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Gaming Rig - First in a few years

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  • Homebuilt
  • Systems
Last response: in Systems
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February 12, 2007 12:48:36 PM

Hey guys...

A few years ago I was really into PC hardware... reading forums and reviews all day. I got busy and have gotten 'out of the loop' so I'm hoping you guys can help me out. I've spent the last few days reading some boards and trying to catch up on all the new stuff I've missed.

This PC will be for gaming (I'll probably be getting tied up in Vanguard soon), Photoshop, and the net.

I will be doing moderate overclocking to milk some performance out of my money so keep that in mind.

Budget: $1200 Max

That $1200 just includes essential parts (proc, mobo, ram, etc) I'll be using CD drives, speakers, keyboard, etc from what I have already. This is what I've come up with so far...

Video:
EVGA 320-P2-N811-AR GeForce 8800GTS 320MB GDDR3 PCI Express x16 Video Card - Retail $299.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...

This just came out today... I was going to get the 1950XT but read that this would be much better for the little price increase.

Processor:
Intel Core 2 Duo E6400 Conroe 2.13GHz LGA 775 Processor Model BX80557E6400 - Retail $222.00
http://www.newegg.com/product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...

I need your guys help here... should I get the E6300 and overclock it a little heavier, stick with the E6400, or go ahead and get the E6600?

Mobo:
GIGABYTE GA-965P-DS3 LGA 775 Intel P965 Express ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail $132.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...

I don't really know much about this board. I saw that quite a few people were putting it in there system so I assume its a nice cheap board...

RAM:
G.SKILL 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F2-6400CL5D-2GBNQ - Retail $179.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1682...

HD:
Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD2500KS 250GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM $74.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1682...

I don't need anything special here.

PSU:
Suggest something please. I don't know what wattage is standard for this type of rig.

Heatsink:
I'm guessing the stock HS isn't going to cut it. Suggest something (less than ~$50)

Thats putting me real close to budget. I was going to get a new case and everything but I have an extra one I can shove this into for now. I really need to pack as much punch as I can for $1200.

- Thanks

More about : gaming rig years

February 12, 2007 12:56:52 PM

You have some really good specs there so far. You'll definitely be able to do some decent overclocking.

Great vid card, great mobo, good RAM, great CPU choice.

You can go with the 6300, however, to save some money. It overclocks like a champ, and since you won't be doing hardcore OC'ing, you'll do just fine with the 6300. So consider that to save some money.

Ok, PSU. Don't cheap out here. PLEASE. You'll regret it otherwise. Spend a bit of money and get something decent. Since your budget it getting tight though, take a look at either FSP or Hiper PSU's......around 500-550w. That'll do you and shouldn't break the bank either.

Heatsink. The stock heatsink on the C2D CPUs is actually quite good, believe it or not. You don't really need an aftermarket one unless you're doing some high overclocking. So I'd suggest you go with the stock one for now, save some money there, put that money into a good PSU, and then consider an aftermarket HSF later if you want to overclock. You can use the stock one now, save some money for later if you want an aftermarket HSF, and get better PSU now too. It's a win-win situation for you ;) 
Related resources
February 12, 2007 5:21:27 PM

As always, I will always recommend one of the most stable/solid PSUs of all time - the OCZ GameXstream Series, and in this case a ~$100 600W would be more than enough.


One of the first few people to include that jewel of a GPU in their rigs :) 
February 12, 2007 5:55:58 PM

I would buy a zalman 9700 or tuniq tower (CPU heatsinks) and really oc your processor can easy get 4300 or 6400 to 3ghz.
February 13, 2007 10:26:18 AM

Enough is always tough to figure. Quick scan of PSU on Newegg found 2 and I think your choice is a little better. Other has good name, and the rebate makes the price the same. Both modular.
Thermaltake 520 W
February 13, 2007 10:33:15 AM

The Hiper 530W has 28A so yeah it's more than enough for 8800gts, but not 8800gtx.
!