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16 hours of researching and I still need your guy's help

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October 31, 2006 11:39:59 PM

Hey guys, I need some help, I'm losing my mind

I'm looking to build a new budget gaming box, I have $700 to spend. Right now I'm basically stuck between going with a Pentium D 820 or C2D E6300, the AMD 3800+ has also caught my eye. The catch is, if I go with the E6300 I'm going to have less RAM (probably 1GB), no SATA setup, and most likely a video card that's going to bottleneck the system anyway, so I have been leaning towards either the Pentium D or 3800+. What would you guys suggest?

More about : hours researching guy

October 31, 2006 11:54:38 PM

Give us a list of your stuff and what you want. We may be able to find you better deals and recommend you better stuff.

C2D is the killer processor on the block right now. However, if you're a total gamer and gaming's the only thing you're going to do with this rig, the most important part of your system is your video card. CPU is secondary.

If you're planning on using your system for things other than games, tell us.
November 1, 2006 12:06:19 AM

Sorry I didn't explain better, my minds a mess today. This box will only be for gaming, I'll be using my old one for everything else.

As for stuff I want, I'm truthfully open to anything at this point. From what I've narrowed down in my attempt to find a decent box for my budget I've seen the Pentium D 805/820/920, and the AMD 3800+. I'm not sure if there is anything better for around that price range, I was hoping you guys could help me out with that. As for everything else in the box, I'm really not sure, I know I would like SATA and eventually 2GB RAM, but I will probably start with 1GB. I've kind of planned on buying the 2nd HD and 2nd RAM stick at a later date.
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November 1, 2006 1:00:12 AM

if $700 for just the PC, no monitor etc....

then you best getting an AMD CPU, a decent GFX card, 2G ram, 320G SATA2

PentiumDs are poo for gaming and run hot

C2Ds are fast for everything but cost more to build

So for decent gaming performance go for a 939/AM2 system
November 1, 2006 1:05:24 AM

Ya it's $700 for just the PC.

Is the MSI P965 Neo-F a decent mobo?

And bazaa, what 939/AM2 CPU do you think I would be best off with?
November 1, 2006 1:10:04 AM

Quote:

Is the MSI P965 Neo-F a decent mobo?


well i would rather go with a MSI 975X Platinum Socket T but that would push the build to upwards of $800

I picked ithe Neo-F because it was recommended by this article
November 1, 2006 1:14:35 AM

Ahh yea, that's one of the articles I found and bookmarked in my 16 hours of research. :D 
November 1, 2006 1:29:45 AM

You might consider the X2 4200+ over the 3800+, it's a better price/performance CPU for not much more. The X2 3800+ is still a great CPU tho..
November 1, 2006 1:34:08 AM

Ya but for a bit more I could get the E6300 if I was going to go that route.
November 1, 2006 1:47:31 AM

I'm sorry, recommending a 4200+ over the e6300 for the same price is foolish.

If you don't plan on overclocking, then the MSI mobo is fine plus save yourself another 20 bucks and get some DDR2 533 ram if no overclocking is in your future, here.

Make sure to get a 1GB stick. You may lose dual-channel for the moment but it'll be better to get another 1GB stick when you save up another hundred. Getting 4x512MB is not recommended.

Better hurry, this deal expires today. The Antec Sonata II is only 75 bucks after shipping and MIR. With the 20 savings in memory and 25 less than what apt403 mentioned, this brings the total down to 702.93.

I'd recommend the Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 series. The 250 or 320GB versions. This will bump up the cost by 16 or 36 dollars but well worth it.

Btw, the 3800 Venice is not worth it. The 3700 San Diego is a much better chip. You can OC that bad boy to 2.8GHz by buying a better heatsink/fan plus it has a full 1MB L2 cache whereas the 3800 Venice only has 512MB.

Get the C2D system. It's 3 bucks over your budget. Anything less would be uncivilized. 8)
November 1, 2006 1:57:26 AM

Single core CPU, AM2 board and 2GB, then K8L later!!
You need SATA more than anything though dont skip that.
November 1, 2006 2:26:55 AM

Quote:
I'm sorry, recommending a 4200+ over the e6300 for the same price is foolish.
Duh.
I was only suggesting that if he was considering the AMD route.
November 1, 2006 2:27:02 AM

I lean heavily towards the AMD system as it has a wide assortment of support and will still let you buy that decent video card and extra gig of ram.But I'm a bit of an AMD fan only because compared to INTEL,they are still the small guy.And I support small business.Goodluck.

Dahak

AMD X2-4400+@2.4 S-939
EVGA NF4 SLI MB
2X7800GT IN SLI
2X1GIG DDR IN DC MODE
WD300GIG HD
EXTREME 19IN.MONITOR 1280X1024
ACE 520WATT PSU
COOLERMASTER MINI R120
November 1, 2006 2:30:51 AM

What AMD setup would you guys reccomend exactly?
November 1, 2006 2:43:47 AM

Hey thanks purdueguy, I bought that Sonata as soon as I read your post. At least I have one part decided on so far, I guess that's a start. :p 
November 1, 2006 2:50:00 AM

Quote:

Get the C2D system. It's 3 bucks over your budget. Anything less would be uncivilized. 8)


more than seconded

i think you should go for the HDD & RAM that he recomended too, i put the 160GB drive because i didnt see the MIR on case and 533 ram should be fine as long as you arent OCing.
a c 83 B Homebuilt system
November 1, 2006 2:56:21 AM

Don't forget you will need a power supply and an OS.
I would suggest looking on E-bay for parts.
November 1, 2006 5:00:04 AM

not sure what he's going to do for the OS but the power supply is included with the case...
November 1, 2006 12:29:17 PM

I already have a few OS's, so no worries there.
a c 83 B Homebuilt system
November 1, 2006 1:04:10 PM

Look on E-bay. I saw a $599 (+$49 ship) mini PC with 1g ram, 160gb drive, athlon x2 3800+, upgradeable to better vga cards. The apevia(aspire) x-pack case would be a nice portable gamer's system. This one is from user magic-micro. It will need the OS you have. There are certainly others out there. At the prices I saw, you can not build your own as cheaply. Find a basic system you like, and upgrade it with the best VGA card you can afford. Unless you want the latest technology in a high end system, or the satisfaction of building your own PC, it does not pay to build your own.
November 1, 2006 1:21:20 PM

The Poster could also get a 7600GT for about $50 less after rebate to get him under $700. The 7600GT is still a very nice card. Personally I would find an odd job to make the xtra $50 and go for the more expensive card since the performance is much greater. I only suggested this option to get under the stated $700 mark.
November 1, 2006 1:40:44 PM

Always skimp on the CPU first, The prices fall much faster on CPU's than anything else, pick a good MB, get as much RAM as you can afford, and the best hdd you can live with (2 GB fast ram, 320 Gb WD drive if it was me). From that point, look at the high end CPU's and find a sweet MB that supports the one you eventually want, then grab the cheapest CPU you can live with. Personally I'd go either intel 805 and OC the hell out of it, or AMD 4000+ single, Tiger just had one for $29. You are much better off to swap out $100 cpu's every 6 months than to drop $400 on a cpu today.
November 1, 2006 1:50:22 PM

Here's a decent setup for just a hair over $700. It's got more than most setups in this range, but the CPU and Hard drive are definately things you'd look to upgrade, even though they'll get you buy just fine. And that extra 1GB of memory later will be good, too.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...
$97.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...
$69.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1682...
$29.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1682...
$114.99 (Ignore the review, guy didn't have a clue about memory voltage)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1682...
$43.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...
$115.99 (The 3700 is nice, sure, but with the board above's overclocking ability you'll have no problem getting this over 3.0ghz, and the speed will overide the additional cache at that level)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...
$225.99 (The Asus 1950pro and Saphire 1950pro's can be had for less and are great cards, but are rather large and don't match the MB's nvidia chipset, not that that really matters)

Total= $698.93 before shipping.
November 1, 2006 2:31:37 PM

Get the C2D now and upgrade the ram and video later
November 1, 2006 2:32:38 PM

Quote:
Hey guys, I need some help, I'm losing my mind

I'm looking to build a new budget gaming box, I have $700 to spend. Right now I'm basically stuck between going with a Pentium D 820 or C2D E6300, the AMD 3800+ has also caught my eye. The catch is, if I go with the E6300 I'm going to have less RAM (probably 1GB), no SATA setup, and most likely a video card that's going to bottleneck the system anyway, so I have been leaning towards either the Pentium D or 3800+. What would you guys suggest?


Did you read this thread 3GHz C2D for $631

Looks like it's right up your alley.... Maybe upgrade the video card for a few more dollars. Good luck.
November 1, 2006 4:37:43 PM

My apologies. You didn't say so in your comment therefore it's what I assumed.

Brodie:
Quote:
Hey thanks purdueguy, I bought that Sonata as soon as I read your post. At least I have one part decided on so far, I guess that's a start.


You're welcome.

Shabodah: You are not going to OC that 3800 to 3.0GHz without somekind of special watercooling. (The E6300 ends up cheaper and you can get an aftermarket heatsink/fan cooler that will nearly reach X6800 performance).

Most reviews only got stability at 2.7GHz which isn't even as good as the 3700+ San Diego on an aftermarket heatsink. Getting the Arctic Cooling Freezer 64 Pro will get the 3700+ to 2.8 GHz. Therefore the 3700+ still ends up cheaper and better both because of it reaching a higher speed and more cache.

Double your pleasure.

But I digress, Brodie mentioned the budget being $700 and it has been shown by several people that an E6300 system can be had for that amount.

This should be the end of this discussion. Period.
November 1, 2006 4:44:57 PM

Please send the link for a $29 4000+ because I'd like to buy one.

I just went to tigerdirect and it's $149.

Have you been smoking something? ;-)
November 1, 2006 4:53:47 PM

Quote:
Shabodah: You are not going to OC that 3800 to 3.0GHz without somekind of special watercooling.

But I digress, Brodie mentioned the budget being $700 and it has been shown by several people that an E6300 system can be had for that amount.

This should be the end of this discussion. Period.


A) The 3800 will do 3.0ghz with air cooling, the 3700 will do 2.750ghz with air cooling, give or take a few for both. The cache differences is almost nill.
B) This is a gaming computer, the E6300 systems shown for under $700 have used LOW-END gpu's, I put the 7900GT in my build compared to the 7300GT in theirs?!?!?
November 1, 2006 4:56:03 PM

Please send a link as to where the 3800 was air cooled to 3.0GHz because I haven't seen it.

I showed the system with an X1950Pro. Didn't know this was a low-end GPU. 8)
November 1, 2006 5:06:02 PM

gigabyte s3 - 115 dollars
C2D 6300 - 181 dollars
eax1950pro - 164 dollars
Sunbeam Nuuo 550 watt modular PFC - 74
a-data vitesta 667 1gig ram 112 dollars...
throw in a 200gig WD sata3.0 for 57 and ur still under 700 hundreds bucks

if u want to be under 700 with shipping then get the MSI neo-f for like 92 dollars from newegg and get maybe a 7600gt

iv also seen the c2d 6300 for less at around 175
November 1, 2006 5:14:02 PM

I don't have a link to one. I've seen many AMD chips between 3.0 and 3.250ghz on air cooling, most of them running near stock voltage. Regardless, I haven't been able to find a 3700 or 4000 in stock hardly anywhere. Your system does look like a nice alternative, I don't have any issues with it, and was specifically talking about the other guys build. The 7900 GT will fit easier into a uATX case than the 1950pro would and they are both excellent and very comparable cards, depending on what game you're playing. It's truly amazing how nice of a system ~$700 can build you these days.

PS - my system was an AM2 build, not a 939 one. (maybe that's why I can't find a 3700 or 4000?!??)
November 1, 2006 5:24:51 PM

I have mostly amd , but my bud has C2D ... Go C2D
November 1, 2006 5:26:39 PM

Since the OP already bought the Antec Sonata II, getting the X1950Pro for "fit" is no longer part of the equation.

The main reason I asked for links is for my own knowledge base. If the 3800 can be easily OC to 3.0GHz on aircooling, then it would be a decent CPU to get. But I think those "special" chips are too few and far in-between. You can buy the "same" chip and one will OC better than the other.

Personally, I don't think it's reasonable to assume that any 3800+ will achieve these kind of speeds. Maybe I'm wrong.

In-stock. 3700+ at Newegg (though it's socket 939), here.

I don't think a 3700+ came in the AM2 flavor.
November 1, 2006 5:26:45 PM

Go competition! As long as you don't buy a P4/P4D you can't get a bad processor these days.
November 1, 2006 5:33:59 PM

I understand fitment is no longer a concern. It was when I picked out my recommendations. The socket issue is also a concern, Unfortunately, there isn't a very good socket 939 uATX board for overclocking, heck almost all of them only support cpu voltage of 1.5 and DDR voltages of barely over spec. I still can't believe how much RAM has gone up in price lately, it's crazy. Regardless of what sort of stable overclock you get, you'll be doing well with either the 3700 or 4000, and they minor differences in performance would be almost unnoticable. I thought having a very portable budget gaming rig would be fun. Of course, I'm still wondering what's up with AMD's 35 watt processors, Albatron's AM2 ITX board, Core 2 Quad's launch, 65nm AMD's hitting the shelves, 4x4, etc, etc. Heck, why is it that we can't buy 2GB sticks of RAM at a decent price yet? Can I get a DVD burner in SATA for a decent price? PCIe soundcard maybe? lol. I can't think of a better AMD build for a budget gamer than the options the two of us presented.
November 1, 2006 5:48:49 PM

It was on the first page, their sale of the day, guess it expierd yesterday. (4000+ for $29)
November 1, 2006 5:51:30 PM

Quote:

Did you read this thread 3GHz C2D for $631
Looks like it's right up your alley.... Maybe upgrade the video card for a few more dollars. Good luck.


Hey Brodie,
Sorry I was offline for a bit there.

That quotes this setup:
Quote:
CPU: Core 2 Duo E6300 Allendale (Retail Box with HSF) - $178
HSF: Stock HSF - $0
M/B: Gigabyte 965P-S3 - $105
RAM: 2x 512MB Corsair DDR2 XMS2 Twin2X PC2-5400 675MHz (4-4-4-12) - $129
GPU: 7300GT 256MB GDDR3 - $85
HDD: Seagate 160GB SATA2 (3.0Gb/s) - $52
DVD: 16x DVD Writter - $29
FDD: 1.44" Floppy Disk Drive - $5
PSU: Cooler Master eXtreme Power 430W - $25 ($35-$10MIR)
CASE: Generic Case (without PSU) - $12
FAN: 4x 8CM Fan ($1.50 each) & 1x 12CM Fan ($5 each) - $11


I base it off of that, (not sure if the prices are the same or not):
CPU: Core 2 Duo E6300 Allendale (Retail Box with HSF) - $178
HSF: Stock HSF - $0
M/B: Gigabyte 965P-S3 - $105

RAM: Here's some 1 GB (512x2) memory DDR2-667 for $100 after a $20 mail-in.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1682...


HDD: Seagate 160GB SATA2 (3.0Gb/s) - $52
DVD: 16x DVD Writter - $29
FDD: 1.44" Floppy Disk Drive - $5
PSU: included w/ case
CASE: Sonata 2 - $100
FAN: Possible, but easily added later.

Total w/o vid card: $569.

$ for vid card = 700-569 = 131.

You've got the case already, so we don't need the PSU, case, or fans. (You might need another fan in the sonata 2, depending on temps).

According to the latest Tom's "Best video cards for your money", the best for around $130 is the 7600GT.
http://www.tomshardware.com/2006/10/31/the_best_video_c...

Here's a newegg 7600GT (eVGA) for 130:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

I wouldn't get a floppy drive if you already have one sitting in a current computer. I tend not to use mine, but its nice to have one somewhere in an emergency.

Course, you might have to factor tax, etc, depending on where you are.

Plus I'd offer this opinion:
If you're looking to only game with this in the future, AMD's 3800 X2 would probably the only processor from the AMD line that i'd consider at this point. Hopefully more games that take advantage of dual-cpus will be coming out soon.
As you said, this is a gaming rig only. But if you ever decide to do more than that on there, be it video editing, media encoding, etc, etc, the C2D will be a better choice - if you can afford it. Since the 3800X2 is $150 (without the heatsink), I'd get a C2D since the difference is only about $30 - less if you count having to buy a CPU heatsink for the 3800X2.
I would try to squeak by on 1GB of RAM for the time being. Hopefully prices will fall soon (stupid DDR2 demand) and you can scoop up some later.
November 1, 2006 6:23:50 PM

Must of been a Halloween special. :cry: 
November 1, 2006 6:48:11 PM

I thought it was the April Fools special?
November 1, 2006 7:27:09 PM

it november...
November 1, 2006 7:33:29 PM

$29 CPU??!?!? Even some socket A stuff sells for more.
November 1, 2006 8:23:48 PM

I've been thinking the same !!!
But I just tried the 'Need for Speed Carbon' demo on my gaming PC
It's a slide show..
You just can't get ahead of these games
They just try to melt your pc to the ground
I'm not going to be played as a "fool" no-more
I'm looking into a xbox or a sony ps for gaming
November 1, 2006 10:11:11 PM

Hey guys, thanks for all the replies. I'm comparing the S3 and DS3 mobo's right now and I had a few questions. The S3 lists this: SATA 3Gb/s x6, and the DS3 lists this: SATA 3Gb/s x6, SATA RAID RAID 0/1, Additional RAID Controller GIGABYTE SATA2 Chip. What exactly does the addition Raid Controller add, and I'm guessing you can't use a Raid setup on the S3?

Also from reading about these motherboards, they say to only use DDR2800 RAM, would I be ok with 667?
!