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Looking to build myself a decent gaming rig with a £1250 budget

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November 7, 2013 8:38:11 AM

Hi everybody,

I'm looking to get my first really good gaming rig so I can play modern games but also get into dev work, which I'm trying to do but is absolutely impossible on my current laptop (9 FPS on CryEngine 3 forest demo level).

I was trying to set myself a budget, because frankly when I look at components online it's very difficult for me not to just make a list of all the ridiculously priced top-end gear. I've come to a rough £1250, although there's some flexibility on that. I have no experience whatsoever of choosing parts, although I have upgraded previous PCs myself.

I went on pcpartpicker.com and came up with this, so I would like to hear some feedback on that, any better value parts for the money or just anything in general from more experienced builders.

Very much looking forward to getting started on this. Thanks.

EDIT: Also, I should mention that I'm strongly considering overclocking the device, so any advice towards squeezing the most out of whatever hardware I have would be fantastic as long as there's no danger to my system from it.

EDIT 2: Based on advice until this point, I've come up with this as a potential build subject to feedback.

Best solution

a b 4 Gaming
November 7, 2013 11:14:22 AM

A couple things, 1 for this you don't need a full tower case 2 go down to an i5 and 8 GB of ram 3 Power supply is overkill. Also want to go haswell. 4 The motherboard comes with a sound card, but if you want better sound go for it. http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/1YOpR I made some changes and bumped you up to a Gtx 780
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November 7, 2013 11:43:11 AM

Computerchap said:
A couple things, 1 for this you don't need a full tower case 2 go down to an i5 and 8 GB of ram 3 Power supply is overkill. Also want to go haswell. 4 The motherboard comes with a sound card, but if you want better sound go for it. http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/1YOpR I made some changes and bumped you up to a Gtx 780


Thanks for the reply. I didn't look at the dimensions of all my components, but what circumstances would warrant a full tower?

I will also be doing some other jobs like 3D modelling and video editing which I didn't mention before and I'd read that i7s were better for that? Is there any reason not to go for 16GB over 8GB or is it just because it's a little bit of overkill at the moment?

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Related resources
November 7, 2013 11:58:04 AM

My contribution: R3 2011v2 - the r9-290 is loud but you can be after cooler bring the noise to an acceptable level. The 2011 socket cpu offers 40 PCI-E lines making it a perfect choice for multi-gpu setup.
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November 7, 2013 12:17:06 PM

Valentin_N said:
My contribution: R3 2011v2 - the r9-290 is loud but you can be after cooler bring the noise to an acceptable level. The 2011 socket cpu offers 40 PCI-E lines making it a perfect choice for multi-gpu setup.


I like the look of the r9-290, although I was a bit concerned by the temperatures it has been noted to reach in several reviews. Is there a particular after-market cooler you'd recommend to go with it that would bring the 93 degrees down to a better level?

Multi-GPU over Crossfire seems a bit out of my price range if I were to pick a card like that, as good as it sounds, but thanks.

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a b 4 Gaming
November 7, 2013 12:21:52 PM

GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
A couple things, 1 for this you don't need a full tower case 2 go down to an i5 and 8 GB of ram 3 Power supply is overkill. Also want to go haswell. 4 The motherboard comes with a sound card, but if you want better sound go for it. http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/1YOpR I made some changes and bumped you up to a Gtx 780


Thanks for the reply. I didn't look at the dimensions of all my components, but what circumstances would warrant a full tower?

I will also be doing some other jobs like 3D modelling and video editing which I didn't mention before and I'd read that i7s were better for that? Is there any reason not to go for 16GB over 8GB or is it just because it's a little bit of overkill at the moment?



Most the time people buy full towers if they are doing custom water loops, or 3 way or 4 way sli. i7s are better for video editing. 16 GB will help in stuff like photoshop, and after effects. But if it's mostly for gaming you can still do some video editing on a i5 with 8 GBs of ram, but if you are going to do heavy video editing go for the i7. There's no real reason to go with lga 2011 at this price point though.
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November 7, 2013 12:38:58 PM

GallJ93 said:
Valentin_N said:
My contribution: R3 2011v2 - the r9-290 is loud but you can be after cooler bring the noise to an acceptable level. The 2011 socket cpu offers 40 PCI-E lines making it a perfect choice for multi-gpu setup.


I like the look of the r9-290, although I was a bit concerned by the temperatures it has been noted to reach in several reviews. Is there a particular after-market cooler you'd recommend to go with it that would bring the 93 degrees down to a better level?

Multi-GPU over Crossfire seems a bit out of my price range if I were to pick a card like that, as good as it sounds, but thanks.



I would say Accelero Xtreme III as aftermarket cooler. You don't need to add a second on now but later once you feel that you need the power of a second gpu.
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November 7, 2013 3:40:22 PM

Valentin_N said:
GallJ93 said:
Valentin_N said:
My contribution: R3 2011v2 - the r9-290 is loud but you can be after cooler bring the noise to an acceptable level. The 2011 socket cpu offers 40 PCI-E lines making it a perfect choice for multi-gpu setup.


I like the look of the r9-290, although I was a bit concerned by the temperatures it has been noted to reach in several reviews. Is there a particular after-market cooler you'd recommend to go with it that would bring the 93 degrees down to a better level?

Multi-GPU over Crossfire seems a bit out of my price range if I were to pick a card like that, as good as it sounds, but thanks.



I would say Accelero Xtreme III as aftermarket cooler. You don't need to add a second on now but later once you feel that you need the power of a second gpu.


Previously I've only used Nvidia cards, so I was interested in the R9-290 and in the reviews it has been hailed multiple times as a "titan-killer" etc etc. However, I'm wondering how big a difference some of the proprietary Nvidia software like Physx will make in the future? It seems to me that in terms of the built-in software side of things Nvidia really has AMD cornered, and then AMD bites back with almost identical day-to-day use and a lower price.

In saying that, it also seems as though the direct competitor to the R9-290 in terms of price is the GTX680 rather than the Titan or the 780 that it's always compared to. It seems as though the 680 has half of the memory but a slightly higher clock. Is there a really noticeable improvement in the 290?



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a b 4 Gaming
November 7, 2013 3:45:47 PM

GallJ93 said:
Valentin_N said:
GallJ93 said:
Valentin_N said:
My contribution: R3 2011v2 - the r9-290 is loud but you can be after cooler bring the noise to an acceptable level. The 2011 socket cpu offers 40 PCI-E lines making it a perfect choice for multi-gpu setup.


I like the look of the r9-290, although I was a bit concerned by the temperatures it has been noted to reach in several reviews. Is there a particular after-market cooler you'd recommend to go with it that would bring the 93 degrees down to a better level?

Multi-GPU over Crossfire seems a bit out of my price range if I were to pick a card like that, as good as it sounds, but thanks.



I would say Accelero Xtreme III as aftermarket cooler. You don't need to add a second on now but later once you feel that you need the power of a second gpu.


Previously I've only used Nvidia cards, so I was interested in the R9-290 and in the reviews it has been hailed multiple times as a "titan-killer" etc etc. However, I'm wondering how big a difference some of the proprietary Nvidia software like Physx will make in the future? It seems to me that in terms of the built-in software side of things Nvidia really has AMD cornered, and then AMD bites back with almost identical day-to-day use and a lower price.

In saying that, it also seems as though the direct competitor to the R9-290 in terms of price is the GTX680 rather than the Titan or the 780 that it's always compared to. It seems as though the 680 has half of the memory but a slightly higher clock. Is there a really noticeable improvement in the 290?





the 290 is comparable to the GTX 780 and beats it slightly, but it's very loud. The 290x is more titan comparable.
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November 7, 2013 3:50:29 PM

Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Valentin_N said:
GallJ93 said:
Valentin_N said:
My contribution: R3 2011v2 - the r9-290 is loud but you can be after cooler bring the noise to an acceptable level. The 2011 socket cpu offers 40 PCI-E lines making it a perfect choice for multi-gpu setup.


I like the look of the r9-290, although I was a bit concerned by the temperatures it has been noted to reach in several reviews. Is there a particular after-market cooler you'd recommend to go with it that would bring the 93 degrees down to a better level?

Multi-GPU over Crossfire seems a bit out of my price range if I were to pick a card like that, as good as it sounds, but thanks.



I would say Accelero Xtreme III as aftermarket cooler. You don't need to add a second on now but later once you feel that you need the power of a second gpu.


Previously I've only used Nvidia cards, so I was interested in the R9-290 and in the reviews it has been hailed multiple times as a "titan-killer" etc etc. However, I'm wondering how big a difference some of the proprietary Nvidia software like Physx will make in the future? It seems to me that in terms of the built-in software side of things Nvidia really has AMD cornered, and then AMD bites back with almost identical day-to-day use and a lower price.

In saying that, it also seems as though the direct competitor to the R9-290 in terms of price is the GTX680 rather than the Titan or the 780 that it's always compared to. It seems as though the 680 has half of the memory but a slightly higher clock. Is there a really noticeable improvement in the 290?





the 290 is comparable to the GTX 780 and beats it slightly, but it's very loud. The 290x is more titan comparable.


I heard it was loud, but according to this the volume can be reduced below the level of a 780 even when OCd as long as you use the custom cooler recommended earlier. That solves both of my main worries about the card, the noise and the heat, although I am wondering quite a lot about the Physx software and whether it'll be enough within the next few years that it'll make a big difference to my enjoyment to have anything but an Nvidia card?
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a b 4 Gaming
November 7, 2013 3:55:02 PM

GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Valentin_N said:
GallJ93 said:
Valentin_N said:
My contribution: R3 2011v2 - the r9-290 is loud but you can be after cooler bring the noise to an acceptable level. The 2011 socket cpu offers 40 PCI-E lines making it a perfect choice for multi-gpu setup.


I like the look of the r9-290, although I was a bit concerned by the temperatures it has been noted to reach in several reviews. Is there a particular after-market cooler you'd recommend to go with it that would bring the 93 degrees down to a better level?

Multi-GPU over Crossfire seems a bit out of my price range if I were to pick a card like that, as good as it sounds, but thanks.



I would say Accelero Xtreme III as aftermarket cooler. You don't need to add a second on now but later once you feel that you need the power of a second gpu.


Previously I've only used Nvidia cards, so I was interested in the R9-290 and in the reviews it has been hailed multiple times as a "titan-killer" etc etc. However, I'm wondering how big a difference some of the proprietary Nvidia software like Physx will make in the future? It seems to me that in terms of the built-in software side of things Nvidia really has AMD cornered, and then AMD bites back with almost identical day-to-day use and a lower price.

In saying that, it also seems as though the direct competitor to the R9-290 in terms of price is the GTX680 rather than the Titan or the 780 that it's always compared to. It seems as though the 680 has half of the memory but a slightly higher clock. Is there a really noticeable improvement in the 290?





the 290 is comparable to the GTX 780 and beats it slightly, but it's very loud. The 290x is more titan comparable.


I heard it was loud, but according to this the volume can be reduced below the level of a 780 even when OCd as long as you use the custom cooler recommended earlier. That solves both of my main worries about the card, the noise and the heat, although I am wondering quite a lot about the Physx software and whether it'll be enough within the next few years that it'll make a big difference to my enjoyment to have anything but an Nvidia card?


Well, actually Physx you can get on a AMD card with a driver, just not advanced Physx which is built into the card. This talks about it and explains it pretty well: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yG5dl_XEnck I would wait for the non-reference cards to come out though, as they will have better cooling and most likely be quieter.
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November 7, 2013 3:59:59 PM

I have come up with a slightly refined build based on advice given here. It can be found here although it's still about £100 over my budget if there's anything you think I could reduce without sacrificing too much performance (annoyingly it seems as though the American price for all the components at the current exchange rate is around £1092, which means it would be cheaper to have it bought there, put into a big box and shipped to me than buy it in the UK). I'll also update the original post with my latest attempt at a build for any new-comers who'd like to give their input.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 7, 2013 4:04:05 PM

GallJ93 said:
I have come up with a slightly refined build based on advice given here. It can be found here although it's still about £100 over my budget if there's anything you think I could reduce without sacrificing too much performance (annoyingly it seems as though the American price for all the components at the current exchange rate is around £1092, which means it would be cheaper to have it bought there, put into a big box and shipped to me than buy it in the UK). I'll also update the original post with my latest attempt at a build for any new-comers who'd like to give their input.


Do you need to keep the blu-ray player?
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November 7, 2013 4:14:00 PM

Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
I have come up with a slightly refined build based on advice given here. It can be found here although it's still about £100 over my budget if there's anything you think I could reduce without sacrificing too much performance (annoyingly it seems as though the American price for all the components at the current exchange rate is around £1092, which means it would be cheaper to have it bought there, put into a big box and shipped to me than buy it in the UK). I'll also update the original post with my latest attempt at a build for any new-comers who'd like to give their input.


Do you need to keep the blu-ray player?


I don't have another in the house, so I'd like to have that, although for some reason I seem to have also selected a writer, and I can't imagine I'll need to write many blu-rays any time soon, not that it hurts except the cost.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 7, 2013 4:47:16 PM

GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
I have come up with a slightly refined build based on advice given here. It can be found here although it's still about £100 over my budget if there's anything you think I could reduce without sacrificing too much performance (annoyingly it seems as though the American price for all the components at the current exchange rate is around £1092, which means it would be cheaper to have it bought there, put into a big box and shipped to me than buy it in the UK). I'll also update the original post with my latest attempt at a build for any new-comers who'd like to give their input.


Do you need to keep the blu-ray player?


I don't have another in the house, so I'd like to have that, although for some reason I seem to have also selected a writer, and I can't imagine I'll need to write many blu-rays any time soon, not that it hurts except the cost.


Do you need the sound card? You're probably aware of this, but the motherboard comes with a internal sound card.
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November 7, 2013 5:02:57 PM

Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
I have come up with a slightly refined build based on advice given here. It can be found here although it's still about £100 over my budget if there's anything you think I could reduce without sacrificing too much performance (annoyingly it seems as though the American price for all the components at the current exchange rate is around £1092, which means it would be cheaper to have it bought there, put into a big box and shipped to me than buy it in the UK). I'll also update the original post with my latest attempt at a build for any new-comers who'd like to give their input.


Do you need to keep the blu-ray player?


I don't have another in the house, so I'd like to have that, although for some reason I seem to have also selected a writer, and I can't imagine I'll need to write many blu-rays any time soon, not that it hurts except the cost.


Do you need the sound card? You're probably aware of this, but the motherboard comes with a internal sound card.


Well when I started I thought I did because I've always had one previously. I do a lot of movie watching etc. through my PC, hence the blu-ray drive as well. But on reading up on it that was one of the areas I was thinking of compromising although apparently the on-board has noticeably flatter and less vibrant sound through decent audio. It's hard to say.

Like I said to begin with there's flexibility in my budget if it's at a spec where lowering the quality of any part would be a bottleneck in some way to the other parts involved. Right now I'm £188 over my £1250 (I've changed the case to a Fractal R4), which is about 15% over. Removing the sound card would take me to about 10% over, which is much more acceptable.

Aside from the sound card though, is there any single thing that you would recommend I change for an improvement or can see that would cause me a problem?

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a b 4 Gaming
November 7, 2013 5:15:36 PM

GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
I have come up with a slightly refined build based on advice given here. It can be found here although it's still about £100 over my budget if there's anything you think I could reduce without sacrificing too much performance (annoyingly it seems as though the American price for all the components at the current exchange rate is around £1092, which means it would be cheaper to have it bought there, put into a big box and shipped to me than buy it in the UK). I'll also update the original post with my latest attempt at a build for any new-comers who'd like to give their input.


Do you need to keep the blu-ray player?


I don't have another in the house, so I'd like to have that, although for some reason I seem to have also selected a writer, and I can't imagine I'll need to write many blu-rays any time soon, not that it hurts except the cost.


Do you need the sound card? You're probably aware of this, but the motherboard comes with a internal sound card.


Well when I started I thought I did because I've always had one previously. I do a lot of movie watching etc. through my PC, hence the blu-ray drive as well. But on reading up on it that was one of the areas I was thinking of compromising although apparently the on-board has noticeably flatter and less vibrant sound through decent audio. It's hard to say.

Like I said to begin with there's flexibility in my budget if it's at a spec where lowering the quality of any part would be a bottleneck in some way to the other parts involved. Right now I'm £188 over my £1250 (I've changed the case to a Fractal R4), which is about 15% over. Removing the sound card would take me to about 10% over, which is much more acceptable.

Aside from the sound card though, is there any single thing that you would recommend I change for an improvement or can see that would cause me a problem?



Well, I would change to a TX 650 as it's a solid PSU, and is cheaper. And are you sure you don't want to go with a 120 GB SSD? All you really need it for is a boot drive and your most used programs. I'm sorry for essentially playing 20 questions with you :p  Also what's the Accelero Xtreme III for? The case comes with fans.
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November 7, 2013 5:29:33 PM

Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
I have come up with a slightly refined build based on advice given here. It can be found here although it's still about £100 over my budget if there's anything you think I could reduce without sacrificing too much performance (annoyingly it seems as though the American price for all the components at the current exchange rate is around £1092, which means it would be cheaper to have it bought there, put into a big box and shipped to me than buy it in the UK). I'll also update the original post with my latest attempt at a build for any new-comers who'd like to give their input.


Do you need to keep the blu-ray player?


I don't have another in the house, so I'd like to have that, although for some reason I seem to have also selected a writer, and I can't imagine I'll need to write many blu-rays any time soon, not that it hurts except the cost.


Do you need the sound card? You're probably aware of this, but the motherboard comes with a internal sound card.


Well when I started I thought I did because I've always had one previously. I do a lot of movie watching etc. through my PC, hence the blu-ray drive as well. But on reading up on it that was one of the areas I was thinking of compromising although apparently the on-board has noticeably flatter and less vibrant sound through decent audio. It's hard to say.

Like I said to begin with there's flexibility in my budget if it's at a spec where lowering the quality of any part would be a bottleneck in some way to the other parts involved. Right now I'm £188 over my £1250 (I've changed the case to a Fractal R4), which is about 15% over. Removing the sound card would take me to about 10% over, which is much more acceptable.

Aside from the sound card though, is there any single thing that you would recommend I change for an improvement or can see that would cause me a problem?



Well, I would change to a TX 650 as it's a solid PSU, and is cheaper. And are you sure you don't want to go with a 120 GB SSD? All you really need it for is a boot drive and your most used programs. I'm sorry for essentially playing 20 questions with you :p  Also what's the Accelero Xtreme III for? The case comes with fans.


I'm enjoying the 20 questions actually, because this is my first build. I went for the higher PSU because I figured it would be more cost-effective to future-proof the machine in case I add another graphics card for crossfire, which is why my current selection goes over the required output.

The Accelero Xtreme III was suggested both above and also in an article I read on the R9-290 to deal with its temperatures and keep the noise level down. Basically it's an upgrade to the GPU fan and people seem to think it's necessary.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 7, 2013 5:32:05 PM

GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
I have come up with a slightly refined build based on advice given here. It can be found here although it's still about £100 over my budget if there's anything you think I could reduce without sacrificing too much performance (annoyingly it seems as though the American price for all the components at the current exchange rate is around £1092, which means it would be cheaper to have it bought there, put into a big box and shipped to me than buy it in the UK). I'll also update the original post with my latest attempt at a build for any new-comers who'd like to give their input.


Do you need to keep the blu-ray player?


I don't have another in the house, so I'd like to have that, although for some reason I seem to have also selected a writer, and I can't imagine I'll need to write many blu-rays any time soon, not that it hurts except the cost.


Do you need the sound card? You're probably aware of this, but the motherboard comes with a internal sound card.


Well when I started I thought I did because I've always had one previously. I do a lot of movie watching etc. through my PC, hence the blu-ray drive as well. But on reading up on it that was one of the areas I was thinking of compromising although apparently the on-board has noticeably flatter and less vibrant sound through decent audio. It's hard to say.

Like I said to begin with there's flexibility in my budget if it's at a spec where lowering the quality of any part would be a bottleneck in some way to the other parts involved. Right now I'm £188 over my £1250 (I've changed the case to a Fractal R4), which is about 15% over. Removing the sound card would take me to about 10% over, which is much more acceptable.

Aside from the sound card though, is there any single thing that you would recommend I change for an improvement or can see that would cause me a problem?



Well, I would change to a TX 650 as it's a solid PSU, and is cheaper. And are you sure you don't want to go with a 120 GB SSD? All you really need it for is a boot drive and your most used programs. I'm sorry for essentially playing 20 questions with you :p  Also what's the Accelero Xtreme III for? The case comes with fans.


I'm enjoying the 20 questions actually, because this is my first build. I went for the higher PSU because I figured it would be more cost-effective to future-proof the machine in case I add another graphics card for crossfire, which is why my current selection goes over the required output.

The Accelero Xtreme III was suggested both above and also in an article I read on the R9-290 to deal with its temperatures and keep the noise level down. Basically it's an upgrade to the GPU fan and people seem to think it's necessary.


You could just wait for the non-reference cards to come out, save yourself around £50
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November 7, 2013 5:41:21 PM

Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
I have come up with a slightly refined build based on advice given here. It can be found here although it's still about £100 over my budget if there's anything you think I could reduce without sacrificing too much performance (annoyingly it seems as though the American price for all the components at the current exchange rate is around £1092, which means it would be cheaper to have it bought there, put into a big box and shipped to me than buy it in the UK). I'll also update the original post with my latest attempt at a build for any new-comers who'd like to give their input.


Do you need to keep the blu-ray player?


I don't have another in the house, so I'd like to have that, although for some reason I seem to have also selected a writer, and I can't imagine I'll need to write many blu-rays any time soon, not that it hurts except the cost.


Do you need the sound card? You're probably aware of this, but the motherboard comes with a internal sound card.


Well when I started I thought I did because I've always had one previously. I do a lot of movie watching etc. through my PC, hence the blu-ray drive as well. But on reading up on it that was one of the areas I was thinking of compromising although apparently the on-board has noticeably flatter and less vibrant sound through decent audio. It's hard to say.

Like I said to begin with there's flexibility in my budget if it's at a spec where lowering the quality of any part would be a bottleneck in some way to the other parts involved. Right now I'm £188 over my £1250 (I've changed the case to a Fractal R4), which is about 15% over. Removing the sound card would take me to about 10% over, which is much more acceptable.

Aside from the sound card though, is there any single thing that you would recommend I change for an improvement or can see that would cause me a problem?



Well, I would change to a TX 650 as it's a solid PSU, and is cheaper. And are you sure you don't want to go with a 120 GB SSD? All you really need it for is a boot drive and your most used programs. I'm sorry for essentially playing 20 questions with you :p  Also what's the Accelero Xtreme III for? The case comes with fans.


I'm enjoying the 20 questions actually, because this is my first build. I went for the higher PSU because I figured it would be more cost-effective to future-proof the machine in case I add another graphics card for crossfire, which is why my current selection goes over the required output.

The Accelero Xtreme III was suggested both above and also in an article I read on the R9-290 to deal with its temperatures and keep the noise level down. Basically it's an upgrade to the GPU fan and people seem to think it's necessary.


You could just wait for the non-reference cards to come out, save yourself around £50


That is true. Considering I'll probably be getting a few of these parts for Christmas from family so I can't build the system until then anyway, that's a good idea, as I've seen it thrown around that the non-reference will be out in late November.

I think that this might be the system I go for: http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/1YX5O

I've still to make up my mind about the sound card, and I'll no doubt delay until the reference models of the R9-290 come out now that you've pointed it out and it makes sense, but the rest all seems to me that it fits my needs perfectly and it's fairly future-proofed and balanced. Any final questions or points to make before I thank you a lot for all your help and patience? :) 
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a b 4 Gaming
November 7, 2013 5:51:54 PM

GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
Computerchap said:
GallJ93 said:
I have come up with a slightly refined build based on advice given here. It can be found here although it's still about £100 over my budget if there's anything you think I could reduce without sacrificing too much performance (annoyingly it seems as though the American price for all the components at the current exchange rate is around £1092, which means it would be cheaper to have it bought there, put into a big box and shipped to me than buy it in the UK). I'll also update the original post with my latest attempt at a build for any new-comers who'd like to give their input.


Do you need to keep the blu-ray player?


I don't have another in the house, so I'd like to have that, although for some reason I seem to have also selected a writer, and I can't imagine I'll need to write many blu-rays any time soon, not that it hurts except the cost.


Do you need the sound card? You're probably aware of this, but the motherboard comes with a internal sound card.


Well when I started I thought I did because I've always had one previously. I do a lot of movie watching etc. through my PC, hence the blu-ray drive as well. But on reading up on it that was one of the areas I was thinking of compromising although apparently the on-board has noticeably flatter and less vibrant sound through decent audio. It's hard to say.

Like I said to begin with there's flexibility in my budget if it's at a spec where lowering the quality of any part would be a bottleneck in some way to the other parts involved. Right now I'm £188 over my £1250 (I've changed the case to a Fractal R4), which is about 15% over. Removing the sound card would take me to about 10% over, which is much more acceptable.

Aside from the sound card though, is there any single thing that you would recommend I change for an improvement or can see that would cause me a problem?



Well, I would change to a TX 650 as it's a solid PSU, and is cheaper. And are you sure you don't want to go with a 120 GB SSD? All you really need it for is a boot drive and your most used programs. I'm sorry for essentially playing 20 questions with you :p  Also what's the Accelero Xtreme III for? The case comes with fans.


I'm enjoying the 20 questions actually, because this is my first build. I went for the higher PSU because I figured it would be more cost-effective to future-proof the machine in case I add another graphics card for crossfire, which is why my current selection goes over the required output.

The Accelero Xtreme III was suggested both above and also in an article I read on the R9-290 to deal with its temperatures and keep the noise level down. Basically it's an upgrade to the GPU fan and people seem to think it's necessary.


You could just wait for the non-reference cards to come out, save yourself around £50


That is true. Considering I'll probably be getting a few of these parts for Christmas from family so I can't build the system until then anyway, that's a good idea, as I've seen it thrown around that the non-reference will be out in late November.

I think that this might be the system I go for: http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/1YX5O

I've still to make up my mind about the sound card, and I'll no doubt delay until the reference models of the R9-290 come out now that you've pointed it out and it makes sense, but the rest all seems to me that it fits my needs perfectly and it's fairly future-proofed and balanced. Any final questions or points to make before I thank you a lot for all your help and patience? :) 


Nothing else. This system will be great, and as always don't forget to choose a best answer :) 
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