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advice for ~$700 budget gaming build

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August 21, 2007 8:25:41 AM

I have a 17" monitor that I run at 1024x768 and I'm not sure I even need to upgrade it. It doesn't have a DVI interface though I can probably find a converter for cheap. I don't see a huge need for some crazy 21" monitor when this one has played games like Doom 3 and WoW fine. I will be running Windows XP. I'd like to play games like Oblivion, Bioshock, and Age of Conan and Starcraft2 when they comes out.

Budget is $700-$800. I'm not sure about overclocking but am not against it and think it may even be fun if it won't lower the lifespan of my computer much. A friend is getting me a legal copy of Windows XP Pro so don't need to buy that. I'm thinking a 1950xt vid card would do fine although I'd go with an 8800GTS 320MB if the price would ever go down. 2GB of RAM and a 320GB HD should suffice. I don't need a fancy case or any extras. Do the power supplies that come with cases just not do the job? cause most of the builds I see have a different PSU. I don't even plan on burning CD/DVDs. I'd like the system to be good enough for games for the next few years and don't mind lowering settings rather than all max to keep framerates up. I'd have my current system for 6 years!

I hope to get all items from newegg.com in one shipment rather than messing with parts from all over.
August 21, 2007 9:21:40 AM

Well the first thing i need to point out is that you have a way to small budget for your game preference. But here we go...

Intel Core 2 Duo E6750 2,67GHz

DDR2 PC6400/800MHz CL5 2x1GB (Try getting a brand name like corsair)

(X1950Pro 256MB/512MB)/(X1950XT 256MB)/(8800GTS 320MB Maybe OC (core:550-575+)

The graphics card come with a DVI adapter so you can use your old monitor with no problem

Antec Sonata III (Has earthwatt 500w with 4 esata and 80+)

inte p35 Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3R

Samsung SpinPoint T166 HD501LJ 16MB 500GB / Samsung SpinPoint T166 HD501LJ 16MB 500GB / Hitachi Deskstar T7K500 HDT725050VLA360 16MB 500GB / Hitachi Deskstar T7K500 HDT725050VLA360 16MB 500GB
Any of this 4 disk will do the job. They make the best buy today.

If you pick the GTS you will go over budget, but if you are gonna use it for 6 years i would put the extra 100$
August 21, 2007 9:54:08 AM

I pointed out a low resolution and willingness to not run games at max settings, so I'm pretty sure $700-800 with no need for monitor or OS should suffice, but thanks for the advice so far.

I think I need to get a case, PSU, mobo, CPU, HD, DVD drive, vid card, RAM. I'll reuse the monitor, keyboard, mouse, speakers. Anything I am leaving out?
Related resources
August 21, 2007 10:37:34 AM

Well you have your build there, the only thing i left out was a 30$ Sata DVD. The only thing left for you is picking a HD and a GPU
Score for the GPU. Higher is better. 1024X768 Oblivion
x1950pro 256MB 26.2 FPS
x1950xt 256MB 31.7 FPS
8800 GTS 320MB 53.2 FPS
August 21, 2007 11:55:05 AM

You could save $ by using an AMD build, but Intel has been on top for about 1 year or so. I use AMD (mostly) because most of the systems that I build are under a tighter budget and any $ saved can be used elsewhere. Yes Intel can OC more/better than AMD right now. If I were to build a system for $700-$800 with what you are looking to do, I would build it with AMD in mind (just because of the budget). You could get the 8800 GTS 320MB and still have a decent budget gaming system for the budget that you want.
August 21, 2007 12:32:32 PM

AMD 4000+ Brisbane w/250gig HDD (combo price) = $121
2Gig's G.Skill DDR2 800 = $89
HIPER HPU-4B580-MS ATX12V v2.2 580W = $85
PNY VCG88GTS32XPB GeForce 8800GTS 320MB 320-bit = $280
BIOSTAR NF520-A2 Socket AM2 NVIDIA nForce 520 = $49
Rosewill R6423-P BK ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail = $21
Shipping = $18
Total = $663!!!
Well under budget. Yes you can tweak any part to get some more options, but this system should do you fine for awhile. You can upgrade CPU/mobo to whatever you like later, but this should do you fine for at least 2-3 years or more.
August 21, 2007 12:49:58 PM

Go with this:

AMD X2 4000+/Seagate 250GB HDD Combo(save $15) 120.98
ADATA 2GB PC6400 64.99
Foxconn 690G Motherboard (Great!) 47.99
CoolerMaster Centurion 541 39.99
ASUS DVD Burner 32.99
8800GTS/Antec NeoHE Combo (Saves you $30) 369.98

Total After $70 of MIRs and after Shipping = $674

All prices are new egg and I posted links below:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductCombos.aspx?Item=N...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductCombos.aspx?Item=N...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1682...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1681...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?item=N82E1682...




August 21, 2007 12:51:44 PM

lunyone said:
AMD 4000+ Brisbane w/250gig HDD (combo price) = $121
2Gig's G.Skill DDR2 800 = $89
HIPER HPU-4B580-MS ATX12V v2.2 580W = $85
PNY VCG88GTS32XPB GeForce 8800GTS 320MB 320-bit = $280
BIOSTAR NF520-A2 Socket AM2 NVIDIA nForce 520 = $49
Rosewill R6423-P BK ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail = $21
Shipping = $18
Total = $663!!!
Well under budget. Yes you can tweak any part to get some more options, but this system should do you fine for awhile. You can upgrade CPU/mobo to whatever you like later, but this should do you fine for at least 2-3 years or more.


Beat me to the punch, but my build uses a better motherboard, better EVGA card, and a better AntecNeoHE PSU :kaola: 
August 21, 2007 1:01:22 PM

Yep, just was putting out some specs real quick, since I'm at work :(  But the idea was the same :) 
August 21, 2007 1:25:19 PM

Nice builds.
1) Poster can save the extra money to buy nice games.
2) Add a Second HDD so he can backup from one to the other.
(I really suggest this - Never Ignore Backups.)

3) Upgrade to a C2D for more CPU power, but I dont think he needs it.
The AM2 Mobo should support next Gen AMDs, so when they come out and he decides he needs the power he will still have a drop in upgrade option.
August 21, 2007 1:42:17 PM

I think TSIMonster has a good build for you there. Lunyone is right about AMD being cheaper, allowing you to put more money into the GPU. You'll need it for the games you listed.
That mobo does look good, especially for a micro-ATX.
August 21, 2007 2:06:20 PM

lunyone said:
Yep, just was putting out some specs real quick, since I'm at work :(  But the idea was the same :) 

I feel ya. Either build would fair nicely for what he wants to do.
August 21, 2007 4:49:04 PM

Thanks alot for the posts guys! I was looking at alot of other posts for builds and everyone seemed to be going with Intel but it looks like better value for cpu/mobo for budget builds if I go with AMD.
August 21, 2007 7:18:24 PM

When you can get a CPU that can do everything you want without breaking a sweat for ~$60.. it just makes since. With so many awesome processors in the sub $100 price range.. the others just don't make since to me.
August 22, 2007 4:21:36 AM

TSIMonster said:
When you can get a CPU that can do everything you want without breaking a sweat for ~$60.. it just makes since. With so many awesome processors in the sub $100 price range.. the others just don't make since to me.


Agreed! :hello: 

I would by Intel if the budget allows, but to get what you need and a good video card to boot! This is why AMD makes sense right now. I can even get Intel Chips at a (reduced, aka Intel employee price :p  ), but I can still get an AMD system cheaper! I know the pro's and con's, but the everyday guy wanting to buy a gaming system, can't always get exactly what they want/afford. Good luck with your build, you'll definately enjoy it once it is up and running! I do!!!
August 22, 2007 8:44:00 PM

completely agree.
!