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First gaming PC build: Is this a good build?

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  • Build
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Last response: in Systems
June 28, 2014 5:30:37 PM

This is going to be my first gaming computer build. I spent a lot of time looking up parts but need advice on some of them. I will be mostly using this for gaming and I will not overclock.

How does this build look? Any changes I should make?
My build:
http://pcpartpicker.com/p/QgVNgs

CPU: intel i5 (I think i7 is not necessary for gaming)
MOBO: I have no idea which mobo to get. I chose Asus because I heard they are the best.
Ram: I want 8gb so I just chose a random one for that. Is there any particular manufacturer or brand that is better?
PSU: I don't know how to choose which is a good PSU. I chose something that was at least bronze certified and at least 500W.
GPU: I chose the R9 270X because I heard it is the best value. It will allow me to run intensive games smoothly.
Case: I just chose something fits everything. Is there any good one that you guys recommend?


Approximate Purchase Date: July-Sept 2014

Budget Range: $1000

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, watching movies, surfing internet

Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg, Amazon

Country: USA

Parts Preferences: none

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe? I don't know much about this.

Additional Comments:
I want to buy the parts that give me the most for my money. I don't need the best of the best. I want to build a computer that can run games at the highest settings no problem at the cheapest cost.

More about : gaming build good build

a c 233 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 5:35:27 PM

Do you want a big computer case or a small one? Or does this not matter?
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June 28, 2014 5:37:35 PM

I want a mid tower size one.
Also do I need a CPU cooler or is the stock cooler sufficient?
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a b 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 5:40:00 PM

tigerdirect.com is good.

you need more than enough amps on your psu's 12v rail that your video card requires.

Can not go wrong with Asus.

You can get a h97 motherboard for less for no overclocking and maybe let you upgrade to the 280.

Can not go wrong with G-skill ram.

Crossfire can be a waist of time for most people and it is money better spent on 1 video card.
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a c 233 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 5:43:40 PM

Few last questions:
1. What resolution do you play games on?
2. Do you need a blu-ray drive?
3. Do you need a wireless card?
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June 28, 2014 5:44:55 PM

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/XBwBhM
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/XBwBhM/by_merchant/

CPU: Intel Core i5-4590 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor ($199.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: Asus H97-PLUS ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($105.24 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($73.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung 840 Pro Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($116.63 @ Amazon)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($54.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: XFX Radeon R9 280X 3GB Black Edition Double Dissipation Video Card ($299.99 @ NCIX US)
Case: Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case ($54.99 @ NCIX US)
Power Supply: XFX 550W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($60.74 @ Amazon)
Total: $966.55
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available

I changed the motherboard since you aren't overcloking, stepped the GPU up a notch, added a ssd, lowered your Psu wattage and gave you a solid brand, and give you a really nice case.
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June 28, 2014 5:50:29 PM

ksham said:
Few last questions:
1. What resolution do you play games on?
2. Do you need a blu-ray drive?
3. Do you need a wireless card?


1920x1080
no blu-ray
Yes for wireless
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a b 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 5:50:32 PM

BigRichard said:
PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/XBwBhM
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/XBwBhM/by_merchant/

CPU: Intel Core i5-4590 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor ($199.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: Asus H97-PLUS ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($105.24 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($73.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung 840 Pro Series 128GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($116.63 @ Amazon)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($54.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: XFX Radeon R9 280X 3GB Black Edition Double Dissipation Video Card ($299.99 @ NCIX US)
Case: Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case ($54.99 @ NCIX US)
Power Supply: XFX 550W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($60.74 @ Amazon)
Total: $966.55
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available

I changed the motherboard since you aren't overcloking, stepped the GPU up a notch, added a ssd, lowered your Psu wattage and gave you a solid brand, and give you a really nice case.


great build. The 280x will certainly give you what you desire.

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a c 290 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 5:51:23 PM

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: Intel Core i5-4690 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($219.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H97-GAMING 3 ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($104.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($75.60 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($52.92 @ Amazon)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon R9 290 4GB Tri-X Video Card ($399.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair SPEC-01 RED ATX Mid Tower Case ($44.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: XFX 650W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($69.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: LG GH24NSB0 DVD/CD Writer ($14.99 @ NCIX US)
Total: $983.46
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
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a b 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 5:53:22 PM

CPU: OK
CPU Cooler: The stock cooler is usually sufficient. Aftermarket coolers are important to buy when you are overclocking which your not. However,
if you don't mind spending 30$, I would get this : http://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-Hyper-212-RR-212E-2...
Motherboard: Since you are not overclocking, I would get a H97 mobo. It is pretty much similar to a z97 mobo but without good overclocking capability:
http://pcpartpicker.com/part/asus-motherboard-h97mplus for $110
RAM Memory: OK
Storage: OK
Video Card: OK
Case: OK
PSU: Id get this one over the Corsair CX series. Will be more reliabe: http://pcpartpicker.com/part/seasonic-power-supply-s12i...
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a b 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 5:57:31 PM

bignastyid said:
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: Intel Core i5-4690 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($219.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H97-GAMING 3 ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($104.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($75.60 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($52.92 @ Amazon)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon R9 290 4GB Tri-X Video Card ($399.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair SPEC-01 RED ATX Mid Tower Case ($44.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: XFX 650W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($69.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: LG GH24NSB0 DVD/CD Writer ($14.99 @ NCIX US)
Total: $983.46
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available


bignasty comes in with the AMD beast 290 and the gaming 3 mobo but lacking ssd and honestly you could just add one down the road.

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June 28, 2014 5:57:41 PM

Thank you for all your suggestions.

I will choose the XFX 80+ ATX PSU and take your suggestion since I don't know much about PSU.

R9 290 vs 280x: Is the $100 cost worth it?

MOBO: H97 vs A97: is the only difference that H97 doesn't do overclocking?
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a c 233 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 5:57:44 PM
a b 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 5:57:59 PM

Just throwing it out there, but since you have quite a large timeline of when you are going to buy, why not buy things as they come on sale. This can be tricky, but not to hard, might save you a $100-200 to.

The cpu/mobo are dependent on each other, so I'd suggest buying them last. But everything else is somewhat "generic" and will work in various computer setups.

As an example, that XFX 550w was just on sale for $25 2 days ago. It's been on sale twice in the past 2 months. It's great for any single card system that you aren't going to overclock. I saw an $80 case on for $35 a few before that. GPUs and SSDs are the same way.

The savings from all this could be the difference between a r9 280 and an r9 280x or an 120GB SSD and a 256GB SSD. :) 

If it's not for you, that's fine, but thought I'd throw that out there.
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June 28, 2014 6:03:07 PM

jaraldo said:
Just throwing it out there, but since you have quite a large timeline of when you are going to buy, why not buy things as they come on sale. This can be tricky, but not to hard, might save you a $100-200 to.

The cpu/mobo are dependent on each other, so I'd suggest buying them last. But everything else is somewhat "generic" and will work in various computer setups.

As an example, that XFX 550w was just on sale for $25 2 days ago. It's been on sale twice in the past 2 months. It's great for any single card system that you aren't going to overclock. I saw an $80 case on for $35 a few before that. GPUs and SSDs are the same way.

The savings from all this could be the difference between a r9 280 and an r9 280x or an 120GB SSD and a 256GB SSD. :) 

If it's not for you, that's fine, but thought I'd throw that out there.


That is what I plan on doing to save some money. I want to get the build and then buy the parts when they go on sale. Is there an easy way to keep track of sales like are there certain sites that help with that?


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Best solution

a c 290 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 6:04:44 PM

Here;a another build using the windforce 290(runs a bit warmer than the tri-x), costs less so I was able to squeeze in a SSD.
PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/Zh47pg
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/Zh47pg/by_merchant/

CPU: Intel Core i5-4690 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($219.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H97-GAMING 3 ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($104.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($75.60 @ Newegg)
Storage: Crucial M500 120GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($72.00 @ Amazon)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($52.92 @ Amazon)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon R9 290 4GB WINDFORCE Video Card ($339.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair SPEC-01 RED ATX Mid Tower Case ($44.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: XFX 650W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($69.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: LG GH24NSB0 DVD/CD Writer ($14.99 @ NCIX US)
Total: $995.46
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
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a c 290 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 6:06:17 PM

Most sites let you sign up to get notified of sales.
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a b 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 6:15:14 PM

^-- yup that's a good start. You can set "price alerts" on a few sites to.

The best way would be to get an approximate build here, then check pcpartpicker for specifics.

As an example, say if you thought bignastyid's was great (it is pretty good :p ) and so you checked the price of r9 290's every 2-3 days. Make sure to spread out your search a bit. Like check better than the r9 290 and below it. I know I saw a r9 280x for $199 sometime last month.

Here's an example for GPUs, but do something similar for all parts; set them from lowest to highest of course.
http://pcpartpicker.com/parts/video-card/#c=137,136,167...

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June 28, 2014 6:24:14 PM

Does the manufacturer matter when picking a GPU? For example for the R9 290, is there a difference between the Gigabyte and Sapphire one?

Also why do you guys suggest a SSD? Does that help with gaming?
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a c 233 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 6:28:03 PM

PCB and Cooler are the differences. They usually have different interfaces and cooling solution. The GPU itself is the same.

A SSD helps in loading of the game. It also makes your computer very snappy such as loading time of applications, booting up your computer, etc. It does not help in gameplay. It provides a better experience overall.
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a c 290 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 6:28:39 PM

With the 290 you have to be careful. You need to avoid cards that use the reference cooler as the run too hot(to the point the card throttles) and loud. The Sapphire Tri-x and vapor-x are the best coolers, behind them are the Gigabyte Windforce and the Asus DCU II.
SSD's are nice to have for quick boot times and load times, and an overall snappy feel to the system. But when it comes down to it as a gamer I wouldn't sacrifice gaming performance to have one.
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June 28, 2014 6:47:20 PM

wizkid6959 said:
I want a mid tower size one.
Also do I need a CPU cooler or is the stock cooler sufficient?


I would recommend an after market cooler preferably a water cooled set up if noise is an issue if not then an after market air cooler can work (Noctua has some great ones). However one thing you may have over looked, you have a glass window and you have a very clashy color scheme with a gold mobo, red RAM, red and black GPU and a blue light case so if this isn't an issue to you then go on ahead but be warned that over time those things can come to drive you mad with your perfect gaming machine.
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June 28, 2014 6:48:39 PM

Thanks for all the help

I have a couple of last questions:
Why have two hard drive? I know that the SSD is faster so what do you store on each hard drive to make the most use?

How many fans should I have on the case? As much as it can hold?
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a c 233 4 Gaming
June 28, 2014 6:54:09 PM

A SSD is rather small as you probably noticed. It's only 120GB so it is ONLY meant to store your operating system, your programs, and a few games tops. The HDD is for everything else.

As for fans, stock configuration is good enough for you because you're not overclocking so there's not likely going to be a lot of heat issues. Too many fans is usually counter-productive if the airflow do not all go in one direction. If you have so many fans and some are blowing one way, another set is blowing another way, and a third set blowing in yet a different direction, you are causing a lot of turbulence and that does help. Just keep it simple. Have some front intakes and a rear and top exhaust.
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September 4, 2014 9:03:09 AM

wizkid6959 said:
Thanks for all the help

I have a couple of last questions:
Why have two hard drive? I know that the SSD is faster so what do you store on each hard drive to make the most use?

How many fans should I have on the case? As much as it can hold?


The idea I have been using as I slowly upgrade my PC is buying one SSD

http://pcpartpicker.com/part/kingston-internal-hard-dri...

and when I have enough money saved up I will buy another exact ssd and run them in Raid 0 for unbelievable performance and 256 GB of storage


For fans the stock ones will do, but if you want a truly silent PC then I highly recommend Noctua fans for your build. They are a little pricey but nothing can compare to these fans

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1w41MniPVgg&list=WL&ind...

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