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1200-1500 box budget for gaming?

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December 22, 2006 5:42:47 AM

Hey All, I posted a topic a few days back but I was far to general.
I wish to build a new pc for gaming, not including monitor, mouse/kb etc for around $1200-$1500. That number is flexible. I already have one 74 gig raptor so I would only need another drive for storage. If you could help me it would be great. I plan to overclock, game, and use for school. Some points so far.

-I was thinking a 965 chipset as they seem to be as fast as any excluding bells and whistles? If you think 680i is worth it please let me know

-I was considering buying some $250 DX9 vid card now as you can get a decent card for that much, and upgrade to a new DX10 card in 6 months or so when I have vista and such.

-I imagine I need at least 2gigs of memory, should I go DDR2-800 if I want good overclock, also, will I be able to run four sticks of DDR2 and be ok?

-The proc I was considering is an E6600, seem like a decent price/performance now that quads are out?

-What sort of power supply should I get considering I will get a DX10 card eventually? I prolly wont go SLI, but I dont really want to cut it close?

-Do I need to have a huge case to fit DX10 cards comftorably? recommendations?? I like the Lian Li I have now, sort of plain, but classy...but I will give this machine to my parents or wife, so I need new case to.

-lastly are widescreen lcds really up to par with crt's these days for gaming, the budget doesnt need to include this obviously, just wondering

Thanks for anyhelp, I hope to buy this in a few days so if you got specifics or strong opinions, they would be welcome!!
December 22, 2006 6:50:41 AM

That price is totaly do-able.... but you shouldn't buy your videocard twice!!!

Just add up the cost of a 8800gtx (for a reference DX10 card price) and your card of choice together and it will probably equal the cost of a new gamming system.

Spend the money NOW, and get a 8800gts. The games your used to playing will forever change as you turn on AND up, all the settings, ENABLE SOFTSHADOWS... and play at framerates and resolutions you never thought possable. you need to read the reviews on it cause that card just rocks the house!!!

The 680 is a great board. pay no attention to the dorks that whine about it. they are a bunch of VIA fanboys.

DDR2-800 is a great choice!!

YEss....but a QUAD will blow your budget to the moon.....

and LCD's now surpass crt now for gaming. SAMSUNG makes good ones, but stay away from gateway and emachines!!! (I used to work for them and they are positivley CRAP!!)

AND AS I ALWAYS SAY; Get a good name brand powersupply (about 650watts should do) and motherboard if you want to avoid problems and upgrade in the future.
December 22, 2006 8:08:41 AM

I think you may be write on the video card issue, in my head i imagined the 8800gtx dropping to like 200 in six months, that is unrealistic...and would still add up to around 450 for buying both cards, so I think I will go 8800gts or gtx. And I agree that quad is too much for my budget, that is what I meant to say but I see now that I wasnt very clear, so I will stick with the E6600. Also, I realize the 680i isnt a bad board, I just am unclear as to if it actually performs better than competition (overclock, compatability, raid etc) , if it does, than im all for it. with the video cards, do you think it is worth it to get the 8800 gtx, or should i go gts? Thanks!!
Related resources
December 22, 2006 12:57:55 PM

-C2D 6400
-Gigabtye 965P-DS3
-Seagate Barracuda 320 gb 7200.10
-OCZ GameXstream 600w
-8800GTS
-G.Skill DDR2-800 @ 2x1 gig
-Lian-Li PC7B Plus (or do you want a full tower?)
-Arctic Freezer or Zalman 9500
-Arctic Silver 5


VERY respectable system, very overclockable, very cost effective........awesome performance and it'll hit your budget no problem.
8)
December 22, 2006 3:44:26 PM

THat board has Overclocking options comming out it's ears and it's southpole!!! it was reciently reviewed by MAXIMUM PC in december (i think) and It got a 9=maximum kickass product.

just get a chipset cooler as I hear that they tend to run hot.

as for the video....if you can afford it get the GTX but it's little brother is no slouch either. go read the reviews on them in MAXIMUM PC JAn. issue. or read them here at toms.

other than that this system may make me break the 10 commandment. :twisted:
December 22, 2006 3:45:41 PM

Quote:
-C2D 6400
-Gigabtye 965P-DS3
-Seagate Barracuda 320 gb 7200.10
-OCZ GameXstream 600w
-8800GTS
-G.Skill DDR2-800 @ 2x1 gig
-Lian-Li PC7B Plus (or do you want a full tower?)
-Arctic Freezer or Zalman 9500
-Arctic Silver 5


VERY respectable system, very overclockable, very cost effective........awesome performance and it'll hit your budget no problem.
8)


nice setup... a bit unbalanced but ok. (Lian-Li w/ Gskill inside?!)

you could change some things there for a better budget. Put the $ first in the components IMO and only then should you splurge on the case. Lian-Li is freakin awesome, but also expensive relative to Antec, Thermaltake and other solid cases. I am thinking full tower here, as that case is a good price until you consider the size. I agree that the case is the second most undervalued component (next to a psu) but when you are on a budget, you can get solid cases for much less than lian-li or silverstone. JMO of course. ;)  Take it for what it's worth.

I would also recommend just getting the retail cpu w/ stock cooler and worrying about aftermarket cooling later when you hit the ceiling on the stock cooler. It is only a couple bucks over the cost of the bare cpu and is much cheaper than the aftermarket one. (and the intel boxed works pretty well for oc'ing)

Both of those options could translate into more $ spent on other components. There are no optical drives on that build, and you could get a beefier harddrive or cpu, or get better quality ram (corsair or crucial), or maybe even scrimp enough to get the 8800gtx... Just something else to think about.

don't go cheap on the psu, and that ocz is a good one for sure. But also don't go cheap on the other parts either.
December 22, 2006 3:45:58 PM

I suppose a full tower could be nice, do you think I need it with these components and possibly future vid card? I had things to be cramped... Also I noticed u didnt like the E6600, it is only $309, not worth it? How is this powersupply:COOLMAX CUG-700B ATX 12V( V.2.2) 700W Power Supply 115/230 V - Retail ? Lastly, does the 8800GTS get spanked by the GTX? Thanks!
December 22, 2006 3:50:00 PM

Quote:
I suppose a full tower could be nice, do you think I need it with these components and possibly future vid card? I had things to be cramped... Also I noticed u didnt like the E6600, it is only $309, not worth it? How is this powersupply:COOLMAX CUG-700B ATX 12V( V.2.2) 700W Power Supply 115/230 V - Retail ? Lastly, does the 8800GTS get spanked by the GTX? Thanks!


THat video card is a BEAST!!! yes the GTX is the best....Full tower is what your looking for. Thermaltake armor or a good coolermaster will work great. and I just reedited my last post so please reread.
December 22, 2006 3:51:36 PM

If you get the gtx then a full tower is a must based on what reviews are saying about its size... gts might work in a mid-tower ok.
December 22, 2006 5:02:34 PM

Yea, I know LOL......Lian-Li and G.Skill. I woulda said a Thermaltake but he mentioned he likes his Lian-Li he already has. So in order to keep the budget down I said the G.Skill. Honestly, I would say OCZ PC6400, but then the recommendation would be pretty much what I got and I am trying to sound unbiased LOL. Guess I could said, "get what my sig has" :lol: 
December 22, 2006 5:06:14 PM

:lol:  funny stuff... ya, hard to convince ppl that you are unbiased. ;) 
December 22, 2006 5:12:26 PM

I KNOW!! :lol:  But bang-for-the-buck, it's a helluva combo for a decent mid-range system, gotta admit LOL.
December 22, 2006 6:18:15 PM

Good RAM.

Aurora is nice.....TIGHT fit for an 8800GTX though......just keep it in mind. Cases are rather subjective....there are many that offer good airflow and functionality. Beyond that, it's mostly a question of taste and personal preference really.

But for $5 more after rebate, I'd consider the Thermaltake Armor ;) 
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

Again, just my opinion. Look around and find something that suits your budget.

And if you're thinking of the 8800GTX, take a look at this too:
http://maximumpc.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=50540&postd...
December 22, 2006 6:42:29 PM

Shoot I thought that aurora would be big because its a full tower, I basically just want a lot of room with good airflow and not to break (plastic). I will go with that armor one you recommended. Also is 600watt ocz really enough, everyone seems to be purchasing a small nuke plant these days for their machines?
December 22, 2006 7:25:52 PM

OCZ 600w will run an overclocked CPU, hard drives, opticals, 8800GTX and pimp lighting no problem. But not 2 GTX's in SLI though.
December 24, 2006 5:42:13 AM

The amperage on the 12V rails looks a bit weak.......but I'm NOT a PSU expert. Best to see what someone more experienced in that department says. If no answer soon, post in the PSU section....be sure to include your system specs along with that link.
December 24, 2006 5:48:59 AM

Skyguy, thanks for your continued assistance. I originally was gonna go with the gigabyte mobo :
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

Then I saw this other Asus 680i mobo that looked good:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

I saw that Asus had a 1333 front side bus, does this matter, bearing in mind that I wish to overclock, or can the gigabyte keep pace? Is there a quality concern with the Asus? it seems so cheap, I really need help on this as I have mad OCD and I need to order this stuff tonight or tommorow morning! =( Thanks!!
December 24, 2006 6:02:41 AM

I think you mean 650i, not 680i ;) 

Apparently that 650i board overclocks like crazy and is hella cheap for an SLI mobo. To be honest, I'm actually considering the P5N-E 650i board for my next upgrade, it looks very promising.

The 965 boards (ie--Gigabyte) have been around for quite a bit longer and have proven to be solid boards. The Gigabyte boards have been great overclockers......check my sig, I myself have the S3 and my 6300 hit 3.0 ghz no problem (with some decent RAM though).

So I guess I'd question whether you need an SLI board or not really.......

Take a read on this article, it may help you out:
http://www.anandtech.com/mb/showdoc.aspx?i=2894
December 24, 2006 6:28:44 AM

Im gonna go with the 650i,as it seems faster than DS3, correct?
Here is everything, this is final, if there is anything you think I can save money on let me know please =)

Case:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...

Mobo:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...

Proc:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...

Ram:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1682...

Video Card:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...

Power Supply:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...

Storage hard drive (already have raptor for OS and games):
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1682...

Optical Drive:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1682...

I also got some floppy drive, total comes to around $1575, but there are like $115 in mail in rebates that I will get back...anyway, anyone that can, please let me know what you think! This goes down within hours! =)
December 24, 2006 6:58:51 AM

please help me..... :cry: 
December 24, 2006 1:52:09 PM

Awesome specs!!! Great system. I wouldn't skimp on the other components.

If you're looking to save money though, your best options in order are to:

1) drop down to a 6300 and overclock it a bit close to a 6600 no problem.
2)You could also get some G.Skill DDR2-800 RAM if you want to save about $50 as well.
3) That case is great, but if you want something smaller you can save anywhere from $50-$80 there.
December 24, 2006 5:00:22 PM

save on the case? Which quality case that fits a 8800 GTX is cheaper? Also, I like the E6600, but am open to suggestion on case, will the Gskill ram perform any worse, or is it just the name?

Thanks!
December 24, 2006 5:11:38 PM

I'm not knocking the case........I'm getting the same one soon ;) 

All I'm saying is that IF you want to cut down the cost, then sacrifices have to be made.....so then you gotta pick your poison......cheaper case, cheaper CPU, cheaper RAM?

Honestly, your best best savings-for-buck is dropping the 6600 down to a 6300 and overclocking it back up. You'll save alot more money than getting a different case or RAM.

I was just giving you the options......I wasn't making an evaluation on them. That's your call, it's your money. No question, what you have listed right now is GREAT. If you can cough up the extra $$ then I'm sure you'll be VERY happy. But if you need to save some $$, then I still say your best bet is to downgrade the CPU and just overclock it back up. Keep the RAM and mobo, and you'll easily OC a 6300 back up to PAST 6600 speeds ;) 
December 24, 2006 9:32:48 PM

I personally like the EVGA, better package deal IMHO. Besides, all the cards are built to spec so they're all the same ;) 

Merry Christmas! I'm outta here for a week and a half......... :!:




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