3 000 rubles.
The processor cooler Comes with the processor 0 rubles
The case Examples:
• Exegate AB-221 Black
1 500 rub.
The power supply unit Examples:
• Chieftec TPS-500S 500 W;
• FSP Group ATX-500PNR 500 W;
• Zalman ZM500-LE II 500 W
2 500 rub.
Subtotal AMD – 36 000 rubles.
Intel – 32 500 rubles.

In December, under the heading "Optimal gaming PC", in which the speed of the assemblies in the "Computer of the Month" is studied, was launched. In the first issue the possibilities of the initial configurations of AMD and Intel were just considered.

Only in the initial assembly of Intel is still using the irrelevant platform – LGA1151-v1 for the processors of the generation Skylake and Kaby Lake. All other configurations use modern platforms LGA1151-v2 and LGA2066. Unfortunately, motherboards based on 100- and 200-series chipsets do not support new generation chips of the Coffee Lake generation, so in December (judging by the incoming information, in January and February – also), we can not afford a budget of 30-35 thousand rubles to acquire the much-desired Core i3-8100.

The Pentium G4600 was selected again, although I could install Core i3-7100, for example. The choice in favor of "hyperpy" is quite obvious. Yes, having paid additionally 1 500 rubles for the Core i3 generation of Kaby Lake, you will receive a chip supporting the vector set of commands AVX and AVX2, the ability to work with Intel Optane Memory technology and support for a set of instructions for working with the model of transactional memory TSX -NI, however, in most home tasks (and especially in games) we can safely do without all this set of improvements.

There is no point in taking LGA1151-v1 instead of Pentium G4600 and quad-core Core i5. So, the purchase of Core i5-7400 will cost about 11 000 rubles. It is more convenient and cheaper to wait for cheap motherboards for the LGA1151-v2 platform and to purchase a bundle of "Core i3-8100 + H310 Express."

In general, the "Computer of the Month" mainly represented the most modern gaming systems, although only novelties can be used in assemblies, unfortunately, not always. What to do with Intel's starting assembly in a couple of years? For example, without a shadow of regret to replace the existing base H310-board and Core i5-8400. Or in the system instead of the Pentium G4600 over time install Core i7-7700 – you can even used. Against the backdrop of the 6-core Core i5 and Core i7 of the Coffee Lake generation, Kaby Lake processors will certainly drop significantly afterwards.

There are practically no options to save on the processor and motherboard within the launch assembly. Instead of four-threaded Pentium chips (G4560, G4600 and G4620), I absolutely do not recommend using a "simple" 2-core CPU, if it's a system for modern games. Installing a Pentium G4500 chip in the PC (this CPU and its counterparts do not support Hyper-Threading), we are doomed to perpetual lags in CPU-dependent games (GTA V, Total War WARHAMMER and "The Witcher-3: Wild Hunt"). The same Watch_Dogs 2 simply will not start on this computer. As a result, those who want to save money can only be advised to look for used second-generation Core i3 chips Skylake and Haswell or alternatives on the flea markets. For example, Core i5 generations Sandy Bridge / Ivy Bridge. At the time of writing, the 4-core Core i5-2400 cost ~ 3,500 rubles on AliExpress.

In general, assembling a gaming computer from old components that will nevertheless cope with modern games in 2018 is a separate, interesting and ambiguous topic for conversation.

With AMD's starting assembly, it's not so simple either. In December, I offer a bundle of "Ryzen 3 1200 + B350-board." Even the most budgetary motherboards based on this chipset cope with the overclocking of quad-core Ryzen to 3.6-3.8 GHz. Once again I am convinced that that overclocking is very, very necessary for younger processors on Zen architecture. If you want to save on the board and take an even cheaper solution based on the A320 chipset, you'll have to forget about the overclocking of the Ryzen chip. These devices allow you to overclock only the RAM. In the case of buying an A320 card, it's better to take a faster Ryzen 3 1300X (+1 500 rubles).

Looking more promising in the starting assembly would look like the quad-core and six-core processors Ryzen 5. But the purchase of the cheaper Athlon X4 950 is not justified at all – a recent review clearly showed that this processor in gaming systems has nothing to do.

For both systems, 8 GB of RAM is recommended as a single module. Again, testing in the "Optimal Gaming PC" showed that in the case of a budget discrete graphics GeForce GTX 1050 Ti, the difference between single-channel and dual-channel operation modes of RAM is very, very insignificant, and in a number of games it is not observed at all. But with time (preferably as quickly as possible), you can safely buy another 8 GB module.

In December, one plate DDR4-2400 really take an average of 5-6 thousand rubles, and, apparently, the memory will continue to go up. Installing a computer less than 8 GB of RAM does not make any sense – this is a kind of subsistence level in 2017-2018

For the AM4 platform, it's better to take Samsung Mxxxxxxxxxxxx-CRC modules running at an effective frequency of 2133 and 2400 MHz. They quietly overclocked to 2933 and even to 3066 MHz with a slight increase in delays and timings. Overclocking memory is noticeable increases the speed of Ryzen-chips : using the DDR4-3200 set in comparison with the DDR4-2133 makes the system faster by an average of 15%.

Any DDR4-2400 kit is suitable for the LGA1151-v1 platform.

Another option is to replace the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti with a Radeon RX 560 4 GByte (9,000 rubles) video card. Save about 2-2,5 thousand rubles, but at the same time in games you will lose 20-30% FPS. Option with the purchase of such a device can be considered if you entertain yourself with mostly undemanding games, such as Dota 2, Overwatch, CS: GO and other multiplayer projects.

# Basic assembly

The systems are relevant for modern games in Full HD resolution with high / maximum graphics quality settings.

Here you can confirm the accuracy of the information specified in the description.

The basic assembly
The processor AMD Ryzen 5 1400, 4/8 cores / threads, 3.2 (3.4) GHz, 8 MB L3, AM4 9 500 rubles.
Intel Core i3-8100, 4 cores, 3.6 GHz, 6 MB L3, LGA1151-v2 8,000 rubles.
The motherboard AMD B350 Examples:
• ASRock AB350 Pro4;
5 500 rubles.
Intel Z370 Express Examples:
• MSI Z370-A Pro;
• ASRock Z370 Pro4;
• Gigabyte Z370 HD3
9 000 rubles.
Operating memory 2 × 8 GB DDR4-2400:
• Crucial Ballistix Sport BLS2C8G4D240FSA;
• Samsung M378A1G43EB1-CRC
13,000 rubles.
The video card NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060, 6 GB GDDR5:
• Palit GeForce GTX 1060 Dual;
• Gigabyte GV-N1060WF2-6GD;
20 500 rubles.
Accumulators HDD, 1 TB, 7200 rpm, SATA 6 Gbps Examples:
• Western Digital WD10EZEX;
• Toshiba HDWD110UZSVA;
• Seagate ST1000DM010
3 000 rubles.
SSD, 120-128 GB, SATA 6 Gbps Examples:
• Transcend 230S TS128GSSD230S;
• Kingston SUV400S37 / 120G
4 500 rubles.
The processor cooler Example:
• Deepcool GAMMAXX 200T
800 RUR
The case Examples:
• Zalman Z3 Plus Black;
• Cooler Master MasterBox 5 Lite;
• Thermaltake Versa N26
3 000 rubles.
The power supply unit Examples:
• Thermaltake TR2 S 600 W;
• Gigabyte PB500 500 W;
• Enermax MAXPRO 500 W;
• Cooler Master B600 ver.2 600 W
3 500 rubles.
Subtotal AMD – 63,800 rubles.
Intel – 65,800 rubles.

As you can see, all sorts of ways to improve the starting build lead to the fact that we are approaching the configuration described in this chapter in one form or another. It is in the base system that more productive hardware is used that will make it possible to play comfortably in modern games at very high and maximum graphics quality settings in Full HD resolution. Essential attributes of the basic configuration are the GeForce GTX 1060 or Radeon RX 570/580 graphics card (with 6 and 8 GB memory options) and 16 GB RAM. Without SSD in the basic assembly it is quite possible to do, but using an inexpensive solid-state drive in the volume of 120-128 GB will significantly speed up the operation of the operating system and download the main programs. Heavy games in any case have to be installed on the hard drive.

Initially, I expected that already in the January or February issue of the "Computer of the Month", systems based on inexpensive boards for the LGA1151-v2 platform and the Coffee Lake processors will be introduced. In the meantime, the need to purchase the Z370 motherboard does not give an opportunity to recommend in the Intel base assembly, for example, the six-core Core i5-8400 (14,000 rubles). So in December we focus on the Core i3-8100.

Even in this situation it is necessary to look for pluses. And they also have a purchase of a motherboard based on the Z370 Express chipset. So, over time, you can easily change the Core i3-8100 to a chip with an unlocked multiplier. Yes, even on the flagship Core i7-8700K! Already now you can buy Core i3-8350K (14 500 rubles) and overclock it to 4.5-4.7 GHz. And instead of DDR4-2400 you can buy a set of high-frequency RAM. As always, the final appearance of the gaming PC depends entirely on your "wants" and opportunities.

In terms of performance, the Core i3-8100 is comparable to the Core i5-7500 generation of Kaby Lake. These chips have similar frequencies (3.6 GHz, only Core i3 does not support Turbo Boost), and the same volume of the third level cache – 6 MB. Plus, in architectural terms, there is no fundamental difference between Coffee Lake and Kaby Lake. Therefore, if you do not plan to upgrade the system in the next few years, you can save on the "processor-fee" bundle. In December, the Core i3-8100 together with the inexpensive Z370 motherboard will cost you 17 thousand rubles, and the Core i5 Kaby Lake together with a motherboard based on the H110 Express chipset will cost 14-16 thousand rubles. Only the version with Core i3-8100 will be noticeably more functional. Cheap H110-boards – those are still "pruning."

The base assembly of AMD in the near future is unlikely to undergo any major changes. Like last month this PC is based on the Ryzen 5 1400 quad-core processor. The components are selected in such a way that without any problems the chip is broken up to 3.6-3.8 GHz and the memory is up to 2933 -3066 MHz.

Of course, the variant with the six-core Ryzen looks more interesting. If overclocking is planned, then it's more logical to take the younger Ryzen 5 1600. Overpay for the more expensive Ryzen 5 1600X makes no sense, as the overclocking potential of all Zen-chips is at the same level – 3.9-4.0 GHz. True, for overclocking 6- and 8-core processors up to this value it will be necessary to invest additional funds in the purchase of better motherboard and cooling system.

Already a month in assemblies of the "Computer of the Month" there are exclusively video cards NVIDIA. For example, in a base PC it's better to install GeForce GTX 1060 6 GB, because for the same money you can only take Radeon RX 570 4 GB. Version Radeon RX 580 with 8 GB of memory costs an average of 3-4 thousand rubles more.

At the end of November, the video cards began to rise again rapidly. In early December, the cheapest 6-gigabyte GeForce GTX 1060 could be taken for 19,000 rubles. At the same time, I hate to recommend to readers 3-gigabyte GeForce GTX 1060, as many modern games consume more than 4 GB of video memory . At the time of writing, even the cheapest versions of the GeForce GTX 1060 3 GB in Moscow retail cost 16,000-17,000 rubles.

In connection with a serious increase in the prices of RAM, video cards and solid-state drives, I can recommend only two options: to purchase iron in parts or to be bought abroad (for example, in the German Internet store Computeruniverse). Only before buying expensive equipment abroad weighed the pros and cons.

# The optimal assembly

The system is relevant for modern games in Full HD and WQHD resolutions with high / maximum graphics quality settings.

Here you can confirm the accuracy of the information specified in the description.

Here you can confirm the accuracy of the information specified in the description.

The optimal assembly
The processor AMD Ryzen 5 1600X, 6/12 cores / threads, 3.6 (4.0) GHz, 8 + 8 MB L3, AM4 15 500 rub.
Intel Core i5-8400, 6 cores, 2.8 (4.0) GHz, 9 MB L3, LGA1151-v2 14,000 rubles.
The motherboard AMD B350 Examples:
• Gigabyte GA-AB350-GAMING 3;
• ASRock Fatal1ty AB350 Gaming K4
6 500 rubles.
Intel Z370 Express Examples:
• MSI Z370-A Pro;
• ASRock Z370 Pro4;
• Gigabyte Z370 HD3
9 000 rubles.
Operating memory 2 × 8 GB DDR4-3200:
• Patriot Memory PV416G320C6K;
• Corsair CMK16GX4M2B3200C16
14 500 rubles.
The video card NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070, 8 GB GDDR5:
• Palit Dual (NE51070015P2-1043D);
• MSI GeForce GTX 1070 AERO 8G OC
33 000 rubles.
Accumulators HDD, 1 TB, 7200 rpm, SATA 6 Gbps Examples:
• Western Digital WD10EZEX;
• Toshiba HDWD110UZSVA;
• Seagate ST1000DM010
3 000 rubles.
SSD, 120-128 GB, SATA 6 Gbps Examples:
• Transcend 230S TS128GSSD230S;
• Kingston SUV400S37/120G
4 500 руб.
Процессорный кулер Примеры:
• Deepcool GAMMAXX 400;
• Scythe SCTTM-1000A Tatsumi
1 500 руб.
Корпус Примеры:
• Zalman Z3 Plus Black;
• Cooler Master MasterBox 5 Lite;
• Thermaltake Versa N26
3 000 руб.
Блок питания Примеры:
• Chieftec CPS-500S;
• Gigabyte PB500 500 Вт;
• Thermaltake Smart RGB (PS-SPR-0500NHSAWE-1) 500 Вт
3 000 руб.
Итого AMD — 84 500 руб.
Intel — 85 500 руб.

Подробный обзор Core i5-8400 наглядно показал, насколько удачным оказался этот центральный процессор. Остается только дождаться, когда его цена опустится до рекомендуемых 11 000 рублей. И когда появятся более доступные платы на базе чипсетов H310, B360 и H370 Express. Тем же, кто ждать не собирается, в декабре придется за связку «процессор — плата» отвалить 23 000 рублей.

При загрузке всех шести ядер Core i5-8400 работает на частоте 3,8 ГГц, чего вполне достаточно для видеокарт уровня GeForce GTX 1070 и GeForce GTX 1080. При активации в BIOS материнской платы функции MultiCore Enhancements процессор работает на такой частоте даже в очень ресурсоемких приложениях, использующих векторный набор инструкций. Правда, шестиядерник потребляет уже более 95 Вт, что явно выходит за пределы, определенные Intel в спецификации. Поэтому вместе с Core i5-8400 лучше использовать хороший кулер башенного типа. Отмечу, что некоторые пользователи разгоняют младший шестиядерный Coffee Lake до 3,9 ГГц по «шине». Для этого необходимо увеличить частоту тактового генератора до значения 3900/38=102,63 МГц.

Хорошим вариантом в рамках оптимальной сборки выглядит Core i5-8600K. Покупка оверклокерского шестиядерника увеличит стоимость сборки на 6 000 рублей. В играх старший Core i5 практически не уступает Core i7-8700Kно наряду с этим заметно опережает 6- и 8-ядерные Ryzen.

Оптимальная сборка AMD по прошествии месяца не изменилась. В системе по-прежнему используется шестиядерный Ryzen 5 1600X, но если вы непременно будете разгонять ЦП, то, конечно же, берите Ryzen 5 1600, который стоит на полторы тысячи рублей меньше. Указанные в таблице платы как раз справятся с разгоном 4- и 6-ядерных Ryzen. О сравнительном тестировании этих устройств вы можете прочитать здесь. Для оверклокинга 8-ядерника лучше приобрести более качественную плату на базе логики B350 или X370. Потому что при разгоне, например, Ryzen 7 1700 энергопотребление ПК увеличивается практически вдвое. Следовательно, серьезно повышается нагрузка на конвертер питания материнской платы.

В прошлом месяце в оптимальной сборке использовался SSD объемом 240-256 Гбайт. В связи с заметным увеличением цен на оперативную память и видеокарты я предлагаю в декабре использовать менее емкий накопитель на 120-128 Гбайт, чтобы хоть как-то снизить общую стоимость системных блоков.

А еще в оптимальной сборке используется комплект памяти DDR4-3200. Но при желании мы можем сэкономить 1 500-2 000 рублей, если вместо набора, функционирующего на гарантированной частоте 3200 МГц, возьмем менее дорогую память DDR4-2400 от Samsung и разгоним ее самостоятельно.

В прошлом месяце в продаже появилась видеокарта GeForce GTX 1070 Ti. В отличие от версий Radeon RX Vega 56, партнеры NVIDIA выкатили большое количество нереференсных версий. На момент написания этой статьи GeForce GTX 1070 Ti можно было приобрести как за 33 000, так и за 40 000 рублей. Как видите, по стоимости новинка пересекается и с GeForce GTX 1070, и с GeForce GTX 1080. Найдете Ti-версию в продаже за 33-34 тысячи рублей — непременно берите ее! Тестирование показалочто GeForce GTX 1070 Ti уступает GeForce GTX 1080 в играх в среднем 10 %, но такая разница легко ликвидируется при помощи разгона.

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