These are exciting times in the processor market because Intel just released its new generation of CPUs called ‘Comet Lake‘. Unlike 9th Gen, all current-generation processors come with Hyper-Threading enabled which seems to be a measure to catch up with AMD’s performance on the multi-threaded front; even if gaming performance largely remained unchanged due to single-core proving to be almost the same, the new processors are a big improvement for people that want a great all-around machine! If you really are in the market to build a new powerful system that can do it all be it heavy gaming or productivity work, the new CPUs come with the best value Intel has ever brought to the table and thus we will suggest a $2500 build that will surely make you want to get it as soon as possible.
Here at PremiumBuilds, we do all the research for you in order to confidently provide these builds as the best performing in the current market; we make sure of this by carefully analyzing and planning them in such a way no bottlenecks will be present. If this list is out of your price range, you don’t need to worry because we have you covered on many other competitive builds, just check out the other constantly updated articles that can be found here. Stick with us till the end of this one to get this supreme build and maybe learn a thing or two along the way!
Core i7-10700K + RTX 2080 Ti Gaming PC Build – The Parts List
|CPU||Intel Core i7-10700K||$410|
|CPU Cooler||be quiet! Dark Rock Pro 4||$89|
|Motherboard||MSI MAG Z490 Tomahawk||$179|
|Memory||G.Skill Ripjaws V 32 GB (2 x 16 GB) DDR4-3600 CL16 Memory||$149|
|Storage||Samsung 970 Evo 500 GB M.2-2280 NVME SSD||$99|
|Storage||Crucial P1 1 TB M.2-2280 NVME SSD||$128|
|Video Card||MSI RTX 2080 Ti Gaming X Trio||$1209|
|Case||Cooler Master MasterBox TD500 Mesh||$99|
|Power Supply||SeaSonic FOCUS Plus Gold 750 W 80+ Gold||$249|
While our primary focus at Premium Builds is build planning for your ease, we also heavily focus on how to pass on this information to our readers in order for them to understand the decisions we took in each and every one of our building lists. We’re not leaving you in the dust with some scattered information that you may or may not find informative; we’re here for the whole journey of helping you plan and accomplish your dream build so stick with us further!
Starting with the main component of this build, we are delighted to have this very capable and new performer. Built on an even more refined 14nm++ process, this CPU is the successor to last generation’ i7 9700K featuring a series of improvements to fill the gaps and iron out all the kinks. Thus, the Intel Core i7 10700K is a full 8 core chip with enabled Hyper-Threading and much better multi-core performance. Its essentially an i9 9900K for $100 cheaper with a much welcome higher base clock, boost clock, increased TDP and better thermals.
The better thermals were achieved by a smart move from the Intel engineers; they made the IHS thicker and slimmed down the die height in order for the processor to have better thermal dissipation. This way the 10700K runs a few degrees cooler than the previous generation 9900K even though it has a higher base and boost clock. It is important to note that Intel measures its TDP (Thermal Design Power) at base clocks so a boosting 10700K will consume more along the 150W point and an all-core 5.1GHz overclock will sadly need around 260W of power in a multi-threaded application like Blender. These are values that we need to take into consideration when choosing the motherboard and CPU cooler combo for this build in order to make sure the build will behave silently in even the most demanding of loads.
These being said, the 10700K is one of the greatest gaming CPUs and beats even the mighty i9 10900K in gaming FPS value-wise. With an improved 2-3% improved single-core performance over the previous generation 9900K, the new i7 is at the top of the gaming charts with great average FPS, 1% lows and 0.1% lows when paired even with the best graphics card out there, the Nvidia RTX 2080 Ti. One of the most notable improvements though come from the 8 additional threads this CPU has over the 9700K; performance in productivity applications make it a valid and favorable competitor to AMD’s Ryzen 7 3700X and 3800X, a field where the 9700K lacked during the last generation. With the multithreaded performance being up 25%, the 10700K becomes a great all-around CPU and not just a one-trick pony.
Thanks to the die thickness tweak Intel’s engineers managed to pull off, the 10700K can be cooled by a good air cooler even when overclocked to its peak. If you want to go for a water cooler, we can’t stop you but the beQuiet! Dark Rock Pro 4 performed very well when tested with this processor. The temperatures reached a peak of 76.5 degrees under sustained stress testing loads and the noise levels didn’t go over 26 db which is virtually whisper-quiet with or without headphones. This proves that you don’t need a water cooler to properly cool a beefy CPU like the i7 10700K but such a cooler may be a good idea if you want to go for 10700K’s bigger brother, the 10 core 10900K, because it needs quick heat dissipation especially when overclocked.
We’ve used the Dark Rock Pro 4 cooler in a variety of builds and always got good results and reviews out of it. This cooler’s closest competitor would be the Noctua NH-D15 which is another stellar air cooler but we went with the Dark Rock for aesthetics; you can’t go wrong with any of them though.
Build quality is top-notch, putting beQuiet! in with a select few coolers out there with the likes of Noctua, Phanteks, and Thermalright. Usability had issues in the past with specific motherboards but this is something that has been addressed, and with a name like beQuiet!, noise is something we should not be dealing with from their coolers. The Dark Rock Pro series of coolers have been around for quite some time and is the answer to the Noctua NH-D15/15, being a dual-tower CPU air cooler. Along the way, they made some minor changes, primarily hardware ones like the size of the cooler, fans, and even the coating technologies; they’ve all been studied and the best options of the time applied to the cooler.
Perhaps you’ve managed to stretch your budget from an i5-10600k to an i7-10700K build, and don’t have much left in the budget for a high-end Z490 motherboard, and want a good performer without the high-end price tag? The MSI MAG Z490 Tomahawk is the answer here!
As featured in our 10700K motherboard guide, the MSI MAG series is designed to offer very good value for users who aim to benefit from Z490 features including overclocking, but at a lower cost to the end-user. The MSI MAG Z490 Tomahawk includes two full-length PCIe 3.0 slots, two PCIe 3.0 x4 M.2 slots, and six SATA ports. Also featured is dual Ethernet with a 2.5 G and Gigabit pair of controllers, but drops Wi-Fi 6 support as featured on the MPG Z490 series.
Dropping the red and black color scheme seen from previous Tomahawk models (both AMD and Intel boards), the MSI MAG Z490 Tomahawk has opted for a more subtle black and grey theme with cool blue LEDs in key areas of its structure. The lighting consists of some integrated RGB LEDs underneath the chipset heatsink, with Tomahawk branding and straight diagonal lines across the PCB merging into the design of the heatsinks. It uses the classical 8-pin and 4-pin 12 V ATX power input pairing setup for CPU power, with a 24-pin motherboard 12 V ATX power input to power the motherboard. Both of the two PCIe 3.0 x4 M.2 slots include its heatsink, with six SATA ports with support for RAID 0, 1, 5, and 10 arrays. The board does have two full-length PCIe 3.0 slots which run at x16+4, with an additional two PCIe 3.0 x1 slots.
Two sticks of 8GB RAM totalling 16GB of memory should be enough for any gaming system today but this may not be the case with the build we’re recommending here; that’s why we’re taking a safer route and upgrading this build’s RAM capacity to a more future proof 32GB. One main reason is that someone who’s investing around $2500 in a build will expect it to not only game but also do it all from a productivity perspective. If not many years ago, true content creators would split their time between two PCs, one for gaming and one for editing/rendering, today this task can be easily done with the use of a single powerful system, exactly like the one we’re building here. Such a system needs the available RAM in order to not choke during gaming and demanding productivity tasks at the same time.
DDR4 RAM is approaching the end of its mainstream life and it is cheap nowadays; makes no sense to limit yourself at 16GB if you have the budget for more. Besides other component areas where being overkill is not a brilliant idea from budget perspectives, RAM capacity will only come with advantages for the system. The build arrangement we are proposing comes with substantial aptitudes in other areas besides gaming and the 2 x 16GB of fast CL16 3600 MHz memory will certainly help with keeping a system smooth while doing heavy tasks such as gaming + streaming + rendering at the same time. This RAM we’re using is also highly tweakable thanks to its great factory binning; a decently advanced power user – exactly like PremiumBuilds’ users 🙂 – will be able to understand the uses for his system and adapt RAM for specific applications. Changing memory latencies and speeds is very easy through the motherboard’s BIOS and will definitely impact your overall user experience.
An easy example that may cause problems for 16GB of RAM users is keeping background applications open during gaming or productivity tasks; we are pretty certain most people forget closing browser tabs or small background apps and those can eat a lot of precious RAM, impacting your smooth gaming experience; 32GB of memory will make sure none of that will happen and it will certainly help in other areas such as editing/rendering large files, virtual machine resources and software developing.
Dual Channel is a must as this system is aimed to always handle tasks perfectly smooth and with no hiccups. While single channel RAM will always provide the bandwidth of a single stick, Dual Channel memory works with double that! It is a no brainer choice for your build and doesn’t add too much to the cost making this G.Skill 2 x 16GB RAM kit perfect for such a system.
The $2500 price budget allows us to carefully tweak this build’s storage in such a way we get the best of both worlds: speed and capacity for a fair price. One of the most powerful M.2 drives out there, the Samsung 970 Evo will be the first ingredient to our system’s superior responsiveness thanks to its excellent reliability, efficiency, thermal management, 3.5GB/s sustained reading speeds and 3.3GB/s writing speeds.
With a price of $100 for the present 500 GB version, Samsung has positioned their slim SSD very competitively to other affordable high-performance NVMe drives. For example, the Intel 760p, which is very similar in performance, costs a little bit more. Both come with a five-year warranty and are made by two of the most reputable brands in the industry but Samsung wins value-wise here. The new Samsung 970 EVO isn’t their top of the line consumer SSD, but it might as well be. With their latest 3D TLC NAND flash memory and SSD controller, the 970 EVO offers almost all the performance of its PRO counterparts but without such a steep price premium – a full comparison of the 970 models can be found here. Samsung hasn’t shared many architectural details of the new Phoenix controller on the 970 Evo, but like its earlier NVMe controllers it uses a PCIe 3.0 x4 interface and includes 8 channels for NAND flash access.
NVMe Drive #2
Alongside the Samsung 970 Evo we will be using an M.2 drive that is popular among PC builders thanks to its amazing speeds and capacity for a great price. The Crucial P1 comes priced at a little over the 500GB 970 Evo while providing double the capacity at 1Tb; this makes it an excellent value for everyday storage use. Its slight weakness lies in transfers bigger than 50GB at a time; that’s when this M.2 drive slows down during the transfer because of its limited QLC cache. But don’t let that worry you, only professional video editors who move a lot of large files may have this problem and may need to look for a different primary storage device – for everyday use, the drive is lightning fast and won’t slow down.
Its featured speeds of up to 2,000MB/s read and 1,700MB/s write make it great as a game library drive in order to not fill the system drive which is Samsunt 970 Evo’s area in this build.
If you are in need of extra storage for your system (like for big files that are rarely accessed), you may want to add some cheaper SATA storage or even HDDs besides these M.2 SSDs. Go ahead, your case and motherboard certainly supports it. For this build though, the generous 1.5 TB of space and great speeds that the Samsung 970 and Crucial P1 pair provides is surely enough for even the most hardcore power users.
This high-end / enthusiast build really deserves the best GPU power for gaming with no compromises; it otherwise would be a shame with such a capable CPU such as the Intel Core i7 10700K. The MSI RTX 2080 Ti Gaming X Trio is a card with terrific looks, super sweet cooling, and low noise levels. Heck, its even factory overclocked and tweaked pretty sweet as well, achieving up to 10% all-around performance over the Founder’s Edition 2080 Ti – definitely one of the best aftermarket RTX 2080 Ti cards out there.
MSI GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Gaming X TRIO replaced the Lightning models and comes customized with higher-factory clocks (1755 MHz Boost), a triple-fan solution as well as a very nice RGB setup. RTX 2080 Ti or not, this card passive up-to roughly 60 Degrees C and has a lot of hidden gems; it also never went warmer than 73 Degrees C. The Gaming X Trio comes with updated looks, it’s styled a bit after the Lightning in RGB design elements with a combination that hints towards the older Twinfrozr looks. Even if the cooler is thicker and occupies the space of 2.7 PCIe slots, that’s
definitely favorable for the cooling and acoustic departments; the card will not throttle and be silent at all times. With an included backplate and a mounting strut to secure the heavy card in place (called “LAN Party Guard”), no sagging due to case and card movement will be present with MSI’s implementation. The card offers one HDMI port, three DisplayPort outputs as well as the new Virtual link (USB) connector. The card runs at 1350 MHz base clock speed but rapidly achieves 1755 MHz during game or rendering load, the TU 102 GPU being kept below 73 degrees Celsius during any gaming session. The GDDR6 memory has not been tweaked, the new Micron ICs are a stock 14 GHz effective clock-rate and that’s good since the bandwidth is enough for this card’s capabilities and tweaking them for higher clock speeds may induce instability and no additional gaming performance at the expense of higher power consumption.
The card has subtle RGB LED lighting elements that make for very nice looks, especially for dark themed builds, with that new all black and grey design; these elements are embedded and once powered on, they make a world of aesthetic difference. Mind you that the card is thick at 2.7 slots, long 32cm and heavy 1.57 kg. Besides the HDMI Port and 3x Display Ports, the card has its Virtual Link USB connector for immersive VR purposes. The GeForce RTX series has DisplayPort 1.4 connectors 1.4a Ready, enabling support for 8K displays at 60Hz.
- Boost: 1,755 MHz / Base: 1,350 MHz
- Memory 14.0 Gbps GDDR6 (effective data-rate)
- Great overclockability on the superior cooling system. 2 GHz or above is definitely possible.
Such a build surely deserves a great cover and place to sit in and we chose the Cooler Master MasterBox TD500 Mesh enclosure with peace of mind. Cooler Master needs no introduction in the computer chassis division. They can be regarded as one of the longest-standing case manufacturers in the industry and have supplied some of the most popular designs.
The MasterBox TD500 gained the attention it deserved since it was first presented at Computex 2018, in a market which is so scarce of unique looking models. The front panel is diamond cut from a mesh material creating a three-dimensional look in a way that certainly demands attention. This mid-tower case is not just a beautiful alternative to other very competitive case designs in this price range but it also offers great building space and dynamics, stellar hardware support and an edge to edge tempered glass side panel with radiator support in the ceiling. The cooling system is also well thought out and the case arrives with no less than four 120 mm case fans, three of which are RGB LED illuminated. Covering the top of this case there is a magnetic dust filter that can also be peeled away.
The weight of this case is a sturdy 6KG (13.2 pounds) and its build quality deserves no criticism thanks to its light steel frame. Its dimensions are suited for even the most complicated cooling solutions and GPU sizes out there, the length coming in at 493 mm, height at 468 mm and width at 217mm. It supports a maximum GPU length of 410mm which is very good considering we will be using the MSI RTX 2080 Ti Gaming X Trio which comes in at (only) 320mm. The maximum CPU cooler height is 165mm and maximum PSU length is 180mm which provides a snug and comfortable fit for every component of this build. If you want to upgrade your cooling solution to water, you must know that the case supports an up to 360mm long radiator in the front, 240mm in the ceiling and 120mm at the back. The warranty comes in at a 2-year extendable period.
When you hear of SeaSonic, you hear stellar quality and great value for even the high end market. They are a company that hardly requires an introduction, as they are perhaps the best-established designer and supplier of high-performance PC power supply units (PSUs) to this date. They make no compromises when designing their own products and they also serve as the OEM behind other popular and known brand names. By always innovating designs and efficiency, you know you can’t ever go wrong with their top tier solutions.
The SeaSonic FOCUS Plus Gold we’re using in the build is a certified 80+ Gold ATX power supply with a peak power output of 750 Watts and great efficiency; made for the mainstream market, this PSU thrives to strike the perfect balance between performance, quality and value in high end and enthusiast builds and this is why we’ll be using it with peace of mind for the safety and powering of this system.
Of course, its a fully modular PSU with every cable being detachable, including the 24-pin ATX cable, all of its cables being completely black, made of black wires covered in dark sleeving and black connectors. The smaller SATA/Molex power cables are ribbon-like, or flat-type, but the larger PCI Express and CPU 12V connectors are made of regular wires covered in black nylon sleeving. The available cables for this build are the following:
- 1x ATX 24 Pin
- 2x EPS 4+4 Pin
- 4x PCI-E 6+2 Pin
- 8x SATA
- 3x Molex
- 1x Floppy
$2500 i7-10700K + RTX 2080 Ti Build: Expected Gaming Performance
Stellar gaming performance is the focus of this build but that doesn’t necessarily mean its stuck with that; on the contrary, this build hold its own with excellent performance during rendering, editing, composing and streaming duties. At the beginning of the article, we compared the Intel Core i7 10700K to the AMD Ryzen 7 3700X which already doesn’t need any introduction to its astonishing multi core performance; the 10700K raises the bar slightly even over the 3700X during work loads and is a comfortable 10% faster during most 1080p gaming scenarios. The margin will reduce in 1440p and 4K but it will still provide additional average frame rate and slightly better 1% and 0.1% minimums.
We compiled a small sample of demanding Triple-A and eSport titles in order to assess the performance of the 10700K build when paired with the MSI Gaming X Trio 2080 Ti. If you decide on this build, you are surely going to be in for a massive treat. Here are the FPS charts together with average, 1% low and 0.1% minimums regarding frame rate consistency:
|Title||Graphics Quality||Resolution||Average FPS||1% Low FPS||0.1% Low FPS|
|Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege||Ultra||1080p||283||246||188|
|Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege||Ultra||1440p||196||175||158|
|Ghost Recon Breakpoint||Ultra||1080p||138||114||97|
|Ghost Recon Breakpoint||Ultra||1440p||112||96||83|
|Shadow of the Tomb Raider||Ultra||1080p||132||112||94|
|Shadow of the Tomb Raider||Ultra||1440p||98||88||81|
A very strong gaming showing and we must stress the fact that temperatures are kept very well under control and the build is virtually silent with or without headphones from on or under the desk.
Conclusion & After Thoughts
We tried our best to present this list of parts in such a way that we hope it will see the light of the day in your hands. We also mean it when we vouch for this system’s performance capabilities; yes, you may build a system which will have similar gaming performance for less money, probably using a cheaper 10600K or second hand 9700K or similar productivity performance while using a 3700X – we actually have a build on that at the $2000 mark, check it out – but the thing is, at this price point, there’s no time to make compromises and this system definitely hits the nail and ticks all checks. Its fast, its responsive, its a very potent gaming & streaming environment and can also double as a content creator machine whenever you like it. Such an all around system will be the pride of your room and we specially built it for that!
Appreciate that you stuck with us till the conclusions; that means we didn’t do this boringly and we thank you! We also hope that this article’s sections have been in-depth enough to answer most of your questions and you weren’t left with many questions; if you do have them, we love to answer in the comment section below! We will also be doing complete building video guides in the future so stay tuned for that.