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Medium Budget Build - Strategy Games ?

Last response: in Systems
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April 18, 2014 3:42:18 PM

Hi all

im looking to do my first build (UK). my current PC is approaching 6 years old now. i'm playing games on medium/ low graphics. often scaled down due to slow CPU.

the purpose of a new PC would be for strategy games and intermediate video editing.

a key reference point would be that id like to be able to run Rome 2: Total war on 'High' settings.
Kerbal Space program and other games would not be needing so much power.

my budget (not including monitor) is £500. this figure is not definitive, as projects develop, things change.
In regards to budget, spending more will mean waiting longer. Iv recently begun self employment, so i'm a bit short on project funding these days. going over budget will mean longer wait for funding.
the mark is Rome 2 on high graphics + Large scale options for strategy games.

my knowledge of computing is patchy. but i understand the structure of a PC and what does what.
im fairly technical minded and eventually find answers to IT problems.

So the 1st draft of a build is as follows:

1) Motherboard: Asus M5A78L-M/USB3 - £50
I have little knowledge of motherboards. i believe it to be the skeleton of the system, housing the Bios, the intermediary between different components.
My only reasoning for an ASUS motherboard is iv heard a good rep about ASUS reliability in relation to gaming.
and that they are more compatible with Nvidia cards.

2) CPU: Intel Core i5. within the i5 range i am unsure.
my experience with Intel has been very good. the gist i get is they're better but more expensive. my attraction is reliability. an intel seems to run smother at 90% than an AMD.
Intel seem like a very professional company that branch further out that PC components.
the i5 seems like it would pack enough punch for Rome 2. within strategy games iv noticed that a better processor allows for larger scale, which unlocks certain 'Epic' aspects of certain games.
within the i5 range i am not sure where to go.

3)GPU: Geforce GTX 6xx range
i used to Have an Nvidia, then upgraded to AMD/ATI. i don't know which had better performance-to-price, but i do prefer the Nvidia software/drivers. seems more tidy.
For Rome 2, the 'can i run it' sites said something in the 6xx range would be good enough for high.
considering i'm trying to keep the build under £500, this choice i find difficult.

4)RAM: 8GB
I recon 8 is enough. though i have never done Ram usage tests while on games, so i cant be sure how much was being used.
I am hoping to be able to finally play strategy games on a huge scale, so im not sure if 8 is enough.

5)HD - SSD: Samsung 840 evo 120GB
Iv noticed, with a windows update every other time i shut down, my hard drive becomes very fragmented. once steam games + editing softwares are on it all runs so slow.
I was hoping for the new build, i could perhaps use my existing Hard disk, alongside an SSD.
keeping only Game files on the SSD.
how many SATA slots do motherboards usually have?

6)PSU: not too sure. i know that the wattage of the PSU must be more than the sum of all components.

7)Sound card: no idea on the difference in price ranges. i studied in broadcast operations at college, iv always wanted to know more about sound interface for PC/sound equipment.

8)Case: from what i gather, with a classic tower, the main air intake is in the front and out the back/top.
id quite like to look into alternative designs. iv noticed cased with corners don't circulate air well.
a case with more curved features would be nice. there is also the option of modifying an existing case.
my only experience of metal joinery is with a soldering iron on circuit boards.

I don't need monitor/mouse/keyboard


what do you guys think? its a 1st draft and from here i'm not to sure where to go.


id be very grateful for any advice.

-note-
I really like building stuff and learning new skills. This project could be a wonderful catalyst for learning new stuff.
feel free to any creative suggestions.





April 18, 2014 3:52:50 PM

Slightly over budget Do you need an OS?

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-4440 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor (£128.22 @ Amazon UK)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H87-D3H ATX LGA1150 Motherboard (£72.86 @ CCL Computers)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory (£63.91 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk (£59.95 @ Amazon UK)
Video Card: MSI Radeon R9 270 2GB Video Card (£129.59 @ Aria PC)
Case: Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case (£45.90 @ Amazon UK)
Power Supply: XFX 550W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply (£46.98 @ Aria PC)
Total: £547.41
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-04-18 23:52 BST+0100)

AMD option:
Spoiler

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: AMD FX-6300 3.5GHz 6-Core Processor (£76.79 @ Aria PC)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler (£25.45 @ Scan.co.uk)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-970A-UD3P ATX AM3+ Motherboard (£64.79 @ Aria PC)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory (£63.91 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk (£59.95 @ Amazon UK)
Video Card: MSI Radeon R9 270 2GB Video Card (£129.59 @ Aria PC)
Case: Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case (£45.90 @ Amazon UK)
Power Supply: XFX 550W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply (£46.98 @ Aria PC)
Total: £513.36
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-04-18 23:56 BST+0100)
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April 18, 2014 9:03:09 PM

OP, do you need an OS, monitor, or any gaming peripherals?
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